Posts tagged fitness boot camp

Cut The Bull Sit!

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Are you sitting down? I have some news for you. Stand up!

A recent study of older women (average age of 79) published in the American Journal of Epidemiology found that people who are sedentary have shorter life spans and are more likely to have high blood pressure, a history of chronic disease, lower physical performance scores, and are more likely to have experienced a fall in the past 12 months. The researchers found that the most sedentary women were biologically 8 years older than their actual age.

Another study in the same journal studied dementia risk in sedentary people. They studied people who were carriers of dementia markers and those who were not. The subjects with the markers for dementia developed dementia more often, but being sedentary greatly increased the risk of getting dementia for those who did not have the markers.

On a non-scientific note, I was talking to a physical therapist about the types of patients he sees. He said that 90% of what he sees is posture related ailments, the majority of them from sitting.

This is scary stuff! But it also means we can take control of our health by addressing the problem.

The first step is obvious- avoid sitting all day long! If you have a desk job this can be a challenge, but make it a priority to get up and stretch, walk around, etc… at least once an hour but the more often the better.

The second option is to address your desk area. There are stand up desks, adjustable desks that go from standing to sitting, sitting on and exercise ball, practicing good office ergonomics, etc…

The third thing to do is to address your posture. This might mean being more aware of your body position or doing more stretches and foam rolling to problem areas.

The fourth thing to look at is your leisure time activities. If you are sitting all day at work, then coming home and sitting on the couch or in front of a computer the remainder of the day that will catch up to you one day.

If you need more in depth instruction on some of these things or you would like someone to come speak at your office and address these topics, I highly recommend Dr. Nancy Harden from Flexibility For Life. I call her the Muscle Whisperer, she does pretty amazing work.

Self Delusion is good for you

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I was listening to author A.J. Jacobs talk about his creative process when he is writing. He is a really interesting guy and goes all in with his book projects. One of his books is his saga of trying to follow every rule in the Bible for a year and another one where he read all 33 volumes of the Encyclopedia Britannica.

 

You would think a guy like that would have no trouble with writer’s block, but it happens to him quite frequently. He has a simple, but effective technique he uses to combat writer’s block.

 

He just sits down and starts writing.

 

The writing could be complete nonsense, but the physical act of writing gets the creative juices flowing. The old fake it until you make it technique.

 

He based his actions on this quote by Habitat For Humanity Founder Millard Fuller:

 

“It is easier to act yourself into a new way of thinking, than it is to think yourself into a new way of acting.”

 

That is a great point! Your mind will eventually catch up to your actions, but you have to start first.

 

Science has proven that if you are upset, but if you can force your face into a smile it will trick your brain into becoming happier. Or if you are feeling insecure in a situation, ask yourself “What would a confident person do?” Then do whatever you come up with!

 

This all sounds crazy, but I have seen it come true over and over with exercise. It’s been proven both with myself and with my boot campers. I tell my clients, to just show up and the magic will happen. If you make it to the workout, you will make it happen.

 

Try asking yourself questions that are framed by your goals. Questions like “What would someone who loves to exercise do here?” or “What meals would a really fit person prepare today?”

 

It's only crazy if it doesn't work.

Diet vs healthy habits. Which is more important?

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One of my awesome clients Lesley gave me a really interesting article to read the other day from The Costco Connection. Yep, I didn’t know Costco had a magazine either.

The article was titled “Dieting versus healthy habits” by Dr. Sandra Aamodt. The main idea was questioning why doctors always recommend dieting for their patients when it has not been proven to improve health in the long term.

The most telling quote in the article is where Dr. Aamodt says, “For health, the most important habit is daily exercise. No matter how much people weigh, physical activity predicts better health. People who rarely get off the couch are more than twice as likely to die prematurely as people who exercise moderately, whether they are normal weight, overweight or obese.”

Two stats that stood out to me are: low fitness is responsible for 16-17% of deaths in the US. Obesity is responsible for 2-3% once fitness is factored out.

That’s not to say you should not watch what you eat. Healthy eating will make you look, feel, and perform better so it is always a good idea!

The main point is to choose a lifestyle change over a diet. It is a clue that diet has die right in the name!

Become more active more often. Ditch processed foods, practice portion control, and cook/prepare more whole foods rather than going on a diet.

Your best year yet by doing things you aren’t qualified for

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Are you a planner? Do you have to have all your ducks in a row before you do anything?

 

I am married to one of those people. Thank goodness, because I am the exact opposite. Marriage is all about filling in each other’s gaps.

 

There is definitely a time to plan, get ready, and make sure you have all the bases covered. But it can also be a sticking point.

 

It becomes a sticking point if it keeps you from taking action. Do you know what science has determined to be the perfect time to start exercising? Now. Now is the best time.

 

I love this quote I heard from Tim Ferriss: “Don’t be afraid to attempt what you are not qualified to do.”

 

I also like this quote from Kamal Ravikant, investor and author, “If I only did things I was qualified for I’d be pushing a broom somewhere.”

 

-Do not be afraid to do your first 5K because you don’t think you are ready.

