You’re in a normal weight range for your height. When you’re in a normal weight range and you wanna look toned, you don’t need to focus on your weight.
If you wanna look toned, you need to lower your body fat percentage. Lowering your body fat percentage means having less body fat and more muscle mass. Since muscle is heavier by volume than fat, you would probably weigh about the same 130 lbs looking ‘toned’ with a lower body fat percentage.
Make sure you’re getting enough protein in your diet and that you’re doing some kind of weight training (not only cardio). Looking toned like the ‘Tone it up’ girls or Cassey from blogilates means eating lots of vegetables & lean protein, cutting sugar out and controlling your portions; in a nutshell: tightening up and cleaning up your diet.
When attempting to lose fat, it is recommended not to try to lose more than 1 to 2 pounds per week. I don’t know the date of your graduation, but I suppose you have about 16-18 weeks left.
I thus think 25-30 pounds are not to high of a goal but this is going to be a big challenge! Are you up for it? It sounds like you don’t want to go to the gym “I don’t have a lot of time to really go to the gym”. I always say we make time for whatever is important to us. I think it would really help if you can show up at the gym 3 times per week. If going there takes too long, you can download workout videos and work out at home.
Hi Juhi, it’s important for you to make the difference between:
(1) when you’re hungry and you need a break and a real snack and
(2) when you’re stressed and you feel like you need something to chew on to release part of your stress. When I was a student I used to chew on pens a lot. Study stress made me feel like I needed to chew on something. It’s a bit like being a baby who needs a pacifier to calm himself down. It has nothing to do with hunger.
Here are some tips:
- Keep low calorie vegetables, such as celery sticks or cucumber on hand. It’s very difficult to overeat them (ps: don’t dip them in anything ;). One large stalk (11”-12” long) of celery is 10 calories. Eating 100 calories of celery (10 stalks!) will take you a little while…
- Chew gum and blow a bubble every 5 minute or so. It can help you relax :)
- Try chewing sticks like licorice roots or sugar cane stalks to keep you busy masticating and release tension. You can find them in ethnic supermarkets. www.ehow.com/how_6404128_use-chew-sticks.html
- Drink herbal tea (chamomile, lavender) to calm yourself down and focus.
That’s a very good question. Yes, ab workouts, squats, donkey kicks and light dumbbell workouts can be considered as strength training because they use resistance (gravity or weight) to oppose muscular contraction.
However, some people may argue that squats without resistance or light dumbbell workouts are not ‘real’ strength training because the applied resistance is low, the number of repetitions are high and that the goal of strength training is to increase strength (the weight lifted) more than endurance (the number of repetitions).
Light dumbbell workouts are a perfect way to start incorporating strength training in your routine when you are a newbie, so buying your first 5lb dumbbells was a very good choice.
Here is a 20 min workout from Oxygen Magazine that you could do with your dumbbells: www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mh0naZiKMME&feature=related The girl has very muscular arms which you may find a bit ‘too much’, but don’t worry you won’t get like her just by doing the workout :)
You can aim for 15 reps per exercise. Stand with good posture, don’t rush the moves, take the time to perform them in a slow, controlled motion, and notice how your muscle are working.
After a while, when you feel like you’ve improved, you can invest in heavier dumbbells and lower the repetition range. Push-ups and triceps dips are also a good way to build muscle in your arms with your own body weight.
In my experience, lifting very heavy with fewer repetitions (8 to 10) got me more ‘toned’ than lifting lighter with high repetitions (15 to 25). But beginners should definitely start with light weight and high repetitions to learn doing the moves correctly and to avoid injuries.
Hi! Nuts are super healthy (if they’re unsalted of course) but the fact is that you can consume too much of a “good thing.”
Nuts are very calorie dense (high in fat, low in water), so eating large amounts can easily add an extra several hundred calories a day to your diet.
Doctors recommend limiting your intake to about one-fourth of a cup of nuts or seeds per day if you are watching your weight. I personally try to limit myself to 25 almonds per day (but I sometimes eat more :).
When you nibble on nuts, it’s very easy to overeat them: try to include water-rich foods that are less calorically dense like fruits or vegetables when eating nuts. For example, snack on an apple with a few nuts instead of just eating the nuts alone. This can help physically satisfy you without overdoing it calorically.
