Personal Training

This Is More Important Than Counting Calories

Caloric Caunting is not important. In fact, calorie counting is the last thing people should focus on.  Calories from refined sugar are not the same as calories from vegetables, even when it’s the same amount of calories.  Also, calories from ultraprocessed foods are not the same as calories from whole foods.  Or calories from foods treated with pesticides or hormones are not the same as calories from organic foods. It’s like comparing the calories of eating petroleum versus eating an apple; both have calories, but one will do harm.

According to Suzanne Somers, bestselling author, all the chemicals that are in today’s foods will keep you fat even though you exercise and “eat healthy.” She explains how the scam of low-fat foods are making people fatter and less healthy.  Obesity rates and other diseases are increasing even though people are following the low-fat food approach. As an example, Suzanne points out that people are eating margarine that’s full of chemicals instead of real butter.

Research has been done that shows that chemicals in foods keep people fat because the liver is the organ in charge of many chemical reactions that affect the body’s metabolism.  If the liver is not working properly due to harmful chemicals, chances are that the metabolic rate will decrease.

Suzanne explains that vegetables and fruits are often sprayed with organophosphates, and studies have shown that children who live in homes where organophosphate pesticides are used have a higher rate of brain tumors (I know this does not have to do directly with weight loss, but I thought you should know). The higher the pesticide levels in the blood, the less the body burns calories while sleeping.  Pesticides mess with insulin, and this may be one of the reasons why people can’t lose weight despite calorie counting.

Before checking the calories of your foods, check where it comes from and what chemicals it has.  This is way more important than calories.  When you buy whole organic foods, you can focus on eating the right amount of foods (calorie counting).  So next time you choose foods from the supermarket, think about it, read the label if you need to, but don’t see the calories before you find the chemicals.  Your best option is to go to the whole foods area and find real foods.


Overcome Your Fears To Start Having Fun

Like you, I have goals to achieve.  One of my goals this year is to be an efficient swimmer.  I’m honestly a pretty pathetic swimming. I most died twice in my life.  Once a friend had to rescued me and the second time I survived because God didn’t want me dead yet, or at least it is what I want to believe.

Anyway, last Sunday I went to practice swimming at the hot springs. One of my young cousins was learning with me. I noticed that he is a little afraid of the water. Even though he could touch the ground with his feet, he was afraid of drowning. He had the swimming moves figured out, but he is just as bad as me.

The only difference between him and I is that I have overcome my fears, while he was still afraid of swimming. So there we were in the swimming line  talking to each other and me telling him to just do it that nothing will happen and that he also have the side ropes to hold himself in case that something goes wrong. He finally felt safer and he started swimming.

After a while, he loved swimming and he discovered that to breathe, as he was swimming, he could bring his head to the side out of the water to catch his breath and continue swimming.

Just like my cousin, many people are afraid to trying new ways to improve their life. They are afraid of failure. However, once they have tried, they noticed that it is not scary as they thought.  In addition, they improve by learning from their mistakes. Nevertheless, people can’t learn if they don’t try.  As we learn, we want to continue growing.  This is why the new behavior is fun.

After a few laps we got tired and we went to the hot pool. All my cousin wanted to do was to continue swimming, so we went back to the swimming line.

I like to get out of my comfort zone and try new things in life, only if I know these new things will improve the quality of my life.  Everything is scary in the beginning.  But once we overcome the fear, we only can have fun.

Getting out of your comfort zone and finding new ways to improve your life is scary, but you are made to overcome them. Something that I remember when I studied risky decisions is that I have been made to overcome any difficulty in life. The task wouldn’t have been given to me if I was not capable to do it.  You know, a Superior Power has all already figured out.  Have faith, overcome your fears and you will succeed.


Cooking Is One Of The Keys To Lose Weight And Stay Healthy

“Man, because he sacrifices his health in order to make money. Then he sacrifices money to recuperate his health. And then he is so anxious about the future that he does not enjoy the present; the result being that he does not live in the present or the future; he lives as if he is never going to die, and then dies having never really lived.”

