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It’s the holy grail of life. Losing weight, shedding fat, getting lean, jumping on that constant roller coaster of health, getting back on track, starting a new diet, getting in shape. The yo-yo effect of ‘health’ rather than creating an active sustainable lifestyle is the missing link. And there are many reasons you can consider as to why you are constantly struggling to maintain your health and ideal physical condition. At the end of the day, losing weight means you have to cut down more calories than what you consume. And an essential element of an active lifestyle is exactly that. Be active!
Let’s investigate a couple of common myths, where the fitness industry in recently has literally jumped all over High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT), and also dubbed the ‘death of cardio’. Which is just nonsense. There is more to consider than just burning calories and the physical aspect of exercise and I will share a few ways of getting your lower intensity work in without you even knowing it.
Low Intensity (LIT) Vs High Intensity (HIIT)
Two of the safest ways to strengthen the cardiovascular system are through the (1) steady-state cardio programs (cardio) and (2) high-intensity interval training (HIIT). They are versatile, convenient, and challenging exercises that can be done virtually with minimal equipment required. But these two employ different training styles and training intensities.
The lower intensity is simple to do and includes any type of extended duration exercise which is maintained at a steady and manageable pace. Working at 60% to 65% of your maximum heart rate (MHR), which lasts for 20 minutes or longer. Ideally, you need to be including 3 sessions per week, for a minimum of 60 minutes for optimal conditioning and fat loss results. It targets the heart rate to achieve 110 to 120 beats per minute. The activities involved are aerobic or need oxygen to use the stored fat.
Sure, it can get boring. So be creative and find ways to make it more productive. Managing stress, listening to podcasts, music, walking with friends, or family or coworkers are all simple suggestions that can increase your engagement with your exercise and build a long-term active lifestyle.
Calorie for calorie, minute for minute, might look something like this.
Let’s dive a little deeper into the 2 types of training, review the benefits and where to add each type of training into your weekly plan.
For your fitness goals designed for weight loss, the low-intensity steady state (LISS) or Low Intensity Training (LIT) still comes up trumps for caloric expenditure. When you engage in walking, it burns a higher fat percentage per calorie compared to higher intensity training, is more sustainable, and comes with less risk of injury. To metabolize or break down fat, it needs oxygen to convert it to energy. When the body is in a faster motion like when you are running, it uses another source of energy such as carbohydrates. Dr. Kostas Papadopoulos, MD, Ph.D. in Endocrinology and Immunology is probably one of the best known experts in the field. Not just a Doctor, Dr. Kostas is a living proactive expert in health and fitness, and optimizing life extension through genetic-based lifestyle design. “It’s the one element that makes the difference. Without the base, there is no building on capacity. The key is a balance, and not neglecting your baseline”.
Determine exactly what is Low intensity training. When it comes to exercise, most will consider exercise is what would be considered ‘structured’ or a workout of some type. When it comes to LIT, it really doesn’t matter what you are doing, as long as you are maintaining your ideal heart rate zone for extended periods of time. You could be foam rolling, playing with your kids, simply walking, stretching, yoga, mobility drills, playing golf, cycling, trekking, blading, rowing, paddling – as they say, ‘pick your poison’. Just move!
Key benefits of Low Intensity Training (LIT):
• Improve cardio health and fitness
• More efficient heart and heart health
• Reduces resting heart rate and blood pressure
• Fast recovery
• Reduce risk of injuries
• Improved sleep patterns
• Manages stress and anxiety
• Improves mood and confidence
• Easier to sustain for the long term
• Improve parasympathetic system
• Appetite control and potential suppression
High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)
HIIT is more complex and intense. The physical activities target 80% to 90% of your maximum capacity for a short period of time with shorter periods of rest and recovery and the cycle is repeated many times as desired. The physical activities are anaerobic. They depend heavily on stored carbohydrates rather than oxygen. With HIIT, you will definitely be breathing through your lungs hard, and pushing new levels of fitness and conditioning, which will also require a strong mindset. HIIT therefore, is usually less sustainable for most people over the long term unless fitness becomes a passion, and lifestyle.
HIIT does come at a price though. Mentally fatiguing, scary and not motivating for most, it’s the reason why many drop out and stop exercising. It’s just too tough. Too much too soon, and altogether too much. People get tired of it, resenting the workout they need to do, and therefore simply, stop exercising. So use it in moderation. 2 times per week is plenty.
Even if you are just starting out, take it easy, be progressive and build up to high intensity levels. And keep these benefits in mind also.
Benefits of HIIT:
• Time efficient
• Increase maximum heart rate
• Facilitate recovery
• Increase hormone release
• Manage blood sugar levels
• Improve insulin sensitivity
• Manage blood cholesterol
• Endorphin and dopamine release
• Increased metabolism
• Life extension
• Repair DNA
The goal of this article isn’t to determine which methods is best, it is to share the facts that both modalities are different, and unique and both serve to achieve different results. Both have specific adaptations and benefits, and both should be included in your week training plan, regardless of the goal. Your motivation, and desire to workout is key so work within your current fitness levels and motivation to determine the best methods and frequency of each you really WANT to do.
