8 Ways To Prevent Getting Sick

 

Now, these are not guaranteed to keep you from ever getting sick, but they should hopefully increase your chances of making it through winter with minimal damage.

The irony is that I thought of this post this weekend, and as I write this, I feel like I have something coming on in the form of a little winter cold…oh well, must be karma.

1) Hydrate Hydrate Hydrate

You can never get enough water, but especially in winter many people actually drink less because of the temperatures not being hot. However, you actually tend to lose MORE body water in the the cold winters  – so make sure you are drinking more water than you think you need.

2) Eat Your Fatty Fish

We should all know, Salmon is high in Omega-3 fatty acids. These fats are awesome for anti-inflammatory properties and may help keep your immune system strong. Eating salmon twice per week is great and all, but for most of us that isn’t a realistic option – so consider getting a Omega-3 supplement –> http://amzn.to/2kq9VyY

3) Get Your Vitamin D

This might be the most underrated and under appreciated vitamin out there. In Wisconsin, we don’t see the sun nearly enough to produce enough vitamin D, and most of us don’t get nearly enough through the diet. What is enough? I recommend everyone who experiences cold, dark winters take 5000 IU D3 per day.

Order this now if you don’t take it –> http://amzn.to/2kraKYx

4) Zinc It Up

One of the more common micronutrient deficiencies in athletes, vegetarians/vegans, and those who sweat a ton, Zinc is crucial for proper immune function.

Zinc has two standard dosages. The low dosage is 5-10mg, while the high dosage is 25-45mg. The low dose works well as a daily preventative, while the high dosage should be taken by anyone at risk for a zinc deficiency.

For a great overall supplement, I recommend ZMA (Zinc, Magnesium and Vit B6)

-> http://amzn.to/2l2E6jY

5) Garlic is the Herb For You

A study in the journal Advances in Therapy found that people who took garlic supplements for 12 weeks between November and February got fewer colds than those who took a placebo. And of those who did get sick, those who took the garlic supplement felt better faster.

Don’t feel like eating a clove a day? Try this: http://amzn.to/2BeoAI4

6) Be Smart About Training

Listen to your body. If you’re feeling sick, especially in your chest, lungs or stomach, maybe you need to take a day off, hit a warm shower, and chill out for a day.

Exercising while being sick will only delay your return to optimal health, might annoy your fellow gym members who don’t want to get sick, and honestly you won’t get much out of the workout because your body is too busy fighting off the illness, it won’t be delegating many resources to your muscle repair systems.

7) Eat the Rainbow

Load up on veggies and fruits – and eat many different colors. I don’t need to preach why this is important, just know that the different colors mean many different kinds of anti-oxidants and awesome phytonutrients that will help your body.

8) Why No Mention of Vitamin C??

Vitamin C is usually the go to for the common cold – however, more and more studies have shown that taking Vitamin C does not decrease your chances of getting sick. However, once you do get sick, taking some Vitamin C may help.

So instead of waiting to get sick and pounding mega doses of Vitamin C, pay attention to the first 7 tips – and hopefully you will prevent yourself form even getting to that point!

 

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To Hell With Average

 

Sometimes a title just needs to grab your attention.

After discussing avoiding the Holiday Season weight gain with some clients, I got to thinking. Instead of coming up with “tips and tricks”, why not just change the status quo? A paradigm shift of sorts.

***Average American gains 5-10 pounds during the Holiday season by the way…BUT that is because the AVERAGE American is overweight, and according to the most recent studies, healthy weight individuals actually only gain 1.3 pounds during the holiday season***

Why be average? Why be like everyone else? Really. Lets look at average:

2/3 of Adults are Overweight or Obese in America

The norm is to be overweight or obese. Now yes, I know these numbers are based on BMI data, and strong muscled up men and women might be technically overweight according to BMI….but just take a look around. Do you see more tight buns and chiseled arms or saggy butts and big guts? 

So what do we do about this? How do you and I solve this epidemic???

