WAYS TO REDUCE AND BURN CALORIES
The truth is that some of these diets may grant you temporary weight loss. In the usual case, however, the weight returns as soon as you stray from the diet.
The bottom line is that you gain weight because you consume more calories than your body is able to use and no diet is a substitute for good eating habits.
Your body requires a certain number of calories in order to function properly. If you truly wish to lose weight, you must burn off more calories than your body requires.
In this guide you will learn ways to reduce the number of calories you ingest as well as tips and techniques to help you burn off unnecessary calories.
Before we begin, however, it’s important that you fill your arsenal with every possible tool available to insure your success. The most important tool in your weight loss program does not include diet or exercise.
There is no special equipment you need to purchase. You don’t need to join a gym or health club. And, you already have every component you need to put this tool to work for you and begin a successful weight loss program. What is it? It’s your mind. Having said that, let’s get started, shall we?
If you have tried every diet on the planet, every exercise program from the latest fitness guru and repeatedly failed to achieve your weight loss goals you probably need a “check up from the neck up.”
Successful weight loss doesn’t just happen. It took more than a few days to reach the point where you are at right now. Give yourself a break and expect it to take awhile before you see measurable results. Take a leap of faith and follow some basic principles.
Begin with your “self talk.” This is the conversation that runs through your brain continuously. What kind of conversation do you have with your self talk? What type of negative self talk has kept you from reaching your goals in the past?
If you had a chance to do it over again, would you change the dialogue? That’s a no-brainer isn’t it? Well, the good news is that you can turn the tide of negative self talk beginning right now. It’s never too late to begin and you start by reprogramming your self talk.
A good starting point is to begin with positive affirmations. Positive affirmations spoken aloud with authority and belief, positively affect your attitude, focus your thinking and lead to a course of action that will help you become the person you want to be and have the things that you want to have.
Begin by writing your affirmations on paper. You need to take some time for this exercise. You can begin with something like, “I want to lose 25 pounds before Christmas.” That’s a worthy goal and attainable, but we need to put some work into structuring the affirmation.
First of all, “I want” gives the impression that what you desire is always in the future. In order to re-program your self talk, you need to trick your mind into believing that you have already achieved success. This is how your subconscious mind functions.
Your subconscious mind has no capacity for understanding the concept of time. Everything is in the moment . . . here and now. When you tell your subconscious mind you “want” that is exactly what you will get … want. You will get "want", without ever achieving fulfillment. Unless you change your mental tape recorder, you will achieve exactly what you are telling your subconscious, that you “want to lose 25 pounds.” You will “want to lose 25 pounds” for the rest of your days unless you change your self talk.
If your weight is 150 pounds and you desire is to weight 125 pounds, then you need to “be” 125 pounds from the moment you make the decision to change your self talk.
What if you write your affirmation to read something like this: “I am healthy and fit, weighing 125 pounds.”
What are you telling your subconscious now? It’s extremely important that you phrase your affirmation as if you have already accomplished what you desire. Work on writing it out until you have it precisely as you wish to become.
It is particularly important that your affirmation is crystal clear because what you affirm is exactly what your subconscious mind will bring you.
You needn’t limit yourself to one affirmation either. Write another one that reflects your new exercise program. “I enjoy my healthy new exercise program,” or, “I love the healthy foods I eat.”
Write and rewrite until you are absolutely certain that you have written your goals “in the here and now” AND to represent precisely what you desire. Then, and only then, begin to speak it aloud and do so several times a day.
Remember to use the present tense. “I acknowledge achievement in all my weight loss goals.” “I have the skill and talent to exercise every day.” “I am a winner.” “I am grateful for all of my accomplishments no matter how small.”
At first you will feel awkward and uncomfortable and you may not feel or believe what you are saying. You may feel silly saying them out loud. It doesn’t matter. Continue to speak the affirmations aloud with as much conviction as you can muster. Try using driving time in your car for firm, strong voiced self talk. It’s taken a long time to train your subconscious to use negative self talk. If you will persevere with speaking your affirmations aloud, firmly and confidently, you will be amazed at how quickly you can turn your thoughts around.
You didn’t hop on a bicycle the first time and just take off down the street. It took practice to train your body to balance on those two wheels. This will take some practice as well. Continue to repeat your affirmations aloud, several times a day for the next 30 days and you will be amazed at how much you change your thinking and attitude.
Let’s investigate how words affect you in your everyday life. Take a trip down memory lane and recall some real life experiences that made you happy, proud, and successful or any combination of the three.
Spend some time recalling how you felt. Maybe you won a spelling bee as a child, or hit a home run. Who was there? This will help you remember. You had those feelings once and you can achieve them again. What words did others use while you were experiencing those feelings of joy and happiness?
Recall those words, and write them down. Then, put them to work in your daily conversations. They are words that are already proven to have a positive affect on your well being. Recalling and including them in your day will trigger those feelings again because your subconscious already has an association with those words and their results.
Above all, take action. If you have become a slave of procrastination, decide to rid your life of it once and for all. Yes, you can create affirmations to help you there as well. “I have the attitude and skills to take action today.” “I am winning in my life by turning my attitude into action.”
Do nothing and nothing gets done. Do something and many things are placed in motion. Regardless of what you are doing in life, you need to take action. Do something every day to put your plan in motion.
