Patience — The Secret to Losing Weight

 

One of the most important ingredients for losing weight and becoming healthy and fit is patience.

The subject of patience has come up quite a bit lately with some of the moms that I coach.  Moms can be awesomely patient with their kids, husbands, other moms, etc. But one thing that moms don’t have a lot of patience for is waiting for weight loss results.

One of my moms started eating a healthy lower calorie diet, and after one week started lamenting about how she has not dropped a single pound. Another mom told me that she has tried weight training in the past but never saw any results. 

Many people have been led astray when it comes to the amount of time it can take to lose weight and see results. One of my favorite shows is The Biggest Loser. But when my 150 pound client doesn’t understand why she isn’t losing 16 pounds a week like many of the contestants, it can be frustrating. Who doesn’t want quick results? So becoming fit and healthy the right way can be a bit frustrating. 

Here is the (possibly harsh) reality — you will not lose 10 pounds in a few days, maybe not even in a few weeks.  You may not see any noticeable muscle definition for weeks, or months if you have a lot of body fat to lose.

So, knowing that patience is important…. Keep on going until you see results!  Continue to eat a healthy, reduced calorie diet and exercise with cardio and strength training until you see results.

Results can be measured by numbers on the scale, muscle definition, increased strength, increased endurance, and the fit of your clothes.  By the time you start seeing results, a healthy diet and exercise plan will be an integral part of your life, and you won’t want to give it up.

On the flip side, if you don’t keep on truckin’ until you see results, a habit of healthy eating and exercise will never take hold.

Getting healthy and losing weight doesn’t have to be hard, but it does take time. Unfortunately time is not something most people have a lot of. 

Ironically, it’s easy to end up wasting a lot of time, spending too much time doing one thing, not enough time doing important things, or wasting time doing anything and everything but the right thing. And when it feels as though our effort does not match the results, it can be easy to give up.   

Here are 3 simple steps to help you make the most of your time.   

Take more time to eat less. Eating right takes time. The whole process starts with grocery shopping. If you don’t shop well, you can’t except to eat well. Next you have to prepare the food and do whatever it takes to make sure you have healthy food with you at all times. Packing lunches and snacks are a vital part of avoiding temptation. Paying closer attention to calories and portion sizes will also require some time, but the payoff is huge.    

 Take less time to exercise more. This is the quality vs. quantity dilemma. Many people invest a lot of time in what they would call exercise but is often just increased activity. Although activity is good for your health, it’s not as effective for weight loss. Many people are just going through the motions and wasting a lot of time doing minimal effort. Really burn some calories by turning a long morning stroll into a purposeful power walk. If you do weights, train at a higher intensity with less rest in between. You don’t have to spend three hours at the gym every day. Commit to one powerful hour three to five days a week and make every minute count! The more quality time you invest, the greater the reward.  

Take the time to make sure you are not wasting time. This is a biggie. People spend a lot of time and energy on things that don’t work. Fad diets, weight loss gimmicks, books and fitness magazines often lead you to believe weight loss can be easy. It’s our human nature to try the easy way first. In the end, we just waste a lot of time trying to avoid the inevitable. Other people struggle because they completely go it alone with no guidance at all. A person who is basically guessing their way through their fitness program is doomed. Don’t waste your time floundering around aimlessly. Invest a little time initially to be properly guided. Diet and exercise does work. If you take time to understand why and how it works, you’ll be a lot more motivated to apply it to your own life. And remember, I am always here to answer any questions, concerns, or challenges you have along the way.

Cooking Healthy – Swaping the Good for the Bad

It was trendy in 2011, and it will continue to be a trendsetter in 2012 — Simple substitutions for healthier meals.

Cooking healthy meals is really not rocket science. But because of old habits or lack of experimenting, we often fall into a rut with cooking methods and staple dishes. And get this; our taste buds are wired a certain way, which can make it tough to go two days without craving the very foods we need to banish from our lives.

One key way to dropping inches and pounds lies in being able to control these cravings. I am not suggesting to ramp up your willpower, but use simple substitution. It’s a great way of ensuring that you feel fulfilled with an old family favorite, but you can be satisfied that you’re eating healthy.

There are so many ways to swap out the bad for the good, so to get the most comprehensive list that not only includes basic substitutions (like milk for cream), but it also has a ton of creative and surprising ideas from some of the smartest people I know when it comes to nutrition. Click here and substitute your way to a fit and healthy you.  Happy New Year!

 

Fit Tips to Start the Year Off Right

It’s opportunity time. The year is almost over, so most of us start to focus on what we are going to do differently next year.  If getting fit and healthy is on your list, here are a few tips to start the year out right.

1. What you eat is everything.  You can work out until the cows come home, but if you want to see those rock-solid six-pack abs, you need to stop eating your way to tubby town.

2. Don’t agonize over genetics. Each and every body is different, but great results are possible for all shapes and sizes. So don’t blame genetics either.  And speaking of the blame game, don’t blame anything — not the temperature of your house, not the color of your kitchen, not the smell of your office.

