Blog Archives

Diet Tip: Eat More Veggies, Eat More Food

You can have 1 oz of pasta and have a big empty plate OR you can have 2-3 times the amount of veggies for the same amount of calories. Check it out!

calories in pasta

Trade 1/2 cup of pasta for 1 FULL Cup of:

1. Asparagus: 27 calories
2. Broccoli: 35 calories
3. Brussel Sprouts: 38 calories
4. Cabbage: 41 calories
5. Cooked Cabbage: 65 calories
6. Cauliflower: 23 calories
7. Lettuce: 8 calories
8. Fresh Spinach: 20 calories
9. Cooked Spinach: 41 calories
10. Cooked Collard Greens: 62 calories

The less high-carb foods you eat, the MORE you can eat. Avoid large amounts of pasta, potato, rice, beans & bread. Increase green veggies to increase portions without INCREASING your waistline!

 

Eating Healthy Isn’t Enough

Healthy-EatingIf I had a nickel for everyone struggling with their weight who responds with “I eat really healthy” when I ask them how many calories they eat. What that means is – they have no clue how many calories they are eating.  But they want me to know how clean they eat and how hard they work in the gym, so they can try to convince me they are the exception to the rule and that they are just unable to lose weight like everyone else. This is when the Red Flag Goes Up.

Listen, I’m not saying everyone has to count calories. I’m also not saying eating healthy is wrong. Gosh no! Eating healthy is AMAZING – and can change your life. BUTTTTTT… what I AM saying is, if you have no idea how many calories you are eating, there is no way you can expect to lose weight. Guessing just doesn’t work. Eating clean alone probably won’t change the scale much. Eating organic can be super healthy, but not affect your waistline. Going on the next fad diet won’t always work either. Working out like a maniac alone won’t cut it either. (again, I’m not saying it NEVER works – some people will luck out and lose weight by just making healthier choices, but most people will not be as lucky)

When it comes to weight loss, most people can’t get results just on making healthier choices alone. The only way weight loss works is when you eat fewer calories than you are burning. You can either just HOPE you are eating less than you are burning, or you can count calories and KNOW you are eating less than you are burning.

Balanced-DietIf you can’t tell me how many calories you are eating every day, don’t tell me how healthy you eat, don’t tell me you never eat fried food or sweets, don’t tell me how much protein you consume, don’t tell me how you don’t eat carbs or how you’ve gone Paleo. While all of those things are great, and I bet your next doctor’s visit will be a good one, they tell me nothing when it comes to whether you should expect to lose weight or not.

How Much Did You Spend?

target-shoppingHere’s an example: Let’s say I just come home from shopping. I bring all my bags in the house and Steve’s eyeballs pop out of his head and he says “How much did you spend?” and my response was, “I shopped at Target. All the items I got were on sale. I didn’t buy anything outrageously expensive. I didn’t get anything frivolous – everything I bought I really needed and was very practical. I made a lot of smart choices.” I can tell you right now, Steve’s response would still be “so, how much did you spend?” 

You see, Steve doesn’t care what I bought, he wants to know how much I bought ($$$$). He doesn’t care how how much stuff was on sale. Our check will bounce whether it was a smart choice or a dumb one. We either have the money or we don’t – whether I needed the items or not. All my bank account cares about is what’s coming in and what’s going out – it doesn’t care what I am spending the money on or how hard I work for the deposits.
checkbook

This is how your body works. While healthy food will help your body look and feel better, your weight is your body’s account balance. You can either afford items, or not. If you can’t afford the extra calories (whether it’s in Snickers bars or grilled chicken and rice), you will gain weight.

So, next time you want to feel sorry for yourself for eating so clean, but not losing weight, it’s time you start managing your body’s account like you manage your checkbook. 🙂

Are You Up for the Challenge?

Not everyone needs to count calories. Some people are lucky enough to be able to make smart choices (because they really enjoy eating low-calorie foods) and do well managing their weight naturally. Some people are able to make healthier choices simply because they don’t struggle with some of the temptations others struggle with. HOWEVER, if you battle overeating, binging, sweets, carbs, laziness or yo-yo dieting, I believe you should count your calories to help you stay accountable and manage portions, high-calorie items and exercise. Remember, it’s not something you have to do forever – but it will teach you SO much!

