Christmas Conundrum: Lose weight while still enjoying holiday parties

Traditional Danish Christmas dinner.

Image via Wikipedia

It’s December 1st and the inevitable time is upon us once again. It’s no surprise to us but each year we act like it’s something we didn’t see coming…What am I talking about? I’m referring to the office Christmas parties, family parties, parties with friends, random Christmas cookies brought into the office, the wine, the eggnog and so on and so forth. We knew this time of year was coming and just like the old tale of The Ant & The Grasshopper, each year we arrive at this point unprepared and ill equipped to face the next 30 days of foodie paradise.

This year, why not arm yourself with a few tools to help you keep that waistline trim and survive those Christmas parties without doing too much damage? Staying slim during the holiday season doesn’t mean you have to become an antisocial recluse, it simply means that you have to be smart about your choices.

The first step in surviving the holiday party is to make sure you attend the party after you’ve had a little food; preferably something high in fiber. Not only will this be slow digesting, keeping your insulin levels steady, but it will give you a slightly full feeling. By no means should you attend a Christmas party on an empty stomach unless you’re on a “Seefood Diet” and no I didn’t spell seafood wrong for all you nitpickers. My point is that when you have an empty stomach you’ll see food and most likely eat with your eyes.  Have you ever heard that phrase, “your eyes are too big for your stomach”? Well situations like these where you eat too much too fast, leave you feeling like a Burmese Python that just consumed a goat, barely able to move and needing a week to digest.

Ok so now that you’re at the party…”put down that massive plate”. Ok, so now that we’re at the party go for the small plate and don’t load it up. Sample a few items, but choose the healthier, lower calorie options first. Move around the party and talk with people. Stand as far away from the food table as possible. This means you have to break your conversation to head back to the food. You don’t want the person you’re talking with to feel like the food table is more important than they are do you? Obviously the food table might be a good out for those times where you’re cornered by someone in the office you can’t stand chatting with or even worse, by your boss, but when going back for seconds choose a few delectable desserts and enjoy (no seconds on these).

Steer clear of the alcohol. That’s all I’m going to say about that. Hey, if weight loss or fat loss is your goal then stop fooling yourself and just cut it out. It’s easier if you nominate yourself the designated driver.

At the end of the night, don’t take anything home except your secret Santa gift. No doggie bags…put the Tupperware down.

Now that you have a game plan, get out there and make it happen this holiday season. If you don’t manage to stick to the game plan this December, then tune in this January as I give you tips for shaking the holiday weight.

Welcome to Bangkok Personal Trainer by Active Lifestyle

Welcome to the Bangkok Personal Trainer, Bangkok’s number one resource for health, fitness and personal training information. This blog is brought to you by Active Lifestyle which is Bangkok’s most complete personal training, health and fitness company. By focusing on a holistic approach to health, including nutrition, exercise and lifestyle management strategies.  We provide everything you need to reach your health, fitness, fat loss and weight loss goals from personal training and group fitness training for everyone from the stay at home spouse or busy executive; the golfer,  the youth athlete or weekend warrior as well as corporate health programs to increase your company’s productivity. Whatever it is we’ve got the solution for you. Subscribe and stay up to date with the latest nutritional information, fitness and recipe ideas and training advice.

Looking for a Personal Trainer then contact us @ 084.656.9800 or info@activelifestyleonline.com

Join us on our quest to make the world a healthier more active place. Like us on Facebook

Top 5 Fat Loss Shopping Tips

Example of an American grocery store aisle.

Image via Wikipedia

Hey guys, I know shopping for groceries is difficult sometimes. What should you buy? What shouldn’t you buy? These questions always seem to plague us when grocery shopping. Here are 5 tips to help you better navigate the grocery store.

1. Have a Plan – that’s right. You should have a plan when you enter the grocer. Don’t just go in blindly and expect to come out with the right things. Remember, failure to plan is like planning to fail. You go into the store and forget what you came for. Some advert catches your attention and you get side tracked.  Have an idea of what you want to prepare for that week and write it down. It’s just like your workouts. Plan it…map your success!

2. Go on a Full Stomach – going to the grocery store on an empty stomach can be lethal. Studies have shown that people will buy more food when hungry. Also, we tend to make the wrong decisions on types of foods. This concept is the same for going out to eat. If you go out with some food already in your stomach, you’re less likely to pig out.

