1. Eat 4-6 times a day: Eating small frequent meals keeps your metabolism revving all day. You want to keep enough fuel in the tank to keep your engine running consistently.
Sticking with the automobile illustration - your car isn't going to get very far with an empty tank. Similarly, when you're underfed you won't be able to perform (not to mention you'll be a total grump. we've all seen the Snickers commercials). On the flip side, if you overfill the tank, gas will be wasted. In relation to weight loss, that wasted gas materialises as excess calories turned to fat.
- Rule of thumb: have a small meal/snack every 2-3 hours
2. Eat lean protein with each meal/snack:
Protein keeps you fuller for longer while facilitating fat loss and muscle growth. Win. Win. Win.
- Your goal should be to consume 1gram of protein for every lb. of body weight (150# person needs 150g + protein/day)
3. Eat MORE protein:
Include animal and non-animal sources.
- Proteins: salmon, steak, chicken, turkey, fish, shrimp, steak, milk, greek yogurt, cottage cheese, eggs, almonds, tofu, edamame, protein powder, etc.
4. Eat vegetables with every meal:
Increase your veggie intake, especially the green ones. Vegetables are a great source of vitamins, antioxidants and fiber, which helps in satiety. It's almost a fact that you will get full before you are able to eat too many veggies. I mean, really, who wants to eat 10 cups of broccoli?
5. Eat carbohydrates around your workouts:
Your body uses carbohydrates for energy. Your body best receives carbs immediately after a workout. When consumed, carbohydrates cause your blood sugar to temporarily rise, giving you a nice little boost. That boost is, however, short lived which is why it's best to pair carbs with...(drumroll)...PROTEIN!
- Carbohydrates: potatoes, rice, quinoa, bread, oats, FRUITS and vegetables.
6. Learn to love healthy fats:
Monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats help the body burn fat and play a huge role in health promotion. There have been multiple studies conducted on diet that demonstrate the bodies need for fat. Low-fat diets rarely work.
- Fats: nuts, nut butters, olive oil, coconut, avocados, seeds, etc.
- Caution! Watch your portion sizes!! Fat calories add up quickly.
7. Ditch calorie-containing drinks:
Juice, soda and alcohol are empty calories, offering you very little nutritionally for a BIG calorie cost. Your drinks of choice should be water, unsweetened tea and black coffee.
- Staying hydrated plays a big part in weight loss – less water retention/bloating.
8. Focus on whole foods:
Most of your diet should come from whole, unprocessed, unrefined foods. You will get out what you put in. Choose QUALITY foods. If you can't pronounce the ingredients on the label, or if a food item has more than 5 ingredients, it would be your best interest to leave it on the shelf.
All foods USED to be whole foods. Unfortunately, in 2013 we have to search for foods that haven't been genetically modified, processed or shaped and colored into weird little figures.
9. Have “10% Foods”:
To successfully adhere to a nutrition program it’s best to follow the 90/10 rule. 90% of the time you are eating on-point, eating whole foods and eliminating empty calories. The other 10% can include a 'cheat' meal - have what you want, don't worry about how many grams of protein you are (or aren't) eating and enjoy it! Then get back on track!!
10. Be religious about kitchen workouts and food logs:
Most of us know what to eat but if it isn’t available it isn't going to happen. Who wants to spend 30 minutes making a delicious healthy meal after you get home from your hectic work day. Make your food prep a priority so it's already in the fridge, ready to go!
- The most successful clients journal/monitor their food intake.
- "Plan to work and work the plan!!"