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Tag Archives: patient support

Weight Maintenance Strategies

Posted on August 29, 2016 by

“It’s ironic that we foinspiredcus on weight loss, when the longest phase of your journey is maintenance!”  

Your road to weight loss was challenging and required tremendous discipline.  Now, you’ve reached the Maintenance Phase.  This phase is a bit different than weight loss and requires some different skills. Here are a few weight maintenance strategies to help keep that weight off for good!

The 6 Keys to Long-Term Weight Control:

EATING:

*Think PROTEIN first because it’s satisfying and harder to digest. Protein also increases the release of hormones that promote weight loss:  growth hormone (helps to preserve lean body mass and keep metabolism up) and glucagon (tells the body to mobilize fat).

*Follow a structured pattern of eating:  Breakfast, Lunch, and Supper with small snacks in between.

*Don’t swear off dessert entirely.  Use the 3-bite rule.

*Avoid banking calories:  It’s ineffective to starve all day so you indulge at your favorite restaurant for supper.  This is a recipe for disaster because going hungry for several hours sets you up for a pig-out.

*The Scale:  Weight yourself twice a week.

*Go back to basics:  If you’ve put on weight, try doing a mini jump start (Weight & Inches shakes).

*Remember the CONCEPT of eating:  “How little can I eat and still be satisfied?”

DRINKING:

*We can’t survive without water and should be drinking throughout the day.  Surgical patients, however, shouldn’t drink and eat simultaneously. Staying hydrated with water can prevent mindless snacking/overeating. Carbohydrates and calories in alcoholic drinks add up quickly. Drink in moderation.

VITAMINS:

*Everyone should take pharmaceutical grade vitamins, especially if you’re restricting your calories.

*1st Tier Vitamins:  Multivitamin and Essential Fatty Acid (EFA’s.)

2nd Tier Vitamins:  B-Complex, magnesium, and Vit. D (about half the population is deficient).

SLEEPING:

*The most successful patients who have lost weight and maintained get 7 or more hours a sleep every night.

*Sleep is needed to recover from the day.

*Cortisol levels will remain elevated from sleep deprivation and make weight loss even more difficult.

EXERCISE:

*Exercise becomes even more essential during the maintenance phase of weight loss.

*It helps you preserve lean body mass and keep metabolism up (especially resistance training).

* Concentrate your workouts:  quality is more important than quantity.  Even 15 minutes of out-of-your-comfort-zone exercising can help maintain your fitness level.

*Pick activities you enjoy:  If dancing to Latin music in a zumba class sounds nightmarish, choose another format like Boot Camp or a High Intensity Interval class (HITT).  If you’re an avid outdoors person, find good running/walking trails, go hiking, or biking.

PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY:

*Make a conscious decision every morning to stay on track and focus on staying healthy.

*Surround yourself with supportive people.

*Reward Yourself:  It’s fun to set personal goals and reward yourself along the way. But, it’s too risky to reward yourself with food.  For every 3 months of weight maintenance, you could go to the movies, buy a new outfit, or take a little vacation.

Weight maintenance is often more challenging than weight loss.  Ultimately, no one can do this but you.  We will help you and support you, but we can’t do the work for you.  If you’re continuing to struggle, call and set an appointment with one of the CFWLS counselors to get back on track.

If you bite it, you must write it…

Posted on July 11, 2016 by

Weight Loss Mobile appYour food diary is a vital tool on your journey to lose weight.  Technological advances have made journaling so much easier and convenient.  Have you downloaded our free mobile app?  It tracks your food & fitness as well as water & weight loss progress!  Don’t have a smart phone? Good old fashioned pen and paper work just fine too. Some people claim that journaling is time-consuming and cumbersome.  The facts are that people who keep daily food diaries are much more successful with weight loss than those who don’t document.

Keeping a generic diary to record feelings and events can help with expressing emotions, aid in self-growth, and appreciating success and mistakes. Use a food/drink journal to increase awareness of your emotions in addition to what you’re putting in your mouth.  Here’s our top 5 reasons to keep a food diary:

  1. Helps to identify areas where changes need to be made
  2. Makes you cognizant of stressful, mindless eating
  3. Helps to pinpoint patterns of over-eating
  4. Provides an understanding of the source of calories
  5. Reveals where the surplus or deficit (protein or carbs) is

Dr. Clark and the counselors at the Center for Weight Loss Success especially want our patients to document protein, carbohydrates, and calories. We’re better able to provide support and assistance if we know exactly what you’re ingesting.

