Cardio Works—So Just Do It!!

That's me flexing my developing muscles after a good dose of cardio!

That’s me flexing my developing muscles after a good dose of cardio!

It feels so good to be back—back blogging, back from the plus size department, and more importantly back to a healthier me. But as we all should know this weight loss/healthy living lifestyle is a journey. Nothing happens overnight, that applies to how long it took you to gain that weight and how long it will take you to lose that weight. Rather you want to believe it or not it takes effort, time, and repetition to gain weight!! Let’s face it; it took days of you not counting calories or even considering them, weeks of you saying no to water and yes to flavor, and months of you indulging in trans fattyfast-food restaurants at all hours of the day and night!

And so after a year of putting ALL of your effort towards gratifying your taste buds repetitively, you realize that things aren’t what they used to be and you’ve begun to not like what you see. At that moment you have a choice to make—you could continue on your road to self-destruction or you could really get fed up and not just talk about it, but do something about it! I’ve mentioned in my previous post that everything doesn’t work for everybody so you should find out what works for you. Well there is an exception to that statement and the exception is my final main tip for you to apply on your journey: CARDIO, it works so just do it!! Every tip that I’ve mentioned up to this point have helped me develop better eating habits but my “healthy lifestyle equation” was not complete until I added Cardio to it!!

It’s so important that you get your eating habits under control before you decide that you’re going to exercise or else your efforts will be in vain. What you eat can really help or sabotage your weight loss efforts. If you rarely choose water over flavor before you commit to cardio why would you do it afterwards?? You won’t!! So before you make a decision to begin working out make sure your weight loss equation is not missing a healthy diet!!

In the past I’ve had gym memberships that were short-lived, so when my gym membership ceased to exist so did my exercising. And when we fail to exercise there are some obvious things that happen to the body and some not so obvious things that happen. It is obvious and a known fact that you will gain weight if you don’t work out. And of course there are some quick fixes for that, that involves liposuction or body wraps for instance. But for all of you Quick Fix Advocates, what does these quick fixes  do for your metabolism or your heart or lungs, does it prevent osteoporosis because you are building up muscle, is it a stress reliever, or can it decrease depression?????? The answer is no!!! These quick fixes could never replace exercise even if they tried, because it’s not just about losing weight, even though that is a benefit of it, it’s about the overall health of your entire body. So don’t try to replace exercise because it’s impossible!!!

When I committed to doing cardio I started off going to the track (free of charge) several times a week. Eventually after we moved I was always standing and moving at my new job, not to mention the eight flights of stairs I would go up and down twice a day, at least four times a week. Of course since cardio has many forms I began to lose more weight at this point but I was still missing something, and that something was repetition in the form of an exercise regimen. Well after I received one of the best gifts ever, an ELLIPTICAL, my life and body has never been the same. I practically lived on that thing and it gave me two things that I needed, cardio and a count of the calories I burned during each session. Overtime I began to increase the calories I burned which caused me to lose weight faster.  *Keep in mind that you can’t spot burn fat, the fat will come off wherever it wants to so be patient.

So I encourage you, make sure your healthy lifestyle equation is complete with a healthy diet and cardio. Be patient–it took time to put on the pounds so it will take time, patience, effort, and repetition to get it off. Keep in mind that you don’t need a membership to exercise, buy an elliptical or go to a track. Quick fixes should and could never replace exercise! And finally remember that CARDIO WORKS—SO JUST DO IT!!!

If you have any questions or comments you can post them below I would love to hear from you!

I hope that this tip will help you on your journey to a healthier you! Until next time ;)!

You Can’t Afford to Eat Fast Food When You’re Trying to Lose Weight!

Me when I couldn't afford to eat fast food, but did it stop me--NO!

Me in 2008 when I couldn’t afford to eat fast food, but did it stop me–NO!

Not being able to afford fast food initially may seem like a contradictory statement because everyone knows that fast food is cheap (depending on how often you eat it and how many mouths you have to feed). But it’s not about the price that you have to pay when you eat this food–it’s about the price that your body pays when you fuel it with “cheap gas,” so to speak. Since it is cheap– so is the quality and your body deserves better! The very concept of fast food is so convenient because all you have to do is go through a drive thru or stand in line for a few minutes and TA-DA, you have your food (possibly accompanied with a smile). But with convenience comes a compromise because how could you possibly make quality food in a few minutes? You CAN’T!!! So, the convenient concept of fast food composes a crappy product, NOT SURPRISING! Hence my weight loss tip for you to apply on your journey is to avoid fast food!

Welcome to the place where taste really does makes WAIST, where convenience and profits reign over quality ingredients. So there are many reasons why fast food restaurants should be avoided, but the main reasons why I’ve avoided it for all these years is because fast food restaurants serve processed foods that are high in sodium, calories, and fat. The cooking methods at many fast food restaurants consist of fried and/or microwaved foods. The ingredients in their foods and some drinks are disturbing and are not meant to be in the human body. They include tons of preservatives meant to preserve their foods life–not YOURS! Many of the foods served at these restaurants have trans fat in it and I’ve already covered the dangers of consuming that in my previous post.

I used to be an EXTREMIST when it came to eating out because restaurants were my primary source of food—breakfast, lunch, and dinner came from restaurants majority of the time. I kept up with the latest food releases from my favorite fast food restaurants. If they were open late, I was eating late. If the food tasted like crap I would throw it away and pay a visit to another restaurant a few blocks away from that one and tried it again. You name a restaurant and I’ve been there! No wonder why I didn’t know how to cook because I didn’t have to, and if I did I would mimic the fattening foods that I ate at a restaurant the night before. So needless to say I was truly on the road to obesity, caught in the ever so fattening cycle of weight gain!

Fortunately, my eyes were opened to the truth surrounding the fact that I could no longer afford fast food, due to the fact that I NEEDED to lose weight, and my then Recommended Daily Calorie Intake of 1500 (which equals one meal at many restaurants) wouldn’t allow it. I had a calorie budget, so I couldn’t afford the high calorie meals at many restaurants. In addition, I wanted to maximize the calories that I did have and I advise you to do the same, because there is no way you’re getting all of your nutritional needs out of that one meal. So please do not be fooled by these restaurants claims and be blind to what you’re putting in your body; instead ask to see the restaurants Nutritional Guide before you order.

Once I stop eating fast food my taste buds changed dramatically because I got used to eating real food! I went to Wendy’s once after I had not eaten fast food for months and I called myself ordering their grilled chicken sandwich because I thought it was a “healthy option,” but I couldn’t eat the bread because it was white and I now preferred whole grain/wheat bread, so I attempted to eat the chicken and it was so salty and disgusting, I just threw it away. Now just a year before that, that sandwich would’ve been history but once you fast from something for a while and you try to go back to it, it won’t be the same. I have never been back to a restaurant with a drive thru since!

So I encourage you, don’t contradict your weight loss efforts or compromise your healthy eating habits by eating fast food. Don’t fuel your body with poor quality foods from fast food restaurants and any other unhealthy restaurant that chooses to use garbage ingredients, like trans fat for instance. Begin to cook for yourself and keep in mind that putting processed foods in the oven like pizza does not count as cooking (unfortunately). Finally, remember that you can’t afford to eat fast food when you’re trying to lose weight!

I hope that this tip will help you on your journey to a healthier you! Until next time 😉