Boost your energy with these three simple steps.

Boost your energy with these three simple steps.

I want more energy!  I want more energy to do the stuff I like to do, like:

  • Spending time with my wife and our 13-year-old (even if he doesn’t want to spend a lot of time with us.) 
  • Working out!  Sometimes, I just don’t feel like I have the juice to work out.  
  • Writing, blogging and educating our members and fans.  Trust me on this one (unless your a writer, in which case, the struggle bus is real), writing takes a lot of energy.  To create a clear message that gets the point across without being verbose and aloof…it’s hard.
  • Helping more people.  I want to help as many people as I can, and when you’re dealing with people all day long in personal training sessions and in the gym, it can really zap your energy.
  • Finally…I want to have more energy to spend time on myself.  Every fit and healthy person that I KNOW (and I know a lot of them!  Plus, they all aren’t just personal trainers) understands that to have that status they must invest time on themselves.  I would go so far as to say 50% of your time should be spent on yourself if you want to be healthy and fit.  That’s not that much considering you should be sleeping for a third of the day.

Rare pic of the kid smiling.

You know what…I am not alone either.  I would go so far as to say EVERYONE wants more energy to do the things they want to do.  They usually turn to gallons of coffee, 5-hour energy shots, monster energy drinks, etc. Because those things give you energy!

Spoiler alert – they actually don’t give you energy.  That “buzz” you feel is caused by a lot of different things, but most noticeably caffeine increases the production of catecholamines and glucocorticoids…or what you would know as cortisol and adrenaline.  This, in turn, tricks you into thinking you have more energy when in reality, it’s just your body responding to an “upper”.  Not a GREAT idea if you’re already stressed out, operating on low levels of sleep and not getting enough food.  This can lead to a host of different health problems like – adrenal fatigue, weight gain, thyroid dysfunction, etc.

When someone comes into our gym, whether it be for personal training, fitness, health, weight loss, rehab, etc. we always ask them – “What are your goals?”

“Have more energy” is almost ALWAYS on that list of three.  In fact, it’s often number 1.

I recently sat down with a female member for a check in (yes…we like to check in with our members as much as possible, how else can we make sure they are happy?).  We will call her, Betty.  Betty is a mother of two young kids, works part-time, married to a husband that works for himself, weighs about 155 lbs, 5’7″, and is in her late 30’s.  There’s some context for you.  That’s probably a lot of you reading this right now!

She said she wanted to have more energy, I asked her what is she eating.  Betty replied (this is actually copied right out of my notes):

Breakfast – 2 hardboiled eggs, banana or one hard-boiled egg a cheese stick and a banana

Lunch – salad with a protein with balsamic dressing with a little cheese.  Protein is usually small chicken breast.

Snack – apple with peanut butter

Dinner – Porkchop, or some other piece of protein with side salad sometimes rice

After dinner snack – maybe 3 times per week – a bowl of chips, something salty. 

Generally, eats more food on Saturday and Sunday because they usually go out to dinner.  She eats the whole plate, will generally ask for double vegetables.

Drinks a few glasses of wine per week – “Can I drink more wine?”

Um…generally no.

I asked her if she felt like she was eating enough food, her reply was yes.  I asked her if she would be willing to eat more food…her reply was, of course, I don’t want to gain weight.

Understandable and totally logical.

I asked her what exactly is food?  Why do we need to eat it?  What does it do for us?  She immediately fired back – “it’s energy.”

Light bulb moment!

Food is energy people.  No food = no energy.  A calorie is simply a unit of energy your body uses to perform work.  More calories = more energy to burn = ability to do more work (or spend more quality time with your loved ones instead of just crashing on the couch).  But, the struggle with eating more food does pose a very real threat of gaining weight.  So, how do you eat more food to boost your energy WITHOUT gaining weight?

Follow these three simple steps!

