After Holiday Weight Gain Blues

22 01 2019

Travel and Food Go Together – Pacing oneself is the challenge.

Last updated 22 Jan 19, by Marc Woodard

Another year has gone by with all the Holiday decor and cheer with it. I understand some of you had a tough time with the food choices and amount that you consumed; and last year’s weight loss resolution didn’t work out so well.

With that being said, should I dare say some of you are not only bummed out after you stepped on the scale, you have the weight gain blues.

There are many reasons weight gain occurs. I would never tell you I know exactly what you are going through. However I do know, out-of-control weight gain is often attached to an emotional lifestyle change. And those changes often trigger over consumption of food and drink – especially during and after the Holiday season, or vacations. And this can lead to acute-to-chronic depression for many.

There is also an illness-disease relationship associated with unhealthy body weight – especially once we become obese. At this point the mind-body becomes susceptible to greater health risk. For example, diabetes, high blood pressure, cholesterol, IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome), congenital heart disease, fibromyalgia-phantom pain, etc. A daily habit of over eating may also increase other bad habits, i.e., smoking, drinking, illicit drug or unnecessary pharmaceutical use.

In general, stressful life events cannot be avoided. But can be stress-minimized through understanding the environmental triggers causing them. Regardless of season, or any day for that matter… you must learn how to target and identify the physical, mental and/or social triggers causing the emotional stress keeping you overweight and unfit and do something about it.

Unfortunately for some – the over weight condition may be the result of a genetic or metabolic factor, Which may have less to do with lifestyle habits and behavior – but more to do with an inefficient calorie burning furnace. Any long-term weight gain that threatens health should seek medical attention immediately from a physician.

Recreational Activity Does a Body Good.

Below I’ve listed a few behavioral habit forming relationships that can be changed before and after any holiday season or vacation to help reduce body fat weight gain and achieve the weight loss goal.

8 Lifestyle Changes You can Make to Achieve Your New Years Resolution Weight Loss Goal.

  1. Holiday Cheer Weight Gain – What can I say about Holiday Cheer that I haven’t mentioned in my previous writings.  Have a Holiday battle meal plan before you set down at the table.  Read the following article, “10 Step Basic Weight Loss Tips.”
  2.  Last Year’s Resolution to Lose Weight Failed – You know why you failed your weight loss program from previous years. You did not resolve, or change your eating, drinking, or exercise habits. To do so is still too painful for whatever the reason. Until you resolve and/or get serious about your weight loss goal, or seek professional help, regardless of who provides you weight loss tips, services or program… you’ll likely continue to struggle with body weight.
  3.  Pain factor – All pain is directly related to illness, disease and/or injury. And with pain comes more sedentary habits. It is for this reason, it is more important than ever you work with your primary physician and pain management specialists to find treatment and activity that’s right for you. If you have mental and physical pain that’s not been diagnosed – seek advisement and referrals from your primary care physician.
  4.  Stressful life events cause excess calorie consumption– For many the habit of eating more calories than needed may come from everyday stresses caused by work or home environment, or bad relationship with spouse, friend or family member. Or the stress could be caused by some other non-diagnosed physical and mental pain from childhood. Stress events can culminate and increase a depression mood that causes one to eat more in an attempt to feel better. Once you target the cause of your stress induced bad habit and/or behavior and remove it… it’s more likely you’ll succeed in a safe weight program over a set period of time.
  5.  Carry the party into New Year – Some carry the end of year festivities into the new year. This behavior can last for months, or the entire year. This continued habit will not help you lose weight or remove the depression umbrella. “First and foremost, you must understand this is occurring and must break this unhealthy habit.” As one ages and the habit continues – health risk increases.
  6.  Fast foods after the Holiday’s. Too many Americans consume fast foods especially during the Holidays. Here lies a crux for much of the American obesity problem. During this time of year there is a huge spike in fast foods and alcohol sales. Yes, business booms almost in every sector of the economy. Fast foods are convenient, chemically addictive and bad for health in the long run. I know you’re thinking, what if I just give up the fast food places and eat out at restaurants? While this is a better concept, you don’t know how much of those meals are processed with unhealthy garbage causing your weight gain. Also when you eat out – most tend to eat more. Instead develop a healthy whole foods shopping habit and limit yourself to 1 fast food meal a week. I highly recommend you read, “Restaurant and Grocery Foods Healthy?
  7.  Love of Baking – I know, some of you carry your new found baking habits into the new year. Although there is nothing wrong with cooking your own food, the pitfall is when you love everything you bake just a little too much. I know the kids love your home made cookies, cakes and pies. Remember moderation with deserts. Too much sugar, fat and salt is not good for anyone, even children with fast metabolisms. If you’re having a tough time changing up your baking habit – try becoming a little more creative by offering different types of deserts… fresh fruits, jello, pudding, etc. Mix it up and break away from the continuous high fat baking habit.
  8.  Empty Nester’s Bake for an Army – Regardless of season, there are many who continue to cook for an entire family after the children have left home. There are many things tied into this habit. This is a tough habit to change – especially if the spouse demands traditional family recipes. If you continue to cook this way, you’ll not reduce food portions – it will be more challenging to meet your weight loss goal.

Once you target the cause of your weight gain nemesis and make healthier lifestyle choices that include daily exercise activities – your fitness levels and health will improve dramatically, while achieving your weight loss resolution once and for all.

Good health to you and your family!

Author:  Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, ARNG, CPT, RET2019 Copyright.  All rights reserved, Mirror Athlete Publishing @: http://www.mirrorathlete.com,  Sign up for your Free eNewsletter.





Weight Loss through Body Chemical Activation

15 11 2018
IMG_0277

Any aerobic activity will release addictive body chemicals to burn more body fat and benefit health and fitness levels.

Updated 15 November 2018, Marc Woodard

Any type of physical activity will stimulate the body’s natural release of feel good chemicals to help you lose weight and experience daily wellbeing.

It is the activation of muscle metabolism during low impact aerobics exercise that will activate these feel good chemicals – while simultaneously melting away body fat.

Once you relate to and apply the information that follows – it only takes a little will power to begin chipping away at your weight loss goals and experience wellbeing daily.

