We might as well declare January National Weight Loss Month! After the transgressions, excesses and guilt of the holiday season (cheesy hors d’oeuvres, potatoes and stuffing, sugar in every form and alcohol at every turn), January is when we once again focus on a healthier lifestyle. Party’s over, my friends! But according to a recent study, all those good intentions typically last only 21 days!
For women over 50, 21 days will most likely not cut it. Our metabolism is slower and we have less muscle mass to burn fat. In all ways, losing even a few pounds is laborious. It goes on SO much easier than it comes off! For inspiration, I turned to one of my favorite trainers, a little power house named Pam Herzenberg, for her take on taking it off. She is chiefly responsible for whipping me into shape when I turned 60 and was determined to do it with a better body. Her plan is designed to shock your body into an increased metabolic rate. Knowing only something drastic will blast off those extra pounds I so indulgently packed on over the holidays, this is what I will be doing. Feel free to give it a try!
Each phase is 14 days. If you are losing weight rapidly (lucky you!!) you can advance to the next phase sooner.
Phase 1 – 14 days
Eat ONLY salad, vegetables and protein. No coffee or alcohol. Green tea is ok. Example: turkey bacon and scrambled egg white for breakfast; salad with protein for lunch; protein with vegetable and salad for dinner. Dress greens lightly with oil and vinegar or fresh lemon juice. Or make your own basic vinaigrette with olive oil, sherry vinegar and Dijon mustard.
Phase 2 – 14 days
Add daily: 1 fruit, 1 dairy and 1 glass wine (!) If you skip the wine, you can add a second fruit. Add coffee if you wish.
Phase 3 – 14 days
Add one serving of carbs daily to the fruit, dairy, wine, salad, veggies and protein. Also add 4 dark chocolate kisses daily. Again, you can substitute a second fruit for your daily glass of wine.
Phase 4 – a lifetime
Stay on this permanently as a maintenance plan having 2 fruits, 2 dairy servings and 2 carbs,1 wine with the basic plan ( salad, veggies and protein) unless you gain weight. If so, cut back to Phase 3.
Although she makes her living training people, Pam always reminded me: it’s 80% what you put in your mouth and only 20% physical activity. Still, the more you move, the more you lose.
I will be adding to this program a minimum of 5 days of exercise including cardio, Pilates, Ballet Barre and weight training for building muscle and burning fat. If you try this, please share your results!