How is your attitude? What are your first thoughts when you awake in the morning? You’ve got quite a lot to choose from. Do you begin the day by dragging out of bed bemoaning the fact that you have to get to work? Or, do you embrace the morning as another great opportunity to do great things?
Put the universal law of reciprocity to work in your life every single day. Did you know as much as ninety nine percent of our conversation is negative? There are some folks who can hardly wait to get their mouths open so they can “one up” another person's current negative situation.
Hmmm, think back to that self talk. If what you hear every day is negative, it’s no wonder your self talk brings you down and prevents you from being, doing and having everything you desire. Try this exercise. Make a decision today, right now, from this moment to spend the rest of the day contributing to conversation in a positive way.
Impossible, you say? Not so. Say that somebody complains about another rainy day. Your response might be, “yes, isn’t it great? See that beautiful rainbow!” Try and create the habit of saying something positive to everyone.
If you are learning to say something positive to everybody about everything every time, you are disciplining your subconscious for positive results in everything that happens to you.
Before we can begin, we need to grasp an understanding of the problem.For Men
Two out of three Americans are overweight. The primary cause is that we eat more and exercise less. There is no doubt that the more advances we make that enhance our lifestyle the heavier we become.
Wait a minute! What about all those low-fat foods that we eat now? How come I reduced fat in my diet but I’m still gaining weight?
It’s a simple answer. A few years ago we all became aware of the detrimental effects of fat in our diet. What did we do? We began to concentrate on lowering cholesterol and taking fat out of our diets.
This is a good thing. However, The National Center for Health Statistics studied eating habits of 8,260 adult American between 1988 and 1991. Their research showed that Americans had significantly reduced their fat intake but still packed on the pounds.
How can this happen? There is no mystery. In the process of counting fat grams, we stopped counting calories! Many of us bought in to the theory that if it is “low-fat” it won’t make us fat.
You can’t forget about counting calories. If you eat more calories than you need the body will store them as fat. It doesn’t matter whether the calories are from fat or carbohydrates.
One school of thought believes that eating small amounts of fat can actually keep you from over indulging on total calories. The theory is that dietary fat causes our bodies to produce a hormone that tells the intestines to slow down the emptying process. You feel full and therefore are less likely to overeat.
Adding a little peanut butter to your rice cake may satisfy your hunger for a longer period of time, thus preventing you from eating more than you need.
Here’s more news that is surprising. Tufts University scientists put 11 middle aged men and women volunteers on a variety of average, reduced and low-fat diets.
The results? Extremely low-fat diets which provided only 15 percent fat from calories (this is a diet near impossible in real life) did have a positive effect on blood cholesterol and triglyceride levels.
However, a reduced-fat diet (much more realistic) only affected those levels if accompanied by weight loss.
In fact, they concluded, cutting fat without losing weight actually increased triglyceride levels and decreased high density lipoproteins (HDLs), the “good” cholesterol that helps protect again heart disease.
We can deduce, therefore, while excess fat isn’t healthy, fat is also not necessarily a bad thing. Without some fat in our diet, the body won’t make nerve cells and hormones or absorb some of the fat soluble vitamins.
Okay, so how can you determine your ideal weight? Just how much fat and how many calories should you consume to reach and maintain a healthy weight?
One answer won’t work for everybody. So you need to do some figuring to determine how much fat and how many calories you can have. First, you need to determine your ideal weight. Here is a simple method to determine what that weight should be:
The ideal weight for a woman who is exactly 5 feet tall is 100 pounds. For every additional inch above 5 feet, add five pounds. If you are shorter than 5 feet tall, subtract five pounds for every inch you measure below 5 feet.
Next, determine whether you have a small, medium or large frame. Using a measuring tape, measure your wrist. If your wrist measures exactly 6 inches, you have a medium frame and the weight number you calculated above, does not need to be adjusted. If your wrist measures less than 6 inches, subtract 10 percent from your ideal weight. If your wrist measures more than 6 inches, add 10 percent to your ideal weight.
The ideal weight for a man who is exactly 5 feet tall is 106 pounds. For every additional inch above 5 feet, add 6 pounds. To determine whether you have a small, medium or large frame, measure your wrist. If your wrist measures exactly 7 inches, you have a medium frame and you do not need to adjust your ideal weight. If your wrist is smaller than 7 inches, you have a small frame and should subtract 10 percent from your ideal weight. If your wrist is larger than 7 inches, you have a small frame and should add 10 percent to your ideal weight.Diet
Okay, now that you know what your ideal body weight should be, let’s take a look at how many calories your body needs each day. Before we do this however, you need to take into account your level of activity.
If you are totally inactive and usually get no exercise, multiply your adjusted ideal weight by 11. If you get regular exercise two or three times a week, multiply your adjusted ideal weight by 13. If you get regular exercise four to five times a week, multiple your adjusted ideal weight by 15. And finally, if you get regular exercise six to seven times a week, multiply your adjusted ideal weight by 18.
Now that you know your ideal weight and how many calories you need each day you can easily figure out how much fat you can eat. Most nutritionists recommend that you limit daily intake of fat to 30 percent of your total calories. However, if you want to lose weight or have a history of heart disease or cancer, limit your daily fat intake to 20 percent of your total calories.
