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  • GETTING FIT

    10 things I wish I knew earlier

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  • During my own journey as a trainer I’ve overtrained and undertrained my clients, overfed and underfed them and sometimes paralyzed them by overloading them with too much information.
    In my 10 years of experience, I definitely have picked up on the “sweet spot” to help my clients lose weight and we use them in our workouts and nutrition programs at Kokomo Fitness.
    Here are the top 10 tips I wish I could have learned earlier in my journey.
    1. I wish I paid attention to the affect food had on me. Some foods made me feel bloated and others made me feel great. Start figuring how foods you eat are affecting you.
    2. I wish I would have known margarine, diet soda, Cap’n Crunch and most things with “Light,” “Healthy,” or “part of a nutritious diet” weren’t good for me. Just because you are training hard doesn’t mean you can eat what you want.
    3. I wish I learned the concept of “earning it” earlier. You don’t get the reward of eating something “not-so-healthy” just because you had a long day at work or you’ve been really good with your diet and exercise program. All of those things are expected of you on a daily basis. Earning it is when you go beyond your normal day and put in a longer session at the gym or eat well for longer than you ever have before (10-14 days).
    4. I wish I were more coachable. Welcome feedback and understand that criticism is positive. Just like alcohol on a scrape, it will be painful at first, but by cleaning the areas of your life that may be problems you can’t see, you will be better off. People giving you the feedback are usually trying to help you out.
    5. I wish I had written down exactly what I wanted. Set goals! If you don’t have them written down and see them each day, know you will only get further from the goals you don’t have as you get older. Spend more time planning out where you are going in life than planning where you are going on Friday night.
    6. I wish I learned the true power of a thank you. Since I have adopted a much better and authentic “attitude of gratitude,” my life has been much smoother. People feel good when they are thanked because they have become a rare thing to receive. I challenge you to give out 10 thank you's today!
    7. I wish I used my downtime better. Speaking of “too busy,” never say that you are. Twenty-four hours is a long time in a day to get stuff done and still have fun. There is a difference between doing stuff so you can say you're busy and being productive and actually having something to show for the time spent on it.
    8. I wish I didn’t let other people’s expectations hold me back. Tip: Ten words to remove from your vocabulary are “What will people say? What will people think?” Learn that no reality show is as interesting as yours.
    9. I wish I knew about the dangers of processed foods sooner. For years I put hard work in the gym, came home and ate a “High Protein” bar or “High Protein” microwaveable meal. All that hard work was flushed down the toilet because I wasn’t giving my body the nutrients it needed to effectively burn fat and build muscle. I was giving it chemical-laden franken-foods that made me gassy, irritated my digestion and never satisfied my hunger. Never again!
    10. I wish I knew sooner that more isn’t always better. I’ve gone from telling people early in my career that they need to work out longer (from 60 to 90 minutes and 90 to 120 minutes) to telling them to work out less (60 to 45 minutes, 45 to 30 minutes). The reason being is that it’s not a sustainable plan. It’s impossible to complete a marathon workout three to five times a week. It only wears down your joints and, in the long run, makes you feel worse than better. I now preach that if you want to do this the rest of your life, you have to consider longevity.
    If any of this list resonated with you, I suggest you start taking action on some of them immediately. Look at your life today and decide what type of person (and body) you want to have in one year, three years and five years. Change only comes from change.
    Dustin Bogle is a trainer at Kokomo Fitness in Hesperia. Contact him at 760-995-3366 or KokomoFitness.com.
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