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18 Waiheke Weekender
ating on a lower burn, the now extra calories are easily stored as
fat. So, crash dieting often leads to an increased number on the
scales. A better approach would be to make small changes over
time. I would suggest focusing on one change to make every
week and aiming for a weight loss of 500 grams per week.
One of the frst things to do is look at portion sizes. Our eyes
and our stomach, through habit and advertising, have adapted to
portions that are far more than what we need. Our stomach can
stretch, and a stretched stomach takes longer to feel 'full'. If
your portions are big, make it a goal for two weeks to measure
your portions until you have re-programmed your senses. The
good news is that your stomach will
decrease in size once you start eating
less in a sitting. Ideally, a meal will ft
into your hands cupped together.
Another thing to focus on in why
you are eating. If it is out of bore-
dom or anxiety rather than the need to
nourish the body, you may be eating a
lot of extra calories. I have found that
by asking clients to eat only while
sitting down, consciously chew-
ing and enjoying their food, a huge
Look at what you are eating. Is it
food? There are lot of things avail-
able on the market that offer a lot of
calories without much nutrient value.
One of my favorite mantras is 'if your
great-grandparents would not recogn-
ise it as food, it probably isn't'. And
because we don't have as much inci-
dental exercise in our lives anymore,
we need to make most of our calories
count. This means they should be high
in non-processed ingredients.
When you eat is important. 'Breakfast like a king, lunch like a
lord, and dinner like a pauper '. You need breakfast to fuel your
day. If you are exercising, it is important to eat before you work
out. If you don't eat you will be running on empty, probably do
a half-arsed session and not get the results.
Look at what you are drinking too. Juice is full of naturally
occuring sugars and no fbre. You are much better off having a
glass of water and a piece of fruit. If you add sugar to coffee or
tea this will add up; see if you can fnd other options or cut it.
Stress has an effect on weight and this is becoming more
and more evident. Times of prolonged stress kick off a hormone
response and some of those hormones lead the body to think it
needs to lay down more fat. Find things to do to make stress
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Bundled up in your winter woolies by
the fre with a mug of hot chocolate,
it may be hard to picture summer, the
beach and bathing suits. But every year in September or October
there is a huge infux of people to
ftness centres and weight loss clinics
who want to get ft or lose fat fast.
It is certainly possible to do this,
though the weight loss may not be fat
and the results will probably not be
enduring. And it is not great for your
health. When it comes to getting ft
and losing weight, slow and steady is
the best approach.
Quick weight loss very rarely lasts.
There are many reasons for this. One
of them is that to lose weight quick-
ly, we need to drastically reduce the
number of calories or energy we take
in. By doing this for even a few days
we might kick off our body's famine
response which is to slow the metabo-
lism down and work more effciently
or 'get by on less'. And most people,
once they have lost the weight,
immediately go back to eating what
they were eating prior to crash diet-
ing. Because their body is now oper-
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manageable; we all have stress but it is what we do about it that
makes the difference.
New exercisers should take a steady approach. If you go
from doing nothing to trying to exercise two hours a day you
are going to get sore and most likely injured. Your body is abso-
lutely amazing and will do almost anything you ask of it but be
kind; it is the only body you've got! If you go out on day one and
run 10km don't expect your body to be happy. This approach
usually means you will not be able to do anything for a while.
Start out by walking three minutes and jogging 30 seconds. Over
time slowly increase your jogging time and decrease your walk-
ing time and before you know it you will be running, without
If you are already exercising, change it up. Neurological
adaptations when new activities are introduced produce results
fairly quickly. It takes more energy for your body to perform a
new movement or skill. The sense of achievement when you do
something different is often a great motivator too.
If you are ft at a steady state, add some intensity. Higher
intensity exercise will keep your furnace stoked up long after the
workout; even while you sleep. If you are trying to lose weight
this can be helpful.
Start now! Yesterday you said tomorrow . . . Rather than leav-
ing your health and ftness plan until it is an emergency; why
don't you start now? Habits take a long time to change but they
can be changed. And it is habits and consistency that will deliver
lasting and reasonable results.
Health and Wellbeing
Winter weight loss
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