Training Day 1: The Attitude

Successful fitness training begins with the right state of mind.

Have you struggled with weight loss in the past? Does the thought of “dieting” or “working out” make you run for cover? Check out Ozzie’s latest article “How to Plan A Daily Weight Loss Calendar” to learn how to lose weight and stay positive.

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Dieting Pros and Cons

Ozzie Jacobs presents a podcast on the pros and cons of dieting.

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Last chance: Beach body

One more month left until summer officially comes to a close!

  • Have you frolicked on the beach in your bikini or swim trunks?
  • Did tourists on the beach mistake you for a swimsuit model?
  • Did you feel comfortable enough to sit around half naked in the sun this summer?

If you answered “no” to these questions or if your beach body dreams didn’t pan out like you thought they would then you are not alone. Work obligations, limited time and procrastination are the usual culprits that prevent us from achieving our beach body but the good thing is that you have four weeks to turn it around!   Four weeks may not seem like a long time but with a strategic fitness program, your beach body may be within reach before the summer ends.

Check out Part 1 of Ozzie’s Beach Body Challenge to help you reach your fitness goals!

In addition to incorporating a great workout routine, make sure your eating habits are up to par.

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The Pros and Cons of Dieting

The word diet is defined as “a particular selection of food, as designed or prescribed to improve a person’s physical condition or to prevent or treat a disease”.  In this context the word diet doesn’t seem so bad but in reality most people view a diet as a significant restriction of calories and the denial of your favorite foods.

A diet is beneficial toward the reduction of weight and body fat.  It can play a major role in one’s risk for hypertension, diabetes and fatigue (among other things).  Generally, the diet is designed to help one achieve a healthier lifestyle.

A diet goes wrong when it deprives the individual of foods and experiences that they desire.  Adherence to a strict diet can prevent a person from indulging in their favorite foods, enjoying dinner with friends and can even lead to an individual falling off the wagon (when the temptation becomes too great).

Healthy eating habits should be a part of everyone’s “to do” list. When strategically designed, a diet can be manageable, enjoyable and sustainable.  In fact, when identifying the best “diet” for you it is important to choose a healthy eating program that you can incorporate into your life for the long haul.  Incorporating a long-term eating plan prevents the” yo-yo” phenomena in which you lose weight only to gain it back once the diet is over.

A sensible diet will traditionally incorporate a balance of carbohydrates, proteins and fats. Recruiting the assistance of a nutritionist or dietitian can be a useful tool to develop a meal plan that can strategically incorporate some of your favorite foods without disrupting your caloric requirements.

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Super Juices, Magic Pills, Enchanted Water

Over the past few years the fitness industry has been inundated with a swarm of super juices, magic pills and enchanted water.  In some cases, these products have been promoted as groundbreaking innovations that promise to heal multiple ailments, help you shed pounds and change your life.

Some consumers swear by these products while others have been thoroughly disappointed and have wasted hundreds (if not thousands) of dollars.  Whatever the experience, the truth is that obtaining a healthier lifestyle cannot be achieved by the purchase of a single product.

Living healthy requires a lifestyle change that extends into a variety of areas of an individual’s life.

It begins with the mind. To live healthy we must make a conscious effort to do so as our current environment will often lead us toward an unhealthy lifestyle.  Excessive work hours, fast food, high stress relationships, smog, depression, anxiety, inconsistent workouts and a lack of time make unhealthy living the norm.

It leads to the kitchen.
Out of sight, out of mind.  One of the easiest ways to begin on a path toward healthier living is to stock your pantry with food that is good for you.  When lean meats, oatmeal, fruits, nuts and veggies are the only food in the house it is much easier to stick to your commitment to consume healthier foods. It is not uncommon that after weeks of indulging on healthier food alternatives, the craving for “not so healthy” foods (cakes, pies, cookies, etc.) begins to dwindle.

It continues at the gym. Fitness is big business, which is good news and bad news for the consumer.  On one hand there are lots of products on the market that promise miraculous results but deliver a hole in your wallet.  On the other hand lots of gyms are offering great deals on memberships so you can work off the pounds the old fashioned way.

It ends with you. In fitness you are the entity that stands in the way of having the body of your dreams. It is your commitment, your consistency and your desire to reach your fitness goals that will keep you moving in the right direction.