–Dalai Lama

Do you have a fast-paced life? Have you questioned yourself where are you going with such a stressful existence?  Many of us are living a life of no sense. We work and make money, shop, party, gather with people and do other activities. But we don’t think about why we are doing all this.  Some of us may assume that someday we are going to be successful and happy with all this running around.  But wait a minute, let’s redefine success. Many people think that success is money, others popularity, recognition or power. My plan here is not to argue the definition of success, but to suggest that we redefine it.

One of the reasons why people are here on earth is to be happy. Many argue that one can’t be happy all the time, and of course I’ll admit that happiness comes from a balance of many factors. But this is what I called success, to find all these factors and be happy no matter the consequences.

We have become people who get stuck in ruts without always enjoying the smaller acts in life which, in turn, can lead us a healthier life. An example is how we Americans treat food.  Food has a great and rich history, and I encourage you to do some a research on how real food is prepared and enjoyed. We have become people who grab something to eat in the way to work, often packaged or fast food. We often eat on the go. We eat out. We usually don’t cook. These habits contribute to the obesity epidemic and other health issues, including cancer.

Cooking is important for human beings; it contributes to our happiness. Real food is more nutritional than packaged food or fast food if fast food or processed food is nutritional at all. Preparing food and eating together brings people together and solidifies family and community.  Eating real food also helps us fight and prevent disease and obesity. An added benefit is that when you cook from scratch, you know what’s in it–transparency rules.

When I was researching food facts, what really caught my attention is that people who cook from scratch are healthier than those who don’t. I learned that the human body adapts to any natural source of food, except the western, fast-food diet. This is because we eat a lot of meat and processed foods that often include hormones, preservatives, chemicals, and added refined sugars and salts.  Humans are designed to eat food, not chemicals; no wonder the body develops many diseases in reaction to these processed products we eat. According to New York Times reporter and foodie author Michael Pollan, a study was conducted that introduced the western diet to primitive hunters who killed and cooked their own food. These people developed medical problems just as we do: high sugar levels, low insulin levels, high cholesterol, high blood pressure and others symptoms. Happily, two weeks after they when back to their native habitat and food sources, these problems disappeared.

We have lost the culture. Cooking is not only a unique skill but a contributor to our health. Cooking is a positive habit that helps people to lose weight and live healthier.

So, if your goal is to stay healthy and find happiness, I suggest that you cook at home. What is the rush anyway to continue our day without enjoying the beauty of this world? Is health contributed to the whole definition of success?


Weight Loss: Ask Yourself the Right Questions To See Results In Your Fitness Program

Weight Loss: Ask Yourself the Right Questions To See Results In Your Fitness Program

I remember when my life started to change for the better.  I underwent a unique change in my thought process.  I became more curious and asked myself many deep questions.  One of the questions I asked was, “How come everyone is happy except me, even though I’m in a better place with many of my dreams achieved?”

Sometimes we take as truth information from the government, doctors, teachers, our parents or anyone else we classify as an authority or weight loss expert. For this and many other reasons, such as finding the truth too uncomfortable, we often stop asking ourselves quality questions. We go with the flow and copy what others do and wonder, after a short while, how we can change our life.

After I asked myself how I could be happy, my brain started searching for the answers, and I found them.  The answers did not come easily.  I had to meet capable people, read, meditate and experiment to find all the answers.

Henry Ford said, “Thinking is the hardest work there is, which is probably the reason why so few engage in it.”  I think he has a point since many do not make time to pose questions and search for the answers.  Just like exercise, weight loss or healthy eating, thinking is a positive habit that adds more value to our lives.

Questions have a lot to do with your weight loss success because the quality of the questions you ask determines the quality of the answers you get.

The answers will create emotions, and your actions are determined by those emotions.

For example, it’s better to ask yourself, “What do I need to do promote weight loss?”, “Am I taking the correct steps for weight loss?” or “How can I improve my weight loss?” rather than “Why can’t I lose weight?” or “Why does nothing work in my weight loss program?”

Have you noticed that these questions create different emotions?  Once you ask the right questions, your brain will start to search for the answers.  But once again you have to ask the right questions.  “What do I need to do to lose weight” questions will lead to many resources.  On the other hand, “Why can’t I lose weight” may lead to answers that don’t make sense, such as “because you never have.”

Not asking yourself quality questions will lead you with no results on your weight loss or the wrong answers.

When you get no results or a wrong answer, the chances of you taking action is 0%, delivering no positive change to your life or weight loss efforts.

Now keep in mind that the better the question is the longer it will take to get an answer.  Albert Einstein said, “It’s not that I’m so smart, it’s just that I stay with problems longer.”  It is important that you are persistence with the quality question to get a quality answers.

My life improves every day.  I become more knowledgeable and make better choices thanks to the questions I ask myself.

I want you to succeed in your weight loss…

My goal is to help you as much as I can.  So today set aside some time and ask yourself deep questions and start looking for real answers.  This will lead you to get the results you are looking for.


This Is How To Tone Your Body

Brittany was raised in a family that focuses on working and doesn’t have strong beliefs about exercising. Nevertheless, Brittany was an active child, playing basketball and volleyball, running track and doing other activities. As she grew older, she continued doing some biking and hiking. She eats somewhat healthily and has managed to maintain a healthy body weight.

When she hit her 30s, she started to discover that her body was not the same as it used to be when she was in her teens and early 20s. Her body was saggy and no longer toned. She discovered some areas that she didn’t like anymore, such as the inside of her thighs, the muffin tops, the wings on her arms, and her butt not being rounded anymore. She is not the only one to notice these changes at this age. Many other women are in the same hunt for their younger body.

She has heard about weight lifting, but weight lifting is only for men — women can get bulky because of it. She tried it once for a couple of weeks, and it was too difficult, and she heard that she can tone her body by lifting light weight and doing numerous repetitions, so she stuck to that for a while. But she gave up after a year of not seeing results, and tried exercises other than a structured weight lifting program. She is now 50, and she has not discovered how to recover her younger body.

When astronauts are sent to the moon, one of the requirements is to exercise before, during and after the trip. Many of the astronauts upon returning to earth need to relearn how to walk. Since gravity in space and on the moon is minimal, the body does not need to make much effort to travel from place to place or for many other physical tasks.

The human being is very adaptable to the environment in different ways, including physical. For example, Brittany failed to notice that when she was younger she was more active than in her adult life where there are many worries and responsibilities that she needs to prioritize. Even though she has been somewhat active and she has eaten somewhat healthily, she is aging, and the activity that she is doing is not enough to keep up with the biological process of aging.

Just like an astronaut loses his strength because he doesn’t need it in space, Brittany is aging because she is not challenging her body.

Jessica discovered that she can keep her body young at an earlier age. She grew up with a brother who is into weight lifting. In the beginning, Jessica was not interested in weight lifting at all. All she wanted was to tone her body, so in her earlier 20s, she focused on cardio. She noticed that she was losing weight, but her body was not gaining toned. She start noticing that her brother was toned from weight lifting, but she didn’t want to get bulky. So she considered lifting light weights.

She started to make her own superficial research about weight lifting. She found out that what she needed to do is to lift light weights and do high repetitions. But what she didn’t know at that time is that the body will transform only when it gets challenged, and light weight does not challenge the body. But she tried it. After 2 years of light lifting, she didn’t see any definition.

She wondered what she was doing wrong and finally asked her brother, who gave her a quick explanation that guys can get big because of their levels of testosterone. It won’t be possible for her to get bulky because of her level of testosterone. Plus, he reminded her that he is 4 times stronger than her, and for her to lift that much weight is impossible. It took him years of dedication and effort to get to that level.

Jessica trusted her brother, so she decided to try lifting heavier weights. However, she knew that if she tried to lift too heavy a weight she would get hurt. She did not know how to start and let her brother guide her. She learned periodization, the act of increasing resistance to the muscle group as the muscles becomes stronger. Also, she learned about muscle groups and many exercises for each muscle group. Jessica is now in her late 30s, and she has a toned body and feels like a teen again.

To be healthy one needs only to eat healthily, exercise at least 3 times a week for 30 minutes, be flexible and know how to deal with stress. But to take one’s health and appearance to the next level and tone one’s body requires a lot more effort. Not everyone should have a toned body, and not everyone is willing to make the effort to have a toned body. For example, to make $1,000,000 a year requires more effort than making $100,000 a year; having 3 children requires more effort than having one; having a mansion requires more than having a house. Not everyone wants to do the work to make $1,000,000, have 3 children or take care of a mansion.

Nevertheless, there are people who do want more than others, and these people are willing to pay the price for it. The same goes for your body. You are not going to make $1,000,000 with the same effort you made $100,000 or properly raise 3 successful children with the effort you raised one or maintain a mansion with the same resources to maintain a small house. You have to put in more effort. Therefore, I want you to think that you can’t tone your body with the same effort it takes to just lose weight or maintain your body.

For example Brittany was doing only enough to maintain her body weight but not more to tone her body. Her lifestyle is healthy, and there is nothing wrong with it. However, she is not happy with the way her body looks, and she wants to tone her body. Her actions and desires are in conflict. Either she needs to accept her body and continue what she is doing, or she needs to pay the price to have a toned body, so her actions and desires are not in conflict anymore.

Jessica, on the other hand, knew what she wanted, and her beliefs were aligned with her actions. Even though she did not have the right information in the beginning, she researched and put in the effort until she achieved her goal.


How to be successful in your weight loss!

How many times have you started a weight loss program or a new diet and gave up in the first few weeks or within a month? If you are like the rest of us I would imagine that it has happened on more than one occasion. I can’t help but wonder what your thoughts were behind the actions that you took. So many times we have tried to make changed in your lifestyle and they just don’t stick. I always wondered why this was the case. Why did I give up so quickly? Below is a great video to help you set up your mind and become successful in your weight loss once and for all. 


Weight Loss Or An Attractive Body?

When I was  traveling recently on  my holiday break, when  people asked me what I do, I told them that I make  people’s lives happier by helping them lose weight and be healthier.

Most people with whom I talked had a point of view about weight loss, and some others wanted advice.  Some told me that Zumba, running, shakes, or diets are effective for weight loss. But what really got my attention was that these people were overweight and out of shape.  If all those great ideas really worked, why weren’t these people really doing them? Go figure.

A paradigm is a belief about what the world is like. You can tell what people believe by watching what they do, because they always behave consistently with their deeply held belief.  It is not necessarily what they say they believe, but what they really believe that counts.

While is true that many of the methods people mentioned work, what is important is to take into consideration that people need to be consistent and do them regularly.

“Weight loss can be simple,” I explained to some of my fellow travelers.   “But I don’t recommend focusing merely on weight loss. My clients and I get healthy results and toned bodies using varied routines and techniques.  None of the methods people list works alone.  I could be wrong, but it seems to me that people don’t want to lose weight just for the sake of losing weight since they often end up with a sloppy body when they are only focused on the scale. The reality is that they want to look their best and hopefully amazing. They want legs and arms toned, flat abs, a nice straight back, and overall an attractive body.  This is where my being an expert comes in. I give my clients all the techniques, routines, motivation, and encouragement they need to get the results that they are looking for.

No one I had a conversation with on my trip mentioned weight lifting as being important for weight loss, but a large part of my fitness plan is weight lifting for people of all ages and body types.  It surprises me that many people are not aware of the importance of weight lifting. Let me enumerate a few of the benefits.  It lifts the gluts, tones arms and legs, makes flat abs, and makes the waist look smaller and over all shapes the body and increase the metabolic rate among other benefits. It also prevents bone loss in older men and women, which helps them stay agile and fit.

So I recommend getting a weight lifting plan incorporated into your weight loss program.  You will notice the difference after two weeks.  But don’t forget to be consistent.  Persistence pays off.


Can I Eat A Hamburger Is Weight Loss Is My Goal?

One of the best tools that a weight-loss program has is a follow-up system or assessment.  Assessment gives specific information about the unique needs of the individual.  This can include but is not limited to injuries, stress, lifestyle, exercise experiences, fears, beliefs and food perception.  With this information, an individual approach can be taken.  Here is where I can empathize with my clients.

Talking to new members during the assessment is exciting.  I always encourage people to talk.  Many people have the perception that I’m perfect, I must be on a diet, and I don’t eat certain foods, such as hamburgers.  So when I say, “We need to work on your eating habits.  It seems like you have a lot of improvements to make,” a common response is, “I know: no hamburgers, no fried foods, no tamales and no carbohydrates.”

