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I’m constantly quizzed on what I eat on a day to day basis.
How do I stay so strict with my diet? Do I just eat chicken, rice and broccoli? What do I do when I want a treat? Do I ever eat out? How do I find time to eat when I see clients until 10pm most nights?
The answer to all of these is simply about balance.
If you open the door and find nothing more than some rotten tomatoes, a few slices of processed cheese and a half-drunk bottle of beer, chances are you don’t have a good physique and don’t enjoy your food either.
Surprisingly, my fridge doesn’t just contain carton upon carton of egg whites, boring packs of vegetables and bottled water. I aim to make my diet as varied as possible and eat foods that I enjoy. As a trainer, my role is to point clients in the right direction, and part of this involves setting a good example through eating habits. I also need to have energy and vigor to cope with early starts and late finishes, meaning a healthy diet is non-negotiable.
At the same time, I can’t be seen to be overly strict as this may put clients off leading a healthy lifestyle. It’s all about balance, moderation and control.
Let’s delve deeper and take a look at what’s in my fridge, starting with the non-perishable items.
I love making food more interesting with herbs and spices (which are kept in my larder cupboard) but am a big fan of condiments too.
I don’t keep regular ketchup, sugary sweet chili sauces, or things like jam and honey though. While I don’t completely exclude sugar from my diet, these foods are calorie bombs, and there are far tastier, lower sugar alternatives.
My condiment staples are mustard (English and American), hot sauces made with habanero peppers and naga chilies that are so hot they’ll make steam come out of your ears, low-sugar low-salt ketchup and zero-calorie syrups and spreads to use when I need a sweet fix.
Through the day I mainly drink tap water and coffee, which obviously don’t need to be refrigerated. I am a sucker for diet drinks though. I don’t go mad, but tend to have a glass or two most days.
There seems to be a backlash against artificial sweeteners and diet drinks in particular at the moment, but as is always the case, moderation is key. Studies that show harmful effects have only been performed on rodents, injected with vast quantities of aspartame.
When you’ve got a sweet craving, you’re far better off reaching for a can of diet drink than raiding the cake tin or gorging on sweets.
I’m not a non-drinker, but only tend to have the odd drink on a rare occasion when I’m out, so you won’t find alcohol in my fridge. If you did, it would likely be a few good quality European lagers, but I have a very much “take it or leave it” approach when it comes to alcohol.
Besides a few jars of pickles, chilies and maybe some sauerkraut, drinks and condiments are pretty much the only non-perishable items on my fridge. I don’t go in for tinned and canned stuff too much, and prefer to eat fresh foods.