Online Fitness Coaching: Nutrition Tips to Get Back On Track

It’s January and the holidays are over. You ate, you drank, you were merry.  Now comes the dreaded step on the scales.  Ugh! (My “ugh” was four extra pounds)   How to get back on track?  Here are 10 Nutrition tips from your online fitness coach to get you back to normal.

  1. Do Not beat yourself up!  We all have times when we leave the healthy path and get off track. Don’t let gaining a little weight make you throw in the towel completely.The holidays are over!

  2. Get rid of all the left over holiday treats in your house.  They are going stale anyway.

  3. Make a commitment to eat a nutritious breakfast every morning.  A piece of whole wheat toast with peanut butter or granola with fruit are great choices.  I am  pressed for time in the morning so my choice is chocolate Shakeology with a teaspoon of peanut butter and a tablespoon of strawberries or blueberries.  I blend it with 1/2 cup almond milk, 1/2 cup water and 1 cup ice.  I can drink it on the way to work.

  4. Aim to eat 3 smaller meals and 3 snacks each day (300 to 400 calories each is a good rule of thumb).  This will keep you from getting really hungry and overeating.  It also keeps your blood sugar from spiking/dropping and keeps your metabolism humming all day.

  5. Eat five fresh or frozen fruits and veggies each day. They are packed with vitamins and minerals that your body craves.  Bonus, they are lower in calories.  This is high octane food.

  6. Make your drink of choice water.  Calories-Zero.  Did you know that 75% of your body is made of water

  7. Journal everything you eat for at least a week.  You don’t even have to look up calories and count them.  The simple act of writing down everything you eat will make you slow your calorie consumption.  If you are still struggling to get back to normal after a week, you can start counting calories for added accountability.

  8. Increase the protein and limit the white stuff (white sugar, white flour)

  9. Be present at all your meals and snacks.  Sit down, eat at a table, turn off the TV and don’t read and eat. If you actually focus on eating, you will eat less.

  10. If you dine out in the next week.  Make a choice from the healthy menu many restaurants include today. If there is no such thing, choose baked or broiled meats, skip the sauces and breading.  Choose a salad with a clear dressing. Pick veggies for your side (no, fries don’t count) and water to drink.

Try these tips this week and see how you do.  Let me know how it’s going.  Next post will be eight exercise tips to get you back on track.  In the meantime, here are some links to help you get started!

28 quick and healthy meals

Skinnytaste

 

Online Fitness Coaching: Stressed Out About Blowing Your New Year’s Resolution?

Are you already feeling stressed out about blowing your New Years resolution to lose weight, start exercising or quit smoking? By now, most of us have made a few New Year’s resolutions for 2012 and most of us have included at least one of these top three.  Research shows that over time a majority of us will fail in maintaining resolutions.  Here are some stats compiled by Serge Prengel, a licenced mental health counselor in New York City.  Seventy five percent of us will be able to maintain our resolutions past the first week, by week two it’s down to 71%.  After one month the percent has dropped to 64% and by six months the number has taken a nosedive to 46%.  I guess we have a right to feel a little stressed out!

One of the best tips I can give you as an on-line fitness coach is to take some steps to hold yourself accountable to your resolutions.  If you really want to achieve them, do some planning to set yourself up for success.

  • Set specific goals that can be reached realistically.  Here’s some examples:  “During the next 90 days I will exercise 30 minutes a day, 3 days a week” or “Jan 9 is my quit date for smoking.  By that date, I will have all tobacco products out of my house.” or “Starting the Tuesday after New Years day, I will limit my diet to mainly lean meats, whole grains and fruits and veggies.”

  • Track your progress.  Keep a food journal.  Write down what you did for your workout each day.  Keep track of how many days you have been a non-smoker and record the health benefits you are noticing.

  • Get an accountability partner.   This is so important, I can’t emphasize it enough!  Tell someone what your resolution is and what your specific goals are.  Ask them to check on you periodically to see how you are doing.  It’s A LOT harder to give up completely if you are going to have to admit that to someone else.

Beacause I think your health is the most important possession you have. I am volunteering to be your accountability partner to start exercising or to lose weight.  E-mail me for details on joining a small (5 or 6 member) 30 day challenge group, or on making me your e-mail or text accountability buddy.

Happy 2012!  YOU can be in that 46% that keep their resolutions! Here’s some links to get you started.