Let’s dive deeper into the “Average person”…

According to a Nielsen report, United States adults are watching five hours and four minutes of television per day on average.

5 hours of TV time!!! Yet…

The average American only gets 4000-5000 steps per day.

The usual recommendation is 10,000 steps per day…

Only 59% of Americans get at least 7 hours of sleep per night.

While it’s more than average getting enough sleep, 41% of people are not. Why is sleep important?

  • Cognitive function – your brain recovers
  • Immune function – your body recovers
  • Hormone production – your muscles and sex drive recover
  • Cardiovascular function – your blood pressure lowers
  • Fat loss – you burn the most fat while you sleep

“Hey average American, cut back on 2 hours of TV, use one of those to go for a walk or exercise and one of those to sleep, and we might get this obesity rate down pretty fast.”

Here is your “average” food group consumption:

https://health.gov/dietaryguidelines/2015/guidelines/chapter-2/current-eating-patterns-in-the-united-states/

Source: https://health.gov/dietaryguidelines/2015/guidelines/chapter-2/current-eating-patterns-in-the-united-states/

How about beverage choices?

Americans on average drink 58 gallons of water per year. That’s 7,242 ounces of water annually — 20 ounces daily, which is 2.5 cups. And ZERO calories…

I recommend consuming at LEAST half your bodyweight in ounces. i.e.  If you weigh 200 pounds, then drink 100 ounces.

Americans on average drink 44 gallons of soda per year. 5632 ounces…or 67,584 calories per year…from soda

Alcohol consumption is tougher, but 30% of American adults don’t drink, and another 30% only consume one drink per week on average, but the top 10% of alcohol consumers drink 74 drink per week. Yes 74…

Median consumption is 3 drinks per week for those who drink. It’s hard to guess calories because of the types of drinks can vary.

So what do we do with all of this???

If you fall into these “norms” then pick one and get to work. I like starting with step tracking. Find out how many steps you get in a day, and try to add 500 each day, week by week, until you are up to 10k per day.

What if you are don’t fall into these norms, but still struggle to lose weight? Look again. Do you truly meet all the dietary recommendations? Do you consume enough water? Do you get enough sleep?

Are you CONSISTENT with most of the healthy habits? Or do you jump on and jump off the routine often?

I always say, CONSISTENCY is the secret sauce. It’s not sexy, it’s not trendy, but holy moly does it work.

Your success in the long term will always be determined by the persistent execution of the most basic things. So don’t be average. Looking back at those stats, it’s really not THAT hard to be better.

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Worried About Holiday Eating? Let’s Talk…

Thanksgiving is supposed to be a happy day, spent with family and or friends, where we come together and ENJOY our favorite holiday foods.

It should NOT be a day where we demonize food, or feel like we need to EARN food, or work off food. Don’t get me started on those posts about “It takes X amount of burpees to burn off a piece of pumpkin pie” – stop it. Enjoy the pie.

On the flip side, if you have been working at creating consistency and positive, healthy eating habits, it should also not be seen as a day to completely forgot about everything you have been working on and just pig out to the point of feeling sick or so bloated that you look like a tick ready to pop.

We need to get away from this “all or nothing” mentality.

Thanksgiving can easily be enjoyed without stressing about our diet, or the scale.

Here are some simple things to keep in mind when it comes to ENJOYING Thanksgiving responsibly.

1) It is ONE day. Enjoy that ONE day.

There are 30 days in November, and 31 days in December. Let’s assume you eat 3 meals a day. That makes 183 meals for the two months.

Let’s assume there are 3-4 meals of pure holiday joy during the two months. Enjoy them – and put your focus on the other 179 meals.

Where people tend to get into trouble is when they start celebrating the feast at the start of the week because “who cares, I will be pigging out on Thursday, so why not just start now?”

Or allowing the feasting to continue past Friday (because leftovers happen) and the rest of the weekend.

This is the mindset that can easily snowball back into old habits that you have worked hard to break. Leading up to Thursday, you should continue your week as you normally would. Eat responsibly, eat when physically hungry, get your workouts in, and maintain a slight caloric deficit (assuming your current goal is fat loss). Simple – IF you have been working on these habits up until now.

