GETFOXFIT | IFBB Bikini Fitness Athlete & Kidney Cancer Survivor Lisanne Keir

Contest Prep | Weight Training | Fitness Motivation | Nutrition & Healthy Living Inspiration


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Friday Five: Top 5 Food Tips to Help you Reach your Heath Goals and Create the Body of your Dreams

Top 5 Food Tips (www.getfoxfit.com)

 

STRENGTH –

Anyone can workout for an hour, but to control what goes on your plate the other 23 hours… that’s the hard work!

 

Ain’t that the truth.

You can sculpt, build, lift, push, pull and sweat as much as you can through exercise, but without the right food (and portion sizes) to fuel your body it won’t change as much as you want.  It’s not just about being strong in the gym but OUT of the gym, in the other 23 hours.

Last year I intensively worked out and ate very healthily however my body made the most dramatic changes when I modified what I ate, how I ate and my portion sizes.  Yes, I was eating healthy food but just way too much and being the carb monster that I was, the percentage of macronutrients that I ate was WAY off.

Once I set my goal the biggest thing I needed to do was change my habits and emotions towards food as well as eat smaller portions, different % of fats, carbs and protein, eat more often (every 2-3 hours) and, like I said before, stick to the plan.  No ifs or buts.

Food really is a science, that’s what makes it so interesting.

Abs really are made in the kitchen!

On that note, here are my Top 5 Food Tips 

1. Portion Control

I cannot stress this one enough!

We all built individually and need different amounts of calories and % of macronutrients (carbs, fats and proteins) depending on your goal(s), so what may work for your friend / sister / neighbour / training buddy may not work for you.  In my case, I was eating the same (if not bigger) portions than Maarten, my husband, who weighs nearly twice my weight!  No wonder I didn’t see any changes for all of those months.

You can check out some example of portion control on my Pinterest board here.

2. The best exercise you can do is walk away from the kitchen and fridge with a glass of water! 

Last year you could find me hovering around the kitchen, usually at times when I wasn’t so busy and had time to think about food.  I would go in there and nibble on a handful of nuts, or have a few sneaky crackers here and there.  Dates filled with walnuts were a huge favourite of mine – so I would have a handful of those too a few times through the day.

I thought I was being healthy BUT I wasn’t paying any attention to the calories or nutrition of the food I was eating.  Yes, dates and walnuts are healthy but they are packed with fats (even though they are good fats) and sugar (even though they are natural sugars), so are high in calories and carbs too.

Even though I was eating healthy options I was consuming far more calories than my body needed.

So next time you find yourself in the kitchen, looking for munchies – get yourself a big glass of water instead!  More often than not we are either “bored” or dehydrated when we think we’re hungry.

3. Be mindful what and when you eat

I have learned to say no.  Believe me, this was a massive thing for me.  I would always eat what, when and where I wanted.

I absolutely love food, especially cakes and would never ever turn down the offer of one.  Birthday parties, work gatherings, dinners out etc. were always exciting times when I would eat any of the things on offer.

However I had to make a conscious decision to really see and take on board all that I was eating – it’s an interesting thing to do – as, like I said, there were those moments alone in the kitchen with the sneaky handful of snacks that I wouldn’t consider as extra calories or even think about… but they all mount up.

So, think before you eat.  Make smart choices.   And learn to say “No”.

4. Keep a ‘food diary’ for a week

Something that made a huge impact was keeping a “Food Diary / Schedule”.

I really wanted to see what, how much and when I was eating so I started using the “Notes” function on my iPhone and ‘writing down’ what, when and how much I was eating.

What an eye opener!

Again – yes all healthy things, but WAY too much – especially in the evening.  I had formed habits, like eating peanut butter on toast with a tea at 20:30 when I would watch The Big Bang Theory.  That was my ritual.  And these were very unnecessary nutrients and calories that my body didn’t need, since I had already ate enough carbs and fats through the day.

