Category: Get Fit

The Lazy Way To Getting Fit

The Lazy Way To Getting Fit 

By fitness guy

get-fit

How can you be lazy and get in shape? Everyone that wants to get started, or is scared to get started working out and changing their diet to become more healthy thinks that it is a giant change in your life.

I would like to warn you not to make too much of the changes that you need to make.

Small Changes – They will add up

You Should Eat Way more than this

Sure you need to change your diet. Sure you need to exercise but to get started in a healthy lifestyle you do not have to do much more than eat better and get 30 minutes of exercise a day.

The changes that you make have an immediate impact to make you feel better and to actually be healthier right away but you still have the opportunity to be lazy a lot of the time.

Don’t Push Too Hard – Let Your Body Change

I remember the first time that a lazy attitude to exercise first hit me. A few years ago when I started running. I had never really run before and the guys that were experienced were giving me tips.

Stretch, start slow and start getting faster every week, try to change my route to keep things interesting. And you know what the last, most important tip form the seasoned runners was.

Don’t push yourself too hard. Don’t hurt yourself by running all the time as you get started.

When you start to exercise you are going to be working out a half hour each day, six days a week. This will not be running from dawn to dusk.

The change in your life to fitness will mean that you will wake up and work out or work out in the evening for a half an hour to get yourself in better shape and then stretch. You can even do this watching TV. Last night I did exactly that.

The other big change is your diet. Is it really so hard to eat better? No, all you need to do to actually to make eating easier and more healthy is to cook your food ahead of time.

If you spend some time making a few big meals on Saturday or Sunday and pack these up for meals for the week.

Get some Oatmeal or something as healthy for breakfast that will start you day quickly and easily. Get some meal replacement bars (low cal as you get started) and you have the makings of a lazy way to start a great diet without the hassle of cooking all the time.

So do you believe it? You can start a lazy way to get in shape and still change your life for the better.

Sure there is a time everyday that you will definitely not be lazy. If you get into action making food it will give you a bit of lazy time later. But, if you are smart, workout hard and eat right this lazy way will hep you to get in great shape without the stress that you have to give up everything in your life.

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How Fast Can I Get the Body I Want?

How Fast Can I Get the Body I Want?        By Steve                    

toned abs

Be honest, you’ve said the following sentence before:

“I want to lose 20-50 pounds, and I’d like to pack on some muscle too…but not too much! Can I do this in 2-3 months?”

I know you have, because I certainly did when I started training. Men want to know “the secret” to a thinner waistline, but also get bigger arms and chest… Meanwhile, women ask how they can lose weight while getting more toned, without getting too bulky.

If you’ve had those same thoughts, then today’s article is for you.

Today we’re going to dive into these goals, and how to best go about them. Keep an eye out for Part 2 later this week.

 

What We’re After

I know why we have those goals of “smaller waistline and bigger/toned muscles.”

We’ve been listening to and following the image put forth by the infomercials, magazines, and advertisements – that in just 90 days with a few workouts (or one key piece of equipment) – we can accomplish everything we want:

  • Shredded, six pack abs!
  • Lose stubborn “belly fat!”
  • Bigger chest and arms!
  • Hot women falling all over you!

For women, the message is only tad different:

  • Lose stubborn “belly fat!”
  • Tone your hips, butt, thighs, arms!
  • Get that bikini body!

Regardless of which camp you fall into, you see these commercials full of professional fitness models and genetically flawless dudes, and then we look at ourselves in the mirror…and we decide enough is enough: we want to look like them!

And here’s a program that tells us we can get there in just 30 minutes a day, 3 days a week, for 90 days. And thus we get started. 90 days later, we’re slightly closer to our goal, but we didn’t build a lot of muscle and we only lost a bit of weight. So we freak out: “those other people got results, but I only lost a few pounds and I don’t have women falling all over me. What did I do wrong?”

Forgetting the fact that I can pretty much guarantee the actors/models in those ads definitely did not use the program they’re advertising to get fit, these programs aren’t even designed with you in mind.

Don’t worry, we CAN turn you into a superhero. It’s just going to mean going about things a bit differently…

Okay, but I want to lose fat and gain muscle…

ChangeAllTheThings

If you are trying to lose ‘belly fat’ and also get bigger and stronger, it’s incredibly difficult to do both at the same time. It’s just how our bodies work.

Which then might lead to your next question:

“Well, Steve, I want to gain muscle and lose weight, but I have no muscles and I have a gut. What do I do first? WHY CAN’T I JUST DO BOTH AT THE SAME TIME!?”

Putting on weight (be it fat or muscle) requires eating more calories than you burn every day.

Losing weight requires burning more calories than you eat… so if you have these two goals, it can feel as if you are watching a battle of tug-of-war. If you try to do both at the same time, neither side can get an advantage and you’ll struggle to see any discernible results in either direction.

OUR RECOMMENDATION: For most people, the first thing we recommend is to drop your body fat percentage: put the focus on fat loss (notice I didn’t say weight loss) and maintain the muscle you already have. Once you get your body fat percentage down to a specific level, you can then turn your focus to packing on muscle.

Here’s why we recommend this:

  • Carrying extra body fat isn’t healthy: if you’re already overweight, packing on MORE muscle and fat is going to push you farther away from a healthy body fat percentage (which is our ultimate goal).
  • Build momentum early. Losing weight, for most people, is an easier and faster process than building muscle. When you get rid of the body fat covering up the muscle you already have, you’re going to build up emotional and mental momentum.
  • Create a great starting point: Physiologically, when you get rid of excess body fat and are down to a level that you’re happy with, you can adjust your training and nutrition so that your whole body, all the way down to the cellular level, is now dedicated to a single cause: BUILD MUSCLE!

So, what should your game plan be? Here are a few strategies to drop weight while retaining as much muscle as possible:

  • Focus primarily on Paleo-type foods
  • Eat more carbs on workout days, especially right after your workout (sweet potatoes, fruit, rice)
  • Eat more fat on non-training days (almond butter, avocado or guacamole, nuts)
  • Always eat enough protein (lots of chicken, fish, and a protein shake here and there)
  • Get enough sleep!
  • Consider working out in a fasted state – as explained in our article on Intermittent Fasting.

