…on your diet.
We live in society where food temptations are everywhere. Walk through a store and you’ll see the unhealthy food items displayed front and center. Turn on the TV and you’ll be assaulted with commercials for fattening foods. Open a magazine and you’ll notice glossy pin-ups of sugary snacks. Go down the street and you’ll have restaurant signs clamoring for your attention.
In addition to the abundance of tempting edibles, you also have deeply ingrained positive associations with indulging. You treat tempting food as a reward. You turn to tempting food for comfort. You rely on tempting food as stress relief. You allow tempting food to become a habit.
It’s Your Turn to Win
Temptation doesn’t need to have the upper hand on you anymore. It’s time to fight back using your most powerful asset: your brain.
Your mind is an amazing thing. Once it is made up about something it is nearly impossible to change it.
A Matter of Perspective
Imagine for a moment that you’re peacefully floating down a river in an inner tube. The sun is out, the birds are chirping, and you are having a wonderful time. You feel great about the river because it is making you feel good.
Now imagine that you are in a plane flying over the river. Your eye is immediately drawn to an enormous rocky waterfall. You look up the river and just around the bend is a person floating in an inner tube, having a wonderful time, headed straight for the treacherous falls.
Do you think that after your plane ride you’d be happy to get an inner tube and float down the river? Of course you wouldn’t. You’ve seen that the river spells disaster.
You now have a negative association (watery death) with the river rather than your initial positive association (relaxing fun).
Overcoming temptation is all about building negative associations in place of existing positive ones. Use the 2 steps below to harness the power of your mind to become stronger than any temptation.
Step One: Create a Strong Negative Association with all the BAD STUFF
If cookies and chips and burgers are put on a pedestal in your mind as your favorite things to eat, then you will always eat unhealthy and will continue to gain weight. What do you dislike about tempting food?
Step Two: Create a Strong Positive Association with all the GOOD STUFF
Now that your mental pedestal has been cleared, put healthy food items on it. Juicy fresh fruit, crispy vegetables and savory lean meats are a great place to start. What do you love about healthy food?
Using the technique above, you will soon find that healthy food is your favorite food.
And cheating will become a thing of your past.
It takes a certain lifestyle to attain a fit, lean body…so what do fit people do in their “healthy lifestyle”?
Take a peek with the following 7 Habits of Highly Fit People…
Highly Fit Person Habit #1: They Don’t Buy Junk
Fit people know that if they keep junk food in the house they will eat it sooner or later. So they don’t buy any. Even buying junk food for your kids or spouse is not advised since 1) you’ll likely eat some of it eventually, and 2) your loved ones shouldn’t be eating that junk either. It’s called junk for a reason.
Rid your home of chips, cookies, candy, baked goods, pre-packaged snacks and anything else that belongs in a vending machine. Replace the above with fresh fruit, veggies, nuts and other healthy whole foods snacks.
Highly Fit Person Habit #2: They Have Priorities
Fit people make exercise a priority. Along with keeping a job, paying the bills and going to the doctor, exercise is an important part of their lives. What I’ve found is that fit people put exercise before leisure time. Sure, fit people enjoy leisure, but it is scheduled around their workout time.
Treat exercise time with the same importance that you would a business meeting or trip to the dentist.
Highly Fit Person Habit #3: They Stop When Full
Fit people stop eating when they feel full. Sound simple? It is, but how many times have you stuffed yourself simply to clear your plate? Or how many times have you eaten another piece of cake despite being stuffed?
The next time you feel full, take it as a sign to stop eating. Yes, even if your plate isn’t empty.
Highly Fit Person Habit #4: They Push Themselves
Not only do fit people make time to go to the gym, they challenge themselves during each workout. While it is easy to simply go through the motions while exercising, you’re cheating your body out of great results when you don’t push yourself. Exercise should make you sweat, make your muscles burn, and leave you with a feeling of accomplishment.
