Is Your House Making You Fat?

If you keep choosing cheese curls over biceps curls, your home could have a lot to do with it.

“Your habits are more tied to your environment than you know,” psychologist Jeremy Dean, the author of “Making Habits, Breaking Habits,” said.

Eat enough chips on the couch, for instance, and you’ll automatically associate couch time with chip time. Our routines are so influenced by environmental cues that research shows it’s easier to change our habits in a novel setting.

“We see major shifts in behavior when people move to a new house,” Dean said. But you don’t have to relocate to start anew; you just need to become aware of the subtle cues that say “cake!” and replace them with healthy alternatives.

“The typical person makes about 200 food-related decisions a day, but she believes she makes 25 to 30. And it’s those 175 that you’re not aware of that can push you to eat more,” Brian Wansink, the director of Cornell University’s Food and Brand Lab and the author of the upcoming book “Slim by Design,” said. 

Here’s how to help your home help you get (or stay) slender.

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/health/2013/09/18/is-your-home-obesogenic/?intcmp=features#ixzz2fGVMGy69

ReFit 42 – the Fitness Foundation by Jim Johnson

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So here’s the basics of ReFit 42. It’s pretty simple, and that’s why it works. Let’s quickly break it down:

1. Goals/Planning – start off by setting small goals. Goals like “I will lose 1 pound/week”. Goals like “I will do a fast food fast – I will not eat any fast food in the next 42 days.”

To really allow Planning to get a foothold in your life, use an app like My Fitness Pal. You’ll be able to plan your meals as well as record what you ate. You can set your weight loss goals there and MFP will help you determine how many calories you should consume. I find this app to be incredibly helpful. You can use it on your smart phone, tablet, or PC. I’m sure there are other tools/apps out there. Research them. Ask friends what they have used. Using an app like MFP will make planning so much easier and keep you on track. Planning helps keep you from cheating.

2. Healthy Eating – fresh is best. Processed is your enemy. My doctor once told me to shop the exterior of the grocery store where all of the fresh food is located. The interior of the store is where boxed dinners are – boxes of danger! Read about the healthy benefits of eating fresh veggies and fruit. Check out the apps Flipboard and Zite. Both apps can be used to find great articles on healthy eating and recipes. Allrecipes.com is a great resource, too. More on this later.

3. Portion Control – guess what? You don’t need as much food as you may think! Portion control is KEY in losing weight. Drink a lot of water. Keep a water bottle at your desk at work. Keep it filled. Avoid soft drinks (especially the sugar-laced ones). When sitting down to a meal, load up on veggies and eat less meat and starchy foods.

4. Exercise – yes, you need to exercise. So do I. But you’re not needing to act like your training for the Hunger Games. If you haven’t exercised for years, you will have to take it slowly. Walk, ride your bike, swim. Don’t start by trying to run a 5 k.

By exercise, I don’t mean walking from your desk to the vending machine at work. Plan to exercise 4 times/week. Just move. Sweat. Breathe. You’ll feel great.

Over the next 6 weeks, I’ll be sharing more about each of these. I’ll share recipes that are easy to prepare and taste great. I’ll share articles I’ve come across that I think will help motivate you and educate you.

Tell a friend what you’re planning to do. Someone who will encourage you along your adventure.

This Fitness Foundation is simple. And it works…if you work it. Just move, change, determine.

You can do this. You have no limits. You can ReFit yourself. Take the next 42 days to prove it to yourself. Doing nothing will only result in no change.

ReFit 42 – a Do-Over to a New You by Jim Johnson

What is ReFit 42?

Maybe you’ve started a fitness program or you had a New Year’s resolution, but now it’s over 6 months later and you’ve not started. Here’s a second chance to start over – to re-fit your goals, your habits, your life.

I’m calling this ReFit 42 for a reason. You can start over. You can do it. And you can begin new habits and a new lifestyle in 6 weeks – just 42 days.

