te· net | \ ˈte-nətalso ˈtē-nət \
: a principle, belief, or doctrine generally held to be true
especially : one held in common by members of an organization, movement, or profession
These are some of our beliefs. This is not a complete list. We will be adding to them in 2021.
Our tenets are based on science based guidelines and best practices.
FitTec focuses on the latest wellness knowledge and its distribution, employing consistent, safe, effective wellness practices following accepted AHA, ACE, ACSM and NSCA guidelines. *
*American Heart Association (AHA), American Council on Exercise (ACE), American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM), and the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA).
1. Strive to be healthy above all. Many people start off with the goal of being Fit. That is great goal, but you can not consider yourself Fit without being Healthy first. See I am Healthy Webpage to find out what it takes to be Healthy. Never sacrifice your health for a fitness or sport goal.
2. If you are looking to go beyond being healthy and want to elevate your fitness you should understand what being fit means. Most people do not have any idea what it means: Being Fit means that you have an above average/elevated level of physical ability in all the components of fitness. It would be great to strive to be fit, but meeting the healthy criteria is more important (see I am Healthy). You can understand your own fitness by doing self-assessments. If you are looking to get Fit see I am Fit. If you are striving to be extremely Fit see I am xFit. If you are looking to be functionally fit see our Functional Screen Test. If you are looking to see if your run times are healthy and fit see I am 5k (if you want to run safely see our 5K Training Program). If you are just interested in your muscular fitness see our Muscular Ability Screen.
3. You should never feel pain from exercise (before, during, and after): Some muscular soreness is common from exercise, but pain is a different story especially if it impacts your ability to move and function. If you do have pain reconsider your program. If you have some minor issues with pain please seek us out. We may be able to help. If it is more severe than this see your doctor. For more information about self-care techniques please see our Muscle and Joint Care Webpage.
4. Be kind to your body - use it but do not abuse it: You only have one body so use it properly and do not abuse it. If you do not use your body through activity and exercises you will lose physical ability. Movement can build your body up, but it can break it down if it is not the right type or too much. The same can be said about nutrition. Therefore, it is important to practice good principles such as performing restorative motions and stretches, having recovery days, eating a balanced diet, and getting quality sleep.
5. To the point of being kind to your body we typically do not recommend using a sport as a sole form of exercise to promote health: Use sports as a form of recreation. Most sports carries physical risks. If you are going to perform athletics make sure you condition and recover like the elite athletes do. They perform specific exercises that protect their body and allow them to perform better. Athletics does promote some aspects of fitness, but not all. Just do not think going out once or twice a week and playing your sport is enough for your health you should also follow a foundational fitness program that works on all aspects of your health and fitness. What is a foundational program? Ask us about exercises that will help you play your sport better and keep you safe.
6. If you do train make sure you have Recovery Days: Generally muscular conditioning should be done 2 to 3 days a week, aerobic exercise can be done 3 to 6 days a week through varied activities, and restorative stretches and motion can be done daily. Therefore make time in your week for recovery days. Walking or light activity is a good thing to do on recovery days. Palpate your muscles. If they are sore to the touch it is a good indicator you need additional recovery.
7. Make reasonable goals because they are most likely achievable and sustainable: Most people expectations are usually too high when it comes to fitness. A five percent improvement in your ability to physically perform every couple of weeks within a training program is a reasonable expectation when starting a program. Being able to do an extra push up is an example. Long term goals of being at an average to above average level on fitness norms are very reasonable and excellent goals.
8. Avoid Extremes when it comes to your health and fitness: When you follow any training or exercise program do not train to the extremes unless your sport or occupation depends on it. Typically training to the extremes creates physical issues that some people have a long time recovering from. If you have a goal that is great, but make sure you follow a safe plan that will assure success. Avoid any extreme fitness programs that causes pain, sacrifices good technique, and uses advanced and possibly dangerous exercises. The same holds true to your diet. You should follow the basic guidelines established from the A.N.D. ( Academy or Nutrition and Dietetics ). Fad and extreme diets are not in our vocabulary. For more about nutrition See Our Nutrition Information Page.
9. Do not use as exercise as a means to lose weight: Exercise will improve how you look and feel and it will change your body composition by increasing muscle mass, but it does not do a great job at helping you decrease body weight ( see article ). To lose weight it is more important to make your diet healthy and eat less calories than what you are accustomed to. However, those who are successful in keeping their weight off according to the Weight Lose Registry combine both a sound diet and exercise for up to 60 minutes a day. So to take the weight off follow a healthy weight loss diet, but to keep it off you should perform aerobic exercise.
