Category Archives: Weight Loss
‘Twas the day after Christmas and all through the house,
Every creature was stirring, yes, even the mouse.
The stockings, once hung by the chimney with care,
Were being packed up and are no longer there.
If only the children were nestled all snug in their beds,
All the adults in the house wouldn’t be losing their heads.
I finished some cleaning and took off my thinking cap;
And thought for a second I might take a nap,
When out of nowhere, there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from the couch to see what was the matter.
Across the house I flew like a flash,
Tripping over empty boxes, wrapping paper and trash.
My neighbors’ Christmas lights lit up the neighborhood
So I could see my neighbor clearly exactly where she stood.
When what to my wondering eyes should appear,
She was standing on her scale crying in fear.
More rapid than eagles, all her weight came,
She cried and shouted and called her scale a bad name.
“Now Dangit! Now Darnit! Dagnabbit and Flippin!
My True Religion jeans are no longer fittin!
To the top of the porch, to the top of the wall;
Now dash away! Dash away! Dash away all!”
As dry leaves before Hurricane Frances did fly,
When they meet with an obstacle, mount in the sky.
Out of her garage her husband flew,
With the car full of toys and all the kids too.
And in a twinkling, I heard my doorbell sound,
Followed by crying and sobbing from everyone around.
As I drew in my head wondering how I could help,
All my friends and neighbors were at my door with a yelp.
They were dressed in fitness gear from their head to their feet
Their clothes were all tarnished with cookie crumbs and sweets.
They seemed to have an extra bundle around their fronts and their backs,
And they all looked like peddlers, each one with a gym sack.
Their eyes, how they twinkled – but wait, they weren’t merry,
They’d all been crying, their noses red as a cherry.
Their droll little mouths were drawn up like bows;
And their faces looked shocked, like they had all seen a ghost.
They had gotten on a scale and didn’t like what they saw.
And now they were ready and determined to erase it all.
They had broad faces and a little round belly,
That shook when they cried like a bowlful of jelly.
They were chubby and plump, each like an unhappy old elf,
And I laughed when I saw them because I was there myself.
A wink of my eye and a twist of my head,
Soon they all knew they had nothing to dread.
I spoke not a word, but went straight to work;
Getting the gym ready, and then turned with a jerk.
And laying my fingers on the computer keys,
I started writing out my fitness tips with ease.
I sprang to my car and gave my team a call,
And told them “get ready! Get ready for them all!”
And away they all flew to the health clubs that night
saying, Happy New Year to all, let’s give fat a good fight!
story by Bonnie Pfiester
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We live by rules in every part of our life – finances, marriage, work and government, to name of few. But, we expect NOT to live by rules when it comes to food. For some reason we think those kind of rules are bad, unhealthy, limiting, no fun, unfair, damaging and inconvenient. Why would it be any different than the rules we have with our finances? We fully understand that we are expected to work for our paycheck, and we are expected to pay our bills – and, if we don’t, there are serious repercussions.
Since we are expected to not spend more than we make, most of us live on some type of budget. Well, in the same way you must budget your money, you should also budget your food. If you eat more than you can “afford” to eat, you will have repercussions to your actions. Those repercussions come in the form of weight gain and health issues.
Think of how someone manages a business. It doesn’t matter how much they profit, if they don’t also consider their loss. It’s the balance that matters. In the same way, it doesn’t matter how much you “work” (exercise) if you are still eating more than you can afford. Every extra pound of fat “over the limit” is a sign that you have been irresponsible with your body account – your loss is greater than your profit. You are, essentially, living “in the red”.
The only difference between overeating and overspending is no one repos your car or takes your house. Your “punishment” is the extra baggage you have to lug around and the evidence you see of your past actions in the mirror every day. So that’s the bad news. The good news is, you can erase the debt! You can literally work off the hole you got yourself into just like we work off financial debt – by working hard, going on a budget, and sticking to it until the debt is gone.