Start Exercising

Lose Weight

Quit Smoking

 

Healthy Tips for Holiday Stress Relief

Are you starting to stress as the holidays approach?  Worried that all the parties, gift giving and traveling will leave you frazzled and your belly bloated?  Here are ten tips from your favorite  fitness coach to relieve stress from Christmas to the New Year.

 

  1. Eat a healthy snack before you head out to holiday parties so you won’t overeat and stress about all the extra calories you have ingested.
  2. Keep to your exercise schedule as much as possible.  Regular exercise will work off built up stress.  It also releases those feel good chemicals (endorphins) that will help you feel calm.  When you are pressed for time due to shopping and social engagements, take a brisk walk or do a quick ten minute workout like Ten Minute Trainer When traveling, plan ahead.  Find out if your hotel has a fitness room.  Take along lightweight resistance bands and a workout plan on an index card that you can do anywhere.
  3. Get some alone time each day.  Even 15 minutes can make a huge difference in your outlook when your are experiencing the holidays at the speed of light!
  4. Pack some healthy snacks in your purse before heading out to shop.  It will cut down on becoming so hungry that you wolf down twice your normal amount of calories at the restaurant.  It can also keep food costs down.  Paying big bucks for meals while shopping can stress you out too!
  5. Help someone else.  Volunteer at a local agency this holiday.  Focusing on someone else who needs your help will take the spotlight off you, and your stress will lower.  Helping others will make you feel good too.
  6. Can’t get to the gym? Use a workout dvd or a workout on a cable channel such as Fit TV.
  7. Use smaller plates at parties.  You will eat less.  Feel free to try my trick and only take what you can carry on a napkin.  Believe me it is definitely less than you can pile on a plate!
  8. Get family and friends to help start some active holiday traditions with you.  Go ice skating or cross country skiing.  Take a long walk around the neighborhood to look at the holiday lights.  With a little creativity, you can come up with something everyone will want to do for years to come.
  9. Try some calming exercise like yoga or tai chi.  These will make you feel renewed in body mind and spirit.
  10. Make sure you get plenty of sleep.  Try to keep your normal sleeping and waking schedule as much as possible.  Little ones get cranky around the holidays when they miss naps and stay up too late and us adults are no different.

Remember:  If you are stressed and frazzled, you can’t enjoy the people you love the most during the holidays and they can’t enjoy your company as much either.  Share some of your favorite holiday stress relief tips in the comment section.  I would love to hear from you!

Additional links for holiday stress relief:

The Mayo Clinic

Web MD

Life 123

 

Easy Healthy Appetizer

Here’s a healthy appetizer that your online fitness coach made recently for a get-together with friends.  It sure can relieve stress when you have something easy AND healthy to take  It only has about 80 calories per serving.  Thanks to Doug Garner for giving me the recipe.  It would go great with his Mr. G’s coffee!

1 package sliced fresh mozzarella cheese   

3 plum tomatoes

1 package fresh basil

balsamic vinegar

Drizzle some balsamic vinegar on a serving plate, arrange the cheese on the plate.  Slice plum tomatoes and arrange on the top of the cheese.  Chop fresh basil leaves and put on top of the tomatoes.  It’s that easy.

Online Fitness Coaching: Helping My Sister Lose Weight

This is my sister Nancy.  When we were on vacation in July, her daughter Mackenzie and fiance, Dan, set their wedding date for October first.  At that time Nancy weighed 142 pounds and she wasn’t happy with that.  Some pounds had crept on over the years and she wanted to lose them so she could look nice for her daughter’s wedding.  She asked me to be her fitness coach.  She had about three months to get it done.  Some of the weight loss ideas she had tried had not worked and she was frustrated.  She didn’t feel she had the willpower to do what she needed to lose the weight.

I got really motivated and started to fire ideas at her.  I told her about all the cool tools on the internet she could use to count calories.  She felt she wouldn’t stick with that.  I talked to her about low fat recipes, but she didn’t think her family with two very hungry, growing sons would go for that.  I told her about all the great workout DVD’s I had from Beachbody, but she said she didn’t like to work out to DVD’s.  It had to be something quick and something she could do that wouldn’t take up time from her family and space from her living room.  I was out of  ideas.  Then she made a suggestion.

“What if I e-mailed you what I eat every day and you can tell me how I am doing?”  It seemed almost too simple, but I agreed to give it a try.  She agreed to start a weightlifting program and continue to run at least 3 days a week.

