Woman Looking Inside Fridge Full Of Food And Choosing Salad

Five Strategies to Sustain Fat Loss

1. Use a habit-based approach.

A more sustainable, habit-based approach that doesn’t include a drastic calorie deficit can give you a better chance at adapting — physiologically and psychologically — to a healthier lifestyle, without your metabolism coming to a screeching halt. This point of view is consistent with The Biggest Loser research paper, which closes with recommendations to focus on health markers like insulin and triglyceride levels rather than weight loss, and to take a more moderate approach with exercise and calorie reduction for long term success.

Here at Fit-2-The-Core we practice one of the most effective principles from Precision Nutrition, a habit-based approach by gradually introducing our members to small, manageable daily practices that support healthy eating and movement.

2. Eat slowly.

This is another foundational habit used at Fit-2-The-Core from Precision Nutrition. Many studies show that people who eat faster are heavier than people who eat slowly, and that people who train themselves to eat more slowly eat less, and lose weight as a result. There’s a 20-minute delay in satiety hormone signaling when you eat, so if you plow through a huge plate of food in 10 minutes, you’re liable to eat it all before you realized you’re actually stuffed.

In fact, it’s proven that simply reducing the number of bites you take per minute by half is effective at reducing your energy intake by 40 percent, particularly in big eaters. That’s why we coach our members to eat slowly. Play a game with yourself: Try to be the last one eating — even after your slow-as-molasses toddler). Tune into hunger and satiety cues, which tell you how much food you really need.

3. At meals, eat until you’re satisfied, not stuffed.

If you’re saying, “I’m stuffed!” after your meals, you’re probably overeating and/or eating for the wrong reasons, which will make it very challenging to control your energy intake. Another keystone from Precision Nutrition Coaching: Eat until 80 percent full.

This helps ensure that you’re not eating more than you need by:

• Helping you connect with your physical hunger cues

• Decoupling eating from emotions

• Breaking the deprivation/binge pattern and mindset

• Regulating your appetite

Feeling full, anxious, lethargic, foggy-headed, heavy, or extremely thirsty are signs of overeating that warrant an 80-percent experiment. Next time you eat lunch, eat slowly, take a good break after each bite, and ask yourself, “Am I still truly, physically hungry?” If the answer is yes, take another bite, chew slowly, and repeat. If the answer is no, end the meal and start monitoring fullness/hunger cues until dinner.

4. Reduce stress.

When you experience psychological stress, cortisol shoots upward. Research has linked increased cortisol with weight gain, likely due to poorer food choices and physiological changes. It’s conceivable The Biggest Loser participants experience considerable psychological stress: Undergoing an intense weight-loss program on national TV; airing their traumas to the world; regaining the weight when everyone knew they’d appeared on the show;

feeling the shame of “failure”. Every day, take steps to reduce your stress level and recover from all the hard work you do — physical and otherwise.

Some ideas:

• Sit and read a book

• Go for a walk

• Play with your cat

• Get a massage

• Take a warm bath

• Meditate

• Do yoga

Of course, what you find rejuvenating might be unique to you. Just be honest with yourself: Some activities that have the reputation for being relaxing — say, watching TV or throwing back shots at the bar — may be more escapism than true stress reducers.

5. Put your environment to work.

Change is hard for most people, and it’s partly due to our hardwiring. Research shows that most of the decisions we make are automatic, based on patterns and brain shortcuts as opposed to rational thought. We react to what’s in front of us, and our actions are often impulsive and/or the result of motivations we’re not fully conscious of. That means our environment powerfully shapes our decisions — including food decisions — more than we realize. We eat whatever’s in front of us, finish all the food regardless of portion size, consume more when we’re multitasking… and more.

Tough to change your eating habits when those habits are based on thoughts you didn’t know you were having, huh? But you can use this hardwiring to your advantage by putting your environment to work to control your energy intake:

• Keep fresh fruits and vegetables within view

• Park far from the office so you have to walk

• Don’t keep junk food at home

• Get a dog that needs walking

If your familiar with strategies that it takes to lose fat, then these should sound familiar. It’s no secret that when you use a sustainable approach to fat loss and health, that the strategies to sustain fat loss tend to be the same common sense strategies that you can follow for a lifetime.

