Posts Tagged ‘Weight Loss’

Sugar and Weight Gain

Wednesday, November 23rd, 2011
 
Kelly Kalbfleisch, NPTI Certified Personal Trainer
Manager of CoachMeFit Ann Arbor

 

I am angry, angry at sugar! 

Due to an injury, I have been very limited in my workouts for about 11 weeks now.  Being a trainer, I know that when something like this happens, it is imperative that my diet be as flawless as possible (which is extremely hard for a girl who loves to eat).  This is where my hatred of sugar comes into play.

I dislike yogurt, but I thought I would give it another shot (for about the 50th time).  I found a few flavors that looked like they may taste ok.  First one was great.  Second one was great as well.  I started thinking something must be wrong with this yogurt if I actually like it.  For some reason, I didn’t bother to turn this little yummy of cup of goodness around to view the nutrition facts, which I typically do before I purchase any food.  It’s low fat = great. It’s low calorie = great.  Then I see it and mid bite I throw the half eaten yogurt in the trash.  Out of the 25 grams of Carbohydrates 22 grams of them are SUGAR!  WHAT?!?!  I could not believe it.  Well, actually, I could have believed it if I would have been thinking straight.  I blame it on the lack of exercise :)  

This led me to start thinking about all my clients who are struggling with their diet and weight loss.  Low fat and low calorie does not mean the product is good for you.  I found a great article that explains what sugar does in the body and why it causes people to gain weight. 

“Isn’t she sweet?” “Rose are Red, Violets are Blue, Sugar is sweet and so are You.” “Visions of sugar plums danced in their head.” “Come on over here, Sugar.” It is everywhere. Sugar, which used to be a rare treat, is in almost every home today. It has woven its way into the fabric of our society. Grandma’s cookies, birthday cakes, Christmas candy, Valentine’s chocolates, the pies and pastries at every celebration feast. Sugar is everywhere.

So, if it is that prominent it can’t be that bad can it? Well, look at the rise in popularity, and availability, of sugar and you will see a similar rise in obesity rates. The research is still out on the different types of naturally occurring sugars and all of the sugar alcohols and artificial sweeteners, so we will focus on refined sugar. This includes white, cane sugar and brown sugar.

First, let’s take a look at what sugar does. Glucose is used by the body for energy. The muscles and organs use it to supply the energy they need to perform their regular functions. In order for the glucose to get to the cells that need it there needs to be a transporter. This is where insulin comes in. It transports the glucose to the cells with the open receptors. Once all receptor sites in the brain, other organs, and muscles are closed the insulin then takes the glucose to storage sites (fat stores.) Most foods can be broken down into glucose for energy but it takes time through the digestive process.

Refined sugar is rapidly converted to glucose in the body. That is why you get a buzz or sugar “high” right after you eat sugar. The problem is that because there is so much sugar in the system after a sugary snack the body cannot utilize all of the glucose so the body releases more insulin to rapidly get the glucose out of the system. The easiest way for the body to do that is to shuffle the excess into fat stores quickly. Then you crash. The body now wants the extra energy, but the energy has been stored away so your energy levels drop to the floor.

So, as you can see the influx of sugar causes the body to quickly take all of the excess energy flowing through the blood stream and put it in fat stores. Not a positive situation for a dieter. Since they are trying to lose fat, not gain it.

So, it’s easy then, just don’t add sugar to my foods and drinks, right? That is only a small piece of it. While this will help, it is not the complete solution. Sugar is hidden in many of our foods. One place people are surprised to find so much sugar is in the low-fat and no-fat foods. To make up for the taste lost by eliminating the fat, food manufacturers dump in extra sugar. A fat free cake may have almost twice as much sugar as the regular alternative. Drinks are another area of concern. Look at soft drinks, they are almost completely sugar, with almost 65 grams of sugar in a bottle.

Sugar can quickly sabotage fat loss efforts, but it may not be as simple as throwing out the sugar bowl. Reading labels is important. Food companies seldom list “sugar” in the ingredients. It will usually be sucrose, dextrose, or some other “-ose” item. Looking at the nutrient breakdown will be a good indicator. Under carbohydrates, companies now have to show sugar and fiber content. If a food has 15 grams of carbohydrates per serving and 12 of those are sugar you might want to find another choice. Don’t let these little white granules destroy your diet. Read labels carefully, avoid extra sugar, and eat a mix of nutrients during your meals for a more even blood sugar level.

article By Jennifer Olsen

My advice: READ LABELS…..always!!

