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Many times, people come to me immediately after medical news. Pre-Diabetes, high cholesterol and hypertension are the most common. The news is rarely a  total surprise but shocking all the same. So Now what?

More than likely, your doctor will prescribe a medication and instruct you to make some lifestyle changes.  Less stress, more sleep, diet and exercise. This is the recipe for nearly all of our “self induced” medical problems. But while the directions for the medications are clear, the advice for “lifestyle changes” is vague. It’s not what doctors specialize in.

Here are some steps that will help you out.

 

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Weight Loss The Mental Side

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Here’s a project that will help you take control of your mind and your actions when it comes to eating and exercise. Do this at a time and place that will allow you to really think and be honest with yourself. Take it seriously. It can make all the difference.

The Mental Side

Weight Loss Tools of the Trade

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Every job is made easier with the right tools, or “Tools of the Trade”. A carpenter has saws and hammers, lawyers use books and doctors use mystic powers. Just kidding. The same is true when you are trying to lose weight. For weight loss, tools of the trade are items that will make your fitness journey easier and educate you as you go.

Here are out TruChoice weight loss

TOOLS OF THE TRADE

When Goals Sabotage Weight Loss

Goals are great. They keep us focused and motivated. Except when they don’t.

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One problem with setting goals regarding weight loss is that we have less control over the success of the goal than we would like. Just because the calories in and out are where you want, your body may not respond as you would like. Stress and water retention alone can send the scale in the wrong direction despite your good execution.

One way of avoiding this disappointment is by changing the type of goal you set from a result driven goal to a behavioral goal.

End result goals should be secondary to behavioral goals when you are trying to lose weight or increase your fitness, and here is why.

You can’t always control when your body retains water or doesn’t drop the pound that the numbers say it should have. However, you can control the actions and decisions you make that are intended to get you to your goal. This is your behavior. Those daily and minute to minute actions and decisions should be the primary goal with some number on the scale being the secondary goal. Still important, but not primary.

When we set end result goals, we are generally not happy with ourselves until we reach that goal. Sometimes that goal is 6 months or a year out if everything goes perfect! That means you are delaying you happiness with yourself for 6 months.

Let’s look at a behavior goal strategy. Your goal is to live the life it will take to get to a healthy weight. While losing the weight is part of the goal, the focus is the life you are living instead of the number. The main difference here is that with a behavioral goal, you succeed every time you take action that benefits your end goal.

Eating breakfast before you take off to work = win.
Ordering the salad with vinaigrette and keeping your hands off the bread = win.
Workout as soon as you walk in the door instead of sitting on the couch = win.

These are behaviors and each behavior that supports your end goal is a victory and should be acknowledged and celebrated. It’s a great way to support yourself in your efforts.

This mentality allows you to feel good about yourself and your daily actions. Not only that, these actions are what it will take to hit that number on the scale.

Life is about execution so let that be the focus instead a number on the scale or a dress size. Set goals that you actually control. And what you control are your daily actions and decisions.

Check out our website at www.TruChoiceFitness.com
As always, your comments and questions are encouraged.

Sincerely,

Eric Soderlund
TruChoice Fitness & Nutrition

Take Your Health Back

5 Exchanges To Lose 100 Pounds

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Without eating any less, you can lose weight! Just swap “This” for “That”.

1. Turn a sandwich into a salad. Next time you are going to make a tuna, chicken or turkey sandwich for lunch, scrap the bread and put the same ingredients into a baby spinach and lettuce salad. This will save 200 calories every time and spinach is packed with nutrients you won’t find in bread. If you swap out one sandwich a day, you could lose nearly 2 pounds per month. You can even use 100 calories of dressing and still save the 200 Calories from the bread. The dressing simply replaces the mayonnaise most people put on their sandwiches. If you would normally put a slice of cheese on your sandwich swap it out with 3 tablespoons of parmesan on the salad and save another 50 Calories per day.

2. Take the sugar out of your hydration. Replace your soda, juice or sports drink with ice tea or water. A 12 ounce Soda has 140 calories  and they all come from sugar. Not to mention the host of chemicals that goes with it. Since diet soda has even more chemicals, I don’t ever recommend it as a replacement. If you eliminate 2 sodas per day, you will lose 2lbs per month. There are a lot of herbal teas that make great iced tea. You can also add lemon or mint to water to mix it up. Watch out for recipes that tell you to add 2 cups of berries to your water. This can add 160 calories to your once 0 calorie water and while it is natural sugar, it’s still sugar.

