Dearborn Boot Camp, Dearborn Personal Trainer, Dearborn Weight Loss

Dearborn Boot Camp | Dearborn Personal Trainer | Dearborn Personal Training - Part 3

          Learn How to Lose Weight Fast             

                 Dearborn Weight Loss                     

Hi, My name is Nick Lopez and I'd like to welcome you to Dearborn Boot Camp and Personal Training blog. I have helped hundreds of your family and friends right here in Dearborn/Dearborn Heights get in the best shape of their lives and I can do the same for you.

This blog is designed to help Dearborn/Dearborn Heights residents feel great, lose weight and add years to their lives.

I love being a personal trainer because it allows me to change lives. So let’s get started!

You'll discover simple, yet effective ways to help you lose weight fast without spending hundreds of dollars on stupid gadgets and diet pills.

If you're tired of spinning your wheels trying to lose weight, come back often because you've discovered the #1 Dearborn/Dearborn Heights weight loss site on the internet. In addition to the killer posts and articles on this blog, you'll also get resources, tips, ideas, and systems for losing weight fast. Best of all, you'll get information that you can apply today and get results now!

Whether you want to lose 10 lbs or 100 lbs of weight, or if you just want to know how to live a healthier life - this is the resource site for YOU.

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(Get in Shape and Help Dearborn’s Homeless Animals!)

shelter image

Dearborn, MI – January 9, 2013 Nick Lopez, CEO/Founder of Dearborn based Weapons 4 Weight Loss, a Dearborn fitness boot camp/personal training program, is going to donate $1000 to Friends For The Dearborn Animal Shelter in order to help local homeless animals. Lopez will accomplish this by donating $50 for every new client that joins his fun, high-energy boot camp program from January 15 to Febuary 15.

Claim your FREE week of boot camp ===> CLICK HERE

“I’m finally in a position to donate back to the community. The shelter does so many great things, with their help, I’m now able to help more people lose weight AND help all these animals find a loving home.”  Lopez said.

The Weapons 4 Weight Loss program is perfect for any fitness level and incorporates fun, fat-burning exercises in an addictive sweat-inducing workout. A full nutrition guide and personalized meal plans are also included to ensure maximum fat loss.

The mission of the Friends For the Dearborn Animal Shelter is to provide loving care and sanctuary to animals, encourage adoptions and reunions, and promote respect, responsibility, and compassion for all animals.

The indoor fitness camp meets Mondays through Friday at 6:30am and Tuesdays through Fridays at 8pm at Sokol Cultural Gymnastic Center in Deaborn Heights. New times and locations will be added in the coming weeks.

Sessions include muscle strengthening and toning, cardiovascular conditioning, core stabilization, balance and flexibility training. Lopez guarantees twice the calorie burn in half the time of traditional health club workouts.

To get started with the Weapons 4 Weight Loss Bootcamp Program please contact Nick Lopez at (313) 686-1989
OR

Claim your FREE week of boot camp ===> CLICK HERE

 

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Following a head injury, there are many things of which to be concerned. Top on the list is often a concussion. An injury to your brain that affects the way your brain works, a concussion can be scary business and should be treated seriously. So if a concussion is suspected, seek medical attention as soon as possible.

Whether a person is severely shaken or has a blow to the head while playing contact sports, suffers from a bad car accident, or takes a hard fall, how can you know if he or she has suffered a concussion? Here’s what to look for following a head injury and what you can do to reduce the risk for long-term injury.

Altered Consciousness

It’s often difficult to tell if someone has suffered a concussion because symptoms may not appear immediately but may take several days or weeks to present themselves. In fact, a concussion can result with an injury that seems relatively minor. There may be no outward sign of trauma or cuts, bruises, or a bump where the head was impacted, but a concussion may be lurking.

Since a concussion is a brain injury, it will temporarily alter a person’s feelings of consciousness, thoughts, and normal brain function. Dizziness, unusual tiredness, ringing in the ears, and confusion are common. Most concussions do not result in loss of consciousness.

