On Normalcy And Eating…

It occurred to me recently that I don’t know how to eat normally. Don’t get me wrong, I know how to eat. I know how to for powerlifting. I know how to eat for bodybuilding. I know for cycling, for running, and for fat loss. I know how to eat vegetarian and vegan. I just don’t know how to eat normally.

Since the first time I stepped into the murky waters of physical culture when I was 13-years old, and as I have become involved with a variety of athletic tasks, I’ve eaten specific to those tasks, always. My edict has been that food is fuel, and to eat for function not for flavor.

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Of course I have a veered off that path thousands of times. I have enjoyed restaurant food, Thanksgiving dinners, cruise ships, hotels, parties, celebrations of every kind, and I have brought the managers of all-you-can-eat buffets to their knees on multiple occasions.

In the scope of my lifetime though, most every time I have eaten anything, I have weighed its content against the results and consequences of how it might impact my body’s aesthetic, my athletic performance, or both. Agenda has undermined any sense of normalcy in eating for my entire life.

On one hand, I can easily think about all I have gained from a lifetime of these behaviors. I’m on the backside of my 50s and can still wear the same jeans I wore in high school. I can ride a bike for an entire day, I can bench-press my weight 10 times in perfect form, and I can jump on a picnic table landing square on my feet.

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On the other hand, I’ve never wandered into a Baskin-Robbins for a couple scoops of ice cream without contemplating — without stressing over how I’m going to offset it. Those stresses by the way, throughout the course of my life, have been very real and have shaped my psyche in ways I wouldn’t wish on anyone. This is a sad, if not bleak, way to live.

Just imagine spending your whole life analyzing and stressing over everything that you eat. Thinking about the good of it all. Thinking about the bad of it all. And through it all, never just being — never just picking up a piece of food and eating it without giving it some thought. But that has been my life of eating.

Anything set on the dinner table before me has rarely been more than a cluster of carbohydrates, proteins, fats, and sugars to be analyzed, consumed or rejected. What has been separate from all of that, is the art, the joy, the spontaneity, and the creative intent behind food.

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Jazz Hands…

I don’t see this ever changing. It has minimized in recent years due to my increasing awareness of it, but living my entire life with this mind-set, those biological and behavioral synapses are in place and etched deeply into my psyche. For me, the idea of eating anything will always cause some level of anxiety. A little food for thought — so to say… Jhciacb

If you have not already, please scroll up and subscribe. Please check back in a few weeks to see what happens when I push the STOP  button on the blender in my head oh, and there is this from Robbie Fulks.  Enjoy…!

Confessions Of A Cutter…

I confess, I have been in a cutting phase lately. By “cutting” I don’t mean sitting in a dark room with heavy mascara on my eyes, listening to Bauhaus, and hacking away at my wrists with the jagged edge of a broken Coke bottle. Cutting, in the fitness vernacular, is a reference to the cutting of body fat. I want to bring mine down a few percentage points, so I have changed up my eating a little bit.

Great music to cut by.  Even for cutting weight...

Great music to cut by. Even for cutting weight…

When I (and millions of others) have done this in the past it has been with a protocol of eating twigs, kale, small amounts of brown rice, egg whites, fish and very little else. Those of us who have cut on such diets always seem to spend a great deal of time preparing less than glamorous meals, that we might be living in a lesser state of enjoyment for their tasteless deprivation. I have been there many times.

This time out, as I have in the past, I am getting as much of my calories as I can from vegetables, fruits, and animal protein sources such as lean beef, chicken, and sea food. However, this time out I’m a little too busy and a little too idontgiveafuck to go about things the way I have in the past.

Fine.  Really.  Just cutting calories...

