If you feel like there is too much to do with weight loss, here’s your blueprint of where to start.
I outline the 6 basics you need to do not only for weight loss, but also your overall health. In applying each of these over time, you will find that your foundation of health improves and you will reach your natural weight.
Listen to the end for the tip on getting started!
Ready for some personalized help? Tap here to schedule a time to ask me your burning weight loss questions!
NEAT, Total Energy Expenditure, and the Effect on Weight Loss [Ep. 34]: LISTEN HERE
The Hunger Scale Episode: LISTEN HERE
Study referenced from the NYT article: HERE
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More from Well with Lisa:
More from Well with Lisa:
Hey, welcome to eat. Well think well live well, the podcast for women who want to lose weight, but are tired of counting and calculating all the food. I'm your host, Lisa Salsbury, and I'm a certified health and weight loss coach. And most importantly, a recovered chronic diet or. I'll teach you to figure out why you are eating when you aren't hungry. Instead of worrying so much about what you are eating. This is episode 43, your weight loss blueprint, building a foundation of six essential health and wellness basics. It has never just one thing that will completely move the dial on your health. There is no magic bullet. That's the ultimate takeaway from this episode to stop focusing on the Tiny minute nuanced conversations that you might be seeing or having on social media. I want to give you today a weight loss blueprint of the six essential things that you are going to want to get dialed in first and foremost. So I've been reminded recently about the three-day diet. I first did in high school. And then I noticed a loved one. Who's close to me. Who shall remain anonymous. I haven't loved her, but ordered and another three-day cleanse. I don't want to criticize others choices for the way in which they want to care for their body or the way they want to lose weight. But these tiny actions, these things that are done in three days, or just focusing on one, my new thing. This is not the needle mover when it comes to your overall health or long-term weight loss, you may have seen posts also about how not to spike your blood glucose while eating certain meals or certain greens powders being touted as the be all end, all of health. Here's the thing. Unless you have the six basics I'm going to talk about in line. None of these other things matter seriously. You cannot manage your health with one greens powder, right? It's not so much. Eat less and move more, but it's basics that are more foundational to overall health and wellness. That will in fact, help you shed weight. If you have weight to lose. So today. I'm going to review this blueprint of sorts for you and talk about six basics. That will be your foundation. Once you have these six pretty well mastered, like you are doing these 80 to 90% of the time, Then, if you want to add in something extra go right ahead. But like they say, you can't outrun a bad diet. Really you can't Out supplement. You can't out greens powder. You can't out hack these basics. Okay. Here we go. Number one. Sleep. Women, you need seven to eight hours of sleep a night. That means you need to give yourself at least seven and a half hours of sleep opportunity. If your needs are on the lower end for me, I know I need eight hours to function at my best. Which means I really need to be in bed for eight and a half hours. If you're not familiar with what sleep opportunity. It has to do with sleep efficiency. So sleep efficiency is the amount of time you spend sleeping, divided by the amount of time you were in bed. And you want to aim for 85 to 95% sleep efficiency, which means you have like 15 to 30 minutes on either end of your sleep to be kind of resting either trying to fall asleep or waking up time in the morning. So when we're talking about sleep opportunity, we kind of be in the window that you've given yourself with the lights out, that you've dedicated to sleep. So essentially sleep opportunity is the amount of time you're spending in bed. With sleep, being the goal. There are thousands of reasons why sleep is important. I read the book why we sleep several years ago and it was super impactful. The very first interview I did on the podcast. I was with Janet Whalen. Who's asleep coach it's episode six and well worth a listen. She says that, that book the, why we sleep book. That it turned good sleepers into bad, Because people got so anxious about getting their sleep. I didn't have that happen to me. I really enjoyed it, but truly there are too many benefits to list here. So just briefly I'll mention the ones related to our weight loss efforts. There are hormonal impacts to our ghrelin, leptin and insulin, which are the main hunger hormones. And these are impacted by lower sleep. And poor sleep quality. But the main thing you're really going to notice is that your cravings are going to increase specifically for high processed foods that are higher in sugar and processed flour. You're going to be less emotionally regulated as well because when you lack sleep, The amygdala and the prefrontal cortex, don't talk to each other. Well, throughout the day, as they are supposed to. So essentially you have less capacity to follow through with your plan and with your intentions when you haven't slept well I saw this Instagram real and it's like the two guys talking back and forth. And the first guy's like, oh, I just give anything to get eight hours of sleep a night. And the second guy is like, have you tried going to bed eight hours before you need to wake up in the morning? And the first