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The Nutrition Twins’ Ten Easy Ways to Get Beach Body Ready

As registered dietitians and personal trainers, our clients are always asking us for the easiest ways to shape up fast, even when they’re super busy!  We get it, after all, who doesn’t want to rock their bathing suit look in no time? Here are a few of our favorite tips we share with them!

Our veggi-licious Crudite!

  1. Eat veggies before your meal. You’ll take the edge off hunger with very few calories and then you’ll be able to make a rational decision about what to eat.  You’ll eat less of the heavy stuff at the meal and you’ll get fiber, phytonutrients and vitamins.  The key is not adding calorie-laden butter, oil or dressings.
  2. Don’t just stop with the eating veggies before the meal—eat them with your meal too! Mix steamed veggies right into your meal! You’ll significantly slash calories.  The vegetables will make the meal much less calorie dense and you’ll fill up faster.  You’ll be able to save some for the next day.  For example:  Don’t just order pasta with shrimp, order a side of steamed broccoli and mix it right into the sauce.  Do the same with all of your dishes!3.Start exercising first thing in the morning. While there is mixed research on whether or not this truly helps you to burn more calories, the truth is that if you exercise first thing in the morning, there are fewer things (and fewer excuses!) to get in the way of your workout.  Even the best intentions to exercise later in the day get derailed by having to stay late at work, going out with friends, or a hectic day.4. Go for the lighter calorie cocktails and stick to the serving size. 5 ounces of wine, 1.5 ounces of hard liquor or 12 ounces of light beer all have significantly fewer calories (typically 90-120) than mixed drinks, fruity cocktails and regular beer (which range from 140 calories to upwards of 700 calories, especially when you don’t stick to a serving size!).  If you have a couple of cocktails each week and switch to the lighter choices it’s an easy way to shed lbs! Keep in mind, many establishments serve in large glasses that double a serving size.
    5. Put your oil in a spritzer instead of pouring it.
    Whether you pour oil on your omelet at breakfast, in your salad at lunch, or in your pan to cook your dinner, each tablespoon adds 120 calories.  And chances are each time you pour the oil you are using more than a couple tablespoons.  Put your oil in a spray bottle, spritz it on your pot or your meal instead of pouring it and you’ll save hundreds of calories each day and the weight will seem to fall of you.  Use a spray bottle for all dressings, condiments and even for butter!).  Psst… people are always shocked to learn that this is also the case for heart healthy olive, oil; the calories still add up quickly.

 

 

6. Write down everything that you eat. Keeping record holds you accountable for what you put in your mouth. You won’t forget you ate a few pieces of candy from your coworkers candy jar if it’s recorded in your food diary.  Research shows when you write down what you eat you lose twice as much weight.
7. Swap dessert for a piece of fruit
. Most people eat several hundred calories of dessert but if you satisfy your sweet tooth with a piece of fruit (typically 60-80 calories/ piece), you’ll get the sweet. Or try this Strawberry Mint “Ice Cream” -cream/ or this Frozen Yogurt Bark (2o calories!)
8. Sneak in more movement/ exercise
: Sneak in exercise wherever you can. Take stairs instead of the elevator at work or push your kids on the swings for an arm workout. Even if you walk around the neighborhood for 15 minutes, it counts. Just get moving! No matter what your current level of activity is, add more activity to your day, you’ll force your body to burn more to slim down for the beach!

 

9. Swap heavier, higher calorie animal-based fare for protein and fiber-filled pulses (beans, chickpeas, lentils, dry peas). Research shows that pulses aid in weight loss even when calories aren’t restricted.  Aim to get ¾ cup daily of any combination of pulses—that’s all it takes!  (This is really encouraging for our clients and helps them meet their “eat less meat” goals!)

  • A few easy swaps/ ideas to try: bean tacos, lentil or split pea soup, bean chili.

 

10.  Leave the last 4 bites behind at each meal. This will save you about 100 calories at each meal and about 400 calories a day.  You’ll feel those last few pounds dropping off as this little change will help you lose almost a pound a week–and won’t miss a thing!

 

BONUS! #11. Start the day with a large glass (12- 16 ounces) of one of our water infused “detox” drinks  (check out a few of ours—under the photo below).  It’s one of the easiest things you can do to start your day off on the right foot.  Every process and chemical reaction in your body relies on water. If you want to look and feel your best and positively impact every aspect of your health, do this. It will take up space in your stomach ( so you’ll eat less and slash calories), increase your energy, boost organ function and efficiency, (your metabolism too!) help flush toxins and wastes out of your body (torid uncomfortable gut bulges from constipation).

