Posts Tagged With: dieting

Say YES to Lifestyle Changes!

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Hi my friends! I hope you are doing well this week. I am happy the weather is warming up so I can take the workouts outside. I wanted to touch base with you about something that I believe is truly important for wellness, Lifestyle Changes.

The goal with fitness is to make lifestyle changes. If you starve to get weight off, you will have to starve to maintain the loss. If you revert back to eating what you were eating before you will gain weight and sometimes more than you lost. If you are limiting calories or are on an extreme diet, you probably lowered your metabolism.  When the calories increase again, your body clings to every one just in case you will starve it again.

Also if you know you will not and can not work out for 3 hours a day for the rest of your life, why do it now? Unless you are training for some athlete program.

We live in a world that promotes dieting. If you search the internet for diets, you will find more than you can research in an evening. Some restrict foods, some add foods, some lead to starvation. I encourage you to make lifestyle changes…what does that mean?

Don’t look for the quick fix, look for what you can do for life

I gave up all soda. I don’t drink regular or diet. My health improved. It was a choice for life. I eat more fruits and vegetables. I eat more fiber. I drink more water. These are lifestyle changes, not a quick fix. Since I made lifestyle changes, I don’t have to worry about yo-yo dieting or buying special foods, pills, etc…I also don’t gain weight quickly. My life has changed. I am seeking wellness, not a life of dieting.

How to make lifestyle changes:

1.Move at least 30 minutes a day several days a week; daily is best. This is not an extended period of time. It’s easy to accomplish. Choose to not be sedentary. Walk, run, bike, circuit train, clean the house, do something.

2. Drink more water. We talked about how water helps our metabolism, digestion of food, and cleaning toxins from our systems.

3. Eat more fruits and vegetables. There are so many reasons to choose whole foods over processed foods. One is whole foods have vitamins and nutrients our bodies need. Two they are natural for the body and not foreign. Three they help the body shed pounds instead of gain them.

Young woman eating salad

4. Cut back on white foods. White bread, white rice, sugar, potatoes…all these foods cause your blood sugar to spike. Unstable blood sugar tells your body to store fat and the mid section (abs) are normally the target.

5. Move from 3 meals a day to 5-6 small meals a day. Stability in blood sugar is crucial to maintain a healthy weight.

6. Eat your favorite foods in moderation or on a cheat day. If you love ice cream, giving it up for life would be a sad thing. I am not a huge fan of ice cream, but I do like it sometimes. So, I purchase frozen yogurt or small one serving size containers. I allow myself to eat certain things in moderation. I love cheese, but I know I can not eat as much as I want, so I keep the portions small. Deprivation can lead to overeating (binge eating).

7. Portion control. The reason obesity is a problem in our country is not simply because of the richness of the foods, our portions are out of control. I ordered a salad at a local restaurant and the bowl was bigger than my head. There had to be 5 cups of lettuce, and several cups of toppings. I looked up the calories, the one salad was 700 calories. Yep. Portions matter.

I hope these tips were helpful. Slow and steady wins the race. If weight comes off slowly, it comes back on slowly. If you make lifestyle changes your life will be better!

Cheering for you friends. You can do it!~Warm Regards…

Categories: Fitness, Nutrition | Tags: , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Detox from Sugar (Fat Loss)

Who doesn’t love desserts? They are creamy, sweet, filled with fat and butter. Yummmmmm….As I stated last post I have not had dessert in 75 days. I decided to detox from sugar thinking it would be great for my exhaustion. I also read some research stating that abdominal fat was often an indication of the over consumption of sugar. Sugar causes insulin spikes in the blood. When we eat that candy bar and drink that soda, our blood sugar sky rockets! What happens after this blissful sugar high? We come crashing down to the land of, “I need either more sugar or some caffeine.” The spiral continues until we are addicted to sugar. Not only have we started the cycle for sugar addiction, we are also telling our bodies to store fat. Yes! Stable blood sugar is beneficial for weight loss (See disclaimer at the bottom of the post if you think you’d like to give up sugar).

Insulin and energy:

“Insulin is a hormone that causes most of the body’s cells to take up glucose from the blood (including liver, muscle, and fat tissue cells), storing it as glycogen in the liver and muscle, and stops use of fat as an energy source,” fitnessblackbook.com.

With the information I gathered on blood sugar and weight loss I decided to try 30 days with no added sugar. Diet consisted of lean meats-fish, turkey, beef, chicken, vegetables, tomatoes, nuts, beans, vegetable protein shakes (no preservatives), eggs, peanut butter, low fat dairy, etc…I did not eat any bread, grains, rice, or sugary fruits. Calorie consumption was relative to my plan before ~1500 to 1300 calories. The food I was eating before consisted of wheat bread, fruits, sugar, honey, cereals, frozen meals, crackers, pretzels, meats/grains/dairy, diet soda, potatoes, and pasta (all within the calorie restriction). The scale was not moving and my body was not responding to calorie restriction.

When I  started eating whole foods it was more difficult to meet the calories I needed. Ex. Spinach has 7 calories a cup vs. eating potatoes that are more calorie rich. And whole foods fill you up faster. I simply wasn’t as hungry. Something to note: women should not eat less than 1200 calories per day and 1500 for men. Reducing calories below that level leads your body to think you’re starving and your metabolism will slow down. Plus it’s not healthy (See webMD.com search starvation).

Fitness and my plan: I did not work out the first 14 days. I wanted to see if the research was valid (stable blood sugar leads to fat loss). I had been running 15 to 20 miles per week.

Sugar Detox Week One (my experiences)

Headache, fatigue, irritability, and then more headaches and irritability.  I mean I felt like a cranky zombie. A cranky zombie who would probably tackle someone walking by with a cupcake. Oh my~ what did I sign up for? I decided to keep going. I was determined to finish what I started.

Sugar Detox Week Two

Energy has increased. No longer craving sweets or wishing to raid the vending machine for sweets.

Sugar Detox Weeks Three & Four

Able to run 6 miles instead of 3 without being exhausted. Energy is through the roof! Skin has cleared up with a healthy glow. I have dropped one pant size. I’ve lost almost 2 inches off my waist  without working out every day. I ran no more than once or twice a week.

Sugar Detox Weeks Five through Present

After the first 30 days I began to add more foods. Sprouted grain bread/Ezekiel 4:9 bread, sweet potatoes, quinoa, greek yogurt, fruit-berries, pears always with protein and never alone, croutons, etc..). Added circuit training into the fitness plan. I feel 100 percent better. I require less sleep. I no longer have the after lunch slump, and my skin looks better. I no longer crave sweets.

Will I ever go back to dessert? Probably in moderation (once a week), I don’t think anyone should deprive themselves for life. However, eating a diet that mainly consists of sugar affects your blood sugar and energy levels.  I’ve also lost four inches of fat off my stomach. It’s flat now. I feel better without dessert and that’s worth sacrificing for! I’m sure cutting out unhealthy processed foods helped with the fat loss as well. Good luck on your journey friends.

Disclaimer: Do not follow this as a weight loss plan. Every person should consult their doctor before starting a diet or exercise program. Your doctor can recommend a nutritionist for you or a plan if you desire. Information presented are my experiences/experiment.

Categories: Fitness, Nutrition | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

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