Combine the above diet advice with three types of exercise:

  • Strength training
  • Walking (or any activity you enjoy that gets you moving)
  • Sprints or jumping rope

When you strength train, your muscles are broken down and need to recover. The calories you are consuming during this period are used to rebuild those muscles and recover, keeping them strong. When you walk (especially first thing in the morning, in a fasted state), you don’t tax your body enough to need to pull from your muscles’ fuel stores. Instead, you pull from the fat you already have.

Win win win.

ONCE YOU’VE DROPPED YOUR BODY FAT LOW ENOUGH (somewhere between 10-15% for guys, 18-22% for women), you can adjust your diet to consume more calories/carbs on training days and start building muscle – making adjustments along the way.

how much weight can I actually lose?

Athena Final Before and After

For most Rebels who email us, your first step should be to cut down your body fat percentage by combining healthy eating with strength training. If you happen to be super skinny, you can probably skip straight to the “how to get big” article!

Your next question might be, “Just how quickly can I lose the fat then?”

We’ve shared tons of success stories here on Nerd Fitness where people have lost 100+ lbs in a year, and even one story where Anthony lost 200+ pounds in a year.

Before After Anthony

Whenever we post these stories, we receive a few dozen emails from people saying “But that can’t be healthy, to lose all of that weight so quickly.”

Our response is always the same: every person will react to strength training and healthier eating decisions differently. If somebody is incredibly overweight, and they switch to a healthy diet and proper exercise and stick with it for months and months, their transformation COULD be drastic and also completely healthy.

In this nerd’s humble opinion (and I am not a doctor), any day spent 200+ pounds overweight is unhealthy, and the faster we can get a person down to a healthy body fat percentage, the better (provided it’s done in a sustainable, healthy way).

We encourage people to NOT starve themselves, to NOT overexert themselves with exercise, and to listen to their bodies. The Nerd Fitness path involves healthier eating decisions, building exercise habits, and months and months of dedicated work! Depending on your situation, you could lose anywhere from .5 lbs to 5+ lbs a week and be completely healthy. Everybody is different, so if you are concerned about your rate of weight loss, be sure to check with your doctor.

One BIG factor here: If you are strength training and actively trying to preserve the muscle you have, the weight will drop off more slowly than if you solely focused on eating better and eating less and exercising as much as possible at all costs. However, in the long run, we believe most people find this route preferable.

Again, our goal is not pure weight loss. It’s building a body that is healthy and gives you confidence. Don’t just focus on the scale, but the big picture.

what’s really possible?

steve push ups

Here’s the truth: we’re human beings. Yes, we are capable of freaking amazing things, whether it’s Joe transforming, or Saint getting in incredible shape for his wedding, Anthony dropping 200 pounds, or Bronwyn becoming an actual superhero.

Unfortunately, unlike in superhero movies, there’s no super serum we can take to turn us from Steve Rogers into Captain America in a matter of minutes – or even in a matter of months! No matter your desired level of superhero status, it’s gonna take hard work! And a crazy amount of patience and dedication.

Focus on the fundamentals above, be aware of these tricks up the Emperor’s sleeve.

1) Those magazines, DVDs, infomercials and books are designed to prey on your insecurities about your body, and paint an unrealistic picture of what you can accomplish in a few short months. Not cool! They don’t want to get you healthy; they want to sell products. If they got you healthy AND taught you how to keep going, you wouldn’t need them anymore!

2) Unless you’re a member of the X-men (if you are, let’s hang out), or on steroids, it’s brutally difficult to build lots of muscle while simultaneously losing fat. As explained above, to build muscle, you need to eat a caloric surplus so the extra calories go into muscle building. To lose fat, you need a caloric deficit so your body is forced to burn fat for energy. How does one eat too much and too little at the same time? It’s kind of like trying to thread a needle while riding Space Mountain after eating a gallon of Dippin’ Dots. Not impossible, but certainly no walk in the park.

Fortunately, if you are just getting started with strength training, you can make some SERIOUS strength gains (which is not the same as muscle gains) while simultaneously losing weight. We’ll explain that in Thursday’s article.

3) If you’re trying to lose weight and the scale went up, you probably did NOT build muscle. We get this quite a bit too, from people that are overweight and in their first two weeks of attempted weight loss.

The conclusion they come to, thanks to what we’ve been told, is “muscle weighs more than fat, so I must have put on muscle!”

Building muscle is not as easy as you’ve been told, so it’s likely that you:

  • Put on fat, and ate a caloric surplus. Or, most likely, you:
  • Are carrying additional water weight, or your first weigh-in was in-accurate. Remember, the scale lies. Increased carb/sodium consumption for a few days, menstrual cycle for women, or any number of factors can give you a totally inaccurate starting weight, or progress weigh-in.

If you are overweight, the scale should be trending down if you are eating properly and exercising. If after a month you’re not seeing results, or the scale is going up, we’ll need to make some small adjustments to your diet (look at your total calories and the sugar/grain consumption).

Yes, you can EVENTUALLY accomplish each goal if you have a solid plan to follow, and you’re dedicated. Becoming Captain America, Black Widow, or Katniss Everdeen is possible. It just depends on how badly you want it, and what you’re willing to give up to get it.

I can tell you building a body to be proud of is absolutely worth it, but you’re much better off building that superhero frame one step at a time, instead of all at once!

But I’m ready to see Results now

alarm clock

I hear ya! Look, I would LOVE to get you in killer shape for your wedding in two months and help you lose 50 pounds, and give you a bigger chest and arms (or ‘toned’ arms and legs), and make you look like Daniel Craig in James Bond or “famous action star in big movie.”

Unfortunately, here on planet Earth, in a place we call “reality,” we have to attack this differently than in Hollywood. We’re much more interested in getting you down the proper path, with a strong, solid base, that sets you up for year after year of success (rather than for 15 minutes during a movie shoot).

