In 265 Point, I share my food philosopy. Instead of making certain foods completely off limits, I break foods into three categories:
1. Everyday foods
2. Sometimes foods
3. Occasional foods
As I think back, I realize I could stand to eat less meat and dairy/cheese (hard on the digestive system) and I could afford to cut back on salt and my gluten intake too (causes inflammation of the stomach). I've also said "yes" when I should have said "no thank you" to the snack cart at work and eaten out more than ususal. The bottom line is: I need to be more diligent if I want to meet my goals. Sometimes it's the little things that add up and bite you in the butt! Contrary to what you might have heard, flat abs are not built in the gym. Oh yeah and you can't spot reduce. Whoever says you can is lying to you.
While you can target where you build muscle, you can't control where the fat comes off -- your body's fat burning process is largely influenced by genetics, gender and age (click here for an article on this) --but if your are consistent with the fundamentals, that stomach will flatten!
Your best bet is to: 1) clean up your diet -- that's 70% of the equation, 2) get in 30 minutes of cardio 5 days/week, 3) strength train your upper and lower body twice a week. These things promote FAT LOSS and that is the secret to flat abs.
This is my plan for the summer and I'm sticking to it! Will you join me?
Confession: That's me in the picture above and my trouble spot is my abs. I say that with some hesitation and trepidation because I know that I'm a far cry from where I was 100+ pounds ago and that some will say I'm being ridiculous and nit picky. But in the end, this is my body and I get to decide what I want it to look like and what I want it to be able to do. While I am pleased with how my overall level of fitness has improved over the years, I can't say the same for my abs. I don't necessarily want a 6 pack but that pouch -- the layer of fat that sticks out a bit - not happy with it! Do you wish your abs were flatter too?
Well, as I have called out at the bottom of my pic, abs are 70% diet and 30% exercise. I believe that wholeheartedly and thus my greatest area of opportunity is and has always been my diet.
If you've followed me for a while, you know I don't believe in forbidden foods -- that hasn't changed. I do know, however, that my diet hasn't been as "on point" as it should be given my body composition (fat vs. muscle) goals. Don't miss that --- how stringent you are really depends on YOUR goals. I believe everyone should aspire to be healthy but healthy can and does come in many shapes and sizes. Most experts agree that up to 25% body fat is acceptable for men and up to 30% for women, but as you can see in the graphic below, there's a lot of room to play with there!
Ok, so back to my rant. I want flatter abs and you do too, so how do we get them?
Join me for Part 2.
A desire is a strong emotion, a passion, a longing for something. When you truly desire something, it is consuming. It becomes the object of your affection, is constantly on your mind, and you will do just about anything to achieve it.
Interest is all together different. To be interested in something is to be curious about it. It’s something that you find fascinating, remarkable, or amazing. But interest doesn’t motivate one to act. Emotion does.
Why do we need emotion? Because reaching a life changing goal will cost you dearly and when it hurts (change does hurt), passion is the only thing that carries us though.
What is the cost? You may be thinking that it’s your “free” time or your money, but I believe it’s bigger than that. Getting healthy and fit comes at a high price – the price of inconvenience. It isn’t the money or necessarily the time. It’s the fact that it is plain old inconvenient to change your lifestyle. It's not convenient to plan your meals ahead of time. It's not convenient to get up at 5:30 am to workout to ensure you won’t be interrupted. It isn't always convenient to cook at home rather than eat out to ensure a healthier meal. None of these things are easy to do and that is precisely why losing weight and keeping it off it so hard. That’s why we need passion – to push us beyond the inconvenience.
Passion results when you are sick and tired of being sick and tired. When you are fed up. When you’ve had enough and can’t take anymore. It's more than interest; passion compels you to act. Are you at that point?
