Yup, and last week you said “next Monday”, and last month you said “at the beginning of the month”. So when are you going to stop putting yourself off until later? Time waits for no man and your health isn’t going to wait until you have the perfect schedule to workout. When you start allowing everything around you to occupy your time and keep you from getting your physical activity in, then it is time to reevaluate some things.
What is holding you back from starting now? What is holding you back from making the commitment of carving out 4% of your day which equates to 1 hour and making it your time to workout? Does everything else mean that much more to you than making sure you keep yourself in shape or better yet getting yourself in shape?
Don’t get me wrong, life happens and we have to prioritize our daily life to make sure that we can provide for our family and get the necessities of life taken care of, but when are you going to stop making excuses and start making time?
How, you ask? Make your time non-negotiable. Find that 30 min to an hour of your day that you can have for yourself and guard it. If 5pm is the only time you can workout before you have to pick the kids up from after school care, then don’t allow friends or family to impede on that time. Period. If 5am is your only time where you have some time to exercise while the rest of the family is asleep then guard it. Don’t let things get in the way that will keep you up late so you miss your early morning appointment with the gym.
Step outside of your comfort zone. Do you keep pushing back your start date because you are afraid of the soreness that you will feel from working out? Get over it! Its going to happen. The sooner you go through it the sooner you will get past it and start seeing the results that you want to see. Do you not want to spend the money to join the gym, get a personal trainer or join a Bootcamp? Stop looking at that as an expense and start looking at it as an investment. An investment in yourself! If you dont pay the money now to get a hold of your health, you will surely pay it later from medications and doctors visits.
That is the question. Stop putting yourself off and start putting yourself first. Cant make it to the gym? There are home workouts you can do. Take the kids to the park and let them run around while you workout on the playground. Walk the dog while the kids ride their bikes. Eliminate all of the excuses.
The one thing I hear people say the most is that the reason they want to get healthier is so that they can be around longer for their kids or that they want to be able to do things with their kids without being tired and out of breath. Well not making your health a priority is not going to get you to that goal. If you want to be around long enough to see them grow up and be able to be active with them, then you have to make the sacrifices and make yourself a priority.
So stop with the, ” I will start next month” spill and make your health a priority and say ” I will start making it happen today”.
Some people never get to start into the habit of doing regular exercise for a variety of reasons. Although sometimes working out is on their New Year’s Resolutions list or on their priority list, somehow they just never get to doing it. Others do start, but fail to follow through. Through listening to the hundreds of clients that I have coached, here are a few of the main excuses people use not to work out.
Number 1 Excuse: “I don’t have time to work out”
Whether one is a housewife or a businessman, the most common excuse for not doing regular exercise is not having enough time to do it. But saying you don’t have time to exercise is just an excuse to get out of doing something you really don’t feel like doing. Now if you really care about your health, just like you care about your job or your family, you have to give some time for this important activity. Remember, it is not just for fun or vanity, it is a necessary part of keeping yourself healthy. Just as important as having a health insurance, taking an active role in keeping yourself healthy is a priority that has to be allotted some time.
Second Excuse: “I’m out of shape”
Of course, you’re out of shape, because you don’t exercise! But it becomes a vicious cycle, when one makes excuses like, “I don’t have enough energy to do work outs” or “I don’t feel well enough to exercise”. So whether you feel like you don’t have enough strength to work out or don’t feel good enough about your self-image to show up in the gym, you are not going to be in better shape if you never try it. Just do it, and take the first step. You might even surprise yourself after losing a pound or just feeling a little more energetic once you burn a few calories.
Third Excuse: “I don’t know how to start”
Some people just don’t know how or when to start. But actually, it’s just another form of procrastination, when one does not have a definite plan to do something important. They can make excuses like, they need to buy a suitable outfit to wear for work outs, they need to squeeze work outs in their tight schedule, they need to find a suitable membership in a gym, etc. If you really want to do something, you will find ways to do it, right? So think about the benefits of exercise and resolve to make it a part of your daily life.
