It’s time that you forget everything you’ve heard about how to sculpt your abs. The truth is that crunches simply won’t give you a six-pack. Ever.
Doing crunches with the hope that it will turn your midsection into a washboard is to operate under the most widely held fitness myth. I’m talking about the spot reducing myth. Here’s the truth: training one area of your body will not specifically burn fat from that area.
Even those who have heard that spot reducing is a myth often still train as if it is true. So here’s the hard truth that you need to face: Doing crunches will not magically make your tummy shrink, it will not cause your muffin top to melt away, and it will not give you washboard abs.
Only a reduction in body fat will do that for you.
So want the secret to great abs? The secret to great abs is a combination of fat burning cardio, resistance training, and clean eating.
It is very possible for you to dramatically shape up your waistline before the holidays arrive. Yes, I’m talking to Y-O-U. Weight loss is not reserved only for the people you see on the Biggest Loser or on exercise equipment infomercials. You can do it too.
So is your current routine getting you closer to that six-pack, or have you simply been burning time? Answer the following two questions to find out…
How many times per week do you exercise? If you answered with anything less than 4 times a week then that’s the first thing getting between you and streamline abs. What is a fat burning workout? A routine that incorporates intense cardiovascular training with challenging resistance training. Does this describe what you do?
I’m sorry to be the one to break this to you, but walking on the treadmill for 30 minutes at a comfortable pace isn’t a fat blasting routine. Neither is a leisurely, not-a-drop-of-sweat 20 minutes on the elliptical machine. The truth is that exercising smart allows you to dramatically increase your results while spending less time in the gym.
Cardio exercise is most beneficial when done at an effective level of intensity. This doesn’t mean that you should be out gasping for air. It does mean that you need to dig down and push yourself. Every time.
Resistance training is the second vital part to a workout that burns fat. This means working your major muscle groups against resistance in a way that challenges you and stimulates your metabolism. The key here is to find the right intensity and to keep each muscle group guessing.
Do you eat clean?Diet is the number one reason that most people don’t have great abs. If your diet is out of control then your abs will be too. To trim your waist, start by trimming the junk out of your diet, regardless of how hard you exercise.
Now you know why simply doing crunches will not get you the abs of your dreams. While it is important to exercise your abs a couple of times a week, don’t expect fat to fall of that area after thousands of crunches.
If you seriously want to flatten and sculpt your waist in time for the holidays then all you have to do is decide that you really want it. Commit to yourself. You deserve it.
Come see me for fat blasting workouts that deliver the results you want. Together we will get you on a program that will melt the fat off your abs, exposing shape and definition—with visible results before Christmas.
Call or email me today for a no obligation consultation. I’m here to propel you towards your fitness and fat loss goals.
Let’s get you started on a fitness program that will get you on the fast track to your best abs ever.
Talk to 10 people and you’ll get 10 different opinions on the best way to get fit.
One will tell you to attend an aerobics class. Another will swear by jogging. Yet another will tell you that dance and biking worked for them.
The truth is that there’s really only one effective way to get fit.
Before I get into the details, it’s important that we agree on the definition of ‘fit’. Too often skinny is mistaken for fit, and that’s not what you should strive for.
When someone is skinny, but has very little muscle tissue, they aren’t truly fit.
Here’s why skinny doesn’t equal fit:
So how does one get truly fit? It’s this simple: Strength Training.
Strength training is when resistance is used to challenge your muscles in order to gain strength and endurance. You could do this with traditional weights, exercise bands, medicine balls, cable machines, sandbags, kettle bells or even just using your own body weight.
Regular strength training has the following side effects…
If that’s not enough to convince you that strength training is the only way to truly become fit, then read on…
Top 9 Reasons To Strength Train
1) To Build Muscle and Gain Strength: Don’t worry, ladies. This does NOT mean that you’re going to ‘bulk up’ or look too masculine. What will happen is that your arms, tummy and legs will become tighter, leaner and more defined.
2) To Lose Fat: When it comes to losing size, all that you want to see go is fat, not muscle. Strength training ensures that you maintain and grow those muscles and only lose fat.
3) To Build Strong Bones: The older we get, the more important our bone density is. A good strength training program is one of your best defenses when it comes to osteoporosis.
4) To Alleviate Anxiety, Stress and Depression:Sure there are plenty of pills out there that claim to give these benefits, but you and I both know that strength training is more wholesome and effective way. And besides, who really wants pharmaceutical side effects?
5) To Sleep Better: Here’s another pill you can stop taking once you start strength training. Study after study have proven that strength training improves sleep.
6) To Improve Chronic Back Pain: If you are one of the millions across the globe who suffer from back pain then you’ll love the benefit of lowered pain.
7) To Improve Insulin Sensitivity: Today diabetes is a huge threat. Minimize your risk by improving insulin sensitivity through regular, challenging strength training.
8) To Improve Good to Bad Cholesterol Ratio: Here is yet another pill that you could potentially stop taking while on a strength training routine. Blood pressure and heart health are of utmost concern, so why not give yourself the advantage of a strength training routine?
