Category Archives: Fundamentals

It’s time for you to shine

Life is and will be great - live life to the max

I know you have what it takes to make the change in your life. Just set your mind to it and work on your goals on a daily basis. I’m no “health expert” or “certified weight loss guru”. Im just a regular guy, but I have experienced all this to be true and I’m well on my way to the weight and body I want to have.

If you follow the advices here you are sure to improve your odds of losing undesired body weight and adopting the lifestyle that will help you keep your desired weight. Losing weight is actually not the hardest part. Keeping the goal weight year after year is the challenge.

I would be happy if you follow Your Weight Loss Mindset on Facebook. By doing this you will get tips, articles, and motivational material to keep your mind fed :)

If you want to look at the weight loss/weight management program that I have been writing about (the plan that got me going and helped me stick to my weight loss strivings) please go to the Weight Loss Plan.

Facebook Twitter Plusone Linkedin Digg Delicious Reddit Stumbleupon

Daily motivation for weight loss

Keep moving forward

So you feel like crap today? Or anyways a little down. You will face a lot of challenges on your road to weight loss success. In order to overcome these challenges you have to get motivated and stay motivated, otherwise you will not have the power to follow through, and eventually meet your weight goal. It’s not only the diet that has to work. You have to work on the diet!

Ask yourself the right things

Start each day with a positive mental attitude. Try to get into that state of mind as soon as possible. Be thankful for a new day full of possibilities and that you are living in a free country, being able to accomplish whatever you want to do.

Suppress the negative thoughts and the negative questions that pops up the the head like “How come I’m not able to lose weight?” and replace them with questions like “How can I make myself feel better today and really enjoy the ride?”, “How can I plan my day best in order to work on my weight goals in the most effective way?”. You know those days that start off in a bad way and everything seems to go wrong. You oversleep, rush out of the bed and hurt your foot by accidently kicking a chair, your sock is missing and when you’re putting in your contacts you drop one down the drain. Your toast gets burned and you continue spilling coffee on your white shirt! As you started thinking negative thoughts, you attract more and more of the negative things.

Even when as bad thing happens, you should try to see the positive in the situation. By asking yourself “What’s good about this? What can I learn from this?”. Maybe you learned that drinking coffee in a white shirt isn’t that smart and you should do it in your housecoat before you get dressed for work instead :) The day your car doesn’t start may be the day you meet your future wife on the subway.

Feed your mind with positive stuff

As much as you have to feed your body with quality food and nutrients, you have to feed your mind with good stuff! Everyday we get bombarded with news about war, crises, global warming, conflicts, world starvation – lots and lots of negative stuff, not to forget all your negative and critical self-talk. You have to “flush the glass” with positive, constructive and empowering things  as a counterweight. Your glass of water gets dirty and cloudy with all that the breaking news and tabloids feed you with. This is a constant process in the same way as doing exercise or eating the right things. You have to listen to educational, self-developing things as often as possible. Audio books are a fabulous invention that you can use whenever you have minutes to spare. You carry them around all day in your (smart)phone and is perfect when you are commuting, working in the garden, cleaning, exercising or whenever! A good start would be to listen to some of the masters of personal development and inspiration – Jim Rohn, Anthony Robbins, Darren Hardy, Jack Canfield, Jeff Olsen just to mention some of my favourites. All of these guys have “been there, and done that” and are tremendously inspiring to listen to.

Team up with other winners

Do you find it hard to lace the sneakers and go out walking/running or to get your rear down to the local gym? How about finding someone that shares your goals and visions about weight loss to team up with? This can be a perfect way to get up from the coach and into the track suit. You will be able to motivate and inspire each other. You will have someone to be accountable to, and it will be harder to get away with excuses. Decide that you are to meet up at the gym at a certain time, certain days of the week. You simple have to be there. You don’t want to let your friend down, do you?

Walking and running as well as exercising in the gym is made much more enjoyable when you have something inspiring to listen to. Don’t just listen to music, even if good music of course can get you in a great mood for pushing yourself while exercising. Try listening to motivational audio every day and read 15 minutes of a good book before you go to sleep as well.

