Yesterday one of my clients reached out to me saying how she has gained 5 kilos of unwanted fluff and puff and asked me for some advice to lose the Covid weight fast! She is drinking wine nearly every night and diet coke has replaced water. She thinks she’s eating “healthy” chips and rice crackers, however her eating habits are catching up with her and the effects are becoming accumulative.
And hey I can totally relate, I myself slipped into some lax eating and drinking habits. Instead of having a glass wine on a Friday night with my meal, I had a glass of wine about 3 times a week. I found myself snacking on “healthy” lentil chips. I stopped when I saw an unhealthy eating pattern happening.
Sure eating some of the bad foods here and there is ok, but when it becomes a daily thing or even every other day, you may find yourself like me where you wake up with less and less energy, not feeling so great digestion wise, and cravings!!! Oh and not to mention a layer of fluff and puff that is just annoying.
If you find you are ready to come out of Covid with some renewed energy, vitality, and dial into your winter time goals then here’s some super simple tips to get you back feeling strong, healthy and sexy from the inside out:
1. Replace all processed foods with whole food meals:
This means cutting out any protein or snack bars, crackers, rice cakes, those cookies here and there, the low fat chips that you munch on midday or at night, any diet sodas you may have been drinking, or the lentil, chickpea or vegetable chips you think is healthy. (I have been guilty of this one! ) All of these foods, no matter if they are a healthy version or not, are processed and void of nutrients with extra calories and most likely high carb (the wrong kinds) combined with fats. Eating this type of food pairing of high carbs with fats is the fastest way to gain a few kilos without even trying.
If you want to shed a few kilos quickly, it’s really important to replace these types of processed foods with healthy, well rounded meals consisting of protein, healthy natural starchy carbs, and some healthy fats. For weight loss, an ideal ratio of these macros is 35% protein, 35% carbs, and 30% fats.
I tell my clients that the best sources of natural starchy carbs for weight loss are ones that come from veggies like beets, squash, sweet potatoes, green beans, peas, and carrots. Swapping out all grains and processed carbs for these potassium rich veggies will really help shed the poof fast!
2. Monitor your calories to stay in a slight caloric deficit:
This is a hard and fast rule of weight loss, you have to be in a slight caloric deficit if you want to lose weight. This will be different for every body and dependant on your goals, activity, age, height and weight.
For me personally I know that I can handle being at 1800 calories a day without feeling too deprived and steadily lose body fat with all my training. At the moment I’m cutting for a photoshoot and have gone a little lower to 1200-1500 calories a day, but it can be tough and I certainly do think about food a lot!
So you do have to know what you’re willing to put up with and what quality of life you want during this process.
3. Drink more water:
I fell into drinking wine more than once a week and diet sodas instead of water and after about a week I noticed my cravings hit me hard, I felt sluggish and tired a lot, and it took a few days just to feel normally hydrated again.
These types of beverages are extremely dehydrating on a deep cellular level, so having them on occasion instead of every day is key, especially if you want to feel energized, alert, and have stable blood sugar levels with no cravings.
Even a slight amount of dehydration will make you crave more food, more meals, more snacks and no matter how much you eat it won't seem to be enough.
4. Eat a lot of broccoli and asparagus!
These foods are kinda like “free foods” because you can eat a lot of them and the amount of energy they take to break down, more or less, cancels out their caloric impact. These are my two favourite as they are high in a few liver cleansing and hormone balancing compounds called DIM, I3C, and sulphorophane.
Personally these are my “goto” for hormone related weight gain and water retention. So fill your plate with these guys, sprinkle some herbed sea salt and some coconut aminos, add some olive oil, macadamia oil or avocado oil and dig in!
5. Keep weight training but do 20 mins cardio or HIIT after!! - (Women should train differently to men)
Another hard and fast rule to shifting your body out of a weight loss plateau is “ if you just want to maintain your current physique, lift 2-3x a week, but if you really want to change it, lift 4-6x a week.
Weight training should never be replaced with just cardio or yoga, that is a good way to to hault your metabolism and start losing muscle mass/lean body mass.
A really good trick for burning more fat and getting the fluff off fast is to do your weight training session first then tack on an additional 20 mins of cardio after the session. Your body will be primed to burn calories and fat after a good lift, plus you’ll dip into those extra caloric reserves nicely:)
6. Increase NEAT:
Non-exercise activity thermogenesis, or NEAT, describes calories burned by the movements we make when we go about our daily business.
NEAT includes the physical movement in our lives that isn't planned exercise or sports (or sleeping, breathing, and eating). It's also sometimes called non-exercise physical activity, or NEPA.
Some of you may find you’re not moving as much due to being at home, so try and be mindful of this and whenever you can, sneak in extra movement in all you do. When you’re cooking, do some squats or lunges, take extra steps during your day, be mindful to move at least every hour instead of just sitting in one spot for an extended period of time.
Increasing NEAT will increase caloric expenditure without even trying, and keep your mind off the fridge!
Oftentimes I have found that a lot of people know what they’re doing wrong but can’t or won’t fully admit to themselves that what they’re doing isn’t helpful. Sometimes we all need to hear the loving reminder that we know deep in our hearts and bodies, from someone else. Staying healthy, fit and in shape really is a balance of simplicity and science, at least it really should be! It doesn’t have to be complicated.
Feel free to shoot me a message back if you are struggling with anything yourself and need more support, I would love to hear from you!
Wishing this finds you well and empowered within your body temple my friend xoxo
Lots of love.