Monday, February 16, 2015

One Thing

When we start our pursuit towards a new goal, we often think about EVERYTHING we need to do in order to get there.  What happens as a result of trying to do everything all at once is that nothing gets done. 
So let’s simplify.
What is the one thing that you need to focus on right now?  What one thing is going to create the biggest change for you?
Here’s what I want you to do.  I want you to identify what you goal is, no matter if its fitness related, health related, work related, or just life related.  Then work backwards.
What steps do you need to take in order to get from where you are now, to where you want to be?
Make a list of what needs to get done.  And then ONE at a time, check them off as you accomplish them.  But only focus on one thing till it’s done and till its routine.  Say for example, you want to run a marathon. You’re not going to start day 1 at running 26.2 miles.  That would be foolish.  So what you do is make a plan of how to gradually build up to that end goal.   
It may look a little like, Day 1 walk/run a mile, and each day/week you build and build. 
Buckle down and identify the most pressing MUST-DO's, and then develop a strategy and action-steps around that.  Maybe you even have to determine what you need to eliminate in your life to help further focus your efforts.  Sometimes eliminating a negative is just as powerful and necessary as adding a positive. 

So what is it?  How are you going to improve?  What are you aiming to improve?
Is it in your nutrition?
Is it in your day to day life?
Is it in your relationships?
What “ONE THING” do you NEED to focus on that will best help get you to where you want to go? Identify that and then go DO IT!
In the end it’s up to you to take action on the one thing that you NEED to get to where you want to go.  Are you ready to take action? 

Is it your fitness?
Is it in your nutrition?
Is it in your day to day life?
Is it in your relationships?

What “ONE THING” do you NEED to focus on that will best help get you to where you want to go? Identify that and then go DO IT!

In the end it’s up to you to take action on the one thing that you NEED to get to where you want to go.  Are you ready to take action? 

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Maximize Your Sleep

Think of the best night of sleep you've had. You wake up feeling renewed, refreshed and as though you could take on the world, right? That feeling is what you should have every morning. Not just because it feels good emotionally, that good mood is reflective of how your body has recovered through your sleep cycle. Now think of a restless night of sleep, the aches, the tension, that resistance to get out of bed, the groggy feeling that most likely carried through the rest of your day. The same thing holds true in this case as well. It's an emotional manifestation of how your body has healed overnight.
    Why does sleep have such an affect on us? Is it really that important? How can we maximize our recovery while unconscious?
    Sleep allows our body to repair all the 'wear and tear' we experience throughout the day.  When our body is finally at rest the healing process can begin. Our tissues are able to regenerate and our brain can process and learn from our days experience. Without giving ourselves the proper time needed for these things to occur, we most definitely feel the affects of it the following day. Imagine if your body were battery operated. When a battery isn't charged completely it cannot carry out its full potential. Our bodies react the same way. Sleep is how we 'charge' our body. Without the proper amount of sleep we will be unable to perform to our full potential. 
     So how can we maximize our sleep? The National Sleep Foundation recommends that adults between the ages of 26-64 get 7 hours of sleep.

That amount will either seem appropriate, excessive or no where near what you could possibly ever sleep, depending on what you can afford to sleep and are used to. For those who find themselves shy of this recommended amount, which seems to be the majority of adults, we will highlight a few points that will allows us to get the most out of our sleep. This does not necessarily mean we need to sleep more. In today's society it can be hard to find time, especially time for sleep when our lives are so tightly scheduled. Here's some tips that will help you to sleep soundly no matter the time you can allot for it. 
•Electronics: Did you know the waves that electronics devices emit can interact with your brain waves and cause your sleep to be disrupted? Try to keep all electronic devices turned off and at least three feet away from you while sleeping. Even television before bed cause restless sleep. When preparing for bed, turn the television off 30 mins prior to bedtime. As we watch television our brain activity accelerates and our neurons start to race. When you shut off electrical devices 30 prior to sleep, you allow your brain to calm down and prepare for sleep. 
•Caffeine: A cup of coffee or tea sounds like a great way to relax at the end of the day. Unfortunately, this could be the exact reason you can't seem to relax. The general rule of thumb is to switch to decaf after diner. However, even then the lingering caffeine in your system from hours before can cause problems when it comes to sleeping. If you have to have that cup of coffee or tea, try switching to decaf after lunch.
•Exercise: Exercising regularly is a known contributing factor to a good night of rest. The one thing we do want to think about it the timing of our workout. After vigorous exercise you want to allow 3-4 hours before going to sleep. It will take that long for your body to settle and calm down enough to allow proper sleep

Sunday, February 1, 2015

February Goals

"Leaders aren't born, they are made.  They are made by hard effort, which is the price which all of us must pay to achieve any goal which is worthwhile." - Vince Lombardi

Because of yesterdays Super Bowl, it felt appropriate to use a Vince Lombardi quote.  Leaders are made. They are made by the situations they are thrust into, for the decisions they have to make in crunch time.

Are you willing to put in effort?  Reaching your goals isn't going to come easy.  Sometimes you need to ask yourself "How much effort am I putting into my goals?"  Is it enough?  Maybe you need a little help getting there.

At the beginning of the month we set a January behavior goal.  Remember?  How'd you do?  Well now its February and its time to set a new goal.  Go ahead and write it down!

Here are a few tips that could help you get there:

1. There is no one diet that is the best or will work the best for everyone.
Everyone is different and their body chemistry is different.  Use your own body as your guide and let your results tell you whether or not you’re doing what’s best for you. Always pay attention to what your body tells you, NOT what somebody else is doing.
2. The best way to measure your fat loss is by using a mirror!
The scale is just a number.  Seriously if the scale is your #1 concern, move to the moon, the effects of gravity are different.  How you look and feel is always more important than numbers.  Body measurements and taking pictures are also a good way to track progress, but if you look good then you look good and it doesn't matter what the scale says.
3. Omega 3’s are your friend.
Salmon, flaxseeds, walnuts and fish oil are a good part of your daily meal plans. The difference with and without them is incredible!
4. You can't out exercise bad nutrition.
How many times have you heard this? Your workouts are 20-30% of the fat loss equation and nutrition is 70-80%. If you’re exercising regularly and not seeing fat loss results, you must make an adjustment to your nutrition.
5. Cheat days or an off day here and there are a good addition to the fat loss equation.
Remember, it's not about being perfect all the time.  Following a guideline of 80-90% healthy eating is a good start.
6.  Stop eating processed crap.  Stick with the basics. 
Fill your day with natural proteins, fruits, vegetables, raw nuts and healthy fats. 
7. Fat loss is not only about what you eat and how you train but also about the thoughts you have each day.
Positive thoughts breed positive behavior and positive results. The same is true for negative thoughts and attitudes.  I've always said this.  Stay positive, no matter what.  You reap what you sow.   
8. Working out is not just about the exercises you do at the gym.
Get outside and exercise.  Its cold now, but there are lots of things to do.  Snowboarding, ice skating.  Find something you enjoy and get out there and do it.  Even just every day activities of walking is a good addition.  Just move.
9.  Find some sort of social support system.  A friend or a group of friends with a common goal will almost always succeed. 
Telling someone, or going on the health journey with someone holds you accountable to them.  Accountability is key.  Exercising with a friend is even better as you have someone that will push you more than you would push yourself.  I see this when I train people together in pairs or groups.  There starts to be a mini competition.  

Enjoy these tips. Hopefully you will use at least some of them.