How To Stop Craving The Wrong Foods

How To Stop Craving The Wrong Foods

You wake up each morning with every intention of eating “healthy”.

You’ll skip the drive thru line on your way to work. You’ll take the high road & refuse to get fast food with co-workers at lunch. You’ll boycott the vending machine in the mid-afternoon. And you won’t even think about having a sinful dessert after dinner.

But then your cravings win.

Your friend drops by with a big fluffy muffin and a latte for breakfast. A group of co-workers invite you to that greasy spoon down the street for lunch. Cake is passed around at the mid-afternoon staff meeting. And after dinner your mate surprises you with a bowl of your favorite ice cream.

You tell yourself that tomorrow will be different.

Tomorrow you won’t give in to food cravings.

But then tomorrow comes with its own special circumstances, and cravings get the best of you once again.

Why Do Food Cravings Always Win?

Let’s face it, we live in a world where food temptations are everywhere…which lead to cravings, which lead to you eating things that you shouldn’t. Again. And again. And again. Until you’re so fed up with your body that you don’t even know where to begin to get yourself back on track.

Stores display the most tantalizing junk food items right where you could easily reach them. TV commercials for greasy, fattening foods portray them so scrumptiously that you literally salivate. Sugary snack items have full-page, glossy pictures in your favorite magazines. And as if all of these weren’t enough, the people in your daily life are another, constant source of food temptation.

To make matters worse, you’ve been conditioned since childhood to have a positive association with the act of indulging in your cravings. You use food as a reward. You use food as a source of emotional comfort. You use food as a way to relieve stress. And quickly these associations and uses of food become habit. A habit not easily broken.

New Technique to End Food Cravings
Food cravings don’t need to have the upper hand on you anymore. Here’s how you can fight back using your most powerful asset: your brain.

Remember that your mind is an amazing thing. Once your mind is made up about something it’s nearly impossible to change it.

Try This Powerful Mind Exercise: Imagine that you are peacefully floating down a river on a raft. The sun is shining, birds are chirping, and you are having a fun, relaxing time.

You feel wonderful about the river because it’s making you feel happy.

Now change perspectives for a moment. You’re now in a plane flying over the river and the raft. Instantly our eye is drawn to an enormous rocky waterfall. Then you look back to the person floating on the raft, having a wonderful time, headed straight for the treacherous falls.

With this new perspective of the river, do you think that you’d agree to get on a raft and take your chances floating toward the falls? Laughable, right? You’ve seen the hidden danger of the river. You know it leads to pain and suffering.

Now your negative association (watery death) with the river has replaced your initial positive association (relaxing fun).

This is the key to overcoming food temptations and putting an end to food cravings: building negative associations in place of existing positive ones. I’ll break this process down for you in two steps:

Step One: Create a STRONG Negative Association with Unhealthy Food
You may not have realized it, but up until this point you’ve placed unhealthy, fattening foods on a pedestal in your mind. As long as the wrong foods are on that pedestal you’ll continue to give into your cravings and will continue to gain fat.

Take the wrong food off that pedestal by listing off everything negative about them…

  • These foods make you unhealthy.
  • These foods cause weight gain.
  • These foods drain your energy.
  • These foods kill your confidence.
  • These foods lessen your quality of life.
  • These foods damage your love life.

Every time that you feel tempted to eat an unhealthy food, focus on your list of negatives. Kick the junk off the pedestal and put something healthy in its place. If a craving is really strong, COMPROMISE. Pick 1 day a week to have the food you crave. You can call it a “free”/”cheat” day. You may find that you will no longer want it when your free/”cheat” day comes. If so great. If not, 1 cheat won’t kill you considering you ate healthy & worked out the rest of the week.

Step Two: Create a STRONG Positive Association with wholesome foods
Now that your mental food pedestal has been cleared, put truly nutrient dense food items on it. Juicy fresh fruit, crispy vegetables, nuts and savory lean meats are the place to start.

List off the things that you love about healthy food…

  • These foods make you healthy.
  • These foods promote fat loss.
  • These foods boost your energy.
  • These foods build your confidence.
  • These foods improve your quality of life.
  • These foods enhance your love life.

