We know exercise and a healthy diet are essential for optimal health. We also need to manage stress, which is a major benefit of choosing Pilates as your form of exercise. So, what about diet? In general, a healthy diet for people who practice Pilates is no different than any healthy diet.
What is a Healthy Diet for People Who Practice Pilates?
Everyone is different, but the goal of a healthy diet is the same for everyone. Eat what nourishes your body. We all have basic nutritional needs despite our individual differences.
Learning to eat in a way that nourishes your body takes some trial and error. But the good thing about planning a healthy diet for people who practice Pilates is Pilates teaches us body awareness. This gives us an advantage when choosing what to eat. We tend to know our bodies better than those who do not practice mindful movement.
No matter what your diet—whether it has a name (like paleo or vegetarian for instance) or not—it is only healthy if you are getting the nutrients your body needs and avoiding things that contribute to disease.
A Basic Overview of a Healthy Diet
You need enough protein to build and maintain muscle, but not too much. Excess protein can damage kidneys and cause other health problems. The average person needs between 0.8 and 1 gram of protein per kilogram of body weight (or between 0.4 and 0.5 grams per pound of body weight). So, a 120-pound woman needs around 52 – 54 grams of protein per day. The best choices are lean meats, fish, eggs, and beans.
You need the right carbohydrates for energy. This is especially important if you have diabetes, high blood sugar, or hypoglycemia. A simple rule of thumb is healthy carbohydrates—complex carbohydrates—are whole foods: whole grains, whole fruits, and whole vegetables. Avoid processed or refined carbohydrates: white bread, table sugar, candy, fruit juices, etc.
You need healthy fats, specifically omega 3 and omega 6 fats. Healthy fats are found in fish like salmon, nuts, seeds, avocados, and some leafy greens. Most people get plenty of omega 6 fats from vegetable oils in their diet, so pay special attention to getting enough omega 3 (from sources like fatty fish, walnuts, and flax seeds). Omega 3 fats reduce inflammation, which can lower your risk for many diseases.
You need vitamins and minerals to keep your immune system and nervous system healthy. Vitamins and minerals are also involved in the proper functioning of all the systems in the body. You can probably guess the best way to ensure that you get enough of all the vitamins and minerals you need. Eat a colorful variety of vegetables and fruits!
You need to consume enough water. You may not think of water as a nutrient, but it is essential to good health. Proper hydration helps stabilize body temperature. It also helps move fiber through your digestive tract.
If you practice Pilates, planning a healthy diet may not be as much of a challenge as you think. As I mentioned, you’ll be able to use your body awareness to choose well because you will notice how your body responds to certain foods. You’ll also make better choices when you’re aware of your triggers—the circumstances that may cause you to overeat or eat things that aren’t good for you.
Pilates body awareness, then, goes hand-in-hand with healthy eating—another great reason to make Pilates part of your healthy lifestyle practice.
Replace negative self-talk with positive thinking. Change I can’t with I can. Think with confidence for a healthy body & mind.
I hope this list of positive affirmations helps you get on your way to a life filled with fitness & health. Give it a try! Change your mind to change your life.
“Set your fitness goals high and don’t stop till you get there.” ~ Felicity Luckey
I recognize excuses for not exercising and replace them with determination to be fit.
I choose persistent action and perseverance over giving up every time.
Having a strong healthy body is important to me.
When I exercise, I am full of energy.
All excuses and reasons not to exercise have vanished forever.
I accept that regular exercise must be a lifelong commitment.
Regular exercise allows me to have the healthy, happy lifestyle I want.
Exercise is adding healthy, happy years to my life.
I eat only nourishing and healthy foods. Junk foods hold no appeal to me now.
I love what regular workouts do for my body.
I easily visualize my new trim body.
My motivation to exercise is growing stronger every day.
I see today as another vital opportunity to improve my physical health.
I put achievement dates on my physical goals, and I’m reaching them on time.
Pilates Body NYC is the Upper West Side Pilates Studio that comes to you wherever you are and works around your schedule. Fitness made convenient.
You have decided to try Pilates. Welcome to a whole new world.
Some people understand and appreciate the benefits of Pilates the very first time they try it. Others may need more time. These tips are for anyone who is feeling like they are just not “getting” it, or are not seeing the results as quickly as they thought. My hope is to encourage you.
“In 10 sessions, you will feel the difference. In 20, you will see the difference. And in 30, you’ll be on your way to having a whole new body.” ~ Joseph Pilates
Patience Always be kind to yourself, and most of all be patient. It takes time for your body to learn new things. It’s a whole new way of moving. I always tell my clients it’s like learning a new language. Focus and do your best in time with patience you will feel and see results.
Persistence Don’t give up. Stick with it. It’s worth it. I’ve had many clients tell me that they finally “get” what I’m teaching them after months of instruction. They persisted. Think long term fitness and wellness – this is a workout that is gentle enough to do anytime, for the rest of your life.
Practice There is a reason for the expression ‘practice makes perfect ‘. Keep in mind Pilates is not a performance, it’s a practice that belongs to you, and only you. Don’t try to keep up with anyone else. Do it for yourself and make it a habit. Don’t worry about what you look like, just strive to do your personal best. I strongly encourage you to regularly do your own mat workout at home. Doing “home-work” makes you learn faster and see results quicker.
Presence You need both your body and mind to do Pilates. Leave your worries at the door. It’s important to be in the here and now. You want to participate not just go through the motions. Distractions during your Pilates practice will not help you get results. Presence will. Everything that’s on your mind will still be there after your workout, and just maybe, you will have a fresher, clearer perspective once you’ve focused your mind and moved your body. I know it always works for me.
I would like to suggest that Pilates on the mat is a great way to begin. You get to learn the fundamentals without the added confusion of new apparatus. It’s just you and your body. Pilates mat exercises will help you gain strength and confidence.
Whether you choose Pilates on the mat or on the apparatus just don’t give up. Pilates is worth it that I know for sure.
Pilates Body NYC is the Upper West Side Pilates studio that comes to you wherever you are and works around your schedule. We make fitness convenient. Give us a call at 646-382-7911.