Let’s take a look at a real life example. If Jane is a 5 foot 4 inch woman with a medium frame her ideal weight is 120 pounds. Jane is trying to lose weight so she needs to keep her fat calories down to about 20 percent.
Jane is exercising two to three times a week so we can multiply her ideal weight by the number that matches her activity level, which is 13. Now we know that Jane needs 1,560 calories each day.
If we take 20 percent of 1,560 (1,560 multiplied by .20) we get 312. Next, translate fat calories into fat grams (this will make it easier for you to read food labels). One gram of fat equals 9 calories. So if we divide 312 by 9 we know that Jane can eat abut 35 grams of fat per day.
Because Jane is over weight and trying to lose, her ideal weight and current weight do not match up. Jane needs to adjust her total calorie consumption. In order for her to lose one pound, she needs to eliminate 3,500 calories.
One simple solution is to lose a pound a week. That’s a worthy, healthy goal and we’ll explore methods that will help you achieve that goal in the upcoming segments.
Avoid “fad” diets. If you don’t believe me, ask your doctor about these: negative calorie diets, extremely low calorie diets, low carb diets, and any other type of “fad” diet that is unbalanced.
Changing diet should be a matter of healthier life style. Learn all you can about different foods and nutrition. The more you know the easier it is to implement healthy nutrition in your diet.
1. Substitute fruit purees for butter or margarine. They are easy to prepare in a food processor and will significantly reduce calories and fat.
2. Cheese is good for you, but the fat is not. Try this: Zap cheese in the microwave and drain off grease.
3. Exercising before you eat just makes you hungrier. Exercise AFTER eating when the body has to work harder to digest food.
4. Don’t eat while watching television. You can become so engrossed in your program that don’t realize how much you are eating.
5. Too many people skip breakfast. Eat in the morning when the body burns more calories.
6. Water mixed with fructose suppresses appetite better than glucose with water or diet drinks. Drink a glass of orange juice one half to one hour before a meal.
7. Avoid trans-fatty acids. Use olive, corn or canola oil when cooking.
8. Switch from whole to skim milk. All the nutrients are there without the fat. Okay, at least cut back to low fat!
9. Limit yourself to just four egg yolks a week.
10. Trim all fat from meats before cooking. You’ll be amazed at how much you reduce your fat intake if you take this one small step.
11. Eliminate fried foods. Do we need to say why?
12. Cream sauces like Alfredo and hollandaise are loaded with fat. Use tomato based sauces instead of cream.
13. Use lemon juice or low sodium soy sauce for flavor.
14. Don’t skip meals. When you do, you eat more at your next meal and usually eat the wrong foods.
15. Read labels – check fat, sugar and carb content.
16. Stop buying on impulse. Never shop for groceries without a list.
17. Avoid shopping when you are hungry – eat first!
18. Shop for groceries once a week and only buy from your prepared list.
19. Head directly to the fruit and vegetable aisles when you enter the grocery store. Fill up your basket in these aisles and you’ll be less likely to buy binge food.
20. If you have a local “farmers market” where you can buy your fruits and veggies off the truck, by all means do so. They’ll be fresher and tastier.
21. Make sure you buy everything you need for your weekly meal planning. Returning to the grocery store numerous times increases the risk of buying what you shouldn’t. The grocery stores know their business very well and present items that are hard to resist.
22. Vary your foods – introduce something new each week. Menu planning can become boring when you eat the same things. That boredom translates into over eating. Try new healthy recipes each week.
23. Stay away from processed foods as much as possible. Yes, they are very convenient. They are also loaded with fat and/or sugar, not to mention the chemicals.
24. The ads are soooo compelling. Cut fast food from your diet!
25. Eat more fish but avoid breading or batters. Fish oil is good for you.
26. Eat more vegetables. Try mixing and matching fresh vegetables for variety.
27. Steam your veggies instead of boiling them. They’ll taste better and you’ll retain more of their nutritional value.
28. Use fat free or low fat salad dressings or make your own using lemon juice, spices and a tiny amount of olive oil.
29. Exchange water for soft drinks – yes, even diet drinks!
30. Slim down with casseroles – just use lean meat and veggies.
31. Go ahead and snack, just snack on good stuff, like raisins, nuts veggies and dried fruit.
32. Never eat while you are standing.
33. Don’t sample when you are cooking. A taste here, a little bite there and before you know it you’ve eaten an entire portions without sitting down at the table!
34. Don’t give up potatoes. A baked potato has 0 grams of fat and only 160 calories. Just don’t eat fries that weigh in at 13 fat grams and 480 calories!
35. Stay away from pastries. They are loaded with fat and are also loaded with sugar.
36. Eat more salads but don’t let salad become boring. Add different ingredients. Throw in a few raisins, canned beans like garbanzos and vary your dressings. Leave out the mayo!
37. Limit your intake of meat to just two or three meat choices per week and select more “white” meats than red.
38. You don’t have to give up dessert, just rearrange it. Try mixing fresh fruits with low fat yogurt. Strawberries with banana yogurt is delicious!
39. Add nuts to your yogurt and salads. Chopped nuts make a great alternative to “breaded” style garnishes like croutons.
