The 5 Things I Do Every Weekend to Stay Healthy All Week

Staying healthy all week takes some planning, and what I’ve learned is that if I don’t have a plan and schedule the whole week goes haywire. One of my favorite quotes that I find so true is “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.” Benjamin Franklin. I want to be successful in my health journey and I’m sure you do too, so let’s make a plan. Here I talk about the 5 things I do every weekend to ensure my success for the week.

1. Routine

Routine is everything because the body strives on regularity and structure, especially if your main goal is weight loss. If you have a structured schedule on weekdays and then everything goes haywire on the weekend your body will pay for it. For instance, if you are eating healthy planned meals during the week and then you go crazy on fast food, sugar, and alcohol on the weekend you will wake up Monday morning feeling sick and 3-4 pounds heavier than the week before. Talk about making yourself feel bad. To avoid this, think of how you want to feel on Monday morning, and what steps you need to take to create that good feeling, and then do that!

If you want success with your weight loss and to wake up Monday morning with a flat tummy with no weight gain follow your same structure as you do during the week. Some examples are, eat at the same times on the weekend as you do during the week, stay hydrated and drink all your water, get 8 or more hours of sleep and if you missed any of your workouts during the week make sure to get it in on the weekend. I’ve been doing this for many years and one of the most important things I’ve learned is that “winners are made on the weekend”.

2. Meal Planning and Shopping for The Week

Every Saturday I plan my meals for the next week, make a grocery list and head to the store. I like to shop at Costco for the most part since I can buy in bulk and save money. It’s important to buy organic veggies, fruit, and meat since these are free from pesticides and added hormones our bodies should not be consuming. If you have a local farmers market get your fruit and veggies there. Strive to get fresh foods that are in season. If possible buy local eggs, meats, such as chicken, pork, and beef.

3. Advance Prep for The Week

When I return from the grocery store I clean, cut, and measure out the veggies, and make my salads for the entire week. I have individual containers for salads and meals. If I have time on Saturday I will cook all my meat and/or recipes and divide them up into their individual containers with the veggies and carbs. It works best if I shop on Saturday and cook everything on Sunday. If you are working an 8 to 5 job you will want to have your meals ready and with you all day. Having your food with you and eating on a regular schedule will avoid blood sugars from dropping so you don’t eat unhealthy fast foods that put on weight.

4. Pack Your Gym Bag the Night Before

Sunday evenings I make sure my gym bag has everything I need for my Monday workout. I keep certain things in my bag at all times such as toiletries. I always have my headphones in my bag and charged up every weekend. I have my workout gloves and straps in my gym bag at all times. I put out my workout pants, top, shoes and socks so I don’t have to think about it the next morning. It’s there ready for me to put on and head out the door. Or if you are heading to the gym after work you’ll have your gym bag packed and waiting in your car, no excuses, you’ve already planned for it.

5. Gym Schedule

I always have my workout times scheduled on my calendar. Every Sunday I look it over to make sure there is nothing that will get in the way of my workouts for the week. If it’s on your schedule you can arrange everything else around it. If someone wants you to comment to something else during that time simply tell them you don’t have that time available and inform them of another time you do have available. Don’t let others dictate your schedule.

Final word, these five simple things I do every weekend might seem basic but they are important for your success if you want to make progress. Most people fall off the wagon on the weekends and never hit their goals. Being and staying healthy is a lifestyle. Give it 100% for 21 days and I promise you will feel better than you have felt in years.

Is Intermittent Fasting For Women

You might have heard one of your friends or someone on social media mentions they are doing intermittent fasting for weight loss. You might think its just another trend, however, there is actually some good research and science-backed benefits on why this is not just a trend. Intermittent fasting produces more weight loss compared to long-term calorie restriction. 

What is Intermittent Fasting?

Intermittent fasting is a dietary approach where you only eat during specific time periods, and then give your gut a break from digestion and insulin spikes for 16-24 hours or more. I personally eat in this manner and have coached many clients, who have experienced tremendous benefits in health and weight loss. The basic American diet routine has shown us that what many of us have been doing has tragic results. Many now have chronic inflammation which brings about troubles like immune and hormonal dysfunction, thyroid disease, cancer, and even weight management resistance. Intermittent fasting is known to be a wonderful tool for taking care of these issues. There are a few reasons why it's particularly useful for weight loss.

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Walk right into a mechanic's workshop and you won't see just one device hanging on the wall. You'll spot a fixed board covered in tools of all various sizes and shapes. Each has a purpose and a value, yet you wouldn't necessarily utilize every one of them at the same time.

Nutrition is not much different: There are a great deal of different tools you can utilize to maintain healthy functioning as well as look the way you desire. Understanding just what those tools are, when and how you can best utilize them, can aid you to maintain and improve your health.

