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10 Tips To Make 2018 Your Fittest Year Yet!

With the new year right upon us many people are getting their new years fitness resolutions ready and unfortunately many of them wont see them through.  Not because the desire isn't there but because the strategy being used may actually be flawed.

The following are 10 basic tips to help you succeed with your fitness goals in 2018 and get in the nest shape of your life. Most of these are taken from a newsletter I sent out months ago but the principles and strategies are still the same and definitely work if they are applied. 

The same basic principles to success on any level still apply. Working hard, staying the course and surrounding yourself with like minded people are timeless strategies that will always yield results.

1) Set very Specific Goals. Don't just say I'm going to the gym to start working out to lose some weight. Instead say, I'm going to work out to lose 25 pounds and drop two dress sizes in 4 months. Be as specific as possible, the more specific you are the better.

2) Find a Deep Personal ReasonToTrain: When we attach some form of emotion to it we will be more inclined to see if through and remain consistent. For example, you can say you want to exercise to be around longer for your family, Or to be sharper and have more energy to be more effective at work. Giving yourself deep personal reasons to train are always a much better motivator than just saying I want to work out to "lose some weight".
3)Announce Your Goals: Put yourself out there to your friends and family by telling everyone that you are on a fitness journey or will be training for a certain event this will help keep you accountable. Using social media to do this is a great way of letting everyone know. This in turn will help keep you on track because your friends and family are watching to see if you stick to what you said you would do.

4) Train With a Friend: Working out with a partner is a sure way to increase the chances that you will stick to your workouts. You can train with a spouse friend co worker or a loved one. Whoever you pick to train with you make sure they are motivated and you will keep each other accountable to make the scheduled workouts. If you tend to slack then picking someone that also slacks will not work. You need to train with someone that will call you and make you stick to your scheduled workouts together.

5) Hire a trainer or join a group class: When hiring a qualified personal trainer or joining a group fitness class you open yourself up to accountability and motivation that you normally would not have on your own. The right trainer can motivate you and train you to reach a level of fitness you may not otherwise would have been able to reach on your own. The same can be said for joining a good group training class. 

6) Set Realistic Goals: Don't come out of the gate saying you want to lose 60 pounds in one month. You will set yourself up for failure that way and then be more inclined to give up thinking that this "whole fitness thing" isn't for you. Instead push yourself and work hard but give yourself the grace needed to make progress little by little. Celebrate every achievement along the way and keep building from there. If you could only run for 5 minutes when you started and now are doing 15 minutes without stopping give yourself credit for making that progress. Love yourself don't beat yourself up!

7) Change It Up: Don't focus on doing the same routine week after week because your body will eventually adapt to the workout and you will plateau causing you to stop getting results. Again a good personal trainer can design a personalized program and change it up every few weeks to ensure you have continued progress. 

8) Completely Commit To The Process: Any form of success in life usually comes when someone completely commits to whatever it is they are trying to accomplish. If you are trying to start a successful business you must be all in! If you want to make that marriage or relationship work you must be all in! The same mindset applies to getting fit and achieving a healthy body. Promise yourself to commit to this process and give it your best effort.

9) Make Working Out An Appointment: Schedule your workouts the same way you would schedule a business meeting at work or a family appointment. Once you put it in your schedule stick to it the way you would any other appointment on your task list. Once you have this mindset you will see that half the battle is already won and sticking to your workouts will not be nearly as difficult. 

10) Have Fun: Make fitness fun! Most people live very stressful lives with a lot of responsibilities. Make your workouts fun by choosing a workout you enjoy doing. This will not only be a great way to relieve stress but will also increase the likelihood that you will continue doing it and stick with it because it is fun for you.

I hope you found these tips helpful. Wishing you a very happy new year and all the best to you and yours in 2018 and beyond!

New Year Sale!

We will be offering a new year sale in the next day or so.  Keep an eye out for that email in your inbox. You'll have the opportunity to start the new year right and get our services at a discounted rate.

Weight Loss Challenge!

Registration for our next weight loss challenge will start Jan 15th. Keep an eye out for emails and info on Social Media for challenge rules and prizes.
Online Personal Training!

I will be offering online personal training programs for those that can't make it to to the studio to train in person.  You will get a full workout program with video demonstrations and meal plans.  Again keep an eye out for that email and registration page.

Simple Nutrition Fat Loss Tips For A Leaner Body!

Greetings, here are some very basic simple tips you can use to help get your body leaner.  These tips should be followed in conjunction with a good results based exercise program.

 Don't Skip Breakfast: unless you're doing some sort of short term fast for a specific purpose skipping breakfast isn't a great idea if you want to lose fat and be lean.  Breakfast means "to Break a fast."  Its important to eat breakfast for several reasons. For starters, it increases our energy levels and gives us energy to start our day and get going.  Breakfast also helps to regulate hormones and kick start your metabolism allowing our bodies to burn fat more efficiently throughout the day. 