3. Take a basket not a cart – This is an important one. Unless you’re shopping for a large family there is no need for a cart. Filling your fridge is just a waist. You’ll end up throwing most things out. Save some cash and save your waste line.

4. Shop more frequently – go for fresher foods. If you shop more frequently you have less of a tendency to load up on packaged goods. Shop for fresh fruits and vegetables on a regular basis. I shop 2 or 3 times per week. I pick up some things to last a week and others to last a day or 2. For example I buy enough apples to last a week whereas I buy enough vegetables for 2 days or so.

5. Shop around the outside – stay away from the middle. There’s nothing in there for you worth consuming. Ok, maybe a few things, but they are specific items and should be mapped out on your trusty plan. Browsing the aisles is what gets us into trouble. We’ll see something that looks like a winner, but really it’s not.

Well, those are my top 5 tips. Try them out…Happy Shopping!

Goodbye Starbucks, Hello Protein Shake

 

Starbucks logo

Image via Wikipedia

 

Say goodbye to Starbucks in the morning and hello to a Mocha Protein Shake. I typically advocate against coffees for people because like any addiction caffeine should be monitored. You should be able to derive all the energy you need from other sources. Sure if you’re having the regular black coffee from time to time at Starbucks you should be fine, but most people are downing some form of frapuccino  or Latte with loads of useless calories and sugar and zero nutritional value. Scrap that plan and get yourself a high protein start to the morning. Don’t be afraid of the fat from the milk and peanut butter either because they’ll help keep you full longer. The banana is loaded with potassium and acts as a natural sweetener. Don’t forget the protein powder punch to cap it off for those essential building blocks your body needs to add lean muscle and burn fat.

Try this on for size

Mocha Protein Shake

Ice Cubes

1 Cup Whole or Low Fat Milk

1/3 Cup Coffee

1 Tbsp Natural Peanut Butter

1 Banana

1 Scoop Chocolate Whey Protein

By Rich Thurman, B.Sc., MA, CSCS, CPT

Health & Performance Coach

Active Lifestyle Co. Ltd

With a degree in Physiology from UCLA and a Masters Degree in Sports & Fitness Management, Rich combines his knowledge of rehabilitation and sports performance as well as nutritional studies to provide a complete and holistic approach to training clients. The focus is on lifestyle change which creates long term health.

 

Cold Stone Creamery Threatens Bangkok’s Health Too

 

Cold stone creamery roppongi hills

Image via Wikipedia

 

So I’m reading a write up on the worst drinks in America and the sad thing is while everyone points the finger at America, guess what? There are three fingers pointing right back at you. Point and laugh all you want, but there are two types of people in the world, those who had it easy and those who worked to get it. Let me explain:

I think back at my younger years of middle school and high school when all the other guys were a little leaner, a little stronger or a little faster. Some guys were just blessed with a physique similar to that of a cover model for a fitness magazine. For myself, I’ve had to work hard, year after year to get my body where it is today and it’s always a never ending work in progress. While some were running a sprint and have crossed the finish line, I’ve been running a marathon.

So obviously some people get complacent because they’ve always been a bit smaller, less fat and got away with eating whatever they want. But what people aren’t seeing is that the change is coming. The clothing sizes are changing in Asia. People are bigger relative to 10 years ago. Sure it will take some time to grow into those big fat shoes of the western world, but with the introduction of Krispy Kreme, Cold Stone Creamery and others I reckon it will be more sooner than later.

So what’s my point? Well this was just a round about way of getting to it, but Cold Stone Creamery has just just found a home in Bangkok‘s centerpiece mall, Central World and did you know that Cold Stone literally takes the cake for Worst Milkshake with their Gotta Have It Size PB&C Shake. Check out these stats:

  • 2010 calories
  • 131 grams fat (68 saturated)
  • 153 grams sugar

According to Men’s Health this is more calories than 12 ice cream sandwiches and more saturated fat than 20 large orders of McDonald’s french fries and Cold Stone doesn’t have any drinks less than 1000 calories.

Quickest way to get fat is to ingest large sums of calories in liquid form. Like they say when it comes to drugs, “Just Say No!”

By Rich Thurman, B.Sc., MA, CSCS, CPT

Health & Performance Coach

Active Lifestyle Co. Ltd

With a degree in Physiology from UCLA and a Masters Degree in Sports & Fitness Management, Rich combines his knowledge of rehabilitation and sports performance as well as nutritional studies to provide a complete and holistic approach to training clients. The focus is on lifestyle change which creates long term health.

