January 2, 2012

Make 2012 Your Healthiest Yet With 10 Easy Steps

The Biggest Loser Resort and Spas of America offer the following 10 simple steps anyone can take to make 2012 their healthiest year yet:

  1. Schedule Your Sleep. There is no way around this - either you get quality sleep (and enough of it) or your body will eventually work against you when trying to lose weight. Sleep is a precious time for your body to repair and rejuvenate. Lack of quality sleep can increase stress hormones which then store fat around your trunk/belly. On average, the body needs seven to eight hours of sleep at night so aim for that as much as possible. Quick tips - try to be in bed before 11 pm and avoid any active stimulation 30-45 minutes before bed.

  2. Eat Your Carbs. Yes, we said carbs. Your body needs the right kind of them. A simple tip to selecting healthy carbs is this: If you can pick, grow, or harvest the carb, you are on the right track. This definitely includes eating all vegetables - eating vegetables helps you feel full while simultaneously giving your body some of the best nutrients for your body in the world!

  3. Pick A Pattern. Your metabolism needs to be told what to do - you cannot think yourself thin! You can increase your weight loss by eating real food that your body recognizes - at the right times. For most people, the ideal pattern is to eat three meals and one snack per day. Quick tips - don't ever skip breakfast and keep dinner your smallest meal of the day.

  4. Portion Control. Let's admit it, most people eat too much food. The reality is that your body does not require excessive portions. Work with a qualified nutritionist or dietitian to figure out what your individual body needs each day to run optimally. Eating smaller portions of real, unprocessed food will give you the nutrients your body needs and satisfy you throughout the day so you don't overeat.

  5. Work It Out. Exercise is important and the combination of cardio and resistance training is ideal. Do an interval-based cardio workout that includes resistance training three to five times per week for a total of 60 minutes per session. If you only have 30 minutes per day, alternate cardio and resistance training days. Interval cardio workouts can be done on a stair stepper, doing sprints outside or simply on a treadmill. Resistance training can include using free weights, yoga, Pilates or just use your own body weight through pushups, pull-ups and sit ups.

  6. Water Rules. Hydration is key to weight loss – drink approximately two to three liters per day. Quick tip - drinking most of your water between meals and very little during meals helps your body digest properly and enhances your body's ability to extract all the nutrients it craves from the food you just ate!

  7. A Sunny Outlook.  Get outside and absorb some Vitamin D from the sun for at least 15-20 minutes per day. Ideally without SPF (okay to cover your face) for that brief time so you can soak in the Vitamin D. Talk to your doctor about this and have your Vitamin D levels checked annually or consider taking a Vitamin D supplement. This can change your life in more ways than you realize!

  8. Sooth By Spa.  Take care of yourself in 2012. According to a survey of 1,000 people by the International Spa Association, 39 percent of the population visited a spa in the past 12 months and 86 percent of those customers said that visiting a spa has had a positive impact on their lives. Taking time out for you and your health allows you to focus, reduce stress in your life, reset what is important to you and helps you gain a clearer understanding of your priorities.

  9. Quiet Time.  In this era of technology and instant contact, it is vital to carve out some time for you. Try to take a break every day to relax, clear your mind and collect your thoughts and regroup. The constant, frantic pace of life can be damaging to your health - remember to give yourself some peace when you can - even if for only a moment.

  10. Camaraderie Counts. Surround yourself with people and activities that inspire, motivate and support you in achieving your goals. This year, find what you enjoy and love doing and go for it! If you want to lose weight and keep active, join an exercise class, fitness group or 'meet-up' in your area. If you're looking for a wellness getaway to get the fire of inspiration burning, consider a visit to The Biggest Loser Resorts!
The Biggest Loser Resort, Fitness Ridge, Utah
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