Quite often we hear people having a giggle and a laugh about 'bulking' during winter, by which they mean, they have put on weight and NOT the kind that is helping to work toward those goals that were set for the year.
Below we have listed a few helpful tips for maintaining that lean physique that all the effort you have put into is maintained.
While being lean is often what a lot of men and women who embark on their fitness journeys are striving for it is important to remember that lean does not always mean healthy.
Keep your vegetable intake high
Summer time is so easy for consuming fresh fruits and vegetables. There are so many delectable foods available at your fingertips. Once winter rolls around, the selection of fresh fruits and vegetables begins to get a little scarce. Sure you can buy most fruits and vegetables year round at the grocery store but let’s face it, the taste and quality just is not the same. And after awhile bananas everyday get a little old.
You can find plenty of ways to reap all the health benefits of produce even when it is freezing cold outside. Try to purchase seasonal produce as much as possible. We tend to eat less fresh fruits and vegetables during the winter as we fill up on other foods. Focus on fresh produce to keep you healthy during the cold months ahead.
Try adding some fresh fruit to your hot cereal or some fresh vegetables to your pizza. Add some dried cranberries to a tossed green salad. Even if you are not adding a full serving of fruits or vegetables, a small amount is better than none at all. Frozen, canned or dried fruit are also an option and count just the same as fresh produce. If you purchase canned fruit, try and buy the “in its own juice” or “lighted sweetened” to keep the sugar content down.
The following fresh fruits and vegetables are plentiful during the winter months:
- Brussel sprouts
- Snow Peas
- Sweet Potatoes
So don’t give up on fresh fruits and vegetables this winter, be creative and enjoy some new and different selections.
Keep your Fluids up
A drop in outdoor temperature combined with room and car heating challenge your hydration. After all, cold tap water and fizzy drinks are not so appealing in cold weather especially if you are not perspiring/sweating as well.
The end result? Under-hydration or worse still, dehydration.
Under-hydration increases your risk of painful stones in the kidney and bladder, premature mental and physical fatigue, concentrated urine that irritates the bladder and increases the urge to pass small volumes of urine more often, a strong smell of urine that may linger in your undies, urinary tract infections, a build up of uric acid that triggers gout, and aged looking skin.
Both green and black leaf tea add to your fluid intake and so help you hydrate. Herbal teas add flavour while offering a different source of hydration also. different herbs can offer a variety of healing and wellness properties
Combine your fluids and Vegetables
Soups are based on water but depending on how they’re made, soups can make or break goals to achieve a healthy body.
Let’s start with soups made on a broth that are clear. Think Asian style without the coconut milk. These are typically a broth or stock with sliced vegetables and a hint of shredded chicken or tofu bits. A few noodles may sit at the bottom.
Clear soups are a great hydrater.
Next in line are smooth vegetable soups which are essentially stock, seasoning and vegetables blended together after cooking. Think pumpkin, potato and leek, and parsnip soups. As long as these vegetable blends don’t have added cream, they are also a brilliant way to boost your water, vegetable and nutrient intake.
Last on the list are creamy soups that have either a flour-butter roux to thicken them or have cheese, coconut milk, cream or sour cream added. Although these contain water and will help with hydration, creamy soups tend to be kilojoule heavy so they’ll help you gain weight but that makes them a poor choice when weight loss is your goal.
When water is incorporated into a meal, such as soup or casserole, the meal is far more hunger satisfying than having the same amount of water as a drink with the meal. That means a bowl of vegetable soup makes you feel fuller for longer than a plate of vegetables with a glass of water.
Winter wise soup tips:
Add a dollop of Greek style yoghurt in place of sour cream to blended vegetables soups such as pumpkin soup at serving time. This simple swap improves the nutritional quality - less saturated fat, more calcium and fewer kilojoules (calories).
For a creamier soup, add skim evaporated milk and some cornflour in place of cream.
Buttermilk in soups adds the flavour of sour cream without the saturated fat and excess kilojoules (calories).
The onset of winter, marks infections like cold, cough, fever and flu. Vitamin C is known to increase your immunity because it is anti oxidant in nature. It also helps to build the skin with its collagen boosting property. It adds extra glow to the skin.
Although vitamin D is required all round the year, the dull weather and the falling temperature makes the intake of this vitamin all the more essential."It is extremely important to step out in the sun for at least a while. Bones are affected a lot during the winter, a lot of people experience severe joint pains during the season.
This vitamin helps in building up the skin, because of its mois turising properties. Our skin tends to become flaky during this season; hence the intake of this vitamin is crucial.
VITAMIN B COMPLEX
This entire group of vitamins ranging from B1 to B12 is extremely essential during the winter. For instance, Vitamin B6, i.e. Pyridoxine helps you get smooth skin, while Riboflavin helps cure cracks on the lips or corner of the mouth. Thiamine helps in curing scaly and flaky skin.
This is not a vitamin, but plays a very important role, especially during winter. Omega 3 fatty acids maintains the high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol level in the body, which aids the body to remain healthy .
Increase your Greens
Blackstone Labs Juiced Up is a high quality complete phytoformula.
This uses a blend of fruits and vegetable extracts to provide your body with essential nutrients.
We all know how important it is to take care of ourselves and stay healthy. This is made simple with Blackstone Labs Juiced Up.
To get a wide variety of fruits and vegetables isn't easy to do. Cooking,cleaning and trying to get enough for what you need before they go bad.
Blackstone Labs Juiced Up combines eveyrything you need in a single scoop.
In addition to being extremely concentrated and provides you with high amounts of real fruits and vegetables.
The advantage of this is the drastic reduction in sugar. Fruit is naturally high in fructose (suagr). Although we need the vitamins and minerals from fruit, most of us could do without all the extra sugar.
Being naturally sourced this product is also utilised much more effectively than synthetic vitamin products.
Blackstone Labs have gone the extra mile with this one and added in a clinical dose of capsorb.
This is a digestive enzyme to help your body handle and digest this high dosed superfood.
Typically absorption of products like this isn't great but this is no longer and issue with capsorb.
Incorporate Cardio using HIIT
If ever there was a "secret" to getting more out of your cardio training, this is it. High-intensity interval training (HIIT) simply means alternating all-out work intervals with slower recovery periods, which has been shown to not only elevate the number of calories you burn during your workout, but boost your metabolism during the 24 hours afterward. HIIT also takes less time than traditional steady-state cardio.
After your cardio warm-up, perform a HIIT session by completing all-out effort for 30 seconds, followed by 60 seconds of low-intensity effort, for anywhere from 15-30 minutes. As you get better, lengthen the work interval, reduce the recovery interval, increase the degree of effort, and/or lengthen the duration of your workout.
HIIT can be done outdoors with running or indoors on the treadmill, elliptical training, or stair-stepper. It should be done 2-3 times per week.
Choose Supplements that suit your goals
Wether it be protein, test boosters, Pre-workout, Fat burners or any other, ensure that you select a product designed to HELP and remember, supplements are a tool to aide the work you put in.
Change your habits for life and make smarter choices
Every item above relates to a choice you consciously have to make on a daily basis. The foods you put on your plate, the exercises you do in the gym, the supplements you take, and the kind of fitness lifestyle you choose to follow are all based on choices. Make smart, healthy choices over time, and you'll eventually no longer have to choose. By that point, you will have built powerful, positive, and automatic habits! That's when you'll learn to stay lean year-round.
If you have any questions with regards to training, supplements, weight loss, muscle gain, nutrition or any other items of concern please contact the Spartansuppz team at any time via email, in store or any of the socials, we are always happy to help :)