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Nutrition

The power of food

13 What you eat and how much you eat
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Through the past decades until now our relationship with food has change a lot and this is the root of many problems nowadays, our diets are based on unhealthy foods, we eat too much junk, processed and fast foods for convenience but all this foods are loaded with hidden sugars, chemicals, extra ingredients, flavors that are one of the causes of health problems physical and mental.

Our mood throughout, the day, our energy levels, our ability to stay focus they all depend highly on what we eat and most of us most of the time eat too much calories and not enough nutrients, we demand too much to our body, we want to be at peak and perform great but we treat our body so bad.

If we want our body to function properly, to be efficient, to be at peak all day long and perform great we need to give the nutrients it needs and this is the power of food. The same way that what we´re eating right now is getting us sick, if we change our eating habits and eat meals prepared with real, fresh ingredients food can heal.

Food is fuel for our body, how we feel and how we look depends of what we eat, everything shows from the inside out.

I know and understand that most of us choose processed and fast food over real fresh meals thanks to the convenience in money and time, it´s easier, faster and cheaper to buy boxes of cereal and milk for breakfast than to cook some eggs every morning, we can grab some cookies, or chips to eat in the car because we´re late for school or work. Even when this options give us a solution in the short term, if we think about our health in the long term they´re not the best option.

Our body needs nutrients to function efficiently not calories, with processed, junk and fast food we´re giving our body too much calories and not enough nutrients, with real fresh foods we´re giving our body nutrients and less calories.

When we eat processed foods our body doesn´t know what to do with all those ingredients and it´s hard to digest and when it´s done there´s nothing that can be used, when we eat real foods our body knows what to do with them, it digest all the food and absorb the nutrients.

All real, fresh foods are loaded with micronutrients and macronutrients and our body needs both. Fiber, vitamins, minerals, proteins, fats, everything our body needs can be found in nature, there´s no reason to eat processed unhealthy foods that are only making us sick.

When we eliminate or avoid as much as possible unhealthy foods (processed, junk, fast food) and we focus on real fresh foods, inflammation on our body starts to reduce, it clears our skin, it improves mental disorders, improve systems in our body like the immune system, autoimmune system.

Food is our DNA, what we eat at every meal will have an impact on our body inside, and outside. If you love food as much as I do you need to know that it is possible to eat so many different dishes cooked with real, fresh ingredients but the hardest part is making the commitment of living healthier, we need to change our relation with food, if we use it the right way it is fuel for our body and it has the power to heal.

It would so much to me if you share this post with your friends and family and if you follow me on Twitter and Facebook, together we can help millions live a better life. Pam

Sleep

Sleep and inflammation

01 How sleep impacts your day
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We all know that we need enough good quality sleep and the lack of it has negative consequences that will can see right the nest day in our mood, performance, cravings, etc. but consistent lack of sleep goes way further and the impact and consequences are bad for our health.

Lack of sleep increase inflammation but what is inflammation? Is a natural response from the immune system of our body to fight off harmful toxins that can cause diseases and also as a way to help our body heal from an injury.

Inflammation is beneficial and keeps us healthy but when it´s too often it can be the cause of many other health issues, as we said before inflammation is a response from our body to fight harmful toxins but when it´s too often this inflammations attacks healthy cells, organs, tissues and systems throughout our body which leads to chronic diseases.

Too much sleep or too little sleep both increase inflammation, poor sleep or sleep problems which cause poor sleep like insomnia, sleep apnea, waking up several times through the night also increase inflammation.

Inflammation is linked to the immune system and our immune system and sleep works according to the circadian rhythm which is the internal clock of our body. Our body does so many different jobs and they´re all scheduled through the circadian rhythm, if it goes out of time everything goes out of time and this out of sync or imbalance creates so many problems in our body, if the circadian rhythm goes out of rhythm so does the immune system which causes inflammation levels to raise.

We´ve also talked in other posts about the relation between stress and sleep, if we stressed right before going to bed we won´t be able to fall asleep and the poor quality of sleep of one night creates more stress in our body which becomes a negative unhealthy cycle that keeps inflammation in our body high.

