Soda side effects: the 60 minute cycle

We all have our guilty pleasures that we give into now and again and that’s perfectly OK, however not all treats are created equal. Although a can of cola is a quick way to get a sugar fix that might not leave you as bloated as a pizza, it could create chemical chaos in your body and derail the rest of your day! 

We try to live by the attitude that you can enjoy any food or drink, completely guilt-free if you really fancy it, as long as it’s in moderation. But there’s more and more information to suggest that soda is at least one exception, Coca-Cola in this example. Everyone knows that a can of Coke is loaded with sugar which won’t do your teeth or (your waistline any favours). But the chemical effects that take place in your body after you drink it, might set you up for more than trouble than a trip to the dentist. Here’s what happen:

  1. In the first 10 minutes: 10 teaspoons of sugar hit your system. (100% of your recommended daily intake.) Phosphoric acid effects the flavour of the sugar so cuts down on how sweet it tastes to you.
  2. 20 minutes: Your blood sugar spikes, causing an insulin burst. Your liver responds to this by turning any sugar it can, into fat.
  3. 40 minutes: Caffeine absorption is complete. Your pupils dilate; your blood pressure rises; as a response, your liver puts more sugar back into your bloodstream. The adenosine receptors in your brain become blocked, preventing drowsiness.
  4. 45 minutes: Your body ups your dopamine production, stimulating the pleasure centres of your brain. Similar to other high fat and sugar products such as Oreos that are known to hit your sweet spot
  5. Around the 60 minute mark: Phosphoric acid binds calcium, magnesium, and zinc in your lower intestine, providing a boost in metabolism. The caffeine’s diuretic properties come into play. (It makes you need to pee.) So you evacuate the bonded calcium, magnesium, and zinc that was headed to your bones as well as sodium, electrolytes, and water.I t’s likely then you will have gone to the bathroom so you would get rid of any water that was in the Coke that gave you hydration.
  6. After the 60 minutes: All of these effects then calm down and blood sugar levels start to rapidly decrease. This is when a person would reach for a second soda and the whole cycle would start again. If you don’t have that on hand, it’s likely you’ll look for another sweet and sugary snack to suffice. You may become irritable and/or sluggish and will be followed by a caffeine crash in the next few hours. (As little as two if you’re a smoker.)

Does zero sugar mean zero problems?

I’m afraid not! They don’t fool your brain and can increase your cravings. The bottom line is if a sweet tasting drink is mysteriously lacking any calories, it often contains chemicals, artificial colourings, and artificial sweeteners. All of the above effects also take place and might be even more confusing to your body.  You can read more about artificial sweeteners from Andrea’s post here which raises some important issues. You might think that they satisfy your sweet tooth but as they don’t contain any sugar it it doesn’t fill you up in any way and research shows this can mess with the balance of bacteria in your gut which plays an important role in weight regulation.

On the very rare occasion that I reach for soda, I confess that I too would be guilty of grabbing the 0 calorie version as a ‘healthier option’. But not anymore. Instead, I’m going to try sparkling water with fruit when I feel like having some fizz! 

Source: Renegade Pharmacist What Happens One Hour After You Drink Coke & What Happens One Hour After You Drink Diet Coke

Strawberry coconut milkshake recipe

My milkshake brings all the boys to the yard… Studentenvoer has this amazing milkshake recipe! Perfect for your busy Monday morning, or just as a snack throughout the week.

Milkshake recipe

Milkshakes are definitely one of our favorite beverages! And we especially ♥ them when they are healthy, it brings a smile to our clean eating hearts ;). The awesome thing about milkshakes is that you can vary and add a lot of delicious fruit. So Studentenvoer made us EXTRA happy with a strawberry coconut milkshake. Now, if this isn’t summer happiness in a jar, we don’t know what is!

All you need is love and: 

  • About 8 strawberries
  • 2 tsps of coconut flakes
  • 300ml of skinny yogurt
  • 1 tsp chia seeds
  • 1 tablespoon agave syrup

All you now have to do, is add all the ingredients to your blender and press ON. Now how easy is that! Surprise your friends with this lovely milkshake… Or maybe you want to keep it all to yourself? It’s all good, we understand 🙂

Share your delicious, healthy milkshakes recipes with us on Instagram and don’t forget to use #fitgirlcode! 

6 tips to get back on track

So you’ve been working your ass off for the past weeks/months. You were finally starting to see some progress, or maybe you weren’t even there yet. But for some reason you’ve lost all of that powerful motivation that got you started in the first place. “How could this have happened”? you might think to yourself. You’re nowhere near your goal yet and still, for some reason, you’ve told yourself it’s ok to just stop/give up/cave in or whatever you’d like to call it. 

Well, you’re not alone. We all reach this point in our journey to living a healthier lifestyle. Really, it’s totally normal. But that doesn’t mean you should wave your white flag and surrender to the ‘motivation killer’ (your own mind!).