Fine. Really. Just cutting calories…

For example, one thing I have been doing through this cutting phase that is very different from my past protocol is that I eat on the run much more. Rather than spend the 30-45 minutes preparing and eating my usual breakfast of eggs and steamed vegetables each morning, I’m keeping it simple with an Egg McMuffin on the way in to work. Yes, an Egg McMuffin. Take note, most days I get the regular Egg McMufin too, not the Egg White Delight. On the days I’m fortunate enough to eat at home, I’m partial to the Jimmy Dean bagel/sausage sandwiches.

You may not agree with me on this one, but I'm right!

You may not agree with me on this one, but I’m right!

Lunch these days is even simpler – almost always a Greek chicken salad at one of the local diners, or a salad bowl from Chipotle. Good ingredients, served up quickly, and usually under $10. I have things to do. When I do prepare my lunch ahead of time and bring it with me, it’s usually just frozen vegetables – well seasoned and thrown into a plastic container with some cut up chicken or pork on top and that’s it.

Under $10 at the local diner.  Oh, and a cute girl brings it to me!

Under $10 at the local diner. Oh, and a cute girl brings it to me!

And when I'm in a real hurry...

And when I’m in a real hurry…

My daytime snacks are taken mid-morning and mid-afternoon and usually include a cut up apple or grapefruit, accompanied by a cheese stick and a few Triscuit wafers.

Dinner for me is just as simple; usually a small grilled steak or piece of chicken with asparagus or broccoli, and a small salad. Or maybe just some quick-stirred ground beef tossed into a romaine leaf – always followed by a single spoonful of ice-cream.

Ten minutes - start to finish...

Ten minutes – start to finish…

Dessert -- one spoonful at a time...

Dessert — one spoonful at a time…

My last meal of the day is roughly 4 tablespoons of plain Greek yogurt stirred up with a scoop of protein powder. I have this right before I go to sleep.

I have made the argument for a long time that our nation would be a MUCH healthier place as a collective if everyone who lives in a state of obesity simply ate an Egg McMuffin for breakfast, had a Smart Ones and a piece of fruit for lunch, and a reasonable dinner. I can make the argument just as easily and just as strong that those who wish to cut the vanity 5 or 10 pounds could eat the same way with great results. This is simply about portion control, ease of transaction, and commitment.

Whatever your feelings are about corporations, monoculture foods, and GMOs, please save them for another argument – that’s not my point. The point is that I have been successfully cutting body fat eating this way, and I haven’t had to think twice about it. Keep in mind I’m about 8 weeks in to this cutting phase and down about 10 pounds. Though I recommend losing no more than ½ pound per week for most people, my decline is more rapid due to my bicycle commute to work each day.

This eating protocol isn’t glamorous. It doesn’t have a fancy name. It’s not trendy. It’s not endorsed by Reebok, CrossFit, or Dr. Oz. It is though, simple, inexpensive, tasty (a relative term, I know), sustainable, affordable – and it will work for anyone willing to commit to it. For me this about going from 180 lbs. to 165 lbs. There are millions of people though, who might benefit from such a simplistic because their lives depend on it.

Lastly, every couple of weeks I put it aside for a day.  Pizza, fish & chips, orange chicken from Panda Express — whatever.  I choose my battles always remembering that if I win 2 days out of 3, I’m ahead of the game.  If I win 3 days out of 4, that much more.  And even if I win 1 and lose one, it’s still a break even proposition.   Just some food for thought – so to say Be well… rc

A meal like this every couple of weeks does a soul -- and a body good...

A meal like this every couple of weeks does a soul — and a body good…

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Please check back in a few weeks to see what happens when I push the STOP button on the blender in my head. Oh, and there’s this from Perry and the Travelers. Enjoy!

Eating As It Relates To Exercise & Fitness: Outline For My December 9 Workshop…

This is the outline for my December 9 workshop on Eating As It Relates To Fitness & Exercise, to take place at the Nederland Community Center.