I want this article to become a resource for the Rebels who are confused about weight loss – so let’s hear your questions! I guarantee if you have one, there are a dozen others with the same question, too. And remember, keep an eye out for Thursday, where we’ll talk about the other side of this coin: muscle gain!

What else can I answer for you about healthy weight loss? What tips do you have for your fellow Rebels?

-Steve

PS: We have 650+ free articles and dozens of free workout plans on Nerd Fitness, but if you’re looking for a comprehensive course that covers all of this stuff, check out the Nerd Fitness Academy – level up a character by completing quests and missions, follow the workout plans, and level up your nutrition to get started down the path to life as a superhero.

###

photo source: Ray Sawhill: Tone your butt, Ray Sawhill: 22 minutes

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Where’s The Gym Etiquette?

By michael

Universal Power-Pak 445 Adjustable Dumbbells with Stand (Combo)

 

Gym Etiquette In Your Fitness Center

– Several years ago I wrote an article about gym etiquette and several pet peeves that you may also see at your gym. About five years have past since I wrote it, some things like technology has changed, but one thing is for sure, some people still have no gym etiquette. Well with the new year upon us, gyms all around are packed with members, some of which just might have you shaking your head. There is a thing called gym etiquette that many just need to learn because some people just act like they are the only one working out in the gym.

Presenting yourself in a respectful manner, obeying your gym or health clubs rules, and respecting others and also the gym equipment is all a part of having gym etiquette.

So, when it comes to gym etiquette, here are some that can get the blood boiling.

1- Leaving Weights Everywhere

It might be impressive to load the leg press with weight but it just isn’t cool to leave all the weight on the machine when you are finished. If your manly enough to do all that weight then be a man and remove it. This will often cause someone to think the machine is being used or maybe they just are not physically able to take all that weight off so they will avoid it all together. Leaving your

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‘ href=”http://exerciseandnutritiontips.com/product/B003UO1DLS/US/exerandnutrti-20/?cart=yes”>weights on the machines, bars, or on the floor is just being inconsiderate to other members. Show some gym etiquette and put the weight away after using them.

2-  Cell Phones

This one is quickly become one of the top gym pet peeves because everyone has a cell phone nowadays. If you have so much going on in your life that you have to be on the phone your entire workout then maybe you should hire an assistant. An emergency situation is one thing but being on the treadmill talking about the TV show you watched last night can wait. Working out and trying your best on a piece of cardio equipment can be hard enough without having to hear all about the entire life story of the person next to you. Put the cell phone away and concentrate on getting your workout done. You just might be able to workout more than just your jaw that way.

3- Not Cleaning Your Sweat

This should be a no-brainer but amazingly I still see it. If you are working out hard and have worked up a sweat than good job to you. It does show your working. But it doesn’t mean you can leave a small swimming pool of your sweat behind for others to clean up. Just can’t figure this one out. Have some gym etiquette and clean up after yourself because it shouldn’t be the job of the next person to clean your mess.

4- Using the Equipment to Lounge

The way they make these new exercise machines you can really target the muscles you are working in a safe and effective way. Most of these <a class=”colorbox” target=”_blank” rel=”nofollow” data-easyazon-asin=”B00L4NCBHW” data-easyazon-locale=”US” data-easyazon-localize=”data-easyazon-localize” data-easyazon-popups=”data-easyazon-popups” data-content=’

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‘ href=”http://exerciseandnutritiontips.com/product/B00L4NCBHW/US/exerandnutrti-20/?cart=yes”>exercise machines have a seat and many people think once they sit on a machine then they have complete ownership to it and no one else can use it. The way most gyms set up there exercise equipment is to perform the exercises in a circuit, so you shouldn’t be lounging on any machine. Just because there is a seat at the machine doesn’t mean you can sit on it all day and shoot the breeze with someone. If someone is looking to work in with you on a certain machine then show some gym etiquette and let them work in. True, these machines are now advanced and more comfortable but I have yet to see one that is a recliner with a remote control.

5- Slamming Down the Weights

This is one of my personal gym pet peeves that drives me crazy. I often see guys throwing the dumbbells around sometimes cause they are heavy or sometime to inflate their ego. I must have missed the memo stating this makes you more of a man. If you can’t control the weight maybe you shouldn’t be doing it. Slamming the dumbbells can often get them loose or even crack them. Trust me, there is no need to drop dumbbells when doing curls, or chest press no matter what the weight is.

Summary

There you have it, my revised list of gym pet peeves, that show the lack of gym etiquette for many. Yes, there are more but I will keep it to five for now. My blood pressure is rising just writing this so I think I better go get a workout in to get rid of the stress.

If you have a gym pet peeve showing lack of gym etiquette then feel free to vent and leave a comment.

Here is a good video about gym etiquette….

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© Exercise and Nutrition Tips, 2015. Written by admin

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Eight Ways To Boost Your Metabolism

By fitness guy

Ways To Boost Your Metabolism

One way that you can keep a trim figure is to increase your metabolism. Giving your metabolism a boost will not only give you increased energy, but it will also help you burn more calories even while you are at rest. Here are 8 things you can do to help boost your metabolism.

Ways To Boost Your Metabolism

1. Eat small meals. Having about five or six small meals per day, instead of eating three large ones, will help keep your metabolism going at a higher rate. This regularity will keep the body from hoarding food and turning it into fat.

Ways To Boost Your Metabolism

2. Build muscle with s. Since muscle is able to burn a lot more calories than fat, it’s a great idea to do some training and build up muscle tone. It will only take a few times a week of training to start gaining more muscle. The key to this is to go slowly while lifting and always work towards using a heavier with less repititions.

3. Get enough vitamin B. Vitamin B12 is an excellent energy boosting supplement. Not having enough of this in your system can make fatigue set in during the day. Taking the recommended amount which is listed on the supplement bottle is all that is needed.

4. Don’t starve. Starving yourself will only trigger the body’s mechanism to store food. It’s goal is to keep you from starving to death during a famine, which is what it thinks is happening when not enough food is eaten. This reaction turns anything that is consumed into fat and is stored for later.

5. Eat breakfast. Breakfast is an important way to help the body get ready for the day. It has spent all night going without food and now needs some form of nutrition to get energized for whatever activities are in store for it. The best thing to eat is something that is light in calories and high in protein. Yogurt with fruit and a couple of nuts is a great breakfast that will turn your metabolism on and keep you full and satisfied until the next meal.

6. Don’t eat right before bed. Eating right before bedtime does two things. First, the body can’t rest properly since all of its energy is going to trying to digest the large amount of food that was just stuffed into your stomach. Secondly, your body won’t be able to use any of the energy gained from this food and it will be stored as fat!

7. Drink lots of ice cold water. Water is the fluid that makes up most of the human body and it also moves toxins through the body. Drinking eight glasses of water a day is what’s needed to keep everything working properly. These aren’t gigantic glasses either, just eight ounces per glass is plenty. If you drink your water ice cold, then it helps to boost your metabolism because your body takes more energy to process the cold water.

8. Get enough sleep. Believe it or not, getting a good nights sleep is critical to your metabolism. You need to give your body plenty of time to relax and re-energize for the next day.

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How to Structure Your Workout Week

By fitness guy

workout

One of the most important things that you can do when you are trying to get in better shape or to get in shape in the first place is to have a weekly schedule.

There are three things to look at in this schedule and if you set your priorities or goals in each of these area you will be more successful in your workouts

Here are the important structure parts of your workout week >>>

1. When do you workout – We all know, at least your should know that working out in the morning is the best time to workout. The reasons for this are obvious.

By working out in the morning you have less excuses, a fresh mind, no plans already, and this is also the best time becasue you will be able to get the metabolism running right away.

If you do not workout in the morning than the next best time would be lunch or in the evening. The eveing is good for a lot of people but depending on your social life this may be a problem.

So make sure you are not going to have trouble with your workouts getting in the way of the rest of your life or you will start to resent the workouts and start skipping them.

2. Energy to workout – It is important to make yourself have the energy to workout or the workouts will go badly.

This means that you should workout well hydrated as well as making sure that it is far enough away from a meal so that you are not bloated.

Also make sure that you are eating well all day long. Eating 6 meals a day is not jsut a good idea but instead is a great way to keep your blood sugar level.

3. How to workout – No matter what you do you need to have a schedule for what kinds of workouts that you want to have.

You should have at least one weight workout, preferably two and these workouts should work your entire body. I choose to do these workouts on Monday and Friday.

Next you need to figure out your cardio workouts. I like to mix up my cardio and that is to do biking, running, street hockey, and using an elliptical trainer.

You don’t have to do this all at once and really you want to work up a sweat in at least a 30 minute workout for three days a week. This altoegether will lead to five days working out a week wich I think is easily enough to get in great shape in no time.

Working out with these three ideas in mind should help you out to get your body and mind in the shape that you need to make sure that you are always feeling and looking great.

The post How to Structure your workout week appeared first on Fitness Tips for Life.

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Get Fit Outdoors

Get Fit Outdoors

Outdооr Fitness Training – Why Gеttіng Fіt Outdoors Iѕ a Grеаt Alternative tо thе Gуm

Thіnkіng of joining a Gym? Yоu’rе nоt alone, оf course. Thеrе аrе plenty оf Health Clubѕ, Fitness Centers and thе lіkе… аll willing tо tаkе уоur hаrd-еаrnеd cash in еxсhаngе fоr a 12 month соntrасt wіth thеіr fіnе еѕtаblіѕhmеnt. And mаncatо mееt Mіѕѕ оr Mіѕtеr Gооdbаr, аnd thіѕ іѕ сеrtаіnlу аn аttrасtіоn and a mоtіvаtоr fоr ѕоmе. Fоr оthеrѕ, thіѕ аѕресt оf the gym ѕсеnе is a соmрlеtеlу unwelcome аnd has given rise tо thе numеrоuѕ wоmеn-оnlу fіtnеѕѕ сеntеrѕ that nоw dot thе mаrkеtрlасе.
get-fit-outdoors
Whаt’ѕ the аltеrnаtіvе? It іѕ rіght outside уоur front dооr, and іt’ѕ аttrасtіng аn іnсrеаѕіng numbеr of fіtnеѕѕ devotees. And іt’ѕ known generically аѕ Outdооr Fіtnеѕѕ, Pаrk Fіtnеѕѕ or аnу соmbіnаtіоn оr variation of thеѕе terms. Outdoor Fіtnеѕѕ іѕ bеіng rapidly еmbrасеd bу fitness dеvоtееѕ whо prefer the frеѕh аіr оf thе great outdoors оvеr the sweaty, ѕmеllу аnd often ѕtuffу еnvіrоnmеntѕ оf the local gуm.

The аdvаntаgеѕ оf wоrkіng оut in the раrk are mаnу and varied, аnd (іn no раrtісulаr order) іnсludе:
• Cost ѕаvіngѕ. Nо mеmbеrѕhір fees. Nо соntrасtѕ tо ѕіgn аnd nо wоrrіеѕ аbоut уоur hеаlth club gоіng brоkе. Hоw many fitness сlub members hаvе lost thеіr mоnеу like thаt?
• Frеѕh Air. Rеѕеаrсh hаѕ shown that indoor аіr is аt lеаѕt twice as polluted аѕ outdoor air
• Mіnd and Bоdу Wоrkоut. Whеn уоu еxеrсіѕе оutdооrѕ, уоur mіnd hаѕ mоrе tо еngаgе іt, аnd іt іѕ forced tо fосuѕ differently thаn іt would оn a static аеrоbісѕ pad оr wеіghtѕ room.

Getting fit іn the Great Outdооrѕ іѕ nоt new оf course. Pеорlе hаvе еnjоуеd runnіng, cycling, ѕwіmmіng аnd еvеrуthіng else for thоuѕаndѕ оf уеаrѕ (fоr сусlіng, ѕubѕtіtutе сhаrіоt rасіng). What іѕ nеw and gаіnіng іnсrеаѕіng ѕuрроrt іѕ the trend fоr personal оr group fіtnеѕѕ training conducted bу a ԛuаlіfіеd реrѕоnаl trаіnеr. Grоuр fіtnеѕѕ сlаѕѕеѕ are еvеrуwhеrе and іt іѕ dеѕtіnеd tо overtake thе popularity оf the раіd-mеmbеrѕhір health clubs and gуmѕ іn thе уеаrѕ tо соmе.

