50 Small Steps Parts 6 & 7

26. Start exercise slowly and build up to 30-60 minutes 3-5 times per week (check with your MD first!)

Ok, so in our last post we said to incorporate additional movement into your day…and like we said before, you can do that with some easy things like parking as far from the door as possible when you are out shopping, but you also need to to work up to some regular exercise.  Now, you can run out an join a gym or sign up for a boot camp of some sort, but the simplest way to get some exercise (especially if you aren’t used to it) is to just go for a walk.  It’s easy and it’s free!  You need to start slowly, though, because if you decide to dive head-first into a high impact aerobics class or hit the weights full-force you will regret it!  You will be so sore that I can guarantee that you will not have the desire to go back! 

27. Increase your water intake (unless you are on medical fluid restriction)

See a previous post!

28. Switch to thin crust pizza

Pizza dough is made from refined flour, that has a high glycemic index (which stores fat in your body) and a fairly low amount of dietary fiber. So opting for a thin crust pizza will help you consume less of dough, which in turn decrease the calorie intake and you will have to burn less calories as compared to a thick crust pizza. Whole wheat crust is a healthy option to the refined flour crust pizza.  It can make a difference…not to mention that you can actually taste the toppings without all that bread in the way!

29. Substitute candadian bacon for bacon or sausage

Common sense–less fat, less calories.  Give turkey bacon and sausage a try!  I love the taste–just remember to watch your portion!

30. Keep a food diary

Writing down every little thing that goes into your mouth can be eye opening.  Especially when you realize that you are have been eating without thought–when you write it down, you have to acknowledge it.  It’s a great way to see just how many calories you’ve been consuming.  It’s also a good way  to figure out what foods “work” for you and what may cause the scale to get “stuck!”

31. Substitute poultry or fish for beef at least once a week

Easy enough…just pick a meal and choose a lean meat like chicken or fish instead of steak or a turkey burger instead of a hamburger (and I promise that if it is prepared and seasoned correctly, it can be just as tasty!)

32. Cut the amount of sugar added to tea/coffee

If you love sweet tea or coffee, then you are probably consuming a significant amount of sugar.  I know that it would be totally “yucky” to try to go to completely unsweetened.  What you can do to make it more palatable is to gradually reduce the amount of sugar until you reach none or a level that you can live with.  That could potetially cut out HUNDREDS of calories each day!

33. Substitute mustard for mayo or ketchup

Mayo is fattening…ketchup is full of sugar.  Mustard is good for you and with all of the different types out there, I’m sure that you can find one to suit your tastes!

34. Modify recipes for your health

It’s usually pretty easy to modify a recipe to make it better for you.  Usually you can take a recipe and cut the fat in half and get the same results.  When possible, substitute olive oil for other fats (except in desserts!) and use an artificial sweetener in place of sugar.

35. Cut out 1 sweet beverage per day

Like I said before, if you drink sweet tea or coffee, try cutting down on your sugar gradually.  If you drink a lot of soda or juice, substitute on of those beverages for a diet soda (or better yet, WATER) a day.  That is usually at least 100 calories or more that you will cut out a day…700-1000 calories a week!

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