Nutrition for Fitness
Losing weight usually begins in most people’s minds with them figuring out when and where to start exercising and being more active. In reality, the first place they should be looking is in the kitchen
It’s this room of the house that will determine your progress when it comes to achieving your most pressing fitness goals of losing weight. For some people, exercising alone will do next to nothing when it comes to seeing results on the scale, if their diet is very poor.
A few others could get away with a little bit of progress if they have better nutrition. Even those who saw a little bit of progress just from added exercise, will eventually realize that sooner or later they will have to change what they eat and drink if they want to continue making progress.
There are many approaches - both extreme and easier methods - to adapt healthier eating habits. Before even beginning any exercise, this could be a great place to start when you begin to map out your weight loss and fitness goals.
A few important factors must be considered when creating a game plan for a new healthy lifestyle - such as your budget, mindset, support system, and body goals. Once you have closely looked at each of these four areas, you will have a better understanding of where you should begin to take your first step into a healthy lifestyle.
Keep in mind that your nutrition doesn’t just come into play when you’re talking about whittling your waist. It’s also fuel for the right kinds of workouts, so even if you’re at or close to your weight goal, you still need to be armed with the right nutritional advice to help you power through your workouts.
Nutrition for Lack of Control
Obesity is an ever-growing epidemic around the world, along with the disease and health implications that follow, and many of these cases can be chalked up to very little self-discipline.
Willpower is one of the most important aspects of achieving the body you want. Unfortunately, it’s also what most people blame whenever they fail to accomplish their goals.
There are occasions where weight gain is situational - such as hormones, stress, medical conditions and medications. However, even these factors can be reduced with effort.
Trying to begin a diet or healthy habits can be a challenge to anyone with little control over moods or cravings towards foods, so it’s important to start small, and begin training your mindset.
A great place to start is to throw out or hide larger sized plates, cups, and bowls, and replace them with smaller to moderate sized plates so that you can still fill them up with whatever you’d like.
Plates used to be 8-9 inches, and now, consumers purchase enormous plates that rival the large dinner portions found in restaurants. These portions are actually not single sized, but enough food for 3-4 people.
This approach slowly teaches us portion control, and this process can still take a few weeks to get used to. While adjusting to slightly smaller portions, put some time off to the side daily - even ten minutes - to consider your goals, barriers and solutions for any situation you might face down the road.
Listen or read motivating and uplifting encouragement over and over, ten minutes a day every day. These two tasks will get your body adjusted to smaller portions, and continue to train your brain’s all without zapping too much of your day worrying about what to eat, when to eat, how much to eat, and all of the other factors that stress many people out, causing them to quit their diet after only a couple of days.
The idea here is to start slow and build momentum, because when momentum is built, it’s very difficult to stop. Once you have adjusted to smaller portions and have a healthier mindset than you used to, it’s time to add an extra step or two.
Maybe you choose drinking more water and walking for 30 minutes a day as your two additional steps. The power of a bunch of smaller tasks being completed will quickly stack up over the course of a few months.
Then you will be easily implementing healthier habits whereas others will try to everything all at once in a couple of days, causing them stress and defeat. Take your health journey one day at a time.
Stay committed to yourself, and focus on what happened today and what’s to come tomorrow, rather than sizing up a whole year and before you know it you will be unstoppable.
Nutrition for the Dedicated
Having the mental capacity to stick to a strict nutrition plan can greatly increase the speed at which you see results in your fitness progress. If this is your cup of tea, that’s great!
Now it’s just about finding where to begin and what steps to take to get you there. First, you have to realize exactly how many calories that you need to consume to gain or lose weight - depending on your goal.
To do this, there are many caloric intake calculators online for use free. However, there are some tests such as the Resting Metabolic Assessment that can be performed by professionals to find out specifically how many calories are required for your individual lifestyle.
Once you know exactly how many calories you should consume on a daily basis, it’s time to begin planning out how you would like to consume those calories. The calories for weight gain or loss will also be different, because you need to be at a 500 caloric surplus to gain lean muscle, while you need to be at a 500 caloric deficit to lose body fat.
If your goal is to just gain lean muscle mass, you will need to have a higher protein diet, and consume both carbs and protein before bed to help with recovery of muscle tissue after hard workouts.
