If you've ever tried a diet, you know that quick n' easy ways don't work. I COMPLETELY understand the dieting mentality. 2 weeks and 20 pounds gone!? Hell ya, sign me up! 2 weeks pass, you lose 20 pounds and reward yourself with ice cream, only to step on the scale and realize you've already gained 5 back. It's a roller coaster I no longer ride.
Weight Watchers my junior year of high school is where it started for me. The weigh ins, the points, calorie counting and group talk was enough for me to develop an unhealthy relationship with food. I felt like if I didn't stay within the point system and lose the weight, I was a failure...and that was at 17 years old! I maybe had 5 pounds to lose, but I became obsessed with the scale! Eventually I cut ties with the program and lost and gained 10/15 pounds for the next 10 years.
Until I found a meal plan that worked for me. It's called the 80/20 rule. 80% of the time, you eat clean and 20% of the time you give in to the foods you know won't make you feel good, but make you feel human.
Eating clean is the easiest meal plan I've ever followed. It's not a quick fix/diet, it's an energizing, eating for nourishment and fuel way of life! But we all know it isn't about the food. It's about your life in balance. Think about when you're tired, all of a sudden carbs + sugar is what you're reaching for, or when you're sad, "HELLO CHOCOLATE!"
If you're trying to lose weight, adopt this motto, "slow n' steady wins the race."
- Drink water. I can't stress this one enough. If you are trying to lose weight, aim for the 120 ounces of water. Even mild dehydration can alter our body's metabolism.
- Eat breakfast. This one should excite you because you get to eat right when you wake up! If you're bored with your breakfast, SWITCH IT UP! Eating within the first 20 minutes of waking up gives your metabolism a jump start!
- Learn to cook simple + balanced meals. You know what you're eating when you cook on your own. Roasting and baking are excellent options to boost flavor and cut calories. Example of a balanced breakfast: 2 eggs + 1 egg white with spinach, avocado + 1 piece of gluten free toast. MMMmmmmmm!!
- Sleep. 7 hours is the goal, some need more/less. Lack of sleep disrupts circadian rhythms and can lead to inefficient body regulation of energy balance, metabolism and appetite. The hormones that tell your body "I'm full, stop eating" can go awry with too little sleep.
- Eat frequently. Every 3 hours or so, test it out, see what works best for you. I wouldn't go more than 4 hours, but that's just me and I get REAL "hangry." (ask my boyfriend) Feeding your body on a regular basis lets it know food is available and it's okay to burn energy rather than conserve and store it as fat.