Custom Meal Plan: The Ultimate Guide for Weight Loss

yoCustom Meal Plan: The Ultimate Guide for Weight Loss

There is a great deal of interest and discussion regarding weight loss, and some of the information is conflicting. This can lead to confusion and yo-yo dieting for many people, creating a disturbed metabolism and potential health hazards. If you are among them, you will discover that this meal plan for weight loss is unlike the others you have likely encountered. It focuses on developing a healthy understanding of food and having a positive relationship with it.

CHANGE YOUR HABITS

Rather than removing all of your favorite snacks from your home and replacing them with foods you may not even be familiar with, you need to select a few of those items to still eat, BUT only in moderation. The fact is, if you try to never eat chocolate cake again, you are likely to begin hyper-focusing on it until you indulge in several pieces or binge eat. This can thwart your efforts and leave you feeling like a failure.

However, you will need to change your consumption habits. Selecting healthy foods to replace your existing meals can actually be quite simple. Most processed foods are not going to help you lose weight. It is important that you realize that as you are replacing them with healthier choices to assist you with losing weight that your taste buds will have to undergo changes. Once you begin to appreciate the flavors of healthier options, you are likely to discover that many of the processed ones no longer taste as good as they once did to you.

You need to have a reasonable plan for three meals each day and some snacks. Skipping meals will leave you deprived and hungry, willing to stop at the nearest fast food joint to fill your stomach or stabilize your blood sugar. This is one of the reasons it is essential to have some healthy snack options replacing your previous choices.

MACRO BALANCE AND SOURCES

The body requires a balance of proteins, fats, and carbohydrates in order to function properly. In addition, there are many vitamins and minerals that are necessary for cells to work well. Learning about this will help you to look at your meals in a different manner. For example, thinking about the vitamin C in tomato sauce or the carotene in carrots is preferable to a mindset that says “I hate…” Eat to Live, don’t Live to Eat,
that’s a North American mentality, as you can see they have a high obesity epedemic.

Your carbohydrate content should be primarily from whole grains and fresh produce. If you don’t want to begin with a thick multigrain cereal, instead consider oatmeal, which you probably enjoyed as a child. Buy the slow cooking kind and add some dried fruit and water while it is cooking. Alternatively, chop up some fresh fruit when it is done. If you want to add a little almond milk or butter, that is okay. Just don’t overdo it.
Again, if you feel deprived it will be challenging and frustrating to lose weight.

Buy meats and seed products. If you really want to become actively involved in your dietary habits, you may even want to begin making your own raw vegan meals, such as a vegan high protein energy bar.

Eating fruits and vegetables is vital to good health. They contain plenty of nutrients and fiber which is essential to digestive health. Fruit salads are delicious and easy to make. Most stores even have them already made in the produce section now. If you want a little something different, add some plain yogurt and fresh honey to the mix.

Vegetable salads are a tricky point for many people. If lots of salad dressing and other high fat ingredients are added, it can quickly thwart your efforts. When you are first beginning, try to eat at least one small salad a day with a low fat dressing or try Walden’s Farm dressing which are calorie free.

When you are selecting produce options for the week, try to purchase different colors. The vitamins and minerals in them create the various hues. By making sure you eat all of the colors in a rainbow, you should find it easier than attempting to memorize the content in each one.

There are some healthy fats that you can add to salads to increase the flavor. Avocado, olives, Macadamia oil, and cooked salmon all contain fats that are good for your body. Depriving your body of fat is not good; you need to simply make proper selections about them.

Low fat meats and healthy proteins are the other food you will need to purchase. Avoid those with added chemicals. Salmon, trout and sardines are high in omega-3 fatty acids which will benefit your body while giving your body the protein it needs to function.

SHOPPING LISTS

Do your shopping for the week all at once, taking a list with you and shopping when you have already had a meal. Impulse purchases are far more common for hungry shoppers. The one exception is that you may want to make a small mid-week trip to ensure your produce is fresh.

