Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Kickin’ The Training Tires

Thank you again to Hot 103 FM's Adam West for asking me to write this to be posted as part of a series of blogs he is doing on their website regarding health:

My third part to helping those new comers to the gym/resolutioners. Again as with nutrition, I felt it best to keep it as simple as possible. Now there are plenty of ways for people to train properly and learning your own body will help determine if certain exercises are working for you. For example if a person is trying to work around past injuries.

Want some motivation? Discover what yours is for yourself and do not rely on others for it. As with nutrition, to really see some solid results…to be fair give yourself at least 8 weeks. Note this, weddings…beaches…not so far off as you may think.

Let us begin your own LIFESTYLE CHANGE! Again, this is all basic stuff for the beginner/intermediate.

Training for losing weight requires you to push your limits a bit. So leave the newspaper until you are ready to sit on the couch. The best kind of motivation will be music or a television show that gets you wanting to train. *cough*…Rocky IV…sorry I had to.

Hypothetically, if talking about an average person working Monday to Friday then training 5 days a week is fine, but taking two off after that…come on, you can do better then that. I find its more helpful to a persons schedule to do 4-5 workouts and take one off…that way it gives you some flexibility should something come up. If you MUST do the Monday-Friday schedule, use one of your weekend days at least to accomplish some cardiovascular training.

Along with cardiovascular training, why not add in some abdominal exercising as well. I mean in order to see that six pack you need to combine both types of training for any hope.

I should mention, before you cringe at “Cardiovascular Training & Abdominals” below. Think of this…simply get your target heart rate going for 20-30 minutes. Abdominals…well if you are contracting that muscle properly, you should not take much time working this area either. *One tip say when doing a crunch, flex that muscle and at the same time force all the air out of your lungs.*

Here is a typical training regimen that you may wish to try, stick to 4 sets of 4 exercises of 10-12 repetitions:

Monday – Chest
Tuesday – Back/Cardiovascular Training & Abdominals
Wednesday – Legs
Thursday – Shoulders/Traps/Cardiovascular Training & Abdominals
Friday – Arms
Saturday – Off/ Cardiovascular Training & Abdominals
Sunday - OFF

Keep your workouts aerobic and burning more calories by taking less rest time. I mentioned previously…do one set of an exercise, rest only 45 seconds and continue to the next set of that exercise. If you are really hardcore you can even do an aerobic exercise in between for the 45 seconds like skipping for example.

Let’s remember that your body, in a way, is your own worst enemy. It can adapt very quickly so changing your routines up every 6-8 weeks is best. Don’t give your body time to make things easier, this means it is no longer as effective.

Though some may not wish to spend money on supplements, I really believe that anyone should include a daily multivitamin into their nutrition.

Well that’s the skinny on training. All the above is basic but should be able to get the most new comers closer to attaining their Lifestyle Change.


Friday, January 14, 2011

Gettin’ Back To Nutrition Basics

Thank you again to Hot 103 FM's Adam West for asking me to write this to be posted as part of a series of blogs he is doing on their website regarding health:

Gettin’ Back To Nutrition Basics

So, in my second part to helping those new comers to the gym/resolutioners. I felt it was best to keep it as basic and simple as possible and dive into nutrition a bit more. Now there are plenty of ways for proper nutrition and a lot will come from learning your own body and how it responds to specific foods.

I mean we need to be honest here, vacation season, wedding season, beach season…they are all not as far off as some of you may think. To really see some solid results that will make you happier you need to give yourself a good 8 weeks in my opinion…especially if you have been slacking for the past year or more. As a reminder, pictures (more for personal use and not facebook or twitter) and measurements will be much more helpful for your motivation then stepping on that scale.

Let us begin your own LIFESTYLE CHANGE! Again, this is all basic stuff for the beginner/intermediate.

Let’s talk food, food, food! In a nutshell…more meals & smaller portions (5-6 day try), H2O is great (2-4 litres a day), protein is essential and Carbohydrates (don’t cringe!)…those even taken in proper foods/portions/times are necessary. Those no carb diets are exactly that, diet = temporary.

Try implementing the following into a 5-6 a day meal plan.

Protein – Egg Whites, Whey Protein Shake, Fish (Tuna, Tilapia, Salmon, etc.), Chicken Breast, Lean Ground Beef

Carbohydrates – Oatmeal, Brown Rice, Whole Wheat Pasta (limited amounts), Vegetables (like asparagus, broccoli, green beans, celery, peppers, etc.), sweet potato, granola

Fats – Fish (good in both categories), Nuts (almonds, etc.), Olive oil (cooking instead of in butter)

Also, make sure to add berries (blueberry, raspberry, etc). Now I also suggest limiting dairy intake as well but still taking in some like low fat yogurts and such.

