5 Easy Ways to Quit the Weekend BINGE!

 

How many times have you worked SO hard during the week to eat healthy and exercise, only to blow it on the weekends? 

 
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If you've fallen culprit to the weekend binge, don't worry, YOU'RE NOT ALONE!  Heck, even sometimes I can have weekends that are the opposite of healthy!  

However, if you're trying to lose weight, keeping your weekends in-check is CRUCIAL to reaching your goals!  Check out these tips to help you stay on track, even during the most fun weekend events!

1. Focus on being CONSISTENT instead of being PERFECT.

Let's be real--the weekends are the time we should be ENJOYING our days without work!  It is 100% possible to lose weight and still enjoy meals at restaurants, and even a special dessert or drink on the weekends.  Instead of focusing on eating and exercising "perfectly," because that doesn't even exist, focus on making consistent, healthy choices when you CAN!  Don't restrict yourself, but control how much unhealthy food you're eating.  Eating a salad with veggies and chicken followed by ice cream cone won't cause you to gain weight, but eating pizza, burgers, fries, AND ice cream could cause you to gain weight.

2.  Forget about "good" and "bad" food, and focus on portions.

Here's the truth: Eating too much of the HEALTHIEST foods can cause you to gain weight.  

Instead of focusing on eating "good" or "bad" food, focus on the portions of ALL foods you eat on the weekends.  It's definitely important that most of the foods you choose are nutritious, but use your hand to help you portion out each meal.  For women looking to lose weight, include a palm size protein, fistful of vegetable, a small cupped hand of carbohydrates and a thumb size amount of fat in each meal, 3 or 4 times a day.

3.  Plan ahead and be prepared!

Often times, we know our weekend plans well ahead of the actual weekend.  If you have an upcoming party or BBQ to attend, or if you know you plan on getting ice cream on a hot summer day, try to eat healthy, nutritious foods for MOST of the day leading up to your event.  Then, when you arrive at the party or BBQ, you can enjoy some treats because you've stayed on track so far.  On the flip, if you have brunch plans, enjoy your brunch and mimosas, but then get back on track immediately after brunch by having a healthy lunch or dinner planned.

4.  Drink 1-2 glasses of water in between each alcoholic beverage!

It's not uncommon for many women to enjoy a few cocktails on the weekends.  Heck, that's one of MY favorite parts of the weekend!  However, it's easy to over-do it with the booze, especially when you know you can sleep all day tomorrow!  

In between each alcoholic beverage, be sure to drink at least 1-2 glasses of water.  Not only will this help control how many calories you're drinking, but it will also help prevent the dreaded hangover (which usually leads to poor nutrition choices.) 

5.  Accept responsibility for your decisions

The first thing I want to stress is that there's no "BAD" or "GOOD" food choices.  There are only more nutritious food choices, and less nutritious choices.  Eating is a simple cause and effect situation.  Everything we eat and drink takes us a little closer or a little further away from our health & fitness goals.  

Accepting the consequence is a great way to enjoy your food.  Plus, accepting the consequences helps to to really hone in on exactly WHAT less nutritious food choices are worth eating and drinking.  

If you're looking to lose weight or simply lead a healthier life, use these suggestions to help you stay on track!  I promise that you CAN lose weight and still enjoy weekends.  It just takes some mindfulness and planning ahead! ;) 

 

Are *HEALTHIER* snacks really healthier for you?

 
 
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I'm not going to lie to you...  Years ago, these nutrition facts surprised me when I compared the two! 

Back when I was trying to lose weight, I *THOUGHT* trail mix was a great snack choice!  Often times, it's labeled as healthy, organic, or high-protein.  YES, it may be organic, or contain a good amount of protein, or healthy to some, but it has almost the EXACT SAME nutrients as a Dairy Queen Blizzard.

This is really important to note--I'm not trying to compare what's the "healthier" or "better" option between trail mix or a DQ blizzard.  I'm simply showing that a food that MANY of us believe(d) to be *healthy" is loaded with just as many calories (and fat) as a Dairy Queen Blizzard.

