7 ways to use less salt

January 28, 2013 By: consultant 11 Comments

Sodium chloride (salt) is essential to the body. The sodium in salt helps transmit nerve impulses and contract muscle fibers. Working with potassium, it balances fluid levels in in the body. But you only need a tiny amount of salt to do this, less than one-tenth of a teaspoon. The average American gets nearly 20 times that much.

The body can generally rid itself of excess sodium. In some people, though, consuming extra sodium makes the body hold onto water. This increases the amount of fluid flowing through blood vessels, which can increase blood pressure. 28% of Americans don’t know they have high blood pressure which can lead to thicker muscle in the chambers of the heart which is connected to heart failure.

If you have fluid retention, high blood pressure, and/or kidney problems, the Shane Diet & Fitness Resorts Nutritionist will help you prepare to reduce your salt intake at home.

Most of the salt that Americans consume comes from restaurants and processed foods. The leading culprits include snack foods, sandwich meats, smoked and cured meat, canned juices, canned and dry soups, pizza and other fast foods, and many condiments, relishes, and sauces — for starters. But enough comes from the salt shaker that it’s worth finding alternatives.

Here are five ways to cut back on sodium when cooking or at the table:

  1. Flavor without the shaker. Add flavor to your favorite dishes with spices, dried and fresh herbs, roots (such as garlic and ginger), citrus, vinegars, and wine. From black pepper, cinnamon, and turmeric to fresh basil, chili peppers, and lemon juice, these flavor enhancers create excitement for the palate — and with less sodium.
  2. Rinse canned food like beans, tuna, and canned veggies.  You can reduce the salt by 1/3 or look for “Low –Sodium” or “No Salt” brands.
  3. Go nuts for healthy fats in the kitchen. Using the right healthy fats — from roasted nuts and avocados to olive, canola, soybean, and other oils — can add a rich flavor to foods, minus the salt.
  4. Check the Nutrition Facts panel. It lists then amount of sodium in mg. per serving and gives the “percent daily value” (set at 2400 mg.) that contributes to the total daily limit. Since serving sizes are small, you may end up with consuming 2-3 times more than listed.
  5. Sear, sauté, and roast. Searing and sautéing foods in a pan builds flavor. Roasting brings out the natural sweetness of many vegetables and the taste of fish and chicken. If you do steam or microwave food, perk up these dishes with a finishing drizzle of flavorful oil and a squeeze of citrus.
  6. Avoid processed and packaged foods. Ten pretzels are 815 mg. One medium kosher dill pickle is 1,181mg. Try a Mediterranean-inspired whole-grain salad with chopped vegetables, nuts, and legumes, perhaps a small amount of cheese, herbs and spices, and healthy oils and vinegar or citrus. For breakfast, cook up steel-cut oats, farro, or other intact whole grains with fresh or dried fruit, and you can skip the toast (and the extra sodium).
  7. Pick the right poultry. Many manufactures inject chicken with saline to make them juicer and weigh more. The result – a three oz. serving has 400mg. sodium before you season it. Choose an additive free organic brand or buy from your local farmers market. Untreated birds are only 50 to 70 mg. of sodium. Shop for peak-of-season produce from farmers’ markets and your local supermarket for a delicious fresh dinner.

Take these steps to lower your sodium intake and reduce the stress on your organs. Remember – if you don’t take the time for exercise and good eating habits, you will have to take time later for illness.  Shane Diet & Fitness Resorts can help you understand the “How” behind the “What”. This will lead to permanent change and improved quality of life and let’s face it, who doesn’t want that!?

 

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Test Your Caloric Savvy

January 22, 2013 By: consultant 1 Comment

Just when you think you have it all figured out, a test comes along to slip you up!  How wise are you to how many calories you’re consuming? If you have been keeping a food journal, you will probably do well. Take this quiz to see how smart you are at choosing what foods are best for reducing your waistline. Write down the food you think is higher in calories then find the correct answers below.

