So You Got Fat During Quarantine: Let’s Change That.

  1. Consistency and Math. Realize we are dealing in science and not anecdote. “He said, she said,” is not valid here. Consistency is the most powerful tool in your box. It’s what creates champions. Simply showing up or punching the clock, far outweighs 30 day programs and New Years Resolutions. As well, understand the math. A pound of fat is 3500 calories. A mile run burns around 100 calories. Therefore you cannot outrun a donut. That is where consistency rules. Daily habits add up and provide positive outcomes.
  2. Measure Your Calories and Protein. In the beginning, most individuals will need to measure what they eat. They usually have NO clue of what goes in their mouth. As well, protein is often unmeasured. Even when queried, individuals avoid the subject with, “I eat a lot of vegetables.” Good answer, but not the correct one. They are deflecting. There are tons of apps and web based tools to help here. After some maturity and only when you reach optimal leanness can you ‘eye ball’, the amounts of food you consume.
  3. Use Your Full Range of Motion. This seems like an odd tip, but it is not. You need to take full strides, squat down to pick things up, bend at the waist, put hands overhead, twist, climb stairs and pick things up. If anything, you don’t want to become more efficient. Breaking a sweat and moving is important. What you don’t use, you lose and the beginnings of aging are expressed through lousy movement.
  4. Resistance Train. If I could do one thing to improve or reverse aging it would not be food supplements or drugs. It would be resistance training. This can be with bodyweight, machines, free weights, kettlebells or even lifting rocks. As we age we lose muscle. This alters movement and is why you look old. Less muscle, more fat and sluggish movement makes us feeble. Seek the best advice possible and realize it doesn’t take much time or equipment.
  5. Do Aerobics. Fitness requires primarily three things. Strength, Mobility and Aerobic Capacity. Don’t neglect any of these. Aerobics for the average person can be of low intensity, but adequate duration. I’d like to see around 20 minutes to an hour of walking, running, rowing, swimming, hiking or machine work like treadmills and ellipticals. Mix it up if you like. Keep a pace where you are not so out of breath that you cannot speak. This is called, “conversational pace”. 3–5 days a week is adequate.
  6. Be Active. This is different from exercise or using your full range of motion. Simply, don’t set up your schedule to make things so easy. Avoid drive thru’s, park a distance from the store, take the stairs, push a lawn mover, walk to get to the coffee shop. Stand more often. All of these activities decrease with age and during the quarantine. Do MORE.
  7. Carefully Control Liquid Calories. This would be wine or any alcohol. As well, juices, milk, smoothies and the highly caloric Starbucks beverages are in this group. Drinking liquids is a FAST way to deliver calories since they have more surface area than solids. That means that a bottle of wine a night at 600 calories will add a pound of FAT in about 5–6 days.
  8. Sleep Adequately. The most restorative tool is not massage or exotic food supplements. It is sleep. Lack of sleep will age you and compromise your immune system. You have to build your schedule around 7–9 hours of deep sleep. This is not negotiable.
  9. Keep Records. What you record, improves. You need to take simple notes about your training and dietary intake. This can be as simple as a wall calendar or as complex as a spreadsheet. As well record your weight and waistline once per week. This feedback is powerful. Don’t use, “how my clothes fit”, as a guide. We can tell ourselves lies and believe them. Numbers don’t lie.
  10. Life Will Give You Days Off. Be active and plan exercise daily. You can vary the strength and aerobics days, but appointments, family, work and illness will give you unplanned breaks in your activity. Your diet should remain consistent. If you are having a ‘free” or unrestricted meal, then eat less overall that day. There is no free lunch.

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Tom Furman has been involved in martial arts and fitness most of his life. He’s currently a fitness coach and been blogging since 2005. www.tomfurman.com

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Tom Furman

Tom Furman

Tom Furman has been involved in martial arts and fitness most of his life. He’s currently a fitness coach and been blogging since 2005. www.tomfurman.com

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