The “Trim the Fat” weight loss challenge is scheduled to begin Feb. 18th. We’ve got $60 in the pot so far, I’m confident we can bring that up A LOT before the challenge actually begins. This is not a “crash diet” type of thing, this is a lifestyle modification. We are hoping to inspire our readers to dig deep and make some changes so that the future for you looks and feels bright. And what’s nice is that you are not getting advice from some stranger who is like a size two, we are real people, giving you real tools that we have actually implemented in our own lives. So here are some tips to get your fridge…and your life ready for this challenge. Oh, and if you haven’t signed up yet, you best go ahead and do that: HERE.
Step One: What the hell is in your fridge.
Yes, your fridge, have you looked in there recently, like really looked in there? Is there a bottle of Coke, maybe some Diet Coke? Ice Cream, Snickers Bars, the works? Well, it’s time to purge. This is my favorite thing in the whole world. Something about throwing things in the trash makes me feel a-mazing. I love it. I feel whole. I feel inspired. Your fridge is where most of your downfalls are going to occur so don’t even set yourself up for it. GET RID OF IT. Make it easier on yourself. Do it with a friend if you have to, so you can cry in the corner with some support. Here is what to look for:
Beverages: Orange juice, soda, diet soda (yes, diet: causes kidney stones, bad for your stomach lining, do you need more reasons???? yuck), juice, basically anything that is not water, throw in the trash. Why? Well, if you are a soda drinker you can pretty much whiz through your daily caloric intake in just a few glasses. If it’s juice, read the label, there a) isn’t a lot of real juice in there and b) your body really doesn’t need all that sugar. Want some orange juice? Go eat an orange. Water. Water. Water. WATER. Water with lemon if you need flavoring, that’s great for your metabolism by the way, but nothing with calories.
Yogurt: It’s one of the most deceiving things you can buy. Read the label of most standard yogurt, sugar, sugar, sugar. Some have 11g, some have as much as 32g, either way, it’s not good. If you wanted to load your body with sugar, go eat a candy bar. At least then, you are being straight forward with yourself. Everyone thinks that yogurt is a go to health food but it can’t be when it’s laced with crap. Read your labels. Dannon fruit on the bottom has 26g of sugar and the ingredients are cause for suspicion. When I want yogurt I go for this brand: (The plain only has 4g of naturally occurring sugar and the other flavors have 9g but with naturally occurring sugar from fruit, not high fructose corn syrup)
Processed Food: Diet meals, TV dinners, low fat mumbo jumbo crumbo, throw it out. Did you ever ask yourself why it’s low fat and how it has that shelf life? Well, you should. Kashi, who claims to be a wonderful advocate of healthier alternatives, has more sodium in their frozen entrees than like the entire Atlantic Ocean. Their bars have a lot of sugar and their meals are just in general, not sustainable. Get yourself eating whole foods, real foods, things that come from the ground, not on the shelf. Learn to shop in the perimeter of the grocery store, not the middle. You don’t need all that stuff.
Replace: Go food shopping and grab yourself things that are bountiful and good for you. Items that will nurture your body and restore such as:
- Green veggies: broccoli, asparagus, zucchini, lettuce, kale, etc.
- Fruit: Mangos, pineapple, apples, kiwi, bananas, strawberries, etc.
- Unprocessed grains: farro, quinoa, barley, etc.
- Brown rice, wild rice, etc.
- Eggs (and eat the egg whites, freeze the yolks for baking later, NO EGG WHITES FROM A CARTON)
- Lean Protein: Chicken breasts, pork, turkey, even fairly lean red meat is fine.
- Nuts: Almonds, cashews, walnuts, pecans, great snack.
- Sweet potatoes, watch the white ones, not a lot of nutritional value there.
I will enhance this list more later but this is a great place to start. Always think about where your food comes from and what that means for your body’s processes. The more your body has to break something down, the harder your digestive system works which means your body is not working efficiently.
Step two: Start moving
Start small. Any activity if you are prone to no activity is a nice change. I suggest walking to everyone who is brand new to exercise. You don’t want to shock your body. Instead of watching television, start walking 20 to 30 minutes a day. You will be amazed at what a change this is. And, after doing it for a couple of weeks, you might even find that you want to jog a little. It may even come natural. From there, the wonderful world of running may open up to you. If you are on a time crunch, pick up a 10 minute fitness DVD. People too often think that you have to spend hours at the gym. You don’t. Small changes amount to big changes. You have to start somewhere.
Step three: Replace one meal a day with a healthy one
If you know there is one place of weakness, now is the time to change it. Because if you don’t, the challenge will be even harder. For Josh and I, it’s lunch. We look forward to it because it gets us out of the office but the places we like to go are challenging. It’s easy to get a sandwich with bacon, a bag of chips and a soda and then right there, bam, diet blown. So for us, I started “trimming the fat”, I chose to replace those big meals with a nice, large, fill-me-up salad. No sides. Just some water. Justin at Molly’s throws some protein on there, a little crunch with a few croutons and lots of wonderful fresh veggies. This has made a huge difference. So, identify your meal that is your weak point and modify it. Once you have that done, you can move on to the rest of the day.
Step four and final: You will not die
You won’t starve to death. No one is going to bomb a foreign country. It’s not the end of the world. It’s just a little lifestyle change. You can still indulge, you just have to tone it down. Have one cupcake of moderate size, once in a while, have one cookie, not ten, eat half the slice of cake you normally would. It’s all about making slightly smaller choices but not depriving yourself. Don’t diet. You will not succeed. Modify. That state of mind will change everything.
Get ready everyone, the count down is on.