Your wedding is coming up fast and you want to lose some weight and tone up for your wedding. I hear you! That’s exactly what I’m here to help with.
I know it seems crazy, but losing weight quickly is not as impossible as it seems. Today we’re talking all about protein, and how eating the right amount of protein can help you achieve your goal.
Protein helps with overall health and boosts your metabolism, which results in burning calories faster all day long. It’s an important part of any healthy wedding workout nutrition plan.
There are many myths and misconceptions regarding how much protein you should have every day and how it affects your body composition, fitness performance, post-workout recovery, and metabolism. I’m sure you’ve heard a few of these myths while on your wedding fitness journey, so I’m going to debunk some of them for you.
Protein is a powerful macronutrient that is essential to building muscle mass and can help you lose weight by boosting your metabolism and curbing your appetite.
Protein is essential for our bodies to function. It’s made up of amino acids, which are the building blocks of our muscles, bones, and skin.
If we don’t get enough protein, our bodies can’t build and repair tissues properly, which can lead to muscle loss, fatigue, and weakness as well as a weakened immune system. Protein deficiency can also cause hair loss and brittle nails (isn’t that even more motivation to meet your daily protein requirement?!).
Protein boosts your metabolism. Compared to carbohydrates and fats, protein takes a lot more energy to digest, metabolize, and use in the body. Protein digestion creates a thermic effect, which means you are burning energy simply by digesting it. The combination of exercise and eating enough protein results in the body forming lean muscle and then maintaining that muscle, which boosts your metabolism even more!
Protein makes you feel full longer. Protein can lower ghrelin levels, the so-called “hunger hormone,” which is responsible for stimulating appetite. Protein also takes the body longer to digest, which keeps you feeling fuller for longer periods of time. This can help reduce the urge to snack on unhealthy foods.
Protein keeps your energy high. A healthy balance of proteins, fats, and carbohydrates prevents energy spikes and crashes by maintaining steady blood sugar levels. You’ll be feeling energetic and ready to tackle your bridal workouts at any time of the day!
Protein builds gorgeous lean muscle. Eating the right amount of protein is vital for repairing and building lean muscles and reducing body fat with your wedding workout program.
Protein helps you glow from within. Hair growth can be stimulated by amino acids in protein, like L-lysine, which contributes to long, thick hair. Protein also keeps your skin healthy and radiant.
Now that we’ve established the importance of protein, let’s dive into the different types:
The recommended daily allowance (RDA) for protein is 0.8 grams per kilogram of body weight. Buuuut, if you want to lose weight or build muscle for your wedding, you need more protein than this!
If you exercise regularly and your goal is to lose weight, aim to eat 1.6 – 2.2 grams per kilogram of body weight (0.7 – 1 grams per pound).
So, if you weigh 130 pounds, your daily protein goal would be 130 grams. (I love the simplicity of this one, plus no math required!)
You can also try a daily protein intake of about 25-30% of your total daily calories. This amount can help with weight loss since it boosts your metabolic rate and helps reduce your appetite.
You might have heard that it’s ideal to consume protein within 30 minutes of a strength training workout. (I naturally do this because I work out in the morning and have my breakfast smoothie afterward.) While it can help after a really tough lifting session, what’s more important is to consume protein throughout the entire day. Don’t stress yourself out if you aren’t able to eat or drink protein right after your sweat sesh.
My advice: Don’t worry about timing your protein intake. Instead, focus on your total protein intake for the day and eat high-quality protein during each meal.
Breakfast. Mixing protein powder into your oatmeal, pancakes, or smoothies is a great way to start the day. You can also add cottage cheese, Greek yogurt, or eggs.
Lunch. Salad bars with chicken, turkey, and hard-boiled eggs are great options when you’re on the go. If you can’t make it out of the office, try a salad with tuna or salmon.
Dinner. A salad topped with chicken is always a great option. If you have time to cook at home, try grilled fish or chicken, or a tofu stir-fry.
Protein is a super powerful nutrient that helps you reach your wedding fitness goals! I hope you are feeling motivated to eat more protein and build strength.
For weight loss and building lean muscle, aim for 1.6 – 2.2 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight for your total daily protein intake. Keep in mind that the amount of protein needed varies on your exercise intensity and lifestyle.
Find quality, protein-rich foods that you enjoy! The wedding nutrition guides in my shop have balanced meals that can help you meet your protein intake goals (and wedding fitness goals, of course).
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