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Consistency!

Consistency!


Through my years in the fitness industry, I have noticed there is one main ingredient that keeps people from reaching their fitness goals. That's consistency, and not only throughout the summer but in general. Most people tend to be impatient when it comes to exercise, expecting miracles to happen over night. The body requires time and effort in your pursuit to a better version of yourself. You need to give your exercise program enough time to change you. Neurologically, it takes most individuals 6-8 weeks to see noticeable changes in their body through consistent workouts. But it's not just about the workouts, consistency in your nutritional habits play a role as well.

As with anything we pursuit in life, whether it is to have success in work or business, or strive to achieve our dreams of a better life, without consistency day in and day out for months and months we will not get to where we want to go. The same goes for your exercise programs. You can have the best coach on the planet, and the best nutrition plan to follow, but if you do not stick with it consistently, you will wind up spinning your wheels and driving yourself nuts as this can be very frustrating for someone who is trying hit a certain goal. 

No matter how good your current training program may be or how perfect a nutrition program you have planned to follow, none of it matters if you are not consistent in your training and nutrition habits. Consistency truly is the key to lifelong fitness and health. Even a not so great training program will outperform a good training program as long as someone remains consistent to the not so great training program.  This is because the longer you are consistent with your training the better you will become mentally and physically.  As with anything in life the longer you train the more experience you obtain, and experience is the greatest teacher which results in knowledge and wisdom.

The 3 Keys To Consistency


I feel there are three main components in any exercise program to build lean muscle and lose unwanted body fat that must be consistent. Those are resistance training, cardiovascular exercise, and proper nutrition. All of which are equally important in your pursuit achieving your health and fitness goals.

Think of them as a team, which requires everyone to do their job or a machine whose parts must work synergistically. When teammates work together or machine's parts work together, they accomplish more than they could alone, which in most cases results in a success win or a completed task.  Same goes with our three components listed above.  If one is not executed consistently, the other two will suffer and so will your progress. Don't get me wrong; to assume we can be perfect, 100% of the time, will just be setting ourselves up for failure. Our goal should be to follow our programs the best we can day in and day out most of the time. The longer the time you stick with something the better you will become at it. Let's go over some ways we can remain more consistent with our exercise programs.

Resistance Training


Based on your individual goals, you should perform some type of resistance training with weights anywhere from 3-6 times per week. The importance of resistance training is that it will help increase your lean, tone, muscle mass, thus giving you a better shape to your body and increasing your resting metabolism. Think of muscle as a 24-hour furnace, in order to improve our metabolism, we must be sure to maintain or even increase our lean muscle so that we can enjoy some of the finer pleasures in life without guilt.

To help keep you more dedicated; I would find a good workout partner with common goals or increase your training session at GSFP either with or without a coach.  Classes are an added benefit of GSFP family members and you are always welcome to bring a friend.  This way you are held accountable for your goals and training sessions. I am more likely to go to the gym if I know there is someone waiting for me that I am accountable for. Also having a training partner or coach will keep you more focused and motivated during your workouts and will keep you from getting bored of the same old routine.

Cardiovascular Training


Cardiovascular activity is necessary to keep the metabolism roaring and help you burn some extra calories that will lead to fat loss. The main reason I choose to do a good amount of cardio is that it allows me to eat more food and still make the fat loss results I am looking for. Some people who rely on diet alone to lose fat usually find themselves losing weight but also a lot of muscle. Keeping a little bit more food in the diet, but using cardio to burn more calories will end up in retention of lean muscle while losing the fat.

I would recommend doing your cardio first thing in the morning, 30 minutes plus, before breakfast. This way it is out of the way, and it will really boost your energy for a good portion of the day to follow. It is a little tough in the beginning, but after a week, you will feel so good doing it, you will be locked into a routine.

If there is no way you can do it first thing in the morning, I would do it right after you train with weights or at night after your last meal. Bring a headset with your favorite music, podcast, or audiobook to help the time go faster.

