The Snap-Back Effect

According to popular statistics, only 8% of New Year’s Resolutions are successfully kept. This means that 92% of us that are brave enough to set out for self-improvement will fail.

Those aren’t very good odds.

Thankfully there is science that explains this curious “Snap-Back Effect” and offers us tools to make the effect work in our favor.

Snap-Back Effect: A term coined by Dr. Maxwell Maltz, the author of Psycho-Cybernetics to describe the rampant self-sabotage of personal improvement goals. Maltz noted that you can stretch a rubber band only to a certain length and hold it only for a certain time until you get weak or get distracted and the rubber band will then snap back to its true shape.

This is essentially what happens when you attempt to achieve a new level of self-improvement. Sooner or later you sabotage yourself and get back to your normal level of achievement.

What sort of person do you believe yourself to be? This mental image of yourself is your self-image.

All of your actions, feelings, habits, and even your abilities, will always be consistent with your self-image. Always. You will “act like” the sort of person that you believe yourself to be. This means that you literally will not be able to act against your self-image for any length of time, despite making a New Year’s Resolution about it, and despite deploying grit, conscious effort and willpower.

Sooner or later you will snap-back to the sort of person that you believe yourself to be.

If you have a “fat” self-image, if you believe that you are the sort of person who “can’t resist sweets,” if you “are unable to enjoy exercise,” then you will not be able to reduce your body fat and keep it off no matter how many times you attempt to turn over a new leaf. Maltz proved that we can’t escape our self-image. You may be able to do so in the short term, but sooner than later you’ll be “snapped-back,” like a rubber band.

The answer is Self-Image Management

According to Maltz, your self-image is a “premise,” or a foundation upon which your entire personality, behavior, and even your circumstances are built. As such, your experiences will verify and strengthen your self-image, and either a destructive or beneficial cycle, is set up.

In other words, you will seek out evidence that supports your opinion about yourself, even going so far as to create the circumstances for proof to be had.

For example, as a dieter who sees herself as a “failure”-type dieter, or one who is “thick in the waist,” will invariably find that the number on her scale continues to go up. She then has “proof.”

Whatever seems just out of your reach, whatever frustrations you have in your life, are likely reinforcing something ingrained in your self-image like a groove in a record.

Maltz goes on to say, “Obviously it’s not enough to say, “it’s all in your head.” In fact, that’s insulting. It is more productive to explain that “it” is based on certain ingrained and possibly hidden patterns of thought that, if altered, will free you to tap more of your potential and experience vastly difference results.

This brings me to the most important truth about the self-image: it can be changed.

Take time this New Year’s to revise the sort of person that you consider yourself to be. The possibilities are endless!

Happy New year,

Brian

12 Days Of Christmas- Flat Belly Edition

I don’t have to be Santa 🎅 know what’s on your list this year and it isn’t found at your local department store. 

And whether you’ve been naughty or nice I know what you want under the tree 🎄this year (figuratively speaking 😜)

You’re wishing for a flat belly and tight abs to start 2018 off right—so I’ve put together a special present 🎁 for you – “The Twelve Days of Christmas –”Flat Belly Abs Edition” just for you. 

On the First Day…Give yourself the gift of Burpees.  Created in the 1930’s by psychologist Royal H. Burpee, the burpee is an intense full body exercise that helps burn fat and tone muscles. A burpee is done in the following 5 steps: 1) Stand with feet shoulder width apart. 2) Drop to a squat with your hands on the ground. 3) Kick feet back while lowering into a push-up. 4) Return to squat position. 5) Jump up with arms overhead. 

On the Second Day…Give yourself the gift of Fiber.  Stocking up on fiber will do wonders for your abs. High fiber foods are nutrient dense and low in calories. Try these high fiber favorites: raspberries, pear (with skin), artichoke, peas, apples (with skin), broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and carrots. 

On the Third Day…Give yourself the gift of a Medicine Ball. The first medicine balls were created in Persia over 3,000 years ago, made with sand filled bladders and used by wrestlers as part of their conditioning. Today you can get the same rippling abs by incorporating medicine balls into your exercise routine. Do a sit-up holding a medicine ball at your chest then throw it to a partner as you raise your chest toward your knees; or hold a medicine ball with arms straight up in the air as you do crunches. 

