Weight loss and aging: Changes to your diet that make it easier (Part 2)

Losing weight is tough. Add a slowing metabolism, lean muscle loss, and a changing hormonal landscape to the equation and it gets even tougher. Last week, in Part 1 of this series, we went into why weight loss gets more difficult with age.

This week in Part 2, we’re going to discuss how the obstacles associated with age can be overcome with simple changes to your diet.

1) Become a weight loss marathoner

When you’re young, you approach weight loss as a series of sprints. Summer is coming, you lose ten pounds. Your best friend is getting married, you lose ten pounds. But winter rolls around and the shoes come off after the final dance and the weight goes right back on.

Your young body – being the well-oiled, high performance machine that is – responds to this kind of treatment because it can. So, you go through your twenties and most of your thirties learning the bad habits of yoyo dieting.

When you reach the tail end of your thirties, you begin to notice your tried and true diet strategies aren’t working as well as they used to. When you hit 40, they stop working all together.

You can’t be a diet sprinter anymore. After 40, your mindset has to change to that of a marathoner. When you’re older, it’s about doing the little things right day after day. It’s about baby steps. It’s about lifestyle change for the long haul.

2) No more late meals

People used to think that a calorie was a calorie no matter when you consumed it. And that the only thing that mattered for weight loss was calories in versus calories out. Research is changing people’s minds.

In 2013, researchers tested the effect of meal timing on weight loss. 420 people all at the same amount, they slept the same amount, and they exercised the same. The only thing that was different between the two groups in the study was the timing of their major meal of the day. One group ate it before 3 p.m. and the other ate it after 3 p.m. The group eating their major meal before 3 p.m. lost more weight than the group that ate their major meal after 3 p.m.

Another study looked at the effects of meal timing in healthy women. The participants in the study who ate lunch after 4:30 p.m. had a lower basal metabolic rate and glucose tolerance compared to the women in the study who ate their lunch at 1 p.m.

When you eat late – anywhere between dinner and bedtime – food consumed is more likely to be stored as fat.

Why this happens could have something to do with evolution. For our primal ancestors, food was scarce. Those who were able to store energy more efficiently would better be able to survive when food wasn’t available. Storing energy as fat is the most efficient way to store energy. One gram of fat holds 9 kcal of energy. Comparatively, one gram of protein or carbohydrates only holds 4 kcal of energy. These ancestors likely also ate in the evening under the cover and safety of darkness.

Those among our ancestors that ate in the evening and stored most of the food they consumed as fat had an evolutionary advantage, which means they survived to have offspring. We are descended from those offspring and have acquired the traits that made it possible for them to survive.

Another reason why eating late meals is associated with weight gain and difficulty losing weight has to do with the types of food eaten. People tend to crave sweet and salty in the evening, which tend to be higher in calories.

3) Meal quantities should change with age

With increasing age, eat less more frequently.

Large meals overwhelm the digestive system. You feel bloated as your body struggles to process what you just crammed into your stomach and blood sugar goes up and down like a roller coaster, dragging your energy levels and your mood along behind it. The bigger the meal, the bigger the crash afterwards. The bigger the crash, the more you’re going to crave sugary snacks to get you through the day.

As your body ages, the effects of large meals on the body is compounded.

Small meals less often stabilizes your blood sugar – indirectly your mood and energy as well – and maintains fatty acids in the blood at a constant level.

It also makes it easier to get all the nutrients you need in a day. One study conducted at the Queen Margaret’s University College of Edinbugh showed people who ate small meals more frequently on a regular basis ate healthier. The people in the study ate more fruits and vegetables and had higher levels of vitamin C and other nutrients than the participants who stuck to eating the traditional breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

4) What you eat matters

As you age, focus on consuming more protein and plants and less saturated fats.

Losing lean muscle is a problem with age, which makes adequate protein consumption to facilitate protein synthesis incredibly important.

Most animal fats are saturated and are solid at room temperature because they have a higher melting point than unsaturated fats. Foods high in saturated fats that should be avoided are products such as cream, cheese, butter, whole milk dairy products, and fatty meats. Coconut oil and palm kernel oil are two plant products that are high in saturated fats.

Fats from plants and fish tend to be unsaturated and better for you. These are the ones you want in your diet as you age.

