Kayla Itsines is the most influential online global fitness trainer in the world from Australia, taking the internet by the storm with her workout videos and posts. She has a massive 14 million followers on her Instagram account. Probably that’s why everyone is always super curious about what she does to be who she is- that means not only her exercise routine or diet plan but her lifestyle too!
There was a point in the summer of 2019 that Kayla wasn’t able to do a single push-up because of the cesarean birth of her daughter Arna. It might not seem a lot to someone who has just started his or her fitness journey, but she sits on the top of a fitness empire. She has devised a range of fiercely popular fitness e-books, garnered a tremendous following on Instagram, commenced boot camps everywhere from New York to Dubai, and founded the BBG workouts that are now accessible on Sweat — a meal- and workout-planning app that she began in 2017 and even after few years, still make it a point to top Apple’s download charts.
Kyla Itsines Physical Statistics
- Height: 1.65 m
- Weight: 53 kg
Kyla Itsines Workout Routine
For Kayla, fitness was always on her mind. She has been a pretty active kid who liked to do sports in her school and college. She says, “I’ve always been active. I am too impatient to not do something with my time. I always wanted to get into the fitness industry. After grade 12, I did my personal training course and basically got straight into it. I started working for a female-only personal training center.”
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LAST DAY TO GET ONE MONTH FREE ACCESS TO @SWEAT!! ? #BBGathome #SWEATathome Here is a no equipment AT HOME AB WORKOUT that you can do using some of my favourite exercises. Shout out to all the new #BBG members out there who will be learning quickly that no equipment does NOT equal low intensity. ?? If you haven’t taken advantage of it yet, this is the last day new members are able to get one month FREE ACCESS to my BBG program in SWEAT as a part of our Stay Strong initiative. Head to the link in my bio to get your SWEAT on at home with an incredible community of strong, supportive, kind women from around the world. ? ✅X Toe Tap – 20 reps (10 each side) ✅Straight-Leg Jackknife – 12 reps ✅Russian Twist – 20 reps ✅Ab Bikes – 20 reps (10 each side) ✅X Plank – 20 reps (10 each side) Try to complete 3 laps!! kaylaitsines.com/StayStrong #StayStrong #BBG #BBGstronger #BBGbeginner #BBG2020 #athomeworkout #athomeabs #noequipmentworkout
Here are some of the strategies that Kayla Itsines uses during her training period.
EXERCISE: Focus on full-body
She likes to train with her own BBG programs that she made for her clients. Her workouts are a combination of different movements- body-weight, plyometrics, and strength building. Here’s what she says,
“I train with my BBG and BBG Stronger programs which are broken down into key muscle groups—arms and abs, legs and full-body. I designed the programs this way to ensure with each workout there is a specific focus on building different muscle groups throughout the body. I use a combination of body-weight exercises, plyometrics (jump training) and strength-building exercises incorporated into high-intensity circuits for an explosive workout that challenges the body. A big part of my training is also about balance, I compliment the intensity of BBG workouts with low-intensity steady state cardio (LISS) on active recovery days to boost metabolism, increase blood flow and promote muscle recovery.”
EXERCISE: Rebuilding strength and confidence
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?Plyometric Training #BBGathome #SWEATathome Plyometric training, or “plyo”, is another style of training used in my BBG program. If you’re doing plyometrics, or “jump training”, you are stretching a muscle (or group of muscles), which is then followed by a rapid contraction. This combination of stretching and contracting helps to increase both power and speed, and can easily be done using your bodyweight as resistance. Some examples of plyo exercises are jump squats, jump lunges, and burpees. I have a written a blog explaining health and fitness terms – swipe ⬆️ on my Instagram stories now to read more! kaylaitsines.com/BBGatHome #BBG #BBGstronger #BBGbeginner #BBG2020 #plyometrictraining #workoutvideo
Her focus has always been to gain strength and when she lost half of it during her pregnancy, she could not wait to gain it all back. Her most recent routine in her own words:
“Since giving birth to my daughter Arna, my focus has been to rebuild my muscle, strength and confidence in the gym. I’m currently completing at least three BBG and two LISS sessions per week and aiming to add an additional session or two each week as I rebuild my strength.
Since having Arna, I’m trying to plan as much as I can to set myself up in the best way possible for the week ahead. I schedule my workouts in my calendar on a Sunday for the week coming week to hold myself accountable. Sometimes life can get in the way and I need to be flexible so if I’m unable to make it to the gym I will complete a BBG workout at home or if I’m short on time I use the ‘quick workouts’ function in the SWEAT app. These workouts run for 15-20 minutes so are great if you want to keep active but are short on time or energy.
When it comes to feeling tired, it is important that you listen to your body. We all have days where we feel tired, flat or unwell so it is important that we can recognise the times we should take a rest day and the days where we can push through, get the workout done and will ultimately feel better for it.”
She also feels that rest days are super important as they help in motivating even further for the other days when you plan to work out.