DRINK MORE WATER

Drink plenty of water each day and replace your favorite sugary beverages with herbal teas sweetened with a touch of honey or stevia. Soon, you will discover soft drinks have an unnatural flavor to them.

INCREASE YOUR ACTIVITY LEVEL

As you are learning how to eat well, you must also remember to increase your level of activity. The only way you can lose weight is if you burn off more calories than you consume each day. If you have a difficult time getting more active, find small ways to boost your metabolic activity. Good ideas include working out or parking away from the door at shopping centers and walking. Using a single flight of stairs can lead to two,
then three. It takes time for your body to adjust to your new lifestyle.

PROVEN TIP TO AVOID POOR CHOICES

When you are feeling hungry, eat a piece of fruit, a protein shake or have a glass of lemon water, followed by a brisk walk. The more you think about doing good things for your health, the easier it will become. Your body will begin to respond to the influx of vitamins and minerals, giving you more energy than you had previously. And, remember, if you want the occasional treat, you should not deprive yourself. You are certain to reach your desired weight if you follow these suggestions.

Fitness Means Healthy Living

LiveFitness Means Healthy Living

As a person gets older they think about fitness in a way that is different than a person who is younger than them. True fitness means healthy living. It means you eat right, get enough rest, and it means you exercise on a regular bases, even if it is only for a few minutes everyday.

A person who exercises all of the time but never worries about the types of foods or supplements he/she puts in their body may have a false sense of fitness. Just because you may look good on the outside does not mean you are healthy on the inside. Too many people today take unhealthy supplements or powdered shakes that are not really good for the body. You have seen pencil thin people who think that fitness means you do not eat and if you do you better go exercise right away to make sure you do not gain an ounce. This is unhealthy and should not be a part of your fitness routine.

You may know people who train for hours and hours and eat protein bars and only drink sports drinks and sometimes water. They too have a false sense of fitness. Fitness does not mean depriving your body of nutrients and stressing it out. You never want to think that you are healthy because you saw some star or athlete, even some well respected person in your town doing these things.

When children think of fitness sometimes they do think of famous athletes. You may see an athlete who has trained their whole life to win championships so they will not eat certain foods, they exercise, but they don’t have a problem taking or putting some type of drugs in their bodies like marijuana or some type of steroids. This is far from what fitness is supposed to be. A person does not have to be young to think about fitness. As we get older our bodies start to change, and we may find that we are eating better and taking vitamins and minerals that will help us to stay healthy. Adding a healthy exercise routine everyday such as walking is the type of fitness a person of any age group can think about.

A healthy person who wants to be fit makes sure they have a balanced view. How you treat your body matters. You put good things in your car to make them run, so why wouldn’t you put good things such as healthy foods and clean water into your vehicle, your body. If you exercise, eat foods that do not have any nutritional value that do not allow you to even gain an ounce, what good is it to be pencil thin and not be healthy? If you train yourself to be fit and try to eat healthy food but put drugs into your body, than how healthy or fit can you be? When a person thinks of fitness they should think of a balanced healthy living.

Risks of Laxatives for Weight Loss

weightlossRisks of Laxatives for Weight Loss

Losing weight can be difficult for just about anyone. In order to lose weight, one must actually work for it. Losing weight can be achieved through proper dieting and exercise. You are going to want to lose weight the proper way.

A lot of people try to take shortcuts only to realize that there is none. Below we will discuss some of the risks of using laxatives for weight loss.

1. Stomach Cramps.

Because laxatives are powerful, you can experience tons of stomach cramps and pain in your abdomen area. You are going to want to ensure that you do not overuse laxatives for weight loss or you can experience tons of issues with stomach cramps.