The advantage of  low intensity aerobics exercise is it stimulates both the fat burning metabolic engine and activates addictive feel good body chemicals. Unlike high intensity strength and muscle bulking development; and high intensity aerobic exercise – these activities more or less suppress the fat burning engine to varying degree.

Walk to a destination place and fish for dinner.  “Thumbs down no fish.”

What many consumers don’t know is during low-intensity aerobic exercise the muscles metabolism prefers to burn fat fuel.  That’s right the metabolic energy needed to walk over a period of time prefers stored body fat to convert to glucose to fuel the large muscles in the legs and buttocks area.

The same muscles during high-intensity aerobics exercise like running and high impact aerobic dance for instance prefer mostly stored liver and muscle glycogen fuel to convert it to blood glucose [sugar].

The harder you train muscles in the body the less body fat you burn.  That’s a major reason high intensity exercise makes you crave carbohydrates after you’ve finished the workout. And for that reason – IS the reason those folks have a hard time losing excess body weight.

The point is, you don’t have to train hard to lose body fat and excess body weight.

The second point I want to make, regardless of training intensity the body will produce chemicals to addict you to exercise whether your building muscle, increasing muscular endurance, or toning the body.  But if you’re consuming a stimulant, diuretic or anabolic steroid or heavy herb concentrate supplement to “fast pace” any fitness goal, the natural chemicals released by the body will be suppressed and you’ll become addicted to an unnatural chemical supplement that may increase health risk.  You’ll may look and feel good [loss weight, or build muscle, etc.] for a while; but then bad at some point in time…

Unnatural fitness results through the use of fads, gimmicks, supplements and herbal diets are often short lived because their not sustainable habits. In the long run when applying these tactics to achieve a fitness goal – “too often,” may eventually break the fat burning (known as yo-yo dieting), or hormonal metabolism and increase health risk; then cause excessive weight gain.

Eat more healthy whole foods. Cut back on processed foods.

Once you connect how exercise and healthy whole foods dieting increases body chemical activation versus an unnatural fad-dietary course, you’ll better understand there is no good reason to “fast pace” a fitness result (e.g., weight loss).  Thereafter you can avoid the pit falls of unstainable lifestyle habits and ill-health consequences.

The 3 major chemicals the brain/body releases naturally during exercise and supports sustainable healthy weight loss…

1) Adrenaline a neurotransmitter and hormone produced by the adrenalin gland just above the kidneys, also known as norepinephrine and epinephrine (provides attention focus in brain).  Together these chemicals activate your fight or flight stimulation designed to get the body out of a stressful situation, or survive an injury scenario.  It acts as a natural pain killer, boosts oxygen and glucose fuel to brain, muscles and suppresses depression.

Walk your dog to a neat destination place you enjoy. Both receive the natural feel good brain-body benefits.

2)   Dopamine is produced and synthesized in the brain which boosts positive behavior, cognition, motor activity, motivation, sleep, mood, learning and attention.

3)  Serotonin is synthesized within the CNS (Central Nervous System).  This chemical is also found in many mushrooms, plants, fruits and vegetables.

Research shows Serotonin plays an important role in liver regeneration and induces cell division throughout the body (important for repair and healing of the body).  Serotonins role as a neurotransmitter of the brain is to modulate anger, mood, aggression, sleep, sexuality, appetite and metabolism.

Walk the beach and discover cool things.

People are motivated to move or walk for different reasons.  Once you find something that motivates you to move more… you’ll enjoy the natural brain-body feel good chemicals; and want to repeat the low impact aerobics exercise experience daily.

Continuous low impact aerobic exercise like walking, hiking, dancing or riding a bike will release those feel good chemicals and cause “for most” an addictive habit to form – whereas you’ll want to continue the course.  It will take approximately 1-2 weeks to become addicted to daily low-impact walk habit for example.

A little alcohol is okay. Over indulging is a bad habit.

Everyone differs slightly in metabolism, exercise and activity interest, intensity, frequency and duration of exercise activity daily.  For many daily low impact aerobics exercise will cause an instant craving to continue the course.

To maximize the odds of achieving a fitness, health or wellness goal four behavioral habits must be addressed if applicable.  1)  Stop substance abuse.  2)  Eat a balanced and nutritious diet.  3) Allow your brain-body the time to become addicted to the body’s natural feel good chemicals released through low-impact aerobics exercise activity.  4)  Remove yourself from unhealthy and stressful environments.

Bike, explore and get fit.

The increased exercise activities experienced by former clients did not require a lot of will power to perform low-impact aerobics exercise to achieve significant fitness results.

But it did require some lifestyle changes.

For example, when beginning a daily walk program it doesn’t’ requires much will power to get started.  But it does require a commitment.  In other words, the excuse I often hear people use to avoid any form of exercise, “I don’t have the time.”  But if you can make the time you’ll lose weight and feel better almost immediately once you start.  Then become addicted to it within 2-5 days.

The best New Year’s fitness resolution advice I could give anyone, as I’ve done with so many past clients… start a daily walk habit.  Walking is the best low impact fat burning activity whose large muscles prefer fat stored energy and it’s easy on weight bearing joints.

Walk and capture nature in a picture.

I assure you, if you walk a little each day, you’ll begin to release more of those feel good chemicals.  Then body fat will decrease and you’ll have more energy and feel lighter on your feet.  You’ll begin to look and feel better in no time.

If you’ve been sedentary for a long time, walking at first may seem uncomfortable and maybe feel unnatural.  But if you can work up to 15 or 30 minutes or more each day you’ll have significant fitness results success.

Keep this in mind.  Before the automobile how did we survive?

As hunters and gatherers our bodies are designed to get work done by walking.  Walking is a very natural and a primal thing we’re designed to do for a lifetime. I guarantee – if you maintain your walking muscle metabolism you’ll become addicted to sustaining it, and in return for your efforts your body will allow you to live life to the fullest.

Walk to the grocery store to pick up fresh fruits and vegetables.

I’ve had plenty of overweight clients walk or ride a stationary bike for a year before they achieved their weight loss fitness goal.  Thereafter participated in a competitive long distance walk, hike, jog or ran or biked a marathon event.  They never imagined themselves capable of doing anything like it.  They simply believed it possible because they could relate to the muscle metabolism and feel the chemical activation truth working within their brain-body.