We started when we got home (July 7).  Every day Nancy either e-mailed or texted me everything she was eating that day.  I replied with encouragement (that’s great, looks good) or redirection (you’ve had a lot of carbs already today.  You will want to go light on carbs for supper) She also included what exercise she was doing that day.

I wasn’t sure it would work, but right away she began losing weight.  Just the fact that she had to tell me what she was eating was enough to change her habits.  She knew I would frown on nightly ice cream snacks at 9 p.m. so she curbed that habit.  She asked for advice on what to order at fast food restaruants when she had crazy days.  She even dreamed that she ate her way through a day and then was mortified when she knew she had to report it to me!

Every week their was some more pounds gone. That really increased her self-confidence.  On the morning of the wedding, she texted me.  “Wedding day weigh-in 128.8 lbs.  Thanks so much coach! Love ya!”  Her goal was to lose 10 lbs. and she had lost 13! Why did it work? Because it was something that fit into her lifestyle, because she felt comfortable with it and because she had someone to be accountable to.

If you think this approach would work for you, grab yourself an accountability buddy, a computer or cell phone and get started.  Or you can contact me.  I wouldn’t mind having another success story!

Online Fitness Coaching: Fitness Partners by Accident

My hubby is my fitness partner by accident.  How does that happen? I was thinking about how over the last 25 years , Bob and I have become fitness partners quite by accicent and it has been good for both of us.

For many many years, hubby lived the sedentary lifestyle.  This was much to my amazement. He had been an athlete in high school, but after graduation did not give exercising or healthy eating a thought.  No amount of encouragement from me could get him off the couch or his hands out of the chip bag.

Then, at age 40, he decided to start exercising.  He began to ride a stationary bike I got for Christmas.  It’s a good thing he made this decision.  It probably saved his life.  When he rode, he started to have a pain between his shoulder blades.  His family has a history of heart attacks at a young age.  He decided to go get it checked out and ended up getting a stent in the “widowmaker” artery that was blocked in his heart.  The widow would have been me….so I’m glad it all turned out the way it did!

Now he had to exercise and eat right.  Motivated mostly by fear, he began a running program and went on a low-fat diet.  I wanted to be supportive, so I also went on the diet and started t0 run.  The low-fat diet had a lot of tasty recipes and it wasn’t long until we both started to lose weight.  Hubby worked his way up to 5 miles per day and decided to enter some 5ks.  I am not much of a runner, but I would go along when he ran outside.  I couldn’t keep up with him, but we ran together on a cinder track near our house.  When he did a 5k in Southporte, NC I signed up for the 1 mile fun run. After while, I had to drop out of the diet because I was starting to be uncomfortable sitting on the floor or hard chairs. (I was losing weight in places where I sort of needed it!) So I added some snacks each day and tried not to indulge in front of him too much.

After quite a few years of this routine, the overuse injuries started to get hubby down.  He couldn’t run as much.  The fear factor was starting to wear off and he wasn’t sticking to his low-fat diet as well either.  Enter a friend who lost about 30lbs doing P90X.  Hubby decided he wanted to try it.  He ordered his P90X from the internet.  Of course I wanted to be supportive, so I decided to do it with him.  The first three days just about killed me (and I was already exercising regularly 5 days per week).  Then the results started to happen for both of us.  He gained upper body strength and I discovered I did have abs after all! I eventually could do some pull-ups and I had never been able to do that before.  This really increased the self-confidence.   We were both in the best shape of our lives.

About a year ago, hubby got a new, very sweet job that offered the services of a personal trainer.  He is able to work out to a plan tailor made for him and he can work out during his lunch hour.  I continued to be supportive by doing P90X plus and ChaLean Extreme at home.  Unfortunately, the weight krept back on for hubby, even though he was working out.  He scheduled an appointment to see the company nutritionist and asked me to go along.

Basically, she said he needed to make a conscious decision to change the way he was eating, especially on the weekends.  So now we are both eating more lean meats and fresh fruits and veggies and eating less bread, pasta and other starchy carbs.  We are also limiting desserts or changing the types of desserts we eat to more healthy choices.  We spend a lot of time planning meals, buying the groceries carefully and paying attention to when we are full.

Having a fitness partner can really make a difference when you are trying to change the lifestyle you are living and make it healthier.  It’s been working for Bob and I for quite a while.  If you would like a fitness partner or fitness coach contact me!

