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10 (Lame) Fitness Rules You Need to Quit Being Seduced By

10 (Lame) Fitness Rules You Need to Quit Being Seduced By

Seduction is oftentimes associated with sexy activities, or at least something in that realm.

Until now.  People are seduced in their everyday lives. Seduction is being lured, enticed, or bribed into something.

The fitness industry is great at seducing people (me included). I’ve been seduced more times than I care to admit in the past with various rules I thought I had to follow if I wanted to achieve any progress.

These rules are so tempting at times, because we see so many people do them. Fitness doesn’t need to be black and white. There’s more than one way to master the skill of fitness and achieve lifelong healthy habits.

Following a set of rules that cramp your style, make you feel bad about yourself, and causes you unhappiness isn’t what you should call an awesome quality of life. Allow me to share with you 10 of the lamest fitness rules you need to quit following immediately.

Lame Rule #1- No Carbs at Night

We’ve all heard the rule, eat your carbs in the evening and you’ll get fatter. Eating carbs at night doesn’t make you fat or cause you to gain weight. Eating too many calories is what causes weight gain.

Your body doesn’t magically say “hey its 7pm, I’m going to store all the carbs into my fat cells now.”

There isn’t such a thing as daytime and nighttime metabolism. Here’s a study where individuals ate carbs in the evening and got leaner(the irony).

Feel free to eat your carbs at night, allow yourself 2-3 hours before going to bed. This helps digestion and allows insulin to return to baseline levels. Carbs also help trigger serotonin release, which will help induce sleep and relaxation.

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Lame Rule #2- You Must Cut Out All Carbs to Lose Fat

We live in a carb phobic society where carbs are public enemy number one when it comes to weight gain. Obesity rising isn’t because of carbohydrates, it’s because people eat too much.

Low carb diets are great for those who are sedentary, but for the active folk, it’s a terrible idea in the long run. Constantly working out without properly replenishing your body with carbs halts your recovery. Other signs of needing more carbs include increased crankiness, brain fog (not getting enough glucose), and issues on the toilet (hello constipation).

Lame Rule #3- Cardio is Needed for Fat Loss

Seduction runs rampant when it comes to our dependence on cardio. Cardio isn’t the only way to lose fat, in fact depending on your fitness goals, it can be counterproductive. Cardio is a great tool to include once you have your nutrition under control, you are strength training consistently, and your stress levels are under control.

Cardio burns plenty of calories, but that’s only while you’re exercising. Weight training burns calories during and after exercising leading to more calories burned.

When it comes to battling the bulge, fall in love with weight training. Save the cardio for when you hit a plateau.

Lame Rule #4- (Insert diet) is the Only Diet That Will Work

Whether it’s Paleo, intermittent fasting, alternate day fasting, Mediterranean diet, or a Japanese village style diet…they all work. There isn’t one diet plan that has to be used over the other.

Are there diets that are more optimal for people and their specific lifestyle? Absolutely.

The key is tailoring your diet to cater to your lifestyle without adding extra stress (there’s enough of that already).

Resist the carefully marketed seduction techniques that you see. Install a way of eating that makes you happy and is sustainable over the long haul.

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Lame Rule #5- You Need Supplements to Make Progress

Supplements aren’t a necessity. They’re meant to ‘supplement’ an already established healthy lifestyle. Think of supplements as icing on the cake. Supplements don’t replace the hard work it takes to make a transformation, no matter how sexy or awesome that new supplement ad sounds.

Stay consistent with lifting weights and eating real foods. There are no quick fixes. Get plenty of rest.

Then. Just maybe. You should consider using supplements.

Lame Rule #6- Fat Can Be Spot Reduced Through Exercise

Whether it’s abs, thighs, butt (glutes if ya fancy), or arms, men and women are equally obsessed with the idea of toning up a specific area.

Sadly, those thousands of crunches or hundreds of reps on the inner thigh machine won’t expedite fat burning in those areas. If you have a lot of bodyfat to lose, those areas will still be hidden underneath the existing layer of fat. You can’t pick and choose where bodyfat will burn off from. Focus on reducing body fat through eating healthier.

Lame Rule #7- You Need Soreness for Progress

“No pain. No gain.”

“Don’t quit. You’re already in pain. You’re already hurt. Get a reward from it.”

Those are two of the most seducing rallying cries that many use for fitness motivation. I’m here to tell you though, you don’t need to be sore, ‘hurting’, or in pain after every workout to experience results.

Muscle soreness is the result of small tears in your muscle fibers.. It’s common to be sore after the first few workouts after implementing a new workout routine or program.

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Constantly being sore is a great sign you aren’t recovering enough. You grow and become stronger by taking adequate amounts of rest.

Lame Rule #8- Go Gluten Free To Get Results

If you have celiac disease, problems with lactose, or other food allergies, then you should by all means avoid foods that don’t suit your well being.

If you don’t have these problems, please stop using gluten free or any other ‘free diet’ as the reason why weight isn’t falling off. It’s not the wheat, rye, nor milk that is making you bloated and miserable. The junk included in your diet is causing these problems.

