December 20, 2012
Ahhhh…the holidays. A time of giving, a time of togetherness…and a time to eat! With all of the holiday parties, gatherings, and other festivities, sticking to a healthy lifestyle can be difficult to say the least. If you don’t want to resort to feeling sluggish and wearing pants with elastic waist bands, the good news is that you don’t have to. By adhering to some simple steps listed below, you can have a great time during the holidays without gastronomical regret:
- Moderation: Moderating your food intake is key. You can do this by using smaller plates, using a smaller spoon to dish out portions, eating before hitting the party circuit, or offering healthier fare to yourself and others. You can still enjoy food as long as you practice some portion control and make relatively healthy food selections.
- Indulge: Though this seems like a contradiction, it is important. Remember – everything in moderation – including moderation. The holidays are meant to fun and special, so enjoy them, just not too much.
- Keep a journal: It’s easy to think that you aren’t overeating, or not indulging too much, but are you really? The best way to monitor what you eat is to write it down in a journal. You can determine if you’ve had too much eggnog or not enough greens, and then you can adjust your eating habits accordingly until the next holiday party if needed.
- Hit the pavement: Eating in moderation and seeing in print what you have been eating is good, but there is another side to the equation – exercise. You can burn calories and stay healthy by sticking to your exercise regime, and even inserting an extra walk or some stretching here and there. Anything you do will make a positive impact on both your weight and your well-being.
- Visual reminders: Sometimes we need a little extra push, or a gentle reminder, of what we are trying to accomplish. If keeping your weight within a certain zone is what you’re aiming for, try adding a visual cue or two. For example, find the perfect holiday outfit that fits you right now, and hang it somewhere in plain sight and even try it on occasionally. Thus can help you to stay on track with eating right.
When you’re exposed to fresh breads, moist turkeys, thick and delicious dips, and cream-laden desserts, it’s no wonder that people forget to stay on a healthy diet. But you can do both – enjoy the festive food while maintaining your typical healthy lifestyle. Balance is key, and by following the tips above, you can savor the best of both worlds. Enjoy!
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from our house to yours!
Todd and Alisha Midgett
December 5, 2012
When you’re starting on a program like P90X, Insanity, Turbofire or Asylum, most of the struggles we see are with the nutrition side of things. People are often intimidated by it, they don’t understand how and what to eat, if they did they wouldn’t be in the situation they’re in now. Or sometimes you do the program and you get decent results and then you plateau. For most people, when they look at the P90X Nutrition Guide, Insanity Nutrition Guide or any of them, they ask….what about carbs? Aren’t they bad or when do I eat them? Or I did a low carb diet before and it worked for a while. Well today’s post is about a method of dealing with carbs and where and how you can fit it in to what you’re already doing or what you’re about to embark on.
There’s a theory or practice you may have heard of. You’ve read about it in fitness magazines and on the internet. Some ultra-ripped body builders swear by it. And even Oprah has dedicated valuable minutes of her daytime talk show to the topic.
It’s carb cycling, and depending on who you talk to, it’s either the single greatest way to lose weight and get toned or a dangerous diet fad that should be avoided at all costs.
The truth, as is always the case with the latest, greatest diet trend, is most likely somewhere in the middle. How well carb cycling works for a person depends on an array of factors that are unique to the individual trying to get in shape–body type, metabolism, health history, exercise habits, diet and willingness to start and stick to a program.
Great, you’re thinking, that doesn’t help at all in determining whether or not carb cycling is right for you–does it work or is it just another fruitless fad.
Okay, you want an answer, and you’ll get one. But first, you need to fully understand what carb cycling is, how it works and what the positive and negative effects can be.
What is carb cycling?
Carb cycling is a diet plan designed to help people burn extreme fat without losing muscle.
In short, people who are “cycling” plan their meals around a program that involves eating between six and seven small meals each day that are either extremely high in protein and low in carbohydrates or high in carbohydrates and low in protein.
For example, a person may eat high-protein, low-carb meals for three straight days and then eat a high-carb meal on the fourth day, then repeat the cycle until he or she reaches their weight-loss, muscle-mass goals.
