Age IS just a number…but Generation Y are old before their time!

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As discussed in the previous articles, the baby boomers – those born between 1946 and 1964 – are actually turning back the clock!  They are becoming more youthful as they age, and not letting the year and date on their birth certificates govern the way they live, look and feel.

They are improving their lifestyles and discovering the closest thing to a fountain of youth.

But what about their offspring?  Can the same be said for them?

Sadly, the same can’t be said for the children of the baby boomer generations and their grandchildren.

The fact is…

…The younger generations are old before their time!

The world may be getting faster, and the boomer generation may be getting off the couch and into a healthier lifestyle.  But their children – the Generation X and Y’s aren’t doing enough.  They are experiencing climbing obesity and an increase in lifestyle attributed diseases like heart disease, diabetes and asthma.

More scary still though is the prognosis for Generation Z – children born in the year 2000 and after.

According to Dr. David Katz of the Yale Preventive Medicine Research Centre, “Children born in the year 2000 or later are not expected to outlive their parents.”  He attributed this shocking revelation to poor diet.

Dr. Katz went on to say that a, “poor diet in kids is more dangerous than alcohol, drugs and tobacco combined!”  He quoted this in a Wall Street Journal article in March 2005.

Now, as a personal trainer, I was totally shocked, yet unsurprised by this statement.  Sure, we all know that people really need to lift the quality of their lifestyles, but to be told that our children and grandchildren won’t outlive us is nothing short of confronting.

It’s time for action – no excuses!

If the younger generation dying before their time disturbs you, then it’s time to take action and stop this from happening.

The power is in our hands.  I implore you to do the following and encourage everybody you know to do them as well:

   Reduce your alcohol consumption (if you are of age of course!)

   Stop smoking completely (again, if you are of age)

   Cut down on excessive sleeping or under sleeping. 

   Enjoy a balanced diet

   Exercise for half an hour per day, at least 3 times per week

    Do things for your wellbeing – do things that make you feel happy

    Meditate for 20 minutes each day to refresh and revive

    Take the stairs instead of the elevator, walk instead of drive

These are simple things you can start doing today to feel better and increase your longevity.  Do these things and you will notice a difference in how you look and feel – in next to no time!

And remember, you’re actually getting younger when you do this! Make it a habit and really benefit!

Determining your REAL age

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If somebody was to ask you for your age, you would automatically think of the year you were born.  And you would be forgiven for thinking that.  After all, that’s the way the great majority of people determine their age.

But what if I was to tell you that your real age is actually different to that?

Each one of us has a birthday, but we also have a body age.  And the good thing about body age is that we have quite a bit of control over what age it is.

It boils down to our lifestyle!

In determining your true body age, assessments take into consideration how many hours a day you sleep, whether you ride a motorbike to work, if you wear a seatbelt when you are in a car, if you ever drink drive or travel with somebody who does, how many hours per week you exercise, what sort of diet you have, if you grew up in a nuclear family or broken home, if you have a lot of family support, if you are married or single, etc.

All of these things are taken into consideration when it comes to determing your true body age.

Our true body age takes into account the following main areas:

  • Diet;
  • Physical fitness;
  • Health; and
  • Wellbeing.

How to find out your true body age

There are plenty of tests you can take online that will reveal to you your true body age.  I’ve had the pleasure of investigating quite a few of them, and the one I recommend is found at http://realage.com.  The test will probably take you around 20 minutes or so to do from memory, and it will give you a fairly good, indicative body age.

Just answer the questions and submit your answers for the revelation of your body age.

What if I get a disappointing result?

Don’t worry!  Many people get a result that indicates their true body age to be older than their real birthday age.  That’s because so many people need to improve their lifestyles.  They need to improve their diet, lift their physical fitness, address health issues and do things to improve their overall wellbeing.

And the thing is, doing this isn’t really that hard at all.  You have so much more control over your true body age, than you do over your birthday age.  After all, you cannot change the date and year you were born.

Age really is a lifestyle thing at the end of the day.  And by making improvements to your lifestyle,  you really can increase your longevity and hang round a lot longer!

Top Tips for Eating Out

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Think you need to stay at home and make your own meals in order to stay on track with your weight loss goals?  Think again!  You’re on a weight loss journey, not a “no fun EVER” journey!

This said though, you’d definitely be forgiven for thinking that a night out at a restaurant would break every diet rule.  After all, check out those cooking shows with the star chefs.  They never hold back when it comes to including butters, oils and other fatty, flavor-enhancing ingredients in their menus.