10. There is no one size fits all when it comes to your muscular fitness: Every body is different and age has something to say when it comes to fitness programming. As mention define your goals, assess your body for those goals, and build on the deficits you find in your assessment, while maintaining your strengths through an appropriate program. There are many tools in the fitness toolbox, but there are several primary movements and exercises which is usually part of most of our clients training and we refer to them as foundational: 1) Types of Squats 2) Types of Lunges 3) Types of Rows/Pulls 4) Types of Pushing (example: Push Ups) 5) Types of Core Exercises: Bridges, BirdDogs, SideBridges, and Planks. What is a foundational program?
11. Practice good posture: You can not be truly healthy and fit if you have poor posture. Poor posture wrecks havoc on your body (see article). There are four major postural keys that I stress such as head up and pulled back to prevent forward head posture, shoulders retracted and arms slightly externally rotated to prevent rounded shoulders, maintenance of the three natural curves of your spine while sitting and standing to prevent lordosis/swayback/kyphotic postures, and to keep knees bent (avoid locking them out). Learn more at Medline Plus.
12. Working on your posture or pain should be your first major fitness goal: If you are starting an exercise program it is important that you do not just start doing any exercises on a body part with poor posture or pain. It could create problems. Example if you have rounded shoulders and started doing shoulder presses your poor posture could cause shoulder issues. Address your posture with postural changes and other good postural habits and incorporate exercises that both strengthen and stretch weakened and tightened areas, which are common with certain types of poor posture. Please seek us out to learn more about postural exercises. Going into a good posture position routinely conditions your body to adopt better posture. When you go into a good posture you stretch tight muscles and strengthen weak ones. Overtime you will attain the musculature tone to stay in a good posture.
13. In conjunction with working on poor posture you should work on mobility as part of your first major fitness goal: Mobility is a combination of range of motion and proper movement where when you move your body it is aligned in a way that makes all the you do physically both safe and efficient. I have a daily moves program/restoration program that can help you do this.
14. Move Well (Remove Bad Movements): It is imperative that you lye, sit, stand, squat, twist, lunge, lift, walk, run, etc. with good form. Through removing poor movements and replacing them with quality movements you can allow your body to recover and heal faster and set up good habits for a lifetime. All of which will allow you to perform better in the game of life. Brief examples: Sleep on your side or back trying to maintain the natural curves to your spine through use of pillows (see more). Sit with the three natural curves for no more than 20 minutes if you can and then stand if you work at a desk. Stand on balls of feet, with bent knees, and weight evenly distributed. Squat by hinging from your hips keeping a neutral back and come up pulling through your hips by using your buttocks as the prime movers. Twist from your legs, and hips and never from your low back (twisting from the hips generates more power and protects the spine). As with the squat, never lift from you back, use your hips and keep back locked with the weight being lifted close to the body. Walk briskly using your arms with consistent strides. Run horizontally with very little vertical displacement with strides that have you landing lightly with your feet under your body.
15. Build a resilient body first through foundational movements and exercises: I am a firm advocate on using a simple foundational stretches, motions, and exercises that may look boring and simple, but will wreck dividends in the end. If you only go hard with just a few compound exercises your training may be building on structural deficits that may show its ugly head someday. If you are looking for fitness extremes then start with and as you progress continue with foundational exercises. What is a foundational program?
16. Regular stretching is essential, but it should not be the sole focus of your exercise routine. A comprehensive fitness program should include exercises that target muscle strength, cardiovascular fitness, and functional movements. Relying solely on stretching, such as in Yoga, can potentially cause harm instead of providing benefits. Developing mobility without stability can lead to joint problems. Stability is achieved through a balanced approach that includes strengthening the muscles surrounding the joints. It is crucial to acknowledge that certain stretches and Yoga poses carry risks. Familiarize yourself with these risks and understand them before attempting any new exercises. In general, avoid stretches that put excessive stress on the joints or involve extreme positions. Stretching should not cause pain. Additionally, it is advisable to avoid lumbar spinal flexion, twisting, and positioning the head below the waist due to potential ocular issues. Here are some key principles for stretching and Yoga training:
Never stretch or move into pain. Take it slow and go to the point of initial resistance, then hold the stretch. Allow the stretch to naturally occur without forcing it.
