5 Important Stages For A Fitter You

SpecialBlog Guest

So, today while looking for my new blog topic, I came across a specific section which will most likely be the mission and vision of any company. It’s like taking a sudden decision to change your lifestyle and then making efforts to stick by it. On a daily basis, I keep receiving multiple queries from people, asking on the kind of workout they should adhere by. They as about CrossFit or 3 sets of 5 reps each, heavy Popeye lifting, HIIT’S, LIIT’S etc. Honestly, I feel happy to know that people are taking matter into their own hands, but somewhere my business is getting doomed. Just kidding!

As I mentioned, that somewhere it takes precisely 21 days to break a habit. If we can stick with our new routine for 21 days, we’ll more likely stay with it in the long term. But before I talk about the habit, I would like to draw your attention to the vision and mission of the subject.  It is very important to keep these 5 things in mind before you draw your plan. It will keep you focused.

  • Identification of goal – Wouldn’t it be easier if you narrow down your needs? Like, I want to lose fat and want to fit in my old jeans or I want to bulk up and scare the people away or I want to build muscle mass and impress pretty ladies. Or it simply can be your want to be healthy, happy and look good naked. It feels sad to people trying to lose weight by jumping from one program to another and getting no results. I know gym can be intimidating but you’ll pull it off once you figure out your goal.
  • Nutrition is 90% percent of the equation – I shit you not. The bravest. The toughest. The hardest of all. When your goal is to lose fat than how you need to keep a check on your food consumption or you’ll be responsible for your failure. You just can’t run away from it. So, tattoo it on your forehead, write it on the sky or do whatever but internalize this concept.
  • Mobility – Fitness is not that difficult as it looks. Do what make you happy. Hiking, swimming, Zumba, taekwondo, parkour etc. But what is important to keep in mind is bringing mobility in your body. Making your body understand that you’re into it now and ready to shed those extra pounds.
  • Defensive Skills and Endurance – The fourth stage is when you start enjoying your workout and it starts to feel little easy as compared to the first day. All thanks to the first week of mobility. This is where you work on your defensive or endurance skills so that you can upgrade your fourth stage to the fifth stage.
  • Strength Training – Anybody in the house, especially ladies who feel they’ll get bulky. Trust me, it doesn’t work that way. When you do strength training, you burn extra calories to rebuild muscles. Half an hour strength training is 1000 times better than your 30 minutes of jogging on treadmill. It will improve your posture and your efficiency in any activity you took as an exercise.

IDENTIFY. IMPROVISE.ADEPT. OVERCOME.HUSTLE UP.

 

This post was brought to you by Surin Sengar, the author of the Fitlete Blog. If you wish to read more articles like this, please visit Surin’s blog on fitleteblog.wordpress.com

How To Eat Healthy On a Budget

SpecialBlog Guest

Anirudh: Hey Surin!
Surin: Hi buddy! How are you doing?
Anirudh: I’m doing great buddy but need to share this feedback with you!
Surin: Feedback? Okay, tell me
Anirudh: So, I took your challenge and advise to consume healthy food for a month
Surin: Wow, that’s so cool. I must say, that I’m impressed.
Anirudh: No, but my budget has gone for a toss and it’s a huge investment for me. I think, I’ll have to stop this healthy eating!
Surin: Well, eating healthy doesn’t mean, consuming expensive salads and juices. You just need to be creative with your diet chart so that it doesn’t get boring and monotonous.

Keeping this conversation in mind, today I’ll talk about specific foods that are a great bang for your buck. I understand that a good physique is 70% diet, 30% workout and making the right dietary choices will always be 80-90% of your success. The goal is to reshape the way you evaluate good deals – the way you evaluate the 30ml and 60ml. Instead of price per calorie, we’ll be looking at the price per nutrient. We want more nutrients for the least amount of money. 

So, here are my top 5 cheap healthy food chart plans:

Vegetables – Green leafy vegetable was never costly and it’s far better than your McDonald’s king size burger. You must calculate the nutrients you’re getting out of that food. For e.g.: Cabbage, broccoli, Spinach, carrots, kale etc. give you the same amount of nutrients compared to your expensive healthy food.

Go Seasonal on Fruits – Without a doubt, fruits are the best source of nutrients and you can save ample on them if you eat seasonal fruits. For e.g. Bananas and grapefruit in winters, blueberries, watermelon in spring and apple, cranberry, carrot, beetroot in autumn. These can be modified according to your taste.

Best source of protein – Sweating out like a meth head but isn’t gaining an inch? Eggs are a great source of protein and can be experimented in varied forms. Other sources of protein are Greek yogurt, oatmeal, muesli, whole milk, dried fruit, sweet potato etc.

Eat Smart – Be smart in your eating. Find your objective. Figure out if your goal is to gain weight, muscle mass or lose weight and accordingly plan your diet. Remember if your goal is to lose weight then most of your nutrients should be coming from fats and proteins and not from carbohydrates. The fancy term is “Paleo diet”.

Buy smart – Another great way to save on some bucks is to buy frozen than fresh. Frozen products allow you to buy in or out of season produce at much lower prices. Buy non-perishable items in bulk whenever a grand sale is on the card.

