Why Fitness Is The Essence Of Overall Wellness

If you are looking forward to overall wellness, then you have got to know that fitness is the essence of it. Unlike the popular perception, achieving fitness is not that difficult. You can’t judge the fitness of a person by just looking at that person. Experiences have taught me that the fittest looking person might not be the one who impresses you with his or her fitness levels. So, it’s pointless to have unrealistic views about fitness. As far as fitness is concerned, the health of your heart is extremely important. Probably, you lack a typically “fit” looking body. But that doesn’t mean that you are not fit. You can be fit irrespective of the way your body looks. Cardio fitness is the real measure for fitness. If you are really serious about fitness, then you have to channel your energies to improve the health of your heart. When your heart is healthy, other aspects like increased lung capacity, strong bones, strong muscles, weight loss etc. will follow.

Understanding the concept of fitness

In today’s world obsessed with fitness, we have complicated the concept of fitness. According to the basic definition, fitness is all about your ability carry out your daily chores without fatigue. A fit person will be able to carry out his chores with alertness and vigour. Back in the day, people used to have that ability. They were all physically active. They were all fit. So, there was no need to talk about fitness. However, things have changed a lot. Lifestyle diseases have become common these days. We do very less physical activities as our jobs force us to stay glued to our seats all day long with zero physical activity. And that has contributed to lot of lifestyle diseases. No wonder why we talk about fitness more these days because we are all worried about our fitness levels. Lack of physical activities made us susceptible to all sorts of health problems.

Significance of fitness

The sedentary lifestyle has made way for lot of diseases. And people have realized the significance of regular exercise to stay fit. However, not too many are able to follow it given the hectic lifestyle. If you want to stay away from many diseases, then it is important to do cardio exercise on a regular basis. As we all know, heart disease has been one of the notorious silent killers. Stroke, diabetes, colon cancer etc. are other diseases which are connected to lack of fitness. There are plenty of benefits for regular exercise. Besides the health benefits, you will be able to control your weight as well. In turn, you will be able to fight aging too.

Psychological benefits of exercise

Exercise has many psychological benefits as well. When you exercise, it releases the feel good hormone endorphins, which significantly reduces stress. And it will elevate your mood as well. It has the ability to fight depression as well. If you are one those fitness freaks who exercise on a daily basis, then you will have a positive attitude towards life. Also, you tend to have better self-esteem. Exercise gives you better sleep at night. You never complain about fatigue either. Last but not least, regular exercise can improve your memory as well.

The amount of exercise to stay fit

Well, this has been a hotly debated topic for years. Different people will give different advice. But one thing is definite – regular exercise is the best strategy. How long should you exercise? Well, 30 minutes a day would be more than enough. And if you are able to extend to an hour then it is better. Some people would suggest that doing exercise 5 times a week is a good strategy. Well, doing it every day is a far more effective strategy. Exercise is like drinking coffee. Your brain gets addicted to the feel good hormones and craves for it every day. For the same reason, your brain will remind you to do exercise every day. That’s like following a natural clock. Your brain knows what is best for your body. Therefore, doing it every day will make it easier for you to get adjusted to the natural cycle.

 

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How to Make It As a Fitness Model!

So You Wanna Be a Fitness Model?

People that follow my stuff know I generally write about nutrition, supplements, training, and other topics that are more science based than subjective topics, such as what is covered in this article. I decided to shuck my science geek persona, and write on a topic I know will be helpful to thousands of would be and want to be fitness models.

As well a known “hard core” science based no BS writer, why I am writing what some will perceive as a “fluff” article? Over the years I have gotten hundreds, perhaps thousands, of gals that ask me via email, letters, or in person “how do I become a fitness model Will? You have been in the business a long time, surly you of all people should know.” I get this from newbies and I get this from women that have been at it a while but have been unable to “break in” effectively.

The fact is, I have been in the fitness, health, and bodybuilding biz a long time, and though I am known as a science and nutrition based “guru” type, I have trained many a fitness athlete, and judged fitness and figure/bikini shows for the NPC, Fitness America, Fitness USA, and other federations as well as given marketing and business advice to all sorts of athletes, including fitness models. So, it’s not as far fetched as it might seem that I am going to use this space to cover a non scientific topic, which is, how one goes about being a fitness model.

This article will be useful to both experienced and novice types looking to “break in” to the biz. If you are already a professional and successful fitness model, I am sure you may still glean some useful information from this article.

First the bad news, there is no one way to become a successful fitness model. There is no single path or magic secret. There are however some key things a person can do to greatly improve their chances of “making it” in the fitness biz as a model, and perhaps using that success as a launching pad to greater things, such as movies, TV, etc.

Several of the top fitness models (Trish Stratus and Vicki Pratt come to mind but there are many others) have gone onto careers in entertainment of all kinds. Bottom line, though there is no magic secret to being successful as a fitness model, this article will be about as close to a blueprint for success as you will find.

“Do I need to compete?”

This is a question I get asked all the time and it’s not an easy one to answer. In fact, the answer is (drum roll) yes and no. The person has to deicide why they are competing in the first place to answer that question. For example, do you need to compete if your goal is to be a successful fitness model?

The answer is no. Many of today’s well-known fitness models have never competed, or they competed in a few small shows and it was clearly not part of their success as fitness models. However, competing does have its potential uses.

One of them is exposure. At the upper level shows, there will often be editors, publishers, photographers, supplement company owners, and other business people. So, competing can improve your exposure. Also, competing can make sense if you are trying to build a business that is related to your competing or will benefit from you winning a show.

For example, say you have a private training gym you are trying to build. Sure, having the title of say Ms Fitness America, or winning the NPC Nationals and being an IFBB pro, will help your reputation and the notoriety of your business. There are many scenarios were it would help to have won a show for a business or other endeavors.

On the other hand, it must be realized that winning a show does not in any way guarantee success in the business end (and it really is a business) of being a fitness model. The phone wont ring off the hook with big offers for contracts. Also, it’s very important to realize that it’s common that the 4th or 6th or 8th place finisher in a fitness or figure show will get more press than the winner. Why? Though the winner might have what it took to win that show, it’s often other gals the editor, publishers, supplement companies etc, feel is more marketable.

I have seen it many times where the winner was shocked to find she didn’t get nearly the attention she expected and other girls who placed lower have gotten attention in the form of photos shoots, magazine coverage, etc. Something to keep in mind when you ask yourself the important question “do I need to compete and if so, why am I competing?” Answer that question, and you will know the answer to the heading of this section. Winning a title of some sort can be a stepping stone, but it is not in itself any guarantee of success in the fitness industry. It’s like a college degree; it’s what you do with it.

Now. If you compete for the fun of it, then by all means go for it, but the above is focusing on competing as it relates to the business aspect of being a fitness model.

Right body, wrong federation?

Ok, so after reading the above you have decided you are going to compete, or will compete again. If you don’t plan to compete, you can skip this section. The biggest mistake I see here is so many gals have the right body for the wrong federation. Each federation has its own judging criteria and a competitor will do poorly simply because they didn’t bother to research which show would be best suited for them.

I will give you a perfect real world example of this. Recently I judged a show whose criteria for the figure round was the women should be more on the curvy softer side with some tone, vs. being more muscular and athletic with less bodyfat that other federations might allow. At this show one of the most beautiful women I have ever seen came out. She was very proportional, great muscle tone, lean, and athletically shaped with narrow hips and waist and wider shoulders. How did she do at this show? She didn’t even place in the top ten!

Why? Because she was not what we were instructed to look for and didn’t fit the criteria. After the show I informed her that she looked great, but this may not the federation for her. I told her she had much more of an NPC type body, where a little more muscle, athletic build, and less bodyfat is rewarded.

The following week I was judging an NPC fitness, figure, and bodybuilding show and there she was. How did she do? She won the entire show with all judges voting her number one unanimously.