As daunting as eating out whilst dieting may seem, all hope is not lost.  You can enjoy a restaurant meal without blowing your calorie intake, if you follow these tips for eating out the healthy way:

  • Plan the event in advance if you can:  Accept that by eating out, you’ll probably be consuming more calories than you would if you cooked yourself and ate at home.  Keep this in mind and cut down a little – when it comes to calories – in the days leading up to the event.
  • Avoid eating all the extras:  Restaurants are famous for their flavored oils and bread rolls with butter.  As tempting as these and the marinated olives or side order of fries may be, avoid all of these extras.  It’s well worth it because you really can save a lot of calories by doing this.
  • Avoid pastries, rich sauces, deep-fried meals, creams and cheese:  This stuff is full of fat and calories.  You don’t need them!
  • Ask for the dish to be adapted:  When ordering, it’s okay for you to ask for the chef to adapt the dish to suit you!  Don’t be afraid to ask.  I recommend you request things like extra vegetables, no potatoes, grilling your meat instead of pan-frying it, asking for salad dressing or sauce to be served in a pot so you can add as little as you want to your meal or requesting no dressing on your salad.
  • Don’t feel pressured into eating three courses:  A main meal is enough, or alternatively, two serves of the starter.
  • Avoid fatty desserts:  A great option for dessert if you’re on the quest to lose weight is fresh fruit salad or sorbets.  Avoid pastries, cheeses and creams when it comes time to order dessert.
  • Avoid sugary soft drinks:  Instead opt for water, mineral water or diet drinks that have zero sugar.

If you don’t have time to prepare (by eating less) for your dining out experience, don’t stress out about it!  Simply cut down on calories a day or two following, or do a little more exercise.  It’s really that easy and it certainly doesn’t mean the world’s going to end.

Eating out whilst dieting doesn’t have to mean punishing yourself at all.  There almost always is a healthy alternative to substitute an ingredient, so don’t be afraid to ask for it.

Bon appetite!

Meet with your local 24hr fitness trainer to put together an action plan on how you can eat when your out!!

The Winning Mindset for Weight Loss

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During my career as a personal trainer, there’s something that really stands out to me when it comes to my weight loss clients.  There are two types of people who come to me for help with weight loss:

  1. Those who see weight loss – the diet and exercise habits required for weight loss – as easy and enjoyable; and
  2. Those who see the weight loss process as one that is difficult and painful.

Guess which group gets the results?

You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to figure it out.  The way we think and the way we feel determines the actions we take and the outcomes we’re going to get.

When you are positive about the weight loss journey and you believe in the great outcomes that will result in you eating right and exercising, you’ll do it!

On the other hand, if you have a negative view about it all, you will end up hating the weight loss journey altogether and drop the ball before you see any results. You’ll feel overwhelmed.

The key to succeeding when it comes to achieving your weight loss goals is to make a conscious decision to lose weight and feel happy and excited about all of it:

  • The process of losing weight – the healthy diet you will come to love and the regular exercise you’ll feel energized by!
  • The results of reaching your goals – the great way you will look, the great way you will feel!
  • The prospect of a long, healthy and happy future – a future where you will continue to look and feel great – and exude health and wellbeing!

Forget the false promises the dieting industry makes about instant or near instant, overnight results.  The only way to lose weight is to change your lifestyle, so make the decision to change your lifestyle and love it!

Healthy lifestyle doesn’t mean regimenting your life and making it difficult.  There are so many ways you can start eating well and exercising regularly with results – and you can fit these in to suit your likes, your lifestyle and your goals.

See the weight loss journey as a positive one.  Know that your body, your mind and your spirit crave health and wellbeing.  Understand that when you give your body the healthy food it wants and exercise regularly the way your body wants, you will become a person who enjoys success, happiness and fulfillment on every level.

Go meet with your local 24 hour fitness.  Find a trainer that can help you develop a winning midset!!

This site is dedicated to you and your continued success.  Feel free to leave you thoughts and questions so we can get you answers to your burining questions.

Calorie Counting Basics

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We all know that eating well is all about taking into consideration the calories going in via foods and the calories going out through our physical exercise.  When we get the balance right we maintain a healthy weight.  And when we ensure there are more calories being burnt than consumed, we lose weight.

Calorie counting is the best way by far for us to stay on track, whether it’s weight loss or weight maintaining.  But what is the easiest way for us to count calories and ensure we stay on track?

Mention calorie counting to many people and they will roll their eyes and say, “It’s laborious” or “It’s too hard”.  Fact of the matter is though, it’s the surefire way for ensuring we get the calories we need to achieve our goals.

