Popular Fitness Questions Answered, Again

What’s the best exercise you can do to lose weight? How about “whatever activity you enjoy doing is best”. What good would it do if I said “sprinting up a 100 yard hill ten times, while wearing a weighted vest, will help you burn calories, build muscle, and tone your whole body” if you hate sprinting? Find a physical activity you enjoy and do it, over, and over, and over, again. And then do it one more time. Worst case scenario, walk a mile a day, and in a year you will have walked 365 miles and burned off 45,000 calories, minimum.

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What’s the best food to consume to help you lose weight? How about, don’t consume too much food. Sounds like a bit of a rude answer, but it’s kind of true. If I say that brown rice, oatmeal, seafood, and fruits are healthy, but you eat too much of these foods, then you might gain weight. Monitor your calories and the quality of them, to lose weight.

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What does toning mean? In the workout world toning means that you lose enough fat to see your muscles. That’s it! That is the only way to tone. We all have muscles. The main difference between us all, when talking about being tone, is the percentage of body fat around those muscles. Low body fat levels = tone body, for men and women alike.

What can you do to elongate your muscles? Technically, nothing. Sorry about that my yoga participants. You only elongate your muscles as you grow taller. Once you’re done growing, your muscles will not elongate anymore. They can be stretched and strengthened, but that is as far as the elongation of muscles goes.

Will lifting weights make you bulky? This is a popular question I get from women. For starters, gaining muscle is very, very, difficult. Ladies, just think of how many buff and tone men you know? Not many. Time to brag. I can dead-lift 315 pounds 3 times, and 225 pounds ten times, and I have never been described as bulky. Simply put ladies, you won’t get bulky lifting weight unless you train with that intent. I have never met a woman who trains that way. The main way we all can get bulky is by eating bulks of food.

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Or…

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Here’s another popular complaint I get. “I hate exercise! What can I do to like it”? This is the bad news of the day. Your body’s demand and requirement, to move, to help it stay strong and function optimally, will never go away. Humans were made to move. Why do you think you have so many muscles? To reach for the remote control, or just walk to the fridge? Nope, your designed for movement. There’s even a scientific field for this called bio-mechanics. I was going to go into that field, but then I decided I better focus on helping people eat less and move more instead, and there’s no degree for that. Just kidding.

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And the last time I checked, you only get one body. I am not asking you to be a workout nut like myself. Or as my wife said Monday, when I told her I did dead-lifts at the gym and then went for an hour bike ride in the heat, “You’re a weirdo”. I am not asking you to be a weirdo. I know you have a life. But just like you get tune-ups for your car, go ahead and give your body a tune-up by walking or jogging, lifting some weights, and eating clean and in the right amounts. Trust me, your body will thank you for it. Your constipation might even go away. Yes, exercise helps constipation.

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Real Life Weight Loss

Hello everyone. When it comes to weight loss, I usually give advice along the lines of moving more, eating less, and drinking water, simple formula right? Well today, I will introduce you to a real life person, who attained real life weight loss results. Her name is Farah, and she is my wife’s cousin.

Farah came to visit us a few weeks ago. When I first saw her I thought “I didn’t know Farah had a twin sister. This girl looks just like Farah, except her face, and the rest of her body is thinner”.  Nope, Farah does not have a twin sister. Farah looked different because she had lost weight. Good job girl!!!!

For starters, Farah is a mother, and works full-time. So she does have a life other than working out and watching what she eats. This is her when she was about to burst and become a mommy a few years ago.

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Below, that is Farah before she began her weight loss journey.

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And below is the “Look at me, I look great, I am 36 years young, I have busted my butt working out, have been strict with my food intake, and I have lost 27 pounds! and counting” selfie. Look how much thinner her face looks, and look how much flatter her tummy is. Great job!!! To tell you the truth, in person, the results are that much more  impressive ad evident than these pictures illustrate.

after(1)Because Farah did not use my services to lose weight and tone up, I decided to interview her, so I could learn a thing or two and share her weight loss wisdom with my readers.

Interview:

1. What is the biggest change you made to help you lose weight? “My eating habits”. (She didn’t hesitate with this answer). She reduced her portion sizes, cut out processed sugar considerably, and “almost completely eliminated fast food”. And yes, although you can make healthy food choices at Subway, it is still considered fast food.

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2. When did you begin your weight loss? “After I had my baby, I did Weight Watchers for  3 months. I lost about 8-9 pounds”. She also said that Weight Watchers taught her about portion control, and she now uses saucers instead of plates, whenever possible, when she eats. (And when she gets angry, the saucers become flying saucers, just kidding. Farah is always happy just like my wife, her cousin. Maybe happiness runs in families like diabetes does. It’s just a thought).

3. Do you drink alcohol? “I drink less overall now. I really don’t drink beer, and just stick to mixed drinks. I sometimes have a glass of wine with dinner”.