  1. McDonalds medium French fries OR McDonalds Quarter Pounder with cheese
  2. Two-egg cheese omelet OR two slices of plain French toast
  3. Medium scoop low-fat vanilla frozen yogurt OR one medium, low-fat blueberry muffin
  4. Half cup of granola cereal OR one regular cereal bar
  5. Slice of cheese pizza OR two mozzarella sticks
  6. One cup of cobb salad OR one cup of Caesar salad
  7. One can of regular soda OR one cup of Minute Maid fruit punch
  8. Peanut butter sandwich OR tuna salad sandwich
  9. One ounce of almonds OR one and a half ounces of raisins
  10. One medium brownie OR one Hershey milk chocolate bar

If you got one or two wrong, you have paid attention to the Shane Nutritionist.  If you missed four or more, plan a trip to a Shane Diet and Fitness Resort to brush up on your nutritional education. Shane will give you a personalized nutrition and physical activity plan, and provide more tips on making healthier choices. Contact Shane at 888-732-9034

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Answers:

  1. Quarter Pounder = 520 kcal     French fries = 380 kcal
  2. French toast = 312 kcal     Omelet = 271 kcal
  3. Muffin = 288 kcal       Yogurt = 112 kcal
  4. Cereal = 257 kcal         Cereal bar = 140 kcal
  5. Mozzarella sticks = 302kcal      Pizza = 231 kcal
  6. Caesar = 184 kcal       Cobb = 262 kcal
  7. Soda = 189 kcal      Fruit punch = 90 kcal
  8. Peanut Butter sandwich = 342 kcal      Tuna Salad Sandwich = 267 kcal
  9. Almonds = 172 kcal      Raisins = 129 kcal
  10. Chocolate bar = 210 kcal         Brownie = 129 kcal
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Yoga – A Man’s Workout

January 14, 2013 By: consultant 17 Comments

Hundreds of scientific studies on yoga show that it aids in overcoming sleep problems, sinusitis, stress, high blood pressure, type II diabetes, even schizophrenia. Here are some reasons why men should find out what all the Om is about…

• A study published in The Journal Of Urology found that men with Prostate Cancer who practiced 60 minutes of gentle yoga (stretching, breathing, meditation, guided imagery, and relaxation) for one year had eight times less growth of cancer cells than the men who did not do yoga.

• Men experience a lot of stress in their lives. This stress creates cortisol, which stimulates appetite and over eating. This hormone also helps turn those extra calories into belly fat, which releases disease-causing inflammatory chemicals (more prevalent in men than in women). Yoga reduces the production of Cortisol which in turn, controls abdominal fat.

• The majority of Americans who suffer heart attacks each year are men. New research shows that yoga can reduce many heart attack risk factors like high blood pressure, elevated total and LDL (bad) cholesterol and high triglycerides.

• A study reported in The Journal of Sexual Medicine found that men who practiced yoga for one hour each day for three months improved every dimension of sexual functioning – libido, erections, satisfaction with performance, and sexual confidence.

At Shane Diet and Fitness Resorts we know that it is much safer to learn by taking a class from a certified instructor.  We don’t recommend that you try to learn from a DVD or book.  The Instructor can look at your flexibility and form to guide you and show you how to use different props to protect you making the experience more ease-ful. To find a good class in your community, ask another man first.  If you don’t know any men studying yoga, ask a woman or visit the website of the International Association of Yoga Therapists.

Remember guys, this is not competitive so don’t rush the results. It is about the poses and breathing exercises helping your mind and your body.  Don’t worry about what the person on the mat next to you is doing. Yoga is a good complement to cardio and strength training. Simply doing a yoga routine 15 to 20 minutes a day everyday will give you discipline, balance and overall fitness while reducing stress and increasing mental focus.Time to find out what you have been missing!

 

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Feel Better in a Flash!

January 10, 2013 By: consultant 8 Comments

Is spending time indoors hurting your health?  If you are like most Americans, and I confess that I am, you spend 90% of your life indoors. And the older we get, the less likely we venture outside. Exploring the great outdoors has numerous benefits to our mental/ physical health and our overall ability to stay healthy.  Just think of the trapped miners in Chili when they finally got up to the surface in October of 2010.  Their experience really hit me and I made a pledge to take a walk outside every day no matter what the weather!  It is all glorious and wonderful doing “green exercise”. Just think of the benefits for your health, and weight loss goals!

