I write about food because I love food. Brekkie, tapas, charcuterie. Hawaiian, Mediterranean, comfort. Wine, Guinness, ginger ale. The list can go on and on. Maybe the toughest thing about having a passion for dining (at least for me) is trying to keep the weight off. In a blink, that pint of hot chocolate ice cream from Starbucks can evaporate, yet it takes constant discipline to maintain an acceptable waistline. On the flip side, at least I have a reason to buy new pants.
When you get past all the advice from every person trying to sell you a solution to weight loss, it always comes down to this:
Proper nutrition in conjunction with regular exercise is key.
It seems easy enough, but not really. First of all, it's not cheap to eat healthy. Who wants to spend twice as much at Whole Paycheck when there's a 10 for $10 deal elsewhere? How often do you want to get up before 6 a.m. to get in your WOD (workout of the day) when you could stay up late sifting thru the DVR (it is a new season, after all). We are a society that equates eating to all emotions. It's a birthday, let's have cake! A miserable day can easily translate to drinks with co-workers. We can't escape it. Food is our livelihood; it sustains and entertains until we are content. Until it becomes a habit, physical exertion is a chore. It's finding that right combination for yourself that will make the difference.
Yet even after a certain balance is achieved, we still struggle to keep it interesting. Yes, there are exceptions. (I'm taking to you, people who can eat and do the same things over and over again.) I, on the other hand, require variety to keep things interesting. I've gone from the gym to personal trainers to heated yoga. I would never have imagined myself wanting to go to a place to get even more sweaty than I already am. EVER. Choosing between eggs and Greek yogurt for brekkie can only satiate me to a point. I need more options. This is where Simply Nutrition comes into play.
An acquaintance introduced me to this. Now before I elaborate, lemme explain something. I don't practice this five days a week. Maybe three, at best. Sometimes, I'm still hungry afterwards. Is it worth the cost? Perhaps. It's what fits into my lifestyle, and I feel better because of it. Also, if I had to choose between this and spending the same amount on Del Taco, there's a lot less guilt if I go with the former. It doesn't hurt that they have a history of success stories via their other name, Herbalife.
When I visit Simply Nutrition, it's a little like getting lunch. Personal wellness coaches welcome me, and I place my order. There are 3 'courses' to be consumed; each one serves a purpose. I can even take the last one to-go.
- 4 ounces of mango-flavored aloe vera for digestion. I refer to it as my shot.
- 10 ounces of (hot/cold) herbal tea in four flavors. An energy booster than burns up to 80 calories.
- A 16 ounce smoothie, which can be one of 17 flavors such as cinnamon cookie or wild berry. This is my meal replacement. Logging in at under 200 calories, there's 17 grams of plant protein and 4 grams of fiber per serving.
They promote 2 visits a day combined with 1 normal meal for weight loss. I opt for their "get healthy" goal: 1 a day with 2 meals. The ultimate idea is to purchase product to use at home, so you can do-it-yourself. I say, why bother with cleaning a blender when they do the measuring and mixing for me? For about $5 a day ($4 if you purchase in advance), I hydrate, put healthy stuff in my system, and have one less fattening meal. I can't argue with that.
There's a brief presentation on your first visit, which answers a lot of questions. You can even have your BMI measured, which
can be is depressing. I didn't feel any real pressure to buy product. The people are there to keep you company, answer concerns, and mix a beverage. Wait, is that like a bartender? Not quite, but during lunchtime it resembles happy hour (minus the twists of lemon and mini umbrellas).
I've been going to heated yoga for the better part of three months. Herbalife/Simply Nutrition has been a part of my routine for over a month, closer to two. Am I reaping the benefits? Yes and no. If anything, I'm managing my weight better, while stretching the hell out of my hips and shoulders. They're closed on the weekends, so that's where willpower kicks in. I do what I can, and remain positive knowing I'm choosing a healthier option on a semi-regular basis. Being a fan of delicious flavor will always be my Achilles' heel, but this helps.
Simply Nutrition is located at 14241 Jeffrey Road (cross street Roosevelt, across from Albertsons) in Irvine. (949) 670-7955. Operating hours are from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday thru Friday.