One of the most popular questions I get is: "What do you eat before/after class?". I must say I do eat what I call "Performance Foods", those that fuel me to do what I do, and give me the energy to ride as hard as I can, every single time.
It is not a diet, it's a lifestyle:
I am not on any specific diet, however, I do follow a set of rules:
-I don't deprive myself from food. If I am hungry, I eat. When I feel full, I stop eating.
-I don't eat anything with artificial sweeteners.
-The only thing in my freezer is ice and frozen bananas for smoothies.
-I don't do sugar-free, fat-free, low-carb, gluten-free.
-I don't believe in juice fasting, however, I do have vegetable juices regularly. Breanne Colella brings me a freshly made one every Friday after class. It is a great drink to replenish lost fluids, it is made with: kale, pear, parsley, cucumber, celery, ginger and lemon.
-I don't believe in alcohol as a way to "decompress" after a stressful day. That "relief" is only temporary! I will have one drink occasionally, and drink lots of water with it. Alcohol slows you down. Period.
-I don't believe in cutting all carbs out of your diet. I would fall off the bike after the first 10 minutes if I didn't eat enough carbs. I choose the right kind, fruits, vegetables and whole grains. I have at least 3 slices of sprouted wheat bread per day.
-I don't eat junk food. But when I do, I choose gelato made with 5 ingredients or less. The real thing, full fat, full sugar.
-I try to buy organic as much as possible but don't go crazy if I can't find what I am looking for at the store.
-I never don't skip meals. If I am not that hungry, then I eat a little less but alwayssomething so that my body doesn't go into starvation mode.
-I don't take supplements or protein shakes, the foods that I eat should be able to provide for all of the nutrients necessary.
-I try, try, to sleep as much as I can.
-I've been a pescatarian for the past 15 years.
-I don't drink soda!
-I do drink an enormous amount of water every day. I am always thirsty. Always.
-If you ask me to choose between a power/protein bar and a sandwich/salad as my lunch, I go with the latter. Real food.
-When buying foods, I look at the ingredients, then the nutritional facts. I don't care if it is 0% sugar, 0%fat, 0%carbs, WHAT IS IN IT?
My favorite "Performance Foods":
-Peanut butter, sunflower seed butter, almond butter
-Kale and Spinach
-Avocados, Tomatoes and Beets
-Sprouted Wheat Bread
-Bananas, blueberries, Apples
Always a combination of good carbs + Healthy fats + Protein is a good idea- they will keep you full to perform better. It is about having energy to train harder!
-Banana, blueberries, peanut butter and raw-cacao smoothie with water/milk and ice. If in a rush, a banana and a small handful of raw, unsalted nuts. One banana will be enough to sustain a strenuous work out of 60 minutes or less.
-2 Slices of sprouted wheat toast with sunflower seed butter and sliced banana + Latte
Water, water, water! Sometimes, you'll see me drink a little bottle of 100% organic apple juice.
A couple of times a week, I'll have a latte or a cup of low-fat chocolate milk. Then later, as I crave salty foods after class, I'll have one of the following:
-2 Sushi rolls at Akane, a couple of pieces of sashimi, an order of edamame, and a cucumber salad.
-I love pickles, olives, capers, sun-dried tomatoes in olive oil, over hummus and home made guacamole made with fresh lime juice and baked lentil chips.
-One serving of whole grain spaghetti mixed with steamed broccoli, a little parmesan cheese and grilled shrimp.
-Grilled/steamed fish with sautéed kale, spinach, mushrooms and shallots + one cup of brown rice or quinoa or one steamed sweet potato.
-I like the tuna salad that they sell at Whole Foods. I'll have a sandwich with sprouted bread and add lettuce or arugula!
-I LOVE the kale salad at Mayfield Cafe in Palo Alto. So good!!
-Scrambled eggs with mozzarella cheese, avocado and smoked salmon.
Everything in moderation!!