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Get Crackin' on Your Weight Loss This Spring

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Spring flowers are going to be in full bloom soon -- it's time for mamas to get it together!

JJ Virgin: I don't mean to turn all weathercaster on you, but spring has (almost) sprung. Goodbye snowstorms, parkas and bulky sweaters that hide the results of all that winter snacking in front of the tube. Hello tank tops, short shorts, miniskirts and cap-sleeved numbers that tell the world that, yes, you do have flesh on those arms and legs. And now I must mention a few words that strike fear into many hearts: Bathing suit! Bikini!

Okay, I know that was cruel.The point is, you've got to get on it! It's March -- and summer's right around the bend.

The first week of March is also an excellent time to make simple changes in your life that will give you the summer body you want to show off. In the next few blogs, I'll be focusing on tips from my new book, "Six Weeks to Sleeveless and Sexy," which is available now on preorder at I'm so excited to share these tips that not only show you how to shape up your arms, but also offer my eating, sleep, stress and other fitness fundamentals.

Until you can get your hands on a copy, let's start today with a few must-needed changes.

Spring Into Your Weight Loss

Eat Your Breakfast

Since the weather is a bit nicer, you might not crave a big breakfast and just grab a piece of toast on the run. I'd rather you run right over to your kitchen table. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day when it comes to weight loss because it gives you a solid foundation for the day. Plus, you won't start off hungry and then go down that rabbit hole of snacking. JJ's JUST DO IT: Remember that you need protein at breakfast (and every meal). Have two poached eggs beside your steel cut oatmeal. Or don't eat breakfast for breakfast and do a turkey wrap.Be sure to stay away from the typical morning carb bombs -- muffins and cereal.

Start Vegging Out

Make it your personal goal to add as many non-starchy veggies as possible to your daily routine this month. Eat a colorful grouping of veggies at each meal including red peppers, bright yellow squash or dark green spinach. Start to think in terms of where you could sneak in more veggies. Toss them in eggs, roast them on a pan and add to wraps or make a huge veggie soup or salad that has much more than just lettuce and tomatoes. JJ's JUST DO IT: Make sure you're spending more time in the produce aisle than any other at the supermarket. Experiment with new veggies. You might just come to crave kale!

Flavor It Up

There's nothing worse than boring and bland diet food. I'm sure you've been on the plan where you eat that horrible naked piece of baked chicken. Why would you want to live bland? Spice it up with turmeric, garlic, cayenne, pepper and other spices. By the way, a recent study at Chicago's Smell & Taste Treatment and Research Foundation indicated that spicy aromas stimulate your olfactory bulb in your brain and send a "full" message to your noggin, thus making you eat less. JJ's JUST DO IT: Take a package of boneless chicken breasts and cover each one with a different spice -- or do them in pairs. It's a great way to cook once and have a different meal the next night. One night do Italian chicken over spaghetti squash and the next night go Indian with curried chicken over saffron rice.

Become a Food CSI Detective

Put on your glasses and really read those labels on the foods you buy. Make sure that you look for high fructose corn syrup as an ingredient you definitely want to avoid. Other things to nix include partially hydrogenated oils. Did you know that trans fats actually jump-start the genes that can increase your belly fat by 30 percent, according to recent studies. JJ's JUST DO IT: Toss your fruity yogurts that are made with high fructose corn syrup. The same goes for BBQ sauce and ketchup.

Get Ready to Move It

This week, I want you to take stock of your fitness particulars at home. If you need them (look at the bottoms), buy new shoes and carve out an area of your house as your own private gym. Invest in a fitness ball. In the next blog, I'll focus on five ways to jump start your fitness without leaving your block. Your job this week is to get ready. Next week it's go, go, go!

next: Police: Man Eyed in 2nd Calif. Teen Murder
12 comments so far | Post a comment now
Leviev March 9, 2010, 6:25 AM

March is the perfect time to start making those changes and getting outside before summer. U wanna look good in ur bathing suit rite! nice artical

Ryan - Lose 20 lbs March 9, 2010, 9:06 AM

Spot on!

You got it right on in this article. Eating breakfast and more veggies will help you shed lbs faster than you’d expect.

With spring around the corner, it’s the perfect time to finally commit to your weight loss goals.

Thanks for the great article.


tennmom March 9, 2010, 2:36 PM

I’m glad to be on weight maint. but the same holds true.
I used to skip breakfast, thinking it just made me hungry for lunch sooner. Now I know that an egg & some oatmeal w. artificial sweetner, a few raisins & walnuts occasionally, keeps me satisfied.
Lunch is usually a portion of lean meat and a hearty serving of veggies. Same for dinner.

adelaide fitness March 9, 2010, 3:03 PM

yep, i always have breakfast coz i figure that way i’ve got all day to burn off the calories!

Josh Schlottman March 10, 2010, 10:40 PM

Great post with lots of great tips. To add one, drinking more water can help you lose weight, look healthier, and have more energy.

Most of us are dehydrated and our performance can decrease even when we’re 1% dehydrated.

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