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Lifestyle

Take responsibility of your life

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Is there something about your life that you don´t like? Is there something you would want to change?

For most of us is possible to change what we don´t like about our life, I say most of us because we need to have the right mindset. If there´s something we don´t like about our life we need to realize that we are responsible of it, we are the ones making decisions and choices that lead to where we are now so realizing that we are responsible and that it´s on our hands, it´s on us to continue this way or make the necessary changes.

We need to make a decision and make the commitment to change then take action and be disciplined. It is hard to make changes and it takes time but if we are committed to improve any aspect of our life we will work as hard as we need especially when we start seeing progress.

It all starts by taking responsibility for everything we do that is on our control. There are so many things that will happen to us and for many of them we don´t have control over them but many of them are the result of choices and decisions we make so by taking full responsibility and realizing that if we´ve made another decision things would have come out differently, this creates the belief or mindset that every decision we make has an impact positive or negative.

It´s about changing perspective and how we see all situations in life, we can think about everything that happen to us as a negative outcome, that had a negative impact, we blame everyone else and we play the victim role. This perspective only needs to a negative outcome and a negative life.

If we think about it as things happen for a reason, what was the choice I made that lead to this outcome? what could I´ve done differently? what can I learn from this? When we stop blaming someone else, when we stop playing the victim and realize that some of our decisions and choices impact the result then we can start thinking of what we can do differently.

When we do this we feel a sense of ownership and empowerment that makes us realize that we are in charge of so many situations that happen to us, we are in control of so many things by making decisions which can completely change the course of the project we´re working on.

Taking full responsibility for everything we do is hard because this means we need to accept our mistakes and this hurts the ego. If we´re not willing to admit our mistakes or that one decision lead us to the wrong path we will spend the rest of our life blaming someone else and being the victim but if we got what it takes to take responsibility and stop blaming everyone else our life will change. As always we need to start small and grow.

Taking responsibility of our actions also helps us create meaningful relationships and when we´re working in team we are more productive and deliver better results. When we work in a team and we´re the leaders we can´t blame a teammate for a mistake or whatever goes wrong, we´ll lose trust and that person will fear us but if we take full responsibility of everything that happens especially when something goes wrong we make our teammates feel safe and protected which leads to productivity because they know that they we all make mistakes and learn from them, they focus on doing their best work and we get the best results possible.

Taking responsibility helps us be accountable for yourself and others, you know that you have power and that the end result depend on you so you are aware of every decision you make, you know that if you say something you will do it which increases self-confidence and also make people trust you, which also is key to building meaningful relationships.

Once we stop blaming others and complaining and we take full responsibility of everything we do we start seeing a change in our life in so many ways, we see all situations in a more positive light and our relationships start to improve, we know that we are in control of our life and that every choice matter.

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

Food

Food and hormones: Leptin

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Have you ever heard about leptin? Have you tried the leptin diet? if your answer is no then continue reading to learn about this hormone and if your answer was yes, also continue reading, you may learn something new.

Most traditional or commercial weight loss programs focus on calories, they make us follow diets too low in calories and the workouts are based on cardio or circuit training to lose as much weight as possible but when we stop following the program we start gaining all the weight back and the reason is simple, hormones and metabolism.

Our goal is to help you get an amazing physique and sustain it effortless and to do that we need to focus on what matters which is increasing metabolism and managing our hormones in a good way to get the best results and to be healthy, leptin is one of those hormones.

Leptin is the satiety hormone and it´s job is to tell us when we´ve eaten enough and we need to stop. To keep it simple leptin tell us when to stop eating because we´re full. This hormone can be triggered by several factors and if we triggered it the wrong way by doing the wrong things then it won´t be doing its job effectively and if we add to this that some of our unhealthy habits are causing problems  like lack or poor quality sleep, which reduces leptin which is why we are hungry and have more cravings during the day and this is one of the short term effects of poor sleep.

When leptin is low it won´t send the message to our brain that we are full and we need to stop eating, on the contrary we will eat more in each meal and we´ll feel hungry throughout the day this is why weight gain is related to lack of sleep.

Fat cells increase leptin so the more fat we have the higher this hormone will be.