Intermittent fasting seems complex, however it actually a very simple concept. The idea is to not consume food for 12 to 24 hours, therefore, only consuming food during specific hours of the day. Research shows you get the most benefits of Autophagy is when you fast 16 hours or more. Autophagy is a natural way the body cleanse itself. For examples, this is one scenario how it works; you stop all food intake after 7 pm, sleep, awaken the next morning, skip breakfast, and continue the fast up to mid-day. Only drinking purified water, organic coffee, or tea. Food for that day is consumed between the hours of 2 and 8 pm. As you get familiar with intermittent fasting, you can push that window of time to be much more press. Some like to eat earlier in the day rather than the night hours, i.e. 9 AM to 3 PM, whichever works well for you. The key is to consistency find what works for your schedule and lifestyle.

What are the benefits?

•    Weight-loss
•    Anti-aging
•    Upgrade in cell Autophagy
•    May help with prevent diabetes

Who should not do intermittent fasting

•    It is not for you if you are not eating healthy whole foods, but more sugars, carbs and junk food.
•    If you are on medication such as insulin
•    If you are not providing your body with enough calories
•    If you have a history of eating disorders such as bulimia or anorexia
•    If you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant
•    If you are on any medications, you need to talk to your doctor before doing any intermittent fasting

References:

1.    Short-term fasting induces profound neuronal autophagy: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.4161/auto.6.6.12376
2.    What is Autophagy? https://www.news-medical.net/health/What-is-Autophagy.aspx
3.    Alternate-day fasting and chronic disease prevention: https://academic.oup.com/ajcn/article/86/1/7/4633143
4.    Metabolic Effects of Intermittent Fasting: https://www.annualreviews.org/doi/abs/10.1146/annurev-nutr-071816-064634

5 SIMPLE AFFIRMATIONS FOR PERSONAL GROWTH

Sometimes life can get us down and can be challenging. However the way we look at life, situations and what we say to ourselves is what determines our happiness, and growth. I believe we create our lives by our thoughts and we can have success, great relationships, our dream job, health, and much more. I know this works because it has changed my life. Here are five things you can start to say to yourself to shift your thought process to one of achievement and growth.

5 Affirmations for Personal Growth:

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  1. I am in control of my thoughts, therefore, I journal everyday what I will create for that day. What I am grateful for and what action steps to take.

  2. Obstacles are my opportunities for success, and to prove to myself what I am capable of.

  3. I am pro-active in creating the structure I need everyday so that I will have a strong foundation for long-term growth.

  4. I am a beautiful, strong, pro-active action taker. I can accomplish whatever I put my mind too.

  5. I always take care of my health, mind and body by exercising daily and only eating whole food that will make me strong for life, and free from disease.

Write these down and put them on your fridge, bathroom mirror, work station, car and in your purse. You deserve the best life ever, but it is up to you to take the action steps!

5 Tips for Better Sleep & Recovery

Sufficient and quality sleep is one of the most important, and sadly ignored, elements of a sound mind and body. We could spend so much time and energy on our physical conditioning, nutrition, and social-emotional sides of our lives and totally bypass among the columns of health and wellness.

We often fall into the trap of prior sleep to “get more done.” Nevertheless, it’s important to try to at least improve your sleep quality, through whichever means you deem appropriate.

In this article, I’ll discuss some of my favorite tips for optimizing your sleep habits, you will learn what deep sleep is, why it’s so important; and how you can improve your sleep over time.

1.    Adjust When You Exercise

Surprisingly, the time of day that you exercise may have a significant impact on how well you sleep; furthermore, the moment you exercise could influence various elements of sleep. For instance, how long it takes to go to sleep as well as just how you remain asleep throughout the night.

When a person exercises in the morning, they have less trouble falling asleep. Interestingly, regardless of the training time, exercise reduced the number of times you woke up at night. Basically, this detail leads us in conclusion that workout in fact favorably influence sleep. In addition, depending upon your sleep issue, the time you workout may have a considerable impact.

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2.    Say Bye Bye to your Gizmo’s

As the reason coincides-- the "blue light" emitted from digital displays (including TVs, computers, and phones) hinders the body's natural manufacturing of melatonin. This makes sleep-- and definitely deep sleep-- much less achievable.

The earlier you quit utilizing these blue light displays the better, as there light has actually been shown to subdue melatonin for approximately 3 hours.

If you're anything like the majority of people living in the modern world, stepping far from all digital gadgets 3 hours before bed may help enhance sleep considerably. 

3.    Build A Regular Rhythm

Interestingly, our bodies have a biological rhythm, which manages almost every function in the body, from when you wake, to when you like to exercise and go to bed. Additionally, most hormonal output pertaining to these occasions also happens on a rhythm. For instance, did you know that your body releases cortisol in the early morning, which ultimately causes you to wake and prepare for the day?

Ends up, this is an important part of your body clock. Melatonin, as I mentioned earlier, is additionally a regulatory authority of your circadian rhythm. Having irregular and/or short amount of time to fall asleep is among the significant concerns pounding our melatonin manufacturing.

Keep in mind that your body does not quit on the weekends. Whenever possible, I recommend attempting to keep your routine of sleeping and waking, whenever feasible, even on the weekend breaks. However, make sure it’s quality sleep for 8 hours. 

4.     Why is Deep Sleep So Important?

Naturally, most of us want to rest better, but those that are working to improve their efficiency and preparedness throughout the day know that the Holy Grail is improving our quantity of deep sleep.

