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By Mairead Rodgers, RD PHEc

Ever feel like you absolutely crush your fitness and nutrition during the week, only to be struggling on the weekend? You’re not alone! This is probably one of the biggest issues our members bring to us and we want to help you out!

Why is being super strict with yourself and then “cheating” all weekend an issue?

If your goal is weight loss or fat loss, we need to be consistent in your fitness and nutrition. If you eat for those goals and are in a caloric deficit (you’re taking in less calories than you’re burning), but then you’re eating way more calories than you’re burning on the weekend, you might be ending up actually taking in more calories than you’re burning, or just breaking even, when it’s averaged over the whole week. That’s going to result in not seeing your fat-loss goals, or could even result in gaining fat overall. Bigger repeated fluctuations, like following a strict diet for a few weeks or months, and then returning to old eating habits for a while, can even result in returning to a heavier weight each time you “slip” or “cheat”, and a bigger risk of some chronic diseases.

The solution?

We’ve got to be consistent in what we’re doing for nutrition and fitness, both over the course of the week, and in general for the rest of your life. When I’m working with nutrition clients to make changes, I always ask them if they can see themselves making the change we’re talking about for the next 18 months, including on weekends. I want them to be able to make the change forever, but forever is hard to wrap our heads around. 

If you are struggling with your weekends, it’s worth having a look at what you’re doing during the week. If you’re finding you’re needing to overeat on treat foods, is it possible you’re being too strict or not eating enough overall during the week? It sounds counter-intuitive, but if you’re not taking in enough fuel or just feel deprived, your body can make you overcompensate as a way to protect you. Maybe we need to have a peek at your diet during the week, just to make sure you’re getting what you need. If that’s not the case, keeping things interesting on the weekend might be the change you need to stay motivated. Get yourself moving if you can; one healthy habit encourages all the others! Get to the Saturday Weekender WOD, or get out for a run, walk or bike ride; whatever sounds fun to you! Focus on the easy things and what you can add to your diet instead of trying to avoid specific foods. Make sure you’re getting enough water in and lots of fruits and veggies. Still want some pizza or beer? No problem! Just work on the things you can ADD instead of the things we’re trying to AVOID. 

At the end of the day, remember that the name of the game here is consistency, not perfection, both throughout the week and in life in general. Don’t overthink it, and keep it simple!

Still struggling? Book your FREE 15-Minute Nutrition Chat here or email maireadrodgers@degreecrossfitseaforth.com to see how we can help!

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By Mairead Rodgers, RD PHEc

We are heading into the Canada long weekend, which means for lots of us there are tons of BBQs and other fun weekend events going on over the next few months. We’ve probably all had a few already this summer too. Summer BBQs are a ton of fun, but if we’re throwing our healthy eating habits completely out the window every single time we’re at one, it can take a toll on your fitness goals over the summer. Luckily, we’ve got some easy tips for you!

  1. Fill half your plate with veggies if you can! If you’ve ever worked with me on your nutrition, you know this is a common strategy for pretty much any situation. Here’s why: veggies pack in a ton of nutrition, including fibre, vitamins and minerals, and some extra water for those hot summer days, which are all important. If you’re someone who’s likely to load up on less healthy foods like potato chips, these veggies physically take up space on your plate to remind you to keep portion sizes in mind. If you don’t think there will be any veggies at your BBQ, you can offer to bring a salad or veggie tray to give everyone some healthy choices. 
  2. Get some protein! Protein helps keep us full, which can ward off munching on less healthy choices later on in the party. Healthier choices can include leaner proteins like chicken or turkey, but burgers, hot dogs, and all your other BBQ favourites are fine in moderation. If you’re the one BBQing, try throwing on an extra portion or two and having it for lunch the next day. Wait, did you just meal prep while BBQing!? We won’t tell. 
  3. Guzzle some water! As we all know, water is always the best drink for us, especially for those of us who get hot and sweaty during summer workouts. If you’re having an alcoholic beverage, or a few, try having a glass of water between drinks to keep you hydrated (you’ll feel better the next day too!). If plain water isn’t your thing, try unsweetened flavoured soda water; you can even add a small splash of juice to it for more flavour if you’re feeling fancy.
  4. Have some dessert! Wait what? Yes really, have a bit of dessert if you want it, and here’s why: have you ever gone to a BBQ, ate all your veggies and lean protein, only had water to drink, and then gone home and inhaled chips or cookies or ice cream? Odds are you weren’t satisfied with what you ate and felt deprived. The solution? Have a bit of dessert if you want it. Eat enough to feel satisfied and happy, but not so much that you feel overly stuffed. Eating a scoop or two of ice cream at a BBQ is going to have less of an impact on your goals than eating 3 times the amount when you get home. 

Need more help navigating nutrition this summer? Let’s chat! Click here to book your FREE 15-Minute Bite-Sized Nutrition Chat to go over your goals and find out how we can help, or email maireadrodgers@degreecrossfitseaforth.com.

