Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Commit 2 Fit - Life Challenge Six

We are moving on to week six! You are going to replace all white flour/grains (processed flours with WHOLE GRAINS.

Why are we going to do this?
Processed flour (grains) will sabotage your efforts to burn body fat. Whole grains are filling, contain nutrients, and are higher in fiber. So much better for you!

White flour + Eggs + Sugar = fatty thighs, hips and stomach

Be careful this week with labels - it can get very tricky, what we think is 'whole grain' may very well not be or have other ingredients that we are trying to stay away from. For example a bran muffin... has white flour, eggs and sugar. For many of us we are thinking how bad can a bran muffin be?? It's brown and brown is good for you, right? Here's the truth - we want to be successful, we want to get rid of body fat that we don't like, clean out our arteries and BE HEALTHY!

Be a LABEL LOOKER - check labels for 'unbleached' and 'bleached flour'. See the above label for Wheat Thins (I love these crackers!) they look and sound pretty good right? "Wheat Thins crackers harvest five-grain". But look a the ingredient list...the first few ingredients are the unbleached and bleached flour. Also take a look farther down - malt syrup. This adds to the taste but also gives the cracker the nice brown color.

Look for whole grains this week - 100%! There are a lot of products out there that taste so good we are not going to have to sacrifice taste. Here are some more labels to review and a few good products to look for

Stoned Wheat Thins - Again like the Wheat Thins, these 'look' okay but when you read the ingredient list there are two things that stand out Enriched Flour and Partially Hydrogenated oils. This is NOT something that we would want to choose.

Ezekiel 4:9 bread - This would be a great choice and you can find this bread in the health food store or health food section in the cold storage.

Brown Rice Spaghetti noodles - good choice! I have slowly switched all of our pastas over to brown rice or whole wheat.

Honey Whole Wheat bread mix - Sounds good right? Remember to always read the labels and my rule of thumb - the shorter the list and if I can pronounce everything on it, most likely it's going to be a good choice!

Make it Happen
  1. Start by throwing out all processed flour products (muffins, crackers, bread, white pasta, chips, tortillas, white rice)
  2. Choose whole grains, preferably those foods made from brown rice and whole oats.
  3. Corn products made without additional processed flours are okay (i.e., corn tortillas)
  4. READ labels!
  5. Skip any bread and croutons served at a restaurant...even if it's 'brown', this doesn't mean it is whole wheat. Molasses is used to create color. Wheat sprinkled into white flour isn't a whole grain.
  6. Remember, starches are fuel, and aren't the only carbohydrate source. Fruit is a great option for your carbohydrate sources.
GLUTEN - There are many of us that are gluten intolerant and don't even know it! Seven out of ten people are adversely affected by gluten. If you want to find out if you are sensitive to wheat and other sources of gluten TAKE IT OUT and choose only rice and oats (and gluten free products) and re-introduce wheat gluten after 4 to 6 weeks. Watch for the return of symptoms. There is a difference between gluten intolerance and celiac disease. Here are some symptoms of gluten intolerance:
  • raccoon eyes - the dark circles around the eye area
  • fatigue - trouble concentrating
  • water weight gain
  • stomach pooch - bloating
  • active stomach - gurgling, cramping, etc
  • runny nose
Remember that gluten is in most sauces! For those of you that are on the Advocare shakes and bars - they are gluten free.

Results up to the 3rd week - you girls are an inspiration!!!!
  1. Kim Heggins 44
  2. Frances 39
  3. Melissa Cavanaugh 37
  4. Tena 31
  5. Linda 30
  6. Krysti 29
As you can see it is all very close! Everyone below 29 is very close each being one point difference. I am personally at 24 points along with about six others. I have lost six pounds since starting this challenge!

Be sure to get in your week 4 & 5 points to me.

Good luck this week - I know it's going to be tough for a few days with Canada Day and 4th of July!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Bathroom Update

The bathroom painting is done and I am pretty excited with the results! I was a little nervous with the stripes and painters tape, but it was pretty easy.

After the two coats of base paint (Eloquent Ivory GLC16) dried I marked off my measurements every 15" starting from the ceiling. I did this because we have have 9 ft ceilings and I still wanted that height and not break it up. I did about four marks on the longer wall and two or three on the shorter ones, just to make sure the tape went on straight!

Sorry the lighting and the color is so OFF - without natural light it's hard to capture this little bathroom.

