Back in my early 20’s I used to do an hour cardio a day and then go home and nibble on HALF A BOX of cereal after my carb-fest dinner.
In complete transparency I’d ALSO do an hour weights a day and walk to and from the gym. In perhaps too much transparency (!) if I was going through a break up (which was regular back then) I’d easily demolish an entire box of my fav cereal: Crunchy Nut Cornflakes.
This certainly wasn’t an effective eating or exercising strategy. As you might have guessed I didn’t get the results I was seeking and even if I had been able to stay afloat via the Cardio-Carb-o-la-Crap-o-la cycle? Well, 20 years on – who has time for 2 1/2 hours exercise a day?!!
In this month in review show I’m covering:
Why You Can’t Out Train A Bad Diet.
I’ll also chat a little food and a little mindset. I’ll share what’s been rockin this past month and what’s been a tad more struggle street. Above all, my intention is to make this content applicable to YOU and creating and keeping a fit, healthy plant strong body.
Let’s get rolling…
First up, FOOD… I had a recipe win this month with tempeh mince.
I’ve never cooked tempeh before and for my fellow tempeh virgins (!) tempeh like tofu is made from soy beans. However it has a higher protein content and the fermentation process means its nutrients are more digestible and bioavailable.
The mince recipe is not my own, it’s curtesy of ‘I’m a little vegan’ and here’s a link to the full recipe however basically to make 3 generous serves you’ll need:
1 punnet of mushrooms, 1 onion, half a packet of plain tempeh, 2 cloves of garlic, handful of mixed nuts, handful of sun-dried tomatoes.
Blend these first 6 ingredients in a food processor to form a crumb like consistency.
Next add the mixture to a heated pan and sauté for 10 min. Add a can of chopped tomatoes. Bring back to the boil reduce and leave to simmer. Season with basil, oregano, salt, pepper, chilli flakes.
I demolished the tempeh mince in 3 different meals with varying degrees of effort and similar degrees of extreme deliciousness.
One: Kale Crisp and Tempeh Mince Nachos with Sun-dried Tomato Cashew Cheese.
This one was the most work. Though remember – I’m a lazy cook – so really it wasn’t much work! If you make your mince and cheese ahead (both freeze fine) it’s easy. To assemble you’ll want 1/2 a small bunch of kale made into crisps and a half dozen of so cos lettuce leaves to act as nachos. Ladle in 1/3 of the mince mix. Additional toppings are limitless however I’m a fan of red onion, capsicum, corn, cherry tomatoes, avocado and coriander. Finish with a couple of heaped tablespoons of sun-dried tomato cashew cheese.
Two: Cabbage / Cos Nacho’s with Nutritional Yeast and Mixed Seeds.
This one was super simple. To assemble you’ll want a mix of cabbage and cos lettuce leaves to act as nachos. Ladle in 1/3 of the mince mix. Additional toppings are again limitless. Finish with a tablespoon each a hemp and pumpkin seeds. Plus a tablespoon of nutritional yeast and if you have it a teaspoon of dulse flakes.
Three: Cos Tacos with Kale-slaw and Coconut Yoghurt.
This one is definitely a 5 minute meal if you’ve made the mince in advance. To assemble you’ll 6 cos lettuce leaves (doubled up to make them sturdier to hold) to act as tacos. Line the cos with kale-slaw bought from the supermarket. Mine has: kale, beetroot, carrot and red cabbage. Ladle in to each cos taco 1/3 of the mince mix. Finish with a heaped tablespoon to each taco of coconut yoghurt.
I’m really happy with each of these meals and will be making them again soon. One piece of beginner advice though? That un-marinated tempeh on it’s own before cooking with everything else tasted vile!
Let’s chat EXERCISE and Why You Can’t Out Train A Bad Diet.
It breaks my heart to see someone slogging away at exercise they do not enjoy and getting zero result for all their exercising effort because they are yet to dial in their nutrition. Partially because I know it does not have to be that hard and also because I’ve 100% been there!
To be clear, unless your food is already amazing, incorporating exercise alone is never going to work for a weight loss goal.
Let’s say you eat 3 meals + 2 snacks/drinks/alcohol a day then that’s 35 times a week what you eat is deciding how your body looks and performs. Versus say exercise 3 times a week. Even exercising every single day does not stack up next to the number of times you eat in a day.
Food Is It.
If you’re looking to lose a mere pound a week then that’s 500 calories A DAY you need to burn via moving more or slash via eating better. For someone my size that’s over an hour a day jogging. Or 2 hours walking. It’s 60 minutes working at the highest possible intensity with my weights.
Perhaps you’re a cardio Queen (or King) and you LOVE it? Well, there are still some common pitfalls to consider and let’s analyze them over a 10 week period:
One: Over ten weeks – how many of those sessions do you actually make?
And, of those you make, for how many are you able to work at a high intensity. To really give your best effort? Yes, just turning up counts – so far are creating that positive habit. However turning up and plodding through isn’t doing you any favours if you’re trying to out-train that burger and ‘a couple’ of chips last night.
Two: Are you tracking your food to check your consumption isn’t sneaking up to cope with the extra exercise?
This happens so easily. It leads to the heart-breaking fitter and fatter.
Three: Perhaps you’d like to see faster results… and you up the exercise anti? Training 5 or 6 days or even every day? Now I train 5 or 6 days and it works for me – however the vital consideration is “What works for YOU?”
A. Is it sustainable?
B. Is it sustainable without extra low value food or even extra quality yet high carb food?
By low value I mean processed, fake food… anything you buy in a packet with more than a couple of ingredients. ONE ingredient food is always best.
