Author: Ridge Personal Trainer Annie Barber

Nutrition is very important when it comes to overall well-being, health and fitness. We all know the basics: eat good grains, lots of fruits and vegetables, stay away from processed foods, etc. There is so much information out there it can be overwhelming. Instead of throwing a dozen new recipes at you or new habits to adopt I’m going to leave you with a few simple rules and suggestions and show you what I eat in a typical day.

• When you go grocery shopping, stay in the outside isles for the majority of your shopping. Load up on vegetables, fruits, dairy products, lean protein and whole grains. Every now and then indulge in a box of crackers, your favorite pack of cookies, etc. Everything in moderation.
• First thing in the morning, drink 16-24 ounces of water before you do anything! It works wonders.
Snacking is important: it helps regulate your blood sugar and hunger levels so you are not ravenous at each meal, which often leads to overeating. My go to snacks are: Clif bars, Chobani Greek Yogurt, Almonds (28 is a serving), half of a peanut butter and jelly, vegetables dipped in salsa, or an apple with string cheese or peanut butter.
Indulge in your favorite comfort dishes, sweets, or whatever you may be craving. Don’t make it a daily habit, but at least allow yourself one cheat day a week. If you restrict for too long it can lead to bingeing or overeating when you are faced with those tempting foods.
Add color and variety to your diet. Try to mix up what you eat for each meal. It will allow you to appreciate different foods and flavors!

A day of Annie B’s food intake.. 

Breakfast (6-7am): 24 ounces of water, 16 oz coffee with coconut creamer, Chobani greek yogurt, banana, oatmeal and a slice of toast with peanut butter.

Snack (10am): Apple or Clif bar

Lunch (2pm): 2 cups steamed vegetables, 1 serving fruit (apple, grapes, orange, etc.), bagel thin or 2 slices whole wheat bread with avocado, deli turkey meat, sliced tomatoes and a slice of cheese.

Snack (4pm): 1 serving nuts, or shake

Dinner (7pm): Always varies~Big salad loaded with vegetables, beans, cottage cheese, etc. Grilled chicken with vegetables. Spaghetti squash with marinara and veggies.

Dessert when I feel like it!

Good luck and happy eating!