Fourth Excuse: “I might not be able to keep up”
Another excuse some people use is their worry that they may not be able to keep up with a gym class or a group of friends who work out together. Or maybe you are afraid to start because you might not be able to follow through. But again, this just reflects their lack of commitment to give some time and effort into regular work outs. It does not really matter if you’re the best in gym class or the one who shows up every time, you just have to make an effort to make a habit of getting more active.
Fifth Excuse: “I don’t know how to exercise”
Some people think there should always be a routine or a science of how to work out effectively. Although there are types of exercise that may be suited to some people more than others, the most important thing to remember is that no matter what kind of activity you do, it is better than just lying on the couch or sitting in front of the computer all day. Maybe you can start by walking around the block as briskly as you can manage. Or maybe take the stairs instead of using the elevator. If you keep these up, your attitude towards beginning a more active lifestyle will improve and perhaps, you can get rid of the excuses that have been keeping you from being healthier.
It has been said that it takes 21 days to create a new habit. Three weeks huh? Less than a month huh? So you are telling me that I can change a bad habit or introduce a new more positive habit into my daily life in only a few weeks? Well how about you test that theory and let me know how you do. I mean its worth a try isnt it? If you have been struggling with your weight, eating habits, making time for the gym, or even getting enough sleep, how about you make it a priority for the next 21 days to change that negative action into a positive one. Here are your action steps to get you going on creating that postive change in your life.
1. You need to set a goal. Why are you doing this? Decide what your goal is, write it down, and read it first thing in the morning and last thing at night for the next 3 weeks. This will be the key to your success. Make your goal specific. Dont just say, ” My goal is to lose weight” or “My goal is to exercise”. Make specific goals like drinking more water, eliminating fried foods, eating more vegetables,working out 4-5 times a week or getting to bed by 10pm every night. These are process goals that will allow you to stay focused and have a residual affect. Weight loss, better health, more energy are all by products of these process goals.
2. You need a reward. Something you really want or want to do. Willpower alone will not get you to your goal. You need a reason to push through the challenges. What’s your reward going to be? Write it down with your goals, and read it every morning and night as well.
3. Pick 5 affirmations that you feel really good about when you read them. Again, write them down and read them morning and night. Nothing is better than starting and ending your day on the right foot. BE UNSTOPPABLE!
4. Be open-minded. Don’t view the next 3 weeks as a time you will be depriving yourself ; look at it as a challenge that you CAN and WILL achieve no matter what it takes! Don’t you deserve that? If you come into this challenge with a negative attitude you will get more negative out of it. You Get what you Give. You are doing this for a reason, think positive and kick the negative attitude to the curb.
5. Last thing to think about…
“The only limits we have are the ones we put on ourselves.”
Leave me a comment and let me know what habit you will be forming in the next 21 Days.
Always Keepin it Real
Percy Bass RD,LD,CPT
Owner of Head 2 Toe Fitness and Nutrition, H2T Fitness Studio
Somebody told me once that excuses are like A$$holes! Everybody has one. Well I have heard more excuses about why people cannot workout or eat healthy than I care to count and I’m fed up! Check out my video below and see why!
Leave me a comment and let me know what is the best excuse you have heard about not being able to workout or eat right.
Do you remember a such thing called a Garden? You know the place where you plant seeds and vegetables grow. See back in the day there were no such things as “Organic” Foods. It was just Food. They didn’t need to put a fancy name in front of it to make it seem healthy because everyone knew that eating fruits and vegetables was healthy. I can remember every Tuesday being picked up from school by my uncle and going over to their house for dinner. They had a garden in their back yard and every day at dinner there was some sort of fresh vegetable that was picked from that garden sitting on the table. They grew tomatoes, cucumbers, green beans, squash, and other vegetables.
It amazes me how many people I come in contact with that tell me that they don’t like or eat vegetables. Now as a kid I can understand not liking vegetables because you really don’t know any better, and anything other than candy doesn’t appeal to you. What I cant understand is a Big 30 year old, grown A$$ person saying that the only vegetables they will eat is Corn. WHAT THE HELL! Now don’t get me wrong, some vegetables no matter how you spice them up will not taste great, but most vegetables just by cooking them a certain way or seasoning them a certain way can create an enjoyable eating experience.
