ReShape: The Six Week Turnaround

What is Kathy Smith’s ReShape?

ReShape is a total body approach to fitness. It’s based on the concept of increasing lean muscle while eliminating excess body fat. If you are overweight, ReShape can help you lose the extra pounds. ReShape will teach you how to replace the junk food in your diet with healthy choices. If you want to be stronger and sleeker, ReShape will teach you to develop and tone your muscles without having the bulky physique commonly associated with weight lifting. If you don’t feel like you are at your best emotionally, ReShape will teach you how to improve your mind and body’s balance by creating a foundation that you can rely on every day.

How to use the Six Week Program

The six week ReShape program is designed to be followed in order from week one through week six, but I encourage you to become familiar with each week’s information right away. I don’t want to keep any secrets from you, but I do want you to follow the progression of the first few weeks closely in order to maximize your results. Feel free to skip back and forth via the weekly menu on the left side of this page as much as you need. Don’t forget to bookmark important sections for easy future reference.

It’s About Balance

ReShape isn’t about fad dieting or workouts. ReShape is about training yourself to balance what you eat, with what you do and how you feel. It’s not about depriving yourself of your favorite things and pushing yourself through torturous workouts. ReShape is about recognizing the things that you need to do differently, so you can meet your fitness and weight loss goals.

What type of eater are you?

It’s important to understand what kind of eater you are. You may find that you fit neatly into one of the categories listed here, but you probably fit into more than one category depending on your circumstances. Don’t worry! It’s all about indentifying your own behaviors and understanding why they exist and how you can manage them.

Emotional eater:

Is it a need for comfort that starts you eating? Stress? Anxiety? Around 60 to 70 percent of people have an emotional attachment to food. There is a clear biological reason for that: When you were a baby, you got your nourishment from Mom’s breast or a bottle. It was also your way of receiving love, so food became associated with positive emotions. The trick now is to know whether you eat for nourishment and fuel or just for that feel-good sensation that often accompanies eating. For the emotional eater keeping a journal will be an important way to track feelings and begin to see patterns in eating behaviors. The Downloadable Journal will help you identify better ways of dealing with emotions that don’t include overeating.

[stextbox id=”custom-2″ float=”true” align=”right” width=”300″]Fat Fact: A 100-pound person and a 300-pound person can have the same number of fat cells. But the 300-pound person is likely consuming too many calorie-dense foods that feed the fat cells, causing them to get bigger—and therefore heavier—than they are in the 100-pound person.[/stextbox]

Volume eater:

This type of eater is often an emotional eater too, although not always. Many people fill themselves with food to avoid uncomfortable feelings such as exhaustion, pain, and stress. Downing an entire bag of potato chips when you are under stress is a classic example. For others volume eating is just their style of eating. They prefer to eat large portions spaced far apart with little or no snacking in between. This kind of eating is not necessarily tied to emotions. I recommend that you see your doctor to share your weight loss goals prior to beginning my program. Make this a team effort. Your doctor also can help you address any special medical needs or issues unique to you, as well as determine an ideal weight goal that will guide you as you follow the diet.


If you are a multitasker who tends to be time-conscious and deadline driven, you might be a grazer who grabs food whenever you can. Grazers skip large meals, preferring to eat mini meals every two to three hours. Grazers will love my Feed Muscle, Shrink Fat program because it recommends eating every three to four hours to keep metabolism humming and blood sugar balanced.

Off-balance eater:

When you work 10 or more hours a day and don’t have much control over your meals, it is easy to become an off-balance eater. You may avoid eating during the day and then arrive home on empty—physically and emotionally. At that point the house gets eaten. For the off-balance eater, it is either feast or famine. The off-balance eater will benefit tremendously from journaling. It will help you zero in on what is happening in your life to sabotage weight loss goals. On the Feed Muscle, Shrink Fat plan, you learn how to stock your kitchen so when you have an off-balance day, you are prepared to feast on a nutritious meal.

Be Consistent

When people ask me for the secret to health and fitness, I advise: Be consistent, be consistent, be consistent. Self-care should not be an on-and-off proposition. Unfortunately people fall into the trap of repeatedly neglecting themselves. If they don’t have time to do a regular workout, they abandon the whole thing and lose momentum for days or weeks. If they see food only in terms of good or bad, they fall into long cycles of overindulging and undernourishing. I eat and exercise in a way that serves me, my health, and my body, without ever going to extremes. This is the kind of consistency I’m talking about, and it is what I will help you achieve for yourself.

Finding your own unique version of consistency will be key to your success. Ideally you will figure out within the menu plans and recipes what works for you. Then you can adapt this program to your life and maintain it on a consistent basis.

How do you find consistency? By having motivators. Motivators can be anything— an upcoming trip to Hawaii, the desire to run a 10K, or even a medical scare in the family that made you think about your own health. Whenever people start a weight loss program, I ask them to write down all the reasons they want to lose weight. It is likely that they begin with simple reasons like “I want thinner thighs.” But when pushed they add other reasons like “I want more energy,” “I want better sleep,” “I want to spend more quality time with my kids,” “I want to live longer,” or “I want a better sex life.” I encourage you to look at the big picture.

This nutrition and exercise program affects much more than your weight; it affects your entire life. When you’re feeling low your motivators will remind you why you have decided to make these changes. Have faith in your power to change.

Writing it Down – Your Diary

Click Here for a copy of my Downloadable Journal

Keeping a journal can maximize your fitness and nutrition results on this program. You can download a Total Control Nutrition & Exercise Diary template [here], or create your own journal using any notebook. Divide your journal into sections that cover the following:

  • Foods. Keep track of what you eat every day.
  • Workouts. Enter what workouts you do. Be sure to include all physical activities because they all have an impact on your fitness level and weight loss.
  • Hunger levels. Record your hunger levels before and after meals. Use a scale of 1 to 5, where 1 means “stuffed” and 5 means “starving.” A 3 is “normal,” and that is where you want to be most of the time.
  • Weekly goals. Set as many goals as you like, but be realistic.
  • Emotions. Record what is happening in your life too. Write down your thoughts, what mood you are in, what life events are most affecting you, and so on. Your mental attitude has a lot to do with your physical energy, and you can learn to use happiness as a motivator in your success.

