A few weeks ago, I left our fitness community with a cliffhanger about ultimate fat-loss secrets. I told them there is no secret.
It takes hard work.
You have to be Dedicated. Committed. Consistent. Relentless.
You have to want it so bad that you're willing to do whatever it takes to get there.
There's no special gadget. There's no special exercise. There's no special diet.
It has to be a lifestyle.
And you have to want it as bad as you want to breathe.
When it becomes a matter of life or death ... then you'll be successful.
But I get it, that's still not what you want to hear. So Amber and I put together a quick list of some of our "fat-loss secrets."
Notice one thing ... it's not nearly as complex as we make it out to be. It's of course the simple things that make a huge difference.
Here's the list, but I'm going to pull out one at a time to focus on. This way you let it digest and start hammering it out each week.
2. Breathe hard.
3. Resistance training.
4. Do total body workouts.
5. Do total body moves.
6. Eat enough throughout the day.
7. Do high intensity cardio intervals.
8. Eat green vegetables.
10. Drink water, and only water.
Today let's focus on SLEEP.
Its so important for you. It helps you repair, rebuild, and rejuvenate.
"Sleep restores and optimizes our metabolism, memory, focus, creativity, mental processing, speed, emotional balance, musculoskeletal performance, and immune defenses. And that's just for starters ..." Mindy Cetel, MD, FAASM (Todd Durkin's The IMPACT Body plan).
Here's the thing most people don't know though, the lack of it contributes to fat-gain and weight-gain.
Researchers from the University of Warwick reviewed data from more than twenty-eight thousand children and more than fifteen thousand adults and found that sleep deprivation almost doubles the risk of obesity for adults and children (The Amen solution).
Without getting too deep, there are basically three crucial types of hormones that are effected by sleep, grehlin, leptin, and cortisol. Grehlin tells you when you're hungry, leptin tells you when you're full. When we're well slept our bodies produce normal amounts of both hormones. If you fall into a pattern of inadequate sleep your brain will underproduce leptin and overproduce grehlin. When this occurs you lose control over your appetite (leptin's job), and you'll get hungrier throughout the day (due to excessive grehlin production).
Increased production of cortisol also occurs from chronic sleep problems. If you don't know much about cortisol, it's called a "stress hormone" because stress activates it's release. While it's an important hormone for proper body functioning, too much of it is actually linked to increased belly fat.
Here's the other sort of subtle thing you may not think about. When you don't sleep enough, your mind doesn't function as right. Therefore you're not thinking clear and are not as cognizant as usual. Now you're susceptible to cravings and lack of control ... leading you to smashing those donuts at the office or heading to fast-food on your lunch break ... because you're just not in the right mindset.
Sleep aids in muscle recovery. In fact, your muscles won't repair and grow without enough. During a deep sleep stage, growth hormone is released to stimulate tissue growth and muscle repair. Lack of sleep causes a growth hormone deficiency, leading to loss of muscle mass and reduced workout capacity.
Let's not forget the most important benefit of sleep: your longevity. Experts in the field agree that "sleep is the most important predictor of how long you will live" (Dement, Stanford University Sleep Center).
What's considered sleep deprivation: Anything less than 7-8 hours of sleep for adults. Kids obviously need more (teenagers 9+, children 10-12, and babies 16+).
According to a study, 74% of people report regularly getting less than 7 hours of sleep per night (Get Healthy, For Heaven's Sake). So chances are most of you are not getting enough.
Sleep----it's not something to play around with. Without enough, you suffer and wreak havoc on your body.
Remember to focus on quality. Great sleep is uninterrupted. You may be laying down for 8 hours but if you're constantly waking up then it's not going to be the same.
Some things to do to get great sleep:
Cut out tv time 90 minutes before you lay down.
Cut out caffeine and alcohol, especially hours before you go to bed.
Read or write before you go to bed.
Buy a sound machine.
If you're not doing it already, start getting enough sleep today. It will be a game-changer for your life and your health....and most importantly, everyone around you.
Push It. Live It. BE IT.
God Bless you and your families and have a great weekend!