Read Your Labels!

I was at the grocery store yesterday, trying to refill the abyss left in our fridge and pantry by the 3 boys that live with me. Our kids love cereal, and well, as a mom, it’s an easy way to get them some quick carbs and energy, as well as a little protein from the milk, especially on busy mornings. We eat pretty healthy in our house – especially compared to the general public. And I’m not ashamed to admit that my youngest, who is most definitely what you would call a picky eater, has had his share of Lucky Charms and Count Chocula (seasonal obviously) for breakfast. The kid won’t eat anything that isn’t fried, dipped in ranch or coated in sugar, and his pickiness has resulted in more than a few meltdowns. From him. Oh, yes, and from me.

So as a new years goal, we are trying to reduce the amount of added sugar our kids, and we, eat. I think sugar is the devil. It is highly addictive, is added to pretty much everything, and I truly believe the snack food and sweetened drink/soda industry is basically killing us slowly. Now, I’m not saying I don’t partake. I LOVE me some sugar. Cookies, brownies, Nutella…Nutella…Nutella. But I really think I’m quite aware of when I’m consuming sugar. It’s the sweet stuff. The stuff that’s bad for me. Right?

So, back to the grocery store –  I’m walking down the cereal aisle – overwhelmed as we all should be by the thousands of options. For many months, I’ve been picking up Cheerios with Protein for days when I can’t make eggs for breakfast. I decided to check out all the Cheerios labels, to see how the added sugar stacked up with my 2 favorite types, Multi Grain and Protein, and my least favorite, plain ‘ol regular Cheerios. Here’s what I found:

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Can you guess which one is which?

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Yep, 17g of sugars in one serving of Cheerios with Protein. Compared to 1g of added sugar in the original Cheerios and 6g in the Multi Grain. 17g doesn’t sound like a lot. But it’s actually 3.4 teaspoons. Of sugar. And I’m going to assume that your cereal bowl probably holds a bit more than one serving of cereal, 1.25 cups. Most people probably eat about 2-3 servings of cereal at one sitting, plus adding the milk. So you’re getting about 500 – 750 calories, plus about 10 teaspoons of sugar. Yikes.

I apologize for all the math. I hate it too. (I also apologize for the really blurry pics – my phone was dropped in the toilet last year. Never mind how that happened.) But I think these 3 Cheerios boxes are a great example of how misleading advertising is. We all know how important Protein is in our diet, right? So of course our eyes will go directly to the “11g of Protein” on the box and assume it’s the better choice. But the added sugars and calories absolutely make it the worst choice of the three.

Remember every company out there is trying to get our attention. Trying to make us believe their product is the right one for us. It’s up to us as consumers to be diligent by reading labels & ingredients. I love Cheerios, and will still continue to eat them – but now just the basic ‘ol plain kind. But with milk and almonds for some added protein.

Oh, and the Lucky Charms I’ve fed my kid in the past (and will probably do it again in the future), 17g of sugar per serving. Exactly the same as the Cheerios with Protein.

If you have more questions about nutrition labels, or how to make healthy eating choices, contact me for a Diet/Lifestyle/Nutrition Counseling Session*!

*Stacey Moseley (AKA FitFatale Training and FitFataleMom.com) is not a Registered Dietician or Nutritionist. She is however, very enthusiastic about living a healthy lifestyle, and an NASM Personal Trainer and NASM Certified Weight Loss Specialist. **And Stacey Moseley has no affiliation with Cheerios, Cheerios with Protein, Multi Grain Cheerios, Count Chocula or Lucky Charms. She loves them all, and has since she was a kid. She just eats them in a bit more moderation now. 

 

 

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2015 Goals

It’s almost 2 weeks into the New Year and chances are, most of you have already started to slip on your New Year’s Resolutions. Did you know that 12% of all gym memberships are bought the first week of January, and yet only 20% of those memberships are being used by the second week of February? I don’t mean to be a Debbie Downer, it’s just that in most cases resolutions don’t work…

…But good news, Goals DO!

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If you want lasting, significant changes of any kinds (weight, fitness, financial, career, etc.) it’s really necessary to make a list of, a) what you want and b) how you’re going to get it & c) make it measurable.  So if you want to gain muscle and lose fat as your goal for 2015, you can certainly change how you eat and go to the gym more often, but it’s easier to track your progress with specifics, which in turn will help you stay on track and (yay!) actually lose fat and gain muscle.

Here’s a few tricks to accomplish your goals for 2015, whatever they may be:

  1. Be specific.  Make a target for what you want. If your trying to save $$$ – have a specific $ amount. If you’re trying to lose weight,  have a number you’d like to reach. If you’re attempting to get rid of debt, focus on one card to eliminate. You get the picture.
  2. Be Realistic. The 20 lbs. you put on didn’t happen overnight. So don’t expect it to go away in a week.  Give yourself time to reach your goals.
  3. Make it Measurable. Set a time frame for what you want and then work backwards. If your saving for a trip, do the research and know how much you’ll need. Work backwards and decide how much you’ll have to stash every month or week.  If your trying to lose weight, set a weekly time to weigh yourself. It will help you account for water fluctuations.
  4. Plan your steps and reward yourself.  Simply aiming for long-term goals way in the future can seem overwhelming. Make small proximal goals to help reach your long-term goal. To run a 10k in the spring means you need to run and strength train twice a week. Pull out your calendar and schedule for the next month. Once you’ve accomplished your first month, reward yourself with a new running hat or pedicure. And then set your next months goals.
  5. Share your Goals and Successes! Tell your family and friends what your going to accomplish this year -this helps make you accountable. Start a blog or post it on Facebook if you really want to shout it out. And ask a friend/partner/spouse to check in weekly/monthly to see how you’re doing.

