1. Everyday foods
2. Sometimes foods
3. Occasional foods
- Everyday foods: I can eat foods from this group every single day because they 1) taste good and 2) are good for me. These foods tend to be relatively low in calories, high in protein, and low in saturated fat, contain low-to-moderate carbs, and consist of little-to-no sugar.
- Sometimes foods: I can eat foods from this group 2-3 times a week (in modest portions). These foods may not be as healthy as everyday foods, but they aren’t junk food either. They are generally slightly higher in calories, fats or carbs than my every day foods. Sometimes foods are great because they allow a little variety throughout the week so that I don’t have to eat perfectly at every single meal.
- Occasional foods: I can eat foods from this group occasionally (usually once or twice a week) because they provide significantly less nutritional value than every day and sometimes foods. Yep, you guessed it; this category includes foods that are high in calories, saturated fat, carbs, and/or sugar. Processed foods (anything that is not in its original natural state) also fall in this group.
As I think back, I realize I could stand to eat less meat and dairy/cheese (hard on the digestive system) and I could afford to cut back on salt and my gluten intake too (causes inflammation of the stomach). I've also said "yes" when I should have said "no thank you" to the snack cart at work and eaten out more than ususal. The bottom line is: I need to be more diligent if I want to meet my goals. Sometimes it's the little things that add up and bite you in the butt! Contrary to what you might have heard, flat abs are not built in the gym. Oh yeah and you can't spot reduce. Whoever says you can is lying to you.
While you can target where you build muscle, you can't control where the fat comes off -- your body's fat burning process is largely influenced by genetics, gender and age (click here for an article on this) --but if your are consistent with the fundamentals, that stomach will flatten!
Your best bet is to: 1) clean up your diet -- that's 70% of the equation, 2) get in 30 minutes of cardio 5 days/week, 3) strength train your upper and lower body twice a week. These things promote FAT LOSS and that is the secret to flat abs.
This is my plan for the summer and I'm sticking to it! Will you join me?