Think Muscle

[stextbox id=”custom-2″ float=”true” align=”right” width=”300″]Muscle Fact: One pound of muscle burns approximately 35 to 50 calories a day. A pound of body fat uses only 3 to 5 calories. Muscle burns calories; fat stores them.[/stextbox]

Developing and enhancing your lean muscle mass is the critical component of the ReShape Six Week Turnaround program. Even when a muscle appears to be at rest, a certain amount of sustained contraction is going on in its tiny fibers. This is called muscle tone, and it is a response to nerve impulses originating in the spinal cord. Muscle tone is what allows us to maintain posture and hold our heads up.

What does all this mean for weight loss? Simply put the more lean muscle you have, the faster your metabolism will be. High metabolism boosts your body’s constant burning of calories, which ultimately, leads to fat loss. Your muscles will burn calories whether you swim laps or just sit on the couch watching television. The amount of lean muscle mass you carry relative to the rest of your body weight is a huge factor in whether your metabolism is moving along at 25 mph or zooming up to 500 mph.

What to keep in your kitchen

A big part of successfully transforming yourself is to evaluate the things around you that may be bad for you. The items that you stock in your kitchen become the foods that you eat most often. A critical step will be removing the bad food items and replacing them with these key items to keep stocked in your kitchen and pantry:


Water and Hydration

Water is the key to life, and staying properly hydrated is critical for your health and weight loss plans. I’ll go into hydration’s benefits in greater detail in our week one hydration section.

The Basics of Food Science – Protein, Vitamin C and Fiber

  • Protein:

Protein is the most important nutritional element for molding your body. Proteins are broken down by the body into amino acids, the “building blocks of life.” Proteins repair and rebuild muscle tissues, grow hair and nails, create enzymes and hormones, and maintain the health of internal organs and blood. Your body also needs protein to break down fat. Just as water provides transport, so does protein. In order for fat cells to open their doors and let the fat out to be burned as fuel, protein and water must be handy.

[stextbox id=”custom-2″ float=”true” width=”300″]Muscle Fact: Eating protein at every meal builds lean muscle tissue, improves recovery from workouts, stabilizes blood sugar, helps avoid cravings, and makes you feel less hungry between meals.[/stextbox]

Specifically protein consists of 22 amino acids. Eight are “essential,” meaning that your body cannot manufacture them sufficiently or at all. It has to get them from the foods you eat. The others can be made by your body but are also found in food. Protein supports weight loss because it causes you to feel full, making it much easier to leave the table. This is partly due to how much effort it takes your body to break down and utilize protein. It is work (and work means energy) for your body to divide proteins into amino acids that are absorbed and transported by the blood to cells for use. So the mere act of breaking down protein is burning calories and keeping your blood sugar stabilized in the process.

Foods high in protein also help you feel full because they usually contain fat as well. The combination of fat and protein can keep you less hungry between meals. Because protein is necessary to build and repair muscles, it is critical that you have a sufficient intake of protein to improve recovery from workouts. Without it not only will you feel low on energy and experience more muscle soreness, but you will also increase your risk for injury.

  • Vitamin C:

Vitamin C is another key in the weight loss formula. Recent research suggests that you might be more successful at weight loss if you eat more fruits and vegetables high in vitamin C. According to a 2006 study at Arizona State University, individuals consuming sufficient amounts of vitamin C oxidize (burn) 30 percent more fat during moderate exercise than those who consume insufficient amounts. Too little vitamin C in the bloodstream was shown to correlate with increased body fat and waist measurements.

In another study published in 2003 at the University of Colorado at Boulder, researchers showed that taking more vitamin C may help older adults combat oxidative stress in their cells that may damage tissues and interfere with normal physiological functions. “Oxidative stress” is what happens when destructive molecules buddy up with oxygen in the body and hinder normal functions, some of which lead to lowered resting metabolisms. The Colorado study demonstrated that one group’s metabolisms burned an average of almost 100 additional calories per day after an infusion of vitamin C directly into the veins.

Vitamin C is by no means a wonder drug for weight loss. But the reason I designed my program with a spotlight on this essential vitamin is clear: When you seek good sources of vitamin C, you find the highest-quality foods that offer a host of health benefits. The standard American diet is so stuffed with processed foods that many of us lack a sufficient supply of necessary vitamins and minerals. A report published in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition in 2005 notes that one in five Americans is vitamin C depleted and an additional 12 to 17 percent are vitamin C deficient. The report indicates that adults ages 25 to 44 have the worst vitamin C levels. A full 18 percent of adults get fewer than 30 milligrams per day when the recommended allowance is a minimum of 75 for women and 90 for men. Some experts argue that the low-carb craze may be partly to blame as people push vitamin-C-rich fruits and vegetables aside.

Vitamin C is essential to the body’s breakdown and utilization of food. The body can neither manufacture it nor store it. On the Feed Muscle, Shrink Fat plan, you will get crucial vitamin C from wholesome, nutrient-rich foods that will aid in your weight loss efforts and support your health. But if you want to take a supplement each day just to be sure your body is getting all of the necessary vitamins and minerals, that is perfectly fine.

  • Fiber:

Science has proven fiber’s many benefits: It improves heart health and can lower LDL (bad) cholesterol, blood pressure, and the risk for developing diabetes and some types of cancer. This is reason enough to love it, but there’s more: Fiber keeps metabolism maximized. It allows the digestion of food to slow to a speed that supports muscle feeding and fat shrinking. It keeps you feeling fuller longer. Let’s explore this idea further. As I said before, timing is a key factor in what you eat. Because foods enter your bloodstream at different rates—some enter it in as little as five minutes, while others can take up to two hours—they change the chemistry of your hormones and either satiate you or stimulate you to want more.

If you eat a food that is high in simple carbohydrates and is quickly digested, it will enter your bloodstream quickly, causing a spike in insulin that is largely responsible for making you feel hungry for more. Foods that satiate you take longer to get into your system, somewhere between 30 and 120 minutes. They help prevent insulin surges and maintain a healthy blood sugar balance. This ideal window of 30 to 120 minutes is created when you eat proteins and high-fiber vegetables, fruits, and grains. Because they take longer to enter your bloodstream, it actually requires more energy to break down. The body needs to process those protein and fat molecules and expend energy to do so, which is like exercise for the body without you physically moving. That is the science of food.

