Three Quick Tips For Continued Results

This time of year is full of plateaus. Back in January, you likely set your New Year’s Resolution, since then, you have made solid progress. Perhaps, you have dropped three to four dress sizes, or lost 10-15 pounds. These are accomplishments to be proud of; some people only make it so far. The difference in you, is you’re going to keep moving. Instead of retreating to the couch with five slices of pizza on your lap, you are going to stick with your workouts, continue to eat consciously, and most importantly be kind to your body. Whenever you get stuck in a weight loss rut, simply remember those people that give up rather easily; maybe they are a friend, or coworker. Those frequent forfeiters are now in your rearview and the distance is only increasing.

 

Three Quick Tips For Continued Results

 

 

• Do Something Healthy Everyday

I am a firm believe that “anything is better than nothing” in regards to your health. We all have our “cheat” days and our habitual vices, but that doesn’t mean we can’t be good to our bodies.Hopefully, you live a very healthy lifestyle, but even if you don’t, try doing one NEW healthy thing everyday. Whether it’s eating a healthy meal after your usual morning run, or going to the gym after a successful day of eating organic, unprocessed foods. What’s more, a healthy improvement like giving up cigarettes, or limiting your consumption of alcohol is just about the healthiest improvement you can make in your day.

• Stay Consistent

Consistency is the key to continued results. Sure, if you do the exact same workout and eat the exact same food everyday, you won’t be optimizing your results and will likely Go Insane. But there is still something to be said for grinding it out. If you workout four times a week, that is great, try to do so every week. Having a healthy week directly followed by one with no workouts and binge eating, will obviously negate the previous success. Your goal should be to think small in the moment, but do so everyday. In other words, if your mission is to cut red meat out of your diet one day a week, make that your mission every week.

• Use Your Progress as Motivation

If for one reason or another you feel the results simply are not happening like they once were, or maybe you’re just tired and need break from your healthy lifestyle for a bit, step back for a few days. Don’t workout at all, go eat a your favorite “fatty” meal and top it off with a hand full of cookies for dessert. In the long run, one day, or even week of “cheating” is not going to matter. What truly matters is whether you get back into gear. When it’s time to do so, take a look at your progress pictures – if you can honestly look at them and say:

“I don’t care if I look like that again, I am perfectly content being fat and unhealthy!”

Then, go ahead and grab another hand full of cookies. BUT if you want to look even better than the progress you’ve made, and certainly better than when you first started, grab your gym bag, lace up your cross trainers and get your butt in GEAR! 

Five Quick Tips For a Healthy Lunch at Work

For those working a long day, lunch may be the meal that suffers. It may be a problem of improper nutrition, or perhaps even it is the meal that gets skipped regularly. It’s hard to imagine anyone not wanting to enjoy a delicious lunchtime meal. Which leads me to believe it’s not a lack of desire that negatively effects lunch.

Whether you work 20 or 80 hours a week, there is no doubt work takes up a significant amount of your time. Surely you have more pressing things to do than think about what you’re going to eat for lunch tomorrow. All things considered, having lunch on the job can be difficult to maneuver, but with a little foresight and a few minutes of preparation, encouraging changes can be made.

Five Quick Tips for Eating Healthy at The Office

1.    A Little Preparation Goes a Long Way

A few minutes of meal preparation the night before, or the morning prior to work, can be the difference between keeping to a healthy diet, and resorting to a desperation double cheeseburger on a whim. Enjoying a homemade lunch at the office simply requires making your favorite healthy food ahead of time. Simple acts like mixing a quinoa salad, or packing a whole-grain sandwich are much healthier than any fast-food option. What’s more, pairing a complex carbohydrate and lean protein with a healthy and savory dressing can really boost energy levels and self-efficacy for a long workday.

2.    Pack a Snack

Bringing a snack along with your lunch to work is a helpful practice as well. A small portion of food on your daily trek can provide a boost when in need. Something small, yet nutritious, like almonds, or local produce, are perfect bites during a long client meeting, trip out of the office, or bumper-to-bumper traffic.

3.    Preserve Your Food

 

With your food already prepared, it will likely go uneaten for several hours. This is a potential problem – wilted salads and soggy sandwiches are far from enjoyable. Personally, I like to use an ice pack and soft cooler, or the office refrigerator to preserve my food. If you need to heat your food, make sure to utilize the office kitchen if there is one; if not, I advise preparing food that is best enjoyed cold, like a pasta salad.

 

4.    Find a Healthy Grocery Store

In a pinch, instead of running to Burger King, use the same effort to search out a local grocery store with an organic salad bar, or healthy deli. Doing so can be a nutritious lunchtime stop. The amenities of a healthy grocery store usually offer salad varieties, or calorie conscious wraps – far more healthy than any menu item at a fast-food place. Healthy grocery stores also stock food for specialty diets for those who are vegan, lactose intolerant and gluten sensitive. Not to mention, such a trip to the grocery store gets you out of the office. Can’t be mad about that.

5. Find a Healthy Cafe

Healthy and reliable restaurants can be scarce, but like a healthy grocery store, most areas have at least one. With that said, there is a certain amount of trust that should be established with a restaurant (chain or local) before one can give it a healthy stamp.

Supplement Advice With a Grain of Salt

The supplement industry is a billion dollar industry, it’s no wonder the average American spends $30 a month on supplements while some dish out hundreds. The source behind this frivaless and at times, completely useless spending are supplement companies and their pipeline of promoters and distributors. It’s pretty difficult not to come across an advertisement for a dietary supplement these days with claims of “massive weight loss.” These companies share just as much advertisement space as most other billion dollar industries. From billboards to bus banners, supplements are right in front of us everyday. Perhaps, the biggest promotion of dietary supplements comes from individuals, not corporations. Could be your average Joe at the gym telling you how “big” he got from taking an embarrassingly narcissistic sounding supplement, or it could be an “expert” recommending you try a certain product because, unbeknownst to you, she’s getting kick-backs from the company that makes it.

From a trainer’s perspective, it’s hard not to associate with supplements. They are a big part of the fitness industry and for as many corrupt and potentially harmful supplements on the market there are a handful of supplements that are trustworthy and can be beneficial. Recently I came across an article in the NY Times about the popular supplement “Jack3d” made by USPLabs. The article explains how the military is banning sales from the company on their bases and subsequently cutting any ties to the company. This comes after two soldiers died from heart attacks after taking the supplement, which contains DMAA, a dietary supplement with characteristics similar to the drug speed (an amphetamine). Consequently, USP Labs issued a Response, albeit offering very little defense.

Personally, I think it’s important for consumers to realize the potential dangers with supplements. The dietary supplement industry is not regulated by the FDA. As one can imagine companies like USP Labs can get away with a lot. There are a few, however, that are morally responsible in creating their products. Companies like NOW and Source Naturals that make reliable supplements. You won’t find any artificial additives or unnecessary fillers in their products. Another safe supplement that I like is The Ultimate Meal.

In closing, if for one reason or another whole food isn’t doing it for you and you are determined to include supplements in your diet, I suggest treating your supplement intake the same as your whole food intake. In other words, look at the ingredients for potentially harmful ingredients like DMAA or even artificial dyes and additives for tastes. If a supplement resembles nuclear waste it shouldn’t be in your body. Also, pay attention to how you feel after taking a supplement. I’ve talked to countless people after taking “Jack3d” who told me their face itched, or their heart started racing. As someone who has taken many different supplements it is scary to think about the ramifications related to obvious supplementation. When it comes to supplementation, be smart, use your head and don’t underestimate the potency of these unregulated substances.