I’m not really on a ‘walking the dog weight loss plan,’ but doing just that has bumped-up my metabolism and increased the rate of my weight loss. Four years ago, when I started regularly walking Sophie, I wasn’t thinking of obtaining any health benefits or losing weight, I just thought it would be nice to get out and walk in good weather instead of letting her out in the backyard to do her business. Surprise! Surprise! I’d been stuck on a weight loss plateau, unable to go below a certain weight, and walking the dog busted right through that. The weight started coming off again.
Since then, my ears perked up every time ‘walking’ was mentioned on a lifestyle TV show. Lo, and behold, it’s considered to be one of the best, if not the best exercise for longterm health. I walk three-quarters of a mile twice a day, every day…or a mile and a half. It’s changed and improved my overall physical health.
The Mayo Clinic says a regular, brisk walks can help maintain ahealthy weight, prevent or manage various conditions including heart disease and high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes, strengthen bones and muscles, improve mood, improve balance and coordination. I take easy walks, although at times Sophie and I will take a short run. Very short. Trust me. When I first did that, four years ago, I was winded after the sprint. Now I can easily trot along for short distances, and Sophie loves the run.
There is no downside to this. If you have a dog, I urge you to walk your canine friend. It will do you both a world of good. If you don’t have a dog, but have a spouse, child, grandchild, or friend to take along get out and give walking a try…or take a camera and take interesting shots as you go along.
Do you not know that you are a temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you? ~ 1 Corinthians 3:16 [NASB]
First, let me put my disclaimer out. I’m not a doctor, not a nutritionist, not a certified diet counselor, but I did slowly loose 60 lbs over a period of five years and have kept it off. In fact, I’m still slowly loosing weight and my doctor says I’m very healthy. If you are going to begin a diet or new type of eating lifestyle ~ consult with your doctor.
How did I achieve this weight loss feat? I wish I could take the credit, but I can’t…entirely. A major factor was my young adult daughters moved out and with them, so did the junk food. One got married. The other two decided they’d live with friends because they were now “adults.” I can’t take credit for the Twinkies, chips, boxed mac ‘n cheese, Chinese noodle packets, microwave popcorn, and sour gummie worms moving out with them.
The other issue I can only partially take credit for. I started walking my dog instead of letting her out in the backyard to do her business. Simply taking a half to three-quarters of a mile walk twice a day did wonders for me. It jump started my metabolism. I believe walking is the best exercise there is for most people. Still, I have to give honor and credit where it’s due. It was my relationship with God that got me walking. I heard Him say (in my inner being) that I should walk the dog and I obeyed. Then I heard Him tell me to change my diet and I obeyed again. So, these are my diet and lifestyle creds. If you are going to make changes in your diet and exercise routine, consult your doctor, and definitely enquirer of God first.
1 Corinthians 10: 31 [NASB] ~ Whether then, you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.
I began a food research campaign. I read articles on WebMD, listened to Christian broadcasts featuring Dr. Don Colbert, and began listening to healthy cooking shows and health-conscious chefs on TV. I became serious about this and developed a very simple lifestyle/eating plan for myself. Basically, I eliminated (or nearly so) all white foods and processed foods. This include white breads, white potatoes, white pasta, white rice, sugar and artificial sugar substitutes, and salt. I eliminated (or nearly so) all white beans. My first choice in beans overwhelmingly is black beans, followed by dark red kidney beans. My choice in potatoes is a sweet potato or yam, followed at a distance by new red-potatoes with the skins left on. My choice in rice is brown rice. However, I make sure I do not eat carb loaded foods at every meal (bread, pasta, rice, potatoes, beans). I don’t eliminate carbs because many of them are healthy, but I never-ever eat them at three meals a day, seldom at two.
There are whites in dairy. I eat dairy, including white milk, mostly low-fat. NO, I do NOT stir in chocolate syrup to make milk non-white. LOL Aside from it being an excellent source of protein, I’ve been diagnosed with hypo-thyroidism which has added to my difficulty in losing weight over the years. In America, dairy products have iodine in them and the thyroid needs iodine to function properly. Salt also contains iodine. It’s my choice for me to cut way down on salt, because I also in recent years have had a tendency toward high blood pressure. Since I changed my diet and have lost so much weight, I was able to come off high cholesterol statin meds, which have negative side effects but do prevent heart attacks and strokes. It’s my goal, as I continue to loose weight, that I’ll get off my high blood pressure meds.