40. Replace white bread with whole grain bread. If you can find bread that still contains the “wheat germ,” buy it!
41. When baking, applesauce makes a great substitute for shortening.
42. Prepare foods in different ways. Instead of traditional frying, try stir-fry and use a low fat spray or non-stick pan.
43. Reduce portions at meal time. We live in a “jumbo size” world. There’s no reason why the portions we consumer need to be super sized as well.
44. Measure portions one time to get an idea of what a portion of any given food should be. Do it once for each food that you commonly eat. Eventually, you will be able to “eyeball” a proper serving.
45. Keep a food diary of everything you eat. This is the first step to acquiring a new, healthier life style.
46. Wait no more than five hours between meals or snacks. This regiment will help to stabilize your metabolism.
47. Specific food combinations can help to burn calories by enhancing your metabolism. Eat carbs that are rich in fiber. They take longer to digest and you will feel “fuller” for longer periods of time.
48. Use fresh or frozen fruits and vegetables. Canned veggies are okay in a pinch, but generally include more salt than you need. By the time they are canned and processed, they have lost much of their nutritive value.
49. Eat more yogurt. Yogurt is a protein as well as a carbohydrate therefore giving you the small amount of energy needed to burn the protein.
50. Add more tuna to your diet. You can grill it, broil it, steam it and poach it, all without any added fat.
51. Try different varieties of beans rather than sticking to the same old type you are accustomed to. Beans are a great source of energy, protein and fiber.
52. Beware of misleading claims. Reduced fat merely means that the item has 25% less fat. Use common sense. If something “normally” contains 300 fat grams, then reduced fat means it still has over 200 grams of fat!
53. Salads to avoid are tuna, chicken and egg. It isn’t the meat or egg that’s the problem. It’s the mayonnaise. Try making them with plain yogurt and spices to dress it up and you’ll have a healthy combination.
54. If you absolutely must have your fatty salad dressing, try this. Have the dressing on the side and dip your fork into the dressing before you spear the salad ingredient. You’ll have your taste but without dredging your salad in fat.
55. Love avocado? Go ahead and indulge a quarter cup but don’t mix it with sour cream!
56. Roasted, flavored almonds make a great snack.
57. Make your own potato chips. It’s simple. Thinly slice a large baking potato and place in a single layer on a cookie sheet sprayed with low fat aerosol spray. Spray the slices lightly as well. Sprinkle with paprika and any other spice of your choosing. Bake in a 400 degree oven for thirty minutes making sure to turn once. ‘Voila! Your own home baked potato chips and a great snack.
58. Switch from cream of wheat cereal to oatmeal. The whole grain in oatmeal is much better for you and won’t leave you hungry an hour later like the cream of wheat.
59. If you plan on eating out at a buffet, eat something before you go. Don’t skip a meal and plan on chowing down at the buffet.
60. Grab a table as far from the buffet as possible. You’ll lessen the temptation to graze or go back for seconds.
61. Go through the buffet line one time only.
62. Load up at the salad bar. Gelatin or plan green salads should be abundant.
63. Look for baked roasted or grilled entrees like fish or lean roast beef.
64. Avoid the breaded fish or fried chicken.
65. Select soups you can see through. If you can see through them, they are broths with fewer fat and calories.
66. Eat slowly. Savor each bite. Take your time and enjoy eating. If you eat too fast, your stomach will be full long before the message to stop chowing down reaches your brain.
67. Ask yourself if you really tasted and enjoyed that last bite of food. If your answer is no, it’s time to slow down.
68. To help downsize your portions, use a smaller plate. Instead of a dinner plate, use a salad plate for your entire meal.
69. When eating in a restaurant, ask for a child’s portion or ask to have the entrée split and have the second half packaged as takeout.
70. As an assist to making certain you are getting the right nutrition from your vegetables, alternate the colors from day to day. One day eat fresh yellow and orange vegetables like squash, pumpkin, and carrots then switch to green the next day, like spinach, or dark leafy lettuces.
71. Pass up peanuts for snacking. Two ounces of salted peanuts has 328 calories. Nibble on pretzels instead. 20 of the small ones have as little as 80 calories and most are fat free.
72. Skip fried shrimp. A three ounce serving has 206 calories while the same weight when boiled is only 84 calories.
73. If you love pie, stick with the fruit pies. Pumpkin and other fruit pies are lower in calories. Pecan pie has about 430 calories while the same slice of pumpkin pie is only 240. You can drop another 100 calories if you don’t eat the crust!
74. Try Canadian bacon instead of regular bacon. One ounce of regular bacon is about four medium cooked slices and carries 163 calories. A one ounce slice of Canadian bacon is much leaner and only has about 57 calories.
75. Avoid the high fat temptations when dining out. Call ahead. Many high quality restaurants will accommodate your needs if you give them sufficient time beforehand. Explain that you are on a low fat diet and ask if they can prepare your food without frying.
76. If you frequent a specific restaurant, ask to take a menu home so you can study what they offer and learn how to plan your meals out.
77. Steer Clear of fast food restaurants. Most of their food is 40 to 50 percent fat. Many are finally wising up, however, and you can get salads, plain hamburgers or grilled chicken. You can also ask for the restaurant’s nutritional information. Many now offer that.
78. Stay away from the appetizers unless you request crackers, pretzels or fresh vegetables like carrots or celery with a honey-mustard dressing (not ranch).