Find ways to make each workout more challenging. For competitive people, the best way to push yourself is to exercise with a friend of similar strength. Another great way to challenge yourself is to set small attainable goals. These goals could be to push heavier weight, to sprint longer, or to do cardio at a higher intensity setting.
Highly Fit Person Habit #5: They Don’t Eat and Watch
Fit people know that eating in front of the T.V. is mindless eating. When your attention is on your entertainment and not on your food, then you’ll be less tuned in to what and how much ends up in your mouth. Eating in front of the T.V. is also very habit forming. Ever notice how you crave munchies just as a reflex of sitting in front of the T.V.?
Eat before or after your entertainment and pay attention to what and how much goes into your mouth.
Highly Fit Person Habit #6: They Drink Water
Fit people drink lots of water. And not just in addition to other beverages, but instead of them. Water is their main drink, while other drinks are occasional treats. Calorie-filled drinks are one of the quickest ways to consume excess calories which quickly turn into fat.
Consider water your beverage of choice. Drink plenty of it each day and drink other beverages only a few times each week.
Highly Fit Person Habit #7: They Are Supported
Fit people don’t leave their motivation to chance. They know that if their personal trainer, boot camp instructor or workout partner is waiting for them, then they are less likely to skip a workout. It is so easy to hit snooze or to talk yourself out of the gym as soon as your behind hits the couch after work. Fit people take the option of skipping out of the equation.
Want instant support? Call or email me today to get started on your own customized fitness plan.
I hope that these habits have inspired you to make a change for the fitter in your own life.
If you already do some of these habits then congratulations – you are on your way to a better body. Make an effort to incorporate the rest of the habits to take your results to the next level.
If none, or very few, of these habits describe your lifestyle, then I’ve got good news – you now have 7 effective new habits to start that will get you some awesome results. Don’t try to tackle all 7 at once – pick one or two to add each week and gradually work up to all 7.
As always, you are welcome to call or email me with questions or to get started on your own customized fitness plan. I look forward to hearing from you.
So you took a break from your fitness routine this summer. You ate, you drank, you relaxed, and ate some more.
Well, now it’s time to face the music.
As you look in the mirror after a summer of less-than-healthy eating… Your body is puffy and bloated. Your joints are achy. Your clothes feel tight.
Maybe you are feeling that way right now.
Here’s how to get you back on the fitness fast track.
1) Find Your Focus
Summer happened. You ate things from the “never eat these” list, you drank more that you should have…but now it’s over.
Draw a line in the sand. You’re back now so the bad eating stops now.
If you’re serious about your fitness goals, then the past few weeks were the exception, and not the rule. Don’t beat yourself up for letting loose. Simply get back up, dust yourself off and get focused.
2) Get Hydrated
While summer days can take on many forms, the end result is most often dehydration and water retention. The only way to restore your balance is to get hydrated.
Your first priority in getting back on track is to drink plenty of water throughout the day. Start with a tall glass of water in the morning, and carry a water bottle with you to sip throughout the day.
Don’t add any artificial sweeteners or stimulants to your water – these will sabotage your hydration efforts. For flavor, add sliced fresh fruit, herbs or vegetables to your water, just like at the spa.
3) Cleanse Your System
For your first few days getting back on track I need you to be extra picky about what you eat. Stick with only whole, real foods like fruits, vegetables and lean meats. Whole, real foods will help to restore balance and block out cravings.
Don’t eat any packaged foods for the next few days. This means no snack foods, processed meat slices, dairy, baked goods or alcohol.
4) Get Some Rest
As relaxing as summer days are, most end with the feeling of exhaustion. Make catching up on sleep a priority over the next few days.
When your body is low on sleep, it becomes easier to make poor eating choices. You’re also less likely to get back into your workouts if you don’t give your body a chance to rest.
Aim for getting a full 8 hours of sleep each night.
