The absolute mantra to fitness and nutrition

This is not something that people don’t already know… but since after several years of trial and error, reading and discussing, I finally figured out the perfect plan (for myself, of course), I thought I’d post it up here for people to see and judge. The thing that makes physical fitness even more complicated than several other things is that nothing works for everybody – you really have to test it out for yourself, if it suits your particular body type (what type are you – mesomorphic, endomorphic and ectomorphic?), time, daily routine and disposition. But my hope is that this little article still serves as a general guideline, which might be easily tailored to everybody’s needs…

First, workouts – work out 4 to 5 times a day. Try to use such a split system that every body part gets trained. Learn about different muscle groups and subgroups, and which exercises work which of these muscle groups. Try a balanced approach such that no part is left out. While working out, the basic idea is to use as much weight that gives your muscles enough exercise – so you can do 10-12 reps with some difficulty. If it gets too easy, move on to heavier weight. If you cannot do 10-12 “clean” reps with correct form, go a little lighter. Use full range of motion and controlled movements, and feel the muscle working out. Make sure that, as much as possible, your bones, joints and other muscle groups only act as links to the actual body part you are training. Quality over quantity, always. Try to get a pump in the muscles by the time you’re done.

Next, the more important part: nutrition. Eat 5-6 times a day – 2-3 good meals and the rest snacks; all meals should be separated by 2-3 hours. This makes sure that your metabolism always keeps going and you keep burning fat. In every meal, try to incorporate good quality carbs (whole wheat breads, brown rice), lots of green and leafy vegetables, fruit, sufficient lean protein from lean meat and lean dairy products, vitamins and minerals. Whey protein supplements are excellent. Make sure that you don’t eat any carbs after 7 o’clock or so.

Finally, get enough rest. I cannot overemphasize this point. Lack of sleep is extremely detrimental to your overall health and even mental functions.

Now for the interesting part. As a college student, you are bound to be invited to parties, and of course you want to go. But indulging yourself in moderation is a good idea in itself from several points of view. As a student (well – this is true for everybody), you often have a lot of workload and your brain needs to be high on sugar for it to work! But instead of allowing yourself empty calories coming from refined carbs, use fruit. Fructose breaks down slowly and gives you evergy over prolonged periods of time. Also, often you don’t have enough time to prepare your balanced diet – we all need comfort foods. But even in this scenario, you can always go for leaner and cheaper alternatives…