Just knowing that there are so many vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals in fruits and vegetables that can ward of the risk of diseases, people should be scarfing down vegetables like its water. Oh, but maybe that is not a good example because people don’t even drink water like they are suppose to. Many experts suggest that people can reduce their risk of cancer significantly by eating more fruits, vegetables, and other foods from plants that contain phytochemicals.
Look, Nature gave us the blueprint that we need to be healthy. We just need to follow it. Although its been shown that our country’s soil may not be as rich with minerals as it was 50 years ago, trust and believe that you can still get plenty of fiber and nutrients from the fruits and vegetables grown today.
So go on out to your neighborhood market and fill your cart up with a rainbow of fruits and vegetables. Don’t let the word Organic and the price tag associated with it detour you from eating healthy. Eating 3-5 servings of Vegetables and 2-4 servings of Fruit a day will get you well on your way to getting the nutrients you need for a healthy body.
If you want to ensure that you are getting the adequate vitamins and mineral that you need a day even after eating the suggested amount of fruits and vegetables, check out these products from Prograde Nutrition that I promote and use on a daily basis to take my nutrition to the next level. Prograde Genisis, VGF 25+ for Women and VGF 25+ for Men
Just because you are exercising regularly that doesn’t give you license to eat whatever you want! If you desire healthy weight loss you still need to watch your portions and your choices regardless of your exercise schedule. I have said it before and I will say it again. You cannot out Train a bad Diet!
I have encountered people who come to me wanting to lose weight but have a really big problem with changing their eating habits. They will workout until their hearts content but will leave the workout and pick the unhealthiest option there is just because they feel they had a good workout and can handle it. The goal is not to stay at the same weight you started at. The goal is to lose weight. At the end of a BootCamp session or Transformation contest sometimes I hear “Well at least I didn’t gain any weight.” Well last I checked THE GOAL WAS TO LOSE WEIGHT! I also hear, “I know what I did wrong, I didn’t follow my meal plan.” REALLY? You don’t say.
Let’s take Bertha for instance. Bertha works out 4-5 times a week. She does Bootcamp twice a week, and spin class twice a week. She is faithful with her workouts but has a problem losing the weight that she has been wanting to lose for over a year now. What is the problem? She works hard and she increases intensity when needed. Why can’t she lose the weight? Well Bertha drinks a six pack of coke a day. That is an additional 840 calories of SUGAR a day. Additional! In addition to! Added on! Plus! So you are telling me if I just cut out the liquid calories in my diet then I could see more progress? You got it Sherlock!
Some people really have an addiction to certain foods or drinks. If you know that something is going to hinder your weight loss progress then why eat it. If you know that when you put it in your mouth to eat that it is going to push you further away from your goals then why eat it? If you know that once you finish eating it you are going to feel guilty as hell about it, then why eat it?
Here is a little trick. When you want to eat or drink something you know is not good for you, go to the mirror. Look at yourself in the mirror while you are drinking that coke, eating that snicker bar or donut. If you feel good about yourself with what you see in the mirror and you know good and well you have 20 pounds to lose and you haven’t been eating clean 90% of the time, then you can guarantee that you will continue to stay in the same place you have always been.
When it comes to weight loss, watch your mouth! What goes in it should be match to words that come out of it.
One of the first things that people ask me when they find out that I am a personal trainer is “How can I lose my midsection?” Some women say,” I just want to lose my mid section but I want to keep my butt and thighs.” Some guys say “I’m not trying to lose to much weight, I just want to lose this gut.” Well if you have ever asked that question or wanted to ask that question then you are in Luck. I am going to keep it REAL with you.
Spot reduction doesn’t work. You can’t just work the muscles of your midsection and expect to have the fat in that region go away. Think about it: almost everyone does crunches but proportionately very few people perform total body workouts. So, with all of these crunches, we’d expect to see nothing but people with flat tummies and fat depots everywhere else on their body (arms, legs, etc.). But think of how many people you know and see on regular basis that have more than a few inches to lose in their midsection. See what I mean- spot reduction doesn’t work!
