Meghan Telpner is a Toronto-based nutritionist who avoids the gym, loves her bicycle and has fully embraced a life of abundantly healthy food.
Q: What does your exercise routine look like?
A: Working from home, any kind of schedule is a challenge. The gym is definitely not for me. I can’t drive myself to a place where I spend an hour running indoors, getting nowhere. I typically start my day with either a walk or a bike ride. Again, as I work from home, if I don’t go out first thing in the morning and move around a bit, I find that I feel sluggish all morning. I go to yoga at least three times a week for intensive flow/vinyasa classes and have recently started working out with a trainer at home where we work on muscular strength and core stability. I would say that I am very good at doing something active for at least and hour every day of the week.
Q: Do you make an effort to maintain a healthy diet? Does it feel like an effort?
A: Healthy eating is my life. It is not an effort at all, completely second nature at this point. Being that it is my job to inspire others to maintain a healthy diet, the best thing I can do is lead by example. Once you get on a healthy eating regime, you really feel the difference when you falter from it and that makes sticking to it easier and easier over time.
Q: What are your biggest challenges in maintaining a healthy diet?
A: Keeping what I eat healthy is not the challenge, eating regularly is. As I mentioned, I work from home and my home doubles as my cooking school. There is always amazingly healthy food available and at the ready, but actually preparing a proper lunch rather than snacking on a few little things throughout the afternoon is my biggest challenge. I try and give myself a lunch time, get away from the computer, and not schedule any clients so that I can take care of my own health.
Q: What do you eat for breakfast every day?
A: Everyday is different, and ever season is different. In the summer I have a lot of green smoothies with leafy green veggies, raw super foods like cacao, goji and maca, some quality protein from spirulina, chia or flax and likely some fresh berries blended with water or home-made almond milk. In the colder months, I tend to keep the super foods in there and instead of mixing them in with a smoothie, I’ll grind them down and combine them with some whole grain porridge like oats or quinoa with cinnamon and some sliced apple. Sunday morning usually finds me enjoying some from scratch homemade, gluten-free pancakes loaded with a gluten-free flour, ground flax, raw cacao, apple sauce, coconut oil, cinnamon, mashed bananas and blueberries, topped with coconut and maple syrup or agave. That is my favourite weekend treat.
Q: Do you ever eat unhealthy things or allow yourself to pig out?
A: I don’t really think of it as ‘allowing myself to pig out’. I don’t want to. There is nothing about french fries, donuts, or processed cookies that have any appeal to me. I know what goes into those things and just have no desire for them anymore at all. An indulgence for me would be dark chocolate, a glass of wine, or fresh baked bread with some butter. I think what I would consider to be unhealthy would be a laughable treat to most people, so I guess the answer is no. A junk food binge was not something I ever craved, even before I was living this healthfully. I don’t feel deprived in the least by the way I eat.
Q: When you get a cold, is there anything you eat to speed up the healing process?
A: When I feel myself coming down with a cold I will high dose Echinacea, vitamin c, garlic, mushroom and antioxidant blends. I drink tons of ginger tea and water and do my best to rest and sleep as much as possible. If that isn’t enough to fight it off before it gets me, I will spend the days that I am unwell fasting on homemade soups that are loaded with green veggies,onions, garlic, ginger, cayenne and other healing herbs and plant-based foods to help support my body in it’s healing. The worst thing we can do when we’re sick is feed into sugar cravings. These will merely weaken our immune systems. I don’t get colds very often, maybe once every two years or so and they usually last just a couple days and then I am a-okay.
Q: Do you have any health/fitness goals for the year?
A: I am leading a retreat to the Caribbean in January and am working towards feeling really strong by that point. I did have a 2009 goal to be able to do a free-standing hand-stand, but I am not sure that one will be achieved. There is still time though. Generally my fitness goals have never been to gain any percent of muscle mass or lose body fat, but really just to feel great when I wake up in the morning, get through my day with balanced energy, eat well and sleep regular hours. I believe that when we feel awesome on the inside, and to feel great inside being the goal, we will naturally look our best aesthetically as well.