As with insulin there´s something called leptin resistance which is when our body produces too much leptin in this case the fat cells when we are obese or overweight and it gets to a point where the receptors block all that leptin so it can´t do its job and instead of getting signals that we are satisfied we feel hungry.

So as you can see, weight loss is not as simple as eat less and move more, there are other things that come into play, what we can do to improve leptin, one simple step is start by getting enough high quality sleep every night, this is a simple tool that gives a lot of benefits and makes everything easier.

If you are overweight the best thing you can do is reduce insulin, we´ve talked about insulin in other posts and by improving insulin is easier to burn fat, when you start losing weight and getting rid of that excess fat, leptin also start to lower, you can do this by trying some type of intermittent fasting like limiting your meals to 2 meals per day in an 8 hour window, another way is by reducing carbohydrates and follow a low carbohydrate, moderate and high fat diet like ketogenic for a period of time. Exercise also helps lower insulin specially HIIT.

What I recommend if your nutrition program is based on unhealthy foods, you´ll need to eliminate those unhealthy foods and focus on eating meals cooked with whole fresh ingredients and try intermittent fasting, go for 2 meals a day you can have breakfast and lunch or lunch and dinner. Do this for 4 to 6 weeks and see the results and how you feel.

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 the brain

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Have you ever thought about the impact of sleep on your brain?

We know that one night of poor sleep will impact negatively our day, we find it difficult to make the right choices, to stay concentrated, cravings increase, we don´t feel like exercising and we know that if this poor sleep becomes chronic it will impact negatively our health and this includes our brain.

Our brain goes through a lot every single day, from stress, to the food we eat, physical activity, everything we do and don´t do has an impact positive or negative, if we make the wrong choices and decisions then the impact will be negative the problem is that most of us do not think of our brain when we make a choice and most of the time we make the wrong unhealthy choices.

Eating unhealthy, highly processed foods high in sugars, unhealthy vegetable oils, trans fats and added chemicals increase inflammation, increase insulin and this impacts our brain. High levels of chronic stress and lack of physical activity also has a negative impact on our brain.

All this are toxins for our body and brain and all this are choices we can control for the most part. We know that sleep affects all systems, functions and hormones on our body, this includes the brain, this is why just one night of poor sleep has a negative impact on during day. We talk in other post about what happens during sleep, what is going on in our body and brain (click this link to learn about it).

During sleep our brain is getting read of all the toxins from the day and getting ready for the next day. With just one night of poor sleep we find it difficult to concentrate on the task at hand, it´s harder to understand what we reading, we tend to forget information, everything seems to require a lot more energy to get done. If this poor sleep becomes chronic it leads to memory loss, brain fog, confusion, forget information and all the negative impact on overall health like increase stress, inflammation, weight gain.

The important thing to consider is what sleep does to our brain, we know that when the night comes our body and brain were exposed to so many toxins and this toxins can lead to health problems some worse than others, even Alzheimer´s and Parkinson for example. Our brain gets rid of these toxins during sleep through the glymphatic system jus as the lymphatic system gets rid of all the toxins ands waste from our body, the glymphatic system gets rid of all the waste and toxins on our brain.

As any system of our body the glymphatic system can be disrupted and can lead to health problems. Chronic sleep deprivation or poor-quality sleep increases inflammation, increases insulin resistance, slows metabolisms and all this conditions are linked to brain diseases like Alzheimer´s and Parkinson.

So it´s not only that when you are sleep deprived you make poor choices and we are slower at any activity, this includes thinking but it leads to severe diseases so we need to prioritize sleep and make sure that we get enough high-quality every night.

On future posts we´ll talk about the glymphatic and the lymphatic system but for now you need to know that if you want your brain to function as optimal as possible you need to prioritize sleep.

Let me know by leaving a comment on Facebook and Twitter if you do prioritize sleep or if like to binge watch.

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

Exercise

Training variables: Frequency

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How many times per week can you work each muscle group? Does we need to increase and lower frequency according to our goals? I´ve heard this questions a lot and they both refer to training frequency, here there´s not a right or wrong answer although there are some tips you can use to get better results.

There needs to be a balance between frequency and volume and we also need to follow a good nutrition program that supports the amount of work.