On the Fourth Day…Give yourself the gift of Reduced Salt.  Too much salt leads to water retention—and that spells disaster for your six pack. Pay attention to the sodium content of your food. Limit salt intake by not eating packaged foods and by putting down the salt shaker. 

On the Fifth Day…Give yourself the gift of Oblique V-Sits.  Who really wants a muffin top? You don’t, so incorporate Oblique V-Sits into your routine in 3 simple steps. 1) Lie on your side with legs straight and hands behind your head. 2) Raise your arms and legs simultaneously, while exhaling and squeezing your obliques. 3) Repeat on the other side. 

On the Sixth Day…Give yourself the gift of Lean Protein.  Along with fiber, your meals should be packed with lean protein. This will help support muscle growth while controlling blood sugar – all important factors when it come to washboard abs. 

On the Seventh Day…Give yourself the gift of Sprints.  The days of long slow cardio sessions are long gone. We now know that short intense bursts of cardio is the ideal way to melt fat. Run 60-90 second sprints in between resistance training sets to really kick your fat burning mechanism into high gear. 

On the Eighth Day…Give yourself the gift of No Sugar.  Sure, sugar tastes good, but indulging in it causes your body to store layers of fat. Enjoy fresh fruit, rather than refined sugar. If you really want washboard abs, then say no to sugar. 

On the Ninth Day…Give yourself the gift of Hanging Leg Raises.  This is one of the most effective ways to strengthen your abdominals. 1) Hang from pull-up bar with legs fully extended. 2) Exhale and drive your knees up toward your chest. 3) Inhale as you slowly lower your legs back down. 

On the Tenth Day…Give yourself the gift of No Grain.  If you’re serious about that six pack then put down the bread basket. Grains are full of insulin-spiking carbohydrates—the perfect combination for fattening you up. Learn to love grain-free meals that center around lean meats and vegetables. 

On the Eleventh Day…Give yourself the gift of Mountain Climbers.  Here’s another intense exercise that really targets your abs while also burning fat. 1) Get into push-up position. 2) Exhale as you alternately drive your knees in toward your chest, keeping your back flat. 

On the Twelfth Day…Give yourself the gift of Flat Abs. Contact me about my tummy flattening programs that will get you those flat and tight abs that you’re wishing for.

​Happy Holidays,

Brian and The Applied Fitness Team

Make a Bowl Of Fitness Soup

During cold winter months, soup is quite possibly the perfect dinner. It’s comforting, simple, and easily modified to fit your taste and the contents of your fridge. Making soup from scratch is simple and easy, once you know how to do it.

What’s also great about making soup from scratch is that you can use healthy ingredients that support your fitness goals – while leaving out ingredients that would increase the carb and calorie count of the meal.

When craving homemade soup, most of us seek out a specific soup recipe that fits into a neat category. There’s chicken noodle, minestrone, split pea, clam chowder and so on. What’s less common is the brave cook who approaches the idea of soup with an open mind, a big soup pot, and whatever ingredients they have on hand.

Today I challenge you to be this brave cook.

You’ll find that making up your own soup as you go along is one of the most rewarding and wonderful dishes you’ll ever make. Let go of the urge to measure soup ingredients out or to overthink the process. Let your hair down, get really un-technical, and have some fun.

And don’t worry, there’s a method to this madness…

1) Start with a Little Healthy Fat

First off you’ll need to find a healthy form of fat to sauté the soup ingredients in. Olive oil and coconut oil are my go-to choices. Put a couple of tablespoons in the bottom of a large soup pot and place it over medium-high heat. Don’t you dare measure. Just scoop or pour.

2) Add Aromatic Veggies

Now add some minced, aromatic veggies to the warmed oil. Choose from onions, garlic, ginger, carrots and celery. This is the perfect chance to use up that starting-to-shrivel onion at the bottom of the produce drawer in your fridge. Sauté until the veggies become tender. If you have any fresh herbs on hand, such as rosemary, thyme, sage, or marjoram feel free to mix these in now.

