THE COMING of a new year typically sounds the bell for New Year's resolutions. If they're ever going to do it, this is the time when most people resolve to go on diets and to exercise.

I recommend that we declare 2010 the year of truth. Truth is simple, and eternal. You can see where I'm going with this: Dieting, weight-loss drugs, weight-loss surgery and other temporary fixes are not the answer. What we should be doing is eating more and exercising less.

That's right, you heard me.

We should be eating more frequently, about every 2 1/2 to 3 hours, and eating "more." At the top of your "more" list should be more fruits and vegetables.

If you've been dieting - eating a low-calorie, low-carb, low-fat diet, you have likely shut down your metabolism. Eating increases your metabolic rate.

So there is no confusion, here is a simple eating formula to try:

Breakfast, 6 a.m.

1 protein serving

1 serving starch

1 cup of water

Coffee or tea

Mid-morning snack, 9 a.m.

1 piece of fruit

1 serving dairy or fat

1 cup of water

Lunch, noon

1 serving protein

2 servings vegetables

1 serving starch

1 cup of water

Herbal tea

Midafternoon snack, 3 p.m.

1 piece of fruit

1 serving dairy or fat

1 cup of water

Herbal tea

Dinner, 6 p.m.

1 serving protein

2 servings vegetables

1 serving starch

1 cup of water

Herbal tea

Late-night snack (optional)

1 piece of fruit

1 cup of water or tea

To keep your portions under control, use your hands.

A protein portion should be about 3 to 4 ounces, roughly the size of your palm (ahem, not your entire hand).

A starch portion is half a cup (one level ice cream scoop). Two handsful of vegetables, 1 cup of milk or yogurt (or an ounce of cheese or half-cup of cottage cheese) and one to two tablespoons of olive oil (fat) should do the trick for the other food groups on your diet.

If you eat like this, you won't ever be hungry - and your metabolic rate will increase, too.

This eating schedule is simple, easy to follow and nets results. You will slim down naturally, without insanity or deprivation. Reasonable, right?

Going for the burn

Are you at the gym for countless hours doing cardio routines? If so, you are actually burning up your muscle and slowing down your metabolism.

Unknowingly, you may have helped your body adapt and become more efficient at - you guessed it, FAT storage.

If you really want to rev up your metabolic engine, then work out with intensity. Doing the same old, same old will actually lower your metabolism.

I know you're busy, so I've developed a plan you can do in as little as 15 minutes, 30 minutes or an hour.

It's inexpensive, can be performed nearly anywhere and is quite effective.

Do each of the following exercises for 60 seconds - that's a 15-minute workout. Do the sequence twice for 30 minutes, or four times for an hour workout.

No matter how busy you are, you can always fit in a 15-minute mini-workout. And this routine works every major muscle, incorporates compound movements that work your upper and lower body simultaneously, and can be done in your home or hotel room with inexpensive bands or dumbbells, and a jump rope.

The most expensive piece of equipment is you.

Kimberly's exercise routine

Jump rope, 1 minute*

Push-ups, 1 minute**

Alternating forward lunge with biceps curls, 1 minute

Crunches, 1 minute

Bent-over row, 1 minute

Jumping jacks, 1 minute

Triceps push-ups, 1 minute

Squat jumps, 1 minute

Alternating lunge with shoulder press, 1 minute

Plank (yoga pose), 1 minute

Jump rope, 1 minute

Lunge with side raises, 1 minute

Squat thrust, 1 minute

Wall sit, 1 minute

Mountain climber, 1 minute

*You can substitute marching in place for the jump rope.

**Do modified push-ups with bent knees.

Remember, if it's simple, it is more likely to be sustainable. As always, check with your doctor before changing your diet or exercise routine.

Make 2010 your year to be fit, strong, and your best!

Kimberly Garrison is a certified personal trainer and owner of One on One Ultimate Fitness in Philadelphia (www.1on1ultimatefitness.com). E-mail her at

kimberly@1on1ultimatefitness.com. Her column appears each Thursday in Yo!