Find a good “made for you” plan

Are you confused about what to eat and when to do it? Are you like a headless chicken, running and back and forth in the gym trying a little of this and a little of that, wasting your time trying to figure out how to exercise properly? Following a plan is the solution. There are tons of good “made for you”-plans out there, both for choosing the diet and for right kind of exercise. Myself I got started on my weight loss journey with a great weight loss, health and weight management program that I strongly recommend. It includes top of the line products that supports cleansing, weight loss and well being. On top on that a guide what to eat, and when to do it as well as video coaching in the iPhone every day by the one of the gurus in the field of weight loss. Sweet!

Reward yourself

Get yourself some carrots to get some motivation. Make a sub goal that is due in a week or two, and if give yourself something for accomplishing that small goal, something that you enjoy doing and don’t do very often. It shouldn’t be something eatable, unless you wanna spoil yourself with a whole plate of raw carrots :) Think of what you enjoy doing or buying, and reward yourself with that when you meet your goal. A week without white bread = a manicure, Walking 2 miles a day all weekdays = you get to buy the latest tech gadget. My reward for every workout is relaxing in the steam sauna and my daily healthy energy drink. This moment is all I think about going to the gym.

Have a positive visual of yourself

When you right now are looking in the mirror it’s maybe hard to picture yourself slim and fit? The thing with a goal is that you have to be able to visualize it as already achieved. You have to believe that you can become that slimmer, healthier version of you. Have you given a thought of how you want to look exactly? Why not trying to find a picture on the net or in a magazine of a person that you would like to look like and then replace that persons head with your own, either by modifying the picture in an image editing program like Photoshop or by just placing a cut out of you own head/face on that picture. Putting this picture up in some strategic place can be a good boost for you self image and a positive affirmation whenever you see it.

Facebook Twitter Plusone Linkedin Digg Delicious Reddit Stumbleupon

Exercise – the key to well being

All you need is a little motivation

So we are finally here. The thing you fear the most. You get exhausted just by looking at people exercising. You think it’s hard, boring, and a waste of time. The times you have exercised didn’t give you any noticeable results.

When losing weight exercise is said to be around 20-25%. I think that is just pure theoretical. In a perfect world, eating a good and balanced diet and exercising on a daily basis surely would make everybody healthy and fit, but we people are very complex. In order to lose weight and maintain our goal weight we have to be motivated. Make ourselves motivated. For me, developing my weight loss mindset, exercising has been a major part. Way more than 20-25%.

Stop making excuses not to exercise

Getting started is the hard part. If you never have been exercising I’m sure you have lots of excuses not to start. It’s too boring, it costs to much to buy a gym membership, you don’t have time, you have a sore this or sore that that, you are stuck with the kids and so on. You must first find something that you like to do otherwise it will be difficult to make exercising a habit. The best exercise is the one you do! Try to make a schedule how often and when to do it, and try not to deviate from that schedule.

The thought of running miles and miles on a treadmill maybe isn’t that appealing. Get outside instead and start walking. It could be a great habit for you to walk for 15-20 minutes every morning before going to work. This summer during my vacation I forced myself up from bed as good as every single day to walk for about 50 minutes. That included quite a lot of negotiation with my bad self in the beginning. To stay in bed seemed so much better, but I whipped my sorry ass out of the bed and into to running shoes. Getting outside in the sun, putting on some good music or a good audio book, suddenly felt way much better than being a lazy lie-abed. I got into a routine and I felt good about myself doing it. I could get home after that and with a clean conscious eat a tasty breakfast.

I started to walk longer and longer and I kept doing it for the whole summer. I often got out with my friends or my wife. If you want to be social and meet friends, you don’t have to sit in a cafe or at home. Why don’t take a long brisk walk together instead? Who can you call today to ask if they want to join you tomorrow morning for a brisk walk before work?