Frequency refers to how many times per week we work each  muscle group, we´re going to divide it into low, medium and high frequency. If we follow a typical or the most common training split in bodybuilding which last 5 days plus one or two days of cardio or rest we have low frequency because we are hitting each muscle group once per week, if we follow a 2 days split or a 3 days split and do it 2 times per week it´s medium frequency because we are working each muscle group twice per week and if we do full-body workouts 3 days a week that´s high frequency.

So the question is what is the best frequency for each fitness goal? and the answer is it depends of some other variable specially volume and intensity and it also depends of the other 4 principles of fitness and the time we´ve been training consistently.

If we are new to working out,  high frequency by doing full-body workouts 3 days per week on none consecutive days is a great option. If we do full-body workouts 3 days a week the volume for each muscle group will be low on each workout The goal here is to develop the habit of working out and we need to do it with activities we like that gives us the best results possible, if we hate doing 3 or 4 day splits then it will be harder to get up and exercise.

If the goal is fat loss and considering that we need to be on a caloric deficit it may be hard to do high volume workouts so moderate frequency is a great option, hitting each muscle 2 times per week gives our body the stimulus needed to keep the level of strength so that we maintain as much muscle as possible. This option is great for someone who has been working out consistently and it´s already a habit. With moderate frequency we can combine rep ranges, we can do one workout with heavy weight/low reps and the second workout with higher reps/lower weight.

If our goal is gain lean muscle mass we have 2 options, the first one is low frequency with high volume and high intensity, since we are working each muscle group once a week we are giving them enough time to recover but if the volume and intensity of each workout are not right it may not be enough stimulus for our muscles to grow. The second option is moderate frequency which causes more hypertrophy and it causes more muscle growth, we may not be able to do a lot of volume but keeping the intensity high is crucial.

There´s one more option for muscle growth which I´ve seen a lot of people using which is high frequency, working each muscle 3 days a week with full-body workouts. I personally don´t like this one but you can try it and if you like it and get results keep doing it. The problem with this one is that in most cases I see people using it to try to gain muscle mass and see results faster but more it´s not always a good thingg. Recovery is crucial for muscle growth and if we are hitting each muscle 3 times a week they may not have enough time to recover.

All variables work together if we have high frequency we need to go lower in volume, with volume high we go lower in frequency, intensity also depends of the amount of volume and frequency and they all need to consider enough time to recover. But to set the right frequency the other 4 elements of fitness also play an important role. If our goal is fat loss we need to make sure that we are giving our body enough nutrients to get through daily activities and the workout while we are on a calorie deficit so that our body uses stored body fat.

If we want to gain muscle we need to give our body enough nutrients to recover, repair and grow and also enough energy to get us through the workouts.

We also need to have good quality sleep every night and rest and keep stress low. Our body recovers while we are resting and sleeping if any of this elements is not on point we won´t see great results.

Let us know in the comment sections how many times are you working each muscle group per week now and it you´ve tried different frequencies which one gives you the best results?

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 urgency can turn into stress

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Just as pressure can turn into stress, urgency can also turn into stress, so we need to know the limit.

Urgency helps us get things done and if we use the right way then we get things done faster and with amazing results and the reason why is simple. When we create urgency we set a deadline and when we have a deadline that means we need to work as hard as possible on a certain activity, when we set some time to work on one single project or activity for a long period of time it may be for 2 or 3 hours in a row without interruptions our level of concentration and focus increases which leads to increase performance and productivity and this is what helps us finish the activity faster and with great results.

The problem with this is that urgency can lead to stress if we don´t know how to manage it. Urgency can create a sense or anxiety and worry which leads to stress, often most of us think of urgency in a very negative way which creates a huge problem to begin with.

If we create a sense of urgency to stop procrastination or to make sure that we get an activity done on a certain date then the results are great but when we see urgency in a negative way and we get worried if we´re going to deliver the work on time, if we´re going to meet the deadline and exceed expectations, when we doubt ourselves and our skills that´s when urgency turn into stress.

How many times have you left an activity or project for later? And then you get to a point where you need to get that activity or project done in a couple hours or days which leads to stress. I´ve also done this a hundred times but, have you thought about the reason why we leave some activities or projects for later? Is it because it´s not a priority at the time or is it because it´s to hard to do it, it will take a lot of time, or we don´t have the skills and knowledge we need to get it done so this means that we need to learn something new and it will be boring and stressful?

