Changing our behavior to become healthier takes work. Think of it like practicing your golf swing. No one is good at it the first time up to the tee. In fact many times we miss the ball totally the first time but after a bit of time, some help from a coach, encouragement from peers, you get better.
In my experience, changing our normal will involve some mishaps- some missed balls. That's okay. Its practice. I know many of us want to be perfect and not let others see our mishaps. But you are human and so are we. You'll get back up and keep on practicing.
Next time you decide to add in more vegetables or stop eating mindlessly while watching TV or taking seconds when you're not really hungry anymore remember to practice the new you.
It is actually freeing to stop trying to be perfect. You can learn your own resilience through struggles.
To Your Best Health,
Successful people notice, learn, and adapt to reach their goals. A great practice to get into at the end of each week is a strategy called Review and Prepare.
First REVIEW, look back at your calendar and see how successful you were last week.
Next, PREPARE for the week ahead.
What do you need TO DO TODAY to be successful this week?
To your Best Health,
Here are a couple of strategies to help you find the best meal prepping technique for you.
On Sunday afternoon (or whatever day you have 2-3 hours) put in an epic cooking session. Bulk cook everything you will need fo assembling meals throughout the week. Fire up the oven, get all your pans out, plug in the rice cooker, and start filling up crockpots. This strategy works well for 1-2 person households or VERY busy households that don't have much time in the evening.
This is probably the most common strategy.
On Sunday afternoon and Wednesday evening cook up what you need for the next 3 days. Make a 3-day meal plan and get to it. This is a great strategy to save yourself a ton of time in the kitchen. Spend 1-2 hours prepping, cooking, and cleaning and then don't cook for 3 days. This strategy works well for a larger family that has evening obligations most days of the week.
Each meal prep day will probably take you about 2 hours of cooking (4 hours per week), but then you are off the hook for days, which ultimately saves you lots of time and hassle. Put in the work on the front end and save time on the back end.
Some people like to cook and enjoy cooking most days of the week. For this type of person, try the double portion dinner strategy.
Each time you make your evening meal, you will make a double portion and save the second portion for lunch the next day. You get two birds with one stone.
What do you do to make your food preparations go faster or smoother?
We'd love to hear from you in the comment section below.
To Your Best Health,
What does hunger feel like?
Everyone describes it a bit differently, how do you describe that feeling?
Some have described it as: "Well, when I am in a good, healthy eating pattern, hunger feels like a grumbly gnawing feeling, but bearable. When I have eaten too many carbs and sugars for a stretch, hunger feels like more of an empty, must shove food in now feeling, usually with some shakiness because my blood sugar has dropped. I can always tell the clear difference."
Others like this: "I'm not sure I know what hunger really feels like. When I'm being mindful, I usually need to stop and think, am I really hungry right now or is it something else? When it's hunger, there is an empty feeling. I often think I am hungry but in reality I am procrastinating on a job task that I don't want to do. Procrastination and then stress because I am not doing what I should be leads me to eating when I am not hungry.
What does hunger feels like to you?
Listening to our bodies is one of our biggest assets.
Mastering is allowing our body to talk to us knowing we will listen.
Listening to how your body feels while you eat. Understanding the level at which you need to eat in order to remain comfortably full, not overstuffed, and yet ‘feel’ hunger before it is time to eat again sounds easy but is much more difficult to do.
Take the challenge. Eat each meal this week only if you feel hunger before hand.
Tell me what you find out about yourself.
To your best health,
Remember that what seems huge or impossible will eventually become a distant memory when it's over and done with. Your opinion and abilities will continue to change over time, and what seems very important now will be replaced by a different priority in the future. Just do the best you can, and take small steps towards better health every day.
Yesterday is gone and today is a new day. A new start. Get back on track and move forward. (I've had to tell myself this once or twice, or 1,000 times.
See, now you feel like crap, shouldn't have eaten that last night huh?
Was it really worth it...?
How many weeks will it take to undo that?
Why did you do that
Look at the big picture if it only once no problem, move on. If it is an old habit restarting, refocus and fix it.
Start over now... which I did... today.
Cut it out idiot. Coach taught you better that that!