Sources and further reading

Why eating late at night may be particularly bad for you and your diet

Why eating little and often is best

“Weight Loss After 40” – Isagenix podcast

 

4 common paths to entrepreneurship

Given the modern economic reality of our time, more people are deciding to go it alone and start their own business.

Some people do it because they have spent years training and becoming educated only to find the “job” they thought was waiting for them doesn’t actually exist.

Others do it because the 9 to 5 grind simply doesn’t work for them and they would rather spend their time creating or working with something that they love and feel passionate about.

Still others want to create a work schedule that fits them and their own life goals.

There are many reasons to want to go out on your own. No matter what your motivation is, you can start today. Tomorrow is the place where dreams go to never come to fruition.

Here are 4 common paths to entrepreneurship and why multi-level marketing is the best one.

1) Start from scratch

Starting your business from scratch means your starting at the ground level. Floor one. No one knows who you are or what you’re doing until you speak up.

From scratch means you scrape together seed capital (the initial funding used to begin creating a business or a new product) and begin by telling the world what you are up to by advertising, marketing, and word of mouth.

Then, you work your bag off. You sink fifteen hours a day, six or seven days a week into making your new business work.

It can be very exciting – you’re creating something brand new and you’re challenging your business acumen against many others who are already established. Some people thrive in this environment. Many perish.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 80% of business with employees survive their first year. After that, the number steadily decreases. 70% survive the second year, 50% survive year 5, and 30% survive year 10.

2) Buy a going concern

Another path to entrepreneurship is to buy a going concern.

A going concern is an accounting term. It means that the company is doing well, and it has the resources to continue operating indefinitely until it provides evidence to the contrary.

Buying a franchise or buying an already established business are both ways to buy a going concern.

The main reasons acquiring a going concern fail are because of a lack of adequate funding, because a business plan isn’t prepared, or because of a lack of teamwork.

While many people say they want to run their own business, there are comparatively fewer that are willing to put their money where their mouth is when it comes time to making the business work.

Running a business requires organization, promotion, and risk management. Managing risks requires management and marketing skills and, above all else, commitment. If you’re risking a significant amount of capital, whether its from your savings or from borrowing against your assets, you need to be sure you have the experience, knowledge, personal traits, and the habits you need to succeed.

Even a company that is doing well can falter under new management. The initial excitement that comes with owning a business of your own can carry you passed some obstacles, but just because a business is a going concern when you purchase it, doesn’t mean it will remain so.

3) Start a new concern with a partner

Starting a business with a partner can be rewarding. It can also be a huge drag and damaging to the relationship.

The most successful, rewarding partnerships occur when each member has skills or knowledge that the other lacks. When this balance doesn’t exist, the relationship has a higher probability of becoming toxic, as one partner may begin to feel like they are shouldering most of the weight of the new business and the other is just along for the ride.

4) Multi-level marketing

Many people do not consider themselves to be business savvy, a marketing mogul, or have an original, creative idea they feel could turn into a legitimate business. Many of these people, however, still dream of working for themselves and starting a successful endeavor of their own.

Multi-level marketing is yet another path to entrepreneurship, and it may be the most enticing one.

Multi-level marketing (also known as network marketing) is a business model. It is a strategy used by some direct sales companies that encourages existing distributors to recruit new distributors. New recruits become part of the distributor’s “downline” and a percentage of the recruit’s sales are given to the distributor that recruited them.

Multi-level marketing is easier than starting a business from scratch, it doesn’t require the initial capital that purchasing a going concern does, and it comes without the risks of starting a new venture with a partner.

This path to entrepreneurship is attractive because you don’t have to start at the bottom and go into it alone. You start your own business with a product that has proven brand recognition and has programs that provide information on finding people, how to sponsor them, and how to train them.

Multi-level marketing is somewhat like buying a franchise, but without the 20,000 to 200,000-dollar initial investment that purchasing a franchise often requires.

But that doesn’t mean you don’t need any investment at all. It’s just not as substantial as a franchise. You still need to invest in the product for use and for demonstration.

With multi-level marketing you are going into business for yourself. You are the Chairman of the Board. That means you need to make a financial investment in the product and a personal investment in your recruits. The more involved you are, the more likely you are to find others who are willing to make the same commitment that you did.

Being personally invested in the company and the idea of owning your own business is the only way to become successful with multi-level marketing. The people who go into it thinking it’s a way to easy success and wealth often become disillusioned, quit, and tarnish the industry as a whole.