And of course, if you are looking to lose 20 lbs., gain 5 lbs. of muscle or simply work out at least 3 times a week, a personal trainer is a great way to stay accountable help you reach your goals.

Good luck!

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Pumpkin Pie Protein Shake

I was craving a pumpkin sweet today. And honestly, I’ve had this craving every day since Starbucks released the Pumpkin Spice Latte again for this season. I think it’s pavlovian. The weather cools off a bit (well, into the 70’s for us Angelinos) and my body immediately wants leather boots, scarves, a Pumpkin Latte and Trader Joe’s Pumpkin Pop Tarts.

So, to help quench my pumpkin needs, I tested a few pumpkin shake recipes (special thanks to pole star Phoenix Kazree for the inspiration.) Ultimately, I just came up with my own – here’s the recipe:

2 TBSP Trader Joe’s Pumpkin Butter
1 scoop Vanilla Protein Powder
1/2 cup Milk of any kind
1/2 frozen banana
1 Small squeeze of honey (or a 1/2 tsp brown sugar or 2 dates) to taste for sweetness
Dash of Cinnamon & Clove to taste
Ice

No TJ’s in your area? any pumpkin butter will do, or use pumpkin puree and add 1 TSP of Pumpkin Pie Spice to taste. And I know the brown sugar should be a no-no, but if your a die-hard pumpkin pie freak like me, it helps with the taste. You can also use sugar substitute.

I’m not a Dietician, so I won’t list the calories/nutritional value, but I’m going to guess it’s a lot lower than a Pumpkin Spice Latte with a Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffin.

Oh, and if your REALLY in need of a Pumpkin Pie like treat, top it with Lite Cool Whip or a few TBSP of Real Light Whipped Cream, only 20 calories per serving.

Posted by Stacey at 10/15/2013 1:33 PM | Add Comment

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Try Something New!

Try Something New
Doing the same workout over and over is tedious for the brain and bad for the body.

When I get myself to the gym, I often see the same people on cardio machines for minutes, even hours on end. Spending that much time on the treadmill every week may burn calories and fat (and can get you caught up with your reading), but does little for building muscle and long term fitness goals. It can also get quite boring, making you lose interest in your fitness routine. Continuously doing the same workout will actually result in a plateau in weight loss and muscle growth. If you haven’t seen a change on the scale or in your body for awhile, it may be time to add a new workout.

Summertime is the perfect time for trying new fitness routines or equipment. Get outside for a mud run, ride bikes at the beach, or swimming at the local pool are great ways to shake things up in your training routine, and can build muscles you may have been neglecting.

I’m typically a gym rat and pole fitness gal. But, I’ve recently become addicted to TRX – a suspension training system, seen below.

My home gym has been recently updated (and quite beautifully I might add!) and has added a TRX training system, I’m like a kid in a candy store when I see new equipment. TRX uses your own body weight for all sorts of exercises, combining strength and stability. Adding this variation to my workouts has made a tremendous impact on my strength and endurance, and is great for those who do body weight sports (ie: pole fitness).

Not interested in a traditional workout? Try a new class instead. Zumba, Pole Dancing, Hooping, Aerial, Trapeze & CrossFit are all popular for those ready try something that’s not so traditional.

What I love about classes instead of a traditional gym is the sense of community they build. Personally, I head to the gym when I need an hour alone with my ipod. But, when I’m feeling the need for a push from my peers and encouragement to try a new crazy pole trick, I head to class. If you live in the LA area, head to Luscious Maven for Pole Fitness and try a class with me! I teach all levels!

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What’s the best workout?

What’s the Best Workout?
I get this question all the time. How can I loose my belly? I want to tone up my thighs, what should I do? Back fat – how do I get rid of it? Everyone has an area that bugs them, a desire to get in shape, feel strong, gain energy and maybe fit back into those before baby jeans again. But the reality is many people, especially busy moms, have no idea where to start. And unfortunately, pinning pics of washboard abs to your fitness board on Pinterest isn’t the best way to get started on your goals.

I say, start small. If you don’t work out at all, aim for 2 workouts a week. Make it simple. Maybe a walk around the block followed by some walking lunges or a workout DVD. Once you’ve done that for a month, set another goal. Add a third workout or try jogging for half of the walk. After a month of 3 workouts a week, maybe try adding a yoga or Zumba class. Making small, measurable and attainable goals is the best way to get started on a fitness program. It will keep you from injury and burnout and allow you the time to make fitness a lifestyle change rather than a short term fix.

So, what’s the answer? What IS the best workout? Well, it’s the one that you do. There is no magic pill. There is no secret that fit, healthy individuals have acquired and haven’t shared. It is quite simple actually:

1. Eat healthy – Avoid processed foods, refined sugar and fatty foods, sugary drinks, etc. Eat veggies and fruit. ALOT of Veggies and Fruit.

2. Keep Moving – Whatever your choice of workout, don’t stop. Keep moving. Lift weights or your own body weight, and get your heart pumping with cardio.

3. Consistency – This is the key. If you eat well and exercise most of the time, the bad days will be outnumbered and you will ultimately get fit, lose weight, and gain muscle. So don’t let one bad meal (or dessert) or a few days off from workouts get you down. Make healthy eating and workouts the norm, and desserts and couch time the exception.

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Posted by Stacey at 4/22/2013 8:59 PM | Add Comment

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