Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Practice What You Preach

I am NOT lovin' my love handles. Don't get me wrong. I generally LOVE my body just the way it is but ... I've sort of fallen off the wagon this last month. I'm feeling a bit "fluffy". I've been so busy helping others get fit and fierce in my boot camp that I've neglected my own "fierce-ness". So I've had to remind myself "Cara, practice what you preach girl!" It has been an exciting ride kicking off my Fit and Fierce Boot Camp. I'm so fortunate to work with a great group who are serious about living a more active lifestyle AND more importantly are having FUN doing it! I love pushing them and seeing them challenge themselves. To keep them coming back for more, I spend a lot of time researching and planning each class so they're different every time and FUN! That has turned into late nights, missed meals, and half-assed workouts. It was time for me to get back on track with focused workouts and regular meal times ... and more of the good-for-you stuff on my plate. Believe it or not that's the easy part. Before any of that can happen, there are four things I need to keep in check. I took some advice from my fitness boss and reviewed probably the four most important elements of a balanced healthy lifestyle. My trainer/mentor/fitness boss Nathan Harewood shared these at a recent nutrition seminar he held. To me, without these 4 elements in place ... you're wasting your time working out. Check them out below: 4 Elements of a Healthy Balanced Lifestyle 1) DRINK WATER Benefits: flushes out toxins, aids in metabolism and digestion, helps your organs absorb nutrients, protects and moisturizes our joints ... just to name a few. Active people should drink 3 to 4 litres a day. And for every cup of coffee you drink add an extra 2 cups of water. 2) SLEEP Benefits: necessary for recovery and healing. Not enough sleep will increase body fat and release a hormone called ghrelin that stimulates hunger. Getting good sleep releases leptin, a hormone that regulates appetite and metabolism. Take naps when you can. Naps are good! 3) BALANCED NUTRITION Keep your meals balanced with proteins, healthy carbohydrates, and healthy fats. If you are a calorie counter here's a guideline: 30% protein, 40% healthy carbs, 30% healthy fats. 4) REDUCE STRESS Stress increases cortisone which suppresses the immune system. It also "eats" muscle and disrupts digestion. Identify the areas in your life that cause you stress and do your best to change them. This is the most challenging element to tackle by far. Do you understand why I say without these elements in your life you might as well stay out of the gym until they're in check? So my fitness journey continues with this kick in the butt ... to help me reach my goals ... and I'm loving it! It's good to be back practicing what I'm preaching! :) Can I get an AMEN?!