Using Food for Weight loss
A few months ago I was at a party with some girlfriends and we were playing Game of Things (one of my all time favs) and one of the questions was. "Name something that happens after you have kids". My answer had been, "Your thighs steal all the fat from your boobs" . I had the smallest chest there, and in my mind, all my fat was in my saddlebags. So I thought someone would probably guess my answer right away. Everyone else in the circle was selected before me for that answer - At the end someone said, "Ty if this is yours then I am going to murder you".
Ok fine, I get that I still have body image issues. It was a little eye opening to me that even though I work on positive body image thoughts all the time, I still don't see myself as the rest of the world sees me. And you know what - This is true with 90% of the women that I come across. Is that the case for you? I have women with beautiful bodies constantly apologize for their "gross fat" while on the massage table. I have women (and men) that won't even get massages because they are so embarrassed about their bodies. Well here's news for ya folks. That is not going to change if you lose a little weight.
It starts with being grateful for what you have. Love your body for what it does for you. My functionality is lower than many, but I'm always grateful for any run that I can do, or any family vacation that involves tons of walking that I successfully complete.
What are you grateful for? Write it down
I wanted to lead with this, because if you are here to lose weight, it's going to be extremely beneficial to be doing it for the right reasons.
1. to have a Healthy Body - Increase of body fat about the belly increase risk of heart disease and other health problems
2. less Weight on your Joints, be able to move better
3. you don't fit into your clothes and don't want to buy all new ones (unless this previous size is unreasonable)
Harmful reasons to want to lose weight
1. to please someone else
2. to feel like you will be a better/ more worthy / more attractive person
3. to look good in a bikini (you already have a bikini body - put a bikini on - bam)
4. to obtain a body that is unobtainabe
So if you have a healthy reason to want to lose weight, continue on
Plan to Lose Weight But Focus on Health
Remember our planning section? This is where it's going to pay off the most. Your diet is going to be THE most important part of your weight loss journey - More than exercise. You can do very little exercise, and still lose weight. (We should be exercising for our health anyways) . We are not going to focus on this, and when you are making your goals, make sure that you have more that are related to different achievements (Being able to hike a certain distance, having an unhealthy medical test improve, feeling more energy, etc)
The Secret to Weight Loss
We are going to follow these 3 guidelines.
1. Move more, Eat Less
After all these years, the answer is still calories in vs calories out. You can read about this well done study here, but basically there were 3 groups - Low carb, low fat, and then the control group. The 2 groups that cut something out (carbs or fat) all lost weight over the course of the year because they both cut out calories. All you have to do is make sure that you are consuming a lower amount of calories than you can burn off in a day.
HOWEVER if you are someone that has gone through years and years of yo yo dieting, your metabolism is most likely a little broken. If you are unable to lose weight even when redoing calories, I would also recommend that you follow the food phasing plan in the next section. I wanted to leave this optional because it is more work and more preparation.
Reducing calories has its limits. It works to a point, but If you reduce your calories too much, you will actually start losing muscle instead of fat, which we really don't want. And your body will think you are experiencing a famine, and start holding on to the fat (even increasing it) just in case. Click on this chart to get a general idea of the amount of calories you should be consuming. Now this does not take into account your activity level, so keep that in mind.
The best app to do this is My Fitness Pal. And it has the added bonus of and adding in workout calories and calculating your macros we will talk about in a minute.
So Take a second and go download the app if you haven't already.
2. Inflammation impedes weight loss.
Inflammation in our bodies is a natural occurrence and is something the body uses to heal injuries, fight invaders, and get rid of infections. It's chronic inflammation that is the diet killer however. All the stress that we address in this program from emotional stress to bad oils to environmental toxins can all be contributors. Once we reduce the inflammation, we can turn the fat cells into muscle cells and become fat burning machine.
All calories are not made the same. The stress foods that are mentioned in the previous section are the biggest culprits and therefore should be avoided 90%of the time. I do live in the real world with kids and I know how hard this can be. This is why I try to offer real world solutions. Becoming aware of this is the first and most important step. Refer to the previous page to see a list of these.
