Fitness contributor Helen Koya shares some of her fave nutrition tips.
As a fitness competitor, diet is everything. This was a totally new area for me when I started bodybuilding, and everything I have learned about nutrition I learned from my boyfriend, who is a qualified and professional nutritionist, and his team The Physique Lab) He was the one who got me to where I was for my first bodybuilding show.
When I am preparing for a show my numbers, along with cardio and weight training, are manipulated to get me to the best condition I can be at that time.
To prep for my third meet on Sept. 7 — a mere 4 weeks away — I’ll be taking in
150 grams carbs, 140 grams protein and 40 grams fat for heavy training days, and a little less carbs on lighter days.
Why you may not need to follow such strict guidelines, here are some of my secrets to drop a few extra lbs.
PAM Cooking Spray. To cut back on calories and fat, I turn to this line of cooking spray to prepare my dishes. It allows me to save a few calories of fat for my actual food. http://www.pamcookingspray.com/
Non-fat Cheese. I consume mainly non-fat varieties of cheeses, and eat regular sparingly. One to try? Lifetime Cheese in a variety of flavors.
Weighing Food. Using my food scale I can make meals and know the exact portion size I’m going to intake. It helps me keep track of my food consumption. You can keep it simple with a scale like this one, or take it up a notch with Prep Pad from The Orange Chef Co., which gives your nutritional info on an iPad via the Countertop app.
MyFitnessPal.com. A site that allows you to track what you eat on your computer or your smartphone, this is one majorly cool app that I adore. With the macronutrient numbers my boyfriend gives to me to balance my carbs, fat, protein and fiber, I use the app to make sure I stay within these numbers. It takes out the guesswork, and makes tracking super easy and effective.
But let’s not get this twisted. I still enjoy on a regular basis my local ramen noodle spot, Brooklyn Bagel and Chirping Chicken. I enjoy everything in moderation because there’s more to life than steamed chicken, brown rice and boiled vegetables.