Keep in mind also, that you need to ENJOY being active, this is priority number what. What you enjoy you will continue, and the ultimate objective is doing what you can be consistent with for a lifetime!
About Dan Remon
Daniel Remon is the CEO of Fitcorp Global Group. A 20+ year veteran of the health and fitness industry, he has pioneered corporate wellness, executive performance programs and result driven health, energy and business systems for today’s busy executive. Author and speaker, Daniel is the creator of the 28 Day Challenge, Fit in 15 for Women, Goal Setting for Life, 30 Day Rituals, 42 Formula, Corporate Wellness Blueprint – Solutions to maximize productivity, optimize performance and develop highly energized and engaged clients to achieve incredible success in business and life. The driving force behind his inspiration is the ultimate purpose to Impact One Million Lives.
For more information, visit www.danremon.com
I hear this more and more, the dangers of sugar, that sugar is a poison, it’s sugar that makes you fat, sugar causes diabetes. Sugar is ultimately the culprit. Correct on all fronts. We all know sugar is the culprit, so what are the solutions to beat it and stop those sugar cravings?
1. Ask Better Questions
Over recent years, having developed effective weight loss programs, helping hundreds of clients lose a lifetime of weight and some reverse their early onset of diabetes and metabolic syndrome, I have found that one of the most effective strategies to achieving any goal in life, not just in relation to health, training and nutrition, is asking better questions. Every time you are tempted by the sugar devil, ask yourself questions related to your goals.
“Will eating this food help me to achieve my goals?”
“How will I feel after eating this….. cake?”
“Am I prepared to sacrifice all my training I did today, just for this 2 minutes of satisfaction?
These are all just examples, you can see where I’m going with it.
2. Freeze Your Fruit
This is a great tip, and super easy. I hear you, yes fruit is sugar! After all though it is natural and if anything be aware of how much fruit you are eating and limit how much you eat. Freezing your fruit will help you to limit the total amount of fruit you eat. Now obviously throwing a bag of apples in the freezer isn’t going to be so effective. I find that certain types of readily edible fruit such as grapes and cherries work the best (Especially if when you dip them in dark chocolate) ;). The frozen fruit ensures you eat just a few, it services your craving, limits your sugar consumption and you learn fast if you eat too many too fast – Brain freeze!!
3. Go Sugar Free
This was a great tip from a client of mine, and it works really well. Sugar free gum is readily available and services its purpose. If you are still working on your mental mind set training, and still developing your strength of the mind, then this can help with your transition from being a sugar addict to being sugar free. Keep in mind though that chewing gum will trick your body into thinking there is real food coming and starts the digestion process. So don’t be surprised if you your tummy starts to grumble. To overcome this, chew for just a couple of minutes and throw it away. Limiting the chewing time will ensure you get your fix, and not start playing with your belly’s emotions and physiological responses.
4. Intermittent Fasting
The human body responds to sugar by increasing the production and release of insulin. Insulin’s role is to shuttle that sugar which is now circulating in your blood stream to the working muscles for energy production and to replace your glycogen stores. Intermittent fasting is becoming an increasingly researched topic. Not just because of its fad status, not just because top athletes and celebrities are doing it, purely because it takes us back to our evolutionary roots. At the end of the day, plain and simple, it works. Studies show that realistic and simple fasting even just once per week has a profound effect on your blood sugar levels. These various studies show different responses, and that there isn’t a one size fits all approach to fasting. There are lots of options out there, from 16 hours fasts to 20 hours fasts, and whole day fasts. The key is to experiment safely and gradually. Have your last meal at 8pm, and ensure your next meal is not until 12 noon the following day. That would be a 16 hour cycle which very easy to complete. Try that every alternate day for a couple of weeks and gauge your results. Keep in mind also that we are not talking about extreme fasting here, and this is very different from an extreme ‘detox’ of any kind.
5. Plan Ahead
One of the biggest challenges with eating clean and being inspired to get that sugar fix is ensuring we have the right type of food available at the time we need to eat. This requires very simple planning and only a short amount of food preparation time the night before. A better solution is to plan 3 days of meal in advance, taking into consideration your schedule, where you will be, what type of activity you will be engaged in and also remember to consider your current eating habits. Gone are the days where you need to eat every 2 hours. This in itself is a big myth, and although it works for some, this strategy doesn’t work for all, and it is essential that you find the balance of meal timing and frequency of your meals that suit your metabolism and lifestyle best.