To maximize the benefits of carb cycling, most people coordinate their diet with their exercise routine. For example, high-carb eating days take place on the most high-intensity exercise days–this is especially true and effective for people who are weight training. Low-carb eating days are planned during low-intensity exercise days. This is where it could get tricky for someone doing Insanity, P90X or especially Asylum because of the body’s need for fuel to get through the intensity of those programs. So be cautious.
It may sound like a lot of planning–especially finding time to eat up to seven meals a day–but it can work. And if you’re following the Beachbody Nutrition guide that came with your program, you’re already eating that many times anyway.
The low-carb, high-protein meals put your body into starvation mode, which then causes your body to burn insane amounts of fat. At the same time, it’s giving your muscles the protein they need to grow. The high-carb days give your body the fiber, vitamins and other nutrients it needs to function properly (think “go to the bathroom,” “feed the brain,” and “properly fight off illnesses”).
If done properly, carb cycling can allow you to achieve your goals—burn fat, build muscle and get toned. In short, it works because it fires up your body’s metabolism, ensures that your muscles have the food they need to grow (or at least not fade away or atrophy), and your body can still function properly.
What are the ups and downs of a carb-cycling diet?
So what’s the bottom line when it comes to carb cycling? Great question…Here’s the answer: Carb cycling works really, really well … if you’re not a sugar addict … if you stick to it … and if you mix it with your Beachbody exercise program like P90X, Insanity, Turbofire or Asylum. However, I recommend following the P90X, Insanity, Asylum or Turbofire Nutrition guides first before taking matters into your own hands by trying the carb cycling approach. Those nutrition guides, especially the Insanity Nutrition guide and the Turbofire nutrition guide are two of the best maps to success you’ll find. It’s a matter of making it easy to follow.
Carb cycling may be a valid option for someone who has hit a plateau with the program and needs to wake the metabolism up. Plateaus are common and for those of us who are older and have to fight harder…it may be what you need.
It melts fat. It helps people maintain their muscle mass. And, unlike other low-carb or no-carb diets, you won’t become lethargic when you’re cycling. Your body is getting exactly what it needs to function the way it’s supposed to function. It’s just not getting it all at once. In a sense, you’re manipulating your body to maximize its fat-burning potential.
But, it doesn’t come without a cost. Some people who have carb cycled report suffering from constipation, heart burn and stomach problems. Others have reported that after a few days of low-carb meals, they go on carb binges because they’re craving sweets and bread so bad it almost becomes an obsession. It can also be a more expensive and time consuming way to lose weight–high-protein foods such as lean can get expensive. In the end, if you have trouble sticking with something that’s not easy to follow or remember you may struggle or you could try it for a matter of a month and see what happens.
But, if you are dedicated and put your mind to it, carb cycling can and does work.
Just ask Oprah.
If you have questions or want reach out to us, please feel free to contact us HERE.
November 5, 2012
Losing weight is a difficult task, especially when you’re trying to take on a challenge like Insanity, P90X, Turbofire…etc. Your schedule is busy and consumed with work, chores, after school activities for the kids and an assortment of other tasks you must complete. This is why we’re here to help keep things simple for you as you go through this process.
When dealing with the P90X Nutrition Guide, Insanity Nutrition Guide or the Turbofire Nutrition Guide for example, you need to take your time with the foods in them, eat slowly and enjoy the moment! My wife is going to roll in the floor when she sees that I wrote this, she is ALWAYS telling me to slow down and eat slow! So I decided to do a little research on it and here’s what I found, by simply reducing the speed from which you eat, you’re able to drastically slash the amount of calories you bring into your body, which in return helps you shed the pounds and move closer to that desired fitness goal.