I encourage you to immerse yourself into the world of healthy, wholesome, nutrient dense foods. Browse the aisles of your local natural foods store. Stroll through a farmer’s market. Pack healthy snacks to bring to work. Clear your kitchen of junk.

Use the technique above consistently and you will soon find that healthy, wholesome foods are what you want most.

And craving the wrong foods will be a thing of your past.

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Gymkitchen: Chicken Spinach Salad

Here’s a quick and flavorful salad that makes a wonderful fitness meal. It’s filled with fiber, protein and satisfying flavor. Use the dressing recipe below whenever salad is on the menu for dinner. You could use your favorite low sodium store dressing too. Servings: 4

Here’s what you need…

Chicken Spinach Salad

Chicken Spinach Salad

  • 1lb shredded roasted chicken breast or turkey
  • 1 apple, chopped
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 1/4 cup fresh mint leaves, finely chopped
  • 1 cup, red grapes, halved
  • 4 cups baby spinach or other leafy greens

Salad Dressing:

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup fresh squeezed orange juice
  • 1 Tablespoon orange zest
  • Stevia/Splenda to taste
  • 1 Tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • Salt and pepper to taste *optional
  1. In a small bowl whisk the olive oil, orange juice, orange zest, stevia, Dijon, salt and pepper*.
  2. In a medium bowl combine the turkey, apple, celery, mint and grapes. Toss with the dressing.
  3. Prepare each plate with a pile of spinach. Top with equal portions of the turkey salad mixture.

Nutritional Analysis (Salad ONLY): One serving equals: Calories: 162  Carbohydrates: 13 g Fat: 2g Protein: 28g Sodium: 267 mg Fiber: 4 g

Chicken Spinach Salad Recipe nutrition Oh Fitness LLC

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Workout Tips: Pump Up Your Intensity

Use these tips to increase the intensity of your workouts:

  • Add Some Resistance. Lunges, squats, hip bridges and even crunches can all be made more intense with some added resistance. A set of dumbbells, kettlebells, sandbags, medicine balls or resistance bandswould do the trick. Pay attention to when the resistance starts to feel too easy, and add weights accordingly.
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  • Increase Your Speed. If you think you could go faster, then do it. The more that you push yourself during your sprinting intervals, the quicker and more stunning your results will be. Remember, you can do anything for just a few seconds.A heavy Speedsac or weighted vest will weigh you down & challenge your muscles to work harder. When you take it off and perform the activity again, you’ll blow right through. Amazon Image
  • Change Your Intervals. If your workout is starting to feel less challenging then switch up your interval training…add a few seconds to your intense intervals. Start by adding 5 seconds and go up from there. You could also remove 5 seconds, but add another round at the end. Programmable interval timers make this an easier to keep track of.
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GymKitchen: Honey Grilled Chicken Recipe

Flat abs are made in the kitchen, just as much as in the gym. In order to flatten your stomach, enjoy lean meals like this Honey Grilled Chicken. Lean, high protein chicken breast is best paired with a steamed veggie side for phenomenal results. This recipe is saved in MyFitnessPal.com. Just search Honey Grilled Chicken by Oh! Fitness. Servings: 6

Here’s what you need…

Honey Grilled Chicken

Honey Grilled Chicken

  • 3 Tablespoons honey
  • 1 Tablespoon Splenda/Stevia
  • 3 Tablespoons spicy mustard
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon peel
  • 3 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (24oz total)
  1. Pre-heat your grill. If using coals, heat until the coals turn gray and there are no longer strong flames, 35-45 minutes.
  2. Combine honey, sweetener, mustard, lemon peel, olive oil and garlic. Mix well. Reserve a few tablespoons of the sauce. Add chicken and marinate in the refrigerator for 40 minutes.
  3. Cook the chicken 5 to 6 minutes per side. Brush with the reserved sauce, and continue cooking for an additional 3 to 4 minutes per side, until chicken registers 170 degrees F on a meat thermometer. Happy #gymkitchen eating!

Nutritional Analysis: One serving equals:  319 calories, 14g carbohydrate, 11g fat, 28g protein, 413mg sodium, 0g fiber.