 

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stress free kitchen

18 Awesome Tips for Making You Enviroment Work For You

Transforming your body and life has much more do with mindset and behavior, it so much more  than just telling you what to eat, this is why so many people struggle to make eating healthy and exercising a lifestyle. This article explains a very powerful strategy of how changing your environment is the key to changing your body.

Most of our decisions are automatic, based on patterns and brain shortcuts.

Instead of slowly deciding, step-by-step, our brains quickly process a handful of grab-n-go inputs and pick from a recognizable menu of options. We ignore stuff we don’t like or want to see, and we’re easily compelled by shiny distractions.

Sound familiar?

So just knowing what to eat is not long term solution for fat loss and health. The fact is that most people know what to eat, they just can’t seem to do it. They feel powerless as if they have no control, and they end up feeling frustrated and defeated. But the fact is, every decision we make is automatic, based on patterns and shortcuts as mentioned above.

Basically, our brains like the thinking version of fast food — go to the place that’s most appealing, speed through the drive-thru, pick the favorite combo from the menu, slam the decision, move on to the next choice.

So we don’t actually think much when we think we’re thinking.

We follow patterns; physical cues that bubble beneath our awareness, and what’s around us. That means our environment powerfully shapes our decisions, more than we realize.

But why should everything be so hard, all the time? There’s no need to white-knuckle the willpower. You can actually make change much easier by simply changing your environment.

Harness your brain’s autopilot for the side of good:

By just changing what’s around you in small ways, you can make changes without even thinking about them.

Here are 18 awesome tips — collected from some of the most experienced coaches in the world — for changing your environment.

“Hard work” and “willpower” not required.

1. Have an athlete-friendly meal delivery subscription.

Someone else will cook a meal that you know is healthy and bring it right to you.

What could be easier than that?

Pro tip: Look for a service that offers meals for athletes — they’ll offer double the lean protein (30-40 g) along with fibrous veggies like salad, steamed beans or broccoli.

2. Keep the ice cream, cookies, and chocolates out of the house.

Make “laziness” work for you by making it harder and more inconvenient to reach for high-calorie, low-nutrition, easy-to-overeat foods.

If you want sweets, you have to go get them. At 10 PM, when you’re snuggled into your sofa binge-watching your favorite TV show, it’s going to be a lot harder to motivate yourself to get up and go to the grocery store.

Pro tip: Keep a colorful assortment of dried and fresh fruits around for dessert instead.

3. Use a meal plan.

Don’t make fresh decisions every day, or keep meal choices totally open-ended all the time.

Instead, make decisions in advance and work from a template.

Pro tip: Every few days, sketch out the meals you’ll eat for the next few days. Check the list daily so you know:

  • what to buy at the grocery store;
  • what to pre-prep;
  • what meal you’ll eat at what time (or when you’re really hungry).

4. Keep chopped, ready-to-eat vegetables in the fridge.

Put them front-and-center so you see them and can get to them easily.

Pro tip: To make your favorite salad veggies even easier, store them “restaurant style”. Clean and sterilize one of your refrigerator’s crispers, dump chopped veggies (loose) into it, and cover them with a damp paper towel and a couple of ice cubes.

5. Don’t be hungry and in the grocery store at the same time.

Treat grocery shopping like a surgical operation: Have a plan (like your meal list from Tip 3). Get in and get out efficiently. (See if you can make a game of it.)

Pro tip: Focus on the perimeter — the produce, meat, and dairy sections. Don’t even go down the processed food aisles, so you won’t be tempted.

Shop with a basket instead of a cart to limit what you can buy (it sneaks in an arm workout, too).

6. Keep shake-ready ingredients in the freezer.

Frozen chopped fruit can be dumped straight into the blender and will make your super shakes extra thick and cold.

Pro tip: Are there any greens in your fridge “on their way out”? Stick them in a gallon bag in your freezer. Once frozen, crush them to make flakes. This reduces the space they take up and makes them simple to add to shakes.

7. Keep a batch of cooked grains handy.

Whole grains take time to cook, but if you make a batch on Sunday, you’ll have it in the fridge to use in grain bowls and stir-fries all week long.

Pro tip: Make two batches, and portion one out by the cupful to keep in containers in the freezer. Brown rice reheats nicely in the microwave. It’s like having home-made minute rice on hand.