The сhаllеngе іѕ to fіnd a gооd реrѕоnаl trainer and a fіtnеѕѕ group thаt іѕ a”good fit”. Onсе уоu hаvе dоnе thаt, a decent раіr of shoes, functional сlоthіng, a fitness tracker, and some bаѕіс fіtnеѕѕ еԛuірmеnt іѕ аll you need. Thе rest is free.

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Five Things to Know Before Going Paleo

Five Things to Know Before Going Paleo

By Steve

muffins

“Alright, I’m in. Let’s do this Paleo thing.”

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve probably heard of the Paleo Diet. Actually, if you’re living under a rock, you probably are doing a pretty good job at living a Paleo lifestyle…and I’m impressed you’re reading this.

Anyways! Today’s article isn’t going to dig into what the Paleo Diet is, as I’ve already covered that extensively in the “Beginner’s Guide to the Paleo Diet,” which has been viewed 9.5 million times.

If you’re not sure which foods qualify as Paleo or not, our Paleo Central mobile app takes out all of the guess work.

And if you’re somebody that’s quick to point out “the Paleo diet is flawed for [insert some reason about cavemen eating something]” or because you read the China Study, check out our “Paleo Diet Debunked?” article, where we explain our stance on the diet (and why we’re fans).

Today’s article is for those people who have already decided they want to go Paleo or Paleo-ish, but aren’t quite sure what that means or how to officially get started.

We’ll dig into the different ways to go Paleo, if there’s a WRONG way to do it, what pitfalls to avoid, and how you can set yourself up for success.

 

Is there a Wrong Way to Go Paleo?

“But the big point of the Paleo Diet is that I can eat as much as I want as long as it’s Paleo right?”

For many people, the reason they’re choosing to go Paleo is because they want to lose weight, and have heard plenty of success stories. Heck, many of the success stories here on Nerd Fitness are from people who have done the same thing:

Saint

Staci

However, just as there’s a right way and a wrong way to start eating gluten free, and a right way and a wrong way to love somebody (thanks Keith Sweat!), there’s a right way and a wrong way to go Paleo.

The right way: Focus on eating real foods (not processed crap), like protein, healthy fats, and plenty of vegetables.

The wrong way: Switching from normal cookies and pancakes to Paleo cookies and pancakes. Eating as much fruit, potatoes, and dark chocolate as possible.

When you’re getting ready to transition to a Paleo Diet, the point is not to find Paleo substitutes of all of your favorite unhealthy foods – but rather to fundamentally adjust how you think about food and how you fuel your body.

Remember, just about every meal should be loaded with vegetables, along with a protein source. Fresh fruit is great, in moderation, and mixing in nutrient rich complex carbs (like sweet potatoes) is awesome too.

But loading up on tons of ‘Paleo friendly’ (aka processed and sugary) carb sources defeats the purpose entirely.

So, we’re focusing on eating real foods, right? Great! That’s a good start. But should switch 100% to real foods RIGHT NOW? Or slowly switch over?

Should I go all in, or gradually transition?

apples

Great question. I knew you were smart!

THE “WADE IN” METHOD: Instead of going 100% Paleo, you decide to SLOWLY transition to the diet over weeks or months. You swap out a food here and there, eliminate one type of food after weaning yourself off of it for months, and you make adjustments along the way.

PROS: Your change is gradual, and it’s less of a hit on your wallet. Instead of throwing out ALL of your food and going to buy all Paleo items, you simply stop eating certain foods as you run out of them, replacing them with Paleo items.

Your body has to deal with less of a drastic shock, which means you’re less likely to run out of willpower during your transition. You’re slowly transitioning, pushing your body and tastebuds just slightly outside of the comfort zone.

CONS: When you slowly transition to a Paleo Diet, the “oh my god I feel amazing!” change that many people feel is a lot less pronounced. Because you’re not making drastic changes, your results will be, surprise, more gradual and less drastic!

THE “ALL IN CANNONBALL!” METHOD: If the above method is you wading slowly into the deep end of the Paleo Pool, this is you pulling a Ron Burgundy CANNONBALL! and going all in with 100% Paleo on Day 1. You get rid of all non-Paleo foods, you stop eating dairy and grains, and you “rip the band-aid” off fast.

PROS: You get all of the changes over with immediately, and all of the ‘uncomfortableness’ with transition is all done much quicker. It sucks for many, but it’s over with faster. You also don’t have to worry about deciding which foods to swap out next.

Also, because you’re going full Paleo, you’re more likely to have a drastic weight loss story in the first few weeks, which can be really encouraging and positively reinforcing, making it easier to stay on target.

CONS: Because “carb-flu” is a real thing (which I cover below), it requires a TREMENDOUS amount of willpower. It’s very easy to slip up when you go all in, because it’s a drastic shock to your system and body. This is especially true if you normally fuel your body with grains and carbs and are used to eating a LOT of them.

Seriously, those first few weeks can seriously suck, which can be enough to cause people to have a bad day and run to their nearest Pizza Hut.

Personally, Team Nerd Fitness is a much bigger fan of the “wade in” method, as we’ve seen this be more successful for the majority of people. We’re huge fans of small gradual changes that last permanently, but we know everybody is different. What we don’t want is for somebody to go all-in for a month, lose a bunch of weight, but be so miserable that they go right back to eating pizza and pasta and undo all their work.

When NF Team member Staci went Paleo, it took her a total of eight months to complete the transition – slowly removing each item from her diet one at a time. That was back in 2010 – so while the change took a long time, it’s stuck for five years now.

The choice is yours as to which method you like, as we’ve seen success stories from both types – it comes down to what’s right for you!