However, if your goal is to lose weight, it is best to consume carbohydrates in the morning, eating a dinner mostly comprised of lean proteins and vegetables. Tracking calories is also crucial to sticking to a strict regimen for optimal results.
Tracking tools can be downloaded through apps on your phone, by using Excel spreadsheets or simply with a pen and paper. Whatever is going to help you remember to keep track of how many calories you consume for the day in the easiest and best way should be the method you pick.
If, at any point during your nutrition progress, you begin to fall off your program, seek professional help with an online or in person nutrition specialist or registered dietitian. These resources will help you stay on track and keep you accountable to your goals.
Staying accountable to goals can also be much easier with the help of meal prepping your calories out beforehand. Meal prepping, if done right, can take a matter of 30 minutes and you can prepare all of your lunches or dinners for the entire week - making it easier on you to keep track of your daily intake.
Planning your nutrition journey out thoroughly before even starting is the key to overcoming obstacles and barriers to ensure you have a plan to keep yourself accountable, too.
Supplementation and Nutrition
In a culture focused on fixing problems quickly and easier, billions of dollars are generated from the supplementation industry. What many people have a hard time understanding is that “supplementation” is simply meant to replace the missing gaps in your established nutrition plan – not replace food completely.
More of your dollars should be spent on wholesome foods rather than tubs of powder and bottles of vitamins. Having a better diet can go a longer way towards your health than a poorly regulated quick fix industry.
Not all vitamins and powdered supplements are bad, but many people spend too much money for the little benefits, if any, that they receive from supplementing. A great place to start when deciding which supplements to invest in is to look at what your current needs are.
Tracking your basic calories and macronutrients such as proteins, carbohydrates, and fats are a great way to figure out if there are any extra protein needs you might have. A good rule of thumb is to eat the number in grams of protein for every pound of your ideal bodyweight.
If your goal is to weigh 150, then try aiming for a daily intake of 150 grams of protein daily. It’s optimal to eat your protein if possible, but if eating 150 grams of protein is difficult to achieve, then supplementing with a protein powder is a great way to sneak in extra protein calories.
There are also symptom quizzes online that you can take to give you a better recommendation of whatever supplements are on the market to improve the way that you feel – or, better yet - a physician can make professional recommendations based on findings in your bloodwork.
Typically, the bulk of any supplements you may need will include a multivitamin, fish oils, and possibly a protein. Keeping costs low on supplements will allow you to budget for more important factors such as wholesome foods and exercise expenses such as home equipment or a gym membership.
Make sure that whatever supplements you do decide to invest in, they’re third party tested for purity, and be sure to look into the company reviews to make sure that the supplements come from a reputable source.
Habits, Not Quick Fixes
A much healthier way to ensure that you lose the weight and the weight stays off is to focus your energy on building small, healthy diet habits. There are an abundance of companies promoting quick weight loss in a matter of weeks.
However, many of them fail their consumers for a couple of reasons. First, a majority of people shopping for diet pills, promising fast weight loss programs and other lucrative advertisements are not mentally strong enough to maintain that regimen on their own.
Some of these products and services can be very taxing on your mental health, stress levels, and they can easily be compromised - which will cause a sense of defeat. Keto diets are a great example of these extreme programs that a majority of people start off strong with, but end up failing within a matter of a few weeks to months.
The second problem with promising programs is that they may actually work in the short term - but in the end, the consumer didn’t learn how to maintain that progress on their own.
Jenny Craig, Weight Watchers, and other programs are great at getting people to their results by limiting caloric intake, and creating nutrition plans for them. Shortly after the goal has been reached, or the program has been completed, a lot of people end up going back to their old nutrition ways, then gaining back the lost weight.
The idea of quick weight-loss is tempting enough to keep people coming back to these programs over and over again – even after consistent regain of the weight, causing you to spend thousands of dollars just to be stuck in a yo-yo effect.
Yo-yo dieting is the process of starting and completing nutrition programs, to only regain the weight, causing your body to be unable to maintain homeostasis and wreaking havoc on your metabolism.