79. Put your waiter through his or her paces. Ask lots of questions and don’t stop until you are satisfied. How is the fish grilled? If it is in butter, ask for it dry. If a fried entrée is offered on the menu, ask if the chef can bake it, broil it, grill it or steam it to cut down on the fat. Make sure they follow up. It’s your meal and your money paying for it and within reason you should be able to get it the way you want it.
80. If a restaurant won’t split a portion in half for you, preparing half of it “to go,” request a doggie bag or box be delivered with your meal and split it yourself immediately before you begin to eat.
81. You can also carry a “survival kit.” Use a small plastic sandwich bag and carry packets of low fat dressings, herbal teas, spices or other essentials that may not be readily available at a restaurant.
82. Split a meal with a friend. Order soup or salad a’ la carte with one entrée and ask the waiter for an extra plate. It will save you money AND reduce the fat in each meal.
83. Visit pizzerias that offer salads and pizza by the slice. Don’t order pizza with meat. Stick with vegetable toppings and, if possible, a wheat crust. Some pizza places do offer that option.
84. Eliminate tartar sauce. If you order a fish fillet sandwich ask that the tartar sauce be left off the bun.
85. Bake with cocoa instead of chocolate. For each ounce of unsweetened chocolate called for in a recipe, substitute 3 tablespoons of unsweetened cocoa powder.
86. Use evaporated skim milk for sauces and soups. It has the texture and the flavor of cream but without the fat. Each cup contains 80 grams less of fat and 600 few calories than heavy cream.
87. Plain nonfat or low fat yogurt is a great replacement for sour cream. Use it to make salad dressings. It’s also good as an add-on to breakfast cereals and desserts.
88. Low fat foods may seem less flavorful when you first try them because fat adds flavor to some foods and you are used to that. Add zip with lots of herbs and spices like basil, garlic, ginger, onion powder tarragon and oregano. Vary the spices and come up with your own combinations.
89. Yogurt can help you lose weight while protecting muscle. A recent study of overweight people who ate three servings of yogurt daily for 12 weeks lost 22% more weight, 61% more body fat and 81%more abdominal fat than people who ate a similar number of calories but no dairy products.
90. Spicy foods curb appetite as evidenced in a recent study. People who ate a sauce containing capsaicin (the compound that makes hot pepper spicy), consumed an average of 200 fewer calories over the next three hours than those who didn’t eat the sauce. Consider eating more spicy foods.
91. A 12 ounce cola has 150 calories, two tablespoons of full fat salad dressing 150, a glazed doughnut 250 and a four ounce bagel, 300. Just eliminating these items will help you to lose weight.
92. Another recent study shows that calcium from diary foods is more effective for weight loss than supplements. Why? Food is a complex mixture of known and unknown components. There is a co-operation among the components that can’t be reproduced in a nutritional supplement. Dairy contains calcium and a host of other biologically active components including the amino acid leucine. Recent research reveals that leucine may increase the ability of muscle to use fat. Have low-fat or skim milk before a meal.
Studies show that getting a liquid from dairy before eating helps you feel fuller sooner at that meal and eat less at the next meal. If you are lactose intolerant, try yogurt with live culture (it has very little lactose) or take a lactose supplement when consuming dairy.
93. Eat fish at least twice a week. The omega 3 fatty acids in fish have been shown to reduce heart attack and stroke risk in addition to helping you maintain a nutritional diet.
94. Sometimes you can go with fast food. Burger Kings BI Veggie Burger with reduced fat mayonnaise contains 340 calories and 2 grams of saturated fat. It’s better than just about any burger at any other food chain.
95. McDonald’s Fruit and Yogurt Parfait is low fat vanilla yogurt layered with berries and topped with granola. It’s a nutrient rich bargain at only 380 calories.
96. Subway’s 7 subs with 6 grams of fat or less include ham, roast beef, chicken and turkey and range from 200 to 300 calories for a six inch sub.
97. Wendy’s Mandarin Chicken Garden Sensation Salad is a creative salad alternative of mixed greens, with chicken and mandarin orange sections, roasted almonds and a half packet of Oriental sesame dressing. It is a great alternative at just 470 calories.
98. A veggie sandwich may not always be the ideal choice. The two ounces of cheese added to these popular lunchtime meals contain three quarters of a full day’s allowance for saturated fat. Tuna salad (because of the mayonnaise), has 720 calories and chicken salad is 550 calories. Stick with turkey, roast beef, chick breast or veggie sandwich without the cheese.
99. All salads are not created equal. A taco salad is served in a fried taco shell filled with ground beef, cheese, sour cream and guacamole. It contains 1,100 calories and a full day’s quota of saturated fat!
100. Not only is a single order of Fettucine Alfredo an artery clogger, it also weighs in at a whopping 1,500 calories! When eating Italian food, opt for pasta topped with marinara or meat sauce (skip the meatballs), red or white clam sauce or chicken Marsala.
Well, you knew it was coming, didn’t you? We’ve discussed at least 55 ways to adjust your eating habits. Some of the tips we covered will help your metabolism burn extra calories, but the bottom line is that you still need to burn more calories than you consume if you wish to lose those extra pounds.
