Hint: intermittent fasting helps, and you don’t need to give up carbs

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Photo by Chander R on Unsplash

You may have heard the term metabolic flexibility recently. The concept isn’t new, but the idea has gained more traction on popular websites, as being metabolically flexible is becoming a key marker of health.

Metabolic flexibility’s formal definition is the ability of an organism to respond or adapt according to changes in metabolic or energy demand, as well as the prevailing conditions or activity. That’s a lot of scientific speak to say metabolic flexibility is how well your body can switch from using carbohydrates to fats for energy depending on what you’re asking from it at the moment (i.e., …

#6 something called optic flow

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Photo by Arek Adeoye on Unsplash

By this point in our evolutionary history, we all know walking is good for us. Yet, many of us still leave this fundamental component of health up to whatever we manage to squeak in while walking around the house, to and from work (if that’s even happening), or while running errands.

We may think we counteract the amount of time we spend sitting with a 30–60-minute gym session, but our bodies weren’t designed to sit all day and then push as hard as possible for a brief amount of time.

According to a study in Diabetes,

The average non-exercising person may become even more metabolically unfit in the coming years if they sit too much, thereby limiting the normally high volume of intermittent non-exercise physical activity in everyday life. …

The research is mixed; here’s what you should know

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By dotshock

Fasted cardio became all the rage when Bill Philips first published his best-selling book Body for Life in 1999. He claimed 20 minutes of fasted high-intensity cardio had a greater effect on fat loss than an hour of cardio after eating a meal. Everyone from bodybuilders to weight loss enthusiasts to professional athletes jumped on the bandwagon.

The theory is that working out fasted (such as first thing in the morning before breakfast) pushes your body to burn fat as fuel because your glycogen levels are low. Glycogen is the stored form of glucose in the liver and muscles.

To maintain consistent blood sugar overnight, your liver slowly releases glycogen into the bloodstream. Insulin levels are also at their lowest after an overnight fast. Research shows when insulin and glycogen are low (generally), your body will prefer fat to carbohydrates as a fuel source. …

#7: possible reduced cancer risk

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Photo by Lukasz Szmigiel on Unsplash

For 99% of history, humans lived off the land. Not only did we use the land for basic survival, but the outdoors provided a space for enjoyment, community, and ritual. One study hypothesizes we are born with an innate love of nature as a part of our hunter-gatherer ancestry.

In the past few decades, a term called “green exercise” has captivated the brains of researchers looking at why movement outdoors tends to provide a greater sense of well-being, enhanced restoration in biochemical markers of recovery, and possibly increased disease prevention.

The Japanese have a term for this called Shinrin-yoku, which translates in English to “taking in the forest atmosphere” or “forest bathing.” You don’t have to get naked in the woods (although that might be fun) like the idea of forest bathing implies. Coined in 1982 by the Japanese Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, forest bathing refers to the “process of soaking up the sights, smells, and sounds of a natural setting to promote physiological and psychological health.” …

#1 — walking 10,000 steps per day to stay healthy

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Photo by Randy Fath on Unsplash

What do you think when I mention Napolean Bonaparte? I know, what does this have to do with fitness? Stick with me for a minute. For most, his name conjures an image of a short man who compensated for his stature in an overly-aggressive manner. The idea is so prevalent, there’s a complex named after him. The truth is Napolean wasn’t short. He was likely close to 5'6" or 5'7" depending on the source — average for a Frenchman at the time.

The myth partly arose because he measured 5'2" at his death, but those were French inches, which are larger than British and American inches. French soldiers nicknamed him “le petit caporal,” which came from his down-to-earth manner, not his height. …

It's not just professionals who often fight an invisible opponent

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By WoodysPhotos

We look at athletes on television and think they must be tough as nails to get where they are. They commit their minds and bodies to hours of grueling daily practice. And it’s not just professionals who risk everything for their sport. Amateur college athletes and dedicated sports enthusiasts (like those who run marathons, ultramarathons, Ironmans, adventure races, etc.) often give close to, if not the same, amount of effort with little to no financial reward.

It’s easy to measure the health of an athlete on the outside. We have devices that examine blood pressure, heart rate, ligaments, muscles, joints, and more. If someone is injured, they rest. …

Advice my therapist gave me: speaking your truth is an act of love.

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Photo by Tim Mossholder on Unsplash

Sitting across the room from my therapist on a sofa, I told him about a recent conversation with my husband. It was about something that bothered me, but I didn't, by any means, think the situation I described would set me on a path to change my life in any meaningful way.

In typical fashion, he asked me how I responded to the situation. He knows I hate conflict. …

Do’s and don’ts of today’s reality — what you should know.

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By Drazen Zigic

Working out from home for nine weeks last Spring tested every bit of patience I had for walking lunges, bodyweight squats, and pushups. Biceps curls with a milk jug are the absolute worst. The minute gyms opened, I celebrated. I’m sure many of you did, too.

In Colorado, we have a state-wide mask mandate, so we’re required to wear masks in all indoor spaces. I happily walked into the gym with my face covered. I set up the bar for front squats, warmed up to a working set, and got to business. Except, holy crap, the mask sucked. …

Here’s how, according to new research

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By Brazhyk

Those of us looking to gain muscle know how difficult it can be. Alan Aragon, co-author of The Lean Muscle Diet, estimates that an entry-level lifter can gain two to three pounds of muscle mass in a month without adding much fat. An intermediate can gain one to two pounds a month, and an experienced lifter will be lucky to add a half-pound.

Of course, the amount of muscle you gain also depends on genetics, bone mass, nutrition, and training — assuming you’re not taking any performance-enhancing drugs. …

See what you may have missed

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Welcome to my weekly Medium article review! With COVID cases on the rise in Colorado, my kids are now home for remote learning until Jan. 5th. (😭). It’s challenging to manage their schedules, but luckily I’m still able to write about topics I love. Hope you’re healthy and well!

Feel free to reach out if you have questions on any of my stories or want to chat directly!

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Suzie Glassman

Writing to help the world become a healthier, happier place. Let’s chat: suzieglassmancoach@gmail.com.

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