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4. When did you begin exercising, and what do you do for exercise? “I began exercising last March, 2013. I go to the gym three times per week. I workout for 45 minutes to an hour and do weights and cardio. I also walk my baby in the stroller, for up to 2 hours sometimes”. The walking of the stroller outside is a seasonal thing because Farah resides in Canada. I believe she works out 4 to 5 hours per week. You go girl!!

5. I know you’re already busy as a mother, do you work too? “Yes, I have a full-time job”. This is very important because it means that she makes time for her workouts, despite her busy schedule. Technically, she has two full-time jobs because being a parent is a full-time job too. I speak from observation and not from experience.

6. Ok Farah, this is the million dollar question. Everyone who embarks on a weight loss journey needs a strong reason to do so. I always tell my clients that if their reason for weight loss is strong enough, it will fuel their weight-loss efforts. So, what was your main reason for wanting to lose weight? “I didn’t like how I looked in my clothes”. This answer was quick and serious, so I knew it was the truth. She said she also did it for health reasons, but it was mostly vanity. And there’s nothing wrong with that. Who doesn’t like to look the best they can look? Even back in the day folks were vain. The painting below is from the 1800’s.

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7. What has been the most challenging aspect of your weight-loss and fitness plan? “Creating a workout routine and sticking to it has been the toughest. The food changes have not been that tough”. This answer surprised me because most of my clients struggle more with food change/reduction than with exercise adherence.

8. What is your favorite form of exercise? “I like doing the elliptical machine and lifting weights”. Translation: She likes most forms of exercise except, in her words, “I do not like to run”. Amen.

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9. I have plenty of female clients, and many of them are working mothers just like you. What advice would you give to them if they are trying to lose weight and get fit? “Just stay active and eat clean”. I swear that this was her answer. It is great advice in just six words.

There you have it ladies, an interview with a young woman who took it upon herself to lose weight and tone her cuerpo. After our interview, I did give Farah some fitness advice and wrote her a workout routine in exchange for her allowing me to post her pictures and our conversation on my blog. Thanks again Farah, and I know you will inspire some women out there with your great results and sincere advice.

 

 

 

 

 

Happy Mother’s Day

I know today is Friday, and Mother’s Day is Sunday, but if I wait until Sunday to post this, many of you mothers probably won’t get a chance to read it because you will be so busy with other stuff. So…

Sentence-Happy-Mothers-Day-with-Red-rosesOne of the cool features humans are equipped with is the ability to dream and fantasize. So allow me to tell you ladies, mothers, what I would do for you for Mother’s Day if I had a kazzillion dollars. And don’t bother checking how much a kazzillion is, just know that it is more than a billion, a jillion, and a trillion!

First, I would fly you all on a private jet…(no children or husbands allowed, mothers only)

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to a private beach resort.

On this private jet you will be served food and drinks of your choice, but here’s the good news. The drinks actually cause you to burn fat! And the food makes your body to feel like it’s exercising, causing you to burn even more fat. So by the time you get off the plane at your destination you will be more toned and sporting a beach body. Also, on the plane you will get a facial and pedicure because I have learned that moms love this type of stuff.

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Ok, you have arrived. It’s about 9am so time to have some breakfast with all your girlfriends. And the good news about the food and drinks continues: The food and drink on this island has negative calories. That means that the more you eat and drink, the more fat your body burns. So mothers, get your drink and grub on.

Ok, now go to your rooms and unpack. Don’t worry, your luggage is already there. While you were eating, the private jet was unloaded and all luggage taken to its correct destination. Now that you have unpacked, back to poolside for some more “fat burner” drinks and to do what mothers like to do when they are around other mothers and they have had a few drinks, talk your butts off!

It’s about 1 pm now, and it is nap time. Yep, you heard me right. Mother’s need naps. And I am not talking about a 10 minute nap either. I am talking about 1 to 2 hours. There’s a light breeze, your buzz has made you sleepy, and you enter into the land of REM. Ok, wake up now. I know, you’re hungry from your nap. Go ahead and order some more food and a drink. “Oh waiter, oh waiter…can you bring me one of your fat burner sandwiches with a fat burner margarita please?”. “Claro que si” the waiter says. Oh yeah, all the staff at this resort looks something like this…

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But they’re all gay and in relationships, so don’t get any funny ideas ladies.

Now it is spa time. You’re getting a massage, mud mask, your temples rubbed, and whatever else it is women do at spas. At this spa they have alcoholic drinks that not only burn calories, but they also tighten up the pores of your skin and diminish wrinkles, so drink up!!!.

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Spa time is over. It is about 6 pm now. Go to your room, and go into your grandiose walk-in closet that has been fully stocked with sexy dresses, sexy shoes, and matching purses and earrings, and get ready. A professional make up artist/hair stylist will come to your room upon request. Be at the lobby at 9 pm sharp, looking sharp. It is 70 degrees with a light breeze, and the sunset view from your room as you got all dolled up was beautiful.