Fiber becomes a key player in creating a meal that will be digested slowly and is less likely to be converted to fat. Glucose in the presence of fiber will be released gradually into the bloodstream, providing continual bursts of energy over time while you’re still feeling full. In fact you can combine a quickly digested food with a slowly digested one that has fiber and change the entire chemistry of a meal. Here is an example: Top a whole grain bagel or English muffin with peanut butter and a spoonful of flaxseed. The fat and fiber in the peanut butter and flaxseed will stop the glucose in the bagel from getting hurriedly digested.

The Workouts

[stextbox id=”custom-2″ float=”true” align=”right” width=”300″]Muscle Fact: Men have 10 times more testosterone than women. That is why men can build muscle more easily. Women are not likely to bulk up by virtue of their physiology. When women build muscle it shows up as a toned and sculpted physique.[/stextbox]

Muscle enhancing exercise is the second component to my ReShape program. I’ve designed ReShape’s workouts to become increasingly more challenging as you progress through the program. During the first two weeks, the workouts are designed to get you back into a groove of exercising on a daily basis. Don’t worry if you struggle at first, or if the workouts are too easy for you either. You can always adjust your exercise duration to coincide with your current activity levels. However, you need to follow the daily exercise plans if you want to get the most out of my ReShape program. After a few weeks, my ReShape workouts get progressively more demanding and will require a greater time commitment from you. The goal is to make physical activity part of your daily routine. Don’t worry, you won’t have to exercise for hours a day because my workouts are designed for you to maximize your effort in less than an hour’s time per day.

ReShape: Week One

Introduction: Changing Your Habits

Bad habits

The truth is that when you start a weight loss program, you are frustrated with how you look and what you have eaten. You feel out of control. That’s OK. You’re human. But to regain control you need to break that cycle of making unhealthy choices. This means following a rigid plan that doesn’t require you to make too many decisions. Week1 rescues you from your old patterns and gives you clarity, focus, and motivation. Although there are restrictions the payoff is so great you will be thankful you made the commitment.

In the first seven days of the program, you follow a strict, daily structured food plan. But don’t panic. There are good reasons for this. Week 1 is the best way to jumpstart your weight loss and lay a solid foundation for the future.

Part 1: The Week One ReShape Diet – Making A Few Big Changes

Meal Frequency

ClockHere is what a typical day on the Feed Muscle, Shrink Fat plan might look like:

  • Meal 1: 8 a.m.
  • Snack: 10:30 a.m.
  • Meal 2: Noon
  • Snack: 3:30 p.m.
  • Meal 3: 7 p.m.

You don’t have to follow this exact timeline; there are lots of other ways to create a schedule that works with your daily responsibilities. You should eat every three to four hours, but you can determine your specific hours. Here are some guidelines:

[stextbox id=”custom-2″ float=”true” align=”right” width=”300″]Muscle Fact: The act of eating revs up the metabolism. It takes energy to digest food. With the ReShape program, you’ll be eating every 3 to 4 hours to keep your body’s engines running at all times.[/stextbox]

  • You should eat within one hour of rising. So if you normally get up at 6 a.m., you should eat breakfast by 7 a.m. and then eat again around 10 a.m.
  • Three mini meals (breakfast, lunch, and dinner) and two small snacks (one in midmorning and one in midafternoon) are ideal for keeping your energy level stable and your metabolism running.
  • Avoid eating after 8 p.m. or within two hours of bedtime. At night our metabolism naturally slows down as our body prepares for sleep. If you eat too close to bedtime, you may have trouble falling asleep as the body (and digestion) tries to shut down and you have food in line to be processed. Late-night eating can be a pitfall for many, especially emotional eaters. Those who get bored can find themselves downing hundreds of extra calories when they really are not hungry. If you truly feel the need to eat something close to bedtime, go for a small snack or a cup of decaf herbal tea.

Following The Meal Plan

Lean proteins and vegetables are the center of attention this week, and you are eliminating starchy carbohydrates, such as bread, pasta, rice, and cereal. (However, you will reincorporate them starting in Week 2.) Refined sugars and most sweets are off the list this week too, although you will be able to eat them in moderation later in the program.

Your Diary

If you haven’t set up a journal yet, do it now. Be sure to record what you eat at every meal and snack and how much physical activity you’re doing. Maintaining a journal will help you identify both good and unhealthy patterns in your eating habits. The journal also will help you stay motivated and on track by keeping you aware of what you are eating and what life events are affecting your mood, attitude, and behaviors.

Downloadable Journal


Because hydration is key to weight loss and good health, you should drink at least six glasses of sugar-free liquids a day. At least five of those glasses should be water, which you should drink at every meal and snack.

If you normally drink caloric beverages like sugary soda and juices, you should make the shift to noncaloric varieties like water and unsweetened tea. A new study called “What America Drinks” reveals that on average Americans get 22 percent of their daily calories from nutrient-poor, sweetened beverages such as soft drinks, fruit-flavored drinks, and presweetened teas. Imagine what would happen if the average person simply switched from regular soda to water. She would cut 22 percent of the calories from her diet and shed pounds in a matter of weeks, even if she did nothing else!

[stextbox id=”custom-2″ float=”true” align=”right” width=”400″]Muscle Fact: Do not worry about some water retention as your body begins to change. The scale may be deceptive, showing water weight while you have actually lost fat weight. Also you will gain lean muscle mass, which like water is much heavier than fat. Fat is puffy and fluffy; water and muscle—two key elements to weight loss and superior fitness in general—are dense and heavy. You want as much water as possible available to keep your metabolism in high gear; it also will keep your endurance primed for extended workouts.[/stextbox]

There are many healthy drink options. Have decaf herbal tea as a morning beverage. To spruce up plain or carbonated water, add a slice of orange, lemon, lime, grapefruit, or even cucumber. Or simply brew your own tea (any kind you want) and chill it with ice. You should limit diet sodas to one or two cans each day because the artificial sweetener in sodas can make you crave sugary foods.