Will you have to make sacrifices? Of course. Will you be able to live the way you have been used to living? No. So go ahead and get your whining out of your system and get over it. I’ll be honest with you, a lot of things have to change. But that is a good thing. The way you have been living got you where you are now. And, if you are overweight, I bet you are not happy where you are now. So why would you want to continue doing things that always give you the same bad result?
When I look at my credit card balance, I forget what I even bought. I wonder how in the world I ever spent that much money. The fine dining and the clothes (I already given away to Goodwill) are gone. It all comes with a price. Now I’m paying it off – and, quite honestly, it’s not fun. BUT I know the reward once I do pay it off. I understand I am paying the price now for what I couldn’t afford earlier – and in many ways, that is exactly what we are doing with our weight. The extra work we have to do in the gym, and the sacrifices we have to make out of the gym are all part of the process to reach our goal.
How do you stick to this new budget and not give up or give in? The key to success is to constantly remind yourself of the big picture. Instead of thinking about what you are missing out on right NOW, you must think about what you would miss out on LATER if you don’t stick to your plan.
If you have a weight issue, I challenge you to rethink the way you treat food. Like your spending, indulging in the extras should be an occasional treat – not a daily habit. Rules are not evil, they are there to protect you and they are healthy. It’s living without rules that is the most damaging. If you are overweight, you are experiencing the damage firsthand. So,every time you are tempted, remember the repercussions for doing what is wrong and remember the reward for doing what is right. Focus on what you are working toward – and don’t you dare let anything get in your way!
Most of us have done this before. We skip a few workouts, and before you know it, we are eating crappy, eating too much, feeling fat, and just eating more and more. Here are 3 chemical reasons why we EAT MORE when we skip our workouts – and if you think about it, these same reasons are also often times why we WORKOUT LESS.
1. WE ARE TIRED. Ironically, one of the reasons we skip workouts is because we are too tired. However, many times we still don’t give our body the rest it needs to recover. We continue to go, go, go. Since calories are energy, some experts say our body craves calories because it knows it will wake us up and energize us. However, what we probably need is just a really good night sleep so we wake up refreshed and energized the healthy way.
2. WE ARE STRESSED. Many times we skip a workout because we are stressed out and can’t focus. When we are stressed, we often don’t feel like being around people and we just want to hide – so extra social events like going to the gym get the ax. Also, the more people are stressed, the less they sleep. So #1 is already in play. Researchers say that when we are stressed our body releases more cortisol, which is a stress hormone. Some reports indicate that increased cortisol is linked to increased belly fat and increased cravings. Then there is just the “woe, is me” part. The more stressed we get, the more sorry we feel for ourselves, and the more we decide we deserve the ice cream because it’s been “such a rough day”. The best way to combat stress, is sleep and exercise. If you want to combat stress eating, you have to combat the stress.
3. WE ARE BORED. We are too tired to workout and to stressed to think – so we plop down on the couch to “relax”. Since we skipped our workout, we actually have MORE time to do nothing (and more time to eat!). Although we probably should go to bed, we don’t, because we don’t like missing out on anything. Instead, we stalk Instagram, check facebook, tweet a couple of folks, surf, or turn on the good ole boob tube. These things stimulate us enough to keep us awake enough to not miss anything, but not relaxed enough to get the rest our body needs.
Like Ricky Bobby said in Talladega Nights, “I’m not sure what to do with my hands?” we don’t know how to stay still. We rarely sit that still – and as soon as we do, we want to be entertained. Normally, that includes food. Again, if you want to prevent boredom eating, tackle #1 so you aren’t too tired to spend time exercising, tackle #2 so you aren’t craving food and work on #3 and limit your “still time” or learn how to control your hands – and your tongue.
Break the Cycle
Sadly, if we don’t break the cycle, the more we eat, the more depressed we get – and that fuels more lack of sleep, more stress and more boredom because we normally retreat. We also feel hopeless because we feel too far away from our goal. Instead of looking at why we eat crappier when we workout less, let’s look at why we eat better when we workout more.
