January, 2012 | The Cycle Project

Archive for January, 2012

Jan
21
2012
0

Chocolate Protein Pudding

Here is a protein packed snack that the whole family will love. It’s important to enjoy snacks that are low in carbohydrates and sugar, and high in protein in order to shed body fat and develop healthy muscles. This recipe delivers on all fronts, without sacrificing flavor.
Servings: 1

Here’s what you need…

  • 6 oz Greek Yogurt, plain, fat free
  • 1 scoop high quality chocolate protein powder
  • Sprinkle of unsweetened cocoa powder
  1. In a small bowl use a whisk to combine the yogurt and protein powder. Mix until all lumps have disappeared.
  2. Garnish with a sprinkle of unsweetened cocoa powder.

Nutritional Analysis: One serving equals: 220 calories, 0g fat, 445mg sodium, 11g carbohydrate, 0g fiber, and 42g protein.

Jan
15
2012
0

Teen’s Need Exercise Too

So get ‘em off the couch, pull the cell phone out of their hands, and send them to the field and the gym.
Remember the good old days, when the only video game available was a pinball machine down at the local soda shop? Well, those days are long gone. Today’s teens have access to more video games and other technology that keeps them away from the great outdoors and off the basketball court. Instead of moving their growing bodies, they spend countless hours pushing buttons, texting friends and playing video games.But if exercise isn’t a regular part of your teen’s life, big trouble could be right down the road. Why should your teen get into the exercise routine, and how can you make it happen?

Why Exercise Matters
Take a look around at teens. They have countless social media tools that are supposed to help them be more connected with others than ever. Unfortunately, these social sites can cause teens to forget how to socialize with real people in real life. Get these kids to the gym and encourage them to exercise with other teens, and you give them an instant lesson in socialization.

But exercise is about more than being socially adept. It’s about good health. And in case you’ve not picked up a newspaper or magazine in the last 10 years, you should know that there is an obesity epidemic currently taking place. It’s affected plenty of adults, but it is now affecting teens as well – especially as they spend less time exercising and more time sitting around watching television, playing video games, texting, and chatting online. Get your teen exercising today, and you’ll help them obtain and maintain a healthy weight and develop lifelong healthy habits.

How to Get Them Moving
Sometimes, getting a teenager to do something is as easy as teaching a rhinoceros to fetch. Don’t let their attitude get you down. Remember your own attitude problems as a teenager, take a deep breath, and prepare to put up a fight. When you’re going into battle with your teen, try these tips out.

Make It Fun. Remember when your teen was a toddler? Exercise wasn’t something you forced him or her to do. It just happened, via hide-and-seek, tag, or just running all day long. Find what physical activities interest your teens, and encourage him or her to get out and do it.

Up the Chores. 
Is your teen lazing around the house doing nothing, while you’re working frantically to keep everything in order? Flip your teen’s world upside down by having him or her take over some of the more physically demanding chores. Have your teen rake leaves, plant flowers, scrub toilets, and take out the garbage. It may not be the same as lifting weights, but it’ll get your teen’s body on the move!

Do It Together. If your child isn’t motivated to get in the gym on his or her own, offer to do it together. Whether you lift weights, ride bikes, swim, or hike, doing it as a family makes it easier to keep your teen on an exercise schedule.

Take It Easy. Your teen needs to exercise. There is no question about it. Just don’t let this need override your parenting know-how. Ever tried to force your teen to do something he or she didn’t want to do? Didn’t work so well, did it? Remember this when working with your teen, and encourage your teen gently. You may be surprised at the end result.

How Much? While medical experts normally recommend adults get 30 minutes of exercise five or more days a week, the same doesn’t hold true for teenagers. Instead, try to get your teen to exercise for at least 60 minutes most days of the week. It doesn’t have to be incredibly vigorous. A light jog, a game of kickball, or riding bikes will do the trick.

If you want to expedite you and your teen’s results then consider working with me on a fitness plan that will turn you both into fat burning machines.

Jan
08
2012
2

5 REASONS HIGH FRUCTOSE CORN SYRUP WILL KILL YOU

IF YOU CAN’T CONVINCE THEM, CONFUSE THEM.

