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Snack Good, Work Better

Guest blog by Kyle Byron, Toronto Nutritionist and health coach

Time is challenge for our fitness. As a nutritionist, I help people save time in the kitchen. Here’s the best advice I have for busy people with serious fitness goals.

Skip meals sometimes, be prepared, and eat the right foods.

Tip 1: Skip Breakfast 

It’s not the most important meal of the day. I’m not sure where that myth started. Probably a cereal company. Rule one of nutrition is to eat when hungry (not because of the clock). If you’re curious as to what meal is most important, it’s the one after exercise.

If you wake up and decide you’re not hungry, you can skip your breakfast. Some supplements are mandatory, however. Have either 20-30 grams of whey protein powder, or have 10-15 g of Branch Chain Amino Acids. These two supplements will help you preserve muscle tissue in what is now a fasted state.

Feel free to also have some no-sugar-added greens powder or multivitamins, and some black coffee or tea. I would also suggest you drink a few glasses of water.

Be ready for hunger to come on strong in the next four hours.

Tip 2: Snack Stockpile 

One of the hugest time-wasters is uncertainty. Think of all the time you waste looking for food. One hour per week? More? Now think of how awesome it would be to have a drawer at your desk that’s filled with nutrition:

  • Protein powder
  • Greens powder
  • A shaker cup
  • Mini cans of tuna
  • A jar of mixed nuts
  • Beef jerky
  • Fish oil pills
  • Rice cakes

Bye-bye wandering around looking for food. Now you can build amazing snacks at your desk. What to snack on?

Tip 3: Protein Perfect Your Snack Game 

Nutritious snacks ALWAYS have protein. Notice the snack stockpile is mostly lean protein. It’s easy to grab an apple or something, but pair it with protein to make it a daily snack.

Other great pairings are:

  • Plain Greek yogurt or cottage cheese and fruit
  • Hard boiled eggs with fruit or veggies
  • Leftover dinner (This is a snack or meal, which basically are the same thing anyway)
  • Protein powder in water, and a side of 10-20 cashews
  • Beef jerky and carrots

An athletic person needs about one gram of protein per lb of lean body weight. So if your snacks don’t have protein, you probably won’t get enough protein that day, and then you’ll never be your best. Plus, meals or snacks without protein digest too fast and you eat too much and gain fat. Plus snacks without protein don’t provide you with good energy.

As simple as this advice is, it’s not common knowledge, nor is it easy to be consistent with. Nutrition is something we work on constantly. I’m here to help if you need me.

Kyle Byron is a nutritionist, trainer and health coach. He’s helped over 1900 clients in the last 10 years. His degree is in nutrition and has worked in hospitals, clinics, and in fitness centers.  Read more at Follow him @kylebyronnutrition

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