When we workout, we work HARD to burn calories. Since just how hard we worked is fresh in our head, we are less likely to sabotage that work. The key is, it has to be a regular thing. It’s not like we can work hard last week and that be enough to make us want to protect last week’s investment. Muscle soreness, being in the gym, being around other inspiration people and sweating your butt off TODAY is what you need to help give you the motivation you need to eat right TODAY.
Sometimes, that feeling is enough to last you a couple of days – but once you’ve missed a bunch of days, forget it. We lose that connection between work and calories. It not real enough to us anymore. That’s also why it’s much harder to diet without exercise. Exercise is like your job and food is like your money. You’ll never be frugal with free money, but if you work hard for it, you’ll be a lot more cautious how you spend it. This is also why the work must be a little tough. When you work REALLY hard for something, you bet you’ll be a lot less likely to blow that hard work on a something silly. One, because you realize all the hard work you just did and, two, because you don’t want to do any more of that than you have too.
Let the People Speak
Here’s what others had to say about why they think they eat more when they workout less.
Alexie Elizabeth Messer I think it is because when we are working out we realize the effort we have out in that day and don’t want to ruin/negate it by over eating. In short we are just more conscious of our bodies when working out.
Patti Ambrosia McLean We figure might as well… Sadly we want instant results. Not possible
Robert Phoenix At heart we are hunters, gatherers & scavengers. Its deeply routed in our genetics. This is at odds with modern day living. We are programmed to search & forage for food. When we exercise we burn fat & calories. If we dont exercise insulin levels rise in the body to convert the excess food we eat into fat & store it, we become “insulin tolerant” & used to the rising levels of insulin & the body desires more food to counterract the increased insulin levels. We are also more likely to desire unhealthy foods as the insulin tolerance increases. Also mentality plays a big part. By saying “no” to specific foods you want them more so this doesn’t work well. The word “Diet” is overused & has become an instrinsic part of our vocabulary which is detrimental because it suggests to the body that we are “depriving” ourselves of food which makes the hunter/gatherer/scavenger inside us become a defense mechanism & make us want more food. I could go on…
Tamara Grand For me, the two go together. I’m more mindful of my body and how it feels when I’m exercising daily and the link between food and fuel is stronger!
Alex Cartwright Pretty sure it’s chemical…we aren’t getting the endorphin rush we’d receive from a good workout so we try to get it from food.
Tommy Arenas i work hard labor” then feel 2 tired 2 wrkout” sumtimz i just eat & crash”
Laurie Duncan It’s a survival mechanism.
Charise Charly McOmber I’d love to know. There are times when I can be right on target, never a slip. But I’ve gone through a period of swearing I’m going to make it today eating clean and then break every rule. I don’t get it.
Chris Nicodemus I disagree sorry , the More I Train the More I Eat, Like a Furnace Fueling the Fire
Amanda Marciniak Mazey did that today, I could not stop eating and couldn’t be bothered with working out, now I feel sick and yet even tho I’m not hungry feel the urge to eat
One of my facebook friends, Vanessa, commented on my omelet yesterday morning and said she’d love to see my shopping list. So I decided to grab my receipt and share what i got.
First, I must confess. My eating has been so off the last 2 weeks since my vacation. I often skipped meals or opted for a can of soup because I was too lazy to cook – and the main reason cooking would be challenging is because we were low on groceries. Betty Crocker I am not. I cook easy, fast, simple meals. If it can’t be simple, I won’t bother cooking it. This girl has very little patience.
We rarely eat out, but this past week I resorted to restaurants simply because I didn’t want to cook and I didn’t want to shop. (I keep telling you how lazy I am. Eventually you will start believing me! If I can do this anyone can!)
