By: Kaylee Randall- Contributing Blogger
Are you trying to tone up but just not getting anywhere? These days we are bombarded with so much information, that it's hard to keep up with what we should eat, when and how much. It can be exhausting trying to keep up, but we're here to keep it simple and help you work on being the healthiest you.
- Don’t eat after 8 pm
The basis of this myth is that the later you eat, the more likely you are to plant yourself on the couch without burning any of those calories. The truth is, your body can’t tell time and those calories from last night will get burned the next day. Giving yourself a cut-off time to eat really won’t make all that big of a difference.
The difference is, a tired person is more likely to reach for unhealthy snacks late at night than someone who’s just perked up from a good night’s sleep. Late night bad habits are the real culprit here.
- There’s no such thing as too much cardio
There’s no denying that cardio exercise is a great way to improve heart health and lose weight, but doing too much of it will actually cause your body to hold onto fat. Excessive cardio will start to eliminate muscle mass leaving your body with only it’s fat content. You may be smaller by doing lots of cardio, but your body’s composition will remain the same.
It’s essential to add strength and resistance workouts to your exercise routine because building muscle continues to burn fat even after the session is complete. Your body fat will drop as your muscle mass increases in a balanced way.
- Carbs are bad, fats are bad
Carbohydrates give you energy. It’s only when they go unused that they turn to sugars which adds up to extra unwanted weight. The trick is to not overindulge in carbs. Try using them as a side dish instead of your main entree.
Fats are easily confused to be foods that make you, well… fat. But this turns out to be false. Fats help you feel full (giving you less of an opportunity to overeat) and they break down nutrients from plants which is a perfectly healthy process. But again, everything in moderation.
- Stretch before you exercise
Stretching is important for lengthening your muscles and increasing flexibility but doing it before you work out can be dangerous. Make sure you’re warm before you start stretching as you don’t want to pull a muscle but touching your toes right out of the gate. You may want to even save the stretching until after your workout is fully complete. Yoga and Pilates are both examples of workouts that incorporate strength and stretching and are usually a better alternative to stretching on its own.
- You should never have a cheat meal
It seems counter intuitive, but it’s actually not the best idea to always deprive yourself of not-so-healthy foods. Treating yourself to a cheat meal once in a while not only keeps you motivated and sane, it can actually boost your metabolism, too! Make sure to not let your cheating get out of hand, but go ahead… indulge!