So forget a New Year’s Resolution – this year definitely did not start off as I planned health or fitness-wise (when does it ever? lol). But no point crying over spilt milk – this month I’ll be jumpstarting my journey back to being whole spiritually, emotionally AND physically, and I hope you’ll join in!
Now, a couple things to note as I have been down this road at least a dozen times before: there is no one-size-fits-all way to get the results you want to see when it comes to your health and fitness. Trust that I have tried almost every diet/workout routine in the book, and nothing worked until I really began to pay attention to my body and what it wanted instead of just simply copying what everyone else was doing. So while I’m going to be outlining my routine here and sharing some of my favorite healthy recipes and tips throughout the month of April, I really want to encourage you to listen to your body and figure out what it needs instead of constantly micro-managing it. If you really want some chocolate, have a piece. When you’re going out with friends, enjoy – don’t be the sore thumb who only wants to eat a wedge of lettuce. Just learn to listen to your body and not deprive your soul of a good cheeseburger when it wants one (so long as it’s a GOOD burger, and not like McDonald’s – don’t waste your calories). Restriction will not get you the kind of results that discipline will.
So here are the rules for the month of April – feel free to adjust them for your schedule and own health/fitness needs:
- ‘Run’ 12 miles a week.
I know, I know – most humans don’t like running. Give them an elliptical or a bicycle and they’re good. But running requires a certain level of effort that those other machines just don’t. Doesn’t matter how you choose to split it up during the week or at what pace you’re going – you could be walking if that’s what you need to do – but 12 miles is it. The goal here is that as the month progresses, you will still be doing 12 miles, just in a shorter time at the end of the month than you did at the beginning – so challenge yourself! What started as a 14 minute mile can be whittled down to 10 minutes in just over 4 weeks!I usually run 2-4 miles 3 days a week at a 10-11mph rate, then do 15-20 mins of sprints on the days I’m not doing long-distance running (1 minute at 8.0-9.0, 1 minute walking for time).
- Drink 3 liters of water a day.
I will allow the occasional glass of wine, but absolutely no soda or processed liquids. Even freshly pressed fruit juices can be high in sugar. Juicing is OK so long as the ratio of veggies to fruits is at least 2:1.
- Eat Clean.
Like I said before, listen to your body. My body is a fan of anything green, but also of less animal protein. I need at least 4 meals a day, and hold back on the grains as much as possible because my body reacts poorly to a high carb load. I don’t know what your body wants, but there are a couple of things you can live by when it comes to eating clean, like trying as much as possible not to eat anything from a bag or a can or a jar, or anything with more than two ingredients, or ingredients you can’t readily pronounce. The more fresh and unpackaged your food ingredients are, the cleaner your meal will be, and being fit and healthy really is 70% diet.
- Lift Heavy.
I know girls don’t like to do this because they think it’ll make them look manly, but really that’s how you maintain your curves – and get even curvier. With all the cardio, it’s easy to lose muscle mass and just become skinny – and if that’s the look you’re going for, then go get em – but personally I just like to look a little fuller. Lifting heavier for fewer reps will make sure that you grow enough muscle to give you that toned figure you’re looking for. I do legs once or twice a week, arms and shoulders once a week, and chest and back once a week as well.
- Work Your Core
There is nothing i hate more than core exercise. I skip it every week – and yet it’s the most important. This month I’m making a commitment to working out my core more because it really is the foundation for all other exercise you do – and I really really want abs this year LOL.
- Follow DJ Khaled on Snapchat
I am deadly serious. Whenever I feel less than motivated to workout or eat healthy, his motivation always encourages me to push through… that and the though that he might possibly achieve a beach body before I do LOL.
- Have Fun!
Every now and then I’ll skip the gym and do something different – Shaun T’s CIZE! is a new favorite! Maybe run outside, go on a hike, or ride your bike somewhere. Sometimes I’ll try new recipes I find online. Just be sure to change it up and make sure you’re making it fun!
If you have any specific questions about how I do any of this stuff, feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, or simply hit ASK in the Q&A drop down menu! And be sure to watch out for my tips and recipes throughout the month!
You’ll have to excuse me now, because I have a date with a treadmill 🙂