Do not prioritize achieving the final position over maintaining proper form throughout the stretch.
Aim to keep your head above the waist and avoid excessive spinal flexion or twisting while stretching.
Having a normal range of flexibility is more beneficial than being overly flexible.
Strive for balance and symmetry in your body by addressing your individual needs, such as posture, habits, weaknesses, or sports requirements.
Understand your personal abilities and limitations through a personal assessment. We can assist you with that. Refer to our flexibility page for more information. flexibility page.
17 Including stretching in the prevention of tight muscles should be accompanied by strengthening exercises. Simply relying on tissue work and stretching alone is insufficient to fully address tightness. Weakness within the muscles or their surrounding areas often contributes to the tightness. Therefore, in order to alleviate persistent discomfort, it is important to assess areas of weakness and limited mobility and incorporate all three components: tissue work (such as massage or the use of releasing tools), stretches or range-of-motion exercises, and strengthening exercises. It is also crucial to address any postural or movement issues that may be contributing to the problem.
18 When engaging in muscular training, it is recommended to work towards or reach a point of momentary muscular failure while maintaining proper form during one or more sets of an exercise. Momentary Muscle Failure is a fundamental aspect of effective muscular training, occurring when you can no longer perform additional repetitions with proper form due to the muscles reaching a state of complete acute exhaustion. This doesn't mean that every set should be taken to this extreme, but incorporating this principle into your program is essential for improving muscular strength.
19. Aerobic Conditioning requires you to get out of your comfort zone at times. Get out of breath daily at points. Engaging in aerobic conditioning often requires pushing yourself beyond your comfort zone and experiencing moments of breathlessness. If you are in good health and able to exercise (as determined by the Physical Activity Readiness Questionnaire, or PAR Q), it is recommended to challenge yourself by incorporating periods of higher intensity aerobic exercise into your routine. Research has shown that even brief intervals of high intensity interval training (HIIT) can provide health benefits beyond those achieved through steady-state exercises like walking at a consistent pace. To add variety to your aerobic workouts, consider including intervals of 20 seconds to 90 seconds of higher intensity exercise. Even a single session of climbing four flights of stairs has been shown to yield benefits. It is important to warm up properly before engaging in these higher intensity intervals to prevent injury and ensure your body is prepared for the exertion.(see PAR Q)
20. Make sure you understand what your goals are and what would be the best exercises and movements for those goals. It is crucial to have a clear understanding of your goals and to identify the exercises and movements that align with those goals. If your primary objective is to maintain overall health and fitness, a well-rounded program that includes foundational exercises would be appropriate. Foundational exercises typically focus on core strength, gluteal activation, and shoulder stabilization. These exercises help establish a solid base of fitness and promote functional movement patterns. On the other hand, if your goal is to excel in a particular sport or physical pursuit, it is advisable to follow a more specialized training program tailored to the specific demands of that activity. Such a program would still benefit from incorporating foundational exercises to ensure a well-rounded fitness base. Understanding your goals allows you to tailor your exercise routine accordingly, ensuring that you are working towards your desired outcomes and addressing the specific needs of your chosen activity or sport. See Daily Moves Program or our Foundation Exercise Program
21. Every exercise has a purpose and some can be dangerous for your fitness level even for the elite level. Doing an exercise because it looks cool is wasted effort and may lead to an injury. Try to know what is right for you. Example: Competitive Olympic and Power Lifts. Some people do not have the hip structure to get into the deep squat position that is required for these lifts. Please see Olympic and Power Lifts section below. We have assessment tools that will help you understand what exercises are best for you and Master Lists of Muscular and Functional Exercises for beginner, intermediate, and advanced abilities. See Muscular Ability and Functional Ability Pages for Self-Tests and Exercise Lists. We also have a comprehensive list of what exercises to avoid/limit/modify (see list).
22. Good nutrition does not need to be complicated.
When it comes to good nutrition I point simply to the healthy plate by Harvard (see plate). It is so simple to understand. Plenty of fruits and veggies, healthy fats, and lean proteins. The complicated part is just doing it. Make a plan and go with it. I do not care if you eat the same meals over and over again. I do. As long as they are healthy I am fine with it. Learn more about nutrition at this page.
