Tip: A small but useful piece of practical advice.
A useful hint or idea; a basic, practical fact dictionary.com
I am not going to present a list of magic tricks or miracle drinks that will melt the fat in 8 hours. Instead, you will find tips and recommendations that will require a little labor (I am not going to lie), discipline and commitment (sorry, not sorry). However, I guarantee you that if you practice these tips on a daily bases, stick to them and trust the process, you will see results:
– Clean up your kitchen:
Staying away from temptation is probably the most obvious piece of advice, but sometimes it can be the hardest to conquer. Start with your pantry. Our pantries or food cabinets can be either the doors to heaven, or the doors to hell. What’s behind those doors will determine the decisions we will make in those moments of weakness when we lose sight of our goal (believe me, it happens). That is the reason why keeping those triggers out of sight, or out for good, are fundamental in this process.
I am not saying that your pantry should look like it is part of the IKEA show room, but if you could place that bag of chips, pack of Oreos, and six pack of sodas in the very back/out of sight/behind the 15lb bag of dog food, that would be great. Tossing what expired in the last World Cup; the bags that contain 87 grains of rice; 7 macaroni pasta; and the dust of what once was a bag of Cheerios, is just ideal!
When our pantry is clean and decluttered, it invites us to fill it up with better options, and will even help us to save money.
The same thing happens with our fridge. Think about it. What is the first thing most people do when they are bored, cooking, thirsty, happy, having a hot flash, hungry, can’t sleep, or find your reading glasses? BINGO! We open the fridge! If we have fresh, natural, juicy, and colorful options, we will grab a fresh, natural, juicy and colorful snack. get the idea?
-Write it down
Dear Diary, I did great today!
In the morning I had my cup of coffee and “a little bit of sugar, with a little bit of milk”, organic! of course! (you know, I need my milk in my coffee and my sugar). Then I made myself a delicious omelet and I only had a piece of toast. (Little Peter didn’t finish his pancakes, and since I hate to throw food away I ate what was left).
3 hours later, I was running errands and totally forgot to bring some snacks with me, so I went ahead and had another cup of coffee (“a little bit” of sugar and “a little” milk” of course). When I got home for lunch, I was starving and while I was prepping my lunch, I had “a little” piece of french bread that was sitting there all alone and calling my name (after all, I was really hungry and needed something very quick).
The afternoon was crazy! homework, driving kids around, and looking for that plain white shirt at Target for my daughter’s play at school. She wanted a cookie, so I bought six for the crew, and had just a little cookie (you now how much I love the warm, fresh chocolate chip cookies). Then, I remembered that nuts are great, so I went ahead I bought a package of salted-roasted-organic-nuts at Starbucks and ate them too (Good fats!).
Dinner went fantastic! I finally made that salmon-5 Recipe with some roasted veggies and a salad (YUM!). For the kids I made some mac and cheese, but little David threw a tantrum in the middle of dinner and had to be sent to his room without finishing it (remember! I hate to throw food away. So, yes. I finished it) My husband opened this beautiful bottle of wine and I helped myself with just “a little glass” (he hates it when I don’t join him) and then little Megan brought some of the cookies to share with daddy and I couldn’t help it, and had just “a little cookie” with the kids.
p.s. I just realized how much I ate today without even noticing it. I am glad I wrote it down, because tomorrow I will be more attentive to what I eat.
My plan for tomorrow is to be more prepared, weather is bringing better snacks in my bag, giving my kid’s leftovers to the dog and telling my husband that I rather have a cup of tea while he enjoys his wine. After all, it is me who wants this. AND I AM DETERMINED! And I know that very soon, I will be joining him with a glass here and there!
-Size DOES MATTER
Portion control is kind of an obvious piece of advice, but is also easy to misinterpret. Chicken breast is great, but 3lb. of it for dinner will make you gain weight. Fruits? Amazing! Full of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, but 3 bananas for breakfast won’t take you anywhere.
The same happens with complex carbohydrates. Brown rice, quinoa, sweet potatoes. They are all your big allies when trying to lose weight, however, what you need to know is, not only how much of it you should eat, but also when to eat it.
A nutritionist or specialist in this area can help you, and assist you in this matter, but common sense will always prevail. A very general rule of thumb is:
• 1 palm of protein dense foods at each meal;
• 1 fist of vegetables at each meal;
• 0.5 cupped handful of carb dense foods at each meal;
• 2 thumbs of fat dense foods at each meal
• 2 palms of protein dense foods at each meal;
• 2 fists of vegetables at each meal;
• 1 cupped handful of carb dense foods at each meal;
• 3 thumbs of fat dense foods at each meal.
-Make peace with your kitchen: COOK!
As much as I would love to tell you that there is an app that will do this part for you, the truth is that you have to do the work. And that means, clean the fridge; the pantry; plan a menu; write the shopping list; do the shopping; and cook. There is not a shortcut.
Like everything, this might not be second nature for the majority of us mortals, but it is a great habit that we should all practice. As I said at the beginning of this article, I was not going to lie, and here is the tough love: If you want to see real results, you have to get out of your comfort zone and do things EVERY DAY that you might not love (at first) but that will bring the benefits that will make you love it, do it and miss it when you don’t.
I am not suggesting you say goodbye to the takeout nights, or having dinner at your favorite restaurants ever again. But if you are really serious about making a positive change in your life (body and mind included) you might have to leave the takeout menus for special occasions. It will save you not only a crap load of money, but also calories.
My next article will be all about “FOOD PREPPING: The Why and the How”, but for now, digest this (no pun intended) and try at least one of these tips at a time. Remember to trust the process and to make it sustainable.
You Got This! Trust the process and Have fun.
Owner and Founder of G.O Nutrition For You