Is Fat Bad For Me?

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You are hungry. You want something delicious. You don’t want to get fat. Lucky for you, the diet trends of the past few years have allowed you to shovel down a large steak with some asparagus and butter on the side, preceded by a salad doused in olive oil. You come out of dinner feeling like a winner since you have eaten almost no carbs and followed your Paleo plan!

Success?!

Well, depends. If your goal is to eat healthy, provide nutrients to your body, and fuel your workouts.. you have eaten a perfect meal! However, if your goal is fat loss, unfortunately you have done yourself an injustice.

No matter what diet trend is in fashion at the moment, you can never escape the fact weight loss means burning more calories than you have consumed. Fat, although a healthy and necessary nutrient, provides a TON of calories. Let’s take an example of your steak dinner:

  • Steak (6oz filet) – 300 calories
  • Asparagus with butter – 120 calories
  • Salad with olive oil – 200 calories

… for a grand total of 620 calories

Let’s compare a leaner meal:

  • Turkey breast (6oz) – 150 calories
  • Salad with Balsamic vinegar – 40 calories
  • Asparagus – 20 calories

… for a grand total of 210 calories

So, if you substitute your steak dinner for a turkey dinner every day for a week you will save yourself 2870 calories (410 x 7). Since a pound of fat is 3500 calories, you are saving almost a pound per week!

I don’t want you to get bogged down with counting calories. Nor do I want you to hate fat (the good kind). Fat provides numerous benefits including: lubricating your bones and joints, making your skin and hair smooth and silky, and improving your good cholesterol levels.

So unless you are on a weight loss diet, enjoy the olive oil, avocados, and steak. However, if your goal is to lean out, you need to carve most of the fat out of your diet for now.

Your Workout Routine: Which Days To Work Out To Maximize Fat Loss

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Working out is extremely psychological. There are a number of motivating factors that push even the laziest of us into the gym. Perhaps your jeans don’t fit, or you have an date you want to look skinny for, or you’ve had a fun-filled weekend of eating and drinking and you feel fat! It is no secret that gyms make the most amount of money the Monday after January 1. Motivated people generally make their new years resolution to lose weight, get into the gym for a week or two, and then quit. It’s an endless cycle.

Does the Monday phenomenon happen to you every week?? You wake up Monday morning and vow to eat healthy and go to the gym after work. You stay true to your vow and follow this regimen not only on Monday, but also on Tuesday and Wednesday. Thursday night its time to go to dinner with your boyfriend. You break your diet, but manage to follow your workout routine diligently on Friday. Hooray! All your workouts are finished for the week! So Friday night you get drunk and feel like crap on Saturday. Consequentially, you eat more.

By Saturday night you feel better and go out again! More food, more drinks.  You wake up Sunday morning and promise yourself that after this day of rest you are back at it hardcore on Monday morning. Diet will be on point, workout routine will re-start with a vengeance.  This is great, but do you realize how much damage you have done on Thursday through Sunday?

This vicious cycle needs to be broken if you are ever going to have any chance of getting skinny! The good news is that you don’t have to will yourself into being good. Instead, you can simply trick youself.

How? 1 simple rule. Don’t EVER start any workout routine or diet on a Monday. In fact, do the converse. Make Monday your off day.

This applies for any training split that you are currently using. Are you working out 3 days/week? Make them Wednesday, Friday, Sunday. 4 days/week? Wednesday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday.

You may be thinking, “This sucks! I want to take the weekend off!” Well, you know what sucks even more? Being fat. If you follow this sort of workout routine for 1 month I guarantee you that your diet will be cleaner on a week-by-week basis, your workouts will be more productive, and your jeans will be looser! After all, what are the chances that you will be scarfing down that balls-to-the-wall dinner on a Monday night? Probably as small as the chances that you will be getting wasted on Monday night! However, when Friday rolls around you will already have it engrained in your head that you have a weekend full of workouts ahead of you. Chances are this will force your Friday night alcohol intake to decrease!

See how this works? It’s a mind fuck. Its a way of forcing yourself out of that endless weekend binge routine. Try it! I bet it will work.

How To Choose the Best Fat Loss Diet for YOU

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Remember when the cool thing to do was to eat 6 meals a day? Then, everyone changed their minds and decided to fast intermittently. THEN, the fitness “experts” got mad and told you that if you don’t eat breakfast you will be fat forever.

This is confusing.

At some point you need to grow your own head on your shoulders and make an intelligent decision on which diet will suit you best. The truth is, most diets works. The down side is that they don’t work if you don’t follow them. So, realistically, this is an exercise on making a decision on which diet works best for your lifestyle and your physiology.

Let’s look at a few different examples:

  • You are: someone who wants to lose weight as fast as possible and you don’t are how strict the diet is. You’re willing to put in that month or 2 of misery to get to your goal. You are also no pro at dieting and you need very precise instructions
  • Your best diet: is written by an expert and spelled out in detail. Your best option is the Xtreme Fatloss Diet

 

  • You are: someone who has very little self control when you are on an eating spree. However, you generally eat pretty healthy and work out regularly. Your weakness is that when you binge, you BINGE.  This means pizza, ice cream, cookies… until you’re gonna burst. These slip-ups are ruining all your hard work at the gym.
  • Your best diet: is the good old 5-6 meal/day diet. FORCE yourself to eat 5-6 small meals every day for a week. Your stomach will shrink and you will get both physically and psychologically used to not eating a lot of food. The truth is that most people start the binge when they are pretty hungry. With 5-6 small meals/day you will never be hungry. If this doesn’t work and you need more help with your binge-fests, read this.

