A Few Tricks...and My New Favorites!

by Gina Neely14, May 2013 09:55

I’ve been doing a great job staying committed to my new lifestyle, but I’ve found a new nemesis – that timer on the treadmill. I’ve been feeling more energetic, so I’ve been spending a little more time at the gym, which has been great. But it definitely seems like that timer on the treadmill has a mind of its own. I figured out a little trick though to keep that time flying by: I turn up my music and throw a towel over those numbers so I’m not sneaking a peak at them every 30 seconds. Works like a charm.

At home, I’ve really gotten into experimenting with new dishes on my grill. Things have been going well, and I’m a firm believer that variety is the spice of life. You’ve got to change things up to keep from getting stuck in a rut and keep it exciting.

My new favorite discovery is Salmon with a low sodium soy sauce, honey and rice wine vinegar. It’s tailor-made for the grill. I’m eating it with a few green onions, asparagus and brown rice. It’s flavor-packed and good for you. There’s no challenge in eating this and it’s easy to stick to the challenge!

I think the secret to following the Challenge for meals is rolling up my sleeves and making recipes that work for what I like. I like to make a list of the ingredients I love the most from the kit and think about ways I could prepare them in a healthier manner on the grill. Don’t be scared to experiment. Just go for it! Not everything is going to work perfectly, but I bet you’ll find some magic and some things you really enjoy eating. Check out the Calorie Charts in the Challenge Kit to mix and match your own ideas.


Celebrate your Success...and Keep it up!

by Gina Neely7, May 2013 11:12

Another week of progress and I’m giving myself permission to celebrate by buying some new clothes! I can’t think of a better way to celebrate than giving myself a few well-earned rewards. OMG! Everyone knows I love to shop, so I’m going to treat myself once a week by buying something new in my new size. It’s so rewarding to purchase clothing with a smaller number on that label, knowing I’m going to look better than ever because of my new lifestyle.

Every good celebration includes other people, so I’ve been reaching out to share my success and excitement with my family and friends. My girls have joined in with the shopping trips and we’ve had a blast checking out all sorts of things in my new, smaller size. When I get to the end of this Challenge we’re going to do a major re-design of my closet to celebrate my new lifestyle, but, for now, we’re keeping it simple. Only one reward per week to keep that motivation going (keeping it to one thing is going to be a lot harder than sticking with the Challenge).

It’s also been great to be able to celebrate the success with Pat, my husband. He sees me every day and has really continued to support this whole lifestyle . We’re making sure to set aside one night per week to have a special dinner where we pull out all the stops and really do it big. We’re keeping it healthy and sticking with the plan, but that doesn’t mean we’re sacrificing flavor (that’s just not how we roll)! We had a fantastic celebratory dinner this week with a little something new we cooked up – Spicy Grilled Shrimp with Grilled Asparagus. It was unbelievable and still as healthy as ever!


How Exciting to See Progress!

by Gina Neely29, April 2013 12:54

As I’ve been working my way through the Challenge and lifestyle change, I have found my journal to be incredibly useful. I was told many years ago if you write down your goals and read them, you have a better chance of reaching them. I think that’s great advice to live by. As I continue to lose weight, my journal has helped me to monitor my progress and regain motivation when I’ve been close to giving into temptation.

In addition to my journal, I’m even happier that I can see my progress not only in my journal but also in the mirror! And I’m not the only one noticing, everywhere I go people are asking me what I’m doing to lose weight and telling me that I look incredible. There’s nothing like some wonderful, unsolicited comments to help keep the inspiration and motivation going. Another funny sign of success…none of my belts fit. I had to go out and buy that gadget that makes additional holes in your belt.

It’s also nice to see the progress reflected in my wardrobe. Clothes that fit six weeks ago just don’t cut it now and that is a great feeling. Soon I’m going to need to hit the stores and do some shopping! What woman doesn’t love to do some shopping!! Especially for new, smaller clothes!

I’m on a roll and I’m not slowing down now!!!