If you have tried eating better, eating smaller portions, working out more, etc but you’ve reached a plateau, maybe it’s time you start counting calories. You’ll be AMAZED with the results! Believe me, I’ve seen this time and time again – and I’ve watched people who have worked insanely hard not get results until they started counting calories. Are you ready to start moving that scale?! Commit to counting calories for 30 days. Unsure you can do it? Start with 14 days of calorie counting and then decide if you can do another 14 days then. I bet you surprise yourself!

count calories

Visit www.LoseIt.com today and download their app on your smartphone. I promise, it can change your life forever.

The Cost of Living: A New Way to Look at Dieting

piggy bankWe 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.

profit-and-loss

The Problem

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.

The Price

Say No to Bad FoodWill 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?

fitness motivationWhen 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.

The Reward

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!

12 Diet Tips

Dieters Beware: Fast Food Chains May Fool You

fast food chains mislead consumersWe’ve all been there before. That moment when you have to make a decision to either eat nothing, or eat fast food. I just recently had that dilema myself. I needed food – fast. Luckily, a Wendy’s was just around the corner. I knew, from previous calorie-counting experience, I could find a low-calorie option there, so off I went.

As I waited on the customers in front of me, I began to browse the menu (which, by the way is always a mistake). I hadn’t been to a Wendy’s in some time so there were many new items, and I decided to try something new.

Mistake #1

Fast food chains deceive consumersYou see, if you are on a diet, you should never even consider what you WANT to eat. That’s like window shopping with no money. A dieter needs to make a decision based on what they can afford to eat, not what they want to taste. So, with that said, it’s best not to look at every high-calorie tasty menu item. Stick to the plan Bonnie.

Too late, the first mistake was made. I went off plan and ordered the Baja Chicken Salad. I did, however, go on my handy dandy FastFoodCal app to check out the damage before I actually ordered it. Once I saw the half salad was only 280 calories, I made the order – BUT, several more mistakes were made without my knowledge.

Mistake #2, #3 & #4…

calories add upAfter I got home, I looked up the official Wendy’s nutritional information online to see if the calories included dressing. That would be a big fat NO. Not only did it not include the dressing, their PDF nutritional menu items did not include any toppings at all. So, I used their customizable calorie counter to add or remove toppings for an accurate calorie count. After I did the math, adding the 100 calorie dressing and the 80 calories in tortilla chips, I got the REAL total for the Baja Salad, as it was intended to be eaten. 470 calories, not 280. Big difference!

Granted, I didn’t eat the chips and I didn’t need the dressing since it had guacamole and pico de gallo, but how many other people would have taken the time to dig a little deeper to find the correct nutritional information about their meal? I was so upset at how difficult it was to figure this all out. All I could think of are all the newbie dieters who gobbled the whole 470 calories up, and put 280 on their log – and they wonder why they aren’t losing weight. They are TRYING their best, but these types of common mistakes sabotage their efforts, and restaurants aren’t helping.

Counting Calories Shouldn’t Be This Hard

dieting shouldn't be rocket science

Counting calories is already a pain but, if you really want to succeed, now you have to be a mathematician AND a private investigator – because many chains desquise calories and hide evidence. The way many chains create their nutritional graph is an irritating sneaky tactic to throw consumers off. Notice the very first number (circled below in red) is weight, not calories. They know good and well we look at that first number, expecting THAT number to refer to calories? It’s the first number on most labels, and it’s the most important number for a dieter, so why put it second? I’ll tell you why. They hope people look at that number instead, and mistake it for a lower calorie item. Believe me, I know better and I still almost got fooled.

fast food chain's nutritional deception tactic

The Truth May be Hard to Swallow, but It Leaves a Better Taste in Your Mouth

fast food chains leave a bad taste in dieters' mouthsRestaurants, you should list the calories as it was intended to be served, not list the lowest number based on what you think customers want to hear. Dishing out lies, and relying on people to be too lazy to figure out the truth, is so deceptive – and no one likes being deceived.

There will be plenty of unhealthy people who will continue to buy your greasy high-calorie food, but if you want to also capture the people who value their health more than your value meal, you need to start serving up the truth and giving us what we need to help us reach our goals while still eating on the go. The alternative is to avoid eating fast food altogether. So, do you want to help us or not? Or are you just doing the bare minimum so you can be in compliance and “appear” to be helping America fight obesity.