After I finished taping I made light 'X' marks on the areas that needed to be painted with the lighter color so there was no confusion. Then I used a small roller brush to paint. I applied the first coat, then waited maybe 30 minutes to apply the second coat. As the Young's say - be sure to take the tape off and I did this as I went along. This made for very nice crisp lines!

And here are the finished walls - I plan on hanging the photos next and I am still on the hunt for a PB knockoff mirror.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Summer house updates

This summer we are going to be tackling some updates - that hopefully don't turn into full blown remodels. You know how that happens when all you want to do is update the paint and the next thing that happens are the cabinets are torn out?? I promised Kirk that it was going to be under control... ;)

The downstairs bath is on task this week. Here are the before pictures

Pretty small half bath and pretty boring. I would love to change out the halogen light fixtures but in keeping with my budget I am just going to re-paint. I have been inspired by this bathroom. I am going to forewarn you that this blog is a time suck, but in a good way! It is filled with home inspiration and they even do cyber consults. This will be the first of many links to this blog.

This will be my first time doing stripes of any kind so I am pretty excited and hoping that all the floors are level. Wouldn't that be awful! I don't plan on doing as many stripes as the inspiration bath, because hubby made the comment of 'it's going to be like a prison outfit', so my stripes are going to be 15" wide.

The key to successful painting is all in the prep - I know, groan. I really don't like to prep but it really does pay off in the end. I start by taking everything off the walls that can come off. Then I wash the walls down and the trim. You can do this with an all purpose cleaner. Also remember if you are painting over a semi-gloss with an eggshell or flat you will need to rough up the surface with a scrubber pad - then clean the walls off.

Paintbrushes - Purdy are my favorite, this one in particular. My favorite part of painting is the 'cutting' in. I really dislike to roller. I have had my Purdy brushes for about 10 years, when you take good care of good brushes they can last forever!

I do all my edging with this brush - I don't tape off, that seems to make more of a mess than anything. With a good brush you can cut in without using tape.

Rollers - Since I don't like doing this part I usually just buy the right 'nap' roller brush. Make sure you do this so it makes the job much easier! Since we have orange peel texture in our house I buy a 3/8" nap roller.

TIP - when you need to take a break from painting but don't want to wash out your tools just wrap them up in foil and a plastic bag and put in the fridge! Then when you are ready to go again just pull them out and start painting.

Paint - my favorite paint is Benjamin Moore, hands down. But it is VERY expensive compared to the other brands - $40 vs. $16 a gallon. My friend Jeanette just painted her bedroom with Benjamin Moore and her hubby was very pleased with Benjamin Moore. For this project I decided to do some comparing and use Glidden for the base color since that is what was used in the inspiration bathroom. BTW - the Glidden color Wishes has a new name: Eloquent Ivory (GLC16). For the lighter stripe I am going to using another Glidden color Antique White (GLC14).

Last night I did my first coat and I can already tell that I am not happy with the paint. It doesn't go on as smooth and the coverage is spotty. It is going to take a whole gallon to do this small bathroom. I am covering a darker color but I know in the past that Benjamin Moore products do a better job. Also the VOCs off gas is really high with this Glidden product. When working in an area like this be sure to keep the fan on and windows in the house open!

Just remember that any paint place can color match from a different company line - find a paint company that you like and have the paint mixed to your color choice.

My painting process is pretty simple. When I am working by myself I cut in a small area and then roller so I have time to blend where I cut in and where the roller overlaps. It lessens the 'ghosting' that you get when you overlap the layers. I give the first coat 8 to 12 hours to dry then apply the second coat. Since I am doing the stripes and will need to tape off I am going to give the second coat the same amout of time to dry. The last thing I need is the paint coming off with the tape!

Accessories - my favorite part! I am on the hunt for a new mirror. One with a white frame so it blends into the wall. I love this large size one by PB, but need to find one at a much lower price!

I also plan to hang two original photos by Randy Jay Braun. These are framed in a dark koa wood so I am hoping to bring more of that natural/spa feel into the small bath. My first stop will be TJ Maxx! We bought these when we were married in Maui.

I will be looking for natural accessories for the rest of the items to hold TP, soaps, and other neccessary items for a downstairs bath. I love the Tava line from PB, but need something a little bigger for storage. Again TJ Maxx will be my first stop...