The winnings of exercise are many

  • Gives you energy and makes you more alert
  • Makes you fresh, lively and healthy
  • Gives you a feeling of elation
  • Makes you relaxed
  • Dampens depression and prevents it
  • Suppresses cravings like sugar craving
  • Makes you proud of yourself
  • Cleans your lymph system due to increased deep breathing
  • Sweating increases the lymphatic flow which cleans out more toxins
  • Improves you immune system
  • Lowers the risk of diabetes, heart disease and cancer drastically
  • Lowers blood pressure and blood fats
  • Increases you metabolism
  • Releases dopamine in the brains “reward center” which makes you feel energized, and gets you addicted to it :)

Do you need more reasons to start exercising? I’m sure there are more, but this should be enough.

Challenge yourself and raise the bar

Just find something that you like to do. Be consistent with it. Make a plan and stick with it. Develop the necessary routines. Get up, get out, get moving. No excuses. Take it easy in the beginning and make a plan that you know that you will be able to follow. If you make a too demanding exercise plan, you probably will find lots of reasons to cheat one, two, three times and suddenly you skipped it all in favor for the latest TV-series. You have to find a good balance – not to easy (you have to challenge yourself a little) but not to demanding. Raise the bar little by little. When you start to feel comfortable with for instance running one mile, extend your route to a two mile track and stick with that for some weeks. Keep pushing and challenge yourself.

The more you do the easier it will get and you will feel better and better about yourself. Push yourself to do more and more. Get a journal and keep track of your trainings and your progresses.

As I said I think exercise is much more than 20-25% of your weight loss when it comes to the mental aspects, your mindset. Get out running, being in the gym doing TRX training, interval training or something else, pushing yourself knowing it’s gonna render progress, is a great feeling and when you see the results you freak out!

Ready for some serious fat-burning exercises?

You are looking for the fastest way to lose weight while exercising, right? What is the best fat burning exercise? Walking in all the glory, it’s a good start when you haven’t been exercising for a long time and haven’t built up the strength in knees and back. Walking is very refreshing for your body and mind, but it’s not the best workout to lose weight.

Forget about spot-burning belly or thighs. There is no such thing, even if TV-shop does a jolly good job trying to convince us that. If you are looking to lose fat fast you should do high intense interval training (HIIT) that involves large muscle groups. High intense aerobic training will increase the calorie expenditure and boost your metabolism. One sweet thing about this type of exercise is that the burning of calories stays on a high level for hours and hours after that you have stopped exercising.

The key is to get the heart rate up

Interval training is when you work very hard for a period of time (the longer the better), rests for 50-100% of that time and then start over again. This makes the exercise more effective and you don’t have to do it for a very long time. The high intense part should be to the point of fatigue, and as for as long time as possible. Sounds great fun, doesn’t it? ;-) I recently put up a punching bag in the garage. Beating that up for 30 seconds makes your heart bounce. Rest for 15-20 seconds and repeat this procedure 7-9 times. You don’t have to go many rounds with the sandbag before you feel pretty exhausted. Put a picture of your dictator-like boss or your nagging husband above it and it gets self-motivating ;-)

Building up your muscles with strength training have many benefits. It increases the metabolism as the bigger muscles needs more energy and will burn calories even when resting, the bone health is improved, it gives you strength and better balance, coordination and posture. When your looking to lose as much body fat as possible you should try activate large muscle groups, not isolated muscles. The more muscle fibers you utilize, the more lean muscle tissue you’ll develop, which will really boost your metabolism.

I promise you that if you start to exercise, you’ll be wanting more and more of it, and it will give you motivation as you will see results after a while. It’s quite hard to get a car rolling by hand, but once you’ll get it rolling it’s quite easy to keep it moving. You just have to get momentum in your exercise and it will be easy for you. Just make a plan and follow it. You can find a good made-for-you exercise program online or ask someone at the gym for tips. There are lots of people there who are eager to help you find the right kind of strength training exercises. They will probably be flattered that you ask them for advice, as they think they must have done one or two things right as you ask them.

Exercise does a good job suppressing cravings, and another aspect is that if you have been out walking, running or been to the gym it’s easier to say no to unhealthy food. You don’t wanna “undo” the exercise you just did, do you?

Facebook Twitter Plusone Linkedin Digg Delicious Reddit Stumbleupon

Basic nutrition for effective weight loss

Basic nutrition for effective weight loss

Trying to lose weight by starving is really stupid. It only makes the body panicking and holding on to the body fat as well as slowing down the metabolic rate for reasons of preservation. Your body needs nutrients to function properly and skipping food can results in nutrient deficiency. The is no silver bullet, but there are things to consume that together can contribute to a quicker weight loss.