Walk a county fair.

Be excited about all the possibilities that lie in front of you and enjoy life to the fullest by maintaining a daily low impact aerobics exercise habit!   Now go get addicted to the natural feel good drugs produced by your own body and reap the ideal body weight, longevity, wellness and health benefits!

 

Author: Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, ARNG, CPT, RET. 2018 Copyright. All rights reserved, Mirror Athlete Inc., http://www.mirrorathlete.com, Get Free Newsletter.





Enjoy Holiday Meals Without Weight Gain or Guilt

20 11 2017

Annual Tree Lighting Event at Liberty Park, Tigard OR

Updated, 20 November 2017

I can’t believe how fast the end of year Holidays roll upon us.  And for some it can be a stressful time.  Especially if you’ve had a hard time managing body weight.

I have an 8-Tip Meal Plan strategy that may help you avoid weight gain during the Holidays.  Yet allow you to have your cake and eat it too.

This 8-tip strategy has helped past clients stay on weight loss target during the Holiday season.  Admittedly – most didn’t lose weight during this time of year…  however they didn’t gain any either while applying the tips.

Back History on the 8-Tip Holiday Meal Strategy – I was asked during a client consult if I could create a work around food strategy.  One that allowed someone to eat favorite Holiday foods without derailing a weight loss goal.

Of course I told the client there’s always a risk of falling back into a bad food habit when overeating hyper-palatable foods.  But for this individual it was worth the risk to modify the current weight loss plan to enjoy Holiday foods with family; and without fear of weight gain.  Prior to this request avoidance of all Holiday and family event meals was the norm for this person.

After the client applied most of the tips throughout the Holiday season – there was no weight gain and weight loss target was sustained during the New Year.

For some, it’s almost as if we must harden the body for the rigors of war while trying to lose a little weight.  The smells and tastes are enough to drive anyone crazy and want to go on a food binge.  And without a good “hold the weight gain line” strategy, Holiday and special events foods often overwhelm our senses and will power to stay a healthy weight loss course.

The worse part of consuming too many calories as we age – our body’s metabolisms become less efficient at processing the excess.  Instead the metabolism gets very efficient at storing body fat weight.  It is also true after a Holiday food binge, there is a tendency for some to continue the same eating pattern throughout the New Year.  With that said, these tips can help correct an unhealthy eating pattern after the Holidays should it continue.

Holidays are a special time of year for families to gather and be thankful for what they have.

I also understand some of you have had tremendous success at melting the pounds away last year as you stuck to your new year’s weight loss resolution.

Congratulation to you!

For those struggling to hold the weight loss line during the Holidays, don’t throw in the towel just yet!  I’m sharing the same client tips that worked for some… I know can work for you.  And quite possibly habit forming enough to incorporate into a current weight loss program.

However remain mindful – these tips alone may not be enough to meet your ultimate weight loss goal.  Especially if you are in poor health with a chronic condition; have a substance abuse problem, or obsessive compulsive eating disorder, or grossly obese, etc.  In any case, request a primary care referral to see a medical specialist for relative treatment.  Especially if body weight now presents a chronic health condition.

IMG_0186

Celebrating with Family should not include worry of weight gain.

I’m no different than anyone else during the Holidays.  “I’m tempted to eat more than I need.”

However if aware of a bad food choice, or habit known to cause weight gain… and having a hold the line food habit strategy – keeping the weight off during the Holidays is very doable.

These behaviors and food habit modifications in practice are also useful when the metabolism slows down in the evening and progressively every year after the age of 25.

It is well known as we age, the body doesn’t require the excess calories it once did during the developmental and active adult years.  Regardless, this does not mean you have to give up all your favorite foods, even if some of them are considered unhealthy.

I would be remiss in mentioning – there’s some foods we’d all be better off leaving off the plate – E.g., highly processed foods and drink with too many preservatives, salt and sweeteners in them.

Since everyone’s metabolism is different due to age, sex, medical condition, genetics, environment, etc.,  I can’t predict, or provide a “one fix solution to hold the body weight line strategy” that’ll work for everyone.  Especially when I know the programmed tips below were designed for a few client types that wanted to indulge once and a while without weight gain guilt.

However I believe these tips are worth sharing because some of them will be useful for anyone.  Especially if your concerned about gaining weight during the Holiday season.

Some have asked, “Can this 8-Tip Holiday Meal Strategy work long term?”  Yes.  “I believe certain habits and behavioral changes as listed below could work long term for a majority that apply them consistently throughout the year.”

For those of you that are disciplined enough to pace yourself and turn off the feeding frenzy without a Holiday Meal Strategy… My hats off to you!  You have will power most of us can only dream about.

For those that need some help in this area – Try the 8-Tip Holiday Meal Strategy below.  It can  allow you to eat your favorite foods and keep weight off during the festive times of year.

Best Time Ever

Best time ever this time of year in the Great NW.

Tip#1Never!  Go to your mother, or mother-in-laws, or Grandmothers home for Holiday meals hungry!

The habit of starving ourselves in preparedness for the Holiday meal seems to be ingrained within the American spirit and culture.  I know my family like so many others during the Holidays have repeated this ritual.  It’s no wonder we can’t stop ourselves.  Before you know it, we’re all lying around like beached whales on a lido deck with “Hot… Hot… Hot,” playing in the background.  So, it stands to reason, you must eat something not less than 2-3 hours before you go over for a Holiday meal.

The way our digestion system processes food after a meal, the stomach will not be empty for the next 4-6 hours depending on metabolism.  This digestive function varies with each one of us.

I don’t suggest being selective when choosing Holiday foods.  Just serve the foods you want to eat and don’t over load your plate.  The point is… when you get to the table you won’t be as hungry or want to eat as much.

Tip#2Never,  I repeat Never!  Drink alcohol prior to going into the meal.

Tasty Beer Cheer.

You don’t drink and drive do you?  Well, what makes you think you could drink and consume without injury to your body prior to sitting down for for the meal?  Although I’m being facetious, I’m also serious in the way I want to make my point.  Alcohol is a depressant, pain killer, relaxant, taste intensifier and social inhibitor all wrapped into one.  This concept is easy to understand: eat and drink like Vikings… equates to inhibited calorie gain!