Honey Grilled Chicken Nutrition

Honey Grilled Chicken Nutrition

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Get The Most From Your Workout

This question might make you squirm, but I’m going to ask it anyway…

How effective are your workouts?

Do you feel like you always give it your best shot?

Or would you describe your workout more like a comfortable trot? Do you coast along, maybe even break a slight sweat?

Since you are spending a portion of your valuable time working out, I assume that you desire to have a leaner and more toned body. And I also assume that if you had the option to achieve that defined body even faster you’d say, “Yes, please!”

The following tips are going to show you how to spend less time slacking, while achieving quicker, more noticeable results. Sounds good, right?

  • Be Focused. It sounds obvious, but this crucial requirement for an effective workout is often overlooked. Don’t be one of those people who exercise their jaw muscles (chit chatting) more than any other muscles. When you’re performing moves, focus on that specific muscle group. Researchers have proven significant increase in muscle activity when people focused on what they were doing, compared to thinking about unrelated topics. Make the mind body connection.
  • Be Confused. More specifically, your muscles should be confused. Do this by changing up your routine often. This helps to avoid plateaus and to continuously challenge your body. I like to switch up exercises at different intensities and weights.
  • Be Nourished and Hydrated. Stay on top of your food and your hydration levels. The best results are achieved when you’re drinking enough water and eating real, wholesome foods.
  • Be Strategic. Plan your workouts, block out time, and make sure your family, friends and anyone else respects that. You deserve it!
  • Be Watched. There’s a benefit to working out with eyes on you. Researchers saw a significant increase in strength and endurance in the people who had an audience versus those training on their own. EVERYONE tries to do a better job when they’re being watched .
  • Be Pumped Up. Check this out: researchers found that personal music motivated weightlifters to complete two more repetitions on average than those who were not listening to music. That’s a great reason to listen to upbeat music while you exercise. Make it fun, and create a workout playlist. I like to listen to “Eye Of The Tiger” by Survivor when I run. It reminds me of Rocky!  : )
  • Be Comfortable. Not only will you be happy to put comfortable workout clothes on, but you will also be able to focus better on your workout. This isn’t supposed to be a fashion show.
  • Be Smart. Working with a professional ensures that you’re being challenged and are seeing results. If you can’t afford a professional, ask a fit friend to mentor you. When you know better, you do better. And that’s just smart, right?

GymKitchen: Homemade Chicken Curry Coconut Soup

This chicken soup recipe is made without added carbs like noodles or potatoes. It’s filled with fiber, protein and lots of delicious flavor. Enjoy! Servings: 4

Here’s what you need…

Homemade Chicken Curry Coconut Soup

Homemade Chicken Curry Coconut Soup

  • 1 1/2 Tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1 medium organic yellow onion, chopped (110g)
  • 3 medium carrots, grated (184g)
  • 2 medium celery stalks, finely chopped (80g)
  • 1 Tablespoon curry powder
  • 1/2tsp minced garlic (2 cloves)
  • 2 quarts low sodium chicken broth
  • 1lb cubed raw chicken breast
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 medium apple, chopped
  • dash of pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • zest from 1 lemon
  • 2 cups unsweetened light coconut milk
  1. In a large pot, over medium heat, melt the coconut oil and add the chicken cubes, onions, carrots and celery. After 5 minutes add the garlic and curry powder.
  2. Next add the chicken broth, chicken, bay leaf, apple, pepper, thyme, and lemon zest. Stir well. Bring to a simmer and cook for 45 minutes.
  3. Remove bay leaf. Stir in the coconut milk, and extra above seasoning/spices to taste and serve. Happy #GymKitchen eating!

Nutritional Analysis: One serving equals: 326 calories, 16g fat, 419mg sodium, 20g carbohydrate, 5g fiber, and 30g protein

Nutrition Analysis

Nutrition Analysis

Your Sweet Tooth Should Know: 7 ways to crave less sugar

If I were to award a single food item with the title of ‘Fastest Way To Pack On The Pounds’, hands down the winner would be added sugar. 