9) To Raise your Metabolism: This helps to reduce body fat and to keep that body fat off, even on the days that you aren’t able to exercise. Pretty awesome, right?
A solid strength training routine will tone your legs, lift your buns, strengthen your core, and will result in inches and pounds lost.
If you’re ready to begin your body transformation then feel free to reach out to me.
Join us for an informative discussion on a mind-body approach to health and wellness, focusing on preventing chronic disease with healthy habits, the significance of emotional health, and the responsible use of complementary and alternative therapies. Dr. Ali will discuss healthy and unhealthy habits from the perspective of Integrative Medicine (the fusion of conventional and complementary therapies) empowering you with the knowledge to consider a holistic approach to preventing and treating disease.
Saturday March 23rd, 2013
Balance Fitness 370 Davenport Ave, New Haven
11:AM – 12:30PM
Register online at www.balanceCT.com or
By Kiera S. Campbell
For a lot of parents, raising kids who are conscious of choosing healthy food is a lifelong mission. Given the massive health advantages attributed to healthy eating, kids who are trained towards it stand to gain a lot. As parents, it is probably one of the best gifts we can give to our children.
So how exactly do we go about building healthy eating habits in our kids? First thing we need to recognize is that habits are built with positive reinforcement. This means that the more positive and happy things our kids can associate with a certain behavior, the more likely they are to repeat it.
Making healthy food choices is a behavior that is directly influenced by our attitudes and reactions towards it. This is a very important principle to keep in mind if we want to encourage certain behaviors in our children. This principle applies not only to eating habits and food choices, but to other behaviors as well.
Keeping this principle in mind, these are just some of the ways you can help encourage healthy eating in your kids:
1. Make meal times pleasant. Avoid fighting over food or having negative discussions when eating. Especially avoid fighting over fruits and vegetables.
2. Model the behavior you want your kids to follow. This simply means that if you want your kids to eat healthy, then you yourself have to eat healthy. Children naturally follow what their parents do. If they see you enjoying fruits and vegetables, they are more likely to try it and are more likely to enjoy it.
3. Praise them whenever they choose healthy food. Let them see how happy and how proud it makes you that your kids choose to eat the healthy food that you put on their plate.
4. Praise them whenever they TRY new food. Even if they don’t like it the first time they try it, some kids just need to see it served often before they acquire the taste for it. Praising them for trying will leave them open to try the new and healthy dishes that you serve them.
5. Prepare healthy snacks that they can munch on while engaging in recreational activities. In line with creating a lot of positive associations with healthy food, it may be worth your while to prepare healthy food that they can eat when watching TV or movies, reading books, after sports activities and so on.
6. Let your children know what they are eating. We’re all guilty of hiding vegetables in our kids’ food, but sometimes it’s actually better to let them know what goes into their food. Teaching them which foods are healthy will allow them to recognize healthy food when they see it.
7. Involve your children in the preparation. From meal planning to grocery shopping to cooking the food, getting your kids involved, assigning them tasks that they can do will make healthy eating much more fun for them. You can be certain that they’ll be more open to trying food that they helped prepare in some way.
8. Introduce something new once in a while. If you can do this weekly, even better.
9. Eat healthy when eating out. This is a great way to show your kids how you can consistently choose healthy food even when you’re in a different environment. This will definitely reinforce the importance of healthy eating and they’ll also realize how easy and accessible healthy food actually is.
Did you know that healthy eating can cut our kids’ risks for diseases like obesity, cancer, diabetes and heart attack by up to 40%? That’s why it’s absolutely crucial that you instill the habit of eating healthy in your children.
If you’re like many other women out there, you have already made that oh-so-easy to make decision that you just don’t have the time to exercise. Why, there are the kids, your job, errands, chores, just being plain tired…these are all perfectly good reasons not to get that exercising into your day, right? Wrong! There is time; and we’re about to help you find it.
Managing Your Time
Anyone who has worked in a fair sized company, or any company at all for that matter, has probably had their share of experiences with time management. The concept of getting the most done in the least amount of time is something most companies strive for. It not only saves them money, it also allows them to see where there is time and/or resources being wasted.
Now, what if you were to apply these same tactics to your own daily life? Calculate how much down time you have, and how often you have it. This could be any amount of time you spend waiting on something, or someone. Such as the time it takes your assistant to draft the report you asked for. Or the time it takes for the casserole in the oven to finish cooking. It could even be that amount of time (however short it may seem) that your baby has finally fallen asleep for her nap. With enough though, I’m sure you can come up with, at the very least, 30 minutes a day where you have absolutely nothing life-threatening which needs to be done.
Is there any reason why you can’t make that chunk of time your personal exercise time? Nobody ever said you needed to work out 2 hours a day in order to keep fit. You just need to realize that time is available, and then you can schedule some exercise in to fill the slot.
What Type of Exercise do YOU like?