EXERCISE: Planking is her favorite exercise
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5 MINUTE ABS #SWEATathome #BBGathome No matter where you are right now, if you’ve got 5 minutes, you CAN do this workout. All you need is a mat and you’re ready to @sweat at home! Save this video and try it today!! ✅Commando – 12 reps ✅Straight-Leg Jackknife – 12 reps ✅Bent-Leg Jackknife – 12 reps ✅Plank (single-leg) – 60 seconds (30 each side) ✅Ab Bike – 50 reps Set a timer and TRY and complete this in 5 minutes OR if you’re advanced, see how many laps you can do before the timer runs out. ? www.kaylaitsines.com/BBGatHome #BBG #BBGstronger #BBGbeginner #BBG2020 #athomeworkout #5minuteabs
Her favorite and least favorite exercises to do:
Just like everyone else, Kayla has her least favorite and her favorite exercises that she likes to do and procrastinate. Take a look at what she says:
“My favorite exercise right now would have to be the plank. As an isometric exercise, it is underrated because it ‘looks easy’. A plank engages all core muscles, building foundational strength which can help to improve overall balance and stability. When done correctly, a plank can also engage muscles from your upper and lower body. The great thing about a plank is that there are a number of variations, which means there are options for those who are just starting out or are more advanced in their fitness routine!
My least favorite exercise is the commando because there are so many elements that need to be considered when performing the movement. In order to execute commandos correctly it is so important that the individual has a foundational level of strength as changing position can be fatiguing on your glutes, core and shoulders and, not to mention, tough on your elbows!”
EXERCISE: Muscle recovery
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GYM ALTERNATIVES USING A RECOVERY BAND This is something I get A LOT of requests for. What is so great about these alternatives is that they are EXACTLY the same exercises, but instead of using weights to add resistance all you need is a recovery band – so you can easily get your @SWEAT on at home! ?? ✅Bent-Over Row – Barbell / Recovery Band ✅Tricep Kickback – Dumbbell / Recovery Band ✅Chest Fly – Cable Machine / Recovery Band What other gym-based exercises would you ladies like to see home alternatives for? Comment below! #SWEATathome #BBGathome #BBG #BBGStronger #BBGBeginner #BBG2020 #BBGcommunity #exercisealternatives #fitnessvideo www.kaylaitsines.com/app
She says that muscle recovery is important to her and since having her first child, it has been more important as she has been busier than ever. She likes to stretch a lot during her recovery period. In her words,
“As I’m sure many mothers can relate, since having Arna life has been pretty busy. I have always been active and even while growing up I couldn’t sit still. We all need days where we take time to rest, relax and recover, but I think it’s how we use this time which is important.
For me, I like to take this time to focus on my muscle recovery and often use this time to stretch or roll out my muscles. Stretching has so many benefits and has the ability to release muscle tension, aid muscle recovery and increase flexibility. Rolling is a great way to reduce pain and muscle soreness, especially after a big workout as it increases the blood flow and oxygen to muscle tissue which helps your muscles recover.”
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GYM vs HOME “Can I modify my gym-based workout for the home?” This is one of my most FREQUENTLY asked questions from the #BBGcommunity and the answer is “yes!!” Here are some common lower body exercises using weights in the gym and how to modify them with minimal equipment. GYM ✅Leg Press ✅Hip Thrust (barbell, bench) ✅Bulgarian Split Squat HOME ALTERNATIVES ✅Goblet Squat (dumbbell) ✅Glute Bridge (dumbbell) ✅Bulgarian Split Squat (chair) www.kaylaitsines.com/app #SWEATathome #BBGathome #BBG #BBGStronger #BBGBeginner #BBG2020 #exercisealternatives #fitnessvideo
She says that her BBG program, which she follows is far different from other guides out there because it’s not just about fitness but helps people to be happier. She says, “Rather than being a weight loss guide, it’s about helping people gain health, happiness, and confidence. It’s not about losing massive amounts of weight in an unhealthy way. It’s more about fat loss and being lean.”
Kayla also loves to do abs and that too in a very creative way! Her favorite ab exercise is jackknife because it focuses on the whole core. he comments, “I love training abs, so I love the abs part. One of my favorite moves is the jackknife, which is weighted. You lay on the ground with a weight in your hands, and you bring the weight to your knees and release your legs and arms at the same time.”
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AT HOME WORKOUT #BBGathome #SWEATathome If you’ve got a skipping rope, you’ve got a workout! ? Ladies, if you’re at home at the moment and you’ve got a skipping rope, I challenge you to try this workout!! This just goes to show that you don’t need much space or equipment to be active. ? If you don’t have the space to skip, you can do air skips or high knees instead. Try 12 reps per exercise (50 reps if you are skipping) for 3 rounds!! Once you’ve finished, comment below! ? kaylaitsines.com/BBGatHome #BBGStronger #BBGBeginner #BBG2020 #BBGcommunity #fitnessvideo #athomeworkout
She says that two of the biggest challenges for the summer are, the first, that workouts can be tiresome sometimes. And the second that people are always short on time and would love to do a quick workout rather than spending hours in the gym. She says, “I’ve just written a post about this on my blog-how to torch 200 calories in 14 minutes. It’s four exercises and you can do them anywhere.”