5) Jump Back Into Your Exercise Routine
It’s time to sweat out all those indulgences. So lace up your shoes and put on your favorite gym clothes. When you start your first workout, ease in slowly. Take the time to warm up and stretch your muscles before powering up to a solid 30-minute routine.
I have just the exercise plan for you – one that will not only help you recover from your summer but will help keep you motivated and going strong in the future.
If you haven’t joined yet, now is the perfect time for you to start. Together we will get you to your goals with my results-driven method.
Simply call or email me today to set up your first workout.
There are many complex reasons that make fat loss a challenge, reasons that go deeper than simply calories-in versus calories-out.
I’m talking about the life issues that get in the way of your success.
Here are 5 things that block fitness results along with the solutions to unlock your best body.
1. You are crazy busy.
Let’s face it, you work too much, commit yourself to too much and don’t even get enough sleep most of the time. The fast-paced way you live leaves you exhausted, stressed and hungry for comfort food. You even begin to feel too busy to take care of your health.
It’s time to reprioritize. Let go of your perfectionist standards and remove a few commitments from your schedule so that you are able to cook healthy meals, exercise and get a good night’s sleep. Remind yourself that taking care of your health is not a luxury—it’s a necessity.
2. You don’t want to wait for the good stuff.
Just as you wish to avoid pain, you are also an expert in seeking out pleasure—namely food. This served the cavemen well, but these days it ends up as extra pounds around your waist and thighs.
There’s good news: extra calories are not your only option to stimulate the pleasure center of your brain. Find an activity or two that make you smile and indulge in those regularly.
3. You don’t want to be bothered.
It’s in your DNA to avoid pain and seek out pleasure. Unfortunately, this works against you when trying to get fit. In your mind, it’s painful (or at least uncomfortable) to deny yourself the tasty food that you crave and to exert yourself with exercise.
There’s a simple way to work around this obstacle: Find something painful about being out of shape to motivate yourself towards healthy eating and exercise. Focus on the negative impact your current shape has on your health, self-esteem and lifestyle. Convince yourself that the pain of being out of shape is much greater than the discomfort of losing the fat.
4. You don’t deserve it.
I don’t agree with it, but you sure act like you don’t deserve to live the good life in the body of your dreams. Take a moment to think back on all the times you have self-sabotaged your weight loss efforts. If you don’t believe deep down that you are worthy, then you’ll never give yourself a chance at a fit body.
I believe that you deserve to have a healthy body—and I urge you to dig deep down to uncover why you don’t. Once you conquer your feelings of unworthiness, getting on an exercise and healthy eating plan will be easy.
Take the time to take care of yourself. You DO deserve it.
5. You are afraid.
You’re afraid to start because you just might fail, and wouldn’t that be embarrassing? You’re also afraid to start because you just might succeed, and change makes you uncomfortable – even if it’s change in the right direction.
When you decide to get fit you will need to go through a bunch of changes:
I want to personally help overcome every obstacle standing between you and your ideal body. Call or email today to get started on a program that will change your life and body forever…in the best way!
Originally printed in the Springs Magazine May 2019
No internet. Forced quiet hours. Howling monkeys. Is inner peace even worth pursuing to a Costa Rican paradise?
by Warren Epstein
The first morning, we wake with a start to the roar of howler monkeys. My phone reads 4:22 a.m.
The howls, deep and resonant, sound like angry—or horny—velociraptors.
My wife and I huddle in our bed behind thin mosquito netting in an open-air cabin in the middle of a Costa Rican rainforest. We came here for inner peace. A yoga retreat. Ommmmmm. Seriously?
Neither Jane nor I were that into yoga, but when friends invited us on a yoga retreat in Costa Rica, we thought, That’s just far enough from our comfort zones to sound exciting.
The trip would be led by our mutual friend David Corder, who runs Perfect Fit Wellness Center in Falcon. He regularly takes groups to the prettiest places on the planet to practice their Angry Cat or Pissed Off Possum, or whatever you call those yoga poses. (Next trip Peru, http://www.perfectfitwc.com/yoga-retreats.html )
David is an alum of the traveling singing troupe Up With People, and he has retained that too-much-enthusiasm-to-be-contained-in-one-body thing. His high-pitched laugh sounds like something out of a Warner Brothers cartoon.