Eat 4-6 Meals:  it's important to have healthy portioned meals every 3-4 hours to help the body stay in fat burning mode. Eating "more" doesn't mean eat anything, the key is to focus on foods that are nutrient dense foods that are high in water fiber and protein.  You can have 3 square meals and 2 light healthy snacks like yogurt or a protein shake one between breakfast and lunch and another between lunch and dinner.  

Have A Protein Source At Each Meal: (ex grilled chicken, fish, turkey etc)  having protein is great because of its many benefits. For example, protein allows us to "stay full" longer, and releases fat burning hormones.  Protein also helps to build as well as maintain lean muscle which is critical for the fat loss process. The more lean muscle we have the less fat we will have. If burning fat and getting lean is your goal adding an adequate amount of protein to your diet is essential. 

 Avoid Heavy Meals In The Late Evening: There's no set time as to when one should stop eating for the day. The reason being is everyone's schedule can be different and not everyone arrives home at the same time.  Ideally I'd say try to have your last meal by 8 pm the latest and then have a protein shake before bedtime.  Preferably have a shake that has a slow acting slow absorbing protein source in it like Casein Protein.  This will help preserve your lean muscle stores while you sleep.  

Avoid Foods That Increase Hunger:  Monitoring this is very important because eating these foods will hinder your fat loss efforts.  Avoid or significantly reduce eating foods that are loaded with synthetic artificial sweeteners, fast foods, tv dinners and high sugar sweet snack foods like cakes.  Instead focus on foods and drinks that control food cravings like lean protein sources, green teas, water and foods high in fiber. 

Don't Go Long Hours Between Meals:  Whenever we go more than 4 hours between meals or snacks out bodies go into starvation mode and begin to store fat and feed off of lean muscle.  Try to avoid this by having small frequent meals and healthy snacks like a protein shake or low fat yogurt spread out throughout the day. Not to mention when we are very hungry and haven't planned out our meals in advance it is common for us to eat the first thing we can get our hands on which usually isn't something healthy.  At that point we eat to "survive" and our blood sugar levels are low.

Eat Healthy Fats: while reducing unhealthy fat from a diet is a good thing we all still need fats, the key is to focus on eating healthy fats. Eating healthy fats actually help with weight loss and fat burning efforts.  Focus on getting your fats from Olive oil , avocado, fish, coconut oil, nuts, seeds and healthy organic grass fed meats. 

Plan Your Meals In Advance: When it comes to getting lean and getting that nice, tight,  healthy body everyone wants preparing our meals in advance is critical.  This will go a long way in achieving success with your fat loss efforts. Make sure you prepare your meals in such a way that you plan for your full day of eating ahead of time. For example, take your lunch to work in Tupperware and have your snacks ready with you also (to eat between lunch and dinner), whether it’s healthy yogurt, healthy fats like cashews, or a nice meal replacement low-sugar protein shake or fruit. The best way to do this is to prepare your meals over the weekend, before the start of the upcoming work week. Have everything labeled and packaged nicely in pre measured Tupperware containers and Ziploc bags for each day.

Yours in health

John Gonzalez

NASM Certified Personal Trainer

Author of "The No Nonsense Guide To Healthy Eating Fat Loss & Longevity"

Is Too Much Cardio Bad For Weight Loss?


I'm often amazed at how much cardio people actually do when it comes to trying to lose weight. In short yes too much cardio is counter productive to your weight loss and fat loss as well as your lean muscle building efforts. Here's the reason why, it's called "cortisol". 

Cortisol is a hormone released in the body during intense times of stress as well as during excessive bouts of cardio exercise. What Cortisol does when released, it begins to eat away at lean muscle putting the body in what's called a catabolic state which reduces protein synthesis as well as tissue growth. This causes the body to store fat and cause the opposite desired effect which is fat storage and not fat loss. 

Keep in mind, this is not just limited to traditional cardio exercises but to boot-camp style workouts as well. Training for over 90 minutes and over 2 hours doing boot-camp style workouts can also release cortisol and tap into your lean muscle stores.  Be mindful when working out to keep your workouts short and intense this will help create an after burn effect within your body and enable your body to continue to burn calories after the workout is over for up to 24 hours.  But the key is to keep the training short and intense, this is the reason why our personal training and boot camp workout sessions run from 30-45 minutes tops. No more than that is needed to create that desired after burn effect. 

How much cardio is considered bad?

Typically anything over an hour of steady state cardio is too much. Now with that said, there are instances where people need to do cardio for over an hour. If you are training for an endurance event like a marathon or a long obstacle course race, those are times when you must do long bouts of cardio to prepare yourself for those specific endurance events. 

We have several clients here at Temple Fitness that are endurance athletes, running marathons as well as obstacle course races. With that said I always stress the importance to them of strength training to preserve lean muscle to combat what long bouts of cardio and cortisol do. There are times that running for over an hour is justified, however if that's not the case for you there really isn't much of a reason to do so. 

