How's your New Year's diet coming along? If you find you're slipping back into bad habits and the pounds aren't coming off, Denise Austin's new book, "Denise's Daily Dozen," might be just the jump-start you need to get going again.
Austin's book promises big, saying that on her three-week diet and exercise program you can lose up to 12 pounds in just two weeks.
The secret? Consuming just 1,200 to 1,300 calories a day for women (1,500 to 1,600 for men) in the first two weeks of the diet, doing at least 12 minutes of exercises each day and walking (or running, biking or swimming) 12 miles a week.
It takes commitment to follow any weight-loss program, especially one with such a strict caloric intake, but the fitness guru uses her trademark upbeat approach to turn it into something that sounds almost fun. Each day's exercises are different (Monday is a "cardio fat blast," Sunday a yoga stretch workout) and are performed for only a minute apiece, so boredom is not an issue. Austin sells the pleasures of healthy eating and shares easy ways to get more active.
Her well-organized book divides up chapters by days of the week and offers nutritionist-devised menus (with simple recipes conveniently nearby); shopping lists; weight-loss testimonials; practical and inspirational tips; illustrated cardio, toning and flexibility workouts; and additional moves to tame tension, work abs and boost metabolism.
As the title suggests, things come by the dozen in this book: a dozen foods to eat daily (three servings each of vegetables, fruits and proteins, two of grains and one of a healthy fat); a dozen meals you can make in 12 minutes; a dozen ways to boost motivation, get better sleep, eat more fiber, get past cravings, soothe sore muscles, relax.
The idea is that the program will help you form healthier habits that you can then incorporate into your daily life. But will you? Austin gives you everything you need to do it. The rest, of course, is up to you.
-- Anne Colby
Photo: "Denise's Daily Dozen: The Easy, Every Day Program to Lose Up to 12 Pounds in 2 Weeks," Denise Austin, Center Street/Hachette Book Group, $16.99. Credit: Center Street/Hachette Book Group