THE BLOG
03/24/2014 12:35 EDT | Updated 05/24/2014 05:59 EDT

You Can't Get Healthy Without Planning Your Meals

Stop me if this sounds familiar.

Wake up in the morning, late. Grab a coffee and a bagel (they're healthy, right?). Run out the door, get to work. Surprise meeting at 11:30, work through lunch. Decide a salad is the healthy option, but it's a Cesar salad. You had intended to be active during lunch, but because of the meeting, you won't be.

It's 2:30 and you're starving, and out of energy. You don't want anything big, because you're going to go home and cook dinner. You also think you want a bit of a treat, so you grab a chocolate bar or something similar. Finish the last two hours of your day, jump back in the car and head home. Dinner is rice vegetables, and meat. You take it out of the freezer in its "diet friendly" package and toss it in the microwave. Yes, one of those kinds of meals. You eat the whole thing in under a minute. Not even an hour goes by and you are hungry again. Perfect, you have cheese and crackers and some wine, sit down and watch an evening of television. The gym can wait, and tomorrow will be better, nutrition-wise.

This is what I get from people looking to change their lives every day. This is pretty much the day of every single person who comes to me, 20-50 pounds overweight, tired, and wondering why they are not healthy.

I can't speak for the actual CEOs of the world, but I would rather someone come to work late with a meal plan and a solid breakfast in their stomach than to show up on time without fuel.

It's like Richard Petty or Mario Andretti showing up to the race track without gas in his car. Not going to get a big victory that way.

There needs to be a value put on food as a fuel. Complex carbohydrates are a big part of keeping you happy and alert. It's the only food your brain uses, your immune function is based around anti-bodies built by protein, and essential fats are key to your ability to focus and retain information. I won't even start in about water -- just drink it, trust me, it's amazing for you.

Skipping meals, and not eating fresh food is slowly killing our population. Not only is it killing us, but it's removing the joy from every day life. If you don't put vitamins and minerals in the system, the system can't function. The body is an adaptive organism, if it only gets half of what it needs regularly, it slows down metabolically to match what you are doing to fuel it.

I've spoken to a lot of endocrinologists in my career, they all agree that there are people with legitimate thyroid issues, but the bulk of the time, it's self-inflicted. You can undo a lot of the metabolism slowing with food and exercise. The question is, will you?

Will you take the time to make a breakfast like this:

Or bring along a green smoothie:

Or take the time to cook a dinner worth eating and full of essential fats and vitamins:

Your body needs food. Not frozen meals, or coffee and a second thought scrap of simple carbohydrates. The day needs to start well prepared, and continue that way.

Would you walk into a business meeting unprepared? Did you eat? If you feed yourself well regularly, you are more mentally sharp, creative, and able to problem solve. You also ensure you prevent disease as best as your body can. The importance of food can not be understated anymore. Yes it is a big part of weight loss. We have got so focused on weight loss that we walked away from health.

Your body is the only thing that keeps you in this world. Treat it well and watch your career sky rocket, your love life flourish, and enjoy energy and immune function like you dreamed of.

My mission is to create a healthy nation, and do it One Fit City at a time. I want to make the process of fueling the body easy for everyone, it's why I offer meal plans for free. I'm also available to message on Facebook. It's the beauty of social media, it makes us all available.

It's no longer only just about weight loss. The obesity epidemic starts because we have lost all sense of food, fuel, and care for our bodies at a cellular level. We became sedentary because we stopped fueling ourselves and providing the body energy to be active. We gained weight when we started eating food that's frozen and easy to consume, but void of nutrition. We don't give our bodies anything they need any more to be great.

Eat whole local foods, get back to cooking. It's simple and it's fast, the effects on your body are intensely noticeable.

I started a project with Emma Cloney (a client of mine who's lost over 100 pounds just graduated nursing, and is an accomplished musician). We are teaching our home town of Winnipeg how to create simple fast meals to stay healthy and lean. Our first video is up, and it's a part of the new website launch from MTS called mytoba.ca

We cooked for eight people, let them video what was important to them with their iPhones -- Emma edited up the content. This is what came of it. Lots of great tips to make simple meals.

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