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The Spark: The 28-Day Breakthrough Plan for Losing Weight, Getting Fit, and Transforming Your Life is a book written by Chris Downie.
Author Chris Downie is known as the “SparkGuy” and is the founder and CEO of SparkPeople.com, which is the largest healthy lifestyle community online. The Spark takes an approach towards weight loss that includes exercise, motivation and goal setting. This book focuses on what you can do instead of what you can’t do.
When reading this book, you will find the secrets of success, a 28-day program and dozens of success stories. The secrets to success included in the book showcase some of the best habits of SparkPeople.com’s most successful members. The 28-day program brings together all the important effective practices into a four stage plan that is exclusive to this book. The Spark comes highly praised by several authors and doctors.
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- Program includes diet information
- Program encourages exercise for losing weight
- Written by an experienced member of the fitness community
- Several testimonials and photos of successful people included
- Detailed meal plan included
- Online component available through SparkPeople.com
- Meal plan includes traditional favorites with a healthy twist
- None to speak of
There is a specific diet plan included in The Spark. The Spark showcases a diet plan that includes three meals and two snacks each day. One suggestion that is included with the meal plan is that you incorporate “super foods” into your diet. Super foods not only help increase the nutritional value of your meals, they also help fight infection, enhance your immune system, protect against diseases, power your brain and help fuel your body. The Spark offers a nice long list of super foods to enhance variety, and most of them are available at regular grocery stores and farmers markets.
The meal suggestions with The Spark diet plan all include nutritional information. This makes it easy to keep track of your daily calorie, fat, fiber, carb and protein counts. The average day of meals with this program is based on 1,500 calories per day.
There are also numerous suggestions for mix-and-match meals. These are snacks that can be quickly put together when you’re short on time but still need healthy options. A day of meals and snacks on The Spark would look like this:
- Breakfast: 1 English muffin topped with a poached egg, 2 slices of turkey bacon and 1 oz. low fat cheddar cheese; ½ large orange; 1 cup of skim milk
- Snack: ½ cup low-fat pudding; 1 sheet graham crackers
- Lunch: Sandwich made with 3 oz. low-sodium lean ham, 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard, 1 slice low-fat Swiss cheese, 1 large leaf romaine lettuce and 3 tomatoes on 2 slices of whole-grain bread; ½ cup grapes; ½ cup baby carrots
- Snack: 1 slice whole-wheat bread, spread with 1 tablespoon natural, low-sodium peanut butter and 1 tablespoon all-fruit spread
- Dinner: 3 oz. boneless, skinless chicken breast grilled and topped with homemade barbeque sauce; 1 cup skim milk; ½ cup frozen peas; ½ cup green beans; ½ cup baked sweet potato; ½ cup cantaloupe
Exercise is definitely important with The Spark. Fitness is a cornerstone of The Spark program, and for those who aren’t doing any type of exercise, you start slow. The suggested starting point for many that are doing the program is simply walking back and forth from your mailbox.
Visualization is also an important part of the program. You must start to visualize yourself as a healthy and vibrant person so that you can work your way toward that image. Some of the same exercise tips that are offered on SparkPeople.com are listed throughout the book. There are illustrations of certain exercises included in the book to help with technique.
For those short on time, ten minute workouts are included for your convenience. Exercises are broken out for beginners and those who are more advanced. The main categories focused on are stretching exercises, upper body exercises, lower body exercises and gym exercises. Some example exercises include:
- Ab crunches on balance board
- Back extension
- Dumbbell side bends
- Reverse crunch
- Weight training
The Spark is a book that is very highly respected and praised by professionals in the diet and exercise community. It contains a program that will lead to weight loss and several people have already been successful following the plan.
Having the book filled with success stories throughout seems to be a good way to keep people motivated while they read. Many people have been able to lose large amounts of weight which can be very inspiring. The success of online subscribers to SparkPeople.com is sure to carry over into those that follow the plan in the book.
It includes all of the essentials of losing weight, such as a meal and exercise plan.
Because The Spark is a 28-day plan, you can give it a try and see if you get results. For those who have larger amounts of weight to lose, continuing on the plan until you reach your goals is definitely doable. Whether you just buy the book or go with the book paired with an online membership, you will find some useful tips that will help you become healthier.Common Misspellings
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