Water

Water is something that you should get in high doses. Both from foods with high water content like fruits and veggies and from drinking clear, clean water. Be sure to drink only clean water. Maybe you should check the quality of the water where you live if you usually drink tap water, to be sure that you don’t drink a lot of water with chlorine, toxins, heavy metals and micro-organisms. Drinking lots of clean water helps the body to flush out toxins, support all the vital body functions and makes the fat burning process of metabolism work effectively. Studies have shown that water can increase the metabolic rate. Water also keeps you feel full, which will help you to keep your thoughts away from food.

About 1.5-2 litres of cold water is what an adult should knock back a day and that may sound a great deal. Good to have some sports bottles to bring in your car, by the desk and some other strategic places. I find it easier to drink a lot from bottles with spouts. If you want some flavour, try putting carefully cleaned lime and/or lemon slices or cucumber slices in the bottle. Cold, brewed organic green tea is also a good choice as it has lots a health benefits.

Carbs

A source of energy that I’m trying to avoid as much as possible as I’m trying to lose weight, but occasionally eating a little whole grain bread, rice (preferable brown and wild), potatoes, and whole grain pasta has no one died of. I guess. Anyway eat carbs in moderation and try not to get them from refined grain products. Carbs are as, mentioned earlier, good after intense workout as it starts the recovery and muscle growth process, and as the body is depleted of energy (glycogen).

Fat

Now were are talking. That’s a nice one. I think there is two basic forms of fat. The one around the waist (the enemy) and the one we eat (the friend) ;-) There has been a misconception for a long time that fat is all harmful and makes us…fat. We have been thought since childhood by mothers and authorities that eating fat is bad for us, but modern science proves the opposite.

Of course there are bad fats like man made trans fats (hydrogenized vegetable oils), brainchilds of mad scientists with grey blowzy hair. Not really, but scientists anyway. These fats are made to make cookies last for decades on the shelf, and they confuses our bodies as they are not natural. Look out for hydrogenated fat or partly hydrogenated fat. Margarines should be avoided as much as possible as well as they are made from sometimes low quality vegetable oils and made with questionable processes.

When it comes to saturated fat, typically from animals and dairy products there is a schism. Personally I think this fat is good for us and I enjoy a good deal of cream, sour cream, cheese, butter, and meat with fat on. Some “experts” claim that saturated fats clogs the arteries and raises the level of cholesterol. However there are no studies that I know of that has proved that saturated fat really is harmful.

Monounsaturated fat is found in canola oil, olive oil, avocados, nuts and almonds has been shown to have good health benefits.

Polyunsaturated fat is found in walnuts, flax seeds, fat fish and fish oil supplements for instance. Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids are well known fats to most people. What you maybe didn’t know is that too much of Omega-6 and to little of Omega-3 is not good. The ratio should be 2:1 for optimal health (Double the amount of Omega-3) but we often get way to little Omega-3 as the vegetable oils mainly contains Omega-6.

Studies show that eating Omega-3 supplement combined with a proper diet and exercise makes the body burn fat easier. It has the benefit of using a surplus of calories to build muscles instead of storing them as body fat and burn stored body fat instead of muscle tissue in case of caloric deficit (that is eating less calories than your body needs a day).

Protein

Protein is the building blocks of your body. It builds up and repairs your body and gives you high quality energy. You should look to get 0.8-1.5 grams of protein per pound of body weight each day. When losing weight, you are trying to get rid of only the fat. The protein helps keeping the muscles intact, so eating lots of protein is important when trying to lose weight. You want to get strong, lean, calorie-burning muscles and lose the fat.

Protein also has the largest thermogenic effect, which means that it requires the most amount of calories to digest beacuse it is harder to digest than the other macronutrients. It takes five times more calories to digest protein than carbohydrates.

