Your nutrition needs to be disciplined and consist of less sugary, processed foods (i.e., canned foods). Since your body has its own metabolic thermostat and "knows" how much energy it needs to be comfortable, tracking your caloric intake is not necessary. You should instinctively know whenever you've had enough to eat. Make an effort to eat at least six small meals daily and spread them out over the course of your day (i.e., every 2-3 hours). A simple rule to remember regarding your fluid intake (mostly water) is to take your bodyweight in pounds and multiply it by 0.5 to get the recommended fluid intake in ounces. Drinking adequate water is crucial as this aids in detoxifying your body and helps to speed up your metabolism. Adequate hydration also helps to reduce your fat percentage in your body, aids digestion, and enhances the absorption of vitamins and minerals. Also, eat more fiber (i.e., fruits and vegetables) as most Americans are deficient in their fiber intake. By increasing your fiber intake you will reduce your blood cholesterol, blood sugar and blood pressure levels. In addition, there are anti-inflammatory properties attributed to fiber intake which may reduce your risk of heart disease, cancer and stroke. The recommendation is to eat at least 14g of fiber per every 1000 kcals consumed.
Exercise should consist of both weight training and cardio. Go with the particular exercises you enjoy (e.g., squats, deadlifts, stairstepper, etc.) in order to encourage compliance. Remember, exercise should become your way of life and your lifestyle choice rather than a chore to accomplish. If you don't find hitting the treadmill or exercise bike all that appealing or boring, consider joining an exercise class. There are dance classes, bootcamp classes, swimming, yoga, Zumba, etc. which can be quite fun! The point is to get your body moving and keep it moving daily. To keep you motivated, have a full-length mirror available to assess your progress in whittling down your waist. Measure your waist monthly to assess your progress. Seeing the number decrease provides its own motivating impact.
Brian Danley, CFT
"Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going."