A study from the Univ. of Essex in England studied the effects of exercising in the presence of nature and its benefits to mental health, so by being outside, your mood will lift as your exposure to light increases. The outside group was more relaxed and cheerful. They breathed a little deeper and their brain was stimulated more.  Removing yourself from the controlled environment of a gym, heighten your senses, improves concentration, challenges your balance, and peps you up.  Another study from Univ. of Pittsburgh showed that you might heal faster and experience less pain when you are exposed to natural light.

By exercising outside, your Vitamin D levels will go up as well.  Research suggests that “D” protects you from osteoporosis, cancer, depression and heart disease. Keep in mind – the lighter your skin tone, the quicker you produce vitamin D, so wear a hat if you are out for a long time, and wear sunscreen with zinc oxide or titanium dioxide on areas you don’t want to wrinkle.

Take advantage of your lunch hour and take a walk around the block.  Instead of taking a “smoke break”, take a “walk break.”  You will burn more calories keeping warm and being active!  It will get your muscles and blood moving, fill your body with oxygen and clear your head. This will re-charge you to be more productive in the afternoon.  It sure beats a cup of coffee.

I am taking advantage of the snowfall outside my door!  My friends and I are making plans to head to the ski slopes, do some cross country skiing and snowshoeing hikes in the Catskills. Talk about a fat-burning activity – you can burn up to 700 calories per hour snowshoeing and anyone can do it – just walk.

Stop hibernating and get outside! Pull on your boots and take an uplifting walk. Drink in the fresh air, explore the beauty of nature, burn some calories, feel better stay healthy and stay with your weight loss goals.  It only takes a few minutes each day and the benefits are invigorating!

 

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Motivation to Reach Your Goals Through 2013

January 7, 2013 By: consultant 9 Comments

For the first time in human history, overeating is now more of a global health threat than hunger.  According to medical journal, The Lancet, more than 3 million deaths in 2010 were attributable to excess body weight, three times the death toll due to malnutrition.

We live in a world of an over-abundant amount of cheap food.  Where gorging at the buffet is a practiced on a regular basis and heart disease and type 2 Diabetes is on the rise among young people. With all of the options out there, why do we make the choices that lead us to illness?  If we just knew how to change our bad habits and move toward healthy lifestyle changes. Shane Diet and Fitness Resorts can help you do just that!  We have lectures and workshops that help you understand how, why and what to do every day to keep you on track. Our counselors help you discover what obstacles are getting in the way of achieving your personal fitness and weight loss goals.

Millions of Americans will try to achieve their New Year’s resolution, pledging to lose weight, spend less money, quit smoking, exercise more…making overnight changes require enormous amounts of self-discipline and support, which can be hard to find. Studies have shown that willpower is a depletable resource. Setting challenging goals can quickly use up your stores of willpower and all your best intentions will fall by the wayside. Here are some tips to staying motivated to creating solid positive changes for 2013.

  • Make tiny goals that can sneak under the radar of you mind. Exercising for five minutes instead of an hour might seem worthless, but you are much less likely to resist it.  Studies show that five minutes here and there throughout the day still adds up. Five minutes today, will lead to 6 minutes tomorrow, to a half hour by the weekend. Motivation is fleeting and the largest barrier to reaching your goals. By taking small steps you will build up your willpower, create new habits and reach success.
  • Search for a deep reason – something compelling – that is the reason for making the changes in your life.  Is it because you want to look good in an outfit or is it a matter of life and death!  Make it long term, like dancing with your child at their wedding, or being able to really play with your grandchildren.
  • Test yourself every week.  Time yourself in a plank on your elbows, or hold a squat hovering above a chair. See if you can increase the time you can hold it every week. How about your balance? Stand on one foot. Too easy? Try to balance on the ball of your foot like a dancer.
  • Drop the “All or Nothing” mentality. You have to discover what is manageable for you. Be honest with yourself and figure out how you can fit movement into your life.  Perform Squats while washing the dishes, raise up on your toes while brushing your teeth, walk the stairs for five minutes during your lunch break, stand while talking on the phone. Don’t overthink it, just find something you can do on a regular basis and don’t get discouraged if you stop – start up again as soon as you can.

