For the 5th year in a row, I am making the New Year’s resolution to get in shape. The past four years I have tried different diets, competitions and “multi-level” programs to lose weight and feel great. I last about a month and then the excuses roll in; I didn’t have $135 for insert “multi-level” program here plus the $40 for the gym. I didn’t have time to work out. I had so many social engagements that it is too hard to diet.
All of that is true. So instead of joining a program and spending hundreds of dollars on shakes and pills, I am going back to basics.
I know that the next month will be hard. I know that eliminating processed sugars and carbs will make me cranky. I know that I will have horrible cravings. I also know that after 14 days, I will feel better, I will be more alert and I will sleep better.
You are welcome to follow my journey or participate with me.
1. Have people hold you accountable. At work we started a “healthy living” competition. It has an app. So daily, I record my workouts and healthy eating habits. You can do this with MyFitnessPal, Fitbit and Beach Body ext.
2. Get a fitness tracker with heartrate reading capabilities. I got the Fitbit Blaze and I love it! What is nice about this, is you see how many calories you actually burn in a day, hour, minute. This changed the way I see food and fitness. It also provides you with easy to use tools for tracking food, water and exercise.
3. Eating right. This is the hardest part of any lifestyle change and the only way to be successful is to prepare. Have food in your house, have snacks in your bag. I fail when I get hungry and feel that if I don’t eat something now, I’ll be sick. I have prepared a shopping list, 14 dinners and a selection of breakfasts, lunches and snacks. Currently I have 14 days of food in my house for 2 people or 28 days for 1 person and it cost me $145.
4. Eat breakfast and eat something every 2-3 hours. Nourish your body throughout the day.
5. Work out 30 minutes, 5 times a week. I am currently using the Daily Burn program Cardio Sculpt.
6. Get rid of external toxins. That’s right; go local and organic with your shampoo, conditioner, soaps, lotions and deodorant. I hit up Oregon Bath and Body today for the essentials.
Eating Plan: Eat what you want when you want from the approved list.
What you can eat:
1. Meat-obviously don’t eat a pound of bacon every day. 3-5oz is a great portion for every meal.
2. Vegetables: Eat a minimum of 2-3 cups a day.
3. Fruits: Eat a minimum 1-2 cups a day.
4. Whole grains: ½ cup twice a week.
5. Dairy: ½ cup twice a week.
6. Beans: ½ cup three times a week.
7. Nuts, including non-sweetened butters and milks.
8. One meal a week, treat yourself to a bowl of pasta or glass of wine or dessert.
9. Butter, olive oil, coconut oil ext. in moderation for cooking.
What you cannot eat:
1. If it is white don’t eat it. Sugar, flour, rice ext.
2. Pay attention to labels. Everything has sugar in it, do not buy it if sugar is on the ingredients list.
3. Pre-made boxed meals and frozen meals.
4. Protein shake mix that includes sugar.
5. Meal replacement products.
I by no means am forever giving up delicious sweets. I am still continuing to bake and experiment with food. I encourage you to cook as much as possible through the next 30 days. Get your nutrients from nature, not from a box.
I am taking this time to build a healthy relationship with food. Meals should be shared and revolve around good conversation, laughter and wine. Meals should not be consumed quickly and alone, this is what leads to binge eating. When we do have to eat alone, make it an event. Have a delicious meal prepared and some light reading.
When you develop good habits with food, then you can eat what you want.