There are a thousand different meal plans, diet programs, weight loss secrets, and every other gimmick under the sun for getting into great shape!
To be honest, the simplest part of the three-fold equation of weights, cardio, and nutrition is actually the weight training aspect.
In its most basic form, the body only needs an overwhelming outside stimulus in order to elicit a muscle-building, calorie-burning response. So, doing 1 set of heavy (to you) alternating dumbbell curls is, in theory, enough to cause a change. The more overwhelming and intense the set is, the more extreme the stimulus elicited. More stress equates to more adaptation.
The second part of the equation, cardio, is a little more complicated, but it can be simplified, nonetheless. Sweat. That’s it!
Perform cardiovascular exercise (jogging, incline walking on the treadmill, hiking, StepMill or Elliptical work, swimming etc.) at a high enough speed/intensity to heat your body up and sweat. If you don’t sweat or “glisten” (Ladies, I’m talking to you!), then breathing at a slightly faster pace than when at rest is the next best indicator.
Nutrition is so drastically complicated it can take years and years and years to even figure out what nutrition protocol works best for you and your specific situation.
Here is an easy way to bypass years of research, trial and error, and just plain old failing at dieting to lose a couple extra pounds of fat without changing much! (That’s what Personal Trainers are for… We do the leg work and chart the course. You, the client, merely have to trust your trainer and follow their course!)
Carbohydrates are used to fuel intense activity… That’s why Sports Drinks are filled to the brim with sugar. Carbohydrates breakdown to glucose in the body. Glucose is a simple sugar (NOT to be confused with table sugar).
Rearrange your meal plan as such to where you are eating all your carbohydrates around your most active times of the day.
If you work out at 6am every Monday-Friday. Then time your carbohydrates before and after the workout. Then, fill up on protein, veggies, and healthy fats throughout the rest of the day. You don’t need a ton of energy to go to sleep. So, why would you eat pasta at dinner? If you workout at 9pm, then follow the same protocol, regardless if you are going to sleep or not.
Of course, consult with your physician before you start any diet or exercise plan.
If you have the green light, here is what a sample menu would look like for someone who works out in the morning and has an 8am – 5pm work schedule:
Low-carb, Low-fat Protein Shake
1 Serving of Steel Cut Oats
1 Low-fat Greek Yogurt
1 Serving of Berries
1 Serving of Granola
Large Green Salad w/ Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Merely rearranging the carbohydrates in your day can help ensure you are fueling the more rigorous parts of your day without overloading your body with sugar at times it may not be able to put it to good use!
Try this nifty trick on for size and see how your energy levels, waistline, and scale-weight are affected!
Yours In Fitness,
Certified Personal Trainer