 

  • You are: someone that doesn’t have any desire to think too much about what you are eating. You know the basics of a healthy diet, but you don’t want to worry about any details. You also don’t have time to get food/cook food/think about food. You are BUSY.
  • Your best diet: is intermittent fasting. If you consume less calories than you are burning, you will lose weight. It’s not rocket science. An easy way to do this is  to just not eat for a period of time during the day/night. Most people like the daily 16 hour fast, meaning – stop eating around 8pm and restart the next day around 12pm.  There are numerous other way to do this to fit your lifestyle. Brad Pilon’s “Eat, Stop, Eat” is THE BEST guide for this diet.

 

  • You are: Someone who is primarily interested in changing your diet because you feel shitty and unhealthy. You are not only fat, but your skin is dull and you are breaking out. You need to get healthy.
  • Your best diet: is one that involves juice fasts. In order to regain your health you need to get nutrients from fruits and veggies into your body the most efficient way possible. Juice is your answer. You can do periodic fasts for 1 day, 3 days, 5 days, or more! If juice fasting is too much for you, do a raw food diet. Though not as efficiently, you will get tons of nutrients this way too.


As you an see, there are a TON of ways to improve your eating habits and get skinny. You just have to pick something that works for you.  If you want to see some of the delicious and healthy things I make, take a look at Cookiesmadewithlove.com

1 Simple Exercise to Blast Fat

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The gym is a complicated place. Figuring out what to do once you get there is even more complicated. You have the option of cardio machines, weights, a class, swimming in the pool, raquetball, blah blah… This is great! Right??

I am a big believer that when you give people too many options in a gym they will normally fuck it up. ESPECIALLY the people that are trying to lose fat.

Why? Because the MOST effective way for you to lose fat is to have an extremely intense workout. You can read more about the theory behind this here. There are few things you can do in the gym that absolutely force you to exert the necessary intensity that is necessary for effective fat loss. Sure, you can sprint. But chances are that you will not go as fast as you can. You can lift weights. Again, chances are that unless you are a pro at inventing workout programs and extremely motivated the intensity will not be up to par.

Not to mention, making up workout programs is a pain in the ass. Why not keep it simple??

There is one single exercise that is absolutely the best for forcing you to go hard. It is the kettlebell swing. You can spend your entire time in the gym performing only this exercise and come out in the best shape of your life. The kettlebell swing works all large (and many small) muscles in your body. The beauty in the kettlebell swing is that you can’t slow down. After all, a swing is a swing! You need to exert force in order to get the kettlebell up! Think about this in comparison to a squat – you can do 10 squats in 10 seconds or you can go super slow and do 2 squats in 10 seconds. Conversely, with a swing, you need to put the weight down in order to slow down. This is a mind fuck. You WILL NOT want to put this weight down until you really, really can’t do any more.

Let’s begin with the mechanics of a kettlebell swing. You are basically taking the kettlebell and swinging it from between your legs up to eye level by using momentum. The most important thing is to NOT use your lower back. You need to use your butt and hamstring muscles to get this weight up. Please YouTube “how to do a kettlebell swing” before you try.

Now, the program. There are a number of different ways that you can approach this. I will tell you my favorite and in my opinion the most effective:

  • Pick a number of swings that you want to start with on day one and do them as fast as you can. I suggest 50 if you are a total beginner, 100 if you are intermediate, 200 if you are more advanced.
  • Do this amount of swings as fast as you possibly can. You will need to put the bell down several times.
  • Time yourself.
  • For your next workout, try to beat your time.
  • Every other workout, increase your total number of swings by 20
  • Always try to beat your score

You will surprise yourself on how quickly you improve. And how quickly you get skinny and defined!

How to Get Skinny by Eating Whatever You Want

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It’s really boring to me that there are things that I am not allowed to eat.  I generally eat healthy food, but there are definitely days that I just want to live on cake. Cake for breakfast, cake for lunch, cake for dinner.

Do you have a similar experience with ice cream? Or nutella? Or meatballs??

I have good news. You can eat these things all day and still lose weight.

It is a general misconception that if you stop eating “bad” food you will lose weight no matter what. Yes, it is very probable that you will shrink if you ingest matter that is high in fiber, high in nutrients, and keeps you satiated longer. However, if you eat TOO MUCH  healthy food you will gain weight.

Conversely, if you eat too little unhealthy food you will lose weight!

The point here is that at the end of the day weight loss is all about calories in vs calories out. There are a million different ways to manipulate these calories to make you less hungry, more energetic, and more prone to stick to your diet. However, if you decide one day that eating an ice cream sundae for breakfast is going to dramatically improve your life, do it.

Let’s take a look at an example:

  • Find your basal metabolic rate (Number of calories your body burns at rest to maintain normal body functions. It is the amount of calories per day your body burns, regardless of exercise) Here is the formula:

Women: BMR = 655 + ( 4.35 x weight in pounds ) + ( 4.7 x height in inches ) – ( 4.7 x age in years )
Men: BMR = 66 + ( 6.23 x weight in pounds ) + ( 12.7 x height in inches ) – ( 6.8 x age in year )

Let’s say you are 130 pounds, 30 years old, and 5’5″.

BMR= 655 + ( 4.35 x 130 ) + ( 4.7 x 65) – ( 4.7 x 30) = 1385

This means that if you did nothing all day long and ate 1385 calories, you would stay exactly the same. Throw in a 500 calorie workout, and you have 1885 calories to work with.

  • Let’s say you want to eat ice cream sundaes all day today! A Baskin Robbins 3 scoop sundae has about 700 calories. You can wake up, eat one for breakfast, go work out, and eat one for dinner. Your total calorie consumption will be 1400 calories. This is 485 calories less than the calories you have burned that day.
  • Repeat this same process for about 7 days. There are roughly 3500 calories in a pound, so if you go on the ice cream sundae diet and create a 500 calorie deficit  for a week you will lose a pound!

Catch my drift?

This is obviously not the healthy way to go in terms of diet. But on days you don’t feel like eating healthy food it is definitely a viable option!