Now it is dinner time, and guess what you’re having for dinner? Anything you want, with any drink that you desire, in any amount you desire too. And this food and drink is even better for you than the fat burner food and drink you had earlier. This food also takes away any physical ailments you may have been dealing with like headaches, back aches, tight muscles, stomach discomfort, or foot pain. You know those high heels you’re wearing, well this food makes those high heels feel like your walking on cotton. That’s how heeling this food and drink is.

Now it is time for the show, on the beach! Because I am a kazzillionaire, I flew in Cirque De Soleil and they will be performing a never before witnessed show just for all you mothers.

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The show is over and you get to meet and greet the performers. You take a bunch of pictures and post them on FaceBook to make your friends jealous, especially those moms you don’t get along with. It’s getting late. But you’re having a great time, you are tipsy, and you just realized you are on an island with a bunch of mothers who feel just like you and want to continue having fun too. Never fear, I planned for that. Because not only am I a kazzillionaire, I am also a smart kazzillionaire who knows how to plan for the ladies.

All of a sudden all the lights go out, and there is the loud sound of thunder in the air. But you don’t see lightning, and the bright stars and glowing full moon tell you that your night will not be ruined by rain. Techno music kicks in, night club type lights illuminate the beach and tropical night sky, and this appears….

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That’s right ladies, I flew them all in from Vegas just for your visual delight, and they are all straight. Enjoy the performance and no touching bellow the belly button. And remember, what happens on this island stays on this island. Happy Mother’s Day!!!! The flight back home leaves tomorrow at 12pm.

 

 

 

 

Kentucky Derby, 2014!!!

Hello everyone and happy Sunday to you. Oh yeah, happy pre Cinco de Mayo to you too. Every time I hear Cinco de Mayo, I think of pico de gallo, probably because they rhyme.

Have you ever gone to an event and it turns out to be so much more than you thought it was going to be, in a good way? Well these past 2 days have been just that. So much so that I was lying in bed thinking about it this morning, at 4am, and I decided to get my butt up and come down to the hotel lobby and blog about my Kentucky Oaks and Kentucky Derby experience. It’s 4:10am now. The security guard in the lobby asked “hitting the road already?” and I said “No, I had plenty of adult drinks at the derby yesterday and went to sleep early, so I am up early to write about my experience these past two days”. The security guard asked me where I am from. I told him I was born in Los Angeles, and reside in Maryland now. He was born and raised in Kentucky. He’s nice, and pretty tall too.

Friday was Kentucky Oaks day. This is the girls version of the Kentucky Derby. It is a race for three year old fillies. This year it was won by a filly named Untapable. The cool part is that the winning jockey’s name is Rosie Napravnik. A female jockey won the race for girls! You go Rosie!! This is Untapable. Isn’t she pretty.

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And this is Rosie on Untapable.

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Oaks Day is also pink day. Everyone is encouraged to wear pick, and yes that means men tambien (too). From left to right that is I, my wife, my sister, my father, my other sister, and my brother-in-law who made much of this trip possible, rocking the pink.

IMG_5145The picture below is my “If I was a famous boxer, this would be my parking lot pose”. I even wore pink gator shoes, faux gators that is, because the real ones are about 600 bucks, and I don’t roll like that, yet.

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My wife rocked the hot pink too!!! Very well, I might add. You go Shalisa.

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The Oaks day attendance was 113,000! Damn, that is mucho!! The races were all great and they were run under mostly clear skies. Then Saturday arrived, and we were ready to go again. Our Oaks day seats had been awesome, but through a friend of a friend of a friend, we upgraded our seats for Derby day to a section that had all you can eat and all you can drink. And take my word for it, people in this section were drinking all they could, us included. The ladies looked like this on Derby day.

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This is pops and I. He was so happy the whole weekend, and I obviously was too. Look closely, I was rocking the faux gators on day two too.

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How about a group shot? Remember I told you about the all you can drink activities in our section. Well check out the dude next to us with two drinks in hand. Mind you, this was at about 11 am.

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This is a great picture my wife took of the actual Kentucky Derby in action. The place was loud and jam packed with 164,906 screaming folks.

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The day went great and I drank plenty of Jimador with OJ and water. I was tipsy. Nah, I was drunk. Yep, you read that correct. I don’t drink often, but when I do, I like to feel it and have a great time. And that is exactly what I did on Derby day.

Leaving Churchill Downs, we had to take some more pictures. My father bought me the hat I am sporting in the picture below. It was that last one of its kind they had left that day.

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Also, a picture in front of a statue of Barbaro. A great horse who won the 2006 Derby, and then passed away because of a freak accident during the Preakness.

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Both days were incredible with plenty of wagering and drinking. If I were to measure this trip by the amount of money I won at the races, it wasn’t much. If I measure my trip by the experiences and memories I gained at Churchill Downs, I left that place a billionaire. When I was a teenager living in Stockton, California, never did I imagine I would one day attend the Kentucky Derby. Yes, I am blessed, and extremely thankful for it.

Damn, I almost forgot. California Chrome won the Derby, with Victor Espinoza aboard.

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