It’s that time of year when the summer shenanigans are winding down. Gone are the cottage weekends, sangrias on the patio, and lounging by the pool with a nice cold one. The days are getting shorter and the nights are getting longer. As we start to migrate indoors, now is the perfect time to zone in on your personal wellness goals and focus on building foundational healthy habits.
416Life is hosting a FREE challenge! The focus of this challenge will be getting more sleep and cutting out added sources of sugar in your diet. These are two fundamental areas that if you start to dial in, the results will be outstanding.
Here’s how to join:
It’s super simple! Join the Facebook Group “Sugar Free September”.
• Get a minimum of 7 hours of sleep nightly
No sources of added sugar (flavoured yogurt, jams, granola bars, honey, maple syrup) or sweeteners (we mean Splenda, aspartame, stevia). Only sugars that naturally occur in fruit and dairy are acceptable. This is to help reduce your exposure to sugar and adjust your taste buds to tolerate less sweet foods. This in turn will help reduce cravings while increasing your sweet sensitivity (so that next time you add sugar to your coffee you may not feel you need the sugar anymore). Another added benefit (we hope) is this will have you eating more whole foods, and ultimately more veggies in your world!
Main Points (3 points each)
• Full day of no added sugars or sweeteners
• 7+ hours of sleep per night
Bonus Points (1 point each)
• Did not have added sugar, but did have sweeteners
• Had 6-7 hours of sleep per night
• Eating more veggies than fruit in a day
• Share sugar free recipe in the Facebook challenge group or on Instagram tagging #416Life
Not only will you have better sleep and less overall sugar in your diet, you may find that you have more energy, a better relationship with food, improved workouts, weight loss/fat loss, better focus on daily tasks, should we go on? If that isn’t enough we are also giving away some sweet gym accessories for those who recorded the highest points!
We are excited to host this challenge and invite you to step outside of your comfort zone and give it a try!
Looking forward to it!
Emilie and Robyn
#7 ASK FOR HELP
This step can relate well to building your support system although most of the time your support system won’t exclusively be fitness or health professionals you can go to for help. Most of the time, your support system will be your loved ones.
For someone starting on their fitness journey or maybe first timers dialling in your nutrition, this step will come easier for you. Help is everywhere for you to take advantage of. Do just that! Starting out can mean a world full of questions and worries that can all be sorted out by asking questions and talking to someone to has experience. No question is a stupid question. Everyone is on their own path and journey to living a healthy lifestyle – we’re all just at different points along the way.
Questions about movements and training? Find your local CrossFit box and ask a coach or contact us as firstname.lastname@example.org and talk to one of our fitness professionals.
Questions about rehab, pain, and/or injury? Seek out a physiotherapist or chiropractor. There’s no sense working through an injury alone. Getting advice and help can significantly reduce your healing time. Dr. Paul Oh provides fantastic services helping athletes at all ranges move better and pain free. Book an assessment with him here!
Questions about nutrition or living a better lifestyle? Talking to Registered Dietician or working with a nutrition Coach will cut down the time of finding the perfect diet plan that works for you. Ask for help with food quality, nutrient timing, meal prep, or simple recipe ideas. 416Life is a program that believes in taking control of your life through proper nutrition. Sign up for the program Here!
For those of you who are further along in your fitness and health journey, in this step, it’s almost like taking a step back. Not literally – let’s strive to keep moving forward – but figuratively. Take a step back and look at the areas in which you can improve. As we become more confident in and outside the gym and with our nutrition, it’s easy to think that we have it all figured out. As much as you know as an athlete, there’s someone out there who knows more. Having a competitive nature can be hugely successful towards your growth but having competitive nature hinder your progress by seeing everyone else as your competition isn’t what we want. Instead, collaborate with others to help you succeed even more.
The more you know, the more you realize how much you don’t know!
Carmen Muniz was a member of 416Life for three months. Working with her drove home the importance of being consistent and learning from your mistakes. Carmen from day 1 was dedicated to the program and was open to any suggestions I would throw her way. Starting off as quite an emotional eater, she’s now able to move forward on her own with clarity and understanding of her relationship with food and continue on a lifetime of progress. Here’s what Carmen had to say about 416Life.
