Why do you exercise? Do you do it because your doctor said so? “If you cannot improve your blood sugar levels through diet and exercise by our next visit, we will have to discuss medications for doing so”. How about to relieve stress? That is another one we hear often. Whatever your reason for walking on the treadmill, investing in personal training, or joining a group workout we all know there is another primary reason you do it. You want to look good!
If you’re a woman, it is all about how the clothes fit. Guys, we all know we want to replace our guts with six pack abs. Bottom line, we all understand the health benefits that can come from consistent exercise. We get it. But we really do it because we want to feel great when we look at the reflection staring back at us each morning. Let’s explore several principles you will want to know and implement to eliminate unwanted fat. For starters, you need to know about your metabolism.
I hear clients often talking about how much it has slowed down with their age. But what does that mean and does it really slow down with age? Metabolism is the process by which your body converts what you eat and drink into energy. During this complex biochemical process, calories in food and beverages are combined with oxygen to release the energy your body needs to function.
Even when you’re at rest, your body needs energy for all its “hidden” functions, such as breathing, circulating blood, adjusting hormone levels, and growing and repairing cells. In fact 60 – 75% of your daily caloric need is simply to ensure optimum function of your body as it does what it needs to at rest. You may have heard the term “basal metabolic rate”. If you have, this is what that is. Now that we have defined metabolism, let’s go back that basal need of 60 – 75% to understand principle number one.
You have to recognize that your body will always keep going, barring death of course. So, listen closely when I tell you that one way in which your metabolism is slowed down is when you decide that you are going to starve the fat off of yourself. Because we all have a basal caloric need, your body will react to excessive and prolonged caloric restriction by slowing down your metabolism to ration the energy needs it must attend to in order to keep you alive.
Principle Number One: Understand that you have a basic caloric need that must be met daily to keep your metabolism revved.
There are some other important points to understand about your metabolism also. For starters the foods you eat can impact it. Have you ever heard or read that celery is a negative calorie food? If you haven’t, I’ll explain. You see, when you eat celery by itself, it does not contain very many calories. Additionally, the calories your body expends to digest it are greater than the amount within the celery. Therefore it is considered a negative calorie food because the amount of calories you realize from eating it are less than the number of calories expended to digest it. The fancy term for this is thermogenesis. Digesting, absorbing, transporting and storing the food you consume all takes calories. This accounts for about 10 percent of the calories used each day. For the most part, your body’s energy requirement to process food stays relatively steady and isn’t easily changed. However, it is helpful to note that a diet higher in fiber will increase thermogenesis.
Principle Number Two: You have the ability to increase thermogenesis by consuming a diet rich in high fiber foods.
Point number two is a crucial one to understand also. Your metabolism is greatly impacted by the amount of physical activity you participate in each day. Without getting too technical I want you to understand that both duration and level of effort impact how many calories you expend doing any kind of activity. I think it best to provide a real life example you may relate to. Let’s say that you want to eliminate 10 pounds of body fat. Assuming that you already know and practice principles one and two, we will then look to their physical activity level and effort. First off, understand that 3500 calories equals 1 pound. If we know this, we also know that we will need to create a deficit of 3500 calories in physical activity by the end of the week. If you’ve looked at your schedule and determined that, realistically, you can only do exercise 5 days each week the math tells us you will have to expend 700 calories on those days to achieve a 1 pound weight loss. Here is what you must understand. It is not duration alone that will get you to the end goal. Effort plays a huge role. If you do 30 minutes of exercise as planned yet only expend 200 calories a pop, you are 2500 calories short. This means it would take you a month to be rid of 1 pound! Effort has to increase to effectively expedite body fat loss.
Principle Number Three: Understand your numbers and how they relate to your end goal.
So what about age you may be saying. What impact does age have on metabolism? You have drawn your own conclusions I’m sure simply by comparing the reflection of you now to the one you saw a decade ago. But did your metabolism change? In answering these questions it is important to first recognize three other factors besides physical activity and thermogenesis that impact your basal caloric need.