I also lost my motivation recently. I was totally in a fit flow and then from one day to another, BAM, gone. To tell you the truth I’m kinda pissed off about it. But there’s no one else to blame than myself. And there’s no reason I shouldn’t get back on track, like yesterday! I’ve listed six tips that will get you up and running (lifting, swimming, yoga-ing etc.) again in no-time…

1. Remember why you started

Maybe the most important tip: remember why you started. Everyone has their own reasons for wanting to live a healthy lifestyle. You might have started because you’ve set a goal to loose a certain amount of weight. Or maybe you were having health issues which led you to turn your lifestyle around. Get your mindset back to that point, think of the benefits of getting back on track. I promise you, your motivation will be back in no-time!

2. Do a 10 minute workout

Anything is better than nothing! I know like no other that facing an hour-long workout when you’re totally not feeling up to it can demotivate you even more. But to stay in your workout flow, pick out something you can do for just 5-10 minutes. Like a short kettle bell workout or yoga routine.

3. Try something new

Sometimes we can loose our motivation because we feel bored of doing the same thing over and over. This is probably the perfect time to switch things up a bit. Have you been going to yoga class for a while now? Or are your running shoes completely worn-out because of all the KM’s they’ve made lately? Give something new a try. It might re-light your motivation fire!

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4. Buy new workout gear

I don’t know about you girls, but I’m a sucker for clothes. In any shape or form. So when it comes to workout gear I need it to look gooood. Know that feeling of just having bought new shoes, or a new coat? And you actually want to put it on in the store because you’re so excited about your new catch? Well get yourself some new trainers and a badass pair of leggings and I bet you’ll be wanting to slip them on the same day.

5. Buddy up

It sounds so cliche, but it’s so true. When you have a buddy to work out with you will feel a little more pressure to actually go. Plan a rendezvous to go running with your buddy at 8 (or whatever) o’clock. No turning back now girlfriend. It’s not only rude to cancel your workout-date, but you’re now also demotivating your buddy to go! Besides the fact that you have now committed to going, it’s so much more fun to train with a friend or family member.

6. Get inspired

We must all know by now that visualizing your goals helps a great deal to getting there. So when you feel like giving up (or if you already caved in): get to visualizing! Grab a couple of fitness magazines or search your social media channels for anything you find inspirational. Stick it onto a (digital) board and look at it. Every day, twice a day or as much as you feel you need to. If they can do it, so can you!

Good luck! And more importantly: get your ass to work lady!

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Sweet Princess Breakfast Ideas PART 1

Today I want to share my favorite everyday breakfast ideas with you. These are made in seconds, but make you start your day with a smile. In PART 2 of this article I will share more unusual breakfast ideas, which take a bit more time, but are definitely worth the effort! But first, here are…

 The classics

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Soothing Smoothie

My all-time favorite after morning workout smoothie is this one:

  • 1 banana
  • handful of frozen strawberries
  • 1 scoop whey protein (I use Pure Whey from Body en Fit shop)
  • cup of water

For a more fresh feel you can add a bit of quark.

Satijn_PrincessBreakfast3Pancake Pleasure

There are a lot slightly different healthy pancake recipes. This one is my favorite, because I always have all the ingredients at home.

  • 2 eggs
  • 1 banana
  • 3 tablespoons of oatmeal
  • cinnamon
  • tiny bit of water if the batter is too thick
  • coconut flakes (optional)

Blend all the ingredients together in your blender, then cook the batter in coconut oil. I love to add dried cranberries before I pour the mixture in the pan. Or I throw in some frozen raspberries: they taste great when they are warm!
The pancake in the picture I pimped with some bio-all-fruit-no-additives-jelly, berries and coconut flakes.

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Dare 2 Challenge – part 2

Well, this challenge became a pain in my cute butt. I was hoping the challenge would become easier, but unfortunately that was not the case. But even after I went a bit flamingo-crazy with my cheat days, I can still be proud of what I have accomplished after my 3 months challenge (live a complete healthy lifestyle)! YEAH! Here’s why:

Because I am determined to fully unlock my personal code for a healthy lifestyle, I challenged myself. In part 1 of my challenge I explained the 5 CONDITIONS and the 2 RULES I needed to keep myself to for the last 3 MONTHS. Working out on a regular base alone is not sufficient to fully unlock a healthy lifestyle. Your food intake is as important and especially since your body needs food to recover from your insane workouts.

MY GOAL

Developing a food schedule I feel comfortable with and gives me balance in my healthy lifestyle.

