Taking two minutes a day to update a fitness journal will help you perform better! For many people getting fit and staying fit can feel like an impossible task but a fitness journal will help keep you on track and make sure you see progress. While this may not be the most glamorous subject, it’s important to keep a record of what you’re doing and how you feel about it because you’ll be amazed to look back six months later and see how much you’ve improved.
Keep reading and I will share a few common fitness roadblocks and help you to overcome them through a process of self-discovery. I firmly believe that keeping a fitness journal will help you on your quest to become fitter and healthier.
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Have you reached a weight loss plateau? If your weight loss has stalled, take a look at my top 5 tips to get help you avoid a weight loss plateau and achieve your dream weight.
One of the more frustrating parts of weight loss is the inevitable weight loss plateau. Everything seems to be going along fine, and then all of a sudden – no matter what you do – you find that the scale just doesn’t budge. When you find that your weekly weight loss has stalled that’s often known as a ‘weight loss plateau’ and many dieters find the sudden lack of progress deeply frustrating. Let me help you understand why your weight may plateau and give you some ideas to make sure you continue to meet your goals so that your weight will start moving again.
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Small changes to your recipes can lead to big calorie cuts. A few ingredient swaps can make home-cooked dishes so much healthier.
Now that the holidays are solidly behind us, the reality of those New Year’s promises we made to ourselves are starting to settle in. Many of us start out the New Year with big plans for big changes…which is why all this month we’re focusing on the ‘little things’. That’s because small steps – taken together – can add up to big results, and are often easier to handle than huge sweeping changes that can be unsettling. In the last post, I made some suggestions for small changes you can make at the grocery store – that is, after all, where the path to healthy eating begins. But now that you’ve brought your healthy ingredients into the house, you want to make sure to keep them that way when it’s time to cook. And with just a few small changes, you can make every dish you prepare at home a little bit better for you.
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Want to change your diet behavior? Break through these diet barriers first! Getting out of your usual comfortable routine is hard and the first step is figuring out why you’re resisting change in the first place.
When my son turned 5 years old, we had an “inside-out, upside down, backwards” birthday party for him. We handed his friends their goodie bags and waved goodbye as soon as they arrived at the house, and we ate cake and ice cream before the pizza. The parents had a lot of laughs, but the kids were totally bewildered – in no small part, I’m sure, because we were also wearing our underwear over our clothes. So why am I telling you this? Because sometimes when I’m talking to clients about the lifestyle changes they need to work on, I see that same bewilderment – as if I’m suddenly turning their world inside-out, upside down and backwards. Why is change so hard for some people?
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The best diet is the one that works best with your lifestyle, your budget, your food preferences and how much effort you’re willing to give.
One of the more entertaining aspects of my work is that whenever I meet a new weight loss client, I never know where the conversation will lead. Usually, I’ll start by getting some history – I want to know what’s the most and the least they’ve ever weighed, what motivates them to eat better and get into shape, and also what’s worked for them in the past and what hasn’t – that sort of thing. From there, I can start to get a sense for how much effort each particular patient is willing to put forth, and what their expectations are. And then we come up with a plan. But I can’t just tell someone what they need to do – I need to help them figure out how they’re going to do it, too. And we work together to figure out what’s going to work best for them.
A few weeks ago, I ran into an old friend that I hadn’t seen in a long time. We’d been friends when our kids were small, and I remembered him as being a little on the heavy side. Now he was much trimmer – he looked like he had lost about 25 pounds. After I complimented him, he volunteered his secret – “no carbs after five o’clock”.
Now let me just say that I usually don’t offer nutrition advice to friends – unless they ask, of course.
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A client I saw recently said something to me that I know resonates with millions of women about women’s weight loss.
“I work out so hard,” she told me. “I follow my diet to the letter, and it’s a battle just to lose a couple of pounds in a month. But my boyfriend – even if he cheats on his diet a little bit – still experiences weight loss week after week. It’s just not fair!”
Fair or not, that’s just the way it is. But why? Why do men tend to lose more quickly than women? Read more »
You’ve Lost the Weight – Now What?
I begged him not to leave me. Right now, he needed me more than ever. But I’d been through this before, and I knew he’d be back. And I would be waiting for him….
His name was Frank. He’d been my patient for nearly a year, and with plenty of guidance on my part, and a lot of hard work on his part, he was 60 pounds lighter. But the day he hit his goal weight, he decided we were through. In his mind, his weight lost task was accomplished – like something he could check off his ‘to do’ list – which meant he could push all thoughts of dieting aside and move on. As we said our farewells, I left him with only this: “there’s a reason they call it weight management, Frank.” Read more »
Sleep and body weight: what’s the connection?
Eating and sleeping are usually thought of as mutually exclusive activities – you generally either do one or the other. But I’ve met plenty of people who get up from a sound sleep in the middle of the night and eat. And it’s not just a glass of milk or a couple of crackers – some get up and make themselves a big sandwich, heat up leftovers, or throw a frozen pizza in the oven. Another client told me she often woke up in the morning to find dirty dishes in her kitchen sink – which wouldn’t be particularly alarming, except that she lived by herself and had no recollection of having eaten. She finally had to install a lock on the kitchen door to prevent herself from ‘sleep-eating’. Read more »
Candles, music and the one you love may be a recipe for overeating. Subtle cues in your surroundings can affect how much food you eat.
Seasoned dieters know plenty of the tricks for keeping their eating in check. Beyond the usual strategies - eating right, getting plenty of exercise and maybe keeping a food diary – they might use more subtle tactics for keeping portions down. They’ll use smaller plates or taller glasses, for instance, to give the illusion that they’re getting more food and drink than they really are. They’ll make sure to put tempting foods out of sight – and keep healthy ones in plain view. What they may not realize is that there are other influences in the environment – much less obvious ones – that could still throw their eating off course. Read more »
Even though I’m a dietitian, my clients frequently ask me about exercise as part of their weight loss plan.
Since managing weight effectively depends on calorie balance, it makes sense that we talk about not only diet (calories in), but exercise (calories out), too. Most simply want to know how much…or, sometimes, how little…exercise they need to do in order to lose weight, or to keep off weight that they’ve already lost. So here are some of the key things I tell them about exercise and body weight: Read more »
I would bet that it’s rare the person who can stand naked in front of the mirror and not identify a trouble spot or two. Most of us stand there pinching, prodding and wishing that those extra bits of fat – whether on the belly, the behind or the back – would just disappear. I thought the myth of spot-reducing had been pretty well busted by now, but I still get asked all the time if there are any special diet or exercise tricks that will target specific pockets of body fat.
The answer is – in a word – no. Your body parts don’t ‘own’ the fat that cover them. When a regular walking regimen leads to weight loss, you lose weight all over – not just in your legs. Performing hundreds of pushups or situps a day might eventually uncover a toned chest or six-pack abs – but it isn’t because you’ve burned off only the fat on your chest or your belly. It’s because you’ve increased your calorie burn – and reduced your body fat from nearly top to toe. Read more »
Most of my clients know the healthy eating drill pretty well – keep your fats down, eat plenty of fruits and veggies, make most of your grains “whole” and focus on low fat protein. But many of them have adopted some eating habits that they truly believe are healthy – and I have to spend some time trying to convince them otherwise. These eating habits sound like they’re healthy – but they really end up being less so when they’re put into practice. Are your eating habits as healthy as you think they are? Read more »