Give yourself the day, but nothing extra before or after. It is ONE day out of 365.

2) Enjoy Your Favorite Foods – responsibly 

I use this with my clients all the time. Do you enjoy (insert favorite holiday food here)? Then eat one serving/slice/portion/scoop/etc – not the entire thing.

Yes, it can even be a super rich, sugary, fatty dessert. One piece will not destroy all of your progress and ruin everything. However, if you know you have certain trigger foods, it may take some extra precaution before indulging. Plan to have just the ONE piece – and move on.

The truth is, food does not not carry morals, nor does eating a certain food make YOU a bad person. It is food – that is all.

Thou Shall Not allow guilt to be felt on Thanksgiving Day!

Enjoy it, clean up your dishes like your mother taught you, and move on back to your regularly scheduled life.

3) Plan Accordingly the Day Of

If you are like me you KNOW that you will go a little crazy with the food choices at the feast. These are probably foods you don’t regularly eat, so why not?

This being said, if you normally eat an early Thanksgiving dinner, then maybe have a lighter breakfast, or pass on lunch – knowing all too well that you will definitely get those calories in later.

Focus on protein and veggies early in the day, saving all those rich, carb and fat filled foods for later.

Even if you have the best of intentions and you do over eat, oh well. It’s OKAY!

Side note: I know I said you don’t need to feel like you need to earn your food, however if you want to make the most of it, hit a nice heavy weight training session the morning of the feast – I’m thinking 10×10 squats are on my pre-feast plan 🙂

The Bigger Picture:

Holidays are supposed to be enjoyable times. When you create a healthy relationship with food, you don’t worry about holidays because you know they are only a small fraction of the entire year – and there are bigger habits that matter.

When you have an unhealthy relationship with food, you stress and worry about the holidays, but often ignore all the other moments that you mindlessly snack, over eat, and all the moments that you eat without even being hungry.

The moral of the story here is short and sweet – enjoy the holiday, enjoy your family, enjoy the foods, and get right back to it Friday morning and through the rest of the weekend -and all will be good – I promise!

 

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Why I Am a Fan of Daily Weighing

First let me start with this – the scale isn’t everything. It is one tool in our toolbox of objectifying data we perceive about our progress and therefore it is useful to a point. 

However, if one’s goal is to lose body fat or build muscle – or even just maintain, it is a very valuable tool in providing feedback and information about our progress.

Many professionals have their opinions on weighing in, and how often it should be done, and what is right or wrong – but they miss the point of what mindset you need to be in for the appropriate measure to be effective.

Here is why I am in favor of daily weighing:

ProTip 1: daily weighing requires the right mindset – distance yourself from emotion tied to the scale.

Easier said than done, and it takes practice – but when you weigh yourself daily, you need to not let that number bother you. IT is just a number. It doesn’t make you good or bad – it just says what you weigh in pounds at that exact time.

THIS IS THE MOST IMPORTANT STEP – IF YOU CANNOT MASTER THIS MINDSET SHIFT, DAILY WEIGHING MIGHT NOT BE FOR YOU!

ProTip 2: do your daily weigh in’s first thing in the morning, naked, and after you empty your bladder.

Our weight can fluctuate like crazy over the course of a day. I have weighed 205 in the morning and been 215 before bed on the same day – no, I didn’t gain 10 pounds of fat in one day.

This is where the scales weakness is exposed. It ONLY tells us our weight. Our daily weight can be different because:

  • We havent peed yet
  • We havent pooped yet
  • We slept like crap
  • We ate a lot of carbs last night
  • We ate a lot of salt last night
  • We drank alcohol last night
  • Women are on their period
  • We are under tons of stress

These reasons are all linked to one thing mostly: water retention. So if we can try to minimize the variables and weigh ourselves every single day at the same time, under the same-ish circumstances – that helps.

ProTip 3: when using daily weighing – focus on the TRENDS, not the day or even week alone.