Share:

Plan Ahead to Prepare Your Meals!

Wednesday, October 5th, 2011

Kelly Kalbfleisch, NPTI Certified Personal Trainer

Manager of CoachMeFit Ann Arbor


What do you eat for breakfast and lunch?  Are you eating on the fly or feel you have no time for lunch?  I’m a firm believer, and I do this myself, in preparing meals for breakfast and lunch on one particular day during the week.  This way, I have everything in the fridge ready for me to grab to take to work.  I’ve fallen victim to the “I didn’t have time to eat” or “I have to eat whatever is fast” excuses.  I am now prepared and even if I only have 10 minutes to eat, I have healthy food instead of take-out.  I found this article that has really good tips to help you get focused and prepared.

“You wouldn’t start your day, go on vacation, or show up to a job interview without a plan, right? So think of meal prep and packing your cooler as your plan for a healthy body.  Your biggest obstacle is going to be managing your time so that getting fit and healthy doesn’t compete with the rest of your commitments.  Prioritizing and planning ahead will actually make life easier and help facilitate your success in the long term.  While it may seem trivial and even stressful at times, preparedness is one of the most important elements of a healthy lifestyle.  Having everything packed and ready to go will be less stressful than leaving your meal choices up to chance and heading to whatever take-out joint is nearby at mealtime.

Try these tips:

1.       Schedule some prep time: A lot of people (including myself) use Sundays as our shop and prep day.  Pick a day when you have a few free hours to buy and prepare your food for the week.

2.       Pack Cook-Free Snacks: Toss these items into your bag for effortless re energizing:

Raw almonds

Protein Powder

Low-fat String Cheese

Chopped Veggies

Fruit

Ezekiel Bread

Hummus

3.       Get yourself a cooler: Invest in a good, manageable-sized cooler (12-can size or larger) for storing your meals and snacks.  Pack it the night before and store in the fridge so you can grab it and go.

4.       Don’t forget your Gym Bag: Being prepared doesn’t stop with meals.  Pack your gym clothes and sneakers the night before, not as you’re flying out the door.”

-Oxygen Magazine

Engrave this word into your brain:  PREPARE

If you need more tips on what foods to prepare and/or pack, ask your trainer!

 

Share:

5 Ways to Jumpstart Your Fat Loss

Tuesday, August 2nd, 2011
Kelly Kalbfleisch, NPTI Certified Personal Trainer
Manager of CoachMeFit Ann Arbor

Fall is fast approaching.  If you’ve had a little too much enjoyment in terms of BBQ and beverages this summer you may need a kick start for the fall.  Here are a few tips to get you back on track.  Set some goals and burn some of that unwanted and unhealthy fat!!

1. Count your steps

Not literally, of course, but by using a pedometer and recording how many steps you take each day. According to The Cooper Institute for Aerobic Research, 10,000 steps a day will get you started on the path to fat loss and cardiovascular health. Some good ways to add to your count? Take the stairs; ditch the email and walk over to the person sitting down the hall instead; or walk with a buddy at lunch.

2. Eat more

You’ve heard it before and we’ll say it again: plan to eat six small meals throughout your day to control your caloric intake. You’ll give your body more fuel to tackle those 10,000 steps!

3. Sleep more

Ok, cut out on the late night talk-show circuit tonight and hit the sack! Studies reveal that two hormones are responsible for your need to feed: ghrelin and leptin. Ghrelin tells your body it’s hungry, while leptin tells your body it’s full. When you don’t sleep, ghrelin thrives and so will your appetite, so tonight be sure to get your vitamin “zzzz.”

4. Lift weights

The healthier your muscles are the more they will aid in your showdown against fat. Weight training boosts your metabolism and that, in turn, will melt fat and keep your body incinerating all day.

5. Fiber + protein = fat loss

This twosome helps cut cravings by keeping you satisfied longer by breaking down food at a slower rate in your body. Before the day is through, whip up a protein shake, steam some leafy green veggies or pack dried fruit for your afternoon snack. Whatever it is, just make a point of doing it!

 Article from Oxygenmag.com

Share:

Shrimp Pesto Pasta

Wednesday, April 27th, 2011

Kelly Kalbfleisch, NPTI Certified Personal Trainer
Manager of CoachMeFit Ann Arbor

This week I wanted to share one of my favorite recipes with you.  Enjoy!!

Ingredients:

 4 oz Barilla Plus penne pasta

12–14 medium-size precooked, peeled shrimp

 3 c chopped baby spinach

1 tomato, chopped

3 Tbsp ready-made pesto OR  pesto dry mix and add water and oil.

3 Tbsp crumbled Gorgonzola cheese

2 Tbsp diced walnuts

How to Make it:

1.  Boil the pasta according to the package directions. 

2.  If you’re using frozen shrimp, defrost them by running warm water over them.

3.  Drain the pasta.

4.  Transfer the pasta to a large bowl and add the remaining ingredients, stirring well to help wilt the spinach and mix in the pesto. Makes 2 servings

 

EXTRA CREDIT

Eat with mixed greens and two or three slices of raw tomato, sprinkled lightly with salt and drizzled with some balsamic vinaigrette.

 

Per Serving (Including salad):  490 calories, 27 grams (g) protein, 47 g carbohydrates, 22 g fat (6 g saturated), 8 g fiber, 515 milligrams sodium

Share:

Stick With It!

Wednesday, March 16th, 2011

Sticking With It!
-Joseph Ash, NASM-CPT
Manager CoachMeFit West Bloomfield

There aren’t many people out there that haven’t met a fitness goal, and then let it go to waste. Whether it’s those ten pounds you just took off, or running three days a week. Once we have met a goal it’s very easy to fall back into your old routine of eating junk and being inactive. Instead of making a one month fitness goal look farther into the future, and then make short term goals to get you there.

You Determine Your Own Fitness Level
by Shawn Lebrun
Did you know that how you live, day to day, determines the level of fitness and muscularity you’ll achieve?
It’s true, if you have a lifestyle that supports weight(fat) loss, you will not have to worry about being overweight. If your lifestyle is not supportive of fat loss and staying fit, then it really doesn’t matter what you do in the gym, your results will be limited.

It’s when you expect one thing and do something totally opposite trying to get it that there becomes a problem.
If you weight train intensely, do your cardio consistently, and support yourself nutritionally, you’ll get leaner, stronger, and more fit. It happens. Certain steps lead to certain destinations.
But doing things repeatedly that DO NOT support your goals will ensure you DO NOT reach them.

Here are some examples;

It’s the new year and you decide one of your resolutions is to lose weight, specifically 15 pounds of fat. You give up your old, pleasurable lifestyle of eating burgers and fries four nights a week while watching your favorite T.V. shows.
Your new, improved lifestyle involves eating salads and chicken breasts and exercising at the time you used to watch your T.V. shows.
You’re so determined to lose this weight that you sacrifice all sense of fun for the next four weeks while you continue to exercise each night, skipping the fast food and T.V. Four weeks have gone by and you’ve indeed lost your goal weight of 15 pounds. So you figure, hey, I’ve done it, now I can celebrate a bit. I’m going to cut back a bit on the exercise now that I’ve lost the weight I wanted and I think I’ll see what’s on the T.V.

You go to the fridge for a snack and realize you haven’t gone shopping for your healthy foods yet this week.
But hey, there’s still those burgers and fries in the fridge, and you’ve earned a little celebration meal.
Soon, the lost pleasure of eating this delicious food and watching your favorite TV show returns and feels so great. So you do it again the next night, and the next, etc….

The old, unproductive habits have crept back into your life and have now influenced the newer, more productive ones. Your lifestyle is nothing more than what you do, day in and day out. It can either support your fitness goals or hurt them.
If you want to shed some body fat yet you continue to take days off from cardio because you’re not motivated enough to do it, that’s part of your lifestyle.

What you choose to do each day will influence what you get in return.
Make small, improved lifestyle changes that support your fitness goals and continue them until they become habit. Then move on to another small change that benefits you, replacing an older, less productive habit.