… and now the results!
Because of my full-time support system and determination to complete my challenge, I managed to stay off the following drinks and food for 3 WHOLE MONTHS:

    1. Alcohol
    2. Soft and fruits drinks (also the light versions)
    3. Snacks (chocolate, candy, chips, cupcakes, pie etc.)
    4. Raw sugar
    5. Greasy and fast food

Due to some stressful events during these 3 MONTHS I did have two extra cheat days. Which is not a crime I know. I did however realise that stressful events or living an unbalanced life contributes to overeating and seeking for quick “comfort food”. And by “comfort food”  I mean snacks with sugar and meals like fast food.

My conclusion
To unlock your personal code to a healthy lifestyle you need to give yourself time. Time to figure out what works for you. Also you need to find the project manager in yourself, since living a healthy lifestyle needs a solid plan. Like prepping or baking your healthy snacks/meals in advance if you know you are going to have a busy week. Or to schedule in your workouts in advance otherwise you end up skipping them and thinking you will hit the gym tomorrow. ..if you are not busy again.
And finally, I like to call my cheat day a treat day. This sounds way more positive and will prevent you from going flamingo-crazy. Because if you treat yourself you can actually enjoy it instead of feeling guilty. The feeling of guilt contributes to the feeling of sadness, failure and stress. Those feelings like to be comforted and therefore your body will send signals to your brain to eat more.

In my food and exercise schedule you can see how I found my balance in my healthy hectic lifestyle. In this article you can also read all about my journey and the challenges I had to overcome and to get me to where I am now. A HAPPY 😀  Fit Girl who likes to live an active and challenging life 😉

FINAL: During the 3 MONTHS of my challenge I learned that my body is still developing and that’s why I need to keep adapting my food intake. I will keep challenging myself to learn more about nutrition and skill training in the gym 😉

Do you want start your own challenge?
Join the Cosmopolitan’s #FITGIRLCODESUMMERCHALLENGE

And remember dare 2 challenge yourself, but also dare 2 fail. Because there is nothing wrong learning from your mistakes! 😀

Good luck and have fun! 😀

10 Foods to stock up on

A healthy lifestyle requires you to do your groceries a bit differently,  but getting used to this new routine takes some time. This can results in pure frustration when you’re all set and ready to bake that awesome bananabread or those healthy brownies and you discover that you miss that one tiny, but essential ingredient. Grr! Because I know how it feels to have to go back to the supermarket again (been there, done that – a dozen times), I’ve made a list of 10 foods which you, as a healthy fit girl, should have lying around at all times. 

1. Oats

If you’re not already having oatmeal for breakfast, you should. I’m not going to argue you on this one but trust me – oatmeal is the most awesome breakfast there is. But there is more! You can use oats in a lot of baking recipes, such as for cookiesmuffins, and delicious oatmeal bars (recipe coming soon). Another pluspoint: oats are quite cheap.

2. Chia seeds

Chia seeds are full of anti-oxidants, vitamins, minerals and more. It is also the richest plantbased source of omega-3 and it will make your tummy fuller for a longer period of time because they absorb a big amount of fluids. You can basically put them in everything, such as smoothies and oatmeal. 

3. Almond flour

You need almond flour for so many baking recipes, that you should just have it lying around at all times to save yourself the extra trip to the supermarket. Again, think of the banana bread, the brownies, but also of healthy cocochoco almond muffins (if that doesn’t sound good then I don’t know what does).

4. Superfood & nuts

It’s always good to have superfoods and nuts around to spice up a boring yogurt or just to eat when you’re in a snacking mood. Body & Fit Shop has made a mix which I especially love and often put into a bowl with yogurt after my workout, but sometimes I also just eat a handful of it.

5. Frozen fruit

I don’t think there’s any fit girl who doesn’t have fruit in her kitchen, but what about frozen fruit? Naturally, fruit goes bad after some days and the best way to keep something lying around just in case is to buy frozen fruits! For example, you can buy frozen blueberries, frozen raspberries or frozen cherries. They are just as good in terms of nutrition and don’t lose their health benefits. You can put them in your yogurt, oatmeal, smoothie, in your baking recipes, or just eat them separately. The same goes for frozen veggies!

6. Cacao powder

We are all crazy about chocolate, although some a little bit less than others. I have to admit that I am utterly addicted to chocolate and therefore really need to have cocoa powder in my house at all times. When I’m craving chocolate, I either take a small piece of dark chocolate, or I make a smoothie or bake something (like banana bread) with cocoa powder in it. You can also make this superdelicious strawberry-chocolate oatmeal with it if you want to start your day luxuriously. And don’t even get me started on the health benefits of raw cocoa powder.

7. Ricecakes

When you just want to snack something or are a bit hungry, have a ricecake! Ricecakes are cheap, a crunchy snack and they taste good. You can eat them plain, but if you’re up for more variation, check out Anna’s article about toppings for your ricecake.

8. Peanut butter

Do I really need to explain why you should have peanut butter? I don’t think so, right? Check out my favorite one from the Body & Fit Shop – it’s a 100% natural.