3) Brown Some Protein

I like a hearty serving of protein in my soup, to keep us full and fueled, so my next move is to add some protein. Ground or chopped meat needs to be nicely browned and cooked through. If you’re going for a lighter fare, then feel free to continue without adding meat.

4) Add in Liquid

Sometimes at this stage I’ll pour in a little bit of white wine into the pot to deglaze the little browned bits that tend to stick to the bottom. The wine adds another dimension of flavor, but I only do it if there’s already a bottle opened. Once the pot is deglazed, add in stock, broth, or pureed tomato in any combination you’d like.

5) Something Extra

Now’s the time to add in those extra veggies that you have on hand – ones like squash, cauliflower or sweet potatoes. You could also add in cooked beans or quinoa.

6) Season to the Max

Start with a generous grinding of sea salt and black pepper, then christen your soup with more daring spices. Give these spices a try:

  • Celery seed
  • Chili powder
  • Cumin
  • Basil
  • Oregano
  • Parsley
  • Fennel
  • Rosemary
  • Thyme
  • Sage
  • Paprika
  • White pepper
  • Garlic powder
  • Red pepper
  • Onion powder
  • Turmeric Root
  • Cardamon
  • Cinnamon (tastes wonderful with ground beef)
  • Dill

Taste and adjust. Be brave. More flavor is always better.

7) Let it Simmer

Bring your tasty and unique soup to a boil, and then reduce the heat to low and simmer for about an hour. Sit back and bask in the satisfaction of your amazing soup creation. Ladle a bowl for yourself and your loved ones and enjoy.

A bowl of your unique and flavorful fitness soup makes for a light and lean dinner that will go a long way toward reaching your fat loss goals. Resist the urge to serve bread with your soup and instead opt for a leafy, green salad.

Remember that an effective exercise plan is vital to getting and staying in phenomenal shape – and I’m here to help you do just that. Call or email me now to get started on my best fitness plan.

Let’s get you into the best shape of your life!

5 Big Benefits Of Fat Loss

Almost every new client comes to me with the desire to lose fat – for a variety of reasons. The most prevailing reason that I hear is that they want to look more fit and attractive as a result of the fat loss.

Maybe losing fat in order to look better is a strong enough motivator for you, but I’ve found that most people need something more compelling. My experience with helping my clients achieve their fat loss goals has really opened my eyes to exactly what they gain when they lose the extra weight.

My hope is that by reading the 5 Big Benefits of Fat Loss below, you’ll feel the driving motivation that you need to jump into fitness with both feet, and that you’ll find out just how amazing and capable you’ve been to achieve your goal all along.

Big Benefit #1: Confidence

You may not consider it a concrete benefit, but that doesn’t stop confidence from being one of the most important perks of dropping fat. When you have increased confidence, you change how you view yourself and go about your daily routine. The world is at your fingertips and you are able to take on whatever it throws your way.

Additionally, when your confidence increases after losing a few pounds, you’re poised to keep losing. So the confidence you gain gives you what you need to lose more weight and feel even more confident.

Big Benefit #2: Money

It may be difficult to understand how losing weight saves you money, but it happens. How? Because one of the best ways to trim pounds is to cut down on the amount of calories you consume every day. When you start eating and drinking fewer calories, that means you don’t have to buy as much food or high-calorie drinks. Additionally, losing weight may make it possible to stop taking certain medications, which will help save you even more money.

On top of that, when you lose weight, you get a boost of confidence. (See previous point.) That boost of confidence will change how you handle yourself at work, helping you make the right impression on your boss, so you can get the promotion you need.

Big Benefit #3: Better Health Now

Go to the doctor with some sort of health condition, and unless it’s the common cold or flu, losing a few pounds can almost always help you manage the condition better. From diabetes to heart disease to joint pain, trimming the fat from your body gives you a heads up right now. Cutting fat makes it easier to get around on your joints, reduces your blood pressure, and helps you sleep better.