Don’t let the amount of calories you consume and where they’re coming from be a big mystery. Knowledge is power, and hiding from the truth isn’t going to bring you any closer to your ideal weight.  A recent study revealed people who kept a food journal six days a week lost almost twice as much as those who only recorded one day or less. This information is very impactful and advantageous. If you’re walking through the kitchen and feel like reaching for a cookie, you might think again if you have to record it!

Be accurate and honest when recording in your food diary.  If it goes in your mouth, it must be recorded.  All the “extras” add up.  For example, we recently had a medical client who was faithfully recording everything he ate daily, or so we thought.  It turned out, he had neglected to write down the dried cranberries he was sprinkling on his salad every day.  Those additional 25 grams of carbs and 20 grams of sugar made a big difference with his weight loss. Once discovered, the scale started moving again!

Tracking your intake may seem a bit time-consuming but pays big dividends and becomes easier with each passing day.  Take charge of your health!

Download the CFWLS free mobile app for iPhone at the App Store or for Androids at the Marketplace.

Low Carb Chicken Noodle Soup

Posted on April 29, 2016 by

Gluten-free and packed with protein!

Ingredientschicken noodle soup

4 cups chicken broth

1 lb chicken breasts, chopped (about 4)

1 cup celery, chopped

1 medium zucchini, sliced & quartered

1 medium onion, chopped

1 clove garlic, minced

2 packets of Fettuccine Pasta (available at CFWLS)

¼ tsp basil

¼ tsp oregano

1 tsp black pepper

Salt & pepper to taste

 

Directions

  1. Combine chicken, broth, celery, zucchini, onions and garlic in large saucepan. Make certain that all ingredients are covered with liquid (add water if necessary).
  2. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Add pasta and reduce heat to medium.
  3. Cook until pasta is done and season with oregano.
  4. Serve immediately and season with salt & pepper.

 

Makes 4 servings

Nutrition Facts:

Calories 228

Total Fat 4g

Total Carbohydrates 8g

Dietary Fiber 3g

Protein 38.5g

Print Recipe Low Carb Chicken Noodle Soup

When Your Doctor Doesn’t Agree With Weight Loss Surgery

Posted on April 25, 2016 by

Does your doctor mention weight loss as a solution for your ailments, aches and complaints? If obesity related diseases are problematic or your body mass index exceeds a healthy range, your doctor may refer you to a weight loss specialist or nutritionist.  You, like the majority of people with weight issues have tried numerous diet plans, most resulting in failure at long-term results. You’ve possibly even considered weight loss surgery. Do you know if your doctor is on board with surgical weight loss options?  We receive patient referrals from many practices but some doctors are not in favor of the surgical option. Their bias may be based on lack of research or experience with patients who have had successful weight loss procedures. Seeking a second opinion is common-place in the medical field. Don’t be afraid to keep looking.

At CFWLS, we encourage people considering weight loss surgery to be their own best advocate for personal health. Gather the information necessary to have an educated discussion with your doctor. Watch our Weight Loss Surgery WebClass or attend one of our free Weight Loss Surgery Seminars  to get started.

The medications that are prescribed to combat high cholesterol, diabetes, hyper-tension and other conditions often simply mask the symptoms while failing to get to the heart of the problem. Losing weight and keeping it off may result in eliminating these medications from your daily routine! The benefits don’t stop there, you may notice less joint pain, more energy, better sleep and a host of other positive outcomes!

CFWLS StaffFinding an experienced, board-certified Bariatric Surgeon who can answer your questions and explain your options to you is imperative. A comprehensive post-surgical follow-up plan will provide your best possible long-term outcome. Your search may be over. Dr. Thomas W. Clark is double board certified as a surgeon and Bariatrician. He has performed nearly 5,000 weight loss procedures and has dedicated almost 25 years to helping people lose weight and learn how to keep it off for life. His experienced staff will guide you and help you enjoy the process along the way!

Having a supportive doctor is important, but ultimately, it’s your body and Weight Loss Surgery is a personal choice. Do your research and obtain all pertinent information. Weigh the risks versus the benefits. Make an informed decision. Schedule a call with our office manager, Cat Williamson, to discuss your next step.

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Boot Camp – A Workout for All Ages and Stages

Posted on February 01, 2016 by

BOOT CAMP BASICSI’ve been a fitness instructor for 27 years. I teach 12 classes a week, 8 different formats, to clients of all ages and fitness levels. Class participants often ask about my favorite class format. I always hesitate because I enjoy all my classes, but my secret favorite is BOOT CAMP! Just the name sounds intimidating to most people. This class is a combo of cardio and strength training and torches fat and calories. But is it really for EVERYONE?