Why did you do it? Should have had that glass of water first. Remember it's a mental game. It really wasn't worth it.
This week I am looking forward to increasing my happy healthy life- without food guilt. In fact I wrote myself a note to help me. The constant reminder that consistent action over the long term will far outweigh the small discrepancies. What about you? What are you going to write to you?
To your best health,
Have you ever found yourself giving others a break for a small mistake or bad choice while condemning yourself for that same action? I do.
Student: "I ate a huge bowl of ice cream yesterday because it was there and it looked great."
Me: "Yes, but look at all the other stuff you did great yesterday. You ate a fantastic breakfast, you are drinking one cup of regular coffee instead of 4 like before, and you avoided the fried foods at lunch."
I end up encouraging them. I've helped them to see the good in their life.
BUT if I do that same thing.
Me : I ate three cookies at lunch actually they were lunch.
Me: I can't believe you ate three cookies. What were you thinking? Well you better not do that ever Ever EVER again. Actually you don't do much right, so never mind. You're hopeless.
(Yes, I do the same thing....give others lots of slack and encouragement while beating myself up...a work in progress for sure.)
You: I ate three cookies at lunch; actually, they WERE lunch.
Me: Were they worth it? Are we back on-board with a supper plan? If it's not a lunchtime habit, forget it and move on. In times of stress and rushing from place to place I have survived worst lunches.
Here is a way to move on from it and use it to do better the next time. (Though this is STILL a hard one for me! ) In the long run the 3 cookies won't sink you, unless you let them.
Tell yourself you did a great job at ______________today.
Go ahead a I dare you. What did you do today better than most?
Here is a list I saw just this morning:
People Motivating others
Moms Taking care of their mom.
Running 2 miles and walking 4 more
Rocking the chin up bar this morning ..!
Getting myself to 5 am training
Training as hard as I could today
Planning my supper
When you find yourself discouraged for one action or poor choice. Find other actions or great choices that will spur you onto better action.
To your best health,
Losing weight (body fat) ultimately comes down to one thing. You need to eat fewer calories than you burn. It's science (physics), and you just can't get around it, no matter how much we would all like to.
Exercise alone (or maybe at all) isn't going to cut it. Exercise burns at best a few hundred calories an hour, and that is very dependent on your physiology. You can't out-exercise overeating. I know, I've tried.
On the flip side, you might be surprised how easily you can cut a thousand calories out of your eating a day with just a few small changes to your diet.
And it doesn't mean you have to starve yourself, or never eat the foods you enjoy. Here are 5 ways you can control your appetite, make smart food choices, and eat fewer calories.
It's about awareness. We are really good at telling ourselves we aren't eating too much, but we are rarely willing to back up that claim. The simplest way to create awareness is to do the work of tracking your calories, and the good news is you don't have to do it forever. The good news is once you create awareness and start making better food choices, you probably won't have to.
I suggest buckling down and tracking everything you eat for two weeks using an app like MyFitnessPal or FatSecret. Be honest, and track everything, food and drink. You are going to have to weigh and measure the food, which takes a little getting used to. The other thing that tracking helps me do? Simplify. It's a lot easier to enter 6oz of steak or chicken into a calorie tracker than a complicated recipe.
If this sounds like too much of a hassle, we can "goldilocks" this habit and make it easier. Simply carry a little notebook and write down every food you eat and every thing you drink. For some of us, this creates all the awareness we need. If your log has primarily eggs, lots of veggies, chicken and fish, you know you are on the right track. If it is mostly bagels, cereal, and pasta washed down with coke or a latte, you know that too. Just the habit of writing it down can help us make better choices. Ask yourself the question: Would I show this list to my coach or nutritionist? 🙂
I don't like crowds. But when it comes to controlling our appetites, crowds are our friend. Huh?
You have probably heard that "a calorie is a calorie", and in terms of energy content that is true. But when it comes to a foods ability to help you feel full, that's baloney. You know it to be true - 100 calories of broccoli (over 3 cups!) fills you up way more than that 100 calorie pack of cookies or crackers, or even 100 calories of a better choice, like almonds are walnuts.