-Do not be afraid to start Adventure Boot Camp because you think it is too hard or you can’t keep up. Spoiler alert- it's not and you can.

-Do not hold yourself back from reaching your full potential because that lying voice in your head says you can’t.

 

Go all in this year, put yourself out there, and see what happens. It won’t be easy, it will hurt, but it will be worth it. Don’t go through another year with regrets.

 

This is the year and now is the time. Take that first step towards change and just keep stepping.

 

Happy 2017 to you!

Before you make those resolutions…

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funny-pictures-new-year-resolutions  

It is almost time. The time of year when we MUST change everything in our lives in ONE day!

 

I love resolutions. I love goal setting. I really love writing down goals to accomplish, but what is going to make this year any different from last year?

Momentum

Let em explain. I've seen a lot of people searching for their word of the year. If I had one it would be momentum.

I think momentum is absolutely crucial to your success. So I am going to give you some advice that is probably counterintuitive to what most people will do.

Start with your strengths.

If you hate exercise, don't start there even if the rest of the world goes to the gym in January. If you hate eating healthy, don't start there even if the rest of the world is producing a broccoli shortage. Pick something that you are already pretty good at and go all in.

If you have already been exercising a little bit, it is time to pick it up! No pun intended. Lift heavier, go further, go faster. Do that race you are nervous about attempting, try that class you've always wanted to try, pick up a new active hobby. Cross train in other areas to improve performance and increase results.

If you already eat fairly healthy, it is time to dial it in!

The goal is to increase your confidence. What happens when you work on your weaknesses? You feel incompetent, that everybody else makes it look so easy, and you feel like a failure.

But when you are working in an area you already have competence, you can really grow your confidence and that will produce momentum.

You can use that momentum to delve into the other areas that you want to work on. It will work better than the quitting smoking, getting a new job, working out 7 days a weeks, and eating a complete Paleo Slow Carb Mediterranean Diet all year game plan.

Doing things the way you have always done will get you the same things that you did not want. Try something different and see what you are truly capable of.

Goliath, Marshmallows, and Reaching Your Goals

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Goliath

There is a hallway at my church where all the kid’s classrooms are. The walls are all painted with famous stories and people from the Bible.

One year my wife and I were leading a Sunday school class and I had a brilliant idea involving marshmallows and a painting of Goliath.

You have probably heard the story in the Bible about David and Goliath. Where tiny David killed the fearsome giant Goliath by flinging a smooth stone into Goliath’s forehead.

I thought it would be pretty awesome to have the kids act like David and try to throw their marshmallows into Goliath’s forehead. They loved it! There was just one problem.

There’s always that one kid.

One kid had apparently been licking his marshmallow while he waited in line. Then when it was his turn he ran up and dunked Goliath in the forehead like he was Lebron James. You would be amazed at how quickly a marshmallow sticks to a painting of Goliath and it would not come off!

Goliath had marshmallow residue on him for weeks! Every time I walk by that painting I am reminded of that day. It also reminds me of the kids’ laughter, enthusiasm, and zest for life that day. It is also a reminder that there are kids that look up to me and I need to be a good example. Every time I see that guy it is a great reminder.

You can set up visual reminders for yourself too. Print off a favorite quote of yours, a picture of the finish line at a race you are training for, a picture of your kids. Think of something that: positively motivates you to be healthier; keep proper nutrition and exercise a priority; and is deeply meaningful to you.

I have no idea how to use semicolons, but I throw them out there occasionally to keep that button on my keyboard from getting rusty. I’m a rebel like that.

Hope you have a very Merry Christmas, thank you for being a reader!

10 Steps To Fat Loss Success (Part 2)

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 success

Continuing with the 10 Steps To Fat Loss Success today with Steps 6-10. In case you missed Steps 1-5, you can check them out here --->Part 1

 

6. Move more, sit less

 

Energy is a weird thing. You have to have the energy to at least get out and move a little bit, but then that little bit of moving can give you back more energy than you had before. You just need to start.

More and more studies are showing that sitting is worse than smoking and can actually undo all of the exercise you have been doing. Get up at the very least, once and hour and walk around a little bit.

 

7. Do you even lift bro?

Strength training is the fountain of youth. It can be weights, bands, bodyweight, milk jugs, or whatever you have that provides resistance but you need to get strong and stay strong.

You will build muscle, which will help you get rid of fat, which will make you more mobile, which will make you have better quality of life. Everything gets better when you get stronger.

 

8. Never settle

You have to continue to challenge yourself. The workout you did 6 months ago does not get you the results it did then. You need to always try to get more reps, more distance, more weight, etc... in everything that you do if you want to keep getting results.

 

9. H2O you didn't!

Just picture me saying this one really sassy like and you will get the full impact of what I named this step. I have talked about the importance of water a lot lately because it is that important.

Try getting up and drinking a tall glass Magical 3F Water every morning for a week and see if you notice any changes.

