Putting it Together

In this HeartStrong.com video/article, we are going to simply take all the concepts from the Phase 3 Healthy Eating Plan and the Phase 3 Exercise Plan and put it together in a schedule for you to follow.

Making Your Schedule – Healthy Eating

Just remember:

  • Continued emphasis on the whole foods plant based diet
  • Fish is reduced to only 1 serving per week
  • Increase fruit servings to 5-6 per day
  • Nuts/seeds no longer limited
  • One half of an avocado can be added every day (increased from every other day)
  • One serving of alcohol can be included daily (up from twice weekly)
  • Add in whole grain bread, brown rice or whole wheat pasta – not to exceed 2 servings per day

Scheduling Your Physical Activity

Just like you made a healthy eating schedule, make yourself a physical activity schedule as well. Be sure to follow the guidelines in the Phase 3 Physical Activity plan. Just find a way to add in 50 more minutes per week.

Putting it Together

Now you have your schedule set up, you should remember to check the boxes off as you go along and be sure to track your progress. Use a calendar to track your weight every day. Also, track your BMI at least once weekly and if you would like, your percent body fat. You know how to do this from all you have learned in the HeartStrong.com videos.

Once you meet these criteria, move to Phase 4:

  • Ability to maintain moderate intensity physical activity for 250 minutes per week
  • Ability to strength train twice per week
  • Body Mass Index (BMI) of 18.5-23
  • Ability to stick to the healthy eating plan
  • Complete a 5K or 10K, 25 mile bike, or a sprint triathlon (optional)

If your are struggling to get the weight off and get your BMI to the 18.5 – 23 range despite following the program strictly you have a couple options. First of course you should be seeing your physician to be sure there is no medical illness contributing. Most people will just need to cut out the alcohol if you increased it a bit in phase 3.

Take the time to really carefully re-examine the ingredients in everything you eat. You will find sweeteners and oil added in many subtle ways. Really think hard about everything you are putting in your mouth. Every drink, chewing gum and mint will count as they frequently will have added empty calories.

If you decided to juice as your snack or as a meal substitute, cut down the fruit in the juice and increase the vegetable content.

Keep going and you will get there eventually! Be persistent! It will be a great feeling to be able to say to yourself at the end of phase 3…”I am almost at my ideal bodyweight!!!!”

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