Not to get as well technical, yet deep rest, or the last of NREM (or non-REM) sleep, is the moment when your brain waves are at their lowest frequency and you are at your hardest to wake up. Deep sleep is the moment when our bodies are working hardest to recuperate, reinforcing our minds and fixing our bodies from the previous day's physical effort. It's no surprise that individuals who typically state they're well rested have shown that they have had high-quality deep rest.

5.    Stay consistent!

One of the most common triggers for severe muscle soreness is an exercise that is different from what you are accustomed to! Regardless of the amount of weight lifted, repetitions performed, types of exercises used and so on, if the exercise stress is relatively new to you, you will likely be quite sore. The best way to combat this is by staying consistent with your workout routine. Even the most intense of exercise sessions can be adapted to and recovered from using the strategies above, as long as you STAY CONSISTENT. Without consistency, you can do everything else right and still be extremely sore the days following a workout. 


Why Autophagy is Important and Why You Need to Stimulate It

Good news there's a little-known approach your body does to clean itself from damage and free radicals. It's a process you can tap into that accelerates self-eating.

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Wait What?...

Yes, you could truly train your body to eat itself - and believe it or not, you should want and need it.

It's a natural process called Autophagy meaning “self-eating”, the body’s system of cleaning house. Explained in easier terms, it a cellular cleansing process that removes toxins within the cells and repairs dead, infected, damaged cells left behind; swallowing up the weaker parts of the body, to make it stronger. This could also be called survival of the fittest. 

Autophagy makes us more efficient by getting rid of flawed parts, protecting us from many different cancers, as well as excessive weight gain, and diabetes. Autophagy is can also slow the aging process.  

When we’re younger our cells are vibrant and more efficient, and duplicating like crazy, but as we age our cells aren't duplicating as much and eventually we die. Now, since we are aging and starting to lose cells, we do need to make sure we become a lot more efficient at making the stronger cells even stronger and begin to increase, and we can do that with Autophagy. The benefits of enhancing this process is so the cells are stronger, which slows down the aging process, so we can live longer and feel more youthful without sickness. 

Another benefit is when Autophagy is working at an accelerated pace, we have high levels of Nero protection that’s occurring. Which means, intermittent fasting helps enhance cognitive function, which may help the brain to learn more easily. As brain cells become more powerful, it protects us from dementia and Alzheimer's. 

Now, I know you're asking yourself “how do I eat myself?” Well, I’m about to tell you. First, autophagy is a response to stress, but we want to utilize “good stressors” not bad ones. The good stressors are things like exercise and intermittent fasting. Let’s take a look at these:

1.    Exercise

Exercise puts stress on the body, however, this is the good stress. Exercise damages your muscle tissue, and it creates little microscopic tears that the body then rushes to heal, this creates more muscle mass and resistant to any more damage you might place it through.

Regular exercise is a natural way you can help your body to cleanse. That must be why we feel so refreshed and stress free after a good hard workout.

2.    Intermittent Fast

Ironically for people who "cleanse" by drinking juice (which can be high in sugar), the act of eating actually works against autophagy. Skipping meals can lead to another stressful act that the body may not immediately love but ultimately take advantage of.

Intermittent fasting is a term that involves time-restricted eating. There are many different ways to do this but if you’re a woman you’ll have to consider hormones will play into what you can do. Start with a 12 hour fast and see how your body feels, and build up from there. Autophagy starts at 16 hours and becomes more powerful between 24-48 hours for the best effects. You might consider trying your first fast starting at 7 pm and then fast until 7 am the next morning. 

3.    Reduce Your Intake of Carbs

Reducing the amount of carbs in your diet will induce autophagy. It may be hard to make drastic changes to your diet all at once, so slowly work yourself into it. Try one of these ideas to start with, and then implement more of them as you are able.

Simply cutting carbs on odd days, or two days with carbs and two days without carbs has been shown to increase autophagy. Bodybuilders have been doing this to manipulate fat loss for years. However, there’s another way to get similar benefits without giving up your favorite rib eye, but you will need to stop eating sugar either way.

It is called a ketogenic diet, and it's an ever more preferred diet for anybody looking for a much longer lifespan and to help prevent health-related disease. The idea is to reduce carbs to 10% of overall calories so that the body has no choice but to use fat as a fuel source instead of glucose from carbs. This puts you in a ketosis, which induces autophagy. 

So, here's my own conclusion… Regular workout, as well as occasional carbohydrate restriction, carry mountains of advantages in addition to their likely impact on autophagy. The very best that may happen is a stronger, leaner, as well as cleaner body. That's our type of cleansing.

References

1) 10-5-16 How autophagy could lead to a cure for cancer and spell the end of diabetes:
https://www.wired.co.uk/article/autophagy-cells-explained
2) 5-24-15 Autophagy https://theartofmed.wordpress.com/2015/05/24/autophagy/
3) 8-16-10 Fasting increases circulating levels of several neurotrophic factors
https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.4161/auto.6.6.12376
4) Exercise induces autophagy in peripheral tissues and in the brain
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3463459/