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Fitness 360: Karina Baymiller, Petite Powerhouse—Nutrition

More than anything, Karina Baymiller believes in balance. Her fitness approach is holistic and sustainable. Learn how she applies this concept to nutrition.

Nutrition is about lifestyle, not about diet fads that have a second in the spotlight and then fade into oblivion. Sure, you may have lost 10 pounds in a week on your juice diet, but how sustainable is that plan? Instead of losing herself in silly, unhelpful diets, Karina made the choice to develop a nutrition plan she could use throughout her life.

Her nutrition plan isn't complex; it's nothing every single person couldn't follow each day. And that's what makes her so inspiring. She has a healthy, positive, realistic approach to nutrition-we could all take a page out of her book.

Karina's Nutrition Philosophy ///

Karina's diet is roughly 80 percent paleo. "The 20 percent comes from artificial sweeteners in some of the supplements I use, organic dairy, gluten-free oats, and the occasional ice cream treat. Okay, maybe it's more like 70/30, but who's counting?" She also says she stays away from processed foods, sugar, grains, and anything containing gluten. "I've found that I feel much better without gluten in my diet."

Although the term "cheat meal" seems to have embedded itself in the fitness community, Karina doesn't believe the word holds any value. "If your eating habits are a lifestyle," she explains, "then you shouldn't be planning your week around gorging yourself every Friday night."

It's more important to pay attention to your macronutrients and create a nutrition plan around how much protein, fat, and carbs you need. Everyone's macros will look a little different. Whether your goal is fat loss, muscle building, or maintenance, eat to give your body what it needs to achieve that particular goal.

"I'm a big fan of the 'If It Fits Your Macros' (IIFYM) philosophy," Karina says. If you can fit a "cheat" food into your macros, then it's much more sustainable than saying "no" to everything except brown rice, chicken, and broccoli. If she's craving some chocolate or ice cream, she can make it fit into her macros. That doesn't mean she eats an entire gallon of ice cream. She just measures what she needs to meet her macronutrient needs and plans her day accordingly.

She admits, though, that IIFYM doesn't work for every situation. "If I'm at a birthday party and eat a cupcake, or if I go out with friends and have a few drinks, I don't beat myself up over it." Alcohol doesn't fit into anyone's macronutrient profile, but having some doesn't mean you've destroyed any chance of success. "I return to my regular eating habits as soon as possible and move on. Drinking and eating cupcakes aren't daily occurrences, but there is a time and a place for excess. I believe life is all about balance."

Clearly, Karina's "balanced" lifestyle is working. Here's what she eats on a regular basis.

Karina's Meal Plan ///
Meal 1: 7 a.m.
Meal 2: 11 a.m.
Meal 3: 1 p.m.
Meal 4: 4 p.m.
Meal 5: 7 p.m.
Meal 6: 10 p.m.


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About The Author

Cassie Smith is a writer/editor for Bodybuilding.com and former professor & college athlete. Find out more about her right here.

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mommywithmuscle

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mommywithmuscle

I have been struggling with nutrition. This article has definitely helped me out. I have a lot more eating to do to achieve the results I want.....

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May 20, 2013 6:41pm | report
MissMonica

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MissMonica

THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!!! I'm GF/DF and not by choice. It's so hard to find delicious, satisfying meals that don't get boring, so thank you for sharing some different ideas.

May 21, 2013 3:21pm | report
Calivingood

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Calivingood

These meals look so yummy! I can't wait to try them!

Jun 5, 2013 9:52am | report
jdalrymple1

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jdalrymple1

Love this! :-)

Jun 12, 2013 3:58pm | report
flynrun

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flynrun

I'm a 70/30 paleo girl too.. Ain't no one touching my oatmeal in the morning or milk in my coffee

Jun 13, 2013 8:29am | report
fitnesschik88

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fitnesschik88

how long do you do this diet for?

Jun 15, 2013 2:22pm | report
StarBrite143

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StarBrite143

So, glad to see that Karina incorporates yogurt as a night snack. I've always been lead to believe you should have little to no carbs at night. I really like that idea of a snack and will use it.

Jun 16, 2013 9:49am | report
mcaroth

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mcaroth

Thanks for the insight, Karina (and Cassie for writing the article)! A few times in the article, you referenced "macros". I feel I have a great handle on types of food and proportions, but I still struggle with understanding how much fat and carbs my body needs and when. Do you plan on touching on that at all in upcoming articles? I'm trying to gain more muscle without gaining unnecessary fat, so I'd really like to get the timing right. Thanks, and you're beautiful!

Jun 16, 2013 12:02pm | report
Tinkski

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Tinkski

The coconut oil really adds some good flavor to things, thanks!

Jun 16, 2013 12:45pm | report
debutton

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debutton

coconut oil is an amazing thing!

Jun 16, 2013 1:43pm | report
beatrizguiselle

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beatrizguiselle

A whole lot of things we dont have in my country :( Or if we do is very difficult to find.

Jun 17, 2013 1:06am | report
Miriam1982

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Miriam1982

Great article, can't wait to try the protein shake it sounds yummy. Do you have any idea how many calories the meals break down to?

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Jun 17, 2013 10:00am | report
lmglong

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lmglong

I am registered for the Strong to the Cor 6-week challenge
Taking into account your advice on the nutritional side, this is the area I struggle with the most. Cutting out many artificial sweetners and diet soda. Looking forward to the results!

Jun 17, 2013 10:15am | report
lmglong

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lmglong

I am registered for the Strong to the Cor 6-week challenge
Taking into account your advice on the nutritional side, this is the area I struggle with the most. Cutting out many artificial sweetners and diet soda. Looking forward to the results!

Jun 17, 2013 10:15am | report
maravillad

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maravillad

Excellent. Thank you sharing. I'll be adding these meals and taking her gluten-free advice for sure.

Jun 17, 2013 12:35pm | report
chi1

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chi1

Thank you I will try and see if it works for me

Jun 17, 2013 8:32pm | report
  • Body Stats
  • ht: 12'2"
  • wt: 146.96 lbs
  • bf: 25.0%
appybee8

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appybee8

I feel much more ready with my meal plan now...thank you for eliminating a lot of confusion I was in, and providing me with some strong stable data.

Jun 18, 2013 1:19pm | report
mkk666

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mkk666

How long did it take to drop that weight and didn't your body have alot of stretch marks and loss skin?

Jul 3, 2013 6:18am | report
Showing 1 - 18 of 18 Comments

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