Reasons Why You Can’t Lose Weight

15 Jan

bloated

I’m sure we have all indulged a bit too much over the festive season. It is scary how quickly I went back to my old eating habits and exercise fell by the way-side.

Hopefully these tips will help us pinpoint where we need to look at to improve ourselves, get motivated and get back on track again!

 

You are drinking too much

Most people overlook liquid calories entirely.  We don’t notice how a seemingly single-sized juice can or bottle actually contains 2 or 3 servings – and therefore 2 or 3 times more calories.

Your best bet : Replace juice with water, and eat your calories instead of drinking them.  I love adding crushed mint and strawberries or lemon juice to my water to flavour it.

 

 

You eat fruity yoghurt

yoghurt

Most fruit-flavoured yoghurts and plenty of other healthy-sounding foods are sweetened with fructose.  But unlike other sweeteners, this one does not tell you that you are full. The result is you end up eating way more calories than your body actually needs. Why not have plain yoghurt with muesli or fresh fruit?

 

You indulge yourself a little too often

junk food

When you indulge in sweet or fatty foods regularly, you end up craving larger portions to feel satisfied.  Need a sweet treat everyday? Try dark chocolate, almonds, a protein bar or some fruit.

 

You are depriving yourself

no carbs

 

When you cut out whole foods groups (like carbs or fat, for instance) you set yourself up to binge eat them the next time you let yourself splurge. So instead of crossing them off your grocery list completely, learn how to manage your strongest cravings by replacing them with healthy carbs and fats.

I have replaced my potatoes with sweet potatoes and green veg, and it really does make a difference.

 

You think working out gives you a “pass”

Exercising can make you want to eat more, but that doesn’t mean you should.  And it does not help that most people grossly overestimate the number of calories they burn working out.

It took me years to realize that the half hour of exercise I was putting in was not cancelling out the junk food I consumed. Fuel your body with healthy foods to give you more energy when working out.

 

 

 

 

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3 Habits for Weight Loss Success!

3 Sep

Honestly, I’m sure you have heard it all before. But these 3 tips are tested and proven by myself! I lost 20 kilograms and kept it off for over a year by sticking to good habits and these tips.

We all know that eating less and moving more leads to weight loss, but forming these habits will maximize your loss, and once they become second nature, they will help you get through your day without having to think too hard about every food move you make.

Daily Food Diary / Journal

food journal

I lost most of my weight on the weight watchers programme.  One of the main reason I will always strongly advocate weight watchers is the easy steps one takes to lose weight. It sounds almost too easy. But actually tracking my daily food intake allowed me to be aware of what I was eating and accountable to myself.  And it takes a couple of seconds a day to plan. What I would do is plan my daily food the night before, so I would leave no chance of failure. Its so easy to just eat anything when you don’t plan, but when you do, success is guaranteed!!

Now that I have left weight watchers, I use a mobile food journal called myfitnesspal, and I still log my food everyday. Its the best way to maintain weight and health.

Don’t Skip Meals

healthy meals

Skipping meals increases food cravings and deadens your mood.  A study found that after fasting, we instinctively reach for high-calorie foods.  Instead of testing your willpower to resist, avoid intense food cravings by staying satisfied.  That means eating breakfast every morning as well as snacking reasonably when you are hungry.

Oatmeal, Greek yoghurt and hard-boiled eggs are quick morning eats that don’t take much thought.  By always having these on hand and adding some fruit or raw veggies, you can make a meal.

MOVE!

Walking

Most don’t even give exercise a thought because they think it would be too hard. But just moving instead of sitting on the couch is still burning calories!!

We all have to start somewhere. We are not going to look like supermodels over night, but with consistent exercise (3-4 times a week) you can start to build yourself up to more challenging workouts and become the best version of YOU.

I often recommend walking as a great way to start getting an exercise routine going. Find a buddy to walk with you, find a scenic route to walk along, play some music while you are walking, and then it won’t even feel like exercise. There have been many days when I’m just stressed, and exercising really does help to relieve tension and decompress.

So give these habits a go…you won’t be disappointed. With consistency, you will see results and feel sooooo much better as well!

Baked salmon dinner (with wilted garlic spinach and squash)

27 Aug

Hi guys!

I have previously posted a salmon dinner, but this one is even easier! Its on my Facebook fitness page and so I thought I would put the recipe on here for ease of reference.

Salmon dinner

Buy a piece of salmon from any store that sells fresh fish. I bought mine at Pick n Pay – approximately R25 for 120g of salmon.

Once I brought my salmon home , I washed the fish and made my marinade. Take a little low sodium soya sauce, honey and a little warm water and form a mixture. Taste to see if its the level of sweet and sour you like. Once its perfect, put it in a zip-lock bag with your salmon and let it marinade in the fridge for 30 minutes.  In the meanwhile, put your oven on 200C.

salmon-marinating

After marinading for 30 minutes I removed the fish and let it come down to room temperature.  I then put the fish in an oven dish with the marinade and let it cook uncovered for 15 minutes. Once fish is flaky, its ready to eat!

