Category Archives for "Mash Potatoes Nutrition"

Protein Made Simple by Coach Jacky Bigger, M.S.

Check out The “Eat What You Want” E-Book to understand nutrition better. With a built-in Macro Calculator, you will have all the tools necessary to getting your nutrition in check.

Check them out here: ⇒ “Eat What You Want”
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Protein Made Simple

by Jacky Bigger, M.S. (Follow her on Instagram at @a.little.bigger)

You may have already read my article that quickly went over what carbohydrates are. If not, go back and take a look. If so, then you’ll know my goal of these articles is to provide you with some quick, simple information to get you started on your nutrition journey, or to clear some things up for you if you have already gotten started. In this article, I’m going to simplify protein for you. What it is, why you need it and how much you actually need.

Protein is one of the three macronutrients needed by our body. By definition from the Merriam-Webster dictionary protein is “any of various naturally occurring extremely complex substances that consist of amino-acid residues joined by peptide bonds, contain the elements carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, oxygen, usually sulfur, and occasionally other elements (such as phosphorus or iron), and include many essential biological compounds (such as enzymes, hormones, or antibodies)” Put in simpler terms protein is a combination of multiple atoms along with various nitrogen atoms, a.k.a. amino groups that are building blocks for our entire body.

The human body is comprised of so many different proteins and without protein we simply wouldn’t exist. Proteins are in the membranes of every single cell in the body. Your hair, nails and skin are all made from the protein keratin. Muscle tissues contain a number of different proteins. Bones contain plenty of protein and protein is also necessary for you red blood cells to carry oxygen around the body. As you can see, protein is very important and basically make up much of the structure of our body.

There are two main types of proteins, complete and incomplete. As mentioned above proteins are made up of amino acids, some of these amino acids we can create in our bodies, and others we must obtain from our diet. The nine amino acids that our body cannot manufacture on it’s own are called essential amino acids. The protein sources that contain all nine of these essential amino acids are complete proteins sources. Some examples of these are: meat, dairy, quinoa, hemp seeds and soy. The protein sources that do not contain all of these 9 essential amino acids are called incomplete protein sources. Some incomplete protein sources are: grains, nuts, seeds, and legumes.

So how much protein to we need? The National Institute of Health Recommends .75g of protein per kilo of body weight per day. Which equates to .34g per lb of bodyweight. For a person who weighs 150lbs, they recommend no less than 51g of protein. Keep in mind, that this is the absolute minimum amount needed for health and survival. If you’re an athlete or are active at all you’ll need more than this recommendation to perform well in your sport and gain optimal muscle mass. The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics states that athletes require 1.4 to 1.6g of protein per kg body weight, which equates to .64 to .82 g per pound. So, for that same 150lb person this would equal out to 96 to 123g. Determining your overall protein need it pretty straight forward, but what about your amino acids?

It is likely that you’re getting all of your essential amino acids if you’re hitting the recommended grams and eating a variety of protein sources. If you eat animal products, it’s much easier to get all nine. If not, it may be a bit more difficult, but it’s still possible. Incomplete protein sources can be combined to create complete proteins. For example, rice and beans paired together create a complete protein, as do peanut butter and wheat bread. These are just two quick examples. So, it’s definitely possible to get all your essential amino acids without consuming animal product, you just have to be a bit more careful.

There are many different sources to get your protein from and numerous protein supplements, and snacks with added proteins available on the market as well. However, as always, we recommend getting a majority of your protein products from natural whole foods. Grass-fed, hormone free meat sources are best. Along with organic veggies, beans and breads when possible, but that could be a whole separate article itself. For now, I’ll just leave you with a few of my favorite protein options.

Animal Protein Sources
– Eggs
– Chicken Breasts
– Lean ground beef
– Ground turkey
– Plain Greek Yogurt
– Cottage cheese
– BiPro Whey Protein

Plant based Protein Sources
– Tempeh
– Oats
– Beans
– Almonds
– Quinoa
– Ezekiel bread

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Carbohydrate Crash Course by Jacky Bigger, M.S.

Check out The “Eat What You Want” E-Book to understand nutrition better. With a built-in Macro Calculator, you will have all the tools necessary to getting your nutrition in check.