It’s been said that you can’t change what you tolerate and if we are honest with ourselves, we know that is true. As long as we are comfortable with the discomfort of our situation, we won’t change. As long as we give our excuses the power to stop us from acting, everything remains the same. As long as the pain of changing outweighs the benefits (measured by our actions, not our words), we won’t make real, lasting progress towards our goals. Period. The cold hard truth is that we don't change until we can’t stand not to. It is then, and only then, that we become unstoppable.
So how does one get fed up? You get fed up by facing the facts. What is the truth about your situation? What is likely to happen if you don't change? What will the quality of your life be 5, 10 or even 1 year from now? Where will your energy level be? What are the chances that you'll be on medication? We have a tendency to think that everything remains the same when we don't change, but exactly the opposite is true.
We are always moving forward or stepping backward, there is no such thing as standing still. Every day we don't do something about our heatlh, it is further deteriorating and we are moving backward. When we take ownership and start taking the necessary steps, we are moving foward. It's not about perfection, but it is about progress.
Stop letting your lack of flawless execution stop you; any step in the right direction is better than taking no steps at all. I challenge you to get moving and remember...
"Whether you think you can or whether you think you can't, you're right."
-- Henry Ford
If you have been following me you know that I am recovering from a foot injury and have decided to take up jogging to build my stamina and endurance. I've never really been much of a runner - at least not for long distances - but I am willing to give just about anything a try if it means that I get "back" sooner.
I have been taking it slow and not focusing on speed, my goal every day is to just keep it moving. I decided that when I got too tired, I would take a power walk break and then resume jogging as soon as possible. I jog for about 25-30 minutes. My first week, I took two power walk breaks and this week I am down to one. I even felt my speed picking up a bit. I felt like I was making progress, until today.
Today my 1st mile absolutely sucked. I barely got through it! I got to my walk break and thought "How in the world I am going to do this last mile? I have nothing left!" In a flash, my mind went back to a conversation with my Dad this weekend about his time in Vietnam. I remembered him recounting walking 25 miles in the hot 100+ degree Vietnam sun with NO BREAK with a machine gun and other equipment on his back. He said he was SO TIRED but he just kept counting "1, 2, 3, 4" and moving his feet to the rhythm. He had to keep moving, no matter how tired he was.
As I reflected on this I thought, "if he can do that, I can do this." I am my daddy's daughter. I have his DNA. His "never give up, never give in" is just as much a part of me as it is him. I got my second wind, finished that second mile and pushed for 2.25. Then I got back to the house and did 10 min core work. I was spent, but spent never felt so good!
When you feel like you have nothing left, remember what those before you endured. Let them inspire you to greatness. If not your parents, then maybe your ancestors who endured the Holacost or slavery. You have their DNA. If they could do that, you can do this. If not them, and you're a believer, think of our Lord Jesus Christ and how he endured that cross for us. We have His DNA and because of His sacrifice, nothing is impossible for us! Believe that!
For real, up until 2 years ago I had no idea that the kind of shoe you wore while working out mattered! I brought shoes based on my personal taste (style, color, etc); who knew those little subtitles "running" or "training" meant anything? I sure did not! But here's the deal, if you are running you need to wear a shoe like the one on the right. If you are training (think CrossFit, Insanity, weight lifting, or even Zumba), you need cross trainers. Why?
Running shoes are designed for FORWARD motion and trainers are designed for quick, agile, LATERAL (side to side) moves while still being able to accommodate bursts of forward motion (ex.interval training). Running shoes have the level of cushioning need to absorb the shock of impact (foot hitting the ground/pavement) and while trainers do provide support, they're also built for flexibility and agility. If you compare the bottom of these shoes, the one on the right has a very distinct, sharp tread and the one one the left a very slight tread.
What's the danger of wearing the wrong shoe? Increased risk of injury which could leave you on the sidelines making it much more difficult to reach your health and fitness goals, so please listen up!
People sometimes find it hard to believe but I DONT enjoy jogging! I do it every once in a while to switch things up (so important) but I've NEVER done a 5K race, triathlon, or Tough Mudder! Have not really interested me. But my doctor told me to push it a bit and it was time to see what I could do.