The dawn of the Information Age has given us more labor saving devices than any other period in history. Along with this knowledge we have settled into a more sedentary lifestyle.
Taking a little trip back in time can really open our eyes. A typical day for your great grandmother began long before the sunrise. She was usually the first to awaken so she could have a hearty breakfast on the table for the rest of the family.
She would probably stoke her range with wood brought in the previous evening. Unless one of the children was old enough to be charged with the task, she would put on her coat, scarf and gloves and trek out to the barn to milk the cow, stopping on her way back to gather eggs from the chicken coop, home-cured ham and sausage from the smoke house, cheese (that she had made herself) butter (that she churned) and potatoes from the cold storage cellar.
Returning to her kitchen with her collection in tow, she would prepare a breakfast that most likely consisted of ham, sausage and eggs fried in lard she had rendered, biscuits, gravy made from the leavings in the frying pan, flapjacks, whole milk and strong coffee.
That picture can pretty much turn your veins to instant concrete!
Bear in mind that after her pre-dawn preparations she would spend the remainder of her day, sweeping, dusting, polishing, scrubbing clothing using hot water that she boiled herself, hanging the laundry out to dry, tending her vegetable garden and often toiling in the fields with the men.
The comparison between your great grandparents is not so much what they ate, as how they used the calories they consumed. Life was hard. Normal physical activity usually burned off the calories they consumed. They worked hard and ate hearty and, yes they did have a shorter life expectancy.
Today we eat foods that are processed and contain more fat and chemicals than nutrition. To top it off, we also live sedentary lives. Unlike grandma’s hearty breakfast we are more likely to grab a cup of coffee on the run. We rush to an office, only to spend the next 8 hours sitting in front of a computer screen, just as you are doing now.
Getting a handle on your diet is just the first step toward losing weight and living a healthier lifestyle. In order to tame the weight loss beast, you MUST change your physical habits as well as your eating habits.
You don’t necessarily have to exert yourself as if you were training for the Olympics, but you definitely need to learn how to burn off more calories than you consume. Once you have accomplished that, you can step in to a regimen to maintain your ideal weight.
Before you begin a fitness/exercise program, you need to know what you want to accomplish. Use the information in the chapter on “Where To Begin” to determine your ideal weight. Once you have your plan firmly in place (we will discuss this further in the next chapter) you can begin to incorporate the following tips.
101. Always warm up before beginning your exercise activity using smooth and fluid movement. The purpose of the warm up is to minimize discomfort and prevent injury and loosen up your muscles for the exercise to come.
102. Begin with a couple of deep breaths, inhaling through the nose and exhaling from your mouth.
103. When you plan to walk or run, do just a few hundred yards at a slower walk or a gentler jog.
104. Use the cool down routine in the reverse of the warm-up, gently slowing down. This will enable your breathing and heart rate to return to normal.
105. Learn to listen to your body and differentiate between good pain and bad pain.
106. Never exercise on a full or empty stomach.
107. Drink plenty of water to reduce the chance of dehydration. Experts usually recommend 16 ounces either one or two hours before exercising.
108. Always use stretching routines. These are not just for jocks and fitness gurus but should be used by everyone. The older you are, the more important this becomes as you can help retain flexibility and good range of movement for all your daily activities.
109. When warming up and stretching, use the movements for five to ten minutes. This will help to loosen your muscles.
110. Do not bounce when warming up with stretching as you can cause tears in your muscle fibers.
111. To increase your flexibility, hold each stretch for fifteen to twenty seconds or longer.
112. Be sure you stretch lightly during warm up to prevent stretch reflex. This is caused by over using a cold muscle.
113. Breathe slowly and evenly throughout your warm up.
114. If you have a tendency to become stiff, take a hot shower or bath before beginning your warm up.
115. Breathing is extremely important when exercising as your body need to process oxygen that will transfer from your lungs through the bloodstream to the muscles that are being worked. Normal breathing is shallow meaning that the air is not reaching deep into the lungs. This can tighten neck muscles which can cause stiffness and pain in the neck, shoulder upper back and chest.
116. Always inhale before you lift, exhale as you lift and inhale as you lower the weight for maximum benefit.
117. Turn everyday activity into exercise. Try balancing on one foot without support while putting on your shoes and socks.
118. Forget about the elevator and use the stairs.
119. Take the stairs two at a time.
120. Instead of shoving your chair, lift it bending your knees and keeping your back straight.
121. Hide your remote control and get up and down to change the channels.
122. Walk your dog and keep pace.
123. Take a Frisbee along and play in the park with your dog.
124. Park in the furthest parking space.
125. Instead of sitting in the stands while watching your kids play at a ballgame, try pacing the field instead.
126. Clean your house (changing bedding is great exercise!).
127. Take a brisk ten minute walk each morning, afternoon and evening.
128. Plant a vegetable garden. You’ll have all that terrific food to eat and exercise in the process!
129. Learn how to snorkel.
130. Learn a new dance.
131. Join a gym.
132. Join a lunch hour aerobic class.
133. When exercising, use a multi-purpose squat to improve strength in the lower body. This will strengthen all of the major muscles of the lower body including hamstrings, quadriceps, calves and gluteals.
134. Use balance training exercises to help in performing daily living and activities. Try a one-legged balance exercise by standing on one leg for 10 to 15 seconds, switching legs and repeating the process for three to five sets.