Various conditions require the elimination of certain foods that might be healthy for everyone else. Thyroid is one of those conditions and there are others. I find Dr. Colbert is very good in explaining this, so is Dr. Oz.
Never say never! I’m addicted to and drink un-sweetened iced tea with LOTS of lemon slices squeezed in and seltzer water with unsweetened flavor added (lemon/lime, berry, and the like). I keep my house well stocked with these. I was addicted to Diet Coke, and will on occasion order that in a restaurant, despite it being loaded with the dreaded aspartame. I don’t purchase Diet Coke in the grocery or keep it in my house. That’s the key, don’t keep it in your house. If you have others living with you, you need to enlist their support. Have a family meeting, get everyone to pray over healthy eating issues.
I’m not a killjoy. After church on Sunday I often go to lunch with a friend. I attempt to choose wisely, but have been known to order a burger with fries. On my birthday, I indulge in a slice of birthday cake. At another’s birthday party, I’ll also have a slice of cake. Ditto for rich foods and dessert on major holidays. Did you know January 22nd is National Blonde Brownie Day? No, I do not eat blonde brownies on Jan 22. Nor do I indulge on National Chocolate Cake Day. I’m also not diabetic and can recuperate from an occasional unhealthy sugar and starch laden meal.
1 Corinthians 5:8 [KJV] ~ Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.
All of my novels have a food angle to them. The1940s, historical Sanctuary Point mystery series presents families sitting down at the dinner table enjoying hearty meat and potatoes fare…not to mention the strudel, cake, and cookies. This depicts how people ate in that era.
My contemporary novel, HARMFUL INTENT, and my first indie endeavor, features a heroine who likes to eat. While Veronica “Ronnie” Ingels, PI, is fit and trim, she can hold her own at the table and what she eats isn’t necessarily healthy. However, in the course of the investigation she takes an organic cooking class and is surprised by how tasty the meal is. The next time the reader sees Ronnie, she’s sleuthing away in the second book of the series, DEADLY DESIGNS (coming out at the end of the year)…and she’s had a change of culinary lifestyle. She’s taken a few health-conscious cooking classes. Her diet has changed and she now knows her way around the kitchen.
Although this recipe for Summer Garden “Cerviche” isn’t written about in either novel, it’s wonderful for adding vegetables and fruit to the diet. Vegetables and fruit are essential in fighting the battle of the bulge as well as fostering all over health.
Feeds 2-3 people (can easily be doubled)
1/8 C virgin olive oil
1 juice of one lemon with some pulp, remove seeds
1/4 C red onion, coarsely chopped
1 ear of corn, shelled
1/2 cucumber, seeded, and cut into small bite size pieces
1 banana pepper, cut in half, seeded, and cut into small bite size pieces
1/3+ C of mango and papaya chunks, removed from a can or jar of Dole Tropical Fruit
3 Tbps of juice from Dole Tropical Fruit
4-5 small fresh basil leave, cut into slivers
salt and pepper to taste
Ceviche has heat. See note at bottom.
Combine all the fruit and vegetable ingredients and the slivered basil leaves in a glass bowl.
In another small bowl whisk together the olive oil, lemon juice with some pulp, 3 Tbsp juice from Dole Tropical Fruit, and the salt and pepper. Pour over the vegetables and fruit mixture. Gently fold in and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 2 hours.
Heat note: There are several ways to add heat. If you seed and slice 1 jalapeno pepper into slivers and marinade it with the vegetables and fruit for the entire 2 hours, there will be a great deal of heat. The slivered jalapeno can be mixed through right before serving for less heat. Or you can place a gourmet bottle of your favorite hot sauce on the table and heat can be added individually according to taste.
Chill a footed desert glass (or a martini glass, or margarita glass). Remove vegetables and fruit with a slotted spoon, draining well, and place into serving glasses. Serve cold.
Fitness Tip: increase walking. Take a stroll in the evening after you’ve digested your dinner. Walk you dog.
Note: Make sure you’re well hydrated. Take a bottle of water along for the walk.
It’s always advised for individuals to consult their doctor before going on any diet or exercise routine, and before making lifestyle changes.