Harry Truman

 

The current media debate about the benefits (or lack of harm) of high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) in our diet misses the obvious. The average American increased their consumption of HFCS (mostly from sugar sweetened drinks and processed food) from zero to over 60 pounds per person per year. During that time period, obesity rates have more than tripled and diabetes incidence has increased more than seven fold. Not perhaps the only cause, but a fact that cannot be ignored.

Doubt and confusion are the currency of deception, and they sow the seeds of complacency. These are used skillfully through massive print and television advertising campaigns by the Corn Refiners Association’s attempt to dispel the “myth” that HFCS is harmful and assert through the opinion of “medical and nutrition experts” that it is no different than cane sugar. It is a “natural” product that is a healthy part of our diet when used in moderation.

Except for one problem. When used in moderation it is a major cause of heart disease,obesity, cancer, dementia, liver failure, tooth decay and more.

Why is the corn industry spending millions on misinformation campaigns to convince consumers and health care professionals of the safety of their product? Could it be that the food industry comprises 17 percent of our economy?

The Lengths the Corn Industry Will Go To

The goal of the corn industry is to call into question any claim of harm from consuming high fructose corn syrup, and to confuse and deflect by calling their product natural “corn sugar”. That’s like calling tobacco in cigarettes natural herbal medicine. Watch the slick ad where a caring father walks hand in hand with his four-year-old daughter through a big question mark carved in an idyllic cornfield.

In the ad, the father tells us:

Like any parent I have questions about the food my daughter eats – like high fructose corn syrup. So I started looking for answers from medical and nutrition experts, and what I discovered whether it’s corn sugar or cane sugar your body can’t tell the difference. Sugar is sugar. Knowing that makes me feel better about what she eats and that’s one less thing to worry about.”

 

Physicians are also targeted directly. I received a 12-page color glossy monograph from the Corn Refiners Association reviewing the “science” that HFCS was safe and no different than cane sugar. I assume the other 700,000 physicians in America received the same propaganda at who knows what cost.

In addition to this, I received a special “personal” letter from the Corn Refiner’s Association outlining every mention of the problems with HFCS in our diet – whether in print, blogs, books, radio or television. They warned me of the errors of my ways and put me on “notice”. For what I am not sure. To think they are tracking this (and me) that closely gives me an Orwellian chill.

New websites like www.sweetsurprise.com and www.cornsugar.com help “set us straight” about HFCS with quotes from professors of nutrition and medicine and thought leaders from Harvard and other stellar institutions.

Why is the corn industry spending millions on misinformation campaigns to convince consumers and health care professionals of the safety of their product? Could it be that the food industry comprises 17 percent of our economy?

But are these twisted sweet lies or a sweet surprise, as the Corn Refiners Association websites claim?

What the Science Says about HFCS

Let’s examine the science and insert some common sense into the conversation. These facts may indeed come as a sweet surprise. The ads suggest getting your nutrition advice from your doctor (who, unfortunately, probably knows less about nutrition than most grandmothers). Having studied this for over a decade, and having read, interviewed or personally talked with most of the “medical and nutrition experts” used to bolster the claim that “corn sugar” and cane sugar are essentially the same, quite a different picture emerges and the role of HFCS in promoting obesity, disease and death across the globe becomes clear.

Last week over lunch with Dr. Bruce Ames, one of the foremost nutritional scientists in the world and Dr. Jeffrey Bland, a nutritional biochemist, a student of Linus Pauling and I reviewed the existing science, and Dr. Ames shared shocking new evidence from his research center on how HFCS can trigger body-wide inflammation and obesity.

Here are 5 reasons you should stay way from any product containing high fructose corn syrup and why it may kill you.  

1. Sugar in any form causes obesity and disease when consumed in pharmacologic doses.

Cane sugar and high fructose corn syrup are indeed both harmful when consumed in pharmacologic doses of 140 pounds per person per year. When one 20 ounce HFCS sweetened soda, sports drink or tea has 17 teaspoons of sugar (and the average teenager often consumes two drinks a day) we are conducting a largely uncontrolled experiment on the human species. Our hunter gather ancestors consumed the equivalent of 20 teaspoons per year, not per day. In this sense, I would agree with the corn industry that sugar is sugar. Quantity matters. But there are some important differences.

