How many times have we all been told growing up as children, that breakfast was the most important meal of the day?  And yet as adults, how many people do you know that continually skip breakfast for all sorts of reasons?  No matter what type of research you give them they seem to refuse to take that extra 5-10 minutes to start their day off right and kick their metabolism on to burn fat.

It seems no matter how often you tell someone the importance of something, their habits will win out, even in the face of evidence.

Fortunately I tend to be a bit stubborn.  I honestly believe that if you can show someone the benefits of doing something a certain way they will make a change.  In most cases, the people that continually skip breakfast still haven't been told information that is important enough to them to make them change their behavior.

Funny thing is the same excuses these people give for not making time for breakfast, are usually the same type of excuses they make for not making exercise part of their weekly routine.  Well, let's see if this motivates you towards a slight change in your habits.

7 Lies We All Tell Ourselves

And then of course I still get the regular emails and face to face questions regarding how hard it is to take 5-10 extra minutes in the morning for breakfast.  As well as the usual, "I'm not a breakfast person because I don't like breakfast foods".  Well here's a little reminder on the importance of breakfast, as well as some very helpful recipes to make sure you get your metabolism awake and burning fat before you even hit the office.

Breakfast and Weight Loss

I apologize, I couldn't resist.  I was cleaning out my office, which seems to be a never ending task, and I came across this article on abdominal training and back injuries.  Couldn't resist the opportunity to share it with you -- especially considering the many times I've advocated for more core training done the "right way".

Is Your Ab Workout Hurting Your Back?

So now you have even more choices and reasons to get the most important meal of day -- breakfast.  Not to mention some great insight as to why I've been making such a fuss about training your abs properly -- to avoid potential injury. 

Heck, if the leading spine bio-mechanics expert in the country suggests the same movements I've been asking you to do, and demonstrating on my You Tube Channel, then maybe it's time you stop beating up your spine and instead trained your abs-- properly.

I think it's time to --

Get On Track and Stay On Track
No matter how you slice it, you can't transform your body if you don't transform your eating first. (Yes, pun intended)

There are no two ways about it.

All the excuses in the world won't create the results you want if you don't at least start making a daily effort to change what you eat. Now that doesn't mean you have to change overnight.  You can do it in a gradual process.  I generally suggest to my clients to pick one meal they will commit to eating in the right proportions, at the right time, consistently (daily).  That way they don't have to feel overwhelmed with making a complete change overnight.  After 2 weeks of getting that one meal in each day, I ask them to then pick a second meal, and so on, until the entire day is covered -- one meal at a time.

They are all sorts of tips and tricks you can use to get yourself motivated and to make the process easier.  Need a few suggestions?

Here are 5 Simple Solutions that will definitely help.

But let's be honest.  Sometimes losing weight has to do with a little deeper issue.  Sometimes we place the responsibility outside of ourselves as the reason why we haven't gotten rid of those extra pounds.  Sound like you or someone you know?

Check out this link to put things back in perspective -- The Blame Game

If the above two don't really seem to apply to you, perhaps your challenge is to have a better plan in place to make the process of getting that one meal or more on track -- with as little thinking as possible. 

No problem.  I've got that covered as well.  Here's a 12 Meal Plan to help you get on track by providing you with 12 days of meal options.  Now maybe all the meals don't quite fit your palate.  Don't let that stop you.  Find the ones that do and use the one's I've provided to help fill in the blanks.

Well, it looks like you're running out of excuses to not be ready for the warmer weather ahead.

Don't Let Life Get in the Way of Your Progress!
Mar
28
2011
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I don't know exactly where I heard it, but there is a quote that goes something like this:

" A truly wise person doesn't have all the answers.  But the truly wise person does know where to look for the answers."

I will readily admit I don't know everything.  But the funny thing about me is that I am willing to look long enough to find the information I need.

Over the past few weeks I provided you with meal options, diagrams on why it's important to eat on a regular basis, information regarding portion control, and a host of other items, sure to give you the info you need to create the changes you want to see in your body.

Well this Monday is no different.  I want to share with you an amazing article on the lessons other people have experienced when trying to lose weight and get lean. 

Why?

Because all too often I think when we get frustrated in trying to achieve a goal, we think we are all alone in our experience.  Sometimes it helps to know that someone else has gone through the same thing -- and how they overcame that stumbling block.

Below is a link to a great article on how to get lean and the stumbling blocks that can sometimes occur.  As well as some good old to the point suggestions on how to get over those stumbling blocks.

http://www.precisionnutrition.com/9-leanness-lessons

I believe John Wooden said, "Don't let what you can't do, stop you from doing what you can do".

Get On Track and Stay On Track!
I have to be honest with you.  I was asked NOT TO share this information with you.  I was told that this should be something that only clients that come to see me should receive.  I was told that, "It's information that the average person isn't going to appreciate without the guidance of regular visits to you or their nutrition counselor".

