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"My Weight Needed a Checkup"

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Workouts and Diet Tips for Weight Loss

Amy's Workouts

Tone as you torch calories.
My trainer, Beth, showed me a way to get a serious sweat while also hitting the other muscles in my body that I'd been missing by solely running. I did this 20-minute variation of her strength-and-cardio routine when traveling.

1 minute: Triceps Dip
Sit on edge of chair, hands on seat, fingers facing forward. Slide forward and bend elbows 90 degrees behind you, lowering hips 3 inches from floor. Straighten arms; repeat.
1 minute: Plank Jack
Start on floor in full push-up position. Keeping upper body still, jump legs wide apart and then back to start (as if doing jumping jacks).
1 minute: Pike Push-Up
Start on floor in an inverted-V position, balancing on hands and feet, hips raised. Bend elbows 90 degrees to lower forehead toward floor. Straighten arms; repeat.
1 minute: Lunge to Kick Combo
Stand with feet hip-width apart and lunge backward with left leg, bending both knees 90 degrees. Rise up onto right leg as you kick left leg forward. Return to rear lunge; repeat for 30 seconds. Switch sides; repeat.
Complete circuit 5 times.

Make the time commitment.
My trainer told me it may take more than the recommended 150 minutes a week of exercise to really transform my body. I bumped up my runs to three days a week and did two to three days of circuits. My goal was to never skip a day, even if it meant doing a shorter workout.

Amy's Diet

Deal a meal.
To cure me of my five-night-a-week restaurant habit, Dawn helped me create a "dinner deck" of recipe cards filled with meals I can make in 15 minutes. I even learned to replicate my favorite eat-out dishes!

Greek Salad Pita
Toss 2 cups salad greens with lemon juice and salt and pepper to taste. Add 2 tablespoons each diced tomatoes and cucumber; 1/2 ounce feta; 3 olives, chopped; and 3 mint leaves, chopped; toss. Toast 1 whole wheat pita, smear with 1/4 cup hummus, and top with salad.

Tomato Flatbread Pizza
Top 1 whole wheat flatbread with 1 garlic clove, chopped. Slice 2 roma tomatoes and place on flatbread. Add 1 ounce goat cheese; heat in oven at 350 degrees until flatbread edges turn crispy and cheese begins to melt. Serve with 2 cups salad greens drizzled with 1 tablespoon balsamic vinaigrette.

Easy Shrimp Tostadas
Crisp 2 small corn tortillas in oven. Warm 1/4 cup canned low-fat refried beans. Top each tortilla with beans, 1/2 cup shredded lettuce, and 2 tablespoons diced tomatoes. In a fry pan, heat 2 canned chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, diced, with 2 ounces precooked frozen shrimp for about 90 seconds a side. Top tortillas with shrimp and 1/4 avocado, chopped.

Reset the clock.
My ER shifts always alternate between day and night, so my dietitian, Dawn, gave me an eating schedule to keep my body in rhythm no matter when I'm on call. Rather than fixate on having breakfast or dinner foods, I simply numbered meals and made sure they were well balanced.

Meal 1: One hour or less after alarm rings
Meal 2: Five hours after meal 1
Meal 3: Five hours after meal 2
Two snacks that include produce and protein, such as a hard-boiled egg with 1 cup of chopped melon, eaten during the day when hungry

Snap to track your diet.
I now keep a food diary on the fly by taking photos of what I eat. I can see instantly whether I'm following Dawn's healthy-plate formula: 25 percent whole grains, 25 percent lean protein, and 50 percent fruits and vegetables.

Take a seat.
Instead of mindlessly eating on the couch in front of my TV, laptop, or Kindle, I began following Dawn's "plate, chair, table" rule. At each meal, I dished out a portion on a plate and sat in a chair at the table. It worked: I tuned in to when I was full much faster.

More Tips to Lose Weight

Compromise rather than deprive. "Don't order just salad if you really want pizza, because you'll overdo it later. Fill half your plate with pizza and half with salad," says Dawn Jackson Blatner, RD, author of The Flexitarian Diet.

Maximize your minutes. "To burn extra calories and make the most of your time, do moves that work more than one muscle group at once," says Beth Tennison, a trainer at Core Fitness in Iowa City. "Try a lunge with a biceps curl, for instance."

Originally published in FITNESS magazine, February 2012.

 

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suhubu2 wrote:

Great job! Thinking you can't do it because you can't afford dieticians and trainers is really just an excuse, people. There is so much great info out there. Find a buddy and motivate each other!

2/22/2012 05:44:59 PM Report Abuse
porshanb wrote:

To all you geniuses obviously the pic with her dressed up is the after. I applaud her for doing something about her weight, she looks great. I guarantee those of you commenting negatively are unhealthy yourselves and t'd off because she had the gumption to do something about it. Speaks to your character, she tried to be a motivator by sharing her story and you idiots criticize her and her efforts. GROW UP!!

2/22/2012 08:50:56 AM Report Abuse
julierotermund wrote:

To e.kent1, I agree. I am a mom of 4 who also has a part time business and money to get those things is not available either. I have lost 18 lbs almost 3 months. Would love to e-mail on how I did that and spur you on in your goals. My e-mail is nochemicals.no.drama@gmail.com.

2/21/2012 11:24:55 AM Report Abuse
smhoppock wrote:

I didn't see a lot of useful advice for me since I don't have a personal trainer or a dietician to help me out. and I agree with the folks above, she still has a ways to go.

2/21/2012 06:12:56 AM Report Abuse
fransien54 wrote:

I think she is still overweight. Clothes can hide a lot!

2/21/2012 12:28:41 AM Report Abuse

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