Rice Paper Rolls

3 x rice paper rolls
100g Chicken breast/beef strips/lean beef mince or turkey breast mince
3-4 thin slices of capsicum, carrot and cucumber per roll
Few leaves of coriander
You can also use bean sprouts or add lettuce as well.

Cook the meat however you like I usually use a small amount of spray oil in a pan and cook the meat with any herbs and spices you like. Once cooked place in a bowl ready to make your rice paper rolls

Fill a plate with warm/hot water, spin the rice paper roll in the water a few times until it is flimsy. Pull out onto a flat surface. Place all your ingredients into the roll. Fold the sides in first, then fold the bottom into the middle and roll.

Make 3 for females use 150g of lean meat and make 5 for larger males.

Chilli Sauce or if you do not like chilli use ¼ avocado
1 whole chilli,
1 nob of ginger
Coriander including the root and stem
1 whole lime (cut off skin and add)
1tb or rice wine vinegar
1tb of fish sauce
1 tsp of honey
½ C of water
1 tsp of sesame oil

In the thermomix or food processor mix everything except for the sesame oil until mixed.
Pull out into a bowl and mix in the sesame oil.

Add to your rice paper rolls 

Cheat meals

The common concept that is out there today is to eat well 80% of the time and then cheat the plan for the other 20%.

Personally I hate calling these foods cheat meals, mainly because the relationship between a person and food becomes unstable. When food is called a cheat and is restricted usually it makes a person want it more. It is the nature of a human being, say you can’t have something then you want it even more. I know it does for some foods for me. So for me I call them extras, things that do not fuel your body for that time of the day. It keeps it simple and most people know what these are.

My advice is to pick two to three things each week. The evidence says and my experience tells me, bingeing once or twice a week rather increases body fat levels more than consuming one small thing every day. Don’t sit down and eat as much as you can for dinner with a drink of wine and the dessert after. It is one thing, normal dinner with dessert, or a fatty or carby dinner when you shouldn’t be having it. A chocolate bar over a chocolate block or a small fun size pack of chips to a family size packet. Small portions sizes but you still get what you want. It can take time to adapt, but that’s ok, it is about making small changes over time to get to the destination you want to be at.

Choose wisely, as hard as it can be at times, plan ahead. Know what you love and want to eat and try to buy a single serve portion. Also, spread it out during the week, or try and place it around exercise so your body can use it as fuel rather than store it. These are just a couple damage control tips to help you enjoy life 

The more stress is placed on nutrition, the complicated it gets, and the more frustration and anger comes out. Stress less, nutrition is ever evolving, there is always a different way to get to where you need to go.

Does it really need to be all or nothing?

Failure is such a big roadblock in our life that decreases our motivation to change, self-confidence, self-efficacy or how we perceive our self. If we can employ good strategies to prevent these roadblocks and take light in the little successes along the way would you? Let me break this down a little further.

I think the most common roadblock in success is following the all or nothing theory? Being 100% committed to nutrition and training, or completely give up on one or both. Does this sound familiar? What happens when a ‘down day’ occurs? Is all hope given up upon?

What happens when you have a down day? Do you completely give up? Everything goes out the window? Why does it have to? Instead of completely giving up, maybe decide ok if there is a day I just am going to eat whatever you want, then you try and make sure you at least exercise, or still have a good dinner. Find a strategy to at least control some of the damage rather than it just being all or nothing.

If this happens do not feel like you have failed. We are all human and we will fail. The most common comment clients say to me is that I feel like I have failed, or failed you. Or if they do not show up for their next consultation, usually it is because they feel like they have failed themselves or myself and they do not want to admit to the failure but would rather avoid me.

However you as a person has not failed, but the strategy to keep you motivated has failed. This just means we together are going through a phase of trial and error. Not everyone is the same and trying to find the best options and strategies that fit your lifestyle, habits and eating behaviours to see change do require extra thought.