3. Daily veggie up. This is something that works well for me on several levels. In place of what I would call a “normal” meal of a vegetable, a protein and a carbohydrate, go all vegetables for 1 meal per day. Take 4 veggies and steam them, then add 2 tablespoons of soy sauce or teriyaki sauce or 2 tablespoons of parmesan cheese or 100 calories of whatever you like. Crush up 10 mixed nuts or almonds. By crushing the almonds up they go further. Mix that up and dig in. I use broccoli, squash, celery, carrots, red pepper and toss two cups of baby spinach on top for the last 2 minutes of cooking. Use a full serving of each and you will end up with a huge bowl of nutrient rich foods with very few calories. This can easily save me 250 Calories or more every day. It’s filling and can satisfy the daily recommended servings of vegetables in one sitting. Stay away from the creamy salad dressings. 100 calories doesn’t go very far. You will see what I mean in a moment.

4. Re-address dressing. When I am cutting back to lose weight, salad dressing is an automatic swap. My “go –to” is medium spicy salsa. It tastes great. Other times I will use lemon and the other day I used some white wine vinegar with ½ of a diced up green apple. It’s a great combination and far fewer calories than some of these choices.

Ken’s Creamy Caesar: 2 Tbsp = 170 calories, 18 grams of fat.
Ken’s Steakhouse Country French: 1.5 oz = 190 Calories, 15 grams fat
Ken’s Steakhouse Blue Cheese With Gorgonzola: 2 Tbsp, = 140 Calories, 15 grams fat
Ken’s Ranch Salad Dressing: 2 Tbsp = 140 Calories, 15 grams fat
To be fair to Ken’s, they have some good choices.
Ken’s Light Olive Oil Vinagrette: 2 Tbs = 50 Calories, 4 grams fat
Ken’s Light Raspberry Vinagrette: 2 Tbs = 50 Calories, 0 grams fat

If you are dieting or just eating healthy, you may be eating 2 salads per day. Whether I use Salsa or the apple and Vinegar, it’s about 35 to 50 calories and the lemon is zero Calories. That’s a savings of 200 Calorie per day and you’re likely avoiding preservatives, artificial colors and other chemicals that many of the dressings use!

5. White for red: Red meat is much higher in calories than say Turkey breast, Chicken breast, Tuna. Check this out.
4oz of Flank Steak has 268 calories and 15 grams fat

Compare that to these options.

4oz Turkey Breast: 152 Calories, 1 gram fat
4oz Chicken Breast: 124 Calories, 1.6 grams fat
4oz Ahi Tuna: : 164 Calories, 5 grams fat

So let’s just take the chicken example and say 124 Calories. That’s 144 Calories per switch. That means that if you eat beef 2x per week (most Americans eat much more) and only have 4oz per serving (The average American eats 200 Lbs of beef per year) you will save 16,128 Calories or 4.61 lbs per year. That’s not dieting. Switching from beef to chicken is barely a sacrifice.

So let’s see what these 5 simple exchanges could do for you:

  1. Sandwich to salad:          200 Calories per day – 6,000 per month – 73,000 per year
  2. Water instead of soda:  280 Calories per day – 8,400 per month – 102,200 per year
  3. Veggie Up:                           250 Calories per day – 7,500 per month – 91,250 per year
  4. From Caesar to Salsa:    200 Calories per day – 6,000 per month – 73,000 per year
  5. Red to white:                      288 Calories per week, – 1,152 per month – 14,976 per year

Are you ready for this?

That equals

29,052 Calories per month – 354,426 Calories per year.
With a pound being about 3,500 Calories, that’s over 8 pounds of weight loss per month!
Now remember, you didn’t eat any less.
You just exchanged 5 things and lost 8 pounds per month or 100 pounds in a year!

Oh, by the way. I didn’t even count the Parmesan for cheddar swap which would be a savings of another 18,250 Calories or 5 pounds per year!

As always, your comments and questions are encouraged.

Eric Soderlund                                                                                                                                     TruChoice Fitness & Nutrition

Take Your Health Back

5 Reasons to Log Your food

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It has become trendy to argue against logging your meals and counting calories. From plans that let you eat as much as you want as long as its meat to critiques that argue it takes too long or makes people feel bad.

Reality.

logging you food is great for anyone trying to improve their health. Whether you are losing weight, adding muscle, trying to control, blood sugar, cholesterol or sodium or simply want to eat fewer processed foods. Logging is a valuable tool for success and education.