We caught up with David and the rest of our yoga team after a long flight to San Jose, Costa Rica; a white-knuckle puddle-jumper flight to the Osa Peninsula; then a tooth-rattling drive to the resort, Blue Osa. (Costa Rica really should get a GoFundMe page for some road paving.)
If you’re into the tropical paradise thing, it doesn’t get much more paradisiacal than this: You can sit on the Adirondack chairs framed by coconut palms overlooking the beach, as squirrel monkeys chatter and toucans right out of a Fruit Loops commercial fly by.
The Blue Osa want guests to disconnect. I discovered they take this literally, turning off the internet in the morning. That would be a real problem for me, as I like to plug into all the national news first thing, so I have stuff to fume about all day.
There’s even a “silent time” rule here; you’re not supposed to talk before 7:30 a.m. This was tough. In fact, Beth, a soft-spoken staffer from NBC News, rebuked more than a couple of my hearty “good mornings!” with a finger to her lips.
“Oh, yeah, forgot,” I said, which earned me another stern look.
This was going to be a long week. Here’s the thing I learned about yoga retreats, and it may come as a bit of a shock. There’s actually the expectation that you’ll be doing yoga. David would ring a bell, and we were all expected to grab our mats and head for the yoga studio, yet another slice of paradise in the center of the resort compound: shiny natural wood floors, floor to ceiling open-air windows overlooking swaying palms and surf. Again, if you like that kind of thing...
There were about two dozen of us, mostly women, mostly from the Springs, sitting in a circle. David welcomed us and asked what we hoped to get out of the retreat. Most said something about peace of mind or greater self-awareness. I said, essentially, I was here for a vacation. More stern looks.
Then David walked us through the theme for the week, based on Aesop’s fable The Tortoise and the Hare. Interesting. I’ve always identified with the rabbit. Sure, he lost the race, but he ended up rested and well fed.
Still, I got what David was saying. The yoga, the idyllic setting and even the excursions he had planned were designed to put us in a different frame of mind, to slow down our racing thoughts. Not a problem for me. I had very few worries—except, maybe, some upcoming work deadlines, a strange sound the car had started making, that strange ache in my neck and shoulder, and did I leave on the Nespresso machine when we left? The neighbors would have called if the house burned down, right? And did anybody respond to my latest Facebook post? OK, my mind tends to race a bit. I’m from New York.
After yoga on those first few days, I tried to practice my meditation in one of the many idyllic shrines around the property. Focus on your breath. Breathe in. I think I heard a fly come in, and my breath is kind of shallow. Breathe out. Should it be that shallow?
It was hard to sit still that long. Fortunately, David had some activities planned to keep my must-do-stuff mind and body busy. We went on zip lines over the jungle canopy (getting in touch with our inner rabbit). We participated in a turtle rescue (getting in touch with our tortoise sides), which turned out to be much more emotional than I’d anticipated, watching those baby turtles waddle to the surf.
Every day, yoga became easier, less of a chore and more like what my body actually wanted to do. Meditation also got easier. Breathe in. Breathe out. Even the howler monkeys became less annoying.
I also felt a bond with the fabulous people who were on this journey with us. As we took turns jumping off a ledge into a jungle swimming hole, the cheers for one another was about more than the courage of the leap. It was about how far we’d all come.
On the last morning, I saw a group of my fellow yogis and heartily shouted “Good morning!” Of course, I received an admonishing finger to the lips. But I swear I saw less animosity there.
When we returned to the Springs after an exhilarating but exhausting week in paradise, I slept so well in my own bed. Strangely though, I jolted awake to the roar of howler monkeys. My wife had recorded them. She laughed her head off.
