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.


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.


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

Fitness From The Inside Out

When Nothing is Something – A Mental Rest

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Our minds are constantly racing. Sometimes into the future, sometimes back to the past. Even when we rest the body with sleep, our unconscious mind is still at work. Unfortunately, it doesn’t always race to a good place. It tends to worry about real or perceived problems and it will race to the same place over and over again if we let it.

I call this type of ruminating thinking “not being present”. These are unconscious and often uncontrollable thoughts. And the problem with them is that they are exhausting and generally negative. This was a huge issue for me for most of my adult life. Here is one of the exercises I do to retake control of a runaway mind.

Think of nothing!

Sounds easy, but I bet you can’t do it for 30 seconds. Go ahead and give it a shot. I bet, that without even knowing it happens, you will begin thinking of something you have to do or some problem you have. Don’t worry, you’re not alone.

A great way to shut down the minds obsessive need to race forward or back is to overload your senses. You can do this exercise anywhere and anytime which makes it a very useful tool.

While doing whatever you are doing (sitting at work, walking, driving, lying in bed) observe every sensation you can.

LISTEN to every sound. Cars, planes, people, typing, footsteps, the fan, your breath.
FEEL everything. Your chair, steering wheel, your heart beat, footsteps, the wind.
SEE everything around you. Cars, people, birds, buildings, clouds, your hands, everything.

And do all of it all at once. This isn’t zoning out or meditating so it is safe to do while driving or walking or running. It is the opposite of zoning out. It is observing and being present. This overload will force your mind to deal with NOW so it can’t race to the past or future. It is too busy processing.

As you do this exercise, do not allow yourself to think about these sensations. Don’t see the flower and think “that is beautiful”, don’t feel your heartbeat and think of your health, don’t hear the plane and wonder where it is going. Don’t think, just observe. No labels, no judgment, no questions.

I practice this when I go for walks or runs or while driving. At first it was difficult to see a hawk and not label it as “beautiful or amazing” or whatever. But as I learned to observe with all of my senses at the same time I could keep myself from thinking longer and be more present to what was actually around me.


It feels great! When you complete your moment of being present you will feel a great relief or joy wash over you. You have rested your mind. I have read that one minute of not thinking is equal to 20 minutes of sleep.

BEWARE! Your mind has been running the show your entire life and is a master at what it does (Race) so be aware that it will trick you into thinking again. It will do this by judging or labeling what you hear, fee and see. When this happens, simply start again. At first, you may only find 10 seconds of peace. But with practice, you will become more aware and take more control of your mind.

Give it a shot and let hear about your experiences with this.

As always, your questions and comments are encouraged.

Eric Soderlund
TruChoice Fitness & Health                                                                                                               weightloss@TruChoiceFitness.com                                                                        www.TruChoiceFitness.com

Fitness From the Inside Out

Truly Priceless Minerals – Calcium

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There are roughly 4,700 know minerals. Of those, there are 15ish that are vital to mammals. These can be broken down into trace minerals and major minerals.

Trace Minerals: iron, zinc, copper, selenium, iodine, fluorine and chromium.
Major Minerals: sodium, potassium, calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, manganese, sulphur, cobolt and chlorine.

The mineral Calcium is the most common mineral in your body and is one we all know. Mainly thanks to milk advertisements.

Calcium plays a major role in our systems. Here are some of its functions.

  • Rids our bodies of free radical, acting as an antioxidant.
  • Plays a role in cell signaling
  • Assists our immune cells
  • keeps bones healthy
  • Helps keep blood pressure low
  • Assists in keeping weight under control

Our body can’t produce Calcium on its own, so where do we find this precious mineral?

Here are a list of foods that are high in calcium.

• Lowfat Milk: 1 cup = 299 mg
• Spinach 1 cup = 291 mg
• Kale 1 cup = 179 mg
• Okra/Collards 1 cup = 357 mg
• Soy beans 1 cup = 176 mg
• Orange Juice 1cup = 300 mg

As you can see, dairy isn’t the only source of calcium, so don’t rely on it exclusively for Calcium consumption. I am not a huge fan of milk or dairy products as a large part of ones diet. But that’s another blog.

• Adult men need about 1,000 mg per day
• Adult women need about 1,200 mg per day
• Teenagers need about 1,300 mg per day

So what happens when you don’t get enough Calcium?