Pretty Face to Match Your Banging Body – Skin Care Secrets

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We often spend so much time worrying about how skinny or fat we are and forget about the fact that a hot body is nothing without a flawless and glowing face. Therefore, skincare deserves some attention.  It is common knowledge that moisturizers and facials help our complexion. However, there are some skin care secrets that are much less obvious, yet much more effective.

Here they are:

  1. Natural Skin Care: The best skin care comes from nature, not chemicals. Some of us can’t/don’t want to buy La Mer or other expensive creams that contain these natural ingredients in abundance. Luckily, you can go to the grocery store and make your own. Here are some recipes.
  2. HITT: High intensity interval training is not only good for your body, but also your face. The blood circulation and increased blood flow to the face bring essential nutrients to the skin. Read more here.
  3. Avoid sun block: The American obsession of staying out of the sun has gone completely too far. Yes, it is true that if you plan to spend hours in the sun you should wear protection. However, if the sun is not strong and/or if you don’t plan to expose your face to it for a long time you do not need protection. Sun block contains chemicals that are harsh on the skin and cause damage if used on a daily basis. So if your makeup has sunblock in it, get new makeup.
  4. Eat More Fat: I obviously mean healthy fats. Fish oils, avocados, and nuts provide the much needed moisture that skin needs to avoid wrinkling. Although these foods are high in calories, they provide the necessary substances to make your skin look good from the inside out.
  5. Eat Raw Foods: If you want to take your health and complexion to another level, eat mostly or all raw. The abundance of nutrients and antioxidants that will be delivered to your skin is unparalleled.

These skin care methods are just as (if not more) important than your lotion and face mask. Use them.

Sex Makes you Skinny and Hot! Here’s Why….

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Working out is a pain in the ass. Eating healthy is a pain in the ass. It’s time that we discuss something that is good for you that is only sometimes a pain in the ass (no pun intended).

Could you have ever guessed that all those romps in the sack lately have been improving your life in more than one way?? Yes, it’s true. Sex benefits your insides and your outsides in many ways other than the obvious…

  1. You release estrogen which makes your hair shiny and your skin glow.
  2. You burn more calories than you think. If you eat a cookie and then have sex… poof! Cookie is gone.
  3. The more sex you have, the more attractive you are to boys. You actually release more pheromones when you are regularly having sex, which are the chemicals that attract boys.
  4. Sex sharpens our senses due to a release of hormones.
  5. Sex makes you have to pee less. You develop better control of the bladder muscles.
  6. When you have sex you release endorphins. In other words, sex makes you happy
  7. Sex increases sleep quality. Have you ever passed out after an orgasm??
  8. Sex  has been linked with higher levels of an antibody called immunoglobulin A, which protects you from getting colds and other infections
  9. Sex relieves pain in other parts of your body. A hormone called oxytocin surges, endorphins increase, and pain declines. Have you ever noticed that after sex your headache or cramps are gone?

So next time you feel like you have had a crappy day and have done nothing good for your body, go have sex! It will do you good.

Oh, and here’s some ways you can spice it up.

Super Easy and Nutritious Protein Bar Recipes

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Scenario #1: You are hungry. You don’t have time to make food.  You don’t have time to eat food.  You really don’t have time to wipe your ass.

Scenario #2: You are determined to eat all natural and nutritious foods and you need something simple that doesn’t require a plate or a fork or a spoon to put in your mouth before your workout.

Scenario #3: You need brownie points for from your boyfriend because you are a lying, cheating bitch. You are lazy and don’t want to make him dinner. You know that they way to a man’s heart is through his stomach and  you need to feed him something that will make him happy but doesn’t require a lot of work.

The answer to all 3 of these? Protein bars.

Since buying protein bars at the grocery store is really no better than buying a cookie laced with chemicals, I have decided to come up with my own protein bar recipes that are extremely nutrition, filling, quick, and easy.  I have also made the ingredient list interchangeable for you to fit your taste.

Here it is:

2 cups of almond butter/ peanut butter (make sure you get the all natural kind, no Skippy!)

1.5 cups of hemp protein/whey protein (the hemp protein is more natural, but has more fat)

1 cup of agave nectar/honey (agave nectar is less calorically dense)

1 cup of dried berries of your choice (goji berries are most nutritious)

Throw all these things in a bowl and mix them together with your hands. It will get a little messy, but if you have running water in your house you should be ok.

Put all these ingredients in some sort of square container and pat down flat. Throw it in the refrigerator for an hour or 2. Take out and cut into rectangles. Wrap each bar in saran wrap. Voila!

Want more?? Here is a really good guide to the best shake and snack recipes that are easy and convenient. Really healthy too.

 

 

This Workout Kicked My Ass

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As I lay on the floor in a pool of sweat I thought I would share…..

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vyTy5q_XZjE

More Sandbag Fun!

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I have recently been obsessed with the Ultimate Sandbag thanks to that skinny muscle girl on Bodyrock. It lead me to explore the possibilities of this multi-functional tool further, and to start to create my own routines. As I have mentioned before, the TRX and the Ultimate Sandbag is all you will ever need in a home gym. You can easily get in the best shape of your life by tossing this bag thing around your living room and playing with the 2 canvas straps (TRX). I originally thought that filling a duffel  bag with towels would suffice, but I was sadly mistaken for a few reasons: 1. It’s not heavy enough. 2. It’s awkward to hold 3. It is impossible to do all the exercises with the lack of straps on a duffel bag. My conclusion is that the sandbag was a great investment.

The other nice thing about the sandbag is that you can progress. The stronger you get the more sand you will add. We all know that one of the laws of getting stronger/skinner/faster is increased load. If you keep throwing the same amount of weight around over and over again at the same speed you will stay the same. Luckily, sand is heavy. Therefore, you have lots of room to grow (or shrink).

