Daily aerobic exercise.
know I like this one! Daily
aerobic exercise, I think, is the most powerful indicator
of how successful somebody is going to be long term.
In the people I have worked with, daily aerobic
exercise is the most powerful indicator of long term
success with weight loss.
When I say “daily”, I mean six to seven days
a week. Daily is ideal.
I always get the question, “Well, don’t we
need a day of rest, Greg?”
My advice is to not actually take the day off,
but take a leisurely walk. Don’t break the habit!
You have worked hard at making exercise habitual,
something you do every day, just like brushing your
teeth. So one day a week (a lot of people like to
do it on Sundays), maybe just take a leisurely walk
and count that as your exercise.
But be consistent.
back to my point.
Exercise six to seven days per week.
Doing something daily is ideal. Here is why.
Your metabolism responds to daily activity.
When you do something every day that raises your heart
rate, your body says, “We’ve got to raise metabolism.
They do this every day, so we are going to
body RESPONDS to daily exercise.
first thing before you do anything else, develop a
daily exercise habit.
Now at first for sure, it doesn’t need to be
long. Get out and take a 10 or 15 minute walk.
Developing that daily habit is the single most
important thing you can do to ensure your long-term
success. You can work on the length of that later,
but get in the habit. Make it something you do without
fail every day. Set time aside for it and get it done.
The wonderful thing about this is, not only does it
help with weight loss, but probably more importantly,
it is one of the healthiest things you can do for
yourself. Everything physiologically, physically,
emotionally, and mentally improves with consistent
exercise. It is a wonderful medicine!
So I would really encourage you, if you are
doing this, keep it up!
not, really make this a priority!
It is a major factor in long term success.
that you have a caloric deficit.
talked about this briefly before, but know that you
have a caloric deficit. We talked about this one when
we talked about recording what you eat.
is absolutely critical. You don’t have to do this
for the rest of your life.
I would encourage you to at least spend a few
weeks writing down everything you eat and determining
two things: how many calories you are consuming and
how many fat grams you are consuming. If you are consuming
too many calories, even just a few hundred too many,
weight loss may not happen. It can be as simple as
that sometimes. You really need to know where you
are. So if you are having trouble and weight loss
is not as fast as you want it to be, KNOW
that you actually have a deficit.
can tell you whether you need to move it up a couple
of hundred or maybe down a couple of hundred calories.
It gives you a feel for where you are.
Create your own snacking system.
this I simply mean have food ready at all times, whether
you are at home, in the car, at work.
The situation that most people fall into is
that they allow themselves to get too hungry. Typically
it is not at home because it is easier to have food
there that is healthy, but in the car, driving, at
work, traveling, whatever. When you are hungry, you
are going to get to the point where you are going
to eat, even if you don’t have healthy food around.
So that will typically be something fast, maybe
at a fast food place or a convenience store. If you
don’t eat and you get home at five, six, seven or
eight o’clock at night and you are famished, then
you are completely out of control and you will almost
always overeat in that situation and will almost always
make poorer food choices in that situation.
have a system. Have healthy snacks in your car, have
something at work. You have to take the time to plan
for this because this is critical.
If that healthy food is not there you are going
to end up eating things that you prefer not to eat.
are a lot of ways you can go with that. Some people
like fruit. Some people like dry healthy cereal, snack
bars that are healthy, but have something ready and
available all of the time.
Fruits, vegetables and whole grains.
touched on this because of fiber just a minute ago.
I know there is a lot of controversy right
now with high-protein, low-carb diets.
But I think that most people—in fact, I talked
to a lady this week—She had done one of the low-carb,
high-protein diets and didn’t do very well. She didn’t
feel well and actually had some health problems. She
said, “You know, I knew intuitively that this was
not a healthy way of eating, but I thought it would
help me lose weight.”
think that statement is true of most people. They
know that eating that much fat and protein is not
a good situation. We do know—I don’t know how this
can be disputed—We know from years of practical experience
with people and from research in labs, that fruits,
vegetables and grains keep us healthy. They help people
lose weight. Long-term, they help you avoid cancer,
heart disease, strokes, diabetes and the whole works.
So focus your diet on fruits, vegetables and whole
grains. Again, as I mentioned earlier, that is where
all the fiber is.
Animal products have no fiber whatsoever.
it takes planning because you are not going to find
fruits, vegetables and whole grains close to their
most natural state, whole grains, breads, etc., out
at fast food places. You can do that at restaurants,
but it takes some work. So it takes planning on your
part and it takes preparation, having the groceries
in your house that you need and not having what shouldn’t
be there, and planning.