Check them out here: ⇒ “Eat What You Want”
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Carbohydrate Crash Course

by Mash Elite Athlete Jacky Bigger, M.S. (Jacky is one of Mash Elite’s World Class Weightlifters and she is an amazing coach for the Eat What You Want Nutrition Program)

Nutrition can be so complicated, however, it can be made relatively simple. I’m here to give you a very quick crash course on carbohydrates that will hopefully simplify things for you if you’re just getting started out on your fitness journey, or are interested in learning more about nutrition in general.

Carbohydrates are one of the three macronutrients needed by our body, meaning they are one of the three main sources of energy for our body. To define them very simply, they are the sugars, starches, and fibers found in fruit, veggies, and grains. Carbohydrates are typically categorized into two types, simple carbs and complex carbs. The difference being the chemical structure and how quickly the sugars are absorbed and digested.

Simple carbohydrates are things like sugars, sodas, and syrups. Many simple carbohydrates are highly processed and contain little to no nutrients. These are often referred to as empty carbohydrates, since they provide little to no nutritional value. They are digested quickly and provide short bursts of energy. Simple carbohydrates are best consumed immediately before, during, or after a workout, because of the rapid energy that they provide.

Complex carbohydrates, are exactly as they are named, more complex. They contain multiple simple sugars combined together to create a larger molecule. Complex carbohydrates include things like whole grains, beans, potatoes, etc. They typically digest more slowly and provide longer steadier energy. Complex carbohydrates contain more nutrients and fiber, and should be the bulk of your carbohydrate intake.

However, despite the digestion rate, both simple and complex carbohydrates are eventually broken down in the body into glucose. This glucose is then carried through the bloodstream and converted into the energy that our body needs not only to do physical activity, but also for the basic functions of our body. If glucose is not readily needed for immediate energy it is stored in the liver until it is needed. Once the liver stores are full, the excess glucose is then stored as fat.

I know what you’re thinking. “Oh no, carbs will make me fat!” Yes, too many carbohydrates combined with too much protein and fats can make you gain weight, however, too little carbohydrates can be problematic as well. If we are not getting enough carbohydrates our body will then turn to protein for energy. This can cause issues because the body needs protein to build muscle. Also, the use of protein for fuel rather than carbs can be very stressful on the kidneys.

So how do we know how many carbohydrates we actually need? The recommended daily amount of carbohydrates recommended by the National Institutes of Health is 135g for adults. However, they also recommend that everyone should have his or her own carbohydrate goal. Each person has their own carbohydrate needs based their body type, age, weight, height, energy expenditure etc. Typically, carbohydrates should be about 40-55% of your overall daily calories. There are four calories in every gram of carbohydrate, so for example, if you’re consuming 2000 calories per day, you would want to consume somewhere between 200 and 275g of carbohydrates per day.

As mentioned above, there are many different sources of carbohydrates. You want to fill a majority of your carbohydrate allowance per day with nutritious, whole foods to maximize your health and micronutrient intake. The less processed foods you consume, and the more fruits and veggies the better. I’ll leave things off with a list of some of my favorite carbohydrate sources. Enjoy!

– Mangos
– Bananas
– Kiwi
– Broccoli
– Brussels sprouts
– Quinoa
– Oats
– Japanese Sweet potatoes
– Ezekiel Bread
– Madjool Dates

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Check out one of the Eat What You Want Online Teams:

Eat What You Want (Everything Needed to Perfect Your Nutrition)
Eat and Lift What You Want (Get Your Nutrition and Your Workout Perfected)

Check them out here: ⇒ ‘Team Eat and Lift What You Want’

STAYING ON TRACK DURING THE HOLIDAYS by Paluna Santamaria

Check out The “Eat What You Want” E-Book to understand nutrition better. With a built-in Macro Calculator, you will have all the tools necessary to getting your nutrition in check.

Check them out here: ⇒ “Eat What You Want”
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STAYING ON TRACK DURING THE HOLIDAYS by Paluna Santamaria

I’m going to keep this one straight and to the point: staying on track during the holidays is easy.

If you have trouble with this you may be forgetting what the holidays are truly about.

Holidays, regardless of your beliefs are about celebrating in community. It’s about being in company of those you love or have something in common with. Yes, in most cases we do this through prepping and sharing food but the truth is, you’d be equally happy eating an apple as you’d be eating a donut if you are having a great time.

Once you have the above in mind, there are a couple of things you can do to make navigating those situations a bit easier.