23. Calories matters when it comes to weight loss.
No matter how you cut it, chop it, serve it, say it, I do not care but calories will always be an important factor of dieting to lose weight. You can eat the healthiest diet in th world and not lose weight. Vice versa you can eat the worst diet in the world and lose weight (see Twinkee Diet). Every single weight loss diet has you eating less calories. The key though is to make sure those calories are healthy so it sustains health and performance. See the healthy diet list on this page.
24. Make the times you eat work for you. I generally tell people to eat 3 healthy meals a day with a couple of snacks. This may not work for you. Some people do well with intermittent fasting where there is a short window of time, 6 hours in day, in most cases that you eat. Although this type of fasting works for some people I would not suggest it for athletes or those trying to build muscle.
25. Make sure whatever dietary practice that you follow is healthy and that you can sustain it for life. If you can not see yourself doing this for a year do not do it. What typically happens with some diets, especially very low carb diets, people tend to gain much of their weight back because they just can not sustain it. We never allow anyone go below 400 calories worth of carbs a day.Calories will always matter if you are trying to lose or gain weight
Do not let any one fool you. Mostly every single diet that I have looked into finds a way to get you to eat less calories. The good thing is that most healthy diets are loaded with fruits and veggies that give the diet more bulk and less calories than unhealthy ones. In so doing they make you feel full and you eat less, but if you eat too many calories from healthy foods you will can still gain weight. So it is important to know how many calories are right for you and how to incorporate the right amount into your own healthy plan. Just remember calories are calories. If you eat those in one meal (meal restriction), intermittent periods, or eight it doesn’t matter for most. What does matter is that you find something that is regular and manageable for you. That being said if you are working out hard you might find a single meal or intermittent approaches not as effective as eating regularly throughout the day.
26. Plan for the Rest of Your Life: If you can’t see yourself eating the same way the rest of your life find a better plan. The same could be said for your conditioning program for the most part.
This is a tenet of most good dietary approaches. Dieting successfully is going to involve changing. Some small and some big things to make it work. Everyone is different. I like to meet people where they are at and make small changes at first. It takes time, patience, and practice but in my experience this is the only way it works.
27. Supplements: They are not the answer. Supplements are add-ons to your diet. They are added to complete or enhance your diet. Supplements can be somewhat useful in a few cases, but as a whole I would say not to waste your money outside of a few cases that your doctor may recommend (see my supplement page).
28. Water is life: Water is crucial for daily good health and to perform at your best (see article). There is no consensus of the best amount. You have to find what is best for you. Try to consume enough water a day to keep your urine a pale color. I would also say to drink water every hour. Typical guidelines recommend eight glasses per day, though this varies from person to person. Those who exercise regularly, work outside, or have chronic medical conditions should consume more water to compensate for more water loss.
29. A diet can not be Healthy without Fruits and Veggies: I have not seen a scientific paper to disprove this. The omission of fruits and vegetables makes the body more prone to deficiencies and a plethora of diseases. Life expectancy drops in those who do not eat fruits and veggies.
30. Eat Healthy Protein Rich Foods, but there is no need to over do it: Excess protein can lead to health issues and weight gain. An inadequate amount can lead to muscle loss and other health issues. Find out what works best for you, but make sure you get an adequate amount. For most that is 15 to 30 grams with each meal if a person is having three meals a day. I typically recommend 20-30 grams.
31. Carbs should not be avoided, but embraced: As a health coach I can not and will not ever recommend to anyone less than 400 calories worth of carbohydrates a day. That amount is considered a low carb diet. I can understand that many low carb diet are at effective at weight loss but VERY low carb diets ( less than 400 calories from carbs ) leaves the body depleted and not able to function at its best. As mentioned Fruits and Veggies are key to a healthy diet. Mostly all of them are loaded with carbs either in the form or starch, simple sugars, or fiber or a combination of each. Whole grains provide healthy carbs as well as some essential vitamins and minerals (see MayoClinic).
32. You need to breathe to live, but to breathe right takes understanding and effort: The bottomline is that when you breathe try to breathe through the nose. There is strong evidence that this is extremely heathy. Even when you exercise, try to breathe through your nose and out your mouth. You should never hold you breath when exercising even when weight lifting. Try to be mindful of your breathing throughout your day. It is also good to try to breathe from the diaphragm through what is know as belly breaths when you can ( this is known as Restorative Breathing ). See articles: Breath Nose, Breath Belly, and Breathing During Exercise.