See, your body loses fat in a genetically pre-determined way when there is the appropriate caloric deficit AND hormonal environment created by proper eating and training. So your best bet is to focus on burning as many calories during your workouts as possible by engaging your whole body each and every training session (not just your abs). Compound, multi-joint movements like squats, push-ups, lunges, etc. (or better yet, total body combination exercises like squat to presses) burn a lot more calories than isolation movements like crunches and sit-ups. So be sure to focus on these movements first and then if you have time, you can do some extra core work if you desire
Oh, I know you didn’t think that I was done. You can do all of the full body exercises that you want, but if you do not take your nutrition seriously then you will still find yourself with that flabby midsection or that GUT. Let me put you on to something real quick.
You have to lose the fat that is covering your abs so that you can see them!
Eat to lose fat and elevate metabolism
Drink at least 2-4 cups of water immediately upon waking and then drink at least 1-2 cups of water every 2 hours you are awake. Drink 1-2 cups of water for every 15 minutes of vigorous activity.
Eat immediately upon waking and then every 2-4 hours after that for a total of 6-8 feedings per day (3 meals, 3 snacks- half the size of your meals, post workout nutrition)
Focus on a wide range of lean proteins, natural fats, and fruit and veggies
Hey, I’m just keeping it real. I can’t make your body lose fat from your belly first. If I could I would be a millionaire right now. All I can do is give you the tools to make it happen. It is going to take you to burn more calories by hitting it hard with your exercise and reduce calories by being more conscious with what you put in your mouth.
I would love to hear comments or experiences with this subject. I keep it real with you, you keep it real with me. Real Talk!
Christmas time is right around the corner and for many of us, trying to find the right gift for our loved ones can be a challenge. If you need some fresh ideas on what to get your friends or family for the holidays, then why not get them a fitness gift? Hell, you could even put some fitness gifts on your own holiday wish list. After all, who doesn’t want to look or perform better and what better way to show someone you really care about their health? Now I know what you’re saying. Percy, you are on that Bull$&!^ right now. Well after you get passed all of that, then you can open up your mind and follow me on this one.
Ladies don’t act like you have never bought your man a shirt that you liked and gave it to him as a hint that maybe he should start wearing POLO shirts and ditch the baggy T’s. Fellas don’t you act like you haven’t been at work or out at the spot and a woman walked by smelling good and you try to find out what she is wearing so you can buy that for your girl as a hint that she needs a new fragrance. So then why not drop a hint with a fitness gift? Now you do have those fitness enthusiasts like myself who actually ask for stuff like this for Christmas and would be grateful. So if want to mix it up a bit and get a gift that your friend or family member can REALLY use, then check out my official top 10 list of the best fitness gifts to give. At the least they can be stocking stuffers. Ok here you go!
1.) A Foam Roller
If you’re like most people, you spend a lot of your day nailed to a desk. And when you actually do have time to workout, all you usually can fit in is the workout itself. Really, who has time for daily stretching?
Well that’s where a foam roller comes in. It’s a phenomenal corrective self-massage tool that will dramatically bolster injury prevention and improve performance. It’s ideal to use for at least five minutes post-workout to promote healing of the small micro-tears in your muscles that result from high-intensity training to jumpstart the recovery process. Plus, a foam roller both kneads out and lengthens your muscle and connective tissues thus alleviating, if not eliminating, nagging aches and pains in your back, knees, hips, shoulders, and elbows.
If you’re going to get a foam roller, get a good one. The cheaper options tend to wear down into a limp noodle for larger individuals after a couple of months.
2.) Resistance Bands
Resistance bands are by far the most simple, convenient, and affordable equipment option in the fitness industry. They supply total portability for killer workouts that can be done anywhere. If you are a busy professional who does a lot of traveling, bands are the perfect lightweight training tool to take your workouts with you on the road as they can fit in the smallest of bags without a problem. If you are a busy Mom looking to workout in the comfort of your own home, bands can make this happen too. Bands provide the perfect compliment to your body weight circuit training workouts for added variety, allow for multiple levels of resistance with practically zero transition and set-up time, are easy on the joints, and are fun to use!