THIS, my friend, is how to NOT live! Steve and I both felt horrible, unhealthy and fat. AND we missed the taste of fresh food, healthy food. Our bodies are smart – once it gets the good stuff, it craves it. We couldn’t WAIT to go grocery shopping and get back to normal healthy eating habits. So THIS was my weekend!! My weekend to get back in control, get organized and plan for a week of clean eating and healthy living!
Before I went to the store, I cooked up some brunch (I made an eggbeater omelet with broccoli, grilled onions and goat cheese). I was stuffed! Now I was ready for my day of healthy preparations! But, before I begin, let me share with you a few simple shopping tips to help you on your diet (or just healthy eating) before you even take the groceries home.
7 Healthy Shopping Tips
Tip #1: NEVER go to the store HUNGRY! Eeeeeverything will look amazing if you go in that store hungry! The only way to hink with your brain, and not your tummy is to go to the store nice and full. Your waistline AND bank account will thank you. That’s why I told you I ate that omelet. I promise, nothing makes me more stupid than being hungry.
Tip #2: Be realistic. Don’t buy celery and stuff you know you won’t eat just because it looks healthy. Buy foods you enjoy and WILL eat. You’ll be less wasteful and a more satisfied dieter. Consider your upcoming schedule. If you are busy, shop for stuff that is simple, quick and easy to throw together. Save your complicated fancy recipes for another shopping trip.
Tip #3: Avoid Fat Free items. Normally fat-free items have more sugar. Since fat slows down digestion (which helps us stay fuller longer), going fat free can actually make you feel hungrier. Don’t avoid fat, just eat it sparingly. Beware of healthy appearing titles. Many times they are not as healthy as they want you to believe.
Tip #4: Don’t Rush. Shopping healthy requires time. You need to read labels and use your noggin to make good choices. Following a shopping list can help a lot, but when you are starting a diet plan, it’s imperative you have the time to really study food and make the best choices. If you don’t have the time to shop smart, get the bare necessities only, and go back when you have more time to shop right. The more educated you become, the faster you’ll get in and out.
Tip #5: If You Can’t Control Yourself Around It, Don’t Buy It. Even if it’s pretty healthy, if you can’t control yourself around that food, you don’t need it in your house. For example, Steve loves Peanuts. They are not bad for you (in low quantities). However, if Steve has a handful of nuts, he has the whole container. As a result, this is one item we rarely purchase.
Tip #6: Be prepared for emergencies. While I believe whole food is ALWAYS the best choice, keep a stock in a few low-cal frozen meals like Lean Cuisine, Smart Ones or Healthy Choice, as well as some high-protein bars like Designer Whey, Detour or Zone Bar (which are all around 200 calories and have 10gms or so of protin). So, in the event you are in a mind and rushed for time, you have something to eat that is much healthier than fast food or not eating anything at all.
Tip #7: Shop around the outside of the store 1st. Only venture in the aisles to find specific must-have items – never browse. Most of the stuff on the aisles are processed foods, toppings and extras we don’t need. I listed all my groceries that were in the refrigerated, produce & dairy sections in green and the inside aisles in red. Black is 0-calorie items.
My Grocery Shopping Receipt
Sometimes your shopping list and shopping receipt can be two totally different things. So, I’m sharing with you my grocery receipt.
- Cabbage (to make Roasted Cabbage)
- Green & Red Peppers
- Romaine Lettuce
- Spring Mix
- Cole Slaw Mix (I use it for sides, toppings & salads)
- Orange Juice
- Edamame (I love this as a salty snack with soy sauce)
- Pastrami (for my Low-Cal Rueben Quesadillas)
- Sauerkraut (for the Quesadillas)
- Chobani Plain Greek Yogurt
- Coffee Mate Hazelnut & Almond Joy Creamer (my treat)
- Frozen vegetables (only snow peas & spinach. I have plenty at home)
- Steam Veggies (for emergency quick meals)
- 5 Lean Cuisines & Healthy Choices (aiming for 18-25gms of protein and around 300 calories)
- Flat Out Healthy Grain Wrap (for the Quesadillas)
- Fruit & Cream Oatmeal (we also have whole oats at home)
- Bear Naked Granola (toppings for my Greek Yogurt Bowl)
- Pineapple slices (for kabobs, salads & stirfry)
- Low-Sugar Craisins (for salads)
- Honey Roasted Almond Accents (salads)
- Mio Lemonade (to spice up water)
- Dasani Pinacolada/Coconut (never tried it)
- LaCroix Cran-Rasp sparkling water
- Secret Deodorant, paper plates, plastic forks, etc (but you probably don’t want to know that kind of stuff! ha!)