9. Canned chickpeas

I keep chickpeas around for those days when I’m craving a snack like potato chips, so I have a healthy and similar alternative. If you roll them around in a little bit of oil and herbs such as pepper powder and/or curry powder and put them in the oven for a while, then you have a delicious and healthy snack which doesn’t take much effort and time to prepare.

10. Pizza

Because it’s ok to have a cheatmeal and to give in to your cravings. As Anna wrote in her blogpost, your willpower and self-control are not unlimited and need to be replenished sometimes. Allow yourself your cheat- and restdays and enjoy them to the fullest. So keep that pizza in the freezer for those kind of days 😉

What foods do you always have lying around?

 

Easy Power Pancakes

These clean power pancakes are easy to make, healthy and always get me through a tough work-out. My ultimate power breakfast or even lunch! And they’re also pretty good comfort food 😉

For these yummy power pancakes, you’ll need:

  • ½ (over)ripe banana
  • 1 egg
  • 1 scoop (vanilla) protein powder
  • 2-3 tbsp buckwheat flour (around 30-40 g)
  • a big splash of water
  • some cinnamon
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • pinch of baking soda

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Now what?

Mash the banana in a bowl, add the egg and whisk till fluffy. Add the protein powder and the buckwheat flour plus the splash of water; the mixture shouldn’t be runny or too tough. If it’s not thick enough, add some more buckwheat flour and if it’s too tough, add some more water. Add the cinnamon, baking powder and baking soda, mix well. Heat some coconut oil in a pan and place on medium low heat. Pour the batter into the pan; the mixture should make about four pancakes. When bubbles appear, flip the pancakes and bake them until golden brown.

I like to eat them with the other half of the banana, with peanut butter, almond butter or Nutella, with some soy yoghurt, berry jam, fruits; haha, just be creative, you can eat them with everything! Enjoy 😀 !

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Easy and clean spring salad with a bite

There’s just something about spring, that makes me want to eat even more greens and fruits than I normally do. I love salads, not only because they are fresh and light, but also because you can take them with you. When you want to chill in the park with friends, a salad is the perfect solution.

Easy and clean spring salad with a bite
This super easy salad I made because I got inspired by two girls eating a salad in the sun! I couldn’t see exactly what the ingredients were, but the grapes and gorgonzola combination caught my attention.

Ingredients:

– Schwiss chard

-muscat grapes

– gorgonzola

– walnuts or cashews

– hemp seeds

– apple vinegar

-honey

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The Schwiss chard and the muscat grapes make this salad a beauty. I love using the pretty and colorful versions of normal ingredients, so that a simple recipe like this looks a bit more exclusive. The gorgonzola gives the salad a bite, so be sure to crumble that in tiny pieces so it doesn’t overrule the fine tastes of the rest. I sprinkled apple vinegar for the freshness, and a bit of honey to make it sweet. Honey and gorgonzola go great together! I used walnut because I forgot to buy cashews, and I think the taste of cashew nuts would fit a bit better. The nuts and the hemp seeds are a source of protein.

Enjoy this amazing springtime dish!

Be sure to follow me on Instagram for more foodspiration 😉

Lazy foodie tries the HelloFresh box

I’m a food lover, I could literally eat all day long. Sweet and savoury, food is my friend. Nowadays of course the healthy, homemade dishes are my favorite. BUT: I’m a bit of a lazy cook. Recipes have to be simple and must not contain more than 6 ingredients, or I lose my focus. And I’m always indecisive of what to eat.. So last week I tried a HelloFresh box for the first time.

IMG_5644In one box, you find the ingredients for 3 healthy meals for 2 people and it gets delivered right at your doorstep. If you are on your own, the box is enough for one whole week. If you want to make dinner for 3 or 4 people you can add extra vegetables or make a simple salad on the side.
Since I am a vegetarian I chose the Veggiebox. When it arrived I immediately started smiling: opening a box full of fresh, delicious, colorful goodies is a joy in itself! There were different kinds of vegetables, cheeses, a bag filled with herbs and a great how-to-do-this-recipe booklet in the box.
I read the recipes and got excited to try these yummie things. The three meals I got were very different, which I liked. The booklet had beautiful pictures and simple steps so nothing could go wrong in the making of these dinners.
I decided to still have my Sunday cheat-meal and start working with this box on Monday. Literally a ‘fresh’ start of the busy week I had.
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How I almost got a sixpack for my birthday

Hi girls! Four months ago, I set a goal for myself: I wanted a sixpack for my 30th birthday. And today is my birthday: Hip hip, hooray! I’ll share my journey on how I almost succeeded on my way to get some more ab definition. Let me tell you how I got as far as I am now. Hopefully you will learn some tips and tricks from my journey: the road to a sixpack! 

