My Kettler adjustable dumbells and Grizzly weightlifter's gloves
Now getting health advice from a fat guy might be like getting sexual counseling from a Catholic priest or Barbecuing tips from a vegetarian but here’s a few things that’s worked for me so far;
I’ve been ‘Big’ all my life, some would prefer the word ‘Big boned’ or ‘well nourished’ but it all boils down to plain ol’ body fat. Thanks to a strict diet of booze and fast food during my college days back in India I swelled up to a massive 112 Kilograms and would get red in the face whenever I had to take a flight of stairs or run after a bus. A couple of years ago I decided enough was enough and I needed to get back in shape and live a little longer. Now two years later, although I’m still a little overweight, I can run up a few floors without fainting, swim a couple of laps without sinking like a stone and even took part in the annual NBK Walkathon two years in a row and completed the full course of 8 Kilometers without even getting out of breath.
Its extremely important to eat a well balanced nutritious meal. Our bodies need a combination of proteins, carbohydrates, fibers, vitamins, minerals and even fats/oils for our day-to-day activities.
.Breakfast is the most important meal of the day and should have enough carbs to jump start your metabolism and give you energy for the start of the day. Complex carbs found in oats and whole wheat breaks down slowly and steadily in your body without spiking your sugar levels.
.A mid morning snack like an apple or a banana is good since it fills your stomach and thus you’re not tempted to buy a croissant or cinnamon bun from the snack cart.
.Lunch is usually 5 hours after you’ve had breakfast so now your stomach is ready for the next proper meal. A good balanced lunch should contain lean protein like lean meat, chicken or fish. You also need vegetables and some form or carbs like rice, bread or potatoes but not all of them at the same time. Most Indian meals will contain rice, chapati and potatoes so you’re overloading on carbs!
.An evening snack/pre-workout snack like an energy bar or a handful of nuts and tea is adequate.
.Dinner/post work out meal should ideally be half an hour or an hour after your workout, this should be the lightest meal of the day and does’nt have to contain as much carbs as your lunch. Personally I just have some fruit and a pot of Activia yogurt mixed with powdered Flax seeds. This may be too little for some people but I sleep early so this works for me. The rule of thumb is that you should have your last meal of the day at least 3 hours before bedtime.
Count those calories
Noting down what you eat during the day is a great way to keep track of calories and you’ll know for sure if you’re within your daily limits. This calorie counter helps you to track your dailt intake as well as your output during exercise.
My calorie counter [link]
Forget fad diets
Every now and then you’ll hear about some friend of yours whos on the ‘GM’ or ‘GE’ diet (both of which are just hoaxes), Atkins diets and other similar diets either restrict your intake or necessary food groups or encourage you to eat excessive amounts of a particular food group. Let me tell you something, THERES NO MIRACLE DIET. Here’s some additional information on these diets
Fad diets Wikipedia [link]
Cabbage soup diet Wikipedia [link]
There are lots of misconceptions about fat and fat loss. The most common misconception is that you lose fat if you sweat or spend time in a steam room or sauna. Fat is fat and water is water, whenever you sweat or sit in a steam room your body loses water and this may show up on your scales as a weight loss. Pretty soon you regain the lost water and you’re back to square one. The only ‘good’ way to lose body fat is thru physical activity. In the long run this assures permanent fat loss and you gain muscle mass, its a win-win situation!
Facts about fat [link]
Dont overdo those crunches
Another myth about fat loss is that if you work a body part long enough you’ll lose fat from that area. This is completely false, if you work your stomach muscles you might be losing fat from your thighs or arms. During my conversations with a certified dietician I was informed that fat loss begins from the areas that accumulated the latest, so that means places like your tummy and behind (which are usually the places that gain fat first) will be the last places to lose fat. So dont be discouraged if you dont feel an immediate size reduction in your mid-rif, you might be losing fat from your arms and legs and then slowly will start losing from your mid section.
Spot reduction myth [link]
Water is your friend
A good way to keep away cravings and keep your body hydrated is to drink plenty of water all throughout the day. Often when you ‘feel’ hungry it may not be hunger at all but a craving for water. Drinking excess amounts of sugary juices or soda(even diet soda) is not a good idea if you’re trying to lose weight.
Importance of staying hydrated [link]
Get off that sofa
The first step towards a healthy lifestyle is getting off that sofa and doing some physical activity like walking or running. You dont have to start running the marathon to be healthy. Find out what works best for you, brisk walking, jogging, stair climbing, swimming etc it doesnt matter as long as you enjoy it and gives you a good workout. One thing about excercise is to keep in mind that the body starts working on your fat reserves only after 30 minutes of physical activity. Therefore during your 1 hour workout, the first 30 minutes you’re not losing fat but rather your body is warming up and then the next 30 minutes is when the stored fat in your body is utilized to provide energy for the workout.
Pump it up
Lifting weights or resistance training is a great way to build muscle mass and one good thing about muscles is that they burn calories even while you sleep! Try to exercise at least one part of your body once a week and keep rotating your schedule so you dont feel bored. Some people I know are reluctant to lift weights and say that they dont want to look like Arnold. Dont worry you’ll never have to worry about looking like that coz that takes decades of dedicated workouts 🙂
My friend and fellow blogger Cajie has a blog dedicated to fitness and you can find more information on health and fitness there. He has also provided tons of valuable tips on fitness.
Running for Six-pack [link]
Fahad from Core Fitness now has his very own blog; Trying to be Fahad [link]
**Disclaimer: I’m not a certified trainer or dietitian. These are just a few things that have worked for me, your body might be different and hence react differently. Always consult a doctor or a trained fitness expert before attempting a new activity. I wish you good health.