Losing weight shouldn’t have to be an ordeal.  Beyond that, forcing yourself on a dieting regimen “designed for the masses” is a great way to turn yourself into a yo-yo dieter.  Sure you’ll lose weight, but hit a detour or difficult situation and the diet’s off.

When that happens, guess what comes back?

Don’t do that to yourself.  Instead, seek to live a balanced life with a target goal of losing 5 lbs a month.  In a year, that would amount to a 60lb reduction – wow.  Sure, it’ll take longer than programs you see on those late night infomercials.

But, man, think of the lifetime benefits and habits you will develop and internalized over the course of the year, not to mention your life.

Follow these simple tips and you will reap the benefits:

1. Eat 5 or 6 small meals throughout the day – Most of all, don’t let yourself get hungry.  A small meal doesn’t mean knife and fork everytime.  In between your major 3 meals, give yourself a healthy mid morning and mid afternoon mini-meal.  How about a half a tuna sandwich?  In fact, bring along your own munchies – homemade trailmix, yogurt (fat free), fruit mix, etc.  Don’t open yourself to the need to hit a fastfood joint or the cup of noodles vending machine.

2. Eat plentiful of fruits and veggies every day – And eat the real thing.  A lot of juices and smoothies out there claim to equal XXX number of servings.  That’s nice.  For you, stick with the real thing – with real fiber, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.  Plus, you get the interaction that naturally exist in the fruit or veggies.  Eat 5 or 6 a day – that would be couple of apples, peaches, a handful of grapes, strawberries, broccoli, bell peppers, garlic, onions – see how easy it all adds up.

3. Become a label reader – This is an absolute must.  I check every label for high fructrose corn syrup, sodium count, fat count, etc.  You need to know what is going in your body.  Education and knowledge is the key here.

4. Choose healthy carbs – Refined sugar, white flour, high fructose corn syrup; these are the calories that will kill you.  Alcohol will kill you.  You should stick with complex carbs from brown rice, whole grains, yams, sweet potatoes, and as mentioned before fruits and veggies. And do away with all the sugary soda and juices.  Orange juice may seem healthy, but the calories will kill you.  Drink water and switch to fat free milk and yogurt while you are at.

5.  Water – Drink lots of water.  How much you ask.  Glad you asked.  I say that you should drink one cup of water every waking hour.  That’s easy, right.

6. Have some protein at every meal – About 3 ounces will net you about 20grams of fat.  Protein will satisfy your hunger.  Plus, protein is critical to your body functioning well.  Eat a variety of lean beef, poultry, fish, soy, and nuts.  By the way, for fish, stick with deepsea fish like wild salmon.  Stay away from farmed fish and shellfish. 

7. Allow yourself a treat – Look it, if you living a balance life with a healthy diet, your body will forgive you if you stray occasionally.  so, you had a root beer; that’s is no biggie.  It’s a biggie if that one can becomes 2 and then 6 and then…  Allow yourself an occasional out, so it never becomes an untouchable temptation that you will eventually eat.

But understand this, these are guidelines that you should follow day in and day out.  But, it’s not a straitjacket to bind yourself in.  Seek to live and eat a balanced diet.

Couple the diet with a good exercise program that challenges and burns fat constantly, like a HIIT program.  Any exercise program will work, so long as you continually challenge yourself and do so on consistent basis.

Finally, set your goals correctly.  I use the SMART system regardless of the situation.  That means my goals are Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Time Driven.  Losing 60lbs in one month may be attainable but is it realistic?  Losing 5lbs in one month may be all that.  And if you lose 5lbs every month for a year, you hit 60lbs – nice.

If you love seafood as much as I do, then you need to read this report, 12 Fish You Shouldn’t Eat, by Food and Water Watch.  Plus, get healthier, stronger, and build muscle with free info/advice at http://www.smartweightgain.com.  Loaded with free workout routines and advice from the best minds in the business, this is where you need to go for commonsense, straight shooting info.

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