Well, I do tend to be a bit hard headed so what the heck.

I don't know where the idea came from, and honestly don't really care. But plain and simple, if you skip meals you will gain weight. 

Why?

Well if you've been following my posts this month, you know that going longer than 2.5-3.5 hours between meals is a recipe for disaster when it comes to your metabolism.  Your body needs to feed on a regular basis if it's going to keep burning stored calories (think fat) and maintain you lean tissue (think muscle).

Why?

Because the human body was built to survive.  Your ancestors out survived the dinosaurs for many reasons, one of which is that your body will slow down your metabolism when it receives insufficient calories on a regular basis (think skipping meals).  In that way you burn less energy and thus the survival of the species is ensured.

Now granted, most of us are not on the verge of starvation nor is the population anywhere near being threatened for it's survival.  But your body doesn't know this.  It has survived for thousands of years using this type of survival mechanism and it's worked just fine.

Unless of course you're trying to lose weight.  Skipping meals in fact tells your body to not let go of any excess calories (think don't burn fat).  Whereas eating every 2.5-3.5 hours sends the message to your body that it does not need to store extra calories for survival because you will give it the nutrients it needs consistently.

Now some people have had a hard time believing me.  While others have had a hard time wrapping their brain around such a concept.  So I thought it would be a good idea to share this TOP SECRET information.

Check out the link below.  I think you'll be surprised at how well the diagram explains the process.  And by all means, the next time someone tells you they don't eat breakfast because they're not hungry, just smile and hand them this diagram or email them this link.


I think it's safe to say you've officially run out of excuses for missing meals.

Reasons or Results --
Without a doubt, physical pain questions are by far the one's I get most often.  It doesn't matter if you sit at a desk all day long, run every morning, or workout at the gym 3x/week.  If you're not doing some sort of well thought out stretching program in addition to self-massage, it's just a matter of when you'll have pain, not if.

So for all the parts that tend to hurt, here's a little cheat sheet to get you out of pain fast and keep you that way.

Cheat Sheet


Of course, I'm sure you've already guessed that the second most popular questions I receive are those concerning nutrition.  With all of the misinformation out there in the media, it can truly be a chore to figure out what works and what doesn't.  It's really not that difficult believe it or not.

It boils down to a very basic principle when it comes to nutrition -- portion control.  Meaning having a template of what each and every meal should look like on your plate.  That's the easiest way by far to keep you on track with your nutrition.  Realistically I understand most people are not going to measure out their food.  It's much more accurate, but it's not realistic for the majority of the population.  Here's a simple trick/template to help you stay on track with your nutrition so you can see results by the time warm weather arrives.

Cheat Sheet 2

So there you have it. 

Whether it's some sort of pain you're in that you're ready to be rid of, or if you need a little help getting started with an easy to use nutrition guide, the above two references should get you on track quickly and effectively. 

There's no need to be in pain, life is too short. 

And there's no reason to be confused about what works when it comes to nutrition.  Don't be mislead by slick media.

Get On Track and Stay On Track!
The year is almost over.  I promised to make sure that you were well prepared with a wide variety of recipes to make sure you start the new year off right.  Recipes to help start you on track, keep you on track, and not make you feel like you were going to have to give up taste.  I believed I've delivered as promised.

Only one more Monday left in the year.  So here are two more recipes to add to your ever growing file.  Next year is going to be so easy for you start off on the right track.  By spring you'll be unveiling a new you and not had to suffer, by living on tasteless boring food.  No one likes to feel deprived.  So I've made sure that your journey to a new you is as painless as possible when it comes to your nutrition.

Here you are:

Recipe #1:  Pizza Eggs (Pizza_Eggs.doc)

Recipe #2:  Romaine Tuna Wraps (Romaine_Tuna_Wraps.doc)

This weeks recipes are from A Recipe for Life by Susan Dopart, M.S., R.D. with Jeffrey M. Batchelor and Eat 2 Liv by Elizabeth Brown M.S., R.D., C.D.E

Be sure to come back next week for more recipes to add to your file.  Remember, the more options you have the easier it will be to stay on track.  No one likes boring food.  And cooking and preparing food that actually tastes good should not be a chore.  If you've been cutting and pasting you will ready to rock come January.
As promised here are 2 more delicious recipes to add to your growing file.  We all have busy schedules, this time of year more than ever.  But that shouldn't mean all of your hard work should go out the window.  Whether you're committing to a new year of losing those extra pounds or just looking for a change in your usual day to day of staying on track, these recipes are sure to help.  They are quick, tasty, and will definitely keep you on track.

