Saturday, May 28, 2011

Thanks for a Great SK Marathon Expo!

I had a great time at the SK Marathon Expo today! I met lots of great exercise enthusiasts from all over Canada. We had many conversations about healthy eating, what to eat during your run, etc. I was beside my friends from Craven Sport Services who had some educational sessions which reinforced the relationship between activity and nutrition. It was a busy day with many people coming through TCU to pick up their race packages.

I hope you have a great run if you're participating in the 10km, half, or full marathon tomorrow! I'll be at the first water station with the Saskatoon lululemon athletic crew to cheer you on.

For those of you who entered the Something Nutrishus draw today, I have 2 winners to announce:
1st prize - a grapeseed lululemon Retro Groove Bag goes to Lisa Wilson
2nd prize - a DC Simple Great Food cookbook goes to Rachel Zanyk

Congratulations and thanks to everyone who stopped by the booth today!

Steph Wheler

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Carbohydrate Loading

Are you running in the SK Marathon this Sunday in Saskatoon? Whether it is your first 10km, half marathon, or full marathon - or even if you are an experienced runner - what you eat and drink will impact your run.

With only a few days before the race hopefully you have already tried eating and drinking during your training runs so you know what you can tolerate. Many people are familiar with the term carbohydrate loading, although what it actually means for the athlete has changed in recent years. Athletes used to deprive themselves of carbohydrates while training hard and then switch to high carbohydrate to store glycogen for the race. This was physically hard on athletes and didn't make for great training leading up to race day.

Today, carbohydrate loading means tapering your training the week before the race and keeping your carbohydrate intake the same as when you were training more intensely. This means that you will be taking in more carbohydrates because you won't be burning as many. This also means that you can continue to eat meals and snacks with whole grains, vegetables, fruits, and low fat dairy to get the carbohydrate you need. During this taper week and carbohydrate loading phase you may see your weight increase by 1-2 kg - this is because you store water with glycogen, so this is a good thing and will help fuel you through your upcoming race.

Take advantage of the few days you have left - don't count on one massive pasta supper the night before. You can plan to eat a normal size supper and perhaps a bedtime snack (if this is what you have practiced during training) along with breakfast (again what you have practiced) on race morning.

Steph Wheler

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Make Healthy Eating a Priority

People take all kinds of actions to treat their ailments, but unfortunately not as many to prevent them in the first place. Someone recently told me that in Canada we say we have a Health Care system, but we really have an Illness Care system and I kind of have to agree. Why not take a stance for your own health and well being? We cannot change our age, family history, or ethnic background, but we can control what we feed our bodies and how we move them. Healthy eating and regular physical activity combine for a healthier you.

By creating healthy eating and activity habits, you may help reduce your risk of obesity, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, certain types of cancer and osteoporosis while providing many benefits such as:

  • Better overall health
  • Lower risk of disease
  • A healthy body weight
  • Feeling and looking better
  • More energy
  • Stronger muscles and bones1

If you think you don't have time to eat well - think again. You can create time for grocery shopping, meal preparation, and time to sit and enjoy great food. Yes, you may have to shift other things in your life, but the time is there for you to create a healthier future for yourself.

There are solutions to whatever barriers you feel to eating well and being active.

1Maintaining Healthy Habits. Health Canada. 2007.