Protein Shakes

protein shakeFor optimum results during Week 1, I encourage you to substitute one of my nutritious power shakes for up to two meals a day. These delicious, easy-to-make shakes will help supercharge your weight loss for a reason you may not expect. They remove the temptation to “cheat” as you cook a meal, tasting a little here and a little there. Because they pack a perfect mix of protein, healthy fat, and carbs, they will give you lots of energy and keep you feeling satisfied. By mixing them into Week 1, you will maximize results and put yourself on a faster track.

Shakes have been a part of my life for decades.

While they are extremely helpful during Week 1 for keeping calories in check, feel free to substitute a shake for a meal whenever you like in the next six weeks. I regularly drink shakes because I just love how much energy and nutrition they provide without a lot of fuss. You will soon have these shake recipes memorized for whenever you want a pick-me-up or have a craving for something cold, smooth, and filling.

If you are accustomed to sugary-fruit smoothies and ice cream-based shakes, it may take time to get used to my blends, which include protein powder. Most grocery stores now carry protein powder. Make sure you don’t buy “meal replacement” powder. Look for a brand that contains whey, egg whites, or soy and has a serving size of about 2 tablespoons or 100 calories. Feel free to play with the ingredients too. If you prefer icier blends over thicker ones, just add more ice, try frozen fruit instead of fresh, and mix in water instead of milk. Protein powders also come in flavors like vanilla, chocolate, and strawberry. You can mix these flavors in the recipes to your heart’s desire.


During Week 1 you should eliminate all starchy carbohydrates, including snacks such as crackers, bread, nuts, and nut butters.

You can have two snacks a day—ideally, one in midmorning and one between lunch and dinner. The goal is to scatter your snacks between your meals so you are eating every three to four hours. If you go too long without eating, your metabolism will slow and you will arrive at your next meal so hungry that it will be difficult to control your portions. When your metabolism is slow, food is more easily stored as fat.


When do you get a real treat? Every day! There is a time and place for sneaking in a sugary indulgence at every step of KathySmith’s ReShape. After all, sweets can satisfy us in ways nothing else can. The problem with most sweets is they tend to be high in saturated fat and made with highly refined sugar that we are physically programmed to crave more of after a small bite. You know the experience. You say you will have just one cookie and then it becomes difficult to abstain from the next one and then the next one. The following is a list of treats you can have during Fast Track 1 (limit one per day). This list will grow as your options open in Week 3.

You Can Repeat Week 1 Anytime

Week 1 is so effective at helping you shed fat quickly and safely that you may want to use it for two weeks in a row. Simply repeat the meal and exercise plan and then move on to Week 2. You can also use Week 1 any time you need to drop a few pounds in a short time. You can even use it for just a day to recalibrate your blood sugar and charge your metabolism if you have not been eating healthfully and exercising. Because it is such a strict regimen, you should not use Week 1 for more than two weeks in a row. If you stay on Week 1 for too long, you may eventually succumb to intense cravings for off-limits foods, specifically starchy carbohydrates and sweets.

Part 2: The Week One ReShape Workouts – 10 Minutes Per Day

Day 1 – Upper Body Workouts

Day 2 – Lower Body Workouts

Day 3 – Core Workouts

Day 4 – Upper Body Workouts

Day 5 – Lower Body Workouts

Day 6 – Core Workouts

ReShape: Week Two


Week 1 gave you discipline, broke some bad habits, motivated you, weaned you from cravings, and generally jumpstarted your fat-burning engines. Now it’s time for Week 2, when you incorporate more carbohydrates into your diet. You will follow the same rules as in Week 1—stick to the meal plan, eat every three to four hours, drink lots of water, write in your diary, and exercise. But you will make a few more shifts as well.

Part 1: The Week Two ReShape Diet – Moving Beyond the First Week

Bringing Back Carbs

Spaghetti You will continue to eat three meals and two snacks a day, but you’ll bring back grains and starchy carbohydrates, such as breads, pastas, rice, and potatoes. During Week 2 I have again taken away all the guesswork by giving you a week’s worth of great-tasting, fresh meals. These easy-to-prepare meals will help you train your body to feel satisfied with the perfect calorie load for you.

Despite what you may have heard about recent diet crazes and fads, carbohydrates are critical for supplying energy, building muscle, keeping you full, and fueling your brain. The right starches also are necessary for successful weight loss. The fact is that if you are not getting enough carbs, your body will turn to muscle for energy, breaking it down and converting its protein molecules to glucose for much-needed fuel. While it can use fat for energy in the absence of any glucose or glycogen (stored glucose), it is easier for the body to resort to muscle. This pushes you in the wrong direction. To avoid this muscle-wasting, fat-paralysis state, you need to have a steady intake of starchy carbohydrates in your diet.

[stextbox id=”custom-2″ float=”true” align=”right” width=”300″]Muscle Fact: Eating the proper balance of healthy carbohydrates and fat with protein is essential. If your body gets deprived of much needed fuel, it can find quick sources by breaking down muscle mass. This is especially true if you run low on carbohydrates, which are required to support your brain and red blood cells.[/stextbox]

There are many healthy carbohydrates from which to choose from during Kathy Smith’s ReShape and they deserve special attention because everyone responds differently to them. Some carbs can trigger reactions in your body that can work against your weight loss goals and, ultimately, your overall health. I will teach you the common guidelines for choosing healthy carbs, and you will tune in to how you feel after eating them. You will quickly catch on to which carbs you should eat frequently, which you should eat occasionally, and which you should eat rarely.

Flexible Eating

You have more options to be creative with your meals in Week 2. You can eat any meal from Week 1. Or mix up the days in Week 2 and eat Wednesday’s lunch on Monday, for instance. In addition I welcome you to try a recipe from one of my hometown restaurants starting this week.


Week 2 is a stabilizing week, so your weight loss may not be as rapid as in Week 1. But by now you have built a foundation for the kind of weight loss that lasts a lifetime. It is steady and healthy, and you won’t feel lethargic or moody as you continue your journey because you will enjoy luscious, energy-supplying power foods from many food categories. You also will gain a heightened appreciation for the foods that boost your metabolism, give you sustained energy for exercise and optimum performance, keep you deeply satisfied, and render a new, vibrant you.


