June 17, 2010

Diamond Bar Boot Camp Instructor is Turning Back The Clock

Diamond Bar Boot Camp Instructor is Turning Back The Clock

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As we get older we start really thinking about our health. This is specially true when we have kids. I always took great care of my health but now more than ever I want to make sure that I am physically healthy and able to take care of my wife and daughter.

Here is an email I received the other day from my awesome friend John who handles all my insurances.

Sam

“You are in amazing health.  You qualified for the best rates available.  You are in better health today than you’ve ever been in the past.  Your EKG and blood count was perfect.”

Pass this along to anyone you know that is looking to make a change.

Why It Matters

But first, let’s take a look at why it even matters.

Check out this article I came across a couple days ago:

U.S. diabetes cases to double, costs triple by 2034By 2034, nearly twice as many Americans will have diabetes and spending on the disease will triple, further straining the U.S. health system and testing the viability of Medicare and other government health insurance programs, U.S. researchers said on Friday. …. will rise from approximately 24 million people to 44 million people by the year 2034 …. “We anticipate that the cost of taking care of those people – and these are direct medical costs – will triple over the same period of time, going from $113 billion today to $336 billion (per year),” Huang said in a telephone interview.Ouch! Today about 11% of Americans are diabetic, about 95% of those being Type II diabetic, the kind that comes from your lifestyle. That means it’s preventable. And even if you aren’t full-blown diabetic, there are plenty of other issues that come from an unhealthy lifestyle. You could say that this is my proposal to fix the healthcare system by keeping you from needing it.

So here are eight tips that will accomplish two goals for you:

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They’ll make you healthier. You’ll be sick less often.

You’ll feel better. And more importantly, what we all really care about, you’ll look better.

Your bulges will bulge less. Your clothes will fit better and you’ll need less of them to look great. Your confidence will go up.

You’ll have fun in the process instead of trudging through more flavorless “healthy” meals and another boring workout.
1. Eat Real Food 90% Of The Time
the cornerstone of your health is what you eat (and what you don’t eat). Most of your results come from what you eat. So start with just eating real food. What is real food?

* Food grows and dies. It isn’t created.
* Food rots, wilts, and becomes generally unappetizing, typically rather quickly.
* Food doesn’t need an ingredient label (and probably isn’t in a package either).
* Food doesn’t have celebrity endorsements.
* Food doesn’t make health claims.

You might be thinking that eliminates a lot of foods, but really all it eliminates are food imposters, things designed to look, taste, and smell like food, but that destroy your body. Here’s a not-so-brief list of the foods you’re left with:

beef, chicken, turkey, pork, salmon, shrimp, crab, lobster, eggs, cheese. Spinach, kale, cucumbers, carrots, turnips, squash (spaghetti, butternut, and acorn to name a few), sweet potatoes, collard greens, broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, onions, radishes, bok choi, olives, cabbage. (Deep breath.) Apples, bananas, cherries, melons, berries (straw, black, rasp, and blue), pears. Almonds, walnuts, pistachios, Brazil nuts. Coconut oil, palm oil, butter, olive oil. And let’s not forget herbs and spices like parsley, sage, rosemary, and thyme (thank you Simon and Garfunkel), garam masala, curry powder, paprika, cumin, cinnamon, garlic, ginger, and nutmeg.

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If you need some help figuring out how to cook all of these new foods that have probably never been in your kitchen before, check out Nikki Young’s Paleo Cookbooks or Antonio Valladares’ Healthy Urban Kitchen.

Inevitably, there are a few gray areas like packaged bulk products, such as nuts and olives. I think you can probably figure these out on your own.

If it is a natural product, something that doesn’t come from a laboratory, it’s fair game.

Olives are fruits and nuts are…well, nuts.

Don’t over-think things. You know what foods will make you healthier and what won’t.

2. Eat What You Want 10% Of The Time

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Pick vices that you really enjoy.

If chocolate cake isn’t your thing, don’t eat it.

Wait for the pumpkin pie or whatever really tickles your fancy.

