Simple tips to help you lose weight

  • You have to be ready. (mentally, physically and emotionally) – Once you decide you want something more than you’re afraid of it is when the magic happens. You have to have a plan and a sense of determination. You cant just “want” it, you have to live it.. its not about a diet, or a quick fix it truly is a lifestyle change. You have to be willing to step out of your comfort zone and put yourself in the uncomfortable.  But I am here to tell you, once that light switch comes on, you know, and never turn it off. Get a friend or a spouse to do it with you, this makes it easier and you two can keep each other on track. And always be prepared for some temptations as well as comments from others …because they do and WILL happen.

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  • Seriously…. no matter how much you workout…DIET IS THE KEY TO SUCCESS. – yes working out will help but if you really want to be fit, and feel fit and super healthy… diet is the answer. When you eat the way our bodies were designed to eat you’ll notice a ton of different things happening with your overall health. Not just weight loss but metabolism actually speeding up, the feeling of fullness before the plate in front of you is empty, maybe some inflammation is gone or starting to fade, more energy, better sleep, and the list just goes on. An easy way to make sure you are keeping track of your food and what your eating, is to keep a food journal.. Which I have  a link on how to do that here:Keep a Food Journal! – How to When you keep a small journal with you its easier to see where your successes are and where you can improve. Also, when you thin about food and what’s healthy and what’s not it can be a little hard if you don’t know what your looking for. My motto is … if it doesn’t come from the ground, grow on  a tree or isn’t relatively “natural” don’t eat it… Shop the outside of the supermarket, that’s where you’ll find your produce, lean meats, whole wheat breads, low fat dairy and this way your skipping going every isle that has the bad things that obviously DO NOT grow on trees .. (ahem… Cheetos) ….

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  • Get to know portion sizes!- So many people think portions are supposed to fill the whole plate. We go out to eat  at a restaurant and if the waiter brings us some “tiny” portion we automatically think…crap! I’m paying $15 bucks for this plate?! Whereas if they bring us a huge plate of food, we are satisfied because were getting our “moneys worth”. The sad thing is that we’ve grown so accustom to having these huge portions that now we don’t know what an actual portion is. Here is a quick reference guide to what portions are supposed to be. And next time you go out or even make your own plate, remember you don’t have to eat everything they give you, you can always take it with you =) hey… 2 meals for the price of one.. sure!!
  1. Your whole fist or a baseball = 1 cup (pasta, rice)
  2. Your palm or a deck of cards = 3oz (meat, fish, poultry)
  3. One big handful including some finger space = 1/4 cup (Nuts, Seeds)
  4. 2 small handfuls not including finger space – 1 0z (popcorn, pretzels, chips)
  5. Your thumb or a shot glass  = 2 tbsp. (nut butters, cheese slices)
  6. Tip of your thumb = 1 tsp.. (condiments, mayo, ketchup, sugar, honey etc.)
  7. And when it comes to fruits and veggies, always fill 1/2 of your plate with those (mainly veggies). 1/4 protein and 1/4 complex carbohydrate.

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  • Fruits and Veggies are your new best friend! – You can pretty much eat as much fruit and veggies as you want and loose weight.. plus they are full of nutrients, water, vitamins and minerals so they will actually keep you full! .. Now I know some of you are probably thinking ” I eat a salad and I’m still hungry!” … Now answer this, are your salads a legit salad.. like if you were to order a salad at a restaurant where it takes up the whole plate? or is it some dinky ass salad the size of a baseball and smothered with ranch dressing? haha. There is a difference between eating a side salad and then eating a SALAD… (this is the only time you are pretty much allowed to eat as much as your want, and not have to worry about portion control. ) When you make your salad make sure you have a mix of greens (preferably no iceberg since it is about 99% water), a lean protein added in like some chicken strips or black beans, as many veggies as you want, think COLOR! and a oil or vinegar based dressing. I do have another link here:The Salad Bar – Building a Kick-Ass Salad! =)  on  how to make a wonderful salad.