135. Jump in place with feet together. Touch the left and right heels alternately in between jumps with both feet.
136. Target the triceps with a bench dip. Seated on a bench, grasp the front edge with your hands shoulder-width apart. With your heels on the floor, extend your legs straight out from your body. Move forward until your hips are off the bench. Lower the hips slowly toward the floor then press up to a full extension of your arm without locking your elbows.
137. Try a bent over row to target the latissimus dorsi, teres major, posterior deltoid, trapezius, rhomboids and biceps. While standing, begin with your feet shoulder width apart. Bend the knees and flex forward at the hips. Tilting the pelvis slightly forward, engage the abdominals and extend the upper spine to add additional support. Hold a weight or bar beneath the shouders with your hands approximately shoulder width apart. Flex your elbows and lift your hands toward the sides of your body. Pause and slowly lower your hands back to the starting position. Be sure to keep your shoulders stationary.
138. A simple shoulder shrug can help to strengthen your back. Stand erect with dumbbells or other weight in each hand. Lift your shoulders toward your head by elevating your shoulders and slightly retract and roll them back. Pause for a moment then return to the starting position. Make certain that you do not rock or use your legs and keep your knees slightly bent. A variation on this exercise is to do one shoulder at a time.
139. Another exercise to strengthen the back is a scapular retraction. Begin with your feet shoulder width apart and your pelvis tilted and slightly forward. Engage your adbdominals so you can maintain neutral spine. Flex forward and hold dumbbells extended down and away from the body. Flex the shoulder blades together, pausing then slowly returning to the start position. Avoid bending your elbows and vary the exercise by using a single arm at a time.
140. Remember to keep it slow. Perform all exercises slowly. Spend two to five seconds in the lifting phase of an exercise and four to six seconds in the lowering part. If you move too quickly, you won’t get the muscle strengthening benefit of the exercise and you could hurt yourself.
141. Work up to the point where you can do three sets of each exercise, with five to 15 repetitions of the exercise in each set. Don’t rest within the sets, you can rest briefly between each set. As the work becomes easier ad weights or increase the number of repetitions you do.
142. Bicycling gives a great whole body exercise. Begin with short jaunts around your neighborhood. Each day widen your travels until you are able to bicycle for at least a mile.
143. Exercise should give you additional energy. If you are excessively exhausted after exercising you have overdone it.
144. Again, listen to your body. If you experience a feeling of nausea or faintness, your efforts may be too intense for your body or you aren’t spending enough time on your cool down process.
145. Your rate of breathing will increase while exercising but you should still be able to carry on a conversation. If you can’t talk and walk or talk and lift at the same time, your pace is probably too intense. Cut back and lighten your weight load.
146. While you may experience some next day soreness when you begin, exercise isn’t supposed to hurt or leave you feeling stiff. Devote more time to warm up and cool down exercises as your body adjusts.
147. Being overweight, your knees may not be strong enough to support you. If you experience pain, then shorten (or eliminate) your walks, jogs or bicycling and concentrate on strength building sessions to build up your muscles and tendons.
148. If you have been sedentary, you may experience lower back pain when you first begin to exercise. This is because your hamstring muscles have shortened. When you walk or exercise the shortened hamstrings pull on the buttock muscles which in turn will grab your lower back muscles. If your abdominal muscles are not strong enough to assist in supporting your lower back, you will definitely feel it. To get rid of the pain, include abdominal strengthening exercises with your warm up and cool down.
149. If you get a headache, cramps or heart palpitations, or feel dizzy, faint or cool while exercising, consult your physician.
150. If you have an infection such as bronchitis, put off exercise until all is normal again.
151. If you just have a cold or the flue, wait until all symptoms such as fever, have been gone for two days before you exercise again.
152. Walking is the aerobic exercise of preference if you are over 60. This is because when you walk, the pressure on your joints never rises about 1.5 times your body weight. Jogging, dance or step aerobics can put as much as four times your weight or more on your bones. This is wonderful for younger people, but can put too much strain on the more brittle bones of the elderly.
153. Start your walking exercise by timing yourself. You don’t want to become too tried to make it back home. Check your watch when you begin, and walk around one block over and over until you get a little tired. Check your watch to see how long you have walked. That’s the length that your walks should be for the first week or two. Be sure to turn around and head toward home when half the time is up. If you get tired on the way home, stop, rest then walk some more.
154. Maintain the same level of exertion for your entire walk. You will be asking your heart to work hard (but not too hard) for your entire session. Your heart gets the biggest benefit from a sustained workout. If you come to a hill, slow your pace to maintain the same level of exertion that you had on flat ground.
155. If the temperature is hot or humid, your workout will seem harder. Adjust the speed and intensity so that you stay at the appropriate exertion level.
156. If the temperature soars over 95°F with 80% humidity, limit outside exercise to no more than 30 to 45 minutes.
157. Establish a rhythm to your exercise routine. Using music can help you to do this. The rhythm helps you perform each repetition within a set with the same gusto! You can also use the tape or cd as a timing reminder if you check the playing time before you start.
158. Be kind to your feet. Exercise in shoes that were designed for the job or you are giving an open invitation to aches, pains and even stress fractures in your feet and legs.
