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Top Ten Nutrition Success Tactics E-mail
Written by Tom Terwilliger   

tom Terwilliger and dawn terwilligerThere are several different nutrition approaches or strategies for losing weight, building muscle, and improving your health. No single approach is right for every person or every goal. Breaking up macro nutrients like fat's carbs, and protein into the right ratios for your specific needs and metabolism is the subject of another article.

What follows is what I feel based on my 25 years of fitness and bodybuilding experience are the top 10 nutrition tactics for overall success... plus as a bonus what I feel is the number one most important factor of all.

  1. Plan and Prepare:  Prepare your meals for the day the night before or that morning. Know what you are going to eat and when.  Pack food in Tupperware and a cooler if you are to be away from home a good part of the day.  Any time you are caught unprepared and hungry you have a 97.9% greater chance of screwing up.

  2. Eat 5-6 small meals per day:  Eating small meals every 2-3 hours keeps your blood sugar stable and keeps you from going into that "Ill eat anything in sight" hunger mode.  If you have ever dug for change while eyeing the junk food vending machine you know what I'm talking about.  You cannot afford to miss scheduled meals; doing so will set your metabolism into a confused tailspin hell bent on vengeance.

  3. 11-12 and 13-14 calorie rule:  if you are trying to lose weight, consume no more then 11-12 calories for each pound of your desired body weight each day.  Say you want to be 138 lbs, consume no more then 1656 cals (138 x 12 cals =1656 total daily cals).  Maintenance should be between 13-14 cals per pound of weight per day or 1932 calories max (138 maintenance weight x 14 cals =1932 per day).  Stay within these caloric guidelines and you will be successful.  Bear in mind these are only estimates, consult with your fitness professional or doctor before starting any diet or nutrition plan.

  4. Include protein with each meal:  Each one of your 5-6 small meals should include a small amount of protein 15-30 grams; chicken, fish, non fat dairy, lean beef, nut's, protein powder, est.  Low fat protein not only keeps your insulin levels stable but will also help you maintain lean muscle tissue while training and dieting.

  5. Cut the caffeine:  Avoid caffeinated drinks as much as possible.  A medium cup of coffee contains aprox 200 mgs of caffeine or more then enough to artificially elevate blood sugar levels and cause a subsequent spike in insulin.  The caffeine in coffee, tea, soft drinks, chocolate, and a freaking 34oz BIG GULP of Mountain Doo will have a detrimental effect on your metabolism, energy levels, and long-term health.  In other words stop with the double shot mocha Latte's already, or stop wondering why your not losing weight.  Drink Water, or herbal tea!

  6. Hydrate your body:  Most of us live in a constant state of chronic dehydration.  The common symptoms vary between chronic fatigue, headaches, muscle cramps, dry skin, hair, and eyes, constipation, and physical weakness.  Your body is made of 75% water; that water is used in almost every metabolic process in our body.  If you do not replace it, you will die... or worse you muscle will look really flat and unattractive.  Drink a minimum of  100-120 oz per day or more if you can handle it.

  7. Cut the sugar from your diet:  Simple sugars like those found in candy, cake, and other junk foods, not only contribute unneeded calories to your diet, but also rob your body of important nutrients, elevate insulin production, and make you fat...period!  Candy and sugar products are emotional dependency, DROP IT, like a Twinkie made in Afghanistan.

  8. No Starch with meals:  Eliminate starchy foods from your diet, pasta, white rice, bread, bagels, tortillas, est.  Starchy carbohydrates act the same as simple sugars, they breakdown and are stored as sugar very quickly.  Most importantly they facilitate the production and release of insulin and spawning and entire chain of negative chemical events leading to obesity and muscle wasting.

  9. Become a veggie lover:  Vegetables are thermogenic foods, meaning they elevate your metabolism.  Green leafy veggies like Broccoli, Asparagus, zucchini, Brussel Sprouts, est., are particularly good for cranking up the metabolic furnace as well as providing much-needed micronutrients and fiber.  All vegetable however are good for you so pick the one's you like, steam em, grill em, or eat them raw, but eat them in abundance.  And stop winning "but I don't like vegetables" you sound like a little girl!

  10. Be Fat Choosey:  Fats have gotten a bad rap. Yes, fats like those found in fried foods, pastries, candies, dairy, red meat, and, processed foods are bad for us in any quantity.  But not all fats fit into that category.  Fats from nuts like Almonds, Brazil nuts, Walnuts, and fish like Salmon, Cod, Orange Ruphy, and Sardines, as well as some oils like extra virgin olive, safflower, and flax are essential to our metabolism, hormone production, and our well-being.  A combination of various sources in the amount of 15-25 grams is recommended.

  11. BONUS Congruent self-image:  If you identify with, derive comfort from, or have more then three "needs" met by being overweight, then you will never be successful at losing weight and keeping it off.  In your own mind, you must first become the healthy, slender, and fit person you wish to physically manifest.  Then you must behave as if that is already you.  That fit (you) person does not eat junk food; the fit you would not be caught dead with a cheeseburger, fries or a snickers bar.  Why?  Because it is simply not who you are, and because you're smart enough to know the consequences of those actions.  The fit you does not eat emotionally and has other strategies for handling those decisive moments, like exercising, reading, or communicating with the people you loves and love you.  The real key to successfully living as the fit, slim, healthy, person you won't to be is programming your subconscious to first except that image as YOU.

About the Author


Tom Terwilliger
Tom Terwilliger

Tom Terwilliger is a certified NLP (Neuro-Linguistics Programming) Master Practitioner, Hypnotherapy practitioner, Life Coach, ACSM personal trainer, and a regular contributing writer for IDEA Fitness Journal, and Fitness Management.  He is also the author of several books and training programs including ‘The Inner Game of Confidence' 7 Rules of Achievement' and ‘Telecoaching For Profits'. Tom is also personal growth and development trainer/speaker for "Peak Potentials" one of the largest personal development organizations in the world. Tom is a on the advisory board of:  National Personal Trainer Institute, Kickfit Sports Magazine, Performance Lifestyle and My Trainer and on the Muscle Mag Fitness Advisory Board.

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