Planning how you are going to eat for the next
I think one of the problems we fall into with
our society the way it is, fast-paced, everything
is fast, nobody cooks and plans anymore. So you go,
and whatever is there, donuts at work, fast food place
around the corner, we live fast. There is little time
that is taken for planning, and we end up eating whatever
is there. I think that is part of the reason that
we are in the situation we are in here in the U.S.
questions so far?
I had a question whether you felt we should
also—If it’s helpful to try to track fiber for a while.
In addition to the calories and the fat grams,
just to see if by increasing that, what the difference
is. To prove something to myself probably more than
That is an excellent point.
I think you’re right. At least for a week or
two. Fiber is fairly easy to learn what is where,
so I think once you do this for a week or two you
really know if you are getting enough fiber, what
has it, what doesn’t have it.
As I mentioned, we know that all the fruits,
vegetables and grains have some fiber. But there is
a great deal of difference sometimes.
example, in beans, there are some beans that are just
loaded with fiber and others that have less fiber
than that. So absolutely, Janice.
Email me and let me know what those numbers
look like. I am always curious to see what those add
Okay. The other thing I was going to say was, I guess
part of the change of my mindset is, in doing the
snack quotient, I guess I made an assumption that
there was an awful lot of stuff at the health food
store that was probably better than at a traditional
But obviously, this is just casting dispersion
on everything. I probably need to really look at everything
that is going on as long as it’s a packaged food product.
you say, the natural state, I’m not as concerned about
that unless there is a preservative in the product
for the packaged or even frozen stuff. But some of
the cereals I was looking at today were like, 300
calories per serving and only 2 grams of fiber, and
you know, a pretty decent amount of sugar. I was a
I thought, “Well, okay, I guess you are teaching
us to be regular label readers!”
Some of the product lines I’m not familiar
A lot of them are new to me.
Even amongst those, it still makes a difference.
I will track that for a while.
I am going to try to see what I can do.
Your recommendation on the grams of fiber is
actually higher than a couple of other things I have
read lately, where they were saying minimum of 30.
That is Dr. Merkin’s Healthy Heart Miracle kind of
stuff. Then another doctor online, he was giving a
lecture somewhere and he was saying at least 30 grams
and a very moderate amount of protein if you are going
to eat any at all. He was not saying high protein,
low fat. He was just saying make sure you don’t overload
on your protein.
What I will do is send you a link to that.
I think he’s got a mixed message in it, but
he is also grounded. So I will send you a link to
you and ask you to just read that and give me some
feedback on it.
I am having a hard time sorting through the
truth in what he’s talking about and what his background
That would be great.
So I would appreciate your feedback.
That is a good point, Janice.
I want to comment on several of the things
It’s easy—I do this too. In a health food store,
you tend to think that everything is healthier, or
at least in that direction. A good bit of it is. It
is certainly better than a grocery store.
But we still need to be very careful because,
well, cereal is a good example. There are a lot of
cereals that aren’t whole grain, like you have seen.
They have maybe an SQ of 150 or something like that.
other thing that I think is becoming more and more
of a problem—Anything that we eat that is processed
in any way and certainly anything in a can, is loaded
Now, sodium doesn’t affect fat gain per se.
It does affect body weight because the more sodium
you consume the more fluid you retain.
But it is bad for health.
I think when you look at fruits, vegetables
and whole grains, if we believe that is supposed to
be where we concentrate, in their natural state they
contain very little sodium. You know, enough to keep
us healthy. But everything that we get in a can is
artificially—has sodium added to it.
So it’s extremely high when you consider what
we should be getting.
other thing you mentioned Janice that I think was
a good point—most recommendations that you see are
geared toward the general public, like American Heart
Association says, “Under 30 percent fat”. They say,
“Under 2000 mg of sodium,” they say, “30 to 35 grams
Realize that those are padded because they
want the general public to at least make a little
bit of change in the right direction.
rather than giving you the ideal numbers - like saying,
“For fat, you really should be under 20 percent,”
they know that the majority of Americans will never
get there, so they say 30 to move it down from where
it is, at 42. Sodium should be under 1000 at least.
They put it at 2000. Fiber should be closer to 50
and they put it at 30 or 35. Their objective is just
to move the masses a little bit in the right direction.
For optimal health, those numbers are usually off.
You mentioned fiber 50 and sodium 1000.
What was the first number you mentioned, Greg?
Percentage of fat in the diet.
Most of the experts that are not American Heart types
believe that we should be around 20 percent fat for
optimal health and for weight management - most of
that should be "good" fat of course.