A few last notes, watch all the condiments you slather on. Sticking to things like Salsa, hot sauce, mustard, low sodium spices and low fat ranch even is acceptable. Also of consequence, green tea is great to add to your daily food intake. Watch the amount of coffee, pop and other sugary drinks you take in during the day.

It is best to take in your carbohydrates earlier in the day when you are most active and especially after workouts to replenish your body.

Though some may not wish to spend money on supplements, I really believe that anyone should include a daily multivitamin into their nutrition.

Well that is it for nutrition. Again all of the above is very basic but should be able to get the most “green” of people start their path back to being happy and fit.


Friday, January 7, 2011

“Resolutioners”, please read...I implore you!

Thank you Hot 103 FM's Adam West for asking me to write this to be posted as part of a series of blogs he is doing on their website:

Making a “New Years Resolution” to get fit for the following year can become as hopeless as an ant pushing a 747 on the runway. People tend to rely on the beginning of the year or any special date to anchor them to a get fit plan. I am sorry to say that this can be detrimental and most may end up failing. But, there is still some hope and I will try to give you some tips to being one of those who are successful.

First thing, pick any day and just say…”That’s it, I am done being unhappy”. What I mean is simply…you are sitting at home eating a gross amount of bad food and you just decide tomorrow is the day of change. Nothing special about tomorrow…it’s not a special date on the calendar of any sort. You are quite honestly tired of being unhappy and you want to make a life style change.

This leads into my second point. Think of this not as a “diet”, this is a “life style change”. The word diet gets passed around too much and the definition it tends to fall under is “a temporary thing”. Look at your fitness and eating as a full out change to the way you are living your life from that point on.

Get started by taking not only weight but body measurements and even pictures. Come on, we all see Facebook…everyone has the ability to take pictures of themselves…just don’t post these ones. The biggest thing is people rely too much on the scale. Which in itself can lead someone to be misinformed about their success. Let’s remember that muscle does weigh more than fat. Also the measurements and pictures will not lie and allow you to see the gradual change. I mean you look at yourself everyday so without the physical evidence it may be harder for you to see the changes in the beginning. This could cause you to be discouraged early on.

Set attainable and realistic goals. I find that instead of saying I am going to lose “? Lbs” by a certain date. It is more effective to make a goal like “Ok, this week I will do an extra session of cardio” or “This week I will cut this completely from my diet”. In addition, give yourself a decent amount of time to really notice that difference. A solid eight weeks of training and eating right should be a perfect amount of time for you to see a noticeable different in yourself.

Abdominal exercises do not work. What??? You are probably asking. Well that statement is true to a point. What I really mean is if you have a layer of fat covering those abdominals…well you can do exercises until you are blue in the face and you know what, your abs will get stronger but you will still not be able to see that six pack. Proper eating and cardio training is the way you will get to enjoy the fruits of your labor. Of course those two combined with abdominal exercises is the most idea way to attain that washboard stomach.

The biggest things you will find that will make the most difference in turning your “physweak” to a “physique” will be how you approach eating. Cut out that pop people! Yes, even you diet pop lovers. Also, too much coffee can be harmful as well. You don’t have to be miserable though, there are still plenty of foods and ways you can eat to be happy. I am a firm believer that eating good or “clean” for the whole week gives me a “cheat meal” as a reward once a week to. Yes, “cheat meal” can be anything and in the end will help reset your body and keep it working hard to burn off the calories for you. The other thing about eating properly, water…water and more water! In my opinion an average person should drink anywhere from 2 litres to 4 litres a day depending on your activity level.

So there you have it…now don’t be afraid to ask for help in the gym to do those exercises properly from others and good luck! I will leave you with some tips below for all I have mentioned above:

- A lot of water goes a long way
- More meals and smaller portions, 5-6 a day is a good goal
- Condiments, try limiting the sugars, creams, ketchup, salts, etc.
- Protein is great, good carbohydrates are also just as important at the proper times during the day
- Eat clean all week, give yourself one cheat meal a week

- Aim for 5 days a week, at least 3-4 cardio sessions 20-30 minutes
- Cardio is not just running, its anything getting your heart beat at its target heart rate for an extended amount of time
- Proper form, like with abdominals don’t just do the motion of a crunch…actually squeeze/flex that muscle as well
- Higher reputations and lighter weight is ideal for a more aerobic and fat burning workout
- In addition to above keep the resting between your sets to a short time, say 45 seconds

There is so much more to cover…but this should at least give you a fighting chance and get you started in the right direction. Put in a decent effort and don’t be discouraged. Good luck in making your personal “Life Style Change”.