About Dan Remon
Daniel Remon is the CEO of Fitcorp Global Group. A 20+ year veteran of the health and fitness industry, he has pioneered corporate wellness, executive performance programs and result driven health, energy and business systems for today’s busy executive. Author and speaker, Daniel is the creator of the 28 Day Challenge, Fit in 15 for Women, 30 Day Rituals, 42 Formula, Corporate Wellness Blueprint – Solutions to maximize productivity, optimize performance and develop highly energized and engaged clients to achieve incredible success in business and life. The driving force behind his inspiration is the ultimate purpose to Impact One Million Lives.
For more information, visit www.danremon.com
Regular physical activity is essential for kids to develop strong bones, improve their coordination and movement patterns and help establish good physical activity habits that will last throughout their entire lifetime.
Research shows that exercise also helps children performance better academically, increased levels of concentration, creativity, and memory and general brain function are all benefits of regular exercise and activity! So what are you kids going to be doing to stay active during the school holiday period?
Rather than staying at home glued to the television or playing their play station, get them moving with these top 10 tips to keep your kids active and happy during the holidays!
1) Learn a New Sport
With the grown in status and awareness of sports such as golf and tennis, get your kids involved in a new sport. In addition to increasing activity and creating a spark of interest, sports will always increase a child’s coordination, movement patterns and build confidence with their peers. Sports such as golf, tennis, basketball, badminton, martial arts are great at keeping them interested and you will find aspiring champions in every child! Kids are great dreamers!
2) Set a Good Example
If you want your kids to be active, you MUST be active yourself! Lead by example, park the car away from the entrance of the supermarket, use the stairs instead of the escalator, get the kids up early and go for a walk before you go to work, do some exercise drills before dinner like push ups, lunges, squats, or jumping jacks.
3) Head to the Park
Bangkok has plenty of parks around for your children to run around and enjoy themselves with their friends. Load bearing exercise like running and jumping keeps their bones and muscles strong.
4) Kids Fitness Boot Camp
A totally new fitness experience for kids, Kids Boot Camp allows children to exercise in a fun and effective gym environment run by fitness professionals. Kids learn how to move safely and challenge themselves using only their body weight, exercise tubes, bands, and medicine balls. Created and run by the professionals at Fitcorp Asia.
5) Home Duties
Give some responsibilities around the home while are on school break, such as walking the dog, vacuuming, and washing the cars. Not only will this help to develop a sense of responsibility, it will help build strong bonds with your children.
6) Family Fitness!
Get the entire family involved for weekend activities. Play catch, or tag around the backyard or in the park. Make exercise fun, and something you enjoy as well. If you show that you enjoy the exercise, they will too.
7) Fun Parks
In addition to having a fantastic time on all the rides, a day at the fun park require hours of continuous walking from ride to ride. Fond memories, a great way to bond, engage and interact for the whole family.
8) Ask and You Will Receive
Ask your kids what ‘they’ would like to do! More often than not there are influences from school or from friends which has sparked some interest. Ask and you will be surprised.
9) Fun Activities at Home
Crab Soccer, tag, jump rope, Hide and Seek or set up a fun circuit for your kids and their friends to do. Stair running, hoola hoops, hopscotch, skating, jumping jacks, balance drills, frog jumps, arm circles and skipping ropes make for a fun and very effective workout!
10) Set up a Rewards System
Create a points system for exercise that encourages your kids to exercise regularly. Use rewards such as trips to the movies, tickets to sporting events, new sporting equipment like jump ropes, roller blades, exercise tubing. Never use food as a reward.
If you are working out at private training studio, some, (Like Aspire, www.theaspireclub.com) will allow you to bring your kids with you to train from time to time. As long they are well behaved of course. We find this is a super effective way to introduce ‘gym and fitness’ into their lives, working out with Mum and or Dad make it super fun, and the perfect way to lead by example for a long term positive awareness of health and fitness for them too.
Infused water is the process of adding fruits, vegetables, and herbs to your water, then letting these ingredients flavor the water. In addition to providing a delicious flavor with a wide range of combination options, you also get some of the nutrients from the produce and herbs, which further improves how healthy your water is. Infused water is easy to do, but there are a few things you should know first. Here are some things to keep in mind when you are making your infused water.
Types of Water to Use
The first thing you should know about making infused water is that filtered water is always better. Filtered water is cleaner, so this is really going to improve the overall quality and flavor of your infused water. Since not everyone has access to enough filtered water to fill infused water pitchers every time, tap water is okay when necessary, but do try to get filtered water if at all possible.
When choosing your water, you should only use room temperature or cold water. Avoid warm or hot water, since it can cause the produce to fall apart at a rapid rate, which reduces how many nutrients are going to end up in your water.
Choose Organic When Possible
If at all possible, try to select organic fruits and vegetables. These can often be found in the produce of your supermarket, but a better option might be to get them from a weekly CSA, farmer’s market, or contacting local farmers directly. This allows you to get fresh fruits and veggies that you know were grown locally without added fertilizers and other chemicals. Organic produce does tend to provide a better flavor for infused water. However, the most important part is having healthy water with your favorite fruits and veggies, so if you can’t use organic, don’t worry too much about it!
