I have had a few people ask me how do I lose weight? I am working out and eating better but nothing is working! What am I doing wrong? Well, at that point I would ask what does eating better mean?
Most people eat more calories than they realize. I cannot count the times that I have had people tell me they know they are eating great, but when we look at the diary of what they had eaten throughout the course of a week, they math does not add up. I strongly recommend to you, if you are not doing it already, if you want to lose weight, that you track everything you put in your mouth in effort to hold yourself accountable. Write down the good, the bad, and the ugly. Only then, will you know where you need to improve, and only then will you succeed on a long term basis.
There are many apps that you can use that are free or nearly free and will help you track throughout the day. I like the Live Strong app really well. Also, I recently switched gyms to Anytime Fitness and they have an awesome program called Anytime Health. These apps not only track your calories, but also other nutritional facts so that once you have the calorie part down you can really target your food choices so that you stay in healthy ranges for fat, carbs, and protein. Also, it is good to know about sodium, sugars, and other facts. Once again, this is not just about losing weight but also about healthy living and that means treating our body the best way that we can. If you own a BMW, chances are you are not using the cheap gas, right? You are using premium gas and synthetic oil. The same is true for us….if you want to be top shelf, you cannot fill yourself with anything less than the best!
If you are looking at your day and thinking that you are starving and this is just not worth it to be hungry all the time, take a closer look. I have said this many times…what you are eating makes a difference. Try and choose foods that are filling and lower in calories. For example, if you are on the run and need to grab lunch out try a 6 inch Subway sandwich, minus the cheese and mayo of course, and instead of chips and or cookies, do the apple slices. You will still feel full afterwards and saved yourself over 200 calories. Another option I like is Chik Fil A. I love the grilled chicken sandwich with a fruit cup.
OK, so let’s say it is dinner time, and you are trying to decide what to cook. Think about your plate in quarters and fill one quarter with a lean protein and the other three quarter with veggies. Vegetables do not have to be boring. You can stir fry some frozen vegetables with cooking spray and a dash of soy sauce and it is delicious. I also like steamed broccoli with a sprinkling of seasoning salt or Mrs. Dash, or even some garlic. Try two veggies like broccoli as mentioned before and also some carrots. Another option is to roast seasonal vegetables in the oven…squash, turnips, onions, etc are delicious and takes little preparation. An oldie but goody is to add a side salad to your meal, but be careful not to load it up with a fattening dressing and instead splash some vinegar and a small dab of olive oil and a little salt and pepper. I also like to top a salad with salsa for a southwestern flair.
The foundation for losing weight is eating right. Your diet is more important than your workout. If you can’t do both…counting calories and starting a new fitness routine….start with the calorie counting first. Once you are comfortable with a better eating plan, then amp it up with some activity and boost your weight loss potential.
It is Sunday evening and if you are waiting for tomorrow to start eating right, stop! Think about starting right now. Even if you ate horribly all day, start now making a good choice with the next thing you put in your mouth because sometimes tomorrow will never come.
Becky Pandolfo is a working Mom who has a wealth of experience with many diet and fitness programs. Her insight and information has helped countless individuals attain their weight loss and fitness goals. She plants her flag on a small corner of the web called Go Slim where newsletters flow and other insightful articles whisper on the digital winds.