Who knew that toxins exist EVERYWHERE? I certainly wasn’t cognizant of my exposure to toxins. Teflon, PABAs, air, water, food, etc. But, I have learned so much and am constantly learning of the dangers of these toxins in our everyday lives. Most recently, all the soaps, lotions, and cleaning products have been updated in our house.
I’ve been hearing more and more about a whole food plant-based diet. There’s definitely data out there that shows this lifestyle is the key to longevity and protective from illness and disease. My curiosity first started when I had our first child. It was important to me to learn more about nutrition because I wanted to learn how and what to prepare food for my kids. From this curiosity, I stumbled upon a book called Genius Foods. Then, I listened to the Audible version of The Obesity Code. Most recently, I’ve been embracing How Not to Die and Eat to Live.
Am I vegan? No. Am I a vegetarian? No. Am I here to save the animals? If saving the animals is a positive side effect, then absolutely! My main goal is to have the l o n g e s t quality of time with my kids as well as teach them how to incorporate nutrition into their lives. As a parent, I want to make my kids’ lives easier, more meaningful, and more fun. Aside from financial freedom and responsible parenting, the next best gift I can give to my kids is the power of nutrition. I wish I knew this information when I was a kid and grew up knowing what was helpful to fuel my body.
I’m currently on Week 8 of PWR at home by Kelsey Wells of BBG Sweat app. It’s a resistance/strength training program that’s 12 weeks long. I started it as soon as I got the thumbs up from the OB to workout again post-partum. I started with PWR at home beginner then moved my way to the PWR at Home 1.0. It’s a great workout to be able to do at home while the kids nap. The program is divided into chest/triceps, arms and abs, legs, back and shoulders. Basically, the goal is to do 5 resistance workouts/week with 3 LISS workouts and 1 HIIT. Well, in a busy world, it’s tough to fit in 5x/wk workouts.
So, it got me thinking and researching: What are the best evidence-based workouts out there?
Being a science-driven person (thank you med school!), I dug into the science looking for journal articles and browsing the thoughts of experts in the field. Here is what I found….
PWR at Home from BBG/Sweat is a Bro-Split program: Training each muscle at least 2x/week results in significantly greater muscle growth than training each muscle just once per week as you do in a bro-split. The main drawback of the bro split: it focuses on one muscle group on each day of the week. Training muscles more than once a week can cause significantly greater hypertrophy.
Fierce from BBG/Sweat appears to be a fullbody workout 3x/wk.
Just know that workout volume and consistency are the most important factors, so focus on those two variables and you will see positive results regardless of the split you use.
2 sets, 8-15 reps, want to go to failure. Little rest as possible bt sets and exercises.
Dumbbell Lateral Raise
Barbell Bench Press
The more I started reading about strength training, the more I came across articles and blogs about CALISTHENICS. I’m still a bit confused as to what it is, but it seems like the gist of it is to use your own bodyweight and for full body exercises that can be done anywhere.
High to Low Chest Cable Flies: 3-4 sets of 10-15 reps
Dumbbell frog pump- 2 sets, 30 reps, 8 RPE
Sledgehammer Swings x 30-60 seconds each side/Oak Tree Stepouts x 30-60 seconds each side
Banded Pulldowns x 30-60 seconds
Plank Punchouts x 30-60 seconds/Plank Pushaways x 30-60 seconds
Kris Home Workout Full Body C (with abs and glutes)
TransparentLabs.com: The Best Science-Based Workout Routine For BeginnersWorkout Instructions: Perform 12-15 reps Use weights that create fatigue, but not to create failure, (if you can’t complete 12-15 reps, reduce your weight). Complete one set of each exercise, moving from the first to the second, to the third, etc. Transition to the next exercise without a break
A colleague of mine had suggested/introduced “The Obesity Code” to me and my reading list. It’s a fabulous read and I highly encourage a read/listen. Here are other books I have read and suggest. After The Obesity Code, I chose The Complete Guide to Fasting… and since then, I’ve added Eat Stop Eat to my audiobook library as well. I’m extremely intrigued about intermittent fasting. I’ve followed a paleo diet for years, however, I’m curious to see if I could actually try intermittent fasting and not succumb to hunger bc I love snacking!
To summarize: a rather normal dose of alcohol caused a decrease in fat burning, no change in carbohydrate burning, and a slight increase in overall calorie burning in men who were in the fasted state.
So the question remains. If metabolic rate increases, glucose oxidation stayed the same, and fat burning decreased… what the heck were they burning?
Turns out the answer is the alcohol… sort of.
In fact, blood acetate is such a priority that it’s mere presence can decrease lipolysis by ~50%, even when you are in the fasted state [Crouse JR, 1968]
And this is what happens when you drink during your fast. It’s not that you will gain more fat (unless you are drinking excessively), but you will stop releasing body fat, stop burning body fat, and burn acetate instead. This occurs without any change in insulin levels.
So sadly, it seems the answer is that you cannot drink during your fasts without diminishing your fat burning abilities.
I’ve decided to try the 16/8 IF schedule (16 hour fast, 8 hour eating window = 11a – 7p) when I go back to work.
Since January 2019, Arden has been waking up 1-2x/night for milk. She turned 12 months old in February 2019. We’re not sure why she started doing this as she used to sleep through the night. So, I’m gathering some info and seeing what we can do to improve her nighttime sleep.
I wasn’t always a huge supporter of eating organic. I was a poor college student… a poor medical student… and a poor resident. In fact, I didn’t start thinking about my health seriously until my husband and I were planning to get pregnant. Maybe this was a little late in the game at 37 years old… but better late than never, right?
In college, I lived off of lean cuisine microwaveable meals with plastic and drinking 3 diet dr. peppers a day. In medical school, I survived off a protein bar, sandwich, and microwaveable dinners as well. Did I mention that I experimented with smoking to help me study? Ick, what horrible habits! In residency, I continued with protein bars, microwaveable meals, and hospital food that was free for residents around 9p. Not to forget, that I made sure I went to a bunch of residency interview dinners to meet potential incoming residents. Fast forward to getting ready for my wedding day, I went 3 months on a paleo diet and felt incredible and saw real changes in my body without feeling deprived or hungry. We went organic during my first pregnancy. We’ve placed more importance on sustaining our baby and helping her maximize her growth and learning with a more nutritious diet. During my second pregnancy, I again ate organic. But, I was diagnosed with gestational diabetes and moved to a more Whole30 diet — eliminating processed foods as well as sweets. I was able to really control my blood sugars with diet alone, and I feel better without all the processed food and sweets in my system.
Why do I think about this now? More and more, I feel the impact of a well-balanced diet on my body. My AGING body. Perhaps in our youth, we can fake it and make it by eating crap food and maintaining an unhealthy lifestyle. But as I’m aging, I feel the effects more and definitely sooner. Additionally, I care more now about what I put into my body and in my family’s. I would love to teach my kids the importance of healthy eating and what good food tastes like. So, enter my quest to eat organic as well as grass-fed, hormone-free meats as well as going more plant-based.