CategoriesBlog Move.

Seven Habits That Will Transform Your Life

Many of us set health and fitness goals to change the way we look — but transforming your health and fitness habits can also change every aspect of your life. Not only will you look better, but you’ll also feel and think better.

Follow these seven highly effective habits to become the best version of yourself:    

Habit #1 If you are not assessing, you are guessing. 

When it comes to health and fitness, ignorance isn’t bliss: It’s important to constantly assess and monitor your nutrition. In order to make a change, you need to know your starting point — which means tracking your nutritional habits. While counting calories may not be a long-term solution, it will give you your strongest weapon in any successful transformation: awareness.    

Pro tip:  If you are not assessing, you are guessing. 

When tracking calories, do keep in mind that too much restriction can lead to failure.  This is normal, and it’s why adopting a flexible approach is essentialA general rule of thumb is to eat healthy 80 percent of the time, while treating yourself the remaining 20 percent. By accounting for the occasional indulgence, you’ll be able to quickly get back on track.   

Habit #2 Follow the six-month rule. 

Create habits that are sustainable for at least six months. While shortterm fixes can lead to quick results, they are often unsustainable — and you’ll soon end up back at square one. When you are developing your nutrition or fitness plan, ask yourself: “Can I do this for half a year?” If not, it’s time to reassess.   

Pro tip: The best training program is one you enjoy and able to stick to in the long term while making consistent, measurable progress. 

Habit # 3 Eat mostly whole and minimally processed foods.

The saying “You can’t out train a poor diet” is 100percent true.  It doesn’t matter if you’re busting your butt in the gym: If you are eating poorly, it will be difficult to lose body fat. Focus on eating minimally processed, whole foods. 

What do we mean by “whole foods”? Follow these guidelines when eating: 

  • Stick to foods your grandparents would recognize. 
  • Shop the perimeter of the grocery store; for example, choose the produce section over the cereal aisle or the snack foods. 
  • Eat one serving of fruits or veggies (the size of your fist) with each meal, and eat a variety of colors when doing so. 
  • Replace calorie-dense and artificially sweetened drinks with water. 

Habit #4 Eat enough protein. 

Proteins are essential for repairing and building muscle, so make sure to eat one or two servings with every meal. It’s also the most important of the macronutrients; if you are going to overeat one of them, make it protein.  

Other benefits of eating protein include: 

It prevents muscle wasting: Muscle tissues are the most metabolically active tissues. Along with resistance training, consistently hitting your protein intake helps you retain your muscle while carving away fats — which will ultimately show off your muscle definition.  

It keeps you full:  When caloric intake is low and you have those cravings for carbohydrates, protein is your BFF.

It burns more calories during the digestion process:  Protein has been proven to be up to 30 percent more metabolically expensive than carbs or fats. This means that if you have 100 grams of protein, then your body will burn 30 calories simply by breaking the protein down into usable amino acids.  

Habit #5 Focus on building muscle 

any still believe that building muscle is only for bodybuilders. Strength training is for everyone, and has proven to help people be more active, keep fat at bay, live longer and improve self-confidence. 

The most efficient way to build strength and muscle is to focus on the main compound lifts. These lifts use multiple muscles in one movement, giving you more bang for your buck.  

Most of your compound lifts should include the following movements:  

  • Squat 
  • Hinge 
  • Push 
  • Pull 
  • Lunge 
  • Carry   

To build muscle, you also need to emphasize progressive overloadlifting heavy weights while properly executing each rep. Progressive overload also means you’ll need to challenge yourself by constantly adding weight. However, you should always emphasize form and technique over the amount of weight you’re lifting; piling on the weight with poor technique will do more harm than good. 

Habit #6 Drink plenty of water and/or calorie-free drinks. 

Proper hydration can have a significant impact on your health, performance and weight. Most of us know we aren’t drinking enough water, but we may not be aware of the potential problems that can arise from dehydration. 

The main reasons dehydration has as adverse affect on exercise and overall health are that it: 

  • Decreases blood volume and blood flow 
  • Decreases heat dissipation and removal of wastes from exercise 
  • Decreases metabolism  
  • Decreases body temperature 
  • Increases organ stress 

The general rule of thumb is to drink half your bodyweight (in pounds) in ounces of water. That means a 150-pound person should drink at least 75 ounces of water — about nine standard glasses — each day. Carry a water bottle, drink it up and refill it every two hours or when empty. 

Habit #7 Sleep like a baby again

Sleep is often the forgotten component of health. In fact, it’s equally important to your workouts and nutrition. As many as 30 percent of adults sleep less than six hours per night: the minimum amount necessary for proper health. If you think you can make do with less than six hours, think again.   

Pro tip: Both sleep quantity and quality are incredibly important for optimal health and fitness and for regulating our circadian rhythm. 

  Need more reasons?  A lack of sleep can negatively impact: 

  • Cognitive ability 
  • Recovery from exercise and injury 
  • Sex life  
  • Mood and dietary decisions 
  • Workouts 

Get six to eight hours of quality sleep every night. Without proper sleep, it’s difficult to see significant improvements in general health and/or fitness — and your body, your workouts and your performance will suffer. 

