Stay Slim for Good: AJ Cook's Success


Marc RoyceFrom Health magazineAfter five months on the feel great weight plan, AJ Cook is thrilled to have her body back. “I feel strong, and love the way I look now,” she says. In fact, because AJ has gained muscle, which weighs more than fat, her goal weight was adjusted a few pounds higher by Dream Team nutrition expert Alyse Levine, RD.

The next step for AJ (and everyone who has succeeded along with her) is to keep it all off. To make it easy, weve rounded up insider strategies—including how to grocery shop—to naturally keep pounds off.

#1 Ditch your “fat” clothes.
Not having anything in a larger size is a great incentive to maintain the size youre in now, Dream Team motivational expert Judith S. Beck, PhD, says. But keep one piece of clothing that you never want to have to wear again to remind yourself of all your progress and why its truly worth it to keep up the healthy eating-and-exercise habits.

#2 Join the portion-control patrol.
The fastest way to regain your lost weight is to stop paying attention to portions, Levine cautions. Stick with single-serving sizes.

#3 Head for the hills.
Walk or run on a hilly course, Dream Team fitness expert Keli Roberts says. Hills increase the intensity and calorie burn of your workouts and will keep your body challenged so you keep the weight off.

#4 Follow the 3-pound rule.
Its easy to fool yourself into thinking youre maintaining your weight when youre not, Beck says. Weigh yourself once a week at the same time. If you gain 3 pounds or more, go back on your plan.

#5 Squeeze in the burn.
You stay slender when you naturally add in bits of exercise whenever you can, Roberts says. A 5-minute toning session, a 10-minute walk, a few sets of stairs, some pacing on the phone—all of these count.

#6 Become a diet coach.
Giving a friend or family member advice about how to eat better (if she asks for it) will remind you of what you need to do, too, Beck says.

#7 Take 30 minutes.
Short on time? Roberts suggests this fat-blasting interval workout (you choose the activity): Warm up for 3–5 minutes at a slow to moderate pace. For the next 20 minutes, alternate 1 minute of high-intensity exercise (get breathless) with 1 minute at a lower intensity. Finish with a 2–3 minute cooldown. Dont have 30 minutes? Simply cut down the interval time to fit your schedule.