Yo Yo dieting doesn’t just affect your metabolism. New research shows that the process can contribute to an early death because of the damage it does to your entire body, in addition to your mind.
Save yourself from being stuck in this cycle, and take nutrition slowly one day at a time so that you can stay fit and healthy long term. Regardless of your dietary needs, coming up with a solid game-plan that will work best for you, and planning out any obstacles that lay ahead will give you a much better chance at staying successful with your fitness and weight goals.
Prepare for your nutrition journey to be more of a long term lifestyle change, rather than a three-month quick fix. The progress may take twice as long to complete, but in the end, you won’t spend years going back and forth between quick weight loss schemes.
You’ll simply lose the weight, achieve your fitness goals and be able to effortlessly maintain the body you’ve worked hard to achieve over time. If you thought about it consciously, chances are you’d choose long-term, permanent fitness rather than a quick fix that evaporates after only a few months.
New Year - Fit Year
The holidays are almost over, and for many, this is a great time to start fresh and being to adopt healthier habits to change their lives. Starting a new fitness journey in January is popular because it allows everyone to start breaking down calories that were gained from the carb-heavy holidays where most of us indulge in big meals after stressful moments of shopping and preparing for family visits.
New Year’s resolutions are also created for mindful goal setting, pairing up with workout friends to get healthy with, and preparing the mind for the journey ahead. Most of the people starting New Year’s resolutions are aware that they need and want to make a change.
However, getting started and knowing what to do requires a little bit more knowledge in order to be efficient and see results. Here are several ways you can make the most of your resolution to change your life and get fit this coming year!
How to Dress Properly for Your New Fitness Journey
To most people, finding something to wear before starting a workout is not much of a priority, however, the clothes that you wear can, in fact, impact your workout. Not only can they alter the way you feel physically as you work out, but it can get so bad that you begin dreading the workouts.
You’ll need to do a head to toe evaluation of your gear to see what needs updating. If you haven’t ever given it any thought, a great place to start with workout attire is the setting in which you plan on performing your exercise regimen.
For the most part, if you plan on working out indoors at either a house or gym setting, you can get away with almost anything from sweats to tank tops because the air conditioning will allow for optimal temperatures.
The only aspect you really need to consider when indoor training is to know if you’re planning for an intense, high cardiac output workout like HIIT training or something slower paced.
HIIT workouts, or High Intensity Interval Training, can be very taxing on the human body, raising your blood pressure, heart-rate, and body temperature, which can be overbearing to some.
Dressing too warm for these workouts can cause someone new to pass out or feel very light headed, so be sure to bring a layer of clothing that you can remove if you begin to feel too hot at any point.
A similar method of wearing layers can be beneficial to anyone who likes to train outdoors at parks, participate in boot camps or go on long runs. Depending on the exercises, the same situation of increasing body temperature can happen outdoors, which makes wearing layers more beneficial when it comes to keeping body temperature lower.
Shoes are also important - even as important as the bed you sleep on, which means making sure you have the right ones for your body are essential for your joint health. Wearing the wrong type of shoes for long periods of time can cause damage to your ankle complex, which can also affect the rest of the joints in your body through its kinetic chain, affecting posture.
There are specialty shoe stores that can run foot assessments in which they assess how you walk and refer you to the best possible shoe and insole that can help correct your footstep to better improve your walking, posture, and the way you feel.
In addition to shoes and layering, you also have to consider things such as sports bras, sweat bands, hats to protect yourself from the sun if you’re working out outdoors, and more.
There are many technological gadgets you can get for your attire, too. From heart rate monitors that you wear to simple step counters that assist you in setting and achieving cardio goals, there’s something for everyone.
Home vs Gym Memberships
In order to start the New Year’s resolution journey into fitness off right, you will need an appropriate setting to perform exercises that are geared towards your specific goals. The first step in making the decision to get a gym membership vs working out at the house is to consider your budget for your health.
If your wallet is running slim after the holidays, it’s perfectly fine to start doing workouts at your home if there is space available to do so, or at a local park. Although your home is limited compared to the exercise equipment offered in a gym environment, there are still a lot of exercises that you can do with no equipment at all.