3.) A Gift Card to a Sporting Goods Store For Fitness Equipment and Apparel
You can’t beat a good sporting goods store to provide the best fitness equipment and apparel on the market today. I always recommend going with a gift card here because everybody has their own preferences, particularly when it comes to clothing sizes and styles.
4.) A Gift Card to Premium, Organic Grocery Stores
Rather then waste money on an overpriced restaurant, why not give a week’s worth of groceries to a Health food grocery store to a friend or loved one. After all, everybody’s got to eat, but how many of us actually eat the right stuff to support our fitness goals?
I must admit, several years ago I thought those grocery stores were just for rich people, but boy was I wrong. I find myself shopping there these days, particularly when buying certain items to avoid foods that are typically loaded with hormones and pesticides at some other grocery stores. The key is to go in with a budget in mind (e.g. spend $50 bucks on protein, $20 on fruits and veggies, and $10 on miscellaneous items) only buying what you need.
5.) A Gift Card to a Massage Therapist
Most of us are crazy busy and super stressed out during the holiday season and nothing eases the tension like a good massage. This is about as can’t miss of a gift as it gets, unless you know someone who doesn’t like to be touched. It’s nice to be pampered on occasion, and though the foam roller I mentioned above can do wonders for the majority of your body, nothing can alleviate tension in your upper back, neck, and head like a good massage therapist!
6.) Supplements that Work: Protein Powders, Fish Oil, Multi-Vitamin
I have helped many people lose hundreds of pounds of fat. In my journey, I have found only three supplements to be a mandatory part of the optimal fat loss program: protein powders, fish oil, and multi-vitamin supplements.
Protein powders provide great liquid workout nutrition and a convenient meat alternative for on-the-go snacking. For a protein powder, look for a brand low in sugar and carbohydrates and with a mix of both whey and casein (fast and slow absorbing proteins).
Fish oil, or more appropriately entitled an essential fatty acid (EFA) supplement, is critical to providing key omega 3’s to maximize overall health, performance, and body composition. Studies show that krill oil provides the most effective dosing of EFA’s.
A multi-vitamin provides keys vitamins and minerals that are tough to obtain unless your diet is near picture perfect. I don’t know about you, but I like to cover my bases when it comes to my health. Be sure to choose a multi-vitamin supplement that is made from whole foods rather than synthetic materials, in addition to being made specifically for your gender.
7.) Sport-Specific Gift
This one’s pretty basic: if you want to give a great gift to an athlete then get them something unique that compliments their sport, whether it be fitness equipment, apparel, or both.
8.) Fitness Book or Subscription to Fitness Magazine
Everybody need bedtime or bathroom reading baby! If you have just read a good fitness book that you know a friend or family member would benefit from, hook them up with their own copy. Better yet, people love magazine subscriptions. Personally, I am a big fan of Men’s Health and Women’s Health. These magazines are filled with tons of workout, nutrition, and lifestyle tips catered to each sex and I never miss an issue. I know it sounds funny that I read Women’s Health being a dude, but I work with a lot of women so I need to keep up with the lingo like skinny jeans and muffin-tops, ha ha!
9.) Wireless MP3 Headset
This one’s a bit pricey, but man is it worth the unparalleled listening pleasure and convenience. It’s this simple: drag and drop your workout MP3’s onto the headset using a USB cable and then press play and rock out while you workout. There are no annoying wires to deal with and the headphones are comfortably, yet firmly locked on your head so they never fall off and you never miss a beat.
10.) A Gift Card to a Fitness Boot Camp
Boot camps provide a fun and exciting team environment that guarantee better results than one-on-one personal training for only a third of the cost… it’s a total no-brainer.
Look for a local fitness boot camp but make sure they have a solid reputation and a bunch of raving fans of people just like you. Plus, any good boot camp worth its weight offers free trials to all newcomers because they are so confident their program works that you’ll more than likely continue after a test-drive, This way there is typically no risk on your part… besides getting your butt kicked, in a good way
So join a fitness boot camp with at least one other friend or family member or buy a boot camp gift card to give to your loved ones. As a boot camp instructor myself, I know firsthand that clients always get better results when they embark on a fitness journey with others.