 

success10. Eliminate the negative self talk

I have an experiment for you. Start talking about or thinking about someone you have not seen in awhile. An old roommate, a friend you haven't see in awhile something like that. More times than not, you will hear from that person within the next week.

It's crazy! But it works. It's called the Law of Attraction. Some people call it a self fulfilling prophesy.

Whatever you call it, you want to avoid negative thoughts about yourself. Constantly calling yourself fat, old, tired, and other insults does you absolutely no good. On the other hand, it actually cements those thoughts in your head and bleeds over into your behaviors.

Instead, do the opposite. Work on constantly encouraging and inspiring yourself. Get around people who do the same. Words have power, let them work to your advantage.

 

Where do you need to start? Pick one you can start making a habit today. Hope you found this list helpful.

“A complete failure”

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complete-failure

If you have been following my writing for awhile, this will probably not come as a surprise. But here it is:

 

Low fat diets do not work

  low-fat-is-wack  

That is not just my opinion, this study shows that low fat diets have "been a complete failure tackling obesity". So what do they recommend instead?

 

Here are some guidelines from the study:

 

-Focus on portion sizes

-Rather than avoiding carbs and fats, avoid processed foods

-Don't fear all fats, there are healthy fats you should make a part of your every day nutrition

 

I really like their advice. Any time you get back to eating foods in their natural state you are on the right path.

 

This is also good advice for Thanksgiving. Rather than limiting yourself with your favorite foods, eat them in moderation (or at least semi-moderation).

 

Choose more of the homemade items over the stuff that came out of a box or can.

 

And I'm pretty sure pecan pie is considered a healthy fat. Let's just all assume it is and not look it up.

 

PS- a will have a special workout video for you tomorrow to get you ready for Black Friday shopping.

I thought my son had been kidnapped

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unknown-1

I had just finished teaching my 830am boot camp, picked up a few groceries, and was getting ready to take nap. Then the phone rang, so I grudgingly got up and answered it.

 

It was a robo-call from the school that I was only halfway listening to, until it said my son’s name. The message said he was absent from school that day.

 

My heart almost stopped because it was 10am and my son rides his bike to school every day. He had left the house at 720 that morning. All the doomsday scenarios were running through my head as I hurriedly called the school.

 

The secretary picked up and confirmed that he was marked as missing from school, but she would send a student aide to his classroom to double check. That was the longest 5 minutes of my life. All I could think of was we should have set up way to know if he gets to school every day and now it was too late.

 

The secretary gets back on the line and tells me it was a mistake and that the wrong child got marked absent. Such. A. Relief.

 

I felt like we were given a second chance and now we have a way to know immediately when he is not at school on time. We were able to take action to prevent something bad from happening.

 

Have you been through something similar with your health? Have you been told by a doctor you need to be more active or ________ will happen? Are you starting to see your strength, mobility, and vitality decline? Do you just feel like crap all the time?

 

It is not too late to fix that! Heed the warning signs and take action.

 

So where do you start? Start with this quote:

 

unknown

What is something you do (or don’t do) every day that needs to change? Start there, improve your daily routine, and you will improve your future no matter what condition you are in now.

3 Strange Tips For Your First 5K

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Color-Run

In honor of the Color Run being tomorrow morning, I wanted to offer up a few tips for running 5Ks. The great thing about the Color Run is it that attracts lots of people for their first 5K. If that is you, these tips will be very helpful. But even if you are a seasoned runner, you can still find benefit with these 3 slightly odd tips.

 

1. Don't be like Raquel Welch

Have you ever seen the sprinters in the Olympics? These are the fastest people on Earth and they have huge upper body muscles. Why is that? Fast arms, make fast feet. If you run with your arms motionless and in by your side like Racquel Welch dancing on Seinfeld, you are not going as fast as you can. And if you missed the Seinfeld era, my sympathies.

Try following these cues: arms bent at 60-90 degrees, keep your hands loose (don't clench your fists), let your hands swing from cheek to hip (not across your body), and think about driving your elbows back as opposed to pushing your hands forward. These things take a little practice, but can really help make you a faster, more efficient runner.

 

2. Jedi mind trick

One of the most important parts of running is the mental game. It can be really overwhelming to think about going 3 mile in your first race. Treat it like you would eat an elephant- one bite at a time.

Tell yourself to make it one step further, get to the next light pole, get past that building up ahead. Keep setting mini goals that propel you forward and don't let the big picture discourage you.

 

3. Get up on the good foot and blow out the candles

You're out running, your legs feel great, breathing is on point, and then someone stabs you in the side with a knife. The dirty side stitch cramp. They are awful and can really cramp your running style. Let the hilarity sink in.

A simple way to prevent these side stitches from occurring is to breath out when your left foot hits the ground. These side stitches are basically spasms of the diaphragm that running can cause because it makes the organs attached to the diaphragm jump up and down. You put a much larger strain on the organs attached to the diaphragm when you breathe out when your right foot hits. The organs on the left side are much smaller, so there is less strain. If you do get one, the best way to fight through them is to slow down and breathe out with pursed lips (like you are blowing out a birthday candle).

Hope these help!

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