Make Exercise Enjoyable!

by Gina Neely22, April 2013 16:16

Challenges, including this one, are all about overcoming obstacles. Time is always a big obstacle for me. How do I find time to shop for the food ingredients in the kit, cook good meals and exercise all in 24 hours? Most days, my schedule is FULL, no, that doesn’t even sum it up, it’s PACKED!  I'm learning to be better at time management. If something is important, you have to find the time to make it happen and, if you’re busy like I am, that means scheduling it.  I’ve built exercise into my routine, treating it just like any other appointment on my calendar. Additionally, I’m far from a morning person, but I make myself get up and work out early to get my metabolism going for the whole day.  Sometimes I’ll end the day with a second bit of exercise, nothing crazy, just a walk before dark to clear my head at a more “smell the roses” type of pace.

My husband, Pat, has been great during this Challenge. He has hopped on the bandwagon and is exercising more too.  He eats whatever I prepare and has picked up some of the slack of grocery shopping. My daughter, Shel, has been telling me how good I look and I notice she is picking more veggies now as well (but I don’t let her know that I notice it….you know…kids!).

I know it’s not always easy, but you must stay true to the course. I keep telling myself that if losing weight, eating right, staying fit, and exercising was easy then we could run the medical profession out of business. Let’s face it, all of these things are "a challenge," but I’m taking them in stride and feeling better about my new lifestyle everyday!


Find Substitutions for Favorites!

by Gina Neely19, April 2013 10:30

This week has been challenging for me because of my sweet tooth cravings, and trust me, I’ve got a big one. I know you all know what I’m talking about. I’ve been fighting these cravings by enjoying more fresh fruit. I know, I know, some of you get bored with your typical fruits and sometimes it can be hard to find a fun, and especially healthy, way to spice up those fruits. When I want to spice up my fruits in a fun and healthy way I’ll try throwing them on the George Foreman Grill which will give them a sweet and smoky flavor. Sometimes if I close my eyes I can turn this sweet flavor into whatever sweets I’ve been craving lately. And, you know, just a pinch of brown sugar never hurts. My fruit of choice for cravings has been an apple and the grill just takes it to another level. It’s still a healthy choice and it keeps me on track.

One great thing about this week is that I’ve continued building on my exercise from last week. I’ve really gotten into a great routine and I’m actually looking forward to working out now. I’ve been doing more abdominal work because I notice a difference in my clothes around the waist area and what woman doesn’t want sexy abs? I think the fact that I can see a change is encouraging and I’m getting many more compliments which is an always welcome boost to my day.

Unfortunately, exercising isn’t always fun and sometimes we need a little motivation or to make it fun for ourselves. I have always loved to dance. I won "best dancer" a few years ago when I was in high school. One of the things that has always helped to motivate me with exercise is music. I’m all about turning on my favorite songs and just letting go with my best dance moves. Before you know it, a full hour will have passed and I will feel like I just left a party!

To really get me going, I love “Girls Run the World” by Beyonce. It’s like my anthem. And for that extra push, I stay with Beyonce’s “Get Me Bodied” because it makes me feel good and keeps me energized. A few other favorites are Usher’s “Caught Up”, Joss Stone’s “You Had Me” and Kelly Price’s “And You Don’t Stop”.

Find what works for you and go with it!


A Change of Lifestyle

by Gina Neely16, April 2013 16:44

OMG!! I have a new love and his name is George Foreman Grill!  The grill really gives me the opportunity to commit to my weight loss lifestyle by not only using it to grill meat but for other foods as well.  I can throw my Hearts of Romaine lettuce on the grill and it gives it a whole new smoky flavor to die for and I can top it off with some delicious low fat dressing.  The salad truly is a beautiful work of culinary art.  Who says eating healthy can’t be good, fun, and easy?!? 


The Challenge is still going well.  I’m excited that I’ve finally found a rhythm with adding more exercise to my daily life.  Most days, between work, Pat, and my daughters, my schedule is crazy (something I know everyone can relate to), so hitting the gym can be a challenge of its own.  I’m making a real effort to just make my overall lifestyle more active and the Challenge is definitely helping with that.  When I pull into a parking lot, I pass on that first spot by the door and park a little further away.  When I walk into a building, I head up the stairs instead of jumping on the elevator.  When I’m in my office talking on the phone, I stand up and walk around.  These are all relatively little changes, but the impact is HUGE!  You don’t have to be on a treadmill to get a workout in!  Get a pedometer and track how much you’re moving for a week.  I think you’ll be blown away with how far you go and how many calories you burn.  I know I was!  These are simple lifestyle changes that can make a big difference and are easy to stick to.  This is just one more small step towards my goal to make this my new way of life.


