Category Archives: 2min reads

Quick and easy short term fat loss

If your goal is to lose fat quickly, stop over-analyzing and cut carbs. It doesn’t matter what the critics say. It doesn’t matter if eating carbs is good or bad. It doesn’t matter if there are other ways that “might” be better. We’re talking purely short term fat loss here.

When you want definite results, you rely on the data you have. And the data we have today says low carb works for short-term fat loss. So for the next 4 weeks, save yourself some mind-space and do the following.

  • Dump all kinds of sugar – honey, dessert, all fruit juice, soda, chocolate etc.
  • Restrict grains to only the meal after working out. Have lentils/beans instead during other meals.
  • Reduce fruit consumption to 1 medium fruit a day. Size? A grape is too small and a jack fruit is too big.
  • Eat 2 cups of vegetables with every meal but stay away from roots and tubers for the most part.
  • Do exactly as said and don’t try to find loop holes or work arounds.

For more, here is some fat loss information overdose.

New Year’s resolutions – A new look

It is that time of the year when most of the urban population make another set of resolutions for the New Year 99% of which will not make it past March purely because, well, the year isn’t new anymore! Looking at how most resolutions don’t result in anything, are there meaningful resolutions that can keep you on track for the duration of the year? I say yes. But they need to be about habits and not about numbers. They need to be about lifestyle changes and not about products.

What the majority of fitness enthusiasts (and the resolution making crowd in general) don’t realize is that it isn’t about the New Year or about a particular event or result but about the consistent actions that lead to the chosen event or result. If, for example, your New Year resolution is to run a marathon, it isn’t about the marathon but about the training, consistency and discipline required for you to be ready for the marathon and, more importantly, about what you learn during the process of preparing for the marathon and how you incorporate what you learn into your daily fitness life, personal life and professional life.

Here are 8 very strong changes I recommend that will help you move robustly towards those results you’re looking to achieve in 2013.

1. Eat dessert 62 times in 2013.

  • There are a total of 52 weeks in 2013. How about eating dessert once a week and on 10 other days? The 10 other days should be days you choose – relevant festivals, important birthdays/anniversaries, respectable life events etc.

2. Get in at least 104 training sessions in.

  • It doesn’t matter what kind of training. It could be a run or yoga or strength training or zumba for all I care. At 500 calories burnt per session (either directly as in cardio or indirectly as in other forms training that increase BMR), you’ll burn a good 50,000+ calories during the year which will result in a ~7kg weight loss in addition to the myriad other health and lifestyle benefits that stem from exercising consistently.

3. Sit for no more than 60 minutes at a time.

  • Every hour stand up. What you do after you stand up is almost irrelevant but don’t sit for more than an hour at a stretch.

4. Try a new vegetable every month.

  • We all have vegetables we love and vegetables we hate. But almost invariably, we tend to hate some of the most nutritious vegetables mainly because we have bad memories of that vegetable from when we were kids. Well, we’re not kids anymore. Our outlook towards life has changed. Our needs have changed. And it is very probable that our tastes might have changed too.

5. Lose your temper less.

  • Every time you lose your temper, give yourself a little black mark.

6. Plan your vacation before February.

  • Everyone is very busy today. No one has the time to take time off. But guess what? The industry/company won’t pulverize if you take a week off and there is enough statistics to prove that people taking vacations are more productive. The truth is that most people don’t take vacations because they don’t plan in time. Plan your vacation well in advance. You will have something to look forward to during the year and you can save yourself a couple of bucks.

7. Don’t litter

  • and report the folks who do. Even a place like Chennai, now, has trashcans every 100 -200 meters in many areas. Use them. Keep the city clean. Keep diseases far away from you and everyone else. Fall sick less. Live life more.

8. Say no to weighing scales, elevators, suitcases with wheels and driving endlessly hoping to find the closest parking spot.

  • Weigh yourself once a month. Always take the stairs. Carry your suitcases. And, always, park a few hundred meters away from your destination.

And like everything else I write about, you don’t have to (and shouldn’t) follow these blindly. Find the ones that are relevant to your life and pick those. Understand the idea and add a couple of your own. Accept that you’re not going to hit all 8 or 6 or 11 and prioritize the list. Focus more on the more important ones and go easy on the rest. It’s all about you and it’s all about sustainability. Make it work.

Adios!

Play to your strengths. Destroy your weaknesses.

We all are good at certain movements and suck at certain others. The way I look at it, you need to get better at what you’re good at and stop sucking at what you’re bad at.

What is it that you like to do? Chances are high that you are good at this. Do it often (once or twice a week). Make a conscious effort to focus on technique. Like running? Learn to run and get better at it instead of just running longer. Like a particular sport? Focus on the aspects of fitness that enhance your sport performance.

What is it that you avoid doing? Chances are high that you suck at this. Make a plan. Do it very often in a way that it doesn’t tax you too much. Forget exercise. Think skill. Think practice. Hate running? Sign up for a 5k that is about 30-45 days away. Start off with a short 5-10min run and add 1min every day. Hate yoga? Instead of going for an all out yoga session or signing up for a year, incorporate yoga movements and/or postures into your warm-up and stretching sessions.

At the end of the day, we are what we repeatedly do. So irrespective of what we do, let’s strive to do it well… real well.

Just a number

I hear friends, clients and people in general complaining all the time. It could be about their weight or age or dress size or body fat % or something else, but there is always a number and there is always whining.

How does it matter how much you weigh if you look great? How does it matter how old you are if your physical capability and mental calmness is trending north ? How does it matter what your dress size is if it looks awesome on you?

How does any number matter if you’re happy with the way you look, feel and function? Or how does any number matter if you’re unhappy?

The goal is not to get to any number. The goal is to continually work towards betterment. Period.

Born to run, but…

… did you learn to run?

Just because you have evolved to be able to do a certain movement, that in no way means you are capable of doing it safely and efficiently especially in a competition/race type setting. Humans can swim. No question. But without really learning to swim, would you jump into a lake assuming all will be well?

More than 95% of recreational distance runners today are sadly only worried about running longer and faster. Very very few runners actually take the time to learn to run better.

Do you have random niggles? Do any of your joints hurt? Do you need to ice your joint(s) multiple times a week? If yes, it is time to drop your running mileage and spend some quality time learning to run.

Any idiot can go out and start running. But do you care enough to get better at running and to continue running injury free for a long time to come? If yes, quit mindless running and start learning.

Here are some resources that will help you start off on the right foot.

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