This year is all about giving back to our clients, to our readers and to our friends. We'll be far more diligent in posting information on a more regular basis and that begins with our new newsletter format which just went out. Lots of the information is posted below, so take a gander and get familiar with the layout.
Education: How to be a healthy athlete in 2016:
It's that time of year again where every magazine, newspaper and TV show is highlighting diets, weight loss and paths to a 'better you.' While I love the boost in motivation and potential that often comes with January, I also feel like it's 90% hogwash. This year, instead of trying to lose 10lbs. or eat less Chipotle, I challenge you to focus on four (4) simple areas and make lasting lifestyle adjustments.
If you can't see yourself doing it in 5-months or 5-years, then any new resolution isn't worth your time. Take each of the four areas listed below and make it priority #1 for 10 days. After that, add on to the next one for 10 days and so on. The key here is adding in, not taking away.
- More Sleep: I will scream over and over again until my athletes and clients start listening. The best recovery tool you have is sleep. While sleeping your body repairs itself, adapts to a harder training load and brings your hormones back into balance. Sleep loss on the other hand lowers glucose metabolism by 30% and time to exhaustion by 11%. It reduces sprint speed and hand-eye coordination and raises perceived exertion by 19%. You are not the athlete you could be when you are sleep deprived. You are also putting yourself at risk of injury and infection; your immune system weakens when you're not getting 7-10 hrs per night. The good news is, naps help and count towards your daily total. Find 30 min at lunch or before your evening training session to close your eyes. #carNAP
- Cook at Home: Eating out is nice, a luxury in fact. The problem comes when we are eating out all the time. Even when making seemingly healthy choices, we are consuming loads of sodium, sugar and calories. Make packing a lunch a priority, bust out the crockpot so you have dinner waiting when you get home and instead of that Starbucks turkey-bacon egg white sandwich, make egg and bacon mini muffins at home so you can grab and go all week.
- Eat From The Ground: It's just that simple. The single most impactful thing you can do for your health is to eat a more plant-based diet. I'm not telling you to ban meat from the house but I am advising you to eat less of it and to eat more items from the produce section. Consuming fruits and vegetables lowers inflammation, boosts energy and stamina, improves sleep quality and provides you with loads of vitamins and minerals to boost muscle function and growth.
- Track vitamins and minerals instead of weight and calories: Our home doesn't even have a scale; in fact I haven't been on one (except at the doctors office) for over 10 years. It was one of the best and most freeing things I've ever done. Weight is a number on scale, not a measurement of your value. Sure it's a helpful tool when your weight has become a medical issue, but most athletes don't have this problem. The same goes for calorie counting. I won't go into why calorie counting is mostly useless but I will say that it grinds you down on a daily basis and often misleads you. Instead of logging every single thing you eat into MyFitnessPal, track your daily servings of fruit and veg, add up your Vitamin D or Omega 3's, record your consumption of magnesium and potassium.
By changing your focus this year, I guarantee you can change your life-small daily life habits become a lifestyle and by the end of 2016, you'll look as good as you feel.
Person To Follow:
The Triumph Project: IG: @thetriumphproject
My good friend and adventure seeker, Jeff Fairbanks jumped into triathlon in 2013 after an extensive career in surfing, MMA and cycle cross. He has created an exception documentary film on the world of triathlons.
Showcasing pro and amateur athletes, his storytelling is gritty, powerful and inspiring. Whether you've been doing triathlons for years or never ridden a bike in your life, I highly recommend you check out this film.
Click HERE to check out the trailer and I dare you not to lace up your shoes and run!
A piping hot bowl of soup is the ultimate comfort food during the winter months. Soups are budget friendly, packed with vitamins and minerals and ready and waiting when you finish a long hard training session. You can pack up soup to take to work or consume immediately after a long Saturday training ride – in the winter I'll carry bone broth in a thermos to sip on as my recovery drink. Soups can be surprisingly filling and nutrient dense as well as help clean out the fridge. I'll share a recipe on our blog, but the basic ingredients are pretty easy: stock, vegetables, grain, meat or meat alternative, aromatics and toppings.
Greens White Bean and Sausage Soup (serves 4 hungry athletes)
4 chicken sausage links (sub tempeh for vegans)
6 cloves garlic
1 can low sodium cannellini beans
4 c spinach
4 c kale
2 c yellow onion diced
2 c sliced mushrooms
1 c sun dried tomatoes (in olive oil for flavor)
6 c low sodium chicken or veggie broth
1 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp ground pepper
2 tbsp ground Italian spices
Heat a large saucepan over medium heat and add sliced sausage. Brown for 2-3 min.
Add onion, garlic and olive oil and saute until brown. 4-5 min. Add in mushrooms and sun dried tomatoes- cook 2 min.
Partially mash beans with a potato masher (or fork) and add broth and beans to the pan and bring to a boil.
Stir in kale and spinach and seasonings and simmer over medium heat for 6-8 min.
Divide into 4 bowls and top with – avocado, hemp seeds, nutritional yeast, fresh herbs or pine nuts.