Why Snacks Help

Hey friends!

How is life going for ya all this week?

{P.s. thanks for liking the table. I thought it looked good too. Wahoo for not failing in the ‘decorating’ dept!}

Some of our Ikea furniture got built-thanks to my fabulous husband.

I screwed in just 1 piece. Yep-1.

I am really helpful and handy around the house, I tell ya. 😉

{Actually, I’m pretty sure he was juuuussssttt fine with me cleaning the kitchen & fixing up the living room so he could be left alone to do it quickly & without having to tell me a bazillion instructions.  I mean who actually LIKES putting together things from a manual?! ICK!}

*****

Why Snacks Help

Ya all know that I eat often-and I eat a lot. I am not one to just be okay with eating a meal at breakfast & then again before bed. NO WAY!

I need like 5-7 meals a day!

I call them ‘3 meals’ and 3-4 ‘snacks’, but in actuality I eat 2 small lunches & 2 small dinners on most days.

Partly because I work out & sweat a lot. But also because I LIKE eating often.

{oh hey sweat.}

Snacks are really important:

  • to keep our energy levels high
  • to help stabilize our hormones
  • to boost & keep our metabolisms revved
  • to save your marriage (NOT kidding. If I’m hungry…..)

 

It is best to eat every 3-4 hours if you eat in this way.

{Some studies have pointed to the fact that men tend to like the 3 square meals way of eating & women tend to like the smaller, more often meals-way of eating. This could be related to the fact that women’s hormones fluctuate a lot more than men’s throughout the day, and thus, our eating habits may reflect this & our feeling better if we’re fed.} Interesting, eh?

But there are always two sides. Some say that eating too often can lead to overeating, weight gain, and overtaxing the digestive system & removal processes.

(But in all honesty, what matters most is WHAT you eat–and if you’re getting the right macros, nutrients, and vitamins that YOU personally need. Remember not to compare your way of eating to someone else, because we’re all different, and one way that works for someone may not work for you!)

To eat this way (eating often/5-7 meals), it is really important to include the macronutrients in each meal or snack. This way of eating does NOT mean to graze your way through the kitchen cabinets or fridge-eating chips at 1 p.m., cookies at 3 p.m., and a protein bar at 6 p.m.

I take time to prepare & eat these meals/snacks so that each of them delivers the nutrients/vitamins/minerals my body needs.

That’s why it drives me bonkers when I hear things like “well you’ll get fat if you eat so often.” Or “that’s a great way to eat a lot more cookies and ice cream!”

First of all, I’ve actually gotten stronger & leaner by eating this way. And second of all, these moments to eat a snack or meal part 2 are not my chance to ‘just go at it’ and eat whatever is around. I take the time to physically and mentally determine what is best for my body at that time & on that day.

Lastly, I don’t enjoy eating a lot in one sitting, so I definitely like to spread it out. I like to eat, so I’m totally okay with eating all day long! 😉 My muscles need this fuel anyways. And I don’t want to lose any hard earned muscle (actually, I want MORE, baby! Bring on the strength.)

A (very approximate) day of eating in my life:

7 a.m.: FitMixer Aminos to prep for workout.

9 a.m. refuel/brekfast {after workout & shower}

12 p.m. snack or lunch part 1

2 p.m. lunch part 2

5 p.m. snack/prep for workout {like a piece of FitMixer Protein Banana Bread!}

+ {I have chocolate milk + whey protein powder immediately following any lifting or teaching BodyPUMP}

7:30 p.m. dinner/refuel

9:30 p.m. dinner part 2

As you can see, I eat throughout the day, and this makes ME feel my best.

{See my prepare & refuel routine of eats/drinks here}

This type of plan is actually advisable for a LOT of people, especially those who workout a lot and need the fuel, or those who are working to eat more in general (recovering from ED), as this gives them chances to eat, just not a lot at one time.

BUT, we’re each individuals with different goals & various lifestyles & work/play life, so this may not work that great for everyone.

{Check with a doctor or dietician to decide what would be best for you if you’re experiencing major hunger, fatigue and/or don’t feel like you eat enough.}

All I know is Go Lean Crunch + granola + almond milk is miiigghhhtty tasty at about 4:30 p.m.

I would know. :)

Have a GREAT day ya’all! I am off to grab FitMixer Aminos & get in a quick workout before the BUSY day that’s ahead of me!

****

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Enter FitMixer Giveaway!

What type of eating during the day do YOU enjoy?? How do YOU decide on meals/snacks?? Do YOU prepare everything in advance?? What’s YOUR favorite snack??