I closed my eyes, thought ommmmm, and then a very un-yogi thought came to mind: I will get her back. It’s what a hare would do, after all.
Thank you Warren, for the fun review and great memories!
John Dryden famously said, “We first make our habits, and then our habits make us.”
Confucius said, “Men’s natures are alike; it is their habits that separate them.”
And Aristotle noticed that, “We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence then, is not an act, but a habit.”
It’s pretty clear that the habits you adopt will shape who you are.
What are your habits?
Do you eat the same thing for lunch, go through the same exercise routine, and fall into bed at the same time each night?
Or maybe you’ve made a habit out of eating something sweet before bed, avoiding the gym, and staying up as late as possible.
When it comes to your fitness, the two habits that define you are your eating and exercise habits. In fact, everyone that you know who is in great shape has dialed in these two important habits.
If you aren’t happy with your body, then simply adjust your eating and exercise habits.
Here’s how to adopt a habit:
1) Decide on the ONE habit that you would like to develop. It’s tempting to pick up 3 or 4 healthy habits but choosing just one new habit is realistic and doable.
Here are some healthy habit ideas:
Here’s an example:
4) Keep track of your progress. You could keep a detailed journal or simply make a check mark on each calendar day that you successfully exercise your new habit.
Once your new habit becomes second nature, usually in about 30 days, feel free to add a second habit by going through the same steps.
I’d love for my fitness program to become your new healthy habit! Call or email now to reserve your spot.
An authentic surge of motivation will change your life immediately.
The best part of my day is seeing clients just like you achieve amazing results. Whether you drop a few sizes, lose the baby weight, get off your blood pressure meds, or shrink your waist, the excitement is always contagious.
It’s hard to describe that euphoria that settles in once you’ve achieved your fitness goal. It’s one of those things that you have to experience to understand.
Every single one of my clients who have achieved massive results have ONE THING IN COMMON…
They are all highly motivated.
I am in a unique position. I know how to get you (or anyone else who walks through my door) into great shape. I can coach you through a 50-pound weight loss. I can guide you to a healthier body. I can even train you into a toned athlete.
But there is one catch.
You’ll need to be motivated.
Just saying, or even just thinking, that you want to get into great shape isn’t enough. You need motivation—and that’s just half of the equation. The other part (and the most important) is ACTION.
Nothing happens until you take action.
You can want it, think about it, mull it over, ponder it, plan it, and then re-plan it. But nothing happens until you take action.
While I may not know your story—it’s probably safe to assume that you want to drop fat and tone up. You want to look better, to have more energy, to experience fewer aches and pains, and to enjoy sweet satisfaction as you achieve your goals once and for all.
I know that all of my successful clients were once in your shoes. They wanted to change their bodies. They felt urgency. And then they did what most fail to do. They took action and contacted me.
But there is more to it than that. They then committed to a program, put in the exercise, stuck to their diet and met their goals. There’s nothing more gratifying than getting back into those jeans that now sit in the back of your closet.
People who take massive action get massive rewards. And those that simply talk about losing weight will continue to put weight on, pound after pound. I hate to put it that way, but it’s the truth.
So what do you want?
The rewards are great IF you do.
Your first step is to call or email me now to get started! Let’s do this.
Do you have a specific fitness goal that you are hoping to achieve? This goal could be a number on the scale, or a clothing size. Or maybe you are hoping to wear a certain cut or style of clothes like strappy tank tops, shorts, or a bathing suit.
While having this goal is great, it will NOT guarantee success.
You knew that, though, because this isn’t the first time that you’ve had a fitness goal. A goal that you didn’t meet. In fact, you probably know dozens of other people who also have struggled to meet their fitness goals.
Here’s the typical scenario: you get all pumped up to lose weight and get into shape by starting out completely gung-ho. Your enthusiasm lasts about two weeks, before old habits and routine slide back into place, cutting your results off before reaching your goal. Then your goal begins to fade from your mind, and life goes on.
