Hi, guys Kris here from Custom Fitness, your personal trainer in Amarillo, Texas.  Today I wanted to share a few ways to start incorporating small changes that can lead to GREAT things! Specifically I want to zone in on how to live a Lean Life in a world of Fast Food and binge watching Netflix. If this post lights a fire under you and you’re ready to find out how to start or change up your fitness journey give us a call at the studio; we’d be happy to help: 806-322-3188

At Custom Fitness we work 1-on-1 with our clients to teach them how to make small and manageable changes in their exercise, nutrition and lives that produce outstanding results every time. Normally we save all of our tips and tricks for our clients but today I am going to share a few with you.

What does it mean to “Live Lean”?

Well, first we have to throw out the window what we believe the word diet means and possibly our scale as well. ;o) Most people think of lean as losing weight and losing weight usually means diet and make the number on the scale read what it did when I was in college. Well, we won’t get into how that is a completely unhealthy position to take, but we will discuss how our diet is not the restriction of food but is instead the sum of food consumed by a person.

When people go on the modern “diet” they create an impossible situation for themselves.

People simply cannot continue calorie restriction, food selection restriction or drinking the same shake every day for the rest of their lives and accomplish the lean goals they desire. Eventually, they get tired, sick or just bored and quit. Then what? They immediately jump back to their old favorite comfort foods and give in to everyone around them and refuse to let go, like a child who has had their pacifier taken away but then found it in a drawer somewhere and now won’t let it out of their site.

In order to Live Lean, we are looking at creating a few new good habits and getting rid of a few bad ones. Remember that great change takes courage, motivation and a plan! It takes about 21 days to begin to create change or create a new habit. The areas that we want to focus on when Living Lean are Nutrition activity and Lifestyle habits.

Let’s start with Nutrition.

When we think nutrition and losing weight, we think diet. Why not, instead think about changing some bad food choices into good ones and finding a way of eating that you can maintain for life while having a healthier body inside and out? Probably sounds hard, right? Well, if you are open to new ideas, it may be more simple than you think. Start by making sure you are well hydrated throughout the day. YOU should be drinking half of your body weight in ounces of pure water each day. That means if you weigh 150 pounds, you should be drinking 75 ounces of pure water every day. Why don’t tea and coffee count? They are mixed with water. Yes, they are, but they also act as diuretics and when you drink them, the body has to take time to break the two entities apart which causes a delay in hydration…which equals dehydration. Hard to become lean when our cells are clamoring for water to aid in replenishing our bodies.

Why does that matter? It’s just a short time.

Well, once the body hits the point of dehydration, no matter how intense, it begins to shut non-essential systems down. Systems such as your metabolism (you stop burning fat), your cognitive functions (you can’t focus or think as clearly), your immune system, etc. If it doesn’t have to do with your heart beating, lungs breathing and you finding water, your body finds it non-essential during dehydration. But 50% of my body weight sounds like A LOT! Well, it really isn’t when you consider that your body is made up of 60% – 65% water. So basically our goal each day is to provide the body with 50% water from pure water and 10%-15% water from our foods and or other beverages such as coffee and tea. One of the best ways to accomplish this is to first, start small and build the amount of water you are drinking each day. Second, grab whatever bottle, cup or mug that you drink out of each day and measure how many ounces it holds. Then take the number of ounces you NEED each day and divide it by how many ounces the cup holds (ie. If you need 75 ounces and your cup holds 20 ounces then you would need 3.75 cups of water that day…let’s round it to 4 to make life easy) so then, you would take 4 rubber bands and place them around the cup or use a bottle like the Zak! Designs HydraTrak. Each time you finish a cup of water, you could either remove or slide the rubber band down to the bottom. Refill and continue until you’ve removed or slid down all of the rubber bands that day.

That brings us to the topic of food.

Many of us, through the stresses of life, have now trained our bodies that they don’t need to eat very often. During my career as a personal trainer in Amarillo I have heard every reason under the sun for someone not to eat: it may come in the sense of “I’m not hungry” or possibly “food makes me sick if I eat breakfast” and so many other manifestations.  However, the truth is that we have taught our bodies when we are willing and not willing to provide the energy they need for their day. Therefore we have taught them how to SURVIVE our habits.

My job, when I go to work each day is to teach people how to THRIVE instead of merely SURVIVING. In order to THRIVE, your body needs a certain amount of each and every nutrient EVERY day! Whether it’s vitamins, minerals, phytochemicals, carbohydrates, proteins or fats, your body needs the calories (yes, I said calories) that these nutrients provide.

We have been led to believe that calorie is a bad word. Well, that couldn’t be further from the truth. As you may have heard before, it is the excess of calories that causes the problem. The calories themselves are what provide our body the energy it needs to move, think, and perform. So how do we stay away from excess calories and create a system that THRIVES rather than SURVIVES?

  • We start by eating small meals throughout the day instead of saving up for one or two big ones. Aim for 4-5 small meals each day.
  • We add balance to our plate by ensuring that each meal has protein, veggies, starchy carbohydrates such as grains or fruit and healthy fats.
  • We eat on a smaller plate. Say a 9” salad plate rather than a 12” American dinner plate.
  • We eat until we are satisfied instead of stuffed and push the rest away.
  • We eat mostly whole and unprocessed foods

By applying just these few nutritional principles, you’ll be on your way to living lean!

Do it on your own, with an accountability partner or with the help of professionals like my team, the choice is yours…just make a plan and TAKE ACTION.  As always, if you have any questions about our personal training, nutrition counseling, or group classes and programs, please contact us at: info@customfitness.biz or 806-322-3188. At Custom Fitness we are YOUR personal trainers in Amarillo, Texas. Have a great day everybody.