How to Prep the Ingredients
After you select the ingredients you want to use for your infused water, you will then need to prep them before putting them into the pitcher.
- Always rinse the fruit and vegetables to make sure no chemicals are left on them. Even if you bought them organic, it is still a good idea to rinse them and make sure they are clean.
- If you are using herbs, you want to crush them with a muddler since this will help to release the oils. The exception is when the herb is leafy, such as with mint or basil.
- Most fruits and vegetables need to be cut at least in half before being put in the pitcher so that they can release their flavors. Hard fruits and vegetables like cucumber and apples need to be cut into thin slices since they can take longer to release flavor to the water. With berries and citrus fruit, they are softer, so just cutting them in half or quarters should be fine. You can also experiment and crush these up too.
What to Make Your Infused Water In
By this point, you are ready to start putting your infused water together. Before you add in the water, make sure you have the right container. While you can technically use anything, a glass pitcher is usually recommended. However, regardless of which way you go, make sure it is BPA-free and food-safe. Many plastic pitchers are not ideal and won’t keep the water fresh, but in the end it is really up to you. There are also pitchers and cups used especially for infusing. They typically have a long and narrow section in the middle where you put your herbs and fruit, with holes or slots so the flavor can be released. You can use these, but they aren’t necessary.
How Long to Soak the Produce
When making infused water, you will add the produce and herbs first, then add your room temperature or cold water on top. You then want to let the water infuse so that you can get good flavors and nutrients from the fruits and vegetables being used. If you are leaving it out on the counter, this is usually done in about 2 hours. Otherwise, wait 4-6 hours if keeping it in the refrigerator for the infusing process. If you leave it overnight, it will be super flavorful.
When the Water Should Be Enjoyed
The ideal time to drink infused water is within 24-48 hours after the infusing process is complete. It is usually best to drink it the same day, but at least try to drink it within the first couple days. Waiting 3 days is okay, but don’t leave it for longer than that.
Make sure you are not leaving the fruits and vegetables in the water for this long though. They should be removed and only the water should remain in the pitcher for this long. Citrus fruits will remain fresher for longer, while melons are going to get soft and mushy quickly.
Also keep in mind that if you drink the infused water the same day, you can usually refill it 2-3 times with the produce in the pitcher or cup and still get good flavor from it!
So make good use of your ingredients, re-use, drink plenty, and enjoy creating new flavors!
We see a lot of information, many gurus, and many companies all telling you what you need to do to be successful in life. Whether it be your health, losing weight, growing your business, being successful. Few however, focus on the essential elements which are actually preventing you from achieving your goals.
With the New Year, and the next season of New Year’s resolutions roll in, I feel this is an important time to get to the point, and focus on the real reasons why you set the same resolutions year after year, time after time.
It’s the things that are holding you back. Everything which prevents you from achieving each goal you set yourself, and it is these things you need to quit doing to achieve everything you ever wanted in life.
So yes, I’m telling you need to quit! Here are 5 things you MUST quit, and some simple tips and solutions to help you live an extraordinary life of health, happiness and success.
You were not born as a procrastinator. Procrastination is a behavior that you can instantly change when you have the right structure in place. Also considered a habit which is a behavior that has been repeated over and over again until it becomes consistent, automated and a behavior. Which prevents you from taking action, getting things done and holding you back from personal growth and success.
Tip: Get organized. The structure you need is to have specific goals, and more importantly, know the reason WHY those goals are important. Your purpose, knowing the higher cause of why you want to achieve a certain goal is crucial to overcome procrastination. Make your goals specific, have a daily action plan of exactly what you need to do on a daily basis, know your ‘WHY’ and develop checklists so you can build that sense of achievement when you tick off or scratch off your completed tasks on your checklist.
Another great tip is to be more aware. Use your awareness of when you start to procrastinate as a trigger, to change your actions onto something that is leading you to your outcomes.
Most importantly, remove all distraction. Number one on the list is social media. Set specific times for your social media activities, remove Facebook from your phone, close the tab on your computer so you’re not event tempted to scroll.
Quit negative thinking.
Your subconscious mind, your little voices will always be there telling you what you can and can’t do. Letting the negative voices determine your outcomes is what’s holding you back. Replace them with empowering thoughts, specific actions that lead you to more positive outcomes in your life that lead you towards your goals, and drive you towards success.
Tip: Create a list of your most powerful affirmations. Affirmations are little mantras or phrases that are aligned with your goals. They fuel your drive, and when repeated multiple times per day, become the foundation of your beliefs. Your belief systems are what your truth. Your truth determines who you are. When you rewire your belief systems, you become unstoppable.
Here are few examples you can use yourself, or as a guideline to create your own. Remember, when you create your own personal affirmations, they resonate with you, they become ‘yours’ and a far more powerful.
