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12 Days of Fitness 2019: Day 10 – The 11 Most Common Weight-Loss Blunders

(This is part 10 of a 12 part series to provide you with some helpful health and fitness tips over the holiday season)

Losing weight can be tricky business: When you’re insanely busy, it can be tough to focus on your goals in a healthy, sustainable way, let alone work towards them at all. It’s easy to fall into pitfalls, but hey, knowledge is power—when you know the traps you’re most likely to fall into, it’s easier to steer clear.

  1. Focusing on what you CAN’T eat. So many people embarking on a weight loss journey focus on what they can’t have – no sugar, no alcohol, no dessert, no bread, no cheese. Shift your focus instead on what you can have and make a list of all the filling and nutritious super foods out there.
  2. Adopting an all-or-nothing attitude. Don’t eliminate foods you love. Too many people who are trying to lose weight develop the all-or-nothing attitude. This way of thinking can be detrimental in the long run. Instead of depriving yourself of foods you love, learn how to incorporate them into your diet in a healthier way. For example, love pasta? Instead of adding a creamy high fat sauce, add lots of veggies, grilled shrimp, and toss in olive oil and garlic. Can’t live without bread? Well, you shouldn’t have to. Make a healthy sandwich for lunch on 100 percent whole grain bread with grilled chicken, avocado, lettuce, and tomato.
  3. Not having a solid plan. Not having a solid, realistic plan is a mistake. People should set themselves up for success by coming up with small, challenging yet attainable action steps to work towards. Start off with a few actionable and specific goals for the first week. Once you master those, keep adding on. Before you know it, those action steps will become lifelong healthy habits.
  4. Cutting out an entire food group. When you are trying to lose weight and you cut out an entire food group, like carbs or meat, this usually just results in an unbalanced diet and even deficiencies in certain nutrients. Plus, for most people, this is not sustainable for a lifetime. Words of advice – if you couldn’t do it for the rest of your life, it’s a diet that’s probably not going to work in the long run.
  5. Replacing meals with liquids. Green juices and smoothies are very popular, and a lot of people will use these as meal replacements. Unfortunately, oftentimes these beverages aren’t made up of the right mix of nutrients. Green juices lack fiber and protein, which are key nutrients in keeping you full and helping you meet your nutrient recommendations, and smoothies are typically loaded in sugar from juice, sweeteners, or too much fruit, and can be really high in calories from over-sized portions of healthy fat sources like nuts and seeds.
  6. Eating too few calories. One of the biggest pitfalls I see constantly is people falling into the calorie counting trap. Sounds counter intuitive but trust me – you need to eat! We live in a culture that is so obsessed with calorie counting that oftentimes we are depriving our body of the very nutrients that will actually help us not only to live healthier, but lose more weight. What you eat is just as important as how much you eat.
  7. Steering clear of healthy fats. Unfortunately too many people still fear fat and are stuck eating low-fat or fat-free versions of food, a holdover from the fat-phobic days of the ’70s, ’80s, and ’90s. A moderate amount of fat is important as it helps with satiety. Plus, people end up replacing fat with refined carbs, which we now know can have a detrimental effect on health and weight. Include healthy fat at every meal, in the form of nuts, seeds, liquid oils, avocados, oily fish, soy, and dairy products.
  8. Ditching fruits and veggies with high sugar content. Cutting out certain fruits and vegetables because you think they contain too much sugar is just ridiculous. Sure, some do contain a bit higher amount of naturally occurring sugars, but they also contain fiber, which helps counterbalance the effect on blood sugars. Compared to highly processed snacks and drinks, there is nothing to be worried about.
  9. Relying on weight loss pills and supplements. The bottom line here is if there was a pill or a potion that really worked in the long term, then not one of us would be talking about weight management at all! The weight loss industry is so successful because we are so desperate to find a quick fix. The only long-term effective weight management skill is to change the way you think about fueling your body. We need to think of food as fuel for daily living and to fuel it the best way we can. The rest takes care of itself.
  10. Taking the weekends off from healthy eating. You should take the weekends off from your job, not your diet. Sure, you can still have fun and go out to eat on the weekends, but make an effort not to stuff yourself to the brim with food or drinks. Simply eating mindfully when you are enjoying good food can be enough to not wreck your hard work during the week. If the weekends are a problem for you, consider weighing yourself Friday mornings and Monday mornings. If you see that number routinely creeping up on Monday, try changing your weekend routine to include more exercise and healthier food choices.
  11. Not drinking enough water. A lot of people simply don’t drink enough water. Changing this habit is one of the easiest ways to help your health. Studies show that drinking water or eating a water-rich salad or broth-based soup before a meal can help decrease how much you eat during the meal—plus, staying hydrated helps prevent headaches, which can lead to stress eating. Figure out how you prefer to get your water: Do you like a bottle with a straw or a wide-mouthed top? Whatever your preference, keep a water container at your side as often as you can. You’ll reach for it a lot more if you don’t have to get up to fill a glass.