A study, performed by the University of Rhode Island and published on USA Today Online, found individuals who eat slowly consume about two ounces of food per minute, while medium-speed eaters take in 2.5 ounces. Faster eaters breeze through 3.1 ounces of food in a minute as the bite sizes are larger. Because the food is larger, less chewing is performed and more food is inserted into the mouth, it takes the person longer to feel full, as it just doesn’t give the body enough time to register this fact. Due to this, the person who eats faster actually takes in more than necessary, simply due to the rate of speed in which they eat. According to the study, it takes the body at least 20 minutes to register a feeling of satisfaction, so when the food is consumed so quickly, more food is generally eaten than what is required to reach this feeling. In order to slow down on consumption, the study points out it is important to take breathes between bites and to chew slowly. On top of this, using food heavy in fiber is important, as it requires more chewing and helps slow down the consumption process. When looking at the numbers, if a slow eater dines for 20 minutes, at two ounces a minute, this results in 40 ounces of food. If you talk with those around you during the 20 minutes, it reduces the amount of food eaten further. However, the fast eater consumes 62 ounces in the same period of time, increasing the amount of food consumed (and the amount of calories) by 50 percent.
According to the Obesity Society in Orlando, men who eat quickly bring in about 80 calories per minute while eating quickly. However, when this is slowed down, the calories consumed is slashed down to 52 calories per minute. The same study found when eating quickly, women took in 646 calories in a nine minute span, but saw this drop to 579 calories in 29 minute. If 67 calories are saved on every meal, this allows the person to shed 201 calories in a day, or 1407 calories in a given week. This equals over 73,000 calories in a full years time, which equals about 21 pounds. Losing 21 pounds in a year without any further exercise or changing of diet is an incredible number, especially if the only thing you need to adjust is the speed of which you eat your food.
So imagine if you add 21 lbs. to the success you’ll get working with us on P90X, Insanity, Turbofire or any of the Beachbody programs….how that would feel!?! This doesn’t even factor in your Shakeology which then brings the weightloss up even more. When you think about it, I guess I have to say the dreaded words all husbands hate to speak, “Honey, you were right!”
Feel free to contact us HERE, we look forward to hearing from you and are here to answer any questions you may have.
November 5, 2012
What do we mean when we say “Free” Coaching? We mean that we’re here to help you succeed with what ever Beachbody program you decide is best for you. P90X, Insanity or maybe even something less impact like Brazil Buttlift, whatever your program…we’re dedicated to helping you achieve your goals and reach the finish line to the body you want.
So many people who we meet and talk to have tried gyms in the past or used to run, or maybe you’re one of the ones who bought Wii Fit and did it for a month and then let it collect dust. 9 times out of 10 when we talk with someone for the first time they’ve hit one of two roadblocks on their journey: 1) lack of motivation (which is usually because of a lack of accountability and support) and 2) lack of discipline with their nutrition or lack of knowledge of what to eat or not to eat.
While both of those seem like very large obstacles in your way, they’re really very small challenges if given the right support. That’s the whole reason why Beachbody started the coaching program, so that people like us (who’ve been where you are) could show you the way and keep you on track…and yes….it’s free to you. All you do is buy the program or challenge pack and we coach you til death do us part. Ok maybe not til death….but you could be the first!
What if I told you that when I was almost 100 lbs. overweight, that the coach that got me through it was almost halfway across the country in Phoenix Arizona while my southern charmed self was in Charlotte NC? You’d think, how could a lady in Phoenix help me in Charlotte? It’s simple, because she cared. She cared enough to plug me into a support system that works. She surrounded me with people via Facebook and Message Boards (yes back before FB was popular) and she took the time to talk to me each week and keep me on track and accountable to my goals. Funny story, my wife used to be in love with Cameron Mathison from ABC’s All My Children and I used to tell Monica (my coach) that I wanted to look like him….for her. She’d laugh and say “Ok, let’s do it”. Now at the time, she told me “Let’s do it” because she knew that’s what motivated me at the time. BUT what made her special was that she knew there would be a time in my journey when getting in shape wouldn’t be for vanity reasons but for the reasons I now know to be the real ones. Those reasons are my wife and daughter, being able to live a healthier life and be here for my grandchildren someday….to see my cholesterol drop 48 pts and my self confidence blow up.