Sources and further reading

Network Marketing Success for Everyone – Lyle Manery

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A step-by-step guide to healthy eating and weight loss for 2019

According to Inc.com, 60% of us make New Year’s resolutions. The most common ones all involve dieting or eating healthier (71%), exercising more (65%), and losing weight (54%).

The unfortunate truth revealed from this survey of 2,000 people: only 8% are successful in achieving their New Year’s resolution and over half of respondents fail their resolution by January 31.

Why do most resolutions fail?

I don’t think it’s because people don’t actually want to succeed, or they lack the discipline or drive.

I think it has more to do with not knowing how to get from point A to point B (point A being where you are now and point B being where you want to be in the future).

Without a definitive plan for success, your chances of failure sky rocket.

Healthy Wheys is a website dedicated to living a happier, healthier life. I want to help you be the best version of you there is.

Considering my goals and the most common New Year’s resolutions, I want to increase your chances of success with you New Year’s resolution this year.

I’m going to give you a step-by-step guide on getting from point A to point B.

What follows is a detailed eating plan that will have you eating healthier and losing weight in 2019.

The science behind everything in this article

The meal plans you’ll find here are based on the science of intermittent fasting in combination with calorie restriction.

A study conducted in 2012 found that intermittent fasting and calorie restriction reduces body weight, decreases fat mass, decreases visceral fat, and improves many measures associated with heart health (i.e. LDL cholesterol measures, heart rate, insulin, and homocysteine).

The plan you’ll find in this article uses the same principles used in this study.

What you’re going to need

  • A good meal replacement shake

Meal replacement shakes are different than protein shakes.

To learn more about them, check out a previous article I wrote.

Meal replacement shakes have a good balance of protein, carbohydrates, dietary fiber, and essential vitamins and minerals. They can substitute an entire meal and not leave you feeling hungry and malnourished.

  • Nutritional supplements

A good nutritional supplement provides herbal and plant-based nourishment, contains ingredients that support mental and physical performance, adaptogens that help your body resist and adapt to stress, aids digestion, and boosts metabolism.

For a better idea of what you need here, please contact me.

  • Good sources of protein
    • Hamburger
    • Salmon
    • Grilled chicken
    • Steak
    • Pork chops
    • Meatballs
    • Haddock
    • Tofu
    • Eggs
    • Milk
    • Yogurt
    • Cottage cheese
    • Nuts and seeds

 

  • A supply of good fruits and vegetables
    • Spinach
    • Carrots
    • Broccoli
    • Garlic
    • Brussel sprouts
    • Kale
    • Green peas
    • Asparagus
    • Red cabbage
    • Sweet potatoes
    • Grapefruit
    • Pineapple
    • Avocado
    • Blueberries
    • Apples
    • Pomegranate
    • Mango
    • Strawberries
    • Cranberries

 

What you’re going to do

What follows is designed for a month: it’s a kickstart to healthy eating and weight loss that will get you on the right track. If you stick to it religiously, it will work. Just ask the people who took part in the study from 2012.

Here’s the broad outline of what your month should look like:

month meal calendar

Within the month, here’s what the perfect week looks like:

Day 1:

Wake up – Nutritional supplement

Breakfast – Meal replacement shake

Midmorning snack – yogurt (300g)

Lunch – meal replacement shake

Midafternoon snack – 1 piece of fruit

Dinner – bunless cheeseburger (100g) and 1 cup of spinach with pineapple salsa (50g)

Day 2:

Wake up – Nutritional supplement

Breakfast – Meal replacement shake

Midmorning snack – cottage cheese (200g)

Lunch – meal replacement shake

Midafternoon snack – almonds (25g)

Dinner – salmon (150g), 1 cup of steamed broccoli

Day 3 (Intermittent fasting day):

Wake up – Nutritional supplement

Breakfast – Nutritional supplement

Midmorning snack – 1 hard-boiled egg

Lunch – Nutritional supplement

Midafternoon snack – 1 piece of fruit

Dinner – Nutritional supplement and cottage cheese (200g)

Day 4:

Wake up – Nutritional supplement

Breakfast – Meal replacement shake

Midmorning snack – cashews (25g)

Lunch – meal replacement shake

Midafternoon snack – yogurt (300g)