Til next time, train smart, eat well, and be better

See you Monday for Day 11 of the 12 Days of Fitness!

Just in case, here’s what you might have missed:

Day #16 Tips for Avoiding Holiday Weight Gain
Day #2 – Cholesterol Myths You Need to Stop Believing
Day #3 – Festively Fit: Staying Fit Over the Holidays
Day #410 Fitness Myths That Need to Die
Day #59 Ways to Trick Yourself Into Feeling Full
Day #6The Cult Of Supplements And The Dangers Of Multi-Level Marketing
Day #7 – The First 5 Things Nutritionists Will Tell You To Cut From Your Diet
Day #8 – Dispelling 5 Common Training Lies
Day #9 – Fitness is a Choice and Mindset

 

12 Days of Fitness 2019: Day 6 – The Cult Of Supplements And The Dangers Of Multi-Level Marketing

(This is part 6 of a 12 part series to provide you with some helpful health and fitness tips over the holiday season)

Here’s how you know a good doctor: A good doctor is one who asks a lot of questions and then listens to the answers the patient provides. A good doctor doesn’t make a recommendation or prescription before knowing the patient inside and out. A good doctor doesn’t have a one-size-fits -all solution for what ails the patient. Doctors take a Hippocratic oath when they become physicians. They swear to practice medical honesty. They swear to keep their patients from “harm and injustice.” The same should hold true in the world of fitness and wellness. Unfortunately, I can say that does not.

It’s All a Big Fat Lie

I’ve been in fitness for a long time now and have seen many trends come and go but none as prevalent as many of the multi-level marketing products sold. Not a day goes by when I hear or worse see fellow fitness “professionals” hocking something that claims to add beauty, fitness benefits, weight loss, and a cure for obesity. We all know deep down these claims are false, irresponsible, and self-serving. We want to believe though, both those who sell and those who buy. We want to believe because we will do almost anything to avoid being uncomfortable and face hard truths. That is why people who sell multi-level marketing products talk a lot more than those who are their customers. If they talk and dance fast enough perhaps they can convince you otherwise of what you already know deep down is a lie – that you can have your cake (or diet cheese puffs) and eat it too, or that you can enjoy that brownie-flavored energy bar and it will help you get and stay thin. You want so desperately to have the body you’ve always wanted and to find something that tastes as good as the food you’re addicted to. Unfortunately for you, there are plenty of people who are happy to sell you that bill of goods and with good reason – there’s potential for plenty of money in it for them. It’s profitable to give customers what they want and tell them things they like to hear. Unfortunately, in fields like medicine, fitness, and wellness, doing so is also often an injustice. We all know the truth about diets of all kinds. They only work in the short term. Period.

The Truth

You know what solves the obesity epidemic? Telling people the truth. Telling people they need to face why they are addicted to processed and toxic food or asking them to face why it is they don’t want to get uncomfortable with rigorous daily exercise. Again, telling people this truth is often not profitable or sexy. It is much more profitable to tell people what they want to hear, which is that there is a fun and easy way to do exercise, and that there is a version of packaged food that is good for you. If you look at the definition of dietary supplement you’ll notice that these supplements are “not considered food.” The same goes for the diet products our country consumes en masse. The fact is we are addicted to toxic and processed food, much of which isn’t even food in the first place. Many of the foods we eat are derivatives of food mixed with chemicals we cannot pronounce, and they come to us in boxes that have shelf lives of months. Selling people products, potions, pills, and powders based on shoddy science or popular belief is downright laughable to me.

The Reality

The reality is food doesn’t have a shelf life. As Michael Pollan says in his book Food Rules, don’t buy anything that is sold at a gas station. Yet another hard truth is that when you switch to eating real food it probably won’t taste as good to you either, at least initially. But understand that we need less stuff from a box or a pill – a lot less. That is the truth we need to be spreading. Obesity and the correlated health issues such as diabetes are continuing to skyrocket out of control. Clearly the rapid and robust growth of the supplement industry and multi-level marketing have solved nothing except make those who sell these goods richer. Money – this is the cause of the multi-level marketing craze in the fitness industry – greed, and specifically greed in response to coming from a position of lack or want. Remember when your parents used to say, “If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.” Couldn’t be any more succinct than that.