We have been eating more and more sugar over the past 200 years, which has led to rising obesity numbers. Back in 1822 the average person ate only 6.3 lbs of sugar per year, compared to 130 lbs of sugar in 2012. That’s more than 20 times as much sugar in our modern diet! No wonder we are bigger than ever… 

One of the reasons that your diet is filled with so much sugar is that some form of added sugar is included in virtually every single processed food. This is yet another reason that it’s important to cut down on processed and packaged convenience foods. 

Cutting sugar from your diet is easier said than done. Once it is a part of your daily diet, cravings strike, causing you to eat it even more frequently. But there is hope. 

Here are 7 Ways To Crave Less of that Sugar that you’re eating that’s killing your results and keeping you from attaining your goal weight: 

1) Eat More Protein
A diet rich in protein keeps you full, satisfied and less likely to crave sweets. A great way to make sure that you are getting enough is to plan each meal and snack around a protein. Plan breakfast around eggs, lunch and dinner around baked chicken breast, and make snacks hard boiled eggs or baked meatballs. 

2) Use Artificial Sweeteners Sparingly
One of the biggest fitness myths out there is the idea that calorie-free, artificially sweetened beverages don’t impact your fat loss results. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but the truth is that the diet soda you’re sipping is making it harder for you to reach your goal weight. While the diet soda itself doesn’t contain calories, artificial sweeteners have been proven to cause cravings for sugary foods, when eaten alone. Decrease the diet sodas and instead pick up a refreshing bottle of spring water with a wedge of fresh squeezed lemon. 

3) Steer Clear Of Saboteurs
The sad truth is that people in your life will try to sabotage your low sugar diet. You’ll run into that pushy person at the office who insists that you eat a donut, the well-meaning family member who dishes you up a bowl of ice cream, and the friend who comes over with a plate of her home-baked cookies. The best avoidance strategy is to sincerely thank the sugar-pusher for their gift, tell them you wish you could eat it, and then BLAME ME – your trainer – as the bad guy who says that you need to cut back on sugar. 

4) Try Dark Chocolate
For those moments when your sweet tooth is relentlessly badgering you for something sweet, ditch the super-sugary candies and stick with a small square of very dark chocolate. Chocolate that is 70% or higher in cocoa content should be the only candy that you keep on hand. The antioxidant rich benefit of the cocoa, in addition to the lowered sugar content, makes dark chocolate an occasionally justifiable treat. 

5) Stick With Fruit
What’s sweet, colorful and comes in many flavors? Seasonal, fresh fruit, of course! As you remove refined sugar from your life, feel free to add in some natural sugar by way of fresh, local fruit. It’s amazing how satisfyingly sweet fruit is – it’s truly nature’s candy. 

6) Change Your Palate
As you begin to limit your intake of refined sugars, you’ll find that your tolerance for sugar decreases. This means that something that didn’t taste sweet before – say a green apple – now has an uncanny depths of sweetness. What’s happening is that your sweet receptors are becoming more finely tuned, now that you’re not overwhelming your palate with the sweet added sugar. 

7) Workout Like You Mean It
A regular, challenging exercise routine will not only get you into amazing shape, it also reduces your cravings for sugar. The endorphin rush brought on by vigorous exercise is an even more powerful feel-good-feeling than the pleasure gotten by indulging in sugary foods. 

