Here’s our round up of our best diet tips
Each week we’ll be posting a new diet tip for you to try that week. Keep it up for a whole week and then introduce another diet tip to your lifestyle, within a few weeks you’ll have transformed your diet, and a diet, will no longer be a diet, but a new lifestyle.
Week 1: Consider whether you’re really hungry. Instead, have a glass of water, as more often than not, you’re actually thirsty, and confusing the feeling between the two.
Week 2: Be choosy about night time snacks. Eating late at night is bad, but unhealthy food is even worse. Try to change your eating schedule so that you have your bigger meals at the start of the day, rather than the end. You’ll find that you’ll sleep better if you do. Nobody likes sleeping on a full stomach.
Week 3: Enjoy your treats away from home. If you occasionally eat out in a nice restaurant, enjoy this, and maintain a healthy balance.
Week 4: Eat protein at every meal. Protein is a crucial ingredient in repairing muscles, helping muscles to grow.
Week 5: Spice it up. Adding pepper or spicy herbs will increase your metabolism as it digests the spicy food. It will also add more flavour to your food, so you don’t fill up on unflavoured and boring food. It will help you realise that you can eat nice food which is healthy, rather than fattening, processed, and instant.
Week 6: Swap a cup of pasta for a cup of vegetables. People who eat little chocolate and sugary food items, and still struggle to lose weight, might be eating too mate carbohydrates. If you eat more carbohydrates than your body requires, the carbs will be turned into glucose, and stored as fat. However, if you’re exercising quite frequently, and intensely, the chances are, your body needs these carbs. Mix up your diet to see how your body feels.
Week 7: Avoid late-night snacks. Eating bad foods in the evening doesn’t give your body an opportunity to digest the food, so the food will sit inside your tummy overnight, increasing the likelihood of a restless night’s sleep, and the food being stored as fat, rather than being used in the day for energy and exercise.
Week 8: Don’t skimp on sleep. If you’re feeling sleepy and tired, it’s easy to have a donut (comfort food) or a coffee, or something that will have a high amount of sugar or caffeine in. This is unhealthy as you’re creating sugar highs and lows, increasing the likelihood of unhealthy eating.
Week 9: Make your own lunch – remove the temptation of bad food or processed unhealthy food by making your own lunch. This also means that you can monitor your portion size more carefully, thinking about the proportion of carbs to fat, to protein.
Week 10: Train your brain – practice self-control when you’re experiencing cravings. It’s been proven that you brain craves sugar in the same way as cocaine, certainly not a healthy addiction in either case. Instead of chocolate or fizzy drinks, try fruit, which has a healthy amount of natural sugar in.
Week 11: Schedule a cheat day. Every now and again, we need to reward ourselves for our dedication to a new lifestyle. Have one day to eat bad food, so that the other 6 aren’t so tough.
Week 12: Skip the salt. Salt is bad for your health, for a number of reasons. The amount of salt you eat has a direct effect on your blood pressure, and having high blood pressure results in added strain on your heart, arteries, kidneys and brain. In addition, a high salt diet results in added water storage, so you’re holding more water weight, making training more difficult and harder.
Week 13: Fill up on fiber and protein.
Week 14: Slim up your snack. Try a healthy alternative such as chocolate coated strawberries, marshmallows or popcorn; rather than carb rich and fatty pizzas for a midnight feast.
Week 15: Drink plenty of water. Water is a much needed source of energy for exercise, ensuring that you’re adequately hydrated for exercise will allow you to perform at your best. Water is also vital for many bodily functions, and for your organs to work efficiently. During exercise you’ll perspire and lose a lot of water, in the perspiration is vital electrolytes which need to be restored from your diet.
Week 16: Think about what you can add to your diet, not what you should take away. When people diet, they think about the things that need to be cut from what they eat. But people’s diets often don’t include the vital nutrients that the body needs, and requires. For example, it is recommended that you eat 5 – 7 portions of fruit and veg a day, where in most people’s cases, this doesn’t happen. So rather than just remove items from your diet, replace them with healthy alternatives, such as a cup of vegetables instead of a cup of pasta.
What diet tips would you recommend for your fellow runners?
From your friendly neighbourhood runner.
This post is also available in: Welsh