[Fabulous Fitness Post] – 5 Healthy Tips To Stay in the Best Shape of Your Life
It’s been quite sometime since I’ve last written a [Fabulous Fitness Post] and besides fashion/beauty, which is ultimately the primary focus of this blog, I also like to incorporate a health/fitness component. This is strictly content based, so there’s a lot of material to be read…Ready, Set, Go:
Shape Your Mind (Not Just Your Body)! - When it comes to health/fitness, I think it’s important to approach it with a fresh state of mind. People don’t realize how strong the mind is and if you put your mind and focus towards your health/fitness goals (whatever they may be), you will eventually get there. It’s going to also require hard work and discipline on your part, but your mind will drive you to do whatever it takes to get you to where you want to be.
Although I was never an athlete, I have an admiration towards athletes not only for their strong bodies, but for their strong mindsets. Most athletes have an incredible mental toughness with an “I can achieve anything” attitude. Personally, I try to train my body like an athlete along with thinking like an athlete. Physical strength also builds up my mental strength and overall positive attitude that I can conquer the world! ;)
Pump up Your Protein Intake - I always included protein into my diet (fish, eggs, chicken, turkey), but now I also incorporate an all natural whey protein into my diet. I especially like to make smoothies with the protein powder or add it to Greek yogurt. I seriously noticed a huge difference in the overall shape of my body as soon as I boosted my protein intake within a short amount of time.
If you are working out vigorously and lifting weights, it is absolutely necessary to increase your protein intake in order to repair muscles and build lean muscle tissue. Also keep in mind that the body has to use more energy/fuel to burn protein than it does fat and carbohydrates.
Pay Attention to the Nutritional Content of your Food - I have always been a huge believer of eating foods in their most natural state. Why? The body is designed to digest natural foods. Once you start feeding it foods with artificial ingredients and “foods” produced from factories, it throws the body out of whack and it is only natural that the body is going to put on excess weight along with creating a myriad of other health risks.
I also don’t understand why there is such a huge emphasis on calories and following an allowance of calories within the day. “I only ate 1200 calories today! Wow, I’m so healthy!!” (Umm, sorry to burst that health bubble, but that does not necessarily equate optimum health. Let me explain why…)
For portion control, yes, I believe having certain calorie limitations can be beneficial; however, people need to really focus on the NUTRITIONAL CONTENT of their food (the vitamins, antioxidants, and quality of the food), NOT how many calories are consumed in a day or how many calories a food contains. Think about it: Is a 100 calorie apple the same as 100 calorie fat free cookie? I absolutely do NOT care whether it’s labeled “fat free,” THIS IS A FOOD MARKETING TRAP!! (Let’s not be fooled here, a cookie is still a cookie!!)
What I look for in a food label: The majority of the foods I eat are natural foods, so they are not individually wrapped or come with a food label. However, if I am faced with a food with a label, the first thing I look at is the INGREDIENTS. (Isn’t it amazing how this is always listed on the BOTTOM of a food label?!?! Ironic no? Being that this is essentially what is most important, it’s always the calorie content that is listed first because companies do not want consumers to know what they are really using to create their products. I guess it is not so ironic after all!). I find this to be the most crucial information because I want to know, “what exactly am I eating?” If the food has an ingredient with a 10 syllable word, you better believe I want nothing to do with it!
FYI, I also pay strong attention to the sugar content (you’d be surprised how much sugar is added to foods that are not even classified as a dessert) and the serving size. This is also crucial. Don’t assume that an item is a single serving size because that isn’t always the case (and more often times is not)!
Sculpt and Shape - Although I find daily diet to play a stronger role in overall health (hence the expression, “you are what you eat”), if you truly want to see amazing results in terms of your overall physique, you’re going to have to invest the time in sculpting. Surprisingly, I’m not speaking in artistic terms at the moment. By “sculpting,” I essentially am referring to lifting weights and strength training moves. Sculpting is the only way you are going to RE-SHAPE your body and create definition. By adding a few daily cardio sessions to the mix along with a consistent (and challenging [or else you're not going to achieve your full potential]) strength training regime, you will transform the shape of your body. Whereas if you only put the focus on cardio, you may lose the weight, but you’re not creating definition in your body.
Body sculpting not only builds up your strength and creates a statuesque physique, but also boosts your metabolism. Did you know that a pound of muscle burns three times more calories a day at rest than a pound of fat?!?! Did I by any chance motivate you to pick up a pair of weights yet? ;))
Eat Frequently for Energy, Vitality, and Overall Good Health - Again, this kind of goes back to my point of eating with the focus of the nutritional content of your food. When you eat healthy foods, you should feel good inside and out. I think of my body as a machine, the only way it’s going to function its very best is if I nourish it with the right nutrients, vitamins, and minerals.
This also means that I need to be eating every few hours in order to keep the metabolism burning at its most efficient rate. It should go without saying that you should NEVER starve yourself. Think about it, how is your body going to run on empty? It blows my mind that the first thing most people say when they need to lose weight is, “I can’t eat for the next few days.” That is the absolute WORST thing you can ever do to your body. Why aren’t people focusing on a healthy diet and consistent exercising? Seriously. That’s all it takes!
[Does anyone have some healthy/fitness tips that work for you?]