Posts Tagged ‘Hunger’

In this week’s blog, I want to discuss one of the newest fat loss supplements from Top Secret Nutrition.  I have had the opportunity to use the new stimulant-based thermogenic Ab Igniter.  I am certainly no stranger to fat burners having sampled many in the last few years during competition prep.  I have used both stimulant-based and non-stimulant-based and they both have their advantages and disadvantages.  Anyway, back to Ab Igniter…

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First off, all the ingredients and amounts are clearly laid out on the label – I love it when I know exactly what I’m getting and how much.  This formula includes many of the most popular and researched fat loss ingredients on the market today including Garcinia Cambogia, Green Coffee Extract, Green Tea Extract, Caffeine, Raspberry Ketones, and Yohimbe to name a few.

Ok, so what did these ingredients do in “real life”?  Anyone who knows me, knows I have an appetite…if it looks good, smells good, and ain’t moving too fast, I’ll eat it…well, maybe.  But, this product really did curb my crazy appetite.  I’m usually starving by mid-morning, but after taking this product, that certainly wasn’t the case.  The energy from this product was also good.  I felt a pretty clean energy without any jitters and it lasted for a good part of the morning.  I usually took a second dose in the early afternoon to carry me through the rest of my day.  For those of you that are sensitive to caffeine, I would certainly recommend starting with only one capsule.  My end dose was 2 capsules twice a day and that was perfect for me.  Ok, confession time – my diet was not always the best while using this product and I still managed to lose some fat: win-win!  The Garcinia is supposed to slow fat accumulation so maybe that was it?!

I have seen some good results but will take a little time off before starting a second bottle 🙂  In a nutshell, if you’re looking for some clean energy and appetite suppression while trying to reach your fat loss goals, I definitely recommend Ab Igniter!

It’s amazing what we can accomplish just by putting some serious thought into something.  This applies to just about anything, but in this blog I am going to relate it to fitness.  Recently, I just got back from a family vacation and I am now full-swing into my contest prep for my fall show.  During my vacation, I trained a couple of times and stuck to my normal eating plan for the most part, but I did give myself a little bit of a break (both physical and mental).  Anyone who has been on a diet, prepared for a fitness/physique contest, or just trained for a race or other sport knows how much is required to fully prepare for these events.  There is a meal plan to stick to, a training schedule, food prep, and many other variables that must be considered.  One of the most overlooked components (in my opinion) is getting the mind prepared.  If that element is not in order, the rest is going to be a huge struggle.  How do I know this?  Well, I’ve prepared for several competitions now and some preps have been easy and some have been tough.  A lot of it had to do with my mindset.  There was one contest that I trained for “just to do it” and I struggled A LOT!  You see, since my mental focus was not 100%, it made everything else a lot more difficult;  I still trained hard but had trouble sticking to my diet on a few occasions.

This contest is a completely different story.  I chose not to compete in the Spring this year because I didn’t feel that I was ready.  I did a few short cutting and maintenance/gaining cycles to work on some lagging bodyparts but now, I’m feeling more than ready!  The huge thing that I noticed is that my mental focus is 110%.  I have become aware of some great things this week because of this.  I realized I had much greater control over my hunger and fatigue.  I made it a point to analyze what was going on when I felt “hungry” even though I had just eaten.  When you’re dieting, it is so easy for food to become the focus of your day; even to the point of becoming obsessive about it.  What am I going to eat today?  When can I have my next meal?  Etc. Etc.  After analyzing why I thought I was hungry (and often coming up with a variety of reasons other than hunger) I realized I wasn’t hungry at all.  Even if I was truly hungry, distracting my thoughts away from hunger and food always works great to pass the time (and it can make for quite the productive day!)  My adherence to my meal plan this week was 100% and I can say that there wasn’t any particular time where I felt deprived, starving, etc.

Another area where the power of the mind is huge is during training.  Training is hard if you do it right.  It hurts and it can make you tired.  Maybe you don’t feel like going to the gym because you had a long day at work, the kids exhausted you, or you didn’t get a good night’s sleep.  There are many legitimate reasons to skip the gym (i.e. you need a rest day, you’re injured, or you’re sick), but these other “excuses” just won’t do!  Getting psyched up for the gym starts in the mind.  Think about what you want to accomplish during your next workout; do you want to add more weight/reps to an exercise, do you want to be able to sprint faster/longer?  Use these goals as a starting point.  Most of you know, once you actually get to the gym and start working out, you realize you’re really not that tired or unmotivated.