The fact of the matter is, no matter how tasty your food is, if you can’t be honest and more helpful to dieters, it will just leave us all with a bad taste in our mouth – and that’s something no amount of breath mints can cover up.

CLICK HERE to see 20 examples of how 1 ITEM from popular restaurants can erase 1 HOUR of hard work.

Learn more diet tips for the drive through window: Fast Food Diet Tips.

30 Days of Motivation: You Can’t Afford to Eat That!

We think about what we can, and cannot, afford to spend all the time – but do you ever wonder what you can afford to eat?

eating a cheeseburgerThere are just as many repercussions to eating more than you can afford to eat, than spending more than you can afford to spend. In addition to weight gain, many unnecessary health issues stem from poor eating habits. Yet, we rarely see food in that light.

If menus placed the required exercise to erase each item, I believe we’d change our mind about what we wanted to eat pretty quickly. But, out of sight means out of mind. The same way work adds value to money, physical work adds value to a calorie – and unless you track it, calories will remain valueless, and meaningless.

Next time you decide you want to cheat on your diet, don’t try to decide whether you deserve it or not, decide whether you are willing to work it off or not. Because, eventually, you WILL have to work it off just like you would have to pay off a bill. Whether you have to work off the weight gained from irresponsible eating, or you have to work off the damage it has done to your health – believe me, you WILL pay eventually.

2013 CHEESEBURGER

The cost and calories in the above graphic are for a regular Five Guys Cheeseburger. I calculated the calories burned doing sit ups using LoseIt.com. To test what YOU can afford, log your calories and activity daily. Just for fun, try looking up exercises on the LoseIt app and see how long you would have to exercise to erase some of your favorite foods.

In 2013, let’s not just eat healthier, let’s eat smarter!

CAUTION: Can the Paleo Diet Make You Fat?

paleo food plateFor those of you who follow me, you probably know by now that Steve and I are trying the Paleo Diet. We are on a 10 day “detox”, where we are eating strict paleo which includes no rice, potatoes, sugar, sweetener (EEK!), bread, oatmeal, milk products, beans, peanuts (yes, no peanut butter!) and many other things we love.

Although that may seem scary to some of you, the truth is, we don’t eat much of those things anyway, but to go TOTALLY without – now that’s a whole different story. But, as I go Paleo, I am learning a lot along the way. When I try knew things, I’m always thinking about my client and members. I think of what they will like about it, what they will struggle with, and how they could mess it up – to the point the diet doesn’t work well at all for them. Here’s what I mean…

Red Flag #1: Paleo doesn’t count calories

loseitpremiumNot everyone needs to count calories, HOWEVER, if you have a problem with your weight, you should be managing calories – just like if you had a problem spending money, you should closely manage your bank account. Just because I tell you to shop at K-Mart instead of Macy’s doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll spend less money. The same goes for diet. Just because the Paleo diet is healthy and it doesn’t allow for a lot of high-calorie carbs doesn’t necessarily mean you’d lose weight on the diet if you aren’t purposeful about where you are getting your calories. It’s one thing to eat Paleo because it’s healthy, and it’s another thing to go Paleo and eat all the Paleo approved foods you want and expect to lose weight.

The reason I’m waving the red flag on calories, is to remind you that just because something is healthy doesn’t mean you can’t eat too much of it. I would suggest counting calories while on the Paleo Diet if you are trying to lose weight. Once you learn what Paleo items are higher in calories, and which ones are not, you’ll be able to snack better and eat smarter.

Red Flag #2: Paleo allows for a lot of fat

nuts & berriesUnlike the Adkins Diet, Paleo fats are super healthy and energizing. They aren’t the kind of clog-your-artery fats that kills people. The problem with this is there are more calories in fat than there are in carbs and protein. And, if something is high in fat (even if it’s good fat), it high in calories. Now, to an athlete, those calories are likely burned up in hours of practice and/or intense CrossFit training. BUT, the common person who dabbles in training (like most gym members), and aren’t training for your best FRAN, heaviest Dead Lift or a marathon, high-calorie fats need to be rationed.