Losing weight can be frustrating when you focus on immediate gratification. For daily weighing, we take away the “once per week doomsday weigh in scenario”. You know it… “I only weigh myself on Fridays”…so then you eat really “good” up until then, sometimes starving yourself on Thursday, but as soon as you weigh in on Friday – you go hog wild over the weekend. That’s not a way to live.

When you weigh yourself daily, you step on, see your weight, track it somewhere – and move on. From this we can look at general trends.

Example: Person A wants to lose 10 pounds in 10 weeks. Very reasonable goal!

Weight on Day 1: 220 

Weight on Day 7: 219 – Yay! Lost a pound doing great!

Weight on Day 14: 221 – $#!T! WTF%@*&^!&$# 

We have all been there before. You think you are doing everything right, and this happens! So demotivating. Now, did person A GAIN 2 pounds of fat from Day 7 to 14?  We don’t know. Maybe it was just a long night, and they had some pasta and wine, because they are stressed out. We don’t know because this is the main flaw of weekly weighing. We can’t see trends.

This is the point when person A might: 1)give up or 2)get on a more drastic diet that maybe they don’t need…

Now lets look at Person B – same weight, same goals, but daily weighing.

  • Day 1: 220
  • Day 2: 219.8
  • Day 3: 220.1
  • Day 4:219.0
  • Day 5:219.5
  • Day 6: 220
  • Day 7: 219.0 —– Add up, divide by 7 = 219.62 – this is progress downward
  • Day 8: 219.5
  • Day 9: 218.8
  • Day 10: 218.4
  • Day 11: 219.5
  • Day 12: 218.3
  • Day 13 : 219.5
  • Day 14: 221 —- Add up, divide by 7 = 219.28 – again progress in the right direction.

But Mike, thats only a loss of 0.72 pounds in 2 weeks…

Maybe it is, maybe it isn’t. Look at the daily weights now. You see some 218’s in there showing up more frequently, and if you rule out the jump to 221 – you would see a much bigger drop in the average. This person could easily get past that one day at 221, and average out at 217 the next week.

Over time this is what weight loss progress looks like when you use daily weighing:

When you look at only one week, it looks like nothing. But over 6 months? PROGRESS!

This is why I am in favor of the daily weigh ins.

  1. Track trends, not single moments in time
  2. It allows us to reflect on the “why” is our weight up vs. just guessing once per week
  3. It provides a sense of motivation with the right mindset.

 

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How To Actually Get Things Done

Ive been writing about goals and mindset a lot lately, mostly because after working in the industry for almost a decade now, I have found that to be the biggest challenge for most people.

Most people know they need to workout/be more active.

Most people know what to eat more of and what to eat less of.

Most people don’t know how to initiate action on either without; A) being totally depressed because they feel they can only eat broccoli and chicken, or B) starting 150% – and burning out rather quickly – a la the yo-yo dieter.

So what does one have to do to have the best chance at results, maintaining sanity, and staying motivated?

I give you – Goal Optimization Technique and Big F***ing Task Management System Pathway to Success – or GOTBFTMSPTS. ($5 to anyone who can come up with something that rolls off the tongue a little better…)

Where did I come up with this? Well – after reading, listening to podcasts and audiobooks, and talking with other great minds, I kind of just threw this together be taking bits and pieces of things that I liked from my sources…

Step 1) Get out a piece of paper or even better a notebook.

Physically writing things out has been proven to be more effective than just saying them or thinking them. Write this stuff out if it’s really that important to you!

Step 2) Write your 3 goals – be specific and be realistic.

  1. Lose 20 pounds in 2 weeks
  2. Retire at age 35
  3. Own 3 sports teams

Are all great, but lets be real here.

***If weight loss is a goal, then I recommend 1% weight loss every 2 weeks***

So lets look at hypothetical person A – Jane. 160 pounds, 40 years old, moderately active, looking to lose another 10 pounds. Thats a 6% weight loss – so about 12 weeks out. Her goals might be:

  1. Lose 10 pounds by Feb. 1st 2018.
  2. Start an online retail business for the widgets she makes by January 1.
  3. Go on a week vacation with her two kids for Spring Break.