2. HFCS and cane sugar are NOT biochemically identical or processed the same way by the body.

High fructose corn syrup is an industrial food product and far from “natural” or a naturally occurring substance. It is extracted from corn stalks through a process so secret that Archer Daniels Midland and Carghill would not allow the investigative journalist, Michael Pollan to observe it for his book, The Omnivore’s Dilemma. The sugars are extracted through a chemical enzymatic process resulting in a chemically and biologically novel compound called HFCS.

Some basic biochemistry will help you understand this. Regular cane sugar (sucrose) is made of two-sugar molecules bound tightly together – glucose and fructose in equal amounts. The enzymes in your digestive tract must break down the sucrose into glucose and fructose, which are then absorbed into the body.

HFCS also consists of glucose and fructose, not in a 50-50 ratio, but a 55-45 fructose to glucose ratio in an unbound form. Fructose is sweeter than glucose. And HFCS is cheaper than sugar because of the government farm bill corn subsidies. Products with HFCS are sweeter and cheaper than products made with cane sugar. This allowed for the average soda size to balloon from 8 ounces to 20 ounces with little financial costs to manufacturers but great human costs of increased obesity, diabetes and chronic disease.

Now back to biochemistry. Since there is there is no chemical bond between them, no digestion is required so they are more rapidly absorbed into your blood stream. Fructose goes right to the liver and triggers lipogenesis (the production of fats like triglycerides and cholesterol) this is why it is the major cause of liver damage in this country and causes a condition called “fatty liver” which affects 70 million people. The rapidly absorbed glucose triggers big spikes in insulin – our body’s major fat storage hormone. Both these features of HFCS lead to increased metabolic disturbances that drive increases in appetite, weight gain, diabetes, heart disease, cancer, dementia and more.

But there was one more thing I learned during lunch with Dr. Bruce Ames. Research done by his group at the Children’s Hospital Oakland Research Institute found that free fructose from HFCS requires more energy to be absorbed by the gut and soaks up two phosphorous molecules from ATP (our body’s energy source). This depletes the energy fuel source or ATP in our gut required to maintain the integrity of our intestinal lining. Little “tight junctions” cement each intestinal cell together preventing food and bacteria from “leaking” across the intestinal membrane and triggering an immune reaction and body wide inflammation.

High doses of free fructose have been proven to literally punch holes in the intestinal lining allowing nasty byproducts of toxic gut bacteria and partially digested food proteins to enter your blood stream and trigger the inflammation that we know is at the root of obesity, diabetes, cancer, heart disease, dementia and accelerated aging. Naturally occurring fructose in fruit is part of a complex of nutrients and fiber that doesn’t exhibit the same biological effects as the free high fructose doses found in “corn sugar”.

The takeaway: Cane sugar and the industrially produced, euphemistically named “corn sugar” are not biochemically or physiologically the same.

3. HFCS contains contaminants including mercury that are not regulated or measured by the FDA.

An FDA researcher asked corn producers to ship a barrel of high fructose corn syrup in order to test for contaminants. Her repeated requests were refused until she claimed she represented a newly created soft drink company. She was then promptly shipped a big vat of HFCS that was used as part of the study that showed that HFCS often contains toxic levels of mercury because of chlor-alkali products used in its manufacturing.(i) Poisoned sugar is certainly not “natural”.

When HFCS is run through a chemical analyzer or a chromatograph, strange chemical peaks show up that are not glucose or fructose. What are they? Who knows? This certainly calls into question the purity of this processed form of super sugar. The exact nature, effects and toxicity of these funny compounds have not been fully explained, but shouldn’t we be protected from the presence of untested chemical compounds in our food supply, especially when the contaminated food product comprises up to 15-20 percent of the average American’s daily calorie intake?  

4. Independent medical and nutrition experts DO NOT support the use of HFCS in our diet, despite the assertions of the corn industry.