33. You may think it does not matter, but Posture does matter. Think about it often. Protect the curves. Think about your posture when you can. Try to keep the natural curves to your neck, mid-back, and low back. They should be slight and not hyper-flexed. You should also try to keep your shoulders back and your head up. It is also a good idea when standing to stand with knees bent and not locked.
34. a. Do not just do a sport as your only source of fitness. b. Do not do a sport unless you do conditioning for the sport. These two statements go hand and hand. I always tell people most sports can improve an aspect of fitness, but there are few if any which work on all aspects of your fitness therefore you need to do other fitness related activities to stay fit. In order to do better in your sport and prevent injury you should also follow a sport specific conditioning program. We can help you determine what you need to improve in your sport and to keep you healthy, fit, and pain-free for your sport and life.
35. Most sports carry injury risks. Become aware of them and be proactive by following a proper conditioning program. We can help you determine what you need to to do to keep you healthy, fit, and pain-free for your sport and life.
36. Performance numbers are important in athletics but not as much as you think. Having the best numbers in the weight room or speed drills will not make you the best on the field, but generally speaking improving your capacity for a sport will help your performance and prevent injury. One study in the NFL found no consistent statistical relationship between combine tests and professional football performance (Study).
37. Stand when you can, but do not stand all the time. I always tell people to stand up and reach for the sky and take a deep breath after sitting for 20 minutes or more and to remain standing for at least 20 seconds to help nourish the spine. Standing is also good for a variety of other reasons, but do not stand all the time. A good ratio is 1:1 (Stand to Sit) or 4:1 Stand to Sit, so either 50% or 75% of the tie standing (Article).
38. An easy way to stay healthy is to eat a rainbow. The most vibrantly colored fruits and vegetables are the richest in vitamins, minerals, fiber and antioxidants. Fruits and vegetables get their coloration from phytochemicals, natural bioactive compounds which, in addition to giving many fruits and veggies their eye-catching hues, also promote good health. (Article).
39. Eat Healthy Fats Dietary fats are essential for good health. Do not buy into that fat will make you fat. On the contrary, eating just carbs leads to eating more carbs because they do not satisfy as much as fats do. On top of that many key nutrients like fat soluble vitamins need dietary fat to be absorbed into your body. On top of that fat helps give your body energy, protects your organs, supports cell growth and keeps cholesterol and blood pressure under control. Current guidelines allow you to eat a very high percentage of calories from fat, which was not the case in the past. I would suggest keeping it between 25 to 35% of your calories to make room for healthy proteins (see above), fruits and veggies, and whole grains. Knowing the difference between healthy fats and unhealthy fats is a key. Read more at Harvard Health, but healthy fats are Unsaturated. There are two types: monounsaturated and polyunsaturated. Monounsaturated fats are found in avocados and peanut butter; nuts like almonds, hazelnuts, cashews, and pecans; and seeds, such as pumpkin, sesame, and sunflower seeds. It is also in plant oils, such as olive, peanut, safflower, sesame, and canola oils. Besides heart health the benefit of eating more "good" fat and less "bad" fat is that this can keep the brain healthy, says Harvard Health. Studies have found a strong association between people who follow the MIND diet and a lower risk of Alzheimer's disease. The MIND diet advocates eating more of 10 certain foods and less of five others. Among the good ones are healthy-fat foods like nuts, fatty fish, and olive oil, while the bad ones — butter, cheese, red meat, pastries, and fried and fast foods — contain high amounts of saturated fat.
40. Eat Fiber (in most cases) Americans are under nourished when it comes to many nutitional components and fiber is one of them. The reason being is that they are found in fruits, veggies, whole grains, nuts, and seeds which Americans do not eat enough of. If a food is processed most likely it is low in fiber. It’s important to get the right amount fiber to keep your digestive system running smoothly. It also provides a lot of health benefits beyond digestion, such as help with weight loss and balancing gut bacteria. According to many health authorities women should try to eat at least 21 to 25 grams of fiber a day, while men should aim for 30 to 38 grams a day. Here's a look at how much dietary fiber is found in some common foods (say Mayo).