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AT HOME CARDIO #BBGathome #SWEATathome One request I’m getting a lot at the moment is for cardio options you can complete at home. For the ladies asking, YES you can march on the spot or run up and down your hallway, but for me the BEST way to get a great cardio workout is by incorporating exercises I know are really going to get my heart rate up INTO my circuit training. Save this workout and try it today. ?? Circuit 1 ✅Jump Squat – 10 reps ✅Mountain Climber – 30 reps (15 each side) ✅Burpee – 10 reps ✅Skipping (or Air Skips) – 50 reps Circuit 2 ✅Snap Jump – 10 reps ✅High Knees – 30 reps ✅Double Pulse Squat – 10 reps ✅Jumping Jacks – 20 reps Try to complete as many laps of each circuit as possible in 7 minutes, then repeat! You’ve got this. ? www.kaylaitsines.com/BBGatHome #BBG #BBGStronger #BBGBeginner #BBG2020 #BBGcommunity #fitnessvideo #athomeworkout #athomecardio
For making her workouts fun, she says, “It’s better to change it up-find ways to use a park bench, instead of a box in the gym. In my guide, there are substitutes for everything-like benches for chairs-and most of the program is based on body weight.”
Kayla is also super popular for her after workout selfies and here’s the secret to her picture: “You look as good as you feel. I’m confident and I can stand there any day, any time, and take a picture.”
Kayla Itsines Workout and Lifestyle Tips
- Add, and not the opposite.
“Start adding positive things into your life, and the unhealthy things will naturally come out. Instead of cutting out carbs, add a 30-minute walk to your daily schedule, or swap the morning milkshake for toast with olive oil instead of skipping breakfast entirely,” she recommends.
- Begin Slow
She suggests being slow rather than giving anything a fast beginning, saying, “If you exercise every single hour, every single day, you’ll soon burn out and become unmotivated. Take things to step by step and slowly build up your workout rather than pushing it too far at the start.”
- Go for a walk and try to be active.
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MORNING MOTIVATION ROUTINE #BBGathome #SWEATathome Keeping to a routine is SO important, as it can help you to stay active, productive and feeling good. When your routine changes it can really impact the rest of your life. For me, it’s important to keep you ladies on track. Starting your day off with this simple routine will help to get your body moving, motivate you for the day ahead and can assist with reducing any aches and pains. ✅Overhead Band Pull Apart – 20 reps ✅Cat Cow – 10 reps ✅Thoracic Rotation – 10 reps (5 each side) ✅Squat – 10 reps ✅Lateral Lunge – 10 reps (5 each side) Complete one round, first thing in the morning! www.kaylaitsines.com/BBGatHome #BBG #BBGStronger #BBGBeginner #BBG2020 #BBGcommunity #fitnessvideo #morningroutine
For her, spending time with her dogs is her cardio, her LISS workout that relaxes her. She uses small tricks that help her stay active and she suggests her followers find ways so that they stay active throughout the day too. She explains her routine by saying, “I have two Siberian huskies, Ace and TJ, and they are FULL of energy! It’s really important to me that they get in their daily walk, so after breakfast, I try and take them for a walk around the area. If it’s a nice day, I love taking them to the beach, but this is usually hard because of how busy my days can get so this will mostly only happen on the weekend…and in summer! This allows me to incorporate my LISS (Low-Intensity Steady State) cardio training into my daily routine.”
One can put their phone in front of the treadmill and watch their favorite episodes.“Go for a short walk on the treadmill and watch Netflix on your phone, I’m sure everyone can do that,” she said. It makes the workout super easy and more fun. Kayla reveals that even bodybuilders like to walk to burn fat and stay active! Although it is not a HIIT workout, it will help you keep active.
That’s all about her fitness routine in the gym or with her at-home workouts. She says that her transition from everyday personal trainer to being a global fitness celebrity, even though has been remarkable, has not changed her a bit. “People don’t realize that I’m just like everybody else,” she said. “I am a normal person, I have a family, I lose motivation sometimes and I drag myself to a workout on some days.”
Kyla Itsines Diet Plan
Kyla has added some delicious recipes and meal ideas on how to eat healthily during the day in her BBG guide. All of those recipes are inspired by her real-life food choices! She tells,
“The guide is based on wholesome foods. What I promote is not excluding things from your diet. Health can happen without starving or restricting yourself. I’ve also allowed for a cheat meal, like a piece of cake. You can have it within a 45-minute window during the day-it’s not a whole night out of drinking and eating greasy foods. I don’t drink myself.
I’ve recently had a lot of questions from members of the BBG Community asking me what I eat each day.
I think it’s SO important to share that I don’t follow any kind of specific diet — for me, it’s all about taking a balanced approach to food that is realistic in the long-term.
I like to eat Mediterranean-style and lots of Greek food — that means a wide variety of vegetables and fruits as snacks, and a good mix of vegetables, protein and carbohydrates for my meals.
I LOVE food! I believe it should bring people together and I eat wholesome dishes that give me enough energy to perform at my best.”
Kayla’s approach to eating: Eating to fuel the body especially after an intense workout
Kayla is the number one practitioner for eating balanced meals. She does not restrict herself and does not mind eating a slice of cake if she feels like it!
“And as a trainer, I feel that it’s SO important that I have enough fuel to get me through each day and my workouts, and that’s how I encourage my clients to think about food too!
