How to Roast Spaghetti Squash

Ever since I discovered spaghetti squash, regular pasta has little to no appeal to me. For me, plain pasta noodles don’t really taste like anything, and really are just a vehicle to deliver the good stuff: pasta sauce, cheese, and meat. I created this video because I think that seeing a spaghetti squash in the grocery store is pretty intimidating: How do you cook it? for how long? You can’t really screw this up unless you severely over cook it, or under cook it (but if you under cook it, you can just stick it in the microwave, and you’re good. General Directions: Preheat your oven to 450 degrees Carefully cut the squash in half, lengthwise. With a spoon or ice cream scoop, scoop out the seeds and other slimy muck. Place squash halves face down on a cookie sheet. Add water to the cookie sheet in the video I Read More . . .

Two tricks I use to avoid the “eff-its” over the weekend

We all work so hard during the week. And once Friday night rolls around, we just want to put on our sweatpants, sit on the couch, and be a vegetable – not eat vegetables. We are worn down from all the adulting that we do during the week, that all we want to do on the weekend is NOT be responsible. Weekends tend to be a bit more relaxed. We typically have more time, so we want to sleep in, hang out with friends, have fun & not have to think about our diet. Well, unless you have kiddos who are in soccer, baseball, basketball, go to birthday parties, and other activities. In that case, weekends aren’t such a relaxing time O.o When we finally get through the week, we feel like we deserve a treat – and one of those treats is to not think about it. So, there are a Read More . . .

Eat the Freakin Banana

So, here’s the scene: It’s after dinner, and you want something. A banana. But you don’t eat it. Because you heard that it’s got a lot of starch in it. And sugar. And they can also have a lot of calories! And all of that is bad to have before you go to bed. So you eat a handful of almonds. Because even though they can be higher in calories, at least they don’t have any starch or sugar. And that’s good because you’ve heard that at least it won’t raise your blood sugar before bed. But the almonds don’t really hit the spot. So you find some fat free Greek yogurt. And you put a touch of honey in it to sweeten it a little. But that’s okay because you read that you should always eat carbohydrates with protein – because protein slows down the spike in blood sugar. And Read More . . .

Should you hire an overweight personal trainer?

There are hundreds upon hundreds of personal trainers in your city – let alone the US or the world. Have you ever had one? How did you pick him/her? What do you look for when you hire a personal trainer? Certification? Years of experience? Did you stalk her, watch her train other clients to see how she interacted with them? Or did you select her because of her body? Choosing a trainer based on looks is a bad idea. Deciding on a trainer based solely on appearance is as bad of an idea as picking a life partner out of a magazine. I don’t need to explain that. Do I? Most people have a disconnect about what a trainer can do for them. They hire a trainer with the idea that they’re going to lose weight and look toned, and so they hire a trainer who has the body style that they, themselves, desire. There Read More . . .

How many carbs do you need to eat?

Carbs! Such a controversial subject in today’s national conversation about nutrition and proper diet! It’s so confusing. Eat carbs or don’t eat carbs? Which carbs are good? Which carbs are bad? (hint: there are no bad foods. There may be more or less nutritious foods, but none are good or bad.) Okay so let’s break this whole carb thing down. What is a carb? We get our calories from Protein, Fat and Carbohydrates (these are called macronutrients). If we divide macronutrients into two vveeeerrrry broad groups, we have things that grow out of the ground (plants), and things that had a mother (animals). Carbohydrates come from plants, and protein mostly comes from animals. Fat can be found in both plants and animals. Good Carbs & Bad Carbs? First. Carbs really run the specturm in terms of nutrition (aka: nutrient density). Nutrient density is the term you want to think about Read More . . .

Why the scale isn’t a good tool for weight loss

When clients come to me saying that they want to lose weight, I understand what they mean. If I were to be snarky, I could say, ‘oh, you want to lose 10 lbs? Let’s just chop off your right arm. Would that make you happy?’ …but that probably wouldn’t make a good first impression now, would it? When folks say that they want to lose weight, what they mean is that they want to lose body fat. We want to look ‘toned’ – like our muscles are flexing even when we’re sitting on the couch. The degree of muscularity desired, however is different depending on the individual, and what they perceive to be an ideal physique. What’s counter-intuitive, though is we say that we want to lose weight, even though we want to lose fat, but we’re measuring that success with a tool that only measures our gravitational pull to the earth – the scale. Read More . . .

The 4 Best Weight Loss Foods

I’ve never felt comfortable creating meal plans for clients. It’s just never felt right to me. Although, it’s the most popular question I get: “Elizabeth, just tell me what to eat!” I mean, sure! I can tell you what to eat – but chances are that you’re going to get bored with it. People’s tastes are so different! I love eating eggs for breakfast. But I know a LOT of folks who don’t. I can eat the same thing over & over & over again – every day. I rarely get bored with eating the same foods. But I know a lot of folks who need something new at every meal. Some people are really drawn to Asian flavors; others, not so much. Most folks like minimal preparation meals, but there are a number who have the time, and like to cook. (yes! really – they’re out there.) So, although no Read More . . .

Are fitness apps a waste of time & effort?

I’ve been reading a lot of news stories lately about the accuracy of fitness trackers, which has been debate in the fitness community ever since I started in fitness over 10 years ago. The calorie readouts on the treadmills, ellipticals, and heart rate monitors were all that were available, back then. Soon after I started personal training, the bodybugg was introduced (and if you’re a long time reader, you know that I loved my bodybugg sooooo much that I became a reseller). It was expensive, but it was a great tool, and I finally felt like it offered the missing side of the equation to my food logging; you can log your food all you want, but unless you know how many calories you’re burning, you don’t have the full picture. Even if you are logging your food, how do you know if you’re consuming too many? Or not enough? I Read More . . .

3, 4 or 6 Meals a Day?

I grew up learning that we should be eating 3 ‘square’ meals per day. I remember being taught in Home Economics class (6th grade) that a square meal consisted of Meat, Vegetables, Dairy, and Grain. So basically, a cheeseburger could be considered a ‘square meal’; it contains meat, lettuce & tomato make up the veg, cheese would check the dairy box, and the bun is a grain. Huh. As I entered my 30s, we started to get a little more sophisticated with our food. The low-fat craze was in full blown effect, vegetarianism was becoming more mainstream, and the new advice was to eat 6 smaller meals per day – so that you could keep your metabolism ‘revved up’ throughout the day. The thinking was that if you ate often enough, you could use the Thermic Effect of Food to help you burn calories for you (although that’s true, it doesn’t quite Read More . . .

5 Ways to Mindlessly Eat Less

Here’s the scene: You’re out to dinner with friends. It’s been a lovely dinner; you’ve really enjoyed the evening and have gotten completely swept up in the conversation. The server comes over to start clearing the plates & dishes. As he approaches you, and asks whether you’re finished, you look down at your plate. What do you see? What do you say? Is there food still on your plate? Are you finished eating? I am reading this great book called Mindless Eating. The author, Brian Wansink, a food researcher at Cornell, says that if you asked folks, “How do you know when you’re done eating?” or, “How do you know when to eat?” you’d think that most would answer these two questions with ‘I eat when I’m hungry; and I stop when I’m satisfied.’ But that’s not the case. Far too often we eat for other reasons. In the book, he exposes Read More . . .