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  • DO NOT SKIP MEALS! – I swore if I hear that eating less will make you lose weight one more time I’m going to scream! You ideally want to eat every 4-5 hours to keep your engine running. when you skip meals or eat very little your body goes into starvation mode and stores the fat on your body because its saving it for when it will need it for other times you my not be eating. This messes up your metabolism and throws it out of whack confusing it and it tends to not work the way it was designed to work. (THIS IS HOW I GOT TO OVER 200LBS… don’t make the same mistake !!! please!)    But I do have good news, you can fix a slow metabolism by simple diet changes and eating a healthy diet. Annnd if you start working-out on top of those diet changes, it will speed up even more. Our bodies and humans in general weren’t made to sit at a desk or on the couch all day, we also weren’t designed to eat things like fake sugar and fillers and food colors.. we were meant to be active and eat things from the earth, things nature intended us to eat. I like to eat 6 smaller meals a day, this way I’m NEVER hungry, or “hangry” as my boyfriend likes to call it (hungry +angry = hangry) plus my metabolism soars when I eat this way =) just try it… but remember, those smaller portions should consist of veggies a complex carb and a lean protein…..

5tip5 Always keep nutrients in mind, think of how eating a certain food will make you feel after eating it … will you be disappointed? will it make your stomach hurt? will it make you have a sugar crash towards the afternoon? yes sure it will be tasty… but is it worth it? 10 min of a sugar high or realizing you don’t need to be putting that crap in your body. I think you’ll be more proud of yourself if you just say no thank you =)

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Surviving the Holidays!

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So .. holidays is what got me a little last year when I was watching my weight. With Thanksgiving and Christmas around the corner, you’re bound to be around a few sweets and some “not-so-healthy” choices.  So I’m going to give ya a couple tips on how to survive the holidays when your either on a specific diet or just trying to watch your weight. =)

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Its all about having a plan!

  • Know what’s being served- whether that means a few extra workouts through the winter, or just smaller portions of you favorites, have a plan before you go into it blindsided. My aunts are super nice and they understand what I’m trying to accomplish so they do their best to have a few options I can have. I have even just randomly asked what they are planning to make so then if it doesn’t fit into my diet, I can bring something or have a plan for that. If your family gets offended that your not necessarily eating something they prepared, don’t take it personally. Your making these choices for your health, not theirs. Usually people will look at you weird the first time, but as you continue on, they just don’t ask anymore. …. and if its a huuuge ordeal, no offence to them, but that usually means they are insecure with their diet and eating habits and don’t like for others to make it obvious. . . . (which in all reality, you aren’t…. unless you telling your family how all that gravy on their turkey isn’t good for them….. which by the way DONT! .. if they want help, advice, or an opinion, they will ask you for them… otherwise keep some thoughts to yourself lol.)
  • Use a smaller plate- when you start dishing up your food, yes you can still have some of your favs, but first load up a plate of veggies, salad and fruits… then add the other stuff. Don’t over-do it on the other stuff either. But if you do this right, you should be pretty full already from your veggies and fruit. =)… Or skip the appetizers unless they are fruits and veggies.

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  • Eat slower and savor each bite – haha I have trouble with this one because I tend to devour foods, but if you actually sit there and focus on the foods, the texture and the taste, you’ll notice you fill up longer because your actually focusing on it instead of mindless eating. . . .
  • Offer to bring something– This way you’ll know there will be at least an healthy option there and you wont be completely screwed if there isn’t anything healthy. …
  • Remember the bottom line- yes, its the holidays, enjoy it. But don’t make it an excuses to eat everything in sight because your diet doesn’t start till New Years .. that’s just ridiculous…. Start now and you wont have such a hard time. Holidays / weight gain/ and New Years Resolutions do not need to go together. Sure you can have a goal for New Years to “loose some extra pounds” or “be healthier” but that was probably on your resolution last year… am I correct??? Don’t give up on this year just yet! =)

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Tip of the Week #13 Eat more!

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Yup! That’s right, eat MORE if you want to lose weight.

Now… lets set this straight from the start, I don’t not mean eat more gummy bears and pringles… I mean eat more high quality nutritious foods.

A lot of people think that losing weight is all about not eating what you love, and eating less and being miserable and feeling constantly hungry. WRONG! You can still eat things you love (every once in a while – not every week or every day). Along with that, people think that if you don’t eat or eat very little you will lose weight as well. This is also WRONG! Eating fuels the body and keeps it running, without it you cant function properly and as well either.

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So without further ado, and without getting off subject. EATING MORE……….