Sometimes it takes vanity, a wedding or a high school reunion to get you to commit…but eventually, if you’re special and you’re one of those who sticks it out, you find the person inside of you that you always knew was there. Vanity will only get you so far with your fitness goals, once you realize what really matters in life and why you should do it…the vanity reasons just happen by default. Funny how people can’t see that, but I don’t judge them for not understanding it. I didn’t either. I had to go through my own personal journey and meet My Coach who helped me see the life that I was supposed to live and how I was supposed to live it.
So when people ask me what I do, I laugh on the inside because there’s never enough time to explain all this to perfect stranger when you’re face to face. BUT if you’re reading this….now you know….what we mean when we say “We’ll be your coach….and it’s free”. The reward we get from seeing you duplicate a lifestyle that we now live and understand is quite honestly….priceless.
October 8, 2012
Insanity the Asylum Vol. 2 Available. Get it right HERE!
Asylum Vol 2 is a 30-Day Graduate Program
- Will cost $59.85
- Will consist of 7 workouts on 6 DVDs
- Will range in time from 40-60 minutes
- Coach Exclusive Workout- Pure Contact $20 value
- The agility training is going to be more fun and challenging!
- Asylum 2 is definitely physically tougher.
- It will incorporate more ladder work than Vol 1.
- The pace of Vol 2 is Faster.
Can I do Asylum Vol 2 without doing Asylum Vol 1?
- Shaun T state that you do not need to do Vol 1 prior, but that it would obviously benefit you from doing the exercise and developing the endurance!
- Asylum Vol 2 will still be fun for people who are not super fit!
- It will be fun for people who were athletes and like to be active!
- Like most of the programs you can do Asylum vol 2 as long as you move slow and stay in control!
Shaun T’s thoughts on Asylum Vol 2
- His favorite workout in the program is X Trainer! He said it was because its a whole body workout and has a crazy challenge at the end!
- His least favorite workout in Vol 2 is Power Legs! He said Power Legs is a “Nightmare,” But its so much fun in a weird way! It is weird cause it is so tough, very muli-dynamic, and very mentally engaging!
- Lastly he said that he knew he was kind of mean in Vol 1, so he thinks he is a little nicer cause he feels for you!
Oh…..He is already working on what he called “The next Situation.”
October 8, 2012
So you’re working your butt off (literally) working out to Shaun T and Insanity or maybe you’re bringing it with Tony Horton and P90X and now comes Halloween! How do you make Halloween safe for your diet or better yet lead by example with your kids and teach them healthier habits?
Halloween is time for fun, but also a time when kids overindulge in unhealthy candy and sweets. To make sure your kids have a healthy Halloween, offer them attractive alternatives to collecting and eating as many sweets as they can. By planning carefully and focusing on good food choices, as well as using some clever tactics to keep the kids’ attention away from sugar-filled treats, you can give your children a healthy Halloween they will never forget.
Avoid letting your children go out to collect treats when they are hungry. Make sure they eat a full meal before the start of any Halloween activities. This will reduce the amount of sweets they indulge in later. They won’t even realize they are eating less candy and junk food than they would otherwise. Another somewhat sneaky tactic is to hand out small bags to the kids for collecting the candy. This prevents them from bringing home a huge amount of sweets and stashing it away to eat at their leisure.
Make sure you let your children obtain treats only from neighbors in your area. Try to organize your neighbors before the holiday and have everyone commit themselves to providing healthier snacks for the kids, instead of the usual candy and sugar-filled sweets. Here are some good alternatives that the kids will enjoy:
- Granola Bars
- Cheese and Cracker Packs
- Sugar Free Gum
- Cheddar Cheese rolled up to resemble a pumpkin
- Edible eyes with carrot and cream cheese
- Microwave popcorn
- Sugar-free snack pack pudding
If you decide to give out candy, choose bite-sized bars that have less fat and calories than the standard-sized versions. You can also distribute dark chocolate bars, which are somewhat more nutritious than milk chocolate.
