Love Out Loud

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Archive for the month “January, 2013”

Protein…how much should you really be consuming?

In order to get your PT certification with Cooper’s, you have to have a little knowledge of nutrition, and that was fine for me for a while. A month or so ago, I decided I wanted a little bit more background in order to better serve my clients and my family, so I went back to Cooper’s and took their Providing Dietary Guidance: Nutrition Specialty Course. I am still not a complete expert, but I have been taught by the best.

One thing that really bothered me while taking this course, was the fact that people nowadays think that the more protein you get, the better. That is simply not true. I’m not sure what or who is putting this information out there, but just because you lift does not mean you need 150 grams of protein. Your protein intake is probably surpassing what your body needs. Hopefully by the end, you can decide whether or not that protein shake is totally necessary.  Here’s the breakdown.

  • What exactly is protein? Protein is large, complex molecules made up of “building blocks” called amino acids and make up about 20% of body weight. We can call amino acids “building blocks” because that’s essentially what they do: grow and repair our cells. They also aid in the synthesis of enzymes and hormones, but their main job in our body is to repair and grow. There are 9 essential amino acids that we must get through our food, and the rest are non-essential that can be made by the body. There are four calories in every gram of protein. 
  • Where can we get protein? You can get complete proteins (proteins which contain all the essential amino acids in proper balance) from animal sources like milk, cheese, eggs, meat and fish. If you are intolerant to dairy, soy products like tofu, soy milk and soy flour are also complete proteins. Incomplete proteins (proteins that have to be combined in order to receive full benefits) are found in non-animal sources like most grains and cereals, legumes, nuts/seeds and green veggies. Bottom line is that you can find protein in a lot more places than meat. This is awesome if you’re a vegetarian!
  • How much do I need? Here’s the million dollar question that I want to address. The RDA or Recommended Daily Allowance is 10-35% of your daily calories. In most adults (and by most adults I mean MOST ADULTS….that’s probably you), it works out to be about .36g/lb of body weight. If you’re into kg’s, that’s .8g/kg of body weight. If you weight 150 lbs, you really only need about 54 g of protein a day. Here’s who needs a bit more: Infants need about 1 g/lb (2.2 g/kg), endurance athletes (those who train VIGOROUSLY for over an hour 5 days/week) need about .5-.6 g/lb (1.2-1.4 g/kg), and strength athletes (again, those who train VIGOROUSLY for 1-2 hours for 5-6 days/week) need about .7-.8 g/lb (1.6-1.7 g/kg). The population of real endurance and real strength training athletes is very small. Odds are, you are part of the “most adults” population. (Vigorously means at a high intensity, which is 85% of your target heart rate…and if we are all honest with ourselves, most of us don’t work out at that level of intensity for the whole workout.)

Here are some more interesting facts about protein:

  • If you take in too much, your body stores is as fat. On a high protein diet and can’t lose weight? That’s why.
  • Protein is a minor source for energy during a workout. It gives us maybe 5-10% of our energy…primary source for energy? CARBOHYDRATES.
  • More protein does not mean more muscle mass….see two points above.
  • Other dangers of too much protein are dehydration risk since protein catabolism requires water,  urinary calcium loss, increased risk for coronary artery disease due to high fat content of some meats, and GI upset (no one likes a tummy ache). Also, protein supplements are very high in cost.
  • You only need protein supplements if you aren’t/can’t get enough from your diet. If you have to, whey protein is the best since its absorbed quickly.
  • Chocolate milk works the exact same, if not better, than an expensive protein shake after a workout.

Please, instead of listening to everyone that says you need more protein, more protein, just calculate your RDA and you should be just fine. A healthy diet is one that emphasizes moderation and balance…even with essential nutrients.

Stay sweaty, my friends!

Sources: The Cooper’s Institute “Providing Dietary Guidance: Nutrition Specialty Course;

All of Cooper’s Institute claims are backed up with scientific, peer reviewed, published research. If you find something that you want to pursue, always make sure its backed up with the right kind of research.


Training Tuesday-Body Combat

Feel like mixing up your routine a bit? I totally recommend taking a class (if offered) called Body Combat. Its a Les Mills workout, so its brought to you by the same people who do Body Pump and Body Flow, and you can order it if you can’t find a class near you. I call it high cardio martial arts. Don’t let the name fool you, you aren’t fighting someone…you’re just fighting your excuses, your fat, your out-of-shapeness, whatever is hurting you at the time. Its a mix of punching, kicking, shuffling, a little dancing and getting your butt moving.