Eating protein in the morning helps stabilizing your blood sugar and keeps you full for a long time, so eating protein in the morning is a smart idea. One of the best sources of protein is eggs which makes eating one or more eggs for breakfast a smart choice. Some other great sources of protein is cottage cheese, quark, greek yoghurt, almonds, tuna fish and turkey breast.

Vitamins

The word vitamin means “essential for life” and that pretty much sums it all up. Vitamins is something that we must have in the diet on a daily basis for our bodies to work properly! Vegetables and fruits, as well as animal products contains the different kinds of vitamins, but a problem here is do we really eat enough of the green stuff and unprocessed food to get all the vitamins we need? I don’t think so. That’s why I do like lots of “health experts” and take a vitamin/mineral supplement on a daily basis, to ensure an optimal intake of the good stuff.

What I take is a liquid formula that is complete, easy to take, tasty and well documented. It has great benefit both in short and long term! Of coarse I eat a balanced diet of fruits and vegetables too, but due to depletion of the soils, optimized agricultural methods and toxins the greens nutritional value has dropped over the decades. I don’t really trust the fruit and vegetables I see in the supermarket to contain sufficient amounts of vitamins and minerals.

As an example B-vitamins is essential for metabolism of proteins and carbohydrates.

Minerals

As well as vitamins, minerals are very important for the body to function as it should. Deficiency can lead to a wide range of troubles and great illness. Minerals is more important than most people think. All nutrients such as vitamins, enzymes, amino acids, proteins, carbohydrates, and fats require minerals for proper cellular function. For your metabolism to work properly you have to have magnesium, potassium, calcium and zinc. Minerals are actually more important to nutrition than vitamins. Without minerals the vitamins cannot function. The great majority of the people in US and Europe are deficient in minerals and trace elements. Are you one of them?

Facebook Twitter Plusone Linkedin Digg Delicious Reddit Stumbleupon

What to avoid in order to lose weight

What foods to avoid if you want to lose weight

Sugar

Sugar, sugar, sugar. Everybody is talking about this sweet stuff. You maybe already know that sugar is one of the main contributors to weight gain. The problem is that sugar is in everything these days. At least half of the sugar we consume comes from soft drinks, fruit drinks, and sports drinks. Do you actually know how much sugar you are consuming everyday? Start paying attention to the “hidden” sugars in food. Look at the labels. The ingredients are ordered by their amount so if some kind of sugar comes in first, second or third place, you can be sure there is a great deal of the white stuff in there. Everything ending with -ose is some kind of sugar. Hey, it may not even be white. It can be in different forms like high fructose corn syrup (beware), brown sugar, invert sugar, glucose syrup or fructose. All of them contributors of weight gain and the grave health problems that implies. Don’t be fooled by the tricks of the food industry. A label saying “No suger added” doesn’t mean a product doesn’t contain sugar. It can contain insane amounts of sugar from concentrated fruit juices. All sugar counts, even fruit sugar (fructose). Do you love to drink sodas, like drinking one can a day? Maybe it’s time to change that bad habit and save yourself the disservice of adding about 15 pounds to your body weight in one year?
An excess of 3500 calories is stored as 1 pound of fat. One soda a day per year makes 365 days x 140 calories = 51100 calories. 51100/3500=15 pounds added per year!

Some foods with “hidden” sugars are:

  • Spice mixes (for instance Thai wok mix)
  • Fruit juices
  • Low fat products
  • Milk (1 cup of skimmed milk = 3 sugar cubes)
  • Fruit yoghurt
  • Dressings
  • Dried fruit
  • Ketchup and BBQ sauces
  • Canned soups
  • Baked beans
  • Tinned vegetables and fruit
  • “Healthy” cereals

Wheat

It is not as commonly known that grains, and especially refined wheat, is even more dangerous than sugar. Two slices of white bread is equal to 6 teaspoons of sugar! Wheat is really high in carbohydrates (carbs) and has a very high GI (glycemic index).

In the 60’s and 70’s scientists were sent out on a mission to solve the world starvation by developing an improved, gene modified version of wheat. They came up with a new type of wheat that increased the yield tenfold and everybody had wheat in abundance. Thumbs up! Hooray!

But it turned out they got more than they bargained for.