To keep your kid’s focus away from eating sweets, join with some of your neighbors and hand out non-food treats. These little gifts will help prevent the kids becoming preoccupied with eating candy, while keeping them happy and entertained at the same time. Some good ideas for this type of treat include:
- Rubber eyeballs
- Personalized coloring books
- Temporary tattoos
Make sure you don’t give very small items to children under the age of three. You can also give kids gifts that are fun and help them stay active, such as:
- Jump rope
- Punching bag
Having a Halloween party at home can keep kids busy and entertained as well as helping them burn off any extra calories they got from eating sweets. Plan some fun games and activities, such as a Halloween-themed scavenger hunt, making jack o’ lanterns, constructing a haunted house walk-through, and telling ghost stories
When Halloween is over and the kids want to indulge in the sweets they have gathered, try to get them to eat in moderation by reminding them that the less they eat now, the more they will have for later. Also, encourage them to split some of the candy with friends, so that that they learn to share. You can even offer to buy the sweets by giving them a small amount of money in exchange for turning the candy over to you. Making sure your kids have a fun and healthy Halloween takes a lot of dedication and effort, but the reward of healthier children with unforgettable memories of this unique holiday makes it all worthwhile.
September 27, 2012
We had the honor of volunteering and meeting some amazing families at the Hospitality House of Charlotte NC. The Hospitality House is a non-profit organization for families in medical crisis. They survive 100% off of charitable donations and volunteer efforts. Hospitality House is more than just a place to sleep. Their guests know, firsthand, what it feels like to stay where everyone knows the stress you are under, and people are here to give a hug or lend an ear to listen. As one guest put it, HHoC is a “port in a storm.” This is not only a place where families from all over the world stay, but also, where they find common comfort and emotional support in one another…a home away from home. I found about this through my own step-mom who’s been battling cancer for over 10 years and has stayed there in the past. I knew what an amazing place it was and how special the people were who worked there.
So we gathered a group of coaches and went to volunteer our time and prepare a meal for the families and patients there. It was humbling and tragic to hear the stories we heard and to see the horrible things some of them are going through. It would amaze you the strength these families have.
I met one lady who had been at the hospital all week sleeping on the floor in the waiting room as her son who was there because of a self inflicted gunshot wound was in and out of surgery. Beside her was his 10 year old son. It made my heart break as a parent to see the pain she was going through and to also realize the other side of it, which was what the little boy must be thinking and experiencing. After sleeping on the floor for a week, the lady’s sister had donated the money for her to stay at the Hospitality House and finally have a bed to call her own while in town.
Meeting these families will make you realize how short and valuable life is and how lucky we were to have the good fortune that God has blessed us with. One of the workers at the Hospitality House, Libby, said to us “You may think you have it bad in life, but there’s always someone out there who’s got it worse.”. Man, did that hit home.
If you’d like to donate your time or money to the Hospitality House of Charlotte, please visit them here. And if you’re not in Charlotte, there’s probably a Hospitality House in your area that could use your help.
September 24, 2012
Does Insanity and The Asylum Work? See for yourself! I had the honor of meeting Billy at a Shaun T event in Charlotte NC. Little did I know that he was actually assigned to us as our customer when he bought Insanity from Beachbody. You see Beachbody believes you’ll have more success if you have a FREE coach to support you then if you try and go it alone. Sad truth is, most people never take advantage of the support they have in their coach because they’re afraid. Afraid of failing and embarrassing themselves. They also are afraid to acknowledge that they bought a “fitness dvd” off of a website or an infomercial. Truth is, I know exactly how you feel! I felt the same way! It was weird to think that you can buy a dvd and do it at home and get results like Billy did! Billy started off with Shaun T’s Insanity program and for 60 days he pushed play and dug deep. Then after he “earned it”, he moved on to Shaun T’s graduate program Insanity the Asylum. Billy learned what it was like to train like an athlete and he dug in for 30 days and committed to himself to finish. I had the honor of working out with Billy almost every week and I saw him on the days when he was gasping for air and wanted to puke! But I saw a determination in him that was unwavering. He came and worked out with me every week, but between those Mondays, he was home pushing play, trying to beat my numbers on the lateral jump (lol, had to put it in there Billy) and now I see a lean, mean, athletic machine. Billy really impressed me with his dedication. His last round of Asylum I remember him saying “I want to do it again, because I don’t think I did my best the first time…”. I couldn’t believe this guy’s dedication! When I asked Billy if he felt weird about buying a DVD program he said “yeah, but after I started it, I really liked Shaun T and what he did and the way he works on you……I got Insanity, because of the fact that you didn’t need any equipment”. Billy’s goals going into Insanity? “To tone up, lose weight and back fat”. Well, that he definitely did! Billy’s weight went from 195lbs. to 161lbs! Body Fat dropped from 20% to 14.5%! Billy is a true inspiration to me and all who know him. Congrats Billy, you killed it dude! I can’t wait to do Asylum 2 with you later this month! To join a challenge group like Billy did and work with us or even Billy himself (yes, he’s now a coach!), contact us today! We actually pay people to get in shape! Click HERE to find out more!