Here’s what won’t happen in 42 days:

You won’t lose 100 pounds
You won’t be running a marathon
You won’t look like a body builder
You won’t be starring opposite your favorite actress/actor

But here’s what WILL happen in 42 days:

You will lose weight. If you follow this simple plan, you can and will lose weight. When I started this, I lose at least 1 pound/week.
You will feel better because you are eating better, exercising, and achieving goals.
You will enjoy a healthy eating lifestyle.
You will see the tools you use (planning apps) as the path to freedom vs. chains.

Others will notice what is happening in you and to you. You’ll hear “wow, you look great! How did you do it?” type of comments. That alone will make you feel great. You will know you can do this and set more goals which you WILL reach.

If you are already living a fit lifestyle, then turn a friend on to this adventure. Be their cheerleader. Help keep them accountable. Share this blog with them.

If this directly speaks to you, join me! I’ll be sharing over the next several days a plan that you can use as your Fitness Foundation. It works if you work it (you’ll read this a lot, because it’s true).

Please note: I am not promoting a diet of any kind. This is about creating new habits in your life – eating habits, exercise habits, planning habits – that will result in a new you. You won’t suddenly become a beach hunk or babe. That’s not my goal in sharing this with you.

Fitness is just as much about healthy choices and creating a better lifestyle than it is about looks. You WILL look better, but that is not my goal here. My goal is to help you and me to become healthier versions of our current selves.

So, if you’re 20, 30, 40, or 50+ (like me), it’s not too late to start to ReFit yourself.

Why start in the middle of the month and not on the 1st? Why not? You’ve waited long enough. It’s time to start. It’s time to change. Mark your calendar. Here we go.

Tell others about this. I would love to read comments on your progress. Be sure to take a photo of yourself now so you can compare it with the you in 42 days.

Yes, you get a do-over. It’s time to ReFit YOU.

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Testimonial – Amanda M

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I have worked with Amanda for years, and I have been thrilled by her determination, strength, and success. You will be encouraged as you read her story. The after photo was just now taken (7/16/13 at 5 pm).

Amanda M: “My weight has been an issue for me since my late teens. I started gaining in high school and by graduation was considered overweight. Over the years the pounds just kept adding up due to inactivity and excessive overeating and drinking. I’ve had success losing weight a couple times, both times by tracking calorie intake, but I was on a “diet” and as soon as I lost weight I’d return to my old eating habits and the weight would come back.

My lifestyle was mostly sitting, eating and drinking. I rarely got physical activity and when I did every joint in my body would ache. I was to the point where I would grunt and groan just putting on my underwear in the morning. I couldn’t find any clothes that fit and the embarrassment over my appearance had curbed my social activities and affected my marriage. I knew I had to do something but always had an excuse not to start. It was so easy and comfortable to just eat, drink and be merry and I didn’t want to give up that lifestyle.

Finally, at 37 years old, 5’8” and 224lbs, I saw an announcement at work that they would be starting a Weight Watchers group. We’d be able to attend the meetings at work with people we are comfortable and familiar with. I went to my first meeting and was instantly hooked on the program. It really does work. The Weight Watchers app for my iPhone made it so easy to track my food and activity and made me realize what smart food choices were and what foods to avoid.

I started slowly by experimenting with different foods and substitutions for the things I normally would enjoy. Now I’d much rather reach for some watermelon instead of cake or extra green beans instead of mashed potatoes and gravy. I still eat the foods I love, like steak and shrimp, but I watch my portions, load up on protein, fruits and veggies and season with herbs and spices instead of butter and oil.

One thing I realized pretty early on is that I’d have to cut out alcohol. I love wine. I loved a whole bottle of wine with dinner every night. I had to learn to love a glass of wine on special occasions. A day that ends in d-a-y is not a special occasion.

Once you start to pay attention to the nutritional information you see just how bad the average American diet is for you. You have to pick and choose the right time to indulge. The program I follow allows you to do that and doesn’t restrict you from enjoying those treats you crave.