So I had to change my habit and make a conscious effort to replace this ritual with something else… which has now become a salad and green tea.

Writing things down and seeing what I was eating was really interesting.  Give it a go!

5. Be accountable to someone other than yourself 

Another biggie!  Sometimes being accountable to yourself is just not enough.  “No one will know if I have that biscuit / croissant / McDonalds etc.”  You, of course, but sometimes the pleasure outweighs the guilt, so you eat it anyway.

However, having another person to be accountable to (and not wanting to let down) can really help you focus, stick to the plan and help in the motivation department.  For me this person was my coach Jerry Koolhoven.

So share your goal with someone (your partner, a friend, a colleague whoever) and go for it!

Another blog post you may find interesting and like to read is:

Hungry, or think you are hungry?  

 


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2 weeks out Photo Shoot by Maarten Vos Photography

Two weeks before the Enercup contest, Nieske and I had a photoshoot with Maarten.

We both compete in the Bikini Fitness division and have a huge passion for weights, healthy living, mindfulness and snapbacks to name a few interests that we have in common.

Not only my swolesister but my soulsister :)

Check out some of the awesome shots below.

Lisanne Vos & Nieske (Photo: Maarten Vos Photography)Nieske (Photo: Maarten Vos)Lisanne Vos (getfoxfit) Photo: Maarten VosNieske (Photo: Maarten Vos)  Lisanne Vos & Nieske (Photo: Maarten Vos Photography)Nieske (Photo: Maarten Vos)   Bikini Fitness Athlete Lisanne Vos (getfoxfit) Photo: Maarten VosNieske (Photo: Maarten Vos)

Be sure to check out more on Maarten Vos Photography facebook.


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Fiery Spiced Cod and Broccoli (Easy, Tasty and Clean Recipe)

Fiery Spiced Cod & Broccoli (Easy, Tasty & Clean Recipe)

Let me introduce you to my most cooked and consumed dish.

Since I am in contest prep and 4 weeks out of my competition I have to closely monitor what I am eating and this meal is a firm favourite.

Easy, tasty, yummy, healthy and clean recipe that packs a punch in the spicy department – perfect!

If you don’t like it super spicy, then just leave out the chili and fresh cayenne peppers.

Enough for 2 servings.  Cooking time: 20 mins

Ingredients:

Frozen cod (400g)
Broccoli (500g)
Spices
Turmeric (2 tsp)
Paprika powder (2 tsp)
Chili pepper (2 tsp+, depending on how hot you want it)
Cumin (2 tsp)
Fresh cayenne pepper (1/2 to 1, depending on how hot you want it)
Pepper (2 tsp)
Himalayan salt (1/2 tsp)

How to:

1) Finely chop the fresh cayenne pepper into small bits

2) Put the frozen cod and all the spices in a big pan, cover it with a lid and cook it on a medium heat (around number 4/5, or turn to just less than half) for 20 mins (since the fish will be cooking from frozen I don’t use any coconut oil as it will cook in it’s juices)

3) Grab a medium pan and bring water to a boil

4) Wash and cut your broccoli

5) When the fish has been cooking for 10 mins add the broccoli to the pan of boiling water and cook that for 7-10 mins (depending on how firm you like it)

6) After 20 mins – mash up the fish in the pan and fully mix so that every bit is covered in the spices and sauce

7) Drain the broccoli and serve

Nom Nom Nom!


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Friday Five: 5 Simple Health Tips

5 Simple Health Tips (www.getfoxfit)

Happy Friday!  With the weekend just around the corner it’s inspiration and motivation time.  On today’s menu – 5 simple ways to get, and remain, healthy.