Eating Out and Keeping it Healthy

by Gina Neely1, April 2013 11:56

So far, my George Foreman Weight Loss Challenge has been rolling along nicely.  I’ve been eating and cooking right and getting my exercise in too!  I’m looking and feeling better and nothing beats that feeling.

Another great thing about this challenge is the kit! I loved that the all-inclusive shopping list each week tells me exactly what I need and the meals and snacks are all there for me. My past excuses for not following through are taken away so I can begin my weight loss lifestyle. 

One of the big challenges that come along with our “Challenge” is eating out.  When I’m in the kitchen, prepping the ingredients and cooking the meals, I know what I’m doing every step of the way.  It gets a lot trickier when you have to walk into a restaurant.  But, we have to remember that this is not a “diet” but a new way of living.  People eat out, so we just have to learn to how to be health conscious about it.  I think there’s a simple solution; have a plan!   Whenever I go out, I mimic my meal as much as I can to what I would’ve prepared if I was at home.  I look for healthy salads, fish or lean meats, and vegetables.  Everyone is becoming more health conscious and almost every restaurant menu includes a “Healthy Options” section. 

In addition, don’t be afraid to ask the chef to prepare your choices in a healthier manner.  Ask for veggies not cooked in butter or grilled chicken instead of fried.  Most restaurants are extremely receptive about customer requests.  It’s all about keeping the customer happy and that customer is you!


Moderation, Preparation!

by Gina Neely19, March 2013 16:12

So I'm taking the George Foreman Grills Weight Loss Challenge.  I'm ready and up for it, but, like I said, it's going to be a challenge.  I'm shooting for 20 pounds.  When I get there, I'll really be a knock-out!

Each day will be a learning journey for me, but I'm going to do this right and figure it out.  The key is going to be cooking the right way.  I'm not going crazy and doing some fad diet.  I'm going to eat the foods I love, but in prepared healthily and consumed in the right portions.  Moderation and preparation!  The George Foreman grill is going to help me with the preparation, but the moderation is all on me. For me, weight loss is as much mental as it is physical.   In fact, I think the mental side is the toughest part.

What I’m really going for here is a sustainable change, a lifestyle change. I’m excited about the possibilities.  I have to keep in mind that I’m not going on a “diet.”  I want to cook right and eat right and part of the challenge will be to make those things go hand in hand.

With the exercise, I want to keep it real.  Again, it’s got to sustainable!  I need to find some routines that I know I can stick to, things that I can work into my daily life and just make a regular part of what I do.  Plus I’m not going to forget to include a little meditation each day to motivate myself and keep centered.

Looking like a knock-out takes time, but let's do it together.  You, me and George Foreman grills - we'll make it FUN!


Welcome to Gina Neely's George Foreman Weight Loss Blog!

by Gina Neely12, March 2013 11:34

We are happy to unveil Food Network’s Gina Neely and her George Foreman Grills Weight Loss Challenge Blog! As Gina embarked on her weight loss journey, she began blogging about her experiences.

Follow along with her week-by-week as she touches on how she embraced her lifestyle changes, took on new challenges, and what she found were the keys to success on the George Foreman Grills Weight Loss Challenge! Blog entries by Gina will begin with challenge phase 2!

Good Luck on your journey!


About the Author

Gina Neely

Gina Neely is a celebrity chef and one half of the dynamic duo that is Pat and Gina Neely, best known for their national hit show, “Down Home with the Neelys” on the Food Network SM. She is also a “knock-out” after taking the George Foreman Grills Weight Loss Challenge and is now offering original low calorie recipes, tips, tricks and support, so that others can lose weight too. 

Gina is a successful restaurateur and best-selling author of “The Neelys' Celebration Cookbook: Down-Home Meals for Every Occasion” and “Down Home with the Neelys: A Southern Family Cookbook”. Gina recently brought her delicious southern cuisine to New York City with the opening of Neely's Barbecue Parlor. She currently lives in Memphis with her husband and their two daughters.

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