The New year, New You…at least for a few weeks, right?
Let us share with you our thoughts on what NOT to do and what TO DO as the New Year rolls around.
1. A juice cleanse or DETOX
Steer clear of juice cleanses or the highly advertised detox programs. That’s what your liver is for. When you lose weight during a juice cleanse or detox, the weight loss is NOT usually fat loss. Instead, your body is expelling water and glycogen. Once you return to eating normally, the weight comes right back. So, although a cleanse may make you feel “lighter” just remember that does NOT equate to fat loss. And depending on how long you do the juice cleanse, you could be putting your body at risk for muscle degradation if you are under consuming calories and protein. So what should you do? Instead, tweak your diet. Cut out 80% of processed foods and replace them with whole nutrient dense foods such a fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean meats, nuts, seeds, avocado, etc. Replace soda and sugary drinks with pure fresh WATER. You can flavor your water with fresh fruit, lemon, or some fruity water drops. Cut out the starbucks lattes and holiday drinks and make your own coffee with steamed almond milk or 2% and add a few drops of stevia for sweetness. Balance out your diet by consuming a healthy breakdown of macronutrients: protein, carbs, and fat. A good breakdown for most people is 40% carbs, 35% protein, and 25% fat. Cut down the times you eat out in half and vow to start grocery shopping and meal prepping for easy dinners throughout the week. Cue the crockpot!! And most importantly, DON’T restrict. Still enjoy that piece of chocolate or that slice of pizza, just have it in moderation or make a more “macro-friendly” version at home!
2. Over commit
Too often people over commit in the New Year. They make all these New Year Resolutions, vowing to eat healthier, workout everyday, start volunteering, be more involved in their social circles, etc. Then a month or two down the road, they have only kept up one or maybe none of those resolutions. Instead, set REALISTIC goals. Sit down and examine your current schedule, determine what goals are most important to you, and look at the big picture. Maybe instead of saying you are going to workout everyday, you commit to working out two or three times a week. To keep you accountable you commit to meeting with a trainer 2x a week and walking with a friend once a week. Or maybe you can honestly admit you won’t stick with meal prepping and cooking your meals 7 days a week, so you vow to cook two nights a week and use a meal prepping service (My Fit Foods, Simply fit Meals, etc.) to help a couple other nights per week. You get the picture.
3. Too much cardio
I think this is everyone’s go-to after the holiday season. Trust me, we’re trainers and we know. We see this every January, the gyms fill up and over half the members are pedaling away on the elliptical. Instead, train smarter, not harder. Too much cardio can actually have negative results. It can lead to a loss in lean muscle mass, increase your hunger which can lead to overeating, and it doesn’t do too much for your metabolism like lifting weights does. We aren’t completely bashing cardio, we are just advising you to not do too much a what can be a good thing. Use cardio as a tool for creating a caloric deficit, but let your diet do most of the work when it comes to that. Get started on a strength training program that incorporates compound moments like squats, deadlifts, hip thrusts, pull-ups, bench press, etc. Depending on how many days a week you commit to working out, you can do total body workouts or break it up and do an upper/lower split. Focus on getting stronger, maintaining good form, and challenge yourself. If you’ve never lifted weights before, hire a trainer to help you. Strength training is going to be the CORE piece to getting you the results you want and transforming your body. Your body composition will improve as you drop body fat and increase lean muscle mass, all the while your metabolism will be stronger than ever.