Many people tell me they will come to boot camp once they got in better shape! That seems oxymoronic since fitness classes are meant to get people in shape. The mind set is that the class is so challenging that it can’t be attempted until a certain fitness level is achieved first. Well, I’m going to debunk that myth. First of all, we all have to start somewhere with our fitness level. You challenge yourself and do what you’re able. I don’t expect perfection in my classes. What I expect is effort.

Everyone needs to step out of their comfort zone and attempt the challenges. If it doesn’t challenge you it won’t change you. Safety is number one and it’s perfectly acceptable to modify any of the moves. I have a variety of participants from beginners to triathletes in my class.

Boot camp is a great workout because:
1. Burns a lot of calories and promotes weight loss.
2. It’s diverse, yet intense.
3. Most of the workout is timed so you can go at your own pace.
4. All the moves can easily be modified.
5. There’s no choreography. It’s straight-forward, challenging but easy- to-follow moves.
6. Variety—it’s hard to get bored in this class! Different types of equipment are used: balls, Bosu’s, steps, gliders, and more.
7. Built in rest periods.
8. East to check your progress from week-to-week.
9. Comprehensive—you get everything you need in one workout and it’s highly effective in burning calories and fat. It incorporates strength training, cardio, speed, agility, power, flexibility, and more!
10. It doesn’t require much coordination.

The following people may NOT be good candidates for this class:
1. People with hypostatic hypertension or veritigo.
2. People with serious orthopedic problems—knee or back issues.
3. Pregnant women.

Examples of Modifications:
1. Wall push-ups in place of regular pushups (or on the knees).
2. Wall squats in place of standard squats (lower down as far as you can).
3. Stepping up and down on the step in place of jumping.
4. Floor touches instead of Burpees (or extending one leg at a time).

Boot camp classes should be designed to accommodate and challenge all fitness levels. It’s important to trust and enjoy your instructor. Shelly Thomas teaches Boot Camp every Saturday at 8:30 here at CFWLS. The members are thoroughly enjoying the class along with Shelly’s fun personality and expertise. Come join the fun every Saturday. It will be the perfect start to you day!

Arlyne Spalla-Benson, LWMC, CPT

***Watch for word on our Self-Defense Boot Camp course coming up soon!  This will be a 4-week course taught by Shelly Ann Thomas – beginning March 16th!  Sign up in the Nutrition Store or call us at 757-873-1880.  Price for WLF & WMU Members is $20 – Non-Members are welcome too for just $40!***

Weight Loss Surgery Success – Ideas to Use Right Now to Lose Weight

Posted on January 13, 2016 by

Motivation Matters In Achieving Your Goals

Posted on December 28, 2015 by

inspiredAnd maintaining that motivation is key to success. As the New Year approaches, most of us find ourselves looking ahead and contemplating some type of change.  Generally, one of our goals involves weight loss or some other health-related change. Sometimes the changes we propose can seem overwhelming. The following tips can help you stick to your fitness/wellness program:

1. When it comes to fitness – start slowly. We are all anxious to get moving and see results, but your body needs to adjust to your new routine. Make sure you begin every workout with a warm-up to get the muscles moving. Then start off with 30 minutes of cardio or light weights – walking, biking, a machine circuit or low-impact exercise class. Gradually increase your workouts as your endurance increases.

2. Take a mental picture! Every day take time for yourself to visualize your new healthier, happier self. Close your eyes, relax and see yourself at your desired weight, and feel how happy you will be when you finally achieve that goal. Many athletes practice this to achieve their goals and you can too..

3. Seek Inspiration. There is nothing wrong with maintaining your motivation with inspirational quotes posted where you can see them throughout your day.  Sometimes it’s just what you need to see to get you back on your feet and focused.

4. Stay Balanced. Success isn’t all or nothing – you will be more successful with your diet and exercise program if you start to make small changes in your lifestyle.  Small changes add up to big results! If you miss a day of exercising or eat something off your program occasionally, don’t overreact. Just get back on track the next day and continue with your fitness routine. Keep your eye on the goal and you will be successful!

5. Make it fun! The time goes by faster when walking with a friend for conversation and mutual support. If you like to exercise alone, consider this time for yourself. Crank up your favorite tunes and feel the energy! When you enjoy your fitness program, you are more likely to keep it up.

6. Weigh in Weekly. The daily fluctuation in your weight is normal and it’s easy to get too wrapped up in the numbers.  Increasing your lean body mass takes time and it won’t show up in those daily trips to the scale. Try to focus on improving your overall fitness and feeling healthy & happier in the New Year. Don’t get discouraged if the numbers move slowly! Keep focused on your exercise and workouts and it won’t be long before you see results.