That means my meals are an important part of my day! I want to make sure I’m getting all the nutrition I need to train, and I don’t believe in restricting myself from any kind of foods, because it’s not a realistic approach to eating. From my experience with training women, I’ve also observed that if you cut out a certain kind of food or food group, you actually end up craving it all the time!
If I want to eat something like cake, chocolate or biscuits, I will, but not every day. I actually don’t crave sweets that often because I don’t restrict myself to only eating certain foods. It’s all about BALANCE!”
Here is what she eats for breakfast, lunch, and dinner:
- Veggies with toast and Turkish coffee
- Scrambled eggs with chili
- Sauteed mushrooms, tomato, avocado
- Piccolo Latte
“If I’m eating breakfast at home, I’ll often have a lot of vegetables with two pieces of toast.
At the moment, I’m eating tomatoes, capsicum (pepper) and cucumbers from my garden, and if I feel like it, I might add some avocado. I drizzle olive oil over the vegetables, along with some fresh basil, dried oregano, and salt and pepper.
I eat my toast with olive oil (yes, that’s even more olive oil — what can I say, I’m Greek!) as I prefer it to butter. I’m lactose sensitive (I used to have lactose intolerance as a kid) so I try to limit my dairy intake where I can, and in the case of butter, I actually just don’t like the taste. I’ll also have a Turkish coffee with breakfast at home.
If I’m eating breakfast at a cafe, I’ll often order something like scrambled eggs with chilli — I love spicy foods! Or I might get sauteed mushrooms, tomatoes and avocado. I’ll eat either dish with toast, as I wake up hungry! I often want to eat before I do anything else.
I usually have a piccolo latte (it’s a small version of a cafe latte) with lactose-free milk when I’m out for breakfast.”
She shares some of her favorite breakfast recipes with her fans:
#1 Avocado & Toast With Poached Eggs
- 2 slices of toasted rye bread
- 1 large poached egg
- ½ or 1 sliced tomato
- 25 grams of sliced avocado
- A glass of Organifi Red Juice
#2 Quinoa porridge with fresh figs
Calories: 581 – Sat fat: 1.7g – Sugar: 47.1g – Serves: 1
- ½ tsp pure vanilla extract
- 125ml semi-skimmed milk
- 60g quinoa flakes
- 100g low-fat plain yogurt
- 2 tsp pure maple syrup
- 2 medium figs, sliced
1. Put 125ml water, the vanilla extract, and half of the milk in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat.
2. Add the quinoa and reduce the heat. Simmer for 5 minutes or until thickened, stirring occasionally.
3. Meanwhile, place the yogurt and maple syrup in a small bowl and mix until well combined.
4. To serve, pour the quinoa porridge into a bowl. Top with the remaining milk, sliced figs, and the maple syrup and yogurt mix.
- Tuna salad with brown rice
- Pasta with some protein
- Rice paper rolls
- Stuffed Capsicum
- Salad Rolls
“At lunchtime, I like to keep it really simple!
If I’m at home, I’ll often make a quick tuna salad. All you need is canned tuna, brown rice, fresh basil, cucumber, tomato, capsicum (pepper) and red onion. My dressing is just olive oil, dried oregano, balsamic vinegar, salt and cracked pepper. It’s a healthy lunch you can make in under 5 minutes — just chop up the vegetables and basil and put them in your bowl, add tuna and dressing and you’re good to go!
If you want to get more creative, there are plenty of ways you can mix things up. You could try adding pasta instead of brown rice or try different proteins — you can add salmon, prawns/shrimp, chicken or cheese for new flavours.
Other favourite lunches are rice paper rolls (they’re also called summer rolls or cold rolls), sushi, a crunchy salad roll with some kind of protein. If I visit Yiayia and Papou, I might eat a favourite Greek dish like stuffed capsicum (pepper).
My general approach is that I’ll eat some kind of protein with rice or pasta and salad or vegetables.”
She gave out some of her favorite lunch recipes to her fans on Instagram:
#1 Moroccan Chicken Pitta
Calories: 284 – Sat fat: 1.2g – Sugar: 8.4g – Serves: 1
- ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
- ¼ tsp ground cinnamon
- ½ tsp ground cumin
- ½ tsp ground coriander
- ½ tsp smoked paprika
- 1 tsp sea salt
- ½ garlic clove, crushed
- juice of ½ lemon
- 100g chicken breast fillet, cut into thin strips
- 1 spray of oil
- 1 small handful of baby spinach leaves
- ¼ medium red pepper, deseeded and thinly sliced
- ½ carrot, grated
- ½ tomato, chopped
- ½ wholemeal pitta bread
1. Place the cayenne pepper, cinnamon, cumin, coriander, paprika, salt, garlic, and lemon juice in a small bowl and stir until well combined. Mix in the chicken ensuring it’s well coated with the spice mix. Cover with cling film and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
2. Heat a non-stick frying pan over medium heat and spray lightly with oil. Add the chicken strips and cook for 4 minutes on each side or until lightly browned. Remove from the heat and set aside.