Dinner – steak (150g) and 1 cup of mushrooms

Day 5:

Wake up – Nutritional supplement

Breakfast – Meal replacement shake

Midmorning snack – 1 piece of fruit

Lunch – meal replacement shake

Midafternoon snack – 1 piece of fruit

Dinner – pork chops (150g) and 1 cup of red cabbage

Day 6:

Wake up – Nutritional supplement

Breakfast – Meal replacement shake

Midmorning snack – yogurt (300g)

Lunch – meal replacement shake

Midafternoon snack – pecans (25g)

Dinner – haddock (340g) and 1 cup of green peas

Day 7:

Wake up – Nutritional supplement

Breakfast – Meal replacement shake

Midmorning snack – 1 hard-boiled egg

Lunch – meal replacement shake

Midafternoon snack – cottage cheese (200g)

Dinner – meatballs (200g) and 1 cup of brussel sprouts

Conclusion

It’s much easier to be disciplined and achieve success when you know exactly what it takes to get there. I want to give you the best chance of succeeding in 2019. I’d hate to see you join the 50% of people that give up on their resolution by January 31. Jump starting your nutrition and weight loss goals with the meal plan I’ve outlined will bring you roaring into 2019 like no other year.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sources and further reading

10 Top New Year’s Resolutions for Success and Happiness in 2019

Intermittent fasting combined with calorie restriction is effective for weight loss and cardio-protection in obese women

4 things I would tell my twenty-year-old self about money

There are things you only learn with time. For many, personal finance is one of those things.

Maybe it’s the arrogance of youth that causes you to brush off advice about money from your parents and grandparents, or maybe there are just certain life experiences you need to have before you can really grasp things like, how much money it’s going to cost to retire.

Whatever the case is, here are 4 things I’d tell my twenty-year-old self about money. Because maybe I’d have heeded the advice if it came from my own mouth (but, probably not).

1. Start putting money away

This is one I remember hearing a few times. Once when I was 18 from an uncle who said, “Just start, doesn’t matter how small it is. Twenty bucks a month. Just start a savings account and start putting just a smidgeon of your pay cheque in there every month.”

Of course, I brushed the advice off.

But wow is it good advice. Simple and so true.

The greatest financial resource a person has is time. Compound interest is an absolute force of nature (a force that can work for you or against you).

This is something you don’t really appreciate until you see the numbers first hand.

Investing for Dummies put together a cheat sheet where they broke down how much a person would have to save and invest to have 1 million dollars by the time you are 65. The numbers are based on assumptions of a 10% return every year and starting with a savings of 0.

If you start saving when you are 20: You need to save $95.40 per month

If you start saving when you are 30: You need to save $263.40 per month

If you start saving when you are 40: You need to save $753.67 per month

If you start saving when you are 50: You need to save $2,412.72 per month

If you start saving when you are 60: You need to save $12,913.71 per month

Giving your money lots of time to incubate without being touched can change the concept of becoming a millionaire from a lofty dream – only attainable for the precious few – to something really manageable and attainable.

Setting up an automatic withdrawal of $95.40 to go directly into a savings account for investment every month when I was twenty is something I probably wouldn’t have even noticed.

2. You don’t need to be rich to start investing

I spent most of my life up to this point thinking you need to have a ton of money before you can start investing and dabbling in things like the stock market.

Turns out that is just false.

Yes, you may need larger sums of money to make a lot of money investing. But it is completely possible to start small and use it as a way to start making your money work for you (a little thing called passive income – check out another article I wrote for different ideas to generate passive income).

Getting into investing young is great for two reasons:

First, it is a way of saving money that will get you an average yearly return on investment better than what you can expect from a regular tax-free savings account.

There is some risk involved, of course. But you can set yourself up with a relatively low risk portfolio using some of the tools I’ll mention shortly.

Second, starting small gets you learning about investments and getting comfortable with them. This way, when you reach a point in your life when there is regularly more money coming into your account, you’ll know what you’re doing and can really start to make some good money before retirement.

CNN put together a good article on how to get started with investments that serves as a good starting point if this is something you’re interested in. It covers where you should get your advice from, what you should be investing in, how much money you need to start investing, and how you physically make an investment.

3. Pay attention to what you’re spending your money on

Responsible spending is the bedrock of financial health, now and in the future.

