Saturday, August 31, 2013

Calorie Counting. Is it necessary?

I have a friend who was a calorie counter extremist.  She counted calories to the point where she was obsessed and it became a sickness.  This is something that is rare, but must be kept in mind as a personal trainer guiding people to better health through fitness and nutrition.

Let's face it, nobody wants to be chained to calorie counting for the rest of their life.  It is annoying trying to estimate, or weigh all your food, plus It is a real downer to see exactly how many calories you have taken in, compared to how many your body actually burned.

For the person who follows the government recommendations for how many cups of fruits, whole grains, lean meats etc.,  to-the-letter, and gets at least 30 minutes a day of moderate exercise, then calorie counting is not necessary.

For the person who eats mostly vegetables, fruits, lean meats, and whole grains, ONLY when they are hungry and gets at least 30 minutes a day of moderate exercise, calorie counting is not necessary.

For the rest of us sedentary, emotional eaters, who cringe at the thought of keeping track of what they eat, and are afraid of vegetables.  Calorie counting IS necessary.

The Why 

You may find it interesting to know that most of our calories are burned simply by being alive.  Then there is an equation based on how active you are that will give an estimated allowance of daily calorie intake.  Subtract 500 of that number each day to receive the amount of calories needed a day to lose a pound.  One pound equals 3,500 calories.  This is a two way street.  I have another friend who found that she was not eating enough calories.  So why was she gaining weight?  

If your body senses that it is not getting enough food to sustain itself, it will hang on tight to whatever you give it.  The reason it does not take from your fat stores if it does not have to, is because it prefers to take from the carbohydrates, protein, and fat you take in.  The fat burning comes after a bout of intense exercise, or during rest when the muscles you worked through resistance training are working to repair themselves. That is a subject for a different post.  

In Conclusion

The beauty of calorie counting is that it does not take long before one can eyeball a plate and give a pretty accurate estimate of how many calories it contains.  It doesn't have to be done for a persons whole life either.  For the most part I do not do it consistently, but when I notice I am getting off track or have gained a pound, it is an excellent portion control reset button.

There are many online sources that will tell you how many calories you need to count.  A nutritionist, dietician, or personal trainer will also include this information in their services.

Thanks for the read, and if you have any questions feel free to post in the comments section, or shoot me an email.
May God bless your health.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

My College Education

This link will lead you to a page that shows the courses I have taken, (with exception to 4 classes that I will have completed by November 22nd 2013) As this course is nearing an end, I am excited and hopeful for the opportunities I may seize.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

     I am always looking for fabulous ways to stretch without actually attending a Yoga class.  It's not that I have anything against Yoga, at least now I don't.  I just do not have to time to attend a class.  I guess if I really wanted to go to one I would make the time, but for the sake of this read, I am not going.

     I was in the gym not so long ago and I was doing my measly cool down stretches when I looked behind me and seen a yogi. Here is the definition for the word Yogi: "One who practices yoga and has achieved a high level of spiritual insight."  There, I have just saved you a trip to the Urban Dictionary site. (I avoid that site for obvious reasons).  Yogi's tend to be friendly people willing to share their techniques, so I began copying her every move.  It did not take long for her to notice me and we struck up a conversation.  I told her that I wanted to develop my core and be able to stand and put my shoe and sock on, while standing the whole time.  She looked at me and said "If that's all you want to do, maybe you should broaden your goals."  We talked some more, she had some things to say that creeped me out, and I went on my way.  

     I left thinking, "Do I need to broaden my core goals?"  To me, if I can stand the entire time on one leg while putting on my sock and shoe, and tying it, then I am golden!  I am not trying to join the circus for crying out loud.  

     Over the past 5 weeks in my schooling, we have been programming the stabilization phase of the OPT model for ourselves and for one classmate.  I worked and progressed core exercises for 4 weeks, and this morning friends, I was able to stand and put on one sock and one shoe (not tied) without losing my balance!!!  Next phase is strength and endurance super set with stabilization, so I will be getting stronger all over, CANT WAIT!