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We are ALL body builders

You’ve heard:

You are what you eat.
Food is Fuel.
Carbs are bad.
Fat is bad.
Sugar is bad.

Everything in moderation.

The truth:

You literally are what you eat.
Food is Information.
Carbs are information.
Fat is information.
Sugar is information.

Eat everything and eat it all in moderation.

Our bodies can’t function without fuel, sure. But our body isn’t simply an engine, it’s the entire vehicle. And it has to rebuild itself around the clock…

Say you’re in a car and the manufacturer didn’t feel like spending the extra time to fortify the steel frame, install all of the windows or even slap on a coat of paint. How far do you think that car will take you? Would you feel safe? Would you want to live with that car? Probably not.

The fact is, you wouldn’t buy that car.

You’d want a car that suits your lifestyle, personality, finances.  You want to know if it’s safe, runs well, gets good mileage etc. A lot goes into choosing a vehicle: what model fits you and your loved ones, what manufacturer makes the vehicle that’s perfect for your life… We don’t think about our bodies as our transportation, but we wouldn’t get anywhere without them. And what they’re made of is completely up to us.

We are the manufacturers of our vehicles.

So if you’re building your vehicle, what kind of materials would you want it made out of? All materials are NOT equal.  Think the guy up there eating the donut is gonna be stoked with the tire he’s creating? Will the ladies and gentlemen eating the colorful salads be showing off their chassis?

Each bit of nutrition that you consume is sending directions and supplying materials to your workers. Take in some orange food and you’re sending beta-carotenoids to your workers that create Vitamin A = healthy vision and neurological function. Windows, check. Distributer cap, check.

Consume some complete protein and you’re giving your workers all the amino acids they need to build effective gears, wires and hinges. Mobilization, check. Doors, check.

A calorie is not a calorie. A calorie is a set of instructions, and building materials.

One hundred calories of chocolate is going to send a completely different set of instructions and materials to your body than one hundred calories of broccoli. (Man, that’s a lot of broccoli.) Don’t worry, you can still turn your SAAB into a Camaro.

Instead of counting your calories, count your colors. Our bodies need a wide variety of vitamins, minerals and proteins in order to function at top speeds, provide safe travel or even efficiently pump fluids.

To increase your miles per gallon, or ehm calorie, make it a point to eat every color of the rainbow throughout the week. It’s tough to get them all in during one 24 shift, so spread out the inventory over a few days.

Be sure to not overload one group of workers with the same materials over and over. They can only do so much in a specific amount of time and the excess material will end up in storage. That means carbs, fat and protein. Too much of anything ends up in storage… unless you really want to make a stretch Hummer with extra extra doors and tires. (Parking may not be fun though.) Speak with a Registered Dietician to find out how much of each macronutrient is best for your body.

And don’t forget water! Water is the messenger for all of the instructions. If there’s not a messenger, the workers have to stop production to go ask for the materials. Sure, they’ll get the message, but it slows down production.

Try these simple focus techniques and you’ll be super-charged in no time.

Consider balanced nutrition your lifetime warranty.

Author: Dana Andrews CPT, PN1

 

 

Mindset: Stay Curious

Mindset is everything.

Some situations are beyond our control. Life gives us plenty of challenging circumstances to face. How we show up to those events may have a direct influence on how said events pan out. So, even though we can’t completely control circumstances in our lives, we might have more power than we think.

It is our mindset that determines how we are affected. But most of us operate the other way around…

Take a moment to check in with yourself:
Are there areas where there is discomfort in your life?
Are there areas where you are content? Even joyful?

What kind of mindset do you bring to those areas?

It’s likely that if it is a joyful remembrance, there is less thought put into it.
However, if it causes discomfort, we tend to dwell and pick it apart, spending more time thinking about how uncomfortable it is.. more time that the joyful areas of our lives. Although this is a necessary process in problem solving and emotional growth, it doesn’t always serve us.

Let’s say that the uncomfortable area of your life is beyond your control. Usually that means we’ve assigned a negative label to it and therefor experience a negative emotion every time it comes up in our mind. Each time you ruminate, you are emotionally hijacked, your focus is shattered and the rest of your day could suffer. But…

What if you made up your mind to approach this area with a neutral mindset?
(Some more serious situations won’t fit into this category but simple application can be made.) Not a happy mindset or even a “gonna-fix-it” mindset – – just neutral.

Would it take the power out of the situation? What would happen if you allowed yourself to have a new experience, to stay curious and observant, rather than labeling it as negative due to past experience?

Now, that being said: if the stove is hot, don’t touch it again!