1. Remember what the holidays are about. Food or no food, you are in good company. Enjoy it!
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3. Keep your goals in mind. Based on your goals, sometimes you can allow yourself more flexibility.
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5. The fact that you can eat as much as you want anytime you want doesn’t mean you have to!
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7. Don’t stop eating through the day so you can eat everything at the party. Unless you have insane will power and don’t mind making yourself miserable through the day it’s best to fuel yourself with nutritious food and smaller portions so you can enjoy a bit of everything at the party.
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9. Sharing is caring. Try a bit of everything by sharing all dishes.
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11. Mind your portions. If you don’t eat a whole baked potato on a regular basis, why do it now?
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13. Fats and carbs are the easiest to get, especially during the holidays so cover your basis first: veggie, protein, hydration.
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15. If you enjoy alcohol, pace yourself and give yourself a limit before the party starts.
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17. And last but not least, do not allow yourself to feel guilty for ANY of your choices. Whatever they are, it is not the end of the world. You have the power to get back on track as soon as possible.

What are your tactics? Comment and share them with us!!

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Check out one of the Eat What You Want Online Teams:

Eat What You Want (Everything Needed to Perfect Your Nutrition)
Eat and Lift What You Want (Get Your Nutrition and Your Workout Perfected)

Check them out here: ⇒ ‘Team Eat and Lift What You Want’

About Paluna

Paluna is a movement enthusiast by nature. As a child she participated in martial arts as well as being part of a swimming team for three years. Always an athlete she went on to play basketball for 4 consecutive years in high school as well as completing a Bachelor degree in Arts with a specialty in modern dance. She spent the years following graduation as a dancer and aerial performer. In 2005 she moved to Canada taking a break from performing to pursue a career in the fitness industry. She is now a certified Personal Trainer with additional training in Yoga, Pilates, Kettlebell, Pre/Post natal and Nutrition. Always curious about movement and looking for a challenge Paluna found weightlifting. She trained and competed under bulgarian legend Alex Varbanov from 2012-2016.

Nutrition Mindset While Traveling by Paluna Santamaria

Check out The “Eat What You Want” E-Book to understand nutrition better. With a built-in Macro Calculator, you will have all the tools necessary to getting your nutrition in check.

Check them out here: ⇒ “Eat What You Want”
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Nutrition Mindset While Traveling
By Paluna Santamaria

I have a busy traveling work schedule. I love hotels, exploring new coffee shops and meeting new people so much so that when I’m not traveling for work I’m usually planning a vacation.

No matter how much I enjoy travelling, I still find it stressful.
There are many types of stress, we can’t control all of them but we can prioritize and make the best out of every situation.

Rest and recovery should be an essential part of any health and fitness program so when I travel, I define my priorities based on the purpose of my trip.

Stress management is always first on my priority list.

Because I usually travel to teach a workshop or certification I need to be fully alert and as rested as possible to prevent crashing and foggy brain.

I achieve this by doing the following:

-Show up few days before teaching date.

-Sleep as much as possible when possible (bring a sleeping mask, travelling pillow, ear plugs or my favorite white noise apps)

-Inquiry about grocery stores, juice bars or anywhere where I can stock up on fruits and vegetables.

-Bring protein, in all forms I can (powders, tuna cans, jerky)

-Stay hydrated

-Book a hotel 20-30min walking distance from facility (this ensures I get a little extra activity on days I’ll mostly be standing and talking for 8hrs straight)

Travelling for pleasure is a bit easier to plan as I can go with the flow and give my body the rest/workout ratio it needs. The biggest challenge is to prevent over eating certain macronutrients and under eating others.

What you have access to will be determined by the country you visit and how long you will be staying for.

Because I tend to be very on point with my nutrition, I allow myself not to strictly track or over think food when on vacation. I’m one of those people who tend to get leaner while away, as I tend to be more in tune with my body’s needs.

Here’s my simple list:

-Eat when hungry, stop when full. Do not eat out of boredom.

-I don’t drink alcohol, ever (I know, weirdo). If you do drink, enjoy your alcoholic beverage with a meal and make sure you drink enough water the rest of the day.

-Only eat desserts and junk once a balanced meal has been consumed (yes this means croissant in Paris is never the first thing in my stomach). This is when bringing protein and greens powder comes in handy. I usually have a scoop of each before leaving the hotel room.

-Carry a water bottle at all times.

-Share everything you eat. This is a great way to taste more than one dish without going over board.