Don’t underestimate the power of your mind:  everything starts with a thought, is planned and put through a process, and eventually becomes your new reality…so, train your brain people! 🙂

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Your stomach is growling, you’re starting to get a little cranky, and you’re having a hard time concentrating…Ok, so restricting calories to lose weight/fat is not fun.  That is definitely not news!  Over the last few years, I’d like to think that I’ve gotten pretty good at it.  It certainly is a “necessary evil” when preparing for physique contests, photo shoots, or even a special occasion or vacation.  The worst part for me…HUNGER!  I don’t mind eating the same thing over and over; I don’t even mind eating my veggies.  What I do hate is being hungry.  So, I’m going to share some of my tips for controlling hunger when you’re dieting.

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  • Food timing:  I’m a firm believer in finding what works for you in terms of meal frequency.  The two most important times that you are going to want to eat is before and after training (with post-training being the most important).  With that aside, choose what will be the best for you, 3-4 larger meals spaced throughout the day or 5-6 smaller meals.  For me, I like to eat every 2-3 hours so the smaller, more frequent meal scheme works best.  It does not work for everyone though…some people find that smaller meals are not satisfying enough and are hungry all day long.  IF (intermittent fasting) has also gained popularity…so if that’s what works for you, go for it (as long as you’re getting enough nutrition during your feeding window).
  • Fiber:  Choosing foods that are higher in fiber will help fill you up faster and keep you feeling full longer.
  • Water:  Drink plenty of water always!  Aim for at least 1 gallon/day especially if you train hard.  Sometimes you may feel “hungry” but you are actually dehydrated.  A tip for helping you eat less at mealtime is to drink a large glass of water before you eat or eat foods that are high in water content (low sodium/calorie broth based soups, fruits, leafy greens, etc.).  I like to make my own soups with a quality low sodium broth.
  • Protein:  Lean protein may help prolong satiety.  Make sure you are getting some protein with each of your meals.
  • Fat:  This important macronutrient takes a bit longer to digest and can add some great flavor and texture to your foods.  Stick to the healthy ones like avocado, nuts, and nut butters (without added sugar!).  Just be sure to watch your portion sizes with fats.
  • Distraction:  Go for a walk, work on a project, clean your house…whatever it takes to get your mind off of food.  A little distraction can go a long way!
  • Gum:  One of my favorites for helping with the sweet tooth is gum.  I think I have the entire line of “dessert gums” in my cabinet.  Nothing like a stick of apple pie for dessert!
  • Tea:  Night-time can be the hardest for a lot of people on a weight-loss journey.  After dinner, a lot of folks sit down in front of the TV and start eating out of boredom.  This is the best time to sit with a nice cup of tea.  Get a variety of decaffeinated teas:  green tea, fruit teas, chamomile, or whatever else you like.  These are great to make in advance and refrigerate when you want something cold to drink other than water.  You can even mix some of the flavors with a great protein powder for a snack!  I like to use Top Secret Nutrition’s 100% Whey in Vanilla and mix it with a fruit tea.
  • Supplements:  A lot of fat-burning supplements are very popular but equally as great are the ones that help you feel full and eat less.  Top Secret Nutrition has a great line of supplements to aid in fat loss.  Some of my favorites are:  L-Carnitine with Raspberry Ketones, L-Carnitine with Green Coffee Bean Extract, Extreme Jitter Free Fat Burner, and the New Garcinia Cambogia Extract.  All of these supplements aid in appetite control.  Another one worth mentioning is the Super F.A.S Lean.  This is great for a number of reasons:  it contains glucomannan – it is a soluble fiber that can absorb large quantities of water forming “bulk” in the stomach and making you feel more full.  It contains green tea and caffeine:  two well-studied compounds that aid in fat loss and energy.  I don’t know about you, but when my calories are restricted, my energy levels drop!  You can also try sipping some BCAAs between meals.  I love TSN’s BCAA Hyperblend Energy!  It has an amazing watermelon flavor when my water is getting boring!

Being hungry is no fun for you and usually no fun for those around you!  But, when you are properly prepared and have the right attitude, you CAN accomplish anything!