Til next time, train smart, eat well, and be better.

See you tomorrow for Day 7 of the 12 Days of Fitness

Just in case, here’s what you might have missed:

Day #16 Tips for Avoiding Holiday Weight Gain
Day #2 – Cholesterol Myths You Need to Stop Believing
Day #3 – Festively Fit: Staying Fit Over the Holidays
Day #410 Fitness Myths That Need to Die
Day #59 Ways to Trick Yourself Into Feeling Full

12 Days of Fitness 2015: Day 6 – 10 Rules of Fitness

(This is Part 6 of a 12 part series to provide you with some helpful blurbs and  tips to keep your fitness in focus over the holiday season)

3320970787_58eb36939aEveryone has their interpretation of what fitness is or what it means to be fit. However, at the end of the day we can all agree that fitness is (and should be) an important part of our lives no matter how we all go about it. The most important concept to remember is the best way to improve and work on your fitness is the one you’re doing and going to keep doing. If you’re successful with that concept, here are a few key points to always keep in perspective no matter what you’re doing.

  1. Respect Sleep and Rest. Somewhere along the way we became martyrs to our work. The more you worked (not necessarily harder) the better you would be and sleep or rest would leave you behind the pack. Who has time to rest when there’s all this work to do? Wrong! A good night’s sleep, when your body’s chemistry shifts, and all kinds of beneficial bodily repair gets underway is one of the easiest ways to make an investment in your health. Want to be stubborn about it and think sleep is overrated? Your lack of sleep probably manifests itself daily with the same stubbornness with which you don’t recognize it – physically, mentally, and emotionally.
  2. Exercise Specific to Your Goals. Just because you exercise doesn’t always correlate with what you’re trying to accomplish. Somewhere along the line we grouped ALL exercise as a way to achieve any goal. If you want to be a bodybuilder then train like a bodybuilder. If you want to be a runner, then train like a runner. If you want to just feel good and healthy, it’s not necessary to kill yourself with mindless exercise that will probably cause more harm than good. Be clear about your goal first and foremost and then use the literally thousands of tools in the tool chest to accomplish that goal.
  3. Stop Buying Into Supplements. The word supplement itself simply means “in addition to.” The “in addition to” is an already healthy lifestyle that may or may not get an extra added boost from taking a dietary supplement. Supplementing a poor diet and lifestyle isn’t going to magically improve anything. The kicker is despite the supplement industry being a multi-billion dollar industry there is very little real data to support most of the theoretical claims. While you probably can’t do a lot of real harm if you take any supplement, putting your blind faith into them is time and energy poorly spent.
  4. Do It Right or Don’t Do It at All. If you’re going to commit to the time and energy to make fitness a part of your daily life, don’t waste any time and learn to do it right. The mindset of “something is better than nothing” has a very low return on investment and it’s a lie people keep telling themselves to feel good about what little they do. Remove the hood of pride and ego. Do it right, and make fitness worth your time every time.
  5. Get Off Your Ass. If you sit on your butt for the greater part of your day at a desk or even in the car, the little bit of exercise that you might be doing isn’t enough. According to a new study that found an hour of sedentary behavior increased people’s risk of being unable to perform basic functions—like doing household chores—by 46 percent even if they still met the minimum exercise requirements of 3 days a week of 30 minutes. Get up and move often. It’s why we were born with legs.
  6. Never Stop Moving. Take this in the most expansive and philosophical way. Build movement into all aspects of your life—work, home, play—and throughout your life. You name the diseaseand exercise is the cure. Workout, and not only will you be healthier, but happier and more confident.
  7. Eat Real Food. You won’t find the recipe for a healthy diet on the back of a package. Change the way a food naturally exists, and you change the way your body absorbs it. There is a huge disconnect between the marketing claims of pre-packaged food and real food made from scratch.
  8. Real Fitness Goes Beyond Skin Deep. Our society has been assuming for years that the picture of health is thin. If you look great externally you must be healthy and of course the opposite that if you carry some extra weight you must be unhealthy. You can be skinny and fat just as you can be overweight and very healthy. Exercise goes a long way to prevent many diseases better than it can change the shape of your appearance. If change in your appearance is what you truly desire, you have to have a concern for the growth and development of lean tissue – whether you see it or not. But that is not what fitness is all about.
  9. Experiment on Yourself What works for others may not work for you —and vice versa. We all have the same muscles and biological make up but that doesn’t mean there still aren’t many differences among us. Find what works for YOU based on what YOU want and will keep YOU engaged.
  10. It’s Not All About the Gear. Don’t get me wrong. Good gear makes things more enjoyable and potentially more comfortable but they ultimately don’t get the work done. Put as much priority, care, and thought into your fitness and nutrition and you’ll look good in any gear you put on. Remember, the ancient Greeks used to compete in the Olympics naked. I don’t think there was much concern for their gear over performance then.

