Everyone wants to know how to be in specimen shape by the summer — but why does being in great shape have to wait?
The truth is, it doesn’t.
Typically, however, these fitness cycles are fairly consistent throughout the seasons. New Year’s resolutions kick in. People hit the gym, determined to make serious changes. Then their obligations create resistance, they get tired, lose focus, and give up on their health and fitness goals. As summer comes around, bikini bodies, and for men, looking good without a shirt become priorities again, and people refocus. As summer cools, fall takes over, and of course, with it comes the Thanksgiving feasts. Lastly, winter arrives, and the cold makes even the best of us want to hibernate.
There are two tricks to beat these seasonal health and fitness trends once and for all. In essence, it comes down to diet and exercise, but getting more specific will make all the difference.
The Blood Type Diet
Naturopath Peter D’Adamo introduced the idea that eating a diet based on your blood type can actually help the individual’s health and to promote weight loss. The foods one eats have a chemical reaction that varies by blood type. Digestive efficiency can be improved by following the blood type diet, ultimately boosting energy, and preventing disease.
The reality is that there are other factors, including genetics that come into play, but blood type plays a significant role in optimizing diet.
Recommended diet for each blood type
Type O blood: A high protein diet heavy on lean meat, poultry, fish, and vegetables, and light on grains, beans, and dairy.
Type A blood: A meat-free diet based on fruits and vegetables, beans and legumes, and whole grains — preferably fresh due to a tendency for Type A to have weaker immune systems.
Type B blood: Avoid corn, wheat, buckwheat, lentils, tomatoes, peanuts, and sesame seeds. Chicken is also problematic. Should eat green vegetables, eggs, certain meats, and low-fat dairy.
Type AB blood: Eat tofu, seafood, dairy, and green vegetables. People with type AB blood tend to have low stomach acid. As a result, they should avoid caffeine, alcohol, and smoked or cured meats.
Workout For Your Body Type + Your Lifestyle
The next key to having a summer body year round is to workout according to your body type and according to your lifestyle. These two factors are both designed to make sure that your fitness regimen and results are maintainable.
Too often, we hear about the stress and obligations of work causing people to pack on pounds. Some of the issue, isn’t necessarily just stress-related, as much as it has to do with not having a deliberate fitness routine that jibes well with their work schedule or other obligations, such as family.
But first things first. There are three main body types — ectomorph, endomorph, and mesomorph, along with other forms that fall somewhere in between on the body type spectrum.
- An ectomorph is lean and long, with difficulty building muscle.
- An endomorph has high body fat, often round, with a tendency to store body fat
- A mesomorph is muscular and well-built, with a high metabolism and responsive muscle cells
What all this actually translates to, looks something like this: ectomorphs struggle to gain any muscle, even with long hours in the gym. Endomorphs have difficulty shedding fat, and mesomorphs gain muscle with minimal effort.
Ectomorphs process carbohydrates into energy and burn fat rapidly. Bulking up, however, can be challenging because of a lower than average ratio of fast-twitch fibers. Ectomorphs should focus on intense workouts that release growth hormone — such as compound exercises — in order to become more muscular. In addition, this body type should consume 3,000 plus calories a day to really bulk up.
Endomorphs store fuel efficiently — sometimes too efficiently, with fat concentrating in the midsection and lower body. This body type is the most difficult in terms of managing weight, and staying fit. Focus on creating a shape by working on shoulders, and core to strip away belly fat. Medium to intense cardio, and a high fiber diet is optimal for this body type.
Mesomorphs add new muscle relatively easy compared to other body types. For this body type, just being conscious and aware is the most important aspect. Since health and fitness are gifted to mesomorphs, there’s a tendency to relax when it comes to workouts and nutrition. This lean body is about optimization, so create specific strength and conditioning targets. Aim for definition, instead of size. 2,500 plus calories a day, with limited fat consumption is ideal.
Many factors play a role in health and fitness, but at the end of the day, each individual is different. These are general tips that are supported by research and have been proven effective, however, our bodies have distinct reactions from one another.
Furthermore, two people could have the exact same or similar body types, genetics, and all the rest, and still require separate plans. This can be for any number of reasons, including schedule and obligations.
Your plan has to work for you. Often times, what feels healthy is, and what makes you feel bad, is not. Your body will tell you what’s working and what isn’t — we just have to listen.
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