We are talking about food, fitness, focus, selfies and that all important rest.  So let’s get to it…

1. Clean up your diet

  • Get rid of refined carbs (in the form of sugar, white pasta, white bread, cakes, biscuits, muffins etc.)
  • Eat more vegetables (especially green leafy veg like spinach, kale, lettuce and paprika, tomatoes, broccoli, asparagus etc.)
  • Eat lean sources of protein (white fish, turkey, lean beef, egg whites, chicken)
  • Eliminate processed foods (frozen dinners, microwave meals, pre-packaged goods)
  • Snack on clean foods
  • Always start your day off with a good nutritious breakfast that will kick start your metabolism and give you energy (for example oatmeal)
  • Cleanse your body and system by drinking warm lemon water first thing in the morning
  • Eat small portions every 2-3 hours
  • Ditch the fizzy drinks
  • Drink filtered water (and loads of it)
  • Interested in how you can eat cleaner?  How to Start Eating Clean – Tips and Essentials
  • Click here for easy and simple clean eating swaps

2. Move your body

  • 4-5 times a week (45 mins -1 hour)
  • Find a sport / activity that you like and is fun for you (for example try biking, weight training, fitness classes, yoga, dance, running…)
  • Keep challenging yourself – lift heavier weights, run that extra mile, score than extra goal
  • Do you have an office job?  Ensure that you get up from your desk and move around every 20 mins… why not use that time to get yourself more water :)
  • Increase success by setting solid goals.  How do I do that? Click here
  • Looking for more fitness tips?  Click here

3. Take photos

  • Every month
  • Taking photos is one of the best ways to track your progress (and will keep you motivated when you see the changes)
  • Too often we do not see the small changes and a photo can show you progress that you do not see yourself

4. Stay focussed

  • Surround yourself with likeminded people who are into health and fitness, share your journey and passion
  • There will be days when your motivation may be low and these are the times you can really help and support each other
  • Create vision boards on Pinterest
  • Read others’ health and fitness journey’s online
  • Re-charge your fitness goals

5. Rest and relax

  • Try and get a minimum of 8 hours of sleep per night (when you are sleeping your body repairs itself, grows, changes and restores itself)
  • Ensure you take breaks throughout the day – no matter how busy you are
  • Manage stress and busy-ness by meditating.  Not sure how? Check out – Meditation Techniques for Beginners: 5 Easy Tips
  • Tried meditation and still can’t manage it?  Here are 5 tricks to try

Do you have any tips you would add to the list? Feel free to leave them in the comments below :)


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Thai fish salad (clean and healthy recipe)

Thai fish salad (clean and healthy) Recipe via: www.getfoxfit.com

One of my favourite dishes – a thai salad which you can add fish (or chicken, beef etc.) to for extra protein.

Just as awesome as a lunch or a dinner.

I really enjoy eating this on low carb days during contest prep.  Just because I’m on low carbs doesn’t mean I have to eat bland or boring food – I like to keep things interesting and this dish certainly spices things up!

Ingredients:

White fish – tilapia, pangasius or cod (250g)

Coconut oil (1 tablespoon)

Pointed cabbage (1)

Cherry or romain tomatoes (20)

Red paprika pepper (1)

Cayenne pepper (1)

Lime (2)

Coriander (big bunch)

Fish sauce (3 tablespoons)

Pepper, chili pepper to taste

How to:

Cook the white fish in coconut oil.

While the fish is cooking finely chop the pointed cabbage, coriander and cayenne pepper and put them in a big bowl.

Cut up the rest of the vegetables and add them to the bowl.

Squeeze the lime and add the lime juice and fish sauce.

Mix all of the ingredients completely, so that everything is covered in the ‘sauce’.

Add the cooked fish and season with pepper and chill pepper to taste.

Hope you enjoy it as much as I do!


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Friday Five: Top 5 Meal Prep Resources

Top 5 Meal Prep Resources (www.getfoxfit.com)

Let’s talk meal prep.

When I started my contest prep I got caught out quite a few times when I was away from home, with regards to food.

We all know those times when you start to get hungry and then search for the nearest place to pick something up.  In my case this would often lead to making questionable decisions.  The solution?  Meal prep and bring your food with you, especially if you are leaving the house for any length of time – like going to work, traveling, having an afternoon out with friends etc.