The first step towards responsible spending is paying attention to what you’re spending your money on.

Try an experiment: track your purchases for a month. And be honest.

You’ll be surprised how much money you spend on little purchases you think are relatively innocuous at the time.

When I tried this, I was flabbergasted at how much money was going to app purchases, memberships to websites, and buying what I thought was just the occasional lunch.

Tracking your spending lets you see where you stand. It helps you identify areas in your life where you’re spending way more money than you should be. Twenty-year-old me spent way too much money on beer and entertainment. Way. Too. Much.

Here’s your perfect budget as an up and comer, according to Nerd Wallet.

50% of your income goes to necessities – these include rent, insurance, car payments, etc.

30% are for your wants – the dinners out, frivolous purchases, an Xbox… you get the idea

20% is for your future financial health – savings and investments

I could have made this budget work easily way back when if I had just stayed home even just one Saturday per month.

4. Get insurance

A simple fact of life: bad things happen to good people.

As a young man I fit into the category of the prototypical young person thinking that I was invincible.

People’s cars, apartments, and lockers got broken into but that wouldn’t happen to me.

Well twenty-year-old me, sometimes shit just happens. If you’re renting, get renters insurance.

It’s cheap and it covers things like break-ins, damage from a fire or severe weather, and the stuff in your car if your car gets broken into in the parking lot.

Also consider life and disability insurance. Much like investing and saving, the younger and healthier you are when you start, the cheaper it is and the more coverage you’ll have over time.

 

 

 

A guide to investing in your 30s [infographic]

Your thirties is a decade in your life when you really start planning for the future – you’re settling into your career, maybe you’ve met the “one”, kids might be on the horizon, and you’ve had your eye on that bungalow in the suburbs for some time now.

A big part of planning for the future means investing now.

If you’ve never thought about it before, don’t feel bad. Many people in their thirties are in the same spot as you.

This article is here to get you started thinking about investments and point you to some resources that will put you on the road to financial success.

healthy wheys corey munegatto isagenix kamloops

A guide to guaranteed income certificates

A guide to dividend-paying stocks

A guide to exchange-traded funds

Main source for the infographic

Further reading:

https://www.dummies.com/personal-finance/investing/investing-one-dummies-cheat-sheet/

https://blog.coastcapitalsavings.com/money-help/savings-investments/growing-money-20s-30s/

 

 

Functional Imagery Training (FIT) helps people lose 5X more weight: Here’s everything you need to know about FIT and how to use it

A new study published in the scientific journal: International Journal of Obesity showed that overweight people lost 5X more weight with Functional Imagery Training (FIT).

Basically, the researchers showed that some clever psychological techniques can help you lose weight. That psychological technique is FIT.

What’s really interesting is the study did not include any diet or physical activity advice. The only difference between the groups compared was their mental approach to weight loss. It’s a true testament to the power and importance of a good mindset in achieving your goals.

In this article you’ll find information on what FIT is and how you can start putting it to work for you.

What is Functional Imagery Training?

** The source material can be found here. Check it out to learn even more about FIT **

FIT is a technique that builds and maintains your motivation to achieve a goal using imagery. What separates FIT from other imagery techniques is what you focus on.

The technique was developed by Professor David Kavanagh at Queensland University of Technology in Australia and Professors Jackie Andrade and Jon May at Plymouth University in England. It’s based on a theory of motivation called Elaborated Intrusion Theory.

FIT is based on three core components: Imagery-based motivational interviewing, imagery-based relapse prevention, and functional imagery training.

  1. Imagery-based motivational interviewing

Imagery-based motivational interviewing has 6 goals:

  • Identify your behavioral weak spots

If your goal is weight loss, imagery-based motivational interviewing will help you identify some of your current behaviors that are inconsistent with achieving that goal.

Maybe you’re eating too much processed food, inadvertently binging on unhealthy snack foods while watching Game of Thrones, or having a “cheat day” more often than you even realize… whatever the case may be, imagery-based motivational interviewing will help you identify your behavioral discrepancies.

  • Build motivation 

By imagining how behavioral change will positively benefit you, you are able to visualize how change will bring you closer to your ideal self.

This serves two purposes: First, it builds excitement and motivation. Second, it gives you’re a vision of what achieving your goal would actually look like, which makes it easier to achieve.

