Tuesday, August 18, 2009

A Common Man With Uncommon Character

My Great Uncle Joe passed away last week. You may know of my Uncle Joe. I’ve mentioned him before and you can even find him as one of our SuperClients of the Month.

Uncle Joe died at 103 years old. He was a common man with an uncommon character. My Grandpa Chudy, his younger brother, was the same way.

The Chudy family wouldn’t be the only ones to tell you what a great person Uncle Joe was. At 103 years old his visitation and funeral were well attended. Everyone from his mailman to his bowling buddies at the senior center, even his girlfriend! were there to celebrate his life and say goodbye. It’s sad to see him go. But I don’t know if anyone could’ve asked for a better life.

He was born in Czechoslovakia in a small farming town. He came to America through Ellis Island and eventually settled in St. Clair, Michigan. He barely spoke English, but was a fast leaner and developed friends right away. He married his love, Helen, and remained married until she passed in the early nineties.

I’ll never forget what he told me about my Aunt Helen. After a stroke she was put into a nursing home to be taken care of. After one week my Uncle Joe refused to keep her there and brought her back home. The nurses warned Uncle Joe how much work it would be and cautioned him against it. They told him he wouldn’t last 5 days. "5 years Timmy. 5 years I took care of your Aunt Helen." Wow. I’ll never forget the sacrifice he made so she could stay at home. Never.

Uncle Joe was a common man with uncommon character. And I, along with many others, will miss him.

It wasn’t just the length of his life, but the quality of his life. His life was still rich with relationships. His family and friends were everything to him. And he still had a positive outlook on life. That’s why he made our SuperClient of the Month.

At 103 years old you have to be healthy and to not only keep, but to foster those relationships.

Late last week as I was waiting in line for my coffee I glanced at the Health section of the St. Louis Post Dispatch. The cover story read, How well you age can depend on you.

My Uncle Joe would have agreed. You can read the full article here.

The article goes on to divide aging into essentially 2 categories: genetics and damage. You control one, but not the other.

Thankfully the Chudy genes are strong. But I could easily neglect them. Smoking, poor diet, lack of exercise, all that bad stuff can counteract good genes. But my choice to live a healthy lifestyle will lead me to live long years. Hopefully into my hundreds.

You see, most people I talk to care more about quality than quantity. I’ll be willing to bet you don’t care to live to a specific age, but you want to live well to whatever age that might be. You want to be willing and able to reap the work you’ve put in. You want to have the relationships and enjoy the time with those people you love most.

My Uncle Joe would tell you to "Keep busy and stay active." It worked for him. And I hope you make the choice to live a healthy lifestyle.

To your health,

Tim Chudy
Fitness Together

P.S. If you would like more help living a healthy lifestyle, request your complimentary health and fitness consultation here. Or, if you’re not quite ready, you can download our infopack here.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

The 2 most important times of day for your nutrition

I just got off the phone with Lindy, one of our clients. She mentioned how awesome her workouts have been going and how her soreness has been greatly reduced. It didn't surprise me. And I had a hunch as to why that was happening.

I’ll tell you her secret in a minute. But first, do you know the 2 most important times for nutrition?

Breakfast and after your workout. The reason is simple. It’s when your body is screaming for nutrients. Let’s take a closer look at why.

Every time you go to bed you’re essentially going on an eight hour fast. When you wake up, assuming you have a metabolism that’s moving, you’re hungry and the body is looking for nourishment. That’s when you ‘break’ the ‘fast’.

You’ve probably heard skipping breakfast is a nutrition no-no. Eating breakfast kickstarts your metabolism for the day, gives your body the much needed nutrients after you sleep, and starts your daily nutrition out on the right foot. We coach all of our clients to eat a good breakfast complete with protein every morning. It’s essential to weight loss and fitness success.

The other time your nutrition is most important is after your workout. This is often overlooked and sometimes, sadly, sabotaged. When you workout you’re expending the body of its energy. This process actually breaks down the muscles. Have you ever felt so sore you can’t move for a couple of days after a tough workout? This is a sign the body has not received all the needed nutrients. And not getting the needed nutrients leads to slow recovery, slow results, and a lot of that unnecessary soreness.

Addressing your nutrition immediately after your workout dramatically speeds up the recovery process. It will reduce your soreness, maximize your release of anabolic hormones (like growth hormone and testosterone), and allow your body to maximize building muscle and burning fat. When you consume a well-balanced shake after exercise, carbohydrate stimulates insulin to drive the branch chain amino acids (protein) to the muscle cell. That way you can maximize recovery and get right back in the gym very soon – ensuring faster results for your program.

**A note to those wanting to focus on general fitness, but particularly, women: terms like anabolic drive and testosterone might bring pictures of Ah-nold to mind. But this is NOT for bodybuilders. You will NOT get big and bulky because of this. These are natural body processes. And they’re relative to you.

We recommend Physique to all of our clients. Physique is formulated with the exact ratio of carbohydrates to protein to reach anabolic drive. Lindy, our client I just spoke with and mentioned earlier, said this:

“At first I thought it was useless calories. After all, I just spent 45 minutes burning calories off. Why would I want to put them right back in? It wasn’t worth it to me.