Stay tuned for update pictures!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Commit 2 Fit - Life Challenge Five

So excited to share week FIVE with you today! We are going to be adding Omega-3 fats to our diet. Yes! we get to eat FAT... of course there is always a catch right?

Why are we going to eat fats?

Omega-3 fats are essential for an overwhelming number of physical processes - there are way too many to list! One of them does include weight management. Very important for shedding body fat you need to make sure you are getting good healthy fats.

How much Omega-3 fats do I add?
  • 1,000 mg per day minimum

Before we go into too many details I think we should review dietary fats 101. Just to make sure we are all understanding the difference between good fats and bad fats.

  • Saturated fats - we don't want these in our diets in high quantities
    • The higher the saturated fats in our diet the higher the risk for cardiovascular disease
    • This is the type of fat that comes from animals - cheese, milk, butter, beef
    • We are going to decrease your intake of saturated fats - is it okay to have cheese and milk once a week. And not a problem to have beef once a week. It is not recommended to have these fats on a daily basis. You are not going to lose a point for doing that, but for overall good health and results I would keep it to a minimum.
  • Trans fats - these are processed, fats that have been manipulated through chemical processes
    • Includes hydrogenated shortening - this is in A LOT of packaged processed foods
    • We are not going to have any TRANS-FATS
  • Healthy fats - vegetables and fist
    • Omega 6 & 3 fats
    • We are going to concentrate on increasing these good fats
What are Omega 6 & 3 fats?
Omega 6 - high levels of Omega 6 fatty acids are mainly found in vegetable sources and are essential for health.
  • Olive oil
  • Avocados
Omega 3 - high levels of Omega 3 fatty acids are mainly found in fatty  cold water fish
  • Salmon
  • Albacore
  • Halibut
  • Flaxseed oil
  • Walnuts
As a society in the last couple of years, we have been educated very well on saturated fats and how we want to decrease our intake of these. Naturally we have gravitated towards Omega 6 fats - like using olive oil in our foods. However we are still very low as a society on Omega 3, we are not eating enough fish or flaxseed oil - so that is what we are going to concentrate on for the rest of the challenge (and your lifetime!)

When the body is in short supply of these essential acids, a myriad of problems can arise including fatigue, immune weakness, gastrointestinal disorders, heart and circulatory problems, reduced growth rate and more. I am anxious to hear from any of you that suffer from any of the auto-immune diseases such as Lupus or Fibromyalgia. Because it has been documented that those that suffer from these have a large deficiency in Omegas.

So one thing that I want to point out to you is the Omega 6 to Omega 3 ratio. This is important! In our bodies our health is optimized by a 1:1 ratio or 2:1 ratio. Meaning we need equal amounts of Omega 6 to Omega 3  - this is optimal. However let's take a look at some numbers from Japan

As a society Japan tends to be really healthy. They do not have the issues of obesity, nor the diabetes problems that the US has. As you can see the US has an unbalanced ratio of Omega 6 to Omega 3 and we really need to balance this out by adding Omega 3.

So what do we need to do? ADD OMEGA 3 FATS!

Choose from the following Omega 3 healthy fats for your POINT (min of 1000mg)
  • Walnuts - 1/4 cup
  • Flaxseed oil (1 TBSP) this is a good choice for those of you that do not like fish! Needs to be refrigerated. I buy mine at Trader Joes
  • Flaxseeds ground (2 TBSP on your oatmeal or in your cereal)
  • Fatty fish (4 oz)
    • salmon, halibut, herring, albacore
  • Egg yolks with Omega 3 (2) these come in a package, just be sure it contains Omega 3
  • Supplements - easy way! (1000mg - Advocare has OmegaPlex)
Trans fats - just want to review again to make sure we all know what they are when you are reading labels. You do NOT earn any points for eating Trans fats!
  • Fried foods
  • Hydrogenated fats
    • processed foods like crackers, processed peanut butter (solid at room temp), coffee creamers
  • Margarine
  • Shortening
  • Pastries, muffins, cakes, pies
  • processed cheese
  • most chips

The above label is an example of looking for those bad fats. Just because it doesn't have color or frosting on it doesn't mean that it's good for you! :)

And just a reminder - we are going to limit the amount of saturated fats.