guy's like, oh yeah, I'm not going to do that. And it's so true, right? We're like, oh, I wish I could sleep better. I wish I had more, more sleep. But what we need to do is calculate when we need to get up and then give ourselves seven to nine hours of sleep opportunity prior to that alarm going off. So I know this can be hard. I know that this advice and this foundation is not for new moms with babies. I just had some rough nights. With, um, a sick dog. I know it's not the same as a baby, but I was reminded like, oh yeah, disturbed sleep is a huge deal. So as much as you can prioritize your sleep. All right. Number two is protein. I don't talk a lot about meal construction on the podcast, as far as what your plate should look like, but without a doubt, every meal should include a hefty portion of protein. Prioritizing protein in your day. Is going to balance your hunger as well as your hormones. And not just your hunger hormones, but your female hormones as well. You will find yourself getting hungry less often when you increase your protein intake. Remember from the episode on neat total energy expenditure and the effect on weight loss, that's episode 34. I talked about the thermal effect of food. It takes quite a bit of energy to digest protein. So this is part of the reason that you stay full for longer, because it takes so much longer to digest than say a chocolate chip muffin. How much you ask how much protein? Well, If you're a recovered chronic diet or like me. You may have counted calories or macros in the past. And so you innately know what a serving of protein looks like, but it's ideal to get at least 25 grams of protein, each meal, and really. More like 40 would be better. The reason is if you are eating three meals a day, as I typically do, and as my clients do getting, you're getting somewhere between 25 and 40 grams per meal, that's giving you 75 to 120 grams per day. Really I'd like you to be over a hundred grams per day. So I try to average about 35 grams of protein per meal. Now, please don't think you need to weigh and measure your protein. There's tons of visual guides online on how to estimate how much protein is in what you're eating. But let me just give you some examples. If you were to eat, say. Four ounces of chicken, for example. That's about a half of a chicken breast, the way we get chicken these days that are like usually about a half a pound chicken breasts. So basically it's about a generous Palm of your hand. So a Palm is typically three ounces is what the visual guide say, or like a deck of cards is going to be about three ounces. So maybe. If you're up to the first knuckle, you could visualize as four ounces. So that's going to give you about 30 grams of protein. So it's not really that much a half a chicken breast is not really that much to eat. If you were to include that much protein three times a day, you would be in a great range. If you are in a weight loss phase, you could do even more protein. So complete sources of protein, which means they have all nine of the essential amino acids, which are the building blocks of your body. Those would include meat, fish, eggs, dairy, and then some vegetarian sources would be soy keenwah, buckwheat and hemp and chia seeds that I always recommend. If you are hopefully an omnivore, getting your protein from animal sources first, because it's just so much more nutrient dense and it's more bioavailable, which means you absorb it better. The same amount of protein in vegetarian sources does not get absorbed in the same quantities. As the protein from animal sources, our bodies are just built as omnivores. So it's, it's just also hard to get the quantity that you need. For example, chia seeds, pack a punch for what they are. But in two tablespoons, which is a typical serving, you're getting five grams of protein. So you'd have to eat three quarters of a cup of chia seeds to get 30 grams of protein. Like you're getting in that same half a chicken breast. So it's just really not practical. So things like keenwah and chia seeds Are definitely. Like a supplement to your main animal sources. Remember, also that eggs only have about seven grams of protein per egg. So if you typically have two in one serving, you'll want to eat those in conjunction with other protein sources for that meal, like a piece of Turkey, sausage, or some Greek yogurt, something like that. So, like I said, I don't want you going out and weighing and measuring your protein. Just think about making it a priority in your meals. And you'll likely be doing enough. If you want just a little more, you could check out some of those, like visual guides. Okay. Number three. Eating the correct amount of food for you. Again, this is where people want to weigh and measure and track. And you can do that if it's right for you. I don't anymore. Because it made me too anxious. And I found that I just didn't need to, but I don't regret what I learned when doing it. So if you have done it in the past, use that knowledge, but primarily we know that we are in the correct amount of energy or food intake. If you are waiting for physical hunger, waiting to get to that. At least in negative three on the hunger scale before beginning to eat. And then eating just to enough. Just to that positive three. This, when you get it dialed in is like magic. You are going to be shocked how easy it is to eat the right amount of food for your body. And lose weight when you are in a weight loss phase and you are doing this. You'll be losing weight. That's one of the ways you'll know you can expect about a half to one pound per week using this method. Not every week because weight loss is just not linear that way. But most weeks, this is what