So there are her three goals.

Step 3) WHY Are Your Goals Important?

Now is where we dive into the “why”. Why are those goals really important to you. I’ve written on that many times – so I won’t…BUT it is an important step to write out as well! Finding “WHY” your goals are important will get to the root motivational objectives – and will drive you to succeed much better than any motivational speaker or trainer can do.

For more info – read this if you haven’t – “Find Your Why” – Simon Sinek

Step 4) Come Up with Your BFT’s Every Single Day

This is where the money is made. Your BFT’s, or Big “frickin” tasks – are what will get you to your goals. So now that we wrote down the goals, and why they are important, we tuck those away and turn our focus to the TASKS that will get us there.

Write out 3-5 TASKS, not goals, everyday that will get you TO your goals.

They may not be BIG tasks to others, but to you, they are because they will move you towards your goals.

Jane’s could be:

  1. Workout at home for 45 minutes (Goal 1)
  2. Plan meals for the week (Goal 1)
  3. Schedule meeting with web designer (Goal 2)
  4. Put $5 in the vacation fund (Goal 3)

As she completes those tasks – she crosses them off. Physically crossing things off gives people a sense of accomplishment, and leads to winning the day.

Your BFT’s might stay the same day after day, and thats okay.Some will change, but some you might be writing down everyday – and thats what matters!

When you start winning the days, you start winning weeks, months and years – and that is where you find results.

Will you win every day? Heck no.

But you keep going forward.

If you had a task that you didn’t complete on Day 1, then put it first for Day 2, and don’t ditch it until you cross it off.

So if you have never done this before, and you are sitting here thinking – I don’t have time to do that, or that sounds like some stupid guru BS; I don’t need to write out my goals, and daily tasks…then good luck, thanks for visiting.

BUT, if you have never tried it, what is the harm in trying it? I promise that if you do this system, you will find yourself more productive, feeling more accomplished, and having more success than ever before!

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You Are The Result Of You

 

YOU. Right now, how you feel, how you look, how you are…is a result of everything YOU have (have not) done. Today, yesterday, last week, last year, the last 20 years. It is all accumulated to where you are right now.

Accept it. Live it. Own it.

Have you neglected your health? That’s on you.

And only you.

It’s hard for people to accept this fact. But once you do, you can actually do something about it. Sitting around whining about how hard things are, and how crappy your day was will get you absolutely no where. It will only stress you more, and make you feel even more hopeless.

When was the last time you actually took ownership and did something about it?

Something bugging you? Change it.

Someone bugging you? Talk to them about it.

Don’t like how you look. Do something about it. Do EVERYTHING about it.

This is on you, not your friend, not your kids, not your boss – YOU.

Okay, now I think you get the point.

Here is how to approach it – and since this is a health blog – we will look at how to take ownership of your health and turn this ship around.

1. Your current state is your responsibility.

“I got busy, and now I weigh 50 pounds more than I did 5 years ago”

Chances are, you didn’t gain 50 pounds overnight and ignored it for 5 years.

This is a culmination of everything you have done or have not done in the last 5 years.

You need to accept this fact, stop blaming external factors, and get to work – NOW.

2. Track progress…track SOMETHING

“I don’t want to track ______, it takes too much time”.

Yep, and so does watching TV, browsing facebook, looking at cat memes, and watching youtube tutorials on how to lose fat in 10 days.

I have a client who tracks their food while sitting on the toilet. This may sound funny, but my God is it a great use of time.

Do you need to track your food?

No.

You need to track something. If you keep ignoring everything, how do you think it will change?

Some objective things that CAN be tracked:

  1. Your food intake
  2. Your weight
  3. Your waist circumference
  4. Your visual progress (progress photos)
  5. Your strength
  6. Your cardio health
  7. Your workouts

So say you want to lose weight, but don’t want to track anything…yep, I’ve heard it before. How will you know if you are progressing if you literally don’t want to track ANYTHING?