It isn’t rocket science.  Like my friend Barbell Strength, a Personal Trainer, Powerlifter and Krav Maga Practitioner, wrote on his Facebook page

“I suggest everyone to try this out. Prepare a few meals in advance and enjoy the luxury of just coming home, plopping your meal on a plate, nuke it for a minute and enjoy your ready made home cooked meal! It takes a bit more time to make but the pro’s outweigh the con’s tenfold.

You don’t have to be a bodybuilder to prep meals. I think it will benefit pretty much everyone. Late from work and need to eat? Instead of spending loads of money on junk food and/or microwave meals or even reluctantly making your food for the evening. Prepare a few in advance and enjoy. I measure out my food to make sure I get enough calories in (if you are dieting you might want to do the same to make sure you don’t go over) but for the average Joe just make your food and equally divide them into containers. You might only make two or three meals but hey, that’s two to three days you have to cook less!”

So, how do we meal prep exactly?  The good news is that it’s not it rocket science, it just takes a little planning and a few big pans….

First thing I did was invest in Sistema containers – not only are they BPA free, but come in an awesome array of colours, shapes and sizes to fit all your food, meal and snack needs.

So, let me hand over to the experts and provide you with 5 awesome meal prep resources and links to check out.

Tons of information, tips, tricks and inspiration right here…

1. Meal Prep for Beginners

2. Top 10 Foods for Meal Prep

3. Expert Tips for Easy, Healthy and Affordable Meals All Week Long

4. Meal Prepping Tips

5. Meal Prep Inspiration

Fail to plan, plan to fail!

Photo credits: Barbell Strength

Top 5 Meal Prep Resources (www.getfoxfit.com)


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To Mark the 1 Year Anniversary of being told ‘You have Cancer’ – Here are the 22 Things Cancer Taught Me

22 Things Cancer Taught Me (www.getfoxfit.com)

1 year ago today, 5th August 2013, it was a warm, sunny, bright and beautiful summers day when I heard those 3 words no one ever wants to hear, “You have cancer”.

A whole year ago – crazy.  It seems like yesterday that I felt the ball in my abdomen and went to the hospital for an ultrasound, that lead to a CT scan, that lead to being told by the Urologist I had a massive tumor and it was kidney cancer AND it wasn’t looking too good for me.  If you are interested in reading how the events of those first days happened you can read my story and ‘diary’ here.

So 365 days.  How fast you have gone by but how amazingly pertinent you have all been.  Those days before, during and after surgery and all of the days since have been filled with more change than I could have ever imagined.

I can certainly say the last year has been one of growth, acceptance, new experiences and a whole lot of change.

To mark the 1 year anniversary I wanted to share with you the 22 things cancer has taught me:

1. Be honest

Especially with yourself

2. Worrying won’t change the outcome 

So be happy and positive instead

3. Evaluate what really makes you happy

Those things (big or small) will be the essence of your life and the things that precious memories are made of

4. Communicate with your loved ones

Plain and simple, even better relationships can be built through unforeseen and challenging times

5. Let go

Thoughts of I wish I did this, or I wish I said that, or I wish I made a different decision… well it’s all in the past, let it go

6. Slow down

Stop rushing through your food, savour the moment and the taste.  Breath deeply and slowly when you write an email.  Enjoy the ‘ride’ and journey of getting somewhere. Life is not a race.  Enjoy it and be in the moment – yes, even when you are doing the dishes or folding your washing, there are joys in these little things, it just takes a different attitude to see and appreciate them.  Do things with love.  Enjoy the gift that is the present

7. Don’t concern yourself with what others think

The only person you need to impress is yourself

8. Ask yourself

Are you a better person than you were yesterday? Do at least one thing every day that your future self will thank you for

9. Be here, now

Use all of your 5 senses to truly be in the moment.  For example if you are out having coffee/tea take a look around. What is going on around you? (Put your phone away), listen to the soundtrack of where you are (jazz music or energetic chatter), take a moment and really smell that glorious coffee/tea, feel the small expresso cup or gigantic mug in your hands and of course savour the taste.  All too often these things are rushed and we don’t even stop, look around or take in the moment.  These moments create the most memorable memories ;)

