#2 – Do a Little bit of Exercise First Thing in the Morning
Now if you’re anything like me, some mornings getting out of bed means a lot of aches, pains and creaking joints.
So when I say that you should get moving early…you might be shaking your head right now.
But hear me out for just a moment…
Getting about 5 minutes of vigorous movement first thing in the morning will CHANGE your entire day.
First, it wakes you up and prepares you to be active.
Second…and more importantly…it actually helps your body to burn fat all day long.
When you start your day off with some simple movement—you lower your insulin levels almost immediately.
This is a great thing.
You see, insulin is the fat-storing hormone. When you have too much insulin—your body stores everything you eat as fat. A little bit of vigorous exercise has been shown to help promote lower insulin levels so your body burns fat all day long…instead of storing it.
Usually, I recommend that my clients start their day off with a series of 4-minute exercise videos that I designed specifically to help folks over 30 boost their metabolism and start burning extra calories.
Let’s talk more about that in a second.
…who am I?
I'm Craig Ballantyne and in the rest of this article, I'm going to reveal a few simple strategies you can use to re-shape your body this year. I think you're really going to enjoy this so keep reading!
I’m an exercise specialist and body-transformation expert and I’m going to tell you about my revolutionary 3-step approach for melting away stubborn fat that hangs around your belly, arms, thighs and legs.
This unique approach has already helped thousands of people around the world get the body they want—and deserve.
Now I promise…these 3 secrets aren’t your regular old weight loss tips.
My research and articles have been featured in:
Women’s Health, Men’s Health, Oxygen, National Geographic and more…
So if you’re struggling with an extra pinch of fat around your waist and want to lose 10 pounds or more…pay very close attention.
If you’ve tried and failed at losing weight before then you know how frustrating and discouraging it can be.
I get it.
But I want you to know that there is a pretty simple answer that can work for anyone.
Today, I’m going to show you my unique 3-step approach that I’ve used to help thousands of my clients get their ideal body.
It’s my responsibility and my mission to share these powerful weight loss principles so you can start seeing and feeling the difference.
Right now I’ll reveal exactly how my strategy works.
To show you the 3 secrets you should know, I’ve got to tell you a story about one of my most difficult to help clients, Catherine.
Her struggle is like so many other folks I’ve seen.
When Catherine found me online she thought she had all the answers to weight loss.
She had been trying and failing to lose weight for years. She’d been on more diets than she could count. She’d rotate diets, repeat diets, fall off the dieting wagon and climb back on again.
Unfortunately, Catherine thought she had all the right information.
She thought maybe it was her fault that these diets didn’t work. And she wondered why the results (if they came at all) never seemed to last more than a month.
She thought that she was buying all “healthy” foods because the labels said so. She bought “low fat”, “low carb”, “gluten-free”, “all-natural”, and more.
She thought that she needed to run on the treadmill because doing lots of cardio was the key to losing weight.
She knew that she needed to count calories because if she starved herself enough, she could lose weight. Catherine wondered what she was doing wrong. She usually lost a few pounds with a new diet or exercise plan—but that weight ALWAYS came back.
“Is it just because I’m getting older?”
“Do I just not have enough willpower?”
“What am I doing wrong?!”
Like a lot of clients I’ve helped over the years, Catherine had been brainwashed by the gimmicky solutions and the “miracle” cures. Those things never worked or else Catherine wouldn’t have found me. Look, I totally understand how tempting those quick fixes can be. When I see my clients struggle to feel happy and comfortable in their body, I feel their pain.
And when people are in pain…the promise of an easy solution sounds like an escape route.
And that’s where Catherine was.
You see—all that extra weight had her totally depressed. She was embarrassed in front of her co-workers, her friends, her family and even her husband.
She hated the way she looked in her clothes and she HATED shopping for new clothes when she outgrew the old ones because she felt like everyone was staring at her and judging her as the lazy fat person.
Before Catherine found me…she tried almost everything.
At first, she had good results on a very popular NO-CARB diet. Those diets are very seductive because they’re so easy to understand. Don’t eat carbs…lose weight.
Sounds simple right?
Simple but NOT EASY.
This diet meant that Catherine couldn’t have fruit, bread, pasta, pizza or chocolate.
That sounds terrible.
Catherine was so unhappy giving up all of her favorite foods so she didn’t last long on the no-carb plan.
Then she decided she was going to exercise away all that extra weight…
Everyday for weeks, she spent more than an hour per day in the gym. She spent hundreds of dollars on personal trainers, specialized classes and gym memberships.
She tried everything—Yoga Sculp, Zumba, Spin Classes, boot camps, and pounding away on a treadmill.
That sounds painful huh?
And here’s the most painful part…
&hellipdespite all of Catherine’s hard work—she still hadn’t lost any weight! Some of her muscles got bigger from the exercise, but the stubborn fat was STILL THERE.
All that money she spent at the fitness club was a total waste.
In my 15 years as an exercise specialist, I’ve made it clear to my clients that diet matters just as a much as exercise.
I like to think of them as two wheels on a bicycle. If both wheels are taken care of…the bike rides smooth. Neglect either and the bike doesn’t get you anywhere!
After her low-carb and exercise struggles…Catherine was getting desperate. She had a big family reunion to go to and she wanted to look good before she saw all of her relatives.
So she tried the most extreme plan of all…NO SOLID FOOD for a month. A 30-day Juice Cleanse.
Catherine just wanted to look and feel good. She didn’t want to deal with anybody’s criticism or judgment—especially not her family’s.
I don’t even need to tell you how the cleanse went. She felt terrible: moody, angry, hungry and tired. By the third day she was dreaming about solid food.
By the 5th day she had to give it up.
