Spot Training: The Myth

No, training your abs harder will not give you more visible abs, in fact squats are more beneficial.  It may be counter-intuitive to some, but after thinking it over it will become a bit more obvious.

What is Spot Training?
Spot Training is training or excising only one muscle group or area of the body.

Why Spot Training?
Often people believe if they want a more defined area of their body that they need to increase the reps for that particular muscle group. Although this will tone and condition the muscle it will not remove fat around the muscle group that is keeping it from being visible.

How Body Fat Reduction Works
When exercising a muscle group the energy comes from calories, some of those calories come from "stored calories"(fat),  your body grabs calories from all of its fat stores not just the fat stores available in the area being exercised. So when doing crunches your body is not using only the fat stores in your abdomen but rather all of the fat stores available in your body. If you go for a jog with your dog, squat in the gym, or rep crunches in your living room, fat will still be all be burned the same.

Why Squats Over Crunches?
Since your body grabs its energy from fat stores all over the body it is best to uses muscles that require a lot of energy.  Just look at the size of your hamstring and quadriceps compared to your biceps and triceps.  Your legs can lift a lot of weight, and moving a lot of weight requires a lot of energy (calories)

The Best Bet
Stay away from sport training.  It isn't good for your body to have muscle imbalances.  Eating healthy will help prevent having excess calories that are stored as fat.  Also, controlling your metabolism which can be read about here ( Metabalism: Know It  Control It ), and of course a daily does of physical activity.

Thanks for reading, any advice on things you would want to read about is always appreciated.  Otherwise have a great day and spread the health

Water: Hydration The Path to Health

Planet earth is a world of water. In fact the surface is roughly 72% water.  Without it life would not be sustainable.  Every plant, animal, and organism needs water to survive.  From the mighty lion to the lonely amoeba, no water equals no life.  That's why it comes to no surprise that water is essential to everyday healthy living.

Drinking water is a staple mark in health advice and for a solid reason.  Numerous people are suffering symptoms of dehydration everyday without even being conscious of it.  When your body is not properly hydrated it will do what it can to preserve the water it already has. During dehydration the body systems compensate functioning to their full ability to fill this hydration void.  Your body is made of around 75% water almost every function your body has needs H20, so why deny it a source that is so readily available.

Benefits of Drinking Water
Hydration is required to keep the body functioning at its prime capacity at virtually every level.  A list in its entirety is unreasonable, but here are 10 keynote benefits.  Remember being dehydrated poses the reverse of these benefits.

1. American Journal of Epidemiology found that those who drink more than 5 glasses of water a day were 41% less likely to die from a heart attack during the study period than those who drank less than two glasses
2. Eliminates extra calories, fat, and sugars found in juice, pop, sports drink, ect...
3. Removes toxins.  Keeps kidneys healthy.
4. Aids in digestion
5. Activates fiber, helping prevent atherosclerosis, cancer, diabetes and other diseases.
6. Assist in discrepancy of hunger pangs and thirst.
7. Clearer thinking.
8. Is the number one resolvent of headaches.
9. Keeps the circulatory system in check and carries nutrients to cells.
10. Avoids dehydration symptoms such as dizziness, fatigue, muscle weakness/cramps, and nausea.

Water truly is a titan when it comes to importance to not only health but fitness.  Read number 10 over again and you will see that athletic performance, cardio, and weight training performance will be hampered greatly by something as simple as not drinking water.

Design Against Dehydration
1. The body wakes up dehydrated.  During several hours of sleep the body is still using water.  Take a second to notice the feeling of dehydration, this will help you determine what it feels like to by thirsty compared to hunger pangs. Then start your day with a glass of water before your breakfast. 
2. Carry a water bottle with you.  If your thirsty you will have water available.
3.  Make it a habit.  When you water bottle becomes empty fill it back up.
4.  Know just how much you need a day. Divide your weight(lbs) in two, that is the number of ounces you should roughly consume 150lbs/2= 75oz.  Factor in individuals may vary along with activity and sweat level.  5.  Dark colored urine is a sign of dehydration. 
6. Caffeine may hinder hydration do to its diuretic effect.You urinate faster not allowing water to be absorbed.

Arm your self for success.  Your car is designed through man to run on gasoline.  Your body is designed through evolution to run on water.  Enjoy a small glass of juice, rehydrate with some Gatorade after a hard workout, but focus on what is natural.  Cold Refreshing Water.

Breakfast: The Mighty Morning Meal

We have heard it before. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Yet 4 out of 10 adults skip this mighty meal(According to a poll from ABCnews). Whether there is no time in the morning or they are attempting to cut morning calories people who do not eat breakfast are physiologically setting up there body for failure. Breakfast aids in weight loss, improves concentration, strength/endurance, and lowers cholesterol levels. 

