Consider the following six simple health and fitness tips, which may not tell the entire health/fitness story, but do certainly cover a great deal of ground making it simpler to access essential health/fitness information. Think of these tips as a Post It note you keep in your planner to remind you of pertinent material. As always, prior to beginning any exercise or dietary program, please consult your physician.
Six Simple Health and Fitness Tips
Eat Breakfast! Remember, you are "breaking the fast". You have probably not eaten for 12 or more hours and your body requires fuel to perform. Not only does the fuel provide energy to your physical body it also provides fuel to the mind. You think better, perform better and feel better. Breakfast does not have to be a big undertaking either. Depending upon your dietary restrictions, consuming foods high in complex carbohydrates, approximately one-two hours prior to exercise, will quickly digest and be ready for use as fuel. You may wish to add a little high-quality protein, such as whey, but the main issue here is to feed the body. Prior to workout, avoid foods high in fat as these may take three-five hours to digest. When you begin your workout, the blood will go to the area of greatest need (i.e. your working muscles) leading to gastrointestinal discomfort.
Hydrate throughout the day! You are also dehydrated in the early morning since you have been sleeping and probably not consuming adequate fluids during the night. Simply drink a glass of water, perhaps six to eight ounces upon waking. If you are an early bird exerciser, exercising an hour or two after rising, once you have hydrated, you may just need to sip water throughout your workout and then hydrate well following.
Consume calories all day! This does not mean eating constantly. It does mean not letting more than five hours go without a snack or meal. A snack usually consists of 100-200 calories, so a granola bar, a handful of nuts, a banana or small serving of a protein shake. This consistent caloric input will help you keep your energy level balanced throughout the day.
Resistance training is great! Yes, weight training, whether body weight or external resistance, such as dumbbells, etc., is a great way to improve your body composition (i.e. lean to fat ratio), burn calories, but most importantly, make you strong. Stronger is just better. We move better throughout our lives, typically with fewer injuries as long as our training regimen is safely designed. Anyone may become stronger regardless of age, gender or current fitness level. Perform exercises for all major muscle groups, two-three days/week, on non-consecutive days, working to a point of momentary muscle failure, safely.
Exercise more than you don't and mix it up! There are seven days in a week, so strive for exercising at least four days/week. And, vary your program periodically. You need cardiovascular/cardiorespiratory, resistance and stretching/flexibility training every week and there are dozens of options.
Recovery is essential! You must have time to recover in order to improve. The body must rest and repair to grow. Choose a day of rest and recreation each week. Play, stretch, meditate, relax and rejuvenate!
Jackie Wright is the owner/manager of Never Summer Fitness, LLC located in Grand Lake, Colorado. She may be reached at her website at www.neversummerfitness.com, her email at NSFGL@comcast.net , her blog at www.skyhidailynews.com and her Facebook page at Never Summer Fitness.