Steph Wheler

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Moms Deserve the Best

This Mother’s Day why not show your mom how special she is with a healthy and tasty breakfast! Whether you serve her breakfast in bed or gather the family around the kitchen table, your mom is sure to welcome a break from cooking. You don’t have to be a master chef; you just need to plan ahead so you have the ingredients you need.
Eating breakfast is part of a healthy diet and gives your body the energy it needs to get started after a night of rest. A healthy breakfast includes at least three of the four food groups (Vegetables and Fruit, Grain Products, Milk and Alternatives, Meat and Alternatives). To get the most nutritional value, choose:
  • Whole-grain carbohydrates (like breads, cereals, and waffles).
  • Lean protein or low- or non-fat dairy (like eggs, yogurt, cheese, milk, and tofu).
  • Healthy fats (nuts, seeds, flaxseed, and healthy oils).
  • Fruit, 100% fruit juice, and/or vegetables.
Make your mom’s day special by changing things up from her usual cereal or toast. Try a new recipe or add variety and visual appeal with different colours and textures. Choose your menu ahead of time so you know when to get up and start preparing.
Mother's Day Breakfast Ideas
Here are some suggestions for a simple, yet impressive, Mother's Day breakfast:
  • Yogurt parfait: Layer low-fat yogurt, granola, and mixed berries in a tall, clear glass.
  • Whole-grain waffles (homemade or frozen) topped with sliced bananas, toasted pecans, and warm maple syrup.
  • Mango smoothie: Toss a cut-up mango, low-fat yogurt, mango or orange juice, and a handful of ice into a blender. Serve with whole-wheat toast spread with almond butter.
  • Breakfast burrito: Stir-fry cut-up vegetables, like onions, zucchini, and red peppers, until tender. Add beaten eggs (or egg substitute) and stir until cooked. Top with shredded cheese and wrap in a whole-wheat tortilla. Serve a fruit salsa on the side.
  • Bagels and cream cheese: Top a fresh whole-grain bagel with low-fat cream cheese, sliced salmon, sliced tomatoes, chopped red onion, and a few capers. Serve with half a pink grapefruit or fresh-squeezed grapefruit juice.
  • Berry ricotta toast: Toast two slices of whole-wheat bread. Top with part-skim ricotta cheese and fresh berries.
  • Fruity French toast: Make French toast special by adding cinnamon to the batter. Top with a dollop of vanilla yogurt, sliced fresh fruit, and a drizzle of maple syrup.
  • Egg "Mock" Muffin. Toast a whole-wheat English muffin. Cook one egg and place it on the muffin. Then top with prepared turkey bacon or Canadian bacon and a slice of cheese for a faster than fast-food breakfast.
  • Apple pancakes: Add a cup of chunky applesauce and a teaspoon of cinnamon to your favorite pancake batter. Top cooked pancakes with apple butter or maple syrup and toasted walnuts.
  • Heart eggs: Using a heart-shaped cookie cutter, cut out the center of a slice of whole- grain bread. Spray both sides of bread with cooking spray and place in saute pan over medium heat. Crack an egg into the center hole, cover the pan, and cook until done as desired. Serve mom one or two heart eggs with a fruit garnish.
  • Cottage cheese crunch: Start with a clear glass bowl. Layer sliced fruit, such as peaches and bananas. Then add a layer of low-fat cottage cheese, and top it off with mom's favorite whole-grain cereal.
  • Cranberry nut oatmeal: Make instant oatmeal according to package directions. Top with dried cranberries and toasted nuts for a delicious, cholesterol-lowering breakfast.
Adapted from Kathleen Zelman, MPH, RD, WebMD, 2007.
Steph Wheler

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Muffins

I tried this recipe from Dietitians of Canada's Simple Great Food awhile ago, and wanted to share it with you. I enjoyed the muffins best warm from the oven!

1 1/2 c whole wheat flour
1/2 c quick-cooking rolled oats
1/4 c ground flaxseed
1/4 c granulated sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 t baking soda
1/2 t salt (I just used a dash)
1 egg
1 c milk
1/4 c vegetable oil
1/4 c liquid honey
1/2 c semi-sweet chocolate chips or dried fruit
1/2 c chopped nuts (optional)

Preheat oven to 400F (200C) and line a 12-cup muffin pan with paper cups (or lightly grease).

1. In a large bowl, combine flour, oats, flaxseed, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
2. In a small bowl, whisk together egg, milk, oil, and honey. Stir into flour mixture until just combined. Fold in chocolate chips and nuts (if using).
3. Divide batter evenly among prepared muffin cups.
4. Bake in preheated oven for 15-20 minutes or until tops are firm to the touch and a tester inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean. Let cool for 10 minutes then remove to a wire rack to cool completely.

*If you choose to use dried fruit instead of chocolate chips, you will add nutrition and fibre to your muffins.

Per servings: 210 Calories, 8.7g fat, 3.3g fibre, 4.6g protein; high in magnesium

Steph Wheler

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Some Saskatoon Running Events

I've been working with running and triathlon groups this spring to discuss the importance of sport nutrition. For those who are interested, I wanted to share some of the upcoming competitions this spring/summer in Saskatoon:

May 15: Making it Happen Tri
May 29: Saskatchewan Marathon
June 5: Moe's Triathlon
June 12: Bridge City Boogie
June 18: Brainsport KOS - kids triathlon
June 19: Craven-Genki Pike Lake Triathlon
June 25: Mogathon

These are great events to compete in and cheer at. Most of them offer various distances as well. What are you doing outside now that the snow is gone?

Steph Wheler