  1. Lean protein.  Lean protein is a great way to boost your energy without adding a lot of body weight.  
  2. Fruits and veggies.  Fruits and veggies are TERRIFIC at giving you some energy.  Plus, they are very low calorie, but very nutrient dense.  Sometimes people lack energy because they don’t have enough B vitamins in their diet.  Fruits and veggies are great sources of those B vitamins.
  3. Chew real food.  Yep…seems pretty easy right?  Chewing food will actually give you some energy.  Have you ever felt tired and started chomping on some gum and immediately felt more energized?  It’s tough to feel sleepy when you’re chewing something.  I say real food because real food needs to be chewed.  You don’t need to chew yogurt, cheese or bread (to name a few processed foods) very much.  But you bite into an apple or carrots or a hamburger and you absolutely need to chew that in order to get it down.

There ya have it!  Some easy ways to boost your energy without gaining weight.  Plus, I would go so far as to say, if you have been trying to lose weight for a long period of time and you haven’t been successful – eating more real food might be your answer.  Maybe you are not feeding your body enough energy for it to burn that extra fat off?  

That’s just a thought from some guy who owns a weight loss, personal training gym who also has a Masters in Nutrition and Human Performance (graduated Magna Cum Laude)…but what does he know 😉

 

There are A LOT more ways you can boost your energy than just those three steps.  Let us show you how!  On February 5th we will be launching our next challenge where teams of five will compete against each other to see who can change their body fat percent the greatest in 12 weeks.  Winning team gets $5,000.00 (that’s not a typo!).  We call it our New Year Better You Team Challenge.

Join the challenge, have more energy, lose body fat, make some new friends…and maybe walk away with $1,000.00!  Click the link below to read more about it.

 

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KDR Healthy Eats: Baked Lime Chicken Bowls

KDR Healthy Eats: Baked Lime Chicken Bowls

Baked Lime Chicken Bowls

 

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2-3 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into cubes
  • 6 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 3 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
  • Juice from 2 limes
  • 2 tsp. chili powder
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • fresh cracked pepper, to taste

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. In a large resealable bag, combine olive oil, vinegar, lime juice, chili powder, paprika, garlic powder, salt and pepper.
  2. Cut chicken into cubes and add to marinade. Toss to coat. Marinate for 2 hours or up to overnight.
  3. Preheat oven to 400ºF. Pour marinated chicken onto baking sheet and bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through.
  4. Serve with cooked quinoa and Lemon Green Beans Amandine or Roasted Brussels Sprouts (or other green vegetable). Enjoy!
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KDR Healthy Eats: Bacon Avocado Egg White Breakfast Sandwich

KDR Healthy Eats: Bacon Avocado Egg White Breakfast Sandwich

Bacon Avocado Egg White Breakfast Sandwich

INGREDIENTS:

  • cooking spray
  • 1 1/3 cup AllWhites® 100% liquid egg whites
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 4 strip of bacon
  • 2 avocados, mashed
  • 2 whole wheat english muffins, halved and toasted
  • 1 tablespoon diced green onions
  • optional: sriracha

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Line a large plate with paper towels. Line up the strips of bacon 1″ apart on prepared plate. Cover with paper towel.
  2. Place bacon in microwave. Cook on HIGH for 2 minutes. Remove and flip the bacon. Cook another 2 minutes. Flip again. Cook another 2 minutes. Remove and let sit.
  3. Spray a small ramekin (2.5″) with cooking spray. Pour 1/3 cup of the AllWhites® 100% liquid egg whites into the ramekin. Season with salt & pepper.
  4. Place ramekin in microwave and cook on HIGH for 1 minute. Remove.
  5. Assemble the Breakfast Sandwich: toasted english muffin half, 2-3 tablespoons of avocado mash, 1 strip of bacon (halved), cooked egg whites, garnish with green onions and sriracha. Serve!