Here are some routines you can try out with the sandbag that will ruin your life while you’re doing them, but improve your life when you are done:

Beginner Routine

Go through this circuit 2x. Do 10-12 repetitions of each exercise. Rest 30 seconds between each exercise (or as long as you need to)

  1. Sandbag back squat
  2. Sandbag bent over row
  3. Sandbag swing
  4. Sandbag front shoulder press
  5. Sandbag bicep curl
  6. Sandbag ab rotation

Advanced Routine

Go through this circuit 3x. Do 10-12 repetitions of each exercise. Rest 10 seconds between each exercise (or as long as you need to)

  1. Sandbag front squat
  2. Sandbag burpee
  3. Sandbag clean and press
  4. Sandbag drag in plank position
  5. Sandbag straight leg deadlift
  6. Sandbag shoulder to shoulder press

As always… Google/YouTube is always at your disposal to show you how to do these exercises. Have fun!

Last Minute Get-Skinny Plan for Summer

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We are on the home stretch for getting skinny for summer, and I know some of you lazy fat pigs haven’t even started. Better late than never.

I have introduced several diet concepts in my articles that vary from eating a high amount of fruits and vegetables to eating a high amount of animal protein.  All of these work in different ways and have varied degrees of difficulty and effectiveness for different people.

Since we have limited time to get in shape at this point I wanted to give you a diet that combines 2 concepts: periods of intermittent fasting and eating paleo. Using these concepts in combination will speed up your results

You have 2 choices: Go research the Paleo diet and intermittent fasting and make up your own plan, or get precise step by step instructions through an ebook. If you have weak willpower I would strongly suggest the ebook. If you think you are going to fuck this up for any other reason, get the book.

For the brave that want to attempt this on your own, here are the basic premises:

  • Eat only meats, fish, chicken, vegetables, fruits, healthy fats, and nuts
  • Create an intermittent fasting schedule for yourself such as
    • Stop eating at 7pm, restart again at 1pm the next day
    • Eat every other day. On the off days drink juice
    • Make lunch your last meal every day
  • Make sure that you tailor your eating schedule around your workout schedule
  • Make sure you have sufficient calories to work out

Follow this plan and you will lose weight fast. Good luck!

How to Deal With Memorial Day Remorse

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I am sure that I am not the only one that feels like shit today. Too much partying and bbqing will do that to you.

You may be someone that has been abusing your body for a while, so what’s a little more abuse? However, you may be someone who has been on it with your workouts and diet in hopes of getting skinny by summer. The second scenario is actually worse because now you feel like a giant sloth!

Don’t worry, all your hard work is completely redeemable.

There was once a smart woman who wrote a book called “French Women Don’t Get Fat“. A major premise of this book is that women in France don’t worry if they eat too much one day. They simply redeem themselves by eating less the next day.  They also don’t worry if they eat too many carbs in one day. They just simply eat more protein the next day.

Since you already fucked up your eating regimen the first 2 days of this week, focus on the next 2 days. How can you redeem yourself? No drinking? Less red meat? Less carbs? Focus on your total calorie intake for the week instead of every day.

Needless to say, this theory applies for any week of the year.

Planning on getting wasted and eating grocery stores full of food for 4th of July? Starve yourself on the 5th. It won’t be difficult – you will be full most of the day. Go back to normal on the 6th.

You will find that you love this new way of thinking about eating because it will allow you to be a gluttonous fat pig once in a while.

Enjoy.

 

How to Never Go to the Gym Again

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I like to work out in my underwear. I hate to go to Lululemon and drop $200 on one gym outfit. We all know once you go Lulu you can’t go back, and it gets expensive!  

Not to mention, I really don’t want to spend more than 30 mins on my workout. Getting to the gym cuts into that time slot and makes working out impossible some days.

It is a common misconception that in order to get in shape you have to  go to the gym. Strangely enough, the content of the workout routine is not seen as important as the  act of going to the gym.  The unfortunate truth is that your presence at a gym is not going to change your shape or your level of fitness. Your workout intensity, however, plays a huge role. This intensity can easily be achieved in the privacy of your own home without a bunch of fancy equipment.

It seems as though everyone has been on the Bodyrock bandwagon lately, myself included! These guys do an amazing job of creating short and intense home workouts that kick your ass. The only gripe I have with them is that some days the workouts are unnecessarily complicated and use too much equipment.

There is no doubt in my mind that you can get in the best shape of your life with 2 pieces of equipment:

and

For some reason the Bodyrock people don’t promote the TRX.  In my opinion it is hands down the best piece of workout equipment you can own.  Pair it with the sandbag, and get ready to sweat your balls off.

Here is an example of a SIMPLE but EXTREMELY DIFFICULT home workout you can do:

  1. Pushup with your feet suspended in TRX – 20x
  2. Squat jump with sandbag – 20x

Repeat 3 times with no rest

Here is another one:

  1. Pike abs with the TRX – 20x
  2. Switch lunge with the sandbag -20x

Repeat 3 times with no rest.

Want more?

  1. TRX pushups  - 15x
  2. TRX lat pulls – 15x
  3. High jumps – 15x

Same shit – 3 times with no rest.

If you are not dying after 20-30 minutes of this you are not going hard enough.

If you are unclear on how to do any of these there is a little site called YouTube that may help you out.

While you are working out in your underwear – blast your music, grunt loudly, and fall over on the floor when needed. The walls aren’t judging you.

Enjoy!

 

How to get Skinny and Hot on the Raw Food Diet

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Sometimes when I get too drunk too many days in a row and feel shitty about my life I decide to try something new to boost my health. Once in a blue moon I stumble on something amazing in the process. This time it’s the Raw Food Diet.

