Read this article on Women's heath. Found it apt and very interesting.
Successfully fit people are successful not because of good luck,
birth order, or family heritage but because they have adopted the right
habits. They do things differently than the rest.
To be a successful person, you must adopt the habits of success.
Stephen Covey's theories on learning from the habits of successful people in his book The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People
suggest that by emulating the habits of successful people, anyone can
enjoy the life he or she desires. Learn the habits, adopt the habits,
practice the habits, enjoy the success. It really is that basic. Here,
excerpted from Push by Chalene Johnson, the 10 eating habits of successfully fit people.
1. They Tend to Stick to the Same "Daily Menu"
The majority of fit people say they eat virtually the same meals
every day, mostly the same breakfast, same lunch, same dinner, and when
it comes to snacks and beverages . . . well, you guessed it, very
predictable food. To clarify, they did not suggest that they eat exactly
the same entree for every meal, but they often chose from three, maybe
four things that they like for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
There are three possible reasons behind this shared habit among
fitness professionals, individuals who have succeeded at taking off
100-plus pounds and keeping it off for years, and those who have been
trim all their lives.
First, it allows "careful" eaters to predict their daily calorie
allotment without much effort. Second, perhaps the most fit among us are
entrenched in habit, including the habit of taste. Third, effortlessly
fit folks are in tune with the energy and calorie needs of their bodies.
When they find foods that deliver what they need and that they enjoy,
why look further? Keep in mind, there's a fine line between careful
eating and disordered eating. The careful eater's diet is a habit and
not a matter of control or obsession.
2. They Eat Breakfast
This one common characteristic is nearly universal in statistical
studies of people who have achieved and maintained a large weight loss.
Eighty percent of those who have been able to maintain a weight loss of
at least 30 pounds for at least a year report that they always eat
breakfast. Research has consistently shown that the people who
successfully lose weight are the ones that wake up and eat! Furthermore,
people who eat breakfast regularly have better vitamin and mineral
status and eat fewer calories from fat. Experts agree that the majority
of people who struggle with overeating are those who undereat during the
first part of the day, specifically those who skip breakfast. So it
seems that breakfast really is the most important meal of the day!
Why does eating breakfast help people lose and ultimately maintain a
healthier weight? One theory suggests that eating a healthy breakfast
reduces hunger throughout the rest of the day, therefore decreasing the
likelihood of overeating and making poor food choices at lunch.
3. They Drink Water
Not soda. Not iced tea. Just plain old water. This is the biggie.
Drinking enough water is a vital part of any conditioning program
because it keeps your body functioning in homeostasis and aids every
aspect of bodily function. Highly successful fit people drink at least
six to eight 12-ounce glasses of water a day, plus more as needed during
exercise. Note: It's possible to drink too much water, which dilutes
the body's electrolytes (potassium, sodium, chloride, magnesium). Don't
drink more than a gallon a day unless you're also replenishing your
4. They Eat Small—And Often
Most people know that small, frequent meals are absolutely the only way
to go. Why? Because when we go longer than 3 hours without eating, our
levels of the stress hormone cortisol rise. And high cortisol levels
signal the body to store fat in the abdominal region. Keep in mind too
that people who skip meals have the highest cortisol levels of all!
Eating small meals more often reduces cortisol levels, research
suggests. In a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine,
people who ate six small meals a day for 2 weeks, as opposed to three
large meals containing the same total number of calories, reduced their
cortisol levels by more than 17 percent! They lost belly fat, too.
When you eat small, frequent meals long term, the body becomes
efficient at keeping cortisol levels low, which helps both men and women
reduce belly fat.
Eating throughout the day also makes you less tempted by the
monster-size buckets ofpopcorn and supersize fries and drink containers
that include triple and quadruple servings. Guided by their nutritional
needs and deeply rooted habit to eat small meals throughout the day, the
superfit stand steadfast, even in the face of a delicious, jumbo