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KDR Healthy Eats: Turkey Meatballs with Zucchini Spaghetti

KDR Healthy Eats: Turkey Meatballs with Zucchini Spaghetti

Turkey Meatballs with Zucchini Spaghetti

INGREDIENTS:

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees
  2. Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add onion and 2 cloves of minced garlic. Cook until onions begin to soften, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat. Cool.
  3. In a large bowl combine onion mixture, ground turkey, egg, breadcrumbs, and herbs. Season generously with salt and pepper. Mix with hands until fully combined. If the mixture is too wet, add additional breadcrumbs.
  4. Form mixture into 12 meatballs. Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake for 15-18 minutes until just cooked through. Turn oven to broil and cook an additional 3-5 minutes until golden brown.
  5. Meanwhile, fill a medium saucepan with water and bring to a boil. Trim the ends from the asparagus and chop into 1-inch pieces. Add asparagus to boiling water and cook for 2 minutes. Remove pieces from boiling water (reserve water), and immediately submerge in ice water to stop the cooking.
  6. Place spiraled zucchini spaghetti in a large bowl. Pour remaining boiling water over the noodles to lightly cook.
  7. Heat remaining olive oil and garlic in large skillet until garlic is fragrant. Add red pepper flakes.
  8. Drain zucchini spaghetti and add to skillet with garlic and olive oil. Add asparagus and parmesan cheese. Toss to coat. Serve with meatballs and garnish with fresh herbs.

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KDR Healthy Eats: Ground Turkey Sweet Potato Skillet

KDR Healthy Eats: Ground Turkey Sweet Potato Skillet

Ground Turkey Sweet Potato Skillet

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 lbs extra-lean ground turkey
  • 1 tsp garlic clove, minced
  • ½ cup onions, diced
  • ½ cup yellow pepper, diced
  • 1 ½ cups sweet potato, diced
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • A pinch of red chili flakes
  • ½ cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • Fresh parsley for garnishing

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. In an iron cast skillet, heat olive oil over medium-high heat.
  2. Add ground turkey and garlic. Use a wood spoon breaking up the turkey while it cooks. Stir occasionally and cook for about 5 minutes.
  3. Add onions and yellow peppers and cook until onions are soft.
  4. Add the sweet potato, chili pepper, salt, and pepper.
  5. Cover the skillet and cook until they are tender. Don’t forget to stir occasionally. If necessary, add more olive oil or a little bit of water to cook the sweet potato faster.
  6. While the sweet potato is cooking, preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
  7. When the sweet potato is tender, add shredded mozzarella cheese and bring the skillet to the oven to melt the cheese* (see note below).
  8. When the cheese melts, remove from the oven, and garnish with parsley.

* You can just put the lid on the skillet for 5 minutes. The cheese will melt.

**You can keep this recipe in the fridge for up 6 days.

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KDR Healthy Eats: Taco Zucchini Boats

KDR Healthy Eats: Taco Zucchini Boats

Taco Zucchini Boats:

INGREDIENTS:

  • 4 medium zucchini
  • 1 lb lean ground beef
  • 1/4 cup minced onion
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt (or more to taste)
  • 1/2 tsp oregano
  • 1/2 cup salsa
  • 3/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 2 scallions, finely chopped

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Wash and dry zucchini and cut off ends. Slice zucchini in half, lengthwise. Use a spoon to hollow out zucchini, leaving a 1/4 inch inch shell (1/4 inch around the edges and the bottom). You can save the hollowed out zucchini chunks for another recipe or add some into your taco meat mixture. Place zucchini into a large baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  2. In a small bowl, add cumin, onion powder, garlic powder, paprika, chili powder, salt, and oregano. Mix together.
  3. In a large skillet, add ground beef and onions. Bring to medium high heat and cook until meat is nearly done. Sprinkle with seasoning mix. Continue to cook until meat is no longer pink. Stir in the salsa.
  4. Fill zucchini with taco meat mixture. Place into oven and bake for about 10 minutes or until zucchini is just cooked. Reduce oven temperature to 350°F.  Sprinkle cheese over zucchini. Place back into oven and cook an additional 5 minutes, so cheese is melted over the zucchini boats. Sprinkle scallions over zucchini before serving.

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