I have heard about the Raw Food Diet before, but never really thought much about it since the absence of steak, chicken, and seafood in my life kind of makes me cringe. I also didn’t understand how I was going to not starve myself!

Let’s start with a definition of the raw food diet:

“Raw foodism (or rawism) is the practice of consuming uncooked, unprocessed, and often organic food” – Wikipedia

There are several variations of this diet, but for our purposes let’s go with raw/ vegan since without eliminating animal protein you are not giving your body a true cleanse (which is a huge factor in weight loss). On this diet you are basically living on natural fats, fruits, and veggies which are not heated above 115 degrees.

Several things start to happen when you eat raw/vegan:

  1. Your skin improves. Seriously improves.
  2. You have more energy.
  3. You lose weight while staying full (natural fats are very satiating).
  4. You get healthier.
  5. You give your body a much needed cleanse.
  6. Your athletic performance improves.
  7. You just feel good.
Given all these things it sounds like a win-win situation.  The problem comes in when it’s time to go out to dinner. Unless you can convince your boyfriend to take you to a raw/vegan restaurant your options will be limited. You may have to play the role of one of those annoying girls who just eats a salad.  However, if you have the luxury to eat at home, there is a surprisingly large array of dishes you can make that makes you feel like to you are not eating like a goat!

Another concern is the decreased amount of protein in the diet given the fact that animal protein is omitted. Many tree huggers claim that humans actually don’t need a high amount of protein. I disagree.

I don’t want to look like a tree hugger

I want to look like those people that promote high protein diets

 

The answer is hemp protein.  Yes, you will be eating pot. But don’t worry, you will not get high since this is the low-grade THC variety. You can buy hemp protein powder to make shakes or hemp hearts to sprinkle on your salad. Other vegan foods contain protein as well. For instance, 2 tbsp of peanut butter contains 8 grams.

Here’s a typical day:

Breakfast: Strawberries and almond cream. To make almond cream: soak 1 cups of raw almonds overnight, throw in blender, add 1 cups water. Blend.

Snack: Apple and pecans

Lunch: Salad with all the fruits/veggies you desire, generous amount of olive oil, hemp hearts

Snack: Raw bar. You can get this at most health food stores

Dinner: Another salad with hemp if you are feeling lazy. Or make raw lasagna if you want to get fancy while making your boyfriend love you. Or get him to take you to a raw restaurant.

Give this diet a shot for 2 weeks and see how you look/feel. Then give me all the credit when you get skinny and fabulous!

 

 

“Holiday Parties Have Ruined My Life” – How to Deal

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You are hung over, you feel fat, and you don’t want to look at another Christmas cookie for the rest of your life. This is a pretty typical scenario for December 26. Most loser people wait until January 1 to get their diet back in order. However, you are smarter and you will start today. This way by January 1 you will already be feeling great. Here are the best things to do right away to get back to feeling normal and to get on your way to skinny.

  1. STOP feeling bad about all the damage you have done. You can only move forward at this point.
  2. Do a juice fast to cleanse, renew, and most importantly – SHRINK YOUR STOMACH BACK TO NORMAL
  3. Commit to working out. Pick 3-4 days in the week where you WILL work out, no excuses. Here’s how to commit. Here’s how to work out.
  4. Just eat less.

You did the damage gradually. Now you will undo it gradually. Do yourself a favor and get a head start.

Speed Up Fat Loss by Simplifying Your Workout

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You decide it’s time for you to get serious about your workout. So you hit up a trainer, a fitness friend, or a fitness magazine for the latest “fat blasting” workout. This workout happens to involve 10 different exercises with 3 sets per exercise, and requires you to put the workout in your phone so you don’t forget. On top of that, your gym is missing the butt blaster machine so you can’t do the full workout anyway!

Is this not a pain in the ass??

The fitness industry is a multi-million dollar industry, and you better believe that people who make equipment for health clubs are making money by making you think their product is necessary for you. The truth of the matter is, you don’t need to do a bunch of different exercises, or even necessarily be in a gym to get an effective workout. Nothing will produce better results than performing a workout where your effort is a 10 (on a scale of 1 to 10). As long as the exercise(s) you are doing are taxing your muscles and your nervous system to the point where you can barely go on, you WILL see results.

On top of this, the less clutter you have in your brain about all the exercises you need to perform, the more likely you are to get it done. Are you more likely to do 100 squats? Or 3 sets of 10 squats, 3 sets of 10 shoulder presses, 3 sets of 10 hamstring curls, etc etc. You get the point?? The idea is to SIMPLIFY. It will allow you to get more done.

Here are some examples of SIMPLE workouts that will bring you results:

  1. Every other day, do 200 kettlebell swings. Pick a weight where you cannot get past 30 reps without stopping. Once you can go no more, put the kettlebell down, regroup, and start over. The goal is to get the 200 reps done as quickly as possible
  2. Every other day, do 100 squats with the squat rack. Pick a weight that you cannot get past 20 without stopping. Same idea as above.
  3. Every other day, do 10 30-second balls out sprints with a minute rest in between. Make sure you are sprinting AS FAST AS YOU CAN. As you get better at this, decrease the rest time down to 30 seconds gradually.
These are just a few examples. The possibilities are endless. If you can commit yourself to doing these (roughly) 30 minute workouts every other day, and you do them HARD, you WILL see results.

 

12/1 Daily Fat Loss Challenge: 15 Minute At-Home Workout

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Lately we’ve been concentrating on food (which is the most important part for fat loss), so today let’s concentrate on exercise. If you want a healthy, athletic appearance you have to work out. This will also reduce your chances for getting cellulite. And, you can eat more. Here’s a quick,  at-home workout for you to try today:

Do as many reps of each exercise as you can for 50 seconds, then rest 10 seconds. You need a timer for this. Download one from the app store of your choice. Do 3 rounds of the whole circuit. If you know math, you know this adds up to 15 minutes. The most important thing is DON’T STOP. If you are too tired, do an easier version of the exercise. You need to keep moving the whole time (except the 10 second rest).

