Nutrition is a Lifestyle Choice
I always tell my clients that a healthy body is the ideal expression of a healthy lifestyle. Once you reach an ideal height weight ratio, it is always to maintain your weight by achieving healthy food and exercise habits. In today’s world, only models and television or film stars are not the only people who feel the pressure to remain slim and fit into size two clothes. Everyone in today’s world want to look their best be it for professional or personal reasons. But most people give up the battle of the bulge after a few attempts thinking that weight loss is not for them. Slowly people slip into unhealthy eating habits and before you know it, their weight has taken a gargantuan leap and losing that weight now seems like an almost insurmountable hurdle. Let me talk about the habit of sticking to routines
Sticking to a Routine
Being tempted by food is not the best way to remain slim. Most people who manage to remain slim and trim for the better part of their lives religiously stick to their routine be it eating healthy and fat free foods for breakfast, lunch and dinner everyday or going to the gym or doing yoga every other day. Always eat breakfast and treat it like a religion. Eat a nutritious breakfast – be it fruit, yoghurt, upma, poha, idlis or scrambled eggs. Similarly ensure that your lunch is healthy and nutritious. Roti, sabzi, dal, a colourful salad, vegetable soup, grilled chicken etc. You can always vary the main items like substitute chicken with fish or have a sandwich instead of roti and sabzi. Stick to a routine diet where you eat the right things at the right time. Make it a lifelong habit and you will be looking fit, fabulous and young way into your twilight years!
Click here to read a previous article of mine on – healthy Indian Breakfast Options.
I get asked a lot by my clients – But how can we eat right when we are partying or socialising? To them I say that if you eat well all the time in the day, you can cut yourself some slack once in a while. Dining out is now a part of a modern Indian’s life and there is no escaping it especially if you are young, upwardly mobile and travel a lot for work. But be mindful always about what you are eating. Avoid overeating at all times. Eating an apple or a banana before leaving for dinner will ensure that you never arrive at your friend’s place or to the restaurant with a growling stomach.
At a restaurant, skip having meals which contain starchy carbs like pastas. If you want to be diet-conscious then order an appetizer as an entrée. You can eat even healthier at restaurants by asking your dining companions whether they would like to share several small dishes and treat it as the main meal. Similarly at a buffet just make a meal out of all the starters. Skip the main meal. Most times at Indian buffets people forcibly down the main meals when they are already full with all the starters. The benefits of this strategy are twofold – you will taste some really great food and you will not only feel lighter in your body but also your pockets! On the other hand, this is not a strategy that you can adopt every time. On the occasions that you have ordered one too many dishes of the main course and you have already had your fill, pack the leftover food and take it back home to have for another meal. Eat less during a meal and reward yourself with a piece of chocolate cake for dessert.
Work a Party – Keep your hands full
You can fill up your entire day’s quota of calories from just the potato and cheese puffs that follow you around the room at a cocktail party! Well here’s an idea if you want to avoid the temptations of gulping down one too many of those tasty but calorie-heavy morsels. Just keep both your hands full! Navigate through the party with your evening clutch in one hand and a drink in the other hand! The food will become easy to avoid because both your hands are full. Liquid calories will not accumulate if you sip a glass of wine slowly and if you are drinking water, well and good! Also learn the art of politely refusing. When someone offers you food at a social gathering, learn to say ‘No’. Excuses such as, “I just ate” or, “No I am good. Thanks” can come in handy and save you many times over from guilt and the pangs of having put on two kilos over the weekend!
Upgrading Travel Food
Traveling is another time when dieting goes for a toss for most people. But the most motivated dieters I know prepare for take-off and landing well in advance! Try and book night flights whenever possible. Pack a bag of mixed dried fruit or a fruit to munch on as a snack whenever you are hungry. That way you can just sleep throughout the flight. Or just order a vegetable or a chicken sandwich at the airport and then just stick to water or green tea while you are in the air. At the hotel, munch on a granola bar or consume the snack that you packed from home. Replenish your mixed dry fruit bag throughout your trip and carry them along with you at all times.
People who stay lean are never hungry! Lean people who successfully maintain their weight know the difference between snacking and overeating. When you are hungry your body usually craves all the foods that you should NOT be eating. Keeping that in mind, your office workstation drawer, handbag and suitcase should always be packed with organic preservative-free energy bars made of nuts, dried fruit, honey and shredded coconut as an added ingredient. Again only eat half a bar at a time. It usually takes longer for your body to register that you are full and satiated. So even when you are snacking, never rush. Fruits are always a good option when snacking.
Exercise – No Matter What
You may think that thin women only look pretty in designer outfits but a thin woman looks good in pretty much everything. She will look equally good in far less glamorous clothes as well – be it stretch pants, a sports bra and sneakers. If you want to be lean and thin – sadly you have to work for it! Exercising to get a thin body cannot be outsourced to someone else! You have to do all the hard work yourself. Do not for a moment assume that the gorgeous woman in her 40’s looking great in that stretch Levis has it easy. You just haven’t seen the tremendous amount of dedication and discipline that she has towards her diet routine. Nor have you seen the exhausting gym workout routines or the Vinyasa Flow Yoga Routines that she does like clockwork everyday! These women workout everyday and they do not waste their time on lame workouts that do not give them results. A truly motivated woman is up at 5.30 am thrice a week for crossfit trainings or personal training at the gym. They would also be doing an alternate workout like Yoga or Pilates. Yoga is highly advised by me as a routine that not only helps you to lose weight and grow stronger but also give you mental peace and stability. Kickboxing is also a popular workout for women. It gives you an excellent cardio and strength workout. You will enjoy your kickboxing session so much that time will fly and you will exit the session leaving exhilarated and incredibly refreshed.
For those who are really really hard pressed for time, make your daily activities count. Walk and take the stairs whenever possible. Move fast because it gets your heart rate up. Carry your groceries in your hand instead of a cart. Send the driver ahead with the larger packets while you walk with a couple of packets of groceries for a few blocks. Lo and behold – you have got a wonderful workout already! Use your imagination and creativity and you will realise that there are far more opportunities than you realise in everyday life to make room for physical activity.
If you’d like to hire a personal trainer at home do check out our Allied Fitness Training Company – Wellintra from whom you can hire the best and certified fitness trainers at home. Click here – Wellintra Fitness
Do Eat Sweets
Contrary to what you might believe – thin women do eat sweets. Keep the portions tiny and you can have your cake and eat it too. Here’s what I advise my clients – Forget the low calories sweets. When you crave for sweets, do not opt for the low calorie ones because it will never satisfy you. Instead just have a small portion of what you really want to eat and enjoy yourself!
Like everything else in life, you value things the most when you experience them in moderation!