 

See you tomorrow for Day 7 of the 12 Days of Fitness

 

Til next time, train smart, eat well, and be better.


Day 1 – Chew Your Food
Day 2 – Fitness for the Road
Day 3 – The Many Names of Sugar
Day 4 – Side Stitches: Causes and Treatments
Day 5 – The 5 Reasons Why You Should Never Feel Hungry When Trying to Lose Weight

 

Supplementation Smarts 101

downloadWhile the summer months may be coming to a close, another season will be heating up momentarily. No, I’m not referring to the fall festivals or the holiday season or the impending winter weather ahead. I’m talking about the season of deceptive and misleading marketing. While another summer may be coming to a close, the companies that produce, market, and sell supplements are already ahead of you and thinking about your goals for next summer whatever they may be. Whether you contribute to the $27 billion dollar supplement industry or not, supplements have become such a household name that it is estimated more than 50% of Americans are using a supplement of some kind. Are we any healthier as a result or are we just paying blindly for that panacea in a bottle?

What’s In A Supplement?

That’s the million dollar loaded question. The word supplement simply means, “in addition to.” A poor diet or poor training regimen are not going to be miraculously saved by taking a supplement. Dietary supplements can range anywhere from vitamins, minerals, and herbs to protein powders, appetite depressants, thermogenic enhancers, and performance aides. The supplement industry is not regulated or kept to the same standards of the US Food and Drug Administration for prescription drugs. Does that make them less safe than prescription drugs? (100 people die every day from prescription drugs) Not necessarily. It does however mean that there are no standards in place to verify or prove that a supplement delivers on what it’s purported to deliver. Just this past year there was a case where dietary supplements sold to major retail stores were indeed not at all what they were supposed to be. I’m not here to debate whether a supplement works or not. There are some just as good as there are bad. I’m only here to pull the blinders off and shed some light on the deceptive and misleading marketing tactics used by supplement companies in the hopes of making you a more alert consumer. Here are my favorites in order:

All Natural

The term “all natural” carries with it a belief that a product has to be inherently healthy if it is all natural. There are a lot of “natural” products in our world not even remotely considered safe for consumption. Just take a look at the periodic table of elements for one. All natural does not mean a product is necessarily good for you.

Clinically Proven

It may have been clinically proven to work on a 150 lb. Caucasian, collegiate, athletic male but if you’re anything else there’s no guarantee that the benefits would be the same. Furthermore, most supplements are not one ingredient and despite the fact that some individual ingredients may have a positive effect, their effectives when used in conjunction with others is again no guarantee. Unforeseen interactions can take place as well as the cancelling out the effectiveness of other ingredients.

Proprietary Blend

Translation – “Our product is superior to other brands but we do not wish to share our secret formula because it’s total bs. We’ll just throw a bunch of really cool, technically sounding words to blow you away.” It’s the shadiest of all the marketing terms because there is no way to regulate or prove that and they know it. To the consumer, it sounds like a big time solution that you’d better get on board with.

Double-Blind, University Study

If it was studied at a university than it must be effective. Number one, check to see if the study wasn’t funded by the supplement company (happens all the time). Number two, request or research the studies the supplement company is claiming to use as their proof. Most times, you’ll see insignificant data to support their claims even if it did show some promise.

100% Safe and Effective

A supplement may be effective, but that doesn’t make it alright to consume or safe for that matter. Again, there are no strict regulations on supplements. There are some that may be effective but that doesn’t necessarily make them safe. Steroids are effective but does that make them safe? 100% is a bit of a stretch.

