Sunday, September 4, 2011

It Starts In The Kitchen (Level 1-Level 2)

It really does!!  Consider this:  80% of losing weight and getting fit depends on what you put in your mouth each and every day.  You can't spend endless time in the gym sweating and working to the max and then go home and put whatever you want into your mouth.  IT JUST DOESN'T WORK LIKE THAT!  The first thing you need to do is identify what results you are looking for.  I have tried this formula for myself so many times....BECAUSE I LOVE TO EAT!  But alas folks, if you want serious results, you must gain control of the kitchen first and foremost.

Ideally, I'd like to tell you that you need to get into your kitchen and throw out anything that will sabotage your goal.  However, being a mother means I have a family that I live with.  I have a family I cook for.  I have lunches to pack, and snacks to make all day for my 3 children and husband.  Cleaning out my pantry of anything not on my list of conducive foods is just not feasible for me, nor is it for many of us.  So instead, try to figure out what some things are that are ultimately MORE tempting than others to you, and  get rid of those items in your home in the beginning and replace them with things you are less likely to feel the need to consume. 

There are 2 stages when it comes to meal consumption levels.  Level One and Level Two.  Level 1- I use when I am working towards a goal.  For example: Weight Loss, Toning or Body Sculpting, or Training for an athletic goal/event like a 5k or marathon/triathalon.  Level 2- I use when I want to stay put and/or maintain. 

Level One
Level One is used for different periods of time.  I tend to go to Level 1 for a minimum of 4 weeks and maximum of 12 weeks at a time.  I feel like 4 weeks is the minimum because it gives your body enough time to adjust and realize, or think, that this is the new way you will be eating so it's forced to go to the stored fat in our bodies to burn the necessary calories we need in any given day.  Level 1 is much more strict.  It does not give you exceptions to the fact that you are at chuck E cheese for a birthday party or that it's labor day weekend and you are at a Bar B Q with your friends grilling out.  However, you can make it work regardless of where you are and what "special event" is going on that day.

 Level 1 Rules: 
1.  No Bread, No Pasta, No White Potatoes, No Rice, And No Dessert--NO EXCEPTIONS
2.  Fruit is eaten in smaller portions (1-2 servings approx. not exceeding the size of your fist) and not after 12/noon.
3.  Making a Journal of what you consume on a daily basis.  This one is very important in the beginning.
Once you have done this for a while you will make more of a mental note and running tally of what you have consumed over the day. 
4.  Stay under 75 grams of carbs a day (Pay attention to labels)
5.  Eating every 2-3 1/2 hrs
6.  Begin each morning with a bowl of Oatmeal.

Level Two (a,b,c)
Level Two is used after you have been working really hard and mentally need a break from Level 1.  Level 2 requires almost more control than Level 1.  The reason is because "free meal(s)" are allowed and you must be able to be focused and disciplined enough to go back to careful eating habits once your "free meal(s)" are up.  The Rules for Level 2 can vary.  Level 2 means that you follow Level 1 80-90% of the week, but allow for 1 free meal(a), 1 free day(b), or 1 free weekend or 2 consecutive days(c).  1 free meal(a)- is recommended for those who have just begun their journey to becoming more fit and are still under 50% of their final goal.  1 free day(b)- is recommended for those who have reached 50-75% of their weight-loss/fitness goal.  A free weekend (2 consecutive days(c))- is only recommended for those who are within 25% of the finish line and their final goal.  Staying on Level 2(c) is only recommend for 4-6 weeks maximum, and then either going back to Level 1 or Level 2 (a).  Once you have reached 100% of your goal you can stay on Level 2(c) longer.  If you suddenly begin to feel your pants getting tight, or see the scale budge upwards, it's time to do a quick Level 1 Adjustment to put yourself back in check. 

Level Two Rules
1.  2 Extra fruit servings may be added (With Portion Size Same As Level 1- No more than Size of Fist) each day
2.  80-90% of your week should be Level 1 allowing 1 serving a day of your choice (brown rice, 100% whole wheat pasta, 1 serving 100% Whole Wheat Bread, or 100% Whole Wheat Crackers)  It is very important that you chose only 1 and maintain 1 serving size, avoiding any of these after dinnertime.

Level Two- Free Meal Rules
1.  A Dessert May Be Added To Free Meal
2.  Portion Size Of Free Meal Should Not be taken to gargantuan proportional size.