If you feel better by eliminating certain foods, then by all means go for it. Just don’t blindly follow some fad diet without testing on yourself. It could all be in your head(non celiac gluten sensitivity for example).

Lame Rule #9-You Need a “Six-Pack” to Look Good.

Look around at newsstands and every health, beauty, and lifestyle magazine has some guy or girl showing off their perfect arms and midsections. Our culture is obsessed with body image to a fault.

If it isn’t abs, then its reducing thighs, toning arms, or that ridiculous thigh gap nonsense. While it’s great to have goals of improving your body composition, your entire self-worth shouldn’t rest on these goals.

You’re good enough already.

Ladies. Embrace your bodies as they are. Striving to make yourself stronger and improving your current self is great. Improve your body for you and only you. If a guy or anyone else has a problem with your body…tell them to go kick rocks.

Guys. A six pack isn’t the end all be. Obsessing over your body gets in the way of living life. Having racks and racks of muscle isn’t as important as you think(can we say overkill).

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Working out only for the six pack, toning the arms, tightening the thighs is shortening yourself of all the awesome benefits working out provides.

The key to happiness and a lifelong habit of exercising is to find motivation that goes deeper than just physical appearance.

Lame Rule #10- Women Shouldn’t Lift Heavy.

This rule is slowly seducing less women as time goes along.

I encounter women everyday who keep lifting the 5 lb weights and performing endless sets of tricep kickbacks. They’re working hard, but results aren’t following. The problem lies with woman being afraid to lift heavy.

Lifting heavy is what gives ladies the ever so desired ‘toned look’. Due to different ratios of specific hormones, it’s near impossible for women to develop the same muscular build of males.

So feel free to start squatting, hip thrusting, and deadlifting your little heart away.

Remember, our society forms these generalized ideals of what’s attractive; you can choose what you find attractive.

What are some lame fitness rules you wish would go away? Comment below or tweet at me.

Featured photo credit: Method Fitness via flickr.com

More by this author

Julian Hayes II

Author, Health & Fitness Coach for Entrepreneurs, & Speaker

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Last Updated on January 17, 2019

8 Simple Mindfulness Exercises to Bring Peace and Happiness to Your Life

8 Simple Mindfulness Exercises to Bring Peace and Happiness to Your Life

In life, we all need to be conscientious of what we are doing. You don’t need to live a life of stress if you don’t want to. You can achieve peace and happiness in life by carefully building mindfulness exercises into your life’s routine.

Exercising mindfulness isn’t rocket science and as importantly, you can do it. It will, however, take a few tries to get into the groove of things but once you get it, it is like riding a bike, you will never lose it.

Trust me. It’s in your best interest to learn and put these mindfulness exercises into practice. In this article, I will share with you 8 mindfulness exercises that will help you to boost your energy, vitality and live a more peaceful and happier life.

Why Is It Hard to Live A Peaceful And Happy Life?

Our Habitat Has Become Too Technological

The world has accepted the idea that technology is often the cure for all evil. We have accepted, as a society, that everything technological will make us live a better life without fully investigating the many side effects that modernity brings.

There are a number of technological side effects that have a tremendous impact on your life that the media rarely tells you about.[1] Some of them include self-harm, economic inequality, having less sex, and even suicide. The global community is becoming less happy because of technology.

How can anybody live a peaceful and happy life when they are depressed? Technology advancements, ladies and gents, is a major reason for why we are living a poor life because it has infiltrated our lives too much.

According to my research, Americans spend an average of 8 hours a day looking at the computer screen — The average screen time spent on smartphones alone is about 20 hours per week. That’s a lot! No wonder why living a happy and peaceful life is so difficult these days.

Too Many People Don’t Want to Unplug

Americans check their phones an average of 80 times during vacation.[2] Some admit to checking their smartphones 300 times every single day. In countries like Brazil, India and China, the situation is no different.

The reality is that people are constantly plugged into technological devices and this behavior is literally making people all over the globe fight an inner war with themselves, which consequently makes them very sad. As we know, war is the enemy of peace which won’t make anybody happy.

Listen carefully:

We have a global anxiety epidemic because people don’t want to unplug from their smartphones and most people aren’t doing anything to fix it. It is a sad state of affairs but very real. This obsession with technology is turning us into perishable robots who live terrible lives.

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The era of anxiety is here to stay. There is little doubt about it. We can, however, fight back with the best remedy of all — We call it mindfulness!

Thank God there is an antidote to this whole technological madness. Without further ado, let’s go straight to the mindful exercises.

8 Mindfulness Exercises to Start Practicing

There are tons of mindfulness exercises available for you to engage with out there.[3] In the paragraphs below, I will include the best ones I’ve personally tried or have seen my close friends and family members try.

Are you ready for it? Let’s go!

1. Pray Daily

You should pray on a daily basis. Why is that you may ask — Well, because science has told us to do so.

