What is the best form of exercise to lose weight?

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There are so many different opinions on what forms of exercise are better for weight loss. Some of the most common ones you hear about are:

  • Boxing
  • Crossfit
  • Running
  • Walking
  • Swimming
  • Dancing
  • Resistance Training
  • Plus many more…

To give you my honest opinion as to which is the best for weight loss, they all are.

Any form of exercise is better than sitting on the couch not doing anything. One of the biggest problems in society these days, is that everything is becoming so easy for us. We can basically do all our shopping, hire movies, order food, and so much more from the comfort of our couch. Convenience is killing us.

The first step is to start moving. If you need to get groceries, get up and go get them. If you need dinner, go out and buy something healthy. When it comes to weight loss and exercise, I would say as long moving then go for it. Make every second count!

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The SMART way to achieve your dreams.

SmartGoals

How many times have you started a health and fitness related journey, done great for a few weeks then began to drop off? How many times have you looked for the first excuse to stop or cheat? If you say you haven’t then chances are you are kidding yourself. I know I’ve done it plenty of times. We tell ourselves that life gets in the way or my favourite is ‘I don’t have time’.

One of the keys to any kind of journey, whether it be health and fitness related or something else, is GOAL SETTING.  I’m sure most you have heard of the acronym SMART when it comes to goal setting. For those of you that haven’t, get ready to change your perspective on setting your goals. For those that have heard it, stick around and make sure you are still setting your goals this way because chances are you have gone back to setting goals the old way such as ‘I want to lose weight’.

Here goes. The S stands for Specific. A specific goal has much more chance of being accomplished than a general goal. For example, ‘I want to do 10,000 steps a day for the next month’ or ‘I want to lose 5kg in the next 8 weeks’. Keeping these nice and specific gives you something real to focus on as opposed to just a broad ‘I want to lose weight’.

The M stands for Measurable. Make sure it’s a goal that can be measured. Ask yourself question like ‘How much?’ ‘How many?’ ‘How will I know when it is accomplished?’ If you can measure a goal then you can measure if you need to do more or if you are on track.

The A stands for Attainable. When you identify the goals that are most important to you, you can begin to figure out ways in which you can make them a reality. You want to make sure that it is challenging. For example if you say you want to do a Triathlon in a month, this is not attainable, but something like running 5km a day is.

The R stands for Realistic. This doesn’t mean set something easy for you to achieve. Don’t confuse the two. Like I stated before, you want your goal to challenge you.

The T stands for Time. Make sure your goal has a time frame. Every goal needs an end point to be able to keep you motivated. What sounds more powerful? ‘I want to lose 5kg’ or ‘I want to lose 5kg in 8 weeks’. I think the second one definitely does. Giving your goal a time frame keeps you accountable and helps give you that nudge when day to day life ‘gets in the way’.

So, make sure you set yourself a SMART goal so you can succeed and keep motivation high. At Vital Health and Fitness we do what we can to keep you motivated and getting the most out of every session. We also have some other little tricks to keep you going. Contact us to book in your first consult and let’s achieve your SMART goals together!

The Key To Success In Any Weight Loss Journey

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Head Space

One of the most important parts of any weight loss journey is mindset. If you go into this with a bad frame of mind then you are destined to fail. Something we see a lot in the industry is people coming in and wanting to lose weight but deep down they are doing it for someone else. When people are in this frame of mind, they normally give up when it gets hard.

Here are a few things that will help you with your mind frame. Firstly it is important to find out why you eat. Are you a stress eater? Emotional eater? Do you eat for comfort? Or do you eat for health?

The first 3 are the ones that can really hamper you weight loss journey. So the important thing is to recognise these issues and try and control them. Figure out the signs before you do it and then get on top of it. You might make mistakes but make sure you pick yourself up and keep going.

Practice positive thinking. When you wake up in the morning, make sure you start off the day with a positive statement in your mind. If you start having negative thoughts, remind yourself of why you are doing it.

Find yourself a positive mantra and use it.

Another good way to keep your mind on track is to write things down. This helps in so many ways, such as helping you release all the negativity ie emotions and feelings. It’s a great way to track exactly what sets you off and can let you get control of it.

Find someone to help you stay positive. It’s important to have a good support network to be able to lift you back up on those days you just don’t feel it. Whether it be a trainer, friends or family. Just make sure you have that positive network and get rid of negativity.

For other ways to stay positive and succeed on your weight loss journey, please contact us and follow our Facebook page.

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The Importance Of Protein In Your Diet

We have all read in our science books that proteins are the building blocks of life. Every cell in the human body contains protein. The basic structure of protein is a chain of amino acids. Your body needs protein to help repair cells and make new ones. Protein is also important for growth and development in children, teens, and pregnant women.