I want to have 2 million dollars in my retirement fund by the time I am 65…but I don’t want to manage my money, track my investments, or monitor changes in the market.

How dumb does that sound?

Call it a bit harsh, but you need to be aware of SOMETHING.

So you don’t want to track food. So maybe track your waist circumference. Is it going up? Then you are probably eating too much – so eat less. Is it going down? Awesome, keep doing what you’re doing – but PLEASE track SOMETHING!

3. Manage and Adjust 

Once you figure out what you want to track – and you figure out how to know if what you are doing is working or not, you need to manage your life and adjust based off of your desired outcome.

Scale not moving? Then maybe it’s time to have a good ol’ heart to heart with yourself and figure out what you can do to change that. Maybe your clothes fit better, but the scale isn’t moving – that’s awesome, you are probably getting some great body composition changes (losing fat, adding muscle)

Still have no clue where to even start?(I promise, you can probably pinpoint a few areas once you accept that “yes, maybe I need to stop putting 1/4 cup of creamer in my coffee and pounding a 800 calorie muffin every morning”) – then find help.

A good trainer and nutrition expert will guide you – but they still cannot do everything for you – (see the top of this post). Obi Wan didn’t blow up the Death Star, Luke did.

Does your trainer give you advice? Does your nutritionist tell you how to change your diet? Awesome…but did you follow their instructions?

I’m guessing they didn’t give you this advice just for kicks and giggles.

Follow good advice, and good things will happen.

  1. Accept self-responsibility
  2. Decide to change
  3. Do it
  4. Adjust and Manage
  5. Carry on, and repeat steps 3-5.

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Set Goals That Fire You Up

“If your goals don’t scare you; they aren’t big enough”

I like the quote, but I also think that “scare” might not be the ideal word.

This is why I like “fire you up” instead – goals that get you excited, goals that make you want to start NOW, not tomorrow.

When it comes to setting goals, many people approach them so haphazardly, that they never really get anywhere. It’s great to SET the goal, but then what are you going to do about it? Other points that matter:

  • How are you going to reach it?
  • What are you going to do once you reach it?
  • How will it make you better?
  • Or will it even make you better?
  • When are you going to reach it?
  • Why is it important to you?

These are the things that you literally need to write down, and post on your fridge or at your desk, or on the bathroom mirror – or make the background of your phone – anywhere you will see them frequently and often.

I have done this for the past 2 years, and both times I have accomplished my “big goal”.

  1. 2016 – Start my business, and grow clientele by 10% while maintaining 90% retention rate – CHECK.
  2. 2017 – Get published on 3 other websites – CHECK
  3. 2018 – Present at a major fitness conference. 

This is MY goal for 2018, and I am writing it here so all of you can keep my accountable.

So lets dive deeper into my 2018 goal, and this same process can easily be applied to health/fat loss/muscle building/etc.

I have my end goal: presenting at a conference.

Now we need to break it down into PROCESS GOALS – these are the steps that will get me to my end goal. This is where the focus MUST be, not on the end goal.

With “i want to lose weight” as a goal, you cannot sit around and focus on that. You need to write out what are the pieces of the process that will get you there – and hit those HARD.

  1. Get to the gym 4 days per week.
  2. Measure out my portions.
  3. Get 7 hours of sleep each night.
  4. Eat 1 serving of protein 4 times per day.
  5. Eat 4 servings of veggies per day…

If you sit around and just focus on “why am I not losing weight?!” instead of the process goals, you will just keep spinning in place. Focus on the process, and the finish line will come to you.

So back to my goal.

Here are the process steps:

  1. Find 5-10 area conferences that I am interested in speaking at.
  2. Contact the appropriate people in charge.
  3. Have a plan put together on my topic that I wish to present on, and WHY it would be beneficial for them to have me present about it.
  4. Follow up, follow up, follow up!