If you’re trying to lose weight, having your lunch salad topped with walnuts and almonds is okay but nibbling on walnuts and almonds after school is sabotaging your progress. You can go for a cup of unsweetened fat free Greek yogurt instead.
I hope this helps a bit,
Since you’re fairly active you should make sure you’re getting enough protein. You can calculate the quantity of protein you need on this page: www.bodybuilding.com/fun/how-much-protein-is-it-safe-for-me-to-take.htm
Although the site is about bodybuilding and fitness the first protein calculator is for ‘normal’ people: it uses the recommended daily allowance of protein according to U.S. government standards. If you scroll down there are other calculators to see how you should increase your protein intake according to your activity levels.
I’m not a vegan/vegetarian but I frequently rely on vegetarian products to get the protein I need because they’re not that expensive and they allow me to ‘switch it up’:
- Soy products like tofu, soy yogurt and tempeh. (There is a kind of controversy about soy products www.womentowomen.com/healthynutrition/soycontroversy.aspx but according to me they’re fine if they’re organic and if you don’t rely only on them for protein.)
- Seitan is another vegetarian food very rich in protein. It’s not gluten-free though because it is made of wheat.
- Hemp or pea protein powders come in handy to make milkshakes and smoothies. Some may taste weird so it’s better to buy a small sample first rather than a big package when trying a new brand.
If you still can eat eggs it would be a good source of protein in your diet.
Grains, beans and foods like quinoa also contain protein but not that much. They are great as carbs. Same for nuts: they contain some protein but I don’t consider them as ‘protein food’, they’re mainly a source of good fats rather than a source of protein.
How much oatmeal are you using? I personally use 1/2 cup of dry oatmeal with water. When I add a banana I usually add only half a banana and give the other half to my boyfriend. Or I use frozen strawberries (about 4 grams of sugar for a few strawberries against 9 grams of sugar for half a banana). A whole large banana contains about 18 grams of sugar. This is kind of a lot if you have weight loss goals. However, one banana is still a very good choice to have after or before an intense workout.
For healthy fats, I don’t use peanut butter but a tablespoon of flax seeds because I like peanut butter so much that I always end up eating too much, so I only eat peanut butter occasionally as a treat. But if you can control your peanut butter intake that’s fine. 2 tablespoons sound a lot though, I would take 2 teaspoons. But it all depends on the energy you need that day and what you’re going to do the following 3 hours after you had breakfast.
I also eat 1 hard boiled egg and 2 egg whites next to my oatmeal to have some protein in my breakfast. This really keeps me full until it’s time for my first snack at 11 am.
It depends on what you mean by “I don’t do an awful lot of exercise”. Does this mean you don’t exercise regularly? I’m not saying that you should do “an awful lot of exercise”, I’m just saying you may want to kick it up a notch ; as trainer Jillian Michael says: “Results don’t come for free!”
Here is a video about model Alessandra Ambrosio’s workout. http://leandrofitness.com/index.php?/Recent-News/aletrain.html She’s naturally very skinny (personally I don’t think she looks nice ; she lacks muscle tone but that’s what the model industry is looking for) but the video may give you an idea of what skinny model girls do for butt/leg exercises.
I personally prefer traditional weight training and cardio: http://fitnesstreats.tumblr.com/tagged/butt
Hello! It all comes down to training your body to enjoy different foods. You have to understand and notice that your eating habits are not permanent; they can always be altered. Eating habits can change. What you used to eat as an adolescent most of which you probably do not care for anymore.
The trick to changing your eating habits is to find a healthy alternative that you will enjoy. It’s a bit easier if you ease into it rather than suddently cut everything out. For example, a person who is sugar-addicted could cut out sugar and switch to agave syrup for a while (still another kind of sugar but with a slightly lower glycemic response), then reduce her consumption of agave syrup gradually, and then cut it out too and rely on fruits to satisfy her sweet tooth.
What is the best way to find great tasting healthy food?
- Learning how to cook.
- Using spices and condiments.
- Being creative.
- Trial and error. Being open en curious: you don’t know what is really good and tasty until you try it.
And it’s not just about weight loss: try to listen to what your body is really telling you: notice the small consequences different foods can have on your body. When you eat fresh healthy foods for a few days, lots of things get better: clearer skin, stronger hair, improved digestion etc.