Thanks to sources like the Internet and YouTube in particular, there are tons of workout plans with structured regimens for the house or outdoors. If having a little extra cash to invest in a gym membership is within your budget, you will find that having more equipment, like-minded people, and fitness professionals around are definitely perks of this option.
A few other decisions to think about when deciding if you’d like to work out at home vs the gym is your discipline to keep yourself accountable to show up at the gym, or even remember to work out at the house.
Some people may be more introverted and may not wish to see others as they’re working out, while others may find it more encouraging to be around people with similar goals and build a network of people who can hold them more accountable.
A great way to go about making a decision is to work out at your house first for a month in order to build consistency, habits and foundational strength, and then join a gym trial during February after the gym is less crowded in order to see if a gym setting is more appropriate for your goals.
Regardless of the setting you choose to work out in, the most important piece to the puzzle is to find your preference in which you can stay more committed and build a strong consistency with exercise and fitness.
Cardio vs Strength
A common question when it comes to starting a new workout plan is whether or not to incorporate more cardio or strength workouts throughout the week. One of the biggest misconceptions is that strength training will lead to bulky muscles and even weight gain, which usually acts a deterrent to those unsure about which route to take.
The problem with that concept is that it’s simply not true. Muscle takes much longer to gain, which means you won’t turn into the Hulk in a year, and strength workouts have even been proven to speed your metabolism up so that you can burn fat as a fuel source more efficiently.
It takes your body more calories per hour to maintain muscle mass than it does body fat, which means the more muscle your body has will result in more calories per hour to be burned.
Strength workouts can also improve bone density, release endorphins to make you feel better, and prevent diseases such as osteoporosis. Strength training is a great place for anyone to start, but what about the cardio side of workouts?
Cardiovascular training is also an important piece to look over when considering workout because many benefits can come from it that don’t come from strength workouts alone.
Training your body’s cardiovascular system can build your aerobic base to burn fat efficiently, improve lung health, and can make for great recovery days between strength workouts.
If you do any sort of cardiovascular workouts, be sure to invest in a heart-rate monitor and learn about the heart-rate zones that allow your body to burn fat efficiently. There are many online calculators that will give you a guestimate to what heart-rate your body will burn fat vs burning carbs and sugars.
If your heart-rate goes too high, then you are no longer burning fat cells, so without a heart-rate monitor, it is very difficult to determine what it is exactly you are using as your energy source when doing any sort of cardio.
When considering cardio vs strength, don’t leave one completely out. Both types of workouts complement each other and both play an important role when it comes to fat burning.
Feel free to do light to moderate cardio just about any day of the week, but a good place to start with strength training is two full body workouts per week, with adequate rest between each strength training day.
Find a form of cardio that you love. You don’t have to commit to a daily 5-mile run. You can do water aerobics or something else you consider fun. The same goes for strength training.
You’re not relegated to using dumbbells. You can use bodyweight exercises or kettlebells or any number of methods to get strength built over time. Make sure you switch things up so that your body can’t acclimate to your routines.
Workout Efficiency and Weight Loss
Hardly anyone ever enjoys going on a restricted diet or adopting healthier eating habits while starting an exercise regimen at the same time. Making your time more efficient will not only help you see results faster, but could also prevent plateaus and save a lot of time and stress as well.
The first step in your New Year’s resolution plan should be to find a way to assess yourself regularly. This could be done through progress photos, biometric scales, or any method of training body fat progress such as tape measurers or calipers.
If you aren’t assessing your progress you’re guessing, and guessing could waste your time, diminish results, and make you lose track of accountability. After you find a way that you prefer to measure your progress, make a commitment to yourself to check weekly on your progress.
A common term used in gyms among staff is “Weigh-in Wednesday” for example, where every Wednesday at the same time you check your progress. Starting off, you will most likely see changes in your measurements and the way you feel, just based off picking up healthier nutrition habits, which makes nutrition goals a great place to start.
Slowly, you may notice the progress begin to slow down, which means it’s time to change something in your current plan, such as adding in cardio a few times a week so that your body now has to adapt to a new method, resulting in more progress being shown on the scale.
If cardio and nutrition aren’t cutting it for the type of results you’d like to see, try adding two strength workouts into your week to help build more muscle fiber and speed up your metabolism.
