So you’ve got an ugly sweater party to go to…or maybe your family just has terrible taste in holiday clothes… Either way, this little jump-start will help you get noticed for more than just that ugly sweater. By the time you put on that ugly *** sweater you’ll be feeling like this guy on the left. #winning. And, you better figure out an answer to the questions “What have you been doing?” “How did you get in such great shape?” “What is your secret?” because you’ll be getting them a lot at the party.
So this is how you do it…(I hope you sang that too)
STEP #1 CREATE A PLAN
I think I’ve said this before, but if you don’t have a plan then you are planning to fail. So figure out a plan that will work for you. Determine when you will work out, and put it in your calendar. For example, say you’re going to hit the gym at 5pm Monday through Friday, write that in your calendar or put it in your phone. Done, I should see you at the weight rack by 5:05. Obviously you’ll be using weights and getting stronger to reach your goals. if you’ve been a cardio queen/king in the past, then I suggest you go read some of my previous posts, like this one and this one…
STEP #2 DIAL IN YOUR NUTRITION
You can’t outwork a bad diet. If you go to the gym every day of the week for 2 hours and bust your butt, and then stop at the fast food joint on your way home to drink a six pack…you’re probably going to get fatter, not in better shape. Figuring out how many calories you need to eat will help you tremendously in reaching your goals. There are a few apps that are great for this. MyFitnessPal and FatSecret are two that I suggest to people. You could also ask your trainer, he should know or be able to figure it out for you. I know a guy that is pretty good at this kind of thing, you can check him out here. The number of calories isn’t your only focus with nutrition, though. You can lose weight by eating Twinkies and pizza. But, you can’t eat very much and you’ll look like garbage even if you lose weight. Eating whole, nutritious foods will not only give you better nutrients and keep you healthy while working towards your goals, it will also keep you fuller for a longer time. Foods that are nutrient dense (chicken, fish, veggies, fruits, greens) take longer for your body to digest, causing a gradual release of energy to your body. This gradual release keeps you fuller for a longer time (so you eat less) and also helps in the prevention of fat storage from excess energy being in the blood stream. So eat lean meats, fruits, and veggies, with some complex carbs mixed in. If you’ve got questions on what to eat let me know, I’d love to help!
STEP #3 FIND A BUFF BUDDY
(This is Buddy The Elf, He loves everything Christmas)
This is a short one. Having a buddy that you meet at the gym and talk about your goals with will help to keep you on track. And, hopefully keep you from diving into that ice cream at night when you are sitting on your behind. Friends keep friends accountable, don’t let your partner slip up, and they’ll do the same for you. Become Buff Buddies and be the people at the party that everyone is talking about.
If you are struggling to find a buddy, maybe a Personal Trainer is a direction you should look. Not only will they keep you accountable, but they also have a whole bunch of advice and ideas they can share with you that will help you reach those goals much faster than on your own.
STEP #4 SLEEP
Go to bed already! Sleep is one of the most important aspects of being healthy. When you are tired your body doesn’t function up to It’s potential. One of the biggest factors in being tired is decision-making. When you are tired you don’t choose the right foods, I know because it happens to me too. And because the science says so. Sleep allows your brain to “recover” from the day, along with allowing your body to recover from those intense bouts at the gym. The less sleep you get, the more stressed you become. Being stressed raises your cortisol levels, and cortisol is known to increase your appetite. Being hungry even after you’ve eaten your daily calories causes you to overeat for the day. Which is how you gain weight. You don’t want that before the big party. So go get your rest.
You’re not going to like this one…but I think it’s something that more people struggle with than they think…
STEP #5 CUT BACK ON THE BOOZE
I’m not saying you have to stop drinking all together. I enjoy a beer here and there with my buffalo wings, or when hanging out with some friends. But, you have to realize that booze has calories. Empty calories, actually. That means you get basically nothing beneficial from them. All they are doing is adding to your calorie total for the day. They don’t help you repair damaged muscles or get the proper nutrients for a healthy body. They only add calories to your diet. Along the same lines is water, except you need to drink more water, not less. You should be drinking much more water than any other drink throughout the day. Not only does your body need water to survive, but it can also be used as a tool to help prevent overeating at meal time. Drinking a glass of water before you eat will help to fill up your stomach a little more than normal. When your stomach is full it sends chemicals to your brain that tell it to stop the hunger signals it’s been giving. Reducing appetite will help you not eat as much, in turn lowering your daily calories. Bottom line: drink less booze and drink more water. I try to shoot for 100 Oz or more per day. Sometimes I get more, sometimes less, but it’s a good place to be for me. I would suggest trying to get about 60 Oz minimum per day.
There it is. That’s how you get HOT FOR THE HOLIDAYS! But seriously, these strategies will help you jump-start your fitness goals no matter what time of year it is. All you have to do is start, and stick with it. Good luck and as always if you’d like any guidance feel free to contact me here.
Go make people forget about that hideous sweater you’ll be sporting!
Haha, I couldn’t resist adding this in there!
That might be a good gym name…