Saturday, May 31, 2008

Sugar Cravings

Weekends are a killer. When you are trying to follow a strict structure, they can throw you off. If you are a normal person (and doing what I ask you to do), :) you may start craving sweets later in the day. ESPECIALLY on the weekends.

I want to make this process as easy as possible for us and control your cravings. Today's blog will cover two issues. Education and solution. I want you to understand why you crave and how you can fix it.

First of all, lets answer why. Your blood sugar is touchy. It needs to be between a certain level. Meaning not too high and not too low. What happens when its too high? Your body has more than it can metabolize and you store the left over as fat. (We want to avoid this like it was the plague) When your blood sugar is too low, you are out of energy. You have probably skipped a meal, are not eating balanced meals (protein, fats, & carbs) or you haven't consumed enough carbohydrates for your body to maintain a healthy level of blood sugars. When its too low you will burn muscle for energy. Not only does this make you tired and cranky, but it makes you crave. You need instant gratification.........SUGAR. Thats why we crave so much. Your mind knows that the fastest way to get it back up is to eat sweets.

Solutions. If you are on a path of becoming a fat burning machine, you need to learn ways of controlling these cravings and understanding the difference between hunger and cravings. If you are following the diet structure I have laid out for you, not having enough carbohydrates is not the problem. If we want to burn fat, we need to eat less of them during the later hours of the day. So how do we help sugar cravings? There are several ways.

  • Diet drinks are helpful for some, sugar free Kool-Aid or Crystal Light is helpful as well. One of my personal favorites has become the sugar free Popsicles.
  • Thirst is often mistaken for hunger, so drink some more water.
  • Out of sight, out of mind. If you have lots of sweets laying around, get rid of them.
  • Make sure you are using your diet journal and check to make sure that you haven't gone more than 3 hours without eating.
  • Make sure that all your meals are balanced. If you are leaving something out, this can cause problems.
Cravings and hunger can be very different things. If you are getting too full or too hungry, let me know. I am here to help :)

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Forget to Stretch?

Stretching is an important part of your resistance routine. Here are some of my thoughts and advice on how to make it part of your routine.

Give your body a chance to warm-up, stretching cold muscles can cause injury. This can be as little as five minutes of low-intensity walking. Just get the blood flowing. Post workout stretching will help with muscle soreness, but remember that soreness isnt always a bad thing. It is a sign that did something you are not used to and the body will make changes because of it.

While stretching, exhale deeply and gently stretch the muscle for around 30 seconds. Counting will keep you from cheating. NO BOUNCING. Bouncing during a stretch can increase the risk of a pulled muscle or injury.

Try stretching immediately after a shower or even in a hot bath or hot tub. The warm water will increase body temperature to make it stretch easier.

Try stretching in the morning. Simple full body stretches can invigorate, wake you and make a great start to your day.

Try a stretching class such as yoga or tai chi. This will help you stretch on a regular basis.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

What Is This Mystery Substance?

Here is a really great article I found.

Is this the magic bullet that you've been waiting for? Before I tell you what it is, let's find out all the wonderful things it does.
First of all it is the most underrated and yet dramatically effective keys to weight loss and, in particular, body fat reduction to get and keep you lean. It performs several biological functions in addition to its fat reduction properties. It is important in regulating thermal conditions in the body. It helps keep the internal and external thermal equilibrium in check so your system cool itself much more efficiently which reduces the effects of high temperature allow for us to tolerate heat much better.
It acts to lubricate joints and ease in joint related soreness and inflammation. It is extremely important in the removal of waste by-products and toxins that form in the blood from metabolic functions and other internal processes. It helps promote health skin.
This magical elixir also seems to act as a natural appetite suppressant. In fact, people on diets will find themselves feeling "hungry" much more often and more severely than those who consume much more of it. Research shows that there are several reasons for this but mostly it is because dieters are getting less of this substance from their food because they're eating less food, which we know is not the right approach to fat reduction. This deficiency leads to a reduction in fluid consumption and results in excessive cravings. These cravings can be significantly curbed with increased intake of our mystery substance.
Consuming enough of this fluid allows the kidneys to function optimally. When the kidneys function at their peak, the liver too becomes more efficient at its function by removing more toxins and waste by-products from the blood and increases its efficiency in metabolizing fat. The end result is an increased fat burning capacity in the liver that translates into a greater reduction in overall body fat composition.
When the body doesn't get sufficient amounts of it, it'll metabolically shift into a defensive mode to "preserve" what fat stores it currently has. This can only result in a negative slowdown of bodily functions and processes. This is the same thing that happens when consumption of fat falls below 10 percent for extended periods of time or left completely out of the diet. The body resists and compensates by holding on to as much of its fat stores as possible, thus defeating the purpose and shifting it's preference toward protein if adequate carbohydrate is not available.
This is why I recommend a nutrition program rich in "good" fats that promote metabolism.
The substance we are talking about here as you might have realized by now is water. The fact that muscle is composed of seventy percent (70%) water should lend considerable insight into just how valuable it is not only to our very existence but to our muscle building and fat loss goals as well.

The bottom line here is that especially during these hotter months and all year round, drinking sufficient amounts of pure water should be the first step in any serious fat reduction program. It can never be stressed enough how important it is to drink AT LEAST sixty-four (64) ounces of water between meals every day. Cold water also has the added benefit of further increasing metabolic rates, as it requires the additional expenditure of calories in order for the body to warm it up.
Those of us in the fitness and body building arena know that at least a gallon or more per day is pretty much our normal intake which is required for support and recovery from the effects of intense workouts. Remember, there is no such thing as too much water.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Inspirational Results

I hear all the time that its "too late for me to start working out. I have been out of shape for so long, that it would probably kill me to start being active again. If this sounds familiar, here's a story that might change your mind.
Meet Howard. He is a client I have been working with for several months. He has dropped from 34% fat and 270lbs to an impressive 12% at 215lbs.
Talk about motivation! He came in late last fall and had been out of shape for years, but decided that he wanted to enjoy his life and stop watching everyone else live theirs. Howard went waterskiing this weekend and spent time with his wife trail jogging at Lake Powell. What an inspiration Howard.
Way to go!

Welcome to Jared's Blog. It is dedicated to a better way of living. Understanding how to care for the body and live healthy and happy are key to enjoying life. I will be making updates regularly and posting health tips. Comments are welcome!