RULE#1 DRINK A LOT OF WATER………AND I MEAN A LOT!

Enough said!

RULE#2 IF IT GROWS ON A TREE OR IN THE GROUND, I’LL EAT IT

that means load up on those fruits and veggies, now virtually you can pretty much eat as much of these and be in the clear. Now if you only eat fruit… not as good, but try to add in some veggies too. Experiment with the veggies, grill something you normally wouldn’t, like mushrooms or make a veggie kabob! This also includes nuts and seeds that are high in good fats and omega-3’s. You should ideally be including fresh fruits and veggies into every meal you eat.

RULE#3 6 SMALLER MEALS A DAY, SHOOT FOR AROUND 250-300 CALORIES EACH MEAL

Eating this way can speed up your metabolism and also leaves you not hungry throughout the day. Learn to make your meals ahead of time or even the night before so your not tempted to go to that vending machine.

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RULE#4 EAT GOOD PROTIEN AT EVERY MEAL

Especially at breakfast! Breakfast is the first meal of the day, you need to fill it with foods that will keep you full for a long time… that means Lucky Charms are out of the question! But the more you incorporate a lean protein source, the fuller you’ll be throughout the day and you’ll be able to fight off those cravings that hit you mid-day. 30g of protein will last you about 3 hours of fullness.

RULE #5 EATING BEFORE YOU WORKOUT

Eating a snack or small meal before your workout that high in protein will actually not only help your metabolism but it will speed up your recovery time and muscle growth. Also make sure you get a post workout meal in too to refuel your body (make sure its high protein too).

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Clean Eating Meal Plan (Month 2)

So this month is going to be a little less strict, but still make it so that your eating a cleaner and healthy diet! I made this plan so that you can choose from the options for each meal so that way you wont feel bored or overwhelmed. Try to mix it up as you go and remember, you’re eating to fuel your body and give it the optimum nutrition it needs… therefore picking whole, complete and nutritious foods are ideal.

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A cheat is ok here and there (hell, were all human right?!) But now I want you to start to notice how you feel when you eat healthy as opposed to not healthy and also remember to pace yourself, don’t push yourself too hard and don’t think miracles are going to happen over night, changing your lifestyle can take weeks, months and even years to learn how to incorporate into your life. Remember where you started and be proud of your accomplishments, but also don’t loose sight of what’s to come =)

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TIPS BEFORE STARTING:

  1. Drink 2-3liters of water a day..  if not more
  2. You may have tea, coffee with stevia ad light creamer if needed
  3. NO soft drinks and sugary juices!!! – make your own juice!
  4. Make sure you’re getting a good amount of sleep
  5. Get active! Find and new sport or play with your kids, there are many ways to “be active” without a gym.
  6. No negative thoughts, stay positive!

Upon waking – 8oz water

Breakfast:

**Add a multi- vitamin with breakfast (make sure you eat first because it will make you nauseous otherwise)

    • Protein shake made with low-fat milk or almond milk
    • Smoothie with both fruit and veggies
    • 3 whole eggs, 3 egg whites scrambled with as many veggie as you want
    • 1/2 cup plain oats – I have great oatmeal recipes here:   Oatmeal 101
    • Greek Yogurt with 1/4 cup granola and fruit of choice
    • 1/2 grapefruit with stevia (if needed), 1 slice whole wheat toast with almond/peanut butter
    • 1 rice cake with almond/peanut butter on top, 1 piece of fruit
    • 1 whole grain or gluten free waffle with1 tbsp. agave nectar
    • Whole grain cold cereal (Cheerios, Oat Squares, Kashi) – make sure to read the serving sizes! and feel free to add a piece of fruit! =)

Snack (Pick one):

  • 1 cup low-fat cottage cheese
  • Any veggies – pretty much as much as you want (no corn)
  • Greek/ dairy free yogurt with low-sugar granola
  • 1 low-fat string cheese with 10 almonds
  • Protein shake made with milk or almond milk
  • 3 hard boiled eggs
  • Rice cake with 1 tablespoon peanut/almond butter on top
  • Mixed nuts (unsalted)
  • 10 sticks of carrots or celery dipped in hummus
  • 1/2 cup plain oats made with water – dash of cinnamon
  • 3 oz of any lean meat
  • 1 apple, 10 almonds
  • 1 apple dipped in 2 tablespoons of almond/peanut butter
  • Pretty much any fruit, pair it with a nut of choice (1/4 cup)

