Here’s the deal. We hit the gym, work our tails off, sweat until our entire shirt is drenched, drink our protein shake, high-five a couple peeps on our way out for our hard work and go home. Now here is the sweet part. Once we get home, we tear apart some mac and cheese, murder some cookies as well as a piece of cake that needed to be eaten because it was in danger of going bad. I understand, you had to do it. It was the noble thing to do. Now this sounds amazing. I wish I was doing the latter half right now. The issue lies in the fact that we are wondering why we aren’t losing weight when we are working so hard? Well if you didn’t know it already, here it is, your nutrition is that of a 5-year-old. I mean that in a pleasant way of course because I like 5 year olds, they are cool. Clean up the diet and you will likely see the changes you have been hoping for.
Here are some guidelines to follow:
- Eat only until you are satisfied. No need to lick the plate clean if you are not hungry for it.
- Eat more food early in the day (breakfast and lunch) and less at night (late night snacking). Most humans are active during the day. They are likely not terribly active before they go to bed. So an individual should probably not be eating like they are about to take a spin class minutes before they go to sleep. Food that is not used gets stored.
- Drinks lots of water. Roughly 8 – 10 cups. This interprets into an estimated 5 or 6 tall glasses of water a day. This will also increase your metabolism and allow you to lose unwanted weight faster, especially if you replace water with your sodas and juices.
- Add natural, healthy elements to your food for flavor. Things like: spices, herbs, stocks and broths, fresh and dried fruits, onions, garlic, vinegar etc. These options are much healthier alternatives than artificial flavors.
- Cut down on sugar. Most individuals get more than enough sugar to satisfy themselves and their families. Most of us are not active enough to burn this much sugar and once again, if it is not used, it is stored, as fat.
“How you eat will have an impact on everything you do. The impact can be either great, or damaging.” – Jonah Taylor
This is only a sample guideline, healthy variations are encouraged.
Meal #1: 1 cup of oatmeal, side of fresh fruit, protein shake. OR. Egg whites with a side of lean protein (i.e. lean turkey sausage or bacon) and side of fruit.
Meal #2: Chicken with brown rice or sweet potato, and choice of vegetable (preferably green). Substitute lean turkey for chicken if desired.
Meal #3: Salmon, tilapia, or tuna with green vegetables and sweet potato or brown rice.
Meal #4: Chicken, lean turkey, or lean steak with whole wheat pasta and choice of vegetables.
Of course this is not an end all, be all means to eating right. It is merely a guideline to help those who are in need of guidance. If this is too many meals, subtract one. If you find yourself hungry between meals, some good snack ideas are: almonds or a healthy nut mix, a protein shake or bar, fresh or dried fruit (easy on the dried fruit as additional sugar is often added), or one of my longtime favorites, beef or venison jerky.