TheFittChick helps you Party-Proof Your Diet…

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Just because you’re losing weight and maintaining a healthy diet doesn’t mean that the rest of the world is doing the same, and that’s where you can run into trouble. The whole month of December will test your willpower with company holiday parties, gift baskets, and the constant spread of Christmas cookies.

Losing weight should not be about deprivation, and that includes social activities. There’s no reason to be less social during the holidays, just because you’re living a healthy lifestyle.

Here’s my Tips for making it through your next holiday party without gaining a pound…

1. Don’t show up hungry…have a light meal before you go, in case there are not a lot of healthy options once you get there.

2. Be Prepared…throw a protein bar or some raw nuts in your bag so your not tempted to eat the candy and bar nuts on the table. And when there are no healthy options you won’t be stuck wasting thousands of calories on a meal you never wanted.

3. Speak Up…most of the time a restaurant will be more then happy to bring you a salad without dressing, a more healthy version of the meal being offered, or a cup of berries in place of the dessert. You just have to ask!

4. Look your best…usually if you are wearing something you feel good in, it will make you more aware of your body and less likely to overeat!

5. Keep your mouth busy…sugar-free gum is a great option when you feel like your about to cave:)

I personally couldn’t have been happier at my husbands Christmas party with my garden salad (no dressing), 1 pound of King Crab Legs, steamed green beans, and fresh berries. Just because everyone else ate double baked potatoes, Caesar salads, huge steaks, and giant pieces of cake, doesn’t mean I had to.

Happy Healthy Holidays from TheFittChick….And remember, nothing will taste as good at your holiday party as being healthy will feel!

Skinny Travels Part 2 from TheFittChick…

Image“No matter where you are headed, finding healthy food on the road can be a challenge. Bringing healthy, tasty, and portable snacks with you on your next trip can ensure that you always have healthy food on hand.”

I just finished packing up all this yummy food and am off to the post office! Being prepared on vacation means you will never have to be so hungry that you eat something in the moment, you will regret later on!

Happy Travels!

Skinny Travels from TheFittchick…

ImageWhen you take a trip, does your diet go on vacation, too? Sticking to your healthy lifestyle on vacation isn’t exactly easy. It seems temptation is around every corner and it’s tough to do the “work” weight loss requires when all you really want to do is rest and relax!

10 Tips to help stay healthy on Vacation:

Research Before You Go……Almost all restaurant websites offer menu information. Take note of items to avoid and those that fit your diet and preferences. Keep the information you learn in mind when choosing where to dine.

Bring Healthy Snacks with You……Bring protein bars and other healthful snacks with you for afternoon and nightime cravings. If you are driving, you can pack fruit and other low-calorie items to help you avoid giving in to vending machine temptation or drive-through desperation.

Be Careful when Ordering Salads……Salads can be a low-calorie alternative, but watch out for items that can add a hefty amount of calories and fat. Breaded and fried chicken (often called “crispy”) has many more calories than grilled chicken. Other items to avoid include refried beans (common in taco salads), high-fat dressings (blue cheese is a good example) and many kinds of cheeses.

Watch for Healthful Cooking Methods……Opt for grilled meat, seafood or veggies, rather than fried. Be careful of sauces: A white sauce, or anything described as “creamy” is often much higher in fat than a tomato or marinara sauce. Ask if you can substitute veggies for a potato as your side dish.

Cut Portion Size……When eating out, here are several strategies to cut portion size: Try ordering an appetizer as your main meal instead of an entree. Consider splitting an entree with someone else in your party rather than eating the whole thing yourself. Plan to eat half of what you’re served and bring the rest home in a doggie bag (or just leave it on your plate).

Choose Zero-Calorie Beverages……Ask for diet soda, unsweetened iced tea, or even a tall glass of ice water with lemon. Save the calories that would be in a tall glass of sweetened soda for some other part of the meal. Restaurants often have tall glasses that already contain more than one serving, and then they refill them for free, which could add up to several hundred calories if you don’t order a diet beverage.

Beware of Alcoholic Drinks……Here is another place where research can serve you well. Look up calorie content for your favorite mixed drinks before you set off on your trip. Know which drinks to avoid. Some can have 500 calories in one glass, but others are much lower in calories. Decide ahead of time which drinks you will avoid and stick to your plan.

Take a Walk……Look for opportunities to walk for exercise. Opt for a walking tour instead of a bus. Get up early and explore the area around your hotel on foot. Or take advantage of the hotel pool or fitness room.

Plan a Minor Indulgence……After all, you are on vacation. Plan one or two meals when you will disregard your diet and just enjoy whatever you want. Think of it as a reward for sticking to the diet for the rest of the trip.

by Melissa Worcester

Eating Breakfast Could Be Your Diet’s Secret Weapon!

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Think you’ll skip breakfast this morning so you can splurge on lunch and dinner later and avoid some weight gain? Not so fast.

“Eating a good breakfast does more than cut the risk of binging later on-it revs up your metabolism, provides energy for your body and brain, and is a key strategy for weight loss and maintenance.”

“As the word implies, it really is breaking a fast when the body wakes up empty,” says Leslie Bonci, a registered dietitian. Among participants in the National Weight Control Registry, an ongoing study of more than 4,000 people who’ve lost a minimum of 30 pounds and kept it off for at least a year, 80 percent are regular breakfast eaters. Meanwhile, other research shows breakfast skippers have 4.5 times the risk for obesity.