Once you’ve decided HOW you’re going to go Paleo, it’s time to figure how to play it out amongst your friends and family – as they’re going to give you a few weird looks for this “eating like a caveman” thing.

Social Paleo Recommendations

fork

“If you’re a vegan who ran a marathon & got your dogs from a shelter, how do you decide which thing to wedge into the conversation first?” -Ken Jennings

“How do you know if somebody does Crossfit? Don’t worry, they’ll tell you.”

Although I’m using the examples above as a joke, you could EASILY mix in “Paleo” or “gluten free” into either of those. When we make a change to our life, we feel like shouting it from the top of the Lonely Mountain. We want to tell anybody and everybody that we feel amazing, and that life is SO much better now that we’ve seen the light. However, doing so is a recipe for getting punched in the face, so here’s how you can still eat healthy without getting ostracized by those around you:

Don’t be a know-it-all: Stay humble, and realize most people need to discover their own path to a healthy life. So don’t preach, and don’t start spouting off facts and figures unless you’re asked; certainly don’t judge those that still eat a typical diet. Remember, that was you. Like, a month ago :)

Stay creative when navigating the real world: Look, even if you don’t talk about your dietary changes or tell others to make adjustments for your needs, you still live in a world that is designed and built to make you fat. From a “balanced breakfast” which is just a pile of empty carbs, to snacks that are processed and plentiful, our society that is BUILT around grains…it’s a challenge to live a fully Paleo lifestyle in modern times.

You’re like Unfrozen Caveman Lawyer, trying to live like a caveman in today’s society.

You may need to ask your waiter to substitute some items or change your grocery shopping habits. And the weird looks? They’ll come with the territory. Embrace the weird!

Don’t panic. Use common sense: We are not a group of Paleo-book thumping fundamentalists that refuse to eat anything because it didn’t exist back in the day. There’s no purity test, and honestly, we don’t care what Fred Flintstone ate.

We just like the “idea” of the Paleo diet, as it makes eating and maintaining a healthy weight easy. So we don’t freak out about every ingredient, or FLIP out if there’s one meal that’s got some non grass-fed beef in it. Do the best you can to use the Paleo diet as an easy guide to eat more real food and less crap… lighten up, Francis!

Just try a little bit of Paleo

berries

Maybe you like the idea of the Paleo Diet, but you’re not ready to jump in 100%.

Or maybe it scares you! Maybe you’ve heard from people that you need your heart healthy whole grains, and that fat is bad, and without dairy your bones will fall apart.

That doesn’t mean you can’t try a Paleo lifestyle, even a little bit. For example, try swapping out Coke for water. Or try eggs and bacon instead of a cereal, muffin, and orange juice.

A sustainable 10% is better than an unsustainable 100%, or nothing at all. Every little change will have big, long term effects. One Rebel lost 20 lbs from simply cutting out soda and fast food!

Remember, we’re after long term changes, not a 30-day diet or 10 day cleanse.

If you’re thinking “If I do this Paleo thing, how long do I have to do it for before I can go back to eating normally?” then you need to free your mind and shift how you view these diet changes.

The Paleo Diet isn’t a temporary diet, but a permanent lifestyle change. We recommend making small changes because any change you make should be something you can stick to. Not for a week, ten days, a month, or even a year. It’s a lifestyle change. Forever.

So, we’d rather you make WAY fewer changes, but make them changes you can live with for the rest of your life!

You need to experiment and find the combination of healthy and happy that works long term for you.

We’ve actually structured our Nerd Fitness Academy around this philosophy, with 10 different levels of nutrition that allow you to pick the level that works best for your goals and expectations, along with instructions on how to graduate and level up when you’re ready!

Carb Flu, Cheat Meals, and More

sashimi

Carb flu is a real thing! If you are somebody that has steadily subsisted on lots of carbs for years (bread, pizza, cereal, bagels, pasta, etc.) and then you switch to a 100% Paleo Diet, your body might struggle for the first few weeks of the transition. When you consumed a lot of carbs before, your body consistently pulled from those carb glucose stores to fuel your body. When you switch to Paleo, your body has to relearn that it can pull from the fat in your body to produce energy…instead of looking for that readily available glucose.

They call this “carb flu.” It doesn’t affect every Paleo person, and it affects people in varying degrees…but it can be a real bummer for many people, leaving them sluggish and depressed (and thus infinitely more likely to bail on the dietary changes). If you are in your first few weeks of dealing with Paleo and you feel really sluggish:

  • Make sure you are eating enough! If you just cut out carbs but don’t increase your vegetable/fat/protein intake, you could simply not be eating enough. Add more avocado/nuts/coconut oil/protein to your meals and see if that helps. We suggest tracking your food intake for a few days while you make this transition.
  • Consider adding in SOME carbs. If you are truly struggling with a very low carb diet, consider upping your carb intake by eating sweet potatoes or fruit and see if that helps. Paleo is NOT a ketogenic diet, and it shouldn’t be. It’s a lower carb than normal, but not to the extent that keto is.
  • Consider trying the wade-in method. You will be far less likely to experience the carb flu if you don’t go all-in.

Cheat meals can be rough! Depending on how intolerant your body is to gluten and/or dairy…don’t be surprised if that “cheat meal” of pizza and ice cream one day wreaks absolute havoc on your stomach and causes you to spend the next day curled up in a ball. You’ve been warned.

Your tastebuds can and will change. For those of you that think you’d never give up [bad food] or can’t live without [blah blah blah] – that’s fine. Feel free to eat those things occasionally – life is too short. However, don’t be surprised when after a few months of healthy living, those same ‘comfort foods’ start to look gross.

Never say never, and don’t assume you’re going to struggle with giving up certain foods. Get started and see how your body reacts, taking changes as they come.

Teach me how to paleo!

meat

I feel obliged to say one last thing about the Paleo Diet: It’s not going to turn you into Superman.

As with anything that becomes popular, people come out of the woodwork to tell you how AMAZING and life changing it is – along with those that scream the exact opposite.

