The Obesity epidemic is an ongoing war in not only Canada, but the world. Since 1975 Obesity rates have almost tripled! In 2016, 39% (1.9billion) of the world’s adults were in the overweight category (based on BMI scale). Within that, 13% (650million) were considered obese.
With numbers this high, there’s likely a fair number of people whom are not comfortable with their current body composition and ready to make a change. These simple steps will help you with battling towards a happier-healthier you.
- Get up/stretch – People sit now more than ever. Unfortunately, the less we stand the more difficult life and basic mobility becomes. Sitting also promotes postural imbalances that cause low back pain due to overactive muscles restricting hip mobility. Stretching out the hips will alleviate these symptoms. Every 15-20 minutes get up and walk around for a bit, or at the very least just stand!
- Eat less calories – There are many websites that have calculators to determine your ‘resting metabolic rate’ (RMR), or simply the amount of fuel your body needs to maintain its current state. A daily caloric deficit of 500-1000 calories a day will result in 1-2lbs of weight loss. There are 3500 calories in 1lb of fat. Do note, as your body weight changes so does your RMR. It’s important to re-calculate this as you lose significant weight.
- Follow the Canadian Food Guide – The most important piece of information on the Canadian Food Guide is what to look out for when choosing foods in each of the food groups. This will help you with determining what to look out for when picking your meals.
- Eat more lean protein – Studies show that diets high in protein during a caloric deficit accompanied with physical activity results in an increased lean mass and greater fat loss than diets low in protein. It is important to choose proteins low in fat, sodium, and cholesterol.
- Get your motor running – Start getting some cardio in! Either with HIIT training or continuous aerobics, it is important to start moving and prime those fat burning engines. Contacting a certified personal trainer is the most effective way to receive the perfect exercise prescription for your specific needs and starting point. That said, when just starting out simply doing anything consistently will have a positive impact in achieving your fat loss goals. Aim for at least 15-30min a day when starting out.
- Pick things up and put them down – Resistance training has many benefits for the endocrine and metabolic systems. When first starting, a certified personal trainer can help you with learning how to perform the correct exercises in association with your current state and goals. But until then, start with performing multi-joint exercises on machines for your whole body as a safe way to get started. Do note, when you first start out you should not train to failure! Going to hard too fast will result in being incredibly sore for days, likely limiting your ability to move and motivation to continue with your transformation.
- Love yourself more than you judge yourself – Gym’s are filled with mirrors and strangers, and we tend to be our own worst critics. Remember why you’re there; to make a positive difference in your health. Gym’s can be intimidating, do not let all those strangers get to you. No one is judging you, only you are. This is your journey, stay the course.
- Repetition – Committing to your new lifestyle is the most important step. Too often do we see people find substantial success during a diet/exercise program diminish by reverting to their old habits and level of sedentary behaviour. If you don’t use it, you lose it, so use it!
As a personal trainer who has battled this epidemic, I know how tough it can be, but I also know its not an impossible journey. I entered this career to help as many people as possible. You are not alone, you got this, let your pride shine, and stay the course. One step at a time.
By: Cody Dale