The corn industry’s happy looking websites www.cornsugar.com andwww.sweetsurprise.com bolster their position that cane sugar and corn sugar are the same by quoting experts, or should we say mis-quoting …

Barry M. Popkin, Ph.D., Professor, Department of Nutrition, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill has published widely on the dangers of sugar-sweetened drinks and their contribution to the obesity epidemic. In a review of HFCS in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition,(ii) he explains the mechanism by which the free fructose may contribute to obesity. He states that:

“The digestion, absorption, and metabolism of fructose differ from those of glucose. Hepatic metabolism of fructose favors de novo lipogenesis [production of fat in the liver]. In addition, unlike glucose, fructose does not stimulate insulin secretion or enhance leptin production. Because insulin and leptin act as key afferent signals in the regulation of food intake and body weight [to control appetite], this suggests that dietary fructose may contribute to increased energy intake and weight gain. Furthermore, calorically sweetened beverages may enhance caloric overconsumption.”

 

He states that HFCS is absorbed more rapidly than regular sugar, and that it doesn’t stimulate insulin or leptin production. This prevents you from triggering the body’s signals for being full and may lead to overconsumption of total calories.

He concludes by saying that:

 

“… the increase in consumption of HFCS has a temporal relation to the epidemic of obesity, and the overconsumption of HFCS in calorically sweetened beverages may play a role in the epidemic of obesity.”

The corn industry takes his comments out of context to support their position. “All sugar you eat is the same.”

True pharmacologic doses of any kind of sugar are harmful, but the biochemistry of different kinds of sugar and their respective effects on absorption, appetite and metabolism are different, and Dr. Popkin knows that.

David S. Ludwig, M.D., Ph.D., Associate Professor of Pediatrics, Harvard Medical School, and a personal friend has published extensively on the dangers and the obesogenic properties of sugar-sweetened beverages. He was quoted as saying that“high fructose corn syrup is one of the most misunderstood products in the food industry.” When I asked him why he supported the corn industry, he told me he didn’t and that his comments were taken totally out of context.

 

Misrepresenting science is one thing, misrepresenting scientists who have been at the forefront of the fight against obesity and high fructose sugar sweetened beverages is quite another.

5. HFCS is almost always a marker of poor-quality, nutrient-poor disease creating industrial food products or “food-like substances”.

The last reason to avoid products that contain HFCS is that they are a marker for poor-quality, nutritionally depleted, processed industrial food full of empty calories and artificial ingredients. If you find “high fructose corn syrup” on the label you can be sure it is not a whole, real, fresh food full of fiber, vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients and antioxidants. Stay away if you want to stay healthy. We still must reduce our overall consumption of sugar, but with this one simple dietary change you can radically reduce your health risks and improve your health.

While debate may rage about the biochemistry and physiology of cane sugar vs. corn sugar, this is in fact beside the point (despite the finer points of my scientific analysis above). The conversation has been diverted to a simple assertion that cane sugar and corn sugar are not different.

The real issues are only two.

  1. We are consuming HFCS and sugar in pharmacologic quantities never before experienced in human history — 140 pounds a year vs. 20 teaspoons a year 10,000 years ago.
  2. High fructose corn syrup is always found in very poor quality foods that are nutritionally vacuous and filled with all sorts of other disease promoting compounds, fats, salt, chemicals and even mercury.

These critical ideas should be the heart of the national conversation, not the meaningless confusing ads and statements by the corn industry in the media and online that attempt to assure the public that the biochemistry of real sugar and industrially produced sugar from corn are the same.

 

Know I’d like to hear from you …

Do you think there is an association between the introduction of HFCS in our diet and the obesity epidemic?

What reason do you think the Corn Refiners Association has for running such ads and publishing websites like those listed in this article?

What do you think of the science presented here and the general effects of HFCS on the American diet?

Please leave your thoughts by adding a comment below.

To your good health,

Mark Hyman, MD

References

(i) Dufault, R., LeBlanc, B., Schnoll, R. et al. 2009. Mercury from chlor-alkali plants: Measured concentrations in food product sugar. Environ Health. 26(8):2.

(ii) Bray, G.A., Nielsen, S.J., and B.M. Popkin. 2004. Consumption of high-fructose corn syrup in beverages may play a role in the epidemic of obesity. Am J Clin Nutr.79(4):537-43. Review.

