Philippians 3:12-14 (The Message Bible)

I'm not saying that I have this all together, that I have it made. But I am well on my way, reaching out for Christ, who has so wondrously reached out for me. Friends, don't get me wrong: By no means do I count myself an expert in all of this, but I've got my eye on the goal, where God is beckoning us onward—to Jesus. I'm off and running, and I'm not turning back.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Here is the KEY, the ANSWER, the SECRET!

This is an exerpt from another excellent blog but I had to re-post it here for you to all read. Of course, I give ALL credit to the author, Trainer Momma! (btw: you have to click on the picture to see the whole thing)


I finally came up with an analogy that I think works when it comes to fitness. Here’s my best shot. Be kind:

Imagine a young tree that has just been planted. Its main source of strength to hold it up comes from the trunk. It is doing OK on its own, but it is a bit weak and with a good wind can blow from side to side. Without a bit of help and support from some extra stakes and cord, it just might not make it on its own.

The tree is fitness. The main key to success is nutrition. However, that said, a lot can be done to help you reach your goals and maintain your success by adding in two supportive little friends: cardio and lifting weights. If you take away one of the supports, the tree may stand for a while on its own, but eventually falter and bend. And of course, if you take away the trunk – proper nutrition – it is game over. There will be no tree, there will be no fitness.

From Tree analogy

Fitness has many factors, but can be slimmed down to 3 components:

1. Nutrition

2. Cardio

3. Weight Lifting

Let’s pull an M.C. Hammer, and “break it down”:

1. Nutrition – This will make or break you. I believe nutrition makes up 80% of your fitness success. When I have a client who I see is working their tail off, but is seeing no progress, my first question is:

When I was heavy, I had a gym membership (but was lacking an arm, since that’s what I used to finance that purchase when I was a wee newlywed – long story). I also had a regular exercise partner who I met up with most mornings of the week and we walked/jogged around the well lit mall parking lot at 5:30 AM. I did all this, and I was fat. Why, oh, why? Because I ate like crap. My nutrition was wwwaaaaayyyy off, however, if asked at the time, I would have sworn up and down that I ate well, but I was just big boned. Bogus. I ate nonstop carbs, I might as well have had an IV with liquid graham crackers running into my veins. I don't think I knew what food had protein in them. I hated vegetables and never ate them (that was my mother’s food, gross) and I was a sugar addict. I couldn’t even eat breakfast without finishing it off with a Yoplait yogurt (with a whopping 27 grams of sugar! AH!). Yes, I would have sworn I was a healthy eater. It wasn’t until I went to my first personal trainer that I learned how to eat, I mean really eat right. And, eleven years later I’m still a believer. Nutrition is paramount in this journey to the land of fitness.

2. Cardio – Cardio, or cardiorespiratory exercise, is also essential for fitness success. This is any activity that raises your heart rate, makes you sweat, and keeps that heart healthy! Muy importante! This said, however, I have known many a marathon runner who trained and ran the darned 26.2 miles and didn’t lose a stinkin’ pound. WHAT?!? All that and nada? I’m telling you, in order to lose weight and keep it off you need all three components to fitness.

3. Weight Lifting – For many women, this is the mysterious one. How often? How heavy? How many reps? What is a set? What is that machine used for? I don’t want to bulk up! But, I only want to tone my arms/lift my rear/get the cottage cheese off my thighs. I’ve heard it all and understand. Muscle building is essential to change the shape of your body. I like to think we are sculpting our own bodies, yes – we are works of art! There’s much more to it as well… Lifting weights is not only essential for how you look, but it helps tremendously in how your body performs and lasts throughout the years. Skin and bones are OUT, ladies. Goodbye Victoria Beckham! Muscle is IN! I’m not talking spray painting your body with bronze paint, bleaching your hair to a dry, blonde crisp, and parading in front of judges in a string bikini for a body building competition. Ugh. I’m just talking health, strong and feminine. There is a way to be all those things.

So, where ever you may be on in your health and fitness endeavors, remember the tree. Ask yourself how you are doing in all three areas. Now let's get to work!


F. Lex said...

Proper breathing for the deadlift is very similar to breathing for the want to have the most stable core at the bottom of the movement. In the case of the deadlift, this is the START of the movement.So get yourself set up in front of the bar and get ready to lift. It's important to note with the deadlift (and I will include a technique point here because I think it's an important one), don't try and pop the bar off the floor, especially when using heavy weight. You want to SQUEEZE the bar off the floor. A heavy bar has to bend and if you pop it off the floor, the weight will bounce up then down and pull you back down. So get the bend into the bar with your initial lift THEN pull the weight off the floor.When you first start the lift, you'll want to hold your breath during the first part until around the point where the bar has cleared your knees. I say "around" because if you're using really heavy weight, it may take you a bit of time to get to that point and you may need to start to exhale a bit sooner in the range of motion, i.e. below your knees.This bottom range is the most vulnerable time for your lower back and you want to keep the greatest stability in your core during that time. So do hold your breath a bit at the bottom...don't start the exhale (through pursed lips, like you're blowing up a balloon) until you get that bar at least a few inches off the ground and moving up.Keep going to the top, then take a quick breath then lower the weight.

Trainer Momma said...

Thanks for the props! I am a P90X fan myself. My husband just started up another round this week. Our entire family -- all 5 of us -- did Ab Ripper yesterday. It is good stuff! You have a beautiful family and positive outlook that is energizing...