Don’t eat junk just because it’s there.

On that note, pick smart vices, like good dark chocolate or high-quality ice cream.

Limit caffeine and alcohol, but you don’t have to completely eliminate them.


3. Train Hard, But Short

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It can even be as simple as bodyweight exercises that you do in your living room or hotel room.

You can be completely done with an intense workout in less than thirty minutes.

There’s really no more needed for just being healthy.

I like all high intensity short workouts here because they are short, intense, and fun.
4. Have An Active Lifestyle

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The 30-45 minutes every day that you spend intensely training doesn’t mean you should sit around the rest of the time.

Take a walk, go for a hike, ride a bike, throw a Frisbee or football, ski or snowboard…the possibilities are endless.

Just turn off the TV and get outside for some fresh air and sunshine (see #6).

I think this is a key difference between people that struggle to make their life health-oriented and those that don’t.

If you enjoy getting outside, enjoy walking around in nature, enjoy a bike ride (whether a leisurely ride or tearing it up on some trails), you won’t need to worry too much about whether you’re active enough.

You’ll find reasons to get up and move just because it feels good.


5. Compete

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I bet there are a lot of people that are going to disagree with me outright on this one.

Competing often takes on a negative connotation and some seem to think we should avoid it for the most part.

There’s no reason that it needs to be a negative.

Competition can be quite the motivator and increase your enjoyment as long as it doesn’t become an obsession or keep you from enjoying what you’re doing.

Recreational sports leagues are great for getting a bit of competition, but keeping it fun.

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Along with rec league sports, you can join any number of Master’s sports, from Track and Field to swimming, from Olympic weightlifting to powerlifting.

I can vouch that …it’s fun and there’s a competitive, but supportive, spirit of people with similar interests and camaraderie.

6. Embrace The Great Outdoors

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I’m not talking about the John Candy movie.

Anyone that’s been around here for more than a month has already been beat over the head with this information a few times.

For the newcomers, here’s a tip: you need sunlight to be healthy.

That’s not sunlight while slathered in chemicals to “protect your skin,” but sunlight on exposed skin.

Your body needs sunlight to make vitamin D.

It drives your immune system. It staves off dementia.

It helps your body fight off cancer.

It looks like it might even improve muscle power.
That doesn’t mean to go sit in the sun for 8 hours with no clothes on.

Just get some sun on exposed skin.

7. Sleep More

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In today’s hard-charging, get-ahead, “success-oriented” society, sleep is one of the first things to go.

It’s funny that sleeping less is viewed as a hallmark of success.

Nutrition may be #1, but sleep is a close second place when it comes to how healthy you are.

How much should you sleep? 7.5 to 9 hours per night. Unfortunately, most of us have to get up early to get to work.

That means you need to go to bed earlier.

In the winter especially, when the sun is down early, you should be going to bed earlier.

Rise and fall with the sun…okay, maybe not at 6pm, but try to be in bed by 10:30.


8. Relax

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My final tip is to find simple ways to relax.

We spend most of our time very wound up and stressed.

Jobs, commutes, crazy bosses and coworkers, running to and from soccer and cheerleading practice…the list goes on.

Add in a recession, possible money issues, “flu pandemics”, and the nightly news full of worldwide stressors and it’s no wonder we’re always so tense.

With all that we have going on, few of us actually take the time to just chill out.

In the past couple years, I’ve come up with several things that help me to relax and unwind.

* Meditation
* Reading
* Playing with my little baby girl Bailee

Your relaxation may be different, but I think it’s key to come up with something that works for you.

It might be yoga or cooking or knitting sweaters for your dogs.

Stamp collecting, wood working, …the possibilities are limited only by what you find fun.

I’ll tell you something else that I’ve done in the past few years…simplifying my life.

I got rid of the superfluous items and kept only what I need and use.

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I don’t watch much TV at all.

Leo Babauta of Zen Habits is the king of simplicity.

There’s a lot that we can all learn from him.

I recommend checking out his three books on learning to live simply and get more enjoyment out of living.

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