Jan
08
2012
1

4 Important Core Exercises For Triathletes

All three disciplines of triathlon require core stabilization and strength. Strong core musculature helps you keep your body streamlined in the water, maintain a comfortable bike position, and complete an efficient run.

Core strength also assists with generating, absorbing and stabilizing forces that occur during your bike and run. Moreover, increasing your core strength will help decrease your risk of overuse injuries, such as low back pain and IT band syndrome. Your core is your foundation, and without it, your form will collapse and suffer. If your form collapses, your chance of injury increases.

Unfortunately, most athletes avoid or limit core exercises during their endurance training. After a long workout, resistance training or core work is the last thing on your mind. The great thing about core exercises, however, is they can be done in your home, at the gym or in your office.

The following exercises are designed to increase deep abdominal and back strength and stabilization. These muscles are key for proper hip and spine alignment. Perform these exercises at least two days per week. They can be added to your off day and your other light training day during the week. Again, a healthy core musculature will pay huge dividends during your long season of swimming, biking and running.

Core Exercise #1: Plank With Repetitions

As you perform the plank, make sure you keep your elbows at ninety degrees and looking down. As you lift your hips up, pull your belly button in to activate your deep abdominal muscles (touch your belly-button to your spine). Focus on keeping a straight line from your ears through your shoulders, hips, knees and ankles.

The biggest mistake made with this core exercise is allowing your hips to sink or raise. This will cause pain in the low back and place pressure on the spine, so be sure to maintain proper spine alignment.

After lifting your hips and extending your legs, pause for two to three seconds and then slowly return to the starting position. Perform 12 to 20 repetitions without sacrificing form. And don’t forget to breathe.

Core Exercise #2: Side Plank With Repetitions

This exercise is performed exactly like the front plank only on your side. Again, maintain proper alignment of your head, shoulders, hips, knees and ankles. Activate your core as you raise your hips and pause for two to three seconds, breathing throughout the movement. The side plank will emphasize the obliques more so than the front plank. Perform 12 to 20 repetitions on each side without sacrificing form.

Core Exercise #3: Ball Cobra

The ball cobra emphasizes the deep and superficial back musculature. Start prone (face down) on the ball in a relaxed position. As you lift your chest off the ball slowly, externally rotate your shoulders and retract your shoulder blades (squeeze shoulder blades together). Hold your finish position for two to three seconds and then lower yourself slowly back to the start.

To advance this exercise, simply add small dumbbells for added resistance. Perform 12 to 20 repetitions without sacrificing form.

Core Exercise #4: Cable Chop

The cable chop involves adding resistance, and therefore is more focused on strengthening key core muscles (as opposed to pure stabilization). This exercise also involves the chest and lats.

Using a cable machine, start in a relaxed position with your feet shoulder to hip width apart and your toes and knees straight ahead. Pull the weight across the body from your shoulder to your opposing hip. Rotate your hips and and upper-body as you perform the exercise. Return to the starting position slowly.

If you do not have access to a cable machine, simply use an exercise band in its place. Perform 10 to 20 reps on each side.

Remember, as a triathlete, great form and technique start with a solid foundation. The foundation is your core strength. Without it, you are limiting your potential. During a triathlon you need your running formand posture to become second nature. If your running form starts to go, chances are you let your core strength program go. Focus on your core and find yourself finishing strong at your next race.

Jan
05
2012
0

Sesame Chopped Salad

  • 1 cup cabbage
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 green onion
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh cilantro
  • 1 Tablespoon sliced almonds
  • 2 teaspoons sesame low fat dressing
  • 1/2 cup cooked chicken breast
  1. Chop the cabbage, carrot, onion and cilantro into very small pieces. Add the almonds and toss with dressing.
  2. Top with chopped chicken breast.

Nutritional Analysis: One serving equals: 276.5 calories, 7.5g fat, 468mg sodium, 27g carbohydrate, 7g fiber, and 26g protein.

Jan
02
2012
0

How To Get Everything You Want in 2012

Here’s to a Happy New Year and to getting everything that you want out of 2012.
Today you have a clean slate with a brand new year spread out in front of you, filled with endless possibilities.

How will you harness your potential to create the very best you? I recommend using the teachings of Dr. Maxwell Maltz in his legendary book ‘The New Psycho-Cybernetics’.