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By Mairead Rodgers, RD PHEc

What’s the best kind of exercise out there for you? What’s going to give you the health benefits and results you want? 

First and foremost, I’m not here to tell you why CrossFit is the best exercise for everyone everywhere ever. I can tell you why it’s part of the best exercise for me though, and we’ll get to that later.

Ok here’s the big secret:  
The best kind of exercise for you is…. the kind you love and will actually do consistently!

If you love the kind of exercise you’re doing, you’ll stick with it, you’ll be consistent with it, and you’ll do it for the long term, not just the next 2 weeks until your motivation runs out. That way you can actually get all the benefits of exercise:

  • boosting your good cholesterol
  • promoting a healthy weight
  • promoting strong bones from weight-bearing activity
  • helping to prevent chronic diseases (like type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and arthritis)
  • improving your mood
  • improving your energy levels
  • improving the quality of your sleep
  • maintaining muscle mass later in life when we usually lose it

But if you don’t like the kind of exercise you’re doing, and therefore don’t do it, you’ll see none of those. 

For me right now, that means combination of lots of CrossFit and a fair bit of running. I’m also always happy to throw in a bit of yoga, a Dance-Fit class, or pretty much anything else, from time to time to keep things interesting and focus on different goals. These are the kinds of exercise that don’t feel like a chore for me, and that make me want to get up and do it all again tomorrow.

I hope that you love CrossFit and that it truly is the best kind of exercise for you personally. It’s amazing, and our community at Degree is amazing, and we are constantly seeing the positive impact on people’s health. That being said, if you hate CrossFit and love spin class, or a team sport, or would rather go on hikes with your dog, that’s awesome too! I just hope you have some kind of exercise that doesn’t feel like a chore and that makes you happy. If we can help you with that, let us know.

Click here to get in touch and book your FREE No Sweat Intro to see how we can help you find the perfect kind of exercise for you.

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By Mairead Rodgers, RD PHEc

Everyone starts somewhere. I think the saying “Every expert was one a beginner” is definitely true.

When I first started coming to Degree, I remember saying that I couldn’t do something. I don’t remember what, and that doesn’t matter now, but Kaleda’s answer was “no, not YET”, and it’s shaped the way I talk about both my own goals, and the goals that the people around me have. 

Just because you can’t do something right now, doesn’t mean you can never do it. Every single person who’s come through our door has seen someone do something amazing and said “I wish I could do that”. We might have even said “I can’t do that” or “I’ll never be able to do that”. My answer to you? You can’t do it YET. 

If you see someone doing a rope climb, a handstand, toes-to-bar, stringing together pull ups or double unders, running fast or far, or lifting something heavy, you should know there was a time when they couldn’t do that YET. Cheer them on, keep working, ask your coaches for help, and some day you just might be able to do that thing too.  

Try rephrasing your thoughts from “I can’t do it” to “I can’t do it… YET” and see how things change. 

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Written By:  Mary Jane Greidanus
How often when you start something like a new workout routine or working on improving your eating habits or increasing your water  intake do you hear “I did so great at first but …. (add in whatever excuse you have, I’m sure we have used them all)?

We all do so great at first but usually slowly but surely to slip back to old routines we wanted to get away from…

Accountability is one of the best ways to help us stick to our plans! When we have someone either checking up on what we said we would do or encouraging us along when we are struggling to accomplish what we set out to do, we are more apt to stick with our goals.At Young at Heart Fitness  we meet once a week for our workout. We learn the movements for the day, practice them and then do a workout.Everyone is encouraged to work at the skills they are capable of and at a pace that works for them!
 If something doesn’t work for you, we try to find a way that safely does work or we change the movement for one that works the same muscles!In that hour we work hard and have fun at the same time. We get to know each other and there is a lot of laughter as the hour progresses =)One hour a week is a good start in our fitness journey, so, keep up the efforts we are putting in we hand out HOMEWORK! A short workout you can do at home to encourage you to keep working on staying active throughout the week ahead.

But how do we get ourselves to do the homework?One way is to hold each other accountable for doing that through our private Facebook page where we can connect with each other and hold each other accountable.It is also where we can find our HOMEWORK for the week if we missed out class or misplaced our paper work!When we hold each other accountable and check in with each other there is a better chance that we will do what we set out to do. 

Often before class begins we are asking each other how we did or if we did our homework. So even if we didn’t make a comment on the page we are still checking in with each other, encouraging each other on this journey to a better you!
 We have a great group at Young At Heart who have fun while build each other up both physically and emotionally as well.  
 Your next 6 week session beings Monday, June 24th! 
These amazing classes are designed for those 50+ to kick start your healthy habits, and continue to be the happy, healthy, Young at Heart individuals you are!
(not for you, but know someone else that could use a little accountability? Forward this email to them!)
 Email maryjane@degreecrossfitseaforth.com for more information.Or phone 519-441-7492 leave a message and someone will get back to you as soon as possible!

See you soon!
Coach MJ