2. Dehydration.

Laxative use causes loss of essential electrolytes and important water retention such as potassium, calcium, and sodium. You are going to want to ensure that you do not experience any of these symptoms when using laxatives. Otherwise, you may find yourself in a dreadful situation. Dehydration is very real, and you do not want to experience dehydration for short term weight loss. Any benefits for effects from taking laxatives will be short lived and can lead to long term damage and problems with your body.

3. Digestion Problems.

Long term usage of laxatives can lead to a lot of long term problems with your digestive system, which can turn out to be permanent. Long term usage of these laxatives can lead to tons of damage to the gastrointestinal tract. This means that your body may lose its ability remove food waste from the body. Obviously, this is not a good thing for your body, and you do not want to put your body through this.

4. Diarrhea.

You are going to experience tons of Diarrhea if you use laxatives for weight loss. The problem is that this type of Diarrhea can quickly lead to dehydration. In the end, you end up severely dehydrated, and your body loses its ability to function properly. This obviously is not conducive for weight loss and will end up in a slower metabolism. This is counter productive to losing weight and should always be avoided. In order to lose weight, you must drink enough water to avoid this symptom.

Abuse of laxatives by young people is usually a sign of an eating disorder. Many people experience eating disorders every year, and it has become a huge problem. A lot of people try to use laxatives as a way to lose weight quick. The problem is the damage that the extensive usage of laxatives causes. Laxatives are not a solution for weight loss. Weight loss should always be done safe and so that it can be maintained long term. Laxatives for weight loss are not effective, nor is it safe. You should never utilize laxatives for weight loss.

The bottom line is that laxatives should not be used for weight loss. They are not effective and are dangerous. If you suspect anyone abusing laxatives for losing weight, tell someone immediately.

Top 5 Goals A Personal Trainer from Ottawa Can Help You Achieve

Top 5 Goals A Personal Trainer from Ottawa Can Help You Achieve

People are creatures of a habit, which is why sometimes we follow the same routine time and time again, without getting the results we want. But many people are also lazy and not willing to do the work unless someone is keeping them responsible, much like working for a boss. Because if we would not finish our work and make the deadlines, our boss would fire us. The same goes for a personal trainer. If you are looking to lose weight, get in shape and regain your health, as personal trainer from Ottawa can help you achieve just that. Or maybe you already lost most of the weight and are working out already, but are simply unable to lose these last stubborn pounds.

Of course, a personal trainer is not only able to help you lose weight, but also train for a marathon or a bodybuilding contest. Either way, if you feel that you are trying and trying but do not seem to get there, consider to call in the help of a trainer with the right expertise. In this article we will discuss the top 5 goals a personal trainer can help you achieve.

#1 Losing weight

As obesity is on the rise and more and more people are overweight, it comes as no surprise that many of us are trying to lose these unwanted pounds. But still, many of us are trying, yet not succeeding. A personal trainer from Ottawa can change this. Statistics show that people are much more successful achieving their goal if they have someone that is keeping them accountable. Of course, you can ask your partner, friends and family for support, but they lack the expertise and experience – and most often time – to accomplish this and help you reach your goals. With a personal trainer you will have several advantages. First of all, these trainers have tons of experience with people in the exact same situation. This means that they know exactly what it takes to motivate you. However, the experience they have also helps them to put together the right workout schedule for you to suit your needs. Because our bodies adapt to everything quickly, it is important to change our workout frequently. A personal trainer constantly thinks of new routines to get you into the best shape of your life. Besides that, you will also find a lot of support, both mental as well as emotional, with your own personal trainer.

#2 Getting ready for a marathon

You decided to take charge of your health and want to run your first marathon. Or perhaps you are already a seasoned runner, but want to spice of your game and get ahead of the competition. Either way, if you really want to improve your skills, your physique and your condition, a personal trainer can help you achieve just that. A trainer knows all the methods to get you in shape quickly and improve your endurance. He can also teach you how to prepare in the best possible way for a marathon, so you can leave the rest behind and win the race.

