June 6, 2010. I knew I had to make a change in my life, and that change meant adopting a healthier lifestyle. I felt miserable, broken, and trapped by my weight. So, I set out on a journey to lose weight. I've always heard and read about how you have to make lifestyle changes to lose and keep weight off, but what does "lifestyle changes" even mean?
As the saying goes…”Use it or lose it” That goes for everything from physical fitness, an active healthy body, any skill that you’ve worked to perfect to an active healthy mind. You can never assume that what was once there will stay there unless you pay attention to maintaining it. Same goes for your body’s ideal weight.
Ever wonder how it all ties together?
Exercise can be helpful in ALL of these areas. Aerobic exercise, resistant training, yoga, circuit training all are beneficial by increasing oxygen levels and fat burning hormones, enhancing blood flow, adding bone density, increasing strength, reducing stress, the list goes on and on. A person engaged in physical activity has a sense of empowerment and control over their life. Motivation is a natural side affect.
I think the benefits to the brain are particularly interesting. The release of endorphins decrease cortisol levels and improve mood. Exercise has been recognised as an effective treatment for depression and actually unblocks neural pathways to effectively “re-grow” the brain.. Studies show that activities such as boxing have a positive physiological responses when given the opportunity to punch something, yoga an ability to relax and focus, group classes a sense of community and social interaction. Water exercise has a lot to offer since the buoyancy lifts the body as well as the senses. The properties of being in water stimulates the skin, conducts excess heat away, provides multi directional resistance and gives a feeling of lightness! Whatever activity you chose, make it something you enjoy! When you are active and working toward physical goals you feel like you can achieve anything that you set your mind to and your waist-line shrinks too!!
Exercise truly is medicine.
If doctors prescribed exercise in the same way as pharmaceuticals, we would all be a lot healthier
I recommend a post work-out treat this week
Fast Salmon with a Ginger Glaze
4(8 ounce) fresh salmon filletssalt to taste
1/3 cup cold water
1/4 cup seasoned rice vinegar
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon hot chile paste (such as sambal oelek)
1 tablespoon finely grated fresh ginger
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1/4 cup chopped fresh Basil
1)Preheat grill for medium heat and lightly oil the grate.
2)Season salmon fillets with salt.
3)Place salmon on the preheated grill; cook salmon for 6 to 8 minutes per side, or until the fish flakes easily with a fork.
4)Combine water, rice vinegar, brown sugar, chile paste, ginger, garlic, and soy sauce in a small saucepan over medium heat.Bring mixture to a boil, reduce heat to medium and simmer until barely thickened, about 2 minutes.
5)Sprinkle basil on top of salmon; spoon glaze over basil.
If you’re pumping iron salmon could make you stronger. With 22 grams of high quality protein per three ounces, this smart catch provides the building blocks your body needs to re- synthesize muscle tissue after a tough workout. And that’s not all. Salmon is also nature’s number one source of vitamin D, a nutrient that many of us don’t get enough of. That can make it harder to build muscle according to a 2010 Osteoporosis International study which links low vitamin D levels to decreased muscle strength.
I’m sure everyone who has ever taken a moment to think about it knows that embedded habits are hard to break. So, why would you think that after a few months of perfect eating habits those old nasty ones are gone forever? Even with the experience of what it feels like to fit in your skinny jeans, sleep well and having more energy than you know what to do with, you forget and serve up a sugary snack! Why?! Our habits take over in times of mindless-ness or stress.
Ever have this happen to you? Everything is going great in the show pen. You are in control, your horse is reading the cow and it feels like you are making a run at the pay window…then comes a bad cow. Yikes! Things are going fast…no time to think…STRESS! Here come those old bad habits that you have been working so hard to get past and you’re right back to leaning and gripping. (Oh, just me huh?) Yup, those old bad habits are just waiting for a stressful situation to rear up to think that they were invited back. Good news!! As you learn strong healthy habits, they can come back just as easily. Without giving much thought, you walk right past the foods that are bad for you to look over what’s available to fuel up in a hurry! Just like practicing for show day, time and a little positive focus teaches you strong habits to move you toward the desired outcome. You’ll be working tough cows with confidence and junk food is back in the past!
