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Have you ever wondered where ADOFitness came from? Check out our first video explaining the background of the business model and Amber’s personal story.
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When you have negative thoughts your body is automatically put into a “fight or flight” type response. By having a pessimistic attitude, you are constantly bracing yourself for the worst possible outcome, which puts your body in a constant state of stress. This causes your sympathetic nervous system to create a cascade of events that result in the release norepinephrine and epinephrine. These hormones cause immediate physical reactions to improve your chances of winning the fight or outrunning your attacker. These reactions include acceleration of your heart and lung function, slowing down of your digestive system, dilation of your pupils, constriction and relaxation of your blood vessels, and releasing fat and sugar for muscle energy. When your body is always primed for action like this, it gets tired. This can lead to mood swings between agitation, anxiety, and depression. You may also experience decreased memory and attentiveness. Not only is our mental health affected, but our physical health is too. When we are constantly on edge, we feel fatigue and low energy and are at an increased risk for depression. It also weakness our immune system which means our bodies can not fight off bacteria and illness, putting us at an increased risk for getting sick.
In order to change your mindset from being negative to positive, you must identify your negative thinking in real time. There are many ways in which we “speak” to ourselves in a negative way including filtering, personalizing, catastrophizing, and polarizing. Filtering is when we magnify the negative aspects of a story and minimize (or filter) out the positive aspects. Personalizing involves blaming ourselves automatically when something bad occurs. Catastrophizing is just what it sounds like… anticipating the absolute worst thing to happen in a situation or turning something small that happened into a big event that leads to your whole day being ruined. Polarizing means you are seeing the situation as completely bad or completely good, no in between. With all of these types of self-talk, and when we have a negative attitude in general, not only are we expecting the worst but we are also taking an active part in making the worst happen. Just like positive thoughts lead to more positive thoughts, the same is true for negative thoughts. By recognizing when we are having these negative thoughts initially, we can put a stop to them and prevent them from taking over the rest of our day.
So what can you do to change your mindset ? First is to identify the areas in need of change. Think about the areas of your life, or time of day, where you tend to think more negatively. Once you identify these areas, starting checking yourself. When you notice yourself thinking negatively, or periodically throughout your day, stop and focus on the way you are thinking. If you notice yourself in a negative thought pattern, think about the positive aspects of that situation to flip the switch in your brain. Other tips for staying positive include staying open to humor, leading a healthy lifestyle, and surrounding yourself with other positive people.
In my opinion the most important step to changing your mindset it to start practicing positive self-talk. When I hear someone speaking negatively about him or herself, I always say to them “You should talk to yourself the way you would talk to a friend”. A lot of the things we think about ourselves, we probably wouldn’t dare say to one of our closest friends, especially when we are thinking of ourselves critically. One example of changing the way you talk to yourself would be to say, “I love to take on a challenge” instead of thinking “this is too hard”. As soon as a negative thought enters your mind, find the positive in the situation and repeat that to yourself a few times instead.
Remember that this is a process, just like anything else and it will take time to make these changes. Be encouraging and gentle with yourself. By practicing your positive mind set daily, your self-talk will eventually become less self-critical and you will feel more self-acceptance. By allowing yourself to make one small change, you could be taking the first step into improving many aspects of your life!
1. TIME BLOCK – use the calendar on your phone, computer, or even your planner and assign specific times for all of the tasks you have to take care of every day. For example:
– 7 – 8am: get kids ready for school
– 8 – 8:30am: breakfast
– 8:30 – 9:30am: shower & get ready for work
– 10:00am: leave for work
– 10:30 – 3:30pm: work (30 min break)
– 3:30 – 4:00pm: home from workRemember, we are only listing tasks that you take care of every single day. Once you have done this you can then go through what you have listed and find your “free” or available time that you can dedicate to your workout, meditation or home project. I do want to be realistic in that sometimes you just can’t stick to the time block you have created ( #life ). Whenever something comes up that shifts your day around, don’t stress about this! Re-adjust your schedule and move on with your day.
2. TIME AUDIT – RECORD EVERY ACTIVITY PERFORMED THROUGHOUT YOUR ENTIRE WEEK. In essence, you are going to keep a one-week activity log. At the end of the week you can then look back through everything you recorded and know exactly where your time went.
3. PRIORITIZE – KNOW THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN WHAT IS URGENT AND WHAT IS IMPORTANT. Make a firm decision on prioritizing your tasks into the ones that absolutely cannot wait to be completed first. Say you only have a couple hours in your day to complete what needs to be done, what tasks will you choose, and which tasks can wait until tomorrow? KNOW THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN WHAT NEEDS TO BE DONE NOW AND WHAT CAN BE DONE LATER.