  • Create a strategy

Having goals is great, but you’re never going to get anywhere without a plan.

Part of imagery-based motivational interviewing is figuring out exactly how your going to get from point A to point B: from where you are now to where you want to be. FIT helps you learn to visualize each step.

  • Break your goal down into bite-size pieces

Sub-goals are mile markers on your way to your imaginary destination: your goal. You learn sub-goals with FIT by imagining the benefits of change over the next few days or weeks.

  • Build confidence

Confidence is built with FIT by imagining successes you’ve experienced in the past, creating a plan for obstacles you’ll encounter on the road to your goal, and integrating strategies that have worked for you in the past into your plan.

  • Get you to commit

The goals of the first core component of FIT training help you identify problem areas and develop a plan for success. A side-product of these exercises is the commitment it helps you establish to your goal.

  1. Imagery-based relapse prevention

Imagery-based relapse prevention has 5 goals:

  • Brainstorm what’s going to get in your way

Obstacles are inevitable and out of your control. They’re easier to overcome if you’re prepared for them.

  • Imagine yourself overcoming obstacles

Identify ways obstacles can be overcome using strategies you already know how to use and imagine them working for you on your way to your goal.

  • Use the cravings buster exercise

The cravings buster exercise helps train you to switch your attention from craving imagery to goal imagery. Find out more about it and how to use it here.

  • Celebrate your successes

Inevitably there will be obstacles; similarly, there are guaranteed successes to be experienced (no matter how small they may be).

The second core component helps you bring attention to those successes and incorporate their memory into your plan.

  • Practice

Conquering obstacles on your way to achieving your goal is like fighting the mythical medusa: no matter how many heads you cut off (the heads being obstacles conquered in this analogy) there is always one more to grow back in its place.

Obstacles are going to keep getting in your way. The only way to get passed is to keep conquering them again and again.

FIT prepares you for this by continually anticipating risky situations and using imagery to develop and rehearse coping strategies.

  1. Functional Imagery Training

Components 1 and 2 are designed to help you develop emotionally-charged imagery of your goal and your path towards it using all your senses.

Core component 3 (Functional imagery training) is where the rubber meets the road. It has 1 main goal:

  • Make your imagery practice automatic

This is done by pairing imagery with an everyday behavioral cue (e.g. washing your hands, climbing the stairs, etc.).

At first you’re going to have to consciously think about the association. I’m washing my hands now… oh right, I’m supposed to visualize achieving my goal… and repeat.

Eventually this will become habit. Without and conscious effort you’ll soon be imagining your success every time you turn the tap on.

How to incorporate FIT into your life

There’s plenty of resources about FIT available if you want to learn more about it and start practicing it on Plymouth University’s website.

A quicker approach is probably lying in your hand right now.

The psychologists who developed FIT have also created a mobile app that helps you work towards your goals using multisensory imagery. It’s called Goal in Mind.

It’s a tool that allows you to practice imagery and boost your confidence without constant practitioner input.

I have an Android phone and the download worked perfectly. I’m assuming it will work well for Apple users too.

How the app works:

Its really easy and straightforward:

Download the app and Goal in Mind will take you to a screen asking you to set your goal.

It then allows you to pick and store images that represent your goal and related behaviors, gives you access to guided imagery and mindfulness sessions, and allows you to track your practice and goal progress.

Practice regularly and you could experience some of the benefits of FIT in achieving your goals.

Give it a try and let me know how it works for you in the comments section!

Sources and further reading:

https://www.plymouth.ac.uk/research/psychology/functional-imagery-training – for more information about FIT and how to use it.

https://www.nature.com/articles/s41366-018-0122-1 – the published journal arcticle.

 

Lifestyle and supplement hacks to boost mental performance

Your mental state has a huge impact on your performance. This holds true in life, in sport, and in your regular day-to-day workouts. Fortunately, your mind – much like any muscle in your body – can be trained.

Training your mind for success is just as important as any other facet of exercise physiology. If you’re not in an optimal mental state, your performance will suffer. If your performance suffers, you’re not going to see the results you want. It’s that simple.

This article is going give you a little bit of background about how psychology influences performance, then it will follow with some mental performance tips taken straight out of sport psychology and provide some information about a few natural ingredients that help boost mental performance.

