Feature Workout + Post Workout Nutrition Tips [Guest Post from Emily Miner]

Hey Bacon & Squats readers!

How are y’all? My name is Emily (most people call me ‘Em’) and I’m the founder and content creator over at emilyminer.com. I teach people how to feel good, look good and still have a life because living a life in which diet and exercise are a part is hugely different than one that is consumed by them. I am trying my best to create a life of the former, stay positive (and transparent) through the struggles and teach y’all a thing or two along the way. If this sounds good to you and we’re not yet connected on Instagram (@emilynminer), we should be!

Anyways, when Finley reached out to me regarding a combination fitness + nutrition guest post, I hadn’t heard of Bacon & Squats so headed to her site for a quickie check to make sure it was a mutually good fit. An hour later, having read her bio and bookmarked ALLTHERECIPES, I knew it was a perfect fit - bacon, hot sauce, short but still totally kicka** workouts, simple recipes and wine? I mean, what’s not to love? Like-minded friends, both virtual and IRL, are bomb. That is all.

Let me give you a little backstory on me. I’ll try to keep it brief, admittedly not my forte, but I’ll do my best. If you want to read more about me, my story and/or musings in my life as I navigate a new city or anything else, it’s all here. I’m a certified personal trainer, group fitness instructor, fat loss nutrition and lifestyle coach with an online biz, a 9-5 and a puppy (basically, my third full-time job, but love of my life and totally worth it). Originally from the Boston-area, I earned my BS in Health & Exercise Science from Wake Forest University #godeacs, stayed there for a bit post-grad and currently reside in the greater-Philadelphia area.

A cardio queen turned weightlifting junkie, endurance exercise is but a thing of my past. Ain’t nobody got time to spend hours a day in the gym! Or maybe you do, zero judgement, but personally I choose not to (because, priorities) and have found a way to get even better results in less time. Say wha?! That’s right. I’m stronger and in better cardiovascular shape than ever before working out for a fraction of the time- 20-30 minutes tops, 5-6x/week versus hours of cardio a day, every day. #nothanks #idienow

How is this possible? Because exercise intensity, not duration is what drives results; working smarter, not longer (e.g. HIIT, interval training, lifting heavy weights faster). I might only train for 20-30 minutes at a time, but I train intensely and with intent. I also practice #restbasedliving and prioritize restorative activities like leisure walking daily. Why? The lower intensity stuff actually helps the higher intensity stuff to work; it keeps the metabolism responsive.

So with that, I’ve got a sweet, er I mean super sweaty WOD for ya followed by a lil’ Nutrition 101. If you try it, snap a pic and post to my Facebook page, or tag me on Instagram in a sweaty selfie, post-workout eats, mindset insight or anything else - I love hearing from you!


Directions: Perform 21-15-9-9-15-21 reps of the following, for time:

  • DB squat/press or BB thruster
  • Chest-to-floor burpees
  • i.e. 21 thrusters, 21 burpees, 15 of each, 9 of each then 9 of each again, working your way back up to 21 reps of each exercise

Finish with 5-minutes of the following, performing back-to-back to failure until time is up:

  • Russian Twists (1 Heavy DB)
  • In N’ Outs (demo here: http://bit.ly/2herXEY)
  • i.e. Do Russian Twists until you can’t, then move to In N’ Outs. When you can’t do any more In N’ Outs, back to Russian Twists.

PWO Nutrition

As for post-workout eats, well, it depends… on YOU. We all have a unique set of metabolic tendencies, personal preferences and psychological/dietary sensitivities. For example, I generally prefer to chew my food and tend not to reach for shakes post-workout. But that’s just me. #doyou. I will occasionally enjoy a shake for my first meal, or as a late afternoon snack, but, it’s not a daily thing for me.

So what to do in terms of post-workout nutrition? Following an intense training sesh (e.g. weight training, MADabolic, CrossFit, Metabolic Effect-type workouts), I generally reco a quality source of protein and starchy carbohydrate. Following shorter duration, higher intensity cardio (e.g. HIIT or sprints vs. longer duration steady state), I don’t worry so much about the carbs (actually, I never worry - it’s just food, it’s only eating and fortunately something that we *get to* practice every.single.day), but do prioritize protein in this window also. It’s not that I avoid carbs here, but I just don’t place as much emphasis on them. If I have ‘em, great. If not, nbd. But since low carb and low fat together is recipe for a hangry me, I will up my fats in this meal if it’s relatively lower carb. Regardless, I eat tons of non-starchy veggies always. Their fiber content adds bulk (and water!) and helps stabilize blood sugar, which helps keep us feeling fuller for longer and may lead you to eat less overall without even trying.

In general, I also don’t stress too much about nutrient timing and prefer to focus my finite energy on the quality of my post-workout meal vs. whether I eat immediately, within the 30-60 minute window following my training session or even beyond that. Are there slight advantages to each? Sure. But you’re certainly not going to lose muscle or gain fat by not eating right away or eating prior to the 30-minute mark post-workout. And, unless you’re an elite athlete, it’s really not something you should stress over either, IMHO. Practice relaxing around your eating process and I think you’d be pleasantly surprised by the results. In fact, I’m willing to bet that you’d look exactly the same, or better, with even less stress.

Remember, no mess-ups; only learning. Monitor your biofeedback (e.g. hunger, energy, cravings, mood, stress, sleep, skin, digestion) in terms of how different foods make you feel while you are eating them *and* after, then adjust accordingly. *Don’t forget: YOU are the best expert in you.

So bearing in mind that I am me and you are you, here’s what my post-workout eats often look like for what are currently end-of-day workouts. Pretty never, yummy always and often in the form of a #plantbasedcarnivore #onebowlmeal:


1.    Organic red cabbage and onion sautéed in coconut oil with grass-fed beef, seasoned with pink salt and a side of homemade sweet potato “chips.”

2.    Bunless, oven-baked grass-fed beef, bison or lamb burger (I don’t grill lol) with a side of roasted brussels sprouts and sweet potato or plantain “chips.” Or these.

3.    Roasted spaghetti squash with sautéed onion, sundried tomato and arugula with grass-fed beef or ground turkey OR meatballs, sausage and homemade sauce.

4.    Gluten-free old-fashioned oats or oat bran with plant-based protein powder or an egg scramble with veggies (if I train in the morning).


1.    Nix the chips from #1 above, add 1/2 an avocado or more coconut oil.

2.    Nix the chips from #2 above, add a spoonful of Paleo mayo or ‘cado

3.    Giant chopped salad with tons of chicken, veggies and homemade dressing with oil, vinegar and spices or Primal Kitchen Foods dressing, for convenience.

4.    Deconstructed Taco Salad with avocado and a few plantain “chips.”

Have a go-to post-workout meal? Let us know in the comments below - we’re all always looking for new ideas!