September 24, 2012
One of the things you may be going through right now if you’re exercising at the gym or really pushing yourself with P90X or Insanity is dealing with your body’s hydration needs. Your body needs water as you do these programs, especially your muscles!
Nothing can be produced or even continue to exist without the aid of water. It’s the essence of life. Three-fourths of the Earth is covered with it and over sixty percent of our bodies are comprised of it. Water delivers nutrients and oxygen. It also hydrates and provides moisture.
In the human body water carries out multiple functions. Not only does water promote the already mentioned functions, but it also regulates body temperature, aids in metabolism, protects our joints and vital organism and it helps our bodies to absorb nutrients. Our body’s require water to be able to perform every function. Even at a cellular level the body needs water. The cells inside the human body need water in order to dissolve different chemicals and hormones traveling throughout. If the body were not able to breakdown these substances our bodies would eventually shut down.
Moreover, muscles, blood, bones and your brain all consists of various levels of water. It is important that we keep our body’s supply of water at a consistent level so it can function properly. If any part of your body lacks water then you will feel certain side effects, some can be very dangerous. Take for instance your muscles. Without proper hydration your muscles can get easily fatigue. This is the reason why it’s suggested that people replenish their water levels after exercising.
Without water your body starts to dehydrate and your muscles begin to lose oxygen. As a result you will experience cramping, head aches, dizziness and unstable blood pressure. A steady decline in hydration can even cause death. Clear signs of dehydration includes tiredness, dark urine, hunger, excessive thirst and dry skin. A good rule of thumb is to never wait until the point that you are thirsty. If you are thirsty you are probably already dehydrated.
The benefits of consuming water are just as plentiful as the consequences of going without it. One of the best benefits of water is assessed through the digestion process. When you drink plenty of fluids you’re body is able to properly metabolize food and will not become constipated.
Water also helps you to think and stay focused. Being that your brain is ninety percent water good hydration is needed for a healthy mental state. On a physical level water promotes healthy luminous skin and helps you to lose weight by breaking up fats and suppressing your appetite.
Once you decide that you need to increase the amount of water in your diet you’re next consideration should be on what type of water you will consume. There are all kinds of water from purified to spring. But which type of water is the best? Is the source of one better than another? Bottle water, tap water, well water, etc? For the sake of strong debate lets consider the two main sources of water consumption. On one side you have bottle water, tap water is on the other side.
Tap water is basically any drinking what that comes out of an inside tap. The water itself is from rivers, lakes and underground wells. It is processed by municipal, city and other domestic water systems. Tap water itself is deemed very safe. The water that comes from these sources are filtered and treated according to pre-established guidelines. Every water system supplying water to a city or town goes through vigorous testing and must pass re-occurring safety inspections.
The rising concern that accompanies tap water is that some water purification systems have been proven insufficient in some areas. In some regions around the United States there are processing plants that have failed to provide safe levels of potable water. Meaning there was a overpopulation of bacteria and pathogens found at testing- usually it’s the result of run-offs, byproducts or chemicals. Unfortunately the public normally finds out about these contaminants after the fact.