Truth is, this idea came to me this weekend, and I already applied to 3 conferences in the area, and put together and outline on my ideal presentation and how it will benefit trainers/fitness professionals. I am fired up about it!

So you need to do the same – whatever your goals may be.

  1. Write it out.
  2. No seriously, get out paper right now and W.R.I.T.E.I.T.O.U.T!!!
  3. Write down 2-4 process goals that will help you get to your end goal.
  4. Set a timeline (when you want to accomplish it)
  5. Hit it hard, and stay the course.

If it is truly an important goal of yours, you will succeed. I’m not saying it will be easy, but if you put in the work, you will get there. I promise.

 

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What is the best diet?

 

Yesterday a friend asked me, “so what do you think the best diet is?”

Talk about a tough question…so why not answer it with the easiest cop out answer.

The best diet for someone is the diet that they can enjoy, stick to, get results on, and maintain an optimal level of health at their current point in life.

What a terrible answer…but it’s really the truth.

To break it down:

Eating what you enjoy.

How many of you have tried some kind of fad diet, filled with foods you never eat, and foods you hate? I’m sure you stuck to it for years, and were a very pleasant person to be around.

You have to eat what you enjoy to be successful.

Does that mean I can have a successful diet on ice cream, bacon and homemade chex mix? Probably not all the time, but I can fit those kinds of things in which gets me to point number two…

Sticking to it.

If you enjoy what you eat (most of the time) you are likely going to keep it up, right?

This is where finding true moderation comes in. Moderation is not drinking one soda a day, and eating dessert only after dinner – that is a little excessive. Moderation is how most people consume vegetables – once or twice a week, maybe…

What you eat 80-90% of the time however should be the foods that we all know are beneficial to our health and especially the ones that we enjoy, because by doing this we…

Get results…

Whether it be fat loss, muscle building, or just maintaining our current shape, results matter – and without an appropriate eating plan, results wont happen. (remember, you cant out train a bad diet)

So you may need to do some tracking, measuring, or have someone keep you accountable – but bottom line is, results matter, and they take some effort.

However, it doesn’t need to be as complex as people make it out to be! Look at what you currently eat. Are you currently maintaining weight, but want to lose some? Then cut out two bites at every meal. Simple and silly? Yes – but it would work.

But what if you eat total crap, but still create a caloric deficit – well, you will lose weight, but you might not feel the best after some time…

Maintain optimal levels of health

Clients are shocked when I look over their journals and tell them “okay, switch your 3 cokes a day to 3 diet cokes”, or “lets switch to eating only one quarter pounder with cheese instead of two”…

Most people expect me to tell them to throw out their current life completely and drink only purified water with pH balanced salts, and cook only the purest organic chicken breasts…not eat one less thing at McDonalds.

Truth is, I would love to EVENTUALLY get people away from fast food, and diet soda…but that might never happen (see reasons 1-3) – but if I can get them to substantially reduce their intakes, lose some pounds, and vastly improve their internal health, then that is one hell of a start.

So look over these 4 points, and figure out if you are currently doing the right things for YOU, or are you trying to follow the latest trend on the cover of the magazine at the grocery store?

 

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Eat Less – Exercise More is WRONG

 

If you read anything today, it should be this.

For years, I myself told people, “exercise more, eat less – thats how you lose weight!”

This is true.

Unfortunately, I disagree with this statement completely now. Yes, I can change my views on things too, I am human.

So why is is wrong, and what DO I suggest?

First lets look at the principles behind the statement.

If you increase exercise, or movement in general – you burn more calories.

If you eat less food, you consume fewer calories.

Thus, you create a caloric deficit. Meaning, you are burning more calories than you consume, and by the undeniable laws of thermodynamics – you should be losing weight!

This is all true.

So what is wrong with exercise more, eat less?

Exercise More

“I need to do more cardio” – ” I need to go to more bootcamps” – “I need to workout more”

Three common statements made by people who want to lose weight. All good statements, but all could be neglecting something important – DIET.

You cannot out train a bad diet. You might be able to at the start, but it won’t last. I promise.

