So its ‘that’ time of year again – it always seems to have gone by so quickly, no matter what we have or haven’t done! It is often a hectic time, generally more socially than workwise, but it is also a great time for reflection. Sometimes to move forward effectively, we need to look back at what we have wanted to do, congratulate ourselves for our achievements, but more importantly look at what we perhaps did not get done and assess the reasons why, to try to ensure that we do not repeat past mistakes?
This may not always be easy but to make progress you need to be honest with yourself as to why you may not have reached a particular goal and bear this in mind when setting new ones for the coming year.
Whilst I do not generally set a series of resolutions for the year, I do think it is a great time to set out your plans, do your research, and know what you want to achieve and put both short and long term goals in place. Don’t forget things often seem much bigger when they are just thoughts going around in your head – so write everything down…and make a plan!
For my last blog of the year, I thought I would summarise what I consider to be important topics in order for you to achieve your health and fitness goals. I will add links to the relevant blogs so you can read them in more detail if you wish.
If you’re just starting your weight loss plan, the first thing you need is the desire and motivation to get what you want. You need to find out what works for you and remember that what has worked for others may not be the answer for you. You may have tried many diets, and if you haven’t lost the weight you wanted, there could be many reasons why, including medical ones.
Basic weight loss is going to come from changing your eating and exercise habits – you need to be aware of calories in / energy out. Then you need to make sure you’re getting the right calories (i.e food) and do the correct type of exercise for YOU.
With diet, you know what you need to do – chuck out the junk food in the pantry and replace it healthy options. Eat good quality protein, & get your fruit and veggie fix. You NEED to eat breakfast, to kickstart your metabolism, you need to not overeat, snack healthily to keep the metabolism going and avoid going into starvation mode where the body wants to store fat for a later date! Take advantage of Janine’s cooking videos in ‘IansKitchen’, where we show you how easy it is to prepare healthy, yummy meals and/or snacks. Don’t worry if you’re a chocoholic, all you need to do is mix some chocolate IsoWhey with natural yoghurt and you get a tasty, low fat/sugar snack! Don’t eat too quickly or too late!
I have talked about detoxing as well. This can be done periodically, with a concerted effort to erase all toxins, not just from food, but from all areas of your life. However, regarding diet, try to eliminate toxins and chemicals where you can – avoid processed foods, especially things like white rice, pasta (replace with quinoa and wholemeal for example), and add raw food sometimes, stay away from pesticides & herbisides by going organic, drink filtered water, reduce your coffee/dairy intake (1 per day max is all you need!) If you want to see results, you’ll need to stop the alcohol, or at least keep it to the odd glass of red (to keep up the resveratrol!).
…Add healthy supplements to your diet as well, for example barley/wheatgrass, and spirulina your body will love, but also a good quality fish oil and a multi. Others to consider to assist you are the acetol L-Carnatine to help mobilise the fat cells and produce energy. Chromium helps to balance out your blood sugar levels (this is in ISOWHEY) and CoQ10 to help lower blood pressure.
So, you have control of your diet and calories in, now for calories out – Exercise! This is essential if you are to achieve optimum weight loss/health goals! I talked about the FITT principle – frequency, intensity, type and time as being guidelines to assist you. ‘Type’ initially being the main one – what to do?
It may just be walking at first, building up your pace and time. Interval training where you walk for 5 mins jog for 1 min, again building up. Perhaps choose a new sport to try, maybe a team one for extra motivation. You don’t need to have a gym membership to get fit, you can use bodyweight or dumbbells at home, or in the park. You can join bootcamp courses to get more tuition, to burn fat faster and still have fun and increase your metabolism at the same time!
A gym membership may be the way for some of you – it is so important to get the correct instruction before you start. Invest some money in (the right) Personal Trainer. You may just start off doing cardio, on the treadmill, cross trainer, or row machine, then add in a class or two. Try something different, theres are so many to choose from, from the high energy zumba dance to body attack to the slower yoga or pilates classes – these can all assist in your weight loss goals.
Resistance, is also so important, it will increase your metabolism, help maintain & develop lean muscle (which in turn helps to burn fat more efficiently), improve your mood and make you look more toned – it also helps to prevent osteoporosis, and ladies, it WON’T bulk you up, so lift away!
Over time you need to mix up your training and exercise, the body adapts to the same movements so change your workout routine and what you actually do to keep seeing results. To maintain your fitness regime you need to enjoy it, or at least the feeling you get when you finish! Choose a gym buddy, someone to commit to be fit with – make a time and stick to it, change your exercise with the seasons, swim more in the summer, get into the ocean, bushwalk in the Autumn, cycle in spring!
So there you have it, the year that was – good luck in 2012, I hope I can continue to get you further towards your goals…and beyond!