For instance, pumpkin seeds, cashews and almonds are all allowed on the Paleo Diet – BUT, if you are a heavy snacker this could be setting you up for a big FAT failure if you aren’t careful. 1 cup of Cashews (which is NOT a lot!) is a whopping 786 calories and 63 grams of fat, so you can see how easy it would be to rack up the calories. (Read my article on Beware of Going Nuts for Nuts) I’m raising the red flag to bring your attention to the dangers of not limiting your fats. Healthy fats are fantastic – in moderation.

Red Flag #3: Paleo doesn’t allow for food alternatives

Artificial sweetener100-calorie snack packs and artificially sweetened drinks are not allowed on a Paleo Diet. This is a good thing when it comes to your health, but can be a bad thing if you don’t have a go-to snack to satisfy cravings. After just 2 days on the diet, I was craving sweets like a Diabetic  – and I don’t even normally care about sweets! I tried eating fruit, but that didn’t cut it. Knowing this was trouble in the making if I didn’t find a solution, I went straight to the health food store and bought all the ingredients I needed to make some Paleo snack bars. I also bought other approved foods, like plantains and sweet potato, which I knew would help satisfy my cravings for sweet carbs. After I ate my sweet potato last night I was golden.

We are so used to being able to grab a snack in a pinch, or enjoy a sweet flavored drink to fight a sweet tooth. Whether it’s a bar or a pack of pretzels, when those items aren’t there we freak. The red flag I’m waving here is to remind you that if you don’t find a solution to your craving you will fail, or quit, this diet – or any diet for that matter. It’s crucial you keep troubleshooting until you find the solution for you. Just because your favorite item is not on the list, like I’m totally crushed I can’t have corn (and POPCORN!), doesn’t mean I can’t find something else I like equally. It just may take some time to find them, and adjust my habits.

Red Flag #4: Paleo cult members can lead you astray

CrossFit Games FemaleLike many diets groups and fitness organizations, it forms a cult-like following – and they LOVE to tell you what to do. And, if they are completely ripped and have a body of a greek god, it’s easy to want to do everything they say. I watch some of my Paleo friends woof down tons of food while still maintaining a six-pack, but is that realistic for me? We can’t all expect our bodies to respond like someone else. I know some of my friends train 3 times harder than me. Some of them have already biked 12 miles, ran 4 miles and hit a WOD before I even woke up. I also realize some people are naturally gifted with beautifully shaped physiques even before they made them more beautiful with intense training. You have to know your own body. You have to know your own cravings and weaknesses. So, the next time someone decides to tell you what to eat (even if you don’t think it’s best for you) notice the red flag, listen to them, and then do the appropriate research needed to make an intelligent decision for your body.

The Verdict

To sum it up, my answer to the question “Can the Paleo Diet Make You Fat?” is “Yes, BUT…“.

YES, you can get fat on almost any diet IF you aren’t eating in moderation. It would be very hard to get fat on the Paleo Diet because it limits starchy carbs and sugar, but it would be irresponsible of me to not warn you to watch your overall calories if you are trying to lose weight until you get the hang of things. So far, I am really liking eating Paleo. It’s forcing me to avoid things I know I eat too much of, so it’s good for me. It’s also hard to argue that it’s not super healthy. It totally is very healthy, improves performance, promotes recovery, balances hormone levels, reduces tissue inflammation, lowers body acidity, and increases energy. Just don’t get excited about the whole “Paleo people don’t count calories” thing, because that doesn’t mean YOU don’t need to. It just depends on your goal. If you only care about performance and health, don’t worry about it. BUT, if you care what you look like, you gotta do what you gotta do to get you closer to your goal.

Creating a Low-Calorie Fajita Salad with LoseIt

Tracking calories for prepackaged food is easy, but what about when you combine a whole bunch of ingredients for a family style meal? This is one of the most common questions I get – and I’ve got the answer!

I believe most people just guess their way through the calories, which allows too much room for error. But, the LoseIt app makes tracking calories easy – even when you are following a recipe or, like me, making things up as you go!

Steve and I are always on the go, and yesterday was no exception. We just got back from shooting some movie clips for a halloween flick and we were hungry, so I needed to whip something up fast. I decided to make some quick and easy chicken fajita salads. It had to be quick, because I was STARVING – and it needed to be easy, because I was EXHAUSTED! (It’s hard playing dead you know) ha

Although I always prefer fresh produce and meat, I always keep some Tyson precooked chicken or frozen chicken tenderloins for emergencies to help me make a quick creation.