Lemon Ginger Turmeric “Detox” Tea

Don’t give up. Take it a step further by drinking that same large glass (12-16 ounces!) before each meal (or carry a water or seltzer bottle with you). Once you make it a habit, you’ll realize how much better you feel, how it sets the tone for the entire day, and you’ll never want to miss it. You’ll overeat less frequently, and you’ll have more energy. Try these:

Vitamin C Infused Detox Water

 Slimming Raspberry Mint Detox Spritzer

Apple Cider Vinegar & Lime “Detox” Drink

Ginger Mint Turmeric Green Tea “Flat Belly” Drink

Raspberry Ginger Lime “Detox” Drink

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

4 Easy Ways to Get Healthy No Matter How Busy You Are

As girls who are registered dietitian nutritionists and personal trainers who always seem to wish there were more hours in a day to both enjoy it and get everything done that we need to, we’re all about finding easy ways to stay healthy despite being time crunched (we’ve been experimenting our entire lives– and teaching what we’ve learned for our entire careers! We enjoy sharing these secrets with our clients and we’re excited to share them with you too!).  These are our top 4 ways to become the healthiest person you know, despite you’re busy schedule.

  1. Start the day with a large glass of water (aka, liquid gold).

It’s one of the easiest things you can do to stay healthy and start your day off on the right foot.  Every process and chemical reaction in your body relies on water. If you want to look and feel your best and positively impact every aspect of your health, do this.

The benefits: This small step will:

  • increase your energy
  • take up space in your stomach, helping you eat less and slash calories
  • boost organ function and efficiency (your metabolism too!)
  • help flush toxins and wastes out of your body, ridding discomfort and gut bulges from constipation and helping your skin to glow

How to do it:

  • Wake up and immediately drink 12-16 ounces. Make it a habit.
  • Don’t give up. Carry a water or seltzer bottle with you and drink 12-16 ounces before each meal.
  • If you need a little extra flavor for motivation, squeeze lemon, lime and/ or orange in. Or try other water infusions like our Watermelon Basil ACV Detox Water Infusion.

So refreshing! Once you make it a habit, you’ll realize how much better you feel and how it sets the tone for the entire day– you’ll never want to miss it!

3. Keep our favorite staples in your kitchen to easily whip up ten, healthy, simple meal options and avoid fast food/ take out.
See Ten Quick, Easy Healthy Meals You Can Make from the Items in Your Fridge.

The benefits:

  • Several studies, including one from John Hopkins suggests that home cooking is a main ingredient in a healthier diet and trying to lose weight diet since people who frequently cook meals at home consume fewer calories, carbohydrates, less sugar sodium and less fat than when they eat out.
  • Aside from delicious meals from home keep you a lot leaner than meals purchased out: they save money and are higher in disease-preventing nutrients! S-C-O-R-E!

    How to do it
    :

    • Simply keep the staples on the list at home so you can rock out healthy meals in 5-10 minute meals when you’re busy!

     3. Eat More to Get Lean: Yes! Mo’ Veggies

Fill half your plate with veggies at lunch and dinner.  This really is possible even when you’re busy! 

The benefits:

  • Veggies are your golden ticket for all things health (disease and obesity prevention, boosting energy & metabolism). They flood your body with antioxidants and phytonutrients that fight disease and mop up free radicals, helping to undo some of the damage created by overindulgences, alcohol, stress and breathing polluted air, while veggies also help to keep meals low in calories.

Additional benefits:

  • Veggie Bonus #1: Fill up on veggies and you’ll have less room in your stomach for the heavy stuff and you’ll get leaner.
  • Veggie Bonus #2 (a.k.a. our constipation & flat-belly cure): The high water and fiber content of the veggies flushes bloat and waste and brings on a flat belly—oh yeah!
  • Veggie Bonus #3 (a.k.a. our bloat-be-gone cure): The high water and potassium combination in veggies helps to flush out salt and the extra water and bloat that it holds with it for a flatter belly.

 

Wonder what Chinese meal makes us smile ear to ear? Shrimp and a double “case of the broccolis” 🥦 🥦 . Yup, we’ve got it bad! 😁What you don’t see is the sauce we get on the side- we request it with no oil or light oil. So delish and totally healthy way to enjoy Chinese and feel satisfied and not over-stuffed or salt- loaded!