What to Watch For

Perhaps your son plays football and sustains a blow to the head. Maybe your toddler fell off the top bunk. If you’re worried a concussion is possible, look for the following symptoms:

  • nausea or vomiting
  • seizures
  • confusion
  • difficulty walking, loss of balance, or decreased coordination
  • weakness or numbness
  • slurred speech
  • trouble sleeping or being overly tired
  • loss of short-term memory
  • headache
  • sensitivity to light
  • unable to taste or smell
  • unusual irritability or crankiness
  • fuzzy vision or unevenly sized pupils

If you notice any of these symptoms following a head injury, seek medical attention. There’s no such thing as a “minor” brain injury, so all concussions should be evaluated by a professional. If you’re unsure if there’s a concussion, play it safe by calling a physician anyway.

Diagnosis and Treatment

To determine if someone has a concussion, the doctor will perform a neurological exam and brain imaging tests (usually a CT scan). It may take time, but most people experience a full recovery following a concussion. Unfortunately, severe cases may lead to long-term memory and problem-solving impairments. The more concussions a person experiences in life, the greater the risk of long term damage. (So football, rugby, and other contact sport players beware!)

With a concussion, the most important treatment is rest. Taking it easy and avoiding activities that require focused attention (playing video games, watching TV, or using the computer) will help your brain heal. Tylenol can be taken to relieve headaches.

The most dangerous type of concussion is one that happens soon after a previous concussion before the first one has had time to heal. In such a case, a concussion may cause permanent brain damage or even death. This is why rest is so important following a concussion. Recognize when you’ve suffered a concussion and avoid activities that put you at risk for subsequent blows to the head until you are sure a concussion is fully healed.

Prevention

While you can’t avoid all concussions, there are steps you can take to lessen the likelihood of head injuries. A good first step is to always wear a helmet while participating in any kind of contact or dangerous sport or when riding a bike.
Additionally, never dive in a pool that’s less than 9 feet deep, wear a seat belt whenever you’re in a moving vehicle, and never drive intoxicated. Inside your house, take steps to ensure your home is as accident proof as possible. Keep the floor clear of toys, secure area rugs, install safety gates and handrails on stairways, and pad sharp corners.

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Ever suffer from back pain? A long day at work, heavy lifting, a new workout, an uncomfortable mattress, or even chores around the house can cause an aching back. You may feel like taking it easy, but staying active with back exercises will help relieve back pain and bring healing faster than rest.

If you’re prone to back aches and pains, these stretches are for you. Just 10 to 15 minutes a day of these simple exercises will stretch and strengthen your back muscles as well as surrounding support muscles. And lucky for you, most of these exercises are done on the floor with little to no equipment needed. Repeat each exercise three times at least once a day.

Do note that if you’ve suffered a back injury or have osteoporosis, consult with your physician prior to doing these stretches.

Lower Back Rotation

Get on the floor and lie on your back. Bend your knees and place your feet flat on the ground. While keeping your shoulders against the floor, roll your knees over to the left side. Hold this position for 10 seconds, and then bring your knees back up. Now roll your knees over to the right side and hold.

Knee to Chest

In the same position on the floor as the lower back rotation (on your back with knees bent), take both hands and reach down and grab your left knee. Pull it up toward your chest and hold it there for 20–30 seconds. Return to the starting position. Now pull the right knee up toward your chest and hold. Lastly, pull both knees at the same time and hold.

As a variation, work another back muscle by crossing your right knee over your left knee and raising your left knee toward your chest. Switch legs and repeat.

The Bridge

Another back exercise is the bridge. Again, start by lying on your back, knees bent, feet flat on the ground. Keep your head and shoulders on the ground and contract your abs and glute muscles. Raise your hips up toward the ceiling and hold this position for about 30 seconds and lower. Repeat.

Arch Like a Cat

On the floor, get on your hands and knees. Let your back and belly lower toward the floor. Slowly raise your abs toward the ceiling, making an arch with your back. You’ll look like a scared cat. Lower your abs down, and repeat several times.

