I don't follow a specific nutrition plan – I’m not a fan of fad diets, trendy superfoods etc. I eat to fuel my body and keep my energy up – with early starts and late classes in the evening this usually means 3 meals and snacks in between. I’m a firm believer in balance and moderation – if I want something, I’ll have it, but I’ll just be mindful of how much I have. For long-term success, your diet has to be sustainable, so depriving yourself will never work.
For breakfast, I almost always have a protein smoothie. I’m on the go and up at 5 am most days, leaving the house at 6 so I need something quick that I can grab and take with me. I can’t eat lots before early classes or clients so this works well as it’s easy to digest and portable– I usually have half early and then half after my first class or client. It’s a great mix of protein and carbs and keeps me full until lunch, plus it’s got the added health benefits of spinach (which doesn’t affect the taste at all). I make a big batch of my favourite smoothie every 4 days or so and keep them in the fridge – you can find my current favourite healthy protein smoothie recipe here.
At the moment I’m totally addicted to these easy banana pancakes for lunch – they’re so tasty and filling, and really easy to make. They're also delicious with loads of fresh fruit. If I can’t get home or I’m rushing between clients I’ll tend to go for a loaded porridge pot – I add extra oats, freeze dried fruit and peanut butter to up the calories and make it more satisfying. Other than that I’ll tend to have leftovers from the night before.
Inevitably I’ll need a snack at some point during the day. My days tend to be pretty manic, dashing between classes and clients, so I need things I can grab and take with me. Protein bars are a staple of mine – not because I feel I need that much extra protein, but more because I get the energy boost and satisfaction of a chocolate or treat bar, but with the added bonus of it helping me feel fuller for longer – so it keeps me going, and makes me feel like I’ve had a treat. If I need a smaller boost, these “little goodies” oat bites are a definite winner – at only 41 cals they’re brilliant to curb hunger pangs. I also love rice cakes with various toppings – nut butter, fruit or hummus etc as a great low calorie, filling snack.
I’m vegetarian so meals tend to focus on veg, good carbs, and a plant-based protein (often Quorn or something similar). I’ve got a few favourites for dinner. If I’m short on time then I love this quick and easy stir fried rice – I can whip this up quickly when I’m home late after classes and it’s a great mix of good carbs and protein. I also love this spicy peanut Quorn “chicken” recipe – which tastes as good as a takeaway at a fraction of the cost and calories. I serve it with quinoa or brown rice and usually some veg on the side (broccoli, beans etc).
My other current favourite is Quorn chicken cacciatore – a tomato-based casserole, which is great for using up veg and is super tasty – especially when the nights start drawing in (again served with grains and veg, or a jacket potato/sweet potato).
Ahh my favourite meal of the day! I do have some healthy, yet super tasty treat recipes for desserts – I love a healthy crumble using whatever fruits are seasonal , with some n’ice cream (dairy-free ice cream) or just stewed fruit and greek yoghurt. But I also really love any sort of ice cream so I’m often to be found with an ice cream cone in my hands after dinner!
About the author: Nancy Priston is a personal trainer and Sundried ambassador