Protein comes from a variety of sources, including meat, milk, fish, soy, and eggs, as well beans, legumes, and nut butters. When proteins are digested, they leave behind amino acids, which the human body needs to break down food. Whey, a high quality protein source naturally found in milk, is a complete protein and contains all of the amino acids your body needs.  In general, proteins derived from animal sources (i.e. milk, eggs & meat) are complete, but your body’s ability to use the protein varies.

Benefits of a Protein-Enriched Diet

Consuming high-protein foods has many benefits, including:

  • Speeding recovery after exercise
  • Reducing muscle loss
  • Building lean muscle
  • Helping you maintain a healthy weight
  • Curbing hunger

Protein and Weight Management 

Consuming a higher protein diet is also a major part of losing weight. Protein helps regulate appetite and cravings by enhancing the feeling of fullness for longer after a meal or snack. This means that you have less chance of giving in to cravings so it is easier to keep your calories lower. To be able to lose weight you need to be in a calorie deficit (burn more calories than you consume). That’s where the feeling of being fuller for longer plays a big part.

Remember as we have mentioned in the past, the more muscle you have in your body the more calories you burn throughout the day. A high protein diet is key to building muscle. Eating protein stimulates an increase in muscle protein synthesis and suppresses protein breakdown for several hours so you end up with more lean tissue.  For weight loss scientists have found that the most important amino acids are the branch chain amino acids (BCAA’s), especially leucine. If your protein intake is high and your proteins are high in leucine, your body can activate a sluggish metabolism and this helps weight loss. (See below ‘Branch Chain Amino Acids’ for more info on the importance of BCAA’s)

Protein in Muscle Growth and Maintenance

If you want to build and maintain muscle mass, you need to eat enough dietary protein. But did you know that distributing protein consumption throughout the day may be the most efficient way to build muscle? Whether you’re an athlete looking to bulk up, or just someone interested in maintaining muscle as you age, to build and maintain muscle over time it may be more effective to aim for around 30 grams of protein per meal three times a day.

Branch Chain Amino Acids (BCAA’s)

Branch chain amino acids are made up of 3 essential amino acids: leucine, isoleucine and valine. These are essential amino acids because your body can’t produce them therefore they need to be consumed. BCAA’s play an important part in energy production during exercise. This is why so many people drink BCAA supplements during their workouts. I myself do this to help recovery and to help me push out those extra reps.

Here are 7 reasons why it is so important no matter what your goal, to have BCAA’s.

  1. Enhance Protein Synthesis- this helps for greater muscle growth and the maintenance of lean muscle mass during times off exercise.
  2. They can increase fat burning and support fat loss
  3. Support hormone balance during intense training- this helps for greater strength, power and endurance adaptations for intense training.
  4. May improve strength developments with training- this can improve neuromuscular adaptations.
  5. Enhance endurance performance and decrease fatigue- BCAA’s can be burned as energy to reduce fatigue and increase energy (drink BCAA’s during your workouts).
  6. Decrease muscle soreness & Delayed onset muscle soreness(DOMS) for greater training frequency- using BCAA’s to decrease soreness and accelerate recovery will allow you to train more frequently.
  7. Prevent muscular loss during long duration exercise- replenishes energy store.

So as you have seen, supplementation plays a major part in reaching your goal whether it is to lose weight, put on muscle or just increase general fitness. We are pleased to announce that we stock protein, BACC’s and preworkouts from Paramount Nutrition. These supplements are made of the highest quality ingredients. I myself use these products and have seen and felt great changes in my body and energy levels. A lot of the Vital Health and Fitness family have also been using these products and have seen some amazing results. Are you using supplementation? Give your body the extra help it needs and start using these amazing products.

Contact us to order your amazing products to help those phenomenal transformations. Send us an email at cristian@vitalhealthandfitness.com.au

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Causes and Treatments for Shin Splints

Medial tibial stress syndrome, more commonly known as shin splints refers to any pain that is felt along the inner or outer edge of the shin bone between the knee and the ankle. The exact cause of shin splints is unknown but research does suggest that its likely due to the increased stress applied to the tibia which occurs during exercise. This is why it is more common in people who have had a sudden increase in the intensity and frequency of exercise or those who do continuous repetitive activity such as running or dancing.

The pain that is felt is the muscles and the tendons of the shin pulling against the bone and creating inflammation.  Other than overuse, contributing factors can include running on hard or uneven surfaces, incorrect running techniques, wearing ill-fitting or worn out footwear and one of the most common factors is a weakness in the calf muscle.