Nutrition


This is by far the most inconsistent of the Big 3 that 95% of the clients I have had issues with over the years. Some honestly go by the motto "I Work for the Weekend", and are good for 2-3 days, then blow it for 2 days, etc.

It is a vicious cycle that will lead to frustration. The goal is not to do an all out sprint and crash at the end.  Go with the 80/20 or 90/10 rule based on how committed you are to achieving your goals or improving your quality of life. Eat good 80-90% of the time and 20-10% of the time you can have a cheat "MEAL" (Not day, lol).  Otherwise, if you have never followed a solid plan you will crash.  I would rather you follow a balanced nutrition program 80% of the time that will keep you sane and happy than one that tests your patients, limits, and causes you to fail. 

It's never a bad thing to enjoy an ice cream once in a while.  Just not an entire carton or every night. 

If you slip up and indulge in one or two of your meals, your life is not over, you did not fail your program, and the day is not ruined, just start back on your nutrition program on your next meal following.

Convenience is a big factor that affects the consistency of eating the right foods. I recommend you get in the habit of preparing your own meals ahead of time. I try and do it on the weekend or mid week.  This will eliminate the excuses of stopping off at a fast food place because you have nothing to eat. It will also eliminate the excuse for skipping a much-needed meal.  The weather is great in California and we can grill year round.  There are 1000's of healthy grilling recipes out there that will allow you to enjoy your food and not get bored eating the same thing over and over again.  If you need some recipes or help with your nutrition programs we have the knowledge and tools at GSFP to help you.  Just ask your coach or me:)  Most of our clients do not take advantage of the nutrition programs we offer because they are afraid that we will learn the deepest darkest secrets, lol. Do not be afraid, no one will judge you, we are here to help you. 

It is recommended that most people should eat 5-6 small meals a day to boost their metabolism. And it takes a minimum of2 weeks of a consistent eating regime to start boosting your metabolism so that you see noticeable changes to your body.  Without proper nutrition or eating habits, you can actually slow your metabolism down and lose that lean muscle you are working so hard to build.  Some people think that if they stop eating they will lose fat, but your body will actually do the opposite of what you want in order to survive and maintain a state of homeostasis or balance.  It will break down your muscle for easy energy and store fat to survive if you are not eating enough.   Supplement companies today make it very easy to hit all of your meals and caloric requirements. 

We specifically work with AdvoCare products at GSFP because they are of the best quality and safe. AdvoCare is considered one of the industries most trusted supplement companies.   Highly regarded and recognized in their areas of expertise, members of the AdvoCare Scientific & Medical Advisory Board use their knowledge and experience in the fields of medicine, nutrition, and science to ensure that all AdvoCare products are formulated with the highest quality ingredients based on the latest scientific research.   Some members include:
 

  • Stanley Dudrick, M.D., F.A.C.S.: Pioneered research and development of intravenous hyperalimentation (Total Parenteral Nutrition)
  • William Kraemer, Ph.D., FACSM, FNSCA, FISSN, FACN: National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA), Past president,
  • Karl Keen PhD: Distinguished Professor of Nutrition & Internal Medicine University of California, Davis
  • Gail Cresci Ph.D., R.D., L.D: Associate Staff Gastroenterology/Hepatology, Cleveland Clinic, Former Associate Professor of Surgery, Medical College of Georgia, Member of AdvoCare Scientific & Medical Advisory Board since 2014 


AdvoCare has formed a strategic alliance with Informed-Choice to certify the products that carry the Informed-Choice logo are banned substance free. AdvoCare values its relationships with the athletic community as well. With testing on the rise for performance-enhancing substances, both at the amateur and professional levels, this alliance allows athletes to make informed choices about what they put into their bodies. Informed-Choice has specialized anti-doping experience. Their WADA (World Anti-Doping Agency) experienced laboratory adheres to standards for sports supplements and has analyzed more samples for banned substances than any other lab in the world. The AdvoCare program exceeds industry requirements.
 