3. To serve, layer the chicken, spinach, pepper, carrot, and tomato within the pitta half.
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SNACK IDEAS: Hummus with pita bread!! Yummm. ? I shared my family’s hummus recipe not long ago but this is one of those recipes that I always make because it’s so quick and easy so I wanted to share it again. Chickpeas (garbanzo beans) are the main ingredient, and they are an amazing pantry staple, as they’re an excellent source of protein and fibre. My hummus will usually last 5 days in the fridge so if I make a big batch on the weekend my snacks are sorted for the week!! ? Never been more grateful that my sister is a foodie hahah. Recipe: ✅ 2 x 400g cans of chickpeas (garbanzo beans) ✅ 1 tsp cayenne pepper ✅ 3 tbsp lemon juice ✅ 2 garlic cloves, crushed ✅ 1/2 cup olive oil ✅ Sprinkle of salt and pepper Depending on what flavours you like, you could also add: ✅A handful of coriander ✅1/2 tsp chilli flakes Just throw all of the ingredients into a blender, except for the olive oil, stopping to wipe down the edges when needed. Once blended, gradually add the olive oil until the hummus is a nice consistency. And that's it! You can then add toppings like tomato, red onion and herbs too if you like. I know lots of people add tahini to their hummus but I never usually have it in my fridge so I don’t use it. If you want to add some that’s fine though. ? #BBGathome #SWEATathome Photo credit: @naturallyzuzu
- Pasta Dishes
- Roasted Vegetables
- Meat Dishes
- Thai Food
“My dinners vary a LOT!
Most nights I have dinner with Tobi, Arna, my parents, my sister Leah and her partner Mitch, and sometimes my aunt and uncle as well.
When we eat together as a family, we have a lot of share dishes on the table, and we each eat a selection of the dishes we like!
Usually, there are pasta dishes, salads, roasted vegetables and meat including skewers, baked chicken schnitzel, or gyros (yiros/kebab).
My aunt is Thai, so we also have Thai dishes with our family dinners, which I LOVE. She’s originally from northern Thailand and the curries and noodle dishes she makes are spicy and SO good!
My basic principle for dinner is to always include protein, carbohydrates, and LOTS of vegetables.”
This is her favorite dinner recipe that she shares on her social media account:
#1 Coconut chili prawns with greens
Calories: 483 – Sat fat: 5.5g – Sugar: 7g – Serves: – 2
- 120ml light coconut milk
- finely grated zest and juice of 1 lime
- 1 garlic clove, crushed
- 1 fresh, long red chili, finely chopped
- 2 tsp fish sauce
- 2 tbsp reduced-salt tamari or soy sauce
- 20 medium raw prawns, peeled and deveined, tails intact
- 120g brown rice
- 240g pak choi, chopped
- 15 green beans, trimmed and halved
- 80g sugar snap peas, trimmed
- 1 tbsp chopped fresh coriander
- 20g sesame seeds
- lime wedges, to serve
1. Whisk the coconut milk, lime zest and juice, garlic, chili, fish sauce, and tamari (or soy sauce) together in a large bowl. Add the prawns and toss well to combine. Cover with cling film and pop in the fridge for 1-2 hours to marinate, if you have the time.
2. Soak 10 wooden skewers in cold water for 30 minutes. This will help stop them from burning when cooking the prawns.
3. Place the rice and 300ml of water in a small saucepan over high heat and bring to the boil, stirring occasionally. Cover and reduce the heat to medium-low. Simmer for 20-25 minutes or until the liquid is absorbed and the rice is tender. Remove from the heat and leave to stand, covered, for 5 minutes.
4. Preheat the barbie if the sun’s out. Otherwise, whack the grill on medium-high heat. Thread the prawns onto the skewers. Grill for about 3 minutes on each side or until cooked to your liking. Once done, brush over again with the marinade.
5. Fill a saucepan 5cm deep with water and insert a steamer basket. Cover with a lid and bring the water to the boil over high heat, then reduce the heat to medium. Add the pak choi and green beans and steam for 3 minutes, covered. Add the sugar snap peas and steam for a further 2 or 3 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender-crisp.
6. Time to dish it all up and sprinkle over the sesame seeds and coriander. Serve with lime wedges on the side. Traditional Aussie cuisine, the Kayla way.
#2 Special Turkey Wrap
- 80 grams of sliced & cooked turkey
- ½ of a sliced tomato
- ½ cup of sliced lettuce leaves
- 50 grams of tzatziki
- 1 wholemeal sandwich wrap
- A cup of organic green tea.
#3 Orange & Beetroot Salad With Salmon
- 100 grams of cooked salmon fillet
- 1 complete orange
- 90 grams of cooked brown rice
- 10 grams of walnuts
- 1 medium-sized roasted beetroot
- ¼ sliced red onion
- 1 cup of rocket leaves
- 1 tsp of red wine vinegar for the dressing
- Fruits with greek yogurt and honey
- Raw vegetables with tzatziki
“My main meals are my primary concern for nutrition and as an energy source.
If I feel that I have enough energy on a particular day, then I won’t always eat a snack. However, I think it’s important that you listen to your body, so if I’m hungry, I eat!
There are so many easy healthy snacks you can eat throughout the day. I’ll often have fruit (at the moment, I’m eating apricots from my friend’s house and the fresh figs from Yiayia and Papou’s garden are amazing!), and I might add some Greek yoghurt and a drizzle of honey and some cinnamon on top.