Steve shops for meat and bulk items at Sams. Here was what he brought home:
- Ground Turkey (for my Mexican Meatloaf)
- Mango (I put in my Greek Yogurt)
- Brussel Sprouts (We grill them with curry)
- Pretzel thins
- Almonds & Pistachios
Of course I already had some groceries, so don’t trip if you don’t see eggs, etc – I still have a pretty full pantry and I do have 2 refrigerators that are not even close to empty. I always stay stocked on condiments and, more importantly, seasonings.
- Lemon Juice
- Lime Juice
- Alessi Balsamic Vinegar
- BADIA Complete Seasoning (can’t live without this!)
- Grill Mates Mojito Lime Seasoning (awesome stuff!)
- Hot Sauce (I love them all)
- Olive Oil
Off the top of my head, I will probably cook the following this week:
- Filet Mignon and Quinoa (which we had last night after I shopped)
- Grilled chicken kabobs with green pepper, onion, tomato & pineapple over brown rice quinoa mix
- Chicken & vegetables with PB2 peanut sauce from Diabetic Living magazine this month (no, I’m not diabetic, but they have great ideas for eating low-cal, healthy, low-glycemic meals)
- One or two of my sensational low-cal salads
- Grilled salmon & asparagus (for Steve)
- Mexican Meatloaf (going to try it with cooked Quinoa instead of bread!)
- Pulled BBQ chicken and low-cal cole slaw wrap
- Rueben Quesadillas
- And probably a lot of grilled meat with veggies.
Grocery Shopping is great, but to be super successful with your diet, you have to actually cook. ha! So, once I got home from the grocery store, the cooking began.
Last night we cooked:
- 10 filleted chicken breasts (making 20 filets) with lime and Grill Mates Mojito Lime Seasoning
- Blackened Salmon
- Filet Mignon (we probably have steak once every 3-4 weeks)
- Turkey Quinoa meatloaf
- Low-cal Italian Turkey Meatballs
Now, all I have to do is throw sides with everything and we’ve got plenty of lunches, snacks and dinners ready to rock!
Makes 4 servings
1 small head napa cabbage (about 12-16 leaves)
2 small carrots (I used the pre-schredded mix)
2 green onions
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
1/2 teaspoon sugar
Visit theKitchn.com for more info and recipes.
How much time and money have you wasted on trying the newest gadget, supplement, pill, bar, shake and diet that didn’t deliver or last anyway? We’ve all done it. We try the easiest way first. Then, when that doesn’t work, we try the next easy thing. But, after you’ve tried 10-20 short cuts, you finally resort to fitness. Yes, you finally try eat right and exercise. After you finally get results, you realize you could have saved a lot of time and money if you just lost the weight the right way the first time around.
So, essentially, exercise and diet IS the short cut. It’s the best way to get results fast – and to maintain those results. Sure, it’s not the easiest way, but not all short cuts are easy – but they can still be fast.
My mom tried everything in the book. She tried diet pills, diet programs, diet support groups, acupuncture – you name it, she tried it. She even tried to Jazzercise off the weight. Finally, in her fifties, she finally decided it was time to LEARN the right way to eat and exercise. She realized she had relied on gimmicks and rules for weight loss, not knowledge. It took some time and energy to learn everything she needed to do, but it worked.