10. Mindfulness

Going a few steps further from what I have said above – check out ‘5 tips to bring mindfulness into your everyday life’ here

11. Do those things that niggle at the back of your mind

Like tidying out a kitchen cupboard that is over stacked and annoys you, edit your closet, back up your photos, organise your music files etc.  Believe me if you do that one thing that niggles at the back of your mind you are giving yourself something you cannot buy = freedom and the sense of accomplishment

12. Be accountable for your health and make good choices that feel right for you

Ultimately no one is responsible for your health apart from you.  You are the one who chooses what to eat, whether to exercise or sport, what to put in / on your body, how much stress you put on yourself, whether to see a Dr or specialist and what attitude & mindset to have.  Knowledge is Power.  Trust your instincts.  I have made a promise to my body and mind that I will do all in my power to keep it healthy and cancer free and make confident decisions

13. Do not take life for granted

Once you are faced with the possibility of The End, you quickly learn how to appreciate the little things and the here and now.  Life is precious

14. Help people

Whether it is helping a person pack / carry their shopping, participating in charity, sharing your knowledge or being a ‘listening ear’ for someone, these are the things that make us a better person

15. Be about it 

Definition here

16. You do not have to finish everything immediately

A good friend brought this to my attention as she noticed that I try and get things done (and finished) sooner rather than later, even though they are tasks that don’t need to be finished quickly.  So slow down, appreciate what you are doing and have pleasure in the task at hand.  Don’t rush through things, take your time and enjoy

17. Have fun and find fun

Having fun is essential – what is life if you cannot smile and savour fun activities, moments and things?  So do what makes you happy.  Doing something that you find challenging or mundane? Find the fun in it!  It really does change things around

18. Take a moment to truly see what is happening around you

Too often there are distractions – but just look up and see what’s happening.  It may be people in the train, the kids breakdancing in the house, your significant other doing something funny, nature or beautiful architectural designs in the streets, whatever.  Just check it out.  You may pass a certain house or building every day, but have you really looked at it?  You spend time with your kids and loved ones, but have you taken a moment just to see what they do when they think you aren’t looking?  These are the moments you may miss or not think twice about but they can be the most precious times

19. Make a decision

Be happy with your decision(s).  Feel confident in what you decide on and most important of all JUST MAKE A DECISION.  Too often we don’t make a decision, and I don’t know about you but the time spent deciding on something usually costs a lot of energy.  So be bold, weigh up your options and just make a decision – you will feel a whole lot better after!  AND you can move on. What a wonderful feeling that is

20. Do what you feel like doing

Feel like being arty?  Then paint or pick up that pen and sketch pad.  Feel like dancing in your living room?  Turn your fav tune up loud and do it.  Feel like speaking with a friend? Call them!  Feel like making soup / a cake?  Do it!  Feel like hoovering or rearrange things?  Do it!  SEIZE those moments.  Those are moments of productivity and creativity, so Just Do It… you will thank yourself later

21. Time does heal and things will change

As cliche as it sounds time does heal.  In some cases it doesn’t take the sadness / hurt / pain away completely but it certainly helps.  So have faith that things will (and do) change.  You are NOT stuck in this moment right now forever.  Circumstances change, energy changes and most importantly you will change – your feelings, your outlook and your emotions.  Just keep the faith (as Bon Jovi sang) and have hope

22. All you need is a little change of heart / Love Will Save the Day

In all honesty I have never really been big on listening to specific song for their lyrics (I’ve always been more interested in the music and vibe than the words) but this one does it for me, especially through those roller coaster months.  Whitney sings (and says) it best… so if you need a little uplifting, or just want a little 80’s Awesomeness click here:

Every day is a gift.

Make it count and count your blessings :)

#seizetheday