Make it happen
  1. Start by throwing out foods that contain trans-fats that are in your home right now. Go through the cabinets, refrigerator, freezer, pantry and any other place you keep food. Donate to your local food bank!
  2. Grocery shop for the a few different Omega 3 fat sources of your choice
  3. If you take Omega supplements, you can count your pills as your Omega 3 serving.
  4. Suggestions for getting your Omega-3 fats:

    1. add flaxseed oil to your shake or add ground flaxseed
    2. use flaxseed oil on your salads and cooked vegetables
    3. add walnuts to your salads or eat a handful as part of a meal
    4. salmon filets are available at most grocery stores

I am hoping that through this challenge we are all learning some really good life habits. Even though we are not implementing them at 100% we know what we should be doing and there is a goal in sight. I believe as adults we owe this to the younger generation - to be aware of how to take care of ourselves. We are the examples - it breaks my heart when I see young kids battling Type 2 diabetes! If we don't start changing our eating habits and becoming 'label lookers' our children are going to pay a huge price.

Here is an analogy that I would like to share with you... it's like your body is a house, you keep it well maintained on the outside. You have wonderful trees, plant beautiful flowers every year, groomed lawn, etc. Everybody that walks by thinks it looks fabulous! But you never clean the inside - the toilets are dirty, there are dirty dishes everywhere, litter box isn't cleaned out, etc. You are going to eventually have some kind of health risk right? Viruses, ecoli, bad bacteria, and ultimately some serious problems. We have to take care of our insides as well as the outside for good overall health!

This week is going to be a great new week - be sure to get your week four points into me. I am going to post the stats up to week three once I hear from some of you.

Please share some meal ideas that you are having - especially if you are eating out. Enjoy life!

Friday, June 19, 2009

For father's day

Ten questions to ask your father:
1. What did you enjoy most about being a dad? Least?
2. Are there things you wish you had done differently as a father?
3. In what ways are we alike and in what ways are we different?
4. Why did you marry my mother?
5. Is there anything you every wanted to tell us (me) but have not?
6. What is the secret to raising good kids?
7. Is there anything you regret not having asked your parents (my grandparents)?
8. Do you think today’s fathers have it harder, easier or just different?
9. What do you want to make sure that my children and grandchildren will remember about you?

FUN gift ideas for the guys

If you are doing the gift card why not create a simple handmade card for it. I was inspired by Kristina Werner on this project. Basic Grey pattern paper and SU! stamp.

Kirk lives in these Red Back boots. He says they are super comfy, easy off and on (which means he doesn't have to bend over!) and there are some models that are water proof.

If you are looking to cook a meal for dad then look no further than the Pioneer Woman. It is called Marlboro Man's Favorite Sandwich and it's to die for. Be prepared to have your taste buds bursting and take a break from good eating habits. Kirk was in heaven when I made this, but he did suffer from heart burn after it! There are several other recipes that I have tried of PWs (chocolate sheet cake rocks!) and they have been wonderful. If this is your first time to her site plan on perusing for awhile.

Love these custom cuff links. Kirk is a cuff links guy and it's the only 'jewelry' that I can purchase for him.

Happy Father's Day to all the dads out there and dog dads too! :)

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Commit 2 Fit - Life Challenge Four

Welcome to Life Habit Four! Can you believe that we are half way through the challenge? I think this life habit is going to be an easy one. Although if you have some deadlines you are dealing with at work it may be a little tough. This week we are going to leave at least of two hour window of an empty stomach prior to bedtime.

We are going to have our bodies enter sleep in 'burn' mode, rather than 'store' mode. Hopefully we will see improved digestion and overall gastrointestinal health.

  1. You must eat your first meal early enough to fit in your 5-6 meals each day, while still spreading them apart by 2-3 hours
  2. Stay hydrated to avoid 'fake hunger' from dehydration. Keep your water bottle bedside!
  3. Drink hot tea or your cranberry water mix if you have night cravings first.
  4. In addition to water, tea and cranberry water, you may drink one serving of some kind of re hydration drink. What you want to look for in this type of drink is something around 50 calories, and less than 12g of carbohydrates.
  5. By following the balanced meal prescription we have been trying to follow, you won't find yourself overly hungry in the evening.
  6. It is normal to go to bed 'slightly hungry'. This is a good thing, but don't let your last meal be several hours before bedtime.
  7. If you are seriously hungry before bed, you are either dehydrated or didn't eat enough calories in your first 3 or 4 meals. Drink some kind of re hydration drink.
  8. Those of you on Advocare Catalyst - take 3 capsules before bedtime to enhance your results!
How you are going to get your point for this?