To make everything worse and more complicated, our gut health is also important, and unhealthy gut also contributes to inflammation, we need to keep our gut healthy by exercising, following a healthy nutrition program and getting enough good quality sleep and having a healthy gut also helps us get good quality sleep so once again the 5 principles of fitness are working together.

Bad habits lead to health problems, we all know this and sleep quality is also an important part of our lifestyle, the best tool to improve sleep quality is having a sleep schedule, this way our body gets used to waking up at the same time every day and going to sleep at the same time every day, this gets the circadian rhythm of the body in balance and working effectively which makes it easier to fall asleep bringing so many positive benefits for our health which includes enough good quality sleep every night.

Inflammation protects the body and keeps us safe but when it´s too much for long periods of time it harms our body, the root cause of some chronic diseases is inflammation so we need to make sure to keep the levels right and for this we need enough good quality sleep, around 6 to 8 hours of good sleep every night and also a healthy nutrition program and exercise are key to keep the right levels of inflammation and they also improve sleep.

It would mean so much to me if you share this post with your friends and family and if you follow me on Twitter and Facebook, together we can help millions live a better life.

Pam

Stress

How to change our mindset about stress

24 How to change our mindset about stress
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We talk a lot about mindset, it´s one of the 5 principles of fitness and it has an impact in our life, I´ve seen this in so many people. The ones who have the right mindset, the ones have develop the successful mindset are the ones who achieve more in life, the ones with a wrong mindset are the ones who stay stuck living an average life who spend so much time blaming, criticizing and complaining.

Our mindset is key so we need to develop the right mindset, how we think of stress is how it affects our life, if we think that stress is bad and it can get us suck then we will get sick but if we think that stress has a positive impact then we can make stress work for us so developing the right mindset and changing our thoughts and believes is key but changing thoughts and believes is one of the hardest things to do.

To change our thoughts and believes about stress we need to start by being aware and living in the present moment, when we´re in a stressful situation our body and mind acts according to past experiences and we take decisions based on those experiences and almost all time we make the wrong decision because we are not able to think, we just react instead of taking some time.

If we think about how our body responds in this situations, our heart rate goes up, we start to sweat, our mind creates the most negative situation and also start bringing some related situations from the past, it is at this moment when we need to be aware of all this going on and reframe the situation.

Once we are aware we need to take a time to breathe, breathing technique are incredibly amazing to help us calm down, take 6 deep breathes and you´ll feel your body calming down so you´ll be able to think and make the best choice, once you feel calm you need to start reframing the situation to a positive outlook. What´s the best scenario, start thinking about what´s the best decision you can make that will give you the best results.

When we reframe the situation to a positive outcome we start to find several solutions to our situation, this is hard to do at the beginning because our mind will always bring the negative stuff so we need to work to change that so that it stops thinking about the negative and instead focus on positive results.

This is the best way to deal with stressful situations, when we start doing this it´s easier to believe that stress is not bad and it can actually be helpful, another thing you need to do is remind yourself that stress is good for you and keep repeating this phrase over and over specially during stress.

Repeating over and over again that stress is good for us, that it will help us grow, that something good will come out of all of this our energy changes, if we feel our heart rate up, if we feel anxious and sweaty we can trick our brain saying that we are excited and we´re ready to go, instead of believing that we´re stressed out we can think that we´re excited, this is part of reframing the situation, if we think and really believe that stress can´t harm us we will be able to deal with is and use in the best way, one that work in our favor to get the results we want.

It would mean so much to me if you share this post with your friends and family and if you follow me on Twitter and Facebook, together we can help millions live a better life.

Pam

Mindset

The negative impact of self-doubt

07 BEliefs
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Fear and self-doubt are the most common limiting believes and those may the ones stopping you from achieving your goals. Self-doubt is the lack of confidence or don´t believing in yourself.

If you believe that you are not worth it or that you don´t deserve anything great you are living in self-doubt which is one reason to keep leaving your goals for when you are good enough, when you know everything you need, when you deserve what you want. But if you believe this then you´ll stay where you are right now. There´s no way you can achieve something if you don´t start working and to take action you need to eliminate self-doubt from your mind. Increasing confidence on yourself is key.

One of the best steps you can take to start increasing your self-confidence is set small goals, goals you can achieve in 1 week. It can be as simple as reading 10 minutes a day for the next 7 days, it can be to eliminate all junk, processed and fast food from your house and office, it can be to do 10 minutes of exercise every day.

