MY JOURNEY TO FIT AT 40
Good morning guys! I am so excited for today's post. As you may know, I embarked on a health and fitness plan in order to get myself in shape for my 40th birthday. As I learned, it was a sometimes difficult and usually not super glamorous process, can you say eating cold chicken in your car, but I am so glad I did it. I feel the best I have in a while and I must admit that I am happy with the changes I have seen in my body. I have always been focused on my health and pretty diligent about my work outs, but I really wanted to buckle down to get ready for 40 because I have learned that things don't change as quickly or as easily as they did in my 20s and early 30s. I could not have done it without the help of Virginia Richardson from Your Life Edited, formerly Nashville Life Concierge. I have had SO many questions about what all I did and I thought who better then to talk about it then Virginia herself. I am so excited to have her here today to share her business, her health philosophy and what she did for me. This post is going to be a long one, but I promise it will be worth it.
Hi girls and thank you so much to Landyn for having me today. As she already mentioned, my name is Virginia Richardson and I am the owner of Your Life Edited. I am so excited to be here today to share with you guys about myself, my business, how I helped Landyn and how I might be able to help you. A little about my journey to where I am today. Although I spent time in London after I graduated taking courses in Holistic Nutrition at the University of Westminster's School of Integrated Health, I actually started out as a sales executive for Financial Information Services. After my husband and I welcomed our daughter I began to re-evaluate my life path. At the end of 2014, I left the corporate world and became a certified end-of-life doula. As I went through the process of editing down my own life during this transition, I discovered a passion for helping other people edit their lives and find their passion. This year I completed my nutrition certification with the goal of creating manageable meal plans for each individual and their unique lifestyle. My passion it to help people to clear their own paths to experiencing deeper joy and fulfillment right where they are. Head to my website to learn more about the specifics of the health package that I offer through Life Edit.
This passion lead me to open my business Life Edit where I help people intentionally edit their life and let go of the physical and emotional clutter that might stand in their way. I get to help people overcome their most frustrating obstacles, whether that is through helping you declutter your home or closet or teaching you how to eat to transform your energy level and overall health. I offer several different packages for everything from editing your health and fitness plan to tackling your closet or editing your entire home. I specifically helped Landyn with editing her diet and fitness routine and I know that is what you guys are most interested in, so let's get right to it.
LIFE EDIT'S PHILOSOPHY ON HEALTH
Life Edit is not a diet; it is a way of life. The health portion of Life Edit focuses on assisting clients in learning about nutrition and ultimately learning about their individual body needs. By understanding your specific needs, we can develop a plan for you to lose weight, sustain energy, build muscle, and feel healthy. Part of feeling healthy is being confident in your food choices and knowing you are on the right path to meeting your goals. I do not believe in quick fixes that result in fast weight loss because all too often they are not sustainable and the weight is easily regained. Everyone is different and the rate at which you lose fat is determined by your individual genetics, body type, metabolism, and exercise program. My goal with the Life Edit Meal Plans was to help guide people on eating the proper macronutrient ratio to slowly lose weight while maintaining muscle mass. All too often people believe the key to weight loss is lots of physical exercise combined with low calories, but in reality this can actually stall your weight loss and lead to the breakdown of muscle fiber. As we age we need to focus more on building and preserving lean muscle tissue which helps burn calories while not compromising your metabolism. I also hope I can help people lighten up about their health goals, focus on doing your best without constantly beating yourself up. Working with people at end of life has taught me that we do need to take care of our bodies, but we also need to relax and breathe more.
WHAT I RECOMMENDED FOR LANDYN
Landyn came to me wanting to lose weight while maintaining muscle and strength in the gym. She was already familiar with what it meant to eat healthy, but needed to understand specifically how much “healthy” food she needed daily based off her age, weight, height, and activity level. Landyn was also very specific that she wanted me to tell her exactly what to eat and when. For Landyn less choices created simplicity. We developed two different plans, one for rest days and cardio only days and another plan for days where she did a high intensity interval style class. Landyn was given a meal plan that focused on eating 5 well balanced meals with specific macronutrient quantities spaced 3 to 5 hours apart. One meal was timed around her workout to increase energy levels and build muscle. Proper pre and post workout nutrition provides energy and stimulates the repair of tissues in a way that leads to muscle growth. We also focused on increasing her metabolic rate by increasing muscle mass, she started lifting heavier in the gym and increasing her protein intake.
Here are the basics of her plan
Each meal was well balanced with Protein, Carbs, Fat, and Fiber based off her specific goals.
We increased Protein to provide satiety while cutting calories to preserve lean muscle tissue.
No snacking between meals unless she is on the go and needs to grab a snack instead of a meal to get her to next meal. Snacks always include a protein, carb, and fat.