The alternative to tap water is bottled water. Bottle water comes from different sources. Usually purified and drinking water comes from the same municipal sources as tap. The only difference is that it further goes through reverse osmosis, deionization and other types of treatments to “purify” the water. Natural and spring water on the other hand usually do come from mountains and springs you see advertised on the bottles. Natural sources keep their mineral and element compositions through treatment. They too go through vigorous testing and inspections. Bottled water manufacturers are held accountable by the FDA to provide safe, treated water to consumers.
Overall, bottle water, tap water… They’re pretty equal. It really comes down to taste and individual preference. Regardless of which you choose your body needs water to survive. The possibility of contaminates in no way foreshadow the body’s need for water. Whether bottle water, tap water your body needs approx. 8 glasses a day!
If you’d like more information or would like us to write about a health or fitness issue that you have, please contact us today!
September 13, 2012
One of the biggest struggles we encounter with people who do a Beachbody program with us, like P90X or Insanity is nutrition. Everyone wants to eat healthy but everyone thinks it costs more. The P90X Nutrition guide and the Insanity Nutrition Guide are probably the most important tool with the programs. If you don’t eat healthy, you’re just going to spin your wheels and get discouraged and eventually quit. Maybe this is you in the past? Let’s make that a memory.
In today’s economically challenged environment, it may seem like processed is all you can afford. How does one eat healthy on a budget? It takes some practice to find a balance between spending too much on food and trying to eat healthy. It is not as easy as buying a box of carbohydrates and processed cheese that is true, but you are up to the challenge. With a little guidance, you can learn how to eat right without breaking the bank.
Make a List
It seems too simple, but you will be surprised the benefits that come with just getting organized when it comes to your diet. Sit down one day a week and write out meal plans. This is how you control what you eat to stay on a healthy path. Once you create a week’s worth of meals and snacks, make a list of groceries from your menu. The goal is to go to the store and only buy what is on the list, no impulse shopping for you. You save on money and calories. The Beachbody Meal Planner is a great tool for this as well as many other smart phone apps etc.
Make the Most of Your List
Now that you have a list of healthy meals for the coming week and groceries to buy, start collecting relevant coupons. The Internet is a couponer’s best friend. You can look online for coupons to print out. Go through the print ads you get in the mail and in newspapers looking for sales. For example, one store may have fresh fruit on sale every Tuesdays as an alternative to hitting the farmer’s market. Do what you canbased on your schedule. If you have the time to visit three different stores to save, then do it.
Buy in Season
A healthy diet is full of pretty greens and fresh produce. These foods are often the most expensive. One way to save is to buy in season. For example, in the middle of winter is the wrong time to look for watermelon. During the summer months, you might find it on sale, however. When you are creating your menus, keep in mind that produce should be in season to save. Organic foods are better for you, but it is not necessary to be 100 percent organic to stay healthy. Concentrate on foods with thick skins. The skin protects the heart of the produce from pesticides, so buying organic is a waste. Onions, watermelon, avocados – these foods all have nice thick skins, so don’t spend extra for organic produce.
What about Homegrown?
Gardening is a fantastic way to get exercise, and not all gardens require an acre in the backyard and every moment of your free time. If you have limited space, consider planting a few things in containers that sit on the patio, rooftop or deck. Tomato plants are a good option. If that sounds like too much, everyone has room for an herb garden on their windowsill. Grow what you can, when you can.
Don’t Skip the Frozen Vegetables
Save money on frozen when you can. Frozen vegetables are sometimes as good, if not better, then fresh, and they cost less. Produce loses nutritional value the longer it sits off the vine. Frozen fruits and vegetables stop degrading as soon as they are frozen. This means frozen may have more nutritional value then fresh produce. Frozen vegetables lose value when you cook them wrong. Steam the vegetables instead of boiling them to get the most out of broccoli and carrots.
Some foods just make sense in bulk – beans and brown rice are two of them. When you combine these two foods together, you create what medical professionals call a complete protein. This means these two foods side by side contain all the amino acids your body needs for optimum health. They are inexpensive and store well in bulk form, so you can spend less on animal protein.
While you are buying in bulk, stop hand picking apples, oranges and potatoes. Buy a full bag when it is available. A bag gives you more for less money. You can look for healthy grains in bulk, as well. Oatmeal is economical, good for you and easy to dress up with fruit and a touch of brown sugar.