There is a time to be strict and a time to relax. This is the key to a sustainable program; however, remember that relaxing doesn’t mean throwing your efforts out the window. Over exercising, over eating and under eating are all stressor that sooner or later will hinder your progress so the time to relax is simply that, a moment to be a little looser with choices.

Hope this helps and if you have any tips, don’t hesitate to share them with us!!
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Check out one of the Eat What You Want Online Teams:

Eat What You Want (Everything Needed to Perfect Your Nutrition)
Eat and Lift What You Want (Get Your Nutrition and Your Workout Perfected)

Check them out here: ⇒ ‘Team Eat and Lift What You Want’

About the Author:

Paluna Santamaria is a movement enthusiast by nature. As a child she participated in martial arts as well as being part of a swimming team for three years. Always an athlete she went on to play basketball for 4 consecutive years in high school as well as completing a Bachelor degree in Arts with a specialty in modern dance. She spent the years following graduation as a dancer and aerial performer. In 2005 she moved to Canada taking a break from performing to pursue a career in the fitness industry. She is now a certified Personal Trainer with additional training in Yoga, Pilates, Kettlebell, Pre/Post natal and Nutrition. Always curious about movement and looking for a challenge Paluna found weightlifting. She trained and competed under bulgarian legend Alex Varbanov from 2012-2016.

Grocery Shopping Strategies by Coach Crystal McCullough, MSN

Check out The “Eat What You Want” E-Book to understand nutrition better. With a built-in Macro Calculator, you will have all the tools necessary to getting your nutrition in check.

Check them out here: ⇒ “Eat What You Want”
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Grocery Shopping Strategies

Ok, guys, it’s just you and your computer screen so you can be honest with yourself. Raise your hand if you’ve ever gone to the grocery store hungry! I know I have. Raise your hand if you’ve ever gone in to the grocery store to buy 2-3 items and you walk out with 25. Again, I know I have. Often times, the key to our failure (lack of success) isn’t what we do, but what we don’t do. What I mean by that is, we aren’t prepared. We are an instant gratification kind of society where there are so many conveniences that we don’t even think about the planning process. I remember my mom talking about how, when she was a child, they planned a trip in to town. They had their list of errands they had to run and their shopping list. Now days, there is a grocery store on every corner and we seem so much busier in our day-to-day lives, we’ve stopped planning. So, we leave work starving and go grocery shopping with no direction and no plan.

For those of us who are in a weight-based sport OR we are simply trying to be the healthiest version of ourselves, having all of these conveniences can actually impede our success if we allow it to. Have you ever heard the old saying of the 7 P’s? Prior Proper Planning Prevents Piss Poor Performance. This holds true even in planning a trip to the grocery store.

You can stop the cycle of sabotaging yourself mid week by taking a few extra minutes to plan your grocery-shopping trip.
1. Don’t go to the store on a whim, make a plan to go!
2. Have a realistic budget for how much you spend on food weekly or monthly.
3. Make a menu for the week – sit down and plan out your meals and snacks for the week. This will help you with budgeting as well as knowing you have enough food to make it to your next trip to the store. Make a list!
4. Even in a crunch, try to make a list of items you find you might need before your next big trip.
5. Meal prep – if you are someone who gets super busy and ends up eating on the go, take a few hours on Sunday and prep the meals you planned out beforehand. It can be time consuming for that day, but saves so much time throughout the week.
6. Shop the perimeter of the store. If you have ever thought about how a grocery store is laid out, the unprocessed ‘real’ food like fruits, veggies, dairy, meats, and even bakery/bread items are all around the perimeter. This will help you to keep mostly real, healthy foods in your refrigerator and pantry.

Some of you may be full time athletes and that’s your job. EAT. SLEEP. LIFT. REPEAT. However, for most of us, we have families, jobs, and responsibilities. We have stress and bills. Taking these few extra minutes to prep and plan for your grocery shopping and weekly meals will give you more time with your family, more money in your pocket, less stress, AND help you reach your goals!