If I want a savoury snack, I’ll have raw vegetable sticks and my favourite dip, tzatziki — it’s made with Greek yoghurt and it’s SO easy to make at home.
Greek yoghurt is low in lactose, so it’s dairy that I can really enjoy.”
She shares a few of her favorite snack recipes with her fans:
#1 Morning snack: Rice crackers with beetroot dip
Calories: 193 – Sat fat: 0.3g – Sugar: 4g – Serves: 1
- 1 small beetroot, scrubbed and grated
- 75g tinned cannellini beans drained and rinsed
- ¼ garlic clove, crushed
- pinch of ground coriander
- pinch of ground cumin
- pinch of sweet paprika
- juice of ½ lemon
- sea salt and ground black pepper, to taste
- 12 plain rice crackers
1. Blitz the beetroot, cannellini beans, garlic, coriander, cumin, paprika, and 2 tsp water in a food processor until smooth. Season with lemon juice, and salt and pepper, if desired.
2. Place the beetroot dip in a bowl and serve with the rice crackers.
#2 Afternoon snack: Berry swirl
Calories: 238 – Sat fat: 2g – Sugar: 34.7g – Serves: – 2
- 170g frozen mixed berries, thawed
- 300g low-fat plain yogurt
1. Place half the berries and half the yogurt in a high-powered blender and blitz until smooth.
2. To serve, place the remaining yogurt in a bowl. Add the berry yogurt and swirl through with a spoon. Top with the remaining berries. Simple, but delicious.
#3 Strawberry Protein Smoothie
- 1 scoop of vanilla protein powder
- 160 grams of fresh strawberries
- 150 grams of low-fat, low-calorie yogurt
- 250mL of fat-free milk (can also be coconut or almond milk)
#4 Minted Yogurt, Celery, And Carrots
- 100 grams of low-fat yogurt with chopped mint leaves
- 1 large stalk of sliced celery
- 1 small sliced carrot
- Kayla loves some bedtime tea: “Most nights as part of my routine to wind down before bed I’ll have a cup of herbal tea. I like to have something like chamomile or peppermint tea as they don’t contain any caffeine so perfect to have before bed and they also aid sleep and digestion.”
Food should bring people together:
“My philosophy on food is really simple.
I believe in having a healthy balanced diet, the food you eat should make you feel good, it shouldn’t feel like a chore to make it or eat it, and you should eat the foods you enjoy.
Don’t cut out whole food groups because that’s not sustainable in the long term, and you’ll most likely end up with intense food cravings!
I also believe food should bring your whole family together. You shouldn’t have to cook separate meals for everybody — there should be dishes that everyone can enjoy and share!”
Kayla Itsines Tips For Eating Healthy
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There are so many quick, delicious meals you can make without using lots of ingredients. With pasta you can actually use as few as 5 ingredients to make a meal that is healthy and also tastes amazing. Another great thing about pasta is you can experiment with using whatever leftover vegetables you have in your fridge. My version of this quick pasta would have fresh tomatoes from my garden, fresh basil, garlic and some burrata or mozzarella. Apart from cooking the pasta, I would cook the tomatoes for about 5 minutes with olive oil and garlic. Once the pasta is cooked, throw all the ingredients together in a bowl, add some extra olive oil, salt and pepper and you’re done! For a dairy free option, leave out the cheese and use a little extra olive oil and walnuts. Photo credit: @coopercairns
- You need quick and easy meals that you can prepare for the week. Stir-fries, meats, vegetables, and lentils are all great foods.
- It’s about working out what is right for your body and putting it into an easy dish.
- Eat homemade dips and cut-up vegetables. Make these and put them at the front of the fridge and you’ll be surprised how much you’re picking at them.
- The first thing you see in your fridge is what you’ll eat – so if you prepare it, you’ll eat it.
- Whatever diet you’re on, it’s important to get your protein and carbohydrates in as well.
- Eat a little bit of everything in moderation.
- Don’t have cheat days; have a little bit of something you love every day. I have a small dessert with every dinner or a sweet biscuit in the morning.
- Food brings people together, so make a date at your favorite healthy restaurant.
Kayla Itsines BBG Plan
Kyla Itsines BBG plan was received with a lot of positive responses from her followers on Instagram and Youtube. However, it was only the workouts that were included in her plan. Soon, people started asking about meal plans that would go with the workouts and maximize the efforts.
To resolve this problem, Kayla developed a nutrition plan that went along with her BBG workouts called H.E.L.P, Healthy Eating & Lifestyle Plan. This plan consists of five meals each day, including three major meals and two snack ideas. The focus is on nutrition and not on weight loss but improved health. She has added very few restrictions to this diet plan because she feels it makes it easier to sustain. She is all in for balance rather than restriction.
The words from experts:
“The BBG diet is the nutrition component of a popular workout plan. It promotes a variety of nutrient-dense, portion-controlled foods to support weight loss. With no eliminated food groups and an emphasis on overall wellness, experts agree this can be a nutritious eating plan.”
—Chrissy Carroll, RD, MPH
How BBG started?
Kayla Itsines who is the star of the fitness industry, especially on social media founded her fitness company and partnered with her fiancé, Tobi Pearce in 2014. Together, they started the original 12-week Bikini Body Guide, popularly called BBG workout guide. The BBG diet followed shortly after.
