Whether you are male or female, we all have the same concerns when it comes to going on a winter vacation, and that is putting on our bathing suit. Maybe you’ve worked out over the winter, or maybe not, but it seems that the worry is still there that because you haven’t had it on in a few months, you will look flabby, pale, and generally like you shouldn’t be wearing the thing at all.
Many people jump into fad diets and fasts before their vacation to ensure they look like they belong in their 2 piece, but this is not the right way, and certainly not the healthy way. To lose weight and keep it off, you must commit yourself to a lifestyle change. If you are committed to living a healthier life, than your extra poundage will be sure to fall off, leaving you with a killer beach body.
Here are 3 lifestyle related changes that you need to consider in order to be and look healthy:
Identify and Eliminate Your Limiting Factors:
Limiting factors are anything that makes it more difficult to achieve optimal results. These are barriers that stand in the way of losing weight and getting healthy. There are 3 main types of limiting factors: genetic makeup, physical activity patters, and nutritional habits.
1) Genetic Makeup:
- Each of us certainly has genetic limitations. However, everyone can still improve their health, lose fat, and/or gain muscle by tossing the idea that ‘being big boned is in my genes’ aside. Following the next two lifestyle changes will absolutely change the way your body looks, even if you grandmother has wide hips.
- Getting fitter, leaner and healthier all require both an active lifestyle as well as a commitment to purposeful, regular, intense exercise. Those who take under 5,000 steps in a day are considered sedentary and are at a higher risk for heart disease and fat gain. Getting moving more is a prerequisite for success.
- The most important limiting factor is almost always nutrition. Poor nutrition holds you back from achieving weight loss goals. Good nutrition feeds muscle and helps shed fat.
Exercise at Least 5 Hours / Week:
In order to stay healthy and lose weight, you must increase your exercise volume and intensity. How many hours per week are you exercising right now? If weight loss is your goal, you must be exercising at least 5 hours/week. If you are already doing so and not seeing results, try increasing your volume to 7 hours /week. If you do not have the time to increase the number of hours you are working out, then try increasing your intensity. This means that you have to get your heart rate higher by moving faster, increasing load, or taking shorter rest periods.
The foods we eat have a direct correlation with our health and body composition. Macronutrients (large food groups) are divided into 3 categories: Proteins, Carbohydrates, and Fats. Below is a list of ‘Superfoods’. Try to eat 3 from each category / day.
|Proteins||-Lean red meat (93% lean, top round, sirloin)
-Low-fat plain yogurt
-Protein supplements (milk protein isolates, whey protein isolates, vegan protein sources).
|Vegetables and Fruits||-Spinach
-Cruciferous Veggies (broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower)
|Good Fats||-Mixed nuts (unsalted)
-Extra Virgin Olive Oil
-Flax seeds (ground)
-Liquid exercise drinks:
(quickly digested Carb + Protein)
-Greens + (vegetable concentrate supplement)
|Other Carbohydrates||-Mixed beans
Gillian Johnson, NSCA-CSCS