Be sure to track how much cardio and strength training you’re doing consistently, then be patient for a couple of weeks to see how your assessments result from your changed program.
Eventually, everyone who eats better, and does a little cardio with strength will begin to notice their progress begins to slow down. This is where you can begin to make minor changes for even more results, forcing the body to adapt in new ways to a healthier lifestyle.
Some changes could be investing in a heart-rate monitor and knowing at what heart-rate your body burns fat the best when doing cardio. Adding in better sleep for recovery and stress or applying a yoga workout once a week can also go a long way in seeing different results on the scale.
Regardless of which habit you’d like to tweak to overcome slow results, it’s important to track your progress continually so that you know when and how you need to change what you’re currently doing to continue seeing progress.
The human body tries its hardest to maintain homeostasis so that your body can regularly maintain its current situation, which is why it’s so important to track when your body is no longer seeing changes from your program, and find that next aspect to change.
The holiday season at the end of the year is the worst season to gain weight. You feel lethargic from a carb heavy time of year, and this a better reason to start fresh in January and get back to being the you that feels and looks your best.
There will be many people stating that this is the year they get fit once and for all. But the reality is, most of them will quit. What makes you any different? The fact that you’re preparing for your journey instantly makes you more credible because you’re taking this seriously.
Continue moving on that path and educating yourself about how to gain momentum, rather than lose it as you work toward your goals. Set yourself up ahead of time for success and plan out any roadblocks that might get in the way so that when the time does come, you won’t be defeated, but instead rise up to continue making the body slowly adapt to a healthier lifestyle.
What are the best habits for a healthy mind and body?
I see this question asked ALL the time.
Here’s the thing…With pretty much any “habit” someone is promoting, it doesn’t mean it will benefit you as well. We’re not all the same. What works for some people might not work for you.
So, how can you work out the “healthy habits” that give you the best chance of helping you?
Scientific research, and lots of it!
Research is designed to eliminate factors you can’t control, and also be statistically significant for the majority of participants. And the more positive research there is, the higher chance it will actually benefit you.
So, in this post, I’m going to go over 5 natural habits that science says will probably work. Enjoy!
Humans are built to run. We evolved to run great distances hunting prey and gathering food.
So it’s no surprise that research suggests running could be one of the most effective habits for your health, physically and mentally.
A 2014 study that appeared in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology found that “running, even 5-10 minutes a day, at slow speeds, even slower than 6 miles per hour [10:00 minute pace], is associated with markedly reduced risks of death from all causes and cardiovascular disease.”….
Adhering to an Exercise Regimen
Working out isn’t always fun for everyone, and adhering to your exercise regimen can be especially hard if you feel unmotivated or lack the discipline to do it. There are a few pieces of advice that can help just about anyone stick to their workout plan longer, and maybe even change your view on exercise.
Assuming that you’re new to working out for the first time – or one of many new starts – you should start off easy and work your way into the advanced exercise plans instead of starting with technical circuits and exercises.
Make a schedule based on how often you can be 100% dedicated to thirty minutes to an hour in your day to exercise instead of doing what most people do and over commit to the gym five to seven days a week.
If you can resistance train two days a week, and do some light to moderate cardio three days a week, this would give you a great starter program to get your momentum going. Three cardio days and two resistance days doesn’t mean you have to train five days a week, because you can combine your cardio portion of the workout with any of your resistance days – either before or after your resistance exercises.
Working out three days a week means that your body has a solid four days to recover, stretch, and de-stress from the workload of lifting. Overtraining is a common issue with beginner exercisers, because just like dieting, they take on too much at one time and can only maintain that lifestyle for a couple of weeks before they cave in and begin yo-yoing back and forth between a healthy and unhealthy lifestyle.
Start slow and ease into more volume, higher intensity, and heavier weights when you begin to feel as though you’re ready to take on more. Aside from getting the proper structure of how many days to work out, you should also make sure you’re enjoying your workout somewhat.
This means you should pick full body exercises that are easy enough for you to comfortably perform, while still making it challenging enough at the same time. If some exercises are causing you pain, you should either stop doing that exercise – because your body uses pain as a message to tell you to quit – or look up how to fix your form, since most people don’t have it.