“A study at the University of Texas at El Paso found that people who ate a substantial breakfast consumed an average of 100 fewer calories a day than when they didn’t eat breakfast. Though that may not sound like much, over a year it could mean a 10-pound weight loss.”

“So what should you eat for breakfast? Experts agree it’s best to include lean protein and fiber-rich carbohydrates. The body has to work harder to digest protein than carbs, so it burns more calories in the process. And because a protein and fiber-rich breakfast is digested more slowly than a carbs-only meal, blood sugar levels stay steady, so you don’t get hungry as quickly.”

Some FittChick “approved” breakfast ideas include breakfast smoothies made with whey protein powder and fruit, a breakfast sandwich of egg whites, low fat cheese and high fiber toast, oatmeal with egg whites, greek yogurt and berries, or a breakfast wrap with veggies and egg whites. The list is endless…Try one of these healthy, low-calorie breakfast ideas today, and you could be closer to a healthier you before you know it!

TWEAK OF THE WEEK…Is your morning coffee to blame for those extra pounds you can’t seem to lose?

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“Do you think about the number of calories you consume when you order your morning coffee drink? If you are trying to lose weight, you probably should. Some popular drinks from Starbucks and other popular spots contain up to 500 calories. If you add that to a breakfast meal, you could easily consume an entire day’s calories before you start your morning.”

“You don’t have to give up the trip to your favorite coffee spot just because you’re on a diet. If you love your morning java fix, keep it on the menu. But learn to order a low-calorie coffee drinks instead. The calories you eliminate by making just a few small changes could have a big impact when it’s time to step on the scale.”

TheFittChick uses SweetLeaf™ vanilla creme in my coffee every morning to make it taste like a latte without any calories. Another great sweetener is the Torani Sugar-free flavored syrups. If its the creaminess your looking for, remember that skim milk has 85 calories a cup, soy milk has 75-100 calories per cup, half and half has 315 calories per cup, and fat-free half and half has 142 calories per cup. How about unsweetened almond milk for only 40 calories a cup, or coffee-mate sugar-free french vanilla coffee creamer for 15 calories a TBSP.

Remember for every extra 100 calories you consume each day, is an extra 10 pounds at the end of the year. Most of the large coffee chains have nutrition information online. Looking up your favorite drink may be an eye-opener for you if you consider your coffee drink just that – a drink and not a meal! Try some of these tips to make your Morning Buzz FittChick “approved.”

http://www.diet-blog.com/08/how_many_calories_in_coffee.php

TheFittChick helps you Snack Smart!

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Who doesn’t love ranch? Ranch salad dressing, ranch dips, cool ranch Doritos….I know I grew up eating and loving everything ranch, so I came up with this Ranch Dip that has changed my world. Just add some Ranch Dressing Powder to any 0% Greek Yogurt and you won’t believe how amazing it tastes. Pair it with your favorite veggies or top your salads with it, and you will never miss your full fat Ranch dip again!

This makes a great after school snack for kids (we call it “protein dip” or amazing for family get togethers (no one will ever know its not the real thing)!!!

Happy Snacking:)

Are you getting the most out of your Cardio Workouts?

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“High-intensity interval training (HIIT) describes any workout that alternates between intense bursts of activity and fixed periods of less-intense activity or even complete rest. For example, a good starter workout is running as fast as you can for 1 minute and then walking for 2 minutes. Repeat that 3-minute interval five times for a 15-minute, fat-blasting workout.”

“One reason high-intensity interval training is so popular is because a HIIT workout takes very little time. A typical HIIT workout is 20 minutes in duration, depending on one’s fitness level.”

“Research suggests that short, intense cardio intervals burn more body fat than sustained activity, such as steady-state cardio. During traditional cardio workouts, calories are burned only while performing the workout whereas high-intensity interval training can boost metabolism for up to 24 hours after a workout.”

TheFittChick HIIT workout is to jump on the treadmill or stairclimber and do a 45 second run/sprint and jump to the side and rest for 15 seconds. The ultimate goal is to work up to 20 minutes of sprinting, with a 5 minute warm-up and cool down.

Check out this article from SimplyShredded.Com for more info on HIIT workouts VS. Steady State Cardio…

http://www.simplyshredded.com/cardio-for-fat-loss-high-intensity-interval-training-cardio-vs-low-intensity-steady-state-cardio.html

“FITT” Finds from TheFittChick…

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A NEW FITTCHICK “APPROVED” PRODUCT TO HELP SPICE UP YOUR MEALS!!!

Whenever we think of eating healthy, we tend to think of bland, tasteless food. Healthy food does not automatically mean no flavor. “Fresh herbs, garlic and ginger are such wonderful additions to recipes that, for many cooks, they’re kitchen staples. But what happens when you don’t have any on hand? Or if you’re in a hurry and don’t want to wash, dry and chop? Or if the fresh parsley in the bin has turned yellow, and your garlic cloves are dry and hollow?”

“Enter Dorot, an Israeli-based company specializing in fresh-frozen herbs. They are packaged in what look like tiny ice cube trays, four by five inches, filled with 20 bouillon cube-size nuggets. While frozen herbs will seldom equal fresh ones, these handy substitutes are light years beyond dried herbs, and occupy little freezer space.”

“The cubes pop right out of the tray, so they can easily be added to sautés and soups, dressings and marinades, or anything that needs a hit of concentrated, fresh flavor.”

These are my new favorite find! No one will know you didn’t take out the cutting board and chop away. They have made my go-to meals even better. Run to TraderJoes to pick these up! You will be so glad you did!