For my wilted spinach, I buy ready-cut spinach at Pick n Pay and wash thoroughly through a strainer (spinach tends to carry loads of grit).

Spinach

I then heat a little olive oil in a hot pan and add the spinach once all water has been drained off.  You need quite alot of spinach to yield a nice serving.  Once the spinach starts to wilt, add a little crushed garlic and keep moving around. Once its completely soft, its ready to eat!

Transfer your spinach to your plate, top it with the salmon and sauce and make some squash (or any other veg) for the side and you have a healthy, super-easy meal that takes less than 20 minutes in total 🙂

 

Please visit my Facebook fitness page for tips and motivation – https://www.facebook.com/pages/Natalies-Health-and-Fitness-Page/398644746900901?ref=hl

 

P90X not so much…

15 Aug

Hey guys!

Been a while since I’ve written a post. My family has been sick, my daughter specifically, and it has been quite a trying and tiring time.

 

I know I committed to P90X some time ago, and I’m ashamed to say that I did not stick to it because of  my schedule. I did find that the workouts were a bit too long for me, especially with working in the day and running a household at the same time.  Yes, I know, anything is possible if I put my mind to it. But I also have to be realistic for me and do whats best for me.

 

I did Chalean Extreme a few months ago and found it incredibly challenging and exciting. And I love that the workouts range from 37 mins on most days and 2 days of just under an hour. That is just perfect for me!!!

 

This time around I am upping my weights and resistance, and judging by the pain in my biceps and hamstrings this morning, I can say I got a great workout and am still bringing it!!!!

 

What workouts are you guys doing? What challenges you? P90X has not seen the last of me yet though… I have committed to tackling it after Chalean Extreme!

 

Do whats right

Cauliflower Rice!

18 Jul

Who says healthy food is boring??

 

I am always looking for ways to spruce up veggies, and this is seriously THE easiest veggie dish I have ever made!!  My daughter cleaned her plate and the whole family came back for seconds :).  All you need is a cauliflower and spices of your choice.

 

Cauliflower

Take a whole cauliflower and cut in half.  Then grate the cauliflower.

 

Heat a non-stick pan and add the cauliflower to the pan, and proceed to dry fry the cauliflower.  I then added some crushed garlic, pepper and aromat.  As the cauliflower cooks, it will start to resemble rice / couscous.

 

Cauliflower rice in pan

 

It literally takes  2 minutes. Once done, plate up. I served mine with roasted skinless chicken breasts, butternut and squash.

 

Cauliflower rice plated

 

 

 

Quick calorie burning workout!

10 Jul

Some days we have more time than others. Yesterday I had limited time, so skipped my normal P90X plyometrics workout and did this instead, and it was no joke!! It got my heart racing and got me sweating.

Better doing something than nothing at all, right? 🙂

Tone up tight routine

4 Foods that Fight off Belly Bloat

10 Jul

Its time to de-puff that pouch! Bloating – fluid building up between cells in your body – can be caused by poor digestion, too much sodium or your period. But according to experts, you can usually avoid it if you pay attention to what you are eating.

 

Water with Lemon

Lemon water

A lot people skip sipping on water when they are bloated, when in reality we should be doing the opposite.  Retaining water is actually your body’s way of holding on to fluid so you don’t dehydrate.

If you’re having a bloating problem, that’s the time to push the fluids, not restrict them.  Since lemons are a natural diuretic and gentle laxative when added to warm water, consuming the liquid can help reduce the amount of salt retained in the body.

 

 

Celery

celery

Over the years, this green crunchy stalk has been used as a digestive aid to regulate bowel movements and to control intestinal gas because its chemicals are known to decrease fluid retention.

Other top picks for veggies that will help reduce fluid retention include cucumber, summer squashes, parsley and any other kind of leafy greens.

 

 

Watermelon

watermelon

All kinds of melon are beneficial to your health, but watermelon is known as one of the juiciest fruits on the stand.  That’s probably because it consists of 92 % water 🙂

For DIY spa water, try mixing lemon, cucumber, watermelon and rosemary for an ultimate belly-deflating fix.

 

 

Rosemary and Turmeric

rosemary tumeric

Rosemary has been used to treat everything from heartburn and headaches to toothaches and high blood pressure. But it also treats intestinal gas and helps indigestion.

Valued in Asia for its ability to fight pain and inflammation, turmeric is also key in aiding upset stomach and bloat reduction. Use the bright yellow spice in a curry dish or to flavour your favourite foods.

 

 

Tips to Ban Bloat for Good!

Bloating

1.  Keep your sodium intake to a minimum and opt for fresh food over processed. 

2. Limit your alcohol intake. When you drink too much you can get dehydrated, which will result in your body pulling in fluid.

3. For bloat as a result of constipation, focus on food that hold water, like wheat bran or all-bran cereal.

4. Your lifestyle can affect bloating, so make sure you get enough sleep and get in at least 30 minutes of physical activity each day to keep fluid moving in your body. If you travel often and sit on a plane or just sit at your desk all day, make sure to move your legs or take a lap around the office every hour.