Lunch (pick one):

  • Mixed Greens Salad with 3 oz lean meat on top, add whatever veggies and as many as your want on top. Top with 2 tbsp. of Balsamic Vinegar or Olive oil and vinegar dressing.
  • 4oz lean meat with 3 cups veggies of choice, 1 cup brown rice
  • 4oz grilled chicken with 1/2 large sweet potato and 2 cups of green beans
  • Lightly sauté 2 cups spinach and put 4 ox salmon on top

Snack (Pick One) :

  • 1 cup low-fat cottage cheese
  • Any veggies – pretty much as much as you want (no corn)
  • Greek/ dairy free yogurt with low-sugar granola
  • 1 low-fat string cheese with 10 almonds
  • Protein shake made with milk or almond milk
  • 3 hard boiled eggs
  • Rice cake with 1 tablespoon peanut/almond butter on top
  • Mixed nuts (unsalted)
  • 10 sticks of carrots or celery dipped in hummus
  • 1/2 cup plain oats made with water – dash of cinnamon
  • 3 oz of any lean meat
  • 1 apple, 10 almonds
  • 1 apple dipped in 2 tablespoons of almond/peanut butter
  • Pretty much any fruit, pair it with a nut of choice (1/4 cup)
  • Egg Whites with hummus or guac inside them instead of the yolk!

Dinner: (You can mix and match these, I’m just going to give you a couple of examples. * Make sure you have a lean protein, a good carb and TONS of veggies!)

  • 6oz lean meat (Chicken, steak, turkey, game meat, fish, shrimp, crap, lobster, bison)
  • Starchy (healthy) carbohydrate – around 1-2 cups (Brown Rice, Quinoa, Couscous, Sweet Potato, Baby Potatoes, Black, Pinto, Kidney, Garbanzo Beans, Whole Wheat or gluten free pasta)
  • With as much veggies as you’d like! (preferably green!, Asparagus, Broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, a salad, squash, zucchini, green beans… ohh the list can go on forever!…. limit the corn… )

Snack (if needed): NO FRUIT in last “snack for the day” too much sugar and carbs.

  • 1 cup low-fat cottage cheese
  • Any veggies – pretty much as much as you want (no corn)
  • Greek/ dairy free yogurt with low-sugar granola
  • 1 low-fat string cheese with 10 almonds
  • Protein shake made with milk or almond milk
  • 3 hard boiled eggs
  • Rice cake with 1 tablespoon peanut/almond butter on top
  • Mixed nuts (unsalted)
  • 10 sticks of carrots or celery dipped in hummus
  • 1/2 cup plain oats made with water – dash of cinnamon
  • 3 oz of any lean meat

Before bed- 8 oz water.

** Note: you may switch lunch and dinner if wanted.

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Tip of the week #9 Prep the week Ahead of time

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When wanting to loose weight or even practice clean eating prepping meals ahead of time can make it soooo much easier to stick to your goals. So next day you have (for most people its Sunday) take a couple hours out of that day off work to prep all your meals for that week.

Whether it be for just you, you and a significant other or even a big family, meal prepping can be easy and effective. Plus it makes it super easy when you get off work and don’t really feel like preparing a meal for the family. haha.

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There are tons of resources out there (blogs, pinterist, Google, you name it) to find clean eating recipes and frozen dishes. Ideally you’ll want to do foods that don’t go bad fast and eat the ones that do sooner in the week rather than later.

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I usually just prep my dinners because that’s the hardest. (usually some form of lean meat, veggies and a sweet potato or brown rice). For breakfast its usually something simple and quick like oatmeal (I can even put that in Tupperware and eat it on the drive to work) or sometimes I’ll prepare some scrambled egg whites with mixed veggies when I’m doing the meal prep too so then ill have a little bit of a mix for my mornings.

Usually prepare my lunch (usually a salad) the night before, throw some lettuce mix in a bowl, add a shit ton of veggie and viola!

But I mean you can find healthy options that you could probably freeze (like a lasagna) and be fine too. Find out what the family would like to eat, make a plan and stick to it! =)

Happy preparing!

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