Yes, the Paleo Diet can potentially help you live a healthier life – you’re going to be eating more real food and lots more vegetables. It can help you lose weight or maintain a healthy weight. But it’s not going to make you superhuman overnight. If you are a skeptic and numbers fanatic, consider speaking with a doctor to get your blood work done, and then get tested again in a few months after making your dietary changes.

Second, results may vary. If you go all in on Paleo, and you used to eat terribly before, it’s possible to see a dramatic weight loss within the first few days.

This is because your body was carrying a lot of extra water weight, thanks to all of the grains, carbs, and sodium you were eating. So when you see that scale drop drastically, it’s easy to get overly excited and irrationally optimistic…followed by irrational depression when you stop dropping tons of weight each week. (This also works in reverse. If you eat like crap for a weekend, your water weight could spike UP!)

This is why instead of basing your self-worth on what the scale says each week, we’d rather you base your success on a few other metrics:

  • How you feel! Are you feeling better? Sleeping better? Less achey?
  • How you look – Compare your before photo to today’s photo (you DID take a before photo, right?)
  • How your clothes fit – Are your pants getting looser? Do you need a new belt? And what’s really happening down there?

If you do slip up, we recommend not even stepping on the scale for a few days until you’re back on the Paleo Train Flintstone Car.

Remember, results vary for everyone. Even among experts there is disagreement if they are Paleo or not. There is no one exact right way to “go Paleo”. The best thing you can do is figure out what works best for you…and then go eat more vegetables – even if you don’t like them.

What other questions do you have for me about Paleo?

Do you have a success story, or want to share your struggles with the transition? I can think of about 245,000 people who’d love to hear your story – it might help them in their own transition!

Leave a comment below and I’ll do my best to answer them :)

-Steve

PS: I wanted to share some of my favorite Paleo and healthy eating articles here on Nerd Fitness:

PPS: Quick reminder about the NF Academy (which has recipes, meal plans, and a nutrition leveling system built around Paleo Principles) – if you sign up before January 10th, you can join us for 4 live Q&As each week where you get to ask me whatever you want about getting started!

Nearly 10,000 Rebels are leveling up in the Academy right now. Come join us!

###

photo source: Asrar Makrani: caveman

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Joining a Health Club

By fitness guy

gym equipment

Health Clubs, How do you decide which one to join? One of the great mysteries of a fitness plan is how to decide which health club, gym or fitness center is the right one for you.

Most people go around and ask people they know which on to join and over the year I have belonged to a half dozen of so health clubs or gyms.

The Decision to join a gym

Congratulations on your decision to join a health club. This is one decision that once you follow through with, and keep up your level of commitment will forever change your life and how you relate to people, food and exercise.

There is initially on joining a gym or health club an excitement in the future and a real clarity of purpose.

I have never felt the excitement of being in a gym by doing any kind of other exercise.

Health clubs are a business and since you are going to be doing business with a Health Club you should be armed with information and the ability to make a decision based on what is important to you and not what is pitched to your by the health club salesman.

I want to be very clear here, the onus is on you to decide what you want and need in a health club and the nice lady or mans job is simply to have you join their club.

What I will do within this series is educate you on what is important to think about and after that you can make the decision yourself, armed with the knowledge that you need to take that health club sales pitch head on and rebut it.

The Process of Finding A Gym

In these next few articles I will help you to create a checklist of what is important when you go out looking for fitness center to join.

Joining a gym– The Tour

Staff in the gym

Other factors of Joing a Gym

We will uncover staff and what to look for, membership hours, fitness equipment, health club amenities, classes worth taking or not and of course the price that you should pay and how to decide what is fair.

If you already belong to a gym, fine, this may allow you to reevaluate whether you are at the right place and if you do not belong to a gym you will probably be joining one soon and I hope all the information you will find will help you make an informed decision on what kind of health club is for you.

The post Joining a Health Club appeared first on Fitness Tips for Life.

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Stick To Your New Years Resolutions With These Tricks

Sоmе реорlе lіkе tо jоkе about gіvіng up thеіr New Year Resolutions for Lent. It’ѕ gооd for a lаugh, but also іlluѕtrаtеѕ hоw mаnу реорlе give up on thеіr gоаlѕ аѕ ԛuаrtеr оnе draws tо a сlоѕе. Fоr some, it’s hаrdеr than thеу thоught іt would bе. For оthеrѕ, a long-term grіnd makes the whоlе thing tоо tedious to саrrу out to fruition.

stick-with-your-resolutions

If уоu’rе hаvіng trouble sticking tо уоur rеѕоlutіоn аѕ thе weather grows wаrmеr, trу оnе оf thеѕе trісkѕ frоm рrоduсtіvіtу еxреrtѕ tо рuѕh thrоugh and kеер that рrоmіѕе you mаdе to уоurѕеlf.

Inѕеrt Tіmе Lіmіtѕ

Rеѕоlutіоnѕ wіth nо clear bеgіnnіng or еnd аrе destined fоr fаіlurе. Humаn bеіngѕ аrе mоtіvаtеd bу success аnd bеnсhmаrkѕ. Try рuttіng уоur resolution іntо a tіmе frаmе аnd ѕее how much bеttеr уоu feel аbоut it.

Bad Example: “I will never еаt ісе cream again.”

Gооd Exаmрlе: “I wоn’t еаt ісе сrеаm until I reach mу gоаl wеіght.”

Gеt Bасk оn thе Hоrѕе

If уоu’vе already quit оn уоur rеѕоlutіоn, саll a Mullіgаn аnd ѕtаrt аgаіn. Forgive уоurѕеlf fоr your еаrlіеr mіѕtаkе аnd start frеѕh tоmоrrоw morning. If уоu mess uр аgаіn іn thrее wееkѕ, gеt bасk оn the horse аt thе beginning of wееk four. A lіttlе progress beats nо рrоgrеѕѕ at аll.

Bаd Exаmрlе: “I gіvе uр. I’ll nеvеr run a 10-mіnutе mile.”