A sample meal for Landyn would include 3 to 4 oz turkey burger, roasted sweet potatoes, and a salad with 1 tbsp healthy fat. Again all meals included protein, fat, carbs, and fiber. The First priority when prepping your meal is to hit your protein goals. Protein is required with each meal as it is a core component needed to build muscle, repair and grow tissue and lose weight. If you eat the right amount of protein while cutting calories, you preserve lean muscle mass which boost metabolism. The right combination of macronutrients assists you in feeling full longer, balancing hormones, increasing energy, all while losing weight you can sustain.
Landyn is very busy and typically on the go, so we knew that having healthy snacking options were going to be important for her because a full meal was not always going to be an option for her. Some of my go-to snacks that I recommended for her were protein smoothies, boiled eggs, sardines (I don't think she took me up on that one), protein bars, rice cakes with nut butter. The goal with any snack is to make sure to get a healthy portion of protein and fat so keep that in mind when selecting snacking options for yourself. Avoid high carb snacks that will cause your blood sugar to spike which leads to a crash later in the day.
WHAT TO EXPECT FROM A LIFE EDIT MEAL PLAN
Life Edit Meal Plans provide you with personalized daily macronutrient targets based off your age, current weight, physical activity and goals. They are broken down into 4 to 5 meals a day spaced 3 to 4 hours apart depending on your schedule. My goal when creating meal plans was to create simplicity around choices, there is so much information circulating at all times around wellness and diet. I believe its beneficial for some to have a plan they can easily understand and follow without all the noise in the background. For example, I always give my clients permission to eat the same foods over and over if that helps them stick to plan. I personally eat a lot of the same foods during the week, and treat myself on the weekends to variety. It’s not required, but less choices can sometimes mean more success. So what are Macronutrients? They are nutrients required daily for your body to function and include Carbohydrates, Fats, Proteins. I believe a well-balanced meal is a meal that incorporates all 3 major macronutrients, so yes all my meals include carbs. When counting macronutrients versus counting calories, you are held more accountable for what you are eating and ensures you are not eliminating any one food group. Proper intake for each macronutrient is important for balancing energy, stabilizing blood sugar and maintaining desired body composition. Think of the plans as a learning tool for eating healthier, and as a way to simplify your life by taking some of the guess work out. I look at my meal plans just like I look at my fitness schedule for the week. The more we prepare the better our success rate, and using a meal plan is all about preparation and ultimately about simplicity. Head to my website to learn more about the specifics of the health package that I offer through Life Edit.
WHAT SUPPLEMENTS SHOULD I USE
One of my most frequently asked questions is what types of supplements I recommend to people embarking on a health change. I thought as a parting gift I would leave you with my top 5 supplements I recommend to my clients.
Protein Powders – I’m a fan of protein powders for their convenience. It’s an easy way to add protein to your smoothie or post workout recovery drink. I personally like to have whey protein on days when I lift weights but I also love a good plant based option. By consuming a fast – absorbing protein like whey immediately after your workout, you’re supplying your muscles with the amino acids they need to repair and grow. You are also increasing your protein consumption which contributes to building muscle while losing fat. Another fun fact about Whey is that it reduces hunger by reducing the hormone ghrelin that tells your brain you are hungry.
Collagen Peptides- Collagen is the most abundant protein in the body. It forms the connective tissue holding a muscle in place that becomes the tendons that tie muscles to bones. Connective tissue keeps your body together – skin, bones, ligaments, cartilage, and organs. As we age our body’s collagen production naturally begins to slow down. This is why it’s great to add back to your diet, who doesn’t want a supplement that is great for skin elasticity, hair, nails, joints, tendons, and gut health? Its also a great way to sneak added protein into your diet by adding to your morning coffee.
MCT Powder – For coffee drinkers I suggest taking MCT Powder mixed with collagen peptides as your first meal in the morning. There are many other good fat options out there, and nutritionally speaking there is not much difference. My main goal for Landyn was to give her an easy way to include fat and protein in her first meal when waking up. I go for the powder because it makes my coffee taste creamy, and it mixes well. You can also add to a smoothie as a good fat alternative to nut butter. MCT powder is a medium chain triglyceride which means it is absorbed and utilized quickly in the body, this is why it gives you an extra boost. I do not recommend taking more than one serving as it can upset your stomach.
Good Meal Replacement Bar – Because we are all in a hurry and we can’t always sit down for a meal it’s important to always have options you can grab on the go. This prevents you for crashing or starving when dinner rolls around. My favorite bars at the moment are G2G, RX, Garden of Life, No Cow, and locally homemade Le Bars. I aim for bars with at least 18g of protein, 14g or less of fat, and 25g of carbs if I’m using it as a meal replacement. If I do not need carbohydrates, I go for the low carb options like the No Cow Bar.Probiotics and Fermented Foods/Beverages– Good health begins in the gut. Our body consists of both bad and good microbiome, and the amounts of each are closely connected to our health and wellness. Probiotics are live microorganisms that promote a healthy digestion and a strong immune system.
Thank you so much to Virginia for stopping by today to share all of this information. If you guys have any questions that you would like to ask Virginia, feel free to head to her website to drop her a note or leave a comment below.