As you know by now, eating every three to four hours is key to your weight loss success. Snacks help keep your metabolism revved so you are constantly burning energy. They also factor into maintaining blood sugar balance, sustaining feelings of fullness, and nourishing those muscles. You can continue to have two snacks a day. Choose anything from the Week 1 list. You also may add the following snack options to your choices this week:

  • 1 ounce low-fat cheese or 1 tablespoon soft goat cheese on 5 whole grain crackers
  • 15 to 20 almonds with jicama slices
  • 8 to 10 almonds with a small pear
  • A small handful (8 to 12) mixed raw nuts: almonds, peanuts, walnuts, and cashews
  • 1 tablespoon nut butter with 5 whole grain crackers or 1 slice whole grain toast


Choose from the same list of Desserts as in Week 1. Next week you will begin to prepare more elaborate Desserts using my recipes.

Lose the Salt

Even if you buy a simple can of sliced carrots at the store, you are getting more than just carrots. You’re probably also getting preservatives and one of the biggest additives in food processing—salt. I know some of us get excited sometimes when we find a food that has few or no calories, like canned olives or pickles, but you can’t forget to look at that sodium content per serving. Sodium is directly linked to a number of health issues, including high blood pressure and heart disease. It also can cause water retention that makes you bloated and uncomfortable. (Ironically drinking water can come to the rescue here. It will encourage your cells to release sodium that is causing the bloat.) A great rule of thumb is if the milligrams of sodium per serving is greater than the calories per serving, you should consider that product high in sodium.

Instead of grabbing the salt shaker, use alternative spices and herbs. Experiment with different brands and blends until you find one tailored to your palate.

Salt Substitutes

[stextbox id=”custom-2″ float=”true” align=”right” width=”300″]Fat Fact: Whenever possible rely on olive oil or canola oil for cooking, even if you’re tempted to use butter. Avoid palm oils, margarine, and anything with the words “partially hydrogenated vegetable oil.”[/stextbox]

Just because we’re taking the excessive salt out of your daily meals, it doesn’t mean that your food has to be bland and boring. I’ve put together a great list of salt substitutes that will keep your meals fun and exciting without the salty repercussions.


Week Two Meal Plan:

Part 2: The ReShape Week Tw0 Workouts – 10 Minutes Per Day


Day 1 – Lower Body Workouts
Day 2 – Upper Body Workouts
Day 3 – Core Workouts
Day 4 – Lower Body Workouts
Day 5 – Upper Body Workouts
Day 6 – Core Workouts

ReShape: Week Three


In Week Three, we will focus on HOW you can ReShape your life by evaluating how you eat. What you eat is extremely important in the ReShape program, but how you eat can have just as much of an impact your overall fitness results. It’s important that you take the time to plan your meals and control your portions. Even if you eat healthy options on a regular basis, you can sabotage your fitness goals if you don’t eat those foods the “right way”.

Part 1: The ReShape Week Three Diet – Focus on How You Eat

Designing Your Meals

Plate Method

Food is a source of profound pleasure. I love the crunch of an apple, the texture and smell of warm bread, the savory taste of roasted chicken. I delight in the cool sweetness of ice cream and the absolute ecstasy of chocolate cake. I cherish the meals my family and I share in our kitchen as much as I do great meals prepared in restaurants. I love food, and I love to eat.

What I have learned about food reflects what I have learned about life: Food has to be both functional and flexible. It has to meet my nutritional needs while allowing my choices to vary day to day. The same goes for you too. While it is certainly OK to have your own set of guidelines to follow, they needn’t be extremely rigid and unyielding. Don’t choose food just because you think it is “good for you” when you really don’t like it. What fun is that?

Choose foods based on how they serve you physically, mentally, and emotionally. You can become a “functional” eater by learning to assess your needs at any given moment and how to decide what to eat based on those needs. This is something most of us are not used to doing. Either we get lazy and don’t want to think about what we eat or we go on an unrealistic diet that tells us exactly what to eat.

[stextbox id=”custom-2″ float=”true” align=”right” width=”300″]Fat Fact: You can lose only about 3 pounds of body fat per week. If you lose more than that, it most likely is water loss.[/stextbox]

Consistency is not about rigidity. If you do “slip,” all you do is get back on track as soon as possible. Eventually you find yourself slipping less and less. When you blend consistency with flexibility, you achieve a truly functional approach to food and eating. You learn how to incorporate food into your life in a way that makes sense for your body and the way you live.

Remember, the ReShape plan is based on my science-supported formula for healthy weight loss: Protein + Vitamin C + Fiber = Weight Loss

These are the ingredients your body craves for optimum health. Commit this equation to memory to help you choose the superfoods that will fuel muscles, shrink fat, and boost your overall health. I will teach you how to identify the foods that contain these essential ingredients. Once you know that, what to eat becomes second nature.

As you’re about to learn, lean proteins, wholesome vegetables, and nonstarchy grains will be your staples at virtually every meal. These are the foods that lie at the heart of the Feed Muscle, Shrink Fat blueprint. I will help you choose the right foods so you learn to design nutritious, delicious meals. This program is all about being satisfied, and there is no room for deprivation.

The Plate Method

plate methodNow that you are on your own and ready to design your own meals, I want you to think of the Plate Method when deciding what type of foods and how much of them to eat. With today’s jumbo restaurant portions and supersize snacks, it is often difficult to recognize what is indeed a proper “serving.” The Plate Method is a simple way to ensure that each of your meals is balanced and has the right portion sizes. All you have to do is visually split your plate into three parts.