#3 A bodybuilding contest

Are you a bodybuilder and are you trying to get ready for a bodybuilding contest? If this is the first time for you, you could use all the help you can get. The competition in this area is fierce and if you do not know how to prepare yourself, you will lose. Personal trainers are very experienced in building muscle fast, yet in a healthy manner. The trainer can also help you achieve the lowest possible body fat percentage, so you will look even more lean during the contest and leave your competitors behind.

#4 Preparing for a match

If you are a professional wrestler or do any kind of other sports, you know how important it is to have great power and great endurance. Sometimes it is also important to lose some water weight, to get into a weight class. Most bodybuilders use diuretics and other harmful substances to achieve this. However, in the long run this can do some serious damage to your body and even be detrimental for your results. Personal trainers can help you lose the water weight fast in a natural way, without causing any negative side effects. Once you made your weight class, it is time to bulk up again fast. With a personal trainer from Ottawa by your side, you will know exactly how to do this in a safe way.

# Getting back into shape

Maybe you are already at your goal weight, but you feel tired and fatigued all the time. If you also have kids, you probably know what a challenge this can be. In these situations, you need all the energy you can get. A personal trainer is not only a good way to lose some weight, but also to regain your health. By looking at your food habits and your workout routine, as personal trainer can quickly determine what areas you can improve and how to do that. He will support you in your efforts and his expertise will help you to get healthy and fit again. Just imagine that you have enough energy to get through the day, without an afternoon slump, and after you come back from work, you are still able to play with your kids instead of falling asleep on the couch. To many, this is a dream come true.

There are still many other goals a personal trainer could help you achieve, but these are beyond the scope of this article. If you are serious about your goals and know that you cannot achieve them on your own, then consider calling on the help of a personal trainer from Ottawa. As with everything, do make sure that you choose the right trainer, with the right expertise and plenty of experience, so that you can be sure that you are getting the right help.

How To Have Success With Figure Contest Prep

How To Have Success With Figure Contest Prep

There’s no doubt about it, preparing for a figure or bikini contest is one of the toughest things you will ever do. At times is can be a grueling schedule to maintain, but the results are always worth it. You will have a sense of accomplishment that nothing else can bring, and the knowledge that you can accomplish any goal in life (in figure, bikini or physique contests, or any other wider goal).

This article is going to explain the differences between figure and bikini contests, as well as guiding you on to how to successfully prepare for a figure competition. You will learn the best and most effective methods of preparation (as used by the best in the business) as well as knowing the choices that need to be made for the best results.

Know what to expect

The first step is knowing what you are getting involved with. As noted in the introduction, the road to a top level physique is not an easy one (which is why so few women are able to achieve such results). It takes tremendous drive, discipline and determination to compete, and to go to levels that you have never pushed your body. This is not mentioned to discourage you, however, those who know that there will be times when they want to give up will be equipped to deal with their emotions and keep moving forward. Having a realistic outlook is very important, and the best in the business know and accept this reality.

This is not to say that every minute will be tough. Far from it. In fact, the majority of time you will enjoy the process, especially as you see the results of your body’s transformation. However, know that the dieting will effect your energy levels and emotions. Just be aware of this and you will more likely to reach the stage in peak condition.

What’s the difference between bikini and figure contests?

This is a common question, and one that you need to understand before making a decision. Many women are suited to one type of competition more than the other. It can hard to know which is the best until you have competed, but here is a breakdown of what you need to succeed in each contest:

crystal_nelson_back

BIKINI CATEGORY

As part of the bikini contest, you need to display balance and shape throughout all aspects of your body, an overall high level of physical appearance, a healthy complexion and good skin tone, as well as demonstrating that you have a high overall presentation (meaning all aspects are present and at a high level). It is also key that competitors show poise when they are on stage, which makes a big difference to the judges. Your posing can show your body in the wrong way or right way. Hire an experienced bikini posing coach suitable to your member affiliation (NPC, CBBF) and you will do much better on stage.

