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Awww! I can hardly move. Yesterday I completed my first full body workout, and today i’m as sore as *bleep*. But you know how the saying goes “if it hurts to tie your shoes, you must be doing something right”.

I wont lie, I had my doubts about whether I would be sore after a full body workout. Going into the workout I thought hitting muscle groups only once, as you should with a full body routine, would be a breeze. Pssh, I’m use to hitting these muscles groups multiple times in one workout. Just once should be easy. Man, was I wrong. Judging from the soreness the workout was very effective.

I was actually doing a good deal of sweating from weight training even. Now there’s a concept I’m not familiar with. My body was simply not prepared for a full body workout, and that means results! If you haven’t already, I would suggest everyone try switching to a full body routine this beach season. It can provide a nice boost in your physique this summer.

If you’re interested in my lifting stats, I made a quick spreadsheet on google docs here.

It’s almost beach season! We better figure out how to slim down and get looking good before we miss this summer completely, right.

I was using stumble upon the other day when I came across an article promoting full body workouts over split routine workouts. The article was suggesting that a full body workout may be better than a split routine. Of course, I wouldn’t know. I’ve been doing a split routine since I started working out. So I decided I better do my research.

I was excited with what I found. A full body workout burns more calories and requires less trips to the gym! Now tell me doesn’t that seem perfect for “beach season” preparation? Seriously burning more calories means more fat loss, and less trips to the gym means more time in the sun or more time for cardio. And when I say less days in the gym, I mean it. I’m talking about three workouts a week. Of course, I’ll still be spending my off days doing cardio.

Want more information on full body workouts google it or check out this article on one of my favorite fitness resource sites. It will show you how to get started on your own full body work out routine in no time.

It’s pretty common knowledge now that one of the factors leading to obesity is stress. Stress slows down our metabolism and it can ruin even the most dedicated dieter with over eating. I know, I know. We all have our reasons for stress. Be it work, financial hardship, or school. But all excuses aside, if we want to live a healthier life we need to eliminate those high stress levels.

I’ve been living a relatively stress free life these past few months, so I thought I would share some of the things I do that help me. We’ll start with two simple things for week one that will help lower stress levels.

First and foremost, set a bedtime! Yea yea, some of the older readers out there are probably thinking this is crazy. For me, I’ve always had a bed time so it’s nothing new. I try to get to sleep no later than 10:30. It is suggested by many sources that we should get around 8 hours of sleep each night, so set your bedtime accordingly dependent upon on when you are required to wake up. It’s also more important that you keep the same sleep schedule every single day. That means no cheating on weekends. Our bodies will adapt to a sleep cycle if we are consistent, and it is this adaptation that will allow for the most beneficial sleep. No more waking up and smashing the alarm clock, instead you’ll find yourself waking up fresher and ready to move on with your day. I’m told if you’re really consistent with your sleep, you can train your body to wake up without an alarm clock.

Second, start your day off on the right foot. Find something that will cheer you up at the start of your day. I find listening to an uplifting song on my way to school is a great way to do this. Others things you could try are things like going for a short 10 minute walk in the morning, or warming up on a musical instrument for a few minutes. The key here is find a quick activity you enjoy that will give you a positive boost on your day. You’ll be surprised how much a 10 minute activity can change your attitude towards the rest of the day.

Try to incorporate these things into your daily routine this week, and check back later or subscribe for next week’s tips on living a stress free life.

Every now and then I’ll come a cross a person that is confused as to why I would diet and deprive myself of good food. Then I try to explain that dieting doesn’t mean depriving yourself of delicious foods. Here are some of my favorite healthy snacks.

Banana Chips – We can’t just give up on good fun flavor. Banana chips are probably as yummy as any sinful sugar treat, but much healthier.

Reduced Fat melted Colby Jack on broccoli – This is a nice filling snack to keep you from indulging from less nutritious alternatives

Fat free Cottage Cheese – This is a healthy and delicious snack is a good source of protein for you body builders

Dannon Light & Fit Yogurt – Make sure you  stick to regulated portions and this will keep those ice cream cravings away

Any Fruit – You can’t compile a list of healthy diet snacks without the most basic and fundamental snack

Disaster Party

You just got done eating, and you are contemplating the desert choices. Large milkshake or an apple? You might think to yourself it’s just tonight, and then proceed with the large milkshake. Feeling like a failure, you continue to eat the rest of the night because you’ve already strayed from your diet. Sound like a familiar situation?

It is for me. Last night I sat down to eat some turkey tacos with my brother around 6, and ended up indulging in some treats for desert. What started as a simple little desert soon turned into a 3 hour food party with my brother out of boredom. We ate popcorn, ice cream, chips, and cake in front of the television. The totally calorie intake during those few hours was probably upward of 3500. 3500 calories on top of my daily budget! That’s a pound of fat, and horrible for the body. Not to mention the food hangover afterward.

To think, this would happen to me on the day I created Complete Lifetime is unimaginable. But it did. So, it’s time to learn from this incident and move on. As John Keats would say, “Don’t be discouraged by a failure. It can be a positive experience. Failure is, in a sense, the highway to success, inasmuch as every discovery of what is false leads us to seek earnestly after what is true, and every fresh experience points out some form of error which we shall afterward carefully avoid.”

Lessons learned

  • Accept a small treat every now and then. It’s okay and normal to slip up a little, and one bad snack wont stop you from losing weight.
  • Don’t pig out on junk to fill a void! I can’t seem to learn this lesson. I tend to eat when I’m bored, and this can lead to diet disaster.

Friday night comes, you indulge in junk food and sit down to play video games. Saturday comes after a crazy sugar buzz from Friday night, and you forsaken yourself with the thought “oh, I can’t control my food..”. You then proceed to eat mindlessly, throwing away your hard work and falling off the health boat. We all hit weeks like this, we just need motivation to keep going.

Welcome

Hey, I’m Steve. Welcome to my blog on my journey to living a healthy life (aka, my journey to getting six pack abs).  I’m 18, and I’ve been trying to live healthy for about a year now.  Actually, a few days ago marked the 1 year mark. During this year, I’ve learned a ton,  gained a lot of strength, and I am looking much better. Most of all I feel better. But in all honesty, I didn’t reach my goals which were to be able to bench my body weight and have defined abs. While I will admit my goals may seem ambitious, remember I’m only 18. I wasn’t far from a six pack to begin with, I started at maybe 16% body fat at about 155 pounds(these are rough estimates taken before I understood proper techniques for measuring). I was pretty weak though, I started bench pressing a measly 75 pounds. Now I’m probably at about 12% body fat, and likely bench pressing around 130.

Why the blog?

The last few months, I’ve been falling off the bandwagon. I actually reached my peak weight loss at the end of December weighing in at about 144 pounds. Currently I’m about 148 pounds. I’ve actually gained weight, not lost it! Some of that weight was muscle gains, but a lot of it is fat.

With “beach season” around the corner, and my goals  unfulfilled I decided to start this blog to stay motivated, and possibly motivate you also. I encourage anyone else trying to live healthy and get ripped to comment along the way.

Let us live healthy, and get ripped.