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Katherine’s Ten Commandments for Flat Abs This Summer

Have you relegated your best suits, bathing suits and skinny jeans to the dark recesses of your closet? Aren’t you tired of going undercover every summer to avoid exposing your less-than-supple body? Wouldn’t it be nice to have beautifully defined arms, legs, chest, and a flatter belly?

So, before you dump on (or just plain dump) your workout for not giving you killer abs and the slim body you dream of, you should know the real culprit could be your diet - and even your high-stress lifestyle.

When it comes to going from fat to flatter abs, new research shows that what you eat is just as important as how--or even how much-- you work out. And lifestyle counts, too, because while stress doesn’t just mess with your head - it can also induce a pooch. And that killer work-out? It may not be slimming your body the way you hope!

As a longtime weight-loss specialist, I can assure you that a slim body and flat abs aren’t an impossible dream or something seen only on fitness models. In fact, I’ve helped thousands of people (myself included) whittle flabby middles into beautiful flatter bellies by combining an eating plan especially designed to decrease fat and bloating with aerobic exercise, strength training and stress management.

With my plan, you’ll build a show-off body that is the center of attention when you’re wearing a fitted business suit, a bathing suit, a pair of skinny jeans--or nothing at all!

Let’s Get Started ... with Katherine's Commandments…

I. Diet Simple Tip #77: Do Some Calorie ShiftingAmericans traditionally eat a large dinner – one that we attack with zeal. Is it any wonder we gain so much weight? Rearrange your days’ calories so you’re eating one third in the morning, one third mid-day and no more than one third at night - so that you're eating 2/3 to 3/4 of your calories before dinner, and you arrive at dinner barely hungry. For most of you, that means you’ll be eating a larger breakfast – about 600 to 700 calories, and a lighter dinner than usual.Bottom Line: Lose 30 pounds Eating relatively light dinners at night, and shifting more of the calories to breakfast and lunch, can easily save you 300 calories a day

II. Diet Simple Tip #28: Shop at the Farmers’ MarketI’ll never forget my grandmother's home-grown tomatoes. They were soft, plump, sweet, deep red, and still warm from the day’s sun – the kind you only get fresh from the vine. At your farmers market, you’ll find fruits and vegetables picked at peak ripeness, which means maximum flavor, texture, and nutrition. And when food tastes better, you eat more... it's a SCIENTIFIC FACT!

Bottom Line: Lose 36 pounds Adding salads, vegetables soups and fruits to your daily meals will help you cut back on other more fattening foods. Studies show starting each meal with a salad saves at least 100 calories – and that’s without dieting! Try my Gazpacho or Cool Cucumber Soup in my new Diet Simple Farm to Table Recipes. And search for my Market Recipes in The Georgetown Dish for ideas.

III. Diet Simple Tip #36: Hit the Ground RunningNo one believes me when I tell them they can burn 600 calories before work or before even waking up! They’re even more surprised when I explain that’s the best way to do it. Try this: Wake up in the morning. Yawn. Roll out of bed, go to the bathroom, have a drink of water, and slip on some exercise clothes. Start moving. Right away! Exercising first thing in the morning is one of the best things you’ll ever do for yourself. And before you know it, it’s over with before you’re even awake!Bottom Line: Lose 28 – 42 pounds All it takes is thirty minutes in the morning: just walking briskly will burn up to 28 pounds in a year. Another great thing about morning exercise: no middy heat to contend with. Wear a pedometer and make sure you're getting at least 10,000 steps daily. Men love the Nike Fuel Band. Women's favorite: the Fitbit.

IV. Diet Simple Tip #43: Listen When You ChewActually, you don’t have to go that far. But you should focus your entire attention on your food so you enjoy and savor every bite. When you eat on autopilot, when your mind is somewhere else, you don’t enjoy your food very much. More important, “mindless” eating generally turns into overeating and doesn’t provide physical or psychological satisfaction.Bottom Line: Lose 21 pounds Once you start focusing your attention on the food in front of you - take a few deep breaths and relax before your meals, you’ll almost automatically eat a little less. In fact, even if you leave only a few extra bites on your plate, it could add up to a savings of 200 or more calories daily

V. Diet Simple Tip #45: Write it and Lose ItThe food diary is the main tool for self-examination of your eating habits. Socrates told us that the road to wisdom is to know ourselves. This is never more true than in your eating habits. Studies show self-monitoring - keeping a food journal in this case - is the most highly correlating factor with successful behavior change and weight loss.Bottom Line: Lose 23 pounds If keeping the diary enhances your attentiveness and helps you eat less here or there or even think twice about that vending machine candy bar, you could save 220 calories per day.

For the 5 Remaining Katherine's Commandments, including Losing weight by enjoying a daily Chocolate Sundae...