“I have all the resources I need to be…….”
“Daily exercise empowers me, drives me and gives me focus on my goals”
“I am a better me, every day, in every way”
“I am productive, organized and positive”
“I am in total control of what I eat, and fuel my body and mind only with the most nutritious food that leads me to my goals”
“I choose to surround myself with positive empowering people that help me to be the best I can be”
“I choose to be positive in all situations, and only focus on solutions”
“I am a strong leader and I lead my team with positive energy, dedication and passion to help everyone achieve their goals”
Quit comparing yourself with others.
This is another form of distraction and one that can really be detrimental to your success in life. Not only does it distract you from being proactive in aligning you with your own goal, comparing yourself against others can actually prevent you from personal growth. Allowing the door to open to negative thoughts, emotions and undoing the great work you have done to reinforce positive thoughts, a positive mindset and empower your life with positive actions and success.
Tip: Focus on yourself, your goals, and your actions. Part of your goal setting process is to know exactly who you are, know what you want to be, and just on making yourself better every day. Be 1% better every day, in just one element, and just one behavior – will ensure you have incredible growth and development every week, every month and just imagine what kind of life you will be living in 12 months from now.
Quit trying to achieve goals without a solid plan.
Random actions produce random results. And as you have probably heard before, if you fail to plan, you plan to fail. It’s a simple yet very true statement. I know very few successful people who do not plan their life, their daily actions. Whether it be your health, losing weight, getting fitter, growing your business, hitting your KPIs at work, you need to plan your strategy.
Tip: So if you want to improve yourself, grow, achieve and become better, you need a plan. A specific plan. Writing down your goals is a good first step however, you need more than just a list of goals. You need to know exactly what that goal is, with timelines, with specific action steps and know the resources you need to achieve them. Over the years I have enhanced the traditional SMART goal system to the SMARTER goal system, remove the redundant inefficient elements and replaced with power, action-oriented steps to ensure the SMARTER goal system is a successful tool, a continuous cycle of evaluation, action, and results.
Quit talking about it.
People are great talkers. Most people love to tell others and share what they are doing, what they plan to do, where they are heading, what their goals are, how much money they are going to make, what care they are going to buy. Quit talking about it and start doing it! I have witnessed so many people who have been talking for years, with little action, and very little progress in their life. I too am guilty of talking too much. For some, it is a form of accountability, to share your goals with others. However, more often than not, these statements fall short of results, because you continue talking about them. So quit talking, and start doing.
Actions speak louder than words, and remember, you have goals to achieve to increase your happiness in YOUR life, not others. Sure, you becoming financially independent creates opportunities to make others happy, support and care for your family, but ultimately, it’s for you. Reinforce your goals, write your lists and start taking action on a daily basis that leads you to better results.
Focus on the actions which will give you the greatest impact. Prioritize your goals and work on the most important steps first. Schedule time in your planner, close your office door, find a quite space to write, plan, and gather your thoughts in peace, without distraction.
With the growing awareness of the dangers of sugar, the culprit in many health related conditions such as obesity cancer, diabetes, many still continue to think that by consuming diet sodas and soft drinks, they are making healthier choices.
The strong marketing propaganda of food and soft drink manufacturers continues to be totally unregulated, and in fact supported by governments with little or no control over content, messaging and emotional sales campaigns.
What you need to know!!
It’s not just about sugar. The key point of this article is to explain to you that it’s not just ‘sugar’ directly – it is ‘sweetness’.
Sweetness IS the culprit.
Many are drinking diet soft drinks daily thinking it’s healthier, safer and zero calories. The key is that the ‘sweetness’ is what triggers the brain response to think its sugar regardless of the source of sweetness. Therefore reacting the exact same way as it does to sugar.
Leading to increased blood sugar response, increased release of insulin, and turning your body into a very efficient fat storage machine. Further increasing the sweetness addition and ensuring your body craves the same sweetness for energy and fuel.
Take a can of diet coke. With 125 mg of aspartame, this kicks your sweet tooth and your body into overdrive. That is not a good thing!! More sweetness, more chemicals, more dangers, decreasing health, energy, sleep and positivity.
You really don’t want to know the incredible amount of chemicals manufacturers are putting in those drinks. Well, actually, yes you do! Check out this short video, which is a short, detailed, to the point overview explaining what you’re really consuming and how the body reacts within 60 minutes of consuming that diet soda:
The interesting part though, is that like alcohol, drinking chemical based sweet drinks will also turn you and your brain into making poor eating decisions. It’s designed to do exactly that. So when your blood sugar crashes, and you need a ‘fix’ you will be much more likely to reach for an unhealthy choice – one that gives you instant gratification, a fast ‘hit’ and probably high in calories, which won’t leave you feeling satisfied for long. And here comes the never ending cycle of emotional eating, and impulse snacking.