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Train (Like an athlete): The diet

In the jigsaw puzzle we call “fitness”, what often separates the extraordinary bodies from the ordinary is the diet.

The simplest way to look at it is from the perspective of the athlete.  A strategic training regimen is necessary to optimize performance.  Mastering the skills and techniques required to excel in a sport will prepare the body for competition and once the competition begins the goal is to win.

A vital element that can separate the winner from the loser is their food intake.  The athlete (like a machine) must be able to perform at his/her best during the round, match, quarter, inning or course without losing any steam.  If poor or inadequate fuel is consumed then the results are disastrous. The “human machine” breaks down resulting in injury, decreased performance, fatigue and diminished focus.

Endurance athletes, physique competitors, wrestlers, gymnasts, football players, basketball players, dancers and any other athlete you can think of must pay particular attention to their diet to maximize gains.   Carbohydrates and fats are primary energy sources for the body.  Inadequate consumption will cause fatigue and limit one’s ability to endure long bouts of exercise and even perform skills that require short bursts of energy. Overconsumption can cause weight gain, sluggishness and other health problems.  Proteins build and repair the body tissues and structures enabling synthesis of necessary biological processes necessary to function and perform adequately.

How important is the diet to lose a few inches off the waist, trim the thighs or get a six pack?

The fitness model and physique competitor take notes from the athlete as they pay careful attention to the percentage of carbohydrates, fats and proteins in their diet.  When the fitness model and physique competitor are in their best shape they reduce the carbohydrate and fat intake to a low level that provides them with “just enough” energy to get through their workout but will significantly reduce as much body fat as possible.  After the photo shoot or the competition the carbohydrate and fat consumption is increased to avoid the aforementioned consequences that occur when the “human machine” breaks down.

If you have a goal of losing weight, toning up or finally getting your “six pack”,  start training and eating (like an athlete) by incorporating the following:

  • A consistent cardio regimen, 4-6 days a week

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Weight loss: Made easy

“Calories consumed” must be less than “calories burned”, this is the simple equation that is essential to reach your weight loss goals.  Oftentimes, the simple concepts (like this one) are the ones we struggle with the most.  Your trainer or the fitness guru on TV makes it seem so simple “just stop eating the junk food”, “get to the gym”, “make the commitment”.  Oh, if it could be so easy……

The fact is that weight loss is hard because there are a variety of different variables that often stand in our way.  One of the major causes for our demise is our environment and how we respond to it.

1. Our surroundings…. On every corner chances are that there is a fast food joint or tasty restaurant that is calling your name.  This restaurant will often carry your favorite guilty pleasure (i.e. french fries, cakes, cookies and the list goes on). So when you’re hungry for a quick breakfast or afternoon snack before you go home your primal urges kick in (especially if you haven’t eaten in the past 4-5 hours).

Solution: Keep yourself stocked with tasty (and healthy snacks) and eat small meals every 2 hours.  This way you can control those primal urges since you would’ve already had your fill of nutritious foods.

2. Our relationships…. Most would agree that when your “love boat” starts to sink, ice cream and chocolate are great flotation devices.  Drowning a broken heart in chocolate and cookies seems like a good idea at the time but what sense does it make to lose your man and lose your waistline at the same time?

Solution: Don’t sulk in the kitchen, go out and enjoy yourself.  Burn off the stress with a night of dancing on the town!

3. Our expectations…. When we make the decision to change our lifestyle we don’t consider “the spectrum”.  The spectrum of eating healthy consists of eating super clean (think physique competitor/fitness model) and eating really bad (think “junk food junkie”). As a result, we try to eat perfectly and end up falling off the wagon.

Solution: We must cut ourselves some slack and not expect to make a “180” in 2 days. Small steps result in large gains, because small steps are feasible building blocks that lead to long-term changes that last.

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Dynamic Power Workout: Part 1

Ozzie Jacobs, Health and Fitness Expert, introduces her Dynamic Power Workout with a Yoga twist that is sure to put some spice into your fitness routine. Don’t forget to check out Part 2!

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Dynamic Power Workout: Part 2

Ozzie Jacobs, Health and Fitness Expert, presents Part 2 of her Dynamic Power Workout with a Yoga twist!

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Ask Ozzie: How to lose weight

Ozzie Jacobs, Health and Fitness Expert, tells you how to lose weight!

Click here to Ask Ozzie your fitness question!!

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