It is that time of year again, time to make a New Year’s resolution and, interestingly enough, over 5 of the top 10 New Year’s resolutions involve our health and fitness. To fit in fitness and tame the bulge are two of the top three New Year’s resolutions made and they will be the focus of this blog post.
Fitting in fitness is a matter of scheduling. Some people are morning people and others don’t function well until afternoon or evening. Make the time when you can fit “one hour for me” into the program. You’ll not only feel better but you will be more productive at work as well.
Taming the bulge is about losing fat, especially fat around the middle, which can accumulate from age and a lack of activity. Remember the old slogan for the YMCA? It is Mind, Body, Spirit and you need to balance all three to stay in balance and perform at your best. A combination of healthier diet and exercise that raises metabolic function can tame the bulge.
So, what are the best weight loss tips? We have comprised a list of our five favorites based upon the things we feel will have the greatest impact upon your weight, health and fitness. Without further ado let’s take a closer look at the list.
TIP #1 – CUT OUT ALL FAST AND PROCESSED FOODS
Fast foods and processed foods are high in fat, low in nutrition and can be replaced with foods that have greater nutrition and far less fat. This trend toward large processed food companies has been the scourge of the past several generations, prior to the 1960’s our diets were comprised almost entirely of whole foods for centuries. It is only in the past 50 years that this all changed and it has ruined America’s diet.
While fast foods may be convenient they are the single biggest enemy you face to maintaining a normal weight. Bring substitute whole foods like carrots, apples, oranges or some other fruit or vegetable based snack.
If you are a “Junk Food Junkie” then this transition may be all you need to lose a lot of weight.
TIP #2 – RESERVE ONE HOUR PER DAY FOR EXERCISE
While many professional athletes train 3 to 6 hours per day, it is not necessary to exercise a lot to receive the health benefits. The consistency with which you exercise is much more important than the quantity.
Elevating your heart rate elevates your metabolism and means that your body burns more calories per hour even when you are resting. This is the wonderful benefit of exercise as it will turn your body into a calorie consuming machine.
I talked to a guy who went to Canyon Ranches in Arizona for a 3 week program. When he entered the doctors measured his hourly caloric burn while sleeping as 90 calories per hour. After three weeks he had elevated that to 180 calories per hour at sleep, exactly double. Over the course of 8 hours of sleep his body was now burning 720 more calories.
So, as you can see, elevating your metabolism with daily physical activity can have some very real benefits.
TIP #3 – DRINK LOTS OF FRESH WATER
Coffee dehydrates us; alcohol dehydrates us, as do a host of other things. Drinking lots of water is good for you; it has no calories and can help fend off hunger. Over 60% of your body is comprised of water, so it stands to reason that water is one of the top fuels for the human body.
The simple solution is to buy a BPA-Free water bottle and carry it with you everywhere and make it your little buddy. Drink small sips regularly throughout the day as this is generally better than drinking mass quantities at irregular intervals.
Staying hydrated will not only make you feel better, it will help you avoid those dips in energy that can occur throughout the day.
TIP #4 – LEARN NUTRITION AND DIET AT YOUR LOCAL HEALTH FOOD STORE
When I was an aspiring national cyclist in the 1970’s I went to my local health food store for advice. It was here that I learned about dietary supplements like brewer’s yeast that contained lots of complex amino acids to help balance out what was then a vegetarian lifestyle. I got introduced to brewer’s yeast, ginseng, bee pollen and a host of foods and supplements I never knew existed.
Often there are some nutrition gurus working at these local health food stores and it is worth the time to ask questions and learn from them. Tell them the problem and they will tell you the natural cure.
For recuperation from hard competition we would often used injected B12, as it probably has the greatest recuperative capacity of any vitamin on earth. Of course there are quality B12 supplements out there that can be used post exercise to aid in recovery.
TIP #5 – USE A HEART RATE MONITOR AND MEASURE YOUR IMPROVEMENT
A heart rate monitor is the single biggest ally in improving your health, physical condition and in losing weight. A heart rate monitor watch is like a tachometer on a car as it is telling you how hard your engine, the heart, is working to deliver your body the nutrients and things that it needs.
Exercise is your single biggest ally in improving the efficiency of your circulatory system and regular daily exercise that elevates your heart rate to between 60% and as high as 90% of your maximum heart rate for one hour daily is the best possible solution.
For people just starting out I highly recommend reading my book entitled How To Successfully Use A Heart Rate Monitor” as it is jammed pack with great tips for getting in shape and changing your lifestyle. The book is also a free download from the Heart Rate Watch Company website and my New Year’s gift to you.