Chicago Personal Trainer Shares Tips On Making Your Diet Easier In 2012

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Craig Kastning, local Chicago personal trainer, shares his advice for making your diet easier to follow in the New Year. He owns one of the local Chi-Town Boot Camps, which offers affordable programs for people who want to get monthly meal suggestions and start going to the gym three times a week. Right now he is offering Groupon members a nutrition counseling session and week of boot camp classes for just $1

Weight loss is one of the top New Year’s resolutions for 2012. While many people flock to gym memberships in the first few months of the year, weight loss is actually 80 percent diet, says Craig Kastning, a Chicago personal trainer and owner of a Chi-Town Boot Camps fitness center. “I always tell my clients, ‘What good are rock-solid muscles if they’re obscured by fat?’ Weight loss starts in the kitchen,” he says. He shares the following tips to make healthy eating easier this year:

  •     Write it down!

“It seems crazy at first, but writing out every meal and snack you’ll have for the week makes it so much easier to grocery shop, avoid cravings and stick to your goals,” Kastning explains. “If you’re not exactly sure what you should be eating, come see me and we’ll draw up an entire month of meal suggestions for you, based on your medical history, preferences and goals.”

  •     Learn to love water with lemon!

“You’re downing 140 empty calories in every soda and it’s easy to lose track of how much you’re drinking amid a busy day. People often try to switch to diet soda, but it’s all sodium and the carbonation is a major cause of bloat.” Instead, he recommends adding a splash of lemon juice to water and drinking a full 8 glasses. “It’s important to remember that dehydration causes the body to hold onto every gulp of water you drink, so you really need to be drinking water before and after every meal. An added benefit is that it makes you feel fuller.”

  •     Be smart with your carbs!

“Some fad diets tell you to avoid carbs like the plague, but that’s not part of any Chicago personal trainer program. We say that carbs are not the enemy, but there is a right way and a wrong way to consume them. You want to make the switch from refined flour, pasta, rice and bread to complex carbohydrates like brown rice, whole grain pasta, whole wheat flour and whole wheat bread. That way, you’re getting more fiber, selenium, potassium, iron and magnesium. Whole grains are better for your insulin levels – which is good for diabetics – not to mention, it lowers both LDL and triglyceride levels – which is essential for cardiovascular health.” He adds that the best time of day to eat carbs is after a workout, and that it’s a good idea to always add protein along with a carb at meal times to keep insulin levels stable.

  •     Learn to beat those cravings!

“If you’re eating a well-balanced diet, cravings and insulin spikes become a thing of the past. Yet, sometimes you will get an occasional ‘taste’ for something and you need to know what to do when your body is dictating its wants. Many dieters fall off the wagon because they try to deprive themselves of everything, which eventually backfires.” Craig Kastning recommends eating light vanilla yogurt, a small piece of dark chocolate and cherry, or a mini bag of popcorn with a little sugar for a sweet tooth. For salt-lovers, try low-fat string cheese or soy nuts.

Craig invites people who are interested in getting a Chicago gym and personal trainer in 2012 to give him a call or visit his website at http://www.ChiTownBootCampsblog.com. He has one-on-one programs for people who want more individual attention or affordable group program for people who are on a budget. Groupon members can receive a week of free boot camp classes and a one-on-one nutrition counseling session for just $1.

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Sam Bakhtiar
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