you'll see. You'll know. If you're stopping at just enough, if you could go for a 10 minute walk and not feel nauseous. Another way, you know, if you're eating in the correct energy balance for you. Is if the scale is doing what you want it to do. So I know a lot of people hate to use the scale and hate to weigh themselves. So you can also see if your same pair of jeans still fit. If you're maintaining your current weight. You were eating the energy balance. It maintains that weight. If you want to reduce weight and use some of your onboard fat stores for energy, you'll need to reduce the energy you're bringing on board, reduce your intake. And then if you are doing that, you will see the scale moving. So. If you want to just get started on the, on this, try, just leaving a few bites behind at every meal this week and see how you feel. This can be a good test to see if you're eating past enough as well, you may be eating what you're used to eating the portions. You're accustomed to. And not realizing that you're going past enough. So practicing, leaving a few bites behind can help you kind of dial in where that positive three is on your hunger scale. When you test it out. You'll also be eliminating some energy. You would typically be bringing on board without a lot of effort. All right. Number four is a strength training. Typically, I'm going to tell you to do whatever exercise you like when you are first starting. Uh, movement program. If you have not been exercising at all, I'm definitely going to tell you. To start with what you like. Well, I'm going to tell you to start with walking, but. That comes up in a minute. So. The reason for that is because it's the one you're going to keep doing if you like it. But lately I've been learning and understanding more and more about the benefits of strength training. So even if you don't love it, I would encourage you to try. I would encourage you to add strength, training to your routines. I noticed there was a little blurb in my alumni magazine. I graduated from Brigham young university. And this month there was a blurb that was quoting a different article that said strength training was comparable to smoking. Versus not smoking on. Overall lifespan. That's how impactful it is. So I was intrigued, so I looked up the original article. It came from the New York times, and they were reporting on a study that had been done. And here's what it said after adjusting for factors, such as age, gender, income, education, marital status, and whether they had chronic conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, or cancer. Researchers found that people who engaged in one hour of moderate to vigorous, aerobic activity a week had a 15% lower mortality risk. Mortality risk was 27% lower for those that did three hours per week. But those who also took part in one to two strength training sessions per week had an even lower mortality risk, a full 40% lower. Than those who didn't exercise at all. This was roughly the difference between a non-smoker and someone with a half a pack a day habit. That's the end of the quote. So aerobic exercise is absolutely protective, but adding in strength training has a significant impact. And the reason I'm bringing this up is because the study also showed just 24% of participants did regular strength training. As opposed to the 63% who said they did aerobic workouts. So strength training just isn't as common as aerobic training, which is why it needs to be repeated over and over that we need to be doing it more. Most of us women have been afraid of weights or just not sure what to do. We've been cardio bunnies and mostly just told, oh, don't lift weights. You'll get bulky. I guarantee you that you won't. I remember too, that strength training is not just for weight loss. I am talking about your blueprint for weight loss here, but Strength training in particular, and really all of these basics really contribute to your overall health of the body. Regular strength training has important benefits for healthy aging, including maintaining a high quality of life, which is super important for me making my health span match my lifespan. I don't just want to live to a hundred. I want to be functioning that long. So other other benefits, it improves bone density, increases functional strength, reduces the risk of injury. Improves balance and coordination. And Mental health. So ultimately I think this quote in that New York time article sums it up. Dr. Bruce Moseley said you will function at a much higher level for longer. If you have good muscle strength. So well beyond the metabolic aspects of muscle burning, more calories at rest than other tissues of the body, all of these other reasons are why we need to strength, train. Okay. Number five is walking, which is why I said that's coming when I mentioned that's where we want to start. If you aren't currently doing an exercise program, for sure. I want you to start with walking. But if you currently are. This is really separate this walking. What I'm talking about here is separate from your aerobic training and your strength training workouts. This is basically your daily step count. It's your activity level, throughout the rest of your day. So again, I'm going to reference that episode on neat total energy expenditure and that's episode 34. I will link that in the show notes. But remember, from that episode, that 15% of your total daily energy is expended on non. Exercise activity, thermogenesis. That's what neat stands for. And that is primarily you're walking. It can also be cooking, fidgeting, folding laundry. You know, all of that, but staying active throughout the day, or just including a short walk after lunch and after dinner