Deciding to quit an exercise is completely fine if it’s causing too much pain, but try to supplement it with a different exercise that still targets that same muscle. If you can learn to not dread your exercises, give your body plenty of rest, and go at your own pace, you won’t be so quick to ditch your fitness regimen..
Exercising Long Term at Home Vs the Gym
Exercising for the long haul is a great way to improve your health, strength, and mobility as you begin to age, feel as though you want to change, or have medical reasons for improvement.
Deciding where to exercise – whether in the safety and convenience of your home, or at the gym where you have a bigger variety of equipment can be a tough decision to make.
Let’s start with your home, since that’s the most convenient place to work out if you have the room to do it. Just about any exercise can be performed with bodyweight alone, and some can even be done with a chair, couch, or affordable equipment such as a pullup bar and dumbbells.
Instead of shelling out hundreds of dollars on a trainer, you can look to sources such as YouTube and other workout programs on DVDs to show you a variety of workouts that can be done at the house.
Because of convenience, budget friendliness, and privacy, the home workout routines can definitely be a competitor with any gym out there. Speaking of the gym, there are some unique advantages that the gym has as well.
A variety of equipment at your disposal is perhaps the biggest benefit and main reason that everyone gets a gym membership in the first place. Some gyms are very price efficient at only ten to twenty dollars a month and include a variety of machines, weights and tools that would take up too much room at your house.
Other gyms may have more amenities such as saunas, pools, and sport rooms at higher prices from thirty to a hundred dollars per month. It really comes down to what you’re looking for in a gym and what your budget is at the end of the day.
Personal trainers on the floor are also a great perk of having a gym membership because they will be more than happy to assist you with any exercise to make sure you have proper form.
And for an additional fee, they can write your whole program and stick around your workout to make sure you’re always progressing safely. Gyms can be crowded at times however, so make sure that you go when you feel comfortable.
Home workouts – although are great – can be limited in the variety of exercises you can do compared to what’s available at the gym. Try working out at home for a couple of weeks first so that you can get in the routine of working out, then once your body has adapted to the change, try asking for a free one week trial at a gym to see which style works best for you – and don’t be afraid to enjoy both if it helps you adhere to your program for the long haul.
How to Keep an Active Lifestyle Without Working Out
Working out is a great way to stay in shape, but many people don’t want to dedicate time in their life to paying membership to access a building where they can pick up weights and put them back down, or run endlessly on a treadmill facing a wall.
Staying healthy doesn’t mean you need to go purchase the nearest gym membership, but instead aim for a more active lifestyle. A great goal for the average person is to walk about ten thousand steps a day.
That may sound like a lot at first, but if you were to get a step tracker such as a Fitbit, you’ll find that it isn’t quite as hard as it sounds. Fitness trackers such as the Fitbit are affordable, comfortable, and tell you other indicators of health such as sleep, heart rate, calories burned and other really cool features that assist in tracking health.
Getting in extra steps in your day is much more convenient than buying a gym membership or working out, and it can even motivate you to be more productive throughout the day.
If you find yourself having trouble reaching ten thousand steps, try little tricks such as taking the long way around a building, using the stairs instead of the elevator, or even walking the dog more frequently.
You’re walking more now and that’s a great start to a more fit life, but there are other things that you can do besides walking more that will continue to take you down the path of a healthy lifestyle.
Picking up an active hobby such as dance lessons, sports, or whatever has you walk and move more - such as volunteering - is great way to supplement the gym atmosphere with something more tailored to your lifestyle and interests.
If you were having trouble with getting in extra steps, picking up a new hobby will also assist you with that as well. Weight loss is another side effect from a more active lifestyle because you are now burning more calories per hour than you were before, and a better cardiovascular system is great for your metabolism’s ability to burn fat.
You’ll find yourself more flexible, with better cardiovascular health, and stronger if you make the effort to do more with your day and stay away from a sedentary lifestyle. And the best part is that you won’t have to ever walk into a gym if you don’t want to!
Improving Your Workout Over Time
The human body is meant to adapt to certain conditions, which is why the human race is superior, and also why you should keep an eye out on the intensity of your workouts. Progressing your exercise regimen is extremely important to avoid plateaus because as you keep repeating the same exercises with the same weights for the same amount of time, your body will begin to change in order to make the workload easier.
