As we get older, we start to learn that our metabolism isn’t what it was when we were younger. It’s harder to lose fat and we feel bad about ourselves because of it. We want to have a healthy and fit “beach ready” body, too, but what a 20-something does isn’t what we do.
Instead of talking about what they do, lets talk about what YOU can do to be healthier, happier, and more fit. What you’ve been taught by the fad diets isn’t really right for health. There’s a difference between losing weight and losing the fat. What we’ve been taught is to stick to a low number of calories and run on a treadmill to watch the scale go down...WRONG, this is the unhealthy way. What we are trying to make you see is that you can have a year long ‘Beach bod’, eat well, exercise regularly and be the healthiest you have ever been!
The impossible method of over-exercising and under-eating burns fat and breaks down muscle, but you don’t want that! Muscles burns fat for you. Want a ‘beach bod’, then get lean. The more muscle you have, the more fat you burn. That’s why you see body builders with really (unhealthily) low body fat percentages! Body builders can eat up to 3,400 calories due to their muscle mass. This may seem confusing that you have to eat more to burn more, but I’m going to help lay out what you need to do to have the body you want and improve your overall health so you can enjoyit!
Your Tips for an Permenant Beach Body
Do. Not. Diet.
Dieting is a lie that the world has told us for years. What dieting/calorie restricting does is make you miserable for an extended period of time and make you look good for a little while, but when you’re done dieting you gain the weight back and the vicious cycle begins. What you need to do is change your lifestyle. As scary and hard as that sounds, it’s not. What you need to do is make little changes to your life. Drink AT LEAST 8 8oz cups of water a day. Eat foods packed full of nutrients, which will make you feel more energetic and happier!
Calculate your BMR. What this number is is a basic estimate of the number of calories you burn in a day, or you basal metabolic rate. Essentially, this is the number of calories your body would burn if you were in a coma. The calories that keep you alive and your organs functioning. For example, a 26-year-old female who is 5’8” and weighs 140lbs will have a BMR is 2,179 kcal. This is a huge number and very far off from the 1,200 that is said a woman should eat to lose weight. Don’t get me wrong, you WILL lose weight if you eat 1,200 calories, but you will burn muscle and fat, which is incredibly unhealthy. If you’re not eating the baseline number of calories that your body needs to survive, it starts to freak out. You’re essentially starving yourself and sets the body into hibernation mode which is why it is so easy to gain weight once you’re done “dieting”.
Lets talk about the Supplements that you can take to further your success.
- BCAAs or Branch-Chained Amino Acid. These supplements are like fuel for your muscles. They help your muscles recover from an intense workout, keep them healthy and help to burn fat from you excess stores or adipose tissue.
- Acai and Green Tea tablets. You may have heard that doctors around the world call Acai a “magical food for fat loss” and, of course, Asian countries swear by Green Tea for vitality and overall health. Acai berries are hard to find, unfortunately, but tablets give you the benefits of the Acai and Green Tea straight into your system. Green Tea is known to induce dietary thermogenesis. This increases the body’s ability to produce heat and therefore burn more calories from its dietary source. Furthermore, it is thought to balance blood sugars and reduce cravings. The Acai berry is packed full of fibre. Fibre can regulate hunger and keep you satiated for longer.
- Garcinia Cambogia. This is one of the supplements that has been given a lot of attention in the past few years and all for good reason. The high levels of HCA in the plant act as an enzyme inhibitor of Citric Acid Lyase. Citric Acid Lyase is responsible for lipogenesis (fat synthesis) from excess dietary carbohydrate/sugar. This controls the amount of fat that stores as excess in the body.
- Glutamine. Glutamine can help minimize muscle breakdown and improve protein metabolism. Glutamine is the most common amino acid found in your muscles - over 61% of skeletal muscle is Glutamine. Glutamine consists of 19% nitrogen, making it the primary transporter of nitrogen into your muscle cells. Basically, this is thought to promote fat burning.
Let’s talk about the foods you should eat.
The advise is simple, Eat your fruits and vegetables, but why always this advice. They’re low in calories, they fuel your body, and are packed with the nutrients that keep your body healthy and lean. For example:
- Blueberries. Blueberries are rich in manganese, which plays an important role in your metabolism. They can help keep you slim and energized. Not to mention the fact that they’re a great brain food!
- Avocados. Are one of the most favoured health foods full of monounsaturated fat and fatty acids. Avocados can help lower LDL (bad cholesterol) levels while raising the amount of HDLs (good cholesterol) in your body. The healthy fats in avocados are also great for heart health and fat loss!
- Broccoli. Broccoli is one of those foods that you associate to a “diet food” but lose that thought. It is packed with essential vitamins such as Vitamin C and Folate which can reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke! Not to mention that it is full of healthy fibre to keep you fuller for longer.
Other than vegetables, LEAN protein like Steak, Chicken Breast, Fish, and Tofu are also great for your body and great for fat loss. Protein is food for your muscles that keeps them strong and healthy. Not to mention the fact that protein can help you feel full and satisfied for hours to stave off the munchies! Studies have shown having a protein packed breakfast is the most effective way of staving off hunger.
The foods you are not advised to eat.
Just remember that everything has to be in moderation and there are certain foods that help you get closer to your goals and certain ones that don’t. Some of the ones to avoid are:
- Sugar Sweetened drinks. This includes cola, lemonade or ‘Energy drinks’. When people drink sugar calories, the brain doesn’t consider them as food. You don’t feel satisfied and not to mention the fact that sugar tends to stick around as fat…
- Fries or chips. Whole white potatoes are a great sources of carbohydrates and very! The same does not go for their fried cousins. These are very high in calories, very low in nutrients, and very easy to over-eat.
- Frozen dinners. Although and easy option and often marketed as ‘healthy’ portion sizes, frozen dinners are often loaded with sugars, fat, and sodium salt. Those additives can lead to weight and heart problems. They can also raise your blood pressure, putting you at danger for stroke.
Finally, the dreaded exercise.
As I mentioned earlier, we’ve been taught that running on the treadmill is the best thing we can do to lose weight. While running on the treadmill is good for cardiovascular health, on its own, it’s not going to do much for your muscles. Remember the mantra muscles burn fat! Well, believe it or not, cardio doesn’t build muscle. Ideally, to maintain an all year round beach body you must opt for strength training. Each 0.5kg of muscle tissue on your body burns about 35 to 38 calories every day. This burning process is not limited to the hours following your exercise session. As the size of your muscle increases, your body burns through even more of your calorie reserves every day to meet your ongoing energy needs. The words “Strength Training” can make people think about body builders and people shy away from it because… Well, that’s just not their thing. Don’t worry. It takes a lot more than picking up heavy weights to reach that size. Examples include
- Lifting dumbbells while you watch TV! Doing this 3-4 times a week will start to build muscle in your arms and you’ll start to notice that the weight might get too light for you and you can push from one kilogram to the next. We are often unaware how much time we waste watching TV when we could be achieving our fitness goals. Little hint to exercise such as this, can really make a difference.
- Squats. Squats are great at building muscle in your thighs and glutes. Doing repetitive squats can help you to feel stronger and build muscle where it counts.
- Pilates. Pilates is a workout focused on using your body weight. The best part is you don’t have to add any excess weights, and due to its recent popularity there are classes just about everywhere.
These are some of the best secret weapons that you have to fight against unhealthy fat and get that healthy, happy, and fit. Don’t forget a healthy body isn’t just for summer.
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