How I Lost 40 Pounds Without Depriving Myself BY OSHA KEY 

For years, I struggled with being overweight. I eventually lost 40 pounds but the journey wasn’t easy. I had to find my way through a maze of confusing and often contradictory information. I tried and failed many times along the way. Above all, I didn’t succeed until I learned how to manage myself.

I had many bad habits: I drank too much caffeine, I smoked, I was a little too fond of wine on weekends, I didn’t get enough sleep, and I leaned on processed sugary snacks for energy. My reliance on chocolate, cheese, ice-cream and bread had made me heavy, sick, low in energy and feeling desperate. I tried drastic diets aimed at restricting my calorie intake, which inevitably lead to binge eating, and to even more serious health problems.

I hit rock bottom in 2010 and decided to get healthy. My life today is beyond what I ever dreamed of. I have not only lost weight, but I’m also full of energy. I’m healthy and happy. And what makes me most fulfilled is sharing my knowledge with others and seeing other people end their struggles and get amazing results.

Therefore, I’d like to share the insights that have made the biggest impact on my journey to health:

1. I dropped the idea that I had to deprive myself.

Read the rest here:  http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-15230/how-i-lost-40-pounds-without-depriving-myself.html

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Seven Ways to Avoid Binging at a Buffet by Elizabeth

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Cooking over the holidays has most of us to closing our home kitchens for a few days to recuperate. If you’re still entertaining family and friends, hitting up the local buffet may seem like the best way to keep everyone fed without spending an arm and a leg. Buffets are also great for New Year’s hosts who want to set up a variety of food options for people to munch on as they count down the last hours of 2013.

Whatever your reasoning may be, buffets seem like an answer to many holiday eating conundrums. However, they can create more problems than they solve, especially when it comes to your waistline. We’ve got tips from Brian Wansink, PhD, of the Cornell Food and Brand lab, as well as ideas of our own to help you navigate buffet-style eating.

Choose a smart seat
Where you sit can have a big impact on how much you eat. By sitting with your back to the buffet, you are less tempted to go up and grab another dish. You also may want to consider choosing a booth over a table. Wansink found that slimmer individuals tend to go for booths. This creates a more comfortable seating arrangement like what you would find at a sit-down restaurant, and can discourage you from eating more than one plate of food.

Read the rest here: http://www.dietsinreview.com/diet_column/12/seven-ways-to-avoid-binging-at-a-buffet/

5 Simple Steps to Getting Back to Success by Alex Blackwell

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Everything started out so well.

You had this marvelous idea; your motivation was sky high.

You were full of passion; taking action was fun and easy.

But suddenly your good fortune turned sour!

Everything seemed to go wrong, nothing went as planned and your drive and motivation started fading away.

What happened? Where has all your energy and passion gone? Everything looked so easy, fun and straightforward at the beginning. Now, nothing seems to be working out.

Don’t worry, things are not as bad as they may look like…

On your way to success, things almost never turn out exactly as planned. Sometimes, you need to be ready to adapt your plans to your current circumstances. It may even be required to slightly change your direction every now and then.

In other words, you always need to remain flexible. When one way is blocked, most probably there is a different way that leads to your destination.

However, if you close your eyes and fight, struggle and push to continue on the planned route you will waste time and energy and you may never reach your goal.

Here are five simple steps that will allow you to get back on the road to success when everything seems to be falling apart:

1. Have a crystal clear vision of your goal.
Always keep the mental image of your goal in your mind. Constantly think about your goal. Feel as if it is already part of your reality.

By all means, this should not be some sort of daily “must do” exercise. Play with it and have fun. Imagine yourself having already realized your goal – this should be exciting and it should feel tremendously good.

Every now and then, your mind may tell you: “Come on, this doesn’t work, forget about it…” Dismiss those negative thoughts and put your focus back on those thoughts and visual images that correspond with the reality you would like to experience.

What you focus on long enough and with sufficient intensity becomes your reality!

2. You still need a plan.
You need to come up with some ideas on how to proceed. Of course, your initial plan will not be perfect and many of the details will change over time.
A plan provides you with a structure and it tells you what to do in order to get from where you are to where you want to go.

If you don’t know how to get started, do some research on the internet, read some books, check out autobiographies of people who already did what you would like to achieve.

