I never figured myself for a health guru, especially back when I was a fat 255 lbs. Yet, today, I get asked all the time: what I do; how I do it; what works; what I recommend, etc. I like to be helpful, so here are some answers.
This week finds me four workouts into the year. I took off about 3.5 weeks – off just before Christmas through New Years by design, the rest by happenstance. The break was needed and worked wonders. Now I’ve hit the gym Saturday, Sunday, Monday, and today – a bit sore but it’s a good sore. Great things…
Here’s a few things you can do (not going overly into details, sorry):
Sleep more and better. I have always struggled with the “better” part myself.
Breath better, slower and fuller.
Drink more water.
Stretch – before a workout, after a workout and, especially when you think you need it.
Stop associating with negative people, things, places, and habits.
Remember that “health” carries over to all facets of life. It’s not just pumping iron and eating granola. Think your day job is killing you? It might be. Prepare to change everything you have to.
Set a regular schedule. Decide on the kind of fitness or health you want and work towards it.
Cut out useless or damaging activities (i.e. TV).
Take it easy, pace yourself.
Don’t take it too easy.
If you have a legitimate, pre-existing condition, see a health professional before making any major changes. They’ll still recommend changes, just the right ones. If you’re a lazy slob, prepare to stop making excuses.
Assess your fitness state and level. There are calculators for this. If in doubt, consult a doctor or a trainer.
Find a gym, home gym, park, or other place where you enjoy working out. Then do it.
Lift weights – no less than thrice per week, no more than five times per week (unless you become an athlete training for something – could happen).
Regulate your weight schedule.
Mix it up: everything works, nothing works for long. Change as needed.
Work in the cardio. I box, walk, hike, and do a kind of stumbling run.
Mix up the cardio too. Avoid boredom. Challenge yourself.
Find a way, almost any way, to make the exercise fun. Most times, it will be that in and of itself. Or it should be.
Monitor your progress. Make adjustments as needed. Set goals.
Rest when you need to – but not for too long. Rest can easily turn into idle sloth. This (and boredom) is why people give up on resolutions between right now and February.
If in pain, take a pill. Try to do without medications as much as you can. The body heals well all on its own.
Drink more water. I say this twice for a reason. More water, less other fluids.
2,000 calories per day – that’s the “average”. Use a calculator to tweak your intake as everyone is different. Count them daily.
Eat for fuel, not for feel.
Kill the: white flour, white sugar, most other sugar, starchy carbs, bread, “bad” fats, processed foods, fast food, and junk food. Just stop. This, by itself, will work wonders.
No: soft drinks, energy drinks (see below), cookies, cake, ice cream, etc. Stop indulging the sugar cravings and they will go away. Treat yourself every once in a while.
Lay off the alcohol. I say “lay off” not “quit”.
Eat a healthy amount of healthy fat. Fat is energy, it does not necessarily turn into body fat. Sugar and starch do.
Eat more fiber.
Eat more protein.
There are calculators for all this eating.
Eat more fruits and green veggies as part of a balanced diet.
Consider a vitamin or other health supplement. There are many and with many claims. Do your research.
Drink more water. Seriously, this and the sleep might be the most important part of the “program”.
If you need a “stimulant”, look no further than plain, old, black coffee.
If you think you need hormone replacement or HGH or something, you might. Consult a GOOD doctor before trying any of this stuff. I’m neither for nor against any of it, per se.
Slim it, trim it, join the yachting set, hug girls.
There you go. These things are so simple they practically explain themselves. It’s the starting and sticking with it that’s a little hard. Make it a month or so and you’ll be on autopilot. Fall off? You might. Then, just start again. Don’t give up and don’t give in.
Happy, healthy 2017!