Why It’s Hard to Change Unhealthy Behavior & How You Can Make Changes Easier

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Many of us are bombarded constantly with what one considers a healthy lifestyle – healthy diet, adequate exercise, no smoking and limited drinking. For most people, they have a myriad of changes they need to adopt, which may seem overwhelming.

Anyone should know that changing a habit is hard to break, especially a negative one. Many people have a belief that habits are hard to change. In some sense, this is true. The further down the rabbit hole you are the harder it is to get out.

For most people, the hard part is the strategy. Most people have large or numerous goals, which may seem overwhelming. In this case, you can achieve your goal easier by making smaller goals. Creating more specific goals such as “I will bike 20 minutes per day” is easier than saying “I’ll exercise 20 minutes per day.”

Plus, it is important to have a practical mindset about achieving your goal. If you want to bike 20-minutes per day but either do not own a bike or dislike recumbent bikes than it will be harder to achieve and maintain that goal.

It is also important to understand where you are at in your life. If you have an uncontrolled or overly busy schedule, fitting in 60 minutes of exercise in one day maybe unrealistic. Why? Because when you can’t fit it in your schedule your self-efficacy decreases.

One thing to note is that any bout of movement counts. Whether its vacuuming the house, walking the dog or getting fit with a trainer, everything you do will expend calories, which leads you one step closer to your overall goal (for weightloss goals).

When you are in the stage of pursuing that goal or taking action, it may be a trial and error process. We think changes are hard if something doesn’t work, but know that there will be something that works. Getting discouraged will not help your mindset, which is why it’s important to maintain a positive outlook.

Positivity should overlook reality. If you are having an intense week or a catastrophic event happens in your life, you should be ready for a roadblock instead of thoughts of quitting. People think goals are difficult when they can’t budge from their specific plan. For example, when a road block occurs and you can only fit in a 10-minute exercise routine, that’ll keep you on track more than getting frustrated on not being able to do your 35-minute routine. Once your schedule calms, you can ease back into your routine.

Have any questions about health behavior changes? If so, contact us at manager@sfm-1800fit.com

Hydration Requirements for Summer Heat

Hydration is important, especially when the body loses plenty of heat and perspiration due to warmer weather. With Gatorade and Vitamin Water on the market, hydration is rather confusing, leading people not to  know what to drink and when.

The first thing to understand if you are going for weightloss, sugary sport beverages may hinder weightloss goals due to the sugar and extra calories. Electrolytes are important, especially when exercising more than 60 minutes (in a row) throughout the day. However, there are better options instead of sugary, or artificial chemical, drinks.

Better options include:
-Nuun tablets
-Vitamin C Packet (best post workout)
-Airborne Tablets (best post workout)
-Getting electrolytes through foods and salt (try pink Himalayan salt  or sea salt)

Hydration Requirements are
-Less than 60 minutes of moderate to intense exercise – water only
-60-90 minutes of moderate to intense exercise – electrolyte beverage may benefit (especially during post exercise)
-90+ more minutes of moderate to intense exercise – electrolyte beverage and possible glucose restoration (possibly during and post exercise)
-More than 2 hours of moderate to intense exercise – electrolyte beverage and glucose restoration (during and / or post exercise).

Stay hydrated by drinking 7-10 ounces of fluid every 15 to 20 minutes during exercise. Stay safe in the heat!

Train like an Olympic Athlete

Every four years, the Olympics inspire millions of Americans with their skill, speed, power and grace. From snowboarding to ice skating, Olympic athletes put forth thousands of hours to train for these events. So what do they focus on?

It depends on the event, but Olympic athletes balance time between training for their event and training at the gym. For example, if someone wants to become a faster speed skater, the skater needs to skate and incorporate speed and power training into his routine.

Generally, the four common “goals” to training is to increase muscular strength and endurance, cardiovascular endurance and flexibility. Speed, power, velocity and quickness are components of strength, cardio and flexibility.

So how do you train like an athlete?

