Monica Brant needs no introduction to those who have been following the fitness world for the past 15 or so years. Gracing the cover of over 100 magazines Monica was amongst the core group of women who influenced my path to a fit lifestyle as I'm sure she has with many girls around the world. If you consider, I was living in a remote area in the Outback Australia when she touched my life.
Life's grand isn't it? The teenager from the Outback with a head full of dreams is now getting to interview her role model, Monica Brant... and carry the torch Monica unknowingly bestowed on me for promoting healthy, inspired living.
So now I hope Monica will help and inspire your life too as she stops by The Global Townhall to offer us some of her wisdom.
Gabrielle Reilly: What makes a champion a champion?
Monica Brant Peckham: A champion is differentiated by the work ethic they live by and the goals they set out to obtain! Champions tend to have more dedication and discipline and will not let anything get in their way!
Gabrielle Reilly: How many calories do you consume a day or how do you mentally regulate how much you consume?
Monica Brant Peckham: My diet is 80% 'junk food free' even in the off-season. It is simple, the stricter I am with my diet the better I look. I take in 25-35 grams of protein per meal. I eat starchy carbs only until mid afternoon unless I am going to be up late and need the extra energy. At this point I cut them after 6pm. I eat fibrous carbs at least three times a day during my competition program. I replace a lot of the starch with fibrous carbs. When I cut my complex carbs I add a little more fat in my diet. During competition preparation my fat sources are Omega 3/6/9s, olive/canola oil, almonds and natural Peanut Butter (crunchy only!).
In the off-season (not that I really get an off season with the industry, I have to be somewhat READY at all times for photo shoots, appearances and camps) fat comes in with some other items, such as egg yolks, avocado, and mixed nuts. Having said all this, I try to eat every three to four hours. Definitely many small meals throughout the day are better than a few large ones. I use Proto Whey (by BNRG) protein shakes all year, I don't stop taking them in at least 1-2x daily except for the last 2-3 days before competitions. I only have a ?Power Crunch' bar (by BNRG) as a snack (occasionally) to help with a sweet tooth!
Just an FYI, I do enjoy some good foods and wine occasionally! I just regulate how often and cut back when I need to! Consistency is the best tool I have under my belt!
Gabrielle Reilly: What is your philosophy on eating carbohydrates?
Monica Brant: Eliminating (starchy) carbs or minimizing them can definitely help someone lose weight; however, eliminating and minimizing (starchy) carbs can also cause extra hunger and can lead to overeating too!
A couple things to keep in mind are that we need carbs for daily bodily functions, brain food and energy! I believe the main problem with carbs is that the general public does not understand which carbs to eat, when to eat them and how much to eat!
To make it easy, below is a list to help out!
*Best time to eat carbs: morning and during the day
*Worst time to eat carbs: late in the evening or night(unless they are fibrous carbs - green beans, broccoli, asparagus, peas, green leafy lettuce/spinach- which can be eaten at any time of the day!)
*Best carbs to eat: Oatmeal (old fashioned is best), brown rice, potatoes (as long as you have some protein with them)- keep in mind anything natural with regards to carbs is best- if you can not give up breads, then make sure to find the healthiest one available with multi grains and possibly some natural fats included such as flaxseed!
Anything ?man made' (breads, pasta) will be stored as fat more readily and not processed by the body as well..
Touching on fibrous carbs.. anything green is good and these type of carbs can be eaten at any time of the day! Great news!
*Amount of carbs to eat: This depends on male/female and how active the person is. Typically for females you can go for about 20-30 grams of starchy carbs per meal for first 2-3 meals of the day- if you can read labels and measure food-this will help a lot to learn! After 5-6pm I recommend replacing starchy carbs for fibrous carbs to get the last few grams in of the day.
An example on measurements: old fashioned oatmeal- ½ cup is 27 carbs =one serving. This would be perfect for most females.. men may need ¾ cup oats to serve their body better!
Rule of thumb.. Try to get in at least 1 gram of carb per lean body pound per day!
FYI- I have explained much more about nutrition in my fitness book, "Monica Brant's Secrets to Staying Fit & Loving Life!" which can be found on my website.
Gabrielle Reilly: What advice would you give someone trying to break into the fitness modeling world?
Monica Brant Peckham: Getting professional photographs, with stress on professional, headshots and body shots taken is a must! Next send them with a resume and short letter about yourself to magazines you wish to appear in. Be sure to tell them what you do and why they would want to have you in their magazine. Remember there are 100's of girls and guys sending theirs in too, so you need to be memorable!
Gabrielle Reilly: Can you give our readers a motivational/inspirational quote?
Monica Brant Peckham: Stay fit & Love Life! My favorite verse... I can do all things through Christ, who Strengthens me! Phil 4:13