As some of you may know in the last couple of years I have changed my diet considerably. This was sparked when I started using and then selling Herbalife. The range of products helped me up my protein intake, eat less rubbish and gave me motivation to want to lose weight and eat better. I have since lost around 2 stone, my body has changed and as a result my performance in football and fitness activities has also improved. Don’t get me wrong, I was never massively overweight. I was a size 12, played football 2/3 times a week and exercised. The mistake I made was not eating the right things. I have a degree in sport and had knowledge about nutrition but never actually ate as healthy as I should have. Since changing this, it has made me realise how important your diet can be. You can’t out exercise a bad diet.
I thought I would share a few tips that have worked for me.
1 – Making sure I have a balanced diet. Eating the right amount of protein, not eating too many carbs, more fruit and veg, healthier snacks, eating ‘good’ fats and limiting foods high in sugar and saturated fats are now all part of my daily regime. It is all about being organised and not eating just because you’re bored. I used to eat lots of pasta because it was cheap, I wouldn’t eat much protein, yet this is what helps build and repair our muscles. It’s vital to eat this after exercising for this reason.
2 – Some people make the mistake I did, eat lots of carbs because you are exercising, but eating too many carbs when you don’t burn them off can get stored as fat. Now I eat brown pasta and brown rice, quinoa, sweet potato, small changes that have made a big difference.
3 – I also vary my training, I don’t just stick to running, or football. I include circuit training or high intensity interval training to challenge me. I also do weights twice a week to help build and tone muscle. Having more muscle uses more energy and therefore helps your metabolism. I am also more toned than ever because of this and my muscle mass and strength is always improving.
4 – I eat a lot during the day. I have smaller meals little and often. I make sure I snack mid morning and mid afternoon on things like fruit, veg, nuts or eggs. Then I eat a smaller meals for lunch and tea. I don’t get bloated very often and it helps keep my metabolism going.
5 – Drink lots of water. I make sure (well try) to have at least 2 litres a day. More if I exercise. It’s a natural fat burner and essential to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
6 – Don’t get bored. If you’re too strict with your diet you will want stuff you’re not letting yourself have. Allow yourself a treat every now and again. This will keep you sane. As long as you don’t have too much of it, everything in moderation.
7 – Mix it up. Don’t stick to the same foods all the time. It won’t be as sustainable. Find new recipes, change it up. There are loads out there. Make the effort to look.
They are just few things that have worked for me. Eating clean and paleo foods are good. There are lots of recipes. I try new things. Thanks to Peanut Butter Boy – his blog can be found here
. I tried a banana and peanut butter omelette this morning. It was really nice. Will be having that one again. There are lots of different recipes out there, its about finding ones that suit you and will help you reach your goals.
Now I have changed my diet and lifestyle I know I will never look back. I have made eating well and exercise an integral part of what I do. And because of this my football performance has improved. Do not underestimate what it could do for you. You will not know how far you can go unless you push yourself and give yourself the best chance 🙂