10 diet & fitness tips you need to know

1. Diet for the season
‘Get up earlier in summer and later in winter, in line with natural sunlight hours. Don’t eat late at night or before you’re fully awake.’
2. Stay hydrated at the gym
‘Your gym may have drinking fountains but they won’t help you keep an eye on how much you drink. Make sure you take a large bottle with you to the gym and keep it to hand whenever you are in class or on a machine.’
3. Shake things up
‘Though there’s not much scientific proof that it works, some dieters find that changing some of their meal plan selections from week to week seems to help them break through a plateau. Simple changes like switching some of those chicken portions for fish or having a chicken salad instead of an egg salad at lunch could make a difference for you. Not to mention ensuring your taste buds stay interested.’
4. Too much chocolate
‘Every time you eat a chocolate biscuit instead of an apple you are choosing to be fat. One biscuit won’t make you fat but it will certainly influence what you eat later and it reinforces for you, the choice is always the chocolate rather than the apple.’
5. Work your stretch
‘Some stretches may feel uncomfortable initially but try to stay in them, even if only for a short while. As long as you feel no pain, you should not be in danger of injuring yourself. Don’t bounce your stretch. Breathe calmly and regularly through your nose.’
6. Accept who you are
‘The key to getting over your idea of a perfect body is to accept what you have. If you hate your body, it won’t work with you. If you accept your body – and even learn to like it – you can achieve peace with your food.’
7. Fat-free? Not necessarily…
‘Put the words “low-fat” or “fat-free” on the label and people will assume it won’t make them fat. But it’s worth knowing that “fat-free” or “low-fat” or “no added fat” usually means more sugar. Simple white refined sugar is the very stuff which converts to fat once in the body.’
8. Reward yourself with a massage
‘Cool-downs are your first line of defence against lactic acid build up and muscle soreness, but you don’t have to fight the fight on your own. Massage is a great way of helping your metabolism recover from the effort and trauma of your gym sessions. A good massage also helps reinforce the sense of reward.’
9. Stay off the scales
‘Don’t assume that the scale is always a true measure of what is going on with the body. If exercise levels are adequate (5-7 days a week), you may be putting on muscle but losing fat, thus losing inches even if you are not losing pounds. It’s always a good idea to do several body measurements to have a second objective way to monitor progress.’
10. Fill the freezer
‘Frozen prawns are as good as fresh: in fact most of the “fresh” prawns you’ve bought in your life were actually defrosted before they were sold to you.’
Read the full article on iVillage.co.uk

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