The finish line!

Getting to the finish line on your weight loss journey can seem very difficult, even impossible. It take effort, motivation, drive, and even a good incentive helps. One of the most important tips that I could give would be to never give up, even if you fall off the bandwagon!  Give yourself something to look forward to aka reward yourself as you see progress. This may be a nice dinner out with friends, significant other, or spouse or even some new clothes as you slim down! In the process, you must realize that you are doing this for you too, not just to look good for someone else. It is changing your ability to be healthy now and for later.

Counting calories, staying consistent in exercising, and keeping on a diet can be an emotional roller coaster. That means there can be emotional eating and this is one thing that you must learn to overcome! Do not make any kind of justification to eat whatever you want and spoil all your hard work because of a bad or good day. The real motivation should come from inside of you. Pay attention to how much you regret binge eating. Ever since I started to limit all those high calorie, unhealthy foods, I have had more energy and can focus on everything else going on in my life besides getting another hit of sugar, soda, sweets, etc. You can do it! Good luck with your weight loss journey!

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March 30, 2010 at 9:32 pm 5 comments

Sleeping prevents weight gain

Did you know that people who slept six hours per night are 23 percent more likely to be obese than people who sleep between seven and nine hours? Studies show that the less sleep an individual gets, the more prone to weight gain they may be. Well that explains some of the problem for me! With all the stress of being a father to a light sleeping baby girl, a student and working, lack of sleep has definitely played a part in my weight issue. In fact, it has been a while since I have been able to consistently get a good night’s sleep for more than a day or two!

Conversely, getting adequate sleep on a regular basis can prevent weight gain. This is due to the hormonal balance that is aided by sleeping that affects appetite. When you are up later, you also tend to eat more. Those struggling with obesity may have factors such as sleep apnea working against them in the ability to sleep which can further impede weight loss. So we should all be trying to get around 7-8 hours of sleep at night to assist in weight management.

March 30, 2010 at 8:37 pm 13 comments

Dieting in a social setting

Calorie counting when you are eating with friends and/or family can be difficult. It may be that you don’t want to have to announce to everybody present that you are restricting your calories. They best thing to do is to try to make your plate look full, load up on fruit dishes and vegetables, and conscientiously eating slower than you usually do. The takes time for the brain to get the message from your stomach that you are full. Eating slowing helps to give your body the time it needs to feel full before you overeat and go way beyond your calorie limit. There is also something to be said for eating meals with family. I find myself eating healthier, especially more veggie and not stuffing myself with huge portions of fast food or take-out pizza.

I have become a believer in take letting all those fitness gyms steal my money! There are so many ways to exercise at home that are simple. It is one of the only ways I can get in exercise while watching my 8 month old daughter. Some times the best weight to use in weight training is your own body weight! The other day my friend and I were discussing at-home exercises and he mentioned the T pushup. This is how it works: after doing a full pushup, in the up position, swing your arm up in the air till it your body forms a T shape. Then bring it down and repeat on the other side! Good for working on your core balance.

March 29, 2010 at 4:46 am 4 comments

Cycling the fat off

This is the bike for me. Since we are going to be moving out to St. Louis this August for optometry school and need some extra money in for the move, we are going to be selling my wife’s car in about a month. Luckily we live close enough to campus and I’ll have my job for the rest of the summer there, so I can just ride a bike. In reality, this is part of my weight loss program. This will force me to exercise when I have to go to work or class, no getting around it! And if I’m late, I’ll have go pedal that much faster.

According to MyPlate, just riding a bike to campus and back¬† burns over 400 calories! So if I was to vigorously ride a bike for exercise every day for 30 minutes a day, I could burn over 600 calories. That’s like all of breakfast or lunch! I am really glad that I don’t have to restrict my diet to any certain foods every day as long as I count my calories and stay within my limit. I had dinner at my grandmother’s tonight and I just loaded up on vegetables. Yum!

March 29, 2010 at 2:45 am 4 comments

Fill up on fruits and veggies

If you often feel hungry throughout the day like me, sometimes you just need something to tie you over until the next main meal. A crisp apple, a juicy orange, or a handful of grapes can do the trick. They provide fiber and lots of vitamins and minerals and help to satiate hunger cravings.

Veggies should be an integral part of dinner. This is especially true because veggies often work as good substitutes for more caloric ingredients. This could mean bigger portions for those with a bigger appetite like me because you would not be eating as many calories. I have started to use some online recipe websites that help calorie counting for full dinner meals.

March 27, 2010 at 9:49 pm 4 comments

Daily calorie tracker

One of the biggest hurdles to overcome in the weight loss process has got to be counting calories. This can be very difficult as each item, including small snacks because these add up quickly. I have found a great tool that can help anyone seeking an easier way to quantify the calories. My sister recommended this free website that hosts the tool. The tool is called MyPlate.

MyPlate lets you input an extremely wide variety of foods, drinks, snacks, etc. and gives the calories, fat, carbs, sodium, protein, and fiber content of the food item. The amount you eat goes against the amount you have been allotted by the calculation given from your input of height, weight, weekly weight loss goal, and activity level. It is able to show nutrition breakdown of the foods you eat each day by carbs, fat, and protein and even tracks your water intake. All of the nutrition information is tracked on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis and compares them to recommended intakes for each of those time periods. Either way, it will make you think differently about what and how much you eat. I have already lost a pound using MyPlate in the past three days and just doing push ups a couple times a day!

March 27, 2010 at 8:08 pm 2 comments

A Good Reason for Weight Loss

I’m guessing you’re wondering why I have a picture of a military optometrist here. Well, I am going to optometry school this fall and have been looking for ways to pay for it. The Air Force has a scholarship that would pay for all of school for my third and fourth year! But in return, I will have to give back three years as an Air Force commissioned officer being an optometrist for them on a military base. I found a really cool article about what I’d be doing here. One of the requirements would be that I meet a certain weight to height minimum.

To say the least, I have a lot of weight to lose to meet that criteria. Wouldn’t it be easier to lose weight if you had a really good reason like this? It would save me over $100,000 in school loans if I could make sure I meet the physical requirements! I think that I’ll be eating better and finding a practical way to work in more exercise into my life…wouldn’t you? Maybe even get back into P90X. Maybe I can get back into this competition after all!

March 23, 2010 at 10:14 pm 2 comments

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