If you are interested in purchasing Advocare supplements that are guaranteed to help you achieve your nutritional goals go to https://www.advocare.com/170114376/ .  There you can purchase a protein powders, a meal replacement packets, protein shakes in a can already mixed, and protein bars. Again this helps eliminate any excuse for not getting the proper nutrition your body needs.

I would rather you eat whole foods but these supplements will make it much more convenient during those least convenient times. 

Conclusion


Like anything worth doing right, a consistent routine will take some time to develop. After a couple of weeks, it will be part of your everyday routine. Once you hit that level it is smooth sailing, almost "auto-pilot." Sure, in the beginning, it will be rough to prepare all your meals, do all your cardio, and hit every training session.  But there is light at the end of the tunnel and we are always here to help. 

We are always here to help you "Make Yourself Stronger Than Your Excuses"

PS.  On a side note, I will be doing 100 workouts in 100 days.  This is something I want to do to help improve my consistency! 

If anyone wants in let's get after it.  I will give you details!! #NoExcuses #WorkOutsInMinutes #MYSTYE

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Tips for Surviving the Holiday


1. Workout in the AM: Morning workouts have a way of really waking up your mind & body. It gets the metabolism revved up for the day. Your AM workout does not have to be an Olympic training session, it could be as simple as doing a 10-15 minute strength circuit. Keep it simple. You will be surprised what a few minutes can do for you and your metabolism.

2.Don’t Skip Meals: Eat 5-6 times a day. Will discuss this more in tip #8. Skipping meals to “save room” or to make up for your over-indulgences is a bad habit you must break. Skipping meals does one thing & one thing only, it entices you to over-eat.

3. Eat Before Going Out: Say it with us, “HOME = CONTROL.” Take the time to eat something BEFORE you head out. This will help you avoid overindulging or being tempted by everything you see & smell. Being on the go is no excuse. Snacks travel well.  If you are going to a dinner or a party try a tablespoon of Almond Butter and a large glass of water before you go out.  The good fats will help make you feel satiated and you will be less liikely to eat everything on the menu:)

4. Drink & Be Merry…in Moderation: Here’s the question: how do you DEFINE moderation? That is the key to how you handle your “merriness.” If you will be indulging in alcoholic beverages, a good tip is to bracket your drinks with water. Remember, sugary beverages may seem harmless but the numbers add up quickly.

5. Stay Active: Don’t let go of your workout regimen just because it’s the holiday season. We know you have a lot of things to do. No Excuses. Your health & fitness are a matter of priority. You must make time for it.  There are a lot of simple things you can do at home & on the go that can help you stay active & burn calories. Make that extra effort. Now is not the time to get lazy & complacent about your daily activity regimen. Stay focused. And if you are traveling and need a workout for the road, our team would be more than happy to provide you with something that will not take up a lot of your time.

6. Continue to Strength Train: It’s important to maintain your lean muscle mass. Remember, building muscle helps you continue to burn more calories even when you are finished your workout routine. Weight lifting will help you to tone, lift, & strengthen your body. Keep it up! Slow and steady cardio will just male you fat:)

7. Drink WATER: Really? Ok.. I probably shouldn't have to explain this one again? Remember, water keeps you hydrated, feeling full, flushes toxins, clarifies the skin, keeps the organs functioning, etc, etc, etc. Drink up!

8. Eat 5-6 times a day: Eating small meals more frequently helps to keep your body properly fueled. Understand, when you feel hungry, you’ve waited TOO long to eat. Think about it like this: your body is a car with a small gas tank. If you have a small tank, you can only go so far with a limited amount of fuel. Therefore, it requires you to fuel up more often. Don’t allow yourself to run out of “gas.” Fuel up!

9. Select your Treat: Notice, we did not say “select your TREATS!” lol! Pick one! We know it can be hard but you can do it. Don’t allow yourself to get overwhelmed with everything you see. You know there will be holiday pies, cookies, candy, ice cream, cupcakes, muffins, & tasty drinks. Decide what you want. Eat it. Enjoy it. Move on.