- Your body size and composition. The bodies of people who are larger or have more muscle burn more calories, even at rest.
- Your sex. Men usually have less body fat and more muscle than do women of the same age and weight, burning more calories.
- Your age. As you get older, the amount of muscle tends to decrease and fat accounts for more of your weight, slowing down calorie burning.
So, in truth, age can play a role in how fast or slow your metabolism is. However, remember that it is your muscle to fat ratio that determines that, not simply your age. This is great news right!? So, when we are insistent that you come to the gym at least twice and optimally three times each week, understand we are saying so because that is the amount of frequency demonstrated to support building muscle tissue.
Principle Number Four: Train with weights that you can safely lift 8-12 times at least 2 times and ideally 3 times each week.
There you have it. If you stick to these four principles consistently you will have no problem keeping your metabolism charged for as long as you want it to be. I underlined consistently because it cannot be overlooked. If you really intend to realize the reflection you dream of seeing, you have to commit daily to these principles. So, rather than using age as an excuse, go kick its butt! Move Better, Feel Better, Live Better my friends!
Welcome New and Returning Clients
Lynn Helseth referred by Patti Trout
Marjorie Wack referred by Sara Jane Lorenzen
Pamela Dintaman referred by Dee Fletcher and Earl Kellogg
Mike Drake – Welcome back!
BodyBasics will be offering two kids exercise and health classes this summer. With the rise of childhood obesity and sedentary lifestyles we decided to take some action! FUNctional Health is a youth fitness and health class being offered to kids 8-12yrs at BodyBasics! In our one hour classes kids will be introduced and educated on healthy habits. The focus will be fitness driven, with education about nutrition, hydration, and importance of adequate physical activity.
- Session 1 June 2-27
- Session 2 July 7 – Aug 8
- Mon, Wed, Fri @4:30pm
- $180 per 4 week session
- Call us to reserve a spot for a child you care about. Space is limited.
Don started training with Myrya at BodyBasics in the beginning of February 2014. At the age of 79, he saw many people in his age group prisoners in their own bodies. He did not want to be like that, so he came to BodyBasics. Don had been told by the doctor that his organs were not functioning as well as they could and exercise would improve that. He started with three goals: to improve muscle strength, cardio ability, and cardio. He is constantly reaching those goals. His weight is up four pounds and his waist line is the same. Don’s wife has been helpful in his training by mentioning his posture and treating him with banana bread and coffee after his workout. She has also mentioned she sees muscle definition, and Don replies: “they are Myrya’s muscles”. Don recently found out that he did not have the strength for a pull-up and now his current goal is to be able to do a pull-up without assistance. Don says he feels stronger and in great health. Congratulations Don for your hard work and dedication!
Recipe – Grilled Kabobs
Nothing says summer like grilling! One of my favorite items on the grill is kabobs. Whether you choose steak, chicken, pork, lamb, or vegetarian, kabobs are a cinch to prepare and cook. Below are some tips to grilling kabobs:
- Choose cuts that are 1- to 1-1/4-inch thick.
- Pre-cook pork and chicken so when grilling you are just finishing off those items.
- Marinade meat before putting them on the skewers.
- Group foods with similar cooking times together. While a skewer of bell peppers, cherry tomatoes and chicken looks appetizing, those tomatoes may turn to mush–by the time the chicken is done. Pre-cooking will help with cooking times.
- Leave a small bit of space between meat and vegetables. This will help cook the meat completely.
- When using wooden skewers, be sure to soak skewers for 10 minutes prior to putting on food.
Now get creative, you can mix and match any way you want. Some of my favorite food items: Shrimp, chicken, beef, cherry tomatoes, mushrooms, bell peppers, red onions, the list goes on and on.
Video – Hip Stability
Myrya, Chris, Amber, Zane, Maureen, Mike, & Carrie