What to do:

  • Include extra non-starchy* veggies (nearly all veggies with the exception of peas, potatoes and corn) at every meal.
    *Starchy veggies are healthy; they’re higher in calories so eating lot of them could cause weight gain.

How to do it:

  • Follow our Red, Green and Orange RuleTM. Include either a red, orange or green veggie at every meal.
    • You’ll focus on what you should eat, rather than obsessing about foods you should eat less often.
  • Steam veggies and eat as a side to a meal, mixed in it, or enjoy them raw.
  • Try cutting meal serving back by one-quarter to one-half and then add steamed veggies right into the sauce. The meal size will be the same but you’ll eat less of the heavy, waist-puffing stuff and automatically boost nutrients, fiber and slash calories.

 The time crunched solution:
How to do it:

  • Keep frozen veggies on hand! They’re just as nutritious as fresh—and they won’t go bad—you don’t have to wash, cut or peel them! If they’re not defrosted, simply steam or pop them in the microwave and voila!

 

  • Defrost frozen veggies in the fridge during the day. When you get home, make a quick cold salad by mixing the veggies with vinegar and a teaspoon of olive oil or toss them right into a hot meal, as they’ll already be “cooked” and you’ll simply warm them up.
  • Purchase pre-washed and sliced fresh veggies. Enjoy fresh carrots sticks and sliced bell pepper with hummus.
  • Dining on take-out? Chinese chicken and rice? Pasta and chicken? Mac ‘n cheese?  Order (or microwave from frozen at home) a side of steamed veggies without added butter or oil.
  • Mix the veggies right into whatever dish you’re eating—the veggies will pick up the flavor from the sauce in the meal and add great texture, flavor and color. The meal will be much bigger, so save half for another day. You’ll eat less of the heavy stuff and fill your stomach with the lower calorie, fiber-and nutrient packed veggies.
  • Make/ order omelets, sandwiches, pizzas, wraps and burritos with veggies (pre-cut/ washed veggies makes it fast).
  • Preparing or ordering a sandwich or wrap? Use or request nori or lettuce to replace carb-rich bread—it’s easier to eat on-the-go than a traditional sandwich and just as quick to prepare.

Tip for Success:

  • One day a week take five minutes to write down how you’ll get produce at each meal in the coming week. This way, when you’re busy you’ll have your plan in place and be good to go!

    Tammy’s daughters Summer and Riley with their veggies

 4. Stay active and keep it fun.

The benefits:

Burn calories, fight obesity, diabetes, heart disease and cancer and boost mood and libido.   

What to do:

Aim for at least 30 minutes of cardiovascular activity three days a week (or more) plus 30 minutes of “movement” (see below for specifics) on each day of the week that you’re not doing traditional cardiovascular exercise. Cardiovascular exercise is also known as aerobic exercise or “cardio,” for short; this is the exercise that burns the most calories while you do it and is going to help you to slim your body and sweat out the bloat, while increasing the strength of your heart and lungs. (Think speed walking, swimming, jogging, biking, the elliptical machine, Zumba, etc.)

The Time-Crunched Solution:

  • Break it up!
  • If you only have 15 minutes in the morning—walk 7 minutes outside your door and walk back. If you have 20 minutes in the evening, do it again.Have less than 10 minutes? Try this quickie, effective, anytime, anywhere 6-minute strength training/ cardio workout (go straight from one exercise to another):
  • 30-Second Plank
  • 40 Wall Squats
  • 20 Knee Push-ups
  • 40 Jumping Jacks
  • 15 Tricep Dips
  • 30 Lunges
  • On the remaining days of the week that you don’t get cardiovascular exercise, aim to get at least 30 minutes of “movement” to move your body EVERY day.

    What counts as being active?

    • Walking through the city
    • Site-seeing
    • Dancing around the house
    • Walking to a friend’s house
    • Walking as you talk on the phone, rather than lounging

IMPORTANT: What burns more calories—lounging on the couch vs. walking down the street or dancing around the house? What is better for your heart, getting it pumping or letting it sit idle? You bet, buttercup—it’s walking or dancing! That’s the reason you’re adding movement.

BONUS POINTS! These are really helpful when you have a time-crunched schedule:

  • Take the stairs at work, do jumping jacks during the commercial breaks of your favorite TV show, and—yes, you’ve heard this one before—take the furthest spot in the parking lot.
  • The goal is to get as many “bonuses” as possible in your day.