I like people to feel comfortable around me, so I start telling them the truth.  And the truth is that I do eat hamburgers.  However, I clarify what is behind the hamburger myth.

I don’t see what is wrong with eating a piece of red meat with organic wheat bread and veggies (tomatoes, onions, lettuce, avocado and peppers).  Usually I eat hamburgers once a week.  However, not all hamburgers are the same, and here is where people need to be aware of the myth.

When I eat a hamburger, I make sure it has real meat and veggies.  There are a couple of local places that use organic ingredients in their burgers. And when I say to make sure it’s “real meat and veggies,” it’s because many corporate hamburgers don’t have real ingredients. Here is what I mean:

One of my colleagues did an experiment.  He bought a hamburger from a famous chain restaurant and left it on top of his desk for one year.  The hamburger was intact! Only drier.  The reason is because the hamburger is nothing more than junk.  Michael Pollan puts it in other words. He says that bacteria are living organisms that need nutrients to survive and, of course, only eat foods that have nutrients.  Therefore, they are not interested in the hamburger.  There are processing steps that this type of hamburger goes through before they’re sold.  These steps remove the nutrients from the hamburger and add chemicals so it will last longer and be cheaper.  This is one of the reasons why people suffer many disease and digestive problems.

So the conclusion is that many people are eating only trash with no nutrients.  These “foods” are a big factor in obesity, diabetes, cancer and other diseases.  People eat because they need energy to survive, and many of these “foods” are not providing them with it.

So when we set up eating habits, I help people understand what the best choices are.  I don’t prohibit foods. Like I tell them, “I’m nobody to stop you from eating what you want. I only give you information and set the path to achieve your goals.”

Food is the energy we need to survive, and I think it is OK to enjoy our foods.  However, it is responsible to be conscious about what we put into our body to achieve a healthy body weight.  The decision is always up to you.

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How Meron lost 22 pounds in 6 months!

Meron speaks about how exercising has improved her life and how all the hard work, sore muscles, and the pain is worth the results. Meron shares with us her personal story about her weight loss and the changes she has made in her life that have helped her to accomplish her weight loss goals. She has made drastic changes in her diet and in turn her diet and her exercise habits have increased her energy and given her the ability to lead a more active life.

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Traits People Who Lose Weight Share

Recently I assessed a new Custom Body Fitness member who had lost 13 lbs in 15 weeks. It reminded me of another member four months ago who had lost 15 lbs. in the same amount of time. Both of these members were overweight, and most heavy people lose between 2 to 4 lbs a month.  Therefore, I was surprised to see people lose more than 10 pounds in the first 5 week assessment.  Another sort of member Custom Body Fitness have are those who fall into the “fit” scale.  They were active before they walked in the door. This people can put into an “athlete” category.  Fit people generally cannot lose 10 lbs in four months, because they are already in the most healthy weight level. However, they also impress me when they lose 2 lbs or lower their fat levels by 1 percent, since few do that. This raises a question:  Why do some people, in the same “fat level category” lose a significant amount of fat and others don’t? After assessing hundreds of Custom Body Fitness members, I have found a pattern:  Different sorts of habits and behaviors get us different results.

  • People who get results are usually open to change. They listen to my suggestions, learn about healthy eating and exercise, and then they put this new knowledge into practice.
  • They find a balance between work, family, exercise, and other activities in their lives.
  • They change their eating habits by cooking at home, cutting meat intake, adding more vegetables and fruits, eating organic, substituting added beverage for water, and eat five times a day.
  • They have an active lifestyle; they come to Custom Body Fitness 3 to 4 times a week, and hike, walk, run, or bike on their own.
  • They find support by seeking out active people like themselves who are striving for the same goals.
  • They take time to analyze their life—they meditate.
  •    They figure out their goals, write them down specifying each one, and work towards them.

Some people come to CBF with some knowledge of healthy ways already and just need to be reminded;  others simply don’t know how to start they journey to health and weight loss. My hope for all members is that they learn to find a balance in their life in order to accomplish their desires. I want them to feel less frustrated about losing weight and concentrate on their habit changes, not on the weight they are trying lose. So if you want to lose weight in a healthy and fun atmosphere that fits your lifestyle, think about the suggestions above.  These pointers have been proven to work, so why not let them help you.

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