Need more help? The Shane Staff is here to provide you with a Success Map to help you reach your diet and fitness goals. We will help get you where you want to go and will give you the tools you need to continue to reach those goals once you leave.

 

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Where Has All the Vitamin D Gone?

December 17, 2012 By: office 3 Comments

D IMG_0139This time of year is hard enough to try to stay on track with our weight loss goals, because of the holiday parties and all of the food and treats associated with them. But to top it off, there is yet another thing getting in our way, the sun. Winter is the time of year when there is little to no vitamin D production due to atmospheric conditions that block UVB rays.  Now you might be thinking, ‘why does this affect my health and weight loss goals just like the holiday parties and food?’ It’s because vitamin D does more than just help us maintain our calcium and phosphorous levels. It has been found to be a key nutrient to weight loss and creating and maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

Since the winter months make it more difficult for us to get the vitamin D we need from the sun, Amber Ketchum, Shane Diet & Fitness Resorts Registered Dietitian for our Texas Resort made a list of 10 foods that can help us receive the essential vitamin D we need.

1. Salmon – This tasty fish is loaded with nutrition!  Just 3 ounces provides over 100% of your daily vitamin D needs.

2. Tuna – Canned tuna is a great option if you’re looking for a healthy, affordable, and versatile food.  One 3-ounce serving of tuna (packed in water) will provide almost half of your daily dose of vitamin D.

3. Fortified Milk – Most cows’ milk these days is fortified with vitamin D since it is essential for absorbing calcium in the body.  If you don’t drink cow’s milk, many milk alternatives such as soy or almond milk are now fortified with Calcium and Vitamin D as well, just be sure to check the label.

4. Fortified Yogurt – Just like milk, many yogurts are fortified with Vitamin D, but just make sure to double check the label on this food to be certain it is fortified.

5. Fortified Orange Juice – This is a great way to increase your intake of vitamin D if you don’t drink any type of milk or consume fish.  1 cup (8 ounces) of 100% orange juice fortified with Vitamin D will provide about the same amount as 1 glass of milk.

6. Sardines – These small fish are an excellent source of both calcium and vitamin D. They may be small, but sardines are considered a fatty fish, which means they provide big nutrition in a tiny package!

7. Liver – Liver may not be one of the most popular food choices, but it is one of the few foods that naturally contains Vitamin D, along with many other essential nutrients.

8. Egg (whole, including yolk) – Sometimes eggs get a bad reputation due to the high cholesterol content of the yolk.  However, eating the whole egg provides many vitamins and nutrients, including Vitamin D, that are simply not found in the egg white on it’s own.

9. Ready-to-eat fortified cereal – There are so many breakfast cereals available on grocery store shelves today.  Many of them are good sources of Vitamin D since they are fortified, just make sure your cereal is 100% whole grain and try to choose those with less than 10 grams of sugar per serving.

10. Mushrooms – There are many varieties of mushrooms that are now grown under tightly controlled conditions with exposure to UV light, which increases their Vitamin D content.  These are a delicious option as a plant source Vitamin D.  The package will say if the mushrooms are Vitamin D enhanced.
Try incorporating these 10 foods into your diet and you’ll be on your way to getting the vitamin D you need for a healthier life and weight loss.

 

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Calories Are Everywhere & Yet We Can’t Track Them

December 11, 2012 By: office 1 Comment

Every day calories are consumed by the billions, and all too often at and between meals. Calorie information appears everywhere with an increasing frequency on food labels, menus, recipes and web sites. But few people understand what that information means and how they work. Especially how they have worked to create a population in which over 64% of adults and a third of children are overweight or obese. The human body does an impressive job making sure that it gets enough calories to meet its needs, but it does not know when the calories are in excess.

