"When it comes to our diet, we need to experiment until we find what works for us," Erin says. What works for her is a combination of high-quality whole foods and quality supplements. Quality and quantity of fuel are both important because she has a high-performance body that stays in motion for much of the day.
For proteins, she favors bison, chicken, eggs, and fish. Go-to carbs include quinoa, black rice, and red rice. For fats, Erin reaches for the good stuff: avocados, flaxseed oils, and pepitas (pumpkin seeds). She says she avoids wheat and dairy because her body doesn't assimilate them well.
Erin Stern Fitness 360
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Even at Erin's elite competitive level, health is a priority along with performance. "I think you need to keep things creative," Erin says. "I go to the farmer's market, and I'm a fan of having a lot of different colors on the plate, so I eat a lot of seasonal vegetables and try new things. I keep it fresh and healthy. Definitely mix up the way you cook stuff, because nobody wants to look at egg whites and oatmeal over and over again."
Erin doesn't count calories, but she does array them around her workouts in meticulous fashion. "If I have a workout that day, I will eat a little bit before and I'll make sure I get good carbs and protein after the workout."
Because she is so active, Erin keeps her carb intake relatively high. Mind you, those are good carbs, not necessarily cinnamon rolls slathered in cream cheese frosting. "I know a lot of people do the lower carb and higher fat diets, but to me, I can't think straight."
While she may save room for carbs, Erin doesn't believe in cheat meals. "I have a lot of friends who go out for pizza, a blooming onion, and ice cream all in one sitting," Erin says. "That's a fast way to set yourself back and pack on pounds. I do believe in treat meals: something that's not maybe as clean, like sushi or frozen yogurt, but that still has some kind of nutritional value."
Erin also doesn't believe in the word "diet," which connotes deprivation. "[Clean eating] is more of a lifestyle change and it's more of making small changes a little bit at a time.
Go for the macronutrients. Make sure you have a protein, a fat, and a carb in each meal. Set a big, long-term goal. Don't be afraid to set huge goals, but you have to set small ones too so you can achieve that final goal."
Erin's advice works great for Erin, but she'll be the first person to say that you too need to experiment. Only when you train will you know if your fuel intake measures up. "I think it's important to test-drive diets," she says.
Erin's Nutritional Regimen
Erin's nutrition plan tends to be high in protein and carbs, with moderate healthy fats.