As additional perks, less fat today means better sleep and better sex tonight. Since both of these improve your quality of life, taking the time necessary to shave off fat will give you the best life you could experience!

Big Benefit #4: Better Health Later

Today isn’t the only time your health will improve if you lose some fat. Shed some pounds and you’ll reap the rewards for years down the road. Instead of having to manage a variety of health conditions, you will be able to keep those conditions at bay. A few health issues you can cut your risk for by cutting fat are diabetes, heart disease, joint pain, a variety of cancers, high blood pressure, and dementia. In other words, get rid of the fat today and you can avoid all the health issues in the future that requires fat loss for maximum management.

Big Benefit #5: Everything Tastes Better

As you settle into your new fat-burning lifestyle that includes eating healthily and working out regularly, you’ll notice something. Because you no longer overeat at the buffet or go for a second or third helping, you will begin enjoying every bite that you take. As the bite sits in your mouth, you won’t swallow it before tasting or chewing. You will take your time and really savor the flavor.

And when you do start chewing your food and enjoying the flavors, your brain will have time to register when you’re full and cut you off before you stuff yourself with more calories than you can burn. Do this regularly and you’ll lose even more fat!

I’ve dedicated my career to helping people, just like you, conquer their fear of exercise and clear up their confusion with healthy eating. I know that a healthy life is within your reach – I’ve seen hundreds of my clients before you do it, and I’ll see hundreds after you do it. Today it’s your turn.

Call or email now to get started on an exercise program that will make fat burning second nature, and will transform your body for the best.

Yours In Health,

Brian

13 Reasons Why You NEED Exercise

Let’s face it, some days you just don’t feel like exercising.

You get too busy, too stressed and quite simply too tired.

But this shouldn’t stop you from lacing up your shoes and heading out for a workout!

Here’s a list of 13 of the top reasons to exercise. Pull out this list and read it when you need a reminder of why exactly exercise is worth your time…

1. To Prevent Disease
Exercise has been proven to reduce the risk of just about every single health problem known to man, from stroke to heart disease to cancer and osteoporosis. Exercise is also a great defense against type 2 diabetes, which is one of the most widely growing diseases of our time.

2. To Look Great
Exercise firms your body, improves posture and even makes your skin glow. Looking your best is a wonderful result of regular exercise.

3. To Lose Weight and Keep It Off
Exercise burns fat and prevents future fat storage. If you want to have a thinner, healthier body, exercise is the answer.

4. To Have More Energy
Anyone who exercises regularly will tell you that they are more energetic, less easily irritated and are more peaceful.

5. To Sleep Better
Exercise boosts energy levels, but also wears you out. It makes you feel more vibrant during the day and sleep better at night.

6. To Age Slower
Exercise is one of the most effective ways to fight aging. When you age your body loses muscle and bone, while the loss of both are drastically reduced with regular exercise. Exercise also helps reduce inflammation.

7. To Relieve Back Pain
In most cases, the best thing that you can do for back pain is to move and strengthen those muscles. Consult your physician or physical therapist for guidance.

8. To Ease Depression
Exercise has been proven to reduce depression – sometimes even as effectively as medication. Just chalk this up as yet another amazing benefit to exercise.

9. To Reduce Aches and Pains By strengthening muscles around your damaged joints you’re able to use exercise to reduce joint pain and overall aches. Always consult your physician before starting an exercise program, especially if you have chronic joint pain.

10. To Stay Mentally Sharp Exercise has been shown to improve memory and other cognitive functions, and seems to have a protective effect against dementia. A Harvard University researcher called exercise “Miracle-Gro for the brain.”

11. To Enjoy Your Lifestyle
Whatever it is that you love in life – your kids, travel, sports, fashion—it is all more enjoyable when experienced in a fit and healthy body. Exercise so that you are able to enjoy all the great things in life.

12. To Reduce Sick Days
People who exercise regularly are 50% less likely to call in sick to work. A regular exercise program reduces colds and upper respiratory infections.

13. To Boost Confidence
Being fit, feeling healthy and having energy are all building blocks to having great confidence. There is no better confidence booster than sticking with a regular exercise program.