The average American spends about 10% of their disposable income on food and with food now being offered in places it never has before; such as, Staples, Bed, Bath & Beyond and book stores, it’s becoming too readily available. Portion sizes, especially in restaurants, are also out of control; for example, bagels are now on average 500 to 600 calories each and sodas are now available in larger sizes such as the 7-Eleven Big Gulp – a 64 ounce drink that is 800 calories. Individuals who check calorie information on nutrition labels often do not note the size of the serving it applies to. For example, a serving of ice cream is only a half cup, and uncooked pasta is merely two ounces.

“Why Calories Count: From Science to Politics” written by two experts Marian Nestle – a professor of nutrition, food studies and public health at NYU and Malden Nesheim – professor emeritus of nutritional sciences at Cornell University, explains what calories are, where they come from, how different sources affect the body and why it is so easy to consume more of them than most people need to achieve and maintain a healthy weight.   As seductive as the current food environment is, with words such as ‘organic’, ‘low-fat’ or ‘heart-healthy’, it’s still easier not to gain excess weight in the first place.

Dr. Nestle and Dr. Nesheim also reviewed the weight-regulating effects of different sources of calories. Evidence was found to support the popular idea that any type of nutrient is responsible for our obesity. “The source of the calories may make a small difference in weight maintenance or loss, but appears to be much less important than the ability to resist pressure to overeat calories in general”, the authors wrote.  Since most people cannot come close to estimating how many calories they consume or expend in a day, a better way to measure intake and output is to regularly check the notches on one belt or numbers on the scale.  “It’s much easier to lose a pound or two than 20 or 30” says Dr. Nestle. Of course, the amount of calories consumed is not the only factor influencing ones weight.  Calories expended count as well. The more active people are, the better able they are to balance out.

At Shane Diet & Fitness Resorts we think that it’s not only important for you to exercise and learn about calorie intake and expenditure, but through our nutrition education classes, you will learn how to calculate your daily calorie intake, create a healthy eating and exercise plan as well as how to cook fresh healthy meals and snacks. Because knowing the why’s and how’s behind things are the keys to a successful weight loss journey.

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10 Ways to Avoid Overeating at Parties This Holiday Season

December 6, 2012 By: office 8 Comments

The holiday season is often filled with invitations to parties galore from friends, families and co-workers.  And the holiday season cycle begins – overeating, weight gain, and a setback on our weight loss goals.  It doesn’t have to happen! Follow these 10 simple steps from our guest writer Skye Cutrupi to avoid holiday weight gain.

1. Eat Breakfast: Every Fitness and health publication will tell you….EAT BREAKFAST. Without eating breakfast, you’re more vulnerable to cravings and less likely to make healthy eating choices in the morning and throughout the day.

2. Carry A Snack Reserve: Holiday schedules can be busy and impromptu; having one or two healthy snacks on hand can help prevent impulse eating at parties.

3. Eat Pre-Party: Going to a party on an empty stomach can be even more dangerous than doing your grocery shopping famished. You are not only more likely to eat things that you would otherwise be able to resist, but to eat them quickly and in great quantity as well, since all the food is immediately available. Your best bet is to eat something small but filling, even if it is just an apple, right before your event. This will break down the hold that an empty stomach has over the mind.

4. Be Aware of What You Are Drinking: Most of us have heard the adage, ‘Don’t Drink Your Calories,’ the holiday season only increases the need for awareness of the caloric intake of our beverages.  With multiple parties, and tins of cookies from neighbors, chances are the month of December provides you with double the opportunities to indulge in sweet treats. If your daily coffee is along the lines of a caramel macchiato, try switching to something with fewer calories if you know that you will want to indulge in treats at a party later in the day. The same goes for any daily sugary drink intake.

