What's a bummer about fat loss is that even really smart people make totally silly mistakes.
And being super smart about lots of other things makes that fact that we do SILLY things even worse.
And believe me, when you read through this email, you’ll be forced to admit two things:
1) These “crimes” against our bodies are definitely silly,
2) You’re guilty of at least one of them. Probably all three.
So, what do I mean when I say SILLY? Well, a few things.
I mean that you, me, and the vast majority of people are doing things we KNOW we shouldn’t do. Things that ALSO happen to be very easy to avoid.
The worst part is, these are IMPORTANT things that we need to address. And if we paid even half as much attention to them as we do to supplements, or training or the latest diet, we would ALL be fitter, sexier, and above all, healthier.
Let’s dive in and you’ll see what I’m talking about.
Totally SILLY Fitness Mistake #1:
Not Drinking Enough Water
See what I mean? This is just silly. And yet WE ALL do it.
Consider the fact that, according to a recent survey, over 2/3 of people don’t drink enough water for “optimal hydration.” That’s over 66% of people who aren’t drinking enough water to do the cool stuff I’ll talk about below.
But, if you want a really scary statistic, there’s this: another survey showed that nearly 50% of people in Western societies are drinking so little water that they would medically qualify as “dehydrated.”
That’s just freakin’ crazy! HALF of people walking around are not even drinking enough water to maintain proper function of their various physiological systems!
AND THIS IS THE EASIEST THING TO FIX.
It’s water! It’s there. It’s free. Just drink it.
I hope I don’t have to explain all of the reasons that water is so important, but I’ll give you a few. Obviously, water is the most vital fluid in your body; if you want to use the analogy of a car, water’s not just the gasoline—it’s also the oil, brake fluid, and anti-freeze.
Having a properly hydrated system helps with digestion and makes you more capable of breaking down and absorbing nutrients. It also aids with bowel movements by preventing constipation. In turn, the increased rate of excretion, which helps flush toxins out of the body.
As far as your fitness goals? Staying hydrated helps in so many ways that it’s impossible to list them. But, a few of the big ones…
Firstly, metabolism: when you’re dehydrated, things slow down (partially for conservation); on the on the other hand, if you’re hydrated, metabolism stays elevated.
Secondly, performance: hydrated muscles contract more efficiently; as a result, your workouts will be more productive, and more intense, and each and every rep will actually burn more calories.
So: water will make sure your body is functioning well, keep your immune system healthy, AND help you burn more fat.
Oh, and did I mention it’s free?
As for how much to drink: I recommend drinking one liter per 50 pounds of body weight, for people who exercise. So, if you’re a woman who weighs between 100 and 150 pounds, drink at least two liters of water a day. If you’re a 200-pound man, drink four.
This is 2 liters. That’s it; just four wittle bitty bottles. Start here and work your way up.
Again, these are pretty basic recommendations, but they’re easy to follow, and extremely effective for maintaining hydration. Obviously, your goal should be to drink more, but this is a good start.
Just get it out of the way earlier: because I don’t want to do silly things anymore, I’ve been trying to drink 16 ounces of water first thing in the morning. I’m making it part of my morning routine, because just that important.
Please. DRINK. MORE. WATER.
It’s free, dammit!
Totally SILLY Fitness Mistake #2:
Not Getting Enough Sleep
I know, I know, you’re heard this one before, right?
Well, if you’ve heard it, and you know it’s terrible for you, why are you still not getting enough sleep?
For the same reason I’m not: you’re a smart person who does silly things. But of all of them, this might be the worst.
You know sleep is important, but do you know HOW important?
Well, for starters, lack of sleep is associated with:
- Higher levels of body fat
- Frequent hunger
- Lower lean body mass (muscle)
- Higher stress
- Earlier death
Not sure about you, but none of that sounds good to me.
And it’s not just how long you sleep, but the quality of your sleep that’s directly correlated to improving your life, health, and body.
There are numerous studies showing links between poor sleep and diseases such as hypertension and diabetes (as well as shorter lifespan), there is also the problems that lack of sleep causes in your day-to-day life.
Put simply, lack of sleep ruins your ability to function: you have trouble concentrating, remembering information, driving, taking care of your finances, and performing your job.
If that weren’t bad enough, there are some hormonal problems: it’s been found that sleeping less than 6 hours per night for as little as two weeks will lower testosterone and growth hormone, and raise cortisol.
The net effect of this hormonal storm is that you will have a VERY easy time gaining fat, and a very hard time losing it.
So, if you want to have trouble focusing and die earlier, all while sabotaging your fitness efforts…by all means, keep thinking you’re “fine” with just 5 hours per night.
And TRUST ME, I am just as guilty of going to bed too late or thinking I can catch up on the weekend, all while keeping myself going by mainlining coffee into my bloodstream.
But that is SILLY. And I want to stop being silly.
Of course not always be able to get seven or eight hours of sleep per night, even under the best of circumstances. Now, look. I get it. You’re busy. So am I. But, let’s be honest: you’re not that busy. Not all the time, anyway. So, “busy” isn’t an excuse every day.