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Sustainability

Regardless of what methods a person chooses to lose weight, add muscle, or better condition themselves as athletes, unless that person chooses a path of sustainability, any progress made will be temporary. This workshop has several agenda points:

  • To share thoughts on eating as it relates to exercise, which are sustainable.
  • To help avoid choosing extreme means.
  • To help avoid trend hopping.
  • To provide practical advice which is relevant, and has been proven to work.

The Math Of Calories

Per Hour: Calories burned per hour are dependent on several variables; level of daily activity, relative muscle mass, BMR (basil metabolic rate) An average woman in her late 40s burns roughly 1700 calories per day, or roughly 70 calories per hour.

While Asleep: While sleeping, the same woman will burn calories at a slightly lower rate – approximately 10% fewer. So in an 8 hour sleep, she will still be using 500 calories worth of energy.

Don’t Eat After 6pm (wrong answer): So if a person does not eat after 6pm, and has breakfast at 8am or later the following day, that person is going more than 50% of the day without ingesting necessary fuel, though a majority of her overall calorie burning will take place between dinner and breakfast. That math does not add up. Not only is it okay to eat a snack later in the evening or prior to bed, it is recommended.

Skipping Meals

Skipping meals is among the most common methods people use to lose weight. This may work for some in the short-term, but rarely is this a sustainable option.

Hibernation theory in a nutshell: It’s simple; if you are not bringing calories into your body on a regular basis, your brain sends a signal your body to slow down the metabolic process. It senses fewer opportunities to take in fuel, thus it conserves what it’s given, and also slows down the use of stored fuel (body fat) as an energy source. When the body gets fuel on a more regular basis, the metabolic process is heightened, maximized, and more efficient with using stored ingested fuel as a form of energy, rather than storing it as body fat.

Quick Eating Ideas

Meatloaf: In the past I have relied on meatloaf to get me through some of the busier times in my life. Meatloaf is a vague term, and isn’t always associated with healthy eating. However, when the right ingredients are used, not only can meatloaf be healthy and support an exercise lifestyle, it can be convenient and also support a busy lifestyle. In busier times, I will make two bison or turkey meatloaves on a weekend afternoon. After they cool, I cut each one into 7 slices, wrap them in cellophane, and put them in the freezer. I then have 14 meals available for the taking. Paired up with a small premade salad and/or a piece of fruit, a slice of meatloaf can be filling, nutritionally fulfilling, and balanced.

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Coffee Creamer Protein Powder: I am not a huge fan of drinking meals vs. eating them. There is much data to suggest that drinking meals regularly has a negative impact on the metabolic process. There is as much data though, that suggests skipping meals is worse. I will acknowledge that in today’s busier than ever lifestyle, there are times when drinking calories and nutrients may be a person’s best option. For those busy on-the-go mornings, and for those who don’t like to eat breakfast, a reasonable alternative is a scoop of protein powder in your morning coffee in place of creamer.

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I won’t suggest here what types of protein powders are better – please message me privately if I can help. I only offer that a scoop of protein powder stirred into your morning coffee rather than creamer, can add flavor and provide needed calories after your overnight fast. Accompanied by a piece of fruit, this might not be ideal compared to a prepared meal. However, for active people this will serve you much better than skipping breakfast or grabbing a muffin on the go.

Cold Oatmeal Stored In Containers: Like the meatloaf, pre-making large amounts of oatmeal and storing it in plastic containers in the refrigerator carries a level of convenience. Cold oatmeal may not sound appetizing, but it actually has the consistency of bread pudding, and isn’t messy if you eat it while driving.

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Frozen Meals: Chemical additives notwithstanding, for their convenience, taste, nutritional balance, and expense, frozen meals such as Lean Cuisines, can be a useful tool in calorie management. The arguments against these, relative to the person’s goals, rarely hold up with me. Additives, GMOs, blah blah blah. If the goal is calorie management, its’ hard to go wrong with a balanced frozen meal, and a piece of fruit for lunch or dinner.