Conversely, if your body type tends to be more rounded and toned, but with a little more bodyfat, wider (but not fat!) hips, you may be better off competing in say the Fitness America Pageants. If you are going to compete:

(1) find out exactly what the judging criteria is for that federation and

(2) go see those shows as a spectator for several different federations and see which one your physique, style, etc will fit into best.

(3) You have to decide if you truly have the athletic abilities to compete in a fitness competition (which requires a routine) or a figure/bikini competition.

 

The Big Rocks: Health, Fitness, and Life

Allow me to share the story about big rocks as told to me by my own mentor, Jeff Smith.”There was a group of disciples who had gathered to learn from their teacher, reputed to be one of the wisest men in the land. To begin their lessons, their teacher told them to sit in front of him. He had a glass bowl and began filling it with rocks. He then asked the class if it was full.”They said, ‘Yes.'”He ignored them and poured in some smaller pebbles until the container looked full and asked the same question again.”The students said, ‘yes,’ again.”This time, he rolled his eyes at them, and began pouring sand into the container until it was full to the top. He then asked the class if it was full now. By this time, the students were catching on and they weren’t so quick to answer yes. The teacher smiled and poured a glass of water into the bowl.”Now the bowl was finally full. He looked over at the students and asked them what lesson they’d learned. One of them piped up, ‘There’s always room for more.’ Others voiced similar answers.”But none saw the real lesson the teacher was sharing with them: ‘If you don’t put the big rocks in first, you’ll never have room for them.'”Ask yourself that question. What are the big rocks in your life?Are your big rocks your children and your spouse? Are your big rocks your parents and your siblings? Are your big rocks your friends? Are your big rocks your trip around the world? Are your big rocks a weekend get away with your wife or husband? Are your big rocks going to a favorite concert? Are your big rocks building your dream home? Are your big rocks making a difference in other people’s lives?Of all the big rocks in your life, what has to be the biggest rock of all? Would it be your children, a mother’s first thought? How can you care for your children and your family if you lose what should be your biggest rock of all–the health and fitness of your body?If you lose your health, you lose your energy, your patience, your joy, and your time to be with your children or with anyone else for that matter.Your body must be your biggest rock of all, and it must come before all the other big rocks.The next time you say to yourself that you don’t have the time to read the books, you don’t have time to listen to the tapes, or you don’t have time to make the changes that will make the difference between health and disease, between energy and lethargy, even life and death, then prepare yourself to live without the other big rocks in your life.What are the big rocks in your life? Make your body, your health, your energy, and your higher purpose your biggest rocks. Then the chances are that you will have a bigger bowl for the rest of your big rocks.One of my patients said to me, “You have no idea what it is like for me to have no pain.” About two years prior, he hobbled into my office using a cane and in obvious pain. He was rather crusty on the outside. Of course he was–all of us are miserable when we have lots of pain.And now he was pain-free and his mobility had returned.He continued by saying, “You have no idea what it is like for me to be able to get out of bed in the morning with no pain. You have no idea what it is like for me to be able to sit down and put on my own socks without pain. You have no idea what is like for me to be able to walk down my driveway to my mailbox one half of a mile and back with no pain.”What are the big rocks for this man? His ability to move and sit and walk without pain? Sure they are. And how does the loss of mobility or the return of mobility affect the rest of his life?It took his effort, patience, intestinal fortitude, his will power, his trust, and time to regain his mobility and health. However, he knew that if he didn’t have his health, he had nothing.And to further expand this lesson of big rocks, when you say to yourself, “I can’t eat ten vegetables or ten pieces of fruit a day,” think of the big rocks.If you eat the most health- and life-supporting foods first, the big rocks, then you will indeed fit them into your stomach. Furthermore, you won’t have enough room for the “not-so-good-for-you” foods and wouldn’t that be a very good thing?Discover for yourself what your big rocks are and fill your life with them. You will be rewarded with truth, health, mobility, energy, joy, and purpose.And remember, body first, everything else second.