Bikini_Front_IFBB_North_Americans_2013

To the left are three of the top 5 bikini competitors that placed at the IFBB North American Championships in 2013

 

 

Tatiana Green

FIGURE CATEGORY

When it comes to figure competitions, you must have a certain (but small) amount of muscularity with a little separation. However, note that your body should not display any visible striations as seen in bodybuilding contests. Figure competitors are required to have an overall muscle tone and shapely lines with firmness across the body. Importance placed on a healthy appearance, so competitors are not expected to be excessively lean when they step on stage (this is in contrast to physique and bodybuilding competitors who are required to show more muscularity and muscle tone).

Figure_Front_IFBB_North_Americans_2013

To the left are three of the top 5 competitors that placed at the IFBB North American Championships in 2013

 

 

Once you have decided between a bikini and figure contest, you will need to make the following choices:

Pick a contest 12 months out

If you think that you can diet, train and live the lifestyle to get into contest ready shape, then set yourself a goal. Having a deadline is always the best way to succeed in any endeavor, and figure contests are no different. So, find a contest that is at least 12 months away, especially if this is your first time.  You might hear about people that say they contest prepped for 2 months and got ready for a show and did well. Well, guess what.. their diets are at least 90% clean YEAR ROUND and they are training HARD year round.  For beginners, you need to prep minimum 1 year out, IF you want to continue through the levels of events.

Again, depending on what your current condition is like, you might not need this amount of time, as it will be based on the category that you choose to compete in, but a 12 month time frame is something that will get you motivated and make you begin to step up your diet and training. This is the ideal way to approach figure contest prep. As the months go by, you (or a trainer/coach) can see how your body is transforming, and you will have enough time to make changes, which lets you step on stage in the best shape of your life.

Have a critical eye when evaluating your body

It is important that you are honest about your current physique and training protocols. Know what level your body is currently at, what needs to be worked on, and how disciplined you currently are. From here, you can make changes and improve the areas that are lagging behind. If you are eating cleanly now, then you are a step ahead of most new competitors. This is a great indicator that you have what it takes to succeed with figure contest prep.

Find professional advice

Having a professional trainer / coach (from the industry) is one of the best things you can do if you are serious about competing. The best sportspeople have coaches, as do the best bodybuilders, bikini and figure athletes. However, the trainer you choose is the most vital step. Find those who have competed at a high level, or have coached successful figure athletes. Always look at the results you want, and find those who achieved them, or assisted others to achieve them. Speaking to current figure athletes will help you to find the best coaches.

A coach will help you with more than your diet and exercise routine. A coach will give you the accountability to stay on course and remain motivated when you lose focus. A coach will also know when your body needs extra rest, can be pushed harder, and when things are working well. A coach acts as a mentor, confidant and motivator which is just as important as the practical exercise and diet knowledge. As competing in figure contests is an individual endeavor, having support and guidance is a huge asset.

Summary

Review the comparison above if you are deciding between competing in a figure or bikini contest. Once you have made your decision, you can begin your figure contest prep and get started in the best possible way, giving you the greatest chance of success.

Custom Meal Plan to Control Your Weight and Improve Health

custom mealCustom Meal Plan to Control Your Weight and Improve Health

Most people are not very successful with their plans to lose weight because they have problems with diets. They find diets very difficult to organize, because they have to go along with the preparation of ordinary food for the family. Diets can get boring, when you have to eat the same uninteresting food, day in and day out. Ultimately, once a body starts getting used to a diet, the diet actually stops working. All this can be avoided if you go in for a custom meal plan that is tailored to suit your own bodily needs and varied when needed.