3. The foundation of any good weight loss nutrition plan is lean protein and green vegetables. You can eat broccoli until you throw up before it would cause you to gain weight.   And protein is an important component of every cell in the body. Your body uses protein to build and repair tissues, make enzymes, hormones, and other body chemicals. Protein is an important building block of bones, muscles, cartilage, skin, and blood. But unlike fat and carbohydrates, the body does not store protein, and therefore has no reservoir to draw on when it needs a new supply.

4. Add low Glycemic Index foods (such as brown rice, whole grains, nuts, and oatmeal) to each day. Carbs often get a bad rap, but the reality is that they provide many vitamins and nutrients that are essential for fat loss and metabolic function.

5. Watch liquids. Water should be the most common drink — try for at least 6 to 8 glasses per day. Drinking water before and after meals causes that full feeling, which can prevent overeating.

6. Cheat meals every now and then are okay.  I love to go to Red Robin for the endless basket of fries. Pizza also tops my list. This may sound counterproductive, but weight loss can’t happen if people are too strict with their diets. Eventually, they break down and fall off the wagon for good.

7. When snacking, always add a protein to that carb. Only eating carbs for a snack can cause an insulin spike, which can lead to big time cravings or hunger pangs later on. Adding protein keeps the insulin stable and produces a slower release of energy that keeps us on track throughout the day.

8.Fill up on fiber by eating fruits, whole wheat, lentils, beans, nuts, veggies,  and even certain types of cereal can be a great way to create a sense of fullness, while providing a key  nutrients to the body that will help with weight loss.

Cut the Calories Not the Taste – Quick Tips to Healthier Eating

25 Quick Tips

It’s the little things that can make all the difference, and the little things can be easy to change without feeling taste deprived.

Here are 25 quick tips that will help you diet smarter not harder. By making small tweaks to your food choices you don’t have to sacrifice flavor, but you can cut a calories, fats, and sugar to help slim down your waistline. Increase your vegetables and whole grains, but decrease the fat, salt and sugar. If you’re really serious about changing your family’s diet, clip this page and post it on your refrigerator as a daily reminder for everyone.

INCREASING VEGETABLES

Learn to properly steam vegetables.

Decrease the meat and increase the vegetables called for in stews and casseroles.

Add grated carrots, zucchini or cabbage to chili and meatloaf.

Offer washed and trimmed carrot and celery sticks for snacking.

Add finely grated carrots, pumpkin, or zucchini to baked breads and cakes.

INCREASING WHOLE GRAINS

Substitute whole-wheat flour for bleached white flour when you bake.

Top casseroles with wheat germ or whole-wheat bread crumbs.

Serve bran-based cereals, or those made from shredded wheat.

Serve imaginative whole-grain side dishes (bulgur, kasha, etc.) instead of egg noodles.

Offer crackers and corn chips containing whole grains.

REDUCING FAT

Cook with less fat by using non-stick skillets.

Blot all fried meats on paper towels.

Add a spoon of water or broth as needed instead of more fat when sautéing onions and vegetables.

Substitute low-fat yogurt for mayonnaise.

Substitute ground turkey for ground beef.

REDUCING SALT

Substitute lemon juice or herbs for salt when cooking pasta or grains.

Avoid cooking with soy or Worcestershire sauce.

Substitute garlic or onion powder for garlic or onion salt.

Avoid using products that contain monosodium glutamate.

Use unsalted or low-salt vegetable broths and products.

REDUCING SUGAR

Choose canned fruits packed in water instead of heavy syrup.

Use only fresh-frozen fruit without added sugar if fresh is unavailable.

Cut the sugar called for in most recipes by one-third to one-half.

Sweeten waffles and quick breads with cinnamon and vanilla or almond extracts.

Add pureed banana to baked goods and reduce the sugar or applesauce to reduce the fat (oil/butter)

 

Making Healthy Choices – The Fewest Ingredients Wins

Is it just me, or does it seems like there are more contradictions than ever about diet and nutrition? Milk is the new super food. Milk, public enemy number one. Eat more protein. Eat less protein. Fats are bad for you. Fats are good for you. It’s making my head spin trying to keep track of it all.

There is one way to make sure to “do it right”, and that is to eat foods in their natural state. We talk about this at the dinner table quite often with the kids. We play the “which is healthier game”. For example, which is healthier a banana or a granola bar? When they are not sure, I tell them to count the ingredients. The one with the fewest ingredients wins… every time. I try to make sure and always compare a fruit or veggie to something else, so the winner is always the item with only one ingredient.

I know how easy it is to choose the processed stuff, since this type of food product has been modified to last longer, manufactured to distribute easier, and is more convenient to store and use. As moms, having access to processed foods can be a life saver.

However, we may want to re-think the way we use processed foods. Take apple juice as an example. Even the simple act of removing the pulp to make apple juice detracts from its value for both health and weight loss. A medium size apple contains just 72 calories and over 3 grams of fiber, while 8 FL Oz of apple juice contains 120 calories and no fiber at all. And I’m talking about pure, “healthy” apple juice.

What if we start using processed and pre-packaged foods more for emergencies only? For ourselves and for our kids, when we have a choice to make (and we have more than 20 seconds to get out the door), choose the apple. You will never go wrong by choosing the apple.

 

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