Well, the other thing Greg, I guess for myself, since
I haven’t been eating a lot of packaged stuff for
quite a long time, generally when I am eating at a
pot-luck and making good selections or I end up making
something according to a recipe, it doesn’t take very
long to tell whether there was a packaged product
or something had too much sodium because I am going
to have a little swelling in my hands or feet or I
am gong to react in some way.
I can tell that there is something in the food
that did not set well with me, because for a long
time I have been pretty toxic with a lot of stuff.
I guess it depends on what kind of level of health
you are seeking. I have been one to go after vibrant
health for a long time and my path has been pretty
long to get there. But I also know that what I have
gained is mine and it feels very stable.
I also look at the public, and as much heart
disease, toxicity, the diabetes and the obesity are
just continuing to climb in numbers. The interesting
thing is that it seems to me that I am seeing more
people unhealthy than healthy.
You are absolutely right, Janice - to live a healthy
lifestyle now, you absolutely have to go against the
flow - you have to be different from 90% of people.
To actually not be healthy, not be moving, which is
a little—It’s like we have gone into a flip-flop.
That isn’t just children, it’s everybody.
That’s right. You know, if you extrapolate the numbers
for type II diabetes and obesity over the next 10
or 15 years, it’s mind boggling to think where we’ll
be. We could actually have a situation in the U.S.
where 90% of adults are overweight!
Type II diabetes is increasing at such a rapid
rate that it is incredible.
In the next 1o to 15 years unless something
drastic changes, it is not going to be a pretty scene.
Twelve, thirteen and fourteen.
Create your own reasons list.
talked about this in the Motivation Seminar.
Anybody can do pretty well at consistent eating
and exercise for a short period of time, maybe weeks,
maybe months. But it gets tough at some point for
That’s when you have to have the motivation
Now, the word motivation, obviously, the root
- a reason to do it.
to stay consistent, you have to have a motive, a reason,
several reasons usually.
So what I encourage people to do is make a
list—A lot of people say, “Well, Greg, I know these
reasons in my head. I can recall these.”
You might be able to recall some of them, but
having this on paper is invaluable, because you can
look at this and see, “Here are the 20 reasons that
losing weight is important to me.”
Or, “Here are the 20 reasons that being healthy
is important to me.” So, take a couple of days and
literally write down every reason (this should be
detailed), that either getting healthier or leaner
is important to you. Be very specific.
Because this is your motive.
This is what motivates you to be consistent.
It’s what motivates you to get up and exercise in
the morning when maybe you don’t feel like it, or
to eat two cookies instead of a half a bag.
These are YOUR reasons for why you want to
get healthier and leaner. So, put it on paper, but
it where you can see it, and refer to it often. You
have to be reminded about why this is important to
and fourteen kind of go together.
of food is important. We get really “hung up” on
how much protein we’re getting, how much fat,
how much carbohydrates.
Those are important, but perhaps just as important
if not more so, is simply volume of food.
we are in a society where everything is “more”.
I saw where Wendy’s not only has Biggie Fries
now, but they have Super Biggie or something beyond
the huge one!
It is incredible, the portion sizes that we
This goes for restaurants, the whole deal.
In convenience stores you have these huge drinks
to put Coke in. It is just incredible the portion
sizes that we have come to. I think that eating has
gone along with this.
So, volume is important. We can get hung up
on what we are eating and you need to look at that,
but Number One is volume.
how do you control volume?
One of the best ways is eating slowly.
We know that there is a direct relationship
between how fast someone eats and how much they eat.
If you want to do something interesting, the next
time you’re in a restaurant, look around and watch
people eat. Look at the slow eaters.
Look at the fast eaters.
I think you will see a noticeable difference.
I think that’s a good suggestion.
It really is. If
you eat slowly, I won’t say it’s impossible, but it
becomes very difficult to overeat consistently. So
I really believe the speed at which we eat is critical.
Experts tell us that ideally they believe about 30
seconds between bites is ideal.
if you are not a slow eater, 30 seconds will seem
But I would encourage you to hang in there.
It’s a habit, and like most habits, if you
consistently work on that for 30 days it becomes much
It really does. Most people that hang in there
with this, the first day they think there is no way
they can eat that slowly, that it’s an eternity between
But it really does get easier as it becomes
habitual for you. I think this is one of the best
habits, eating-wise, that you can develop because
it affects so many things.
So, work on eating slowly. Chew your food a
lot - savor every bite.
another thing here. They
also believe that the act of chewing affects satiety.
So the more you chew a given amount of food, the more
satisfied you are, even with the same amount of food.
So chew your food very well, knowing that it affects
satiety. Savor it, enjoy the taste of it. In thirty
seconds take your next bite.
I think you will see that you can get used
to that quickly and it won’t seem like an eternity