Drink water, tea, cranberry water or re hydration drink as your only consumption two hours before bedtime.

There are 28 possible points this week: 12 cups of water, five to six mini meals per day, making those meals protein+carbohydrates and this weeks habit.

Once everyone turns in their life habit 3 points I will do a status post - I can see there is going to be some competition for third place!!! Be sure to turn them in -

Since we are talking about bedtime, I leave you with this precious picture of Jesse. He knows how important sleep is! Yes, that is MY pillow and yes all three of them sleep with us. It's the only place I don't mind the dog hair - weird eh?

Good luck this week and look forward to hearing from you!

Friday, June 12, 2009

Fun Friday Finds

Big party tonight - a good friend is turning 40 and she is bringing it on IN STYLE of course! There will be a small dinner to start off the night and then an actual dance party at another friends house. I am putting together a small collage of picture frames to feature around the candy bar - it's funny when you realize that all of the pictures you have of this friend is when she is laughing out loud. I mean really laughing out loud with her mouth open! Love her because of that, there is nothing fake about her or the courtesy laugh - if she thinks it's funny, she laughs with an every muscle genuine laugh. You know she is a VERY happy person!

Back to my Fun Friday Finds/ideas - I have done a candy bar before so I have all the different glass containers in storage and these have been well used. Who can resist a candy bar buffet??!! I usually purchase some fun unusual candy at the Sweet Factory. Which means I have to go the mall - my least favorite place in the WORLD. But it is the best place to get Sprees, sour candy lips, etc in bulk. Then I head to a big box store for big bags of M&Ms, Peanut Butter cups, and Dove chocolates. If you have time there are some great online resources, Candy Warehouse is a favorite of mine for some nostalgic finds. I find the glass containers everywhere. Look at TJ Maxx, Goodwill, antique stores and don't forget you need smaller ones too - not just the fancy statement ones.

Here is an example of what one looks like - if you go to flickr do a search for 'candy bar buffet' and there are so many ideas!

The dress. I was lucky enough to find the dress several weeks ago when I wasn't even looking. When I saw it I knew it would be perfect and could be worn to multiple events that I am going to this summer season. I already wore to the Il Divo concert with my mom

The dress is Trina Turk and was a special purchase for the Nordstrom Half Yearly sale - I couldn't find the color I bought online but they had this one so you can see the style. What I love about mine was the varied color and the DEAL I got - $158. Trina Turk is one of my favorite designers and her clothes/design fit me well each year. Kirk took me to one of her stores in Palm Springs and I had died and gone to heaven.

The necklace is by Robyn Rhodes called Rita. I fell in love with this necklace when I first saw it on the show Entourage, Carla Gugino was wearing it. Then count my lucky stars that In Style magazine featured it so I had a chance to order one. The best thing is that you can customize it - you choose your metal, stone and charm.

The shoes...I have several pair that I can wear with this dress already in my closet! I have these wedges that I will bring to Maui

On Friday night I will be dressing it up a bit with some bright yellow patent peep toe 4" heels. I couldn't find them on the internet, they are a couple of seasons ago. If there are any decent photos from the night I will be sure to post them for you all. Have a great weekend - enjoy life!

Those of you on the challenge - good luck this weekend!

Monday, June 8, 2009

Commit 2 Fit - update

Well I have to admit that the five meals a day is a REAL struggle for me. Since Weds I have done it twice - I just seem to forget and I actually IGNORE my calendar notification when it beeps at me! Going to be better this week...

I am also going to be posting the weekly life habit on Tuesday afternoon so you can prepare to start it first thing Wednesdays.

How is everyone feeling? If you are hydrating yourself with the 12 cups of water and making better food choices (300 calorie meals) you should be feeling pretty darn good! I know many of you have lost some weight and also have kicked your coffee or soda habit. GREAT job!

You should also be receiving a gift from me in the mail! The first group was sent out last week and the second group will be sent out this week. We ran out of one item and my AWESOME office gal, Maddie is coming in today to finish up. If you don't receive anything by next week let me know.