can have a profound effect on your total energy expended in the day. The fact is women who walk more, have an easier time losing fat. Period. It's just the truth. If you have a step counter, like an apple watch or a Fitbit. Take a look at your seven day average, or maybe even take a look at. like all of last month and look at each of those weeks, each of those four weeks of the month, what was the average for each week? And look to increase your total for the week by 100 to 200 steps. That's it. At first, since it's a total for the week, that might just be a few extra steps per day. Then you can start increasing your daily average. I'm not going to give you a number to shoot for since I don't know where you are starting. Just try to prioritize movement and increase it a little each week. All right. And lastly, number six. Is stress and mind management. This is where we talk nice to ourselves. Whatever works for you in this department that truly decreases your stress. I want you to think meditation writing in your gratitude journal, doing coaching models on yourself, getting coached by someone like me, talking on the phone to your best friend, having committed sex with your partner, yoga, hot shower, or bath cold plunge. If you're into that hot tubs, taking long walks, there's a thousand ways to truly decrease your stress. And I guarantee you that. That none of them include eating an entire tub of ice cream. Get really honest with yourself about what your true pleasures are and your true stress relievers in your life. And do more of those. Do less of the false pleasures, like overeating or overdrinking thinking that that is going to solve for your stress. So true stress management. Is choosing the things that are truly going to help decrease your stress. And stopping. Those things that are falsely. Decreasing. And what I mean by that is overeating gives you a false positive. So it's like, yes, I feel better in the moment, but we have a net long-term negative result. So there is an entire episode coming soon on this, but for now, just know that decreasing stress is one of the basics. And I'd love to know your questions on this so I can include. Answers on my episode, devoted solely to this topic. Honestly on this one as well, use the Google, right? There are a thousand ideas on how to reduce your stress. Obviously I just gave you a few off the top of my head. But. Thinking about your thoughts? The way we do in coaching can really help in this department. Okay. Let's recap that list. We've got number one, sleep. Number two, prioritizing protein. Number three, eating the correct balance of energy for yourself. For strength trading added to your aerobic training. Number five is walking and number six, stress and mine management fees are your core priority is when it comes to weight loss. Once you are doing these things, then we can dial in some smaller nuances in your diet or maybe in your supplement routine. I know, I cover a lot of varied topics on this podcast. So I wanted an episode for you to go to and maybe listen again and again. To remind you of the core things that you need to do. You'll notice too, that each of these fall under my main pillars of the podcast. So under the eat well pillar, we have prioritizing protein and eating in the right energy balance, which I know is just another way of saying that stop over eating. You can really dive deeper on that with the hunger scale episode think, well includes the stress and my management. And then the live well pillar includes the sleep, the strength training, and the daily movement walking. I know it can be hard to get started. So this is the last like bonus tip. It's not one of the core principles, but this is your bonus tip for today. Just pick one. If you feel like you need work in all six of these areas. Pick the one that you think you could be successful at this week? Pick one thing to start with do not try to overhaul all six of these items. This week, if I were going to pick for you, I would pick sleep. I would love for you to dial that in because when we are well rested, A lot of these other things can fall into place a little bit easier. So if I'm picking for you, I'm picking sleep. If you're like, that's not happening, then you get to pick your own. But again, that is my last bonus tip for you, which is just to pick one. If you are. Looking at this list and you're thinking, okay, I'm like four out of six doing well, then you know where you have some works so you can pick what to work on. If you feel like you kind of really do need help with all of them. And especially with that stress, mind management, and just the thinking about all of this feels overwhelming. That's when you really need to hire a coach. I do offer free strategy sessions. So if you want 30, 45 minutes with me to ask me your burning question, tell me what's going on. Let me get a little look at your brain and I will be offering you some coaching along the way we can see if coaching is a perfect fit for you. Be sure to get that scheduled. I would love to speak with you. I know I have a ton of new listeners lately, and I have not mentioned that. So. I get that scheduled. I've got lots of time open in the next couple of weeks. All right. All the links I talked about and the other episodes I referenced are in the show notes. And I hope you have a great week. hey, thanks for listening today. Before you go, make sure you subscribe to the podcast so you can receive new episodes, right when they're released. And if you're learning something new and enjoying the podcast, I'd love for you to leave me a five star rating and a review. Thanks again for joining me, Lisa Salisbury in this episode of Eat Well, Think Well, Live Well.