At the end of the day, the quantity of calories you eat, no matter where they come from, will dictate whether you gain weight, lose weight, or maintain the same weight.

So how do you know you're choosing the healthiest snacks, especially if you're trying to lose weight?  

Should you count calories and check nutrition labels? NO and YES!  If you've been following me for awhile, you know that I DO NOT BELIEVE IN COUNTING CALORIES!  Seriously, it takes so much time and ISN'T necessary to lose weight!

But should you be checking your nutrition labels?  YES!  I highly encourage you to check the ingredients of your snacks.  Here's my general rule of advice for snacks: The fewer ingredients, the healthier it probably is. 

If you're looking for the healthiest snack choices, stick with the basics!  Try to choose foods that come in their natural state.  Whole pieces of fruit, vegetables, greek yogurt, or cottage cheese all make great snack choices!  

If you're looking for more healthy snack or meal choices, be sure to join my *FREE* Facebook group for Women here!

 

 

 

 

 

4 Reasons You Should Start Exercising NOW!

With Memorial Day kicking off the summer season, it comes as no surprise that summer is the one of the busiest seasons of them all!  Between work obligations, family life, and social functions, it's hard for many of us to find time to exercise.  Aside from looking great on the beach this summer (because let's be honest, we all want too), check out these reasons why you should begin exercising today:

1. Exercise boosts energy AND happiness

It's science. Today's research suggests that exercise releases feel – good endorphins into our bloodstream. In fact, a study at Penn State University suggests that people who exercise, regardless of the intensity, had more pleasant feelings than those who did not work out. This study also noted that participants were happier on days that included physical activity, as opposed to days they did not exercise.

2. Exercise can help you sleep better.

If you're prone to tossing and turning at night, exercise actually helps to strengthen your body's circadian rhythms and can help you to fall (and stay) asleep!

However, the results are not immediate. Research suggests that it can take up to four months for exercise to help study your circadian rhythm's, so start hitting the gym now to get a better quality sleep over the next few months.

3. Exercise helps to reduce stress in a positive way

As I mentioned earlier, it comes as no surprise that we all lead busy, complicated lives. There are tons of ways to deal with stress, many of which can negatively impact your health and fitness goals.  Eating a pint of Ben & Jerry's may seem like the best way to deal with a stressful situation, but I promise you that you'll end up feeling worse about yourself afterwards.  You know that exercise can make you happier, but it can also help to reduce stress by stopping the release of stress hormones that flow throughout your body.

4. Exercise helps improve your confidence and willpower

Sure, it's great to see the physical results of exercise. I'm talking tone arms and abs, a tiny waist, and chiseled legs. For me, the mental results that my clients gain are much more important than the physical ones!!  By slowly increasing how much weight you can lift or how far you can run, you'll gain confidence that will bleed into other parts of your life.  It's simple--crushing your workouts and FEELING the gains helps you to feel good in all areas of your life!

In addition, exercise improves your mental strength. Let me be real with you, there are definitely days when I wake up and do NOT want to work out.  However, once I complete the work out, I feel energized and never regret putting in the work!  Plus, I know that I can push myself into that zone that's a little bit uncomfortable. Sure, it can be scary to lift heavier weights than you're used to, or running a further distance than you ever have before, but that's where the real magic happens!

A 30-minute workout is 2% of your day. That's all you need to gain the benefits listed above, and to start seeing great results. Instead of finding excuses and reasons that you can't exercise today, take action find a type of exercise you love.  Get up and get moving!  Make a commitment to your health today, and look and feel better tomorrow!

Struggling to eat fruits and veggies? Check out these tips!

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One of the habits that I find my clients struggle with most is eating enough fruits and vegetables. In a perfect world, we would all eat five servings of fruits and veggies daily. As you and I both know, the world is not perfect, and unless you're really focusing on it, chances are you are not eating enough fruits and veggies on a daily basis. This week, I'll be sharing tips and tricks to help you out, so those five daily servings won't seem so daunting.