Seated Lower Back Rotation

To do this exercise, get off the floor. Sit up straight in a chair with your right leg crossed over your left leg. With your left elbow against the outside of your right thigh, twist your torso and stretch toward the right side. Hold for 10 seconds, and then repeat on the other side.

This is a good back exercise to do several times during the day if you’re sitting at a desk for long periods of time.

Hamstring Stretches

Lower back pain is often caused by a tight hamstring muscle. Lie on your back with your legs straight. Bring your left knee up to your chest, then straighten your left leg and lift your foot towards the ceiling. Lower your leg back down, and repeat with your right leg.

Another exercise you can do while sitting in a chair is a hamstring stretch. Sit on the edge of the chair, straighten one leg and lift your foot as high as you can.

Bird Dog

Stretch and strengthen your back muscles as well as your core and abdominals with the bird dog exercise. Get on your hands and knees with your wrists under your shoulders and your knees under your hips. Point your fingers forward, and keep you back straight. Lift your left arm straight in front of you at the same time you lift and straighten your right leg behind you. Lower, and then raise your right arm and your left leg. Continue alternating sides.

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Let’s face it, no one is perfect. One big mistake while trying to lose weight could set you back weeks, or even months….you might even prevent yourself from achieving your goal altogether!

They say experience is the best form of education, so today I want to share with you my 3 BIGGEST mistakes I’ve made while trying to lose all my weight. You may have already made these yourself, so learn from your mistakes!

#3: Lack of Effort With Nutrition

The heaviest I ever weighed was about 245lbs. I started losing weight by just moving around more and being active. I worked as a bagger at Kroger and was ALWAYS on my feet working 30-35 hours a week.

That first year, I dropped about 20 lbs FROM JUST THAT ALONE. I didn’t workout at all and I still ate whatever I wanted (which was complete shit).

Sounds great right?

Well the more weight a person has to lose, the faster it will come off in the beginning. So then why was this a bad thing?

Because I assumed that I could eat whatever I wanted and STILL keep losing weight.

Wrong!

What ended up happening is I entered the dreaded plateau. My weight loss came to a screeching halt and I got frustrated and was about to say screw it and quit.

Yes I know it can be a pain in the ass, but you NEED to pay attention to what you eat and make a good faith effort because if you don’t, you WILL PLATEAU. I can promise you that.

If your workouts and nutrition are locked in from the very start, your weight loss will damn near double in pace. Make every day count.

#2: Comparing Myself to Others

When losing weight, it’s VERY easy (and almost instinctive) to compare yourself and your journey to others.

I would look at other people in the gym and just wish why I couldn’t look like that, lift as much as they can or have as much cardio endurance as they do.

I always had a grudge against people that were fit and in shape because I felt like they have been like that their entire life. Most of the time that’s simply not true.

All fitness models (male and females) work extremely hard and are VERY dedicated to keep their bodies in top shape. NOTHING worth having ever comes easy, that goes for anything in life.

I would frequently lose motivation because I felt like I couldn’t measure up to other people’s standards, I couldn’t lose weight as fast as I heard other people doing it.

You NEED to understand that every single person’s story and journey are different.

You are going to lose weight at a different pace than everyone else. But the important thing is that YOU ARE LOSING WEIGHT. Understand that if you quit, you will NEVER get what you want. It’s that simple.

Learning how to stay motivated is absolutely critical in this entire process. It’s one of those intangible skills you MUST have.

And last but certainly not least….my #1 mistake I’ve made….

#1: LACK OF PATIENCE!

Those that know me on a personal level know that I have absolutely no patience with anything in general.

However now with weight loss and fitness, I do. That’s my job and passion so given my journey I’m able to empathize with a lot of my clients because I’ve been there and know exactly what it feels like.

But with 99% of the other things in life (especially little kids!) I have ZERO patience.

I think we live in a world of instant gratification. Technology has allowed us to communicate with people across the world in a matter of seconds. Usually, if we want something (physical or otherwise) we can get it, buy it or do it.

Unfortunately weight loss does not work like that.  Humans are fat storing machines and it’s obviously much easier to gain weight than lose it.

I was no exception back when I was fat. I wanted everything right now. I wanted the results from all the infomercial gimmicks and gadgets I saw. All the stupid diet pills and weight loss supplements that ended being proven to be complete bullshit and waste of money.

I don’t really blame people for being this way, “instant results” are all around us thanks to the media and advertising from the supplement industry.

If you’re like most people, you haven’t been happy with your body in months or even years….perhaps even NEVER!

So then you must accept that you’re not going to drop 3 pants sizes in a month, lose 50 lbs in 3 weeks and get completely ripped in 5 weeks.

I know it sucks, but this shit takes time!

But I can promise you, that as long as you don’t quit, you WILL get the body you want.

Remember why you started this crap in the first place. You want to look a certain way and feel a certain way right?

Remember the last time your body made you feel uncomfortable? The last time you had to buy that “other shirt” because the one you really wanted showed off your belly fat and muffin top?

It sucks doesn’t it? SO WHY WOULD YOU EVER QUIT?!

Doesn’t make sense…so don’t do it!

That’s it. Post over, now go workout!

-Nick

PS: If you found this helpful, do me a huge favor and click that “LIKE” button below :)

 

 

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What you should know about plastic.

Everywhere you look, you see something made of plastic. But it wasn’t long ago that plastic began to get a bad rap. Drinking out of plastic containers, eating food packaged in plastic, microwaving food in plastic dishes, or heating plastic baby bottles all became another cause for concern. Maybe you were one of those who threw away all your plastic Tupperware, plates, cups, and utensils altogether for fear you were poisoning yourself and your family.

However, a new type of plastic is available that advertises itself as a safe alternative and is deemed BPA (bisphenol A) free. But is this really a safe type of plastic? What about the many other types of plastic that package or touch our food? If you’re one of the millions concerned about the safety of plastic, here’s what you should know.

The Plastic Leak

Teeny tiny amounts of plastic get into your body from the food you eat. When plastic touches your food through preparation, packaging, or contact with dishes or utensils, it leaks out trace amounts. When plastic is heated or comes in contact with salty, fatty, or acidic foods, it releases even more chemicals.

Unfortunately, the health dangers of this leached plastic haven’t been adequately studied. Scientists can’t tell for certain how safe plastic is because it hasn’t been proven completely unsafe. They have determined, however, that two types of plastics known as BPA and phthalates are possibly dangerous. Most food or drink products made with these chemicals should be taken off the market.

Behind BPA

Found in water bottles, baby bottles, and the lining of canned goods, BPA seeps into drinks, formula, and canned foods, and then into your body, and finally into your blood. Along with other plastic chemicals, BPA is harmful to your hormone levels—especially estrogen. Under investigation, this chemical may increase your risk for reproductive problems, heart disease, diabetes, and liver problems.

Limit your exposure to BPA by eating less canned goods and eating more fresh or frozen foods. Also, don’t feed your baby formula packaged cans or from a bottle containing BPA, and don’t drink out of plastic bottles made from polycarbonate. (They’ll be marked with a PC or a 7.) Instead, look for bottles labeled as BPA-free.

Phthalates Aren’t Preferred

Countless consumer products are made of phthalates and many foods are packaged in this type of chemical. (It is often used to cling-wrap deli meats, cheeses, and other foods.) Banned in Europe and nine other nations, phthalates are so common in the U.S. that particles are found in the air we breathe and trickle into the food we eat.

Similar to BPA, phthalates mess with your hormones, but phthalates affect testosterone. High levels of the chemical block testosterone from doing its job, lower sperm count, and cause genital abnormalities. Although officials say levels are too low to cause concern, you can make up your own mind.

The prevalence of phthalates makes it difficult to avoid, but you can limit your exposure by not buying products made of polyvinyl chloride that should be labeled PVC (think of the pipes in your house) or with a 3.

Other Dangers

The same harmful chemicals used in certain plastics are also used in nonstick cookware. When these pots and pans are under high heat, they can release toxic chemicals into your food. They can also kill a pet bird.
Keep the following tips in mind to avoid these poisonous chemicals:

  • Avoid preheating an empty nonstick pan on high heat. Cook your food at as low a temperature as possible.
  • Keep your exhaust fan on over the stove while cooking.
  • Use cast iron pots and pans if possible.
  • Avoid eating fast food or microwave popcorn.
  • Don’t put plastic wrap or plastic containers in the microwave.
  • Buy a dishwasher with a stainless steel interior.
  • Avoid plastics labeled with the numbers 3 or 7.
  • Store food in glass containers.>
  • Throw away any scratched plastic containers.
  • Wash plastic dishes and utensils by hand.

Many plastics are declared by experts to be safe for your family, but until recently, so were BPA and phthalates.

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The pros and cons of caffeine.

Let’s face it: You’re addicted to caffeine! Don’t worry, you’re not alone. Millions around the globe are in the same boat. Without that cup (or cups) of coffee to get you going in the morning, that energy drink to get you through a night of studying, or that soda to give the boost you need in the afternoon, you’re practically worthless.

Caffeine seems to be a harmless drug, as far as drugs go. And you can probably think of a long list of benefits that come with that cup of coffee. But are there any downsides to consuming too much caffeine?

What Is Caffeine?

Caffeine is a bitter-tasting substance naturally found in coffee, tea, chocolate, and kola nuts, which is added to soda, energy drinks, some weight loss supplements, and certain medications. It is a stimulant drug that affects your metabolism and stimulates your central nervous system, increasing your alertness and energy level.

Most people who consume some form of caffeine on a regular basis could forgo it and be fine. Others, however, seem to be addicted. They are dependent on caffeine to function well, and if they don’t have those cups of coffee, they have withdrawal symptoms (headache, anxiety, fatigue, or depression for a few days). Addiction to caffeine is not nearly as serious as addiction to other drugs. It won’t put you in danger, damage relationships, or break your bank like other addictive drugs, but it may have its downsides.

The Pros

If you drink coffee in the morning, you know the benefits that come with caffeine. Perhaps you notice that your memory is improved; you feel awake, alert and energized; you’re more social; or you’re able to focus and get more accomplished.

Besides these well-known benefits of caffeine, there are other possible health benefits to moderate consumption. Your morning Joe may be doing more than waking you up. Research has shown that caffeine consumption may help reduce your risk of developing Parkinson’s disease, type 2 diabetes, dementia, colorectal cancer, liver disease, or liver cancer. Caffeine can also help to relieve headaches and asthma symptoms.

The Cons

A few cups of coffee a day won’t hurt you. However, there are dangers to consuming too much caffeine, and caffeine abuse is a growing problem—especially among teens and young adults. Compacting the problem is that more and more products are being marketed for high levels of caffeine. Sodas are now super-sized, energy drinks are chock full of the drug, and caffeine-infused diet pills are gaining in popularity.

While not as dangerous as other drugs, caffeine abuse can lead to insomnia, restlessness, irritability, nausea, vomiting, headaches, tremors, heart palpitations, and chest pains. Additionally, caffeine raises your blood pressure temporarily. Normally this isn’t reason for concern, but repeated high doses of caffeine may lead to heart problems. If you’ve already got high blood pressure, are young or elderly, the affect on your blood pressure may be dangerous.

How Much Is Too Much?

In general, you’re in the safe zone if you drink less than three or four cups of coffee a day or consume less than 400 mg of caffeine a day. However, some people are more sensitive to the effects of caffeine than others. One cup of coffee could energize you until lunch, while it takes four cups for someone else. Know your body and learn to recognize negative symptoms of too much caffeine. If you start noticing that you feel jittery or anxious after that third cup, it’s time to cut back. Pregnant or nursing mothers should also limit their caffeine consumption.

So go ahead and enjoy that cup of coffee each morning. Just beware of the dangers of abusing caffeine in its many delicious forms.

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Working out but not losing weight? You may be doing too much cardio.

You’re determined to lose weight. You want your body and your health back. So you’re running on the treadmill three days a week and taking a spin class two days a week, but you’ve stopped seeing the results you want. Rather than seeing the scale go down, it’s staying put or even going up. What is the hold up? Are you doing something wrong?

Unfortunately, many people have this frustrating experience. They know they’ve got to burn calories and they hear high intensity exercise will get the job done so they hit the gym. Learn the possible set backs of too much cardio and the most effective way to shed those extra pounds.

An Urban Legend

If you’ve been busting your buns trying to lose weight and the scale’s barely budging, you may want to listen up. A common exercise myth is the more cardio you do, the more weight you’ll lose; that the longer and harder you run, cycle, or swim, the faster you’ll lose. Many people believe this urban legend, and when their weight loss expectations aren’t met, they often give up.
Yes, you need cardio. As you think, it’s an important part of any exercise routine and will help burn calories, improve your health, and get you in shape. But it may not work like you expect.

Burns Muscle

When you push your body to perform high-intensity cardio exercise for long periods of time (45 minutes or more), there are negative effects. You will burn calories, but your body may turn to the energy stores in your muscles to make it through such a long workout. This means instead of burning that bulging fat, you’ll wind up burning muscle. Since you need your muscle to keep your metabolism working at its best, getting rid of any amount of muscle is not a good idea.

Stressful on Your Body

Long, strenuous workouts are stressful to your body. This stress may lead to increased production of the stress hormone cortisol. Granted, your body needs some level of cortisol for proper metabolism, blood pressure regulation, and a healthy immune system. Small bursts of the hormone give you energy, improve your memory, and decrease your sensitivity to pain. However, prolonged exposure to cortisol leads to negative health effects, including high blood pressure, decreased muscle mass, lowered immune response, and increased fat around your waist. Excess cardio places stress on your body and will lead to fatigue. What do many people turn to when they’re stressed or tired? Food. Especially carbohydrates.

Increase in Appetite

Keep in mind, when you add exercise to your lifestyle you’ll be hungrier than usual. Your body needs to replenish the energy it used while working out. On the mornings you exercise, expect to be hungrier than normal when lunch rolls around. This can be dangerous. It’s easy to overestimate how many calories you burn as well as underestimate how many calories you’re eating. Watch what you eat to make sure you’re still creating a calorie deficit.

Water Retention

Regardless of how much water you typically drink, you’ll want to increase the amount of water you drink on the days you exercise. When your body becomes dehydrated, it may start to retain water to hoard it for later. The weight you thought you should have lost may actually be water weight. Get rid of water weight by drinking more water before, during, and after exercise.

Create a Balance

Cardio exercise is a good thing, but you can have too much of it. An effective weight loss routine should include a balance of cardio, strength training, and flexibility exercises. Aim to do 20 or 30 minutes three days a week of interval training to get your cardio. Then do 20–30 minutes of strength trainings two days a week with flexibility exercises added in.

Get Personal

Wondering how to create a nutrition and exercise plan that is just what you need to meet your weight loss or muscle gain goals? Ask your personal trainer. After all, that’s what he or she is there for!

 

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I often have a “no sugarcoat” mentality and attitude when it comes to my personal training and when I teach. I don’t tell people what they want to hear, but rather I say the truth.

Now here are my top 3 real reasons why you’re probably not losing any weight. These come from experience and are of course not the end all be all reasons.

1. YOU’RE LAZY

Most people are inherently lazy, not just with fitness, but just in general. This laziness means you’re missing workouts and inconsistent with tracking your food.

Sometimes people think they eat less than they actually do, or have inaccurate “eyeball” measurements when they eat, thus making them eat more than they need.

You need to build positive habits, and that only comes with repetition. Never forget the reason why you’re doing this in the first place! THAT is your motivator.

2. You Neglect Nutrition

Lots of people think all they need to do to lose weight is start exercising. And while yes, that is a huge part of it, the person will then think they can eat whatever they want since they work out.

You can always out eat your workout, no matter how many calories you burn!

Diet is the tougher part of losing weight. Think of it like this: If you worked out every single day for an hour, that’s only 7 hours for the entire week. What are you doing the rest of the time?

Sleeping, at home, at work…pretty much everything else. Temptation is all around you to eat poorly. The majority of your time is spent in these situations, not working out.

3. YOU LACK PATIENCE

The simple fact is this: LOSING WEIGHT TAKES TIME!

Chances are the extra weight you’re carrying did NOT accumulate overnight. You cannot expect it to come off overnight either.

Consistency is everything. If you quit what you’re doing….what do you think will happen?! Of course you’re going to gain weight again, duhh!

A good rule of thumb is to expect weight loss of around 1-2 lbs per week if you follow your program correctly. But again, this is a rough estimate and varies based on lots of factors such as how much weight you have to lose to begin with.

We live in an age of instantaneous gratification, if we want something, we can usually get it asap (assuming money wasn’t an issue).

But fitness unfortunately doesn’t work like that. You need to believe that what you’re doing is working, and stick with it! Nothing works if you quit a month into it (or less)!

 

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Looking to shed a few pounds? Who isn’t? By making a few small changes in the types of food you eat, you can save your waistline from a lot of calories. Many foods have simple substitutes that taste similar, if not better. Take a close look at what you typically eat for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks. Then think of what you could swap for lower calorie options. You may be surprised.
Here are a few ideas to get you started.

Breakfast

What does the first meal of the day look like for you? Do you even eat breakfast? Well, if losing weight is on your to-do list, you should have breakfast each morning. If you typically grab a sweet roll, muffin, or donut, switch to an English muffin or whole grain bagel with light cream cheese.

Granola may sound healthy, but it can be high in calories. Go for some bran flakes or reduced fat granola in low fat yogurt. For something hot, grits and oatmeal are great options that you can prepare on the quick.

Rather than using one- or two-percent milk on your cereal, save on calories and go for skim. Better yet, try unsweetened almond milk, a tasty option that has 62 fewer calories than one-percent milk.

Eggs and bacon on the menu? Swap the real stuff for Canadian bacon or lean ham. Also, only use egg whites or egg substitutes.

In the event you can’t do without your morning coffee and you enjoy creamer or half and half, you’ll need to make yet another breakfast change. Swap your creamer and half and half for low-fat milk or fat-free dry milk powder.

Lunch

In today’s fast-paced world, eating out for lunch has become the norm. But you should know that it’s much easier to eat healthily and watch what you eat if you fix your own food. So pack up your lunch and you’ll know exactly what you’re getting.

For sandwiches, choose low-fat cold cuts and reduced fat cheese. Rather than tuna packed in oil, buy the kind that’s packed in water, and then rinse to reduce the sodium content. Regular mayonnaise is hard to pass up, but you should recognize that it’s high in calories. Use light mayonnaise to reduce your calorie intake. Instead of using two slices of bread, use one piece of whole-wheat flatbread and reduce your calories by 120.

Salads are a great lunch option, but calories can add up even on a salad. Drizzle on reduced-calorie or fat-free dressing or make your own with lemon juice, herbs, and wine vinegar. Cheeses, nuts, and croutons are all yummy salad toppings, but like so many things, they’re high in calories. So pile on the veggies instead. Be picky about what you add to your salad.

Dinner

The last meal of the day is usually the biggest. Be on the lookout for ways to cut back. Here are some easy dinner swaps.

Fat from meat can pile on extra calories fast. Swap out regular ground beef for extra lean ground round or ground turkey, and eat chicken or turkey without the skin. Rather than a 4-ounce rib-eye steak, choose a lean pork chop that’s about the same size and save 182 calories. Save even more calories by changing your cooking technique. Rather than frying your meat, grill, bake, or broil it instead.

When it comes to sauces, always choose red sauce over white. Replace sour cream with low-fat yogurt. You can save an amazing 160 calories by eating one cup of tofu shirataki noodles rather than a cup of cooked pasta.

Snacks

When everything else seems to be right in place, snacking still has the power to cause your diet to fail. Calories pile on fast with mindless or frequent snacking. Stick to single servings or pre-portioned snacks to keep your snacking safe.
Also, swap out baked goods or candies for fresh fruit. Dried fruits are healthy, but they have up to four times as many calories as fresh fruit. Rather than going with the full-fat snack foods, choose low-fat options, such as cheese sticks yogurt, and crackers.

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The numerous health benefits of garlic might be worth the bad breath.

A rose may look beautiful, but what if it smelled awful? The same goes for garlic. Earning the nickname “stinking rose,” this herb may not be beautiful, its odor is anything but pleasant, but its health-promoting effects can’t be denied. Related to other allium vegetables such as onions and leeks, garlic contains a high amount of sulfur compounds. Sulfur may smell pungent, but the body uses it for optimal functioning. In addition to sulfur compounds, garlic is also high in essential vitamins and minerals including manganese, selenium, vitamin B6, and vitamin C.

Don’t let the fear of bad breath keep you from enjoying the flavor of garlic. You may be missing out on amazing health benefits.

Good for Your Heart

Garlic has been found effective in treating many conditions related to the cardiovascular system. From high blood pressure, heart attack, and high cholesterol to heart disease and atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries), garlic fights it all.

The sulfides in garlic work to dilate blood vessels and have the potential to reduce your blood pressure by seven to eight percent. Garlic can also lower your blood triglycerides and total cholesterol by five to 15 percent. And the compounds found in garlic protect your blood vessels from damage and inflammation, reducing the risk of plaque buildup and heart attack.

Decrease Your Risk of Cancer

The unique properties of garlic have been found effective in warding off certain types of gastrointestinal cancers, such as stomach, colon, esophageal, pancreatic, and rectal cancers. All these benefits, however, are experienced when individuals eat garlic—not when they take garlic supplements.

Garlic has also been used to treat prostate and bladder cancers. Currently, research is ongoing in garlic’s role in reducing one’s risk of breast and lung cancers.

What is it about garlic that lends such powerful effects? It may be its antibacterial properties, the way it limits cancer-causing substances, its ability to enhance and repair cells, or its power to induce cell death.

Treat Skin Infections

Many people have found garlic oil or gels containing garlic helpful in treating fungal infections such as jock itch, ringworm, and athlete’s foot. In fact, garlic seems as effective as over-the-counter anti-fungal creams when it comes to the treatment of these common maladies.

Some folks promote garlic’s ability to treat corns and warts, but there’s insufficient evidence that garlic is truly helpful.

Other Possible Benefits

Garlic’s strengths don’t stop there. Many people eat extra garlic as treatment for colds, flu, asthma, bronchitis, coughs, fever, headache, stomachache, diabetes, hay fever, gout, rheumatism, stress, fatigue, snakebites, and as a natural tick repellent.

How Much?

To receive the full health benefits of garlic, the World Health Organization recommends adults eat approximately one clove of garlic, 300 to 1,000 milligrams of garlic extract, 0.4 to 1.2 grams of garlic powder, or 2 to 5 milligrams of garlic oil a day.

In order to get the goodness from garlic, you’ve got to eat it when the clove has been crushed or chopped. This method may release the unwanted, strong smell, but it also initiates the chemical reactions that produce the good sulfides. Wait 10 to 15 minutes after crushing or chopping before exposing the garlic to heat so the compounds have time to form.

Chopped garlic bought in jars and garlic stored in the freezer both still maintain their potent sulfur compounds. Aged garlic may not smell as strong and therefore be more appealing, but remember that this type of garlic loses its potency and is less effective than fresher garlic.

Final Tips

Before taking any supplements, including garlic, talk with your doctor. Garlic is known to interact with certain medications and may cause a dangerous reaction or cause the medication to lose its potency. If you decide to take a garlic supplement, find one that is coated so it will be able to pass through your stomach and into your intestines before dissolving. And to neutralize the sulfur compounds, wash down garlic with a glass of milk.

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