The problem, my friend, was your initial focus on the result rather than a sustained focus on the process. Let me break this down for you…
Fitness success is not about focusing on your goal. It’s about making the fit lifestyle stick.
Of course, once you’ve gotten a fit lifestyle to stick you’ll end up meeting that goal!
This may go against everything you’ve come to believe about achieving a goal, but then, your techniques haven’t exactly been working. The number that you’re hoping to magically be one day doesn’t matter one bit, and here’s why…
IT’S ABOUT LIVING IN THE MOMENTUM.
Can you remember how it felt the last time that you ate clean, exercised hard and got adequate sleep for a few consecutive days? A feeling of momentum came over you, didn’t it?
There was a buzzing in your cells and a rhythm in your pace. You felt alive, you felt sexy, and you felt empowered. Never mind that you weren’t yet at your goal number, you were headed there!
Getting down to your goal weight, and fitting into your goal size, is the direct result of living in that state of momentum for an extended period of time. You see, the momentum can be felt immediately, once you start eating clean, exercising hard and taking care of your health, whereas that “goal number” simply can’t be felt until it is achieved, and so it’s not as powerful a motivator.
My challenge and advice to you is to find the joy of living in the momentum, and keep that momentum going until your goal number is achieved. Focus only on the momentum, not on the number.
Fitness is a way of life. Being lean is a lifestyle. Neither of which can be had by going about it halfheartedly.
You have to become the momentum.
Call or email me today and we will get your momentum started on the exercise program that will reshape your body once and for all!
You woke up this morning and began making choices.
You chose whether or not to exercise, to eat a healthy breakfast, or to do something productive. You chose whether or not to eat that donut, to sleep in, or to watch an extra hour of TV.
At the end of each day the sum of your choices pushes you in a direction.
It could be pushing you in the direction of fitness and health, if your choices were predominantly wholesome.
Or the sum of your choices could be pushing you in the direction of weight gain, health issues and problems.
I find this perspective to be helpful when it comes to making a major body transformation. It’s tempting to feel helpless in changing your body when you have so many pounds to lose and so much work to do, since you aren’t able to do it all in one day.
However, by capturing the power of each day by making wholesome choices, you will be pushed in the direction of weight loss and health day after day, week after week.
Until one day you’ll look in the mirror and see that you’ve arrived at your ultimate destination: a lean, healthy and vibrant you.
So embrace the power of each choice that you make today, and allow a momentum of good choices to push you through to your goal.
Today is a big deal. Today is all you have.
Make the most of today.
If you’re not yet one of my prized clients then make the excellent choice to call or email me today to get started on a program that will supercharge your momentum towards the best version of yourself.
Let’s do this!
I realized something important about exercise that’s worth sharing with you.
Most of the time, when encouraging you to exercise, I focus on health and fat loss. These are two significant benefits, but there’s another side effect of exercise that’s hugely important…
How you feel after doing it.
Every workout has an immediate impact on your energy, mood, body chemistry, and even mental functioning. The endorphins released are specifically designed to make you feel good.
All of these factors combined create your overall feeling of wellbeing.
Don’t you want to feel good?
The tricky part is that most of us are habit driven, and so our activity level (or lack thereof) is fairly consistent day-to-day and week-to-week. This makes the impact of each sedentary day less noticeable, since another similar day causes no obvious change. It simply perpetuates your current state of un-wellbeing, with a slow decline.
Why this matters: You could begin feeling a lot better than you do today by starting to exercise.
This could come as a surprise, especially if you believe that the way you feel today is a given, and not something that can be improved.
By maintaining a consistent, challenging exercise plan:
Making regular exercise part of your routine is a foolproof method for improving your overall wellbeing. It’s a gift that you give to yourself with each workout.
Ready to really feel good? Sign up for my latest fitness program. Call or email today to get started!
Owner and Lead Personal Trainer at Perfect Fit Wellness Center.