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      2/5 Essentials: The value of PROTEIN

      2/5 Essentials: The value of PROTEIN

      Now that we have discussed how important water is, let’s talk about another essential nutrient. 

      Protein is one of the major building blocks of the body and is essential for the growth and repair of virtually every cell. It is a macronutrient meaning that our body requires protein in large amounts and because we do not store most of it, we need to eat it on a regular basis. This is especially important for fighters as it helps to feed and repair muscles.

      Although the quantity of protein differs for each individual, the standard amount is about 15-18% of your total calories. It is important to note that this number will vary depending on age, gender, lifestyle, and what feels right for your body. 

      To calculate your daily protein requirements accurately, multiply your weight in kg times the amount of protein in grams. For most non-athletes, 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram is suggested. Athletes require more protein, between 1.2 and 2.0 grams. 

      Here is an example of how to calculate your protein requirements:

      A 200 pound male fighter who trains regularly,

      • 200/2.2 = 90kg
      • 90kg x 1.2 = 108 grams of protein per day
      • 90kg x 2.0 = 180 grams of protein per day

      This means that the athlete requires between 108-180 grams of protein per day depending on the amount of training he is doing.

      So what do you eat? Lean animal protein such as chicken, turkey, lean ground beef, tuna, salmon, eggs, cottage cheese, and Greek yogurt are great options. If your diet is more plant-based, then be sure to include quinoa, black and kidney beans, lentils, tofu, hummus, edamame, hemp and chia seeds, pumpkin and sunflower seeds, rolled oats, and nuts.

      One of the easiest and quickest ways to get protein after training is a good quality protein powder. It can be consumed quickly and has the perfect balance of macros to be used by the muscles immediately. I have mine ready in my gym bag and drink it on the way home from training.

      Body Systems Barrie in support of Legacy is giving members 20% in store and a free protein shake for members who visit for the first time! Be sure to swing by and mention you are from Legacy so that the staff there, who are super helpful and are all educated in the health profession, can help you choose the right protein powder for you. 

      Your next nutrition challenge… Calculate your protein requirements to ensure you are eating enough. Add a few of these easy, high protein meals to your day:

      • 1 scoop plant-based protein powder + 1 cup soy milk = 30 grams
      • 1 cup Greek yogurt + ⅓ cup blueberries = 20 grams
      • 1 slice rye, pumpernickel, wheat bread + ¼ cup tuna = 16 grams
      • ½ cup low-fat cottage cheese + 1 cup raw celery or carrots = 12 grams of protein
      • banana roll-up: 1 small whole wheat tortilla + 1 banana + 2 tbsp almond butter = 11 grams
      • overnight oats: ½ cup milk + ½ cup rolled oats + 2 tbsp hemp seeds = 11 grams
      • chia pudding: ½ cup plant milk + 2 tbsp chia seeds + fresh berries = 6 grams
      • 3 oz of baked salmon in a large green salad + ½ cup edamame = 30 grams
      • lentil curry = 23 grams
      • tofu and quinoa bowl = 18 grams

       

      Michelle Stone
      I am a lot of things. I am a woman, a school teacher, a registered nutritionist, a fitness enthusiast, a partner, a daughter, a writer, a friend, a chef... But most of all I am a fighter. Yes, I train at Legacy Fight Club, but what I mean by “a fighter” is not just in the literal sense of the word which is “to contend in battle or physical combat”, or, “to engage in boxing”. It is to constantly put forth effort and determination in everything I do. So when I say I have been a fighter all my life, it is true.  You can reach me at Michellestone2424@gmail.com for any questions or advice ot Nutrition and Lifestyle. My Services.
       

      1/5 Esssetials: starting with WATER

      1/5 Esssetials: starting with WATER

      Are you busting your ass everyday training, giving it 100% but not seeing the changes you want? This may be because your body isn’t getting the right fuel it needs for optimal performance and recovery. Before I became a Nutritionist, I didn’t connect the dots between what I was eating and drinking and how they affected workouts. But, once I began incorporating some important nutrients into my diet, I really saw my body begin to change. If you want to up your game and improve your training, follow my next few blogs to see how you can incorporate five easy but essential nutrients into your diet. I feel like I need to begin right away with the most important element. 

      What is colourless, tasteless, and has no caloric value, but it is the most important element of your diet because it is involved in every function in the body? Yep, you got it… it’s water. I dedicated a full blog to the importance of water back in July (check it out here), but I feel like I need to reiterate that it is THE most important thing to give your body and more than half of us are not getting enough. The average recommendation for water per day to maintain a good level of hydration is 2 litres for women and 3 litres for men. But when you are training hard sparring, rolling, and doing the 100 sit-ups everyone has come to love, you need even more water to replace the lost fluids and electrolytes such as sodium and potassium that keep your muscles relaxed and help store carbohydrates that fuel the muscles.  Drinking more will improve your performance, energy levels, muscle fatigue, and help you to lose weight. 