  • Section 1: Protein: The first section of your plate is for protein (for example, turkey, fish, chicken, or lean beef). The right portion of protein will be about the size of a deck of cards or the palm of your hand. Protein and veggies are what stabilize your blood sugar and keep you satisfied.
  • Section 2: Fruits and Nonstarchy Veggies: This section of your plate gives you that important vitamin C. You can load your plate with as many leafy vegetables like spinach, asparagus, or green salad as you want. This is one section where it is OK to fill up! Because some fruits contain concentrated sugars, you will need to pace yourself better and go easy on these.
  • Section 3: Whole Grains: The third section of the plate is reserved for complex carbohydrates in the form of whole grains such as brown rice. I have included starchy vegetables like potatoes, yams, and corn in this category. Starting in Week 3 you will add grains/starchy vegetables to two meals each day. Keep your servings to about the size of a single scoop of ice cream.

You will create your meals within the Plate Method, then “add on” dairy, fats, and desserts. These add-ons are important because they deliver more nutrition and calories. This may sound counterproductive, but you need to be sure your caloric intake doesn’t dip too low. It is not ideal to lose more than two pounds a week, especially during this Fat Burn phase, because the body can’t adjust to rapid changes in chemistry. Therefore, you will “add on” one or two servings of dairy plus two fruits a day. Limit your fat intake at each meal to about the size of your thumb. Having a sense of an ideal portion for your body’s needs is the key to weight loss. It also will allow you to finish a meal feeling satisfied and full of energy. Who doesn’t want that?

Portion Sizes

small portionsI have built in plenty of flexibility to help you tailor this program to your needs. Not everyone enjoys three meals a day, so you will find ideas for breaking up your calorie load to create mini meals and snacks scattered throughout the day.

If my daily meal plan feels like too much food for you, then you shouldn’t feel pressured to eat more than you need. Conversely if you don’t feel like you’re eating enough food, I will show you how to make needed adjustments. You should not have to count calories and grams or measure foods on a kitchen scale. I want you to become so attuned to your body’s needs, including its level of hunger and sense of fullness, that you can decide for yourself the proper portions for you.

Not only is everyone’s body different, but everyone’s level of activity is different. One day you may be high on the activity scale, and the next you may be mostly sitting in front of a computer and not moving much. Because activity levels change constantly, there is no magic calorie total that will meet your individual and perpetually evolving needs. Calorie consumption should be viewed more broadly. One day you may be hungrier and actually need more calories than the next. Don’t be afraid to respond to that true hunger and take in an extra 100 to 200 calories.

You are training your body to feel satisfied with the right amount of calories for you . My hope is that you can do away with “rules” once you finish my program so you can successfully adopt this way of eating as a lifetime practice. I understand that the learning curve for shifting your way of eating can feel restrictive. It is human nature to resist change. But with the right attitude toward all that awaits you once you become a healthier person, the benefits outweigh the frustrations.

Increase Proteins and Vegetables/Fruits First:

Every meal starts with a protein and a healthy serving of high-volume produce. Then you can add a grain and dairy twice a day. As you sense the need to give your calorie consumption a boost to meet your activity level, start by increasing protein and vegetable/fruit portions, then add more grains and dairy if you still don’t feel like you are eating enough fuel to satisfy your energy needs. It is much easier to reach your satiety level through protein and fibrous vegetables/fruits than through dairy and grains that have simple sugars that easily rush into the bloodstream.

Track Hunger with Your Journal:

The key to knowing where and when to increase foods is to listen to your hunger. If you undereat eventually you will overeat. Use your journal to track hunger and level of satiety after each meal. As you lose body fat and increase muscle mass, you are retraining how many calories your body needs to run efficiently. You are maximizing your immune system and cardiovascular capacity in the meantime.

But I’m Still Hungry!

If you find yourself still hungry after a meal, and you thought you chose the right portions using my guidelines, here are some explanations:

  • Your body hasn’t registered that it is full. It takes your stomach about 20 minutes to feel satiated, so wait at least that long before eating seconds. If you wait and still want more, have a few more ounces of lean protein or high-fiber vegetables.
  • You ate too quickly. Try chewing your food slowly and deliberately, putting your knife and fork down after every bite. This way you will enjoy your meals more and need less to be satisfied. Have a conversation or read a book to slow yourself down.
  • You are dehydrated. Many people mistake thirst for hunger, so before a meal or snack, drink an 8-ounce glass of water, wait 10 minutes, and see if your hunger abates
  • You are shortchanging one of your food groups. Usually it is protein, so try increasing the amount you eat by a few ounces to see if that helps. You also can consume more raw or steamed vegetables to make you feel satisfied longer.
  • You are premenstrual—craving fat and sugar. Hormone levels affect hunger, so during that time be particularly conscious of your eating habits and portion sizes. Take extra care to select healthy treats that will level off your cravings.
  • You are skipping meals. Remember to follow the three- to four-hour guideline

Sample Meals

  • Meal 1(about 7 a.m.): Egg white scramble with tomatoes, spinach, avocado. Plus toast.
    • Protein: 4 egg whites (complementing fat: . avocado [chopped])
    • Produce: 1 chopped tomato, 1 cup packed fresh spinach leaves
    • Grain: 1 slice whole grain toast
    • Extras: chopped cilantro, salt and pepper to taste
  • Snack 1 (about 10:30 a.m.): Red Berry Sunrise Shake (recipe, page 232)
  • Meal 2(about 1:30 p.m.): Grilled Chicken Salad (recipe, page 191)
    • Protein: 4 ounces skinless chicken breast (complementing fat: 1 tablespoon olive oil in balsalmic-based dressing)
    • Produce: 4 cups mixed salad greens with chopped celery, cucumber, and cherry tomatoes
    • Grain: (no grain)
  • Snack 2 (about 4:30 p.m.): 1 cup fat-free vanilla yogurt with ½ cup mixed berries and 4 crushed walnuts
  • Meal 3(about 7:30 p.m.): Grilled salmon with asparagus and brown rice
    • Protein: 4 ounces wild salmon (no fat added because this is a high-fat protein)
    • Produce: 10 stalks of steamed asparagus
    • Grain: ½ cup brown rice
  • After-dinner treat: ½ cup fresh strawberries and fat-free Reddi-Wip with ¼ ounce grated dark chocolate sprinkled on top
  • Target totals for the day:
    • 4 to 6 servings of proteins (a “serving” is 3 to 6 ounces)
    • 3 to 8 servings of vegetables/fruit
    • 2 grains
    • 2 dairies