She finally learned to eat smart, and not diet. She learned how to exercise right, and manage her weight by understanding the checks and balances of her body. She lost 100lbs. At 60 she finally got the results she’s always wanted.
Don’t be tempted to put fitness off as a last resort. It should be the first thing you try, not the last.
Here is my mom in 2003, before she tackled her weight, and now (with my dad) at the gym. So proud of both my parents. My dad put on 25lbs of muscle over the last 10 years, and they workout and run together on a regular basis. They may have waited until their late 50s to get fit, but they have successfully reinvented themselves and are living the fit life in their 60s! They prove it’s never too late to do it right! Love you guys!!!!!!
A FIVE GUYS burger with fries = 1,460 CALORIES. That could take 14 MILES to WALK OR RUN OFF!
Know what it takes to erase extra calories:
- 1 Tall Salted Caramel Latte = 1 Hour Power Walk
- 1 Side of Chili’s Cole Slaw = 1 Hour of Yoga
- Side of Ranch Dressing at Subway = 3 Mile Jog
- 1 McDonald’s Medium French Fries = One Hour of Zumba
- Dairy Queen Dipped Chocolate Cone = 1 Hour of Kickboxing
- 1 Boston Market Broccoli & Cheese Soup = 1 Hour on the Elliptical
- Duncan Donuts Mocha Coffee with Cream = 1 Hour on the Treadmill at 4mph
- 1 Slice of Little Caesars’ Deep Dish Pepperoni Pizza = 1 Hour of Aerobics Class
- 1 Panera Everything Bagel with Light Veggie Cream Cheese = 1 Hour of High Impact Aerobics
- 1 Steak & Shake Medium Cookies & Cream Shake = 1 Hour of Boot Camp AND 1 Hour Power Walking
- Chili’s Bottomless Tostada Chips & Salsa = 1 Hour Running at 6mph (10-minute miles) AND 1 Hour of Aerobics
6 Lunches that would take 2+ hours to erase:
#1 DAIRY QUEEN: 850 CALORIES (No Drink)
NIX: 1/4lb GrillBurger with Cheese: 540 calories
Medium Fries: 310 calories
FIX: Burger with 1 piece of bread, no cheese & no mayo: 340 calories.
#2 MCDONALD’S: 890 CALORIES (No Drink)
NIX: Quarter Pounder with Cheese: 510 calories (they don’t list topping calories
Medium Fries: 380 calories
FIX: 6 piece nuggets for 280 calories or the Grilled Chicken BLT Ranch loaded for only 380 calories.
#3 WENDY’S: 1,000 CALORIES (No Drink)
NIX: Wendy’s Single with Cheese: 580 calories, 33gms of fat, 220 calories just from the bread
Medium Fries: 420 calories
FIX: Wendy’s Single without mayo & 1 piece of bread: 420 calories
JACK IN THE BOX: 1,020 CALORIES (No Drink)
NIX: Big Cheeseburger: 570 calories
Medium Fries: 450 calories
FIX: Get a Chicken Fajita Pita for 320 calories instead.
#4 SONIC: 1,130 CALORIES (No Drink)
NIX: Cheese Burger with Mayo: 800 calories
Medium Fries: 330 calories
FIX: Get the Grilled Chicken sandwich instead for 430 calories
#5 BURGER KING: 1,170 CALORIES (No Drink)
NIX: Whopper with Cheese: 760 calories, 40gms of fat, 240 calories from the bread, 140 calories in mayo
Medium Fries: 410 calories
FIX: Whopper with no mayo & one piece of bread: 500 calories
#6 FIVE GUYS: $1,460 CALORIES (No Drink)
NIX: Cheese Burger: 840 calories (not including toppings!)
Regular Fries: 620 calories
Heavy Hitting Toppings: Mayo (100 cal), Cheese (70 cal), Bacon (80 cal), BBQ Sauce (60 cal)
FIX: Scratch the bread, cheese & Mayo & add veggies and jalapeno peppers for TONS of flavor less calories!