Dr. Maltz created the original science of self improvement and success, so who better to turn to when you’re ready to take your life to another level. His teachings have stood the test of time.

Take the following and get all that you want out of 2012:

1) Use Your Imagination
If you thought that imaginations were only valued in preschool, think again. One of the key points in ‘The New Psycho-Cybernetics’ is the technique of using your imagination to reprogram and manage your self image.

You may have been exposed to self improvement strategies that tell you to ‘act as if’ or to ‘fake it till you make it.’ Those typically don’t work because your self image is still the same.

According to Dr. Maltz, your self image is the key to changing your actions and habits. If you want to lose 50 pounds, you first have to think of yourself as someone 50 pounds lighter.

Spend time in your imagination. See yourself 50 pounds lighter. Experience a day in your life at this slimmed down size. Imagine everything down to the smallest detail.

According to Dr. Maltz, this imagination time will begin to change your self image to that of a person 50 pounds lighter, and your actions and habits will fall into place.

2) Reject Negative Thoughts
Negative thoughts will undoubtedly arise as you use your imagination to see your ideal self. “I’m not really going to lose 50 pounds.” “I’ve tried losing weight before and it never works. I’m always going to be overweight.” “This imagination stuff is bogus. It won’t work for me.”

Dr. Maltz says that the instant you receive a negative thought simply dismiss it. Don’t spend any time on it at all.

The quicker that you dismiss negative thoughts, the less impact they will have on your self image. Also you’ll find that fewer and fewer negative thoughts arise once you get into the habit of dismissal.

3) Be Nostalgic For The Future
It’s so easy to be nostalgic for the past, especially when you only remember the good stuff. But what good does it do for you to wish for things that are long gone?

Dr. Maltz recommends developing nostalgia for the future.

In your imagination you’ve already lost the 50 pounds, so start pining for the future! Your self image will lock onto that picture and your nostalgic feelings will fuel the fire.

4) I’m The Kind Of Person That…
What kind of person are you?

  • I’m the kind of person that loves sweets.
  • I’m the kind of person that hates exercise.
  • I’m the kind of person that can’t lose weight.

OR

  • I’m the kind of person that eats fresh and healthy food.
  • I’m the kind of person that keeps fit.
  • I’m the kind of person that maintains an ideal body weight.

Your self image will fulfill any label that you put on yourself. The power is all in your hands.

What kind of a person do you want to be in 2012?

If losing weight is something you’d like to do this year, then call or email to set up a consultation. I’m the kind of person who LOVES to see clients like you achieve their goals!

Jan
01
2012
0

Make Your Resolutions Stick

New Years is finally here, which means most of us are making those New Year’s Resolutions.   However, in 2002 The Journal of Clinical Psychology’s did a study that found:

Percentage of Americans who usually make New Year’s resolutions: 45%
Percentage of people who are successful in achieving their resolution: 8%
Resolutions maintained past first month: 64%
Resolutions maintained past six months: 26%
Among the top three resolves are to lose weight, save money and quit bad habits.

So…we have a lot of people making healthy resolutions, but not following through…until now!  This is the year that you can keep your resolutions, just by following a few simple steps.

 

1.    Goals

Resolutions are nothing more than goals wrapped in a fancy name since the New Year is one of the best times to embrace a new start.  And since they are simply goals, you should to treat them like any other goal.

You need to create a clear, defined goal that has emotion attached to it.  I have found when you are able to add all of these keys to your goal setting, you will be able to stay on track a lot more often than by just picking a resolution/goal.

First and foremost you need to find a way to attach an emotion to your goal, This is Your WHY!  This is the thing that will keep you moving forward when things get a tough, or you want to quit.  The way to find this emotion in your goal is to keep asking yourself “Why”.

I had a client once who started off with a goal of wanting to lose weight, which is a very vague goal at best.  Upon asking why?, why?, why?  It came out that they had one parent die from complication of diabetes, the other was currently experience some complications from diabetes and they were afraid they were headed down that same path and wanted to change.  That fear of following in those steps is a lot more powerful reason to keep working towards a goal, than just to lose a few pounds.