When people pray, they feel peaceful, almost eliminating anxiety. Worries become secondary, and often gives people energy and hope to cope with the difficulties of life.

Prayer can make you more confident and focused. Prayer also helps you with self-control, helps to control pain, and can protect you against illnesses and disorders like cancer and high blood pressure. At least, this is what researchers from Harvard Medical School have said.[4]

Pray. You won’t regret it.[5]

2. Pay Attention to Your Inner Thoughts

A lot of people allow themselves to be influenced by their negative thoughts. Be different and resist believing in them. It is a bad habit that can lead to unhappiness.

By the way, if you do feel this way, chances are high that somebody other than you put these thoughts into your head.

Here is my secret to combat this cancer — look at things objectively. I bet that if you look at things as they are, you will realize that most if not all of your negative thoughts are only inside of your head.

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If you pay close attention, you will quickly realize that these voices aren’t worth your time. Believe me — Ignoring them and looking at things with objectivity is often the best course of action.

This article can guide you to beat negative thoughts:

How to Stop Automatic Negative Thoughts When You’re Overwhelmed

3. Smile Often

Smiling will slow down your heart. It will also relax your body because when you smile, your body releases endorphins which in itself has a number of positive benefits for you as a person.

Smile often! You may want to smile early in the morning, during the day, and late in the evening. It is amazing what happens to you when you decide to smile instead of being grumpy.

Surrender your problems to a nice smile. You will notice two things. First, most people just don’t which makes them live a miserable life. Second, if you decide to smile often, you will eventually smile unconsciously which is the ideal.

The moment that you smile unconsciously, you then know that you are truly happy.

4. Organize Your Working Desk

A messy desk will make you less productive and can agitate and overstimulate you. You don’t want that.

When you clear your desk, you engage in deep inner-thinking and your systematic decision making ends up becoming therapeutic.

Most people realize that they are most creative when their creative space is clean and organized. The former often makes people more aware of what they are doing which lends to less stress and more productivity.

Organizing your desk will also make you more energetic and focused because order often decreases chaos which is a condition that often slows down daily progress.

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5. Celebrate Your Friend’s Victories

I love this mindful exercise. One of the best ways to live a happy and peaceful life is to celebrate the victories of others. When you do that, you automatically make your friends in a better mood which makes you in a better mood, as well.

Happiness is contagious! We might as well celebrate others as much as we can. If you find out that your peer has won an award, celebrate with him! If your friend is the recipient of a local charity award, celebrate with her!

What is also awesome is that when you celebrate with others, they often celebrate with you in return. This, ladies and gentleman, will make you feel fantastic. You can’t go wrong with this one, period.

6. Listen to Your Spouse/Partner

God put someone in your life for a reason. You might as well listen to him or her.

I listen to my wife everyday. In fact, I often ask the following question to her, “Amanda, what are your thoughts about…” or “What am I missing about…” It is shocking what I hear back from her. Without her having much context and perspective, by the art of observation in my own nonverbal behavior and the behavior of others, she accurately gives me incredible insights which helps me out with living my life to the fullest.

I’m a firm believer that spouses are supposed to engage in interpersonal communication every day. I most definitely do and will continue doing it. You should do the same.

7. Give Yourself a Break from Technology

You can’t be in total equilibrium if your computerized devices control your life. You must get away from technology on a daily basis.[6]

How do you do that? This is my formula:

First, take this smartphone control test. It is only ten questions but this test will place you somewhere in the human robot cycle continuum.

If your score is between 25-30, take a break from the computer (or smartphone, pad, laptop/desktop) every twenty minutes and stop being on a computerized device after 8:00pm.

If you score between 30-35, still take a break every 20 minutes but stop being on these devices at 5:00pm.

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If you score more than 35, you need to take action immediately.

Limit computer use as much as possible throughout the day. Give yourself as many breaks from the computer as possible. Are you ready for the challenge?

8. Go Exercise

Go exercise at least three times a week. I don’t care if you need to workout early in the morning, late in the evening, on the weekends or during work days. Working out is absolutely imperative for you to live happy and peaceful life.

The stresses of the modern world are too much for you to neglect this important mindfulness exercise. When you go to the gym, you burn calories, focus on activities one step at a time, your mind relaxes, anxiety decreases, you sweat and often think about topics unrelated to your work place among many other benefits.

You must exercise at least three hours each week for optimum results. Why? Just take a look at all the benefits of regular exercising:

12 Benefits of Regular Exercise You Should Know

The Bottom Line

It’s in your best interest to learn and put these mindfulness exercises into practice. Now that our habitat has become too technological and many people just don’t want to unplug, engaging in daily prayer, celebrate your friends’ victories, and listening to your spouse are among the best ways to be mindful about what you are doing and how you are living.

It is possible to live a happy and peaceful life. It only depends on you.

Go exercise! Take a break from technology and invest in you! Life is too short for distractions.

More Resources About Mindfulness

Featured photo credit: Lesly Juarez via unsplash.com

Reference

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