The Gym…Again

After the holiday I’m told I’ve gained weight. Good thing we don’t have the girther movement here.

Of course I disagree and I’m prepared to defend myself against such malicious allegations. Though, if truth be told, I’ve had one too many beers and other unhealthy stuff- but that was just me cultivating mass. Bulking up, so to speak.

Who doesn’t want to bulk up?

But, just in case there’s a shred of truth in the allegations, I’ll be going to the gym again tomorrow. Blame the holidays, resolutions blah blah. Perhaps this time I’ll last.

 

Or perhaps I should just follow Tim Ferris’ experiments advice in The Four Hour Chef and get quick results. Either way changes are coming- again.

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Fitness and all that

Around February I rejoined the gym and then stopped going soon afterwards. For some reason I never stick to my fitness goals.

And then today I noticed I’ve gained some weight, which made me panic a little. So I decided, for the umpteenth time, to start working out again.

I know, of course, that eating well is better than exercise for losing weight so I will have to make some adjustments in my eating habits. I think now is a good time to cut down on carbs and try one the in vogue diets like Keto, Paleo or the Slow Carb popularised by the maverick Tim Ferris in his book The Four Hour Diet.

A good diet is the best hope I have of losing a few kilos in the shortest possible time but exercise still has plenty of other benefits. So I have to start working out again

The challenge is that I’ve recently moved and there doesn’t seem to be a gym close to where I now stay. Which means I will have to take up calisthenics. Also I’ve realised I don’t like gyms anyway, and even if I move to where there are gyms close by, hopefully soon, I don’t think I’ll ever go to a gym again. My plan is to just buy my own weights, rack, benches and bars and workout at home.

Or I might take up running again. Last time I did I tried running I went from only managing a minute to running five km by following the Couch to 5k program.

Either way, I have new fitness goals.

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Exercise is good, but healthy food is better

I read somewhere that the reason humans like eating sweet and fatty stuff is evolutionary. The theory is that for a very long period of humanity’s history people were more likely to starve than get fat. As a result people ate stuff that could be stored in the body and could be used when starvation came.

Of course nowadays this is no longer the case, people are now battling obesity. The problem is that we naturally prefer sweet and high energy content food like cakes, chocolates, French fries and pizzas to healthy food such as fruits and veggies. Our brain is wired to think cakes, for example, taste better than guavas, and biscuits are tastier than lettuce.

Sugar is especially problematic. An interesting article in the Independent explained what sugar does to our bodies. In short sugar has the same effect on our brains that drugs have. Sugar makes us “high’’ and like other drugs you need ever increasing amounts of it to achieve the “high” feeling.

The reason I’m writing this is some new research that has generated a considerable amount of debate. This research suggests that for weight loss, exercise is not effective. Changing one’s diet is a better way of losing weight than running every morning. After all eating a pizza slice gives more calories than you can lose running a mile. So what is easier, running a mile or not eating a slice of pizza?

I’ve always suspected this, and professional bodybuilders and even casual gym-goers know it. We all know some overweight guys who live very active lifestyles without shedding a single kilogram. There’s a saying in fitness circles that abs (sixpacks) are made in the kitchen.

Exercise however, is still important. It makes us fitter, increases life expectancy and lowers the risk of getting some diseases. Personally it also makes me feel good and helps clear my mind.

The studies I’ve mentioned have totally convinced me of the dangers of eating unhealthy food. In fact I think it is better to eat healthy and live a sedentary lifestyle than eat bad food and live an active lifestyle. My goal this year is to cut down on sugar and foods with high carbohydrate levels like fries and pasta. I’ll still exercise of course but I have resolved to stop eating junk food.

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