Weight Loss – Healing Old Wounds

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One of the main objectives of our mind is to keep us safe. That feeling in your stomach when you get too close to the edge of a cliff. The fear of walking down a dark street. The negative thoughts you get when you think about dieting. HUH?

Unfortunately, the mind won’t distinguish between real danger and perceived danger. In the instance of weight loss, the mind is protecting you from the pains of the past and fear of pain that would come from failure in the future. This reaction is brought on by how we think about weight loss. What our ever so clever mind doesn’t know is that the pain of being overweight can be debilitating and painful.

The mind isn’t against you losing weight. It doesn’t even understand what that is. It’s against you feeling bad and being stressed. This instinct keeps us from trying, let alone accomplishing many things in life.

Looking for a new job, starting a new hobby, leaving an unsatisfying relationship, getting in shape, etc. These can be considered unknowns and opportunities to fail to the mind and thus things to be avoided. And that is what our mind “protects” us from.

So how can we override this instinct when it comes to weight loss? Click here to find out.

When Scales Attack

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It has happened to nearly everyone that has tried to lose weight. You follow your meal plan, do your workouts, confident you have lost weight during the week. But come Saturday morning, the scale says otherwise.

This happened to me recently. Find out why and how it can be corrected!

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

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

Can You Exercise the Weight off?

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When people learn that I’ve started a company designed to help people prevent or reverse lifestyle conditions such as Pre-Diabetes through weight loss and activity, they often have a story or question for me, which I always enjoy.

One comment that I frequently get is “I walk every day but I am actually gaining weight”. This comment then provokes the question, “Can you exercise the weight off”? Let’s look at some numbers.

In 60 minutes, a person weighing 200lbs will burn approximately:

320 Calories walking the dog
360 walking briskly
364 calories biking leisurely
700 calories biking vigorously
720 jogging a 12 minute mile
900 jogging a 10 minute mile

(Of course these are estimates but close enough for my point)

It takes 3500 additional calories (calories consumed vs calories burned) to gain a pound and the same amount of a calorie deficit to lose a pound, 3500.

If you are eating enough to gain 1 pound per week, which is an additional 500 calories per day, you would have to walk for 10 hours per week or run a 10 minute mile (which is fast for an inexperienced runner) for 4 hours per week just to break even.

Now double those numbers in order to lose 1 pound per week. 20 hours of walking!

So the answer to the question for most of us is “NO”. You can’t continue to eat poorly and just walk or jog the calories off. You need to combine sensible activities with an appropriate meal plan. You need to know how many calories you should consume and then track those calories.

I am certainly not implying that you shouldn’t exercise. Exercise does assist in losing weight and diet alone will not increase your fitness level. It does nothing for strength, bone density or cardiovascular improvements. It doesn’t release endorphin’s that make you feel good or accomplish any of the other things that being physically active achieves.

The goal shouldn’t just be to weight loss. The focus should be on health, physical, mental and emotional. And that requires balance of life. If you want to lose weight, focus on making good decisions for yourself. Eat well, stay active and take time for self.

If you have more questions on Pre-Diabetes, weight loss or increasing your fitness, go to:
www.TruChoiceFitness.com

As always, your questions and comments are encouraged.

Eric Soderlund

Truchoice Fitness & Nutrition

Fitness From The Inside Out

TruChoice Weight Lifting Tip – Don’t Rest When You Rest

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I went to the gym this morning. A bit later than normal but I made it! Today was the beginning of phase 2 of my weight training. I follow a practice called periodization when I put my plans together. Phase 1 was designed to prepare my muscles for phase II. I am coming back from an injury so I wanted to make sure I did several weeks of light lifting to begin with. This let me know where I was physically, identified problem areas and helped me regain range of motion.

Periodization is critical to prevent injuries and maximize results. That’s another blog. Today I began to increase the amount of weight I lift, added another exercise per muscle group and separated upper and lower body routines. This is a much slower paced workout than before when I was doing SuperSets and combining upper and lower body workouts into one session.

The good part of my Phase II plan is that I will be adding lean muscle/bulk to my frame (Ladies, this doesn’t mean you will get huge and dude like so yes this type lifting is for you also). The negative, to me at least, is that there is a lot of “down time” between sets. When you lift heavy weights, you need to allow for your body to replace the ATP in your muscles cells before you begin your next set. This will take between 1 ½ to 3 minutes. That can be a half an hour of sitting on your rear looking at the TV or listening to tunes.

So what can you do with this time?

STRETCH! If you are like me, you neglect this very important aspect of fitness. Lifting weights, running, riding your bike or whatever you do consistently will shorten certain muscles. Sometimes they are the muscles that you are working and other times they are muscles getting ignored. When muscles shorten, they tighten. This can lead to injury and loss of range of motion. Both of which decrease performance and cause pain.

So while I sit and wait for the muscles that I’m working to recover, I stretch other muscles. Sometimes I stretch something that is feeling tight and other times I stretch the muscles that I will work next. I’m not a fan of stretching the muscles I am working at the time. I don’t feel this is the best way to let them recover. I will however lightly stretch a muscle I’m working if I feel a little twinge and I want to see what’s up with it.

By stretching in between sets, I stay moving, save time and get a good 20 minutes of stretching in that I would not have done otherwise! So move while you rest and get more out of your weight sessions.

As always, your comments and questions are encouraged.

Eric Soderlund
TruChoice Fitness & Nutrition