41. Stay Away from Added Sugar If you do not know this where have you been. The AHA suggests an added-sugar limit of no more than 100 calories per day (about 6 teaspoons or 24 grams of sugar) for most women and no more than 150 calories per day (about 9 teaspoons or 36 grams of sugar) for most men. There's no nutritional need or benefit that comes from eating added sugar. Natural sugar from veggies and fruit are not added sugar. I would say to stay away from juice even though it comes 100% from fruit because the healthy fiber has been removed from the fruit to make juicel Sugar comes in many forms and names. Here is the list to avoid: more than 60, if we’re talking about what’s listed on nutrition labels. Here are a few of them.
Fruit juice concentrates
42. Stay away from Red and Processed Meats According to Harvard Health the accumulated body of evidence shows a clear link between high intake of red and processed meats and a higher risk for heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and premature death. The evidence is consistent across different studies (see article). Some kinds of red meat are not necessarily healthier. There are no firm studies that have shown nutritional or health advantages from eating organic or grass-fed beef. These types of red meat are often more desirable as they contain low or no growth hormones compared with grain-fed beef. If you have to eat it some health authorities suggest to limit consumption to no more than about three portions per week. Three portions is equivalent to about 350–500g (about 12–18oz) cooked weight. Consume very little, if any, processed meat.
43. Try to have Fatty Fish if you can. According to many highly cited and accepted health sites oily fish, fatty fish are the best sources of two of the three most important omega-3s (EPA and DHA). These fatty acids are considered the good fats, unlike the bad saturated fats in meat. They may deliver huge health benefits for your heart, brain, lungs, and circulation. Oily fish is rich in omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids, which have been shown to reduce inflammation and potentially lower the risk of heart disease, cancer, and arthritis. Both white and oily fish are good sources of lean protein. Oily fish such as salmon, tuna, sardines, mackerel, and trout are full of omega-3 fatty acids..
44. Besides conditioning your big muscles condition the smaller stabilizing muscles. Stabilizing muscles are important muscles for support and posture. If you have strong and balanced stabilizing muscles you most likely have proper posture and alignment, which means possible decreased pain and risk of injury.
In any movement, stabilizer muscles act to stabilize one joint so the desired movement can be performed in another joint. These muscles usually aren't directly involved in a movement, but work to keep you steady so that your primary muscles can do their job. The CORE is the most well known stablizing muscle system around your trunk and hips. Other stablizing muscles work around other joints like the rotator cuff muscles as well as the muscles that wrap around the knee and ankle. I spend a lot of time making sure the my clients have a stable and balanced stablizers to assure that the exercises they do will not cause harm.
45. Take care of your feet. Feet are your body's foundation, so keeping them healthy is vital to your overall health. Years of wear and tear can be hard on your feet. Overuse, shoes that don't fit properly, and even genetics can lead to injuries and disorders of the foot that can greatly impact your mobility.You need to do things that will strengthen your feet as well as following proper foot care. Here are some Basic Care Items from WebMed
1 Check them daily for cuts, sores, swelling, and infected toenails.
2 Give them a good cleaning in warm water, but avoid soaking them because that may dry them out.
3 Moisturize them every day with lotion, cream, or petroleum jelly. ...
4 Avoid wearing tight-fitting shoes. ...
5 Skip the flip-flops and flats.
6 Rotate your shoes so you’re not wearing the same pair every day.
7 rim your toenails straight across with a nail clipper. Then use an emery board or nail file to smooth the corners, which will prevent the nail from growing into your skin.
46. Work on your balance? I can not get over what poor balance most people have. It is a true sign of overall fitness and function. It is so important to have a we age. Balance exercises are part of all my training programs. I personally incoporate them into my own training. ( see more about balance and functional training here ). According to Athleco improving your balance has shown a lot of promise in being able to prevent injuries for a wide range of people. For athletes, balance work is associated with a dramatically lower risk of injury. Just one sprained ankle will predispose you to future ankle sprains for life, but regular balance work can decrease your risk of a sprain by nearly 40%. For the elderly, improved balance could prevent a fall, which is the cause of over 90% of all hip fractures–one of people’s most life-altering (and shortening) injuries.
47. Know these important numbers (1). Waist Circumference is one of the most important health metrics. I consider it and blood pressure the two most important. Waist circumference is a good measure of fat around your middle. This type of fat builds up around your organs, and is linked to high blood fat levels, high blood pressure and diabetes (see site). A larger waist usually also means there is excess fat inside your organs. Waist circumference (WC) is an indicator of intra-abdominal adipose tissue, high levels of which confer an increased risk of cardiometabolic disease. Population data on WC should be more informative than data on body mass index (BMI), which is a general indicator of body size according to the NIH.
