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Learning to Eat Healthy!

21 May 2011 No Comment

One of the most important things to learn when first starting out on a journey toward a healthier lifestyle is how to eat. It is probably the toughest part also, at least for some. In reality, making the decision to start working out to become more fit is great… and just deciding to do it is a huge step! You pick a workout that is best suited to your style, goals, and even personality…. you set a time and become committed to your goals. Whether it’s losing weight, getting ripped, improving overall health to avoid or overcome Type II diabetes, hypertension (high blood pressure), or to reduce your cholesterol.

What most people then get frustrated with is stalled goals. Sure, at first you see results… but the comes the dreaded plateau. . . and you don’t understand . . .  you’ve been working out hard and have been dedicated. What’s going on?

Typically it is diet related. I will be honest with you, the word “diet” has gotten a bad rap. It conjures up bad memories of deprivation and missing ones favorite foods. I’m not a big fan of  ”eating clean” either… although it does describe things a little more clearly. Here’s the bottom line…. to get the results that you want, you  need to realize that diet is 80% of the overall plan. Depending on what your goals are, you need to alter your nutrition plan.

  • If you want to lose weight, you should expend more calories than you take in. You need to decrease (but not eliminate) your fat percentage. Make good choices… follow Michi’s Latter and pick from the top two tiers. Eat lean “white” meats and fish and plenty of fruits and vegetables. Limit your dairy and grains. If you feel hungry, you should try drinking water first. Our brains sometimes confuse thirst with hunger. Snack on healthy, low calorie snacks. Eat frequently but with smaller portions. Your body will adjust and you will get used to it. If you start losing energy and feel weak, then you may not be eating enough. As you lose weight you will also have to tweak your calories as you go along.
  • Now if your goal is to gain size and muscle, then you need to eat lean meats and complex carbs as noted above… but the big difference is that you will be eating a LOT of calories. As you build your new lean muscle your metabolism will increase and to continue to make progress to HAVE to eat! Again, eating several small meals over the course of  the day with calorie dense foods will help. You may at first feel that you can’t possibly eat as much food as is required. But again, making good choices goes a long way. Protein bars, protein shakes and Shakeology can add what you need nutritionally and are portable.
  • Lowering your blood glucose, cholesterol and high blood pressure all have their own priorities. You should discuss this with your doctor… but in general, following a healthy, low sugar, low fat, low cholesterol nutrition plan should be what we all strive for.

Bottom line…. if you are working out hard and not seeing results…. you need to take a good hard look at what you are putting in your mouth. Start by writing everything down… and I mean EVERYTHING! You will be surprised by what you forget about. Limit alcohol intake. Push away from sweets except on special occasions. Make the commitment! You will be so happy that you did! Set a realistic goal and when you want to meet that. Put it on a calender. Then take pictures and measurements at least once a month. Try to avoid the scale… weight at the most once a week. It is very natural for our weight to vary on a day to day basis.

Oh, and avoid processed foods! They are loaded with salt and other things that you do not want to be eating! Try to eat fresh whenever you can (or at least frozen).

If you have questions please contact me!

Karen Crawford
Independent Beachbody Coach


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