Dieting. Nearly every one of us has tried it at one time or another. And while we will often enjoy reveling in the newfound look and leanness we possess for a brief time after dieting, the diet itself is often viewed with negativity. There’s always this sense of urgency and denial that accompanies any diet, and at the end of the day we lie in bed reveling in dreams of the foods we wish we were consuming. This perpetual state of sacrifice very often ends with the diet failing into a smorgasbord of pancakes drive thru delicacies. Or worse, the diet is a success and we lose the weight, only to gain it back the moment “normal” eating returns. It’s a cycle doomed, isn’t it?
There has to be a better way – and there is. By choosing to follow “lean for life” strategies, one can achieve an amazing new leanness and keep it for years to come. Simple changes to daily dining and other activities can gradually make your body burn more calories than it is consuming, and leave you leaner each week you engage in these practices. Ready to give it a try?
It’s time to get moving. Maybe you don’t yet possess the ability to spring into action at the gym every morning at 5 a.m. sharp. But you do have it in you to knock out 30 crunches each day before climbing out of bed. Maybe the ability to hit the weights five days a week isn’t there for you. But three full-body workouts each day is certainly something you can manage. Begin small and incrementally build upon each level of gains. Before you know it, 5 a.m. spin classes or Monday through Friday weight sessions will be a breeze!
You will want to construct a daily diet built out of acceptable foods that you love. Many a dieter has failed because she forced herself to choke down broccoli when consuming another vegetable that she preferred may have allowed her to stick with clean eating. Make a list of the protein, carbohydrate and fat sources that you really enjoy that will support your lifetime leaning goals. Protein options include chicken, lean beef, eggs and egg whites, turkey, and whey protein. Carbohydrates should range from the starchy beans, pasta, rice and potatoes down to fiber-rich fruits and vegetables. Popular fat options involve oils, nuts, and eg yolks. Shop from the outside of the store in, hitting the meat, seafood and produce areas before your even encounter anything man-made inside a box. Finally, design a daily meal schedule made up of 4-5 meals you truly enjoy. Change up the options weekly to suit your ever-changing tastebuds and to keep variety in your dining. Bon appétit!
Most people live in a state of perpetual dehydration. In years past, most people would grab a cup of water from the sink when they were thirsty. Today, we live a society where bottled waters are available everywhere and clean water reaches more corners of the globe than ever before. However, the influx of energy drinks and other highly caffeinated, sugary drinks has led to a situation where most people aren’t drinking enough water, despite enjoying delicious beverages all day long. For lifetime leanness to occur, your body’s processes need to be efficient and highly functional. That means staying hydrated, with clean water, on a regular basis. Aim for a gallon of water each day and you’ll soon discover it’s easier than you thought!
You continually analyze your workouts, your diet, and your recovery. When it the last time you took a long, hard look at the negative stressors influencing your life? Just as eating and training wisely will lead to muscle gains, letting stress and negativity occupy your thoughts on a regular basis can lead to breakdowns in muscle creation and continual reservations of body fat. Stress hormones such as cortisol are released when you obsess and worry, and over time, the buildup of these toxins can truly impact your physique in a negative way. Address each concern then move on to a happier place where you can build some muscle!
Your body adapts very quickly to the demands you place upon it. Training with one particular workout might get your body’s fat burning and muscle building processes roaring for a month. However, your incredibly deductive body will quickly acquire all the muscle it needs to maintain that level. From there, it’ll be time to change up your workout once again to keep the body guessing. Aim to introduce a new form of cardiovascular training to your workouts each month. Hiking, rock climbing, and every machine in your gym should be given at shot at least once. Plus, it’s fun!
As mentioned, varying up your cardio can help your body to continually grow leaner, stronger, and healthier as it grows and improves to meet the changing demands you place upon it. And for about a million years before humans had access to commercial gyms, people managed to remain lean and healthy as a result of normal, daily outdoor activity. Why not continue the trend that worked so well for your ancestors? Daily walking, running, hiking, and other outdoor exercise is always interesting and continually challenging. If your location allows for it, you should be working outdoor cardio into your training at least twice per week. Like your parents used to say… Go outside and play!
As soon as babies can sit up, they’re trying to crawl. As soon as they can crawl, they want to walk. And as any parent can attest, as soon as they can walk, they will want to run. While running is the perhaps the most effective (and simple) high intensity exercise once can employ to get and stay lean for life, it can take a toll on the joints and tendons of the body. Therefore, daily running isn’t a realistic activity strategy for most people. However, adding a brisk walk to your daily routine is a lifelong habit which can literally add decades to your life. Plus, you’ll be leaner and feel better for all those extra years as well! Start with a quarter mile walk at any pace you wish. Work your way up to the point where you can complete a 1 to 2 mile brisk walk each day.