If you’re tracking how much weight you’re lifting, for how many repetitions, and for how long, you’ll be able to better see the changes your body is making in order to compensate for your workouts.
Even with no weight at all, you should be counting elements such as time when exercising, speed, and any other form of progress that you can track. Increasing load and repetitions when it comes to lifting weights is the easiest way to track progress, and you should increase it by five percent once you can fully count twelve repetitions.
Cardio is often tracked by time, speed, and incline for those who are running on a treadmill so that the intensity of the cardio can gradually increase as your cardiovascular system improves.
Bodyweight exercises such as a plank, sit-ups, and pushups can easily be counted by repetitions for strength, or amount of repetitions given in a certain amount of time such as a one-minute interval.
There are other forms of progressions – such as learning how to do a proper pushup. Pushups aren’t easy for a majority of people, and doing a perfect one on your hands and feet can be quite a challenge.
Begin with doing a pushup standing next to the wall, using the wall to push off of instead of the floor. Gradually increase the angle of your feet so that you will perform a harder push at a higher angle.
Eventually, you can move onto the floor using your knees to rest on instead of your feet until you get the hang of that and you’re ready for your first real pushup. This method of assisted progressions from a regressed state to proper form can be used with squats, sit-ups, and just about any exercise.
Keep progressing through your workouts so that you don’t hit plateaus or get bored of your workout and you continue to see improvements in your strength and composition. Don’t try to level up all at once – slow progress helps prevent injuries and burnout.
Long Term Workout Motivation
Unless you’re one of the few who love to workout, unlike the rest of us, it can be challenging to commit to fitness and health long term because eventually, old habits emerge and might be tempting enough for you to leave your healthy progress behind.
Most everyone who begins a workout regimen is motivated for a change in their life, and is ready to start seeing a change in the way they look or feel. The tricky part is to stay motivated when you don’t see any change – when you’re sore or when staying comfortable seems better than doing any hard work.
It’s times like these that are the toughest and it makes a difference between those who simply wish they were better than they currently are, and those know that what they want in life and that they won’t always have it given to them on a silver platter or it may not go the way they expect.
What you should expect are obstacles. Writing down what you think those obstacles might be in the future and writing down two or three ways to overcome those challenges is a great way to mentally prepare yourself for them.
Tracking progress is another great indicator of success. This doesn’t mean stepping on the scale every day. If you have a scale that only calculates weight, only use it weekly because there are many other elements such as water, food, muscle, and fat that all affect your weight.
You could lose body fat, gain muscle and more water, but the scale still wouldn’t budge – making you believe you made no progress that day. Aside from weight, measure your body composition and invest in a tape measurer or even a cheap pair of calipers to track body fat.
These types of measurements, along with tracking the amount of weight, number of repetitions, and time completed are all great ways of tracking progress, and could be used as a huge motivator.
Now that you’re tracking your progress, overcoming obstacles and beginning to feel the momentum pick up each week, try to help a friend or family member. Having a workout buddy can be competitive and encouraging, and it’s a great source of accountability to drive each of you to improve your health.
Arming yourself with resources and tools to adhere to your program long term is something that even the professionals do, and should be included in your workout program before you even begin.
Don’t start by yourself without a game plan, or the day you decide to quit your new healthy lifestyle may come easy for you – and you don’t want to get back on that hamster wheel.
Will Your Fitbit Now Be Able to Monitor Your Blood Sugar?
Making sure that you take care of your diabetes is one of the keys to controlling it. The first step is always with self-monitoring and there are many ways already that you can do that, but new technology is being brought to the marketplace.
If you don’t watch it carefully, you’ll end up with complications. You should check your glucose levels frequently every day throughout the day and make any adjustments that are needed.
With millions of people having diabetes and that number continuing to rise, technology is needed to help promote better management of self-care. Thanks to the technology available today – a new and improved way to keep your glucose levels at a healthy number is at hand.
You can wear this technology right on your wrist and be able to effectively monitor your diabetes. Studies have shown that people who can easily track their diabetes numbers tend to stay in range more often than not.