 

Top tips for eating out…

Top Tips for eating out plus a couple more. Eating out has become a major reason for pitfalls in nutritional planning. Often times a person is left thinking, what should I eat? It can be even worse here in Asia where eating is a communal thing and food is ordered and shared by everyone at the table. Essentially, you have no choice to what is available sometimes as one person has done all the ordering of a variety of things he or she thinks is best.

What do we do when faced with these sorts of situations? Well, these top tips address Western methods of dealing with eating out, but what about while in Asia? So here are a few tips that you can try in order to still eat with friends in Asia.

1. Make sure the person ordering simply says “no msg”. Easy to do and will save your body loads in health. For more information on MSG have a look at my article, “Thai Food is Healthy Right? So Why Am I Gaining Weight?”

2. Ask the person to order more vegetables. Typically in Thailand for example there are more “other” things on the plate than vegetables and often times rice is the dominant item on the plate. In Korea, just keep asking for more side dishes.

Want more tips? I’ve got three words for you “Buy My Book”. Just kidding. I got that line from “Wall Street 2” yesterday. But there is always a little truth to every joke =)

Enjoy…

Top tips for eating out... 1.     Eat your calories and drink water. The first question you are always asked upon being seated in a restaurant is what you would like to drink. Choose water and pass on the high-fructose-corn-syrup, sugar, preservatives, caffeine and extra    calories found in most beverages. 2. Take half home. We are annoyed when restaurants don’t over serve us and restaurants have responded accordingly by over supplying huge portions. Italian Restau … Read More

via Connectfitness’s Blog

What’s in Your Fridge Part II

We’re revisiting the refrigerator and asking you what else is in your fridge this month? In Bangkok it’s difficult to get Quinoa, but those of you in other regions have no excuse as it’s readily available. But what else should be in your fridge if you’re looking to shed some body fat and lose weight? We’ll take a look at five more items that you may want to consider stocking up on.

  1. Berries – Blueberries, raspberries and blackberries are all packed with cancer fighting antioxidants. Not only that, but berries have a lower glycemic index than other fruits so they will not cause such a large spike in insulin levels. This is great for diabetics, but it’s also great for people trying to lose body fat as insulin is related to fat storage in the body. Berries are also packed with loads of fiber.  Fiber is great for intestinal health and helping lower cholesterol levels. Looking for fruit to fill your fridge with then berries is the way to go. Read more of this post

Super Size Me Part I

After years of recommendations I finally got around to watching Super Size Me. Well, I must say that America and the rest of the world really haven’t listened to John Banzhaf and his message as the waistlines have continued to increase and people around the world continue to consume large amounts of fast foods and generally unhealthy amounts of food.  Watching this movie really opened my eyes to a pandemic that is directly impacting our way of life. Read more of this post

Do You Think Whole Grains Help You Lose Fat? Think Again

Loaf of dark rye bread

Image via Wikipedia

A lot of people are being misled into believing that eating whole grains will somehow help them lose body fat or lose weight and it’s not our fault. We are bombarded with information, but never clearly educated on our health and nutrition. We are drowned in key words and catch phrases and never really told the truth.

A friend of mine once told me that “words are his tools”.  This is because he is an attorney and yes words are his tools, but we often forget, words are the tools of marketers, writers and politicians.  Writers are using words to get the reader to go down the rabbit whole of the author or company backer’s choice.  A company I used to work for often told people that they need to eat more whole grains, oats and rye bread, but what’s the difference? These are all carbohydrates. Yes, sure they have more fiber, but they are still carbohydrates. Read more of this post

Pomegranate Fruit Salad Recipe Prep Video

Welcome back for another visit. Today I felt it necessary to share with you a video from a former University professor of mine.  The video provides a recipe that is great for vegetarians, people trying to lose weight or body fat and the ingredients are globally available and Asia friendly. Susan Bowerman MS, RD, CSSD who is featured in this video was my professor of Nutrition while I attended UCLA.

“Susan Bowerman is the Assistant Director of the UCLA Center for Human Nutrition, and is a Registered Dietitian and a Board Certified Specialist in Sports Dietetics. She graduated with Distinction in Biology from the University of Colorado, and received her Master’s degree in Food Science and Nutrition from Colorado State University. During her clinical training, she taught extensively and developed educational programs targeted to individuals, groups and industry in areas of health promotion and self-care, women’s health, cardiac health and weight management.” Read more of this post

%d bloggers like this: