Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Protein Recipe Contest Rules!

Purchase any of the following Cellucor protein flavors from and use my code "sarah" for 20% off
Cookies and Cream
Cinnamon Swirl
Strawberry Milkshake
Whipped Vanilla
Molten Chocolate
Cor-fetti (cake batter)
Peanut Butter Marshmallow

Post AS MANY protein creations as you want by March 11! Hashtag #sarahbakian. Recipes can include (but are obviously not limited to): protein donuts, pancakes, muffins, breads, oatmeal, waffles, etc. Get creative!!

I will determine the top 3 winners on March 12
First place- 1 month customized macro meal plan, 1 month of cardio workouts, and 1 month of lifting workouts with videos of me doing each exercise
Second place- 1 month customized macro meal plan and your choice of cardio or lifting plans
Third place-1 month customized macro meal plan

Must use my code "sarah" when purchasing from
Must hashtag your picture or else I won't see it
Must be an original recipe
Must include recipe, ingredients, and directions

Sunday, February 23, 2014

What Not To Do At The Gym

Feel free to add to this list in the comments, this is my own personal working post of all the annoying things that happen at the gym:

1- people doing things other than squatting in the squat rack
2- what people don't rerack their weights
3- people talking to me mid-set
4- people talking to me while i'm doing cardio
5- people talking to me
6- people trying to sell me herbalife
7- someone correcting my form
8- the "look at me" grunt
9- using 10 different dumbbells at the same time when people are waiting
10- sweaty people who don't wipe off the bench
11- that guy who raps
12- that girl who doesn't wear a shirt
13- that guy who brings chocolate milk
14- the couple who won't stop holding hands
15- the old creepy guys
16- the young creepy guys
17- that thirsty girl who hasn't lifted a damn weight- go away
18- that guy who needs a size bigger shirt
19- the short shorts guys
20- that guy who does 14 sets on one machine

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Daily Life

So a lot of people, I'm sure, have a stigma that "fitties" on instagram only workout/get paid to workout/only talk and think about working out/etc.

While some "famous fitties" on instagram don't have jobs- not quite sure how that works out- sugar daddy i suppose- majority of people who you see online actually have lives outside of the gym. so, here's a glimpse into mine:

6am- fasted cardio
7am- meal 1
8:30 - 5:00- work mode- I work at a digital marketing agency (basically every aspect of marketing that a traditional agency doesn't do. we build websites, apps, film videos, digital marketing campaigns, SEO, social media, etc). Meals 2-5 consumed at work
7pm- post workout meal
730pm- tan like twice a week
8pm- meal 6
8:30 - 9:30pm- answer client emails and play with my cat
10pm- bed

weekends are obviously a little different but they still consist of two-a-days, volunteering several hours at the humane society, more time to play with my cat, and a lot of recipe creations/experimenting!!

so there you have it- glamorous huh- just a normal girl trying to make a statement in this crazy world

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Hit a Plateau? No You Didn't- You Aren't Working Hard Enough

Yes, the first few pounds of any weight loss program are the easiest to fall off. But honestly, if you think you have "hit a plateau", chances are, you aren't dedicating 150% to yourself or your plan.

First- assess your situation.

How long have you been at a "plateau"? DO NOT rush to fix something that isn't broken. Even if it's been a few days or a 2 weeks since you last saw movement on the scale- do not fret. Weight loss is NOT linear or predictable.

Are you truly and honestly following your program? Oh, you don't have a program- get one. You do have a program- get real with yourself before you consider yourself at a plateau. Are you grazing between meals? Are you measuring your food? Are you training as hard as you could be? You need to recommit yourself to your plan and your goals if you even think for a second that you aren't giving it 150%.

Do you need rest? Sometimes, rest is what a body needs to move forward. If you are constantly putting your body in a state of stress, this elevates cortisol levels and inhibits fat loss.

How long has it been since a treat meal? Recommended is one treat meal a week. NOT recommended is a treat meal everyday.

IF, and only IF, you are at 150% dedication and haven't seen a change in a few weeks- you may need a change. Consult with your trainer, coach, or get a consultation from me.

Monday, February 17, 2014

"Clean Eating" is a Scam

Oh my gosh what did she just say?!?!?!?!?

That's right- clean eating is a SCAM.

Let's break it down:

"Clean Eating" aka healthy, clean, safe, wholesome. The definition of clean eating is eating food in its most natural state- ok that's all fine and dandy but there is no mention to portion sizes, macros, etc.


SO- eating 10,000 calories of broccoli is "clean" and if you aren't burning more than 10,000 calories a day- unless you're Michael Phelps- you're not. So, 10,000 calories of your precious broccoli will make you gain weight. No thanks.

Clean has literally has NO objective definition nor scientific support. It has also been proven to lead to eating disorders. Avoiding specific food or food groups is one of the defining characteristics of orthorexia nervosa aka binging and starving. It is literally MADE UP.