Regular exercise gives you so many amazing benefits, as you’ve seen from the above list. Call or email me today to get started on the exercise program that will change your life forever.

Yours In Health,

Brian

Think Positive and Get Fit

Your mindset plays a big role when it comes to getting and staying fit.

In the same way that an app on your phone is limited by the functions that have been programmed into it, your body is limited by the messages sent by your mind.

If you have the goal of changing your body for the better by dropping pounds and increasing your muscle tone, the first thing to do is to begin with your mindset. It’s a step that far too many well-meaning folks skip in their quest for an improved, sexier body.

My experience has led me to observe that my successful clients who experience the most amazing body transformation results are the ones that abide by the following Positive Mindset Habits…

1) Positive Mindset Habit #1: Stop Beating Yourself Up

Most of us compare where we are today with where we ultimately want to be.

If you’re a size 18 with the goal of one day being a size 6, what runs through your mind when you look in the mirror?

With a positive mindset you would look in the mirror and notice the improvements and progress that you’ve made towards your ultimate goal, no matter how subtle.

With a negative mindset you would look in the mirror and only see the gap between what you are today and what you ultimately want to be, and you’d beat yourself up about it.

To be successful with your body transformation, focus on positive improvements and every small step towards your bigger goal.

2) Positive Mindset Habit #2: Do not EVER consider what others think of You

My best clients don’t give one hoot what others think of them. They are focused on their own journey and realize that the only opinion that matters about them is their own.

This small mental shift makes a huge difference when it comes to getting results.

Maintain your focus and energy on your daily fitness goals and resist the urge to compare your progress with others. Do not attempt to decipher what others are thinking about you, because the only opinion about you that really matters is your own.

3) Positive Mindset Habit #3: ONLY Think Positive Thoughts About Yourself

Nothing good ever comes from thinking poorly of yourself. I simply can’t emphasize this point enough: Negative self-talk is one of the reasons that most attempts at weight loss fail.

On the flip side, those who make a daily practice of positive self-talk, by encouraging themselves and focusing on every small step made towards their goal, see incredible results.

Keeping a positive attitude about yourself will not only help you lose the weight, it also helps you to keep it off in the long run.

Remember that an effective exercise plan is vital to getting and staying in phenomenal shape – and I’m here to help you do just that. Call or email me now to get started on my best fitness plan.

Yours In Health,

Brian

4 guilt-free pasta recipes

Image result for healthy pasta recipe

It’s hard to find a dinner more satisfying than a steaming plate of flavorful pasta, but by now you’re well aware of just how fattening that is. Let’s not give up on our favorite pasta dishes…let’s make these dishes lighter, healthier and just as delicious by using noodles made from vegetables, rather than traditional, carb-laden pasta.

If you’re new to cooking with veggie noodles, have no fear! It’s simple and satisfying to create comforting guilt-free pasta dinners, and I’m going to show you how…

Guilt-Free Pasta Recipe #1: Spaghetti Squash

Spaghetti squash is the easiest of all the veggie noodles to prepare since the noodles are already formed in nature. Cut a spaghetti squash in half and you’ll find a mess of seeds and stings in the center of thick, firm, yellow flesh. The seeds and strings are discarded, and that thick, firm, yellow flesh is cooked until tender and scraped off the skin, into a neat pile of soft spaghetti-like noodles. Pretty cool, right?!

Make Spaghetti Squash Noodles:

  1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Cut the spaghetti squash in half, lengthwise and scoop out the seeds.
  2. Rub the inside of each spaghetti squash half with coconut oil and sprinkle with sea salt and black pepper. Place, cut side down, on a baking sheet and bake for 45 minutes, or until tender.
  3. Serve with your favorite spaghetti sauce and meatballs. Enjoy!

Guilt-Free Pasta Recipe #2: Zucchini

Zucchini is such a tender squash that it really doesn’t require cooking, and in fact cooking zucchini noodles quickly turns them to mush. I’ve found that pouring hot spaghetti sauce over a pile of zucchini noodles is all that it needs to heat it up without causing it to get mushy. You’ll need a spiral slicer –a little kitchen contraption that spirals zucchini through grating holes to create long, spaghetti-like noodles.