I am still trying to figure out how to post the chat recordings - it's a little over my tech brain. But here are some things that we talked about.
  • Protein formula: body weight/2.2 multiply that by 1.5 (or 1.6 if you are active)
    • Let me know if you need help determining if you need more protein in your diet.
  • Those of you that are just starting to work out you might want to think about taking some sort of muscle building/repair supplement. I have talked about Catalyst before and it is really important that when you first start working out that you burn fat and not muscle. Catalyst has helped me maintain the muscle I have and also prevents the soreness that I usually experience after working out with my trainer.
  • I have also been on the ThermoPlus for about four weeks now (in conjunction with my MNS Max 3) and have noticed a difference in my appetite and energy level. Will report what I see with my % of body fat.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Fun Friday Finds

This weeks Fun Friday Finds is all about Etsy.com I really enjoy visiting this site when I have some free moments or HOURS is more like it! Love to support fellow artists making a living doing what they enjoy. Here are a few of my favorites...

First I want to start off with my dear friend Georgana Hall - did you even know she has a fun little Etsy store called Georgi Girl Crafts?? I love her fun pendants, but the newest addition is the flat iron bag! Need to get this for my travel bag. I usually end up putting mine in my underwear bag and hope nothing melts!

Now check out this cool masking tape from Japan!!!! This gal is calling it Happy Tape and that is exactly what it is. I have been eyeing these for days but can figure out which set I want to buy. Tina Rice is also a very talented jewelry artist - I have a few of her enamel pieces and also receive comments on them.

This next Etsy seller is Louise - so cute and lives in the UK. She designs a line of jewelry that is perfect for those days where you just need a little umpf! My favorites are the rings - they are adjustable and add that fun bit of color when you wear it with jeans. Her company is called Pretty by Pistachio - she has a fun blog to check out too.

If you are looking for some unique address stamps or name stamps check out Sweet Paperie. She is really good to work with and has some great designs. This is the last one that I bought for us and I am thinking that it would make a great gift for the inlaws this Christmas since I think they will be celebrating a milestone anniversary.

These wrsitlets by Lulaballou have been my saving grace over the last year since I started using them! I put all of my important handbag items in it so when I SWITCH handbags I don't leave important things in the other one. Also when you don't want to lug around your big handbag you can just use this. It will hold credit cards, id, cash, keys, and cellphone comfortably! They are on sale right now for a limited time -

My good friend Dee has made the cutest felt cupcakes - which would make a wonderful gift She has also put togehter a tutorial on how to make them. You can purchase both versions - I am definitely going for the already made one...

The By Order of Management series of John W Golden is hysterical. My favorite, I have several, but this one is resonating in our house right now

I also love the Enlightened Fireflies...

This will be hanging in my house soon - Lovely You. Love her whimsical style and colors!

If you are a jewelry collector be forewarned before you click on this link to Botanical Bird's shop! Her latest design Bohemian Blue and Red necklace has been on my mind for a couple of days.

Saving this for last...vinyl chalkboard!!! In shapes that I have only DREAMED of... especially the pig one.

Have a wonderful Friday and great weekend - enjoy life!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Commit 2 Fit - Life Habit Two

Eat FIVE (300 calories) small meals a day

Remember this challenge is called Commit 2 Fit and we are here to change habits! Let's start this week's habit with some fundamentals and basic understanding of weight loss. For many of you this will be review and for some brand new.

The first column on the left (in turquoise) shows an example of how much you ate in calories - let's say 1500. Then your body burns 1500 calories for the day (2nd column) - that would mean a weight maintenance. Remember everyone has a different metabolic rate, but with this challenge we are trying to develop these new habits that help increase your metabolism.

What happens when you burn 1800 calories? The second scenario - you are going to lose weight! You are going to burn up some body fat - the body is going to be looking for that 300 calories to burn away. This is another reason why I take the Catalyst so my body doesn't go looking for muscle to burn, it burns the fat first.

The third scenario is what we are trying to avoid - surplus of calories, weight gain. I know that some of you are wondering how to figure out how many calories that you burn. Without getting into anything scientific and you going in for testing this is a generic example of calories burned:
  • Average woman that works out 3 times a week, she burns 1500 - 2000 calories a day
  • Average male that works out 3 times a week, he burns 2200 - 2500 calories a day
Remember this is a generic number - bottom line what you put in your mouth, you have to burn off!

The challenge this week: You are going to eat a small meal every two to three hours. This life habit that we are going to implement this week is VERY important for your overall results. Some of us are really going to see some results when you start this!