5. Bring A Healthy Dish Or Bottle: Volunteer to bring a healthy/lower calorie dish, treat, or beverage that you like to the party. This way you know that there will be a healthier alternative that you can choose from. Fruit platter, vegetable dish, cookies or brownies that you have made with healthier substitutes, low calorie beer, Skinny-Girl Alcohol…you get the idea.

6. Make Choices: Deprivation as a form of dieting is neither healthy nor is it effective. Moderation and balance is key. Do you love Grandma’s holiday brownies, enjoy one of those, and skip over the treats you might be tempted to eat simply because they are there. You still get to enjoy your holiday favorites, but avoid the guilt of overindulgence. There are enough other factors during this season that can create stress, don’t let food be one of them.

7. Help Out: Lending a hand to a party host is not only in the holiday spirit, but can also be a good way to avoid the temptation of overeating. If you’re greeting guests and taking coats, playing DJ or pouring drinks, chances are you won’t have time to linger at the dessert table.

8. Wear Zippers & Buttons: Being comfortable in what you’re wearing is the most flattering look of all; elastic waistbands however can be a screaming invitation for overeating. When picking an outfit for a holiday party choose something that you like and are comfortable in, but also something with button or zippers, to help keep you aware of your food and drink intake.

9. Play With The Kids & Pets: Family gatherings and parties can be wonderful, but for many of us they can also be extremely stressful. Playing with children or household pets is a great way to sidestep and alleviate some of the stressors that can stem from such get togethers. Not only is it simply difficult to be stressed when you are making a fort of blocks, or tugging on the tail of a dragon hanging from a dog’s mouth, but you have also created a fun way to still be engaged at a function, that you might have been otherwise dreading.

10.Don’t Judge Your Insides By Other People’s Outsides: What does this statement mean? People have a tendency to compare their lives to the lives of others, and the holiday season can sometimes provide even more than the normal opportunity to do this. We see family members that we have not seen in months, friends back from college etc. What was your year like, their year like? How is your job, school, and so on. It’s easy to begin comparing the events of our year to those that we are hearing from others, and for some this could be a significant source of stress. Maybe your cousin got engaged, while your significant other of four years gifted you with a Keurig this year; your high school friend made deans list or an exclusive fraternity, someone got a big promotion, had a baby….Don’t judge your insides by other people’s outsides, is a way to remember that such a comparison will never be a fair one. Think about it, we have all the information about ourselves…good, bad, ugly, in between, and are attempting to compare it to a tiny fraction of what we know about the life of someone else. Be kind to yourself and remember this imbalance should you find your mind comparing your years’ events to those of others’.  Avoiding the comparison trap can save you from unwarranted and unjustified stress and depression, and the possible desire to eat every sweet treat at the party.

If you follow these 10 simple steps you will still be on your way of getting and staying healthy and losing or sustaining your weight this holiday season.

This post was written by a guest author, Skye Cutrupi. Skye is a Certified Alcohol and Substance Abuse Counselor in Training, holds a B.A. In Political Science with an emphasis Conflict Resolution, and is a clumsy but devoted enthusiast of Yoga.
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How To Avoid Holiday Weight Gain

December 3, 2012 By: consultant 2 Comments

The #1 trick to avoid weight gain over the holidays is to only celebrate that one special day. Stick to your regular routine before and after the holidays.

Here are some other tips to keep you on track of your healthy weight goals:

Avoid the pre-holiday indulgences:
Are you the chef of the family like I am? I do a lot of baking early on in the week. Enjoy your hard work on the special day. Limit your “tastes” while cooking and baking. Limit yourself to 1-2 bites of tasting pre- and post- seasoning. You’ll get to enjoy what you made on that day. For recipes that you have made many times before like your famous cheesecake, challenge yourself to not taste it until the day it’s being served.

Do NOT restrict:
Thinking you may “save your calories”, restricting is not the answer. When restricting, you end up over eating because of being ravenous and won’t listen to fullness as well.

Keep eating 3 meals and 2 snacks a day like at Shane Diet & Fitness Resorts. This way you will never feel hungry and less likely to overeat.