The BBG diet plan complies with a 90-page e-book. Anyone who wants to follow the diet can buy and download the food guide, which also goes by the name “H.E.L.P. Nutrition Guide” on the official Kayla Itsines website.
How The Diet Works
The BBG diet is so liked by everyone because it is flexible and not restrictive. Even if you have individual dietary restrictions, BBG easily accommodates that.
The initial H.E.L.P. Nutrition Guide has recipes that include all the five major food groups like, grains, vegetables, fruit, dairy, and meat. Animal products can be swapped out for plant-based alternatives if needed, but later on. a vegetarian version was out that included only meatless diets. The overall contents of the e-book are information on foods to eat, foods to avoid, nutrition education, cooking tips, and a 14-day meal plan.
The whole day of eating is divided into five meals that help control portion sizes: Breakfast, snack #1, lunch, snack #2, and dinner. Kayla recommends that the next meal must be taken 2 to 3 hours after the first meal.
What to Eat
- Vegetables and legumes
- Dairy and non-dairy alternatives
- Meat and meatless alternatives
- Healthy sources of fat
- Herbs and spices
- Lots of fluids
- Fast food
- Animal fat
- Added sugar
- Fried and processed food
Vegetables and legumes
The BBG guide has put vegetables and legumes together. The people who are following this diet must include five servings of this category every day. The guide includes a lot of recipes that incorporate non-starchy vegetables. For the starch, the beans and vegetables like potatoes complete the requirement for the day.
Any fruit is admitted on the BBG diet. You can even have fruit juice on this diet, but make that fact certain about its freshness. Fresh fruit is also favored over the dried fruit because it normally has added sugar. You can have two portions of fruit per day while you follow the BBG diet.
Out of all the food groups on this menu, you’re supposed to consume the most servings of grains — six servings to be exact. Nonetheless, the portion sizes are smaller than some of the other groups. For instance, ¼ cup of steamed rice is estimated to be one serving of grains, while ½ cup of boiled pasta is another course. You can also have whole grains in the form of bread, cereal, and quick oats on the BBG diet.
Dairy and Non-dairy Alternatives
One of the critiques that Kayla’s got on her BBG meal plan is the profusion of procedures that use dairy products. While you can trade out the dairy products for non-dairy options, Kayla herself suggests 2.5 servings of yogurt, low-fat cheese, and low-fat milk per day.
Meat and Meatless Alternatives
Like dairy, the nutrition pattern prescribes 2.5 servings of “lean meat, poultry, fish, eggs, and alternatives.” Participants can barter out animal products for tofu or legumes. The vegetarian variant of the meal plan has even more recommendations and choices.
Healthy Sources of Fat
Kayla puts specific stress on the importance of healthy fats. The guide distinguishes between the origins of fat that have health benefits versus those that have health risks. Some healthy fats incorporate avocado, nuts, seeds, and olive oil.
Herbs and Spices
To make food more fun, Kayla suggests including herbs and spices. She largely concentrates on the herbs and spices that make animal protein taste better, but she also incorporates a recipe on how to season grains like rice and quinoa.
Lots of Fluids
An essential phase of the BBG diet is staying hydrated. Kayla drives followers of this diet to drink at least 8 cups of water every day. Additional liquids, including herbal tea and coffee, are also allowed. Coffee should be devoured in balance and without heavy cream, nonetheless.
There’s an expanded pedagogy section in the nutrition guide, and one segment describes why alcohol consumption should be confined or withdrawn completely. Alcohol is high in calories and has detrimental side effects that can prevent the development of your health goals. Kayla never supports any amount of alcohol to her clients or followers.
While on the BBG diet, you ought to withdraw from having fast food completely. If feasible, avoid restaurant food as well. Take-out food is normally higher in calories, and it can be hard to apprehend what’s really in your meal. The guide prescribes against buying pre-made food but on the other hand, offers some suggestions on what to order in case you can’t dodge this.
In the guide, animal fat is explicitly listed as a harmful source of fat. Alternatively, lean animal produce is advised.
When purchasing packaged food, review the ingredients listing for extra artificial sugar. The BBG diet doesn’t incorporate foods that include white sugar, though a few of the directions call for brown sugar. Processed sugar is linked with many health hazards, so Kayla suggests indulging your sweet tooth with fruit and natural sweeteners.
Fried and Processed Food
Deep-fried foods are non-compliant with the BBG diet. Furthermore, processed meals like cakes, biscuits, candy, and so on must be shunned. These foods are normally low in vitamins and minerals, so they, most expectedly, won’t help you get nearer to accomplishing your health and fitness goals.
Followers of the BBG diet can anticipate eating five times during the day. There are three principal meals—breakfast, lunch, and dinner—and two snacks.
It’s suggested that you separate your three main meals by 2.5-3 hours and drink loads of liquids in-between.
Resources and Tips
While Kayla’s e-book presents two weeks’ worth of recipes and meal ideas, you can get inventive with your food choices as long as you apply the suggested servings of the five main food groups.
