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Planning The Day Is The Best Way To Win The Day

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Wake up and go. That’s the routine for most people. Just deal with your daily frustrations as they come. You try to relax when you get off of work and nothing helps. The stress of the day is still on your mind. You go to sleep, only to start your cycle all over again.

A little planning can help you get through the day. Rather it is making sure you eat the right food or getting the right amount of sleep it all plays part in finding balance in your life.

Plan the Night Before
If you want to greet the day feeling relaxed and in-control, do your homework. Create your to-do-list and breakfast menu before you hit the sheets. Taking 15 minutes to get organized in the evening can save you a 30-minute crisis in the morning (Where are my keys? That shirt is dirty—really?) … plus grant you invaluable serenity, so you can focus on bigger things.

Fuel Right
What you put into your body when it’s waking up sets the tone for the next 24 hours. Now is a great time to choose quality protein (whey protein powder, eggs, Greek yogurt), healthy fats (avocado, olive oil), and complex carbs (whole-grain waffles, oatmeal). Chow down.

Drink Up 
While you get your zzz’s, your body loses water. Wake up and replenish with fluids stat. Choose something natural like spring water or ZICO Premium Coconut Water, which will keep you hydrated with five electrolytes: magnesium, sodium, phosphorus, calcium, and as much potassium as a banana. ZICO’s natural flavor is never sweetened, but it tastes refreshing and is just sweet enough.

Get in the Habit 
Routines save time and energy—you won’t have to stress to figure out what to do next. If you know your morning goes something like: meditate/drink coffee/run/blend smoothie/shower/shave/brush/floss/iron … you can free your mind to focus and plan for the day ahead.

Get Introspective 
Does morning meditation sound … sleepy? Even a few minutes of meditation deeply stimulates the brain, allowing you to clear distractions from your mind and center your mental energy. Set the timer for three minutes, and start there. Focus on your breath, and when your attention wanders, as it will, gently bring it back. A three-minute respite from the onslaught of your busy mind is a glorious thing.

Now go, tackle your day. Live it up.

Fitness

Alvin Kamara Decides That Weights Are Not Enough In His Workout

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Saints running back and NFL Rookie of The Year Alvin Kamara is getting ready for next season.

Kamara decided to put the entire weight rack on his shoulders, along with four giant plates, and then he walked 20 yards with them.

As if that’s not difficult enough, Kamara also decided to pull a Jeep behind him during his workout, which probably burned roughly 90,000 calories.

If you want to rush for over 1500 yards maybe you should find a Jeep.

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What’s Holding You Back From Being Ripped

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Do you want to be a ripped guy with abs for all seasons? The answer is a matter of priorities and discipline.

Think about it: Are you willing to cook your own food instead of eating premade meals or buying takeout? Count your macros and measure your food portions? Eat salad while the rest of your buddies are eating pizza? Give up even foods you didn’t think were especially bad for you, such as bread, cheese, and milk? Commit yourself to getting more sleep than a normal guy?

If you answered yes to all those questions, you may have the dedication needed to get ripped. If not, no worries—you can still be strong, healthy, and lean, a guy who’s always energized and resistant to disease but won’t appear in a firemen’s calendar anytime soon. And no one says you have to.

But if ripped is your goal, we’ve got the goods. You’ll achieve a lean physique faster with this approach than with any other you’ve tried so far.

Determine how those calories break down into grams of protein, carbs, and fat. Because getting ripped demands resistance training and lifters need more protein than regular folks to repair muscle, set your daily protein intake at 1g per pound of bodyweight. You need carbs to provide energy for workouts and recover from training, so again, 1g per pound is good. As for fat, keep it low to keep calories under control (1g of fat has more than twice the calories of a gram of protein or carbs), but not so low that you negatively impact hormones like testosterone: Start with 0.4g per pound per day.

So for our 250-lb man who wants to be 180, his macros are 180g protein, 180g carbs, and 72g fat.

 

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Do Fitness Trackers Really Work?

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This article was written by K. ALEISHA FETTERS and was originally published on Details.com.

THE QUESTION: I’M constantly looking at my fitness tracker. But how much can I really rely on what it’s telling me?

The expert: Ray Browning, Ph.D., director of the Physical Activity Energetics/Mechanics Lab at Colorado State University

The answer: It depends what, exactly, you’re tracking and which brand you’re wearing.

Why? These fitness devices track everything—from calories burned to steps taken—with their built-in accelerometers. And as the name suggests, they only detect acceleration (changes in motion), not exertion. They don’t have any idea if your arm is wielding a candy bar or a 50-pound dumbbell.

That’s why, as you may or may not have noticed, your tracker gives you little to no credit for some of your workouts. A lot of strength training exercises—not to mention biking—all read like you’re just chilling out on the couch, Browning says. Remember: If your tracker is not bouncing around, it’s not counting your exercise.

In one recent study published in Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, trackers’ calorie expenditure (one subset of the genre) was found to be between 10 and 15 percent off, on average, which isn’t so bad. Researchers asked 30 men and 30 women to complete a 69-minute workout that included 13 different activities—from writing at a computer and playing Wii tennis to running and shooting hoops. They then compared the readings from eight fitness trackers against those from portable (and far more accurate) metabolic analyzers.

The BodyMedia FIT, Fitbit Zip, and Fitbit One, were the most accurate (with 9.3, 10.1, and 10.4 error ratings, respectively), while the Jawbone Up, Actigraph, Directlife, Nike Fuel Band, and Basis Band, brought up the rear (with 12.2, 12.6, 12.8, 13.0, 23.5 percent error ratings, respectively).

But if you put too much faith in even the most accurate trackers—basing your calorie intake on how many calories your device says you’re burning—you could end up gaining, not losing weight, Browning says. For instance, if your fitness tracker says you’ve burned 3,000 calories today, you may have actually only burned 2,500.

The smartphone apps for some of these fitness trackers will let you manually enter exercises to get a more accurate calorie-burn total, but even if your tracker knows your height, weight, age, and gender, the calorie-estimate could be off, of course. (the accuracy of cardio machine calorie-counters is another matter.)

There is a silver lining, though: “These fitness trackers may not be accurate in counting calories, but their results are repeatable,” says Browning. If you do the exact same thing two days in a row, you can expect the same tallies from your tracker. That means you can easily use them to track your progress. Have you burned more calories today than yesterday? Taken more steps? You can trust that info.

And progress, in the end, is what will make you fitter and faster.

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