Part 2: The ReShape Week Three Workouts – 20 Minutes Per Day


Day 1 -Upper Body (10 Minutes) and Core Workouts (10 Minutes)

Upper Body Workouts

Core Workouts

Day 2 – Lower Body (10 Minutes) and Cardio Workouts (10 Minutes)

Lower Body Workouts

Cardio Workouts

Day 3 – Upper Body (10 Minutes) and Core Workouts (10 Minutes)

Upper Body Workouts

Core Workouts


Day 4 – Lower Body (10 Minutes) and Cardio Workouts (10 Minutes)

Lower Body Workouts

Cardio Workouts


Day 5 – Upper Body (10 Minutes) and Core Workouts (10 Minutes)

Upper Body Workouts

Core Workouts


Day 6 – Lower Body (10 Minutes) and Cardio Workouts (10 Minutes)

Lower Body Workouts

Cardio Workouts

ReShape: Week Four


This week, we’re going to discuss the key elements of your ReShape food choices. We’re going to provide some details and suggestions about Proteins, Fruits and Vegetables, Vitamin C, and Whole Grains that will fuel your muscles and help you ReShape your life. There is a lot of information to digest this week, so don’t hesitate to bookmark this page and come back often in order to refresh your memory. Don’t worry, after a while this information will be second nature to you.

Part 1: The ReShape Week Four Diet – Focusing on Food Science


[stextbox id=”custom-2″ float=”true” align=”right” width=”300″]Fat Fact: Dietary fat is not the same as body fat. Excess body fat is the combined result of a lack of exercise and overeating all nutrients, which includes proteins, carbohydrates, and fats.[/stextbox]

Proteins play a key role in your ability to lose weight, plus they help satiate you, build muscle mass, and boost metabolism. In short, proteins feed your muscles so you can shrink your fat. It doesn’t get much simpler than that. But Americans don’t get the right proteins—or the right amounts. Most people eat far more protein than they need and from sources like steak and cheese that are loaded with saturated fat. Other people buy foods on the run that they may think are protein sources but in reality have more starchy carbs and unhealthy fats than lean, nutritious protein.

Best Protein Sources:

  • Protein eggsThere is a simple solution: low-fat, highprotein foods. With all the extra-lean meats available, it is easy to buy protein without all the fat. Turkey, chicken, eggs, most fish, and soy-based proteins are the best sources for high-quality, low-fat protein, whereas red meats, duck, and pork are higher in fat and should be limited in portion size. It is OK to have 4 to 5 ounces of lean chicken, but reduce your serving to only 3 or 4 ounces of sirloin steak. Eat medium- to high fat proteins only twice a week. These include higher-fat fish, chicken thighs, eggs with yolks, turkey sausage or bacon, and red meats.

Vegetable Protein Sources:

  • Instead of getting your protein from meat, try vegetable sources, which come packed with complex carbohydrates plus protein. The richest sources of vegetable protein are legumes—dried peas and beans, including lentils, black-eyed peas, soybeans, kidney beans, pinto beans, and black beans.

All About Fish Protein:

  • Salmon and other types of cold-water fish contain heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids. But you are probably aware that high levels of mercury, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), and other pollutants have been measured in all sorts of fish from different parts of the world. So are fish healthy or harmful? Do the benefits of eating fish outweigh the potential risks associated with the alleged toxins? While there is no definitive answer on just how harmful these contaminants are, it is wise to take the reports into consideration and be mindful of where we get our fish and how much of it we eat. So I recommend two things: First, consume cold-water fish like salmon two or three times a week, and second, seek wild, not farmed, varieties. Speak with your local grocer in the seafood department for ideas on selecting the best and freshest types of fish. You may have to spend a little more money for wild seafood, but it is worth it. You will find these fish more flavorful too.

How Much Protein Do You Need?

  • It depends on your body size and activity level. For an active adult the Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) for protein is 0.36 gram per 1 pound of body weight. For a 150-pound woman, that equals 54 grams. Different foods contain different amounts of protein. Most of the foods listed in the chart on page 61 have about 7 grams per ounce. It is OK to eat more protein than the RDA. Because the Feed Muscle, Shrink Fat program strives to build and maintain lean muscle mass while boosting activity levels, my meal plans and suggestions call for slightly more protein than the RDA standards, which are a bare minimum.

Protein Needs and Vegetarians:

  • If you are a vegetarian or get most of your protein from plant sources, you must choose your protein sources carefully. Meat, chicken, fish, eggs, and milk products contain all of the essential amino acids. However, the protein in most plant sources is “incomplete,” meaning it is missing one or another amino acid. You can easily rectify this by combining two incomplete proteins that complement each other. You don’t need to eat complementary proteins in the same meal, just a variety of different protein sources on a regular basis.

Here are some vegetarian protein combinations that will work:

  • Rice and beans or sesame seeds
  • Wheat and nut butters
  • Beans with wheat or corn

Fruits and Vegetables

Your Vegetable Choices:

Fruits and VegetablesVegetables are foods you can eat in large amounts. They fill your stomach and fuel you with the vitamins, minerals, and fiber that you need for ReShape. I categorize veggie choices by volume: The more water and fiber a vegetable has, the higher its volume.

High-volume vegetables supply the most food with the fewest calories, so you can eat more without risking a calorie overload. Raw leafy greens like broccoli, cabbage, and salad greens are high-volume veggies, whereas parsnips, peas, and cooked beets are low volume. Keep an assortment of veggies in your freezer at all times. That way you can always add them as a quick side dish to any dinner you prepare.

If you want more food, opt for more high-volume vegetables first. This will allow you to satisfy that urge to chew without overindulging in calories. Aim to have two servings of vegetables at every meal, but don’t be afraid to load up on high volume veggies. It is hard to overeat in this category because you will fill up fast. You can mix and match. A salad can be a mixture of spring greens with a handful of diced carrots, mushrooms, celery, diced tomatoes, and sweet peppers.

Your Fruit Choices:

Fruits also have a volume component, but they have higher concentrations of sugar—and thus calories. While lots of diets restrict daily fruit servings, with ReShape you should really worry only about limiting fruits that are high in sugar. Your best bet is to find a middle ground where you eat a variety of different fruits and vegetables.