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Exercise Recovery

Eating for workout recovery is often misunderstood. I’ll start by suggesting that post workout eating should be relative to the workout itself. What to eat for recovery matters much more for hardcore athletes than for those chasing weight loss or general fitness. Protein is perpetually touted as the best nutrient for workout recovery.

To an extent this is true, but there is no need for immediacy here. Since rebuilding blood sugar and glycogen stores post-workout matter most, taking in simple sugars in small amounts after a workout can have a positive effect. I know many seasoned athletes, myself included, who go straight to the Gummy Bears after a session. Just a few will do the trick though.

Later, I will have a meal which will include an equal portion of protein and carbohydrate to further aid in exercise recovery. The carbohydrate is necessary in the utilization of the protein.

Protocols

There is no shortage of eating protocols being thrown about these days as being supreme. If any one protocol were truly supreme, no other would likely get results. Clearly this is not the case. Paleo, Low-fat, Mediterranean, Eating Right For Your Type, Low-carb, and High-protein diets among many others all have one thing in common; they are centered around calorie management.

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With the truth being in the middle, calorie management and portion control, not the specific protocol, matter more.

I know of no eating scheme that provides for unlimited quantities of any food group, with the exception of green vegetables. When it comes to eating protocols, what matters most is picking one and sticking with it. My own suggested eating protocol for fitness and wellness can be referred to as – The Balanced Diet.

I don’t think it’s farfetched to suggest that including modest amounts of protein, carbohydrates, right fats, and simple sugars into one’s daily eating scheme would doing anything other than to promote health and fitness. To eliminate any of these suggests that nature is ignorant and we are superior.

In fact, a balanced diet based on portion control and calorie management is often overlooked by people as they jump from trend to trend, subscribing to any or all of them for the short-term, and none for the long-term.

In fitness, as in life, the answers are often right before our eyes. We miss so much when we look beyond simplicity in search of magic. Be well… rc

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Please check back in a few weeks to see what happens when I hit the STOP button on the blender in my head.  Oh, and there’s this from the John Fairhurst Band.  Enjoy…

Downshift…

Preying for change…

I’ll begin this by stating in clear terms; I have no problem with the killing of, or the eating of animals.  So long as those animals have been raised humanely by organic methods, or have been caught in the wild by methods which will not significantly reduce populations or threaten the species, I’m good with it.  Man has been eating other animals almost from the beginning, as animals have also been eating other animals, including man.  All who are born, are born as a potential snack.

What I can no longer do, what I am no longer willing to accept, is to eat animals raised inhumanely, sustained callously, and slaughtered brutally.  Between the callousness of their surroundings, the hormones and antibiotics they are reared with, and within the filth they are raised in, high volume animal farming is something I can no longer support.

Shake up in the cabinet…

As I have cleared the last of my farmed meat from my freezer; beef, chicken, pork, and shrimp, and as I have used my last egg given by a caged chicken,  I now begin a process that will have me obtaining most of my protein from plant-based sources – even if those sources contain GMOs.  I would rather eat genetically modified soy curd, than an inhumanely raised chicken, or farmed or threatened fish. Or to put it more succinctly, I would rather have more GMOs in my diet, than OMGs.

As I can access and afford it, I will also include protein derived from un-caged chickens, unchained dairy cows, grass-fed and humanely slaughtered beef, bison, and whatever game and fish I catch, or my friends are willing to provide to me.

This is not a stand against eating Bambi.  If Bambi is in the right place at his wrong time, and ends up on my dinner table, I ‘m down.  This is a stand for how I believe we should conduct ourselves as a species, and as the stewards of this planet.  I am no longer willing to accept the way many corporations raise, slaughter, distribute, and market animal food sources.

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Guess who is coming to dinner…?

Sensationally speaking…

I understand the video below is social media sensationalism at its best.  I also understand that it’s real – nothing seen in it has been contrived.  These, and similar methods of animal processing are all around us, and have been for decades.  It is only social media that has many of us seeing red for the first time, over seeing red for the first time.  Seeing this video was simply the final push I needed to take this personal stand I have been on the verge of for more than a decade, but have selfishly resisted.