Make Zucchini Noodles:

  1. Wash the zucchini and remove the green skin with a veggie peeler. Run the peeled zucchini through a spiral slicer to create long, thin noodles.
  2. Top with warm spaghetti sauce and serve immediately. Enjoy!

Guilt-Free Pasta Recipe #3: Butternut Squash

While zucchini and spaghetti squash noodles are light and soft, noodles made from butternut squash are a bit heartier. Not only does this translate into a more filling meal, it also means that need to be cooked on their own, before applying the spaghetti sauce, in order to achieve a tender consistency.

Now there’s a little bit of technique involved with cutting your butternut squash in the best way to run it through a spiral slicer. I’ve found that the narrow part of the squash, that’s completely solid, is the piece that works really well with a spiral slicer. Slice off the skin and then simply run it through the slicer. The part of the squash that’s hollow in the middle is trickier to use with the spiral slicer, since those pieces are pretty thin. A quick option is to simply chop those pieces thinly and use that along with the long noodle strands.

Make Butternut Squash Noodles:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Cut the narrow part of both squash off and peel off the skin. You should have 2 nice solid pieces of squash (no hollow section). Run this through a spiral slicer to create long, thin noodles.
  2. Toss the noodles with 1 teaspoon of olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Spread over a rimmed baking sheet and bake for 5 to 8 minutes, until tender.
  3. Serve immediately with the spaghetti sauce of your choosing. Enjoy!

Guilt-Free Pasta Recipe #4: Asparagus

Talk about truly guilt-free pasta – one made from asparagus spears! Rather than serve this one with traditional spaghetti sauce (although you could) I’ve included a dressing to toss the noodles with and I’d recommend serving it with meatballs for some added protein.

Make Asparagus Noodles:

  1. Wash one bunch of asparagus spears. Resist the urge to chop off the tough stalks, these are your handles! Cut off the asparagus tips and save. Hold onto the tough stalks and use a vegetable peeler to peel long asparagus noodle strands into a large bowl. Mix in a Tablespoon of fresh dill.
  2. In a small bowl combine 3 Tablespoons of lemon juice, 1 teaspoon honey and a dash of sea salt and black pepper.
  3. Heat a Tablespoon of olive oil in a medium skillet. Add the asparagus noodles. Sauté for 2 minutes then remove from heat. If you’d like, sauté the asparagus heads by throwing them in the pan after 1 minute. Toss with the dressing.
  4. Serve the noodles warm and garnish with fresh dill. Enjoy!
  5. Eating healthy, low carb meals like these are what it takes to have that lean, sexy body that you want. But don’t forget that a fit body also requires a consistent, challenging exercise program! Call or email me today and get you started on the fitness plan that’s custom designed for you. Let’s do this!

 

4 Veggie Noodle Recipes

Image result for veggie noodles

Veggie noodles?! Yes, you read that correctly.

While it’s hard to find a dinner more satisfying than a steaming plate of flavorful pasta, by now you’re well aware of just how fattening traditional pasta is.

I say let’s not give up on our favorite pasta dishes…let’s make these dishes lighter, healthier and just as delicious by using noodles made from vegetables, rather than traditional, carb-laden pasta.

If you’re new to cooking with veggie noodles, you’re in for a treat! It’s simple and satisfying to create comforting guilt-free pasta dinners, and I’m going to show you how…

Veggie Noodle Recipe #1: Spaghetti Squash

Spaghetti squash is the easiest of all the veggie noodles to prepare since the noodles are already formed in nature. Cut a spaghetti squash in half and you’ll find a mess of seeds and stings in the center of thick, firm, yellow flesh. The seeds and strings are discarded, and that thick, firm, yellow flesh is cooked until tender and scraped off the skin, into a neat pile of soft spaghetti-like noodles. Pretty cool, right?!

