Gina Neely – charismatic star from TV show “Down Home with the Neelys” at Food Network – managed to lose almost 50 pounds during a five year period.
How did she do it?
To make a long story short, four important changes were crucial in making Gina Neely’s weight loss possible. She talks about it in the video clip below (where you also get some extra bonus tips for how to lose weight).
- Eating healthier
- Using a salad plate
- Drinking more water
- Started moving her body
But let’s back up, and take it from where this journey started. Motivation.
Where did she find the motivation to change her lifestyle? As she told Arian T. Moore at Faith & Fitness Magazine:
My motivation to lose weight was due to my annual [doctor’s] visit and my cholesterol was a little high and I wanted to make some changes to fix it.
Another factor that contributed was that her family had a history of high blood pressure. To deal with the cholesterol and blood pressure issues, she decided to make necessary changes.
By coincidence, she was approached by former heavyweight world champion boxer George Foreman right around that same time. He wanted her to participate in the 12 week long George Foreman Grills Weight Loss Challenge. And so she did.
By making changes in her daily life, pound after pound of excess weight started to disappear. Now five years later, Gina Neely is a changed person. She is almost 50 pounds lighter, has more energy, and she has also divorced from former husband and co-host Pat Neely.
How did Gina Neely Lose Weight?
Let’s dig deeper into the four changes she made that I mentioned earlier.
1. Eating healthier
One big change, that Gina probably from the George Foreman challenge, was to replace frying with grilling. By grilling her food, she completely cut out all the bad fats she would have used in the frying pan. The new lighter Gina Neely only fries food occasionally.
Gina eats a lot of seafood, fish in particular. It’s low on bad fats, and instead contains a lot of healthy omega-3s. She likes to grill salmon and halibut, and between meals she even eats tuna straight out of the can (when hunger cravings set in).
As far as meat goes, she has removed pork and beef, and replaced it with chicken and turkey. Grilled of course!
A couple of other eating habits she has:
- Never skips breakfast.
- Eats healthy snacks (and canned tuna) when she feels hungry.
- Fills her plate with vegetables first.
2. Using a salad plate
Portion control is absolutely crucial when you are trying to lose weight. By limiting your calorie intake, you will have a much better chance at succeeding.
Most people don’t get this. They continue to eat even after they are full. It’s called overeating.
Gina has solved this problem by using a salad plate instead of a normal dinner plate. Since salad plates are smaller than dinner plates, there is less room for food. And so she will not be tricked into overeating. Clever!
3. Drinking more water
Water is essential to life. If your body doesn’t get water, you will eventually die. As you understand, drinking enough of it is vital, especially if you want to burn fat.
Apart from its many life sustaining effects, water consumption also has these three advantages:
- It has been scientifically proven that if you drink 1-2 glasses of water before a meal, you will not feel as hungry, and thus consume fewer calories.
- After drinking water, the body uses energy to heat it to body temperature. In other words, more calories are burned.
- Consuming water will help to flush out toxins from your body.
Gina understands this, and so she makes sure to always drink a lot of water.
4. Moving her body
Exercise is a key part of any successful weight loss. For Gina too.
Although she loves to run (even considering a marathon), she exercises in a number of different ways as well. CrossFit, long walks with her daughters, Zumba, and pole dancing (!). She even did hip hop once!
A key part of her workout regimen is strength training. With the help of a personal trainer, to make sure she handles the equipment correctly, she does full-body workouts. More muscles increases your basic metabolic rate (BMR), which means that your body will naturally burn more fat.
Gina tries any physical activity that’s fun, because fun is an important part of staying consistent. If you don’t think it’s fun, you will eventually find an excuse to stop working out.
You Want to Get Started Too?
If you feel inspired by Gina’s weight loss, but don’t know how to get started, just try to keep it simple and follow her lead.
Eat smaller portions. Replace unhealthy food with healthier alternatives. Drink more water. Get moving!