Monthly Archives: December 2017

What a Runner Can’t Forget

Whether you jog to stay in shape or you compete in a few marathons a year your overall fitness diet is responsible for a large part of your performance. Being a competitive athlete requires tons of practice and dedication as far as the fitness goes, but some professional athletes and most amateurs don’t understand that fitness is only one half of the performance equation. The other is your diet health.

What you put in your mouth is the fuel for your body. When you are an athlete your body is finely tuned and even more sensitive to what you put into it. While many people try to improve their running times and distances by working out harder a simple awareness of their diet could yield the same results, without the extra strain on their body.

If you are a runner looking for help, or someone just getting into jogging, the first fitness diet recommendation would be to make sure that you are eating mostly organic food. Processed food contains many chemicals and preservatives that are toxic to your body and will not allow you to perform your best.

Then make sure that you are taking some type of high quality natural vitamin and mineral supplement so your body is getting the nutrition it needs. You can also get your vitamins and minerals from your diet, but because of soil depletion, convenience foods, and non-organic food it is difficult to do so. A sports nutrition drink that contains natural glucose, not high fructose corn syrup, is also highly recommended to provide optimal hydration before, during, and after any workout.

Fitness Diet For Lean Muscle

The key for developing the proper body type for running is to focus on developing lean muscle. It is important to remember that muscle, although it provides you strength, also weighs a lot so you want powerful toned muscles, not strong bulky ones.

A sprinter may need larger muscles to travel quickly for 100-400 meters, but they would be no match for a lean marathon runner in any race that was longer than a mile and visa versa. So develop and maintain the right muscle type for the running you do.

To develop lean muscle I would suggest taking high quality natural whey protein supplements or making sure you are getting enough protein from your diet. Also try consuming fresh, organic vegetable juice everyday to keep your body cleansed of any toxins. This will keep your body fat percentage very low.

You can get protein in your fitness diet by consuming:
* Organic free range eggs
* Organic red meat
* wild fish
* Organic nuts

Your body uses protein to build and repair your muscles. This is very important in the prevention of muscle-related injuries. For maximum benefits you should consume protein in the morning when you get up, immediately after your workout, and before you go to bed. Also try eating kelp or taking kelp supplements. Kelp aids in muscle repair and recovery.

The Carbohydrates

This is the most important area of a runner’s fitness diet. Why? Because carbohydrates = energy. However, don’t go out eating anything that has carbs in it.

A lot of runners I have talked to eat bread and/or pasta because of the carbohydrate content. While they are both loaded with carbs they are not the wisest choice for a runner. There are a lot of acidic ingredients in bread and pasta that will adversely affect your energy levels and endurance, such as refined sugar, flour, and preservatives.

Instead try to get carbohydrates in your fitness diet from a whole food source such as:
* Organic oats
* Bananas
* Broccoli

These are each much healthier and leaner than bread and pasta, but pack the same carb content. A great way to consume the oats and bananas is to put them in with your protein shake in the morning and after your run.

How many carbohydrates you need to consume in a day depends on the type of running you do. The farther you run the more carbohydrates you will need in your fitness diet.

Minutes of Magic

I just finished reading “7 Minutes of Magic” by Lee Holden a few days ago and it has prompted me to do a couple of things. That is a mark of a very good book, it prompts you to take action. First, I have tried the routines Holden outlines in this book, and I do agree with another review of this book that it does take longer than 7 minutes to do the routines when you are first learning them. However, that is okay, I am used to spending longer than 7 minutes each morning. I really like the routines, and I feel that by themselves for most people they will be very beneficial.

However, for me, I am incorporating Holden’s flows from this book with the morning exercises I already do that are based on teachings of Dan Millman, Pavel Tsatsouline, and other martial art/qi gong instructors I have had. Holden’s workouts fit very well with the kinds of exercise flows I’ve already been doing. (In fact, some of the same things he teaches have been in my routines) So, for me it has been invigorating to try different routines and to incorporate them into what I’ve been doing. My goal for the morning exercises is to loosen up my joints, warm up my core, especially lower back, and to energize myself for the day ahead. This is just what Holden’s routines do! I really like how Holden incorporates Qi gong, Tai Chi, Yoga and Western exercises into his routines, since that is how I approach things as well.

Normally my evening or after work routines incorporate aerobic exercise, weight lifting, martial art practice and a variety of other exercises. I will often do a little stretching late in the evening and a breathing or meditation session. I’ve been incorporating Holden’s PM routine into my training and enjoy it as a nice way to calm down late in the evening before retiring for the night. I’ve also looked at Holden’s other products and intend to learn more from him in the future, so yes this is a book I recommend.

The book starts out with a little about Holden’s training. I enjoyed this short chapter. As someone who has also lived in Asia to further my training, I found his story very interesting. I also liked the second chapter on East Meets West: Your Body, Mind and Spirit. It corresponded well with my own philosophies and I liked how Holden put it simply and to the point.

The next part of the book teaches the flows, or exercise series. There are several flows for the morning. Core Flow, Upper Body Flow, Lower Body Flow, Full Body Flow, Energy Flow, Breath Flow, and Mind Flow. Then the PM flows: Spinal Flow, Upper Back and Neck Flow, Lower Back Flow, Downward Flow, Seated Flow, Lying Flow, and the Joy and Gratitude Flow.

I really feel that incorporating these flows, or even modifying them if need be, will help a person have increased health, energy, and fitness. With this comes reduced stress levels and the avoidance of the illnesses that come with increased stress and inactivity of the body.

Part three of the book focuses on Living with More Vitality, and in this part Holden gives some good advice for living a more healthy lifestyle. He discusses exercise, especially walking. He has a short chapter on breathing. Chapter 7 is a short chapter on eating, not what to eat, but how to eat, especially chewing food more and eating less to lose weight and live longer. He also includes a quick chapter on drinking water. He finishes with chapters on meditation and sleep, and then throws in a bonus 7 minute routine for health and vitality.

All of the chapters are short, direct and easy to read. They do not include in depth information on the topics, but give enough to get most people started along a healthy way of living. For some, this book will act as a catalyst to send readers to further study the topics here, through more of Holden’s works or those of others on the same or similar topics.

This is a great start for many people, and following the routines will help anyone improve their health. For me and others, it is a good book of information to further our studies and incorporate new approaches into our own routines. I’m glad I bought this book and look forward to doing these routines and learning more from Holden in the future.