Guide: Fueling Your Fitness with THM

This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a commission off of purchases made using these links. If you’re interested in fitness, the Trim Healthy Mama lifestyle, or just living a more healthy life, please consider using one or more of the links below. The money made helps me feed my growing family and keeps this blog running with free recipes. Thank you!

This is your go-to guide for fueling your workouts  on the Trim Healthy Mama (THM) plan.

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The journey to where I am today began first with my passion for fitness. I joined my local YMCA when my daughter (now 4.5) was about 6 months old. I started going to swim as my workout, and soon got into group fitness classes. Strength training, Zumba, yoga, cycling, TRX – you name it, I was trying it. At first, I was losing weight consistently, but a few months later I plateaued even when I was working out more.

After being frustrated and stuck at the same place for months, I began my journey with THM. Around that same time, I became a fitness instructor (AKA working out a LOT more). It took a few months, but I finally hit my stride with being a fit, trim, AND healthy mama.

1. Timing is everything. We all know we’re supposed to be eating every 3 hours, and with fitness that rule is even more important. You should have a meal 1-2 hours prior to working out, and have a replenishing meal or snack within an hour of working out.

My go-to post workout snack is a Vega Sport Protein smoothie. Vega is a vegan protein, and its flavors are stevia based. The stats for a half scoop are 1.5g fat, 1g net carbs, and 15g protein. I place a half scoop into a Blender Bottle with water after my workout and shake it right up. [*NOTE: I believe Vega is still considered a personal choice because the peas are not sprouted. In this instance, I take it because I believe it will do more good than not in my case.]

2. Match your fuel to your workout. This one is really important – in order to perform your best during your workout, you need to know what type of fuel will be best.

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For cardio-heavy workouts such as cycling, running, tabata, etc. an E meal will give you the most energy during your workout. You don’t want to feel weighed down while doing cardio, the heavier carb ratio helps fuel your muscles and increase endurance during your workout.

Oatmeal is FANTASTIC for cardio workouts. I have multiple recipes for overnight oats, which are all E’s and easy to throw together with a little prep. If you’re OK with dairy before cardio, then cottage cheese, yogurt, or a kefir smoothie are also great E options with lots of protein. I like to mix a Tbsp of fat free cottage cheese into an Oikos 000 yogurt and have sprouted toast with jelly and fruit on the side with coffee or green tea.

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For more strength-based or low impact workouts (such as weight lifting, yoga, barre, pilates, or similar), go for a Deep S meal prior to your sweat session. Dairy-heavy S’s can cause bloat during a workout, so try to avoid them.

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My go-to meal prior to low impact exercise is eggs, bacon, avocados with nutritional yeast, and coffee with collagen. I do have half and half in my coffee, but it’s not enough to weigh me down during my workout (and I usually consume this over an hour before my workout).

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For a combination of strength and cardio, I find it best to go with a FP protein shake. It’s light, but filling, and keeps my energy levels up while I get my sweat going. This meal type is also good if you’re someone who wakes up early and goes to workout first thing in the morning. My rule is not to workout on an empty stomach, but there are a few days during the week where I’m up early to sweat and my stomach hasn’t quite caught up with me. On those days, a shake is just enough to get me going.

My basic skeleton recipe is 1 scoop of whey protein isolate, 2 Tbsp fat free cottage cheese, fresh or frozen fruit of choice, vanilla, 1 scoop of collagen, water and/or unsweetened almond milk (I usually do about 1/2 c of each), and sweetener of choice to taste. It’s the perfect pre-workout energizer for early mornings!

3. Know how to recover. Just like fueling prior to your workout is important, recovering and re-fueling post-workout is equally important.

Carbs fuel your muscles for hard work, and they also help your muscles recover while boosting your energy. After a tough cardio and/or strength workout, I go for a big E meal with lots of protein. The protein helps you recover, while the carbs build your muscles and give you an overall boost of energy (after you come down from that post-workout endorphin and adrenaline rush).

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Like I said – pack. in. that. protein. What many people miss with E meals is the protein, then they end up feeling hungry an hour later. My post-workout lunch is a sandwich on sourdough packed with turkey, Dijon mustard, lettuce or sprouts, tomato and onion with a pickle wedge, fruit, veggies or other on-plan sides (pictured is 1 c of salted Skinny Pop and 2 Tbsp of my FP Everything Bagel Dip with grape tomato dippers), and a big Good Girl Moonshine (pg.  397 of the Trim Healthy Mama Cookbook). Hydrating is important for muscle recovery as well, so make sure you get those fluids in to prevent soreness tomorrow.

If the end of your workout is an hour or more until your next meal, go for an S meal to fill you up. There are many ideas you can go with for an S meal, and the same basic rules apply: pack in the protein, get a mix of fruit and veggies, and sip that water/GGMS.

There you have it! My guide for fueling your fitness with THM. These make seem like small tweaks, but trust me when I say they will make all the difference in your routine.

Pumpkin Chai Fat Bomb Ice Cream (THM Deep S)

This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a commission off of purchases made using these links. If you’re interested in fitness, the Trim Healthy Mama lifestyle, or just living a more healthy life, please consider using one or more of the links below. The money made helps me feed my growing family and keeps this blog running with free recipes. Thank you!

What is a “fat bomb” you ask? Fat bombs are any recipe that is high in fat and low in carbs. Different recipes will use different fats, this one has tons of healthy fats without weighing you down with dairy.

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I love this ice cream recipe for two reasons: 1) my husband (who’s lactose intolerant) and I can both enjoy it and 2) there’s zero cooking involved.

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Start by blending the everything except the ice in a high-powered blender until slightly thick and creamy.