Instead of thinking about food as calories, we should look at it as required work to erase. READ MORE
You have the power to sculpt your body with the foods you eat, as well as the type of exercises you do. Before I address how to sculpt your body with how you eat, let’s talk about how you train.
Sculpt Muscle by How You Train
“The more muscle your workout requires, the more muscle you will gain…”
While protein is very important for sculpting a fit body, supplementing without the proper training will not get you the results you want. How you train greatly determines what you store for energy and what you use for energy. With intense movements, your body will likely store more energy as muscle. Your body is smart. The more muscle your workout requires, the more muscle you will gain, or keep. - And don’t worry ladies, you won’t be a beef-cake bodybuilder, you will just look super fit. It takes a LOT of work to look like a man!
On the contrary, if you are a marathon runner, you are more prone to burn both muscle and fat as energy, and store fat, because muscle is not needed as much for low to moderate intensity workouts. While running a marathon is quite grueling, it doesn’t require a lot of explosive power, it requires endurance. Of matter of fact, a runner’s body considers muscle as unnecessary added weight. However, fat is a good source of energy for long runs, so that is why your body is prone to storing fat. If a runner wants to maintain muscle, they need to pump up their muscles in the gym (and pump up protein) in addition to their running program to encourage their body to keep muscle.
Sculpt Muscle by How You Eat
Now that you understand the importance of how you train, let’s dive into your eating. As you’ve heard before, “you are what you eat”. Fat and carbs makes fat bodies. Protein make fit muscular bodies. That is why it is so important to get enough protein if you want to maintain, or add, more muscle mass. Your body is always burning calories from a combination of fats, carbs and protein. If you eat carbs and fats, but are low on protein, your body doesn’t just stop burning protein. It still burns protein, but it burns stored protein (muscle). The same goes for fat stores. If you are short on fat or carbs, your body will burn stored fat to turn it into the fuel it’s missing.
If you are like me, and don’t want your body to burn muscle, then you want to keep a steady stream of protein in your diet so your body can feed off that – and not feed off your precious hard-earned muscle. If you want to GAIN muscle, then you need to give your body more protein than it needs so it stores more protein (muscle). *Use the protein calculator, below, to learn how much protein you should get a day.
Just the same way our body stores fat and carbs as body fat when you eat too much of it, your body can store excess protein as well. However, you still have to watch overall calories if you don’t want to gain weight, because too many calories is still too many calories – and it can cause you to gain weight, whether it’s coming from muscle or fat. Understand, if you eat more calories than you burn, you WILL gain weight – whether it’s muscle weight or fat weight.
So, the trick to a lean muscular physique is to eat a low-calorie, low-fat, moderate-carb, high-protein diet. This will encourage your body to burn fat stores to reduce body fat, while storing (or maintaining) protein to sculpt muscle.
What’s Your Number?
Click HERE to use GNC’s Protein Calculator to help you decide how much protein should be in your diet.
It’s easy to get “fluffy” during the winter. We pile on layers of clothing, hiding extra layers of fat we may gain. Before we know it, spring rolls around and it’s time to pull out the bikinis – and we get our little wake-up call.
Eeeeeek! Suddenly everything is exposed – and the thought of putting your winter body on the beach can be a scary thing. You have 3 choices. One, you can continue to hide and just never even put on a bathing suit. Two, cover up, like this lady, and put someone else’s body on with one of hese hilarious bikini tees. Or, three, you can lose the fat – and the clothes, and feel good in your bikini this year!
It’s time to take it OFF!
Diet. You’ll never see abs (unless you buy them on a shirt) if you don’t diet. The only way you can lose weight is reduce your caloric intake. You can do that by guessing, and trying to just eat better, or you can do it by really budgeting your calories. Of course I suggest the latter because it’s guaranteed success.
Cardio. The next thing on your list to tackle is cardio – and lots of it. You need to burn off that stored fat from the winter. So, go for a jog or hit the gym to do your favorite cardio machine or high-intensity aerobics class.