C. Do you see it as a privilege to have the time and health to exercise this regularly? Or is it a boring, tedious ‘necessary evil’ that you’ll ditch at the hint of a better option? Finding the positive in exercise is the only way you’ll stick with it long term.
Common pitfall Four: When you go on holiday? Travel for business? Move house? Change job? Can you keep up that exercise routine? If you’re just hanging on in there for dear life now – what happens when life really gets crazy?
Alternatively 500 calories is:
- 85 grams of roasted nuts.(I’ll eat over a 100 grams today as PART of morning tea!)
- 2 medium slices of pizza.
- 1 medium serve of french fries with tomato sauce.
- 4-5 glass’s of wine or beer.
- 1 cup of chocolate ice cream.
That’s 500 calories EACH and 2,500 total.
So, you could slog away 5 hours a week running or super intensely training with weights. Or walk for 10 hours! And then wipe that calorie deficit (Yes, that one you needed to lose ONE pound) in one foul sweep with a single meal such as the one above.
WOW. That’s disheartening right?
And that is why I recommend NEVER to weigh food and exercise up against each other. The mindset of “if I eat this then I have to train for this long” is no fun. It’s restrictive.
It puts the focus on “what can I get away with?” with your food and “what’s my punishment?” with your exercise.
The toughest way to lose weight is via restrictive calorie counting of crap-o-la (and high caloric density) food. You get to eat next to nothing. And it has close to zero micronutrient value so your body plagues you with cravings for nutrients… no, not more sugar and fat, your body is craving the whole food it’s missing not more dead food.
The easiest way to lose weight is to swap the vast majority of the processed food you eat for natural, satisfying, one ingredient food. Start with fibrous veg to keep you feeling full and allow for large quantities with low caloric density. You never need to even measure these FREE fibrous veg. You can eat your fill. Amp up your veg base with your fav plant based protein and also some good fats to satisfy you.
For more info on building your best plant based meal that lets you sculpt a fit, strong, healthy body without feeling restricted or bored or like you have to spend a heap of time in the gym please check out my Free 3 Day Easy Vegan Plan (I’ll link to it in the show notes and for those just cruise to strongbodygreenplanet.com and search 515 ).
For the final part of todays show I want to move a little more rapid fire. A recommendation, who’s inspiring me and also my biggest struggle.
So far as a recommendation I often share a Podcast or Documentary.
However this month I’m loving my new Vegan wallet and I want to share the love! I belatedly realised my old wallet was dead cow skin. Like so many things I encounter in day to day life. As I’ve shared before I find the food part of living a vegan lifestyle relatively easy. It’s just EVERYTHING else. So, this wallet is from Urban Originals. It’s leopard print – you’ll see it in the show notes – and it rocks. You’ll find an awesome selection of vegan leather wallets and bags at https://uo.com.au.
Who’s been inspiring me?
The vegan activists under fire from the dairy industry right now. I have so much respect for the grace under fire activists like Joey Carbstrong have been showing especially in live television and radio interviews. In contrast I’m beyond disgusted to see mainstream media controlling / distorting the narrative presented to the public and resorting to personal smear campaigns against individual activists. I guess it reflects the HUGE progress the vegan movement is making. It’s threatening to both consumers of and producers in animal agriculture who are resistant to change and who are choosing to continue perpetuating the unnecessary cycle of cruelty.
As the Gandhi quote says: First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.
My biggest struggle street this month?
It’s the realization or RE-realization that you can’t want something for someone more than they want it for themselves.
I’m actually not talking about eating plant based here although I absolutely could be. I felt real concern for my meat, dairy and egg eating parents health after watching the documentary: What The Health. However I can’t want them to live a long and fit, healthy, pain free life more than they want it. Hell, I can’t even get them to watch the doco in lieu of buying me a birthday present! YES, I did unsuccessfully try that strategy last year… let’s chalk that up as Score 1 to decades of indoctrination and Score 0 to a loving daughters attempted emotional blackmail!
Equally I can’t want my one on one clients to fuel their bodies the food that helps them shift stubborn fat more than they want it.
I go through phases in my career of accepting that all I can do is provide the best information, inspiration and support however I can’t do The Reps or The Meal Preps as it may be. And then, I hit a phase of frustration (now!) where it gets a little tougher to hear the same old excuses.
My takeaway to both me and YOU, is to only focus on that which we can control.
Anything else is futile. And such a frustrating waste of time and energy that would be better served devoted to those things that we can control.
Like our own daily food and information consumption choices.
Or perhaps our responses to the same old excuse from others! In my case I’m RE-commited to either removing myself from the situation or engaging with empathy, understanding and faith while doing my upmost to not enable self destructive behaviour!
To get actionable today, is there anything beyond your control that you’ve been allowing to waste precious time and energy this month? What actions within your control would you be better served by focusing on instead?
That brings us to the end of todays show.
Is there anything you’d love me to cover in an up coming show? Please let me know. I’d love to hear from you via the show notes or even better via an iTunes review. Those little reviews absolutely 100% make my day.
Thanks so very much for hanging with me today. I appreciate it. Till next week, happy training and remember… Creating a body and life you love is Freedom. (If this ex-carb queen, NON-genetically gifted, naturally uncoordinated VEGAN chick can do it – so can YOU!!!)
If you liked ‘Month In Review plus: Why You Can’t Out Train A Bad Diet‘ you’ll also like: 3 Stupid Diet Mistakes Smart People Make. (Weekly Wrap #9)
If you’re yet to share the Healthification love – just click here to zip over to iTunes and leave an honest rating and review. It’d help me out big time. With gratitude, Kate.