Podcast 1: Controlling Weight and Maintaining Health through the Holidays – with fitness expert Debra Hammett

Posted by: Penny Rackley   |   Comments Off on Podcast 1: Controlling Weight and Maintaining Health through the Holidays – with fitness expert Debra Hammett   |  Posted on: Nov 20, 2015


In this episode, Certified Personal Trainer, Certified Nutritionist, Certified Yoga Instructor, Champion competitive body builder and CrossFit athlete Debra Hammett tells us how to enjoy the delicious temptations of the holidays, without losing control.

About Deb

How she became a trainer: I would rather help people eat good foods and still have a good life.

What inspires Deb about her job: Helping clients set a goal and meet that goal. I love to help them overcome their challenges, and that gets me excited.

Deb’s Holiday Strategies

About the holidays: We need a plan. There are going to be LOTS of temptations!

Tune into your own body, and think about your hunger levels. What items on the table do you really want a bite of? Those are the ones to put on your plate. If you love pie, enjoy it! But maybe you don’t need a whole piece of pie to get the experience.

If do have some, enjoy and savor every bite — the textures and the flavors, the whole experience. You’ll find you don’t need a big piece to get the experience and enjoyment.

When you are choosing your food, look at all that’s offered. Pick out the things you really want to try, get a little of it, and truly enjoy it.

Pay attention to your plate, and what’s going into your mouth instead of eating mindlessly, hand to mouth, hand to mouth. We want to avoid that opiate reaction.

Part of tuning in is eating more slowly. Try to remember to put your fork down or take breaths between each bite, so you can pay attention to what you’re consuming.

 — Eat until you’re 80% full. —

Ask yourself, how am I feeling right now? You don’t want that totally distended, crash on the sofa feeling where you’re napping in front of people. When you’re there at 80% full, slow down even more, and let your body digest a little bit. You’ll give your hunger hormones the chance to tell your brain that you’re it’s getting full.

Pay attention to your hunger cues. When you’re 80% full, there’s going to still be a lot of food sitting around. What do we do? Ask: Am I hungry?  Put your hunger on a 1-10 spectrum — 10 is super hungry, 1 is not at all. If you’re at a 7, have a little bit of something. If you’re a 3-4, wait a while.

This one day, it’s okay to have some of all the great food. One day does not make you fat or skinny. (So, if you run your 5K on Thanksgiving morning, it won’t make you skinny.)

— “We are what we consistently do.” —

Deb’s favorite quote is from Aristotle: “We are what we consistently do.” Therefore, excellence is not an act but a habit. It’s all about what we do consistently day after day.  Thanksgiving, Christmas, our birthday are only single days out of the year. We can handle that!

But if we celebrate all month, everyone else’s birthday and every other thing in between, we’ll run into problems.

On your one day, have your piece of cake and enjoy it! Then the next day, go back to your good habits — tuning into how hungry you are, making sure that the foods you eat are as healthy as possible, like switching to whole wheat pasta in your mac and cheese.

Remember, little changes over time make a big difference.

I tell about my connection to Deb – Our mutual love of Mexican food and margaritas! And how Deb inspired me and taught me to keep it real and under control!

One question Deb gets all the time: “Can I still have my glass of wine?” Yes! You can, It’s absolutely allowed. You just have to manage it. So, not a whole bottle of wine, but a glass.  As long as you pay attention to what you’re consuming, everything can fit in.


What Do We Do over the holidays?!

If you’re not already working out regularly, then just walk around the neighborhood. If it’s too cold, find a treadmill and do a walk, or use an elliptical machine if you have bad knees. There are a lot of options! Be sure to start slowly.

If you have been exercising, do what you normally do. Don’t do extra or go overboard. That’s when we start getting into bad habits that take us down bad roads.

If you need help understanding what to do in the gym, before the holidays is a best time to get a trainer on your side so that they can help you through this time of year. You’ll have someone to bounce ideas off of, and an ally in devising good strategies.

Getting Help from a Pro

If we’re looking for a trainer, Deb advises getting a referral from a friend. But before you hire the trainer, interview them in person and make sure they’re a good fit for you, because whomever you hire will be getting deep insight into your personal life!

Here are some things to ask:

– How do you plan for each client? A standardized program? Personalized for each individual based on their goals?

– What is your education and/or certifications? Find out how qualified they are to coach you about food and exercise.

At this point in the interview, I asked a question I already know the answer to, but was having some fun with Deb. I asked, “Are you a mean personal trainer? “ No! I smile quite a bit throughout the training session. Clients that come to me from previous personal trainers often comment that I laugh and smile during our sessions.

We have fun, but I also want my clients to know they’ve been challenged in our sessions. I’ve seen tears here and there, but I want the workouts to be challenging, not, “was that it?” I want my clients to know they worked hard that day.

I also asked: “How do you feel about whiners?” I wouldn’t have clients without them! We’ll work through the whining. It’s okay, we’ll still smile and laugh, and work hard.

For a free consultation, you can reach Deb at www.seriousresults.com or call her at 972-345-3569


Comments are closed.