  1. Step-ups on a chair. Hold your hands over your head while you do this.  Bring hands down when you’re exhausted.
  2. Push-ups. Do these on your knees when you’re exhausted
  3. Burpees. Walk these when you’re exhausted
  4. Dips on a chair. Bring feet closer in when you’re exhausted
  5. V-ups. Do regular crunches when you’re exhausted
It’s only 15 minutes, but you should be almost dead once you are done with this workout. Good luck.

11/30 Daily Fat Loss Challenge: Replace 1 Meal with Veggie Juice

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Today’s challenge will make you healthier as well! As great as it is for you to do an entire juice fast, I know that sometimes this isn’t a viable option. Either you can’t get access to juice, you can’t fight the hunger, or you just don’t want to.

Try replacing one of your meals with a veggie juice. If you don’t have time to make juice or you don’t have a juicer, go buy a juice! Many Whole Foods stores have juice bars. Or chances are there is a juice bar by you. I’m sure you can find one. If all else fails, go to Jamba Juice and get a pure carrot juice. Just MAKE SURE it is not the canned stuff, otherwise you miss out on all the nutrients.

 

 

11/29 Daily Fat Loss Challenge: Wait Until You Are Hungry to Eat

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I read somewhere that if you take 1 action per day toward achieving your goal, you will get where you want to be AT LEAST 2x faster with much less perceived effort.  Imagine that! If you were planning on losing 5 lbs next month, you can plan on losing at least 10!

In the spirit of this method, I will be posting a Daily Nutrition Challenge that you can follow every day, every other day, or whenever you feel fat. Obviously, the more often you follow it, the faster you will get skinnier!

Keep in mind, the goal of this challenge is to DROP FAT. It is extremely important to have a concrete goal. For instance, if you want to get healthier while dropping a few pounds the actions will be slightly different. On that note, let us commence….

11/29 DFLC

Wait until you are truly hungry to eat all meals

Most people generally eat a lot more food than they need. As a result, fat is added to the body. Once a person realizes they need to lose weight, they change WHAT they are eating before changing HOW MUCH they are eating. This is wrong. The quantity of food you are eating is much more influential on your body fat than the quality of food. I’m not saying quality doesn’t matter, I’m just saying it takes 2nd place to quantity.

So today, don’t eat lunch because it’s “time” for lunch. Wait until you have true, real hunger before you eat.

5 Unconventional Ways to NOT Get Fat During the Holidays

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What is it about the months of November and December that makes us involuntarily shove unthinkable amounts of food into our mouths?? For most of us it is endless holiday parties, leftovers, and alcohol-induced eating.  As the weather gets colder, activities slow down as well. We all know that more calories + less movement = getting fat. Boooooo! Chances are that if you have picked up the latest issue of Shape Magazine they will give you suggestions such as “eat before you get to the party so you’re not starving”, or “limit yourself to one drink”. Frankly, these options suck… not only because they are no fun, but also because they are hardly effective. Lucky for you, I have come up with some tips that work:

  1. If you know you will eat a lot at night, skip breakfast AND possibly lunch. Many “experts” will tell you that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and don’t skip it, and you need it. Bullshit. Try simple math instead of “expert” advice. If you eat 2000 calories at your party AND 500 calories for lunch AND 500 calories for breakfast, you will have ingested 3000 calories total. However, if you skip those 2 meals you will only have ingested 2000. This formula can be tweaked. For instance, if you are starving in the morning and you eat a 300 calorie breakfast, you will have ingested a total of 2300 calories for the day instead of the original 2000. Makes sense, right?
  2. If you eat a huge meal the night before, don’t eat until you are TRULY hungry the next day. This is another variation of the rule above. I don’t know about you, but when I eat a ton of food at night I usually wake up with a “food hangover”. Many of us will ignore this sensation and eat breakfast because its breakfast time. Or because we’ll faint. Or some other weird reason. YOU’LL BE FINE! Perhaps you’ll only get really hungry the next day at dinner. Or perhaps in time for a late lunch. The key is, wait until you feel the true and real sensation of hunger to ingest food.
  3. If you know you have a big dinner at night, get a HARD workout in that morning. Hard workouts raise your metabolism. A higher metabolism allows you to ingest more calories without getting fat. Hard workouts can consist of something like this or this.
  4. Do a juice fast the day after a big dinner. Chances are you won’t be too hungry the day after you have an obscene amount of food anyway, so a juice fast will be easy. It’s a nice way to clean out your system and reduce your calories the day after a feast. It will also tremendously help your hangover.
  5. Control your eating/drinking at every OTHER party. Sometimes getting wasted and eating everything you see is fun. And satisfying. The key is SOMETIMES. When you’re on your way out make an agreement with yourself on how you will handle this event. You can say to yourself  ”tonight I will go balls out and lose all control”. The next time you can say to yourself “I will limit myself to 2 drinks and 1 plate of food”. Then stick to it. This makes for a healthy balance.
So there you have it. You can still enjoy the festivities and the debauchery of the holiday season while staying your fabulous skinny self.

More Juice Fasting for the Fall!

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Not eating for days sounds f****** nuts, right? That’s what I thought too until I tried it. Turns out the extended juice fast actually not that bad.

Throughout the recent years I have experimented with different kinds of juice fasting, and through trial and error have figured out some stuff. Although I have read a bunch literature around the topic, I was still unsure about the experience, especially since the people writing the books are basically a bunch of tree huggers with lives much different than mine.

So I decided it was time to become the guinea pig and do an extended fast. I’ve tried one-day fasts in the past, but evidently short fasts are short on results.

