In 2 months and 15 days, I will be 40 years young. Even though I feel like I am in my twenties and in the prime of my life, ready, willing and able to take on the world, my health is at the forefront. Not just for cosmetic reasons but for longevity and quality of life. Many of us in the 40 and over club share this concern. So as an ex- personal fitness trainer of 8 years, allow me to shed some light on the subject for all of us.
The Battle of “Fort Bulge.”
Okay, so most of my life I always had a flat tummy. Once I began weight training and studying for my ACE fitness trainer certification, I earned rock hard abs that many women would kill to have. It takes hard work and dedication to get them toned and defined. Your diet must be ‘clean’ as we say in the fitness world and you must put in the time and effort. I will go in depth about that shortly.
Currently, I am at war with my body and have been fighting against its pursuit to build “Fort Bulge” right around my waistline. This new unwanted construction has been in effect for a year now but mostly due to my sedentary lifestyle. I do not know if any of you remember from prior posts, but I spent a year on the road with Jimmy( my love), who drives an 18 wheeler. I embarked on the adventure looking good and feeling great; it ended with me 20 pounds heavier and feeling achy and fatigued. Now that I have been home for three months it is time to answer the war cry. Whoever would like to join me in battle, I humbly invite you. We can take up arms together!!!
Where do I start?
If I had a dime for every time a new client asked me that question; I would not be rich, but I would have a nice nest egg for retirement. Detox!!! If you are putting junk in your body, it’s imperative to flush it out. Most people are not aware that we should clean our bodies periodically, it does not matter if you are a carnivore, herbivore, or vegan. Think of your body like your car; you tune it up regularly to keep your engine in good condition. Well, we must do the same for our body. There are many ways to flush your body, colonics, herbs and fasting. What’s most important is you choose what is best for you and consult your physician. Personally, I prefer natural herbs due to my fear of synthetic medicine.
You have had a tune up now it’s time to put the good stuff. Vegetables, protein, carbs, water, water and more water. When you are changing your eating habits, there is a method to the madness. Fifty percent of your meals should be vegetables, 20% protein, 10% carbohydrates and the remaining 20% water. The secret that completes the formula is meal configuration. What to eat and when! Always and I do mean always plan for your heaviest meal around your most active time of the day. Consume your carbs at that time as well; they contain sugar and convert to fat. The body will use the sugar in carbohydrates for energy.
For those who love a thick juicy steak or burger, I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but it’s time to cut back or stay away from fried foods. Remember we are at war not only against ‘Fort Bulge’ but also high cholesterol is lobbying for a seat. My plans are to go back to a vegetarian lifestyle. After over ten years of vegetarianism two years ago I started with chicken and graduated to occasionally eating red meat. Needless to say at first, I was very ill, but I was a glutton for punishment. Jimmy loves his pork chops and ribs; he will not be giving them up! Over time I developed acne, fatigue, headaches and gradual weight gain. Well, my friends, I am tired of being sick and tired. Pun intended!!!
What is this thing called exercise?
LOL!!! Let’s not make getting in shape more than what it has to be. No, you don’t have to give your right arm, leg, blood and your first born child to the exercise gods. That statement used to be an excellent icebreaker with new clients. I required newbies to do 45 minutes of cardiovascular training four days a week. Week two we incorporated exercises using their body weight. The third week, I put on my drill sergeant hat, handed them some weights and start teaching form. Suddenly in week four, drill Sargent Lydia is wielding a double barrel shotgun and barking orders. No Pain No Gain was the flag I erected in their minds, and they marched to my beat, happy about the what they hoped to accomplish. Not to pat myself on the back or anything but all my clients received results. Well, maybe a slight pat.
Choose an exercise regimen that will be comfortable for you. A trainer and the gym is not for everyone. At this point, my workout consists of Zumba and Yoga classes with an occasional workout with light weights at an all women’s gym. Just get active. Physical activity will guarantee great results but also increase your energy.
It is Now or Never.
I’m afraid if I don’t start now while it is bugging the hell out of me, I will get complacent. Putting off until tomorrow what I should start today. So as I embark on my journey, I invite others to join me. I am here for advice or encouragement, just comment on this post or email me personally at firstname.lastname@example.org.