The Overwhelming World Of Fitness: Calories Are Key, Not Fad Diets

The Overwhelming World Of Fitness: Calories Are Key, Not Fad Diets

Volume two: You lose weight is because of a calorie deficit.
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You've heard it. I've heard it. Just about everyone who is looking to lose some weight and trim that stomach fat has heard it. "You just have to eat clean." While the amount of calories you usually cut by eating clean does the trick, eating clean or depriving yourself isn't the magical solution to losing weight. This is where we learn the magical words caloric deficit.



I know this will piss a lot of people off, but THE REASON YOU LOSE WEIGHT IS BECAUSE OF A CALORIE DEFICIT. Not a magical keto diet. Not carb cycling or avoiding carbs. Not eating eight times a week. Whether you adjust your diet for your body to burn more calories than it's consuming, or you exercise to burn those daily calories off, calories are the how you shed pounds.

Do your research. Any registered dietitian will tell you the same thing. My personal experience will attest to it as well. It is up to you to set a diet with a calorie limit that you know will cause you to lose weight but not starve yourself. The way to do this is to track your calories and experiment with certain intakes to see what works best for you, your schedule, your appetite, and your workouts.

You shouldn't have to cut out bread or pasta to lose weight. You shouldn't have to avoid any single food to lose weight. Flexible dieting is your best friend. Knowing that one bad meal won't derail your progress is the most important thing; that's like getting a flat tire then stabbing a hole in your other three tires. The opposite is also true-- one grilled chicken salad won't make you skinny, either.

Myth 1 debunked, carbs are not the enemy. Carbs are just as essential as any other macronutrient. If you lift heavy consistently, you need a carb-heavy diet to supply your muscles with adequate glucose for energy and recovery. Additionally, consuming enough protein is important to build lean muscle mass, which in term burns more fat in your body for energy, increasing the limit of calories you can consume and also decreasing your body fat percentage.

Myth 2 debunked, eating fat doesn't make you fat. Limiting your fat intake is important because it is the most calorie-dense macronutrient (9 calories per gram compared to 4/gram with protein and carbs). Don't let this fact deter you from fat consumption, but instead consume the bulk of your fats before a workout for optimal energy!

Ultimately, your diet should start with your calories if the goal is to lose pounds. Don't over-complicate things, and don't go all in. Create a diet that is flexible and maintainable, not a crash diet that deprives you of anything and everything. Enjoy your food, stay motivated.

Last but not least... be patient because real results take time, consistency, and your full effort.

Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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An Open Letter From The Plus-Size Girl

It's OK not to be perfect. Life is more fun that way.

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To whoever is reading this,

My entire life has been a juggling match between my weight and the world. Since I was a young girl every single doctor my family took me to, told me I needed to lose weight. The searing pain of those words still stabs me in the side to this day. I have walked past stores like Hollister and American Eagle since I was 13.

Being plus-size means watching girls the same age as you or older walk into a store that sells the cutest, in style clothing and you having to walk into a store that sells clothes that are very out of style for a young girl. Being plus-size means being picked last in gym class, even if you love sports.

Being plus-size means feeling like you have to suck it in in pictures so you don't look as big next to your friends. Being plus-size means constantly thinking people are staring at you, even if they aren't.

The number on the scale haunts me. Every single time I think about the number I cringe.

Can I just say how going shopping is an absolute nightmare? If you haven't noticed, in almost every store (that even has plus sizes to begin with) plus-size clothing is closed off and secluded from the rest of the store. For example, Forever 21, There are walls around every side of the plus "department."

Macy's plus department is in the basement, all the way in the back corner. We get it that we are not what society wants us to look like but throwing us in a corner isn't going to change the statistics in America today. That being that 67% of American women are plus-size.

My life is a double-digit number being carved into my jiggly arms and thunder thighs. It is me constantly wanting to dress cute but turning to running shorts and a gigantic sweatshirt instead so that people don't judge me on my size.

It is time that the American society stops making plus size look like a curse. It will never be a curse. If every person was the same size, what would be the point of uniqueness? I will never despise who I am because while I was growing up multiple people told me that I needed to be a size 6 in order for a guy to fall in love with me. I will never hate myself for getting dressed up and being confident.

To all the girls reading this who may be plus-size,

It's OK! You're beautiful and lovable. If you want to buy that crop top, buy it. Life is too short to hide behind a baggy T-shirt. We are just as gorgeous as the girls that we envy. Be the one to change the opinion of the world. Fat rolls don't need to be embarrassing. Your stretch marks are beautiful. Don't ever let the world tell you not to eat that cheeseburger either.

In the end, this earthly life is temporary. We are on this earth for a blink of an eye. Don't let anything stand in your way. Wear the bikini, the crop top, and the short shorts. Post the sassy selfie you've had on your phone for 6 months and you won't post because you have a double chin or your head looks "too big." Who cares. BE YOU and love yourself while you're at it.

I'll start.

Cover Image Credit: Victoria Hockmeyer

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The Rejuvenating Qualities Of Panama City Beach

There are definitely some healing properties in these ocean waves.

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We have gone to the beach quite a few times this summer season. We live around 2 hours away and try to make it to Panama City Beach at least once a week. It's a venture for sure, but compared to the 7-day drive from The Rockies of Colorado to the Peanut Capital of the World, Dothan, Alabama (a time in which no one has heard of) we can't really make any excuses.

Now, I am sitting here typing away in the early morning while watching a summer storm blow in over the sea but, make no doubt about it, the ocean and its shores are one of the most healing, rejuvenating places on this planet. There is a calm in the break of the waves on the shoreline, and yet it pairs with an unspoken knowledge that the ocean is this uncontrollable force.

This isn't a speech on saving the planet and being eco-friendly, recycling and watching out for our beaches, which is a topic I am very passionate about and a post I would totally create. This is simply an open letter to those who might need to get away in order to revive their souls.

If you are anything like me, you have emotions pulsing through you at all times, ideas about everything under the sun, a longing to explore and adventure, and a deep need for rest, all at the same time. There are not many things in this world that truly satisfy me. There is a lot of disappointment. There is a lot of wrongdoing and suffering. It's overwhelming.

That is why I come to the beach. It removes the overwhelming things.

You see, there is nothing complicated about the waves (unless you make it complicated, but we stay away from people like you). They are simple. They are peaceful. And 99% of the time in my life that is what I need, simplicity and peace. I over-complicate things myself, I make excuses and I feel hurt in most moments of my life. I lived an exposed, vulnerable lifestyle that drains me.

That is why I love the ocean. It replenishes my drained soul. It energizes me. It is motivating and inspiring, relaxing and unwinding.

I don't pass out advice. I never have. I do, however, try living an honest life, always in the moment, so I can share my experiences in hopes that others might find them helpful. That is precisely why I am writing this. Because if you could just get to the beach, to a shoreline, it might change you. Seeing this vast landscape changes your perspective on the situations in your life you thought might overtake you.

The ocean speaks. It heals. It tells your worries to cease and your mind to rest. It tells your body to relax and your busy schedule that there IS time to take a moment. Don't forget to take a moment for yourself this summer season.

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