I can’t walk around a corner without seeing an ad for health and fitness.
I’m not saying it’s a bad thing. I have always been into fitness, and I think it is an important part of life that most people don’t put enough emphasis on. Your body is like any other machine. If you use it often, and take care of it, it will last. If you let it sit there without using it, your body will turn into a lumpy piece of shit that doesn’t work right.
That’s just the truth in the matter.
I stay pretty up to date with fitness news and media. I enjoy reading about new exercises and diets. However, I feel as if our society is getting a little carried away with it.
“Don’t eat this! Don’t eat that! Follow me to transform your life!” – blah blah blah. Everyone is an expert. It’s pretty annoying and also intimidating for someone who is just starting to get into fitness.
It doesn’t have to be that complicated. Most people are just looking to be healthy, and aren’t super motivated on getting that six pack and looking like a gladiator. I’ve spent years reading up on health, diet, different exercise programs, and experimenting with different forms of movement. I’ve done juice diets, high protein diets, low carb diets and everything in between. I’ve done CrossFit, power lifting, long distance running and your standard gym workouts. Over the years I have come up with a fitness regiment that works for me, and that’s great.
Through all of my experience, I have devised three simple tips. If you do this consistently, you will be healthy, looking great and feeling great.
1 – Eat Lots Of Different Colors
All these fad diets drive me nuts. Everyone thinks they know the secret. But there is no secret, it’s just common sense.
Meats, breads, starches, vegetables, fruits, fats, sugars, you name it – everything has a benefit in your diet. The opposite is also true, too much of any one thing can be detrimental.
The way food breaks down into different kinds of energy is actually very fascinating and I encourage anyone to read up on it. If you don’t have the desire to do, then just follow the simple rule of eating lots of colors.
The more vegetables, the better. If you eat meat, then mix between red meats and white meats. If you don’t then eat different nuts. For me (and yes I eat meat) a healthy meal consists of 4 or 5 different colors. Nature has made this very simple for you. If you want a balanced diet, eat lots of colors.
2 – Move Until You Sweat
Here’s the thing about exercise – it hurts.
Going to the gym and laying on the foam roller will not improve your health.
No matter what your style of exercise, if you are not sweating, you’re not doing shit. If you enjoy lifting, I recommend putting super sets together to increase your heart rate. Simply going to the gym and doing bench press and curls is silly. Sure your muscles will get bigger, but your heart and your lungs are still being neglected.
You need to move. You need to feel a little pain. You need to sweat. If you are not sweating then you are just pretending to be working out. Big muscles will not protect you from a heart attack. The more muscle mass you have the more oxygen your body needs. If you carry a lot of muscle but have a poor diet and high body fat, this will just put stress on your organs and your circulation system.
If you are not sweating, you’re wasting your time.
3 – Consistency Is The Key
This is the biggest problem I see. For fellow gym rats like myself, we know that the first week in January is the worst time to go to the gym. Everyone gets fat over the holidays and decides to get in shape for their new years resolutions. People flock to the elliptical machines for three months and then they stop.
Fitness is all encompassing. If you take care of your body, you will also see benefits in your mental and emotional health. It is a huge release of endorphins and a form of meditation. The only way to really be healthy is to make fitness and good health a part of your life.
It’s about balance. You are far better off working out for a half hour three days a week than you are working out 3 hours a day for a month. There is no such thing as an overnight success in fitness. The Universe doesn’t allow it. You have to pay the price for your health.
Wrapping It Up – Just Add Moderation
1 – Eat lots of different colors. Every color (including brown meats or nuts) play a role.
2 – You need to workout until you sweat, and try to maintain your sweat. If you want to take care of the muscle that really counts (meaning your heart) you have to sweat and feel a little bit of pain.
3 – Finally, you have to make good health a part of your life. Fitness should be just as important as your job. The people that fail to do this are the ones that wake up when they are 40 and find themselves 60 pounds overweight feeling like a fat blob. You don’t want this. You want to be healthy and live a happy life.
You don’t have to starve yourself, just eat right. You can still have dessert and bacon, just be mindful of your calories, carbs and saturated fats. You shouldn’t workout for 5 hours a day either. Don’t obsess over exercise, but make it an important part of your life. Balance and moderation are paramount.
Granted, I realize that this is a very simplistic view of exercise and fitness. I encourage everyone to find something that they love. For me, running will always be my go to. Some people love yoga, some people love food, some people love CrossFit. Whatever makes you feel good is what you should do. I encourage everyone to read and learn because I think you will find it all very interesting and enjoyable.
Exercise will benefit you in all ways. Your emotions, your mental strength, your ability to push through pain and of course your ability perform at your physical peak will all improve with a steady fitness regimen.
Just do it. Stop being a baby and a wuss. Get your shit together and exercise. You want to do it slowly and consistently, because just like everything else in life, you have to pay the price.