How psychology influences performance

healthy wheys corey munegatto isagenix kamloops

Psychological research strongly suggests your mental state plays a vital role in performance – positively and negatively. Psychological factors that impact performance are things like stress, anxiety, and tension.

1) Stress

Stress is a physical, mental, or emotional demand that takes the body or mind out of its comfort zone. Stress operates on a continuum: no stress isn’t good (if there is no challenge you cannot grow and develop), some stress is good (every person has their own optimal amount of stress), and too much stress is bad (the circumstances become overwhelming and you cannot perform).

2) Anxiety

Anxiety is a disturbed state of mind that includes physical symptoms – such as trembling, twitching, feelings of fullness in the throat or chest, feeling jumpy – and emotional symptoms – restlessness, worrying, irritability, among many others.

Much like general stress, some anxiety is good since it helps sharpen the attention. Too much or too little anxiety, however, and your performance suffers.

3) Tension

Tension is the physical manifestation of the internal mental state. Tension can be created by too much stress and anxiety. If you’re conflicted, overstressed, or overanxious it is reflected in your appearance or behavior as some, or all, of your muscles are in a partially contracted state. You lose fluidity in your movements making everything much more difficult as muscles combat one another across your joints.

As mentioned, stress and anxiety exist on a continuum. Too much or too little hurts performance. Like Goldy Locks, you need just the right amount.

The next section will provide you with a few tips to optimize your mental state.

Tips for boosting mental performance

healthy wheys corey munegatto isagenix kamloops

1) Goal-setting

It’s easy to set goals that exacerbate stress, anxiety, and tension rather than optimize them. Goals that do this are lofty, vague, and unrealistic.

An example of a bad goal would be for me to say, “I want to cut 20% of my body fat.”

Yes, it may be attainable with a lot of hard work and dedication, but it sets me up for unnecessary mental anguish as it is just too much to work for all at one time.

Goals should be designed in small, achievable increments. A better goal would be for me to say, “I’m going to lose 1% body fat every week.”

Another important facet of goal-setting is breaking down the goal into a game plan. How exactly are you going to turn it into a reality? What are you going to do every day? What do you have to add? What do you have to sacrifice?

Goal-setting like this breaks down stress and anxiety into bite-size pieces and prevents them from becoming overwhelming. It also shifts your perspective to the process rather than the end goal, allowing you to build confidence as you work towards your ultimate end-point.

2) Routine

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Don’t underestimate the power of a good routine. Your brain finds comfort in the expected and the less brain-power you have to use thinking about what you are going to do next the more brain-power you’ll have to devote to your performance.

If you’re struggling to find the motivation to go to the gym, developing a routine where it’s the first thing you do in the morning when you wake up can make it much easier as it becomes habit.

You can also create associations between activities. Certain playlists, for example, can be played every time you’re getting ready for a workout. Things like this are simple and seem trivial, but they are powerful tools to create a mental state conducive of your best effort in whatever task you’re performing.

Lifestyle factors like these can help ease stress and anxiety, ensuring you have just the right amount to be at your best.

Natural ingredients that boost mental performance

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1) Caffeine

There’s a reason caffeine is possibly the most popular ergogenic aid of all time. Humans have been using it to feel more energized and alert for hundreds of years.

If you’re feeling low and need a pick-me-up, a cup of coffee can get you to the arousal state that will help you perform at your best.

It is possible to go too far, though. Too much caffeine can cause anxiety and too much anxiety has a negative impact on performance.

2) Ginkgo Biloba

Ginkgo Biloba, in its supplement form, is derived from the Ginkgo biloba tree. It’s thought to increase blood flow to the brain and is linked to improving cognitive functions like focus.

3) Rhodiola Rosea

Derived from the herb Rhodiola rosea, this supplement has been used in Chinese medicine for a long time to promote well-being and healthy brain function.

Rhodiola Rosea is thought to benefit brain function by maintaining mental processing through the reduction of fatigue.

Conclusion

Your mental game is vital to performance. And performance can really mean anything. It could be your job, chores at home, your workouts, or even athletic performance. Whatever the task may be, having the tools available to reduce or raise stress and anxiety to their optimal level will help you always be the best you.

Please like the article if you enjoyed reading and found it useful; contact me if you’d like more information about lifestyle techniques and supplements linked to mental performance; follow the blog; and follow Healthy Wheys on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.