But as my workouts got progressively harder, my muscles got progressively sorer. After stealing some of my husband’s Physique (he’s religious with it) I was amazed by the results! My soreness is not as evident -if any at all. I was more concerned about Physique from a calorie standpoint. But now I realize there’s a lot more going on inside my body after a workout. And Physique helps me recover.”

Lindy’s initial reaction is typical. There is also what appears to be a lot of sugar contained in Physique. But this is all working strategically in your favor and leads to faster fitness results.

Breakfast with protein and Physique. These are two quick modifications to make in your own diet to leap frog you past slow and steady fitness results.

To your fitness success,

Tim Chudy

P.S. If you would like more help with your fitness and nutrition, request a complimentary consultation here. Or if you just want more info on our programs and services you can get our complete infopack here.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

How to stop stress eating

Have you ever had one of those days? Something went wrong at the office, your significant other won’t see your point of view, or maybe a relationship is getting you down. Whatever happened, you spent all your energy on it and you now need a little release. Something for YOU.

I bet you’ve had one of those days before. And I bet you’ve gone to food to feel better. Let’s face it, Ben & Jerry’s makes you feel soooo gooood doesn’t it? And how could it not? It’s chocolate and vanilla ice cream, with fudge brownie and gobs of chocolate chip cookie dough. I’m feeling good just talking about it!

I’m not going to wax intellectual about food being a drug and letting food by thy medicine. That’s all good and fine. But what I want to talk with you about today is how to break the habits of emotional eating. I want to show you how to avoid the trap of going to food when you’re stressed, frustrated, or depressed. I want to give you a solution. You’ll see some very positive results if you put to use what I’m about to share with you.

There are 6 steps to conquering stress eating. Let’s get started shall we?

Step 1 - Decide and Determine
You have to decide that you want to stop stress eating. That may sound 3rd grade to you, but not many people actually do it. Then you have to determine what has prevented you from stopping. Maybe it’s work. Maybe it’s fussy kids or a friend that you’re not getting along with. Whatever it is, acknowledge what has been the roadblock to your success.

Step 2 - Shift the pain
Pain and pleasure. We’re either moving towards pleasure or away from pain. That’s our human nature. If you’re a stress eater then you are associating eating with a nice warm fuzzy feeling. That feeling could be the freedom to chose, making you feel good, food tasting delicious, or some other warm fuzzy feeling.

Your success relies upon shifting the pleasure of eating to absolute pain. Downright, miserable pain. You see, when you get home after a rough day at the office you might eat some pizza. Obviously this should not be on your nutrition plan. But it tastes good doesn’t it? And every last bite is worth it, right? You may be thinking pizza is well deserved after a rough day. You don’t think about how the pizza will make you feel after you eat it. Or the 20 pounds you gain over the years. You only associate the pleasure of it after a hard days work. And that MUST stop.

Step 3 – Pattern Interrupt
This is a simple but powerful step. When you go to bed at night you likely have a ritual. Wash your face, brush your teeth, a little reading, and lights out. It’s a pattern. And over time you develop the habit. The same goes with emotional eating. When X happens, you go to food. It’s clockwork. You’ve conditioned yourself to do so. And that pattern MUST be broken.

A pattern can be broken by consciously replacing whatever the feeling is with the new feeling you want. You can RE-condition your actions to develop new habits. It’s really that simple.

You’ve done this before whether you realize it or not. Think of a time when you’ve been depressed. Your demeanor takes a specific pattern. Your shoulders slump, your eyes drop and you talk softly with a negative tone. You’re conditioned to do so. But what happens if you go see a funny movie when you’re down? You laugh. You slap your knees and smile. It may not last but for a moment. But you DID break the pattern. And over time you can shift your patterns. And that my friend, is change.

Step 4 – Create a New Pattern
What’s the alternative? If you’re not going to eat when you’re stressed or emotionally weak, what are you going to do? Think of every possible option. Write them down. I’ll help you with your first one. Exercise! But make it your own. Give yourself some options and begin to create a new pattern.

Step 5 – Take Action
You must take action. Now! And again, and again, and again. You must focus and reinforce your new pattern. If you can do this over and over again with emotional intensity you’ll condition yourself to change your old pattern.

Step 6 – Test
Ok, you’ve done the first 5 steps. Now you need to see if it works. And the best way to do this is test it. You can do this in real time or you can sit and imagine yourself in the moment. How do you feel? How would you act? What do you feel inclined to do? If it’s not in line with your new pattern, then you must go back and repeat one of the steps. Maybe you didn’t create a new pattern that was powerful enough. Maybe you didn’t take action on that pattern. Whatever it is, redo that step.

Do you know the only type of person that likes change?

A baby with a wet diaper.

But you’re capable of change. You CAN change! It’s not a matter of if you can, but if you’re motivated to. If I put a gun to your head and said to stop stress eating you’d do it wouldn’t you? Of course you would! It’s a matter of life and death now. And that’s what helps change. The more serious your motivation is, the easier change will come.

These steps will help you change your behavior and stop your stress eating. If the desire is there and you commit to implementing these steps into your life, you will make a radical change. You’ve got the formula. Now go and act!

To your nutrition success,

Tim Chudy