My role as a dietitian is not to be the ‘food police’, or to tell you to just eat chicken and broccoli. It is to provide strategies to guide and help my clients motivate themselves to change. This is something I know at times I myself fail in and am trying to change. I personally am learning to speak in a different language that helps motivate people to change. This takes time to change and adapt, just as eating behaviours do. Everything takes time! However for you all today as a result I have two strategies I would love everyone reading to try and employ over the next few weeks.

The first is a habit change diary. Pick one habit that you want to change, for example, decreasing caffeine intake from 6 coffees a day to 4, soft drink intake cutting from 1L a day to 600mL a day, increasing exercise from nothing to 3 days or cutting back a block of chocolate a day to half a block or a chocolate bar. On your calendar, mark only the days that you reached this goal. At the end of that week, check and see whether you had reached that goal. Say you only reduced your coffees to 5 instead of 4. That is ok, you still have reduced your intake which you should still be happy about, but for the next week, try and aim for 4 coffees instead of 5. Small steps are always better than nothing. If you did reduce it to 4, then look at reducing it to 3 and so on. Small steps and small goals are sometimes the only way to see real change. It does not have to be the all or nothing theory. It does not have to the only way we can reach our goals, because for everyone it is just not realistic. It takes a long time to break habits and increase motivation to really change. Take joy in reaching small goals!!

Which leads to my second strategy; every day for three weeks write down three blessings that occurs throughout your day which you have taken the time to appreciate. For example, you saw a beautiful sunrise or sunset and you took the time to appreciate it. You said no to a chocolate bar and you took time to appreciate yourself for making that decision, you had breakfast when you normally wouldn’t and enjoyed eating it. It can be as simple as what you want it to be. What this will do will track your gratitude and has been proven to increase your happiness and increase health. Take the time and it will pay off I promise. Three blessings every day for 3 weeks, I will also do this over the next three weeks and keep track! Who is in this with me?

I hope this helps motivate you to work on the little goals and strategies. Remember it does not need to be all or nothing, because typically a person will fail and then the motivation to change later on is even harder or more frustrating. Take small steps!!

All the best

Buckwheat Slice

Here is a gluten and wheat free goodie that I absolutely love and could probably eat the whole batch of!

Buckwheat slice
3/4 C of buckwheat kernels or flour – I used kernels and then half blitz them so the slice was more crunchy 🙂
1/2 C of sunflower seeds
2 tb of linseeds
2 tb of chia seeds
3/4 C of GF flour
3/4 C of desiccated coconut
2 tb of cacao or cocoa powder
1/2 C of olive oil
1/2 C of maple syrup
1 whole egg

In a food processor/thermomix add the kernels, sunflower seeds, chia seeds and mix until into small pieces – I liked small pieces for the crunch factor!
Mix in the GF flour, coconut, cacao powder
In another bowl, mix together the olive oil, maple syrup and egg before adding to the dry ingredients.
Once mixed, place in a long baking tray. Mine were about 1 inch thick.
I cannot remember how long I baked them for. I am pretty sure it was at 170 degrees but maybe check it every 10 minutes or so? I think between 20-30 minutes.

It makes 16 serves and is amazing! Have 2 before training or 1 as a snack.

Competition Day Nutrition Part 2

Well it is now the Crossfit Season for competitions, with some sort of competition going on almost every weekend for the next few months.

So how can you nourish your body so you don’t end up walking around for days after like a zombie.
Here are a few tips:

1. You need to eat!! Most people tend to avoid eating throughout the day and just drink protein shakes. As a result, they get to the end of the day and bam they have nothing left. I know I used to do it, I would rarely eat on a competition day because I was so nervous or the thought of food would make me want to be sick. Fluids will be your saving grace. However if you can eat, eat!!

2. Carbs are your best friend not nuts or seeds!! This is something most crossfitters typically lack unless they are super prepared. Carbs are your bodies preferred fuel source a competition day, especially when you are completing 3-4 hard intense workouts. If you do not replace your fuel source, it is like a car, you will break down, you will fatigue quickly and for most of you, the last 1-2 workouts will be so hard to get through. Most would put it down to hard day of competition. I put it down to not refuelling your body appropriately.

