Healthy snack ideas to help you stay on track with your diet…

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This is a picture of some healthy snacks I picked up this weekend. I wanted to be sure that I have enough healthy snacks in my house so I don’t either snack too much on unhealthy foods or too little on healthy ones. Over snacking on unhealthy foods is bad for obvious reasons but why is it bad to “under snack”? First, snacking is good because it keeps your metabolism going. Second, if you turn up to a meal “over” hungry you will eat too much. I know because I do it all the time! Part of my battle the next 8 weeks is coming up with snacks that are both satisfying, healthy and easy. I’m constantly on the go, as a mom with 2 kids and multiple activities going at all times, I need some quick and easy options. I’m sure a lot of you can relate even if you don’t have children yet.

Here is a list of easy snacks that are satisfying and healthy…

– Fruit. Pretty obvious, but fruit can be more delicious than candy if you get what’s in season and try to by organic. Ask your local grocer what fruits taste especially good right now and they will tell you.

– Vegetables. I love baby carrots, peppers, broccoli etc. Dip them in a low-calorie dressing and they taste delicious.

– Toast and all natural preserves or peanut butter.

– Greek yogurt. I love Fage for the taste and it has less sugar than most yogurt.

– Almonds mixed with dried cranberries. Great for satisfying that sweet and salty craving.

– Humus and pita.

-Avocado and tomatoes with a drizzle of olive oil, salt and pepper.

What other healthy snack ideas can you share with us?

Xx,

Hilary Ann Lambert

Basics of weight loss…

 

I’m really excited to get started on our “8 to Great” slim down challenge starting this Saturday! To gear up for 2 months of intensely focused health & wellness, I wanted to go over a few basic facts about weight loss.

1) Start by counting calories. This is not something you need to do forever, but it’s a good way to gauge how much you’re actually consuming. When you realize your calorie intake per day you will be encourage to cut back on some things.

How many calories a day should you be consuming to lose weight? Here are some numbers that will be helpful for you to achieve your goal:  1,200 / day = 15 pounds, 1,500 /day = 10 pounds, 1,800 / day = 5 pounds

2) Recognize your “triggers”. For example, I always want sweets at night-time after I’ve put the kids to bed. Many a night I have devoured a large ice cream sundae as a way of “rewarding” myself for getting through the day. I know this is a tough time for me so I need to figure ways of combatting it. Sometimes I actually just go to sleep in order to avoid tempation! And that’s perfectly fine, I get good rest and wake up feeling great that I didn’t eat a ton of calories in sugar the night before.

Here are some ideas on how to control binges: 

Workout instead. Go to the gym, take a walk, perform some yoga poses to get your mind off of food.

Meditation. This practice is so good for you for so many reasons, check out my post on the benefits here. One being that it’s a way of clearing your head of distractions, like food.

Substitute. Find foods that are healthy and low in fat, calories and sugar to substitute the unhealthy craving. Since I have such a sweet tooth I’ve been buying a lot of dried fruit to keep in my house when I’m itching for something sweet. Dried cranberries, mango and pineapple are delicious and satisfying.

2) Invest in a food scale. I know it sounds daunting, but weighing things like fruits, vegetables and meat are a good idea to know exactly how much you are consuming.

3) Get a pedometer. Start implementing some moderate exercise into your day. A good way to know you’re getting the right amount of exercise is by having a pedometer on you to keep track of your steps. It’s suggested that you take 10,000 steps per day to maintain good cardiovascular health and burn a fair amount of calories.

4) Plan ahead. Many people want to lose weight for a special event and attempt to crash diet and rely on very unhealthy ways of losing weight in order to do so. Here’s an idea, plan ahead! Look at your calendar and see what you have coming up so you can be prepared for those times when you want to look especially fit. Crash diets play a number on your health and have a very negative affect on your metabolism.

5) Prepare yourself to make permanent changes. It’s been said over and over again that if you want to lose weight and keep it off you need to make lifestyle changes.

The next 8 weeks I’m going to show you ways to live a healthier, thinner and happier life. These are all suggestions that if taken seriously and implemented into your daily activities as “habits” will make you look and feel your best everyday.

Do you have anything to add to this list? Do you have any questions for me or my nutrition consultant before we begin our 8 week slim down? 

 

Exercise requires healthy joints.

My 8 week slim down plan starts next week and of course a big part of slimming down requires a fair amount of exercise. Many workouts that promise intense results require a lot of high impact moves which take their toll on your joints. My workouts will have some high impact exercises but I will be sure to include modifications for those of you who prefer or don’t feel comfortable performing these moves.

A good way to prepare yourself to live a more active lifestyle is by taking care of your joints:

Keeping your joints healthy will allow you to run, walk, jump, play sports, and do the other things you like to do. Physical activity, a balanced diet, avoiding injuries, and getting plenty of sleep will help you stay healthy and keep your joints healthy too.

Here’s how:

1) Use it or lose it! Staying active promotes joint health, if you don’t use your joints they try to get away with doing as little as possible. So stay active and make sure your stretch before and after working out so your joints get the extension they need.

2) Weight Training. Weight training not only builds muscle that protect your joints but also increases bone strength and thickness. Thicker bones protect your bones from problems down the road.

3) Don’t over do it! Exercise helps protect your joints but is also detrimental to them if you are not doing them correctly or if you are overdoing it. Pay attention to your body and do what feels comfortable for your. Exercise should not hurt. It’s good to challenge yourself aerobically and strength wise but your joints should not hurt you in the process.

Here are some foods that can help:

1) Salmon. Omega 3 fatty acids are a great anti-inflammatory which is important for joint health. Salmon particularly wild salmon, is a great source of this.

2) Almonds. Rich in vitamin E, these nuts protect the outer membranes of the joints.

3) Papaya. This fruit contains the most vitamin C of any. Vitamin C is an anti-oxidant that penetrates into cells and protects DNA from free radical damage.

Want to know more food that help? Check out the list here: 8 Foods for Healthy Joints

Make sure to follow along on the U Go Baby fitness Plan starting March 1. It’s only 8 weeks and will get you into great shape for summer if you take it seriously. 

Xx,

Hilary Ann Lambert