Quick Guide to Healthy Snacking

Did you know that our digestive system was designed to receive and process food every four hours or so?  That’s why we often get the munchies in the middle of the afternoon, between lunch and dinner time.

Hunger is the physiological drive to eat, regulated by internal mechanisms. When we haven’t eaten for a while, body cells become deprived of fuel, which stimulates the feeding centre in the brain to signal us to eat. Therefore, snacking is a way to maintain our energy levels.

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Five Easy Steps To Achieve Your Fitness Goals

“I’ll do it tomorrow, next Monday, next month…” Yes, we do wish to … (exercise more, eat better, etc) but life is so busy that it is hard to accomplish everything we want in one day. So, we postpone it (once more). The problem is that procrastination can become a (bad) habit, impeding you from achieving your best. Why does it happen so often? Do we lack drive to move forward or are we just overwhelmed by the change?

More often than not, the problem lies in planning. Without a clear plan of action, chances are that you won’t get anywhere. The question is “how can you create a plan that is both easy to follow and effective?” Probably, that’s where many people get confused and overwhelmed. How can you act if you are not sure of what to do? This uncertain situation leads to paralysis and consequent procrastination.

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Don’t Let Your Metabolism Slow You Down

You probably have heard a lot about it but do you really know what is metabolism?

In simple words, metabolism is the process in which the body converts food into energy. And why does it matter? Well, for starters, your metabolism determines how fast you burn up the calories you consume. The higher your metabolic rate, easier it is to burn calories.

The amount of energy your body needs to survive, aka basal metabolic rate, is determined by your age, gender, body size (height and weight) and body composition. Let’s face it, most of which we can’t change.

But do not despair! With a little help, we can fine-tune your metabolism and transform your body in a calorie-burning machine.

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Why You Shouldn’t Drink Your Calories

If you are trying to lose weight, this is an easy way to cut calories without starving yourself.

Liquid calories are readily absorbable, meaning that they will go straight into your bloodstream as sugar. This produces an immediate response from the body, releasing a huge amount of insulin[1]. Insulin job is to take up all the sugar floating around, taking it to muscles and organs where it should be used as energy. The problem is when those sites are full, insulin will have to make other arrangements. Which means taking the sugar to your liver where it will take the form of a long-term type of storage. You probably heard of it before. It is called FAT. And your body favourite storage spot is your belly.

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Detox Revised

It is January. Holidays are over and it is time to face the reality. You overdid it throughout the festivities. Hey, don’t feel ashamed. You are not alone. I did the same. Too much to drink, too much to eat, not nearly enough exercise.

Now, it’s time to get back on track and I have a PLAN. We are going to DETOX. Alright, calm down! Not what you are thinking. Just listen to me.

First things first. What is Detox anyway?

According to Dr Google, “detox is a process or period of time in which one abstains from or rids the body of toxic or unhealthy substances.”

It doesn’t seem too hard. For how long are we doing it?

Let’s try one week? I can definitely cut stuff for a single week.

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Changing Your Exercise Perspective

Don’t you love a New Year? Our hearts fill up with hope and we start envisioning how the year is going to look like. We get in touch with our dreams again and say: “It’s time to give it one more try”.

Does that sound like something you would say? I have certainly experienced that several times. There is nothing wrong with that. However, to get something you never had, you must do something you never done. Doing exactly the same thing you did last time is not going to cut it. You need a fresh start.

If you are not an active person and seem to have trouble sticking to any exercise regimen, try changing the way you perceive exercise. You see, exercise should not be seen as a chore but an activity you spontaneously do FOR yourself (not to yourself). The goal is to find enjoyment rather then focusing solely on a desired outcome.

Keep in mind that results (no matter what your goals are) come from small efforts consistently repeated over time. The keyword here is CONSISTENTLY. That means that if you really want to get where you want to be you must be able to stick to a plan. Truth be told, you will be more likely to be consistent if the activity you choose to practice brings you joy, excitement, and a sense of accomplishment.

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Weight Loss Plan

Losing weight is not an easy task. Just ask any person who has ever tried maintain a lean body and they will tell you that it is hard work. You may think that all you need is strong willpower but I’ll tell you right now: willpower is not enough. You need a good plan. Without a proper plan your efforts won’t last a week.

Did you know that to lose 1 kg of fat you need to burn whopping 9000 calories? Just to put into perspective, a light jog burns about 200 calories per hour (depending on your body weight) which means that you will need 45 hours of running to burn a single kilo of fat. Discouraging? You bet.

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Meal Planning 101

Eating healthy on regular basis can be quite challenging. In my experience, the best way of avoiding falling into the junk food/take out trap is being prepared. If you arrive home from work and have everything ready to prepare a delicious and nutritious meal, you will be less likely to end up at McDonalds drive thru.

Here are some tips for creating your own meal planning system. This is the method I use to plan my meals and grocery shopping for the week.

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Working the Back – Horizontal Pull

The basic horizontal pull exercise is a row. It targets mainly the horizontal fibres of our back muscles. When you develop a strong back, those muscles pull the shoulders back (flattening the shoulder blades against the rib cage), giving you a nice open-chest posture like ballerinas and military people have.

Rows are similar to pull-downs/pull-ups. They both engage the same muscle groups and involve shoulder and elbow joints. The difference between the two exercises lies in body positioning. In a pull-down, weight is moved from above the head to the chest (vertical pull). In a row, load is moved horizontally (seated cable row) or in an angle (bent-over row), depending on how you position your body. Rows could be considered the opposite movement of chest presses.

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