Think of an exercise that you don’t mind doing. It could be as simple as dancing or as complex as martial arts. The fact of the matter is, if you engage in a physical activity you enjoy, the chances are much more likely that you’ll stick to it. If you really aren’t fond of bicycle riding, I really can’t recommend that you choose that as a way to use your 30 minutes of exercise time. You’ll get tired of it, bored, discouraged…you’ll find any number of reasons NOT to have to go out there and ride that bicycle.
If you like to dance however, it will be much easier to keep up with this new routine of adding 30 minutes of physical activity to your day. Why? Because it’s human nature to make time to do the things we actually enjoy. Besides, dancing is an easy one. You can dance with your kids, you can dance around the kitchen while drying the dishes (ok, maybe not with the good china), or you can even dance while your ironing your husband’s shirts.
And do you want to know the best thing about exercise? It’s cumulative. Take your thirty minutes while ironing shirts, plus another fifteen there while you walk up and down the stairs with laundry baskets and it all beautifully adds up to an increase in your personal fitness level. There is absolutely no reason to let the factor of time be discouraging. Short bursts of more intense exercises often work better for overall fitness. So, if all you have is 10 minutes to spare, go for it, and give it all you’ve got. Run in place as fast as you can, or take the stairs at a faster pace, instead of waiting for the elevator. Just remember if you’re going for short, intense workouts to give it your all the entire time.
Making time for exercise might not be the easiest thing you do today, but it is probably the one which is the most necessary. Sit and think of where you can save a few minutes here and there from your schedule, and make yourself and your health an earnest commitment to use that time for exercise. Once your mind is set, and your habit well cemented into your lifestyle you will find additional opportunities for working out popping up all over the place!
As many of us already know, it’s not always easy to get exercising and/or cooking
into our busy schedules every day. We have jobs, we have families, we have dedicated prayer times, we have hobbies…and we all have the same 24 hours in every day. So how is it that some women seem to have it all together, yet some of us can barely get supper on the table by 6:30pm, let alone get everything else done from our never-ending To-Do lists?
First of all, there are ways to get around many of these road blocks without sacrificing any family time or responsibilities. It way require some rethinking of our daily schedules, our family’s chore charts or one of many other aspects of the way we are accustomed to doing things. But change is good, especially if that change can also result in you eating healthier AND exercising on a regular basis.
Some of you may be thinking something like, “This woman doesn’t have a house full of children.” or “She has more help than I do.” This kind of thinking is what gets a lot of women into that negative area where they start to doubt themselves. We don’t want any of that here. So, for the purpose of this little lesson today, everybody has the same amount of children, and the same amount of help. And we’re still going to end up with a great meal on the table in 30 minutes or less.
Meal planning is something that takes getting used to if it’s not something you’ve done before. At first, it might seem like it’s taking a whole lot of time just to save 20 minutes a day. This process, like any other process or habit we learn in our lives, takes time. The normal length of time to learn a new habit is 3 weeks. The average length of time to cement it into our everyday lives without a second thought is 6 weeks. By all means, give yourself time for this!
Not only does planning your meals save you time in preparation and cooking time, it saves you time at the grocery store, and also saves you money on wasted food as well. Remember those peppers you bought, put them in the drawer and forgot they were there? It happens to all of us at one point or another. By knowing ahead of time what exactly you need for the week, you will be saving yourself (and your bank account) from forgotten fruit or vegetables in that drawer of the fridge. And believe me that can really add up over a year.
Okay, we’ve planted the seed about menu planning. We’ll get back to that in a bit more detail in a few days. For now, I want to show you how easy it is to make a proper, healthy meal in 30 minutes or less. And it can be much less if you’re the type of person who buys their salad pre-packaged in those large, reseal-able bags or containers.
Speedy Macadamia Chicken
4 boneless / skinless chicken breasts sliced
1 garlic clove, finely chopped or pressed
1/4lb green beans
½ sweet red pepper
1 large tomato
¼ tsp. sesame seeds
1/8 lb Macadamia (or other) nuts
Put a pot of water on stove to boil in order to prepare instant whole grain or brown rice as per package instructions.
Chop or slice all ingredients. Save ½ of red pepper for salad. Heat sesame oil in a skillet or wok. Sauté garlic slightly. Add chicken and dill, and sauté for approximately 5 minutes.
Water should be boiling in your pot. Add rice and stir.
Add green beans and red peppers to skillet or wok, and sauté for saute for another couple of minutes.
Stir rice and check to see if it’s ready. If it is, remove from heat and cover.
Combine salad ingredients. Add tomato, celery, mandarin orange slices or other ingredients as desired.
Add the tomato and the macadamia nuts to skillet or wok; sauté another minute or two. Add the honey and the sesame seeds. Continue cooking just long enough to warm the honey.
Place rice on plate, and top with chicken mixture. Add salad and desired dressing, if any. Sit down, as a family and enjoy the extra time you have to spend together, since this delicious meal should only have taken you approximately 22 minutes to prepare from start to finish.
Now plan some extra time for yourself after dinner! Your first lesson in healthy cooking in 30 minutes or less has been passed with flying colors!