Have you heard all the BUZZ about Dr. Andersen and his 30 Day Habits of Health challenge? Working on fixing bad habits does take commitment and what better way than getting support from the expert?!
To date, 11,000 people have already taken the 30 day challenge! My question is……..What about YOU!?!? Simply follow the link and sign up. Regardless of where you are on your journey to create health in your life, the challenge will provide you with another layer of info and support. I think you will LOVE IT!!!!!!!
Oh and……even more exciting news as Dr. A was in the Wall Street Journal! Check out the article!
I hope you find these support tools helpful! These tools are available to everyone so feel free to share with a friend. As always, I am here, willing and able to assist anyone who is ready to move on with their life and finally reach their weight loss goals. Oh, as usual…ready with a yummy recipe too
Crispy Buffalo Chicken Bites Medifast isn’t just for snacking!
9 oz. raw boneless skinless chicken breast cut into cubes- should yield 6 oz cooked (1 Lean)
1 tbsp Frank’s Red Hot Wing Sauce (1 Condiment)
1 Bag Medifast Parmesan Cheese Puffs (1 Meal)
1 tbsp Reduced Fat Grated Parmesan Cheese (1 Condiment)
Optional Dipping Sauce:
2 tbsp Hidden Valley Light Ranch Dressing (1 Healthy Fat)
1 tsp Frank’s Red Hot Wing Sauce (0.33 Condiments)
1)Preheat Oven to 350.
2)Finely crush the Parmesan puffs into a bread-crumb consistency – use food processor or just whack the heck out of the (already opened) bag with
something heavy. Mix the Parmesan cheese with the processed Parmesan puffs and pour crumb mixture into a plastic Ziploc bag. Set aside. 3)Cut Chicken Breast into approximately 1 inch cubes/chunks. Combine chicken with 1 tbsp of Frank’s Hot Wing Sauce, tossing until combined.
4)Place the coated chicken (let excess sauce drip off chicken before placing in bag) into the Ziploc bag with the crumb mixture and shake the bag, making sure the chicken is completely coated with the crumbs.
5)Put the crumb coated chicken cubes onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper (etc.) and bake for approximately 25-30 minutes. Cooking time will vary depending on your oven, maybe use a oven light and kept an eye on them to make sure they didn’t burn.
6)Combine ranch dressing and 1 tsp Frank’s Hot Wing Sauce and stir until combined. Serve with chicken bites.
1 Lean Serving with 2.33 Condiments, 1 Healthy Fat, and 1 Meal (Don’t forget to add your Greens!)
“Poor health is not caused by something you don’t have; it’s caused by disturbing something that you already have. Health is not something you need to get, it’s something you have already if you don’t disturb it.” ~ Dean Ornish
Have you ever thought about how you were created to be perfect? Yup, you are an exact copy of your designed blueprint, the person you were meant to be. Along with that comes your human-ness. We all seem to have the drive to push things to the limit. How high can I jump or fast can I go? What about stretching the boundaries of our health? The problem of course is that beyond those limits, things tend to break and we are faced with the reconstruction process to get back what was once there.
Rather than compromising your health, I think it is better boost it! Guarding our health is the best way to keep it. The old “use it or lose it” works here.
All those healthy habits that I’m constantly preaching about are the key. Most of us have stretched the limits of our health and are on our way back to un-disturbing perfection. Getting our weight down is an important part of returning health. I found these tips helpful
*Start out your day with a high protein breakfast. Including protein in the morning will help diminish those feelings of hunger. Not only is there a physiologic effect of a higher protein breakfast, but there is also a perception of fullness that goes along with eating protein. Try some Greek yogurt, scrambled eggs, or a protein bar like a Medifast Crunch Bar.
*On the go? Try incorporating a meal replacement. Studies have shown that meal replacements are an effective tool for weight management. Choose a meal replacement with a balance of calories, protein, fiber and carbohydrates, like Medifast Shakes or Crunch Bars. Eating a meal replacement is a better choice than not eating at all as it will help keep your metabolism going and fuel your body with the nutrition it needs for your busy day.
