Bob Greene's New Year, New You
"It's the big new year's resolution and every year people do the wrong thing," says fitness guru Bob Greene. Here are his four tips for the right way to lose weight this year:
Get active (not negotiable!)
"The first step is really about moving more," Bob says. "We're only eating about two or three percent more food than 20 years ago, but we're moving 16, 17, 18 percent less than we did back then. If you don't move, you're more prone to virtually every disease known, whether it's headaches, heart disease, cancer -- your rates go up. Become an active human being and find things that you enjoy doing."
Eliminate emotional eating
Bob suggests "looking at your emotionally eating. If you're trying to save 20 calories here or 30 calories there, but then you're pounding food down during an emotional eating episode at night, that's where you do the damage. Late night eating is usually a sign that something is off in the rest of your life."
Reorganize how you eat
"You should shut down your eating two or three hours before bedtime," Bob advises. "Nothing good happens when food sits overnight. Whatever you eat at night usually ends up pasted to your hips." Bob also recommends that people eat breakfast even if they're not hungry. If you wake up and you're not hungry, that means your metabolism is just limping along."
Start replacing foods with healthier alternatives.
Bob points out that a typical breakfast of three pancakes, butter, syrup, two scrambled eggs and three pieces of bacon can contains as much as 1,400 calories, 73 grams of fat, 28 grams of saturated fat and about 3,000 mg of sodium. Bob suggests replacing it with a Salmon and Spinach Frittata, which has only 208 calories, 14 grams of fat, 4 grams of saturated fat and 225 mg of sodium.
Chicken Parmesan is another popular dish, but Bob explains that when it's fried and breaded, accompanied with two cups of pasta with sauce and topped with about 3 ounces of melted provolone cheese, this meal contains between 1,300-1,600 calories, 65 grams of fat, 45 grams of artery-clogging saturated fat and 3,000-4,000 grams of sodium. In comparison, the recipe for Shrimp and Edamame Rotini in The Best Life Diet contains only 486 calories, 3 grams of saturated fat, 537 mg of sodium and 10 grams of fiber.
When it comes to beverages, Bob recommends eliminating soda from your diet and replacing it with water or tea. "Tea helps to prevent many diseases from colds to heart disease," he says. "Green tea is the one that has the most health improving properties."
Rachael asks if it matters when you work out during the day. "It's better to work out in the morning," Bob answers. "You’ll have better results -- you'll raise your metabolism and burn calories all day long. Plus, research has shown that morning exercisers are much more consistent than evening folks because once you've worked out you don't misbehave on the food side -- you won't want to ruin that workout with half a pie!"
Bob answers several questions from Rach's audience.
What's the best food for your body if you want to lose weight?
Bob explains, "We were meant to eat a variety of foods, so don’t stick to just one food. At breakfast, you should really be trying to get a combination of good complex carbohydrates and proteins, so eggs and egg whites are really good. Try soy milk over your cereal, and get some healthy fats -- avoid some of the trans fats and limit saturated fats. And the best cooking oil to bring into your kitchen is olive oil."
How many days a week should I work out if I'm trying to lose weight?
"If you're trying to gain health benefits, three times a week is fine," Bob says. "But if you're trying to drop weight, it needs to be a minimum of five times a week. Exercise elevates your metabolism, and if you start taking two days off in a row you're going to lose most of the benefits."
"I can't get rid of the baby weight from my last pregnancy. I've hit a plateau -- how can I lose those last five pounds?"
"Plateaus are fascinating," Bob says. "The number one way to break a plateau is is to up your pace. Time yourself when you run -- if you're jogging or walking at a certain pace and you improve that pace, your body has to release body fat. Increasing pace is number one way to get off yourself off a plateau."
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