Urgency can turn into stress when we leave an activity or project for later even when we know that activity is high priority but the reason we leave for later is because it takes a lot of hard work, effort, concentration and time but it needs to get done any way and the less time we have to work on it, to learn what we need the more stress it will create and in most cases this activities are the ones that give us a better reward.

Procrastination also leads to urgency and stress, there are so many reasons why you can procrastination but in most cases it´s fear, the thought of learning something new and the need to work hard and focus. If you are the type of person who prefers to leave things for later and procrastinate then urgency will lead to stress more often than not so you need to find out why you leave things for later, why you procrastinate, what´s the real reason why you don´t take action.

One way to avoid urgency turn into stress is to make a list of all the activities and projects and rank them from high priority to low, and then take action doing the ones rank on high priority even if those take a longer time of wok and more effort. There´s no reason to leave them for later, and go through all the list, you´ll find out that when you´re done with the hardest activities first you feel accomplished, calm your self-confidence increase because you finished a hard task so you continue with the next ones with that sense of accomplishment.

If there´s any project you want to get done then set a deadline and create a sense of urgency, think about what could happen when you get it done and how you´ll feel. And from now on try to do a list of all activities and projects in order of importance and priority and work on them, do not leave anything for later.

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

Focus on progress

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How many times have you started a project and you were obsessed with getting every detail perfect? I´ve done this too but, focusing on perfection only creates anxiety and slow our productivity and progress.

From what I´ve seen progress leads to happiness, perfection leads to anxiety. As tony Robbins says, “Progress equals happiness”. Just think about how you feel when you realize you are making progress in a project or whatever you are doing? You feel accomplished, your self-confidence increases, and you feel happy.

This may be true or false for you but in most cases, perfection get us stuck in some little detail and stop our results while progress let us keep going and improving along the way.

When we focus on progress our goal is to make the best, we can with what we got at that time, and this includes time, skills, knowledge, resources, equipment. And you are committed to improving every single day, being better every day, learning something knew or improving skills.

Our ultimate goal is to keep learning, keep growing and keep improving, the moment we stop making progress we start losing that feeling of achievement and if we let this feeling run our days and life for a long period of time it can lead to mental problems.

When you focus on perfection and if you get obsessed with it you can develop a negative mindset, wanting perfection on every single detail on everything you do is really hard to achieve, more often than you not you won´t be satisfied with the results, it will take you a long time, hard work and effort until you feel are satisfied and think the result is perfect. If you are not satisfied with the result you can get to a point where you don´t feel worthy or capable which leads to a negative and limiting mindset.

Progress on the other hand focuses on doing the best you can with what you know and what you have at that moment knowing that you can always improve, knowing that you can get better every single day by learning new skills or improving the ones you already know and also by getting more or better equipment or tools when you can. It´s about making sure you did your best and you give your all and feeling satisfied with your result. Realizing it was the best you could do but, tomorrow you can do better.

Some steps you can take today to start focusing on progress and stop chasing perfection are:

1.- Realize and accept that chasing perfection is almost impossible, you won´t feel satisfied and it will leave you feeling bad

2.- Think about doing the best you can with what you have

3.- Always keep in mind that you can improve every single day, learn new skills or improve the ones you already know

4.- Take does new or improved skills and apply them to help you get better results every day

5.- Focus on how you feel when you see you are making progress.

When you are aware of your feelings, your emotions is easier to make a change, most of us do not want to feel bad about ourselves, we want to feel uplifting emotions and happiness is one of them, the feeling of accomplishment is another one that makes us feel worthy and capable, when you focus on progress and see it make sure that you are aware of your feelings and enjoy them, this keeps you in the right track wanting more so you stay on that progress search.

Let me know by leaving a comment on Facebook and Twitter if you tend to focus on perfection over progress and what has been your result.

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

Lifestyle

Live your passion

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How many times have you heard someone say to live your passion? Find your passion and live it. This seems so simple but for most of us it´s really hard and the reason why it´s hard is because this advice is not completely true.

From my experience and what I´ve read in books we don´t need to find our passion we need to find our purpose and work on it. Passion is the result of doing what we love, what makes us happy and fulfilled.