*Strive to increase your fruit and vegetable intake. Fruits and vegetables are low in calories and high in fiber, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. By grabbing an apple, banana, carrots, or broccoli, you are more likely to replace foods that are higher in fat and calories for a healthier diet. A great goal is to have a fruit and vegetable with every meal! Are you up for that challenge?
You may not be able to incorporate all of the changes at one time. In fact, attempting to make several significant changes at one time can make you feel overwhelmed. A proven approach to weight loss is the small-changes approach. By incorporating one or two small changes at a time into your daily lifestyle, you are more likely to attain sustainable results. Some examples of this are walking more, increasing fruit and vegetable intake, and continued follow-up with a Registered Dietitian, nutritionist, or other health care provider. These small changes will become habits will help you to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
Get in touch with me and together we can work on improving your health habits Then let’s see your body in action!
Ready for a picnic?
3 eggs at room temperature
3Tbsp light cream cheese at room temp
pinch of cream of tarter
1 packet of Splenda
1) Preheat oven to 350.
2) Separate egg yolks and whites. Add cream of tarter to whites and beat until stiff peaks form. Set aside.
3) Add cream cheese and Splenda to yolks and whisk until blended. Gently whisk into whites taking care not to over-mix and let them fall.
4) Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and make 6 equal “blobs” not touching.
5) Bake for 25-35 minutes.
Enjoy them warm, cold or toasted!
6 rolls is enough for 3 servings, 1/3 lean & 1.3 condiment. Add 2/3 serving of your favorite protein to make a delicious sandwich!
A Tip of the day from Dr. A…
“Most people fail not because they don’t believe they can do it. They fail because they are not willing to do what it takes to succeed. Your level of commitment will determine whether you work hard to get to your goal or fizzle out and stop short.”
I thought this was worth sharing. Dr. A has a lot of insights to share about how to reach your goal to live at your ideal weight. Did you know that you can sign up for Dr. A’s tip of the day by going to www.habitsofhealth.net and click on the request? Check it out! It’s just one more way to stay committed to yourself and your health. Hard work? Maybe, but you will be the one to benefit the most!!
Now, for your homework…Please fill out the form below and send it my way. You should also print it off and keep it somewhere where you can look at it on a daily basis. You do your share and I’ll do mine….
Here is an idea for beef tonight
Slow Cooker Pepper Steak
2 pounds beef sirloin, cut into 2 inch strips
garlic powder to taste
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 cube beef bouillon
1/4 cup hot water
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1/2 cup chopped onion
2 large green bell peppers, roughly chopped
1 (14.5 ounce) can stewed tomatoes, with liquid
3 tablespoons soy sauce
1) Sprinkle strips of sirloin with garlic powder to taste. In a large skillet over medium heat, heat the vegetable oil and brown seasoned beef strips.Transfer to a slow cooker.
2) Mix bouillon cube and corn starch with hot water until dissolved. Pour over the meat. Stir in onion, green peppers,stewed tomatoes and soy sauce.
3) Cover, and cook on High for 3 to 4 hours, or on Low for 6 to 8 hours.
Take Control of Your Life!!!
1. Create your visual: How will you feel? What will you look like? What will you be able to do that you are looking forward to? ___________________________________________________
2. When someone offers you a cupcake, you will say…
a) “Thank you! I’d love one!”
b) “You know I can’t have that”
c) “No thank you. Although it looks delicious, I’m
going to pass this time.”
d) “I’m choosing to eat healthy these days”
e) Both C and D
3. I will take each day at a time and celebrate my success at the end of each evening by ________________________________
(ie: write in journal, take a walk, go to bed early)
4. I plan to weigh myself once a week on ____________. I will keep a chart of my success.
5. The people I can depend on to help support me are
My weight loss buddy is ______________________
My exercise buddy is ________________________
6. The situations or people that may make staying with my program difficult are: (ie: “happy hour” or “my boss”) ________________________________________________________________________________________________________
7. My secondary goals are: (ie: exercise daily, drink plenty of water, listen to support calls weekly)
8. I will reward myself for every ______ pounds I loose. Some choices I will pick from are….
9. I choose to exercise daily! The best time for me is _________. I will keep track of my progress in my journal.
10. I will keep a journal and keep up with the lessons in my Habits of Health System. I will keep in touch with my Health Coach.