In fact, by making lifestyle changes in moderation, you increase the likelihood that these changes will be permanent.
Anytime that you go back to the unproductive lifestyle that caused you to be overweight, the weight you lost can return again.
The solution? Do not rule out all sense of pleasure when you decide to go after your fitness goal.

In fact, your fitness goals of being slimmer, more muscular, and more confident should be more pleasurable than burgers or fries.
If your surrounding environment and habits (cookies, cake, ice cream in front of the TV) do not contribute to your fitness goals, you need to make a change so that what you eat and do each day does.

Share:

Not enough time?

Sunday, September 26th, 2010

By: Jessica VanReenen, M.S. Clinical Exercise Physiology, Grand Rapids

Not enough time is usually one of first complaints I hear from clients when discussing exercise and eating habits. We all know that in order to lose weight we must expend more calories then we are consuming. Time is an important step in achieving weight loss, because it takes time, it does not just happen instantly. Not only is exercise an important aspect in weight loss but nutrition also plays a critical role. When I look at clients’ food logs, one of the main reasons for defeat in weight loss is because they do not take the time to plan ahead and do not pick the right foods. Having a plan will help you eat well! Here are some tips for eating well and shopping in the grocery store: 1.) Limit prepackaged foods: prepackaged foods contain a lot of sodium, fat and preservatives. 2.) Limit presweetened foods: Instead of buying presweetened cereals or yogurt (which contain a lot of sugar), buy the plain version and if absolutely necessary you can add a little bit of honey for your sweet tooth. 3.) Buy seasonal produce: try your local farmer’s market. 4.) Limit empty calories: Sodas and alcohol have lots of sugar and empty calories and no nutrients so why waste your money? 5.) Learn to read labels: the fewer the ingredients the better, avoid trans fats such as hydrogenated oils, and keep your saturated fats under 5 grams a serving. Watch for hidden sugars such as dextrose, corn syrup that may not be listed at the top of the ingredients. 6.) Plan a menu: don’t have time? That is probably not true, especially if you have time to sit and watch T.V. Plan a menu while watching T.V.! Having a plan will prevent you from impulse buying things you may crave at the store, and also allow you to plan healthier meals and not be tempted to eat out all the time. Remember, practice makes perfect. Try some of these steps here and there and make time to do them because you will benefit in the end!

Share:

Maintaining Weight Loss through Proper Eating Habits

Wednesday, October 7th, 2009

Catherine Munaco, Managing Partner at the CoachMeFit Private Personal Training Studio in West Bloomfield, MI, explains how weight loss can be maintained through proper eating habits.

Share:

How to Lose Weight

Tuesday, September 15th, 2009

Are you achieving the weight loss results you want from your work outs?  If you’re not, click on this short clip to hear CoachMeFit West Bloomfield Owner, Catherine Munaco, explain what additions or modifications can be made to your work out regime in order to see real weight loss results.

Share:

Every Woman’s Plight: Dieting with Her Husband

Wednesday, December 17th, 2008

By: Catherine Munaco

Owner, CoachMeFit West Bloomfield

A few months back, Robin, the mother of my old college roommate called me to ask me a few questions about diet and exercise for herself and her husband. “Mark and I are going to go on a diet!” She explained giddily. My response was less enthusiastic, but she assured me that Mark was a “meat and potato guy” who was “simply getting dragged along for the ride”. I had heard it before, but I gave her my advice on cardio routines and we were on our way.

Less than six weeks later, Robin called me in a fury to explain Mark’s “diet”. “He weighs himself in the morning,” she lamented, “and if he weighs more than he did the day before, he skips his morning muffin. If he weighs less, he eats his muffin.” She paused before exploding: “HE’S LOST 15 POUNDS! I’VE LOST ONE AND I NEVER EAT THE MUFFIN!”

If this were a rare occurrence, women wouldn’t have such a disdain for watching a male significant other drop 5 pounds in a week by eliminating his midnight snack. But instead, woman after woman has returned disgruntled after attempting to diet with her man.