4.STAY ORGANIZED – Declutter your work space. Can you imagine walking into your office with only your computer, planner, and a cup of coffee on your desk? Sounds pretty good right? IF YOU’RE ORGANIZED PHYSICALLY (i.e. a clean desk or office) YOU WILL MOST LIKELY BE ORGANIZED MENTALLY.
5. KNOW HOW TO SAY NO – Sometimes responsibilities and goals take higher priority over going out for a few drinks. Know when to say no to activities or tasks that will ultimately take away from what’s urgent. This matters in work situations, as well. Learn to say no to any e-mails that are not urgent and don’t require an immediate response.
6.TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF – On the flip side, learn how to say YES. You need to make time for YOU. If there is a work task that can wait and you absolutely need a mental break … YES, take that break. If you have been grinding out work tasks all day at home, haven’t left the house once and you get invited to go out for dinner … YES! If those tasks aren’t urgent and don’t require immediate action, stop them and do something for you!
WHERE IS YOUR TIME GOING? …. YOU NEED TO KNOW WHAT IS GOING ON EVERY HOUR THROUGHOUT YOUR DAY.
Instagram, owned by Facebook, says its users under 25 spend “more than 32 minutes a day on Instagram,” and users 25 and over “spend more than 24 minutes a day” on the app. If you do this daily, that can add up to 224+ minutes spent on social media EVERY SINGLE WEEK. Can you imagine what you can get done in 224+ minutes a week?! By minimizing the time you spend on social media, this opens up time for a couple workouts a week that you originally had zero time for. KNOW WHERE YOUR TIME IS GOING.
In order to reach your goals and find time to do so, you have to be willing to implement these tips and develop new habits that will help you be successful at scheduling your time. To do this, you need to know where your time is going and what you can do to make the most of it
What all these thoughts and emotions have in common with behavior is they affect our cognitive abilities. They cause us to make unfavorable choices, particularly bad habits with food. Often times an individual will turn to food as a way to cope with stress or sadness. Bingeing is common as a response to stress. We are looking for a way to avoid or numb the discomfort we are feeling, however the chemical reaction in the brain when we eat is short lived and usually the individual will feel worse in the aftermath. So how to fix this? What has happened is a neural connection between emotional discomfort and food has been created, almost like an auto pilot response. For many of us, this has been deep rooted in us for years. It can be changed! When we feel sadness, anger, or stress and we choose an alternative coping mechanism, every time we do that we are strengthening that neural connection to associate those behaviors with what we are feeling. We are rewiring our brain to urge us to make different choices. Some of the best coping activities I recommend are meditation, journaling, reading, baths, puzzles, any activity that requires you to be fully present and in the moment of what you are doing. Things you enjoy. This is being mindful.
Mindfulness teaches us to see things as they really are and not just how we think hey should be. It ends resistance which creates inner peace. Inner peace will spill into every area of your life by improving self love, relationships, family, career, and spirituality. When we are mindful we make choices that are in alignment with our best interest. The choices we make are not clouded by deceptions of the mind but rather from clarity and authenticity. We are not our thoughts, we are the observer of our thoughts, and we have the power to choose. We are in control of how we experience everything around us. We are in control of our physical ,intellectual, emotional, spiritual, and social health just by choosing our thoughts! Be good to yourself
You’re busier than you’ve ever been- Kids. Careers. Commutes. Life can feel really demanding-and you’re struggling to stay healthy and fit. You’ve come to terms with the fact that you don’t have the metabolism of your 18 year old self anymore and you wonder if you’re doomed to pack on the pounds because you’ve tried shakes, patches, pills, restriction, yo-yo dieting, and tons of cardio but nothing works. You must be cursed with the inability to achieve your fitness goals, right? WRONG. What you need to do is throw away those patches, pills, and yo-yo dieting habits and start eating real food, moving your body and develop new habits of consistency and self-accountability within the context of YOUR demanding life. So how do you start?
Consistency and self-accountability are rooted in reality meaning you must set a realistic goal, have a realistic plan, find realistic resources, and be prepared to meet the vulnerability and resistance within yourself when you commit to a goal and/or lifestyle change.
Set A Realistic Goal
Most people fail before they have even start because they set unrealistic goals for themselves like losing 30lbs in 10 days by only eating 500 calories a day and doing 3 hours of cardio. It’s impossible to stay consistent and hold yourself accountable when you are trying outlandish and unstainable methods to try and drop weight fast. Your body will almost immediately turn against you sending signals for you to eat because it doesn’t care about your weight loss goal, it cares about keeping you alive, so start by setting a realistic goal.