8. Help your kitchen coach you.

Keep your kitchen as clean, pleasant and clutter-free as possible so you feel relaxed when you enter it (stress = cookie binges). Have an edible plant (like sunflower sprouts) growing on the counter for when you feel like snacking.

Pro tip: Make the fridge door a “vision board” with post-it notes reminding you of your goals, inspiring pictures, and cool looking magnets.

9. Just put on your sneakers.

Having them on your feet often just makes you feel like getting active.

Pro tip: For that matter, consider just wearing comfortable shoes all the time, so you’re up for anything.

10. Keep workout gear in your face.

Have a kettlebell, resistance bands, a dumbbell or two, a pull-up bar, and/or a suspension trainer in your home or office so you’re more tempted to use them.

Pro tip: Do “trigger training”: Leave the gear in various places throughout your house, and whenever you pass one of them, do a few reps.  Over the day this adds up quickly without eating up too much time or leaving you wiped out.

11. Pack your “mobile gym” when you travel.

Book hotels with gyms and/or pools. Toss a jump rope or resistance bands into your suitcase along with a list of bodyweight-only exercises (like squats and pushups) that you can do anywhere.

Pro tip: A kayak bag (20 L capacity) folds up small enough to fit in a carry-on but turns into a ~40 lb kettlebell once you fill it with water.

12. Turn your car into a locker room.

If you drive a lot, be prepared with gym clothes and a healthy snack so you don’t make counterproductive decisions in desperate moments. Keep a shaker bottle with measured protein powder and greens under the seat — just add water.

Pro tip: Keep a container of several changes of exercise clothes, shoes, and towels in your trunk so you’re ready to move no matter where the day takes you.

13. Schedule workouts like you schedule meetings.

Put them on your calendar and treat them like any other appointment.

Pro tip: Put everything from workouts, to laundry, to work meetings, to rest and recovery on your calendar so that very few things are “unexpected”. Most of our routines are pretty predictable.

14. Move social gatherings to parks and gyms.

It doesn’t always have to be a bar or restaurant. Make your next date outside (frisbee?) or at a climbing gym or trampoline park.

Pro tip: This goes for professional networking, too. Instead of sitting down at a coffee shop, get coffee to go and have a walking meeting.

15. Have only half a car (or less).

Sharing a car with your partner or a friend means you’ll have to walk or bike more (some Precision Nutrition staffers have invested in cargo bikes so they can cart their kids along with them).

Pro tip: Walk on errands, even if your destination is on the outside edge of “reasonable”. For example, instead of driving seven minutes to the post office (or asking your partner to do it), take 25 minutes to walk there. That’s 50 minutes walking rather than 15 minutes sitting in the car, but the errand only took an additional 35 minutes from your day.

16. Combine walking and working.

Moving while you brainstorm or take a work call helps you focus and avoid the I-sat-at-a-desk-all-day soreness.

Pro tip: Get a used treadmill for a couple hundred bucks off Craigslist and fit it with a SurfShelf for your laptop. Now you can write, edit, fire off emails…all of it while you walk.

17. Separate yourself from your work once per hour.

Work for 50 minutes, then step away from your desk for for 10 (may we suggest a walk, some stretches, or some squats?). Cycle this for your workday. You’ll find that you still have energy and focus by the end.

Pro tip: Install anti RSI software, which “locks” your computer for 5-10 minute intervals every hour so you’re forced to give work a rest.

18. Turn family and friends into coaches.

To create a supportive environment, be explicit with loved ones that you’re trying to eat better and get fit — and why. They don’t have to participate, but ask them to help. That takes the pressure off them to do what you’re doing, and most people (especially kids) like “helping” in some way. (Kids love to nag, so hire them as your alarm clock and workout reminder.)

Pro tip: Involve your family in goal-related activities, such as menu planning, meal prep, and rep counting. This reduces resistance by giving them ownership, meaning you won’t feel you’re the “other”.

Here at Fit-2-The-core, we give men and women the daily coaching and support needed to positively shape their environments. The result: Better health, less body fat, and a better relationship with food and movement.

Sure, the world of nutrition and fitness can sometimes be a confusing place. But it doesn’t have to be. Once you get personalized attention from a knowledgeable coach, your path to healthy, energetic, and capable comes into sharp focus.

If you would like to schedule a strategy session and learn how we can help you with your health and fitness goals, go here to schedule your strategy session today:

http://fit2thecore.com/schedule-a-strategy-session/

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