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Comments

  1. Favorite snack lately….pumpkin/protein smoothie….or OIKOS plain yogurt with fruit/walnuts/mini chocolate chips…yum!

  2. You aren’t starving during your morning workout? I HAVE to eat prior to working out / running in the AM, or my stomach growls and I get light-headed. That could also mean I need a more substantial snack before bed, like casein. I’ve just been reading about it!!!

    • The FitMixer Aminos help a ton, actually. And yes, because of my snack at night, I’m fine for the workout & then I eat IMMEDIATELY after it. 😉

  3. I’m definitely in the 5-6 meals a day camp. It just works so much better for my energy levels!

  4. Man, I do love cereal for a snack, but it definitely does not fill me. And I would never eat it as a meal (for the same reason) so I have to wonder why i ever buy it…
    You have SUCH a great, healthy outlook on life, your body, eating, etc. I really admire you! And I’m so glad you got there. (I’m on my way…)

    • Thanks lady!

      I eat that snack when I just need something ‘small’ <--I too can't eat it as a meal. I need nuts & nut butter or something! hah.

  5. Great tips! What you snack on is so important and can definitely make or break your meal plan. I’m definitely a 4-6 mini-meal person myself. I try to incorporate a variety of high fiber, lean protein, and healthy fats into each for optimum health and energy.

  6. I’m definitely a snacker – I also like eating so that makes eating all day way more fun. I snack on tons of stuff… As of late, itz been an apple, almonds, or these nut bran muffins I made a couple days ago!

  7. I love snacking! But sometimes my snacks turn into meals and I end up over eating.. so i usually keep it to 3 meals and 1 snack each day, with optional dessert after dinner if I want it!

  8. First off, I just want to say I love how you include your knowledge on various subjects in your posts. I feel like I’m always learning something!

    When it comes to meals, I usually just stick to the main 3 and add a few snacks–or, that’s what I shoot for at least. I find that if I eat really often, food is ALWAYS on my mind, and I end up eating way too much, too often. I’ve learned to control portions much better, but I guess I’m still working on just eating when I’m hungry. There’s always progress to be made.

    • Phoebe says:

      Same here! I tried having 6 meals/day, and became OBSESSED with food. I was constantly thinking of food, and gained 8 pounds :(

      Now I’m back to eating 3 meals and an afternoon snack. I feel much, much better now :)

      PS. I’m totally not judging anyone’s mini-meals! Just sharing my own experience and saying that everyone’s different.

  9. I definitely like eating lots of small meals versus just 3 main meals, I do not understand people who can go 6 hours without eating! I’ve only been on your plan 2.5 days but I’m already feeling like I have more energy and that I’m always satisfied, but never over-stuffed and never starving!

  10. Haha I love the part that you said eating regularly saves your marriage… Amen to that! You don’t want to be near me if I get too hungry. 😉 I’m a huge fan of snacks. I usually have a breakfast, lunch, and dinner (of moderate size), and a snack mid morning, mid afternoon, and (sometimes) after dinner. I love eating!

  11. I follow a pretty similar eating schedule, lots of “mini meals” throughout the day. I find that I get really tired and sluggish if it’s been too long since I last ate, and I need the constant (smaller) meals throughout the day to keep my energy up. Everyone’s different! And I agree, you don’t want to mess with me when I’m hungry…haha. I saw a pin that said “Sorry for what I said when I was hungry”, cracked me up!!

  12. Christine says:

    I try to follow a similar plan but it’s so hard when I work 9 hours a day and commute an hour to work each way! I have been trying to make lunch and snacks in advance to have throughout the but i always end up getting so hungry, do you have any advice for this type of schedule?

    • Definitely planning ahead & taking those snacks & meals with you.

      I’ve found that when I eat enough protein, fiber, and healthy fats, I don’t get as hungry as often. Maybe consider upping some of those macros in your earlier meals so you’re not as famished later on? Let me know how that goes if you try it!

      Have a great night!! :)

  13. I’m glad you’re promoting that eating alot can be healthy too- especially for gym bunnies like ourselves. I see you workout twice a day, is this typical? Do you teach morning and night or usually have your own morning workout and then teach at night?

  14. I like eating a lot at one time, so I’m a fan of 3 larger meals + 2 snacks per day! It works out to eating about every 3 hours though, which keeps me satisfied all day long!

  15. I LOVE to eat, so I’m a snacker! Plus I hate the feeling of being full too. So snacking (healthily) between meals helps me to stay non-hangry, but also not too stuffed!

  16. I am in recovery and this is pretty similar to how I try to eat! Thanks for sharing and thinking of recommending this way of eating for those in recovery! The 9:30pm meal/snack is crucial for me!

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