Focus on socializing:
Don’t let your main focus of a holiday party be the food. Many times during the holidays you get to see family and friends that you are not able to see regularly the rest of the year. Enjoy the company around you. After you take food walk away from the table and engage in conversation and you’ll be less likely to walk up for seconds.

Be Picky:
When it comes to holiday foods, be selective. Go for foods you typically wouldn’t eat on a regular basis. For example, if it’s a decision between a plain old chocolate chip cookie or your grandma’s famous mini chocolate éclairs, choose the éclairs and savor those indulgences by eating slowly and truly enjoying the flavors.

Get Moving:
Just because you may be home for break or traveling to visit family, keep moving. Go for a walk, run, do push-ups, sit-ups, etc. You can still have a great workout even if you are away from the gym. If you really want to go to the gym and you are away from home, many gyms allow guest passes for the day.

Avoid the post-holiday indulgences:
Avoid bringing home leftovers that are too tempting. You got to enjoy those treats the day before. Get back to your healthy eating and exercise routine the next day!

Always remember that the holiday is only one day of the year. One day will not ruin all your hard work. With that being said, that one day it is not a free pass to go crazy and eat anything. Healthy eating is all about balance.

Have a happy healthy holiday and enjoy!

 

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Rosie’s Top Tips for After Shane

November 13, 2012 By: office 3 Comments

This is really special guest post for us- Rosie was a guest at the Shane Diet & Fitness New York resort this summer, and has become one of our Success Stories.  She’s been working hard ever since she left to continue to achieve her weight loss goals while attending college and studying to become a fitness trainer- something she never thought possible before this summer.  Rosie shared with us her top ten habits, thoughts and reminders that have helped her continue her weight loss.

  1. Stick to the routine, even if it isn’t strictly the Shane routine, pick times of the day that work for you to eat and exercise and stick to them.
  2. Don’t get hungry, whatever you do avoid going long periods of time without food, it won’t help weight loss and you’ll end up eating something unhealthy.  Also don’t save up all your calories to eat badly, if you’re going to eat badly plan for it but don’t avoid food all day.
  3. Don’t feel guilty, if you want something so badly you can’t think straight… have it, have a small portion, don’t do it all the time, work out a bit more that week but don’t beat yourself up about it. Own your decisions.
  4. Don’t forget where you’re going, or where you came from. If it feels like progress is slow once you get home don’t forget all the progress you’ve already made and don’t let slow progress stop you feeling achievement or set you back. Even slow progress is a step in the right direction and if you can accept it’s not going to happen overnight you’ll do better in the long run.
  5. Fight cravings, recognize that cravings aren’t usually hunger and tackle them, if it’s an appropriate time to eat have a healthy alternative. If not occupy yourself, take up knitting or paint your nails, read a magazine or have a hot drink like green or herbal tea. Do whatever works for you as a distraction.
  6. Reward yourself, every time you have a healthy home cooked meal rather than a take out or don’t buy that chocolate bar on the way home or take a pack lunch to work. Use the money you save to buy yourself a new outfit or a recipe book.
  7. Be goal oriented, without something to aim for its hard to stay on track, whether it’s a weight to lose, a weight to lift or a race to finish achieving goals is a great way to mark progress. And if it doesn’t happen first time round don’t despair, reassess and try again.
  8. Don’t weigh yourself every day, by all means once a week, even make a chart but don’t do it every day you’ll get sucked up in the little numbers and it won’t feel like you’re making progress when you are.
  9. Keep in touch, Shane creates an environment where you live, eat, sleep and work out with the same people, you go through a lot with them, they are your friends, your family and your support network while you’re there. Don’t lose that when you get home, the staff and the programme will be there for you long after you leave but so will everyone else and it’s a great opportunity to make life long friends. Make sure you utilize that.
  10. And most of all, do not, under any circumstances, give up. You might stop losing weight, you might even gain a few pounds, maybe you’re injured, something is going on at home or at school or you just don’t feel like its worth it. But this is your life, you only get one and it’s never too late to make the most of it. Take the opportunity to get healthy, get fit and enjoy your body.

 

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