If the situation has been labeled negative, we aren’t allowing it room to change. Therefor it won’t. It will stay negative and hold that power that you’ve assigned it. But if the situation has potential to change, we can only benefit from letting it evolve naturally. Neutrally (without funneling our negative emotions into it).

The next time that uncomfortable area comes into your mind, simply observe. From a neutral place, you can observe the situation and your emotional reaction to it without becoming the emotion. After all, logic and emotion don’t make good neighbors. Observe where your mind goes and try to guide it back to curiosity. 

“I’m thinking about (blank) again. I wonder what that will be like today…” 
or
“Ok, I’m heading to (blank). It’s been uncomfortable in the past, but I’m willing to have a new experience. I simply have to observe.”

This is NOT an easy practice, but it is simple. It is also not for the faint of heart or the strong in ego.
It means letting go of everything you think you know about a circumstance and allowing it to be new. Every. Time.

Will this change the circumstance? Maybe, maybe not.

But it will definitely change your perspective, and potentially, the power you hold within your life.

Personal Training: necessity or luxury? 

It seems like everyone has a personal trainer these days, almost bragging about it. Are we bragging because we can afford it? Or because it’s working?

Probably both.

In days of horrendous daily ergonomics, the States’ obesity epidemic and movement starvation, this makes trainers more of a need than a flashy new phone with a sparkly case.

As a nation, we are in chronic pain, stressed and malnourished. If you knew one person could alleviate all of that and teach you how to maintain it through the rest of your existence, would you still try and fix it all yourself?

So who should have a trainer? 

If you want to increase performance, get a trainer. If you need the accountability, get a trainer. If you’re bored with your workout, if you’ve got joint pain, just finished physical therapy, had a baby, or have a big goal… get a trainer.

Yes, I’m biased. Because, science.

If Kobe has one, and he’s that good already, why wouldn’t we all get one?

It makes me giggle when people say “Oh, I’m an athlete so I know what I’m doing”.

Athletes have coaches, man! You have no idea what your scapula is doing when you’re trying that slap shot.

And in my personal experience, the coaches that we had growing up didn’t have the education that we have today. And they sure didn’t care as much about your 40 year old body as much as they did sacking the QB before the other team made another down.

So give science a chance: check with a trainer (one that’s continuing their education) on whether or not your routine still stands effective in today’s array of knowledge.

Well, who doesn’t need a coach? 

If you are a creature of habit and your routine is working for you, no need for a trainer. If you’re happy with your body and only maintaining your current state, by all means, keep going. If you have no injuries, no pain and can spice up your routine by looking up the newest thing and have a knack for great form – by golly,  you just keep on doing that!

Sounds like almost everyone needs a trainer.. 

Well, yeah. Even if it’s only for a few sessions to check your form, routine and current knowledge base – it’s a great idea to consult a professional.

If you have pain, are fresh off of an injury/operation, or have a big goal – expect to invest more time with a coach to get you back on track and climbing mountains.

Personally, I have a trainer because I give my time away. I know what I need to do, but I need someone else to hold me accountable – so that I make time for me. 

I don’t believe having a coach has to last forever. Sometimes it’s a kickstart, other times is a kick in the pants. Either way, it’s an investment in your health. What you do with the knowledge afterward is the most important. 

Nutrition: Whatdya know?

The media is saturated with information on nutrition and businesses trying to make a buck selling their “big secret” to all of your hopes and dreams. They stuff us full of ingredients from around the world promising that it’s the missing clue as to why we don’t feel good or look a certain way. THEN, they tell us that if we don’t use it or continue to purchase at astronomical prices, that we will lose everything that we’ve worked for and will regress to worse than before. All this because we want the easiest, fastest way to “get there”.

Wanna know the truth?…

 

You already know everything that you need to know about nutrition.

Case in point:

  • Eat fruits and vegetables
  • Drink water
  • Stay away from junk or processed food
  • Watch your portions
  • Eat when you’re hungry, stop when satisfied
  • Ease up on the caffeine
  • Not too much red meat
  • Buy organic when you can

And in your heart of hearts, you also know that lasting change doesn’t come easily or overnight.

You see? We were taught everything we needed to succeed and remain healthy when we were in elementary school. Lack of knowledge has never been the problem.

Lack of practice is where we’ve sold ourselves short.

Maybe we didn’t have an example or weren’t blessed with the resources to instill good nutritional habits. Quite possibly we had those things and fell prey to the “worker bee” mentality and fell away from those healthy choices. But here’s the good news: you probably have much more control over what you fuel your body with these days.

So start today. Start right now. 

You only have this moment. You don’t have to take on tomorrow or next week or next month. Just right now. Just today. Your body needs you and has been waiting for the same amount of care that you give to other things. For right now, choose you.