Judge Not, Roy Bean…

In this decision I am not passing judgment on anyone else, nor am I advocating similar actions by others.  The complexity of our food system – of our society has expanded to a point where answers and truths can no longer be established by outside sources.  In this era of increasing complexity, I truly believe that the best answers and the best truths we can depend on must come from within.

Sadly, people are certain to judge me on this decision.  There will be jokes cracked, social media friendships threatened, more than a few snickers.  That’s on them, not on me.  Though I don’t believe I will waiver on this, as I have not wavered on not owning a vehicle, I certainly won’t attempt to predict the future – I consistently suck at it.

 Restaurant not impossible…

Though I expect making these changes might offer some challenges in the beginning, I’m not too concerned about the adaptation process.  My weak link though, will be in restaurants. I eat out often, sometimes several times a day.  Most everything I eat in restaurants I have deemed acceptable until now.  That definition has changed.

Most of what I order in restaurants has been chicken or egg based.  My friends may roll their eyes as I add tofu or textured vegetable protein to a garden salad at the local diner.  Perhaps not as much if I just thrown a little ground bison that salad, and call it good.  We shall see.  Regardless, eating out will need to be modified.

Did somebody tell me that the restaurant chain, Chipotle, offers tofu...?

Did somebody tell me that the restaurant chain, Chipotle, offers tofu…?

The hustle to keep up the muscle…

Lastly, as a lifelong weightlifter, bodybuilder, and weekend athlete, I have raised myself to be the ultimate carnivore.  I have eaten red meat most every day of my adult life, often by the pound, with a belief that animal protein, beef in particular, is a requirement for strength, energy, and forging a tasty aesthetic.  This is going to be tested to be sure, since my bodybuilding aspirations remain intact.

If my strength, energy, and aesthetic suffer for a lack of feedlot beef, farmed fish, and caged eggs, my soul certainly will not suffer.  In these days, and in these times, my interest lies much more with soul-building than with bodybuilding.  Be well… rc

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Please check back in two weeks to see what happens when I push the “stop” button on the blender in my head.  Oh, and there is this by The Alabama Shakes. Enjoy…

Guilty, I am…

Now what…

So you did it.  You finally got there.  Congratulations!  You are lean – in the best aesthetic shape of your life.  You ate clean.   You worked out like a person possessed.  You sacrificed, you pushed, and it shows.  You have abs, you have obliques, and you now have the ass of 12-year old boy.  Now what…?

You might not have considered this on your way to the heart of Nude Jacked City, but getting lean means more than just being in the best aesthetic shape of your life.  As you stand down from your quest, add calories back into your diet, cut back on your exercise, and allow body fat to increase, take note that, “the best shape of your life” was then, not now. 

Less than your best…

At any given moment, unless you choose to be in peak form once again, you will forever more be in less than your best shape – aesthetically speaking.  How you will you be able to handle that, emotionally speaking…?   

Be warned: no longer being in your best shape may not be a comfortable place to dwell for the rest of your life, though different folks do handle this in different ways. 

Some I know have dealt with this extremely well – they are not driven nor motivated by the Madison Avenue body garbage we have been fed for so many years in TV and magazine ads. They don’t bow to ill-conceived social pressure.  They recognize that being that lean didn’t come naturally or easily for them, and thus they had no expectations of a long-term lean status.

Many realize their body, and brain function better with a few more calories added in, and a little more body fat evenly distributed about their frame – even if that translates to a size or two increase with their clothing.  Yes, they miss the definition, but they LOVE the energy.  They still workout, they still eat better than 99% of the nation, and they appreciate what they have, rather than long for what they don’t have.