Set a Realistic Plan
If you want to achieve a goal you need a realistic plan. Most people cannot spend two hours a day in the gym so determine what type of exercise will fit in to your life and commit to it. Get a personal trainer, hire an online coach, find an exercise buddy, join a group class, etc. Find an exercise you enjoy, set a schedule and commit. Does your exercise of choice align with your goals? If not determine which one needs to be adjusted and set the plan.
Find Realistic Resources
If you don’t know how to lift a weight properly you will likely not set a squat PR (safely). If you don’t know how to eat for your goals you will most likely not achieve your goals. Do your research to find who can best support you on the path to achieving your goals and be open to learning about their methods, which leads me to the final and most important point about increasing consistency and self-accountability. Once you have set your realistic goal, made your realistic plan, and found your resources….have a plan for when you meet self-resistance, vulnerability, and doubt because these are the biggest obstacles in achieving weight loss and fitness goals.
Weight loss is not physical, it is mental. Most people will meet self-resistance in their journey at some point in trying to achieve their fitness goals for a multitude of reasons (past with an eating disorder, poor self-image, inexperience, stress, etc). What this means is you need to have a plan in place for when you meet that self-resistance so you can push past it and move closer to achieving your goals. Sit with yourself and determine what it is that’s holding you back, is it something you can tackle yourself (i.e. stop keeping candy in the house) or is it something that needs professional attention (i.e. unresolved eating disorder or emotional issues). Whatever it is take it upon yourself to work on resolving those issues and stop waiting for them to resolve themselves because that is not realistic. If you are your own biggest obstacle, find out why, meet that resistance and tackle it. It is important to be realistic with yourself about what is REALLY keeping you from your health and fitness goals which is why self-accountability and consistency are rooted in reality.
Now go out and smash some fears and achieve some goals!
This week ADOFitness trainers will be dressing a topic that gets commonly asked about. Coach Jen discusses hormones.
What are hormones? By definition, hormones are “a product of living cells that circulate in body fluids and produce a specific, often stimulatory, effect on the activity of cells”. To someone who isn’t in the medical field or has a scientific background in chemistry or biology, that definition is probably rather confusing.
So, what are hormones? Well, our body makes hormones naturally but there are also synthetic hormones that we can put into our body. These hormones, whether natural or synthetic, travel around in our body fluids, like our blood. They are made in one part of our body, travel to another part via our body fluids, and then act on another part of the body in order to cause some sort of change. One example of this is with Insulin. The Beta cells in our pancreas make insulin, which then travels through our blood and to our cells where it helps our body regulate blood sugars.
Hormones are made to help our body perform certain tasks. Hormones can come from almost anywhere in our body and they play a role in how our organs function. Hormones play such a major role in the proper functioning of our bodies, so it’s going to be extremely important to make sure we are feeding our body correctly and moving our bodies in a way that is going to allow our hormones to stay balanced.
When speaking scientifically, “balance” in our body is often referred to as “homeostasis”. If something in our body gets out of whack, our body automatically responds to this problem in order to fix it. Thinking back to our example of insulin, when our blood sugar is too high, our body responds by stimulating the Beta cells in our pancreas to produce insulin, which then travels through our blood to our body’s cells to lower our blood sugar back down to a normal range. The things we do everyday cause our bodies to leave homeostasis almost constantly, so it is crucial to treat our bodies well so they can continue to function smoothly.
Hormones play a vital role in almost every function of our body including our metabolism, immune health, and reproduction. Even things that you eat can throw off or help restore homeostasis. Similarly, how you exercise will affect your hormone balance. Other things like stress and sleep will also greatly affect your hormones. Cortisol is a great example of a hormone that is easily effected by your everyday activity. Cortisol is an important hormone in your body that causes the “fight or flight” response when we are in danger. Often referred to as the “stress hormone”, Cortisol is released by your adrenal glands when your body perceives a threat. Having chronically high levels of cortisol in your body means your body constantly feels stressed, which can negatively affect your health by causing things like increased blood pressure and increased amounts of visceral fat around your abdomen. To help maintain cortisol levels, it is important to make sure you are eating a well balanced diet, getting enough exercise, and getting enough sleep. Caffeine and alcohol have been shown to increase cortisol levels in your body and it is recommended that these items are best had in moderation. Exercise has been shown to reduce cortisol levels, so it is important to make sure you staying active, especially if you have a sedentary job. Not getting adequate sleep can also cause cortisol levels to rise, which is why having a goal of 8 hours of sleep per night is usually recommended.