Most of us spend the first part of our life studying in school and then another big part of our life working in something we don´t like. We´re educated to have a 9 to 5 job that we don´t like, that keeps us with chronic stress for different reasons like doing something we don´t like, dealing with coworkers that make fun of us and talk behind our backs, bosses that only think about money and results, we don´t make enough money so we´re worried about paying bills, we spend hours on traffic every week just to get to the office on time and back home again, this type of lifestyle creates chronic stress that lead to health problems.

If we have the opportunity to do what we love we first need to find our purpose, what are we meant to do? I wrote a post to help you find your purpose which you can read by clicking here. Once we find our purpose and we start taking action towards it all of a sudden our life changes, we feel more energized, we´re happy all day long, we´re more positive and we start developing optimism, we feel better, our life improves in all areas.

When we get to this point we feel great because we´re living based on our purpose and we´re passionate about what we do.

One of the reasons why our life changes completely when we work on our purpose is stress lowers and this is a crucial part for health and improving our lives. When we love what we do we wake up every day motivated and inspired to keep working and we go to sleep every night fulfilled knowing we did our best. We no longer have to do work we don´t like, we don´t have to deal with people we don´t feel comfortable, we don´t have to deal with bosses that don´t care about us, we´re more focused on our work and improving which leads to personal growth and it´s easier to challenge ourselves and get out of the comfort zone because we are able to see an end result that motivate us.

We are more positive and optimistic which brings and attracts more positivity to our lives, we are able to enjoy life a lot more and is easy to merge work life with family and relationships which lead to building meaningful relationships which is an important part for being successful.

All this is the end results of a deep inner work, to find your purpose you need to go inside your mind, brain, soul and find who you really are. When you find your purpose you are reconnecting to who you really are, when you start working on that purpose, with time you´ll feel a sense of freedom you realize that there´s no one we need to prove, that we don´t need to fit in, life is way better when we work and do what makes us feel happy and fulfilled.

The hardest part is that we have responsibilities, we need to pay bills so finding ways to work on our purpose and make a living from it can be hard for some of us so what we can do is while we´re at school or job find time to start working on our purpose, this means watching less Tv, or any streaming service or even lose parties and social meetings, find ways to make a living from it and once we´re making a good income then try to scale the business. This is hard to do, it takes a lot of time and work and there so many things that go into creating a business based on your purpose but if you do it right the results are worthy.

Finding our purpose and working on it not only leads to passion for what we do and our lives, it leads to less regrets later in life. So it´s not about living your passion, is about finding our purpose, working on it and as a results we feel passionate for what we´re doing and we love our 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

Food

Food and hormones – Insulin

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With so many diets and a lot of contradicting information, myths and lies the best way to know what´s true, what doesn´t, what work and what doesn´t is to understand how things work. This has been my focus for the last years understanding how things work, to get in shape and sustain it and for this hormones play an important role, one of those hormones is insulin.

Insulin is a hormone that is produced and secreted by the pancreas following the consumption of carbohydrates. When we consume carbohydrates, they are broken down into glucose which raises the amount of glucose in the bloodstream. The body cannot have a lot of glucose in the bloodstream so the pancreas secret insulin to take the excess of glucose from the bloodstream to the cells.

Carbohydrates are the primary trigger of insulin. Insulin blocks the utilization of fat as fuel and promotes its storage so when insulin is high fat is not burned, when insulin is low the body can break down triglycerides (stored fat) to be used as fuel.

When insulin is absent or the cells are not responding to it glucose is not used efficiently and therefore cannot be utilized for energy. Under these conditions carbohydrate consumption causes blood glucose levels to skyrocket.

Insulin is related to diabetes which is a common diseases that affects more and more people. Diabetes is a metabolic disorder that occurs when the hormone insulin is not working properly. There are two types of diabetes, type 1 and type 2. Millions of people are diagnosed and in treatment of one of this types while many others are undiagnosed.

Type 1 diabetes is when the pancreas which produces insulin cannot work efficiently resulting in insulin deficiency, with this lack of insulin the cells are unable to take up glucose,  blood sugar is high but it cannot get into the cells. This type of diabetes is generally treated with insulin injections which provide the insulin that the body needs to take glucose out of the bloodstream.

Type 2 diabetes is when the pancreas is still able to secret insulin, but cells are unable to respond to insulin and therefore do not allow glucose to enter. This is known as insulin resistance, it is the opposite of insulin sensitivity in which insulin easily moves glucose into cells. Individuals whit type 2 diabetes should aim to improve their insulin resistance.