For others though, for most I’ll suggest, not being in their all-time best condition is a hard pill to swallow, ongoing.  As their clothes become a bit snug, as their faces round out a bit, and as the compliments from others that often go with being lean minimize, their self-esteem gets cloudy if not stormy.  Guilty I am. 

Some will go as far as to alter their social settings for fear of judgment that they are not at their best any longer, despite that they are still ahead of the game.  They may avoid the beach, pool parties, or any place that might require one to wear minimal clothing.  They will wear larger, and baggier clothing to hide behind.  Guilty I am.

A fine line that ain't so easy to navigate...

A fine line that ain’t so easy to navigate…

 

Some modify the activities they choose to participate in, for similar reasons.  They change the patterns of their life; when they go to the gym, the grocery store, or they do errands at different times of the day so they’re not seen in such poor condition.  This is all due to a self-generated perception which most outsiders never notice or even are aware of.  Guilty I am.

All of this due to just a few extra pounds, when most of the world still sees them as being in excellent shape.  Guilty I am.

Face it, we seek our flaws first.  When one has spent months seeing those “flaws” minimize, and ultimately disappear, seeing them return, and getting good with them is no easy experience.  Guilty I am.

Sustainability in condition…

Make the distinction between getting lean, and staying lean.  I will argue that most people have it in them to get lean.  However, being in peak condition with single digit body fat, for most, is not sustainable in the long-term.  Those you know, or know of, who are that lean year round, are fortunate, but I’ll suggest they are also rare.  People who are that lean year round are likely the product of a superior genetic predisposition, though this not to suggest they don’t work at it also. 

The guilt of failure…

It isn’t really failure though, it’s realism.  I have been unlean much more than I have been lean in my life, but again, this is a relative term.  Unlean doesn’t mean unfit.  It means balanced.  Dieting to get extremely lean is the Siberia of living; it’s a cold, bleak place, and there little joy there.

I will close this with a quote from an online friend who is also a fitness professional.  This was her response to a question I posed to her regarding being lean:

“As a fitness professional I’ll be honest with you. When I was at 12% body fat my cardiologist was so proud of me for being in shape, but I was crying out to her for help. I had not had my cycle in over 6 months. I told her this and she only advised me to take a pregnancy test. I knew that was NOT the issue! Shredded for women is just not a healthy, sustainable look for the woman who wants to be a vibrant member of the community, an active mother, a loving wife etc.

I don’t know how you can get to that stage and keep the energy levels adequate for living life. I want to be strong, vibrant, energetic, and healthy. I like my muscle “tone” ugh, hate that word! But I have decided that I’m not ready at this point to drain all my energy into a temporary look.”

My advice…

I have spent years telling people who truly desire to be lean, and who are willing to put in the work that they have a responsibility to get there at least once, just to experience the feeling of being there.  These days I’m more cautious about that suggestion.  For some, it may do more long-term damage than good.  Guilty I am…  Be well.  rc

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Please check back in 2 weeks to see what happens when I push the “stop” button on the blender in my head.  Oh, and there is little piece of ambient love from Yo  La Tengo.  Enjoy!

A Room Full Of Words…

The Mix

As a fitness trainer I’m fortunate to have such a variety of clients in my current rotation.  On a given week I will work on balance and flexibility with some silver haired folks.   I will aid clients my age who are interested in maximizing their functional fitness, that they live more active and more productive lives.  I will work with weight-loss clients who are trying to improve their overall health, appearance and confidence.  I will also work with a few prep athletes helping them with their strength and conditioning, and enabling them to perform better and stay injury free in their respective sports.

With such a variety in clients in a week’s time, my studio walls will also be witness to a variety of personalities and conversations.  The personalities are often strong, the conversations rarely dull, and I am richer for the discourse.  It works best when the client can talk and exercise at the same time, or restrict the conversation to the short breaks I allow in-between sets.  If the workout begins to take a back seat to the conversation, I just tap a bench with my finger tip, point to a weight, or look in the direction of a yoga mat and without interrupting the client, they will know to continue the workout.  They are all well-oiled machines.