If you have aches and pains along or on either side of your shin bone and the area is tender or painful to touch then you may have shin splints.

You can treat shin splints at home by resting as much as you can, if you must exercise stay away from anything high impact opt for a low impact activity such as swimming. A combination of applying ice to the area for 10- 20 minutes three or four times a day and anti-inflammatory pain killers will help the inflammation settle and ease the pain.

It is very important that if the pain is intense or does not subside after a few days of rest you seek medical advice. Other more serious injuries such as stress factors can show similar if not identical symptoms.

You can prevent the onset of shin splints by opting to exercise on softer surfaces such as grass and by wearing decent footwear. It’s also important to incorporate gentle stretching after exercise and ensure that you are giving your body adequate recovery time to avoid overuse.  Using massage tools such as foam rollers and massage balls can also help reduce the tightness of the muscles.

Foam rollers are available from Vital Health and Fitness so if you want to purchase one please let us know.shin splints

20 Weight Loss Tips

WEIGHT LOSS TIPS

Here we have put together a list of 20 weight loss tips that you may have never thought of. Have a read through the list and see if you are doing everything you can to get where you want to be.

  1. Use incidental exercise throughout the day to give you that extra edge e.g park far away from the shops so you have to walk or take the stairs instead of the lift.
  2. Drink a glass of water before a meal. It will fill you up quicker.
  3. Eat healthy meals and snacks every few hours. Try have 6 meals a day.
  4. Skipping meals can cause your body to go into a fat-storing starvation mode, making it harder to burn calories.
  5. Don’t confuse thirst with hunger. Drink a glass of water when you feel hungry to see if that’s what you’re really craving.
  6. Never eat any snack food out of the box, carton or bag it came in. You’re less likely to overeat if you separate snacks into appropriate fist-sized servings.
  7. Things like green tea and chili peppers help speed up your metabolism
  8. Make sure you are sleeping properly. Sleep deprivation alters levels of hormones in the body that regulate hunger, causing an increase in appetite.
  9. Muscle burns at least 4 times as many calories as fat does so make sure you do some weight training to increase your muscle mass.
  10. A lot of people are emotional eaters. Find out what your triggers are and learn how to handle them.
  11. People who eat breakfast have a better shot at losing and maintaining weight loss. Your body needs the fuel to function properly and to kick start your metabolism.
  12. Don’t go by what the scales say. The best way to keep track of your progress is to use measurements. Don’t forget muscle weighs more than fat.
  13. Make sure you check food labels and avoid anything with more than 4 grams of sugar, especially high-fructose corn syrup, per serving.
  14. Carry around a healthy snack with you so you don’t go and buy something full of sugar.
  15. Avocados are great in aiding fat loss. They are both high in fibre and healthy fats.
  16. Keeping a food diary keeps you accountable. Write down everything you eat and drink. Most importantly be honest with it. You would only be cheating yourself.
  17. Control your portion size. Make sure there is still room on your plate. Don’t over eat.
  18. Stay away from fad diets. They don’t work. Just look at eating clean and healthy foods.
  19. Make sure you keep changing your workout. Your body adapts to it very quickly which means you won’t be getting as much out of it.
  20. Eat citrus every day. Vitamin C inhibits the production of cortisol, a hormone that essentially tells your body, ‘Store fat.’ Eat grapefruit slices with breakfast.”

Importance of Rest in Training

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Working at a gym you see a lot of people there every day doing the same thing. Yet these people don’t get the results they want. Why do you think that is? I am going to do my best to try and explain the reasoning behind it.

The main reason for this is that these people don’t give their muscles enough time to recover. When you work out your muscle fibres stretch and are being broken down, as you rest these fibres begin to heal and build more muscle. Most people think that to put on muscle they need to constantly work those muscles. The fact is that these muscles need that healing time otherwise the fibres just keep breaking down and don’t have the opportunity to rebuild.

Giving your body rest also:

  • Prevents injury
  • Strengthens the muscles
  • Avoids fatigue and burn out
  • Speeds up weight loss
  • Improves performance during workouts
  • Strengthens the immune system

As I have said before, the more muscle your body has the more calories you burn. The important part of this to take in is that if you don’t give your body the time it needs to heal then it won’t build as much muscle. Remember the body builds muscle during rest. Your body will give you hints that it needs a break. Some of these hints will be muscle soreness, lack of strengthen, cramps, quick fatigue and many more, so make sure you listen to your body and take that time to rest.

So remember that rest is a very important factor in getting those results that you want. Whether it be losing weight, bulking up or toning. So give your body the time it needs. It will thank you for it and will help you get where you want to be a lot faster.

 

 

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