Skinny Girl Tip of the Week: Hydrate!

Skinny Girl Tip of the Week: Hydrate!

I know, you don’t need to hear this one because you’ve heard it over and over. Buuut I gotta tell you anyway. The good news? I want you to forget that myth that you have to drink 8 cups of water a day to be healthy. Think about it: We’re all different sizes, with different weights, diets, and activity levels. How could there possibly be one magic number for all of us? But it is still very important to get enough water.

Here are some reasons to stay hydrated:

1) Water carries nutrients throughout your body. It transports all of the vitamins and minerals from those calories. Let’s make those calories count!

2) Mild dehydration is the #1 cause of daytime fatigue (allaboutwater.org). So when it’s 2pm and you don’t have a reason to be sluggish but you are, it’s probably because you’re not getting enough water.

3) Water takes up space in your stomach! Translation: You’re likely to eat less calories if you’ve got some water taking up room.

4) Water keeps your body working like a well oiled machine. It keeps your metabolism up, your muscle working at max peformance (you can work out longer and more efficiently), and keeps your brain functioning.

5) Water is calorie free! If you reach for a bottle of water instead of a can of coke, even just once a day, you save 140 calories. Do it twice, and that’s almost 300!

So, if I don’t have to drink 8 cups a day, how much should I drink? Our body has lots of indicators for when we need some water, thirst being the best one. Again, if you’re feeling fatigued, down some H2O. Researchers also say that the need for hydration is often mistaken for hunger, so have some water before that snack and then see how you feel.

Also remember that there are lots of ways to get your ‘water’. While drinking plain water is definitely the best one (I drink about 3 16 oz bottles a day), sometimes you just get sick of water. It’s ok to switch it up for some tea or coffee. Of course if you add sweetener, you’re adding calories, but it still hydrates you. Juice is a good option, but I try to but the calories by adding some water or club soda. Another creative way to spruce up water is to add a few berries, slices of fruit or cucumber, or citrus wedges. Eating fruits and vegetables count toward your water consumption too! So does soup, and any other food containing a lot of liquid.

It’s important to remember that I am not a medical professional, I just read a lot, and I know what has worked for me. It’s also important to remember that there is such a thing as too much water (if you start feeling nauseous, time to back off.). So try to keep a cup or bottle close at all times, find what works for you, and enjoy!

Drink up!

Drink up!

Skinny Girl Tip of the Week: Eat!

Skinny Girl Tip of the Week: Eat!

You’ve heard the analogy that eating is the human equivalent to putting gas in a car. It’s totally true. Starving yourself is not the answer to weight loss. I know way too many people who have gone on 500 calorie-a-day diets to lose weight. But guess what? They’re not thinner. And they’re still trying to find that miracle diet. Why? Because starving yourself DOESN’T WORK. Even if you were to lose 5 or 10 pounds, your body can’t live on 500 calories a day forever. Eventually you have to go back to eating a healthy amount. And when that happens, you gain it all back. This happens for two reasons:

1) You haven’t learned new eating habits. Healthy eating habits. You don’t know any different so you go back to eating the same junk that got you there in the first place.

2) When you starve yourself, it screws up your metabolism. Our bodies are smarter than we realize. When you starve yourself, your body goes into hoarder mode. It’s so glad to finally have food, and it’s afraid you’re going to starve it again, so it clings to the calories you put in, as well as the fat that’s already there.

If it’s clinging to the fat that’s already there, how easy is it really going to come off when you diet and exercise? It’s gonna fight to keep what it has.

Eating gives you energy and spurs your metabolism. This makes your body way more effective at burning calories when you exercise, as well as when you’re just vacuuming the carpet, or even while you’re sleeping. Feeding your metabolism is key in losing weight and keeping it off.

So eat when you’re hungry!

I’m not going to tell you to eat breakfast if you’re not hungry and it makes you sick to your stomach (though it wouldn’t hurt to down some water or a cup of joe. And no, your coffee doesn’t have to be black.).  But when you start feeling sluggish, it’s a good indication that your body needs some fuel.

That being said, when you eat, try to make wise choices, and stop when you’re full.

Even if it’s between meals, have a yogurt or a banana or a granola bar. Motherhood, or life in general, is crazy busy. So if you just ate breakfast a couple hours ago and you hear your tummy growl, don’t feel guilty about grabbing a snack. You’ll burn more calories, think better, feel better, and your loved ones will thank you  😉