Take the activity you want or the goal you want to achieve in 1 week, keep it simple so that you can keep track of your progress daily and achieve your goal in those 7 days, what we´re looking for here is to keep you accountable. To realize that you can achieve your goals, with time you need to make those goals bigger and bigger and of course; you need to give enough time.

Starting with weekly goals builds momentum and that´s what you need, when you are lock in any limiting belief we need to eliminate that limiting belief and change it for a positive one so we need to get out of that loop, in this case the belief that you are not worth it or you don´t deserve it or you are not capable. When we set small goals we can achieve in a small period of time our self-confidence start to increase and this motivates us to go after bigger goals.

Taking action is crucial, take one step at a time, just one action. What action do you need to do today that will improve your life what do you need to do every single day to achieve your dream?

Working on small weekly goals make us feel successful, it makes us feel that we can achieve something, that we are capable of doing what we said we were going to do and that feeling of success and accomplishments is what motivate us to set bigger goals.

The bigger your goals, the bigger the reward and the bigger the feeling of success and accomplishment. When you start to eliminate self-doubt and increase self confidence you start with small goals, one thing you need to consider is do not listen to what others say or think of you, most people will always be criticizing and talking behind our backs, we will never please everyone so stop worrying about that. When we listen and pay attention to those negative comments we are only giving more importance and we´re taking our focus from what matters which is our goal.

It doesn´t matter what your goal for your first week is, we´re all at different levels so don´t compare yourself to others, it doesn´t matter if their coworkers, classmates, neighbors or social media influencers. Focus on you and do your thing there´s no reason to compare with someone who hasn´t lived our story.

It would mean so much to me if you share this post with your friends and family and if you follow me on Twitter and Facebook, together we can help millions live a better life.

Pam

Fitness goals

What nobody tells us about fat loss

27 What nobody tells you about fat loss
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I see so many people dealing with their weight and struggling with many different weight loss programs but there´s something that all this programs, fitness trainers and gurus don´t tell us.

Fat loss is not a quick fix, there are no easy solutions or shortcuts. Our actual weight is the result of years of unhealthy habits so it will take time and effort to achieve our goal. There´s not a perfect weight loss program and not one single program will give the same results to 2 people, there´s not just one way to get to your goal.

If you´ve been following us for some time you know that we work on the 5 principles of fitness which is something no one consider, for sleep we need 7 to 8 hours or at least 6 hours of good quality sleep every night, we need to get our mindset right to be able to get through the hard times and for diet and training there are many different diets, from high carbohydrate, to low carbohydrate, ketogenic, paleo, vegan. Even when I don´t consider some of them to be healthy or to be the best options they are all tools you can try and see how you feel and how your body responds and find out which one works best for you. The same with training, resistance training is key but there are different tools you can use like straight sets with heavy weight, moderate weight, supersets, circuit training, you can focus on gaining strength, hypetrophy, power, overall performance, training splits you also need to find what works best for you.

Fat loss is not a quick fix so what I mean by finding what works best for you is that it takes time to lose fat and get in shape so you´ll need to follow a nutrition and workout program for a long period of time and some diets and workout tools may not be sustainable for you, if you love meat there´s no way that you´ll stick to a vegetarian diet for 4 or 5 months, if some foods cause inflammation and you feel bloated you won´t get results and you won´t stick to the diet. If you can only go to the gym 4 days per week and you want to follow a program in which you need to go to the gym 6 days a week you won´t stick to it.

You need to find tools that you can follow according to your daily activities for each of the 5 principles of fitness, find the tools that best fit your day and that you can incorporate to your life so that you can stick to them day after day for as long as you need.

It´s not about what diet or workout is the best, it´s about finding the tools that work best for you and combine them to develop good habits that lead to a healthy lifestyle that make your fat loss achievable and sustainable.

Another point that no one tells us is that it´s hard to lose fat, we need to be in a calorie deficit and there´ll be times when we feel hungry, there´ll be meals when we want to eat a lot more which in most cases is our brain sending the wrong message, if we let go by this messages we can overeat, sometimes our brain will try to trick us telling us that we need that cookie or donut or any other unhealthy snacks, if we pay attention to those thoughts we´ll end up eating those unhealthy foods and we will feel ashamed, and like failure.