In  insulin resistant cells do not respond efficiently to insulin´s signals to take up excess glucose, the pancreas secret more and more insulin to compensate for insulin resistance and manage blood glucose levels. Over time, this process leads to dysfunction and the pancreas is not able to secret insulin efficiently to maintain healthy levels of glucose in the bloodstream. Glucose then accumulates in the bloodstream which may lead to type 2 diabetes.

The hormone insulin is one of the most important when trying to lose fat and stay lean. Insulin resistance and insulin sensitivity will determine how efficient our body is at utilizing carbohydrates which can make our process simple or harder.

High levels of insulin for a long period of time is unhealthy and causes many health issues, every time we eat insulin gets high so one way to keep it low is following some type of fast, we can do this by reducing meals per day, instead of 5 meals per day try 2 meals. Another way we can keep insulin low is with a low carbohydrate diet, specially keto which is high in fats, moderate protein and low in carbohydrates since carbohydrates are the macro which spikes insulin.

High levels of insulin caused by unhealthy diets are the cause of most metabolic diseases so finding tools we can use to keep it low will give you amazing benefits.

In both type of diabetes and even when insulin injections and other drugs are the preferred treatment, I cannot stress enough the importance of making healthy life changes including exercise and nutrition. 

The importance of a healthy lifestyle that includes daily exercise and a healthy diet have a positive impact on our life and daily activities preventing some diseases and leading to a more enjoyable and meaningful life.

Before you do any change to your diet and lifestyle talk with your doctor or health professional. We all know which unhealthy habits we follow and which healthy habits we need to develop but we still need some guidance and know what´s the best way to do it for each of us and they are the ones that can help us create a plan that works according to our own 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

Sleep

Sleep and longevity

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This is the truth, even when I know that sleep plays an important role on maintaining optimal health I would love that I do not need sleep, it would be amazing to go through life without sleeping but this is not possible, actually one of the many benefits of sleep is longevity.

Studies show that getting enough high quality sleep increases longevity, we´ve seen in other posts that there are so many things going on while we sleep, our body and brain are not resting they are actually working hard to make sure that all systems and hormones of our body function right and this leads to optimal health and also boost longevity.

Every morning when you wake up you are supposed to feel renewed and fresh, full of energy to start your day, this means that you had enough high quality sleep and your body and brain were able to work on renewing all systems and hormones, sleep helps maintain everything in balance but we also need to make sure that the internal clock of our body or circadian rhythm is in sync because this is what helps us fall asleep fast, get enough high quality sleep and it also helps our body know when it´s time to sleep and do all the cleaning, repairing and growing job and when it´s time to be awake and alert.

Chronic sleep problems have shown to have a negative impact on overall health, weight an longevity, with just one night of poor sleep we can see the negative impact during the day it´s clear that on the long run this will affect our health.

If we get enough high quality sleep every night which at some point means that we have a good night schedule then we´re making sure that our body is working as best as possible keeping all functions, systems and hormones in balance which leads to optimal health and this optimal health leads to longevity.

To get the most benefits from sleep the best step we can take is to go to sleep when the sun comes down and wake up when the rise which for most of us is impossible to do, we are not able to get the 8 hours recommended because of work and all the activities we need to get done during the day. So, making sure that the quantity of sleep you can get every night is high quality.

We also need to consider that too much sleep also has a negative impact, too much of a good thing can be counterproductive. I don´t thing that all of us need 7 to 8 hours of sleep, if we consider that sleep goes in cycles then the math is not right for me (we´ll talk about this on other post), I think it all comes down to lifestyle and even genetics. The best way to know if you´re getting enough high-quality sleep is by being aware of how you feel the next day and your health. Listening to your body always wins.

Everything we do with this site is to help you improve your health and maintain optimal health and a healthy weight which helps you reach your full potential without burning out and increase longevity. This is why we focus on the 5 principles of fitness, exercise, food, sleep, stress and mindset are all important but since sleep makes sure that all hormones and systems on our body are on balance this is why some people consider sleep to be the most important. If you didn´t get enough high-quality sleep you´re cravings for unhealthy foods increase and you make unhealthy choices, you don´t have energy to exercise, it´s easier for you to get stressed and this leads to a negative and unhealthy cycle.