Eating on the Run
We live in a world of big portions. You can use that to your advantage when eating at a restaurant. If you are with a friend, split a plate and the check to save calories and money. If you are by yourself grabbing a quick lunch, ask the server to pack half the plate in a takeout container before bringing it to the table. You still are eating less and now you have lunch for two days, as well.
A healthy diet doesn’t have to be expensive. It does have to be well thought out, however. The key to eating right while living on a budget is planning. Set time aside each week to organize your diet. That hour or two will save you in long run, and keep you eating healthy too.
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September 12, 2012
It’s what everyone sees when they look at you, your gut. Whether you’re on the beach, in the nightclub or talking with strangers, it’s there. Maybe you can pretend not to see it or hide it behind baggy clothing, but it’s still there every time you’re shopping for a bathing suit or meet your potential soulmate. Your gut keeps you living in insecurity.
“What’s the best way to lose my gut or beer belly?” isn’t a question about vanity, but health. Most people make it about vanity and if that’s what it takes to get your attention, so be it. You, like most people, are concerned with the belly fat you can see. However, it’s the visceral fat that’s the problem too, even for thin individuals. Before answering the question what’s the best way to lose my gut or beer belly, it’s important to explain a couple things.
Your body stores fat in two ways:
• Under the skin
• Around vital organs
Just beneath your skin, you have the fat you notice. This is why you ask the question, “What’s the best way to lose my gut?” This type of fat, called subcutaneous fat, is located in your abdomen (your gut), thighs, buttocks and hips.
The second area of fat is called visceral fat. Visceral fat is needed because provides cushion deep inside and around your organs including your lungs, heart and digestive tract. It’s also located around the pelvis, your gut and chest.
You’re not supposed to notice visceral fat because it’s so deep inside your body. However, when you have too much visceral fat, you notice. Also, you have a greater chance of developing medical conditions such as type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure or heart disease.
There is good news about belly fat. When you’re losing weight the healthy way, it’s the first area you notice slimming down.
What to Focus on
One of the most important factors in losing your gut involves cardiovascular exercise. During your exercise routine, you want to work on increasing your heart rate because it helps you lose weight.
You want to focus on lean protein sources. These sources include turkey or chicken breast. Also, non-white starchy carbs like whole wheat pasta, boiled potatoes and brown rice is good too.
Reduce refined carbohydrates while you increase the whole grains. Refined carbohydrates such as white bread often change your glucose response. It elevates blood sugar and makes fat deposit in your body easier.
Limit the saturated fats too. This includes high-fat meat and dairy products like cheese and butter. Instead, increase the Monounsaturated Fatty Acids or MUFAS. The MUFAS help you lose your gut. Olives, avocados, nuts, avocados, canola oils and chocolate are rich in MUFAS.
Eliminate, or at least, moderate alcohol intake. Alcohol and junk food are empty calories which can increase your fat.
Decrease your calorie intake to about 1,600 calories. It takes approximately 3,500 calories to lose a pound. Thus, reducing your calories can help eliminate your belly fat. Even when you’re eating healthier, calories quickly add up, especially when at a restaurant. Keep your portions in control.
Avoid limiting your food calorie intake too much. For example, if you go lower than 1,000 calories a day, your body goes into starvation mode. Thus, it holds onto your body fat reserves—even the fat stored in your gut. You gain fat in your belly, not lose the dreaded gut weight.
Asking, “What’s the best way to lose my gut?” is taking accountability for your unhealthy, bad eating habits. However, you should remember to mix your accountability with a little support from others. Understanding how to lose your gut takes action and continuous information on losing weight and maintaining your weight loss.
For a free consultation or help with your weight loss struggles, contact us here.
August 28, 2012
Lift weights & your spirits. Studies show that even a little bit of exercise can affect the mood-controlling parts of your brain. Try a bicep curl by standing with your feet shoulder-width apart. Place your arms at your side and slowly bend your arm, bringing the weight up toward your face. Do 12 reps each and the next time you have a rough day remember to reach for a dumbbell instead of junk food.