When we´re following a fat loss program is normal to feel hungry and here is when having the right mentality comes into play, what the right mindset you´ll be able to get pass those feelings, emotions and thoughts and you´ll be able to make the right choices over and over which will give you the results you want.

It would mean so much to me if you share this post with your friends and family and if you follow me on Twitter and Facebook, together we can help millions live a better life.

Pam

Training

Supersets and giant sets

25 Supersets and giant sets
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If you hate cardio but want to lose fat, resistance training with supersets and giant sets and circuit training can help you get to your goal.

More people prefer resistance training over cardio for many good reasons, resistance training can be more fun and the way it makes you feel is amazing compared to long and boring cardio.

Giant sets are when you do three to four exercises with no rest in between, for example you can do pushups, incline bench press and flat bench flyes one after another with no rest in between until you finished the three exercises. This type of training is better on a 10 – 15 rep range with 45 seconds in between. If your goal is fat loss I recommend doing giant sets within the same muscle group.

The way this type of training is a great option for fat loss is thanks to something called post-exercise oxygen consumption which means that once you´re done with your workout your body is still working to get you to where you were before exercising, this increases your metabolism, increases protein synthesis and depletes glycogen from the muscles.

Working with giant sets is more demanding, you are increasing the amount of work and reducing the amount of rest between sets, this can be a type of HIIT for resistance training where you´re lifting weights and working the cardiovascular system.

Supersets can be used with the same muscle or two different muscles and it can also be used for muscle gains, for this I recommend superset within two different muscle groups for example chest and back, choose one exercise for chest and one exercise for back and do one after another with minimum rest in between.

When you start with chest and then continue with back your chest is resting, while you´re working on chest your back is resting. This active recovery helps you go higher in weight. For this type of workout you can use both types of hypertrophy, working from 6 to 12 reps.

To use supersets I prefer to follow a 3 day training split, legs – abs, back – chest, shoulders – arms and I work both muscles per superset for example I do one exercise for back and one for chest for a superset and I do 4 or 5 supersets.

For giant sets I prefer to work the same muscle per giant set, if I´m working legs I choose 4 or 4 leg exercises for a giant set. My favorite giant sets are the ones that combine bodyweight, compound, isolation and explosive exercises.

Using supersets for fat loss is a great option, building and maintaining muscle mass is important and using resistance training is the way to make sure to maintain as much muscle as possible, combining this training technique with periodization by changing rep ranges from 8 to 12 gives amazing benefits, this is my strategy and go to for my latest fat loss program and it works great.

As in all other training techniques it´s not necessary to use them but they can add variety to your workouts, if there´s a technique that you don´t like just try another one, there´s not one single way to get to your goal, there are many tools you can use so find the ones that works best for you and the ones you like more.

It would mean so much to me if you share this post with your friends and family and if you follow me on Twitter and Facebook, together we can help millions live a better life.

Pam

Nutrition

Are pre / post workout meals effective?

28 Prepost workout meals
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I want to listen to your opinion and take about pre / post workout meals, do you think they are effective? or is it just an strategy to sell products?

I do believe that the most important meals of the day are the ones around your workout, specially post workouts meals, when we finish our workout our body starts to recover so we need to make sure that we´re giving it all the nutrients it needs, if your body do not have everything it needs it won´t be possible to recover and your next workout will suffer.

The faster your body starts to recover after the workouts the faster you can get to the gym and hit the same muscles.

During our workouts we lose water, electrolytes, glycogen so our body needs to replenish what our body lost. Being hydrate before, during and after is important but the amount of water will vary, our gender, weight, age and the intensity of our workout needs to be consider to get a more accurate number but around 3.5 liters for guys and 3 liters for girls per day can serve as a guide. Another important thing to consider is that we need to replenish electrolytes like sodium.

Glycogen is the preferred source of energy for our body and it´s the one it uses during intense workouts, to replenish glycogen simple sugars are more effective so the meal right after your workout is the one where you can have simple sugars this is why some guys and girls in the gym take sport drinks and others like gummy bears.

