Trends END

IMG_1199

 
“There’s a rebel lying deep in my soul. Anytime anybody tells me the trend is such and such, I go the opposite direction. I hate the idea of trends. I hate imitation; I have a reverence for individuality.” -Clint Eastwood
 
trend simply reflects what seems to be going around at any given time. A trend can be in any area and doesn’t only reflect fashion, pop culture and entertainment. There can also be a trend in the stock market to be bullish or bearish, depending on economic indicators, or a political trend reflecting a nation’s current mood. Some trends are fun, some fabulous, some appalling, but however long they last, you can be sure there will always be a new trend coming along to replace the old. (Vocabulary.com)
 
Ever notice how many of the most popular trends seem to come and go as time goes by?  Think back.  Remember when the Walkman, mullet, and rollerblades were all the rage?  Even language goes through changes: we used to call things “hip”, “groovy”,or  “fresh”.  What was cool then seems totally silly now to many.  New trends come to take their place.  Now, selfies, social media, smartphones, and binge watching are popular uses of our time and energy.
 
Diets are the same way.  A new trend comes along and everyone gets on the band wagon.  These new diet trends have attractive names and to some degree, solid reasoning.  Some of these food trends include non GMO, paleo, gluten free (except when you have celiac dsease), and even cleanses.  But, do you know what?  Most of these trends don’t work!  For each of these diet plans, someone had the idea, branded it, and shared it with the world.  Their catchy name and concept catches on fire and burns like a wildfire throughout the country.  However, most of them are not based on solid science or research.  The truth is, there is no silver bullet.  A diet that promises massive losses in even less time will not amount to the long term healthy and strong body we all want deep down.
 
Instead, focus on eating mindfully.  Choose foods from the healthy food groups: whole grains, low fat dairy, lean proteins, and fresh produce.  Serve small portions and eat slowly so that your body recognizes its satiety signals.  Limit sweets and choose healthy drinks. Sound difficult, you say?  How is eating like a cave man any different??
 
As Always, Eat, Move, Improve!
Advertisements

Ignore the White Noise

IMG_0258

“You will never reach your destination if you stop and throw stones at every dog that barks.”- Winston Churchill
 
White Noise: meaningless or distracting commotion, hubbub, or chatter (Webster’s Dictionary).  On any journey to making a change, it is inevitable you will face distractions.  I Like to call it “white noise.” These distractions make an effort to bother us and derail us from the main objective or goal.  Most of the time, distractions appear as innocent annoyances.  However, they can have a cumulative effect if you succumb to them often enough.
 
Take television for an example.  Almost everyone has found a show they enjoy to watch.  They get excited when it comes on and stop their lives to envelope themselves in a story through the screen.  However, streaming companies and cable providers have made television shows more accessible and on demand.  More than ever, it is so easy to get distracted in our lives and binge watch several hours of these shows!
 
When it comes to diet and exercise, many distractions can delay or divert us from our success.  One distraction I always think of are the food choices at holidays and parties. How often do you attend family or friend get togethers where there is food served?  If I was a betting man, I would say every couple weeks!  Most of the time, the food served here aren’t very healthy choices!  And, there is always more available than anyone could eat in one sitting.
 
As for exercise, there are so many distractions that hinder people from having an effective workout.  I have experienced it myself!  The distractions can be different depending on where people work out.  In the gym, it is easy to become distracted by people watching (my personal favorite), chatting with others, or wasting time on our cell phones.  If you exercise at home, the TV, computer, or chores can be distractions from carrying out an effective workout.
 
In order to change your life, it is important to ignore these distractions. Take some time to reflect where you get distracted from achieving your goals.  It is critical to discover what pushes you away from making the best decisions to achieve your goals. COMMIT to staying focused and don’t allow the distractions get to you.  I know what you’re thinking, “easier said than done, Anthony!”  The truth is, I believe in you and it is possible to ignore distractions!  Above all, Eat, Move, Improve!

Own Your Scars

IMG_1200

“I wish I could say something classy and inspirational, but that just wouldn’t be our style. Pain heals. Chicks dig scars. Glory… lasts forever.” -Shane Falco, The Replacements

Ever see someone with an awesome scar?  Ever ask about it and of course, it came from an awesome story?  Me too.  As people, we notice imperfections.  We notice things out of place: blemishes, mistakes, cuts, bruises, a messy room, an untidy car.  Scars are a reminder of a past pain.  We carry them long after the pain has subsided.  Our bodies change and are never the same because of our scars.

However, this chapter is not about physical scars.  Those are on the surface and can be explained in a quick story, hopefully filled with action, adventure, and a great ending.  Scars that exist on the inside come from deeper cuts.  We carry them secretly like a weight holding us down.  Everyone has emotional scars: baggage they carry from their past failures, disappointments, hurts, and regrets.

It’s natural to hide these scars away.  They are more ugly, raw, and sometimes unattractive.  We are embarrassed to open up and share our scars with each other.    We feel others will judge us from our past failures, mistakes, regrets, emotions, challenges, and bad memories.  A lot of people want to sweep these memories under the rug.  It’s the safe thing to do.

