Friday, November 15, 2013

Fit Friday - Tips, Tricks and Inspiration

I apologize for the inconsistency in posting lately; my parents are in town for several weeks and I am suddenly super-stingy with my time, trying to soak up every minute of family time!  Nonetheless, the fight to fitness goes on so here I am!

I have a tip: If you want to change the state of your health, don't spend time worrying about small things, like the timing of meals, but focus on reducing calories and increasing activity. This article on timing of meals is interesting, but in the end, metabolism plays only a small part in weight loss. Exercising more can reduce stress and build muscle -- which does speed up our metabolism -- but most importantly, the common side effect of exercise is that when we feel better about ourselves, we make better choices about what we eat. We all want the magic thing that will make weight loss easy and while speeding up our metabolism can certainly aid our efforts, in the end, it's all about what we eat versus what we burn.

The trick of the week is one I picked up at Weight Watchers from last week:  Put your fork down and take a small sip of water after every bite.  It's a simple tip to slow down my eating enough for my brain to get the message that I've had enough. The question is, how will I remember? My plan is to take the time to set a lovely table in the dining room each evening so I remember -- this is family time, not mindless-eating-time. I think is as much a challenge for the week as a trick; who is going to try this with me?

For this week's inspiration, I offer this wonderful article from the amazing Dr. Katz. When I suggest to people that toddlers and children can eat whatever adults eat, they think I'm crazy. Even some of the healthy eaters we know feed their young children differently than they eat. Dr. Katz says we are ruining our children with "kid food" and I agree. After 10 years of eating mostly home cooked healthy food with limited forays into processes or restaurant food, I will tell you that those odd chemical flavorings that are added to almost everything these days taste really weird to me! My concern is that if we acclimate our children to these chemical flavors, real food won't stand a chance.

The flavors in nature's food are more subtle than chemically enhanced ones. Kids will complain at first so we parents have to be patient but any child can learn to eat healthful, real food. Bento boxes are one way we've made real food fun for our kids. One of my proudest moments as a parent came when a worker at school commented on my 4-year-olds love of all types of vegetables. Oh and be realistic; my kids go to birthday parties and trick-or-treating. They get their occasional dose of candy and confection. It's all about moderation and a gradual lifestyle shift. Please read the article for yourself and let me have your thoughts.

I'm healed up from a foot injury so back to my Couch to 5K program this week.  Have a good weekend, everyone.