So that zero calorie soft drink is actually going to cost 400-600 calories in additional crappy food, snacks and junk leading to… you guessed it, more fat!
Do you start to see the cycle now? It’s a death cycle.
To back it up, researchers found that just like with regular soda, the consumption of artificially sweetened beverages like diet soda is also associated with obesity, type 2 diabetes, metabolic syndrome and cardiovascular disease. Drinking just one can of diet soda per day is “enough to significantly increase the risk for health problems”.
The report explains that diet soda and artificial sweeteners trick the body into thinking that it is consuming real food and sugar even though it isn’t, which could lead to metabolic confusion and overconsumption.
Here is what happens:
- Artificial sweeteners are hundreds to thousands of times sweeter than regular sugar, activating our genetically-programmed preference for sweet taste more than any other substance.
- Artificial sweeteners trick your metabolism into thinking sugar is on its way. This causes your body to pump out insulin, the fat storage hormone, which lays down more belly fat.
- It also confuses and slows your metabolism down, so you burn fewer calories every day.
- It makes you more hungry, making you crave even more sugar and starchy carbs even when you don’t need them.
- In animal studies, the rats that consumed artificial sweeteners ate more, their metabolism slowed, and they put on 14 percent more body fat in just two weeks (even eating fewer calories).
- In population studies, there was a 200 percent increased risk of obesity in diet soda drinkers. FACT!
Now that’s scary. In addition, don’t think that drinks like Tonic Water are any better.
Bottom line, drink water, or if you want some bubbles, go for the best go-to source of soda water.
Rehydrate, replenish, refresh. Make smarter choices to better health, energy, performance and longevity.
To your success,
It’s the same as random vs systematic. Ultimately, if you want results, you need a system. A program that works. It should methodical, systematic, progressive, consistent and repeatable. So if you are following a random structure to your fitness, expect random, or very little results.
Let’s first define training and workout. How they differ, and how you need to approach your fitness differently if you want to achieve specific results.
With the growing trends on zero commitment options for gyms and fitness class passes, we are driving a mindset away from results.
The initial concept was based on the opportunity to try our different fitness options in your area so you could then choose the best program, facility, option for your goals. However as with most fresh and young industries, as the demand and increased awareness leads to more entry level consumers, they get used the variety, fun and complete flexibility of these type of programs.
First point. Let’s not skip the most important element of our industry. Movement. For most coaches and trainers our goal is to encourage more people to be more active, to move more and live healthier lives. It’s all good. I believe anything that encourages people to be more active is a great thing. Variety is also good. Its keep fitness fun varied, and also the member to try out lots of different activities that they may otherwise not have a chance to experience.
And if you’re not looking for any specific result, and to just be active, then that’s great. However, that approach is probably not going to give you the result you’re looking for. It might be fun for a few weeks or months, however at some point, if you have specific goals and results you want to achieve, then you need to narrow down the specific of what is going to give you that desired physique you are working for.
For terms of simple understanding, these are just workouts. Workouts are random, perhaps structured for that specific workout itself, but no progression, continuity of forth sight towards an ultimate outcome, goal or result. It’s just random.
If your training is random, expect random results. This isn’t to say that by following a random lifestyle of activity isn’t going to give results. Ultimately if your goal is to lose weight and you create a caloric deficit ie: you burn more energy and calories than you consume, you will lose weight. However, who has time for random outcomes? If you’re focused on a particular result, you want to engage in the most effective program possible, that gives you the result you want.
Training on the other hand is the strategic creation of a program that you follow over a set period of time. It’s planned, measured, tracked with a focus on the result. Your program determines your result, so if you fail to plan, you plan to fail. If you are going to be putting the hard work, effort, time money and energy into your training, you might as well be aiming for the best result right?
The better coaches and trainers will design a specific, progressive program that you follow over 4- 6 weeks. Taking into consideration different intensities, energy systems, frequency and type of training modalities, Strength, conditioning, lower intensity, corrective. And better coaches still, will perform a detailed assessment to identify your muscle imbalances, weakness and pain which should also then be included in your ‘strategy training plan’.
Now we have a training plan. A specific system to follow to achieve a specific result. If you have specific goals you want to achieve, and struggling to see any improvement, getting frustrated with the lack of results even though you are working out every day, consider this a first step to get you moving on the better path for your result.
If you are butterfly floating from one class to the next, and not getting the physical result or changes you desire, consider using that flexibility you have with your current class pass to identify the team, the coaches and facility that can focus in on what YOU NEED to change your body and get the results you are working for.
You can also check out one of our top coaches, Jeff Smith and get his own personal 12 week transformation program that helped him pack on 9 kilograms of muscle and shed 8% body fat.
Daniel Remon is the CEO of Fitcorp. Daniel was the first in Thailand to develop personalised result based training since 2002, and founder of the Aspire Club and CrossFit Bangkok at Asoke. The leading gym for weight loss, and getting lean. Aspire runs fitness and weight loss challenges, educational seminars, nutrition and physiotherapy programs that achieve incredible results and change lives.