Sign up for 416Life and create your own success.
#5 BUILD YOUR SUPPORT SYSTEM
The importance of having people around you that believe in and support what you’re doing – CrossFit gyms, this is what we thrive off of. Building your inner athlete takes a village.
Teammates or training partners: These guys are always in your corner. Find someone (or someones) who will push you when you need to be pushed and who will support you when you need some support. Not every day is going to be easy and getting through a hard day is made much easier when you have people going through the same thing you are. These guys get it. They know what you’re doing every day. This group of people are also best for adding levity to a lot of tough situations. Training can be difficult and nutrition can be overwhelming – Look to these people to give you a laugh.
Coaches: They also know what you’re going through. Usually they’re the ones making you do it! Open communication with coaches WILL help with your success. Let them know how you’re doing. How did that workout feel? How is your body feeling? How is your sleep, stress, hunger levels, work life? Your coach wants you to succeed – always remember that.
If you don’t have a coach, seek out a professional for advice. If you’re having issues with a certain movements, a certain diet plan, reach out to someone that can help you. You never have to do any of this alone. Nutritionists, Nutrition Coaches, Registered Dieticians, A coach at a local CrossFit box or gym, Personal Trainers, Physio therapists, Chiros. Your community is littered with knowledgeable people who can help you.
Loved ones: Although Grandma might not really understand what the heck it is your doing, she loves you. Ultimately that’s what matters. Your loved ones want you to succeed in anything you do. Being able to talk to these people about what it is you do is important. So, explain it to them. If Mom is starting to get a little worried that you’re tracking everything you put in your mouth or eating too much (or too little), sit down and explain it to her. If your boyfriend or girlfriend sees you starting to ramp up your training intensity and is afraid you’re going to get hurt, take him or her to the gym! Let them into this lifestyle and help them help you.
Having likeminded people around you who believe in you and believe in what you’re doing will help you be confident in yourself and confident in building your inner athlete.
Sign Up for 416Life Here!
#4 ONE MACRO AT A TIME – BABY STEPS
For the amount of time you dedicate to training and getting a good sweat on, you should be able to show off what you work for by feeling great and looking great. What most people fail to realize is how important your entire lifestyle really is in playing a role towards these goals feeling and looking great.
Since you’re reading this, I take it you’ve started to think about, or have already decided to create this change in your lifestyle. In order to be most successful, we want to make sure we’re not biting off more than we can chew. That’s where things can go wrong and where most people usually fall off the wagon. It’s all about the little changes you make that soon turn into good habits, ultimately forming a better lifestyle.
So where do I start? Here are some questions you can ask yourself. What kind of good habits to I currently have?
Do I drink enough water first thing in the morning?
Do I take my vitamins every day, especially if I know I’m deficient in a certain nutrient?
Do I turn screens off 1 hour before bed time to make sure I get a sound sleep?
Do I get enough green vegetables every day in my current diet?
If you’ve answered “No” to any one of these questions, then you already know there’s a small change you can make to ultimately create a better lifestyle for yourself. Start there.
Over time, these small changes add up. You start to trust yourself that you can create small shifts and stay accountable, and you’re ready to tackle bigger challenges the more you build your confidence.
There’s always something we can be doing to better ourselves. What can you do to start?
The importance of understanding your quality of food before starting to count macronutrients is huge. The last thing we want to do is bite off more than we can chew by fitting measurements and numbers into our lifestyle before we have a good foundation. After that, you can start dialling in one thing at a time. Maybe after a week of tracking all your food, you realize that you eat way more fat than you realized. Let’s look at that first! Start to gradually reduce your fat intake over the course of a month (or more) and already you’ll start to see some changes. Once you’re there, then you can tackle the other macronutrients (Protein and Carbohydrates).
If all this is overwhelming and confusing, just remember one step at a time. If you’re feeling a little lost, approach a coach to help guide you through this phase. Getting to know our body is a process and a coach can help reduce the time to find your optimal diet plan in half.
Sign up for 416Life Here!