For protein our body does not use it during the workouts but we need to consume enough protein to drive protein synthesis and to keep this protein synthesis consistent some guys and girls take protein around every 2 or 3 hours with protein shakes, proteins bars or meals, whether you want to follow this or not depends of you, if you are following some type of intermittent fasting a protein bar or shake will break your fast, BCAAs can be a solution but just be sure that those BCAAs do not break your fast. What I consider more important is right after your workout, I prefer to take protein shakes right after my workouts and the best way to do it is with just water and protein powder this way our body can absorb it faster, milk and protein powder is also great.

Fat is also important for overall health, if you can cook your post workout meal make sure to add some extra virgin olive oil and you´re good to go.

The macronutrient ratios will vary depending of the type of diet you´re following, if you are on a more balanced diet between proteins, carbohydrates and fats or if you are following a ketogenic diet. If you are keto adapted then you need 50 grams or less per day to replenish glycogen, if you are carb adapted you need around 1 – 2 grams per pound of bodyweight per day.

If you are following some type of intermittent fasting try to schedule your workouts around your meals, if you have lunch and dinner it will be great if you workout before dinner or if you have breakfast and lunch you can workout before lunch or first think in the morning before breakfast but if this is the case consider that not everyone can workout in a fasted state.

It would so much to me if you share this post with your friends and family and if you follow me on Twitter and Facebook, together we can help millions live a better life.

Pam

Sleep

The best time of the day to exercise to improve sleep

28 The best time of the day to exercise to improve sleep
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Many people are concerned about diet and exercise, what´s the best diet to lose weight? what´s the best workout to lose weight? but most of them do not give sleep the importance it deserves.

For me is not only about weight loss, in this case our goal is to help you improve body composition which means less body fat and more muscle mass but it doesn´t stops there it´s about living your best life possible and sleep plays an important role to help us live better and to help us achieve our fitness goals whether it´s gain muscle mass or lose body fat.

The biggest benefits come when we combine the 5 principles of fitness, developing healthy habits on each give us the best results so when we want to improve the quality of sleep, the time of the day at which we work out will have an impact.

The best time of the day to workout to improve sleep is in the morning, studies show that people who sleep in the morning tend to have more efficient sleep phases, sleep better and improve blood pressure.

There are some of us who can´t workout in the morning because of school or job but if you want to give it a try you just need 10 minutes, try to make those 10 minutes intense or at least moderate and in this case cardio is the best option, you can choose between HIIT or steady cardio, try it for a couple of weeks and see if the quality of your sleep improved.

If you see benefits and you want to keep it try to increase those 10 minutes to 15 or 20 minutes, if you like the changes, how it improves your day and sleep chances are you´ll get motivated and find ways to get in those 15 or 20 minutes of daily morning exercise.

The reason for this is that it improves the circadian rhythm of our body, in the morning after a good quality sleep night our body is in balance, all systems and hormones are working efficiently and exercise boost some of this hormones and it sends a signal to your brain to start the day strong, hormones like adrenaline and cortisol are beneficial if we use them the right way and they are higher in the morning so when we workout early in the morning we boost this hormones and which helps as preparation for the day and in the evening they´re lower and melatonin start to increase to help us fall asleep.

Now as always this is not a rule or law, there are people who workout in the night just a couple of hours before going to sleep and they get enough good quality sleep and there´s also people who workout in the morning who have bad quality sleep so you need to find out what works best for you.

For me it´s all about keeping it simple and working on improving the 5 principles of fitness which work together to give us the best benefits, working out in the morning at the same time every day specially outside is one of the best tools to improve quality of sleep, it is the right combination of exercise and sunlight exposure and you´re getting 2 at once.

Improving the internal clock of our body or circadian rhythm improves our day and life in so many different ways on just by having a sleep schedule and a morning routine are the best way to improve that internal clock.

It would mean so much to me if you share this post with your friends and family and if you follow me on Twitter and Facebook, together we can help millions live a better life.

Pam

Stress

Stress and change

28 Stress and change
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Change is part of our lives, we all need to be open to change but many of us fear it. Stress caused by change is also normal, it happens to all of us but there´s a limit to what´s consider normal and when things go too far.