1. Eat at least one serving of fruit (or veggies) with your breakfast! 

I'll be honest, the idea of eating raw broccoli for breakfast kind of grosses me out (unless it's in an omelet!)... It just doesn't sound appetizing in the morning! However, I DO try to include some fruit with my breakfast every morning. Check out a few of my favorite options that can help you kick start your breakfast with fruit: 

--A banana with almond or peanut butter

--Greek yogurt with fresh berries

--and orange or grapefruit with some Almonds

--cottage cheese with pineapple or mango

2. Make a super smoothie!

Making a super smoothie for either a snack or meal is a great way to get in multiple servings of fruits and vegetables. The more fruits and veggies, the better! Just be sure to include at least one source of protein as well.  Spinach is an easy, nutrient-packed veggie to add to ANY smoothie because it usually acquires the taste of the other ingredients.

3. Include one serving of fruits or veggies as an afternoon snack. 

If you find yourself getting hungry between lunch and dinner, it's totally fine to eat a snack! Just be sure your snack is properly portioned and includes a bit of protein! Check out these easy to grab (or pack) afternoon snacks:

--Carrots and hummus

--Celery with peanut or almond butter

--Turkey rollup with a cherry tomato inside

--A cheese stick with Some broccoli

4. Include at least one serving of fruits or veggies with both lunch and dinner!!

It sounds simple enough, but be sure you include at least one serving of fruits or veggies at lunch and dinner. When choosing what to include, the more colorful the better! If you struggle to find time to prep your fruits and veggies, buy packaged, ready-to-eat ones! 

5. Pump up the flavor!

I think that raw vegetables are boring and bland on their own... is anyone else with me? Check out these ways that you can make your fruits and veggies taste better:

--Dip raw veggies in a bit of salad dressing, peanut/almond butter, or hummus

--Roast veggies to bring out their natural flavor: sprinkle a bit of olive oil on them and throw them in the oven until they are tender

--Season cooked veggies with lemon juice and a splash of olive oil; add fresh herbs such as sage or basil

--If you're looking for a healthier dessert, try baked apples or pears topped with a bit of honey and cinnamon

Comment below, which of these can you add to YOUR daily meals?

6 Practical Tips to Make Weight Loss Simple

Starting a new health and fitness routine is a difficult task!  Especially when your goal is to lose weight.  It means making changes to your already-busy schedule.  Here are 5 tips to make losing weight, and your life while losing weight, easier.

 

1.     Set your exercise schedule and clothes out on Sunday night:  Make a pile for each set of clothes you plan to wear that week for exercise.  Include everything from socks, to shorts, to a sports bra, to shoes,  to a shirt.   In addition, commit to your workouts for the week by writing them into your calendar.  On the days of the week you plan to workout, grab a pile of gym clothes in the morning, and you’re ready to go!

2.     Empty your fridge and cupboards of junk food, and don’t buy more!  It’s much more difficult to eat junk food if you have to leave your house to go get it.   It’ll also make you think twice about whether it’s really worth your goal to eat the treat.  Try to keep fresh fruit in your kitchen for when you crave a sweet snack.   If you don’t buy the junk, you won’t be tempted to eat it!

3.     Measure your progress!  Set your goal weight, and then decide how much time you want to get there.  Take your current weight, and create a simple line graph to help keep you on track.  Be sure you are consistent with your weigh-in.  Weigh in on the same day and time every week (usually first thing in the morning is best).  This is a great way to measure progress, as well as to see when you need to kick things up a notch to hit your goal.

4.     Hire a trainer or coach.  If you can afford it, work with an expert!  It makes the entire process easier when you are told exactly what to do to lose weight.  Plus, it helps having an accountability partner and cheerleader for your weekly goals.

5.      Eat your meals on small plates.  This may seem like a silly tip, but research shows that you change the amount of food you eat depending on the size of your plate.   Trick your brain by choosing a smaller plate to fill up, as opposed to a large plate. 

6.     Drink a glass of water before every meal.  Sometimes, when our bodies signal hunger, we are actually thirsty.  Plus, it’ll prevent you from over-eating by helping to fill your stomach.

 

If you'd like to step up your weight loss game, I am offering you a FREE 15-minute call, where we will discuss your goals, and look for a way to get you there as quickly and safely as possible.  Click HERE to register for a call.