100% Money-Back Guarantee

Like your mama always said, “If it sounds too good to be true than it probably is.” It is impossible to guarantee that a supplement will deliver 100% on its promise. As I stated earlier, if you have poor dietary and/or training habits, there isn’t a supplement in the world that is going to reverse all of that. The supplement companies are banking on that. It can be guaranteed 200% and it wouldn’t matter. A supplement company can stand by and say that their product is 100% guaranteed of what they say it is, but they can’t guarantee that it will magically work for you, especially if you don’t follow their protocol.

Ads and Photos

Most of the men and women used in the promotion of a product are paid models; people who eat, live and breathe fitness. Some may use the product their endorsing; others are paid to endorse the product. People want to see a visual but that visual is highly deceptive.

The market is inundated with literally thousands of products – all making different claims; all making themselves better than the rest; all virtually saying the same thing. Taking a supplement is a personal choice. I’m not here to judge or suggest; only advise. Be a smart consumer and just be all the wiser than the supplement company is expecting you to be.

Til next time train smart, eat well, and be better.

The Fat Loss Blue Print That is Failing You

imagesSummer is here – my favorite time of year; more daylight, beach trips, outdoor grillin, less clothing, etc. I mean it’s more fun without having to put on a coat, hat, or gloves. The summer months though can spell doom for those who’d rather hide behind their hoodies, sweaters, and sweats as the thought of less clothing is an unfortunate reminder of how the winter months were spent more in hibernation than in action. This is not to suggest that everyone needs to come out in summer as if right off the pages of a swimwear magazine. It only continues to highlight the fact that year in and year out the same mistakes are being made to create change that was hoped for back at the beginning of the year. There’s a great saying that says “keep doing what you’re doing and you’re going to keep getting what you’re getting.” When talking about weight loss what people really mean is fat loss. Weight loss is easy as so many fraudulent programs, tricks, and gimmicks prove and repackage again and again. Fat loss is different, very real, and very possible. You’ve just been misled and going about it all wrong! Here are some steps to going about it the right way.

Stop Dieting

The word alone spells doom – D I Et! A billion dollar industry exists and grows because people think they need to be on a diet to achieve optimal health or the physique they want. By dieting, everything from caloric restriction to avoidance of a particular macronutrient is blindly entered into with the hopes of a positive outcome. Short term, possibly; long term, no. After just 24 hours on a restricted diet, you can reduce your metabolic rate by 15 to 30 percent! When you go on a restricted diet, your body goes into starvation mode, slowing down your metabolism. This can actually cause you to store extra calories and hold more weight—plus, research shows 95 percent of weight lost through dieting is regained within 2 to 5 years. Ever heard the term  yo-yo dieting?

Stop Cutting Out Food Groups and Eat The Food You Love

Cutting out entire food groups can be harmful to your body. A low-fat diet can leave you hungry and unsatisfied as well as depleted of important vitamins. If you don’t get enough carbohydrates, you may experience fatigue, loss of focus, headaches and cravings, because your brain, muscles and nerves turn to carbohydrates first. When you slowly add carbohydrates over time, your body stores them since it has been deprived for so long. This can actually cause you to gain weight more easily—not to mention that you are likely to over eat carbohydrates because you have restricted them. Likewise, cutting out your favorite foods only causes you to want them more and can lead to overeating. Fitting in your favorite foods in the right amounts and in the right settings (not stressed, bored or emotional) can help your body stay at its comfortable weight.

Stop Putting Blind Faith Into Pills, Powders, and Potions

The supplement industry is a billion dollar industry that has grown and exists due to the emotional triggers they hunt and expose. Now, I’m not saying all supplements don’t have some value because as the name suggests, they can be used safely is so desired to supplement, be used in addition to an already healthy diet. They don’t however magically remove, reset, or cleanse a behavioral issue that is already corrupt. And if they promise to do so in days, be prepared to hit the repeat button in a not too distant future.

Stop Ignoring Intuition

Dieting is based on external cues to tell you when to eat, what meal plan to follow, etc. What everyone else is eating may dictate your day. But the research shows that taking a non-diet approach and following intuitive eating cues helps participants improve metabolic fitness and avoid psychological distress. If you’re hungry, eat! Just don’t eat the whole village!