For more information visit www.theaspireclub.com or call 02 229 4114 for your free trial and consultation.
Get Out of Your Comfort Zone
This is one of the key fundamentals you need to do. Which is why most people are not able to achieve their goals or become successful. Staying in your comfort zone means you are probably happy with second best, satisfied with average performance and sticking with the status quo. Forcing yourself out of your comfort zone also leads to personal growth, learning some of those hard lessons and getting back up again after those heavy knockdowns.
When you are uncomfortable, you meet problems and challenges, forcing you to dig deep, deeper, to find solutions, new and improved ways to achieve goals and build your success strategy beyond what the average person is ready to do.
Know Where You Are Going
Knowing exactly what you want is crucial in knowing how to develop your plan and knowing what you need to do to get there. Without a destination, you will simply be lost in space, lacking direction, with no specific plan of action to achieve your goals. You have probably heard of the SMART goal setting system, and the traditional model is ok, however over the years I have further enhanced its effectiveness and developed what we call the SMARTer goal system, and there are more tweaks to the system than just the ‘er’ at the end. The NEW SMARTer goal system ensures the most crucial components of a goal, the ‘action plan’ are also included, which needs to be the main focus after you have identified your specific goal. If you are still not sure exactly what you want, then another awesome tool I learned from Kane Minkus from the Industry Rockstar. It’s all about how to create your Rockstar Lifestyle.
Success leaves clues. And guess what, regardless of your niche or area of expertise, and even if you are breaking new ground, for sure, someone else has done it before. Finding your mentor, or ‘mentors’ is a crucial part of your success. You get to tap into their previous experience, learning from their mistakes, and gaining essential insight into their successes, their mindset, success processes. Mentors, like coaches, won’t be telling you what to do. They will, however, be asking very specific questions, to help you find your own answers guiding you in the right direction that will lead to greater success. Look for mentors in your industry who have already made it, already been through the failures, mistakes and have already spent years to achieve their dream lifestyle and ultimate success. It’s also important to know, that mentors cost money. They don’t share their knowledge and experience for free. However, if they are good, you will no doubt achieve tremendous returns for your investment 10 times over and over. Think of it as an accelerated success system.
Success leaves clues. Yep, believe it or not, success is a system. Hundreds of others have become successful by following someone else’s success strategy. You will find that there are many similarities in every success system. Once you know what success is defined as for you, find others who have also achieved the same level of success that you also aspire to. Study their steps follow the plan, do as they have done. And, find a mentor who has already been there, and done it!
Be Ready to Be Wrong
What, ME? Wrong? That’s impossible! Yes, sometimes we are. Perhaps most of the time you are right or give yourself the most correct answer, most of the time. The point is, you cannot be right all the time. Be humble, be open to learning, be open to new opportunities and perhaps ‘better’ ways of achieving the same outcome – or an even ‘better’ outcome. With age, experience and knowledge, sure you will be guiding yourself in the right direction, just remember, ‘we don’t know what we don’t know’ so don’t shut the door on other people’s advice or opinions. It might just guide towards a new way of thinking and even greater success.
About the Author:
Daniel Remon has been a pioneer in the health and fitness industry, developing a multitude of result driven health businesses from gyms, personal training studios, retreats, education and corporate wellness. An energetic and inspiring speaker and presenter, Daniel writes in real terms on the latest research, programming, training, nutrition and mindset success systems that just makes sense. The founder of Fitcorp Group, which includes The Aspire Club, CrossFit Bangkok, ASPATA Fitness Academy, Lifestyle Health Retreats, Asian Corporate Wellness Association
I think this is an important message to share, and it involves the traditional warm up, that we are known to do, or have evolved to. From the traditional run or do cardio for 5-10 minutes, to a more specific dynamic warm up before we train or play sport, I’d like to take it to another level. We need to have a specific goal in mind with each component of our training, and the warm up process is equally as important as the essential first step of the training system and foundation of program design.
The strategic corrective warm up.
The strategy, means you have a specific objective in your warm up routine. And not just to ‘warm up’, increase blood flow and circulation before exercise. For 99% of us, we have muscle imbalances. We are dominant left or right handed. At best, ambidextrous, where we may favor left and right sides equally and perform certain tasks, or play parts of a particular sport well with both sides. Either way, we will be dominant left or right handed to write, and perform majority of daily tasks. This in itself creates imbalance, stable and unstable differences, over compensation from standing, walking, running, throwing, writing, carrying bags, drinking coffee, holding anything and drive to name just a few. I’m sure you get the picture here.
Bottom line. We all have imbalances, and therefore prone to overcompensation, weakness, and risk of dysfunction, pain and injury. So we all need this approach, and we, I mean everyone.
The corrective warm is design to be just that. Corrective. An intelligent approach to warming up, active recovery and giving purpose to your warm up routine.