Do not give up on your goals. I REPEAT DO NOT GIVE UP ON YOUR GOALS. Hustle Up.

FITNESS-FRIDAY: The Benefits of Smoothies

SpecialBlog Guest

When life gives you lemons, make lemonade” is a famous proverbial phrase used to promote optimism and a positive can-do attitude in the face of adversity or misfortune. Similarly, in the field of exercise/workout – “when life gives you fruits and vegetables, make smoothies” is a phrase used for happiness and result oriented body. We have certain goals in mind when we step in the gym. Some people desire for a flat stomach while some want 6 pack abs. Again, some people just want to socialize and some to strengthen their bodies. This one is the cure for all these problems. To be honest, getting those bricks or losing a couple of pounds is not as easy as it looks. One needs a certain level of dedication and self-motivation both inside and outside the gym premises.

Today I won’t scribble about the muscle size, posture, or any of the training exercises. But rather will share something which will help you to stay on your toes and help you being positive throughout the day. The solution is not some magic pill or powder but the healthy smoothies which can help you to feel full and eat less than your usual. And, honestly, it can also prevent you from putting on weight.

But that’s not sufficient. Below mentioned are some of the things, I observed while preparing my own healthy smoothies. Not to forget that these smoothies helped me stay full in odd hours of the day. And by odd hours I refer to sleep eating or munching while sitting at the office desk.

Also, after reading this, I think you’ll be convinced that inculcating the habit of preparing healthy smoothies on a regular basis is an excellent investment of your time and money.

  1. Quick and Easy – It’s not a herculean task to make a smoothie. All you have to do is to get your weekly or daily allowance of fruits and vegetables, a blender and The milk can be soy milk, rice milk or almond milk. It doesn’t take as long as making your other meals. Just a matter of 3-4 minutes.
  2. Fat burner – It might be surprising but smoothies are an effortless way to burn fat. With the little tweaks like the addition of berries (fat burning fruit) and plain nonfat yoghurt, you can make a tasty and nutrient-rich protein. This is because of flavonoids, which has been shown in studies to be one of the keys for not putting on weight. It is even believed that blueberries can actually stop fat cells from developing.

What are flavonoids?

Flavonoids are naturally occurring bioactive compounds that represent a                  constituent of fruits and vegetables, beyond calorie and macronutrient                        content, that could potentially influence body weight.

  1. Better Digestion – Nobody wants to experience constipation or indigestion. Let your blender “chew” your food and ease the burden on your digestive system while you simultaneously consume plenty of dietary fibre to ensure excellent digestion.
  2. Stay hydrated – I took a poll in which I observed that 73% of people do not drink more than 6-8 glasses of water every day, a reason they feel dull and tired. Stay hydrated and full of smoothies because lots of fruits and vegetables are quite rich in water.
  3. Reduces Cravings and energy empowerment – Smoothies supplies your body with the right amount of nutrients and vitamins. It helps you stay fuller for a longer time. As a result, you don’t crave for munchies.
  4. Boosts your immunity system and helps you in getting a better sleep – Fruits and vegetables are a great source of antioxidants, which scale up your immune system and results in better sleep at night.

This is just the tip of the benefits you can reap out of smoothies. Personally, this habit has exceedingly helped me on my own journey to better health. To know more on this or to clarify your doubts, drop me a line in the comment section. Feel free to even tell me about your suggestions. Hustle up!

 

Want more awesome Fitness articles and inspiration? Follow Fitlete, here.

3 Reasons Why I Have Been Binging & I Was Not Aware Of

Right. Once again I was doing good, wasn’t I? I even wrote about going beyond the critical day 3 just a few days ago, and today I messed up for real: one litre of ice cream and an entire package of paprika crisps. Afterwards, of course, and as I always do, I desperately looked out for answers, for the trillionth time. 31956129_2086866341593273_4026763119693922304_n (1)

Seriously, I’m becoming sick of myself. I have been on this rollercoaster for decades and every attempt becomes a total fail. I have tried to buy new gym clothes, a sports watch, I downloaded different weight loss apps, I did counselling, I tried anxiety pills, weight loss pills, protein shakes… I already did raw food, vegetarian, protein only… I tried smoothies and immunological diets… I tried to stay accountable through a lifestyle instagram account, I started out an online group… why the hell am I still failing?

Well, apparently I have been dismissing three important things that I never consciously linked back to my binge eating. I am sure these three reasons are the ‘why’ behind my eating compulsion and they all have been secretly mining my recovery since I can remember. These are:

  • anxiety a.k.a. excess of future,
  • too many commitments, activities, and responsibilities,
  • no time to relax and do stuff that energises me (e.g. go to the beach on a Saturday instead of going to work)

All these relate to my earlier post on high performers. I was managing so well my work-life balance earlier this year, but as soon as my mid-year review deadline kicked-in, things went crazy. And now that I passed it with flying colours, my workload hasn’t reduced at all. In fact, it has been increasing exponentially, with 2 conferences to attend, 2 public speaking events, and 2 different workshops I’m co-organising between June and July, plus a thesis to be written and ready to submit by September. How the hell do I always put myself into such a big mess of things?