First things first – background information on fasting:

Fasting has an extremely powerful healing effect on the body. While you are not eating food, the body will systematically cleanse itself of everything except vital tissue. In the breakdown of unhealthy cells, all essential substances are used and conserved in a most extraordinary manner.  As a result, a few things happen:

  1. You get a lot healthier FAST
  2. You get skinny
  3. Your stomach shrinks so you eat less food once you are done with the fast
  4. You just feel better
I experimented with a 5 day fast. One surprising thing that I learned is that it is actually easier to do a 5 day fast than a 1 days fast! The reason for this is that after the first couple of days, you break the habit of eating and you’re actually not hungry any more.  Although food may look good, imagining yourself eating it is not a pleasant thought. The important thing is to get enough juice in to feel satisfied.  Here are the rules for juice to make your fast effective and easy:
  • The only fruit you should be juicing is apple. Other than that, juice any vegetable you like.
  • Try to keep the juice as organic as possible, but if buying a carrot juice at Jamba Juice makes your busy life easier, do it. In fact, you can do the whole fast on “juice bar” juices.
  • DON’T drink bottled juice unless you’re dying and there’s no other juice in sight.
  • When you’re hungry, drink juice.
These are the guidelines I followed, and had a relatively easy and successful fast. Days 1 and 2 sucked, I was hungry. By day 3, hunger disappeared and I felt lighter. My energy was a bit lower than normal, but definitely enough to go one with my daily activities (other than the gym). By day 5 I felt amazing. I could have actually gone for the 7 day fast, but it was weekend time and I was ready to go have fun.
Here’s some other juice fast info:
  • The shittier you feel during a fast, the dirtier you are, the more you need the fast. Suck it up and do it.
  • A colonic or 2 helps speed up the fasting process tremendously since you get cleaned out from top and bottom.
  • The dirtier you are, the more weight you lose
Want more info? Here’s my favorite book.

Summer is Over. Don’t Get Fat!

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Summer is over. Gone till next year is the season for pool parties, the beach, skimpy Herve Leger dresses, and booty shorts. This does not mean it’s time to give up your fat loss goals since staying skinny is A LOT easier than getting skinny. So why not start now for next year instead of freaking out in April?? And why not prime yourself for the holiday season so you have at least a bit of wiggle room? I’m trying to help you make your life a lot easier… you should listen to me.

Contrary to popular belief, losing fat does not take hours upon hours in the gym. In fact, it can be done with no gym at all.

It is a common misconception that when one wants to get skinny, one should go to the gym and kill oneself until one can’t go anymore. The truth is, the most important factor in losing fat is your diet. Have you ever heard the expression “6-pack abs are made in the kitchen”? Well, it’s true.

Although precise percentages are impossible to measure, it has been proven through numerous scientific studies that diet contributes about 70-80% to the fat loss puzzle. In other words, if you don’t work out and just keep a strict diet you will lose 70-80% of the fat that you would have lost if you work out and diet.

Have you ever gotten a bad flu and lost 5 lbs in a matter of a week through not eating? Or have you ever killed yourself in the gym for a month and saw no results for a month? This is all due to diet.

All that said, I am NOT knocking working out. Exercise makes you feel good, builds muscle for a firmer shape, and helps you burn calories more efficiently.  You should definitely work out on a regular basis in order to stay healthy and vibrant. However, we all know that there always comes a time when we are in a pinch to lose some fat, and focusing on perfect diet and perfect gym routine is virtually impossible when you have a job, a boyfriend, nails to get done, bikini to wax, etc.

Therefore, if you can focus on one thing just focus on diet, and squeeze in some gym when you can.

Now, let’s take a look at which diets will get you results the fastest in ranking order:

  1. EAT LESS FOOD – You need a lot less food than you think, especially when not working out. Humans can go days, even weeks without food. Although I am not trying to lead you in the direction of an eating disorder, I am a proponent of periodic fasting. It not only makes you lose fat, but also makes you healthy.  ”Eat, Stop, Eat” is a fabulous guide on how to get started. Guides are extremely helpful when starting a program like this since I’m betting if you do it on your own you give up on day 1.5 due to hunger.
  2. LOW CARB DIET – Not the healthiest way to drop pounds, but not the worst either. If you are not into fasting, the old school method of cutting out carbs still works. It baffles me how when things go out of style, people think they don’t work anymore. Just because Dr. Atkins is dead, doesn’t mean carb counting stopped working. Here’s a good guide on how to stick to it.
  3. XTREME FAT LOSS DIET – If you are one of those type A people who like precise instructions, check this one out. It’s a combination of tricking yourself into eating less food, while revving up your metabolism. I’ve seen my friends drop quite a bit of fat on this one.
The good news is.. once you spend a bit of time dieting you don’t have to bust your ass to keep it off. Just eat like a normal, healthy person. Contrary to popular belief, it takes your body just as much calorie excess to gain weight as it does calorie deficit to lose weight. So do yourself a favor and knock some fat off before it’s too late.
Happy dieting!

Fix Your Life with Fasting (and get skinny)

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“One quarter of what you eat keeps you alive; the other three-quarters keeps your doctor alive.” 

No matter what kind of diet you’re on or how healthy you think you are, the unfortunate reality is that unless you live in the Tibetan mountains you are probably loaded with toxins. Beyond building up toxins from food, you may be experiencing other unhealthy events such as drinking alcohol, smoking (whatever you smoke), or other recreational weekend activities which we will not discuss in detail.

The result of this unhealthy cocktail is feeling sluggish in the morning and after lunch,  aging (aka wrinkles), unhealthy colon (your poo is important), and most importantly WEIGHT GAIN!