3 Reasons to Keep Going When You Want to Quit
1. Nothing Great Came From Quitting
What if Michael Jordan quit sports after being cut from his high school basketball team? What if Walt Disney quit after being told he had no imagination? What if Opera had quit after being told she wasn't meant for T.V.? If you quit you will never know what greatness was in store for you.
What are you celebrating? Weight loss for the week? New pant size? Weekend success? Back on track today? Even little celebrations are life changing. Each day that you reach small goals should be celebrated since they lead to the ultimate ones…the healthy life that you deserve! Don’t forget to include me. There is nothing that I like more than a celebration ;) Now, let’s look at how we get to celebration day……
Many of us have been on just about every diet out there. Sometimes you lose, but sometimes not. The common denominator in the past has always been that the weight has come back…Why? Well, at Take Shape for Life, we want to help you understand how to not only get down to your healthy weight but to learn how to keep it off for good!
It is all wonderful to get down to your BMI of between 19 and 25 that will get you going in the right direction. But to keep you going in the right direction for the rest of your life, we want you to reach for your “Metabolic Fitness”. Metabolic Fitness is achieved when your body is absent of all the metabolic and biochemical risk factors associated with obesity. These risk factors include high cholesterol, high triglyceride level, elevated blood glucose, insulin resistance, high blood pressure and elevated fatty acid synthesis. You can achieve metabolic fitness by a modest drop in your weight and a moderate increase in your physical activity. Sounds easy enough, but the difficulty lies in the fact that so many people use food for non-nutrient purposes such as stress relief, emotional soothing, entertainment, to feel high or good, to rebel, to stop boredom, to procrastinate, and the list goes on and on.
So what should you do? Well, the key to successfully losing weight and keeping it off for good is to change your attitude about yourself and the food that you choose to put into your magnificent body.
Here is an example that may sound familiar:
Ann just left her doctor’s office, and after quite a few tests it was revealed that she needs to lose 60 pounds to improve her health. Ann’s concept of herself is that she will always be heavy. Her whole family is overweight. She has tried every diet ever invented and joined every weight program around, and although she may lose some weight, it always comes back on. She feels that she can only stick to a diet for a few days. She loves food too much. She also hates to exercise. So, what her doctor has just told her is creating a lot of havoc in her brain. What is she going to do?
Ann’s biggest obstacle is her preconceived concepts of herself and her relationship to food and exercise. She needs to challenge these core beliefs about herself and make a shift in her attitude and thinking. At first, Ann was very sad and grief stricken, she did not want to give up the “feel good” foods she had come to love, but they were killing her! She couldn’t imagine life without these foods nor could she imagine having to exercise. Ann chose to get help from a therapist, who helped her to imagine other options other than to turn to food. She chose the Take Shape for Life program, and took advantage of all the great support from her personal Health Coach, the online support tips and tools, and the weekly support calls. She started exercise slowly by taking short walks daily. She found friends and neighbors to exercise with and made it fun. Ann had slowly but surely changed her self-concepts about herself, food, and exercise. Ann has lost 60 pounds and lives an active healthy life. Now, how about you?
How you see yourself will determine much of your behavior. If you perceive yourself as loving sweets, you will not let a brownie pass by without a bite. If you see yourself as a vegetarian, you will never crave a juicy piece of steak. If you claim that you are a triathlon competitor, you look forward to your daily workout. You are what you think you are. And just like Ann, you can change your attitude and ideas to healthier ones.
Hey! What about a recipe? I decided to offer “Food for Thought” this week.
Here are some steps to help you change your relationship with food…
1) First, write down your current reality…where you are right now in your body and mind. Then look ahead to where you want to be in your body and mind… more energy, eating healthy, feeling great, metabolically fit? Write it down in your journal.
2) Examine and challenge your basic beliefs about foods that are holding you back from getting down to your desired weight and health.
3) Redefine yourself as someone who eats healthy and exercises regularly. Imagine a “new you” and begin to “be” that person.
4) Stop using foods for non-nutrient purposes and learn other ways to cope with stress.
5) Allow yourself to grieve over the loss of your unhealthy eating habits and then let it go!
6) Eat only at planned meal times and planned snack times.