Limit yourself to two 8oz glasses of cheer after the meal (your choice).  Remember alcohol also contains calories that add up fast.

Tip#3Drink plenty of water throughout the day prior, during and after Holiday meals.

Water is a natural solvent, absorbs well in the stomach and intestinal lining assisting the body’s digestive system to process food intake more efficiently and that means less calories stored as fat.  Plus, water will make you feel full faster and has no calories.

Tip#4Do not stay at the dinner table after eating.

This is where most of us fall prey to over eating indulgences.  It is very difficult to resist picking at the Holiday turkey, cranberry, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, pies, olives, sipping on Champaign…  “Ohhhhhh the dressing and gravy… Give me a break!  I’m dying here.  I think I just made myself hungry.”

See how hard this is and I’m supposed to be giving you advice.  Look, I never said I wasn’t human, or this would be easy.  More so the reason to have a pre-meal battle plan strategy that moves one away from the table and out of the kitchen after the meal.

Tip 5#Take your first serving.  After you consume it wait 20 minutes before you think about seconds.

Take at least 20 minutes and enjoy the meal.  “Seconds is not recommended.”  This will be the hardest part of the meal plan.   It takes your brain approximately this much time to register whether you’ve eaten enough or not.

Focus on satiety not a feeling of fullness.  But if you do decide you can’t resist a second helping focus on a favorite serving that doesn’t take up more than 1/2 the plate diameter.  And no piling food on the plate.   Focus on 50% less than what you’d normally put on the plate for 1st’s and 2nd’s.

Tip#6Never eat dessert after you’ve eaten the main meal.

This will only add insult to injury.  Your body simply is not designed to handle this mass blood sugar spike without consequence, especially if you’ve achieved satiety after eating the meal.  Wait 1 hour to see how your body processes the feeling of what you ate.  If you experience a feeling of satiety and not overfull after a period of time then do enjoy some dessert.  While eating dessert take your time to gage feeling of gut comfort. But if you begin to experience the feeling of near full, back off and leave the remaining portion of dessert.

Tip#7 Never,  I repeat never!  Take home left over’s.

This can set you up for failure early on into the New Year.  Simply by continuing to eat these foods addicts some to them with similar eating patterns for months.  In this case another 10 pounds can be added quickly.

Walk whereever you find yourselves during the Holidays.

Tip#8 – Start a daily  exercise program during the Holidays if you don’t already exercise.

This is very important!  When you consume excess calories on “any day,” you will need to mobilize the body to remove the unspent fat fuel.  I highly recommend at a minimum… a daily walking program, or other aerobic activity at least 30 minutes a day.

You’ve now learned how it’s possible to embrace Holiday foods that don’t compromise the meal experience and add guilt.

And best of all, when applied with conviction you won’t gain any weight.  You may even surprise yourself and lose a little.

Marc Woodard wishing you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.  If fortunate enough to get covered in the white stuff, walk around in it. It’s a fantastic exercise activity experience.

Have a wonderful Holiday season with family and friends and don’t let your food fears and weight loss program prevent a great meal experience with loved ones.

Plan, prepare and participate in the spirit of the Holidays without fear of being around the foods you love to eat.

Author: Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, ARNG, CPT, RET. 2017 Copyright. All rights reserved, Mirror Athlete Inc., http://www.mirrorathlete.com, Sign up for your Free eNewsletter.





Natural Weight Loss Secrets Revealed

22 02 2017
Aerobic workouts good for the cardio Muscular endurance

Is this the secret to safe weight loss?  The answers may surprise you.

Updated 22 February 2017, Marc Woodard

It seems as we age and for many body fat seems to increase each year.

And with that being said, a commitment to improve eating and exercise habits seem to fail miserably each year.

We tell ourselves we’re going to get serious this time and lose that excess body weight once and for all.  However for many it is thought easier said than done.

But you can easily loose this thought once you learn how easy and effective it is to apply truthful weight loss knowledge that works long term.

There are hard truths for most people to accept and therefore they look to fast track weight loss using dangerous diet products and weight loss concoctions found in the marketplace.  But if you can accept it took years to become unfit and unhealthy and will take some time to reverse the situation I can help you do this naturally and at no cost… provided you’ve not broken your fat burning metabolism through years of abusive fad diets, supplements or drug abuse.

What would you say if I could show you how to improve health, lose weight safely, increase fitness and energy levels and longevity?  And it will only require two things.  A little will power and commitment each day.

Would you be interested in knowing what information I’m willing to give at no cost?  Most of you would say I’m all ears.  What’s the catch?

“No Catch.”

“No I’m not talking about a magic pill.”

“Nor do I have some other hidden agenda to get into your wallet.”

“Why would I provide this valuable information at no cost?”

What’s bothered me for years is watching the marketplace charlatans promote and sell weight loss and muscle building gimmicks that don’t work long term and make people sick.  Their not interested in providing natures truths.  Their only interested in selling a quick results fitness gimmick to get your money.  And if you get sick using it they accept no responsibility.  I’ve worked with too many clients over the years and fully understand this reality.  I take my profession seriously and believe this truth belongs with consumers to make the best decisions possible with regard to their health.

Consider the information I’m providing a way to give back to those that provided me valuable information when I needed it most in my life.

There is no need for pills or fitness gimmicks to lose weight.  Especially when you understand how your body produces powerful chemicals during low impact activities that melts away body fat and addicts you to the weight loss commitment without artificial and dangerous chemical product gimmicks.

And believe me the fitness and diet industries don’t want you to have this knowledge, why?  Because if consumers understood this information on a large scale there’d be no need to purchase their products and they’d lose revenues.

Pure and simple.  What I’m providing are exercise science truths.  Yes, Exercise Science or Exercise Physiology is a real undergraduate, graduate and doctorate degree.

If your looking to choose a specialized diet or fitness plan, don’t get duked into one that guarantees quick results and increases health risk!   Most processed dietary foods and anabolic supplements [including formulated herb concentrates] in the marketplace use unhealthy diuretic and stimulant chemicals  that compromise the body at a cellular level and can ultimately make you sick and cause disease.