I decided I would take it slow and not focus on speed - my goal just was to keep it moving. When I got tired, I would power walk. So I had a plan and it was time to execute. But since I don't love jogging, I decided to take my music with me cause music makes me happy! I hit the streets at 5:30 and at first it was tough because I was focusing on the fact that I didn't want to do it! But then I reminded myself to focus on the music and my perspective changed.
I stopped focusing on pure jogging and threw in some random stuff - skipping to the beat, stutter steps, punches, and even some good ol' Insanity moves to the beat. I started focusing on having fun, being playful and it made a world of difference. Now I am sure anyone that happened to see me thought I was crazy but who cares?!!! This was MY time and MY workout.
Whatever workout you do, make it YOURS. It's ok if you don't do exactly what they do on the DVD (although you do need to watch form) and you don't need to do exactly what the others are doing in your gym class or running group. Compile a playlist that is both motivating and fun. DO YOU!
Live in that moment and watch working out become 10X more enjoyable!!!
Last night I was enjoying a "freedom meal" with friends and someone asked where they could find the supplement Senna. I had never heard of it so naturally I had to look it up. In a flash, Google returned a long list of results and I landed here. As I read through the list of potential benefits and risks, I was reminded of why I love and hate these types of supplements all at the same time.
Why I Love Detoxes
Why I Hate Them at the Same Time (based on MY experiences)
Something Things to Think About:
Everyone must come to their own conclusion.
As for me? I'm still undecided. Every time I consider doing one I end up going back-and-forth in my mind. I'm not sure when or if I'll ever pull the trigger.
To be continued.
When I introduce myself as a fitness coach, people typically share the struggles they’ve had with losing weight and inquire about fees for personal training sessions. While I am confident in my ability to train one-on-one, I always share that personal training is not my passion. More often than not, the person’s response is “then…what DO you do?” It’s a fair question. Coaching is relatively new and if you don’t understand what it is you may think it isn’t for you. So let’s clarify shall we?!
In the end, personal trainers and fitness coaches have the same goal – to get their clients healthy and fit – but the approach is very different.
To sum it up succinctly:
A personal trainer is a fitness professional that specializes in exercise prescription and instruction.
Characteristics of a Fitness Trainer:
A coach with a fitness specialty focuses on needs exploration and problem solving.
Characteristics of a Fitness Coach:
To sum it up….
When You Would Benefit from Hiring a Personal Trainer:
If you are ready to start a fitness program and want a customized program that outlines how much you should exercise, how long you should workout, how often, how intensely, or what you should do (aerobic vs. weight training) OR you want to an expert to lead the workouts and push you throughout to give 100%.
When You Would Benefit from Hiring a Fitness Coach:
If you struggle with motivation and consistency and find developing a holistic action plan on your own overwhelming and demotivating. A coach can inspire change and help you navigate the difficult decisions to balance all the parts of your life in a way that moves you from existing to truly living.
So, how can I help you? Hiring a fitness coach could be a game changer for you!
I am a firm believer in stretch goals that require you to step beyond your comfort zone, yet I must caution that there is a fine line between stretch goals & unrealistic ones. In order to progress, we must challenge ourselves, we must push ourselves to do a little more than we think we are capable of doing, but it's also wise to do a reality check.
Let's say your goal is to lose 25 pounds by a certain date and a part of your plan is to exercise an hour a day 5 days a week. Is this a stretch goal or an unrealistic one? Let's ask some questions to find out:
Why set a goal where your chances of succeeding are slim? And then feel guilt and shame when you miss the mark? Wouldn't you rather feel the exhilaration of succeeding every single day?
Goals should be comfortably uncomfortable, not a source of stress and anxiety. To set yourself up for success - think stretch.
coach tam's Blog
40-something who loves food, fitness, and fun!