This Year’s Goal is Weight Loss

22 12 2010

Wild Turkeys in California on Rural Walk

So your New Year’s resolution is to improve your fitness levels.  What will your fitness goals look like and how will you achieve them?

And really, what is a fitness goal anyway?  A fitness goal is a desired physical outcome that can be programmed by a planned strategy or objectives to to achieve it.

The most common and desired fitness goals are:  weight loss, reduced body fat, muscle strength, increased cardiovascular and muscular endurance and flexibility.

One must also recognize will power to change habits and behaviors is a driving factor toward meeting long-term fitness goals.  Will power is enforced to sustain the course when  positive results are realized.

So what will be your fit-healthy strategy to succeed in your New Years fitness resolution?  First you must know what it is you’d like to change about your current fitness-health-relational situation, or lack thereof and make a plan that is relative and right for you.

What fitness goal will you be working on?  The most typical New Year’s Resolution after the Holidays is weight loss and to become more fit.

Most don’t know the body can remove short-term weight gain hiccups and get more fit rather quickly once you get back into a low-intensity activity exercise program.

It stands to good reason that weight loss is a number one New Year’s resolution after eating so many rich foods during the Holiday season.

Since I’m targeting weight loss as a fitness goal how will you set a realistic weight loss program that fits your unique lifestyle and one in which you will not lose enthusiasm?   Do you need support to achieve the goal and will you have the will power and motivation to do this on your own?

First of all, “you know you better than anyone.”  Am I right?  Of course I am.  If you’ve been telling yourself for the last 2-3 years your New Year’s resolution is to lose weight and you’ve still had no success or lack will power to change old habits you’ll surely be able  to make use of this insight .

I know many of you are conflicted with many daily issues that seem to sabotage your fit-healthy plan each year.  Let me name a few, I’m sure you can identify with them:  job stress, kids, significant other, too tired, not enough time in the day, addicted to bad habits that take away motivation-energy-will power (drinking, smoking, drugs, etc.); lack of sleep, lack of enthusiasm, extended family influence, general environment, etc.  I could go on and on, but I’ll stop here.  You get the picture.

If any of these issues resonate within your inability to succeed at your fitness goal you must find a solution to change it if you expect the desired results.  If you cannot make positive change in your life by modifying your lifestyle, you will forever struggle to enjoy life to the fullest.

And when you fail repeatedly, you tell yourself you can’t do it, what’s the point.  The point is repeated failure and feeling miserable for too long is a recipe for “depression,” and other ill-health problems throughout time.

Also, if you begin a restrictive and dangerous weight loss plan as a short cut to lose weight fast through diet pills and restrictive diets in general; you will have short-term weight loss results.  But when the body’s metabolism discovers it’s been deceived, it will pack on weight with a vengeance after the cheating practices stop.  After years of yo-yo dieting abuse, “these short-cut methods will stop producing results all together and you will, if this course does not change, get sick!””

When this happens, this newly formed weight gain and poor health reinforces the defeated mindset, “I can’t lose weight, therefore I’ll accept my obesity and other health problems.  The mind then accepts an unhealthy lifestyle which than has an impact on the physical body.   I’m here today to tell you, you don’t have to accept unhealthy short-cut practices to fix your weight gain problems temporarily!

There are 7 common practices that can support healthy weight loss.  These practices coupled with years of personal client experience tell me optimum weight loss success can be achieved with slight modifications of daily habit and behaviors.

1)     If you have “repeated” failures at losing weight or your health is at risk, you must change the habits, or behaviors that are causing your weight problems.   See your primary care physician and/or seek referral to a behavioral, nutritional, life coach or fitness consulting service to help target your weight gain nemesis and develop an action plan to resolve the problem that is sustainable.  If you are grossly obese and/or your health is at risk seek medical attention!

2)   It is my belief you must exercise to have effective long-lasting weight loss and sustaining results.  However, for those that have not participated in a fitness exercise and now overweight a walking program will be your best course to burn body fat and lose body weight with minimum risk of weight bearing injury.

Exercise comes in many forms: resistive weight training, walking, hiking, biking, jogging… Basically anything that moves the body consistently for a period of time provides a fitness benefit.  Walking at a brisk pace (3-5 days/wk for 15-60mins) is the best metabolic fat burning, low-stress exercise that results in weight loss and cardiovascular benefits.  However, if you are just starting a walk program, “do not start out walking at a brisk pace,” you must work your way to higher intensity walking exercise over a longer period of time if you’ve been sedentary for some time.