10. Set Realistic Goals: How many times have you heard us tell you, “This is a process.” Rome was not built in a day. That means you can not expect to reconstruct your normal behaviors & see sustainable results overnight. It’s a process. It was a long-term process to gain it. It will be a long-term process to overcome it. Remember, this is a LIFEstyle change. Establishing and working towards both your short term & long term goals will help you stay motivated & put you in a position to win. At the end of the day, the ultimate goal is improving your overall health, wellness, and establishing sustainable weight loss.  Be on the look out for new programs we are putting together to help improve you daily habits. 

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Don’t Over Think Your Nutrition

So, over the past couple weeks I’ve been asked on multiple occasions, “what is the best diet for me to cut weight?”  To answer that honestly, there is no one diet or BEST diet that works for everyone.  Like your fitness programming, your nutrition program should be customized and tailored toward your lifestyle and needs.  A successful nutrition plan isn't necessarily considered the “Best Diet” or most “Popular” that’s hit the market at a specific time (Paleo, Atkins, Vegan, Whole 30, etc). But that doesn't mean that the so called “Best Diets” out there are wrong either.  They all focus on similar points such as: Food Awareness, Quality, Nutrient Deficiencies, & Exercise.  Being more aware of what food you are putting in your body will help you through outany nutrition program.  Most of the programs out there all recommend choosing high quality whole foods, that are minimally processed, and is nutrient-rich.  They eliminate nutrient deficiencies, which keeping with the previous point, its about what you put in your mouth.  Making sure that your food is nutrient dense, minimally processed with rich nutrients that your body can actually use rather than store as fat.  This will help control appetite and food intake.  They also promote EXERCISE.  Which we all know is the gateway to staying fit and weight loss.
 
But where do you start?  How do you know how much to eat?

I think that the most important thing is to first work on good eating habits and be aware of how much you are eating by controlling your portion sizes.  It doesn't make sense to count calories when you don't understand how the different types of calories you are putting in your body effect your end goal.  Its just silly to get all wrapped up and overwhelmed in the time consuming process of calculating the amount of calories you are consuming and stressing about breaking up your macronutrients (proteins, carbs, fat).  There is a lot more science and calculations that go into that.  And it involves a lot of time that most people with full time jobs, who have a family to support, a social life, simply do not have.  Your nutrition program shouldn't be so difficult that you give up and say “the hell with this shit!”

So…Lets start with simple… Then we can tweak your program for the best results possible.  

Understanding portion sizes is a good start to simple.   Using your hand as a way to measure your portion sizes of protein, carbohydrates, and fats is a good way to initiate good, simple, eating habits and controlling how much you eat.  Below are some simple ways to make measuring your portions easy using your hands rather than pulling out the scale, measuring cups and spoons, and calculators and smart phone apps (which for the most part are in accurately counting your calories anyway).


To Determine Protein Intake:
For protein-dense foods like meat,
fish, eggs, dairy, or beans, use a
palm-sized serving.

We recommend women eat one
palm-sized portion with each meal.

For men…we recommend eat two
palm-sized portions with each meal.

Note: a palm-sized portion is the same
thickness and diameter as your palm.

 

 

Fist Sized Portion

Fist Sized Portion

To Determine Your Vegetable Intake:
For veggies like broccoli, spinach, salad,
carrots, etc. use a fist sized serving.

We recommend women eat one
fist-sized portion with each meal.

For men…we recommend eat two
fist-sized portions with each meal.

Again, a fist-sized portion is the same
thickness and diameter of your fist.

 

 

Cupped Palm Size

Cupped Palm Size

To Determine Your Carbohydrate Intake:
For carbohydrate-dense foods like
grains, starches or fruits use a cupped
hand to determine your serving size.

We recommend women eat one
cupped hand - sized portion of
carbohydrates with most meals.

For men…we recommend eat two
cupped hand - sized portion of
carbohydrates with most meals.


 

 

Full Thumb Size

Full Thumb Size

To Determine Your fat Intake:
Fat fat dense foods like- oils, butters,
nut butters, nuts/seeds use your entire
thumb to determine serving size.

We recommend women eat one
thumb size portions of fat
with most meals.