You know what is truly liberating?  Being proud of your inner scars, too.  They have made you who you are:  a special, unique, and one of a kind human being.  Our inner scars shape us, mold us, and develop us into who were are today; for better or worse.  Life is about connecting with people in a real way and being open to new experiences.  I cannot count how many times I have opened up to people  about a certain event, situation, or hurt I have experienced.  It only made me feel better and deepened my connection with that person.

Mistakes happen.  Accept them.  Laugh at yourself for making one.  Everyone fails at something.  Learn from it and move on. Worry and regret is a waste of time and energy.  It never makes the situation better.  The past is just that: the past.  It does not matter today.  What if, instead of being embarrassed of our inner scars, we owned them and wore them like a badge of honor?  What if we shared our inner scars to others as if they came from some amazing, crazy story?  Because, honestly they did.  And, you survived!

Above all, Eat, Move, and Improve!

Forget “FOMO”

IMG_1197
“Great achievement is usually born of great sacrifice, and is never the result of selfishness.”   -Napoleon Hill

 

     FOMO: The Fear of Missing out.  At one time or another, we all experience it.  Everyone has a degree of feeling like they are not included. We all yearn to be accepted into a group.  We all yearn to be invited to the party.   I remember how I wanted to be a part of everything and never miss a special event.  I wanted to sample every food choice in sight.  I wanted to participate in every game.  I wanted to be a part of every conversation. I wanted to be the one making all the plans. I didn’t want to miss a birthday.  i didn’t want to miss a night out.  I didn’t want to miss a holiday.  I didn’t want to miss an episode of my favorite show. You get the picture.  At one point, I realized it was not beneficial to me. I would exhaust myself by trying to be a part every little thing. If I heard about an event that I was not a part of, I grew angry. I felt left out.  I took it personally.  Because of these feelings, I grew bitter.  I was seeking a quantity of experiences, but sometimes not quality ones.  It was time to change my focus.
 
      In life, we have to make choices.  In order to overcome our challenges and break our habits, we need to make sacrificial choices. Nothing is a priority if everything is a priority.   It is important to minimize/ limit anything that does not move you toward your main goals.  In order to make a weight change, this means sacrificing anything that moves you away from your weight goal.  Instead of following 6 TV shows at a time, DECIDE to sacrifice a few shows and exercise.  Instead of eating that nightly dessert, call a friend for some positive encouragement or as a distraction.  Instead of getting involved in everything, pick a few activities that you truly enjoy and focus on those.
 
     It’s ok not being involved in every little thing.  Life goes on if we miss an event or show.  Sacrifice takes work and concentration.  However, it makes us stronger because we trade instant happiness for lasting accomplishment.  Now, sacrificing every bad habit at once would be difficult, if not impossible.  Behavior change is most effective when focusing on a few changes at a time.  Choose some sacrifices that you feel confident you can make consistently. Once those sacrifices feel natural, take another look and see what else isn;t necessary.  Above all, Eat, Move and Improve!

Happy Easter

This year, Easter Sunday is on Sunday, April 20 2014.  For most, this means Easter Baskets full of chocolate eggs, jelly beans, large chocolate Easter bunnies, and much more!  We also usually have a large Easter dinner meal.  Depending on your tradition, that could mean sliced ham, casseroles, hard boiled eggs, or, if you’re like my family, pasta and red sauce!  With all this great food and  good company, it can be easy to go overboard with the foods we eat.  Here are some tips to make your Easter healthier! 

Instead of candy in Easter baskets, try these:

  • Whole pieces of fruit
  • Bags of popcorn
  • Small toys
  • Granola Bars
  • Crackers
  • Pretzels
  • Fun books

If you are planning to eat a large Easter dinner, follow these tips:

  • Fill your plate only once
  • Drink water
  • Have a small meal a few hours before
  • Make half your plate fruits and vegetables

I hope you and your family have a happy and healthy Easter!

Red, Red Wine

Red, Red Wine

            Question: Is alcohol good for you?  Research indicates that moderate alcohol consumption can help reduce stress and decrease heart disease risk.  Moderate alcohol intake can be defined as 1 drink for women a day and 2 drinks for men a day.  A serving of alcohol counts as 4 ounces of wine, 12 ounces of beer, or 1.5 ounces (a shot) of hard liquor.  According to the American Heart Association, this moderate alcohol consumption can be most effective for middle aged men and women.  But, alcohol should not be a substitute for healthy habits such as eating right, exercise, and not smoking.

            So, what’s all this commotion about red wine?  Is it just as good as, or better than any other alcoholic drink?  Answer: Red wine has something called reservetrol.  This antioxidant is found in red wine has been shown to reduce HDL cholesterol.  This “good” form of cholesterol protects against blocked arteries and the arteries from hardening.  So, red wine can help protect against heart disease in conjunction with healthy behaviors!  But, before you start drinking red wine on the regular, check with your Dr. if it’s a good idea.  Enjoy this classic video while you drink some vino!  Cheers!

Reference: http://circ.ahajournals.org/content/111/2/e10.full?utm_source=BenchmarkEmail&utm_campaign=NEW__To_Your_Good_Health_Newsletter_August&utm_medium=email