So why is it so easy for men to drop weight compared to women? The easiest answer is the most annoying one: men’s body compositions are simply designed to burn more calories. Anthropologically speaking, men were the hunters and the protectors. Women had to bear children (which also means fatty breast and hip tissue). As we evolved, men continued to have more muscle mass than women in part because the males that survived had higher muscle masses and the strength to kill for food or protection, and the females that survived had the fat stores to carry healthy children to term. Because muscle is an active tissue, it burns more calories at rest than fat. Men have substantially more muscle than women, both because they have a lower percentage of body fat than women (A healthy level of 8-19% for males compared to 21-33% for women) and also more mass in general. In analyzing body fat, a body is generally divided into two groups: Fat mass percentage (FM) and fat free mass (FFM), which includes muscles, bones, and organs. If we compare two individuals with healthy body fat percentages (a 135 lb woman with a FM of 27% and a 165 lb male with a FM of 14%) the female would have a FFM of 98.55 pounds and the male would have a FFM of 141.9 lbs. That’s roughly 43 more pounds of active tissue for the male. It’s no wonder that skipping a morning muffin can still lead to weight loss when a man’s body will almost always have higher rate of calorie burn at rest (also called resting metabolic rate, or RMR). Whether it’s running outside or watching a movie, women simply do not burn as many calories as men.

To be fair, men have a similar frustration when they reach 30 and realize they can’t eat like they did in college. I call this the plight of the 30-year-old male. Part of this is because careers and families make it more difficult for a man to regularly exercise like he did in his college bachelorhood days. But even more significant is the fact that testosterone levels first start to drop at 30 in males. In some men, testosterone can drop by as much as 2% every year after 30. Among other things, testosterone is responsible for muscle development. (The significantly lower level of testosterone in females is another reason female muscle masses are lower than in males. Sigh.) After puberty and throughout the 20s, when testosterone levels are highest and males see their peak muscle mass, an average man can practically eat whatever he wants and not gain significant weight, as long as he remains relatively active. At this age, men are caloric vacuums. Their bodies can literally burn calories while they sleep. But when 30 hits and testosterone levels drop along with activity levels, men who are conscious of their weight often find themselves nibbling on carrots and whole bran cereal right along with the women in their lives.

The bottom line is that many factors contribute to muscle mass in both females and males. Muscle mass is directly linked to resting metabolic rate, or calories burned at rest. RMR is considered the baseline for measuring caloric expenditure. The intensity level of an activity can be measured by how much greater it is than RMR. If an activity burns twice as many calories than RMR, it is considered to be 2MR, if it burns 9 times more calories per minute, its considered 9MR, and so on. It makes sense, then, that a higher muscle mass leads to a higher RMR, and also a higher caloric expenditure in any activity. There’s not much a woman can do to increase her testosterone levels to those of a man, nor should she want to (a plethora of complications could arise). But women can still fight the weight loss battle more effectively by increasing their own muscle mass. And by staying away from diets with men and muffins.

Share:

After elimination, Amy offers advice for others

Thursday, November 27th, 2008

“Biggest Loser” contestants Amy and Shellay are clients at the CoachMeFit studio in Birmingham, MI.  They work out with the owners of the studio, Derek and Kerrie DiGiovanni.

“Biggest Loser” airs Tuesday’s at 8:00pm on NBC.

Last night, Amy was voted off the show. Eager to stay at the ranch and continue the rugged regime, she would now have to go it alone. Instead of a TV star for a trainer she would look to Derek at the local CoachMeFit to “kick butt.” It’s working. Her weight continues to go down.

Amy has some advice for people who are seriously over weight but don’t have the luxury of a stay at the Biggest Loser ranch to help them.

    1) Make exercise a priority every day. If there is something else you want to do, tell yourself that you can’t do it until you do your cardio, or weights.
    2) Ideally find a “workout buddy” who is committed to exercising with you regularly. Of course, a personal trainer is your best support system.
    3) Diets alone don’t work.
    4) Realize that many physical symptoms—aching legs and feet, difficulty breathing, and a host of medical problems—are the result of your weight, and you can be free of them.
    5) Set small attainable goals, achieve them, and set more small goals. If you never exercise, don’t start with a goal of working out every day. You’re likely to fail, and give up completely.

This week’s pay-off for Amy was going to lunch with friends she used to work with and finding that many didn’t recognize her. Priceless.

In case you are curious … Amy and Shellay won’t be indulging in a 4,000-calorie (the average intake of an adult at Thanksgiving dinner) eating frenzy this Thanksgiving. They are eating turkey breast, salad, and cauliflower mashed “potatoes.”

Share: