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Stay-Trim Tricks of the Trade: What Diet & Fitness Experts Eat

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Secrets of a Pumped Personal Trainer

Energizing snacks are key if you spend up to nine hours at the gym most days, like Los Angeles-based celebrity trainer Elise Gulan, who created the popular Burn Bliss class for Equinox Fitness Clubs.

In Gulan's Gym Bag

"It's hard to inspire others if I'm tired or overweight," says Gulan. See what's stashed in her gym bag:

Spicy trail mix Gulan mixes 1/4 cup of almonds; 1/8 cup of chopped dates, apricots or cranberries; plus a dash each of salt and cayenne pepper for a 220-calorie snack that supplies lasting energy.

Kashi TLC Chewy Granola Bars These 120- to 140-calorie bars contain whole grains, nuts, and sun-dried fruit -- and enough fiber and protein to fill you up without weighing you down.

Hard-boiled eggs For affordable, high-quality protein, Gulan takes a crack at these.

Workout Wisdom

Here are some of the tips Gulan gives to her celebrity clients, including Becki Newton of Ugly Betty.

Fuel your body. Gulan recommends having a small snack 30 minutes before a workout. "Exercising on an empty stomach, especially in the morning, when your body has essentially been fasting for hours, can cause dizziness and nausea," she explains.

Treat yourself. But not with food. Instead, set aside an hour of "you" time for every hour you exercise. Use it the same day to read a good book or soak in the tub, Gulan suggests, or take a whole night for yourself at the end of the week.

Skip sweats. After you shower, slip into a figure-flattering outfit instead of comfy, elastic-waistband pants. "You'll notice how amazing you look and feel after a workout and be less likely to overeat," Gulan says.

Originally published in FITNESS magazine, March 2010.

More Stay-Healthy Advice from Fitness & Diet Pros


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