Different Genders, Different Subjects

There are many subjects which get discussed in my studio each day.  Most men like to talk about seasonal sports.  As a sports fan I enjoy and look forward to these conversations.  I can actively contribute to them, even if I might disagree with the client’s stance or allegiance to a player or team.  Of all the sports conversations, football and golf tend to dominate.  That works for me since they are my two favorite sports.  Once football season is over, some sessions go completely silent for a while.  It’s like a black hole exists, post-football, where there is just nothing to talk about.  Then, a mass killing will take place somewhere, a tornado will toss a mid-western town down the highway a bit, or some senator will bag a 19 year old girl while his wife is in the next room, and the conversations start up again.

When football season is over Bill, age 69, and I have less to talk about. Then, I just mention Obama, and he pushes 135 pounds around in perfect form like it’s nothing…

Most women like to discuss shopping.  When the subject of shopping comes up, I’m more an active listener than participant.  Often times when shopping is discussed, I make lots of mental notes.  However, if the subject of shopping goes on too long, I listen to my client like my dog listens to me; I pretend to pay attention, but am more interested in the fly orbiting the half eaten orange on the other side of the room.  Still, I learn a lot during shopping discussions with my female clients, in a getting to know the enemy kind of way.

Food And Cancer

Of all the subjects which get discussed each week in my studio, two lead the way; food and cancer.

Cancer is discussed because it’s everywhere, all the time, and directly or indirectly affects everybody.  These are rarely bright conversations.  Discussing the cancer of friends, loved ones, and even the clients themselves can be heavy and a bit draining.  The positive aspect I try to retrieve from such conversations is to just be grateful for my own health and abilities on a given day.

Countless conversations of cancer have laid a solid groundwork in my psyche to help me prepare me for some variation of cancer which might afflict me some day.  Maybe it’s wrong to go through life with a it’s not a matter of if, but a matter of when attitude.  However, daily discussions of cancer with clients through the years have placed me well into that state of thinking.

I find it interesting that whether they are 15 years old, or 89, all of my clients have brought up the subject of cancer at one time or another – all of them.

Food is the other topic which serves to nourish my day in conversation.  Though I make my living touting a healthy lifestyle, not all food discussions in my studio are about broccoli, grass-fed beef, and keeping processed foods minimal.  Yes, there is much discussed about healthy recipes, resources, tools, and motivation to eat well, and my studio is a great redistribution center for all healthy eating information.  There is much also much spoken of cheat days, where the best pizza places are, decadent desserts, and beyond.

In conversations of eating, I am a contributor to the healthy as well as the not-so-healthy of it all.  I sometimes feel myself cringe when I recommend Bronx Pizza to a weight-loss client, but that doesn’t stop me from doing it – Bronx Pizza is the bomb!  Moderation, I remind them, moderation.   Whether it’s on healthy eating, or the best dessert and martini combination in San Diego, food gets discussed literally ever hour in my studio.

I find it interesting that whether they are 15 years old, or 89, all of my clients have brought up the subject of food at one time or another – both healthy foods, and the not-so-healthy.

Though they gather more attention than all other topics combined, food and cancer are rarely spoken of together, or from the same root.  There is probably a connection there somewhere, and I may explore that connection in a future essay.

Conversations Over Crunches Redux

I once had a rule that no words be spoken in my gym unless they related to the workout itself; that if one is speaking, one can’t give supreme effort in an exercise, and I was all about supreme effort by my clients. I also had a rule about friendship with clients, or a lack thereof. As my client base has changed through the years, those rules have also changed, and conversation has become central to the experience.

I am blessed and wiser for these conversations over crunches. Since I still like to see strong effort by my clients, if the talking ever does get out of hand, I just increase the weights they are using and render them unable to speak. It’s good to be king.  Be well. rc