Yogurt Berry Parfait
Protein: 27 grams
You’ll Need: o or 2%Greek yogurt, protein powder, berries, walnuts, cinnamon, a drizzle of honey
In a bowl, combine 175g 2% yogurt with half a scoop of your favourite protein powder. With half a cup berries and an ounce of chopped walnuts, top the parfait with a dusting of cinnamon and a drizzle of honey to complete this mighty muscle-building breakfast.
Protein: 34 grams
You’ll Need: Ezekiel 4:9 Sprouted Whole Grain English muffin, chorizo sausage or chicken/turkey sausage, egg, onion, salsa
Spoon 2 tablespoons tomato salsa on top of each toasted English muffin half. Sprinkle half an ounce of cheddar cheese on each pizza, and then top with a crumbled, cooked link of chorizo and sliced onions. Bake in a 350-degree toaster oven for 5 minutes or until cheese melts. Top with an over-easy fried egg.
Protein Lunch Box
Protein: 25 grams
You’ll Need: 2 hard boiled eggs, 1 slice Dave’s Killer Thin-Sliced Powerseed Bread or flax seed bread of choice with 1 tablespoon natural peanut butter, 1 oz string cheese, and grapes
If you don’t like to eat first thing in the morning or are on the go, a bento box is a great option. It allows you to graze through the early hours and offers up a solid dose of energy. Pack up two hard boiled eggs, string cheese, swipe a tablespoon of peanut butter on a slice of bread, and a half-cup of grapes to hit the nutritional mark.
Lemon Ricotta Pancakes
Protein: 24 grams
You’ll Need: Eggs, oat flour, ricotta cheese, vanilla extract, baking powder, lemon, milk, salt
If you’re looking to inject a protein boost into your pancakes without using protein powder, this recipe is for you. Rather than adding protein powder, you use an Italian cheese called ricotta and high-protein oat flour. Rather than feeling too heavy, these pancakes are brightened up with the tart addition of lemon zest. Using an electric mixer or hand whisk, whip 7 egg whites to stiff peaks.
In a separate large bowl, combine 2 ¾ cups ricotta, 1 ½ cups milk, 6 egg yolks, and the zest of one lemon. In a medium mixing bowl, combine your dry ingredients: 2 cups oat flour, 1 tablespoon baking powder, and 1 teaspoon salt. Add these dry ingredients to the wet, then fold in whites. Dole out batter onto a lightly buttered (or coconut oiled) griddle and cook until golden. This recipe makes 6 servings.
Savoury Oat Bowl
Protein: 26 grams
You’ll Need: Bacon or turkey bacon, onion, steel cut oats, cheddar cheese (or skim mozzarella cheese), egg
Start by sauteeing up diced, thick bacon. Once crispy, remove bacon and drain off fat. Add diced onion to the pan and cook until translucent. Add a quarter cup of steel cut oats, toast, and then add a cup of water. Allow to simmer until the oats have absorbed all the water (about 15 minutes.) When cooked, add back the bacon and top with cheese and a fried egg. With the magical energy-boost of protein, fat, and fiber, consider adding this dish to your breakfast routine!
Quinoa Power Bowl
Protein: 15 grams
You’ll Need: Quinoa, 2% milk, raw cacao powder, almonds, strawberry
For you plant eaters! Quinoa is a small grain that’s has lots of protein. It’s one of the few vegan-based superfoods that is a complete protein, meaning it contains all nine essential amino acids. To make this bowl, add a quarter cup of quinoa, half a cup of milk, and a tablespoon of cacao powder to a small pot and simmer for about 4 minutes. Pour into a bowl, top with sliced fresh fruit and half an ounce of almonds.
Savoury Chickpea Crepes
Protein: 20 grams
You’ll Need: Canned chickpeas, extra virgin olive oil, yellow onion, rosemary, salt, mushrooms and asparagus
Set your oven to 450 degrees. Place a 10-inch cast iron skillet with a tablespoon olive oil and half a diced onion to heat up. In a blender, blend a can of garbanzo beans (or chickpeas) with a pinch of salt. Once the pan is hot, pour chickpea batter directly into the pan on top of the onions. Sprinkle with rosemary and cook for about 10 minutes, turn the broiler on and toast the top for another 3 minutes. When it’s ready, serve with sauteed mushrooms and asparagus. This is easy for weekend brunch or breakfast and can be topped with anything you’d like!