Remember, food that is good for you can actually taste good too.  All too often I hear people avoid making good food choices because they believe they have to give up flavor.  Not with these.  The second biggest reason I hear is that making food that is good for you just takes too much time.  Again, not with these.  But I will admit it will require some planning on your part to make sure you get all of your meals in each day.  And heck if it tastes good, all the more motivation to take as little as 5 minutes to whip up something that tastes good going down and gives your body what it needs to stay healthy and assist you in getting in better shape. 

Don't fall into the easy excuses.  Take a few minutes and cut and paste these to your file.  Good food and get in shape at the same time -- sounds like a win/win to me.  Enjoy!

Recipe #1:  Mint Chocolate Shake (Mint_Chocolate_Shake.doc)

Recipe #2:  Sauteed Salmon (Sauteed_Salmon.doc)
I was just painfully reminded of how important it is to keep things simple in life. Had an unbelievable workout on Saturday, only to awake on Sunday feeling as though I had been run over by a truck -- repeatedly.  Yes, I do typically feel my workouts a few days later; but this soreness was far beyond that "typical" feeling.  So I traced my steps back to see what was different.  What I realized is that I had tried out some new "exotic" movements in my warm-up to replace some of my usual movements.  Doing my usual research, I came across some stretches and warm-up movements that were said to replace several other movements I was already doing.  So I figured, hey, that sounds like a good idea, if I can save time and accomplish the same amount of quality work, why not do it.  What I quickly realized is that these new (exotic) movements in fact did not work as well.  They did not warm my body up properly nor effectively prepare me for my workout.

And of course being me, I started thinking about how this example of using the "new and improved" happens in not only when it comes to staying healthy, but in life. 

Check out today's video blog post to see what I mean:

It was recently brought to my attention that I could probably eat cardboard with a few spices and it wouldn't bother me at all.  Fortunately for me, cardboard has no nutritional value.  I don't know, I guess I'm just weird that way. 

It's said that some people over-indulge with food to meet other needs besides nutrition.  This type of person tends to go overboard with the sauces, sugars, breads, etc.  I'm just the opposite.  I mainly eat for function.  And if it was a choice between a flavorful meal that would take an hour to make or eating right now a nutritious meal but with little flavor, I'd probably pick the latter of the two.

Don't get me wrong, I thoroughly enjoy a flavorful and nutritious meal, it's just that often times my schedule gets so busy that I skimp.  No, I refuse to go grab fast food, or some other highly processed food substitute.  No, I admit it, I'm willing to skimp on taste.

So believe me when I tell you I am really excited and appreciate this recipe book-- Gourmet Nutrition by Dr. John M. Berardi, Michael Williams and Kristina Andrew.  It is full of quick, tasty, good for you meal options all in one spot.  The authors probably saved my life and don't even know it.

Now I can stop eating cardboard. 

I refuse to waste your time with any hoopla about something that tastes good when it doesn't, just because it meets some nutritional number guide. I am actually coming to appreciate taking my break and enjoying my meals these days.  And believe me that is a nice change of pace.

So don't forget to cut and paste these to your filing cabinet on recipes so you'll be ready for next year.

No more excuses!


Recipe #1: Chai Blueberry Oatmeal (Chai_Blueberry_Oatmeal.doc)


Recipe #2: Turkey Sausage and Yam Hash Browns (Turkey_Sausage_and_Yam_Hash_Browns.doc)


As always, let me know what you think.  I always appreciate your feedback.
In this day and age when you say you're going to do something, you better darn well do it.  I'm sure we are all tired of the "Oh, let's do lunch".  And you don't hear from the person for weeks or months.

A handshake and your word is pretty much all you really have when it comes to establishing your integrity.  In this day of information (overload in some cases), it's pretty easy to have something witty or interesting to say.  But how many people actually back it up with action?  It has been my experience that those individuals are few and far between.  A mentor of mine once told me, "under promise and over deliver".  When it comes to establishing your credibility follow through on what you tell others you are going to do. In fact, over deliver on what you committed to doing.  It let's people know that they can count on you, that your word actually means something.

Well, in keeping with my promise to make sure you are ready for the coming year with lots of recipes to help keep you on track and not spend hours in the kitchen preparing food, here are two more to add to your file called "recipes". 

I sincerely want you to have a variety of meal choices that are tasty, good for you and are easy to prepare (take as little time as possible).  Goodness knows, we all have enough to do in our daily lives.  Spending hours in the kitchen to create a nutritious, tasty meal is not to motivating.  In fact it will just increase the chances of you getting off track and grabbing some highly processed alternative to a good meal.

So let's keep it simple.

Recipe #1:  Microwave Orange Roughy (Microwave_Orange_Roughy.doc)

Recipe #2:  Chicken a la King Kong (Chicken_a_la_King_Kong.doc)


Remember, plan your meals in advance.  It will make the day so much easier, and I'll bet, make you much more productive as well.