No wonder I use food to stop and relax; actually it seems to be the only moment in time that I literally stop! While I’m eating, I’m not trying to manage everything on my plate. While I’m eating, I force myself into a temporary state of pleasure and relaxation, just right before guilt and shame come in, and my body feels overwhelmed with the amount of food I ate in seconds.

This is all pathetic and ridiculous. I feel angry at myself and a big impostor. I feel like I should know better and at the same time I think I should stop torturing myself, accept my vulnerability, that I’m not bullet proof, and that no one is going to die if I fail at something that needs to be done. And in the meantime I need to allow myself to not do anything at all for a while – but God dammit, I have a presentation to deliver next Tuesday before my flight to Lisboa, reason why I spend the weekend in the office!

Oddly enough, the guy living in the room next to mine just muttered the following words “Relax your mind”… The question that now needs to be explored further is why do I overwhelm myself with so many ‘to-do things’?

Addiction Recovery: The Critical Day 3

Last year, I went public here about my food addiction.

Since then I recovered at least twice from it and relapsed three times. Right now, I’m recovering from my third relapse and it’s Day 4. In a nutshell, uncertainty and the fail of another “almost relationship” led me here – well, actually, my ancient unhealthy mechanisms to deal with emotional pain drove me here.

In each relapse and recovery I learn something more. When looking back, this time I noticed that Day 3 is a very critical day and it’s usually the day I jeopardise all my recovery efforts. Day 3 is the day my body starts to kick out all the toxins. The result is an intense and paralysing headache, body aches, light sensitivity and nausea. And what do I (usually) do about pain? I eat (crap).

So yesterday my food cravings went up 200%. I could only think of gummy bears, Big Macs, french fries loaded with ketchup, chocolate cookies, donuts, and so on. I wanted to put everything in my mouth and spend the rest of the evening eating, so I would be distracted from the physical pain I was going through.

But suddenly I remembered the time I spent on the retreat doing my coaching certification. For one week, we did raw food fusion at every single meal. On the third day, I got the same reactions I was having yesterday: a paralysing headache, body aches, light sensitivity and nausea. It then struck me: the physical pain was part of the recovery process and in order to continue I had to be with it. If I gave up to the sweet taste of a whole box of donuts, I wouldn’t be able to reach the following step on my recovery journey and I would be back to stage zero.

Hence, instead of numbing the physical sickness with food, I did what I had done before when I was at the retreat: I laid down, I took the fetal position, closed my eyes and tried to fell asleep. In the next day, I was totally fine and the intense cravings were completely gone. This is exactly how I feel today – I have been thinking way less about food and my body feels much healthier on the inside, so I’m glad I managed to go beyond the Critical Day 3.

Healthy Chia & Oat Pudding

I will start saying this again: if you don’t fancy complicated recipes, but you do like to eat healthy, than this post is definitely for you. Here is today’s deal: the other day I came across a “chia pudding” and I got marvelled with the fact that you can do a pudding with healthy ingredients and with zero preparation struggle.

I found this to be very exciting, because I come from a family to whom pudding is more or less like the king of desserts. However, recipes always include eggs and complicated tricks in the kitchen. Once I tried to do something we call “pudim flan” with caramel to a boyfriend of mine and the result was that I completely screw up the pan to a point that we could no longer use it. Can you imagine such thing?

So, going to what really matters here: I made a slight twist to the recipe I found and came up with a chia and oat pudding. Here are the ingredients that you will need:

  • chia seeds
  • oats
  • milk (I used almond milk; the original recipe used coconut milk)
  • honey (the original recipe used brown sugar)
  • cinnamon

Now you might be marvelled as I got when I tell you the steps. Here they are:

  1. in a bowl, put two thirds of a cup of milk and add a tea spoon of honey
  2. add some chia seeds and oats (half a cup with both, maybe… you know I’m the worse with dosing)
  3. mix everything altogether and make sure the honey, the seeds and oats are blending
  4. add cinnamon to your mixture, mix it up once again and…
  5. put the bowl in the fridge for two hours

The seeds and oats will absorb the milk. The honey and cinnamon will give a nice flavour to your pudding. Once your pudding became consistent, you can top it up with some fruits. This time I chose black-forest fruits, but I imagine that some peach would work really well too.

Honey Oats: Another delicious breakfast!

Breakfast is by far my favourite meal! And today I opted for something a little bit different from what I have been having (egg on toast).

Here are the ingredients you need:

  • rolled oats
  • honey
  • cinnamon
  • chia seeds
  • strawberries

How to do it:

  • place the oats in a  bowl and add some water (until they are covered)
  • microwave your oats for 2.5 minutes (mine is set to its highest power level)
  • remove your bowl from the microwave and drizzle your oats with honey
  • sprinkle some cinnamon over the honey
  • cut a couple of strawberries (I cut them in a round shape, but you can be as much creative as you want!) and place them in the blow
  • add some chia seeds to decorate

And eat it all with great pleasure! 😉