By Chris Freytag
As a fitness trainer, I am accustomed to providing information on nutrition, exercise and motivation, yet sometimes I am asked what I personally do on a daily basis for my health. People want to know what I do when the munchies strike or when I want a cocktail. So here’s the inside scoop on my health decisions, or what I call my trainer tricks to stay fit.
I start strong with a nutritious breakfast. I load up on nutrients early in the day by making my favorite green smoothie. With frozen banana, pineapple, almond milk, coconut extract, kale and spinach, I stuff all of the ingredients in the blender. This smoothie has vitamins A and C, calcium, fiber, folic acid, magnesium and other nutrients.
I never go more than two days in a row without exercise, even when you travel. Since I travel so much, I usually teach about five hours of fitness classes per week including kickboxing, strength training, spinning or yoga. I also love walking, jogging leading boot camps and biking outside. I believe in varied workouts and follow a two-day rule. I never go more than two days in a row without exercise. I will run stairs in a building and I always look for ways to get more movement into days.
I swap out unhealthy for healthy. I love ice cream but most of the time I will swap it out for a healthier choice. I will have Greek yogurt and add dark chocolate chips, berries and walnuts. If I do indulge in ice cream, I will do a more intense or longer workout. I follow the same personal rules when I have the munchies. I will eat popcorn instead of something like chips. Popcorn is full of fiber—as long as you aren’t eating the calorie-laden movie theater type.
I opt for a lower calorie cocktail. My cocktail of choice is red wine. A five-ounce glass typically has about 125 calories, much lower in calories than many other alcoholic beverages. A margarita can have up to 800 calories! Red wine also has antioxidants, making it good for your heart. Liquid calories add up fast, so opt for one glass only.
I don’t go to parties hungry. The most important rule for parties is to not go to them hungry. Don’t make the mistake of saving up your calories for the end of the day when you head to a party. It isn’t a smart strategy because when you are hungry your resolve for portion control goes out the window. Plus, you are setting yourself up to eat more than you should if you go to a party thinking you sacrificed all day so you can really indulge. I only fill up my plate once at a party.
I take water with me wherever I go. I carry a refillable, stainless steel water bottle with me to drink water throughout the day. It’s easy and convenient and cuts back on landfills.
I stay positive. Your thoughts determine how you feel and often determine what you can accomplish. As Napoleon Hill once said, “What your mind can conceive and believe, you can achieve.” Believe in yourself and your ability to accomplish your goals.
I prepare for the week. It’s always good to keep healthy snacks on you—especially if your schedule is crazy. I make apple cinnamon energy bars and freeze them so they are easy to grab on the go. I grill up chicken on Sundays to have during the week. It saves time and I can put it in my salad without the prep time each day.
Follow these trainer tricks to get and stay fit!
Chris Freytag is a health and fitness expert, author and speaker. She has been teaching fitness classes and personal training for over 20 years. She is a contributing editor for Prevention Magazine; the fitness contributor for the NBC affiliate in Minneapolis; and Chairman of the Board of Directors for the American Council on Exercise. Chris has authored 5 books; has created dozens of fitness DVD’s; and sells her signature line of healthy kitchen and fitness products on QVC. Connect with Chris at www.chrisfreytag.com www.Facebook.com/ChrisFreytagpage or on Twitter @ChrisFreytag