3. Keep your Insulin levels from elevating - burn off your carbs
Guess what guys - Sugar and Carbs are not inherently bad. Oh snap, I said it. Cake is not going to make you gain weight just by looking at it. The trouble comes when we consume carbs, raise our insulin, and then don't burn them off in the day. This is why you should:
* Eat your carbs earlier in the day. Aim to reduce carbs and even eliminate them by dinner. Sugars in the body do not turn into fat unless they are not burned off.
* Avoid spiking insulin by eating a large amount of carbs at once. Eat with protein and fat.
*Avoid carbs that spike insulin quickly - Sugars, cakes, candies, sweets, sodas, juice.
There are a few things that you can do during the day that can aid your body in fat loss.
* Do a fasted workout before you consume any calories in the morning. This can last from a few minutes up to 45 minutes, but should not be intense. A morning walk, easy yoga, or something else low intensity will be the best option. Most people don't have that kind of extra time unless this is their workout workout - This is why I introduce the 2 minute Resets in the next chapter and I think they are perfect for this.
* Alternate between standing and sitting during the day. Standing regulates insulin levels much more than sitting.
* Take a 20 min Walk after dinner (or move around ) to help the body digest food and again to keep Blood Sugar levels and Insulin lower
Counting Your Macros
I'm sure you have heard this trendy diet phrase floating around, but if you haven't, I'll explain now. Your macros are the molecules that your body uses to make energy - Fat, Carbohydrates, Protein. It's best to eat a balance of these sources of energy, and will assure that you are eating enough protein to lose weight, and avoiding too much fat or carbs. After you input your food daily into the App, you can look to see what percentage of each macro you ate that day. It has an amazing database of food, including specific brands. So if you are eating Costco chicken, you can type that in and find a close match for the one you consuming. I tend to eat too much fat and not enough protein, so knowing that helps me to make better diet decisions. I'm not going to give you an assignment to make a bunch of calculations for your body to figure these out. My Fitness Pal does this for you and really makes it easy. After you input your food, the app will give you a report. It has you will aim for 40% Carbs 30% Protein 30% fat. These numbers can be adjusted based on your goal. If you lift weights and want more muscle mass, increase protein decrease carbs by a few percentages. I would do this is well if you are mostly sedentary and don't need the extra carbs for energy.
If you want to follow a more structured plan, then you can head to the next page and follow the 12 week food phasing plan.
Tips to Help You Cut Calories
1. Make a social situation plan - Social Situations seem to be the hardest times to eat healthy because we associate yummy, treat food with happiness. And we don't have to avoid it all the time because no one does that (for long). But if you are partaking of the splurge food too much, it can start to slow your results. So if you are around unhealthy food, try to find the healthiest thing you can and munch on that. Then wait until after to eat a healthy smoothie at home. Even better plan ahead and eat before so you aren't as tempted. Or best, try to get everyone to bring healthy snacks. You being a good example can influence others to be the same way.
2. Start with 100 calories. Where can you leave off 100 calories? Usually night snacks are the best to cut first (and can give you a better night's sleep when it doesn't have to digest). Try to avoid eating after 7pm as a general rule (except if you need the calories). You can cut an afternoon treat, or stop drinking soda or milk or another beverage with a meal.
3. Feeling full or icky while eating. I know this should be common sense, but we are wired to want to store extra fat in case of emergency. It may be hard wired into you to want to finish every meal or someone else's meal, but start asking yourself, "Why do I need to?" The universe doesn't care if you eat the rest of a meal or throw it away. You are the only one affected. So if you are starting to feel full, I'm giving you permission to go ahead and stop eating.
Also If you start to feel bloated or something like it while you are eating, that is a pretty good indication that your body isn't cool with what you are giving it. This can happen after an intense workout too, but your body will let you know if it can digest that yet. This is especially true with protein and fat. Taking an enzyme with dinner helps out with this amazingly and you can read about it in the next section.
On a side note, if you are working out so hard that your stomach is hurting, it may be time to reevaluate your fitness goals.
4. Be mindful while you eat. It's time to focus on the act of eating to help you fit your goals. What is the biggest killer of this is eating in front of a tv or with a cell phone. Ugh I know. I do it too, But just for now while you are eating, I want you to practice leaving it to the side, and sitting down and chewing your food.
All right! Get started and check in on Facebook.