The more toxic your body is, the harder it is to lose fat. There are a bunch of complicated processes that the body goes through to change it’s chemistry which are made that much more complicated by toxins.  So what can you do to fix your toxic, dirty self without a lot of money or commitment?? FAST. One day a week is all you need to see benefits. Of course, if you’re up for a 3 day fast (only once a month) you’ll heal that much more. However, for most of us that is unreasonable because of the need to function in work and life at 100%. Needless to say, energy levels are much lower during a fast.

Here’s why fasting works for weight loss and general detoxification:

  • Detoxification is a normal body process of eliminating or neutralizing toxins through the colon, liver, kidneys, lungs, lymph glands, and skin. This process is sped up by fasting because when food is no longer entering the body, the body turns to fat reserves for energy.
  • There is a healing process that begins in the body during a fast. During a fast energy is diverted away from the digestive system due to its lack of use and towards the metabolism and immune system. The healing process during a fast is greatly encouraged by the body’s search for energy sources.
  • The most scientifically proven advantage to fasting is the feeling of rejuvenation and extended life expectancy. When you clean yourself out, your cells rejuvenate and you are good as new (almost).
  • Fasting is a much easier way to reduce calories than consistently eating less. If you eat the same as you always have, but take out one day a week from eating, your weekly calorie intake will be greatly reduced.

Now, here’s a quick and dirty way to do it without much pain:

  • Make lunch your last meal of the day
  • Suffer through not having any dinner that evening by keeping yourself busy with shopping for skinny clothes, doing a full facial and mask on your hair, or having sex.
  • Wake up the next morning and don’t eat breakfast
  • Begin eating again the next day at lunch.

Words of advice….

  • Eat light around the fast. So have a light lunch the day you are starting the fast, and another light lunch when resuming eating again. Otherwise you may not feel good.
  • Don’t exercise. When fasting you need to conserve your energy for the healing events that will take place inside you.
  • Don’t sit around at home and think about how you’re fasting and it sucks.
  • DON’T do a fast hung over

If you would like to turbocharge your progress with fasting or you simply want more info about why and how, this is an excellent read.

Let me know how it goes…..

You Are a Koi Fish

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It’s been a while since I’ve written, and I have no excuse. I can tell you I got busy, but I would be lying. Although I WAS busy, I could have found time in the day to share my thoughts with you. Did you miss me??

This got me thinking about motivation. Training and staying in shape is just a small piece of the puzzle of what keeps us motivated in life, and without a motivating environment chances are you will get nowhere. You will be fat, broke, and miserable.

I recently read somewhere that Koi fish are even MORE motivated by their surroundings than humans. Apparently a Koi fish’s growth is completely proportional to it’s environment – if you stick a koi fish in a tank it will only grow 2 inches, but if you let it go wild it will grow up to 2 feet!

Think about how motivating environments apply to humans and training… do you hang out with a group of friends who are constantly going to dinners and drinking? Do they keep ordering and ordering? Do these people work out?? If your friends are constantly going out to dinner it is going to be extremely difficult for you to exercise portion control when you get back home. If these people are constantly drinking it is not only going to influence you to take in extra worthless calories, but will also make you lethargic and lazy the next day.

Conversely, are your friends constantly doing something active? Working out, hiking, biking? Are they big on hitting the farmer’s market once a week? Is Whole Foods their favorite place on earth??

After I learned about these Koi fish I took a look at my own environment and realized that even a seasoned workout junkie like me changes with environment. For the past month or so I have had a small rotation in friends that have caused me to drink beer and eat burritos more often than I would like. Some of these burritos happened to be the size of a small child. Therefore, although I kept my training on point I have still put on a couple of pounds. In the grand scheme of things, no biggy – I know exactly how to get back on track. However, it opened my eyes to the severity of influence from my environment.

This lesson of motivation should be applied not only to training, but to all aspects of your life. Do you hang out with people that are supporting you in furthering your career? Do they help your relationship with your boyfriend? Are you dressing like you belong on an episode of Jersey Shore because your friends are?? The Jersey Shore thing is obviously an exaggeration, but still no matter how strong you are the level of influence from your environment is staggering.

So do yourself a favor and start hanging out with a couple of girls who are constantly at the gym, don’t drink much, and have cute clothes.

How To Do a Kick-Ass Home Workout

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Some people go to the gym with the intention of accomplishing a chore and getting in and out as quickly as possible. I think that’s lame. I work out at Gold’s Gym, and I must say I find all the muscle freaks, steroided-out women, and general douche-bags rather immensely.  They keep me entertained and have me looking forward to a new day at Gold’s.

That said, there are those certain days when you are friggin’ BUSY and you have NO time to get to the gym.  However, you have been eating shit for the past 2 weeks and feel like a huge lop. You NEED to get a workout in! What to do??

I have good news… you can get a fantastic workout in the privacy of your home without spending money on P90X, TRX, or any other contraption that will not arrive at your house for the next 2 weeks. All you need for this workout is simply a chair, which I trust you own.

Keep in mind that you shouldn’t rely on these workouts for your every day exercise routine, but they do serve as a great filler when you are stuck. Workouts using your body weight can be surprisingly challenging, and may even leave you in a state of soreness for the next several days.

If you do intend to workout out at home on a regular basis, definitely invest in a TRX with instructional videos. This is the best at-home workout program out there and can give you similar results to the gym.

For once in a while use, here’s a perfectly good and functional at-home workout for you to try…

  1. One-Legged Squats (8-12 each side)
  2. Push-ups (or girlie pushups) (8-12)

Rest 30 seconds, repeat 3x

  1. Bulgarian Lunge (8-12 each side)
  2. Tricep Dips on Chair (8-12)

Rest 30 seconds, repeat 3x

  1. Step-ups on Chair (8-12 each side)
  2. V-ups (12-15)

Rest 30 seconds, repeat 3x

  1. Mountain Climbers (12-15)
  2. Plank (30-45 seconds)

Rest 30 seconds, repeat 3x

Try this, it will kick your ass. Enjoy!

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