Make Spaghetti Squash Noodles:

  1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Cut the spaghetti squash in half, lengthwise and scoop out the seeds.
  2. Rub the inside of each spaghetti squash half with coconut oil and sprinkle with sea salt and black pepper. Place, cut side down, on a baking sheet and bake for 45 minutes, or until tender.
  3. Serve with your favorite spaghetti sauce and meatballs. Enjoy!

Veggie Noodle Recipe #2: Zucchini

Zucchini is such a tender squash that it really doesn’t require cooking, and in fact cooking zucchini noodles quickly turns them to mush. I’ve found that pouring hot spaghetti sauce over a pile of zucchini noodles is all that it needs to heat it up without causing it to get mushy. You’ll need a spiral slicer –a little kitchen contraption that spirals zucchini through grating holes to create long, spaghetti-like noodles.

Make Zucchini Noodles:

Wash the zucchini and remove the green skin with a veggie peeler. Run the peeled zucchini through a spiral slicer to create long, thin noodles. Top with warm spaghetti sauce and serve immediately. Enjoy!

Veggie Noodle Recipe #3: Butternut Squash

While zucchini and spaghetti squash noodles are light and soft, noodles made from butternut squash are a bit heartier. Not only does this translate into a more filling meal, it also means that need to be cooked on their own, before applying the spaghetti sauce, in order to achieve a tender consistency.

Now there’s a little bit of technique involved with cutting your butternut squash in the best way to run it through a spiral slicer. I’ve found that the narrow part of the squash, that’s completely solid, is the piece that works really well with a spiral slicer. Slice off the skin and then simply run it through the slicer. The part of the squash that’s hollow in the middle is trickier to use with the spiral slicer, since those pieces are pretty thin. A quick option is to simply chop those pieces thinly and use that along with the long noodle strands.

Make Butternut Squash Noodles:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Cut the narrow part of both squash off and peel off the skin. You should have 2 nice solid pieces of squash (no hollow section). Run this through a spiral slicer to create long, thin noodles.
  2. Toss the noodles with 1 teaspoon of olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Spread over a rimmed baking sheet and bake for 5 to 8 minutes, until tender.
  3. Serve immediately with the spaghetti sauce of your choosing. Enjoy!

Veggie Noodle Recipe #4: Asparagus

Talk about truly guilt-free pasta – one made from asparagus spears! Rather than serve this one with traditional spaghetti sauce (although you could) I’ve included a dressing to toss the noodles with and I’d recommend serving it with meatballs for some added protein.

Make Asparagus Noodles:

  1. Wash one bunch of asparagus spears. Resist the urge to chop off the tough stalks, these are your handles! Cut off the asparagus tips and save. Hold onto the tough stalks and use a vegetable peeler to peel long asparagus noodle strands into a large bowl. Mix in a Tablespoon of fresh dill.
  2. In a small bowl combine 3 Tablespoons of lemon juice, 1 teaspoon honey and a dash of sea salt and black pepper.
  3. Heat a Tablespoon of olive oil in a medium skillet. Add the asparagus noodles. Sauté for 2 minutes then remove from heat. If you’d like, sauté the asparagus heads by throwing them in the pan after 1 minute. Toss with the dressing.
  4. Serve the noodles warm and garnish with fresh dill. Enjoy!

Eating healthy, low carb meals like these are what it takes to have that lean, sexy body that you want.

But don’t forget that a fit body also requires a consistent, challenging exercise program.

Yours In Health,

Brian

Look Your Best For The Holiays

Image result for holiday party

With holiday parties and gatherings quickly approaching, most of us are now thinking about looking our best while dressed in our finest. Too bad that losing body fat is a slow and steady process, rather than an instantaneous fix.

However…I do have an extremely effective 2-step method for losing belly fat faster than ever, and I’d like to share it with you today so that you can utilize it to look and feel your best this holiday season.

Look Your Best for the Holidays. This deadly, fat-incinerating method fights fat simultaneously on two separate fronts for maximum effectiveness: your sugar intake and your high intensity workouts.

First: This step requires zero extra effort on your part! In fact all you have to do is NOT do something that you’re currently doing! You stop consuming refined sugar, in all its forms. This means no sodas, no desserts, no packaged snacks, no candy, no mocha lattes, NO SUGAR AT ALL!

