Still struggling to hit your health and fitness goals? In my previous health jumpstart post I discussed that I went to the doctors and put on 10 pounds from summer 2016 to summer 2017. To be honest I hadn’t even noticed because it was wearing well on my body (even though 10 lbs on a 5-foot person is pretty much 20 lbs), but going to my doctors and weighing myself was a nice wakeup call. My comfortable weight is no more than 115 pounds and in summer 2016 I was 111 pounds. Now, before everyone makes assumptions that I am naturally skinny and don’t have to really do anything to remain thin, I have CAH (Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia Non-Classical) which is a recessive genetic disorder in which my adrenal glands do not produce enough of the hormone cortisol. Long story short, ever since I was 4, my weight has been a huge focus in my life because any bit of excess weight can be life threatening. My hormones are all f*cked up and most medications I took as a child made weight an extreme struggle for me. My ballet teacher even made a very disturbing remark about my weight the summer going into sophomore year of high school (I went to a Performing Arts High School). So long story short, when I put weight on, it did not go unnoticed. Because of this I have been obsessed with health and fitness since a young age. I mean I was literally doing Denise Austin workouts in the morning before school in like 6th grade…not normal. There have been milestones in my weight that have only dealt with a maximum of 10 additional pounds. Could you imagine your doctor giving you a hard time about gaining 10 pounds…yeah I didn’t have a choice but to keep my weight at 115. Like I said my meds made this task a nightmare and very taxing on me mentally. Fast forward to today…back in August I was told to lose my pounds asap. So now I am sitting at a solid 111 pounds (about 10 down in 5 months). For most people, the last 10-15 pounds are the hardest thing to lose. In order to find your new “normal weight” you have to train your body to accept that new weight; which takes time. The problem with most people is they want a quick fix. So they’ll follow a crash diet or something extremely restrictive. The reason this doesn’t work is because when losing a pound, 1/3 of it is water, 1/3 of it is fat and 1/3 of it is muscle. Muscle is what controls our basal metabolic rate (which is the rate that our body burns calories naturally at complete rest). When people lose 10-15 pounds in a short period of time they typically regain those pounds and then some the second they start eating “normal.” What they don’t realize is they lost muscle. So their metabolism is running to support the current calorie intake they were living on. If your diet was 1,000 calories a day your body will adapt to survive on those 1,000cals to maintain your current weight. Once you start consuming your previous normal diet, we will say 1,500 calories a day. Your body is getting 500 extra calories a day. 1 pound is 3,500 calories. So in about 7 days you will gain a pound. You can do the math from there to clearly see you are on the path to weight gain. What I have been practicing is a real method of training my body to run on less food. WEIGHT LOSS IS A MARATHON NOT A SPRINT. To lose 10 real, PERMANENT, pounds it is going to take time. Not what you’ve seen on magazines promising ‘10 pounds in ten days’. There are no magic pills so the sooner you accept that and stop being lazy you can genuinely change your body.
- Night Time Eating: It is a basic concept that I even still struggle with. The easiest way to start cutting some pounds is to stop eating after 7pm (aka let’s be realistic 8). It sucks and honestly sometimes I don’t even get home from work until 8pm but you are not understanding the purpose of food. Food is truly only meant to fuel the body and give it energy. If you are eating heavy or big meals after 8pm, unless you are going to the gym at 9pm, you are probably giving yourself a ton of energy to…sit on the couch. So instead of burning off the fuel you just took in it needs a place to go so it stores as fat usually. These are all basic concepts that you’ve probably heard before but might need a refresher. Eat an apple, drink some water, eat some veggies…those are your options for night time hunger during this 10-pound journey.
- More Cardio ISN’T Always the Answer: Your body burns the most calories when at rest. Even though we can’t technically speed up the metabolism, especially the basal metabolic rate, it is proven that muscle tissue burns more calories than fat tissue. So when you are getting your cardio in make sure you are doing an equal part of muscle building exercises. I always use lighter weights and burn out the muscle. This is just my personal preference and what works for me. Do whatever weight training you enjoy most. Building muscle is going to not only ensure you burn more calories, it is going to guarantee you start to shape your body into what you want. I am all for the lighter weight or body weight and incorporating HIIT training so it is the best of both worlds! Just remember you need the muscle to burn fat and lose weight.
- The Right Foods Don’t Need to be Boring: People get weird about food and dieting and how “boring and unsatisfying” it can be. Well this is why people yo-yo instead of losing and maintaining their weight. MAKE HEALTHY FOOD FUN. Don’t be lazy (and that is the only reason people don’t enjoy eating healthier). You can make everything taste good if you put a little time in to cook and prepare it! Use (a little) butter if you need for flavor but you can honestly make anything taste good. Always EAT FRESH. If you need to cut some lbs you pretty much shouldn’t be eating a single thing that is processed. You need to detox those chemicals out of your body which will make your body’s internal functions run smoothly and properly.
- Take Your Supplements: As you read in my previous post on adapting a healthier lifestyle your vitamins and minerals are extremely, extremely important. Don’t assume you changing food habits is the only thing YOU need. You may need additional support or be deficient in a few areas. Go check out my post for some major details on the perfect supplements and vitamins for you.
- Advance Planning: Another huge factor in why people can’t get weight off is because of their lack of planning and preparation. Now you don’t need to meal prep and put it in little containers for each day, but the best tip I can give is to plan meals in advance. Have an idea of what you plan on eating for the day and have it available to you. The biggest issue for me is when I’m starving and can’t figure out what to eat. Especially something healthy. It is hard to make smart decisions if you don’t know what to eat. So at least in the beginning of the day plan each meal and even snacks (I snack on apples typically) and know if you have to go purchase anything or if you have the ingredients available to you.
- You Don’t Need To Suffer: Go to dinner with bae or black out on East Carson with your friends…don’t feel like just because you are trying to lose weight you cannot enjoy your life. This should be a lifestyle change and being restrictive is only going to set you up for failure and to miss out on important memories with your people! So learn some self control and don’t use a night of fun as an excuse to f*ck up everything…use it as a treat and get on the treadmill the next day with your green juice and get back in action!
Be patient and realistic…do you want 10 pounds that is going to stay off or a quick 10 pounds that isn’t going to stay off the second you go back to your normal eating habits? We are striving for lifestyle changes instead of a “diet”. The body needs to adjust to your new weight in order to accept it. You would be surprised how much your body remembers…so get ready for a your new one! Did you guys enjoy the tips and tricks? Let me know what you want to see next or what health and fitness questions you have!