Thursday, April 26, 2012

The Eat-Clean Diet

I've never been big on diets.  I've always relied on eating healthy and fitness.  A few weeks ago, my Barre instructor asked if anyone wanted to participate in a 2 week cleanse.  I was interested, as I have never strictly followed a diet or cleanse.  She sent me a link to purchase The Eat-Clean Diet Recharged! by Tosca Reno.

Right away, I was interested to learn more about this cleanse.  I've been stuck in a rut for some time trying to find different ways to maintain my weight while toning up certain areas.  I work out 5-6 times per week and I eat pretty healthy.  Vegetables and fruits have always been a part of my daily meals, yet I am never fully satisfied with my body image.

So what does Tosca recommend?  Her whole book is full of useful tips and tricks, and even includes meal plans and grocery lists.  I've highlighted below a few of the most helpful to me:

  • Eat 6 small meals a day, every two and a half hours is recommended
  • Drink 2-3 liters of water a day, and when you think you're hungry, drink a glass before digging in
  • Eat breakfast within one hour of rising
  • A combination of lean protein and complex carbohydrates at every meal will yield the best results
  • Depend on fresh fruits and vegetables for fiber, vitamins, nutrients and enzymes
  • Adhere to proper portion sizes

I felt like I was already adhering to most of these tips.  It's the "what to avoid" list that really got me:
  • Avoid most processed foods, particularly white flour and sugar
  • Avoid chemically charged foods
  • Avoid food containing preservatives
  • Avoid artificial sugars and foods

Learning what these artificial, chemically charged, preservative foods were an eye opener for me.  So far for this cleanse I have given up bread, all pasta, dairy, and processed foods.  The meals I was preparing before this diet were particularly healthy, but they are now even more.  Because it is Spring, it is a lot easier to add in more fresh fruits and vegetables.  I also find it easier to eat six smaller meals at work than when I am at home.  I have a routine five days a week at work for eating my healthy snacks and lunch.  On the weekends when the routine is off proposes a challenge for me.

Here is a look into my new daily eating and fitness routine Monday-Friday:

  5:50 AM     Wake up
  6:00 AM     Breakfast consisting of 1/2 cup multi-grain cereal and 1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk
  7:00 AM     45 minutes to an hour of exercise-  Mondays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays are Barre;          
                          Tuesdays and Fridays are running
  8:30 AM     Handful of natural, unsalted almonds
10:30 AM     An apple or banana with unsalted peanut butter (I love Trader Joe's)
12:00 PM     Lunch consisting of a handful portion of baked chicken and veggies, or a spinach salad
                           topped with baked chicken, salmon, or tuna full of vegetables and a little balsamic vinegar
  2:00 PM     Mixed bowl of  fresh fruit; grapes, kiwi, strawberries, cantaloupe, and pineapple
  3:30 PM     Handful of fresh veggies; carrots, tomatoes, and cucumbers
  6:30 PM     Dinner consisting of one of the recipes from her book or the same as lunch
  8:00 PM     One small piece of organic 73% dark chocolate
10:00 PM     Bed

I'm on day 10 of this cleanse, and I can already tell a difference in my energy level.  Right away, I stopped having the urge to nap at 3 PM in the afternoon.  I wake up every morning raring to get in a high energy work out, and I don't tire as easy during my long runs.  This could all be in my head, but I feel like it has a lot to do with this cleanse.  All in all I feel like this has been a great experience for a "spring cleaning" (if you will) of my body and increase in natural energy.

If you have any questions, please feel free to ask away!  I will also be posting a few of my new favorite recipes I have tried from Tosca's book tomorrow.

{Disclaimer:  I am not a nutritionist, health guru or anyone certified to give advice.  These opinions were formed on my own, and the facts were referenced from Tosca Reno's "The Eat-Clean Diet Recharged". Tosca's Eat Clean website is also full of useful information.}


Tara said...

Thank you for sharing this! It's so true that chemically charged and processed foods can do damage to your body and suck out your natural energy and nutrients. I'm trying to eat healthier myself and I can definitely tell when I lack in my water consumption.

Loved reading, please keep posting! :)

Becky said...

I'm thinking of doing a 30 juice fast, but I'm nervous! I totally agree with the way Spring makes you feel and all the fresh fruits and veggies.

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