So…let's be real for just a few minutes…how's your New Year's resolutions going so far? If you're like most, you've already faced challenges…maybe "fallen off the wagon" for a day…or even given up and decided that you'll deal with your "whatever" next year. Do you know that only 6% of people who make New Year's resolutions will keep them through the entire year? I, personally, don't make them. I choose instead to pick an area of my life that I need to make a "lifestyle" change in.
Several years ago, I decided that I didn't want to consume foods with High Fructose Corn Syrup in them…the year before that I chose to make a concentrated effort to buy organics for the "Dirty Dozen"…and last year, I tried to eliminate foods with GMO's. This year, I think I'll just concentrate on adhering to all of those, PLUS avoiding foods with MSG in it.
Here are some suggestions (when implementing these, don't do them all at once, take one and stick to it for a week or two…feel what it feels like to successfully change something in your hectic life, and then move on to another one)
- Find time for a MINIMUM of 150 minutes of exercise (a combination of cardio and strength training) per week (30 minutes per day X 5 days). This will help you to maintain your current weight, but if you want to lose weight/fat, you've got to move more than that. Exercise will drastically improve your overall health…especially your heart health.
- Get 7-8 hrs of sleep per night. It is scientifically proven that lack of sleep WILL contribute to making you FAT!
- Drink water like it's your business. Start with 32-48 oz of pure, cleansing, hydrating water per day. Work up to 64-80 oz of water. This is soooooooo good for your body, for weight loss, for flushing toxins, and for helping to regulate blood pressure.
- Have lean protein and vegi's at EVERY single meal…and EVERY single snack. Yes, EVERY…SINGLE…MEAL! Find creative ways to sneak vegi's into your diet…omelets, fruit/vegi blend juice, chopped up in homemade soups, use as "delivery vehicles for dips" (hummus, salsa), on pizza, in meatloaf, and on, and on, and on.
- Clean out your pantry, cabinets, and refrigerator. Get rid of anything processed (especially all those sweet, yummies left over from the holidays), and anything that has ingredients in it that you'd need a Doctorate in Chemistry to pronounce. It's a pretty simple concept: IF IT'S NOT IN YOUR HOUSE TO EAT, THEN YOU WON'T EAT IT!!!
- Do NOT EVER skip breakfast!!! …again, scientifically proven that fatter people are those who skip breakfast. I won't get into the science behind it, but it has to do with fasting, blood sugar levels, and hormones…trust me on this one…just eat your breakfast. (Protein and vegi's)
- Eat something small (containing protein) 30 minutes before your workout, and within 30 minutes of completing your workout. If you fuel your body, you'll burn fat…if you're body is starving, you'll burn muscle…pretty counter-intuitive huh? …again scientifically proven…and way too complex to explain in this short little blog…
- Don't worry about your calorie consumption. Yes, you read that right. If you are eating the right stuff, calories don't really matter…it's when you're eating the chemically processed crap that you need to watch every single calorie that goes into your mouth. If you're eating lean protein, vegi's and fruits, you're giving your body what it needs to run efficiently. So…if it grows on a tree…EAT IT!!!
- Cut out all sugar laden drinks. They are calorie bombs…not to mention what they do to your hormones...which end up making you fatter!
- Stretch, stretch, stretch!!! I can't stress this enough. So many people lose their flexibility as they age. Guess what? Flexibility is one thing that you don't have to lose! I stretch for a few minutes when I wake up, often throughout the day, after exercise, and sometimes before bed. Don't you want to be able to tie your own shoe when you're 70? …or bend down and pick up your grandchild when you're in your 60's? Motion is lotion for the body!
- Cut out all fast food. For the most part, I haven't found a good fast food restaurant…they use cheap, over-processed, chemical laden, food-like substances. If you MUST eat fast food…please choose items in their most natural forms (apple dippers, fruit cups, yogurt, grilled chicken (no bun or breading), salads)
- Really look at limiting your starches and sweets if you have a weight/fat loss goal. That soft, squishy fat around your tummy…well, that is directly related to what you put into your mouth. Sure, you can say, but it's my hormones…or it's hereditary, I call BS! Yes, what you put into your mouth affects what hormones are released in your body (fat burning or fat hoarding), but those hormones are released in response to what you're eating! As for heredity, well we all have a genetic pre-disposition, BUT you can do all the right things to not be a victim of your parents genes.
- Plan meals in advance. During the weekend, cook up a dozen chicken breasts…cut up bags and bags of vegi's, make homemade soups and side dishes…freeze them, or just refrigerate them. The moral of this story is: if you plan ahead, you are far less likely to make a bad choice.
- Enlist the support of family and friends. It's been scientifically documented that those with a healthy support system are the most successful at making lifestyle changes.
- Hire a Personal Trainer or Health Coach. Look for those who are credentialed…they've put in the educational hours to be knowledgeable in helping you to reach your goals. Also, look for those who've "walked in your shoes". Had I not been 80 lbs overweight for most of my life, I couldn't even begin to understand what it's like for an overweight person to exercise or to resist temptations. I know what's it's like to be morbidly obese…and I know what it takes to "get your sexy back!"
Now, these aren't all of the things that will create a healthier, slimmer YOU, but it's sure a great place to start. I would bet money on the fact, that if you are doing these things CONSISTENTLY, YOU WILL LOSE WEIGHT/FAT…there's almost no way it can't happen!
If you need more information, I'm always available to clarify and offer further suggestions. You can email me at: firstname.lastname@example.org You can also subscribe to my Online Personal Trainer at www.fitinyourpants.com . I'm running a New Year special (6 weeks for only $79)…and if you live in the Jacksonville area, you can hire me to kick your butt into shape personally (New Year special: (15) 50 minutes sessions for $490 (that's 5 FREE, and you can make 2 payments if it's more convenient for you, OR (30) 30 minutes sessions for $490 (that's 10 sessions FREE, and you can make 2 payments if it's more convenient for you)).
Be blessed!!! Be well!!! Be fit!!!