Diet tips

To remind myself of help and info collected over time.

January – Preparation. The 7 “P”s of preparation. Prior Planning and Preparation Prevents Piss Poor Performance
Weigh the food not yr body. Kitchen scales are more important than bathroom scales. Learn what the calorie content is. Think before you put the food past your lips.
Measure. Chest, waist, hips. Your chest is over your nipples. Your waist is above your belly button and goes round the small of your back. Your hips are mid way between your belly button and your crotch. Measure weekly. Count inch loss, not weight loss.
Snacking. Here’s a list of snacks around 100 calories. If you are a snacker like me, make an allowance for 2 or 3 daily in your calorie count. To be successful you have to enjoy your new lifestyle.
Apple 80
Banana 100
yogurt 100 or less – choose carefully
hard boiled egg
babybel cheese
30gm sultanas
1 tablespoon mayonaise ( if salad features in a diet, mayo is a must for me)
30gm cream cheese
60gm prunes
2 custard cream biscuits
pack of crisps (slightly more – 127 cals for the cheese and chive ones)
3 crispbreads with marmite or bovril or cottage cheese

Exercise. If you have a LOT of weight to lose – take it steady. The obvious ones are
Park at the other side of the carpark and walk to the office
Take the stairs not the lift (heavy stuff to carry ? Put the stuff in the lift and race it upstairs)
A 20 minute walk at lunchtime burns about 100 calories.

Yoga. I’m a great believer in yoga. It aligns all your insides into the right spaces, helping with inch loss as well as balance, strength and breathing.

Put the radio/music on in the kitchen. A good tune comes on, you can dance, with or without a tin of beans in each hand

Wii fit is waste of time – use it for entertainment but you won’t get fit doing Wii fit activities

I have a sweat dance Wii disc which is better. Choose what you want to dance to and keep going till you reach a target sweat point. Allow half an hour. (I’ve got a zumba disc as well but find the dance one better)

So Throughout January, you have measured your food and learned the calories. So you know how many you are consuming and can make a decision how many less you will stuff into your body. Measured your body, and decided what your ideal measurements are.  planned your snacks, and planned exercise. If you have a lot of weight to lose, your target to loss should be 10% of your current weight. When you have achieved that, take off 10% again. This gradual change allows for it being more difficult to maintain the loss, and helps to keep you motivated. So if you are 100kg, target losing 10kg, then 9kg. No time limits, just working towards that. But focus more on the inch loss, as a good diet will build muscle as well as burning fat, and muscle weighs a bit more than fat.

So in  you are ready to start.

How do you start your diet? Heres some ideas.

Whatever the daily calorie level you have decided, take 200 calories off, on 2 of the days and add them to two other days. This gives you the same calories overall, but allows for good days when you are feeling strong, and not so good days when you need that extra pasty or wine. eg if daily calories is 1800, then it would be 3 days at 1800, 2 days at 2000 and 2 days at 1600. in any order over the 7 days.

Start counting from your evening meal. For me this would be startig at 6pm when i get home from work and have my evening meal. In the morning, the evening calories are deducted and i work with the remainder through the day, but I only have to count to 6pm and then I can start again.This gives you chance to save calories in the morning and through the work day as you can probably be more disciplined in the day, and look forward to starting again at your evening meal.

Some people  restrict the time period that they eat. Eating breakfast as late as possible, and having nothing at all after a meal in the early evening. It does work, if you can avoid snacking in the evening, which is when most of us fall down. But you can also find it difficult to sleep if you are hungry. I’m a night owl, so this diet is better for someone who goes to bed early, and doesn’t feel too hungry generally in the morning.

Portion size

You have probably seen the “percentage plates” – 1/4 protein, 1/4 carbs and the rest veggies. I’m not a fan of veggies. I’ll eat brocolli or green beans or a few carrots, but i dont want all of them together. I think if I have one of them each day,  twice a week, thats me done! But portion wise, I think just having a small plate works for me. And the portion control tip I remember most  is – a portion of  Protein is about the size of a pack of cards. Thats a fish portion or a steak or a quarter pound burger. The potato or rice or pasta etc is the size of your closed fist, so that can vary a little from small to larger people but its an average measure. Then fill the rest of the plate with veg or salad. If theres too much plate, use a smaller one.

Don’t forget the gravy! Now, I overestimate all my calories, with the excuse that I can then ignore the gravy, or the mayo, or the sauce. But the sauce in some rich meals can be high in carbs and high in hidden sugars, so I would recommend either counting the calories in, or only having half what you would normally have, or manage without. Your choice – the calories have to count in the end.

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