There is so much crap out there regarding health and wellness, and half of it is contradicting towards the other half, and most of it is obvious. The “lose weight quick” pitches trying to get you buy videos and e-books are getting old. There are no more ridiculous ads on the web than the photo-shopped pictures of something resembling Hulk (not the porn star wrestler, but the green Avenger) saying, “He did it in 8 weeks.” Meanwhile we all know what it takes to get into decent shape: a balance of eating well and exercising. I’m not here to tell you some big weight loss secret, because there are none. I’m also not here to some ingenious fitness tip; they also don’t exist. Instead I would like to focus on the easiest ways to lose the gut as it relates to being in Thailand. IF you know you’re long overdue, let this article give you the jump start you need to get moving.
1) Chill out with the rice
I know it’s easier said than done, especially in Thailand. They bombard their dishes with rice and some of those spicier dishes just aren’t going to be the same without the white stuff. But our bodies don’t process rice well; it slows things down, while the goal really is to speed things up. Some carbohydrates are better than others, so if you have to have a filling of rice here and there, at least get some kind of multigrain rice. I don’t know anyone who doesn’t enjoy noodles or rice when they’re hungry, but we can’t just indulge in everything that tastes or feels good each and every day, can we? Eliminating 80% of the simple carbohydrates (like white rice or basic noodles), you eat will go a long way in a hurry towards slimming the gut. Concentrate on eating: chicken, pork, fish, and beef with sides of vegetables. Mild on the sauce, but seasoning isn’t really a problem.
2) Only drink water and juice
Cutting out all soda and crap sugar drinks is right up there with cutting carbs in terms of making a large impact on slimming you down. If something is a crazy blue, yellow, or orange color your body wants no part of it. Those bottled soft drinks at 7-11 are just liquid candy. Juice is fine, but you’re better off squeezing your own which is easy enough to accomplish in Thailand. Most importantly, drink mostly water; that is obviously what keeps things moving along in your body the best.
3) Exercise your legs
This isn’t to say only exercise your legs; you should do a full body exercise routine a couple of times per week. But we all know the type of guy who only works his glamour muscles out (biceps and chest) while he neglects his chicken legs; and that’s foolish. Exercising your legs does more to keep your gut in check than exercising any other part of your body including your stomach! Studies have shown that leg exercises blow stomach crunches out of the water and the reason is because of the impact they have on your metabolism. Your legs have large muscles from top to bottom, so when you work them out those muscles swell and demand that your body send nutrients and water down to them to reduce the swelling. Your body works hard to move everything quickly down to those large muscle groups and this whole process super charges your metabolism which goes a long way with eliminating the gut.
4) Do cardio two times per week
If you don’t do any cardio it shouldn’t come as a surprise to you that you need to do something to get your heart rate up and to break a sweat. But if you ‘re the type who runs on the treadmill 6 times per week, you might find it a bit surprising that you’re probably doing too much cardio. Redundancy in your cardio routines doesn’t do a lot for you and neither does overtaxing your body. You see chunky girls who run on the treadmill every day of their lives and they never get skinny. They get really good at running at the expense of their knees and ankles, but they don’t get a nice figure. Cardio is just part of the puzzle, so do it 2 or 3 times per week until you break a really nice sweat and get the heart rate up. Be sure to stretch before and after to decrease risk of injury and to promote faster recovery, and that goes for weight lifting too, although with weight lifting you also want to stretch while you’re working out). If you’ve seen videos like P90X or Insanity, stay away! These routines overload you with massive cardio which does make you lose weight, but you destroy your body in the process and you gain all of the weight back shortly after you’re through with the routine.
5) Eat fruit when you feel snacky
Potato chips and candy are a killer; but most people have cravings for both. While it might be difficult to cut out 100% of the crap out of your diet, try to cut 80% of it out and when you have intense cravings substitute the crap with fruit. Fruit is sweet, tasty as hell and there’s no cooking involved. Some people say that fruit won’t help you lose weight since it does have a lot of sugar and carbs. But we’re not getting fit for a photo shoot guys. We need to find a diet that can work long term; something you can actually stick to. And fruit is clearly much better for your body to process than candy or chips.
Always remember; there are no short cuts to your long term health. If you’re healthy you’ll look good and that’s the bottom line. Pills, steroids, and fad diets will work short term while they mess up your body in a variety of ways long term. Creating a plausible system for your diet and exercise with achievable goals and minimal risk of injury is where it’s at!