You lost weight by running a bunch and not really looking at your diet. Then all of a sudden life happened and you had to stop running 2 hours a day, 7 days a week. Then what happens?

Or you hit a plateau in your weight loss, so you must add more running! Now you are socially exiling yourself from your friends and family, because you need to run 12 hours per week to maintain your weight loss – that sounds fun.

Exercising more is not the answer.

Eat Less

So you want to crash diet to fit into that dress for the winter ball? Ok. Go jump on a standard cookie cutter diet (which definitely doesn’t include cookies) and starve yourself at 1200 calories a day. You will lose weight.

But then what?

You either have to keep eating so little that you burn out, or yup – you have to exercise more to create bigger deficit.

Man or woman, starving yourself brings about some pretty nasty hormonal side effects – I don’t recommend it.

So what the hell do you recommend?

Exercise More, Eat More.

or

Exercise Less, Eat Less

(but maintain a caloric balance suited for your goals)

What does this mean?

Want to lose weight at a sustainable rate? Then live in a 300-500 calorie caloric deficit for most days of the week, and don’t go crazy on days that you aren’t.

Want to gain muscle at a sustainable rate without gaining tons of fat? Maintain a caloric surplus of 200-300 calories for most days of the week that you train.

So say you want to lose some fat.

Here is what your week might look like:

As exercise increase, this allows you to eat more – which will help maintain muscle mass, and your sanity – and as long as you stay within a deficit, you are golden.

So how do you figure all this out?

That is way beyond a blog post – and unfortunately it isn’t as simple as just plugging in numbers to a formula. For in general, if you live by being aware of 1) Did I exercise today? and 2) Did I eat a little more today? and 3) Am I still losing/gaining weight (dependent on goal) – then you will have your answers.

This is my goal for everyone. Stop this trend of eating less and less and less, and exercising more, and more – and find a sustainable process that works for the long haul, and you can switch it on and off like a faucet – with very little problems.

 

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Stop Overthinking Everything Diet and Exercise

Being in the industry, I see a lot of opposing viewpoints when it comes to nutrition and exercise.

I can see why it is so confusing for the average person to figure out what they NEED to be doing.

Here is a great realization that I have made recently – the fitness/nutrition world is just like America right now. I would say about 98% of people in the industry agree on most stuff – and then you have the other 1% on each end of the spectrum.

Unfortunately, these 1%’ers on bot are the ones that make all the noise.

  • “If you drink tap water you will die!”
  • “If you eat 5 grams of sugar, your will die”
  • “Lifting weights makes women bulky”
  • “Cardio is the only way to lose fat”

Pardon my le français, but STFU. These aren’t even the most extreme things I have heard, but it blows my mind what people choose to fixate on, and what they passively ignore.

“What supplements should I take?” – “What do you currently eat daily?”…. Crickets….

Supplements mean absolutely, 1000%, jack if you have no clue what you currently eat. I’m not saying it has to be meticulous tracking for the average Joe or Jane looking to lose weight, but you need to be aware of how much you eat.

I could go on about different examples, but here is the deal. Stop over complicating things.

We all know what we should be eating mostly, and what we should be limiting, so I’m not going to even go down that road.

We all know that exercise is good for us, and we should be doing more of it, so I’m not going to go down that road either.

But when was the last time you actually wrote down, or at least thought about what you ate?

When was the last time you worked out, and it felt good, and you felt good after?

When was the last time you enjoyed a day at work?

When was the last time you took time to breathe?

Wait, where am I getting with this?

Do you think that losing 20 pounds will make you happier? It might, but why are you unhappy in the first place? Really, WHY? It likely isn’t just that 20 pounds.

Focusing on improving your nutrition and working out like a #beast is great, but NONE of that will change your life, make you happier, or arguably make you more healthy – if you don’t look at your LIFE as a whole.

So let’s stop fixating on whether or not you should eat 22 or 24% of your calories from fat, or eat 0.8 or 1 gram of protein per pound of bodyweight…and start fixating on living a wholesome and happy life.

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