Some BBG-friendly recipes include:
- Mediterranean Grilled Eggplant Salad
- Indian Potato and Lentil Stew
- Southwest Quinoa Salad
Kayla Itsines also has a fitness blog where she dispenses even more exercise suggestions, lifestyle tips, and recipes.
Her app, SWEAT is yet another device formulated by Kayla. Both the workout guide and meal plan can be found on this app.
The BBG diet is generally admired because of its versatility. The real guide isn’t intended to suggest in case of allergies or dietary restrictions (i.e. vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free, etc.), but the foods can simply be customized. The vegetarian variant of the meal plan is even more allergen-friendly.
The nutrition guide is created so that no supplements are needed. However, a multivitamin is suggested for somebody who has trouble reaching all of their food group obligations. If you believe you’re at the peril of nutritional lack (usually for under-eating), you can get a daily multivitamin.
Protein powder is also voluntary but not needed.
Pros and Cons of BBG Nutrition Guide
- Balanced macronutrients
- Vegetarian- and allergen-friendly
- A large variety of compliant foods
- Designed for women aged 16-25
- Relies on suggested portion sizes
- Not evaluated by a health expert
Many diets suggest that you focus on protein a lot or decrease your carb intake. The keto diet, for example, emphasizes high fat and low to no carb intake. However, the BBG diet recommends all macronutrients in balance forms. It also includes the major food categories and does not restrict anything. The aim is to promote a healthy relationship with food choices and meal plans.
The BBG diet is well-balanced and diverse. Though it originated in Australia, it’s similar to current USDA dietary recommendations. While various diets concentrate on macronutrient ratios, the BBG diet additionally prioritizes micronutrients.
Vegetarian- and Allergen-friendly
By design, the BBG diet is not plant-based or allergen-free. Nevertheless, the nutrition model gives several replacements and choices to foods that some people may not use. For instance, meat can be exchanged for tofu or beans. Another instance is trading cow’s milk for almond milk. There are also options for people who like to go gluten-free.
Large Variety of Compliant Foods
This diet s so easy to incorporate because it has a long list of foods that can be eaten. The only restricted food options are processed and take out foods. The choices are ample and it is sustainable.
Designed for Women Aged 16-25
The BBG diet is not made keeping in mind everyone else. Kayla Itsines’ fans are normally aged 16-25. Hence, it made sense to her to create the nutrition guide by keeping the same demographic in mind. Nonetheless, this eliminates the majority of the people, including men and women who are well over 25.
The BBG diet is written for women aged 16-25 years. The recommendations in the meal program are expected to fit all women within that age limit. Nevertheless, the USDA guidelines don’t reflect the requirements of a 16-year-old female to be the same as a 25-year-old female.
The everyday calorie and nutritional goals for women around this age limit are split into two sections in the USDA guidelines: females aged 14-18 and females aged 19-30. As per USDA guidelines, the younger group demands less protein, fiber, and overall calories. Nonetheless, they need more fat, calcium, and iron.
Relies on Recommended Serving Sizes
The meal plan specifically relies on serving sizes approved by the Australian government. It can be hard to know how many meals you’re eating without careful planning and tracking. The portion sizes may also be too much or too little depending on your dietary requirements.
Since the BBG diet originated in Australia, Kayla suggests that her global followers move forward with their government’s dietary guidelines. For Americans, that indicates matching the BBG diet to the 2015-2020 USDA Dietary Guidelines.
Not Reviewed by a Health Professional
BBG materials are formulated by Kayla Itsines together with her fiancé, Tobi Pearce. Both researched on personal training, but neither of them is a professional dietician. All information provided in the BBG diet comes from Kayla’s personal experience. Nevertheless, her recommendations are in line with the Australian government’s dietary guidelines.
Because the meal plan is made for the goals of weight loss, Kayla suggests deducting 500 calories from your daily sustenance calories. She tells that the normal woman in her age limit needs about 2,100 calories to support her current weight. To lose weight, this would put her members at 1500 to 1600 calories per day.
The USDA guidelines have separate instructions based on age and sex. They suggest 1,800 calories for females aged 14-18 and 2,000 calories for females aged 19-30. These calorie recommendations are lesser than the BBG diet. The USDA suggests 1,500 calories for women attempting to lose weight. That’s also lower than what the BBG diet approves.
Things to Avoid While on BBG diet:
1. Cheat Days
Kyla is not against cheat days but she suggests balancing instead. A tasty treat can also be created more healthily. Another way is to eat healthy and clean meals throughout the week and then can have a small cheat meal. She gives her clients a 30-45 minutes cheat window but warns against taking cheating too far.
2. Excessive Alcohol Consumption
Even though alcohol is also a macronutrient, giving 7 kcal/gram, it isn’t healthy and can not be metabolized or digested and the energy is not saved in the equal way that carbohydrates, lipids, and proteins are. Moreover, alcohol is often mixed with other artificial flavors that add to the empty calories from the sugar.
3. Restaurant Meals that Stray From Your Goals
Everyone eats out and it is a part of socializing. However, Kayla says that restaurant meals are bigger than the recommended portions and filled with a lot of calories from sauces to dressings. She suggests sticking to a meal or two that you know is healthy while ordering out.
That’s all about Kayla Itsines’ diet and workout routine and what she suggests as a part of her health program to her fans and followers.