Online Fitness Coaching: Food/Mood Experiment Day 15

Day 15 Results

AM  Sleep:  7 hours  Mood:  7/10  Energy 6/10  Exercise:  Spin class at YMCA

Breakfast  protein bar 🙂

Lunch  Broccoli and chedder chees soup 🙁  salad 🙂  Greek dressing 🙂 tomatos 🙂 mozzarella cheese 🙁

Snack  1 scoop Shakeology 🙂  1 tsp almond butter 🙂  frozen strawberries 🙂  1/2 c water 🙂  1 c ice 🙂  watermellon 🙂  1 slice deli ham 🙂  1 c plain yogurt 🙂  frozed blueberries 🙂

PM  Mood:  8/10  Energy:  6/10

Supper  Talapia 🙂  Mango sauce 🙂  broccoli 🙂

Evening  Mood:  7/10  Energy:  7/10  Energy dip:  3 p.m.  Stress factor:  TOO BUSY today!

Good Food Mood %  17/18 or 94%  (yes!)

Food for Your Mood Experiment Day 14

Results for Day 14

AM  Sleep:  8 hours  Mood: 9/10  Energy:  7/10  Exercise: ChaLean Extreme Burn Circuit 1

Breakfast  1 scoop Shakeology 🙂 1 tsp peanut butter 🙂  3 Tbsp strawberries 🙂  1/2 c almond milk 🙂  1/2 c water 🙂  1 c ice 🙂

Lunch  whole wheat sandwich thin 🙂  6 slices ham 🙂 1 slice provolone cheese 🙂  watermellon 🙂  cerlery 🙂 almond butter 🙂

Snack  whole wheat sun chips 🙂  protein bar 🙂

PM Mood:  8/10  Energy:  9/10

Supper  4 1/2 oz  grilled chicken breast 🙂  tomato pesto 🙂 cucumber 🙂 tomatos 🙂  Italian dressing 🙂  water 🙂  watermellon 🙂

Evening  Mood:  9/10  Energy: 7/10  Energy Dip:  3 p.m.  Stress Factor:  None

Good Food Mood %  21/21 100% (great!)

Food for Your Mood Experiment Day 13

Results for Day 13

AM  Exercise:  Short walk  Mood:  8/10  Energy  7/10

Breakfast  Oatmeal 🙂  raisins 🙂  brown sugar 🙂 scrambled eggs 🙂  rye toast 🙂  grapefruit 🙂

Lunch  salad 🙂  italian dressing 🙂  roll 🙁  vegetable lasagna 🙁  steamed veggies 🙂  lemonade 🙁  water 🙂

PM  Mood:  8/10  Energy:  5/10

Snack  grapes 🙂

Supper  2 slices white bread 🙁 🙁  bacon 🙁  lettuce 🙂  tomato 🙂 light mayo 🙁  broccoli 🙂  water 🙂  grapes 🙂 walnuts 🙂  celery 🙂 pineapple 🙂 mayonaise dressing 🙁

Evening  Mood:  9/10  Energy:  7/10  Energy dip:  3 p.m.  Stress factor:  none

Good Mood Food percentage:  17/26 or 65%

Food for Your Mood Experiment Day 12

Results for day 12

AM  Sleep:  7 1/2 hours  Exercise:  2 Rounds of Circuit training, 2 hr Canoe adventure down the Delaware River, 1 mile hike all uphill! (that’s not made up)  Mood:  9/10 Energy:  10/10

Breakfast Oatmeal 🙂  Raisins 🙂  blueberries 🙂  brown sugar 🙁  orange 🙂  grapefruit 🙂 2 poached eggs 🙂 white toast 🙁

Snack  2 0z cheese 🙂  2 Tostidos 🙂  1 glass wine 🙁

Lunch  fried chicken 🙁  macaroni salad 🙁  baked beans 🙁  homemade veggie soup 🙂  apple pie 🙁

PM  Mood:  7/10  Energy 8/10

Supper  ham and bean soup 🙁  salad 🙂  italian dressing 🙂  pork loin 🙂  apricot glaze 🙁  acorn squash 🙂

Snack  3 glasses wine 🙁 🙁 🙁  carrots 🙂

Evening  Mood:  10/10  Energy:  9/10  Energy dip:  10:30 a.m. Stress factor:  no cold water in the shower and we couldn’t fix it!

Good Food Mood percentage:  14/26 or 54%