Marc Woodard posing after a day of kayaking on lake Shasta, Northern California,

Also many fitness trainers in typical gyms don’t have the expertise to program exercise and dietary prescription relative to age, current health condition, lifestyle goals and fitness profile.  Hence the customer often experiences paying too much for services that may work short term, or not at all.  Or they quit before real results take effect.  Either way they have your money and you’ve failed another weight loss commitment.

These “quick fix” fitness fad concoctions are chemically addicting and increases health risk the longer used to keep weight off, or enhance physical performance, or appearance etc.  Thereby causing more metabolic harm and unnecessary mental and physical pain and suffering that need not be.

Click on the following link and learn how to activate those powerful body chemicals naturally, lose weight safely and improve health and increase fitness levels long term.

Click: on Link:  “Weight Loss through Body Chemical Activation.”

Author: Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, ARNG, CPT, RET. 2017 Copyright. All rights reserved, Mirror Athlete Inc., http://www.mirrorathlete.com, Get Free Newsletter.





Enjoy Holiday Meals Without Weight Gain or Guilt

17 12 2016

Santa’s on his way

Updated, 17 December 2016 Marc Woodard

I can’t believe how fast the end of year Holidays roll upon us.  And for some it can be a stressful time.  Especially if you have a hard time managing body weight.

I have an 8-Tip Holiday Meal Plan that may alleviate fears of eating your favorite traditional Holiday meals and without gaining weight.

These tips can help many resist the temptation to overeat during this time of year.  I’m sharing a “no weight gain strategy.”  This strategy has helped past clients stay on weight loss target.  Admittedly most didn’t lose weight… however most didn’t gain any either.  And some even shed a few pounds by applying all 8 tips below.

Back History on the 8-Tip Holiday Meal Plan – I was asked during a client consult if I could create a work around food strategy.  One that allowed someone to eat favorite foods during the Holidays without derailing a current weight loss plan.

Of course I told the young lady there’s always a risk of falling back into a bad food habit when overeating hyper-palatable foods.  But for this individual it was worth the risk to modify the current diet plan.  That is to enjoy a traditional Christmas meal with family and not fear losing control over foods and body weight.  Prior to this request she had avoided all Holiday meals in fear of weight gain.  And now doesn’t want to avoid them any more.  After applying the 8 tip program she acknowledged the following results.  There was no weight gain and she continued to stay on weight loss target for the following Year.

For some, it’s almost as if we have to harden the body for the rigors of war because of all the food temptations in front of us.  The smells and tastes are enough to drive anyone crazy and want to go on a food binge.

The worse part of consuming too many calories in a day, as we age our body’s metabolisms become less efficient at processing the excess.  Instead the metabolism gets very efficient at storing body fat weight.  It is also true during the Holidays most have a tendency to over indulge and then continue this pattern the following Year.

I also understand some of you have had tremendous success in melting the pounds away last year as you stuck to your new year’s weight loss resolution commitment.

Congratulation to you!

For those still struggling to lose weight don’t give up!  I’m sharing the same client tips I know can work for you.  And quite possibly may be habit changing enough to incorporate into your current weight loss program.

However the tips alone may not be enough to meet your ultimate weight loss goal.  Whereas ill-health conditions warrant medical doctor advisement prior to changing a daily routine.  The point being these food strategy tips will not help if you are in poor health, have substance abuse problems, personality disorder, e.g., obsessive compulsive tendencies, etc., and/or carry excessive body weight and grossly obese.  Moving on…

IMG_0186

A Time to Celebrate With Family

I’m no different than anyone else with regard to foods during the Holidays.   I’m greatly tempted to eat more than I need.  However, awareness of our food habit weaknesses combined with a food plan strategy is the best deterrent to minimize an uptick in body fat weight during the Holiday season.

The fact is as you age the body simply doesn’t require the excess calories it once needed during the developmental and active adult years.  This does not mean you have to give up all your favorite foods.   For the most part you can consume a selection of your choosing.  Your only real requirements are to follow the satiety suggestions below, reduce over processed food consumption and don’t eat or drink your calories after 8pm.  And participate in some form of low stress aerobic exercise activity daily [i.e., walking, biking, hiking, jogging, dancing, yard work, rowing, cross country ski, swimming, etc.].

Since everyone’s metabolism is different due to age, sex, health and medical condition, genetics, etc.,  I can’t predict or provide a one fit “hold the body weight line” solution that will work for everyone.  Especially when I know the program below was designed and worked for a few client types that wanted to indulge during the Holidays without experiencing weight gain.

However I do know these tips are worth sharing because they can be advantageous for you.  Especially if your the type of individual that has the will power to continue a healthy habit food course after partaking in an infrequent celebration or Holiday meal.

Can this 8-Tip Holiday Meal Plan strategy work long term?  Yes I believe it can for certain individuals.  But determining each individuals commitment to a successful weight loss goal and plan is best accomplished through 1:1 consulting services where information sharing is a two-way street and the program is relative to individual needs and wants.

For those of you that are disciplined enough to pace yourself and turn off the feeding frenzy… My hats off to you!  You have will power most of us can only dream about.  For others, to help reduce calorie consumption during the Holidays my 8 Tip Holiday Meal Plan may be of consequence.

Best Time Ever

Best Time Ever

If you take this 8 Tip Holiday Meal Plan to heart and apply parts of it or the whole, it can work short and possibly long term.

Tip#1Never!  I repeat Never!  Go to your mother, mother-in-laws, or Grandmothers home for Holiday meals hungry!

The habit of starving ourselves in preparedness for the Holiday meal seems to be ingrained within the American spirit and culture.  I know my family like so many others during the Holidays have repeated this ritual.  It’s no wonder we can’t stop ourselves.  Before you know it, we’re all lying around like beached whales on a lido deck with “Hot… Hot… Hot,” playing in the background.  So, it stands to reason, you must eat a normal meal not less than 2-3 hours before you go over for a Holiday meal.

The way our digestion system processes food after a meal, the stomach will not be empty for the next 4-6 hours depending on metabolism.  This digestive function varies with each one of us.

I don’t suggest being selective when choosing Holiday foods.  Just serve the foods you want to eat and don’t over load your plate.  The point is when you get to the table you won’t be as hungry or want to eat as much.