Protect your investment. If you are trying to lose weight, the next focus is trying to make sure you don’t replace the calories you BURN with calories you EAT. If you burn 300-400 calories in the gym, you can erase that with one latte and reduced-fat coffee cake, so be careful not to sabotage your hard work in the gym.
1o Diet Tips to Get You Bikini Ready
If you don’t know where to start with dieting, here are 10 simple tips to apply to help get you started.
1. Keep meals to 300-350 calories for women, 400-450 for men.
2. Keep snacks to 100-150 calories for women, 200-150 for men.
3. Eat something (doesn’t have to be big or fancy) 5-6 times a day.
4. Wait at least 2 hours to eat after meals.
5. Never go over 3 hours without eating something (even something small like a few almonds)
6. Never eat more in one sitting than you can burn in one workout.
7. Eat on salad plates instead of dinner plates.
8. Eat with salad forks and small spoons instead of large silverware.
9. If you DO mess up, count up the calories so you know how much your mistake “costs” you. (this will not only be good information for you to learn, but it is also good motivation not to mes up again). Out of site, out of mind.
10. Drink a LOT of water.
Abs on Fire Workout
While you work to improve your eating and lose the body fat, here is a workout @stevepfiester put together to sculpt your abs so when your do lose the body fat, your new great abs can start peaking through!
15 Med Ball Throw
15 Russian Twist
15 Oblique Crunch L
15 Oblique Crunch R
15 Side Plank Pulses L
15 Side Plank Pulses R
CLICK HERE to watch the instructional video to learn all the moves and follow along with Steve.
Every where we go we are inundated with weight loss commercials, diets, exercise gimmicks, workout fads and commercials for healthy food. Just by all the commercials alone, it is clear everyone knows America has a weight issue.
149 million Americans are overweight or obese. We suffer $208 billion in lost productivity and $46 billion in direct medical costs as a result of our weight issue. One out of three youth are overweight, and one out of six is obese. And, if a parent is overweight, their child has a startling 70% chance of being overweight or obese too. So, it would only make since that anyone who wants to make money would jump on the weight loss bandwagon to sell us something to fix our problem.
So how do diet and fitness brands try to grab our attention? They don’t attempt to hook us by listing health risks or obesity facts. No, they capture our attention with six-pack abs and hot fit bodies. Why? Because our outer body is more tangible and real to us. It’s what we see. But what about what we cannot see?
Rolls of fat are bothersome, and tight jeans are frustrating. Our outer layer of fat speaks to us every day. It stares us in the face and screams at us constantly – but what if your organs, blood and bones could talk to you and explaim how your weight affects them?
This picture (posted above) is a look inside the body of a person who is overweight vs a person at a healthy weight. Look at how crowded the overweight person’s organs are. Look at how the body fat shifts their joints out of whack and changes their posture.
Let Me Hear Your Body Talk
If your body could talk, your heart may ask you for a much-needed break, and complain about how hard and fast it’s been beating. Your lungs may tell you how cramped they are and how badly they would like to expand more so you could perform better. Your bones may cry for relief from carrying such large loads day in and day out. Your blood might be too busy yelling at your artery walls to even have time to complain to you about your cholesterol issues. Each blood drop is probably yelling “pardon me, coming through, make a way” because of all the build up it has to dodge or squeeze through every second of the day.
We take life for granted. It’s not that we forget the fact we are alive, but we neglect to realize all the work it takes to keep us alive. We have such high expectations for our body. We expect our body to perform well even when we treat it like crap. We act surprised when we have health issues when, if our body could talk, it’s probably been struggling for years.
Sure, weight loss looks great, but we can’t forget about how much better weight loss looks on the inside too. Don’t you think your body deserves a break – and maybe even a little pampering? It’s been working so hard all these years. Let’s take good care of it, so it can continue taking good care of you.
Today’s Fitness Motivation: