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I don't know if you are realize why I make such a big deal of eating regularly.  And by regularly, I mean eating a balanced meal every 2.5 to 3.5 hours.  Yes, I realize it's a pain in the behind.  Yes, I realize sometimes your meeting schedule for that day doesn't cooperate, I understand.  But you'll need to find a way to get some nourishment in every 2.3-3.5 hours each day.


Because that is approximately the amount of time it takes before your body has burned through the previous meal.  And as long as we're being honest about it, it's about the time your blood sugar is beginning to drop off.  And we all know what happens when your blood sugar begins to drop.  Outside of being loopy and distracted, you'll notice it's harder to keep focused, and think clearly.  Basically it just takes so much more energy to get the job in front of you done.

Now, add to that, if you make a habit of skipping meals it actually sends the message to your body to store calories.  That's right, store calories (think increased body fat). 


Because as corny as it sounds, your body is a survival machine. We out survived the dinosaurs for a reason -- our ability to adapt.  One of the reasons we've been so good at survival in tough times is because our bodies respond to our eating habits.  When food was scarce, whether from drought or cold (depending on where your ancestors lived), your metabolism slows down.  In that way it ensures that you will not starve to death (conserving energy).  That's kind of an important thing don't you think.

Well, flash forward, if you consistently skip (go over 3.5 hours without eating something substantial) meals you are in fact sending your body the same type of message -- caloric deprivation or "food is scarce".  Being the great survival machine that it is, your body will slow down your metabolism to make sure you don't starve (think conserving gasoline). 

So any ideas you had about losing weight or getting lean -- scratch 'em.  Your body is focused on survival because you've been missing meals.

Now, on the other hand, when you feed your body every 2.5-3.5 hours, your sending your body the message that it does not need to store calories -- because you are feeding it consistently (think decreased body fat).

Obviously if there's no need to store calories (evidenced by the regular meal schedule) then your body will (with a good exercise program) proceed to get lean by speeding up the metabolism and burning fuel (food) efficiently.

And to make sure you have your meal options, I've included some snack options to help you stay on track.  Last week was breakfast choices.  This week let's cover the morning and afternoon snacks.  Next week I'll make sure you stay on track with some lunch options.

Snack Options (mini meals):

Romaine Tuna Wraps (Romaine_Tuna_Wraps.doc)

Mint Chocolate Shake (Mint_Chocolate_Shake.doc)

Raspberry Mocha Shake (Raspberry_Mocha_Shake.doc)

And remember there is always the trusty Pita Pocket (cut in half) with 4-6 oz. of your favorite meat, lettuce, tomato and a low fat topping.

That's the Big Deal!
So get your meals in.  It just takes a little creativity.  Don't find problems, Find Solutions!
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I realize it may be hard to believe, but we are just about to begin March.  Which means the first quarter is almost over. 

Stay with me here. 

Which means the first 3 months of the year are almost over.  How's your body transformation -- project, resolution, promise, or whatever you're calling it going?

You know you could just start off by having a good breakfast to start getting back on track.

I don't know how it happens, but for some reason breakfast seems to be the most difficult meal to get most people to eat consistently.  I've heard all the excuses from "I don't have time", to "I don't eat eggs", to "I'm really not that hungry in the morning". Trust me if you've been sleeping for 6-8 hours or more, your body is hungry -- even if you don't feel like eating. 
However, if you keep that pattern up, of not eating breakfast, you encourage your body to store calories as body fat.


Because if you continue to tell your body it will be underfed the amount of calories it needs (which is what you do when you skip breakfast), it will do what it was made to do -- survive.  Thus it will store calories and slow your metabolism down, so that it can conserve energy (think a slow metabolism makes it extremely difficult to lose weight).

So whether you're working to get lean and ripped for summer, or just wanted to get rid of a few pounds, breakfast is the most efficient way to do that no matter how you slice it.

Being committed to your success, I'm going to make this super easy for those of you who consistently skip breakfast for any reason.  Below you'll find some easy recipes to get the right food in your stomach, and still get you to work on time.

Remember, when you eat a proper breakfast consistently you start your metabolism off right.  Meaning, you send the message to your body not to store calories because you will be feeding it the nutrients it needs consistently.

I'm sure you can find at least one option below that will suit your tastes and time schedule.

Don't find an excuse.  Find the solution.

Check back with me next week and I will share with you some lunch options to help keep you on track and reaching your goals.
It's the last Monday of the year, and that means it's time for 2 more recipes for you to add to your file.  Remember, there are no magic pills, no magic shoes, and no secrets I have not already shared with you.  It's all about making the plan and sticking to it.

But when it comes to nutrition, who wants to stick to a plan where the food tastes horrid.  Neither do you want to spend what little free time you have in the kitchen slaving over a stove and measuring every little morsel, right?  Thank goodness you've been courageous enough to check in with me each week to build an incredible file of recipes, making sure you are ready to go for the new year.  Now you have plenty of choices for breakfast, lunch and dinner. 

Now all you have to do is make a plan.  Stick to it.  And watch your body transform. 

It can happen.

It will happen.

And you can do it.

Here are your next two:

Recipe #1:  Rancher's Omelet (Ranchers_Omelet.doc)

Recipe #2:  Stir-Fry Beef (Stir_Fry_Beef.doc)

These are courtesy of Gourmet Nutrition by Dr. John M. Berardi, Michael Williams and Kristina Andrew.  I would strongly recommend you take the time to pick up this wonderful book.  I've shared a few with you, but there are countless other recipes that are sure to meet every taste, time schedule and lifestyle.

The year is almost over.  I promised to make sure that you were well prepared with a wide variety of recipes to make sure you start the new year off right.  Recipes to help start you on track, keep you on track, and not make you feel like you were going to have to give up taste.  I believed I've delivered as promised.

Only one more Monday left in the year.  So here are two more recipes to add to your ever growing file.  Next year is going to be so easy for you start off on the right track.  By spring you'll be unveiling a new you and not had to suffer, by living on tasteless boring food.  No one likes to feel deprived.  So I've made sure that your journey to a new you is as painless as possible when it comes to your nutrition.

Here you are:

Recipe #1:  Pizza Eggs (Pizza_Eggs.doc)

Recipe #2:  Romaine Tuna Wraps (Romaine_Tuna_Wraps.doc)

This weeks recipes are from A Recipe for Life by Susan Dopart, M.S., R.D. with Jeffrey M. Batchelor and Eat 2 Liv by Elizabeth Brown M.S., R.D., C.D.E

Be sure to come back next week for more recipes to add to your file.  Remember, the more options you have the easier it will be to stay on track.  No one likes boring food.  And cooking and preparing food that actually tastes good should not be a chore.  If you've been cutting and pasting you will ready to rock come January.
As promised here are 2 more delicious recipes to add to your growing file.  We all have busy schedules, this time of year more than ever.  But that shouldn't mean all of your hard work should go out the window.  Whether you're committing to a new year of losing those extra pounds or just looking for a change in your usual day to day of staying on track, these recipes are sure to help.  They are quick, tasty, and will definitely keep you on track.

Remember, food that is good for you can actually taste good too.  All too often I hear people avoid making good food choices because they believe they have to give up flavor.  Not with these.  The second biggest reason I hear is that making food that is good for you just takes too much time.  Again, not with these.  But I will admit it will require some planning on your part to make sure you get all of your meals in each day.  And heck if it tastes good, all the more motivation to take as little as 5 minutes to whip up something that tastes good going down and gives your body what it needs to stay healthy and assist you in getting in better shape. 

Don't fall into the easy excuses.  Take a few minutes and cut and paste these to your file.  Good food and get in shape at the same time -- sounds like a win/win to me.  Enjoy!

Recipe #1:  Mint Chocolate Shake (Mint_Chocolate_Shake.doc)

Recipe #2:  Sauteed Salmon (Sauteed_Salmon.doc)