Do you know that person who says that they are going to start exercising and never seem to getting around to doing it. Do you know that person who starts a diet plan and then never follows through with it? Is that person you? Well if you say that you want to lose weight, then DOGONIT, DO IT!
I read a quote one day that said “People who want to lose weight do what is convenient; People who commit to losing weight do what it takes.”
If you wake up in the morning and look at yourself in the mirror and say, I need to lose weight, then do it! If you are fine with how you look standing at 5’4 and 175 lbs, then hey, more power to you, but if you know that you need to lose weight then get a plan mapped out and do it or hush up about it!
The person who says that they want to save up and buy a new car has to make some sacrifices. They have to take money out of each check and put it into a savings. They have to make sacrifices not to go into the savings account and use that money for misc. items in order to one day have enough money to buy that new car.
The same applies to you and your weight loss. You have to make sacrifices. You have to attack your weight loss goal with tenacity and make it happen. Throw all of that, “Eating in Moderation” crap out of the window. Eating in moderation got you to where you are now because you thought that just one Jelly Donut every morning was better than two!
If you need some great advice on how to get started, then you are in luck. I am about to run it down to you. Are you ready? Here you go.
1. Set a weight Loss Goal for yourself. Go big or don’t go at all. What I mean is, if you want to lose 15 lbs then make that your goal and don’t sell yourself short.
2. Set a time limit or goal date that you will accomplish this goal. Usually no less than a month, so that you can get in the groove of things.
3. Post your intentions on Facebook, and Twitter. Email your friends and tell them your goals. Yup I said it. Put it out there for the world to know. You said you were going to do it so do it! You know you will have people keep you accountable for losing the weight if you post it on facebook. People will be messaging you on your wall on your goal date asking you how you did. You DON’T want to be the person that says that you didn’t stick with your plan and you fell off the wagon.
4. Last but not least. Put an all out assault on losing the weight. Do what it takes, not what is convenient! Eat Clean at least 90% of the time. Exercise with a purpose and not just because. Get plenty of sleep so that your body can recover. Take each day as if your life depended upon it because in most cases, it does.
Are you ready to stop talking about it and Be about it? Are you ready to make that commitment and attack fat loss with tenacity and ferocity? If so, take the above steps, own them and make it happen. It’s that simple.
Leave your comments below and let me know what you think about the list or what you have done to jump start your weight loss.
Use these quick and easy nutrition tips to cut down on calories throughout the day. The amount of calories you will save by incorporating these simple tips is unbelievable. On the flip side, it’s easy to see how rapidly we can gain body fat from making the opposite choice…
Start by incorporating 1 or 2 into your daily routine. Once you have mastered those couple of tips move on to the next few. Enjoy!
1. Choose water over juice: 150 calories
We know that soda carry a lot of empty calories but most juices are just as bad. Whenever you are thirsty it is the best option to drink water or a glass of green tea.
2. Opt for mustard over mayo: 100 calories
I love mayo but mustard is a much better choice. Why? Because it is calorie free and every little bit counts. That’s all I have to say about that. LOL
3. Go with a wrap instead of a sub roll: 250 calories
Sometimes we may think that just getting a sub sandwich is the best option but that bread is killing your fat loss efforts. Go with a wrap instead.
4. Skip 1 glass of wine or beer with dinner: 120 calories
Stick with your calorie free beverages. Save the alcohol for special occasions for your best fat loss results
5. Order your wrap without cheese: 200 calories
Again, every little thing counts
6. Skip the soda and go with water or green/white tea: 210 calories
7. Skin your chicken breast: 100 calories
This is an easy way to cut calories from you meals.
8. Choose a fat-free salad dressing over regular: 120 calories
9. Make an omelet over a muffin or bagel: 250 calories
10. Order a turkey wrap instead of tuna/chicken salad with
mayo: 250 calories
There are a lot of hidden calories in Tuna and Chicken salads. You have to be careful.