Depending upon the workout will depend how much carbs you need. A few short 3-4 minute workout or a pure strength will not need as many carbs much as a workout that lasts 15-20 minutes and you just grind away at it without stopping. Sweet potato is not a choice of carbs on this day unless you want to eat 500g in one sitting. Which if you are going to be working out again in an hour or so time, most people would not be able to stomach that much food without feeling heavy or sick by the time the next workout rolls along. Use pasta (gluten free) or basmati/doongara rice to refuel your body. Try it? see how much better you feel when you eat a good source of carbs after each workout. I guarantee you will be able to perform better than ever before If you fuel yourself appropriately.
Good options might include – chicken and tomato based penne bake, chicken/tuna and rice, muesli and yoghurt (chobani), oat based slices, banana sandwiches or bread rolls etc.

3. Hydrate – dehydration can impair your performance by up to 60-70%. Which is quite a lot! If you are competing outdoors, you will experience some sort of dehydration unless you are continually rehydrating.

4. Make sure you get a small amount of protein after each workout. Again the shorter ones you will not need as much e.g. half a scoop of protein powder. Where the longer duration workouts I would have a full scoop.

5. Eat a good nutritious meal when you get home that night, a good source of carbs and try and avoid alcohol. Alcohol will ruin your recovery. Save it for the next night if you can and I promise you will feel better for it.

These are my main tips for competition season!

Competition Day Nutrition Part 1

As the majority of my clients are from an Olympic Weightlifting Background, I thought it would be a good idea to break down competition day nutrition for both sports. This week I will discuss Olympic weightlifting and next week I will discuss crossfit competition days! I find many people struggle to get through the whole competition without any fatigue settling in. So here are a few tips to help keep you performing at your best!

For Olympic Weightlifting Athletes:
This comes down to whether you have to cut weight for the competition or not as to how vigorous you need to be to refuel your body. So for this I will break it down.

For those sitting comfortably in their weight division:
Ensure you are consuming a protein based option at each meal such as 2-3 eggs, 100-150g of lean meat or fish, 150-200g of chobani yoghurt, protein powder etc. You will only one or two larger meals with carbohydrate containing foods to prevent fatigue such as muesli with yoghurt, wholegrain bread roll, 1-2 pieces of fruit. Try and avoid anything with fast releasing carbohydrates such as lollies, soft drinks, juice and chips. There is no need for them, and will probably end up making you feel worse than better!

For those who struggle to make weight division.
Usually you are dehydrated and carbohydrate depleted going into a competition. Always in the lead up, ensure you are still regularly consuming protein throughout the day to minimise muscle mass loss. If you are struggling to get through the day – do a mouthwash and spit out sugary drinks to help increase your energy levels. You will feel better by doing so I promise!

Post weigh in, consume a very high amount of carbohydrates both fast and slow releasing alongside a fluid with electrolytes. For example, muesli and yoghurt with added dried dates and sultanas; oat and honey muesli bars/slices and fruit; a vegemite sandwich and Gatorade. Of all electrolyte drinks Gatorade, hydrolyte or Endura are the better options to go for! Make sure you hydrate well after and drink slowly.

Nutrition during lifting:
Try and find a caffeine source to have 45 minutes- 1 hour prior to lifting to help increase the feeling of being alert. In between the Snatch and Clean and Jerk, again try another caffeine source and pick a carbohydrate source to go along with it – only small such as a piece of fruit, a snack pack box of sultanas, muesli bar. If you do not like to eat, a protein powder that has some kind of dextrose of maltodextrin is a great option to drink. This will prevent any feelings of fatigue by the time you get to your last lifts and you will feel more capable of hitting that PB!

These are just the basic nutrition tips but can make a big difference for your lifts so take advantage of them. If you need help determining what are the best options for you, please email me at amiestargetnutrition@gmail.com Do not underestimate the power of nutrition in training and competition!