Gооd Example: “A 10:30 mіlе is bеttеr than no mіlе аt all, and wе’ll ѕее іf wе саn’t hіt 10:15 bу Sрrіng Brеаk.”
Write іt Down

You’re always еxсіtеd about your rеѕоlutіоn оn January 1, but іt slides іntо thе bасk оf уоur аttеntіоn аѕ thе wееkѕ rоll bу. Write уоur gоаl dоwn ѕоmерlасе уоu’ll see it оftеn, lіkе a роѕt-іt оn your mоnіtоr, a note оn your steering whееl, оr іn drу-еrаѕе mаrkеr on уоur bathroom mіrrоr.

Bаd Exаmрlе: Leaving the bar napkin you wrоtе thе rеѕоlutіоn on іn уоur junk drаwеr.

Good Exаmрlе: Sеttіng a саlеndаr аlаrm оn уоur phone to call уоu every mоrnіng and rеmіnd уоu.

Bribe Yourself

Brіbеrу gets a bаd rap. Yоur bоѕѕ brіbеѕ уоu tо come to wоrk. Yоu teachers bribed уоu with gооd grades. There is absolutely nоthіng wrоng with bribing уоurѕеlf for small ѕuссеѕѕеѕ with your resolution. Just bе ѕеnѕіblе wіth the rеwаrd.

Bad Exаmрlе: “If I make it thrоugh the mоrnіng wіthоut smoking, I gеt a cigarette аt mу lunсh brеаk.”

Good Example: “I’ll put thе money I wоuld ѕреnd оn cigarettes іn a jar, thеn splurge оn a ѕhорріng ѕрrее whenever іt hіtѕ $200.”

Fіnd a Buddу

Fеw thіngѕ improve уоur ассоuntаbіlіtу like hаvіng tо ѕhаrе уоur рrоgrеѕѕ with ѕоmеbоdу уоu care аbоut. Find a workout раrtnеr for еxеrсіѕе rеѕоlutіоnѕ, a wеіgh-іn buddу fоr wеіght lоѕѕ resolutions, or just a mutual соасh tо demand рrоgrеѕѕ reports.

Bаd Exаmрlе: Cоmрlаіnіng tо frіеndѕ аbоut hоw уоu nеvеr асhіеvе уоur rеѕоlutіоnѕ.

Gооd Exаmрlе: Meeting wееklу wіth a frіеnd tо dіѕсuѕѕ rеѕultѕ and ѕtrаtеgіеѕ.

Narrow thе Focus

Sоmе rеѕоlutіоnѕ аrе ѕіmрlу too brоаd, оr tоо ѕwееріng, to be rеаѕоnаblу ассоmрlіѕhеd. If you fіnd you’re fruѕtrаtеd with уоur rеѕоlutіоn because you fееl уоu never make hеаdwау, thіѕ соuld bе whу. Reassess the gоаl аnd thеn rерhrаѕе it іn a more mаnаgеаblе format.

Bаd Exаmрlе: “This year I rеѕоlvе to lоѕе wеіght.”

Good Example: “I’ll lоѕе 12 pounds thіѕ year, at a rаtе оf one роund a month.”

So, whаt rеѕоlutіоnѕ hаvе уоu drорреd іn уоur lіfе? What dо уоu thіnk wоuld hаvе hарреnеd іf уоu’d аррlіеd оnе of these ѕtrаtеgіеѕ?

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Low Carb Diet-What You Should Know About It

Low Carb Diet-What You Should Know About It

 

By fitness guy

low carb shrimp

Carbohydrate is the root cause behind your obesity, or so the supporters of low-carbohydrate diets would have you believe. Low-carb diets have always been more popular than the other dieting methods. After all, who hasn’t heard of the classic ones such as the Atkins Diet and South Beach Diet which continue to be popular even today?

Today however, you have more than one choice for low carb diets. There is the Zone diet, and then there is the Suzanne Summers Diet, each trying to beat down the other in terms of effectiveness. There are also several other minor low carb diet plans available.

If you are worried about cooking low-carb meals, drop your worries. Almost all low carb diet plans now come with in-built menus, recipes and other dietary tips designed to help the common man prepare delicious low carb meals with little effort or headache. Now the million dollar question: is the low-carb diet a right choice for you? Well, that is what you would learn about in this article.

Research low carb diets

Many people make the mistake of going on a low carb diet without doing adequate research and diligence. They are so much excited and blinded by all the hype surrounding these diet programs that they don’t even pause to think whether the diet is right for them or not.

Subsequently, frustrated with their chosen diet plan, they quit it altogether. You shouldn’t make such a mistake. Before going for the low carb diet, it is necessary to understand what types of foods you would be allowed to eat and which ones would be restricted or forbidden.

Ask yourself: do white bread, pasta, packaged fruit juice, etc., form part of your staple meal? Are you a fan of potatoes? If yes then low carb diet plans are not for you. If you have a special addiction for sugary foods then again you shouldn’t pick up a low carb diet as you are sure to be disappointed with your choice.

With a low carb diet, your carb intake would be severely restricted. Now, the types of restrictions vary from diet to diet. Some diets would put a complete ban on your carbohydrate intake, which means no chocolates, no sugar, no packaged fruit juices, no potatoes, no white breads, and no pasta for you. Then there are others which would let you eat only certain types of carbs.

Can I ever eat carbs again?

For example, the South Beach diet plan allows a gradual increase in the amount of carbohydrate intake in “phases”, while the Atkins diet puts a severe restriction on your carbs. With the Zone diet or Suzanne Summers Diet, you are required to eat only low-carb foods.

That said, don’t think that you cannot have delicious meals without carbs. I already mentioned that most of the available low-carb diet plans come with cooking recipes. Each of these recipes would help you make a delicious meal for yourself and your family, so much that you would almost forget about carbs. These recipes would satiate your taste buds while at the same time limiting your carbohydrate intake to a minimum.

Lastly, switching to a low carb meal plan is not an easy task especially if you have been thriving on sugary foods for years. Such a switch, if not impossible, is pretty difficult, and unless you are a self-disciplined individual with a strong mindset, such a switch may prove quite frustrating for you in the long run.

The post Low Carb Diet-What You Should Know About It appeared first on Fitness Tips for Life.

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