By sticking to these seven habits, you’ll transform your health and your life with results that really last. Come to Flow Fitness today to get started on your journey.   

CategoriesBlog Live Fit.

Five Fitness Principles for Long Term Success

The health and fitness industry is full of myths and misconceptions. Everyday we are bombarded with ads, instagram videos, and articles claiming they have discovered the new diet or exercise.  There’s so much conflicting information on what we should and shouldn’t do. 

That is why I wrote this article.  I wanted to cut through the noise and simplify fitness for you.  When it comes to fitness,having a solid foundation of principles are essential to achieving your goals.  

Why does this matter? 

 Principles are your bullshit detector.  By adhering to principles, you’ll be able to sniff out all the crap information out there.  This will help you eliminate information overload, simplify your decision making, and guide you to achieving lifelong results you deserve. 

 1) Focus on the basics 

The principles for losing fat, building muscle, and having Energizer Bunny levels of energy have remained unchanged throughout the years.  

 In the gym, 80% of your exercises should be big, compound exercises such as deadlifts, squats, bench press, overhead press, and rows. You must also adhere to progressive overload, the oldest and most research strength principle.   

For nutrition, have protein with every meal, plenty of veggies, eat foods that once had a face or came directly from the earth instead laced with numerous chemicals or created in a lab.  

Drink plenty of water (half your bodyweight in ounces of water.) 

Manage stress levels and get 7-9 hours of sleep every night. 

If you are unsure what to do, follow the listed advice above and make sure you’re nailing these daily.  The majority of individuals don’t.  They waste their precious time searching for the “Holy Grail” of hacks.  This is a mistake and we’ll get you nowhere.  Focus on fundamentals first and foremost. 


2) The 6 Month Principle 

The honest truth is the majority of individuals already know what they need to do in order to see the necessary changes they desire.  Instead of being consistent with their approach, they are embarking upon the never-ending search of that perfect training plan, the next best thing, and that one “secret”. 

The “true secret” to losing fat, building muscle and looking your best isn’t one program, nutritional approach, or method.  It’s a plan based on the principles engulf in what you can consistently for months and years, not for weeks and 30 day challenges.  

 I call this the 6 Month Principle and it’s about creating what is sustainable for you.  In order to lose that weight once and for all, you need to focus on being consistent, patient, and staying the course.  Ask yourself this one question: “can I do this for 6 months?”  If not, it’s time to reassess. 

3) Focus on behavior, not the outcome 

Harsh truth coming in hot! 

The uncomfortable truth isn’t your training program nor your nutritional approach; it’s your inconsistent and lackluster commitment that is the problem.  If you want to make dramatic changes to your physique you need to modify your behavior. 

Without question, it’s a difficult process to alter our behaviors without seeing the immediate gratification of doing so.  Sometimes in life, it makes sense to suck it up and make that tough decision (i.e. getting out of a trouble relationship/friendship).  However, when it comes to training and nutrition, you need to delay immediate gratification in favor of greater rewards down the road. 

By focusing on your behaviors, you’ll be better to consistently adhere to your goals.  This is why you need to find a program that you can stick to when life is crazy, not one designed when the stars aline and everything is perfect. 


4) Do the things you enjoy 

If you are not having fun in the gym, then it’s going to be damn near impossible to stick with it.  Thankfully, there are many different ways to get into shape.   

Find what exercises you enjoy and challenge yourself with that exercise.  If it’s weightlifting, then aim to add five more pounds every week.  If it’s running, aim for a faster pace or do one more mile.  Whatever your preferred endeavor is, challenge yourself and work harder than you did last time.   

You’ll stay engaged.  You’ll stay committed.  You’ll stay consistently.  I promise you that.   At the end of the day, consistency is far and away the most crucial factor in achieving long term health and becoming a better version of yourself.   


5) Track, Assess, Adjust 

When you are tracking your spending, it becomes easier to budget your expenses, pay your bills, save for that summer vacation, or car you always wanted.  When you aren’t tracking?  You are walking in the dark without a light and have no idea what’s happening. 

This same principle applies to fitness.   

To lose fat, you must be in a caloric deficit. 

To gain muscle, you must be in a caloric surplus.   

To get stronger, you need to challenge yourself with the weights.   

You with me on that right? 

Good 🙂 

When it comes to tracking your metrics (bodyweight and macros), you need to adhere to your budget.  If you don’t track these metrics, you’re essentially trying to set a budget without knowing what your income, expenses, or where they’re going.  Except it’s your health, not your money. 

With nutrition, track your macros.  It may be tedious at first, but I promise you’ll gain the necessary knowledge to reclaim control over your health. 

In the gym, track your workouts.  Write down your entire workouts (exercises, sets, reps, and weights), and improve your weights.   

The first step in making better decisions and improving your overall well being is awareness. 


By Mackennon Klink, CSCS, PN1