If you want to boost your longevity makes sure that the amount of sleep you can get every night is high-quality, you may need to make some changes on your night routine like turning off all lights and electronic devices 60 minutes before going to bed, making sure that your room is dark and at the temperature is right.

There are simple steps you can take for the 5 principles of fitness to help you improve your day and life, we´ll continue sharing with you tips and strategies you can take to improve sleep but, if there´s something you want to know leave your comments and questions on our Facebook and Twitter account.

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

Exercise

Training variables: Rep ranges

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If you´ve been training for a while do you vary rep ranges on your workout programs according to your goals or do you stick with the most common?

In fitness we can achieve different goals from fat loss, muscle growth, strength, power and for each of them we need to work on different rep ranges and that´s what we´re going to talk about in this post.

For the last months and years I´ve seen a lot of guys and girls interested in knowing which is the best rep range they need to focus on, as many other things in training there is not a right or wrong answer and I consider all of them to be great options.

If we go to a gym we see most guys and girls working in the most common rep ranges which is 10 to 15 and most of them do the same thing over and over for months which at least for me it gets boring and we hit plateaus. Working on different rep ranges keep our workout challenging which is what we need if we want our body to change.

It all starts with our goal, we can use resistance training for all goals just by changing the rep range we use, it´s not the same to train for power than to train for endurance the rep ranges are as follow:

1 -4 for power

5 – 8 for strength

8 – 12 for hypertrophy

15 – < for endurance

With this we know in which rep range to work according to our goal, for muscle gain we can use strength and hypertrophy on the strength rep range we´ll be building dense muscle also called myofibrillar hypertrophy which is the one that last and with hypertrophy rep range also called sarcoplasmic hypertrophy we are able to gain size faster but it doesn´t last, if we take some time off the gym we start losing that size. This two rep ranges are the ones we can focus on more to build an aesthetic physique.

For power and strength rep ranges we need to use compound movements which are the ones where we can lift more weight, for hypertrophy and endurance we can use compound and isolation. The endurance rep range can help us burn fat and sometimes gain some muscle, we can use all types of exercises, compound, isolation and bodyweight.

If our goal is to gain muscle mass then the best option is to focus on building dense muscle mass by focusing on the strength rep range around 5 to 7 reps using compound and bodyweight exercises and add some isolation exercises for weaker muscles using the hypertrophy rep range around 8 to 12 reps.

Getting stronger on the first 3 rep ranges specially around 5 to 12 reps by using a tool called periodization is an awesome strategy that keeps us getting stronger and gaining muscle mass, if we get stronger on the power and strength rep ranges we are able to lift more weight on the hypertrophy rep, gaining muscle is about getting stronger (we also need enough quality food and recovery).

When we work on power and strength the central nervous system gets stressed a lot and it takes more time to recover so we need to consider volume and frequency when training on this 2 rep ranges, with hypertrophy and endurance the central nervous system doesn´t get the same amount of stress.

Weight loss and gaining muscle are the most common goals so strength and hypertrophy are the most used rep ranges but once we achieve our goal taking some time and maintaining it gives us the opportunity to work on the other 2 rep ranges. When we train for power we need to be really conscious and focused on form to avoid injuries, I personally don´t like to work below 5 reps, I mostly go from 5 to 7 and 8 to 12 focusing on building dense muscle with bodyweight and compound movements and sometimes I add some isolation exercises. Sometimes I use the endurance rep range with bodyweight exercises specially when I want to lose fat and I could go for 50 reps in some exercises.

Our ultimate goal is to improve body composition and get a physique that is useful, we don´t want a body that looks incredible but it´s not able to perform, by this I don´t mean that we need to be pro athletes what I mean is that we want a body that looks amazing and that performs great in our daily activities and also in case of an emergency.

All rep ranges have their space on training and they´re all great options for different goals, using all of them using periodization keeps our body guessing and making your workouts fun and challenging. Since working out most be a habit then we need to understand all the variables will be talking about to be able to create or adjust our programs accordingly to be able to build the type of physique that we want but also to keep each workout fun and interesting.

Share with us in the comment section which is your favorite rep range and the one you are working on now.

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Pam