Successful Weight Loss

Meals must include the right percentage of carbohydrate, protein and fat, and each person’s metabolism has different requirements. A custom meal plan has more chances of succeeding when it constantly varies its ingredients, while staying within the nutrient ratio percentages. This makes the food interesting and never becomes boring. It reduces the chances of a person falling prey to any temptation for food that is not included in the diet.
Every person’s body has its own demands depending on height, weight, age and gender. This can also be affected by any daily exercise routine that is being followed, which has its own demands on the energy required from the consumed food. Once a person does start losing weight, the metabolism changes, and calorie intakes can reduce, and this has to be reflected in changes made to any custom meal plan.
It is necessary to keep a track of the ratio of body fat to lean body mass, as otherwise you may find yourself losing muscle instead of fat. This does happen, when a very drastic cut is made in calorie intake, and the metabolism anticipates starvation and hunger and prefers to retain the fat for using it as energy and instead takes its protein from muscle.
A successful diet is one that does not mean simply eating less, but requires planning a custom meal that is the best for the individual.

Using Software to Arrive At a Custom Meal Plan

Fortunately dieticians and medical personnel have collaborated with IT experts to develop software that allows you to plan a custom meal depending on your own personal lifestyle, body structure and preferences in food. Sports personnel use such software to plan their own meals that best suits their particular form of activity or sport. The software also allows you to constantly vary your diet until you can find one that is giving you the best results.
This software (there a number of them) gives you a lot of options for food, giving you as many as 14000, and all this within minutes of your feeding in the necessary information. You can choose your own percentages for the carbohydrate, fat and protein. If you are not sure of this, some of them will ask you for some details about height, weight, age, gender, lifestyle and weight loss requirements and make their own suggestions, for the percentages. You can then use this to keep on varying the custom meal plan till it comes up with something that you feel that you can stay with. Once this information is in the system, food choices can be continuously varied, so that there is never any chance of getting bored with food choices.
You can even build your plan around any branded food, food supplement, or a dietary system if that is what you are comfortable with. The data that you have fed in regarding your person will enable the software to give very precise figures for suggested calorie intake. When you feed in this personal data, you are also asked to specify the exercise that you normally undertake, and this software can list as many as 90 or more forms of exercise, which can fit into all known exercise routines followed by people. So the calorie requirement indicated is very precise and can be put on auto pilot. Changes can be made as per new requirements or changed preferences and this is why a custom meal plan has always a greater chance of succeeding. The software also shows you how to track body fat levels to ensure that you have the right ratio of fat to muscle.
The software can help you to customize any meal plan to the goals that you have set out, and suggest how you can maintain a particular weight or even gain weight, if that is what is desired.

A Custom Meal Plan Makes For a Sensible Choice of Diet

At any given time, there will always be some diet plan or the other that has gained a lot of publicity and is popular. Whether it can work for you is a completely different thing. Much of the hype comes from advertising and marketing and is rarely a complete indication of its effectiveness. What you need to do, is stay away from the herd instinct and understand that you have your own unique body type, and are different from everybody else in the way you eat, work, exercise and sleep. Your genetics are different, and this means that food has its own unique effect on your body, something that only you are aware of. You are therefore far more likely to succeed in losing weight or putting it on if you come up with your own custom meal plan.
You must analyze your diet by noting everything that you eat in a normal week. Go online and get the calorie count for your meals. While you are at it, also home in on nutritional information. You will be surprised to find, that there are just a few things in your diet that have very high calorie counts and you must immediately look to find substitutes for them or look at a way of avoiding them all together. It is not necessary for a custom meal plan to include items that you have never eaten before. All that you need to do is eliminate the high calorie ones and look for something else that can keep your nutritional percentages, so that you can continue with your lifestyle. An example of avoidable bad calories is sodas. They are really not necessary and can be easily substituted by plain good old water.

Ensure that you custom meal plan has food that you like to eat, and a diet that you can sustain as a part of your lifestyle in the future. Eat smaller meals at closer intervals. Once a fortnight take a break from your meal plan for a day or two. Just make sure that you do not overeat on those days. The results of your diet will not be far from showing up on your body.