Nov 15, 2013

War on Calories

War on Calories

Too good to be true weight loss commercials, diet pills, surgeries, restricted calorie diets that leave you hungry- there is so much information thrown at us everyday through advertisements and false promises of weight loss for the constant battle of shedding those unwanted pounds. Although, it would be nice to take a pill and watch the pounds melt away, I’m afraid this is not only unrealistic, it is not safe for our health. Our weapons to use during this battle are more simple than most people are taught to think, we just need to figure out how to handle these weapons properly, and in a safe manor!

A soldier is not sent to war with no previous practice or knowledge of how to use their weapon to properly defend themselves. These soldiers become a professional when handling their weapon, can do it in their sleep, and have put the hours in to get to this point of expertise.

The same thing goes for improving and maintaining our over all wellness with the choices and obstacles that we are faced with everyday. Our weapons of choice are going to be simple. It will not always be easy, and yes, sometimes we are going to fail. This is going to fuel our fire, teach us a lesson, and make us stronger for our next obstacle!

The hardest weapon to master in the battle to wellness comes at mealtime. We will call this The War on Calories!

1. DISCIPLINE– This is number one for a reason… It’s the hardest! We all have a general idea of what we should and shouldn’t be eating. Here is a breakdown on common meal time options, as well as the calorie savings you will be making by passing on them.

-Substitute a salad/veggies for fries (Savings :434 cals/ medium french fry)

-Pass on the cheese (Savings: 113 cals/1 slice of Cheddar)
-Skip the bun, lettuce wrap your burger (Savings: 130 cals/hamburger bun)
-Pass on the milkshake, soda, juices. All are jam packed with sugar, chemicals, and calories!  Order sparkling water with fresh lemon and lime!  (Savings: 600 cals/16 oz  milkshake)
-Avoid dipping sauce, dressings, creamy spreads. Packed with calories and fat. (Savings: 180 cals/2 tbsp of Mayonnaise)
-Eat your salad dry.*My trick is smashing a small slice of avocado around. This will provide some moisture to your salad, will give you a serving of heart healthy unsaturated fat, and adds some amazing flavor!* (Savings: 288 cals/2 oz ranch)
-Use 2-1 ratio when making omelets. Instead of three whole eggs, use 1 whole egg, two eggs whites. When eating out, restaurants are happy to make this substitution. *Don’t feel bad for ordering with substitutions, you are paying good money for it!* (Savings: 100 cals/2 egg yolks)
-Prepare meat grilled instead of fried in high calorie oils. (Savings: 310 cals/ 6 oz chicken breast)

*Small substitutions listed above are going to save ~ 2,155 calories. To put this into perspective, one pound of fat =3,500 calories.*

2. BE PREPARED– This is crucial. If you are anything like me, my reasonable thinking becomes foggy when hunger pains hit. Let’s be ready and prevent poor choices!

-At the beginning of every week, prep food to have accessible and ready to eat in the fridge for meals. Cut veggies, fruits, and cooked meat will all stay fresh during the week in a zip lock container!
-Peep the restaurants menu before eating out. Scope out your healthy choices before you are tempted in the restaurant by smells, sights, and up sales from the server.  
-Schedule meal times and snacks in the morning. Make a mental note of what times you are eating, spread meals 4-5 hours apart with a small healthy snack in-between meals (I.e. cucumber with hummus, apple slices with almond butter, green shake)
– Rid your kitchen of any junk foods that might tempt you (chips, candy, soda, ice cream). If its not there, you can’t eat it.
-Call for backup! Fight this battle with a friend, significant other, sibling. The list is endless. Just someone who will hold you accountable, and be your SHADOW when trying to make the right decision! Someone to turn to when you are feeling weak and will help point you in the right direction.

3. PRACTICE MAKES PERFECT– Doesn’t get any more clear than this!

– The more you practice these healthy decisions, the easier they will become.
– These choices begin to form your “lifestyle”. No diet, surgery, or pill can make this lifestyle for you. You are the creator!
-Have fun with it. Experiment with different foods creating yummy recipes!
-Your results are going to create motivation! You WILL produce amazing results if you stay true to yourself and your choices.
-Don’t be too hard on yourself. If you slip up, take note and do it better the next time! (Remember, we are human beings and will make mistakes.)

Now that you are a professional with your “weapons”, go ATTACK at this War on Calories. Do it for yourself, your health, and your well being. We get one shot at this. Make it count. Do something fierce. Be proud of yourself and take the road less traveled. It’s easy to be lazy but lazy isn’t going to achieve your goals. We get one body in this lifetime, so take good care of it. Good news is, YOU CAN DO IT!