So what are the most effective ways we can keep track of the calories going in?  Here are my two recommendations:

  • Developing meal plans:  This is by far the best method to help you monitor all of the calories going in.  Measure the foods going into your meals, to determine the calories.  Create your meal plan for an entire week, and for variety, create several meal plans – perhaps 4 or so – to cover you for a month.  It is important that you stick to your meal plan.  Meal plans include absolutely everything you eat – breakfasts, lunches, dinners, and of course snacks.  By sticking to your meal plan, you will know exactly how many calories are going in. 
  • Keeping a Food Diary:  Keeping a food diary is the traditional way people count calories.  You simply write down whenever you eat something, and make a note of the calories.  Then you add your daily calorie intake up at the end of the day, to determine how many calories have gone into your body for the day.  Food diaries are popular, however, one of the downsides to food diaries is that people don’t add to it as they eat.  As a result, they may forget to add snacks and drinks throughout the day, resulting in a lower daily calorie calculation at the end of the day.  It’s called food amneisia and so many of us have done it at some time or another! 

I always recommend people develop meal plans, as opposed to keep a food diary, because meal plans are by far the best way to keep track of calories in.  You don’t have to guess how many calories you are eating, because the meal plan tells you.  Also, you don’t have to add the food as you eat, like you do in a food diary.  And as you know, all too often people forget to add everything they eat to the diary anyway.

The thing though about meal plans is that people often bawk at the effort involved in preparing one.  Whenever a client says to me, “Oh Dear Trainer, creating a meal plan is way too much time and effort for me”, I just respond by asking them how important it is for them to achieve their weight and health goals.

There are plenty of meal plans out there that you can get off the internet for free, however, by creating your own meal plan, you are factoring in your own preferences.  Sure, you will be eating healthy foods, but still, you may not like eating brussel sprouts and instead may choose to replace with broccoli.  By creating your own meal plan, you cater to your tastes.

If you really find creating a meal plan daunting, I recommend you go online and find a meal plan that appeals, and then make small changes to suit your tastes.  Be sure though to ensure the calories are correct for whatever it is you are adding to the meal plan as a replacement food.

It’s definitely worth the effort to create a meal plan, so set some time aside and have fun!

My Take on Weight Loss Supplements and Weight Loss

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If you’ve decided to drop the extra pounds you’re carrying and lose weight for life, chances are you’ve probably done your fair share of internet surfing to find the easiest way to do it.  If easy is high on your priority list, no doubt you’ve checked out weight loss supplements.  And perhaps like millions of people each year, you probably loved the idea of the weight “simply melting off in no time, with hardly any effort.”

As the old saying goes, “if it sounds too good to be true, then it probably is” and as a personal trainer, I’m afraid to break it to you.  There is no magic pill (pardon the pun) when it comes to weight loss.

Sure, we’ve heard all about supplements like Hoodia and seen the dramatic (in my view, over dramatic!) before and after shots of devotees who apparently swear by the supplement.  But the thing is – like most products in the weight loss industry – supplements aren’t meant to work long term.

Here are the two big ones that many weight loss supplements claim:

  • You don’t have to worry about dieting:  This is rubbish that appeals to people who don’t want to control what they eat.  Fact is, you need to get your metabolism on side to get the weight off and keep it off.  To do that, you need to fuel your body up with the right foods at the right time.  This means cutting back on carbs, cutting out processed foods and consuming lots of fruit and veggies – in addition to healthy carbs, good fats and of course, lean proteins.  If you’re time poor or stressed about changing your dietary habits, you won’t like the sound of this – but it’s the only way!
  • You don’t have to do any exercise:  This is totally wrong!  No diet pill will help you to burn the calories needed to rid your body of excess fat and keep it off – none!  All a pill may do is elevate your heart rate somewhat, but that’s about it.  Frequent exercise will help you to burn the calories you need to lose weight and keep it off – and by regularly exercising, you’ll increase your energy levels, help your resting metabolism so it burns fat even when you’re resting and build muscle which also helps you to burn fat and keep weight off.  Pills don’t do this.

By changing your lifestyle to include a healthy diet and healthy dose of exercise, you’ll not only get the weight off – you’ll keep it off for life.

And trust me.  No pill will do this for you.  The weight loss supplement companies don’t care about you.  They simply want to make money and keep people overweight, so they can keep making money!

After saying all of this though, it’s totally fine for you to supplement your healthy diet with vitamin supplements if you’re finding yourself lacking a bit.  And yes, it’s okay for you to have a meal replacement shake every once in awhile – but only as part of a healthy and balanced diet.  The shakes recommend this anyway.

Remember, 30 days is all it takes to get you well and truly into the habit of healthy – so start today!