48. Know these important numbers (2) Blood Pressure. It's important to get an accurate blood pressure reading so that you have a clearer picture of your risk for heart disease and stroke. High blood pressure can damage your arteries by making them less elastic, which decreases the flow of blood and oxygen to your heart and leads to heart disease. In addition, decreased blood flow to the heart can cause: Chest pain, also called angina. High blood pressure has been nicknamed the silent killer. It usually doesn't present obvious symptoms until it's too late, so you have to be proactive in measuring it throughout your life. The good news is that there are many steps you can take to lower blood pressure before taking medication. Limiting salt intake, drinking less alcohol, quitting smoking and getting more daily exercise have all shown to be effective, which are all the things we preach.
49. Know these important numbers (3) Heart Rate. This is very easy to measure. Most fitness tracking devices do it for you. If you don't have time to go to the doctor to get your blood pressure checked, your resting heart rate may give you a clue whether it's too high or not. A study of World Health Organization data showed that elevated resting heart rates are strongly correlated with high blood pressure, and in turn cardiovascular mortality. A normal resting heart rate is anywhere between 60 and 100 beats per minute, though if you're in really good shape it might be even lower. While a very high resting heart rate, called tachycardia, can be a serious medical emergency, monitoring average levels can give you good indicators to your overall health as well. Resting heart rate tends to rise when you are stressed, exercising less or not getting enough sleep.
50. Know these important numbers (4) A1C. Prediabetes and of course diabetes is disasterous to your body. Unfortunately some people do not know that they have either one. People with prediabetes are in danger of getting diabetes, and are at higher risk of chronic kidney disease and heart and blood vessel diseases. A1C is one of the commonly used tests to diagnose prediabetes and diabetes, and is also the main test to help you and your health care team manage your diabetes. Higher A1C levels are linked to diabetes complications, so reaching and maintaining your individual A1C goal is really important if you have diabetes.
51. Know these important numbers (5). LDL One in every six Americans has high cholesterol, making them twice as likely to develop heart disease. But, total cholesterol isn't all bad -- it plays an incredibly important role in your body. It's found in every cell, and plays a vital role in creating the cell membrane that protects all the good stuff inside. Typically, when people talk about "cholesterol," they're usually referring to LDL, or "bad" cholesterol, which you want to be LOW. There's also HDL, or "good," total cholesterol, which you want to be HIGH, and triglycerides, which you want to be LOW. A healthy diet low in processed food and exercise is the best first treatment for high bad lipids (LDLs and TRIs). Quitting smoking also help. Cholesterol naturally rises with age.
52. Take it one step at a time. Rome was not built in a day. So take the attitude of making small changes that you can and build on. If you start walking on a regular basis you might ask how can I feel stronger doing this. That is when we would introduce some simple strengthening. Or say you started eating basic iceberg salads on a regular basis and one day you said how can I make this healthier. That is when we would add leafy greens like baby spinach and spring mix or to make it more interesting by adding vegetables like carrots, peppers, onions, beets, cucumber etc. Good habits tend to build on each other. Create a foundation of basic and simple healthy habits and away you will go. You will always have that initial base to support you.
How to Create an Initial Healthy Base:
1. Learn to Breathe Right ( see our articles: nose breathing and belly breathing ) through your nose using your abomen.
2. Try to get Seven Hours of Sleep a Day ( see our article)
3. Drink several servings of Water Daily ( see our article )
4. Walk when you can and try to accumulate 20 to 30 minutes throughout the day ( a minute here and there )
5. Do several flights of stair a day ( to get you heart pumping faster )
6. Try to stand every 20 minutes and reach for the sky and lean back for good joint health ( see our article )
7. Eat a Rainbow :) Try to get at least 3 servings of veggies a day and 1-3 servings of fruit ( see our article )
8. Use Olive Oil or other Healthy Oils or Fats with some meals ( see our article )
9. Try to do some Basic Daily Moves or follow our Simple Fitness Program because Motion is Lotion or come to us to have a Foundation Assessment and Program built for you.
10. Meditate for 1 to 5 minutes through mindful breathing, prayer, visualization, or whatever form you choose ( see our Relaxation Program ). A 10 minute Nap is sometimes a good thing ( see our article ). Both have you taking time for yourself.