7) Don’t focus on the scale and start focusing on healthy behavior and lifestyle.
8) Let go of the “I wish I were thinner” comments and work to make you the best you can be. No comparing allowed!
9) Take advantage of the support from your TSFL program (health coach, online daily tips and tools, weekly conference calls).
10)Write down your goals for where you want to be in 3 months, 6 months, and 1 year. Keep a daily journal.
Mona Lisa Vito: So what’s your problem?
Vinny Gambini: My problem is, I wanted to win my first case without any help from anybody.
Mona Lisa Vito: Well, I guess that plan’s moot.
Vinny Gambini: Yeah.
Mona Lisa Vito: You know, this could be a sign of things to come. You win all your cases, but with somebody else’s help, right? You win case after case, and then afterwards you have to go up to somebody and you have to say, thank you.
Mona Lisa Vito: Oh my God, what a ****ing nightmare!
Author Unknown in My Cousin Vinny – 1992
Are you like our friend Vinny Gambini? (one of my all time favorites, by the way That any new challenge that you take on should be accomplished on your own? Maybe you think you’re different and don’t need the support of others to succeed in life. But, if you ask the most successful people, no matter the goal, they will credit the support of the caring people helping them. A winner will always surround themselves with the like-minded and stay connected to keep themselves focused.
Weight loss, improving health and changing bad habits into good works the same! It is the secret key to success! So, the next time a caring friend wants to join you on your quest to achieve, invite them along…you BOTH win!!
And that’s what we are all about on the Take Shape For Life team. No one has to go it alone. We all win when we work together. My reward is the excitement in your healthy smile
And now for a movie night treat
1/4 cup Egg Beaters (1/8 lean)
3/8 cup 2% low fat shredded Mexican 4 cheese variety (3/8 lean)
1 cup fresh raw Cauliflower, then shredded in a food processor (2 greens)
Dash of Italian Spices
1) Combine all ingredients and spread out on Pam sprayed foil pie pan. Pat down so that it all sticks together.
2) Bake in 450 degree oven for 20 minutes or until it starts to brown, then flip over and bake another 10 minutes.
You can bake a few at a time and freeze for a quick pizza anytime.
2tsp. Ragu Pizza quick sauce (low in sugar!) (2 condiments)
1/4 cup 2% low fat shredded Mozzarella cheese.(1/4 lean)
1/4 cup Morning Star sausage crumbles. (1/4 lean)
1/2 cup of your choice of veggie)bell peppers,mushrooms,etc. (1 green)
3) Bake in the oven for another 10 minutes for the cheese to melt. Wowee!! Delicious and completely lean and green!
You might think that the slim person must be that way because it’s easy for them. That making healthy choices during their day is just natural and they must have some secret talent for maintaining a healthy weight to stay fit.
ummmm, nope. It comes from those choices made constantly during the day….everyday…Sometimes, tough ones. A person living at their ideal weight lives in the same health pollution ridden world as everyone. Tempting junk food is everywhere! Over-stressed schedules burdens most of us! Who really wants to spend time exercising when the couch calls? The only difference between healthy and not is in your CHOICE. Yes, the choice is yours.
I actually find that quite reassuring. I am in control. If I want to stay fit, I can. It may take challenging myself everyday to stay true to what I want, but the consequences of poor choices are not worth it. Boy, is it a struggle!
Making the choice between a healthy snack or calorie laden dessert, holding back on a portion size, working a lil harder in the gym all add up to the results at the end of the day. The best decision always becomes obvious. I do take comfort in knowing that if (when) I slip up that I can be smarter the next time. The cool thing that happens is the more often I consider what’s best, the better I get at it. The law of averages are in my favor as long as I keep at it… everyday.
I feel better when I choose what’s best for my health, soooo I choose …………HEALTHY!
This is a idea for your veggie serving tonight. Tastes like roasted potatoes and oh sooo yummy
Roasted Butternut Squash
Butternut squash (try a bag from Trader Joes) 1/2 cup is 1 serving
1)Sprinkle with a little olive oil (1 healthy fat)
2)Spread on a baking sheet
3)Sprinkle with your favorite seasoning
4)Cook at 400 until golden brown