Tip#2Never!  I repeat Never!  Drink alcohol prior to going into the meal.

Tasty Beer Cheer.

You don’t drink and drive do you?  Well, what makes you think you could drink and consume without injury to your body prior to sitting for the meal?  Although I’m being facetious, I’m also serious in the way I want to make my point.  Alcohol is a depressant, pain killer, relaxant, taste intensifier and social inhibitor.  The point is easy to understand here, eat and drink like Vikings… No pain equates to much inhibited calorie gain!

Limit yourself to two 8oz glasses of cheer after the meal (your choice).  Remember alcohol also contains calories that add up fast.

Tip#3Drink plenty of water throughout the day when attending Holiday meals.

Water is a natural solvent, absorbs well in the stomach and intestinal lining assisting the body’s digestive system to process food intake more efficiently and that means less calories stored as fat.  Plus, water will make you feel full faster and has no calories.

Tip#4Do not stay at the dinner table after eating.

This is where most of us fall prey to over eating indulgences.  It is very difficult to resist picking at the Holiday turkey, cranberry, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, pies, olives, sipping on Champaign…  “Ohhhhhh the dressing and gravy… Give me a break!  I’m dying here.  I think I just made myself hungry.”

See how hard this is and I’m supposed to be giving you advice.  Look, I never said I wasn’t human, or this would be easy.  More so the reason to have a pre-meal battle plan strategy that moves one away from the table and out of the kitchen after the meal.

Tip 5#Take your first serving.  After you consume it wait 20 minutes before you think about seconds.

Take at least 20 minutes and enjoy the meal.  “Seconds is not recommended.”  This will be the hardest part of the meal plan.   It takes your brain approximately this much time to register whether you’ve eaten enough or not.

Focus on satiety not a feeling of fullness.  But if you do decide you can’t resist a second helping focus on a favorite serving that doesn’t take up more than 1/2 the plate diameter.  And no piling food on the plate.   Focus on 50% less than what you’d normally put on the plate for 1st’s and 2nd’s.

Tip#6Never!  I repeat Never!  Eat dessert after you’ve eaten your meal.

This will only add insult to injury.  Your body simply is not designed to handle this mass blood sugar spike without consequence, especially if you’ve achieved satiety after eating the main meal.  Wait 1 hour to see how your body processes the feeling of what you ate.  If you experience a feeling of satiety and not overfull after a period of time then do enjoy some dessert.  While eating dessert take your time to gage feeling of gut comfort. But if you begin to experience the feeling of near full, back off and leave the remaining portion of dessert.

Tip#7 Never!  I repeat never!  Take home left over’s.

This can set you up for failure early on into the New Year.  Simply by continuing to eat these foods addicts some to a similar eating pattern for months.  And thereafter another 10 pounds can be added quickly.

Walk where ever you find yourselves during the Holidays.

Tip#8Don’t quit your exercise program during the Holidays.

This is very important!  When you consume excess calories on “any day,” you will need to mobilize the body to remove the unspent fat fuel.  I highly recommend a daily walking program, or other Low-Impact aerobic activity at least 30 minutes daily.

You’ve now learned how it’s possible to embrace Holiday foods that don’t compromise the meal experience or add guilt.  And best of all when applied with conviction you won’t gain weight.  You may be surprised and even lose a little.

Marc Woodard wishing you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.  If fortunate enough to get covered in the white stuff, walk around in it. It’s a fantastic exercise activity experience.

Have a wonderful Holiday season with family and friends and don’t let your food fears and weight loss plans prevent a great meal experience with loved ones.

Plan, prepare and participate in the spirit of the Holidays without fear of being around the foods you love to eat.  You’ll be glad you did.

MirrorAthlete wishing everyone a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Author: Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, ARNG, CPT, RET. 2016 Copyright. All rights reserved, Mirror Athlete Inc., http://www.mirrorathlete.com, Sign up for your Free eNewsletter.





New Year New You

21 12 2015

 

Start a New Activity and Meet New People.
Start a New Activity and Meet New People.

Last Updated:  21 Dec 2015

It’s a new year and will it also be the beginning of a new you?

How many different directions could you take in making a New Year’s resolution that would make you happier, more energetic, feel and look good and more excited about life?

So what is your New Year Resolution, what do you want to change? Is it to finally lose that weight once and for all, start a walk/jog exercise routine, spend more time with the family, get out of a bad relationship-start a new one, stop smoking-drinking, get a new job etc.?

In building any action plan to resolve any problem, “yes this includes a New Year’s resolution,” you first must target what’s causing you to lose sleep at night and focus during the day. Then once you’re sure you’ve identified the problem you must focus and stick to a relative-planned solution “that’s right for you and your situation” to accomplish the goal.

Whatever you need to do to make a positive life change will require 1) courage, 2) will power and a 3) sustainable action plan to see it through. But the forth ingredient in my opinion is the most important because it is the driver of the first three.

The action plan must be 4) relative to your needs and wants so you’ll have the motivation to sustain it long-term.

As a personal fitness trainer and consultant throughout the years, I’ve received an earful from my clients. One thing I’ve learned, the customer often brings a 3rd party solution to the table. But these well intended solutions are custom designed for someone else. All too often in the world of fitness, health and life coaching, custom designed plans are relative to another individuals life goal profile. This means these plans will not work optimally, or work at all for you.

Canoe a favorite river and see the sites

Canoe a favorite river and see the sites

For example, you may share a similar obesity and diabetes condition, but there are many ways to lose weight and treat diabetes. Some treatment plans will work for some and not others, or as effectively.

In other words when I develop a fitness program for one client, I don’t pass it on to the next one who has a similar goal. If I did that I’d lose clients, why?  The Desired results would likely not occur.

We are all of various ages, sex, genetics, culture, body type, mental and physical readiness, have different lifestyle needs, wants and activity goals. Our motivations and will power differ greatly as well as our habits, behavior, environment, medical histories and current health conditions… the list goes on.

So how can you successfully plan to create a new you for the New Year?

If you’ve been unsuccessful in changing any of your life goals might I suggest, or recommend you seek out a life coach or fitness consultant, or trainer that can help you develop a relative customized plan to make that positive change in life once and for all.