Let’s talk about how to fix this…
Take a hard look at the end-of-evening activities you can cut out to get to bed an hour earlier. Do you really need to check Facebook again? Is it imperative catch up on ESPN right now? Of course you don’t. So, well…maybe just don’t?
But, that’s kind of a superficial way to look at things. I want to give you something REAL. Something I got from my buddy John Romaniello, a New York Times bestselling fitness author. It’s something I’ve been using, and it’s working well.
Here’s the strategy Roman gave me—a fun exercise for you to do over the next two weeks that should help. A little challenge, if you will.
For the next week, record the time you go to bed. Don’t actually try to change it; just record it. Keep a little pad by your bed and just record the time you went to bed. Over the next 7 days, your only job is to record when you climbed into bed.
Now, take the average of those times. If your weekday and weekend times are drastically different because of social stuff, exclude the weekends; just average 5 weekdays.
Once you have your average bedtime, the challenge begins: for the next 2-3 weeks, make it your goal to climb into bed 15 minutes earlier than that average. That’s it. Just 15 minutes. All you need to do is start by shaving 15 minutes off your day at the end of the night.
While that won’t add up to much in terms of sleep time, you’ll begin to build the habit of getting to bed earlier; more importantly, you’ll realize that you are the one in control of when you go to sleep, not the outside world.
Make that happen.
Not sleeping is SILLY, because it is killing us. And making us sick. And keeping us soft, and fat, and grumpy.
So let’s get more sleep, okay?
(Also – it’s free!)
Totally SILLY Fitness Mistake #3:
Huh? Yeah, this one is a bit outside the box compared to the other two, but it’s probably even more important, so I really want you to listen.
The unfortunate truth is that the majority of us say some pretty hurtful things about ourselves. We disguise how damaging this is by acknowledging, “Everyone does it.”
We say that everyone is their own worst critic, as if that makes it okay. That isn’t the case. It’s one thing to try to be objectively critical about yourself; it’s another thing to subjectively abuse yourself.
And that is what so many of us do. Heck, I’m guilty. I tend to disguise this with humor—as evidenced by the fact that I just called myself “silly” for most of this email.
But I want you to really understand what I’m talking about.
I’m not going to get all “woo woo” on you but there is a ton of hard, scientific data that categorically proves that what we say to ourselves about ourselves tends to inhibit our ability to advance, grow, change, or be happy.
If you say, “I would like to lose 5 pounds to fit into this dress,” that is an objective goal framed with an objective reason. And that’s okay.
What’s not okay is the underlying invisible script that many of us will be experiencing: “How awful am I for not being able to lose 5 crummy pounds? I’m so terrible for skipping a workout or not sticking to my diet. I don’t deserve to have a nice body and I don’t deserve to be happy.”
Now, we don’t all come right out and SAY that (although some people do), but for many of us, that feeling is running just below the surface. Obviously, it makes us feel miserable. But did you know it’s also keeping you miserable AND keeping you fat.
You see, self-talk reinforces our own perceptions of our reality, like a self-fulfilling prophecy: you keep telling yourself that it’s your fault that you can’t lose 5 pounds, and that you don’t deserve to lose 5 pounds, and whatever else.
One result is that you believe it, and subconsciously align your behavior accordingly: It becomes even HARDER to stick to a diet and even EASIER to skip workouts.
Not only that, but there are ACTUAL physiological/hormonal/metabolic consequences that ensure fat loss is harder. I’ll get to those in a minute…
The important thing is, we construct a cycle of beating ourselves up. Which is something we have all done, and something I think we can admit is (for lack of a better term) pretty silly.
Shawn Achor, a Harvard educated researcher and bestselling author in the field of positive psychology talks about this in his books. Very simply “perception is reality” – and if you want to change the reality, you often have to start with changing the perception.
In other words, if we want to lose 5 pounds, we have to realize that losing 5 pounds isn’t the key to happiness. And it’s not the key to worthiness. Instead, we need to focus on cutting out the self-hate we think all the time.
There are exercises to do this, but before I talk about that, here’s the key: once you are able to actively change your perception, you’ll begin to see that while losing 5 pounds won’t necessarily make you happy...being happy will make it possible to lose those 5 pounds.
Perception is reality, so change the perception, right?
And you want to know the CRAZY part?
As I mentioned earlier, avoiding negative self-talk with actually help you lose fat on a PHYSIOLOGICAL level. I mean that in the most literal way possible.
You see, when you constantly say these things about yourself, you create a negative mindset, which leads to a negative hormonal environment…one that can make it nearly impossible to lose fat, whether it’s 5 pounds or 50.
How does this happen? Well, you’ve heard of hormones like cortisol—it’s a stress hormone that just so happens to contribute to fat storage (specifically, belly fat). Negative self-talk drastically increases the production of cortisol, forcing your body to hold onto fat, and in the places where you hate it most.
On the other hand, if you have more positive thoughts, there is an IMMEDIATE, positive hormonal reversal. Cortisol goes down, helping you lose fat; and growth hormone (which helps you not only lose fat, but also improves your skin, hair, energy levels and general look/feel of youthfulness) increases drastically.
