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Fail Proof your Plan – making healthy work for you

15 Jan

My day job is as a sales person. One of the things I learnt when I first began training is that anybody can sell to the person who has already committed to the sale. A real salesperson makes their mark by selling to the person who is not yet quite convinced.

The ability to sell to the uncommitted person is called objection handling. We as sales people go through the list of different reasons why someone would object to purchasing our product/service and plan positive solutions. I use the same rationale in everyday life and in making sure my plans work.

So when approaching my healthy eating I always try to think about everything that could happen to get in the way and prepare accordingly. So here are a few of the things that I think about to make sure that my plans stay on track:

Running out of time:

We all have busy lives. And sometimes, things just don’t go to plan. But do not give me the “I don’t have time” excuse. I’m going to bust this one straight up the middle because its CRAP. Absolute complete and utter CRAP. If you have time to watch television, you have time to cook. Yes I understand that you may have work, kids, university, sport etc but seriously if you don’t have time to make food you’re kidding yourself.

Most of the meals on my page take less than 20 minutes to cook. Tonight I cooked a weeks worth of meals in under an hour. (2 meals – 8 servings of food)

I’m not saying it’s always easy – but it is definitely possible. A little planning is all it takes…

Solution: PLAN PLAN PLAN – Everytime I see a recipe that I want to cook I put it into a recipe folder. Every Sunday I set aside a time to cook one or two meals from that list that can be frozen and reheated when ready. Eat some immediately and freeze some. Within a month you have four or five different meals in the freezer to used whenever you need. Then even when everything absolutely goes to shit – you have something ready to go.

It’s raining, too cold, too hot to train:

This one can potentially be a legitimate excuse. For example, I refuse to leave for a bike ride in the rain – it’s just too dangerous to ride on the roads when cars barely look out for you in normal weather conditions. But that doesn’t mean I don’t have a plan.I always look at my training plan and have back up options ready. If it’s raining, I’ll schedule in a crossfit session or maybe some yoga. If it’s too hot to run, I’ll jump in the pool and go for a swim (or again head to the air-conditioned gym).In the middle of summer, I know it will be too hot if I don’t train early. So I get up at 5, get my training out of the way and get to enjoy the rest of my day.Your other option is to HARDEN THE FUCK UP!!! Stop whinging and just get your shit done. It sounds harsh but a little rain or sun isn’t going to kill you. At the end of the day, you have to choose how important your health is to you…

What can I do when I’m going out with friends and they’re all drinking/eating/partying?

This one can be as tough or as easy as you make it. You can either choose to stick to your plan absolutely or let it go.  For me it depends how often this is occurring. If its more than once a week than I think you need to be careful. But the basics I try to follow:

1. I can drink whenever I want (although I find that usually this means a glass of wine every two weeks).

2. Follow as closely as possible the eating plan by ordering dressings on the side, no chips. However be realistic – a little balsamic vinegar will not kill me.

This is a great guide that I used to get me started. It has lots of helpful hints: http://www.theclothesmakethegirl.com/2011/07/14/paleo-social-butterfly/

So those are just some of the things I do to make sure my healthy living plan succeeds. Now it’s your turn. Sit down and work out what it is that stops you from reaching your goals. Now… what are you going to do about it?

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Magnesium: the missing link in reducing Physical and Psychological stress?

19 Dec

Let’s get back to basics. I am a big believer in treating the cause of a problem rather than the symptoms. So I do not take paracetamol, cold and flu tablets or antihistamines. Instead, I would rather understand why I am having the symptoms and see if I can change my behaviour to rectify the problem.

A few years ago I was having lots of trouble with muscle spasms, I couldn’t sleep but I was always tired. At the same time I was exercising at least three hours a day for my upcoming triathlon, working a full time and a part time job and in the midst of one of my many attempts at vegetarianism. At the time I thought I was being extremely healthy. Obviously looking back there were a few problems glaring me straight in the face but that’s a story for another time 🙂

When I started doing a little research I began to hear more and more about Magnesium. Magnesium is a mineral responsible for such things as bone formation, nerve and muscle relaxation, the metabolism of proteins, carbohydrates and fats etc. And yet so many of us are deficient in this basic mineral. So here are a few things I have learnt about Magnesium to date:

Symptoms/Conditions associated with magnesium deficiency:

  • anxiety
  • depression
  • muscle weakness
  • fatigue
  • eye twitches
  • PMS
  • insomnia
  • apathy
  • apprehension
  • poor memory
  • confusion
  • anger
  • nervousness
So, with that in mind, I have put together a list of some great Paleo friendly foods that are high in Magnesium. 
Kelp
Pumpkin Seeds
Almonds
Spinach
Brazil nuts
Pecan
English walnuts
Coconut meat, dried
Dates
Collard greens
Shrimp
Avocado
Parsley
Prunes, dried
Garlic
Raisins
Crab
Banana
Sweet potato
Blackberry
Beets
Broccoli
Cauliflower
Carrot
Celery
Beef
Asparagus
Chicken
Green pepper
Winter squash
Cantaloupe
Eggplant
Tomato
Milk
Now of course it’s not just eating these foods that will help. There are issue with Magnesium absorption as well as the the way that these foods are cooked that will affect the amount of magnesium you are receiving. As I learn more I will continue to post the info.

Additional Links

http://www.nutritionalmagnesium.org/

http://nutritionalmagnesium.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=290%3Aa-look-inside-the-cell-by-andrea-rosanoff&catid=91%3A

http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=nutrient&dbid=75 (lots of food ideas here)

As always, I must note that I am not a medical professional, so the thoughts and ideas referenced above are collections of information I have gathered. Readers should not use this information for self-diagnosis or self-treatment, but should always consult a medical professional regarding any medical problems and before undertaking any major dietary changes. This information is not meant to be substituted for medical advice.