I opened the LoseIt app on my iPhone and clicked on “More” at the bottom of the screen. Then I chose “Edit Foods & Exercises” to get to “Recipes”. As I added ingredients, I just simply scanned each food item with the LoseIt barcode scanner and it automatically added the nutritients to my recipe.

After I cooked up the fajita topping, I needed to know how many servings it made. I guessed it made 4 or 5 servings, but I wanted to be sure since we are counting every calorie we eat right now in preparation for Steve’s bodybuilding show coming up. I weighed one serving to get an idea of what i was needing for my salad. Then I weighed the entire mixture and divided it by my serving size to see how many servings it made.

After I tallied the servings, I inputed the servings in the app and that was it! I was all done and ready to eat! Here was how how I made this simple delicious salad on the fly.

298-Calorie Quick & Easy Fajita Salad

FAJITA TOPPING
makes 5 1/2 servings

One Tbsp Olive Oil
Bag of Tison fajita chicken strips
1 Onion
2 Green Peppers
Fajita Seasoning
Lime Juice to taste
TOTAL: 990 calories = 180 per serving

SALAD INGREDIENTS
for 1 serving

Organic Mixed Greens, 20 calories
1 Tbsp Light Sour Cream, 20 calories
1/2 Tomato,  11 calories
1/4 Avocado, 57 calories
2 Tbsp Salsa, 10 calories
Top with a little Lime Juice
TOTAL: 118 calories per serving

118-calorie salad mix, topped with 5 ounces of fajita topping totaled 298 calories of deliciousness! 🙂

 

Is Your Body a Maxed Out Credit Card?

We have all complained about our credit card bills. Everyone has bought stuff they couldn’t afford at the time  – and now it’s time to pay it off. It’s not fun, and many times we aren’t even enjoying the purchase by the time we are paying it off, which stinks even more!

We do the same thing with food. We eat it, whether we can afford it or not, and when it comes time to pay it off we gripe, complain and act like we are the victim. Like being in debt to our eyeballs, we did it to ourselves and it’s time we start manning up, paying it off, and becoming more disciplines.

1. Pay it off (completely). Don’t just pay it down and then rack up the calories again the first chance you get. Pay it off completely. Get to the size you know you should be before you start your “spending” again. Then, if you increase your spending, remember to keep paying it down while the amount is small – never letting your fat account get that high again.

2. Practice more discipline. If you can’t afford it, you really shouldn’t eat it – especially if you know you aren’t willing to pay it off fast. Be honest with yourself. Are you REALLY going to wake up in the morning and run an extra 3 miles to erase the ice cream you’re eating tonight? Remember, when you are losing weight, you are already paying off past mistakes, so any more calories you eat will require ADDITIONAL work to erase.

3. Eat like American Express. The wonderful thing about American Express is you pay it off each month. We should treat eating that way. We should only eat what we are willing to pay off that month. Unfortunately, most people eat like a Visa card – they eat what they want and just do the bare minimum to get by – resulting in carrying a large balance that never gets paid down.

Subscribe to my pFITblog for more tips and encouragement. 

7 DAY DIET: How to Make Your Own Meal Plan

So you’re committed to working out. Whether you just joined our Boot Camp program or you are training on your own – you’re dedicated to getting results. What about your diet? (sound of car skidding to a stop here)

Yes, I said “Diet”. When I speak of diet, I’m not talking about a fad, a quick fix, or a miserable period of time you starve yourself in order to lose weight. I’m referring to managing your calories and nutrition.

Excuses, Excuses
Do you know how many excuses I hear when I ask someone if they know how many calories they eat? First they tell me HOW GREAT they eat. Then they tell me WHAT they eat. Then they tell me how HARD they work in the gym. They’re doing everything they can BUT counting calories – and most people don’t know where to start.

Weight loss isn’t about how healthy you eat, what you eat, or how hard you work in the gym. Although all those things are awesome, weight loss is determined by how many calories you are eating PERIOD. If you aren’t losing weight the way you are eating now, then you are eating too many calories – plain and simple.