This also leads back to a previous article on randomness. If you are investing, time, money, energy into your training, you should make it as effective and valuable as possible right? And that starts with your warm up. So make it strategic, rather than random.
What Most of Us Need:
There are a couple of key physical issues that most of us need help with. In technical terms, they are called lower cross syndrome, and upper cross syndrome. A quick break down will help you understand which major muscles are weak, which muscles are tight, which then explains why we end up in pain and have poor posture. To keep things super simple, Ill break down both symptoms in an easy to understand format.
Lower Cross Syndrome: The result of tight hips / lower back and weak core / glutes. This results in an ‘anterior tilt’ of the pelvis which can be seen by the excessive curvature of the lower back.
Upper Cross Syndrome: The result of tight chest / pectoral muscles and upper traps and weak posterior chain / mid back muscles, resulting in the typical hunch back and rounded shoulder posture.
Warm Up with Purpose and a Specific Objective:
Have an outcome for your warm up exercise. Work with a health professional trainer, coach or physio to identify your weaknesses, muscle imbalances and develop a program. Choose 8-10 exercises. In our system, we follow this very simple, yet logical method.
Choose 2-3 exercises for each key component of your corrective warm up program.
Shoulders – Any exercise that helps to improve range of movement, activation of stabilizers and engage all shoulder joint muscles in a functional way. Majority of movements should be backward motion.
Hips – Any exercise that focuses to improve range of movement, motion, stability and muscle activation of the hip joint.
Core / glute activation – Switch on the central nervous system (CNS) and active they key muscles needed to stabilize, generate force and are the prime moves in major movements.
Movement preparation – Start to get the heart rate up, full body movement and move outside the square for multidirectional flowing movement.
Side note: If working on mobility and range of motion, still focus on posterior or backward movements, as opposed to forward. Forward motion will still be amplifying the tightness of pectoral muscles that we are trying to undo. So while movement in both directions is important, working on a higher ratio of backward motion to accelerate improvement, neural activation and correction of muscle imbalances and to optimize function.
Even if you are not sure where your imbalances lie, I can give you a pretty good idea of what most people need, and more than likely, you will benefit from this also.
A good example may be like this:
Shoulder – Shoulder circles, scap push-ups, arm rows
Hip – Leg swings, fire hydrants, spiderman
Activation – Single leg bridges, side planks, anterior / posterior tilt
Movement Prep: Butt kicks, high knees, lateral shuffles
Perform each exercise for 20-30 seconds and move on to the next.
Repeat, Repeat, Repeat. As Many Times As Possible (AMTAP):
You’re not going to undo ten or twenty years of poor mechanics and posture with a light three minute warm-up three times per week. It’s going to take time to reverse the muscle imbalances that have developed of years and years of poor ergonomics.
You’re going to have to do better than that. As they say, repetition is the mother of all learning, and your bad habits if years gone by are going to be unlearned. Then you have to develop new musculoskeletal adaptation to correct those imbalances.
This is what I have been doing with my clients, and now applied into our program design system for all coaches to implement with their clients. Once you have been screened, or told by your coach, trainer or physiotherapist your muscle weaknesses, make sure you have a corrective program developed and prescribed. This becomes your ‘essential’ warm up proud.
Better than that, this needs to be performed continuously for weeks ahead, and then ongoing. So in addition to your warm up, you can follow the same exercise after each major super set in your training program. I call this your active recovery set. You will probably need a little extra recovery time if you are working at any kind of intensity with your weight training. So use this time wisely and constructively to continue your corrective plan.
Repeat your corrective plan post workout also.
Now this is where we can take it to the next level.
To really make in impact, reach new levels of muscle balance and function, as well as moderate, reduce and eliminate pain, you need to be doing these exercises DAILY and if possible, multiple times per day.
So choose the exercise that you can do easily before you leave home, at the office, when you are anywhere and perform again at night. Think of them as your rituals. It’s just what you do. And more important it is what you NEED to do perform better, functional optimally and live a pain-free life.
Track your progress:
Like you hear me say with pretty much everything!! Track your progress. If you can get some initial baseline markers, whether it be a measurement of pain, level of function, flexibility, functional strength / stability or range of movement, then you have something you can track, monitor and measure your progress. What gets measured gets improve, and if you’re, not then, well, you’re just waiting your time.
Train and move with purpose.
If you are in pain, you can also follow my friend Mike Jones and join his awesome ‘Pain Free Me’ program at www.mikejonestoday.com/pain-free-me – he has some great tips and online program to follow to get totally pain free. As physical Therapist, Mike knows what he’s doing and will definitely get you started in the right direction.
Hope you enjoyed this, you can also check out a few different variations of strategic warm up plans over at the site, with videos and pdf handouts. Most of the exercise are appropriate and applicable to pretty much everyone. Start implementing them today.
Roll, Activate, Mobilize, Prepare