Some examples of changes are:

1.- Changing jobs

2.- Being fired

3.- Buying a house

3.- Starting a new project

4.- Changing cities

5.- Changing school

6.- Changing habits…

and many more. The important thing here is how we see this changes, if we see them as the beginning of an exciting journey things will go the right way because it will be easier to find solutions to all the challenges but most of us start over thinking and fear and anxiety takes place making any change so stressful.

The reason why change causes stress is because our mind, brain and body love comfort and love staying in the place that they know and the place they feel safe and with change we´re getting out of that comfort zone, it´s not safe, there´s nothing sure for the future, we don´t know what´s going to happen and we don´t have all the answers.

Change is a challenge it requires us to adapt and grow but when our mind and brain are lazy and they fear change it get´s though. What we can do is realize that change is necessary in all aspects of life, nothings is static everything is constantly changing so we need to have a positive mindset and embrace change with the right attitude knowing and believing that we have everything we need to get through.

The most important step is realize that change is part of our lives, it doesn´t matter if it seems to be a bad change in the beginning we need to find the positive outlook, reframe the whole situation and find all positive points, also realize that any change will get us out of our comfort zone so we´re going to face challenges.

Any challenge make us grow, this is where we learn and we grow and get stronger, this is where life get´s amazing and that´s what life is about, facing challenges that help us grow and become the best version of ourselves, this is also the way to live to our fullest and reach our potential.

If we embrace any change with this mindset and attitude, we will be able to be more creative and find more solutions to any challenge, we will be more focused and the results will be more positive, with all this stress won´t get as high and we can actually see it as an exciting part of life instead of a stressful situation.

It would mean so much to me if you share this post with your friends and family and if you follow me on Twitter and Facebook, together we can help millions live a better life.

Pam

Mindset

How fear is killing our dreams

28 fear
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How many goals or projects have you let aside just because of fear? The fear of failure, fear of what could go wrong, fear of what others say and think of us. Fear is what keeps us stuck and the reason why we don´t follow our dreams.

We all have fears, even the greatest athletes, actors, musicians, CEOs the only difference is that they know how to take that fear and turn it into excitement, the fuel, energy and motivation they need to get pass that fear and follow their dreams.

Developing a successful mindset is key, you need to realize that the journey is hard and the only thing that will keep you going in those hard times is your mindset and is the same that will give you enough reasons to give up. Whit a successful mindset you´ll be able  to keep going every time you fail, you´ll be strong enough to know how to handle rejection and all the no´s you´ll get over and over again.

If you are doing something right now that you don´t like or you even hate and you have some project or goal that you´ve been setting aside take them and start working on them, if you don´t know where to begin research someone who did what you want to do and start modeling them, do what they did but do it in your own way.

Take a dream you have and set it as a goal, if it´s too big set smaller goals for every day, week, month and year and create an action plan, what do you need to do every single day that will keep you moving towards your dream, and start taking action every day.

Now, when fear gets in your way, acknowledge it, it is there to tell you that you are out of your comfort zone, think deeply and figure out where that fear based, if it´s for what everyone around you is going to say? do it anyway, you´re not going to please everybody and there will be someone talking behind your back always. Is it fear of failure? see failure as a lesson, if you keep going and trying different strategies you didn´t fail, is it fear of rejection? they are not rejecting you, the guy or girl who rejected you is not interested on your product or service, just move forward and keep asking until you find someone who loves what you do.

The fear of not being good enough, of not feeling worth it, feeling that you don´t deserve it are hard to identify because they´re deep in our believes. The first thing you need to do is believe in yourself, it´s possible for you to achieve your goal, you are capable, if you put the time and hard work needed you can achieve amazing things.

Believe in yourself and believe that you deserve everything you want, but you need to really believe and feel in your heart that you are capable and that you deserve amazing things, it´s not enough to read affirmations, you need to feel the emotions.

Once you develop a successful mindset which includes changing thoughts and believes to believe in yourself and you start taking action every single day you just need to be consistent, continue working on your project every day following your action plan and when fear gets in your way remind yourself that you are capable of doing it, you got everything you need and you deserve the best of life.

It would mean so much to me if you share this post with your friends and family and if you follow me on Twitter and Facebook, together we can help millions live a better life.

Pam