Next, you need to clarify your goal so there is an end date/time and you will have a definitive way to measure whether or not you made it.  Saying I want to lose 5 lbs, is ok, but it vague.  Vague Goals Lead To Vague Results! Instead try a goal that has your ending weight (not that you should be too focused on just the scale to begin with.) and an ending time.

If you are 100 pounds right now, instead of saying you want to lose 5 lbs, your goal would be To Weighh 95 lbs.  Then add an ending date.  So if today is Jan 1st, you would want to achieve that goal by Feb 5th at 9am when you wake up.

Now you have a great goal.  On Feb 5th at 9am when you step on the scale, you either hit your 95 lb goal or you didn’t.    Now the goal won’t keep rolling over until maybe you hit that 5 lbs.  If you are serious about this, you will take the steps to get to 95 lbs buy Feb 5th at 9am!

Finally, write your goals down; And then post them in strategic places where you will see them numerous times each day.   I like the bathroom mirror, so I see them first thing when I wake up and right before bed.  Your desk is a good option, or if you have trouble overeating, put it on the fridge as a reminder as you are making dinner. Our subconscious is a powerful thing, so by seeing these goals a lot throughout the day, it will help you prepare to reach these goals.


2.    Set Realistic Goals

When you are setting your goals, you need to be both realistic in your goals as well as making them sustainable.   You need to able to decipher between short term and long term goals.  If you think back, I am sure you will realize that it took you a while to get out of shape, maybe even years.  Since that is the case, it will take a while and perhaps a year to get to your ultimate goal.

Saying you want to lose 50 lbs in January is just not going to happen.  Don’t set yourself up with an unrealistic goal like that.   I guarantee that if you plan on losing weight the proper healthy way, that goal will never happen and you just set yourself up to fail.  Make the 50 punds a long term goal.  Start with being down 6-10 lbs the first month and then get down the 50 lbs by July 1stat 9am!

On average, through exercise and proper eating, you should plan about 1-2 lbs of weight loss a week, except for in the beginning if you are obese, you could lose weight more quickly.

Also important is making sure you ease into new things so you can sustain them.   A lot of people try to change everything at once and fail because there are too many new things they are trying to do.  If you are adding exercise into your goals, start off slowly and ease into a harder routine.  If you have been a couch potato, hitting the gym 3x a week and running 10 mi twice a week, may not happen.  But you can start light lifting a few times a week and say a walk/run program to get you going until you are able to do the other.

The same thing holds true for nutrition.  Don’t try and completely revamp your nutrition plan overnight.  Pick a few easy changes to start with and then add the other changes slowly down the road.

 

3.    Hydration

Often overlooked, hydration is one of the simplest things you can add to your resolutions to help you get healthier.   Hydration helps with digestion, skin, keeps you from feeling tired and sluggish and also keeps you from having that “snack time feeling” all the time.  So many healthy benefits just from staying properly hydrated, why wouldn’t you?  A general rule for hydration is drinking half of your body weight in ounces of water every day. And add more if you are exercising.


4.    Get Back Up

Chances are there is going to be a time when you have a slip up and don’t stick to your plan.  That’s fine.  It happens to everyone.  The important thing is to get back on track as soon as possible.  Too many times a person will have a bad lunch and decide the day is ruined so they might as well have a poor dinner too.  Or miss a workout on Thursday, so better wait until Monday to get back on track…all of those will lead to failed goals.   The key is if and when you have the bad meal or the missed workout, to get back on track right away.  There is no need to wait until a future “event” or new day.

My favorite analogy…if you were getting some eggs out of the fridge to make an omelet, and while you were pulling the carton out an egg fell on the floor and broke…would you throw the rest of the dozen eggs on the floor and then start with a new carton?  Or would you just clean up that one broken egg and then use whats left in the carton?

It’s the same thing with a meal or a workout.  If you miss one, or its bad, you don’t have to sacrifice the rest of the day or week before you “start again”. Just clean up the mess and start over at the next possible time.

 

Resolutions have probably, at some point in your past, been forgotten about weeks or months into the New Year.  However, following these four simple rules will help keep you on track for your goals throughout the year as well as obtain them!

If you have any questions or need help setting up your goals, email me today and we will get you started!