      Your first nutrition challenge… Increase your fluid intake by including at least one of the following:

      • Start your morning by having a large glass of water before leaving the house
      • Drink a glass of water before each meal
      • Drink an additional litre of water during/after a workout to replace lost fluids
      • Keep your water bottle in sight. Take a few sips each time you leave your workspace
      • Drink a cup of herbal tea (hot or cold)
      • Try sparkling water sweetened with fruit juice
      • Drink an additional litre of water during your workout to replenish what you have lost
      • Add flavour to your water with a workout powder such as BCAA’s (Branched-chain amino acids) to build muscle and reduce soreness and fatigue
      • Add a glass of water between each alcoholic beverage you have

       

       

      Keeping up with your nutrition & health while traveling

      Keeping up with your nutrition & health while traveling

      After almost a year and a half of lockdowns and stay at home orders, things are starting to open up and we are finally able to travel again! For the last month and a half, Federico and I have been in Sicily, Italy, visiting his family in the main city of Palermo and staying on the island of Pantelleria. Whether you are planning an overnight stay, or spending time abroad, there is often a change in your normal routine that makes it harder to maintain healthy habits. Being in a country where I am a guest for dinner most evenings and there is a pasticceria (pastry shop) at every corner, I have been struggling to maintain my typical fitness and nutrition routine. However, I want to share a few tricks that I have found to keep what are the most important health components for me.

      DRINK WATER. Whether you are on a plane or traveling by car, it is easy to forget to hydrate. I brought my own water bottle and refill it constantly. I also drink a litre of water first thing in the morning to ensure that I am getting a good amount for the day.

      PACK SNACKS. I bought a box of protein bars (Cliff Builders Bars are my favourite) and prepackaged protein shakes to throw in my suitcase in case I can’t find something to eat at the airport, or we are going on a day trip. Prepackaged dried fruit, mixed nuts, and whole grain pretzels, or crackers are handy snacks to have and instant oatmeal can be easily made for breakfasts. I also brought my BCAA powder to add to my water during a workout and electrolyte tablets to replenish my minerals and add flavour to my water.

      ASK FOR A ROOM WITH A FRIDGE IF POSSIBLE. We are lucky to be staying with family and have somewhere to store the food we pick up at the local market. Having fresh fruits, veggies, yogurt, cheese, etc. readily available will allow you to make healthy choices and you can also save a bit of money by not eating out for each meal too!

      PLAN IN ADVANCE. While staying in Palermo the first few weeks we knew we would be eating out a lot so we were careful to make good choices at restaurants such as splitting a pizza and ordering a salad on the side. We also looked at the menu beforehand to find dishes we liked and that contained lean protein and veggies. If you are staying somewhere with a kitchen like we are here in Pantelleria, you can stock your fridge and pantry with whole grain pasta, rice, local fruits and veggies and can cook most of your own meals.

      EXERCISE. When on vacation make sure to get your steps in when you are sightseeing. Staying in the center of the area you are visiting allows you to walk to most places and saves you money on transit. Here there is lots for us to do and we are taking advantage of the beautiful trails through the mountains, swimming in the sea and we have squeezed in a few workouts as well. Federico actually bought a heavy bag and gloves to use here, but a bodyweight workout with squats, pushups and lunges can easily be done wherever you are staying. I have even stopped at a playground to do pull ups and box jumps!

      Finally, enjoy yourself! We have been under so much stress with the pandemic that it is nice to get away and indulge a little. The gelato here is amazing and I have made it my goal to try as many flavours as I can. I know that when I get back home, the club is waiting for me and I will get back to being more diligent about what I am eating.

       Workout on the go!  That's how we roll in Italy!
       
      A 2 hour hike to Favara Grande.

       

      In Italy everyone orders their own pizza! And it’s 6 euro! 

       

      A beautiful day for an unexpected spiaggia tour with Federico! We went from place to place for a quick swim. Campobello, Gadir, and Arco dell’elephante

       

      Cooked my first meal in Italy!

       

       

        

      Michelle Stone

      I am a lot of things. I am a woman, a school teacher, a registered nutritionist, a fitness enthusiast, a partner, a daughter, a writer, a friend, a chef... But most of all I am a fighter. Yes, I train at Legacy Fight Club, but what I mean by “a fighter” is not just in the literal sense of the word which is “to contend in battle or physical combat”, or, “to engage in boxing”. It is to constantly put forth effort and determination in everything I do. So when I say I have been a fighter all my life, it is true.  You can reach me at Michellestone2424@gmail.com for any questions or advice on Nutrition and Lifestyle.

       

       

       

      Drink before you are thirsty

      Drink before you are thirsty

      Are you drinking enough water? If you answered no, you are not alone as more than half of North Americans are not getting the amount of water they need in a day. If you suffer from headaches, constipation, tiredness, muscle cramps, dull, dry skin, or if your urine is a dark yellow colour, this is a sign that you are not drinking enough. 

      Water is pretty boring. It is colourless and tasteless with no caloric value, but it is the most important element of your diet because it is involved in every function in the body. 