And Catherine’s struggles didn’t end there. Next she tried one of the most popular diet programs she’d seen advertised on TV. You know…the one with a bunch of celebrity endorsements.
So she followed it religiously:
- She counted every single calorie
- She bought those annoying little 100-calorie snack packs
- She paid to attend a weekly support group
Great news! She actually lost about 9 pounds. But counting calories, recording her progress and attending all those meetings was expensive and time consuming.
Catherine felt like she gave up her entire life just to follow the program. And it was very embarrassing when she went out with friends and could only order a side portion while everybody else loved their entrees.
Not just that…but her cravings were out of control. One day, Catherine found herself lost in a daydream about a brownie for almost 15 minutes before she snapped out of it.
Catherine was pretty happy with her progress, but like a lot of other people that follow painful restrictive diets…she broke the rules and all her hard work went up in smoke.
One cheat snack turned into a cheat meal which turned into a cheat day which turned into a cheat week and VOILA…all the weight she lost was back—with interest!
Before she knew it, Catherine was going back to her old clothes in the closet, unbuttoning the top button of her jeans and going one notch looser on her belt.
Her story is very common. I see it all the time with my clients.
That’s why most dieters end up gaining all the weight they lost. Even worse than that…many of them actually put on more weight than they lost.
That means less than 10% of people succeed with the most popular diets out there. Those are TERRIBLE and alarming statistics!
Because of all her struggles…Catherine was skeptical of anything that she hadn’t heard about before. And I realized that in order to get her to try out my 3-step approach that had already helped many people lose weight once and for all, I had to PROVE to her that all those gimmicks and fad diets were actually hurting her body.
First – I told her that she shouldn’t count calories ever again. Catherine was shocked…she said: “what do you mean? I have to count calories to lose weight.”
Second – I told her to take it easy on the exercise. No more long, slow and boring cardio for an hour or more. I explained to her that it’s impossible to out exercise a bad diet. Jogging can help…but it takes too much time to be worth it.
Again, Catherine was shocked.
It was obvious to me at that moment just how well all that TV advertising had brainwashed Catherine. The diet industry in America is HUGE and they spend a fortune every year on beautiful, exciting commercials designed to sell you these fad diets and fake health foods.
I know that Catherine needed to see the results I was talking about to become a believer in my method. Nothing short of seeing her body change in the mirror would convince her.
So first I asked her what she normally ate for breakfast. She said she ate healthy: “a glass of pure orange juice, a bowl of whole-grain cereal and two slices of whole-wheat toast with low-fat margarine.”
Then I asked her what else she did in the morning…
…she told me she got ready for work and hopped in the car to her stressful commute.
I asked her if she was willing to try—just for a week—to make 2 simple changes in her morning routine to see if they helped. She agreed so I put together a very simple plan for her.
Each morning, instead of eating her normal breakfast, I had her prepare a delicious protein shake that contained more than 20 grams of protein. She tried:
- Chocolate Banana and Pear Shake…
- Frosty Cinnamon Smoothie…
- Apricot Nectarine Smoothie…
- And a few others
Then, she did 4 minutes of exercise. That’s it, just 4 minutes of movement in the morning.
She didn’t run on a treadmill. She just did a series of gentle movement patterns that anybody could do.
…I told her to skip running on the treadmill for the week.
When I told her these suggestions, Catherine was skeptical. Which made sense based on what she thought was the right way to lose weight.
You see—breakfast is one of the most important meals of the day but most people totally eat the wrong stuff.
More on that in a second.
But despite her skepticism, Catherine agreed to try out this plan for 7 days. She enjoyed a delicious protein-rich shake and did 4 minutes of exercise each morning.
And the next week, Catherine looked and felt different. And better!
She had lost weight and felt way better than she had in years.
Also…she didn’t have to count calories or worry about her other meals for that week.
I was thrilled for Catherine but not at all surprised by her results.
Let’s take Catherine’s normal breakfast and talk about it for a moment. I wouldn’t be surprised if you had a similar breakfast every morning…
- 1 Big Glass of Pure Orange Juice
- 2 Slices of Whole-Wheat Toast with Low-Fat Margarine
- 1 Bowl of Whole-Grain Cereal
First, even though commercials say orange juice is a healthy way to start your day, it is NOT.
It’s actually really bad for your body.
Well…the problem isn’t the fruit.
The problem is the way the juice is made. Most juice manufacturers remove the fiber during the process. And that fiber is what protects you from having a massive spike in blood sugar when you eat the fruit. But with the fiber taken out, all you have left is sugar water that puts your body into fat-storing mode first thing in the morning.
So when Catherine drank that class of OJ, she immediately sent her blood sugar sky-high and caused her body to release a flood of the hormone insulin to lower it.
Remember—insulin is a hormone that causes your body to store fat.
More Insulin = More Fat.
Now when Catherine had those two slices of whole-wheat toast and the cereal the same thing happened. All of those carbohydrates in the bread made her blood sugar spike and her insulin rise.
That sent a clear signal to her body to store it ALL AS FAT.
Now maybe you knew that high carb foods like this can make you gain weight but if you’re like me, you love these foods and don’t want to give them up.
Well, you don’t have to.
I’ll explain more about that in a minute.
When Catherine took my advice and swapped out her fat-storing breakfast for delicious, protein-rich shakes for a week something amazing happened.
Her body did not go into fat storing mode first thing in the morning.
In fact, because protein is a dense nutrient…it takes more energy for your body to digest it…which means you burn more calories (and fat) naturally.
Plus the protein made Catherine feel very full and satisfied.
So after that first week on the program Catherine felt and looked way better…she lost weight and was excited for step 2.
She came back to me and asked me what to do next.
Here’s what I had her do.NEXT PAGE: Here are steps 2 and 3 to help lose stubborn belly fat.