Listed below are the two disciplines with specialties identified that can help refocus a relative plan and resolve your New Year’s Resolution and then sustain it for life.

Certified Life Coach                                      Certified Fitness Consultant

Finances and Budgeting                                              Develop Muscle Mass

Relationships and Intimacy                                         Muscular Strength

Family and Parenting                                            Aerobic Cardio Endurance

Stress Management and Balance                        Develop Lean Muscle Mass

Creativity for Artist, Writer, Musician, Performer     Tone, Body Fat Loss

Spirituality and Personal Growth                      Health, Lifestyle, Self-Care

Career Planning and Development                                Natural Anti-Aging

Motivation and Time Management                              Stress and Pain Mgt

Entrepreneurial and Small Business Development   Custom Fit Program

Health, Lifestyle and Self-Care                                       Diet & Nutrition

If you need help in any of these areas, these consulting services are easily found and listed throughout the Internet and phone directory. There are also many self-help books found within libraries, Internet and book stores.

If you can identify the problem and find a relative and specific plan that’s right for you then you will experience significant change that can be sustained long-term.

MirrorAthlete Inc., is near complete with its first book publication, scheduled to be released not later than 1st half of 2016.  Where the context uniquely addresses many of life’s fit healthy lifestyle concerns, with relative “how to” application in consumer safety awareness, customized fitness programming, healthy lifestyle solution, customized fitness programming, illness and disease prevention, etc.  The context of this first ever consolidated fitness, health, nutrition, consumer lifestyle book shows you how to become your very own life coach and fitness trainer within many of the specialized skillsets listed above.

The book project represents years of personal client, adversity-life stories “including yours truely,” and fitness and health experiences with over 250 citations in relative fields of expertise to support the fit-healthy lifestyle principles we all need and want with relative how-to-programming guidance.

It is also uniquely developed to show anyone how to create a customized fitness and nutrition program that’s right and relative for them at any age. It’s as if a fitness trainer-consultant and life coach were there helping you customize a solution for your New Year’s resolution that will work once and for all.

Low intensity aerobic exercise burns body fat calories

Low intensity aerobic exercise burns body fat calories

There is no other principled fit healthy lifestyle book in the marketplace that compares to this 10-year plus project. The book is also uniquely written to be timeless and useful within any decade. That is it will help redirect, refocus and support many revolving issues that enter your life where your fit healthy lifestyle coach never leaves your side and provides relative advisement and fit plan when you need it most.

To review a summary of this book project and 2016 release date, visit our home site   http://www.mirrorathlete.com (then click on the book project link).

Don’t live anyone else’s life course. Instead plan and map your unique objectives, goals and lifestyle to achieve the quality living experiences that you need, want and deserve.

My New Year’s wish for you and your family is to be happy and healthy with many life rewards and success.

Author: Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, ARNG, CPT, RET. 2015 Copyright. All rights reserved, Mirror Athlete Inc., http://www.mirrorathlete.com, Sign up for your Free eNewsletter.

 

 

   

 

 

 

   

 

 

 

 

 

 





Enjoy Holiday Meals Without Weight Gain or Guilt

21 12 2014

It’s that time of year again. What will be your New Years Resolution?

I can’t believe how fast the end of year Holidays roll upon us.  And for some it can be a stressful time.  Especially if you have a hard time managing body weight.

I have some food management and modified behavioral habit tips that may help alleviate fears of eating your traditional Holiday meals without gaining weight.

These tips may help you resist the temptation to overeat foods craved at this time of year.  I’m sharing a “no weight gain strategy” I’ve provided past clients and have helped to keep weight off within a 48 hour window of time and longer.  Although most didn’t lose weight… they didn’t gain any either.

It was through a diet consulting session a client asked if I could create a work around food strategy so they could eat their favorite foods during the Holidays.  And without derailing a weight loss diet plan.  Of course I told them there’s always a risk of falling back into a bad food habit when you eat rich foods.  But for this individual it was worth the risk to enjoy a good Christmas meal with family and not fear losing control over foods and body weight.

For some, it’s almost as if we have to harden the body for the rigors of war because of all the tempting food nemesis in front of us.  The smells and tastes are enough to drive anyone crazy and want to go on a food binge.

The worse part of consuming too many calories in a day, as we age our body’s metabolisms become less efficient at processing to remove the excess food fuel from it.  Instead, our metabolisms get very efficient at storing body fat weight.  It is also true during the Holidays we all have a tendency to over indulge and then continue this pattern through the New Year.

We all know excess body fat has a direct correlation to poor health conditions and disease.  Some of the better know diseases directly related to obesity for example are diabetes, atherosclerosis, congenital heart failure, weight bearing joint pain, etc.

I also understand some of you have had tremendous success in melting the pounds away last year as you stuck to your new year’s weight loss resolution commitment.

Congratulation to you!

For those still struggling to lose weight don’t give up!  I’ll provide the same client tips to help you modify food habits in a way to enjoy a tasty meal in good company without fear of weight gain.  And quite possibly this may be a habit changing plan to supplement  your continued weight loss effort during the New Year.

But the tips alone may not be enough to meet your ultimate weight loss goal.  Since weight loss, health condition, medical history and fitness levels are all interrelated it is advised you seek a medical doctors consultation if you have a serious obesity or health problem.  These food strategy tips will not help if you are in poor health, have substance abuse problems, obsessive compulsive tendencies and/or carry excessive body weight.

IMG_0186

A Time to Celebrate With Family

I’m no different than you with regard to all the tempting foods during the Holidays, I’m greatly tempted to eat more than I need.  However, awareness of our food habit weaknesses combined with a food management strategy is the best deterrent to minimize an uptick in body fat weight you don’t want.

There are many reasons one may over consume foods daily [stressful environment,  compulsive behaviors, bad relationships and depression to name a few].    However when over consumption occurs frequently, the body tends to accept this habit as the norm.  Hence a new habit of overeating is formed and weight gain is inevitable for most of us.

The fact is as you age the body simply doesn’t require the excess calories it once needed during the developmental years.  This does not mean you have to give up all your favorite foods.   For the most part you can consume a selection of your choosing.  Your only real requirement is to cut out excessive calories and participate in some form of low stress aerobic exercise daily [i.e., walking, biking, hiking, jogging, dancing, yard work, rowing, cross country ski, swimming, etc.].