Your body does not have an indicator that states that all of your salmon will go to your muscles while sorbet during your treat meal will go to your fat because that's an "unclean" food. Literally NONSENSE.

Personally, when I went through my "clean eating" phase, I was CONSTANTLY thinking about the foods that I told myself I wasn't allowed to have. Starving for a week, binging for a few hours, starving for a week, so on and so forth.

Several points to remember:
Food doesn't make you gain fat- people over-eating food makes them overweight
Eating some of your calories from less nutrient dense sources IS NOT going to give you a nutrient deficiency

I am not trying to get any to drink the IIFYM koolaid. I do not believe in eating whatever you want as long as you hit your carbs, proteins, and fats- you still need to hit your fiber. You really need to watch the glycemic index and you will never see me post "pretty froyo carbs" at the end of the day because 1-i'm on prep and 2- i don't feel that the people promoting this type of IIFYM really even understand what they are doing (which is probably why you never see them explain why they eat ice cream and poptarts at 10pm).

In short: portion, macros, and live happily ever after.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Fitness Competing 101

A lot of people have asked me what steps they need to take to start competing. Below are the steps that i personally would take:

1- make sure you are 150% dedicated to competing. this sport is expensive so if you aren't going to be dedicated damn near 200%, don't waste your time.

2- research. decide which organization you want to compete in. i compete in the NPC but there are a handful of other organizations such as WBFF, CBBF, NGA. Muscle Mania, IFPA, OCB, NANBF, REAL, FAME, INBF, UNBA, INBA, and NPA

here is a link with them all:

3- once you know what organization you want to compete in, find a coach that is certified and experienced in that organization. while an NPC coach will help you in WBFF, it would be most beneficial to have a WBFF coach work with you if that's the organization you're going to compete in (ie a softball coach won't be able to give 100% to a wrestler)

4- once you have found a coach, work with them on determining your show date and which division you should be competing in

5- train and eat to your plan for the duration of your prep

6- prep throughout for your show: shoes, hair, tanning, suit, jewelry, organization registration, show registration, etc

7- be PREPARED for your friends and family to not understand why you are doing what you are doing and/or try to get you off track. a lot of friends will make you feel like s**t for not going out and partying with them or eating nasty food- be true to yourself and your goals

8- compete

9- compete again and learn for your first show. and then compete again.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Cheat Meals 101

Ok, a lot of competitors and "fit fam" members post about their epic cheat meals/days that they have during contest prep.

1- I don't like to think of it as a cheat meal, cheating means you're doing something bad. And cheat DAYS can turn into some horrible habits. However, if you handle TREAT meals properly, they can be the most beneficial thing since sliced bread!

So, a treat meal- what is it? It's just that, a treat meal that isn't on your regular meal plan. It can be pizza, donuts, chocolate covered fruit, whatever you want it to be! The idea is to keep it a MEAL (ie no more than 500 calories as a rule of thumb).

Typically, I have my cheat meal on Friday or Saturday. With my birthday coming up, I am using one treat meal for dinner with my dad when he comes into town and the next week will be lunch with my mom- planning is vital for your treat meals too so that you aren't giving in to cravings!

So now you know what a treat meal (donuts), how often you should have them (once a week), and how many calories you should have (less than 500). Now, why are treat meals important?

Two main reasons:

1- physchological stress- we ALL know that when you are on a diet, some days, certain foods just sound amazing and you feel like you would stop at nothing to eat a piece of pie or cake or whatever. Treat meals aid in this, they give you a light at the end of the tunnel, more over, that damn donut that you eat for your treat meal will be the most delicious pastry you've ever had in your life.

2- metabolism. the goal with a treat meal is to stimulate leptin (a hormone that plays a central role in the regulation of energy homeostatis). When you are in a calorie deficit, leptin is inhibited and its level decrease (noooooooooooooooooooo). This results in low thyroid stimulation. When one is in a calorie deficit for a long time, leptin levels fall chronically and our metabolism becomes slower (hence, why we can't all be stage lean all year round). Unfortunately, leptin reduction is the normal physiological response to calorie restriction and the treat meal tricks our reactive leption signals so that we can continue to lose fat effectively.

Post treat-meal, you will feel good with lots and lots of energy, you will have more muscle definition and volume and more vasculatiry.

So there you have it! Train hard, treat harder.

3 Ingredient Protein Donuts

3 Ingredient Protein Donuts

Set your oven to 350.

In a blender, blend 1/2 cup almond milk, 1 scoop protein powder, and 1/2 cup raw oats.

Pour into sprayed donut mold and bake for 8 minutes.

Top with 1 tsp agave nectar or honey and sprinkle with cinnamon.

Macros for the whole recipe (yields 4): 320 calories, 5 grams of ofat, 35 net carbs, 30 grams of protein.