How Bad Do You Want It?
Working out is hard, but it’s the easy part when it comes to weight loss. You can’t rely on exercise alone for weight loss. Although exercise is awesome, exercise makes you hungrier so many people just replace the calories burned exercising by eating more – and they don’t even know they’re doing it. It’s similar to getting a raise and ending up just as broke as before. You can’t say where the money went, but it’s gone. Unless you BUDGET those calories, you can’t count on everything just magically balancing out like you want it to.

1 Day Commitment

Give me just one day to journal you regular eating habits. You can’t really know what to fix, if you don’t know what’s wrong. Write down everything you eat normally all day long, without modifying portions or foods. Write down exact measurements, including sauces, dressing, drinks, toppings, vitamins, coffee creamer, etc. Using a calorie counter or google, tally your calories for the day, taking a mental note whether this is truly a normal day or not.

Analyze Your Results:
1. Was was your total calories? (most diets are 1200-1500 calories for women, 1500-1800 for men)

2. Where you are getting most of your calories from (carbs, fats, protein). 
3. How many grams of protein are you getting? Most people are very low in protein.
4. How often did you eat? Eating 5-6 times a day boosts your metabolism.
5. Look for high-calorie mistakes.Was it food choice or portions? 

Getting Started: Your 7 Day Commitment

So you want a meal plan? Of course you do! I’ll give you a meal plan if you will give me 7 days to prove you really want this.  Anyone can count calories for 7 days. Right? Listen, if you TRULY want to get results, you must quit avoiding the inevitable. You may have gotten by with reducing portions, cutting fat, or limiting carbs in the past, but it’s time to take it up a notch. The only way to get guaranteed results is to have accurate information. NOTE: Weigh yourself on an empty stomach on Day 1 and Day 8. Dedicate the next 7 days to managing calories.

10 Quick Start Tips To Calorie Management:
1. Sign up for a free online calorie counter or phone app like LoseIt, MyFitnessPal or FitDay.
2. Before you eat ANYTHING, look it up first. 
3. Aim to keep meals between 300-400 calories each and snacks 100-150 calories.
4. Eat 5-6 snacks and meals per day.
5. Try to get .5 – 1.0 grams of protein per pound of ideal bodyweight a day.*
6. Eat whole foods (meat, vegetables, etc instead of casseroles, etc.) Keep it simple by eating simple.
7. No guessing. Everything must be measured or weighed. We always underestimate portions. 
8. Don’t eat at any restaurant that doesn’t offer nutritional information.
9. Eat prepackaged meals & snacks, if necessary, to simplify things at first.
10. Be honest. If you ate something you shouldn’t have, input it anyway. You need to see it in black & white.

Your New Meal Plans
At the end of your 7-day commitment, look at the days you felt, and ate, your best. Use these days as templates for the next 7 days. YOU just started your own meal plan! (I promised you a meal plan didn’t I? Yes, I’m sneaky like that!) Most of us are creatures of habit and eat the same thing often. Are you ready to do this for another 7 days? The longer you manage your calories, the more meal plans you will have to choose from the easier it will get!

*PROTEIN: If you are working out, a woman who wants to be 130lbs would shoot for 65-130gms a day. I personally prefer to eat 75% to 100% my body weight in protein, which would be 97.5gms to 130gms). Using that formula, a 180lb man would shoot for 135-180gms of protein a day. 

SUBSCRIBE TO THIS BLOG to get low-calorie food & snack tips and more this week!

2 Holiday Cookies A Day Keeps the Skinny Jeans Away

The Hard Cold Truth
I recently tweeted “all it takes is 500 calories extra a day to gain 5lbs over the Holidays“. That’s only 2 Subway Cookies a day – not a ton of food by any means! It stemmed some great conversation and one of the replies was the fact was a little misleading.

I was thankful for his input because it helped me see how others may interpret my tweets. When I was talking about the Holidays, I was speaking of the period between Thanksgiving and Christmas. Then I did the math:

500 calories x 30 days = 15,000 calories ÷ 3,500 (calories in 1lb of fat) = 5 pounds

He replied “for people less in the know, that’s a daunting fact”. SO, that brings me to the question:
Do you prefer hard cold facts that aren’t always fun to hear (but you may NEED to hear) OR do you prefer glossy text full of warm and fuzzy encouragement?  Read the rest of this entry

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