Fitbit is now working to help those with diabetes to be able to better manage the condition. In conjunction with Dexcom, the company has created a smartwatch that will provide the necessary information and lead the way in diabetes management.
It’s easy to make the watch one of the tools in your self-care routine. All you need is to get one of the Dexcom G5 sensors to go with the Fitbit Iconic and you’ll soon be able to see your readings at a glance using either your smartphone or the watch face.
The new Fitbit will work with a variety of third party apps – including the one that can help you keep your diabetes under control. You’ll have access to immediate information concerning your glucose levels, thanks to the smartwatch, which will be released closer to the end of 2017 and the sensors working with the smartwatch will make an appearance sometime the following year.
The sensor has an approximate $900 price tag for the device that has to be inserted below the skin surface. However, the cost is well worth it as in investment in both your short and long term health.
Because it will have the ability to check your levels rapidly and as often as every five minutes, you’ll be able to stay on top of your diabetes and immediately correct any glucose reading that’s out of range.
The continual monitoring can give you real time information that can help you know when you need to adjust and knowing that can be one of the keys to weight management, which improves diabetes as well.
The smartwatch and sensor combo will allow those who have diabetes to understand the complete overview of their glucose levels. They’ll be able to get a picture of when their numbers were up and when they were down.
This is good information to relay to your doctor at your next visit. This will allow people to make improvements on how they care for their diabetes. These improvements lead to better care than you get from old fashioned meter monitoring.
When it comes to dieting, most people concern themselves most with cutting calories and burning fat. You’re measuring food, walking on the treadmill, and trying to stay away from temptations.
One good way to lose weight and tone up is to focus on gradually improving your metabolism. If you’ve been a yo yo dieter for years, then chances are your metabolism is struggling, which means you have a harder time losing weight. There are six ways you might be able to change that.
#1 – Build muscle to burn fat for you even when you’re just sitting there.
No one has time to exercise all day long, You’re probably lucky if you can squeeze in twenty minutes of it, much less a full hour. But you can still burn calories even while you’re sitting still or resting if you build a little muscle to work for you.
Muscle works almost like a furnace. It helps burn calories at a higher rate than fat. So even if you haven’t shed enough pounds to see those six pack abs yet, don’t quit lifting weights, because each time you do, you’re one step closer to increasing your metabolism and reaching your goals.
#2 – Stay hydrated throughout your day.
You’re probably already drinking water in order to stay fuller and steer clear of snacks. But water also helps you rev up your metabolism. Even a couple of glasses of water can begin boosting your metabolism up to 30%.
It may not sound like a lot, but when you drink that water daily, or even more for bigger benefits, you start to see a long-term weight loss that you can enjoy almost effortlessly over the course of a year.
#3 – Choose interval training when you exercise.
There are all sorts of exercises that will help you lose weight. Lifting weights, doing cardio exercises – they’re all beneficial. But certain programs like HIIT or other interval training programs boost your metabolism even more because your body is getting intense workouts buffered by short resting periods.
#4 – Eat enough (and the right kinds of foods) to fuel up your body throughout the day.
You may have already chosen a diet program to follow in order to lose weight. Maybe you cut carbs or sugar, or switched to a whole foods program. You might even simply be cutting calories or using mindful eating.
Just make sure you’re getting enough food, because it fuels your metabolism and ultimately helps you keep the weight off for good. Of course, not every food will help with this situation. Sugary donuts won’t help as much as lean protein, for example.
#5 – Stop drinking alcohol.
Even if you’re only a weekend drinker, your metabolism might take a hit if you consume wine, beer or other alcoholic beverages. The reason for this is that your body focuses on alcohol digestion first, so it ignores the food calories you have consumed, slowing it down to a crawl and causing some of it to be turned into fat stores.
#6 – Improve your sleep habits.
If you’re running on fumes, it’s hard for your body to have a fast metabolism. Find out why you’re feeling sluggish and tired. It might be that you’re using technology before bed and finding it hard to get or stay asleep.
Or maybe it’s other sleep hygiene issues, such as uncomfortable bedding, a room that’s too warm, or too much noise in the bedroom. Target the problem, make changes and see if your body is able to begin burning fat faster.