159. Pick the right kind of shoe. Walking or running shoes absorb the shock of your stride. This is thanks to a slightly elevated heel that also helps to prevent injuries to the leg muscles and tendons.
160. Tennis and other types of athletic shoes absorb the impact of sideways movement and quick turns.
161. Women who typically wear high heels should avoid flat tennis type shoes because the sudden shift in foot position could cause strain.
162. Buy new shoes often. They may last for years, but looks are deceiving. They will lose their shock absorption within just a few months. If you walk fewer than 25 miles a week a new pair is in order every four to six months. If you walk more than 25 miles a week, they should be replaced every two to three months.
163. Examine the patterns in your existing shoes and/or take them along when shopping for new ones. Your wear patterns might help the salesperson pick out the best pair for your feet.
164. To get the best fit, wear or bring along the same kind of socks that you will be exercising in. In case your feet swell during the day, plan to shop in the afternoon
165. After your warm up, exercise for more than 30 minutes per session if you want to lose weight. Otherwise, three 10 minutes sessions per day will protect against disease and a healthier lifestyle.
166. Wear loose fitting clothing that breathes well. You can use layers of clothing to stay warm and dispel perspiration and heat.
167. Avoid drinking coffee, alcohol or other diuretics before or while you exercise.
168. If you are a morning person, exercise after you have been up and about for at least 10 minutes. While sleeping, sometimes fluids can pool throughout your body even in disks in the spinal column, ligaments and muscles. If you get up and immediately begin to exercise, the accumulated fluids can cause major injury such as a herniated disk.
169. Avoid exercise right after eating. Both your intestinal tract and your muscles will need extra blood to function. The conflicting needs of each system may leave you with cramps or a feeling of nausea or faintness. Give you body two hours to complete its digestive duties.
170. If you have diabetes, avoid injecting insulin into a muscle that will soon be used for exercise. Working muscles process insulin differently than nonworking muscles.
171. Learn how much activity is required per hour to burn calories. For instance, one hour of bicycling at 6 miles per hour burns 240 calories; at 12 miles per hour, you will burn 410 calories. Jogging at 5.5 miles per hour burns 740 calories but at just 2 miles per hour more at 7 miles per hour you will burn 920 calories.
172. Walking at just 2 mph, burns 240 calories; increase it to 3 mph and you are burning 320 calories and at 4.5 mph you are burning a whopping 440 calories! *Note that this is based on a healthy 150 pound woman. A lighter person burns fewer calories, a heavier person burns more.
173. Walking need not be a chore. Visit your local museums and art galleries spending time browsing the exhibits. Not only will you add additional exercise with the walk, you’ll improve your mind!
174. Eating a handful of raisins (about 1 ounce) approximately 15 minutes before your workout can significantly lower free radicals and the damage they cause. Raisins are rich in antioxidants.
175. In addition to your daily workout here is a simple exercise to do while sitting at your desk, driving or watching television. While seated with back straight, pull your abdominal muscles inward, and lift your chest and rib cage as you inhale. Hold that position four to six seconds then release slowly as you exhale. Repeat eight to 12 times. Try doing this while driving. Change your rearview mirror so that it can only be seen when you are sitting straight. Just changing your mirror can help you to remember to sit up straight.
176. Here is a quick way to tone up your buttocks while standing. Squeeze muscles in both cheeks tightly, hold the contraction for two seconds. Relax for two seconds then repeat eight to 12 times.
177. Need to strengthen your calves? Stand on a telephone book, a block of wood, a step or a curb. Face toes in the direction of the spine of the book. Hang heels over the edge opposite the spine. For better balance while trying this outdoors, hold a railing or a signpost on at curb. Keeping your back straight, push up onto the balls of your feet while counting for two seconds, hold for another two seconds, and then count for four seconds as you lower yourself back down. Tighten up your abdominals and buttocks to help stay balanced.
I’d like to leave you with a few thoughts that may help you on your weight loss journey. At the beginning of this report, we discussed how the words we speak are very powerful and how those words create an attitude.
How often have you used the term, “my weight?” You may have made the comments like these:
“When I lose my weight. . . .”
“My weight doesn’t let me. . .”
“I can’t . . . . because of my weight”
Do see a common thread throughout these statements? Can you make an educated guess at how many times you have said one of them or something similar?
From our earlier discussion, you probably already noticed the “negative” affirmations . . . when . . .doesn’t . . . can’t. . . Read them again more carefully. Do you see the other critical factor in each statement?
Each of those statements re-affirms that you “own” your weight. Therefore, each time you make that comment not only are you re-affirming your current weight, you are pronouncing to the world that you are not willing to let go.
Using a personal pronoun is powerful stuff, because not only are you claiming ownership, you are training your subconscious mind to believe that you can’t let go.
Starting today . . . right now . . . this very minute, make a conscious decision that you no longer accept ownership of excess weight. You are not what you weigh. You are a unique human being and entitled to all the gifts that this life has to offer.
Now pull out pen and paper and begin your affirmations.
DISCLAIMER: This information is not presented by a medical practitioner and is for educational and informational purposes only. The content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read.
Since natural and/or dietary supplements are not FDA approved they must be accompanied by a two-part disclaimer on the product label: that the statement has not been evaluated by FDA and that the product is not intended to "diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease."
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