There is a good deal of conflicting advice out there about how to get fit, lose weight and be a better you. If you’ve followed SparkPeople for awhile, you know that we spend much of our time introducing you to workouts that really work, delving into diets that will help you lose weight and disproving health and fitness trends that aren’t worth your time.
But sometimes we don’t spend enough time tying everything together. We don’t list which workouts burn the most fat with the least chance of injury, or which diets perfectly balance your total nutritional needs. With the spring season upon us, we thought we’d take a break from our normal routine and tell you, in no uncertain terms, how you can reach your goals as efficiently as possible. We hope you enjoy these four ironclad rules to improve your diet and fitness.
Want a balanced diet that will help you shed the pounds and build muscle? Go vegan.
Turns out, herbivores have had it right all along. (There’s a reason why the brontosaurus was so big, yet svelte.) If you eat vegan, you will lose weight and get stronger. With most diets, you have to pay close attention to how much protein you’re eating in a given day, and how many carbs you’re putting in your body. Not if you eat vegan. In fact, a vegan diet is so healthy, you don’t even have to track what you eat!
Rocky Balboa was right: No pain, no gain!
Who would’ve thought a fictional movie could get things so right? It’s really not possible to get in the shape you want without a little pain along the way. Of course if it’s too much pain you’re probably pushing yourself too hard, but as long as you’re feeling a moderate amount of pain you’re probably right in the fat-burning zone. Sure, it’s not fun to have to suffer through the discomfort, but no one said getting fit was going to be easy!
Early birds win: The best time to exercise is between 1:00 a.m. and 4:00 a.m.
This one is a real bummer. I hate getting up early--much less before the sun has even risen--but a team of scientists out of Harvard’s Sleep Study Program monitored over 1,000 students over the course of three years and found that study participants who worked out between the hours of 1:00 and 4:00 a.m. burned 35 to 60 percent more fat than participants that worked out during any other time of the day. We were surprised, too, but we had our fitness coaches go over the study and it was sound. If you’d like to give it a look yourself, you can find it here.
If you can’t exercise hard and often, don’t exercise at all.
Small changes don’t work. If you really want to see change, you’ll have to change how you live your life to reach your goals. Be ready to change your schedule, your diet and everything you value if you want to get in better shape. To reach your goals, you’ll need to exercise at least twice daily, and you’ll need to push yourself just up to your limit with each workout. Then, three times per week, you’ll need to push yourself past that limit. Because that’s just how human physiology works.
If you haven’t guessed it yet, lovely SparkPeople, this is our April Fool’s prank! There isn’t a lick of truth in anything we wrote above; we actually measured it and it came in at zero percent on our truth scale. If you liked this post be sure to share it with someone else you think might get a kick out of it.
And if you want to know what we really think, and which fitness trends really do work, check out these pieces by our health and fitness professionals:
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