3)   There are certain habits that will sabotage any weight loss fitness goal:  Bad eating habits, smoking, drinking and legal/illegal drugs.  Behavior therapy or in combination with cessation treatment and group therapy may be required in order for you to be successful in your weight loss program.

4)   As we age our bodies require anti-oxidant and whole food quality nutrients to boost metabolism, increase energy, mood; maintain weight and overall health.  So balanced diet in the form of healthy macro and micronutrients become more important especially if one expects to optimize weight loss results.  If you can’t get fresh whole foods in your diet, I highly recommend you supplement your food source with a super food high-quality vitamin-mineral product.  Food is energy and certain foods have more or less nutrient concentrates that don’t always find their way into the daily diets for whatever reason.

5)    When you incorporate exercise into a weight loss program you reap other benefits, such as:  Increased metabolism, muscle development, fat loss, body toning, mood enhancement, strength, flexibility.  Decreased:  Cholesterol levels, blood pressure, mood swings, depression, stress and illness/disease risk.

6)   It is also true, in the short-term a weight loss program that incorporates exercise may add weight.  You say what?  That’s right, depending on body type, exercise will typically increase muscle mass (muscle cells are more dense and heavier than fat cells).  When you exercise the muscle fiber increases in mass and weight.  So as you lose body fat “at first,” muscle mass increase will keep your weight consistent and may even show a slight increase of weight on the scale.  The trick here is to understand this is normal and eventually, the more muscle developed means greater fat burning.  This equates to greater weight loss in the long run.  Eventually, the weight on the scale begins to drop after the body becomes better conditioned.  Read [Science Proves Exercise Alone May Promote Weight Gain, Woodard, Oct 2009]

7)   There are simple weight loss measurements to measure success.  If this is not done, “out-of-sight/mind” will not help to keep you  focused on your goal.  The simplest and quick form of weight loss measurement for me is a scale and the way my pants feel around my waste.  If my weight increases and waist band feels loose, I equate this to muscle mass weight increase.  If my weight decreases and waist band feels tight, I equate this to body fat increase and muscle mass loss.  If my weight decreases and waist band feels loose while aerobics walking activity continues; I equate this to lean muscle mass toning and body fat loss.  “For me,” this represents an easy way to measure my weight loss success.

So what is the perfect weight loss program for you?  The answer lies within customizing daily habits and behaviors that are relative to your needs and wants and a plan that you can sustain.

When daily activities are changed to accommodate healthy habits then will power also  increases to stay the course because it craves these addictive healthy changes!”  This also occurs because of released addictive brain chemicals that occur during exercise activity.  Read article (New Year’s Resolution, Activate Addictive Healthy Chemicals, January 2009, Woodard).

In understanding these concepts and principles you will experience more productivity, feel happier, healthier, have more energy, feel more fit and experience more quality living experiences.  You will also boost your Mirror Athlete image on a mega-success scale that will definitely alter your ego and lead you towards other successes in life!

Author:  Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, USA Medical Services Officer, CPT, RET.  2010 Copyright, All rights reserved.  MirrorAthlete Corp., Publishing @: www.mirrorathlete.com, Sign up for your free eNewsletter.


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3 responses

31 12 2010
Marc Woodard

Good tip for all of you that will make your New Years resolution a fitness goal. “Listen to your body, work with it, and not against it.” All to often we tend to go full throttle. Ease into your fitness goal. Whether it be through walking, jogging, running, weight loss, better eating habits, etc. Don’t try to do it all at once. What is the saying, “patience is a virtual.” And in the case of fitness goals, the virtual is pain alleviation, not pain creation for the mind, body and soul-spirit.

6 01 2011
Marc Woodard

I’ve been putting the final touches on my first eBook soon for sale, “Centurion Longevity and Weight Loss Secrets.” I’ve posted pic’s of myself from 1993-1994 and 2011. Although I’m not as lean as I was in 1993; and have lost some bulk in the upper body… I’m working now to correct this symetry over the next year (2011). This info will be shared in a follow up eBook Designed specifically on “how I customized my fitness program around pain triggers” after rehabilitation fitness goals. It will be interesting to note the bulk symetry changes to upper body without adding any fat to body mass at age 52.

BRIEF HISTORY: In 2002 I had some major injuries and a couple surgeries later… After 2008; I began rehabilitaing myself back to fitness health. My goal is to get my 1994 fit body pose back. This pose is illustrated in this first eBook “middle picture illustrated in last chapter of this eBook. Cheers. Be sure to visit our home site at http://www.mirrorathlete.com

3 12 2012
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