Low bone mineral density

These are serious problems so it’s best to make sure you get enough Calcium in your diet. As is true with most of the vitamins and minerals we need, if you eat a well-rounded diet and get the recommend servings of fruits and vegetables you will probably be fine. Make sure you mix your diet up some since just eating one or two types of veggies will leave you deficient in some areas.

For more information on weight loss and fitness, go to www.TruChoiceFitnenss.com. If the info isn’t there, hit the contact button and send us an email.

As always, your comments and questions are encouraged.

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:

As always, your questions and comments are encouraged.

Eric Soderlund

Truchoice Fitness & Nutrition

Fitness From The Inside Out

Is Your Food Brown? A Pretty Plate is a Healthy Plate!

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Have you noticed that when you’re eating an unhealthy meal, that meal is also an ugly meal? Usually it’s all brown. As it turns out, the color of the foods we eat generally represent certain micro-nutrients. In fact, it’s the chemicals in the fruits and vegetables that make food a certain color.

Here are some examples.

Blue and purple: Berries, eggplant, grapes, plums, prunes, cabbage, figs and raisins.
The color of these foods come from anthocyanins. These purple delights are packed with vitamin C.

Vitamin C is vital in protecting cells from free radicals by acting as an antioxidant.
It improves iron absorption keeping us from becoming anemic. Aids in producing norepinephrine, a neurotransmitter. Assists in metabolizing cholesterol, converting it to bile acids thus lowering the amount of cholesterol in your system.

Green: Artichoke, asparagus, avocado, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, celery, cucumbers, green apples, honeydew, leeks, lettuce, limes, onions, peas, spinach, sugar snap peas and zucchini.

The green color from these foods is from the natural plant pigment chlorophyll and provides fiber, calcium, vitamin C and beta-carotene. These nutrients lower blood pressure, improve cholesterol, aid in vision and protect against cancer.

Red: Apples, beets, cherries, cranberries, grapes, onions papaya, pears, peppers, pink grapefruit, radishes, raspberries, strawberries, tomatoes and watermelon.

The red comes from antioxidants. lycopene, ellagic acid and quercetin. Antioxidants protect against cancer.

White: Bananas, cauliflower, corn, garlic, ginger, Jamaica, mushrooms, nectarines, onions, peaches, potatoes and turnips. This white color is from anthoxanthins, which contains    beta-glucans, SDG and lignans that boost immune systems, reduce your risk of cancer and balance your hormones.

Now of course you will remember all of these nutrients and which colors they correspond to. NOT. But what you can do is make sure that all the colors are represented if not daily, at least weekly in your diet.

The point is, if your plate is mostly brown, you’re probably missing out on a lot of necessary nutrients and more specifically, you’re not eating enough fruits and vegetables.

As always, your questions and comments are encouraged.

Eric Soderlund
TruChoice Fitness & Nutrition

Fitness From The Inside Out

The abCs of vitamins

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With all of the focus going to the 3 macronutrients, protein, fat and carbohydrates. I thought I’d go micro on you from time to time and discuss the importance of vitamins . Let’s start with the most well-known of the group, Vitamin C.

Vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin, meaning it dissolves in water. With these type micronutrients, the body easily gets rid of “extra” amounts through urine. Note, that it is still possible to take too much vitamin C.

C is easy to get into our diet. It’s found in Leafy Greens, Broccoli, Potatoes, Citrus Fruits, Bell Pepper, Strawberries, asparagus, mangos and more.

Why get C?

  • Vitamin C is vital in protecting cells from cancer causing free radicals by acting as an antioxidant.
  • It improves iron absorption keeping us from becoming anemic.
  • Aids in producing norepinephrine, a neurotransmitter.
  • Assists in metabolizing cholesterol, converting it to bile acids thus lowering the amount of cholesterol in our system.

When you get too much:

The recommended daily allowance of vitamin C for a healthy adult is right around 75 to 90 mg. However, some suggest Mega dosing C at times, suggesting that 2000 mg is the acceptable amount. If you have gout, kidney disease or liver problems or any chronic health issue, consult a doctor before taking high levels of any vitamin.

In the short run, too much C can cause stomach cramping, heartburn and headaches. The effects of too much vitamin C over a long period of time can be severe diarrhea and kidney stones. It is highly unlikely that you are going to get too much vitamin C unless you are taking supplements.

Vitamin C is a crucial requirement for a health body and mind. And as usual, the key is to eat fruits and vegetables daily. Do this, and the vitamin C will be taken care of.

As always, your question and comments are encouraged.

Best regards,

Eric Soderlund

TruChoice Fitness & Nutrition


Fitness From The Inside Out