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Keeping It Real In Unreal Times: Where Should You Start?

Duder Himself Talks Stress Management

Duder on Stress Management…

 …sadly, we’re not talking about The Dude here. Or even El Duderino; not being into the whole brevity thing.
No, in this article it’s all about addressing the mountains of irrelevant concerns people have regarding their workout programs and nutrition.
Early on in my personal training and performance coaching career I noticed a disturbing trend.
Perfectly competent, intelligent individuals going nowhere fast in their health/fitness endeavors due to one paralyzing factor: Information Overload.
How many days a week should I work out?
What can I do for weight loss?
How much cardio should I do?
How many times a day should I eat?
Should I avoid fat?
Should I avoid carbs?
Should my nutrition come from a Paleo diet?
How much protein is enough?
Can I eat at night?
Should I do intermittent fasting?
Am i overtraining?
Should I drink a shake after I work out?
What supplements should I be taking?
Should I be training to increase my VO2 max?
What about my lactate threshold?
Should I consume plutonium to increase my mitochondrial density?
… You get the point.
Walter could probably use some tips from Red Rocks Health & Human Performance on destressing/healthy lifestyle.
Sure, there’s a million and one things you can worry about when it comes to training and even more when it comes to nutrition. The fact remains that unless you take action when it comes to those questions, you’ll remain the same.
“There is no more miserable a human being than one in whom nothing is habitual but indecision.”
– William James
If you’re already snowballing downhill, that path will only continue unless you make a conscious effort to change course.
Even The Dude knew he had to stop them from killing that poor woman, man. And he had the sense to know it was going to require action.
And therein lies the secret; action.
I can’t tell you what workout program is most effective for you, only that you should be physically active every day of your life. A good way to start is simply to do something.
I could make some predictions based on personal experience with myself/clients and research on what type of program is best. But truthfully, I have no idea how many days a week you should be working out or how much conditioning is right for you.
Anyone who tells you this without working with you personally first is a quack and the only ducks you should accept are those pan roasted and served with a side of vegetables.
These things require trial and, inevitably, error. Do yourself a favor and start small. A couple 30 minute workouts. One long walk. Build up to where you see results and you’re at a point that you can maintain.
Progressive overload is the only thing you absolutely need to focus on. Write it down and keep track. Are you using more weight this month at x repetitions for y exercise than you were last month? Are you running x distance at a faster pace or more distance at y pace? Not having access to a gym is no excuse, I’ll give you an example why in a second.
As far as nutrition goes there is even more uncertainty.
Heard you should eat your body weight in protein a day?
Eat 6 meals a day?
Low carbs? Plenty of carbs?
Low fat? Gluten free?
Nothing but pills/powders?
Pills/Powders? Here’s an answer to which fat burner you should take… not this one.
How many meals a day? I was fortunate to see Dr. Berardi speak at the NSCA National Conference a couple weeks ago and his experimentations on himself are worth the read. You can find them here. Please read everything, what works for him may not work for you, he clarifies that himself.
Herschel Walker is a vegetarian and consumes 1 meal a day. He never touched a weight until he played college football.
“No Meat! He’ll surely wither away into Screech from Saved by the Bell!”
I wonder who does his personal training?It’s tempting to warn the man, but then again he’s been eating that way for over two decades.
One can only assume this has worked because he has a rug that ties the room together.
Would Walker’s approach work for you? Who knows.
There are only two recommendations that I believe can apply to everyone.
1) Consume a hearty amount of fresh vegetables and a moderate amount of fruits daily. Fiber is your friend.
2) Eat whole, unprocessed foods for the vast majority of your diet. Body composition may be as simple as calorie deficit/surplus, but your actual health is not so cut and dry. In general, naturally occurring foods have more vitamins, minerals and fiber than processed, pre-packaged foods.
Have faith in what you’re doing, do it with a purpose in mind, and stay dedicated.
When it gets tough, just remember… THE DUDE ABIDES.
His Dudeness making some healthy nutrition choices for weight loss
 …or EL Duderino if you’re not into the whole brevity thing.
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