You cannot genetically modify something without side effects, and the new version that was supposed to still the third world hunger, was introduced in the west world as well. Little did they know about creating a monster high in gluten (blood sugar raiser and inflammation inducer) and starch (amylopectin A that is super fattening).

Wheat also contains a protein called Gliadin that is a appetite stimulator which is bad when you are trying to eat less and lose weight.

In short; wheat is really something you should look to avoid now that you have a weight loss goal. Try eating a minimum of bread, pasta, pastries, pizza, breaded and battered foods, sauces, ready to eat food and cereals to mention some. Wheat and other grains contains a protein called Gluten that may cause chronic inflammation and digestive problems, even if you’re not gluten intolerant. Unfortunately wheat is “hidden” in a wide range of foods. Foods that you wouldn’t bet on containing wheat in some form does actually have wheat added. Don’t think that bread that contain whole grain is a safe bet. Just because the label on the loaf says “Whole grain” it’s perfectly healthy (even if the food industry wants us to think that). Whole grain doesn’t contain much less calories and raises blood sugar quite as much as refined wheat. However eating 100% whole grain is an upgrade compared to munching toasted white bread every morning.

Carbohydrates

All carbohydrates end up as glucose so you can say that carbohydrates = sugar. In other words carbs gives you lot of energy and that may be good if you are running a Marathon, or participate in Iron Man Triathlon, but for you and me carbs gives an excess of energy that eventually turns into fat and should be avoided as much as much as possible. Carbs is however good for restoration after a intense work out as it’s needed for building of muscles so getting some “good carbohydrates” after training is okay. Hint: A double white toast sandwich with jam is not a good source of carbs (but a fruit and some freshly squeezed juice is).

Carbs prevents fat burning

Carbohydrates raises the blood sugar level in the blood which raises the insulin level as well. Insulin has the function of controlling the blood sugar level by taking sugar from the blood to the cells. It also tells the fat cells to store excess glucose (sugar) as fat. With a diet rich in carbs, the insulin level is constantly elevated which makes the fat cells hold on to the fat. Insulin is preventing fatty acids to enter the blood stream by keeping them “locked up” in the fat cells. In other words carbs prevents the fat to be burned which is really bad as you and I are trying to lose body fat.

Choose good sources of carbs

The carbohydrate intake should mainly come from fruit, vegetables, nuts, seeds and legumes. Cutting out carbs from gluten and starch rich foods like white rice, pasta, potatoes, bread, corn products, gluten containing cereals and such will make the body start to burn that nasty body fat instead of the excessive energy from the carbs. There are more benefits than weight loss with controlled intake of carbohydrates. Proven health improvements are: stable insulin levels, bad cholesterol goes down, good cholesterol goes up, controlled blood sugar, blood pressure and body fat levels. Eating a minimum of carbs can be very difficult if you’re used to eat lots of the foods mentioned above, but you should start to choose your carbs wisely.

Alcohol gives a lot of excess energy

Cutting back on alcohol will be a very smart thing to do as it is very high in calories (double the calories in protein and carbs), has a very high glycemic index and the disadvantage of slowing down your metabolism by over 70%. If you eat and drink alcohol, it’s the alcohol in that drink the body burns first, postponing the burning of the energy in the food.

Ever been craving for a late night meal after a wet night out? Alcohol has appetite increasing attributes, and together with a fattening food like a burger meal or a pizza, you are sure to store some extra unwanted fat. Carbs and alcohol is a very bad combo. Drinks with drink mixers contains lots of sugar. The best choice for drinking is red wine, as it contains a good deal of nutritious anti oxidants.

Abstaining from alcohol is something a lot of people find very hard. You should anyway try to do your best to limit your consumption as much as possible, and choose the occasions when you get to “celebrate” with a drink, or a cold one. It’s up to you if you want to lose weight fast or not. Alcohol is going to make it a lot harder to drop pounds.

If you are going to a party all night, let’s have a low-calorie, no-carbs day and the best is if you can have a good, intense workout before to boost your energy burning mechanism and start your after burn effect (that will burn calories even on your hang over day :)

Facebook Twitter Plusone Linkedin Digg Delicious Reddit Stumbleupon