Next, begin adding the ice cubes one at a time, while keeping the blender power on, blending well (for about 10 seconds) in between. At the end, the mixture should be a little thicker, creamy, and chilled.

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Transfer the mixture to your pre-chilled ice cream machine and churn for approximately 15-20 minutes. The mixture should be the texture of soft serve once it’s done.

This next part will be hard – DON’T EAT IT YET. I know, I’m mean.

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Transfer the ice cream to a lined loaf pan, or other shallow dish, and let it set in the freezer for about 45 minutes to an hour.

Talk about  creamy dreaminess!

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My kids and I had a taste test of this ice cream the afternoon I made it, and I kid you not when I say we probably could’ve eaten it all in that one sitting. They gobbled it up! I was sad I decided to share it with my son, because really I wanted a huge bowl all to myself.

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This ice cream has all the decadent deliciousness of dairy without weighing you down. Believe me when I say it is the creamiest non-dairy dessert I have ever had. I want to try so many variations of this just so that I can eat ice cream at every meal.

Pumpkin Chai Ice Cream (THM Deep S)

  • Servings: Multiple
  • Time: 30 minutes, plus firming time
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print


Credit: Erin Murray, My Fling with Food

Ingredients

  • 4 whole eggs
  • 4 egg yolks (save the whites for later!)
  • 1 c pumpkin puree
  • 1/3 c melted raw cacao butter (I found it easiest when I chopped the cacao butter small before melting. It took a long time to melt!)
  • 1/3 c melted coconut oil
  • 1/4 c MCT oil
  • 1/4 c Pyure or THM Gentle Sweet
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ginger
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp cardamom
  • scant 1/8 tsp cloves
  • 10-12 ice cubes
  • 2 Tbsp vegetable glycerin, optional

Directions

  1. In a high-powered blender combine all ingredients except ice cubes, and blend for about 2-3 minutes or until creamy.
  2. Begin adding the ice cubes, one at a time and blending well for about 10 seconds between. NOTE* Try to add only large, whole ice cubes. In my Ninja, I was able to open the flap on the pour spout in order to drop the ice in without having to remove the lid each time. This step helps dilute the mixture slightly and bring the temperature down enough for churning. It took about 10 ice cubes for my mixture to be a consistency I liked. It was creamy, and slightly chilly.
  3. Next, pour the mixture straight into your pre-chilled ice cream machine and churn until it’s about soft-serve consistency. Mine took about 10-12 minutes.
  4. Transfer to a loaf pan or any shallow, long dish suitable for the freezer. Chill it for about 30-45 minutes before serving.

Transformation Tuesday: June 2016

I hate this post already. It makes me uncomfortable putting so much of myself out there, but I’m doing it anyway.

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These are my very own transformation pictures – on the left was me in September 2015, and the right was taken today.

To explain a little, let’s start at the beginning.

September 2015, I had been a fitness instructor for about 3 months. I was doing Barre somewhere between 2 and 4 times per week, amongst other things.

I wasn’t exactly eating horribly, but it definitely wasn’t healthy either.

Flash forward to January 2016, and I decided to take a tough HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) class at my gym as often as my schedule would allow. While I could tell my fitness level was elevating week to week, I wasn’t seeing the changes in my body that I wanted.

If I’m going to be real honest, I’ll say that I was eating pizza and fast food 3-4 times per week, naively thinking that my time in the gym was cancelling out my less-than-stellar diet. Wrong. The scale wasn’t moving. My body fat was staying put. And even though I worked out all the time, you probably couldn’t tell by looking at me.

March 2016, I finally came to my senses. I realized that I had been “treating” myself with food, as a learned behavior, way too often. Resulting in all my hard work at the gym being negated. I did away with that behavior, and decided to treat myself with a challenge – a bikini.

I have not bought, much less been IN, a bikini in at least 6 years. Between not being in shape, and having 2 kids it just didn’t happen.

I bought myself a cute little number from Victoria’s Secret, and immediately I felt anxious. A bikini? You mean basically-as-legally-naked-as -you-can -get-in-public? Bring on big, baggy sweats I already feel overexposed just thinking about it. HERE GOES NOTHING.

I knew I had to make a change, and I decided to dig in on changing my habits. My Mother-in-Law had been trying to get me on the Trim Healthy Mama (THM) bandwagon for months, and I was skeptical. How could  I be sure it would work for me? Was the food any good? Was it something we could do as a family?

Truth is, I didn’t know the answers to any of those questions until after I gave it an honest try. When I really started doing every day the THM way, I saw major differences. I had more energy. My body was changing. My weight was going down (FINALLY). I could see and feel muscles – a first for me.

Now, here I am, a little more than 2 months into my lifestyle change, and I can honestly say that I will be a THMer for life. Not just because of the changes in my body and weight, but because of the freedom. Nothing is rigid, and it’s totally sustainable.

If you’re feeling frustrated with where you are in your fitness journey, I strongly encourage you to consider this:

  1. Be honest with yourself about what you’re putting into your body. Are you fueling it? Overly “treating” it?
  2. Move it and shake it in a new way. A lot of people think the way to lose weight is through cardio. Yes and no. Cardio is important to fitness and heart health, however building muscle through strength training is what will help you burn more resting calories. Try a new class at your gym! Lift heavier weights. Try a new activity at least once a week to break up your routine.
  3. Love yourself at every stage. I can’t stress body love enough. Love your body for what it can do. Love your body at the beginning and middle of your journey, not just when you’ve achieved your goals. Speak positively about your body. Believe in your body’s ability.
  4. Don’t make excuses.

If I can do this, you can too. Fitness and health are learned behaviors, not God-given abilities.