Chronically imbalanced hormones can lead to common diseases and health problems like diabetes (when your Insulin is imbalanced), insomnia (when your Cortisol is imbalanced), and infertility (when your sex hormones are imbalanced). Having imbalanced hormones can also fatigue, irritability, and anxiety. As you can see, hormone balance is extremely important for quality of life.
Weight you feel best at: 135
Current Macros: Lift days: 160P/375C/76F and NL: 135P/350C/66F
IIFYM or Bro Diet: IIFYM, I’ve been lucky enough to never have been on a bro diet but they don’t seem sustainable.
Favorite exercise: Deadlifts and Lat Pulldowns
Favorite food: Eggs
Least favorite food: Ham
Favorite cheat meal: A HUGE turkey sandwich with all the fixings (except cheese) and a coke zero. This is the only thing I crave when in a deficit as well as post competition.
Favorite thing about your body: My overall shape and my back. I feel lucky to be proportionate and I have a strong back, which I have always been proud of because it’s something that must be built. It cannot be bought.
Least favorite thing about yourself: “I’ve got 99 problems and 86 of them are completely made up scenarios in my head that I’m stressing about for absolutely no logical reason.” Enough said.
Hidden Talent: When I look at a plate of food sometimes I feel like Dustin Hoffman in Rain man because I know the macros on the plate almost automatically without thinking too hard about it.
Years in the fitness industry: Personally 2 years (competing) but by proxy about 5
Favorite thing about competing: I’ve never had a traditional artistic outlet. I cannot draw, I cannot sing, I cannot paint, and I never caught on to playing an instrument however I have always desired to be an artist and the closest I’ve come to that is being a bodybuilder/competitor. Being able to sculpt and create a beautiful physique through commitment, hard work, and dedication is in fact an art and one that brings me great satisfaction in knowing I have created something using my own materials. My favorite bodybuilding quote: “A bodybuilder is a sculptor who carries with him his own material.” –Serge Nubret
Favorite thing about being an ADO coach: It’s hard to pick one thing but if I had to, I think it would be knowledge sharing. The amount of health and fitness misinformation out there is insane so being able to help people learn about balance, moderation, nutrition, and exercise in a realistic way AND have them make progress towards their goals is by far my favorite thing.
This week ADOFitness trainers will be addressing a topic that gets commonly asked about. Coach Joey discusses the importance of mobility training.
Mobility training is something that a lot of people neglect to incorporate into their program, myself included until recently. Mobility training is a dynamic, active stretching routine that is used to increase flexibility and prepare the body for more intense movements. This is something that research is showing should be incorporated into every workout before your lift starts. It has countless benefits for your joints and muscles and doesn’t add a ton of time to your workout routine.
Mobility training is NOT the same as static stretching though and some research is mixed on this one, but most shows that static stretching before working out has little to no benefit for you. Static stretching, which means holding one deep stretch for 20-30 seconds at a time, can cause small muscle tears that can actually decrease the power you are able to create for your lifts. It can also dampen nervous system activation to the muscle groups being stretched, which can cause them to feel weak, loose, and unstable. This can decrease your strength during your lifts and because your muscles are unstable, could even lead to injury.
Instead of static stretching before working out, mobility training can be done to effectively warm up and activate certain muscle groups. Mobility is defined as the ability to move a part of your body through full range of motion, while still maintaining control of the movement. The stretching exercises used in mobility training help maintain joint function, promote flexibility, and improve your overall performance.
Mobility is important for everyone’s every day life, not just for those who are lifting heavy in the gym. Many things cause decreased mobility including age, living a sedentary lifestyle, and injuries. Something as simple as sitting at your desk all day at work causes your leg muscles and hip flexors to become tight and stiff, which can lead to pain in your lower back, hips, and knees. By doing mobility training, you are actively opening up those joints and stretching the muscles to avoid the pain associated with these muscles being so tight. By continuing to do mobility training, even when you are feeling better, can help prevent this tightness from reoccurring therefore preventing the pain and keeping you moving.
Not only is this training a great way to warm up, prevent injury, and improve flexibility, but it also doesn’t take that long to do. One of the top reasons why you often hear people say they don’t stretch or warm up before working out is because they don’t have enough time. Your mobility routine can be as short as 5 minutes and with all the benefits involved, it is definitely not something to skip. It can be as simple as three different movements performed for 2-3 sets that are specific for the body part you are working out.
Mobility training helps ensure your muscles are ready to work and that your joints are not stiff. It also helps improve flexibility and prevent injury that could hinder your training and progress. While it may seem like “one extra thing” you have to do at the gym, taking the few minutes to get your body moving could be the “one extra thing” your workout is missing.