When you stop to evaluate your diet, it may be shocking to find out how much refined sugar has crept in. Nothing will contribute to fat gains as swiftly as consuming sugar, so it makes sense that cutting sugar out is the top must-do for shedding those unwanted pounds.

It’s not necessary, or beneficial, to starve yourself during this time of rapid fat loss – you should fill in your diet with lean meats, vegetables, nuts and seeds as you cut out the refined sugar. Keep your metabolism high by fueling up on high protein, high fiber, low carb, and zero sugar foods whenever hunger strikes.

Second: Here’s the step that requires some effort, but trust me when I say it’s worth it. You crank up the intensity of your workouts to a whole new level.

Most people take exercise on with the slow and steady mentality – moving, pushing and pulling as little as possible while still “getting the job done”. I’ve got some news for you…if you still have belly fat to lose then the job wasn’t getting done.

If you can comfortably hold a conversation, hardly break a sweat, or feel the same when it’s over as you did when it began, then you’re simply not pushing yourself hard enough while you exercise.

Increasing the intensity of your workouts requires focused intent. You must go into the session with the goal of pushing your body to the limit. Remember, it’s a contained timeframe that will be over shortly, so bear down and deal with the discomfort. With practice you will learn to embrace the burn.

The safest and most effective way to crank up the intensity and effectiveness of your exercise time is to work with a qualified fitness professional, such as myself. I would love to hear from you!

Happy Holidays,

Brian

How To Quit Junk Food

Image result for craving

Junk food tastes annoyingly good. There’s a reason for this – the food companies actually formulate each bite for maximum craveability with a specialized balance of sugar, fat and salt.

But while junk food tastes like another…it’s detrimental to your fat loss results.

Wondering what exactly classifies as junk food? You’re in good company, especially these days as many junk foods are being deceptively marketed and packaged as healthy choices.

Here’s the rundown on what classifies as junk food:

  • Junk food has little to zero nutritional value
  • Junk food is processed and packaged
  • Junk food is high in sugar, fat and salt
  • Junk food is high in calories
  • Junk food is rarely eaten out of hunger
  • Soda pop, convenience foods, packaged snacks, frozen treats…

4 Steps to Quit Junk Food

Imagine being 100% free of junk food for the next 30 days. How would your weight improve? How would you feel? How many empty calories would you save yourself from? Now let’s take some action!

Step #1: Get Rid of It

Step one is simple: get rid of all the junk food that currently resides in your home, office and car. Go through with a big garbage bag and toss anything that remotely resembles junk food. Remember, junk food is stuff that is high in empty calories.

Step #2: Stock Up on the Healthy Stuff

Don’t worry, you aren’t going to starve now that your junk food has been cleared out. Step two is where you go to the store and stock up on delicious, nutritious foods that will take the place of the junk food. Nuts, seeds, fruit, veggies, hard boiled eggs, meatballs, and hearty salads or burrito bowls (like the recipe below) are great items to have on hand. You’ll eat less of these healthy snacks, since these aren’t empty calories, but rather nutrient-filled calories that satiate.

Step #3: HALT!

When the next craving strikes you, tell yourself to HALT! This word is actually a handy acronym. Ask yourself, “Am I Hungry, Angry, Lonely or Tired?” If you’re hungry then reach for one of the healthy snacks from step two. If you’re angry, then explore the issue and seek resolution. If you are lonely, then reach out to a friend, instead of reaching for junk food. And if you are tired then make the time to grab a nap or get to bed early to catch up on sleep.

Step #4: Stick With It

The first day that you go without junk food will be the hardest day. The second day will be a smidge easier. The third day will be even easier than the second…and so on.

The fact is that your taste buds adjust to the foods that you exist on. When your diet is filled with junk foods then that is what your taste buds will crave, but as you shift to a diet that is filled with fresh, nutritious foods then your taste buds will forget all about that old junk food. Stick with it, one day at a time, and you will break free from the grip of junk food addiction.

Yours In Health,

Brian