What is a small 300 calorie meal? Make a fist - a fist and half is a good general rule of portion size, it is about 300 calories. We are going to follow the fist and half portion for this challenge not the two fists.

Here are some examples of 200-300 calories meals:
  • Half Turkey sandwich (light insides - have you tried the Orowheat double fiber english muffins?
  • 2 eggs with yolks + 1 slice of whole grain bread (no butter)
  • Yogurt + 1 TBL natural peanut butter
  • Open face sandwich with meat, veggies, light mayo
  • Advocare Meal Replacement shake
  • Advocare Bars (many varieties: meal replacement, breakfast )
  • 1/2 cup of brown rice (cooked) + 3 oz of chicken
  • 1/2 cup of oatmeal (no milk, butter, or sugar) + 1 scoop of Muscle Gain Powder
  • 3 oz of tuna fish (no oil) + 6 small whole grain crackers
  • 3 oz of ground turkey meat + 1/2 cup of whole grain pasta
  • 25 raw almonds + 1/2 piece of fruit + 1 scoop of Muscle Gain Powder
  • 3 oz of salmon
  • 3 oz of chicken + 1/2 cup of grapes
  • 2 hard boiled eggs + low fat mayo + mustard + 1 piece whole grain bread
  • 1 small apple + 1/2 cup of cottage cheese
Vegetables are considered the 'free' food and don't count in your 'fist' portion size. What really impacts your calories are butters, dressing, sauces, etc. Use light versions or very little of these.

Please share your ideas for these small meals - we are going to need them over the next seven weeks we have left!

I have planned that my typical day is going to look something like this:
    7:00 AM     Meal Replacement shake
    10:00 AM   some kind of protein bar or Breakfast Bar
    12:00 PM   small meal
    3:00 PM     small meal (something with almonds or bar)
    6:00 PM     small meal
    8:00 PM    optional small meal for females - if you are hungry, if not skip this

What does a typical day look like? Based on this graph I am definitely in the 'typical' range. So this will be a good challenge this week to get me to change it up to the ideal scenario! It is very important to have your meal within an hour of waking up - you need to eat! You have to start in the morning if you are going to continue to eat these small meals throughout your day. Plus it is a great way to jump start your metabolism in the morning - your body will start burning calories immediately. Do not deprive your body.

You can see how your blood sugar is going to stay even/stable throughout the day. That is what we are looking for. In the green you can see how most of us eat - notice first thing in the morning we sabotage our weight loss by not eating anything until 9am. But when dinner time comes around we are STARVING and we eat even more after dinner because we deprived ourselves all day. Look at the calorie intake of the ideal situation versus the typical in this example. The 'typical' example is actually called the SUMO Wrestler diet, believe it or not. I don't think any of us are going for that look on purpose!

Sumo Wrestler diet:

How do you keep your metabolism burning HIGH all day?

Think of the twigs that you toss on the fire to keep it going as your food. So we have to be giving our metabolism small amounts of food to keep it going.

You are probably thinking there is no way that I have time to eat 5 meals a day! I believe we need to change our perception of what a 'meal' is. It's not always sitting at a table, with a napkin and silverware. Most of us don't have time to do this - we need to look at these meals more as snacks and they are not going to be eaten in the perfect social environment every time.

Let's Make it Happen!
  • Plan ahead: write out a meal plan for each week. See the examples above.
  • Make a grocery list and stock up on exactly what you'll need - feed your family this way too! Did you notice that most of your kids eat this way already??
  • If you are going to work, pack your meals
  • Eat within one hour of waking up so that you can fit all of your food in (plus it will enhance your results)
  • At first, you might have to eat "by the clock" to break old habits, especially during the first half of the day. Because if you are eating those big meals at dinner/night you are not going to wake up hungry - your stomach probably hasn't even finished digesting it. When you even out your calories you are going to wake up hungry.
  • A good rule of thumb is you need to at least have half of your small meals in before 2pm. Make a note of this somewhere - set it on your phone or your computer calendar.

Remember to either post your last weeks points here in your comments or send them to me privately at paulamw@mac.com. If you don't want your results posted on the blog PLEASE let me know! Also there are 14 possible points this week - one for the water and one for the small meals. This challenge builds upon itself each week.

We are all committed to feeling and looking better! Let us know if you have any questions, concerns or input. I will be posting the chats as soon as I figure out how to do that...if anyone knows how to post an MP3 file let me know! :)