Eating Breakfast Is Vital in Weight Loss
1. Staring the day with a meal also starts the bodies metabolism for the day.
2. If the metabolism is not started blood sugar drops.
3. If blood sugar drop the body craves sweets and other foods full of sugar.
4. Sugar is bad (Read more on how sugar effects your body “Sugar: A Bitter Sweet Tale”)
5. People who start the day off with a healthy breakfast satisfy their bodies early in the day and tend to eat less calories, saturated fat, and cholesterol. Set your day up for success.

No Time? Not Hungry? No Excuses!

No Time?
Instant oatmeal takes 1 minute to make.
Fruit and yogurt
Peanut butter on whole grain bread
Low-Fat Milk and whole grain cereal
A shake or bar is better than nothing.

Not Hungry?
Make yourself eat breakfast for a week hungry or not. Soon your body will adapt to your new eating schedule and when you wake, your body will expect it's morning boost.  This is a good thing.

No Excuses
Let's be honest we all know were suppose to eat a healthy breakfast.  When we were children it was a staple mark crying call of our mothers.  Now it's laced through multi-media advertisement.  Do your self a favor and use the knowledge you already have. Be Smart. Eat Breakfast  

What To Eat, What Not, and How Much

What To Eat
Start with water.  The body wakes up dehydrated.  Those who consume caffeine skip the creamer and sugar with coffee or drink tea.  Then add a carbohydrate, a protein, and some fat.  Carbohydrates are ideal for the days energy source and protein keeps you full and builds/repairs muscle.  Fat in the morning is key.  When you eat a carbohydrate and a protein your metabolism is programed to use those and break them down because they are available.  Adding fat will prime your metabolism to continue to burn fat for the rest of the day. Fat host many addition benefits. Use any of the examples below and aim for 250 to 375 calories per morning.

Carbohydrates (energy)
Whole grain Bread
Whole grain Bagel
Whole Grain Cereal (Be wary check the ingredients for sugar)

Yogurt or even better double the protein and eat Greek yogurt (check the sugar)
Cottage cheese
Peanut butter your protein and a fat (Go with natural on this )
1 Full egg mixed with 3 egg whites (1 full egg has 78% daily value of cholesterol)

Peanut butter
Full-Fat Yogurt
Ground flax seeds or flax seed oil
l full egg

Don't eat
Leftovers! Pizza and Chinese food are nasty culprits.
Sugar (watch bars, cereal, and juice)
White Bread for toast.
Bacon (I know I know, so tasty, not worth it)

Have a great day.  Be smart.  Eat Breakfast.

Always appreciate comments and questions. Thanks for reading.

Sugar: A Bitter Sweet Tale

Let me say this plain simple.  Sugar isn't what it used to be and what it has become is somewhat terrifying.

Making smart choices in controlling sugar helps you control weight, aging, diabetes, obesity, heart disease, hypoglycemia, cancer and a host of indirectly related diseases.

Sugar is a Culprit in a host of various health issues and problems.  Around half of Americans consume a half pound of sugar a day! In comparison the average persons consumption of sugar in single year has jumped from 4 lbs in the 1700's, 18 lbs in the 1800's, to 90 lbs in the 1900's, to monstrous current number of 180 lbs annually.

Now that we know our sugar intake has gotten out of control lets hit the facts about what this sugar is doing to our bodies.


1. 1 gram of sugar contains 4 calories.

2. Sugar is digested immediately which means the calories are instantly available to be used as energy.

3.  When the body does not need energy the calories are instantly converted to fat.

4. When sugar is consumed the pancreas must excrete insulin to regulate blood-sugar levels, the stress from this creates additional problems including throwing off triglyceride levels which is a major predictor in heart disease.  This may also play a role in Type-II diabetes which occurs when the receptor cells to insulin no longer works, along with many other insulin related problems.

 5 STAY AWAY from high-fructose corn syrup.  Simple sugars such as fructose and glucose found naturally in food are balanced with enzymes, vitamins, and minerals.  This allows the sugar to be naturally digested and at a slower pace.  High-fructose corn syrup is corn syrup that has been genetically altered to become a sugar/syrup. Corn is easy to grow cheaply and yield large amounts. Every cell in the body can digest glucose(designed for our body) only the liver can digest high-fructose corn syrup(designed for profit).

6. Around the 1970's most sugary beverages made the switch form glucose to high-fructose corn syrup. Coca-cola has 39 g's.  Vitamin Water has 33g's.

7.  Daily % values of sugar do not exist.  The American Heart Associations recommends keeping intakes under 6 teaspoons for women and 9 for men. 

Fight Back

Be smart about sugar.  Take an extra second when buying food or drink and look at the amount of sugar, then remember this article.  Lastly, take your eyes down to the ingredients list.  If you see high-fructose corn syrup gently place it back and choose a product that wasn't synthesized in a laboratory.  Remember even juices and sports drinks that are perceived to be healthy may shock you on their amounts of sugar.

As always questions and comments are appreciated.