I’d like to formally introduce myself. My name is Adan Martinez and I own and operate a small private training business out of Costa Mesa, Ca. I have over 13 years of experience in various elements of the health and wellness field including competition in sports (Cross Country and Track & Field) up to the collegiate level, studying Kinesiology and acquiring a degree in Exercise Physiology & Sport Science at Concordia University Irvine, spending a number of years working alongside Physical Therapists treating things from post-op ACL reconstructions to individuals needing to extend quality of life as they age, and being a one on one trainer and coach whose main goal in this profession is to educate and reshape the lives of those I encounter as best I can. During our time together in these discussions I only ask that you leave the opportunity open to be able expand your mind and capabilities to maximize your results both in the gym and in your personal goals throughout this maze we call “life”.
Now as for today’s topic I want to dive into the beginnings of where anyone SHOULD start on their fitness journey. And that my dear friend is fuel. Without proper fuel our bodies and brains feel downright lousy, let’s keep it real actually – we feel like shit. We’ve all been there at one point or another. That cycle of “I want to eat clean. I’m tired of eating pizza, burgers, or whatever other greasy processed foods seem like a good idea at the moment”. Then we cave 5 minutes later and go to In-N-Out or our fave spot down the street and get the WORST possible option and upon finishing the meal we feel instantly horrible. Why do so many of us continue to do this when we know the feeling of regret comes soon after? Some say it’s habit, maybe it’s the belief that eating healthier is more challenging or time consuming than eating junk (you must understand that corporate lobbying from big companies are the reason why many are uneducated in creating a healthier diet, as these companies pay to have their guidelines and agendas at the forefront to promote sales), laziness perhaps, or just simply not caring what you put in your body. The example I always give people is looking at your body like a vehicle. We wouldn’t use improper fuel in our cars right? If I have a standard 4 cylinder engine that uses gasoline as fuel but I decided to use diesel to fuel it I won’t make it down the street without seizing the engine. Then we have a big issue on our hands. The good thing is the mechanic can flush, clean, and replace all the damaged components or downright get a new engine if needed. I will say your body is more resilient than an engine. You can shove mounds of crap into it for decades and feel “okay” (in truth people who do this don’t actually know or remember how they felt eating clean. If they even did eat clean at some point that is. I tell you, it feels AMAZING). The problem with the body is even though you can “get away with it” for what seems to be forever, once things break (and they will) you can’t go to the body parts store (similar to auto parts store – bare with me here it sounds good in my head) and ask for a new or rebuilt gastrointestinal tract, arteries, heart, etc. Luckily there are transplant procedures and other biomedical options, but is that how we should be living our lives? Driving ourselves to the ground with the unhealthy habits we fall into. That’s not a life I’d like to live for one. It’s another tragedy to see we live in a world where being on multiple medications in our later years is seen as the “norm.” Type II diabetes, atherosclerosis, coronary heart disease, high blood pressure, high blood sugar, high cholesterol, gastrointestinal issues, the list goes on and on. Something has to be done in order to stop this constant downward spiral.
What I aim to do is give you some brief information on where to start, and we can continue this discussion in the coming weeks so that we are better educated on how to make clean eating happen for you. The first and most important thing is clarity. Now I mean clarity in many ways; from which diet to pick (paleo, vertical, keto, pescatarian, vegan, vegetarian, etc.), which foods to avoid, good quality meats/proteins, clean carbs, healthy fats, essential micronutrients, and so on. I do not want to throw too much at you today. But I do want you to take this as a great challenge to learn how to apply this to your life. As always any questions or concerns you have I implore you to please please PLEASE reach out. I love talking about all this stuff! So here we go; clarity in which diet to pick comes from this mindset – DO NOT DO WHAT EVERYONE ELSE IS DOING. Meaning fad diets and your friends macros will RARELY help you. I say this because everyone’s activity level, biochemistry, thermoregulation, physiology, and most importantly how YOU react to something (training and ESPECIALLY diet) is vastly different. For example, my body loves carbs and can process them at a remarkably high and efficient rate. This does not mean sweet bread, ice cream, and candy. But things such as rice, pasta, potatoes, and whole grains my body can manage extremely well on. Inversely my body likes a minimal amount of fat (I do keep healthy fats like avocado, nuts, seeds, oils, etc. in my diet still). But both are still necessary for me to be at a top level of performance. My ratio is just different from others. I work with people who perform amazing and are shredded year round with a bit higher healthy fat intake and lower carbs. Where I am getting at with this is don’t be afraid to venture out and find what YOU need. This is where a health professional comes in. Your physician, dietician, or nutritionist (make sure the last two are certified and educated with a degree preferably) are a great resource and I always recommend finding a knowledgeable coach or trainer. If you find a trainer near you who cares about his craft and diligently researches then cling to them at least for the purpose of attaining knowledge. More likely than not he/she also wants to help people and will gladly do their part in any way they can. Any of these health professionals can help you establish a foundation.
As for the basics we know not to eat junk such as fast food, processed food, greasy foods, and stay away from added sugar foods/beverages. Also snacking is a big one. Not that we can’t snack, we just need to be sure we’re making the best options. Fruits are chock-full of fiber and micronutrients including vitamins, minerals, and polyphenols (berries). Eating the skin of most fruits ensures you maximize the amount of micronutrition you receive from it as well. No I do not mean you should eat an orange and banana with the skin on it. But foods such as kiwi’s, persimmons, and mangos can be eaten with the skin. I know it’s not something that’s popularized, but this carries a great amount of the essential micronutrients we need in our bodies. A tip I give to everyone to adjust to the change, but especially to make it an easier transition overall, is to make fruit and veggie smoothies. It’s the quickest and most effective way to get a large amount of micronutrients in one go. I personally ensure I get one shake either in the morning or evening with berries, leafy greens, any fruit and veggie, and my scoop of bone broth protein. I cycle a ton through what I tend to use. You can even add other supplements into the mix dependent on what you’re deficient on. An active multivitamin supplement is always recommended as well. However! This does not mean you can have a greasy burger just because you have a multivitamin supplement. So my first challenge is this. Let’s keep it simple and cut out all the snacking and added sugar foods and beverages all to be replaced with healthier options. We don’t have to change our main meals just yet. That’ll come later. The reason we’re doing it this way is to ensure consistency and adjustment without failure. I also want to assure you that I don’t define failure of adherence to this change as having a cheat snack or a slip every now and again (1-2x a week is fine for the time being). I only constitute failure when someone allows one slip to throw them off track for weeks or months. Respect your body and it’ll reward you for it tenfold. So whatever you have in your pantry lets get rid of it and focus on alternatives such as nuts, greek yogurt, mixed berries or other fruit, bell peppers and baby carrots, healthy jerky’s, protein shakes, edamame, and countless other options. This action combined with no added sugar beverages (especially when having meals) and you’ll make a ton of progress in how you feel and even how you look.
I hope this information has been helpful for you! Again there is a lot of info to go over, and we can spend hours going over stuff but I want to simplify things; incorporate them, feel the change, and finally analyze what the body is going through during the changes we’re making.
With that said have a great rest of the week and I look forward to our discussion next week. Be sure to stay up to date as we will be releasing more info on nutrition as well as biomechanics, injury prevention, mindset training, programming for specific training goals, and much more.
Blessings, Coach Adan