First, getting the mind and head into the game is essential. Thoughts are powerful and can make or break you routines and outlook on training. Second, you need to establish a baseline if you have not done so. This means that your body requires stability, mobility and a cardio  baseline before integrating higher bouts of intensity. If you have this established and been strength training than you are ready to push yourself further to more explosive movements  and/or Olympic weightlifting.

Box Jumps, Lateral Bounds and Cleans are just some of the exercises these guys work on. Get inspired now before its too late and the inspiration is put off for another 4 years.

Truth behind Your Metabolism

Metabolism is a concept not easily understood, except for individuals who study exercise science or other forms of medical studies. Metabolism comprises of several aspects, which is important to our overall daily caloric expenditure. Below is an easy to understand layout to see what lifestyle affect metabolism.

Digestion of Food
This part of the metabolism is based upon the energy expended to digest and breakdown food. Metabolism is affected by what we eat, when we eat it. There truly is no one-size-fits-all approach to eating. Some research suggests five small meals per day, others say eat three adequate meals. The one thing to note is the quality and quantity of food. The body burns more energy when it has to breakdown whole, nutritious food. That is part of the reason why we can eat a whole bag of Doritos. There is no fiber or lack of “whole grain” to make the body feel full and work to break it down. Therefore, although the quality is rough on digestion, due to slamming down the chips, the stomach will quickly pass it through to the intestine. Once again this another reason to advocate for fresh, whole foods, especially fruits and vegetables.

Physical Activity
This component of metabolism is vital beyond “boosting” our metabolic rate. Physical activity reduces stress and promotes happiness and vitality. We expend energy through movement. This movement occurs through exercise sessions, running errands or walking to work. Moving the body throughout the day is now known to be significant indicator for weight management. In addition, those who strength train or complete metabolic conditioning classes can burn calories long after their workout, thanks to a concept known as EPOC.

Resting Metabolic Rate
This part of the metabolism is based upon the ability to expend calories at rest and our normal daily functions. This includes breathing, thinking and heart pumping actions. Our organs constantly work around the clock 24/7, so we are technically burning calories all day, everyday. However, as we age, the body naturally deteriorates.  This is where having lean muscle mass is vital to keep our daily caloric expenditure high. Muscle burns more calories than fat at rest. This is based on the pounds. For example, the metabolic rate of muscle can burn 4.5 calories per per pound versus 2 calories per pound of fat.

If you are lacking in any of these areas, contact us and we’ll get you back on track. manager@sfm-1800fit.com | 206-576-2017

Achieving Your Fitness Goal

There are many philosophies and opinions on how to achieve your fitness goals. For some, achieving their fitness goal is taken as serious as life or career goals. Below are three powerful tools to push you toward goals. And like most goal setting, it’s your mindset what makes or breaks your success.

When you set a goal, adopt these three qualities to meet your end result.

Desire

First, you must have a burning desire to achieve the goal. How strongly or how important is that goal? How will reaching your goal change your life? For some, achieving their fitness goal may mean participating in an event that they never dreamed they could before they got fit and healthy. For others, movement transforms their life to elevate their mood or maybe not be so winded when they play with their kids.

Belief

Second,you must have a strong belief that the goal is possible and within reach. This is where your mindset comes in. Our society is pretty negative about many things. What you believe, you will achieve. If you have that negative voice in the back of your head saying, “I can’t. I’m not strong enough,” then this is a clear indicator that you do not believe in YOU and your capabilities!

Expectancy

Third, you must be in the state of expectancy, you must be expecting to see results. The mind and body works together as a unit, not separate departments. Living in a state of expectancy is highly positive, and it makes people feel good about themselves. So if you believe you will lose weight, you better expect the best for your mind and body. Some people have small expectations where others have grandiose plans. There is nothing wrong with having BIG goals, but most do not  believe that it can happen. Therefore, most people should incorporate small changes.  Small changes overtime leads to BIG results. Having realistic expectations is what keeps people on track and successful. Why? Because you believe you can do those things or make those changes!