7 Excellent Reasons To Be FIT

I spend a lot of time talking about what it’s like to be working towards your fat loss goal, with your perfect body somewhere off in the distance.
Today I’m going to switch perspectives and turn the focus onto how it feels to BE at your ideal weight. In addition to getting you pumped up and motivated to work even more diligently towards your goal, studies have shown that those who spend time visualizing the accomplishment of their goal have a higher success rate in actually getting there. So if you are still working towards your goal then sit back and let the following 7 Excellent Reasons to be FIT really sink into your mind. Visualize the following as being a part of your reality!
Excellent Reason To Be FIT #1: You Always Look Great When you are at your ideal weight clothes look and feel amazing. Every. Single. Day. Gone are the days of looking for ways to cover your ‘problem’ areas because even those areas look great. Friends, family members and co-workers tell you how fantastic you look and that you’ve never looked better.
Excellent Reason To Be FIT #2: Your Confidence Is High The act of accomplishing any worthwhile goal is enough to seriously boost your confidence, and this is even more apparent when reaching a fitness goal. When your body goes through a transformation there’s no hiding it. You are tighter, leaner and feel more attractive. You stand straighter, walk taller and exude a genuine confidence that can’t be missed.
Excellent Reason To Be FIT #3: You Have Lots Of Energy Before you met your fat loss goal, getting off the couch was a challenge…one that you didn’t always win. Once you became fit, new surges of energy course through your veins. You thrive on motion, and activities that used to tire you out now leave you energized.
Excellent Reason To Be FIT #4: You Are Strong The life of a truly fit person knows no limits! In your free time you hike, bike, run, walk, pick up new hobbies and play with the kids. Picking up items that used to feel heavy is now a breeze as your functionality for daily tasks has never been stronger. Gone are the days when you’d tell yourself, “I can’t do that. I’m not strong enough.”
Excellent Reason To Be FIT #5: You Have No Health Worries You’ll never forget the look on your doctor’s face when examining your transformed body. Gone is the lecture about the many risks of weight-related ailments. Those days are behind you. Your healthy, strong thriving body is health-worry-free.
Excellent Reason To Be FIT #6: You No Longer Have Weight To Lose How long have you been trying to lose the fat and get down to your ideal weight? Long time, right? In all that time your fat loss goal has been a giant monkey on your back – always in the back of your mind, always weighing you down. Guess what? Poof! That giant monkey disappeared the day you reached your goal weight an in its place came a sweet, carefree peace of mind.
Excellent Reason To Be FIT #7: You Are Able To Enjoy Life Once you transformed your body, life got decidedly more fun and exciting. You never knew how much your weight had held you back from excitement and adventure until the day that burden was lifted. You now enjoy life with carefree abandonment – the way you were designed to.

GymKitchen: Healthy Low Sodium Hot Dogs…a Labor Day Staple!

Did you know the average hot dogs contains over 500mg of sodium? I challenge you to search for one that’s lower than what’s usually on your grill. Applegate makes a really good low sodiium hot dog…at only 330mg!

Here’s how my old favs stack up…Applegate Hot dog

  • Nathan’s  …648mg
  • Hebrew National…520mg
  • Ball Park…520mg

Applegate Analysis: One serving equals: 110 calories, 8 fat, 0g carbohydrate, 7g protien, 330mg sodium, 0g sugar, 0g fiber, 2.5g fiber

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GymKitchen: Spinach & Egg White Basil Pesto Wrap

This wrap is delicious for breakfast, lunch or dinner. It’s ready in a flash, tastes amazing, and is filled with lean protein, veggies and whole sprouted grains. Try it today, but don’t be surprised if you get hooked! It’s already saved in MyFitnessPal just for you. Servings: 1

Here’s what you need:

Spinach Egg White Basil Pesto Wrap Recipe

Spinach Egg White Basil Pesto Wrap Recipe

  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/4 cup tomato, finely chopped, no seeds
  • 1 cup spinach, roughly chopped
  • 3 egg whites
  • pepper to taste
  • 1 sprouted grain tortilla
  • 1 Tablespoon Cibo Naturals pesto (or combine 1 cups basil leaves, 1 clove garlic, 1/4 fresh parmesan cheese, and 2 1/2 Tablespoon olive oil in a food processor and blend until it becomes a paste.)
  1. Spread a tablespoon of pesto over the tortilla and set aside.
  2. In medium sized skillet warm the olive oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and sauté until golden. Add the tomato and cook for another 3 minutes. Add the spinach and cook until it is soft and wilted. Remove the veggies from skillet, set aside in a bowl.
  3. Pour the egg whites into the skillet, season with pepper. Cook until the egg is no longer runny.
  4. Arrange egg whites in a line down the center of the tortilla. Top with veggies and then fold the ends up and wrap like a burrito.

Nutritional Analysis: One serving equals: 322 calories, 30g carbohydrate, 17g fat, 19g protein, 6g fiber, 254mg sodium, and 1g sugar.
Spinach Egg white basil pesto wrap oh fitness llc recipe nutrition
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