Okay, so, why a sixpack? It might sound like a superficial goal: of course a sixpack looks great, but what other purpose does it have? Well, I’ll tell you. To me, a sixpack is the ultimate proof of fitness. You’ll have to train hard, but also keep a close eye on your nutrition. And you’ll have to be patient. Very. Very. Patient. For those who have never met me: I’m a super impatient girl! I cannot sit still for a minute, haha. So sticking to a fitness and food regime for a long term goal, was the best thing I could commit to. No quick fixes! This goal will take me months to reach! And I was up for a good challenge.

So when I started blogging for #FITGIRLCODE, I was looking for a long term goal. A sixpack it was! I started using the hashtag #sixpackbefore30 on my Instagram account (@fitgirlroos), because I would turn 30 in April. It was my goal to be the strongest, happiest and fittest version of myself at the age of 30. With some good abs, preferably!

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One of my Instagram pictures: My weight hasn’t changed much! But my abs have changed! This is why you shouldn’t trust your scale 😉

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10 Reasons not to be a Fit Girl

Being a Fit Girl requires time, effort and dedication. Why else would fitness journeys be so rewarding? Although, we can’t always assume this is everyone’s cup of tea. I’m constantly hearing comments such as “I don’t want to bulk up and look like a man”, or “I cannot find time in my week to put in a workout”. So after much thought and consideration, I came to a realization and came up with quite the list of why you shouldn’t want to be a Fit Girl 😉

10 Reasons not to be a Fit Girl

1. That bikini body you’ve always dreamed of, yes, that one, well who needs it? I mean, really…

2. It’s awkward to have so much energy throughout the day once you start working out more and eating properly

3. Once people start noticing your progress, the shower of compliments is just unbearable

4. Being constantly surrounded by an awesome positive community is… too good?

5. The feeling of not only looking good but feeling great on the inside is unsettling.

6. Why would we want a healthier, more nutritional version of pancakes if we have perfectly fine processed 800-calorie servings ready made?

7. It became un-cool the second our parents gave us so much support to follow this healthy lifestyle choice…

8. The rewarding feeling of soreness in the morning is not all that they make it to be

9. The huge array of workout clothes with spunky colors and patterns is overwhelming.

10. Peanut butter and all those gooey healthy things are too overrated.

What I’m trying to say here is… there are basically NO logical reasons why you shouldn’t lead a happy, healthy, and active lifestyle 🙂 So keep on doing your thing and hope you had a good laugh Fit Girlies!

Overnight Oats

Some of you may know what overnight oats are, but for the ones that don’t know: let me tell you what they are and how awesome they are! Next to green smoothies, overnight oats are on top of my breakfast list and they never let me down!

Oats are full of fibre which helps preventing blood sugar spikes and crashes, aids digestion, and keeps you full longer. I often mix my oats with some flax and chia seeds. This way I provide myself the daily amount of recomended omega 3 fatty acids, plus some extra protein and minerals like calcium and magnesium from the chia seeds. Of course that little tablespoon of chia seeds won’t provide me with nearly enough protein for the day (something superfood-critics might state), but it sure helps getting there.

Due to dairy intolerance, I don’t use regular milk but I switch between almond milk, oats milk, soy milk, spelt milk… basically all the variations out there. If you don’t experience any tummy troubles consuming dairy you could just use dairy milk to add to your oats. I would recommend switching milk every now and then though. Variation is important for health and it keeps things interesting!

 Here is what you need:

  • 1/2 cup of (gluten free) oats
  • 1/2 tbsp flax seeds
  • 1/2 tsbp chia seeds
  • 1/2 cup of almond/hazelnut/rice/cow’s milk
  • 1 tspn cinnamon
  • optional: 1 or maybe 2 tbsps of extra water, depending on how thick you like it

Put everything in a bowl and set in the fridge for at least 3 hours. I always make them in the evening and put them in the fridge overnight. In the morning I often top them with fruit (blueberries are my favourite! low in sugar, full of antioxidents and just super yummy) and sometimes tahini, nuts, or superfoods. 

And there, you have me drooling while writing this post… You just can’t go wrong with oats! Enjoy!! 

Quick & Easy Mashed Vegetables With Chicken

It’s time for a dinner recipe again. A healthy mash of sweet potato is very common nowadays, but you can also choose for a mash made of broccoli or cauliflower. Everybody knows broccoli is extremely healthy, but cauliflower should definitely not be underestimated either. It’s a source of vitamin C which increases your immune system and also stimulate detoxification of the liver.

Quick & Easy Mashed Vegetables With Chicken

Add some herbs, pesto and a piece of grilled chicken filet…. Yummm. I love dishes like this because you eat a lot of veggies without even noticing. On top of that: it’s super easy to make!

 Ingredients (1 person)

  • 200 gram cauliflower
  • 200 gram broccoli
  • 150 gram chicken breast
  • 1 teaspoon pesto
  • oregano
  • garlic herbs
  • salt and pepper

How you make it

Cut the broccoli and cauliflower into florets and cook them for 15 minutes in boiling water. Season the chicken with salt, pepper, garlic herbs and oregano. Heat a grill pan. Grill the chicken for about 10 minutes until cooked. Drain the cooked vegetables and mash them. Add pesto, salt, garlic and herbs.