Stop Eating Processed Foods

Don’t be fooled by the low-fat, low-calorie foods in the grocery store. Three things make food taste good: salt, sugar and fat. If something is “sugar free,” it likely contains artificial ingredients, not to mention more fat and salt to make it taste better. It won’t be as satisfying and can leave you wanting more. If you think you are doing good by eating low-fat products, think again. Fat contributes to satiety, and leaving out fat at your meals and snacks only causes you to be hungrier later—and probably overeat. Labels and packaging are designed to do one thing and one thing only – get you to buy more. If it comes in a box, really examine its health value, not it’s emotional one.

Start Putting Yourself First

It is important to find happiness and joy in your daily life. If you are running ragged and not getting enough sleep, food can be a source of comfort or relief. When this happens, eating is not as enjoyable, nor does it serve its purpose. A study researching the effects of stress on eating behavior concluded: “The overall increase in snacking during stress was reflected by reports of increased intake of ‘snack-type’ foods in all respondents, regardless of dieting status. In contrast, intake of ‘meal-type’ foods (fruit and vegetables, meat and fish) was reported to decrease during stressful periods.”

Love Who You Are

Accept where you are right now. Remember that genetics, social pressures and learned behaviors differ for everyone. In fact, 50 to 80 percent of weight is determined by genes, so it’s important to be happy at every size and shape. Do not let life pass you by or put your goals on hold until you reach a certain body weight. Stay positive about what your current body can do for you. Turn negative self-talk into positive affirmations every day. If you can learn to accept our natural shapes and sizes and meet our bodies’ need for fuel, we can stay at a weight that is comfortable and healthy.

There is more to life (and exercise) than the pursuit of fat loss at the expense of everything that hinders the achievement of that goal. If everything you’ve ever done to this point has not worked for you, perhaps it’s time to start re-evaluating the methods you stick to and understand that it’s not you that has failed but the system and beliefs that are corrupt in the first place.

Til next time, train smart, eat well, and be better.

The 12 Days of Fitness – Day 9 – The Top 10 Mistakes Made By Fit People

a3f79fca82d7aa79156cce0b5dbcf9b8_exercise-mistakes-300x300_galleryThose who exercise regularly have lots to be proud of.  They’ve increased their chances for a healthier, longer life; decreased their risks for hundreds of illnesses and premature death; they earn the distinction of being one of the few who value their health and actually take good care of themselves.  But even fit people aren’t perfect, and too many waltz through life believing that because they workout or because they work with a personal trainer, that they’re immune to the rules that make all the difference.  I call these:

The Top 10 Mistakes Made By Fit People

  • Skipping breakfast. Breakfast literally translates into “break the fast”.  The fast being the hours between your last meal and the time you get up.  Skipping the first opportunity of the day to fuel the engine and the engine won’t run optimally all day
  • Not eating before a workout. Providing the body with food for energy allows for a better, more productive exercise session. Try eating a pre-workout meal consisting of carbs, a little fat and some protein no later than 45 minutes prior to the session.
  • Replacing meals with energy bars or replacement drinks. Many energy bars offer little more nutrition than your average candy bar and replacement drinks may lack adequate fiber. There’s really no substitute for healthy whole foods.
  • Trusting the accuracy of dietary supplement labels and claims. Because the supplement industry remains largely unregulated, manufacturers can make unproven and untested claims about their products. Do your homework before putting anything into your body.
  • Believing that exercise means you can eat whatever you want. Whether you exercise a little or a lot, you still need to follow a healthy, balanced diet and watch you portion sizes.
  • Doing nothing but cardio.  For many, they believe that cardio in copious amounts is the only way to shed weight and burn fat.  In reality, too much cardio can actually be counterproductive to fat loss efforts.
  • Weight train like a bodybuilder. Bodybuilders trainto build their physique to compete in show; a discipline that is not conducive to the average person’s desired lifestyle.  If you’re not going to be a bodybuilder and do ALL of the necessary requirements, why train like one?  The results will never live up to your expectations.
  • Jumping on the latest diet craze in search of that elusive “edge.” It’s tempting to believe for even the very active that there is some magic formula out there that will dramatically improve our performance or lose weight, but the best approach remains to stick to the basics and follow a healthy, balanced diet.
  • Reading or watching TV while exercising. I know, I know.  It helps to pass the time.  But I question just how hard can you be exercising if able to concentrate enough to read or follow a TV program? It’s why they call it a workout.
  • Neglecting to stretch.  Think of stretching as a way to help muscles to recover, and not a way to compete in the next Olympics as a gymnast.  Increased range of motion is a good thing, but muscle health and recovery feels so much better.

See you tomorrow for Day 10 of my 12 Days of Fitness.