      The average recommendation for water per day is 2 litres for women and 3 litres for men. This number will change depending on the climate and if you are exercising. Right now I am on an island in Sicily for the summer (I know, poor me right?!) and the temperature here is above 30 degrees celsius every day so I am trying to focus on drinking more to replace what I have lost in sweat. I do this by having one litre of lemon water as soon as I wake up and bring a water bottle with me wherever I go. We have also put up a heavy bag here and when we workout, I make sure that I am drinking an additional litre of fluid after we finish exercising.

      When training you need to be in an optimal state of hydration for both your endurance and performance. During exercise, you lose electrolytes which are made up of sodium and potassium. Sodium maintains the fluid in our body, keeping it hydrated while helping muscles to relax. Potassium has a similar function and also aids in the storage of carbohydrates to fuel the muscles. If you sweat a lot during a workout, or train for long periods of time, it is a good idea to add electrolytes to your drink (plus they make your water taste so good!). Sport drinks are what people gravitate to because they contain carbohydrates and electrolytes needed for hydration and energy, but I find that they have a lot of unnecessary ingredients and colouring. Instead, I like electrolyte tablets (I am using them in Italy right now). You can get them at any health food store and most grocery stores and you can throw them in your gym bag to use whenever you need them. Nuun hydration is a great brand and has a variety of flavours as well as specific tablets for sports, immune support, and some with added caffeine. My favourite is Strawberry Lemonade.

      Another great drink is coconut water. It is a natural source of electrolytes and what many Muay Thai fighters drink in Thailand because of the extremely hot temperatures. You can also make your own sport drink by using a few simple ingredients.

       

      Toss some electrolyte tablets in your gym bag and use whenever.

       

       

       
      Coconut water is popular among muay thai fighters to restore electrolytes.

      Maple-Lemon Electrolyte Water Recipe

       

      Ingredients:

      Instructions:

      Combine all ingredients in a glass and stir until the salt is dissolved.

      If you want to up your hydration and improve your performance try the following recommendations:

      • ensure you are well hydrated before you exercise - this means drinking water throughout the day
      • replace 80% of the sweat lost during exercise 
      • drink fluids that have electrolytes if exercise is high intensity, more than 1.5 hours, or in hot a hot climate
      • drink at least ½  a litre immediately after exercise
      • add fruit juice, electrolytes, or BCAA’s to make your water taste good and to add carbohydrates, sodium and potassium
      • continue to drink fluid after exercise until at least 1 litre is consumed

      The most important thing to remember is to drink before you feel thirsty and ensure that most of what you drink in a day is water.

       

        

       

       

       

       

       

       

       

      Michelle Stone

      I am a lot of things. I am a woman, a school teacher, a registered nutritionist, a fitness enthusiast, a partner, a daughter, a writer, a friend, a chef... But most of all I am a fighter. Yes, I train at Legacy Fight Club, but what I mean by “a fighter” is not just in the literal sense of the word which is “to contend in battle or physical combat”, or, “to engage in boxing”. It is to constantly put forth effort and determination in everything I do. So when I say I have been a fighter all my life, it is true.  You can reach me at Michellestone2424@gmail.com for any questions or advice ot Nutrition and Lifestyle.

       

       

      Excercise, muay thai, and physical activities for your mental health

      Excercise, muay thai, and physical activities for your mental health

      Most of the time we are so focused on fitness goals that we forget about how important exercise is for our mental and emotional wellness. With the stressful pace of everyday life and now a world pandemic, it is so important that we find strategies to support our mental health. Mental health includes our emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It affects how we think, feel, and act and determines how we handle stress, relate to others, and make choices. Physical activity is a very important way to maintain this balance. Getting sweaty at least five times a week has been proven to boost mood, improve brain function, improve sleep, reduce cortisol, and help manage anxiety and stress.

      For a long time, the main purpose of my going to the gym was to be physically fit. Now, I realize that activities which challenge me such as training for a half marathon and participating in Tough Mudders, inspires self-discipline and helps me build a strong mindset which I carry into my everyday life. This is why I love training in Muay Thai as Martial arts is known to promote physical and mental control. Each week, when I show up at Legacy, I love that my body is getting stronger and my kicks more powerful, but I also find that when I am in need of a break, or want to give up on something that seems impossible to master, I have the mental focus to help me dig deeper to find that extra push.

      Remember, going to the gym is not always about having a six pack. The social benefits of working out with other people is a great recipe for maintaining mental wellness. Being part of a team or club provides you with a sense of community that is working towards a common goal. This mix of exercise and social activity will surely boost your mood when you are feeling down.

      If you are not one to join a big box gym or don’t have enough time to workout, remember that any kind of physical activity is healthy for your body and mind. Find something you like to do or have wanted to try and schedule it into your calendar to find time for your own well-being. 

       

       

      Michelle Stone

      I am a lot of things. I am a woman, a school teacher, a registered nutritionist, a fitness enthusiast, a partner, a daughter, a writer, a friend, a chef... But most of all I am a fighter. Yes, I train at Legacy Fight Club, but what I mean by “a fighter” is not just in the literal sense of the word which is “to contend in battle or physical combat”, or, “to engage in boxing”. It is to constantly put forth effort and determination in everything I do. So when I say I have been a fighter all my life, it is true