This happens in part because cultivating a positive mindset stimulates the releases of dopamine and serotonin: two “feel good” hormones responsible for feelings of pleasure and overall well-being, respectively.
When you increase dopamine and serotonin and keep them elevated with consistent exercises, a healthy diet and a positive mental outlook, fat loss is exponentially easier.
So, I think you can say when I say that negative self-talk is a really, really damaging and “silly” thing we ALL do, I really mean it.
Unlike the other things we do, this isn’t as simple as “well just stop treating yourself like crap.” Unlike drinking water or getting more sleep, the fix here is not as obvious as we’d like.
But there IS a way to fix this, and make your entire life—not to mention your fitness goals—smoother and happier. And, in fact, part of it is tied to fitness. Or should be.
If you’ve been reading health related stuff for a while, it should be obvious to you that all of this “mindset” stuff is the MOST overlook, underrated, under-addressed aspect of how we approach trying to get fit, healthy, and change our lives in general.
Which is pretty terrible, because as we just covered, it is really, REALLY important.
So why aren’t coaches talking about it? Simple: most don’t understand it, or how to fix it. Most…but not all.
Over the past several months, I’ve been spending a lot of time reading the work of my friend Neghar Fonooni. Neghar is a world-class fitness and lifestyle coach, and a lot of what she does is actually helping women restructure their relationships with themselves.
According to Neghar, who has helped thousands of women overcome negative self-talk, there are a lot of very simple, actionable strategies to help you take control of and FIX your negative self-talk, and the effects it has on your body.
And, perhaps most excitingly, these exercises don’t have to be time consuming, and you don’t need to stop everything else in your life to do them. If you find the right coach—like Neghar—they are actually BUILT IN to an already awesome health & fitness program.
Let me explain what I mean.
Just today, Neghar released her brand new program, Lean & Lovely. It’s a complete body, mindset, and lifestyle transformation system specifically for women. Sure, it focuses on fat loss, and helps your learn how to eat. But the rest is what’s really important.
Lean & Lovely isn’t just about getting fit. Even though it has 12 weeks of amazing, fat-burning workouts, that isn’t the only benefit. And even though there’s an entire nutrition handbook that will help you lose fat without dieting, that’s not even the half of it.
In addition to all of that, there are the Lean & Lovely mindset exercises. You see, L&L is broken up into 3 phases. Each phase has a different focus in terms of training, nutrition, and mindset.
The mindset components are incredible, as well as amazingly helpful. You have exercises to do that help you overcome negative self-talk. Exercises that help you become aware of when you’re doing it. And strategies to help you keep it from overcoming you, allowing your to get down on yourself, and prevent you from sabotaging yourself.
In the Lean & Lovely mindset sections, Neghar talks about things like journaling to create awareness, strategies for “detaching” from the thought, and taking control of your unspoken dialogue with yourself.
It’s really, really powerful stuff. And, I have to admit, some of these exercises have helped me in just a few short weeks.
That’s why I’m so excited to tell you about Lean & Lovely. Because Neghar is one of the ONLY fitness professionals I have ever met that not only realizes how important an intentioned, positive mindset is to your overall health, fitness, and happiness…but who also goes out of her way to make it a part of everything she does. Which is just one of the many reasons L&L is so special.
And the best part is…for this week only Lean & Lovely is on sale for 50% OFF to celebrate the launch.
For less than HALF PRICE, you can pick up this amazing new program that will help address, change, and improve every single aspect of your life.
We’re not just talking about a typical fitness program here: we’re talking about a program specifically designed to for a complete body, mind and lifestyle transformation system.
So, YES, Lean & Lovely does have 12 weeks incredible workouts that will help you lose fat. In fact, some of the women you’ll see on the L&L website lost 20, 30, or even 40 pounds while building shapely curves.
And YES, Lean & Lovely does have an incredible nutrition program. But as you’ll see on the website, it will also teach you how to burn fat and lose weight without dieting.
OF COURSE Lean & Lovely comes with all the bells and whistles you’d come to expect from a world class coach like Neghar: instructional exercise videos, bonus workouts, progress tracking sheets, and all that cool stuff. But it’s not just about having a lot of cool features—it’s about making real and lasting progress.
All of that…plus it’s on sale for 50% off until Friday at midnight. It really doesn’t get any better than that.
…look, there are a lot of “silly” things we ALL do that inhibit our fitness goals. And some of these have really simple fixes.
So let’s just decide, together, that we’re going to stop being silly, and drink more water, get more sleep, and be more active.
But some of these “silly” things aren’t easy fixes, and we need a little help from people who’ve been there, and come through stronger. So let’s also agree to stop trying to hate ourselves to better bodies.
Neghar and Lean & Lovely are here to help us do just that. And I really, really hope you’ll do as I’ve done, and accepted her help.
I know that it will make a world of difference in your body, your mind, and your life. And that’s what I want for you.
Because you really do deserve it.
And deep down, you know that.
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