Enjoy your mashed vegetables!

#FitGirlConfession – I had a binge eating disorder

Nowadays my relationship with food is a healthy one. Sometimes we fight, sometimes we laugh, but we always respect each other! A few years back, this relationship was not healthy at all, it was obsessive. I was so crazy about food, and all it did was make me feel bad about myself. Not a relationship you want to be in for the rest of your life.

#FitGirlConfession

I had a binge eating disorder. There, I said it! I don’t think this kind of eating disorder is the most well-known eating disorder out there, but it sure as hell is one. Whenever I felt sad or just bored, I’d gather my favorite food together, sat on the couch (or even in bed) and ate it. All of it. Sometimes at night, I’d snuck out of bed and raid the fridge. Hoping my roomies and later on my boyfriend wouldn’t hear me. And when I woke up, I felt so unbelievably guilty. So I wouldn’t eat until lunch, to compensate. And most of the time, in the evening it started all over again.

Listen to your body
I am not sure why and how I developed this relationship with food. But when I started seeing a therapist for it, I did understand it better though. My therapist explained to me that I had forgotten how to listen to my body. I misinterpreted the signals it gave me and always answered its questions and needs with food. Now I know that my body is not always telling me that it’s hungry. Sometimes it’s sleepy, needs affection or is just bored. Now that I know that, I can cope better with my cravings. It has been really, really hard to overcome this, but I am getting there. One step at a time.

Proud of myself
I did a lot of attempts to get to where I am now, had fallbacks, but never gave up! It’s still a bit painful for me to share these things about myself. But while writing this down I realize that I am actually really proud of what I have already accomplished. I still think a lot about food, but in a healthy way. And even though I have to drag myself to the gym sometimes, I go there at least three times a week! That’s pretty fucking awesome right?

So, no matter what your obstacle or problem might be, I promise you that it feels great to make the first step in the right direction. If you really set your mind to it, you’ll get wherever you want to be eventually. I speak from experience!

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Tips for a healthy relationship with food

  • Eat on fixed times. Often when you develope something like an eating disorder, your mind and your body are out of balance. You need to recognize when you are hungry and when you have had enough. Eating on fixed times every day really helps to reboot your system. After a few weeks your body will naturally tell you what it needs, but you have to listen closely. The answer is not always food!
  • Distraction. If you feel a binge coming on, look for distraction. Take a warm bath, go out for a walk or call your best friend and tell her what`s going on. If you still feel hungry after doing that, grab an apple. If that doesn’t satisfy you, you’re not hungry. There might something else you gotta do. Again, listen to your body.
  • Make sure you always carry a snack with you. To prevent you from giving into a binge you should always bring healthy snacks with you. If you feel you are hungry and you have to wait too long for your next meal, the risk is bigger that you’ll overeat.
  • Plan your meals ahead. If you think wisely about what you are going to eat the next day, you`ll make better food decisions. You’ll have plenty of time to prepare healthy meals and snacks. Eating healthy doesn’t  mean less tasty. The internet is filled with nice and healthy recipes.  Dive into it and I`m sure you’ll amaze yourself and others with your culinary creations.

Make a stance
Being able to reach out on a topic like this to such a strong, positive and supportive community as #FITGIRLCODE, I encourage all the Fit Girls to make a stance and support a cause like this one. By just talking to a friend in need, reaching out to a family member, or sharing your supports online to other people going through this, you could communicate an immense amount of courage to someone, or to thousands.

3 easy tips for a healthy relationship with food

It’s been a very busy few months over at Healthy Beautiful Me – my personal health and fitness website. I’ve been spending lots of time getting creative in the kitchen and writing my healthy eating guide.

Beating disordered eating and illness through good food
After playing around with my diet for years, suffering from disordered eating, IBS, CFS and food intolerances, I finally decided to make health my priority. Eating the right foods and adopting a healthy lifestyle was key to this and the foundation behind a happy, healthy and nourished life. Healthy Beautiful Food, my new book, is ultimately the outcome of my experiences. A book that gives you all the recipes you need to create a healthy eating food plan, alongside healthy eating tips, facts and nutritional advice.

The book itself features all the recipes I use to create my monthly food plans and offers vegetarian alternatives for each meal, as required. It’s not so much a diet plan in the traditional sense of the term, but more a healthy lifestyle handbook, which you can follow long-term to look and feel your best.

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Three healthy food habits

In this blog, I wanted to share an excerpt from the book with you. The three tips on the next page are just some of the nuggets of advice I share in the book in the section that looks at maintaining a healthy relationship with food. I hope these tips alone can help you to re-assess any poor eating habits and give you a taster of the material I cover in Healthy Beautiful Food.