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Check out one of the Eat What You Want Online Teams:

Eat What You Want (Everything Needed to Perfect Your Nutrition)
Eat and Lift What You Want (Get Your Nutrition and Your Workout Perfected)

Check them out here: ⇒ ‘Team Eat and Lift What You Want’

About the Author:

Crystal McCullough, MSN

“41-year old Army wife and Mom to a genetic 13-year-old freak. Basketball player turned runner turned CrossFitter turned powerlifter. Crystal has podiumed over the years at 5k and 10k road races and local CrossFit competitions. She is currently a 72k USAPL National Level powerlifter. Her best competition lifts are 145k squat, 77.5k bench, and 170k deadlift. She is an RN with a Masters degree in Nursing Education, a CrossFit affiliate owner, and a Mash Elite Performance coach. She has several years of coaching experience in the CrossFit community and is a life long learner of the art and science of the vast strength and conditioning world. She is currently studying for her CSCS.”

“An Athlete’s Grocery List” by Jacky Bigger, M.S.

Check out The “Eat What You Want” E-Book to understand nutrition better. With a built-in Macro Calculator, you will have all the tools necessary to getting your nutrition in check.

Check them out here: ⇒ “Eat What You Want”
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Jacky’s Grocery List

Eating healthy doesn’t have to be difficult. Especially if you get yourself into a solid routine. I’m a full-time athlete and like many other athletes, I’m a creature of habit. I buy mostly the same things every time I go to the store, and eat the same meals each day for breakfast and lunch. I then switch things up for dinner and snacks. Eating the same meals for breakfast and lunch allows me start my nutrition off right each day, with no guess work and minimal planning. It makes it easy for me to stay on track with my macros while giving myself room at night to switch up my dinners and snacks, to go out to eat, or to have something yummy. This keeps me from getting bored with the foods that I’m eating, and allows me to live a relatively “normal” life with flexibility in my diet. (Even though I often times eat the same meals over and over again for dinner anyways.)

I get asked a lot what kinds of foods I eat, how many times a day I eat, etc. So, below is an example of my Grocery list, and a typical day of meals for me. I don’t have a family to care for/cook for, so I’m sure this may be a bit easier for me than for some of you all. But hopefully this will give you some insight and ideas for simple, delicious meals.

AM Coffee – 8:00am

I start each day out with a big glass of water and a cup of coffee with Dairy Free coffee creamer. Usually about an hour later I make breakfast.

Breakfast – 9:00am

My usual breakfast is: Three eggs scrambled with onion and spinach sautéed in coconut oil, topped with salsa. With a side of brussel sprouts and potatoes that I’ve already roasted.

*I sometimes omit the potatoes if I know I have a light training day, or if I know I’ll be going out to eat later on in the day, or I’ll replace the potatoes with fruit if I’m not feeling potatoes for the day. I also switch my veggies to whatever I have cooked up from the day before, which are usually Brussels sprouts.

Lunch (Pre-workout) – 1:30pm

My pre-workout meal lately has been a chicken burger on an Ezekiel bun with tomato, lettuce ketchup and mustard. I have a side of pre-roasted broccoli.

*If I know I have a tough workout for the day I add in some more potatoes, rice or fruit.

Dinner (Post workout) – (6:00pm)

My typical Dinner is usually a chicken salad with whatever I feel like putting in there at the time. For example: Spring mix, romaine lettuce, black and pinto beans, raw sunflower seeds, raw pumpkin seeds, red, orange and yellow bell peppers, cucumber, avocado and shredded buffalo chicken that I made in the crockpot. It’s usually just combination of whatever veggies I have, some chicken and beans. I top it with salsa, or with no dressing at all, because it’s delicious without it.

*If I had a really high volume workout, I’ll add quinoa, berries or other carbs in as well.

Snack (9:00pm)

I have a major sweet tooth at night, so I always save some carbs for my bedtime snack. I try to limit this to mainly fruit but sometimes it turns into ice cream or chocolate. I’m a huge fan of mango, so I’ll usually have one of those topped with CocoWhip (which is dairy free cool whip). I also dig bananas or apples with peanut butter, which is my other go to snacks.
So, as you can see, my meals aren’t anything overly complicated, they allow me flexibility and I do my best to eat mostly whole foods and lots of veggies, but I’m not perfect and like to snack at night and go out to eat sometimes. Having a routine with my food, like I do with my workouts and work schedule keeps me on track, keeps me feeling strong in the gym, and helps a ton with my recovery. For me, food is fuel, what I put into my body is either helping me reach my goals, or bringing me further away from them.

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Check out one of the Eat What You Want Online Teams:

Eat What You Want (Everything Needed to Perfect Your Nutrition)
Eat and Lift What You Want (Get Your Nutrition and Your Workout Perfected)

Check them out here: ⇒ ‘Team Eat and Lift What You Want’

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