For men…we recommend eat two
thumb size portions of fat
with most meals.

Examples of Good Protein Sources:  

  • Eggs
  • Chicken Breasts
  • Beans
  • Steak (lean)
  • Shrimp
  • Red Lentils
  • Greek Yogurt
  • Scallops
  • Salmon
  • Halibut
  • Pork Tenderloin

Examples of Good Carbohydrates:                  

  • Spaghetti Squash
  • Red Potatoes
  • Sweet Potatoes
  • Brown Rice
  • Couscous
  • Quinoa
  • Chickpeas
  • Plantain
  • Butternut Squash

Examples of Good Vegetables:

  • Broccoli
  • Spinach
  • Kale
  • Bell Peppers
  • Green Beans
  • Eggplant
  • Brussels Sprouts
  • Celery

Examples of Good Fat Sources:  

  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Coconut Oil
  • Avocado Oil
  • Raw Avocado
  • Butter
  • Almonds
  • Peanuts
  • Almond Butter
  • No Sugar Added Natural Peanut Butter
  • MCT (Medium Chain Triglycerides)

I recently posted an article on Facebook on how we tend to overeat or until we are full and how we tend to let our external, visual cues determine how much to eat instead of listening to our bodies.  Understanding portion sizes and how much we should eat is a good way to start creating good eating habits.  A couple more habits I want you to try are:

  • Eating slower
  • Put less on your plates
  • Eat meals that are satisfying and make you feel satiated
  • Eat your vegetables and salads first
  • Drink your water between meals and not during meals (big glass right before you eat)

Be on the look out for more Eating habits and Nutrition advice.  My goal is to help you create good habits now so it is easier for you to maintain them throughout the upcoming holiday season.  

And remember…

“There is no BEST diet…The BEST diet is the diet that is best for YOU!!”

 

 

 

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I think I’ve figured it out!

I think I’ve figured it out!

Posted on April 14, 2016 by Siriji Lamenzo0 Comments

What? What have I figured out?

Finally, I think I’ve found something that actually works.

When we talk about fitness, nutrition, habit building, strength gains, lifestyle changes, mindset shifts, there are a gajillion different ways, different plans, different ideas and a never ending barrage of new research, new formulas, new ways to do things. Each one better than the last, right? Each one touting that you’ll get the best results you’ve ever had, and this time it’ll last forever!

Oftentimes, all this information and new research, new and hot trainers to learn from, new fad diets only leave us more confused, more unhappy and still not achieving the results that we want from our own fitness and nutrition programs.

But, I think I’ve found a solution. I know I have for myself. I’ve developed my own training program for myself that for the last 6 weeks I’ve been working on. It’s not complicated, it’s not overly ambitious and my results so far have been amazing. I feel great, I’m achieving personal records in the gym each and every week and I’m pretty sure that I’ve finally hit on the right formula for me to adhere to.

So, what’s the big key to all this success? It’s one simple word. Patience.

Yep. That’s it. Patience.

Even if you work with a personal trainer or nutritionist for guidance and help, it will take time to figure out YOUR particular formula. I urge you to take the time, and be patient with it. Once you put all your pieces together in the right way, you too can feel as good as I feel right now.

Ask yourself one simple question to get started, then start trying new things and keep asking yourself that question until you’re able to fine tune your strategies for success.

Ask yourself: Does this make me feel good?

That’s it. Then practice patience and remind yourself that any change is a process that if you trust, you will get there.

For me, nothing is set in stone. I know that my formula changes. It changes with my moods, it changes with my energy levels, it changes with my work schedule. But, I roll with all that so that I can stay on track. I miss workouts, I don’t always eat the best food but I work on being patient and knowing that tomorrow I will do better. I don’t kill myself in the gym, but I workout almost everyday. I don’t count calories, macros or track anything. For me, that’s what works.

What works for you? If you want results either with your workouts or your diet planning, you need to know that. And, if what you do does not make you feel good, it’s not the right thing for you.

In the mean time, be patient and trust the process.

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