After I changed my eating habits I started to see results within a few weeks and it inspired me to get active. I dusted off the old treadmill and started walking. Just walking. At first it was 30 minutes a few times a week but over the months I’ve increased the speed and incline and now spend about an hour a day working on cardio. I also mix in some strength and core training a couple times a week. It feels so good to be active. I have energy and strength I never knew I possessed and I can finally keep up with my husband and 10 year old son.

The change in the mirror is unreal. I’m amazed by how different I look and feel and my confidence is through the roof. I can’t count the number of people that have told me they didn’t even recognize me. My own mother in law didn’t know who I was when I saw her out in public the other day. It’s still hard to believe that I don’t have to shop in plus sizes anymore. I can actually go into trendy stores and the clothes fit! But wait, it gets better. I used to have so many health problems…heartburn, stomach upset, insomnia, the list goes on. Since I’ve adjusted my lifestyle all of my health issues have been resolved. I can’t remember the last time I had to take an antacid or was up tossing and turning during all night.

When people ask me “How did you do it?” I always answer “Eat right and exercise. You know everything they tell you to do.” I never say the word diet. Diet implies something you’re “on”. To maintain a large weight loss you need to find a healthy balance of calorie intake and exercise that becomes your daily routine. Setting small goals each week helped me to introduce changes gradually. These were just little goals like drinking enough water or eating vegetables with every meal. When you add these changes together they create a healthy routine. Tracking is extremely helpful to me too. Tracking makes me aware of my food and exercise choices and holds me accountable.

I’ve truly gone through a lifestyle change during this process and I will continue to track my daily food and exercise even after I reach my goal. I’ve lost 65lbs so far and have 15 more to go. It takes perseverance. But just keep at it and you can make these changes, too. It’s all up to you.

Remember, no one can do this for you. You have a choice and are in complete control. The ability to change is within each of us. One day I simply believed I could do it and I did. So can you.

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Healthy Eating – Overview

How do you get started on healthy eating?

Healthy eating starts with learning new ways to eat, such as adding more fresh fruits, vegetables, and whole grains and cutting back on foods that have a lot of fat, salt, and sugar.

A change to healthier eating also includes learning about balance, variety, and moderation.

  • Aim for balance. Most days, eat from each food group-grains, protein foods, vegetable and fruit, and dairy. Listen to your body. Eat when you’re hungry. Stop when you feel satisfied.
  • Look for variety. Be adventurous. Choose different foods in each food group. For example, don’t reach for an apple every time you choose a fruit. Eating a variety of foods each day will help you get all the nutrients you need.
  • Practice moderation. Don’t have too much or too little of one thing. All foods, if eaten in moderation, can be part of healthy eating. Even sweets can be okay.

Why pay attention to what you eat?

Healthy eating will help you get the right balance of vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients. It will help you feel your best and have plenty of energy. It can help you handle stress better.

Healthy eating is one of the best things you can do to prevent and control many health problems, such as:

Is healthy eating the same as going on a diet?

Healthy eating is not a diet. It means making changes you can live with and enjoy for the rest of your life.

Diets are temporary. Because you give up so much when you diet, you may be hungry and think about food all the time. And after you stop dieting, you also may overeat to make up for what you missed.

Eating a healthy, balanced variety of foods is far more satisfying. And if you match that with more physical activity, you are more likely to get to a healthy weight-and stay there-than if you diet.

How do you make healthy eating a habit?

First, think about your reasons for healthier eating. Do you want to improve your health? Do you want to feel better? Are you trying to set an example for your kids?

Next, think about some small changes you can make. Pick ones you can keep doing.

  • Don’t try to change everything at once.
  • Set an easy goal you can reach, like having a salad and a piece of fruit each day.
  • Make a long-term goal too, such as having one vegetarian dinner a week.

Where can you get support?

Having support from others can be a huge help. The more support you have, the easier it will be to make changes. Ask family and friends to practice healthy eating with you. Have them help you make meals, and share healthy, delicious recipes and cooking tips.

If you need more help, talk to your doctor or a registered dietitian. Look online for groups that support healthy eating and share success stories.

http://www.webmd.com/food-recipes/tc/healthy-eating-overview