Burn the Fat in 2014

As we welcome 2014, let’s declare it the year to fight fat and those stubborn unwanted pounds you’ve allowed to creep onto your body over the previous years. Maybe you’ve fought it for a week or a month before, but the next thing you know, you’re back to your old eating habits and have even gained five pounds!

There’s no reason to feel guilty or regret the diet decisions you’ve already made. Get over it and get to work so you can rock your jeans better than ever. It takes your commitment and a willingness to get back on track if you have a bad meal or a bad day of eating. Just don’t let it turn into months of poor eating, where you find yourself looking forward to starting fresh again in 2015. Take action now.

Below are my top five strategies to burn your stubborn fat.

Eat foods that satisfy
One of the hottest words in diet research today is “satiety.” A recent study showed that eating oatmeal for breakfast was more satisfying than eating other breakfast cereals. Research has also showed that almonds help people feel satisfied. In my new book, “The Pinterest Diet: How to Pin Your Way Thin,” I share my top 50 MSF (Most Satisfying) Factor Foods. Eating enough protein also helps you to stay satisfied and resist the temptation to snack excessively between meals. To burn fat better, boost your protein intake to about 0.7 grams of protein for each pound of your body weight. Just multiply your body weight, in pounds, by 0.7 to determine the number of protein grams to eat each day. Protein helps boost your metabolism, since it takes more calories to metabolize compared to fat and carbohydrates. Some of my favorite high-quality protein sources include: cottage cheese, lean beef, chicken breast, fish, lentils, beans and Greek yogurt.

Get HIIT Fit
After doing the same ol’ same ol’ at the gym for years without getting the results you desire, it’s time to change it up and try high-intensity interval training (HIIT). HIIT is a great way to maximize calorie burn in a short amount of time. Boosting your heart rate above 75 percent of its maximum has been shown to increase metabolism. My personal HIIT fave is doing Tabatas, which were developed by Izumi Tabata, a former training coach for the Japanese speed skating team. The basis of his method is to work at an extremely high level for short periods of time. Each workout is four minutes long, consisting of 20-second, high-intensity work followed by 10 seconds of rest; this continues for a total of eight cycles. Using his method has worked wonders for my clients as well as myself. A few exercise examples of how you could do Tabatas include: jump squats, burpees, star jumps and mountain climbers.

Log it
Keeping track of your food and beverage intake has been shown to improve weight loss success. My favorite apps for logging food intake are LoseIt and MyFitnessPal, which allow you to easily record your food intake to help keep you accountable.
7:30 p.m. rule
Evening eating is a huge problem for a lot of people, and I’ve seen some sabotage their daily efforts by eating after 7:30 p.m. Late-night eating is often done mindlessly while watching TV or browsing the Internet. When you eat after dinner, your body is already busy digesting your dinner, so instead of burning fat while you sleep, you’ll be digesting the food from your late night munchies. You want your body to be burning fat while you sleep, so stop eating after dinner. This is the rule that helped me lose my “Freshman 15” from college.
Say “no” to five or six small meals per day
As a registered dietitian for over 16 years, I have seen many people who are trying to lose weight following the common expert advice to eat five or six small meals each day. However, I rarely see this actually work for clients or with my own diet. I’ve found that people who do this actually graze all day long and never stop eating except to sleep. Shift to a three-meals-per-day mentality. During these three meals, make sure a good source of protein, a whole grain and fruits and vegetables are included. Eat a satisfying meal, and then wait to eat again until the next meal. That also puts your body into the calorie deficit you need to start losing body fat.

 

Categories: Health & Wellness, Wellness Wisdom

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