Choose freely from this list but aim to fill up on the higher-volume fruits, such as whole apples, berries, and grapefruit, that are also higher in fiber. Any fruits with edible skins are excellent choices; think of them as vitamin C bombs wrapped with fiber. I recommend that you have two servings of fruit a day and then adjust your intake to your activity level. If you find that as you increase your activity level your hunger also goes up, you can safely add another serving or two of fruit a day. Grains are another category that you can adjust to help satisfy your body’s calorie needs to keep you going.

These foods are listed in order from high volume to low volume. Eat more of the highvolume
foods to fill you up without adding a lot of calories.

The reason I do not impose strict limits on fruits is because studies show that when you crave sugar or sweets, fruit is an excellent solution. Eating fruit is much healthier than bingeing on a high-fat, high-processed-sugar product that will sabotage your weight loss goals.

When you crave a food that is more likely to feed fat cells, like a doughnut, reach for a muscle-feeding food instead, like a green apple with cottage cheese and a sprinkle of cinnamon. It is not the end of the world if you splurge on fruit. Fruit is considered a muscle-feeding friend compared with its junk food counterparts. In time you will be able to manage your consumption in this category and choose smartly among your vegetable and fruit options.

One small restriction:

It should come as no surprise that sugary fruit juices are not the same as whole fruits. During this weight loss phase, you should avoid sugary fruit juices in addition to dried fruit (including raisins) and packaged dried fruit concoctions that contain added sugars.

Vitamin C

tomatoLet’s return to the vitamin C component that is another key in the weight loss equation. On the Feed Muscle, Shrink Fat plan, you will consume vitamin C mostly from vegetables and fruit. The fruits and veggies with the least calories and the most vitamin C include tomatoes, salsa, grapefruit, and asparagus, which I use often in my recipes. These all have levels of vitamin C greater than your daily need, which is 75 milligrams. Salsa in particular not only adds vitamin C but is also a low-fat, low-calorie alternative to sour cream, margarine, or butter. It even counts as an extra vegetable. Although supplementing your diet with vitamin C pills can be helpful, nothing beats getting your vitamins mostly from real foods.

What else does vitamin C do? It is needed for the growth and repair of tissues in the body. It plays a role in your immunity as well as your metabolism. It is necessary to form collagen, which is used to make skin, scar tissue, tendons, ligaments, and blood vessels. It is also essential for wound healing and for the repair and maintenance of cartilage, bones, and teeth. What’s more, it’s a potent antioxidant.

Whole Grains

Let’s be honest: Grain is often a code word for carbohydrates like bread, bagels, and pasta. They can be sinfully good at times and are typically the one food we find hard to restrict for long periods of time. When you deny yourself these, the tension builds and at some point you feel like you are going insane. Carbohydrates serve an essential and important function in the body, including helping you to lose weight. They help to make you feel satisfied at meals and give you sustained energy. They are also key to keeping your bowels regular and your brain fueled. If you’ve ever gone on a low-carb diet that restricts your intake of complex or starchy carbs for an extended period of time, you may have felt tired, weak, and brain-dead. Well, here is why: You were denying your brain and body what they want most—quick access to energy.

Whole Grains Keep You Sane:

whole grainsThere is a point I am making here by calling this category “whole grains.” As you are aware, I am putting the focus on whole grains that offer muscle-feeding, fat-shrinking fiber. In addition to getting fiber from fruits and vegetables, you are going to obtain even more fiber from this category by switching to whole grain food varieties that can include pasta, crackers, tortillas, bread, cereal, and even cookies and some baked goods. The fiber will enhance your blood sugar stability, which in turn contributes to your feelings of fullness, satiety, and overall sense of well-being after and between meals.

Even though you will move away from refined grains like white bread and any “enriched” carbohydrate that has been stripped of its natural fiber, you will need to limit your intake in the grain category. Grains are the most calorie-dense complex carbohydrate (sugar).

Finding whole grain alternatives to your favorite breads and pastas is easy. Not only do natural food stores carry these products, but supermarket chains across the country also now stock their shelves with wholesome grains. On page 66 I have given you a list of my favorite grains and I will keep you posted on my website about new products on the market that I think you should add to your menus.

The “Grains & Starchy Vegetables” chart displays lists from which you can choose grains that will feed your muscles and assist you in your weight loss efforts. Popular foods like white bread and regular pasta are listed as foods that you eat rarely. You would do well to transition from white (“bleached wheat flour”)-flour-based products to purely whole grains and multigrains. Look for the Whole Grains Council’s stamp of approval on products.

Vary Your Grain Servings:

Grains occupy one category that you will need to adjust for your body type and activity level. As you start to create your own meals, limit grains to two servings a day. But if you find yourself feeling low on energy, moody, and unmotivated to work out, then by all means increase your intake of these complex carbohydrates to help keep you energized and fueled for your workouts. This will take some experimentation, but don’t be afraid of trying three grain servings a day as long as you stay tuned in to how you feel. Keep a record of extra servings in your journal. If you get bloated and your weight loss seems to halt, then reduce your grains and add more protein and vegetables to your meals. Also experiment with when to add grains to your meals. You may, for instance, want a grain at lunch if you plan to work out later that afternoon.

Part 2: The ReShape Week Four Workouts – 20 Minutes Per Day

Day 1 – Lower Body (10 Minutes) and Cardio Workouts (10 Minutes)

Lower Body Workouts

Cardio Workouts


Day 2 – Upper Body (10 Minutes) and Core Workouts (10 Minutes)

Upper Body Workouts

Core Workouts


Day 3 – Lower Body (10 Minutes) and Cardio Workouts (10 Minutes)

Lower Body Workouts

Cardio Workouts


Day 4 – Upper Body (10 Minutes) and Core Workouts (10 Minutes)

Upper Body Workouts

Core Workouts

Day 5 – Lower Body (10 Minutes) and Cardio Workouts (10 Minutes)

Lower Body Workouts

Cardio Workouts


Day 6 – Upper Body (10 Minutes) and Core Workouts (10 Minutes)

Upper Body Workouts

Core Workouts

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