Diet and Fitness: Simplicity Is Key
Taking a simple, balanced approach to your fitness and nutrition plan is key. I can't count the number of times healthy food and types of exercise have been shunned in the media, or even by health professionals. Hearing statements such as, "weights never go after cardio," "cottage cheese is too acidic," and "carrots are not as nutritious cooked," are not very helpful to a diet and fitness newbie. With all of the conflicting information surrounding the healthy lifestyle, it's no wonder people's heads spin, and then they give up. Even I felt forced to question my food choices after reading certain reports and articles.
The thing is, diet and fitness are not fundamentally simple sciences. As a matter of fact, information changes often, and the research into these industries prove or debunk different theories everyday. With that said, you don't have to have a degree in sports sciences, or be a dietitian to improve your lifestyle, lose extra pounds, and increase energy.
Simplified Diet and Nutrition
Eating fruits and vegetables? You're on the right track!
You had potatoes, carrots and corn as sides with dinner. Then you read that these are the unhealthiest vegetables. Coming from last week's plan of frozen burritos and McDonald's, you thought you did a good job, so why do you still feel like a food prep failure?
Take my word for it, switching from fast, fried and foods high in saturated fat to vegetables...ANY vegetables is going to achieve results, both physically and mentally. Making a switch is the first step. Eventually, you will refine your food choices and opt in for yams, sweet peppers, and spinach but for now, you're on your way! Don't give up.
Fantastic. Then you hear that cardio is only beneficial after 20 minutes, but you're only up to 10. You read that weight training is not as effective for muscle growth after cardio, and that's what you have been doing all week. Finally, you just discovered the heart rate training zone chart and you have no clue.
It doesn't matter. My philosophy is: ANY exercise is better than NO exercise. Ten minutes 5 times a week is almost an hour more than the prior week before starting your program. Weight training if performed in the morning, evening, before or after cardio, will improve your metabolism. The heart rate issue? As long as your breathing has increased but you can still make conversation, you're doing just fine. Keep going!
You're conscious of your actions!
You can't believe you dined out three times this week. Why oh why did your co-workers choose the French restaurant. Everything was smothered in creamy sauces and cheese. Then last night you arrived home after work past 9pm. How were you suppose to exercise after you kicked off your shoes and face planted onto the couch?
You're thinking about the things that went wrong. Perfect! You know what's even worse than realizing you ate an extremely unhealthy meal? Not realizing it at all! Do you remember before you committed yourself to a healthy lifestyle? I do. I would regularly pound back a fast food burger, up-sized fries, a milkshake, and a dessert without giving it a second thought! Exercise? What's that? The fact that I was destroying my health wasn't even on the radar. These days I'll splurge a little, and I'll have a burger and fries (Hold the milkshake and dessert, please!) but it's on my mind. This is good. It means you are consciously analyzing the lifestyle choices you are making. It will help you to think that since you had that fast food lunch, maybe tonight you'll home cook a healthy dinner.
Don't let all of the information out there confuse or discourage your progress. By exercising when and however you can, and by making healthier food choices by eliminating fast, fried and fatty food, you are on the right track, and you WILL see results.
Kaleena Lawless Personal Training Specialist http://www.kalisthenixfitnessblog.com
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