7. Listen to your Body. No one time is perfect to exercise. If you are a “morning person” get up 1/2 hour earlier and do your workouts in the morning when you energy is at peak level. If you stay up (or get up) late, you would probably do better to exercise in the evenings. Work with your own personal body rhythm to keep your enthusiasm up.8. Consider a Personal Trainer or Health Coach. A personal trainer/health coach can really help keep you on track. We have some of the best trainers in Hampton Roads right here at CFWLS.  They can work with you to create an exercise plan that is right for you.  Our nutritional coaches can teach you what you need to know to feel your best and get that scale moving in the right direction.

 

 

Healthy Holiday Tips

Posted on December 07, 2015 by

healthy-holidaysMost of you know me as a pretty quiet guy.  Although this is true, I still like to attend parties with friends/family.  I am a firm believer in working hard…and playing hard.  When you attend parties, you should focus on the “fun” aspect and not the “fear” aspect of how you may end up derailing your best weight loss efforts and have regrets the next day.  Here’s my “do’s and don’ts” for attending holiday parties with confidence and no diet regrets:

1. Don’t go to parties because you have to…Do go because you want to.  There’s a big  difference and you have a choice.  Surround yourself with the people you love.  If excess baggage comes along with the ones you love…minimize your exposure…I know – easier said than done sometimes!

2. Don’t go to parties hungry…Do have a bottle of water before you attend and a healthy snack such as cheese wrapped in turkey, handful of almonds or a protein bar before you get there so you are not ravenous.

3. Don’t eat the first items you see…Do take the time to peruse what’s on the buffet table and determine which have the highest quality protein (beef, chicken, shrimp, cheese, fish) and select these first.  Combining these choices with your pre-party snack can fill you up so that other temptations don’t bother you so much.

4. Don’t exclude items you desire this time of the year…Do take a very small portion of them so that you can avoid feeling deprived and move on.

5. Don’t be a wallflower…Do mingle and talk with others.  If your mouth is busy talking, it is harder to keep if full chewing and swallowing.

6. Don’t drink excessively…Do have a drink if you desire.  Too much alcohol isn’t good…period.  It also lowers your resistance to “go wild” and sabotage yourself which is sure to cause regret.

7. Don’t select your spot for fun right near the food…Do mingle around and settle in a location where you can talk with everyone but not have food ‘staring you down’.

8. Most importantly, relax and have fun.  Try to take a deep breath as the stress begins and focus on enjoying this time as much as possible and those you may not get to see on a regular basis.

Enjoy this holiday season!  From our family to yours…Merry Christmas and Cheers to a Healthy New Year!

How Healthy Are Your Holiday Traditions?

Posted on November 30, 2015 by

Holiday traditions are often based on recipes that have been handed down through generations and those memories that cling to the scents and sights of particular foods. Why should this year be any different? You’ve sifted through your favorite family recipes and all you see is sugar, butter & flour, right?  Don’t get discouraged – by making some substitutions, you may be able to enjoy them after all!

Using artificial sweeteners is tholiday_traditionshe most obvious switch. It seems like there are new options on the shelf every week but, not all sweeteners are the same!  If the dish you are making will not be cooked or baked, you are safe to use your favorite no-cal sweetener.  Baking or cooking is another matter – Splenda is one of the few that holds up under heat. Use the type that is specifically made for baking and cooking as it measures differently than what’s in the little yellow packets.

You might be able to cut back on the butter or shortening in some of the recipes.  Butter used for cooking shares its flavor well and you may not miss the extra fat.  Applesauce or other pureed fruits are a common substitute for butter and oil in recipes but watch out for the extra carbohydrates, it may not be worth the switch. Using a low-fat dairy product in place of the heavier one is generally okay but you may notice a bit of difference in the texture of your dish.

Flour may be one of the trickiest to switch out and you may have to do a bit of experimenting before you are truly happy with the results, but there are many options on the market today.  Flour made from nuts has a forth of the carbohydrates that wheat flour has and has the benefit of added protein as well. Soy flour is a great option too, it contains just one third of the carbs in all-purpose flour. You can substitute (both nut & soy flour) 1/4 – 1/2 of the amount of flour in most muffins, cakes and cookies.  Whole wheat flour has more fiber than white flour so it lowers your effective carbohydrate count but cannot always be substituted one for one in recipes. Crushed nuts or some of our protein Biscotti work great as crusts for pies or cheesecakes!

There are several low-carb baking mixes available either online or in health food stores. The reviews are pretty good but I have not tried any of them.

Check out the recipes that we have already tested!  Many of them may be similar to what you are trying to recreate.  You will find a great selection on our blog at www.cfwls.com/blog/, website (search recipes) or on our Pinterest page at www.pinterest.com/cfwlsva/.

 

Weight Loss Surgery Success – 6 Tips to Avoid Overeating

Posted on November 25, 2015 by