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Dare 2 Challenge – part 1

What doesn’t challenge you doesn’t change youthat was probably what I was thinking one month ago, when I agreed to this challenge! 😉 And not only that, also because I still havent completely unlocked my personal code for a healthy lifestyle.

In the work-out department I score like an 8, hitting the gym four times a week and challenging myself to reach a new level of soreness after every work-out. haha 😀 . But in the food department I score like a 5 and sometimes a 6. Like so many Fit Girls I’m also still searching for the best nutrition for my body ever since working out became part of my lifestyle. So hopefully after this challenge I will be closer in unlocking my personal code for my healthy lifestyle…

Dare 2 Challenge
So it’s very simple… there are 5 CONDITIONS and 2 RULES. You only need a pretty large doses of self-control or a full-time support system. 😉 The followings drinks and food are off limit:

  1. Alcohol
  2. Soft and fruits drinks (also try to stay away from any light versions, since they contain other substances of sweetness)
  3. Snacks (chocolate, candy, chips, cupcakes, pie etc.)
  4. Sugar (read more about “how to eat less sugar” in the article of Fit Girl Lisanne)
  5. Greasy and fast food

And you need to keep yourself to the following 2 rules:

  1. One cheat day a week (and don’t go flamingo-crazy there, a cheat day could also mean a dinner in a restaurant or one healthy snack)
  2. Time frame: 3 MONTHS (of course you can determine your own period, if one month is already enough of a challenge for you that’s also good)

Why complicate life?
Since I am determined to live a healthy lifestyle, I also need to change my food habits. Working out on a regular base alone is not sufficient and your food intake is as important as your workouts. I also realised that my body is seeking for different nutrition ever since I started working out on a regular base and therefore I am in search for a food schedule I feel comfortable with and gives me balance in this lifestyle. This does not mean I will never allow myself to eat chocolate or a hamburger again, but I am challenging myself to find healthy alternatives for these type of cravings.

I believe that because I am not aware and don’t have the knowledge yet of all these alternative healthy delicious snacks and other recipes, I continue going in circles and fall back in my old habits over and over again. I want to change that and therefore I hope this challenge will force me to make an extra effort and after 3 months will get me into my healthy habits and lifestyle 😀

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Pasta Pesto with Creamy Avocado

If you ask me, the easiest dishes are often simply the best! Especially when you have a real busy week ahead, it’s nice to prepare yourself a quick and healthy meal. The best of all, you won’t need any prepackaged products with lots of unnatural additives for this recipe. This dish is loaded with natural and fresh flavours and lots of fresh vegetables.

Today’s speciality is a delicious classic pasta pesto with a twist. Instead of using pasta I make zucchini strings. Zucchini is rich in folic acid, so ideal for women who are pregnant or trying to. It is also rich in potassium, magnesium, vitamin A, B1 and C. The pasta sauce is made of pesto and creamy avocado.

pastapesto

This is what you need (1 person)

  • 1 zucchini
  • 1 ripe avocado
  • ½ lemon (juice)
  • 100 millilitre almond milk
  • 1 tablespoon pesto (organic)
  • garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon pine nuts
  • 10 cherry tomatoes
  • salt and pepper

How you make it

Remove the skin from the zucchini with a cheese slicer. Cut the zucchini into thin long strings with a julienne slicer, grater, mandolin, spiralizer or, when you don’t have all of this just use a cheese slicer. I prefer the spiralizer.

Remove the skin from the avocado and remove the pit. Mash the avocado with a fork (you can also use a blender or hand mixer) and add the lemon juice, garlic powder, milk, pesto, salt and pepper. Mix well together until you get a smooth sauce. Add the sauce to the zucchini strings and stirr.

Heat a frying pan and fry the pine nuts until they start to colour. Cut the tomatoes in half and add them to the pine nuts. Bake until they become a little bit softer. Add the tomatoes and the pine nuts to the pasta.

Enjoy!

www.inlovewithhealth.com

The holistic approach to fitness

Put Eefje, my very Dutch name, next to the powerful word‚ leven’ (Dutch verb‚ to live’) et voila: there is l-eefje. I simply like to live a little! I am turning 27 in one week, however I celebrate life way more often than just on my birthdays. After winning the‚ Fit Body Award’, powered by Women’s Health last fall, I started to write and share more moments in life, which are mainly about feeling good and living life the way I want it to be: happy, energetic and healthy!

Learning
Everyday we learn. This is what intrigues me and sends me out into the world, eager to meet a new day. I think, being curious is a great way to live your life. Last year was an adventurous and quite curious year for me. I decided to put more focus on things that I love to do and which am good at. Things I feel that should be put into the world, by me.