This doesn’t need to be complicated. Just a few starting points. Once you start taking action, you will get new ideas, your knowledge will grow, you will meet new people… and your plan will become more and more refined.

- See more at: http://www.thebridgemaker.com/5-simple-steps-to-get-back-to-success/#sthash.a82pe9z5.dpuf

The Power of a Daily Bout of Exercise By GRETCHEN REYNOLDS

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This week marks the start of the annual eat-too-much and move-too-little holiday season, with its attendant declining health and surging regrets. But a well-timed new study suggests that a daily bout of exercise should erase or lessen many of the injurious effects, even if you otherwise lounge all day on the couch and load up on pie.

To undertake this valuable experiment, which was published online in The Journal of Physiology, scientists at the University of Bath in England rounded up a group of 26 healthy young men. All exercised regularly. None were obese. Baseline health assessments, including biopsies of fat tissue, confirmed that each had normal metabolisms and blood sugar control, with no symptoms of incipient diabetes.

The scientists then asked their volunteers to impair their laudable health by doing a lot of sitting and gorging themselves.

Energy surplus is the technical name for those occasions when people consume more energy, in the form of calories, than they burn. If unchecked, energy surplus contributes, as we all know, to a variety of poor health outcomes, including insulin resistance — often the first step toward diabetes — and other metabolic problems.

Overeating and inactivity can each, on its own, produce an energy surplus. Together, their ill effects are exacerbated, often in a very short period of time. Earlier studies have found that even a few days of inactivity and overeating spark detrimental changes in previously healthy bodies.

Some of these experiments have also concluded that exercise blunts the ill effects of these behaviors, in large part, it has been assumed, by reducing the energy surplus. It burns some of the excess calories. But a few scientists have suspected that exercise might do more; it might have physiological effects that extend beyond just incinerating surplus energy.

To test that possibility, of course, it would be necessary to maintain an energy surplus, even with exercise. So that is what the University of Bath researchers decided to do.

Their method was simple. They randomly divided their volunteers into two groups, one of which was assigned to run every day at a moderately intense pace on a treadmill for 45 minutes. The other group did not exercise.

Read the rest here: http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/11/27/the-power-of-a-daily-bout-of-exercise/?_r=0

20 Ways to Burn 500 Calories by Tom Kelso

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Many of you are seeking ways to lose fat. You also know the most solid approach to this is to create a calorie deficit so your body can better tap into adipose fat storage sites. In essence, if you take in fewer calories than you expend, you’ll lose weight. If done properly and while using resistance training, muscle tissue will remain, and it will be your stored body fat that exits the body and facilitates that desired defined appearance.

Calories in versus calories out. It’s simple to understand, but often times difficult to do. Because it’s difficult, what is the sensible approach to take?

Calories In

90% of it comes down to discipline. Eschew those bad calories (processed food) and go with nature’s gifts: vegetables, fruits, grass-fed meats, beans, and plain H2O in relative proportions. If it comes out of a box, is microwave-ready, or processed otherwise, it’s a red flag. It’s true that over-consuming any food can lead to a calorie surplus and result in fat weight gain, but going with a natural approach will make your efforts a bit easier.

Calories Out

Knowing that calorie intake is paramount in the fat loss goal, what type and amount of exercise can you add to the equation? Exercise helps, but it remains significant relative to fat loss. All things considered, the old adage is true. You cannot out-exercise a poor diet.

Running on a treadmill at a 10:00-per-mile pace for 45 minutes burns approximately 500 calories for a 140-pound person. If you then go home and eat two slices of a fourteen-inch, regular crust pepperoni pizza, you’ll consume 596 calories. Train for 45 minutes and ruin that with ten minutes of pizza eating. Is it worth it?

How to Burn 500 Calories

Again, discipline is the key element. If you truly want it, you’ll do it. If you don’t, then pay the price. If you do want it, what follows are activity suggestions that burn approximately 500 calories based on your body weight. You can implement them into your training or, at the least, make you aware of the impact of activities and their approximate calorie burn.

Incinerating 500 calories (based on various calculator averages):

Read the rest here including the chart: http://breakingmuscle.com/strength-conditioning/20-ways-to-burn-500-calories