How much Cardio should one do?

If your goal is weight loss and to burn as much fat as possible then ideally you should try to keep your cardio sessions between 20-45 minutes working really hard during that short window. What this does is the opposite effect of long steady state cardio, you want to preserve your lean muscle stores so that your body can combat fat and help you to lose weight in the process.  

One of the very best ways to achieve this is by doing "HIIT" High Intensity Interval training. The goal of your cardio sessions should be to preserve lean muscle, burn fat and calories while increasing the effectiveness of your heart. HIIT training does all of the above without taking up too much time which is perfect.

Ideally you want to keep your HIIT sessions short and performed at a pretty high intensity depending on your fitness level. For example, you can jog for 1 minute followed by a sprint for 30 seconds followed by another 1 minute jog then a 30 second sprint and keep repeating this until you get to the desired time. This is HIIT training and it can be performed outside on a track or on pretty much any cardio machine like a treadmill, rower or elliptical.  

Lastly, don't forget to have an emphasis on muscle, meaning you should always lift weights and strength train. No matter what your goal is, it is always imperative to strength train to achieve your goals. The more lean muscle you have the less fat you will have.  The long standing proven formula to get lean is to do short intense cardio, lift weights and have a balanced healthy meal plan. In applying these methods consistently your body will transform and you will arrive at your health and fitness goals.  

Yours in health

John Gonzalez

NASM Certified Personal Trainer

Author of "The No Nonsense Guide To Healthy Eating Fat Loss & Longevity"


10 Quick Nutrition & Fitness Tips For Fat Loss! 


Here are 10 quick nutrition and workout tips for fat loss and to help you live a healthier lifestyle.

1) Change your mindset,decide that you're going to be healthy by working out and eating better.  Nothing will happen unless we change our mindset first.  Sometimes finding an accountability partner is ideal someone that can workout with you and keep you on the right track.  If you don't have that you can join a group class or hire a personal trainer to guide you on the right path.
2)Focus on eating "real food" avoid heavily processed foods that are high in fat. Heavily processed foods have so many negative effects on our bodies too many to list here. Once in a while is fine if you're a fit active person but greatly reduce if not eliminate altogether fast foods that are loaded with hormones unhealthy preservatives and additives. 
3)Add greens to your diet.  vitamins are good but the body does not absorb all of the nutrients. You can add the greens to your protein shakes or just mix them into water.  Juicing with a juicer is my preferred way of getting greens and all the nutrients that come with them into your diet.  However, many people are so busy and don't want to make time for juicing so adding greens is a great way to get your greens in without juicing.  There are many good brands on the market I like to use SANS Green Supreme Fusion. 
4) Lift weights, lifting weights is extremely important to help transform your body. Strength training should always be done as part of a complete fitness program. Make sure to lift heavy challenging weight and that includes women as well. The more lean muscle you have the less fat you will have. Remember muscle actually burns fat.

5)Add body weight movements to your routine. Don't just focus on weights and on using machines. Machines in particular can cause imbalances and the weaker side of the body doesn't get stronger because our stronger side does a lot of the work and compensates. Body weight movements like push-ups pull-ups dips chin-ups squats, lunges and  box jumps are great because the whole body is engaged during these movements and you will get stronger and leaner as a whole.

6) Limit Long Slow Paced Cardio unless you are actually training for an endurance event.  Keep your cardio sessions to 20-45 minutes depending on your fitness level and goals. But when you do focus on doing High Intensity Interval Training (H.I.I.T.)  this will yield much better results in terms of burning fat without tapping into lean muscle stores.  

7)Cut back on having too many carbs. If you're looking for a more lean look cutting back on carbs can definitely help.  I'm not saying not to have carbs you need carbs to survive and it's our energy source. What I am saying is to mindful of your carb intake especially later in the day if your goal is weight loss. 

8)Plan your meals for the week in advance. This is a tremendous way to increase your likelihood of success and getting the results you are looking for.  Meal prep and planning takes the guess work out of things and more importantly keeps you regimented. If you have your meals and healthy snacks with you at work you won't be as open to eating the first thing you find which usually is unhealthy fast food when you have a long work day and are "starving."  

9) Switch it up don't spend too much time doing the same workout over and over.  You're body will eventually adapt to the workout routine and plateau.  You will get results initially but then once you're body gets used to the routine you will see a dramatic decrease in your gains. Sticking to a plan is important but you must change it up at least every 4-6 weeks.  

10) Focus on lifestyle not on a quick fix.  Living healthy is a lifestyle and not something that should be looked at as a short term thing.  Take the steps needed to get better and don't give up when you have setbacks.  Setbacks are a part of life it's no different when it comes to exercising and eating healthy.  The key is to stick with it and keep pressing forward and strive to be better than you were yesterday.  Stay the course and never give up!  

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