I started to ask myself, what do I really like? What am I good at? At a young age, I found out I am a caring person. During my social and environmental and resource management studies, I came across that character trait again. I needed this to make more sense, to something that was more me. Besides that, I always felt quite some responsibility. Towards the earth, people around me, and to myself. Not running too fast, by figure of speech. ‘Hearing the music, before the song is over:’. That sort of thing.

happy baking

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From Fast Food to Fit Girl

In my first article I told you that I used to live a pretty bad lifestyle. A couple of months ago I met the girls of #FITGIRLCODE and felt really inspired to make a real change in my life. I want to share my story with you and maybe even inspire you to start (or continue) your own fit journey.

Fast food and energy drinks
I’m going to take you back to almost 8 years ago… When I was sixteen I started working in the fast food industry. I liked it a lot! I worked with a team of young people and not one day was the same. I’ve worked in several fast food restaurants since then. At some point I worked there fulltime and didn’t go to school. Almost four years later I was an energy drink-consuming, fast food eating, really unhealthy and unhappy girl. I wasn’t happy with whom I had become and I struggled with insecurities. I blamed everybody and everything for my unhappiness until I realized that I was the one responsible for my own happiness.

I decided I wanted to turn my life around and started with my education. I graduated with evening classes for my high school diploma (in Dutch: havo) and after that I went to college and started my communications study. Just after that I decided to quit my job at the fast food restaurant. It felt like a weight was lifted off my shoulders when I walked out of the restaurant for the last time.

The start of my fit journey
Walking out of the restaurant was the start of my fit journey. It took me a really long time and for almost a year it was really hard to adjust my lifestyle. I took many small steps. First I got a membership at the gym and started excercising about two times a week. I lost about 5 kg by eating – what I thought – was healthy. I still ate fries and I told myself that the sugarfree energy drink wouldn’t do that much harm. It took me a long time to be really honest with myself and to realize that my lifestyle was still really bad.

In September 2014 I met the girls from #FITGIRLCODE while I was doing my internship in the same building as the #FITGIRLCODE HQ. There I saw delicious meals they prepped every day. Especially the beautiful food that Fit Girl Anna created inspired me a lot. I ordered some Fit Girl goodies to motivate myself and read a lot of articles on Fitgirlcode.com to educate and inspire myself. Then I slowly started to replace some foods and drinks for healthier versions. Here are a few alternatives to my greatest sins.

  •  Potato chips → nuts (almonds, macadamias or hazelnuts) or all kinds of fruits
  •  Fries → homemade sweet potato fries, just peel or scrub your potatoes, slice them, sprinkle with some olive oil, sea salt and pepper and bake them for approximately 30-40 minutes at 220 degrees Celsius.
  •  All sorts of candy → fruits, also sweet but healthy =).
  •  Pancakes → banana and egg pancakes; mash up 1 banana and 2 eggs and bake in coconut oil.

One healthy meal at a time
If you want to change your lifestyle, give your body some time to adjust to the new food. At first I wanted to change my whole lifestyle in a split second. My body reacted really badly on the different food at first, I had real bad stomach aches and was nauseous. Then I realized I had to take it easy, adjusting my lifestyle one meal at a time. Of course your body may react differently, this is just my personal experience.

The #FITGIRLCODE goodies are really helping me to stick to my healthy lifestyle, I walk around with my Fit Girl beanie and bag all the time! It keeps me from buying bad food, because I would feel really guilty buying a hamburger while carrying my #FITGIRLCODE bag ;-).

I hope I’ve inspired you with my personal story. Feel free to ask me any question you may have and follow my fit journey on Instagram.

Love,

Lisanne

Look what Santa brought us…

Apparently we’ve been good Fit Girls at #FITGIRLCODE HQ! Because Santa brought us some really awesome goodies.. Basically everything we need to kickstart 2015. Here’s what was beneath our #FITGIRLCODE Christmas tree!

 

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Dermalogica multi-active toner

Fit Girl Aranka is completely in love with Dermalogica, and the rest of the team cannot wait to try it out too! Dermalogica is one of the few brands that cares about your skin and your skin only. Their products look simple and luxurious, which makes us love it even more. This multi-active toner will hydrate, refresh and soften a Fit Girl’s skin. Exactly what we need in the winter!

 

 

 

 

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Body & Fit Shop Shake & Smoothie mix

Our Santa at the Body & Fit Shop sensed that we wanted to make 2015 even healthier than 2014 was! Is this even possible? We say hell yeah! The shake & smoothie mix of cacao, cashew and flax is gonna make our yogurts, shakes and smoothies so much more delicious. Because what more does a Fit Girl need than some healthy chocolate in her food? 😉

 

 

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Colourful Rebel beanie

To keep us warm in the cold, cold winter, we really neeeeded these awesome beanies from Colourful Rebel! Now everyone can see we’re (fit) rebels, hehe. What do you think? Can Fit Girls Nathalie and Shirley pull off the Rebel beanie successfully?

 

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