The broccoli creates a crowd in your stomach; more volume of food means less room for other food. It's magical! Use your MyFitnessPal app or a tool like the SELF Nutrition Database to get an idea of the nutritional content of the foods you love. I'll bet you'll find that you already make some good choices - eat more of those!
Once you figured out those "fuller foods", a good strategy is to eat those first. Filling up on veggies, lean meats and healthy fats creates that "crowd control" we are looking for, and you will automatically eat less.
While it might seem that exercising more is just going to make you hungrier to compensate, that is not necessarily the case. This article explores many of those factors, and many studies show the opposite to be true. Learning to refuel your body appropriately after exercise is crucial; you don't want to train and then not eat for hours and hours.
Mindset is key here. Viewing food as a reward for exercise is counterproductive. I have done it, and it's just plain a bad strategy. Exercise for the health benefits, not so you can have another donut.
Even those of us who enjoy cooking don't always make/find/have the time to spend in the kitchen. If you do, that is awesome - so enjoy!
The good news for the rest of us is we don't have to. Getting in the habit of cooking in bulk, twice a week, is a tremendous help. It's just as easy to grill or roast 5 or 6 chicken breasts as it is two. Roasting veggies and Chicken-in-a-Crockpot are two of my "go-to's" when time is tight.
Another favorite "hack" of mine is to spice it up! There is a whole wide world of flavors open for those brave souls who use more than just salt and pepper. Coriander, Cardamom, Cloves, Cumin. And those are just some of the "C's". Be bold and experiment, it's a lot of fun.
When I don't get enough sleep I find it much harder to control my appetite, and I found out at least one reason. Turns out when you don't get enough sleep your body produces endocannabinoids - you literally can get the munchies.
But even when your appetite doesn't increase, your willpower and decision-making abilities are affected by lack of sleep. Less sleep = more bad food choices. For me that tends to lead to overeating. I can turn a handful of nuts into half a pound of nuts pretty fast.
Human beings need 7-9 hours of sleep a night to perform at their best, physically, mentally, and emotionally. I have seen people exercise religiously and make positive changes to their nutrition and still have trouble dropping the weight. Sleep made the difference.
Fat Loss is simple - you just have to eat fewer calories than you burn. But that doesn't mean it's easy, far from it. The good news is that you don't have to follow a specific diet plan or food restrictions to lose weight. There is no one-size-fits all, but you do have to put in the work to discover what works best for you.
If you are having trouble nailing down your diet and you want to make real progress this year, use these 5 tips to help you get dialed in. And as always, we are here to help.
"Hope is like the light at the end of a tunnel.
But you have to walk toward the light or it doesn't get brighter and brighter."- NMC
What are you hoping will happen this year?
What do you hope will be the result at the end of this month?
Where do you hope this week will find you feeling?
How do you hope to experience today?
Don't leave things to chance. Take some actions toward your goal each day. Those little steps you take every day toward your goal will stack up and lead your way. Hope is wonderful because it can move you forward if you let it.
To your best health,
Everyone knows the tangible difference between bubble gum and a clay brick. While bubble gum can be moldable and moveable and brick is solid and strong.
Each one has its purpose. Bubble gum is designed to change shape and be an enjoyment while you chew. A Brick is created to build a firm object.
But which one would you like your brain to look like? Would you like your brain to have the ability to grow, change shape, take on new actions, evolve to what is needed at the time?
Would you like to have a brick for a brain? A solid object that can not take on new ideas or thoughts. You'd be set in your ways and firm against change.
Many times I have heard that as you age you become set in your thinking. I want to encourage you to age with a bubble gum brain.
When it comes to nutrition allow yourself to think new thoughts, try new concepts, be open to different ideas.
It could be that you will try a new recipe or a food you 'just know you won't like'. What about experimenting with going without a snack, or going to the movies without eating popcorn.
Don't lock yourself into one solid idea. Be open- a little creative, mold, be bendable, moveable and grow.
To your best health,
I just read "Bubble Gum Brain" by Julia Cook. She took "Mindset" by Carol Dweck and made it easy enough for a child to grasp.
And Why do I need it?
Recovery comes in many forms.
Recovery could be one of these things or all of them. Which one do you think you need to work on most?
To Your best Health,