  1. Calorie Count: Logging is the only way to truly know how many calories you consume, Especially when you first start paying attention to your intake or you go outside of your normal food routine. It also allows you to plan for events such as dining out. If I am going out to dinner, I will plan ahead, leaving myself extra calories. By logging, I know exactly what I have left myself and I am more likely to stick to my plan of reserving those calories.
  2. Awareness: logging your food creates a mindset. It keeps you aware of your actions and goals and provides you with some accountability. It’s visual proof of your actions that will either support or hinder your goals.
  3. Tracking nutrients: You may be able to argue that you can estimate your calories but few can do the same with macronutrients. If you trying to gain muscle and you’re only getting 20% of your calories from protein, your body won’t have the materials required to build lean mass. If you are trying to rid yourself of Pre-Diabetes but 60% of your calories are carbohydrates, you will likely go from Pre-Diabetic to Diabetic even if you are losing weight.
  4. Portion control: You can plug in food before you eat it to see how many calories it has per ounce or serving. This is great info when you’re at a restaurant deciding between the 6 or 8 ounce steak or what you want on your potato.
  5. Education: This is a biggie. I’m amazed at how educational logging my food is. It’s truly eye opening. By logging your food for a few months, you will learn the calories and macronutrient balance of the foods you regularly eat. This knowledge will help change eating habits and allow you to eat healthier without dieting. It’s not dieting if it’s just the way you eat. Education is knowledge and knowledge is how we change our mindset.

You won’t log your food forever. It is a tool for you to use to achieve a dietary goal and go back to when things get out of control or you have a new goal. It’s a way of staying focused and holding yourself accountable. It’s a way of educating yourself so you can live the healthy life you want to live.

As always, your questions and comments are encouraged.

Eric Soderlund
TruChoice Fitness & Nutrition
www.TruChoiceFitness.com

Fitness From The Inside Out

Sports Drinks – Diabetics and Dieters Beware

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  • Over 80 million Americans are Pre-Diabetic and 30% are considered obese.
  • Americans have doubled their intake of sugar sweetened drinks in the past 40 years.

The Marketers of our world do an amazing job. They know what we like, what we need and how to get that emotional response that will make us want their product. There is also a certain amount of “lie by omission”. They give us facts just not all of them.

Sports drinks are an excellent example of this. They show amazingly fit athletes, dripping sweat and tell us that if you want to get the most out of you workout, you’d better fuel up on their product.

Reality check. These drinks are packed with calories and sugar and few of us need what they offer during or after our workouts.

Sports drinks have 3 main components.

  • Water: For hydration
  • Electrolytes: Replenishes minerals such as sodium and potassium.
  • Sugar: to replace calories

Gatorade G has 130 calories per 20oz bottle and 34 grams of Sugar. All the calories are from sugar. This is a nightmare for those that suffer from high blood sugar or are trying to lose weight.

How many grams of sugar should I have?
The American Heart Association says the daily allowance for an average male can is up to 150 calories of sugar and the average women should keep their sugar calories to 100! That’s 39 grams for men and 26 grams for women.

So that one bottle of sports drink will put you near or over your limit for the day and good luck avoiding any more sugar if you eat anything out of a box, can, bottle or go out to eat.

What if you are Diabetic or Pre-Diabetic? While a few sips of sports drinks can help you out in a pinch if your blood sugar has crashed, it can also be a real problem if you are using them for hydration. These drinks are specifically designed to hit your system fast, spiking your blood sugar. This can be a disaster if you are insulin resistant so be careful. In fact, just avoid them altogether.

If you are dieting, that one bottle of sugar can easily put back 1/3 or the calories that you are working so hard to shed during your hour workout.

The bottom line:

  • If you are working out for 60 minutes or less at any intensity, you only need water
  • If you are sweating hard for more than an hour you may some CALORIE FREE electrolytes such as Nuun Tabs, Active Hydration, Zym Endurance Tablet, Elixir.
  • If you are doing and endurance event and the effort will be longer than 3 hours, you will need calories and electrolytes and sports drinks MAY be appropriate.
  • Never drink sports drinks during the day for hydration. They are barely better than a soda. Do your body a favor and grab some water.

For more tips on reversing Pre-Diabetes and weight loss go to www.TruChoiceFitness.com and like us on FaceBook to make sure you receive our weekly tips.

As always your questions and comments are welcome.

Eric Soderlund
TruChoice Fitness & Nutrition

Fitness From The Inside – Out