Since everyone’s metabolism is different due to age, sex, medical conditions, genetics, etc.,  I can’t predict or provide a one fit “hold the weight” solution that will work for everyone for a few days.  Especially when I know the program was designed and worked for a few client types that wanted to indulge during the Holidays without experiencing weight gain.  But since I know these tips can work through short-term modification of food behavior and habit it’s worth sharing because it can work for you.  Especially if your the type that has enough “will power” to apply a short term off-the-wagon dietary strategy to self control within the 8-Tip Holiday Meal Plan guidelines below.

Can this food tips strategy work long term?  Yes I believe it can for certain individuals.  But determining each individuals fitness and weight loss goal nuances, habits and behaviors within environment etc., is best accomplished through 1:1 professional consulting services that make these connections and provide relatable  information  that resonate with clients.   Personalized fitness programming with a safe weight loss long-term strategy has the best chance to succeed when unique lifestyles are analyzed and prescribed relative to the individual.

For those of you that are disciplined enough to pace yourself and turn off the feeding frenzy… My hats off to you!  You have will power that most of us can only dream about.  For others, to help reduce calorie consumption during the Holidays, My 8 tip Holiday Meal Plan plan may be of some assistance.

Best Time Ever

Best Time Ever

Now, let’s get to the meat of what you’ve been waiting for. Here are the tips clients and I have used to minimize weight gain during the Holidays.  If you take this 8-Tip Holiday Meal Plan to heart and apply it, it can work for you short and possibly long term.

Tip#1Never!  I repeat Never!  Go to your mother, mother-in-laws, or Grandmothers home for Holiday meals hungry!

The habit of starving ourselves in preparedness for the Holiday meal feeding frenzy seems to be ingrained within the American culture.  I know my family, like so many others during the Holidays have repeated this ritual.  It’s no wonder we can’t stop ourselves, before you know it, we’re all lying around like beached whales on a lido deck with “Hot… Hot… Hot,” playing in the background.   So, it stands to reason, you must eat a normal meal not less than 2-3 hours before you go over for a Holiday meal.

The way our digestion system processes food your stomach will not be empty for the next 4-6 hours after each meal depending on metabolism.  This digestive function varies within each one of us.   I don’t suggest being selective when choosing Holiday foods.  Just serve the foods you want to eat and don’t over load your plate.  The point is when you get to the table, you won’t be as hungry and you just won’t want to eat as much.

Tip#2Never!  I repeat Never!  Drink alcohol prior to going into the meal.

You don’t drink and drive do you?  Well, what makes you think you could drink and consume without injury to your body?  Although I’m being facetious, I’m also serious in the way I want to make my point.  Alcohol is a depressant, pain killer, relaxant, taste intensifier and social inhibitor.  The point made of over consumption is easy to understand here, eat and drink like Vikings… No pain… Much calorie gain!

Limit yourself to two 8oz glasses of cheer after the meal (your choice).  Remember alcohol also contains calories that add up fast.

Tip#3Drink plenty of water throughout the day when attending Holiday meals.

Water is a natural solvent, absorbs well in the stomach and intestinal lining assisting the body’s digestive system to process food intake more efficiently.  Plus, water will make you feel fuller faster.

Tip#4Do not stay at the dinner table after eating for further conversation.

This is where most of us fall prey to over eating indulgences.  It is very difficult to resist picking at the Holiday turkey, cranberry, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, pies, olives, sipping on Champaign…  “Ohhhhhh the dressing and gravy… Give me a break!  I’m dying here; I think I just made myself hungry.”

See how hard this is and I’m supposed to be giving you advice.  Look, I never said I wasn’t human, or this would be easy.  More so the reason to have a pre-meal battle strategy that advises one to move away from the table and out of the kitchen after the meal.

Tip 5#Take your first serving, after you consume this wait 20 minutes before you think about seconds.

Take at least 20 minutes and enjoy the meal before you even think about seconds.

“Seconds is not recommended.”  This will be the hardest part of the meal plan.   It takes your brain approximately 20 minutes to register whether you’ve eaten enough or not.  Focus on satiety not a feeling of fullness.  But if you do decide you can’t resist a second helping focus on a favorite serving that doesn’t take up more than 1/4 the plate diameter.  And no piling on.

Tip#6Never!  I repeat Never!  Eat desert after you’ve eaten your meal.

This will only add insult to injury.  Your body simply is not designed to handle this mass assault without consequences, especially if you’ve achieved fullness after eating the main meal.  Wait 1 hour to see how your body processes the feeling of fullness.  If you experience a feeling of satiety after a period of time then do enjoy some dessert.  But if you begin to experience fullness again back off.

Tip#7 Never!  I repeat never!  Take home left over’s.

This can set you up for failure early on into the New Year.  Simply by continuing to eat these foods stimulates and addicts some to a continued and similar eating patterns for months.  And thereafter another 10 pounds is added to body weight.

Tip#8Don’t quit your exercise program during the Holiday season.

DSC00495

Marc prepares for the Holiday festivities with family. A time of Year to reflect and be thankful for all we have.

This is very important!  When you consume excess calories on “any day,” you will need to assist the body in removing the unspent food fuel.   I highly recommend a daily walking program, or other Low-Impact aerobic activity at least 30 minutes daily.

Hopefully, I’ve provided a few tips you can relate to and apply this Holiday season.  You’ve now learned how it’s possible to embrace Holiday foods without guilt and doesn’t’ compromise taste buds or the social meal experience with family.  And best of all, if taken seriously and applied correctly, you won’t gain any weight.

Many can enjoy tasty meals during the Holidays without gaining weight when a reasonable food consumption plan is known in advance to help modify traditional Holiday food habits.

Please have a wonderful Holiday season with family and friends and don’t let your food fears and weight loss diet plans compromise having a great meal experience with loved ones.  Plan, prepare and participate in the spirit of the Holidays, you’ll be glad you did.

Merry Christmas and have a Happy New Year!

Author:  Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, ANG, MSC CPT RET.  2014 MirrorAthlete® Copyright,  All rights reserved.  Sign up for your free monthly eNewsletter.