Feel like you’ve done almost everything right and can’t lose that last 10 pounds? Below are three tips you can start using today.
Weight gain, or lack of weight loss, can often be caused by our stress hormone, cortisol. Cortisol is a really important hormone that is released in your body during stressful events and thoughts. When cortisol is released into your bloodstream and stays longer than necessary, it has a negative effect on your weight loss or maintenance goals. Normally, cortisol is high in the morning and lower in the evening, but when you are super stressed, your cortisol is elevated all the time. It effects your mood regulation and energy stores, storing fat and causing cravings for carbohydrates or other unhealthy choices. The longer cortisol is at work on your body, the more your cravings will get the best of you.
Action item: Get your cortisol checked. This is no joke and can cause real health complications.
Action item: Consider a mindful first 10 minutes of being awake. Institute personal boundaries for electronics. Practice calming breathing techniques. Make choices about your time management that are reasonable and achievable. Learn yoga.
How can your sleep affect your weight loss or lack thereof? When we don’t get our quality sleep, our bodies go into “starvation” mode. Similar to when your stress is elevated too much, or when someone is truly starving for food, your body holds onto fat in the belly and butt and makes it really tough to shed when you are quality sleep deprived.
Why quality sleep? Our bodies are made with a built in “chip,” or sleep cycle. This cycle, called Circadian Rhythm, has five stages and you need to progress through all five. When we “cheat” our sleep from going through the necessary stages, our bodies don’t get what they need to support our normal body functions (like, say, breathing, walking, listening, etc.). When “cheated,” it stores fat because our hormones – yep, that same pesky cortisol I talked about above – aren’t firing right and are “starved.”
Action item: Start your nighttime routine for bed 60 minutes before bed. Make it a non-negotiable routine by which your body will know you’re sending the signal “it’s bed time.” Your brain will recognize the routine and you will get to that ever-so-comfy moment in time when you hit the pillow and actually sleep. Also, get your stress in check. See Tip #1.
Serotonin is boosted through exercise, eating the right foods, and sunlight. Exercising every day will help your body, your brain, and sets a nice model for your kids. Your body reacts better – burns more fat and builds more muscle – with every day movement instead of three or four times per week. If exercising for 20 minutes or more seems daunting, try breaking it up in to 5- or 10-minute intervals throughout the day. The important part is that you get your body moving.
Fit moms at FOR starting their day with some crawling.
Action item: Make your daily exercise non-negotiable you time. Plan it the night before. Use your workout to shake off all the stresses in your life. Give it a few weeks before you “give up” and you will likely want to add another five minutes, or even add an extra day. Once you get hooked, you’d be surprised how easy you can find the time if you make it a priority.
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Alexandria Wellness offers achievable answers for anyone who is tired of chasing fitness and health without a clear plan, someone who has struggled and is not satisfied with their fitness and wellness or someone who is open to maximized healthful longevity and fitness along with healthful weight loss. Adrien and her team offer help with food guidance, body acceptance, sleep and stress issues, and insist you have fun along the way.
Schedule your free 30 minute consult here!
215 North Payne Street
Alexandria, VA 22314