Since I am pregnant, I had to really concentrate on holding myself back and staying at a lower intensity…the music and instructors really make you want to get loud and fast! I couldn’t do the jump shuffling and the jump kicking, but I made sure to keep my feet marching so I could get all the cardio I could out of it. Even if you’re a beginner, there are options you can take so you don’t feel like you’re going to die. If you’ve ever taken Turbo Kick, its similar, but not as high impact. Perfect for us preggos out there! I did get a little hot toward the end (might have had something to do with the 50 women that were sweating next to me), so I had to take some time to cool myself down. Other than that, this is a workout that I think all levels can do, even us preggos. (Again, if you are just starting a workout routine as a pregnant woman, work your way up to this…don’t start with it.) And make sure to take lots of water!

Your back, butt, biceps, abs and shoulders will be super sore the next couple days. These are all the things that I feel need to be worked as a pregnant woman. We can’t do crunches or most ab work, so getting a core workout indirectly from all the punching is perfect. Our upper body tends to get a little weak while we are carrying our bundles of joy in our bellies, and who doesn’t need a strong butt?


If you can’t tell, I absolutely loved this workout and plan to work it into my routine (if I can ever get back into one!).

Stay sweaty, my friends!

23 weeks and counting!

Here’s a little update to my pregnancy.

  • Baby Boy is growing and getting stronger every day. I can really start to feel his kicks and punches now…is he doing Turbo Kick in there or what? A little TMI…the placenta is right up against my tummy so its acting as a blocker to a lot of his movements. Apparently that’s totally normal, so if that’s your case, welcome to the club!
  • I am feeling fantastic. I’ve got the middle of the second trimester energy and don’t always need a nap at the most inconvenient times (ie. when my son gets home from preschool and wants to play and all Mommy wants to do is nap.)
  • My lower back hurts a lot of the time…probably from picking up Little Man, who, incidentally, is not so little anymore.
  • I try to get to the gym at least three times a week. I love going, and I love the stares I get from the macho men who can’t believe a pregnant lady is still in the free weight room. That’s right fellas! I’m carrying a human and lifting weights….what did you do today?  The head (woman) trainer told me that its cute to watch me work out…I’ve decided that I’m going to take that as a compliment.
  • Speaking of the gym, I’m trying out a new class they are starting tomorrow called Body Combat. Its like cardio martial arts from what I gather, and I’m super excited about it. I’ll let you know if I die or not.
  • Eating is interesting. I’m not starving all the time anymore, although I do feel like I’m constantly grazing. That’s why I try to only keep healthy snacks in the house. Chocolate milk is one of the indulgences, though. I can’t eat a whole lot at a time b/c Baby Boy has set up a pretty tight camp in there. If I eat too much (a normal person’s meal) I’m miserable for about an hour.
  • Water seems to be the thing that I have the most trouble with. I’ll drink enough one day and then only drink one bottle the next. Preggos…DRINK WATER! And now I’m going to take my own advice.
23 weeks :)

23 weeks 🙂

There’s a little bit of what’s going on in my world right now. How are y’all doing?

Stay sweaty, my friends!

1/8/2013 Workout..quick leg and shoulders

Today I did a pretty quick leg and shoulder/back workout that’s perfect for you preggos out there, or those of you who are just beginning to workout. If you don’t have a lot of time to workout, or you don’t want to do a super long workout, combine exercises that work different muscles. You’ll burn more calories and be done with your workout in no time.

  • 10-20 minutes of any type of cardio you want. I have to do the stationary bike, now. Walking on the treadmill at the speed I want to walk at gives me a killer cramp in my lower belly. Not a good place to have a cramp when you’re carrying a human there.
  • Squat with a overhead shoulder press. Start with your hands down by your side, squat as low as you can safely go, then press the weights up to the ceiling. I did 12 lb weights, 10 reps, 3 sets, but for those of you just starting out or who haven’t been working out as long as I have, 5-8 lbs should be enough.
  • Dead lift with upright row. Dead lift with a barbell keeping your back straight and knees slightly bent, then as you stand up, bring the bar up to your chest, elbows pointed up. Lower the bar and repeat. I used a 30 lb bar, 10 reps, 3 sets
  • Plie squat with lateral raise.  Start with your legs in a wide stance, knees and toes pointed out arms straight down and drop your butt, as you stand, raise the weights out to the side of your body until you look like a T. I used 10 lbs, 10 reps, 3 sets.

Stay sweaty, my friends!

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