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Lift Weights and Chill

Posted by James Kliewer on 1/18/2016 to Weight Training

Weight training has a lot of benefits. There are pros and cons to anything we do but weight training can be detrimental to your body if done improperly.  Incorrect weight training technique can lead to sprains, strains, fractures and other painful injuries that may hamper your weight training efforts. Weight training, if practiced properly, can prevent bone loss as we age, promotes fat-free body mass with decreasing sarcopenia (loss of muscle mass due to aging), increases the strength of connective tissue, muscle, and tendons, and it improves quality of life.

To get started, remember to begin small. It is highly recommended to have a trainer teach you proper form. Form should never be sacrificed for heavy weights. Starting slowly will decrease your chance of injury and soreness. The use of the correct weight amount is also very important. Lifting too much weight will increase your chance of injury. Some don’ts to weight lifting are: don’t skip your warm-up, don’t rush, don’t overdo it, don’t ignore pain, and don’t forget your shoes.

Beginners should focus on the three major lifts Squats, dead lifts, and bench press. This should be a foundation for everyone. Too many people throw these exercises out since they require them to work harder. These compound movements should be accomplished early in the workout.

We also shouldn’t just focus on weights. Cardio is important and targets our cardiovascular system. The benefits to cardio are improved heart health, increased metabolism, improved hormonal profile, improved recovery ability, and management of diabetes. These are just some of the benefits to cardio. Also remember to keep your body moving, cardio doesn’t have to be boring. Take a walk, ride a bike, run a trail, swim in the ocean, or climb the stairs. Think outside the box to make your workouts suit you.

Can you be healthy by just lifting weights?

Clean Eating

Posted by James Kliewer on 1/11/2016 to Nutrition

Eating clean doesn’t have to taste bad. Clean eating focuses on healthy, whole, unprocessed foods. Eating clean should increase energy and optimize your health. Just like anything, we have to make it a lifestyle change. Eating clean has flexibility built in so that it can be adapted to fit any kind of lifestyle. Processed foods are anything in a box, bag, can or package, the majority of your foods should be fresh.  This idea is simple in nature but requires you to look at food in their natural form.  

The foods to focus on are whole grains, fruits, vegetables, nuts, meats, and dairy (in moderation). Lets face it, eating clean can be bland so some spices to help boost the flavors of meals are basil, marjoram, mint, oregano, parsley, rosemary, sage, tarragon, thyme, cinnamon, cloves, cumin, nutmeg, and turmeric. For your sweet tooth, some clean sugars include honey, maple syrup, and dehydrated sugar canned juice. See, eating clean doesn’t have to be bland and boring. We have provided a website that includes ‘20 healthy clean eating meals’ below.  Remember to include some protein, carbohydrates, and fats at every meal.  We do not support the removal of meats from your diets.  

Here are some processes to remember when you prepare/cook your meals:

When cooking food, the focus should be on maintaining the integrity of what you are consuming and avoiding high-fat cooking methods such as deep-frying or stewing in animal or vegetable fats. When cooking, opt for flash-cook methods such as stir-frying and steaming. For fruits and veggies, raw is best, but steaming is a close second in terms of preserving nutritional value and keeping the food's natural integrity. There should be no guesswork or taste-testing for hidden fats, salt, and sugar that are found in restaurant meals and prepackaged foods. You can personalize your eating with spices and herbs (instead of salt), smaller amounts of healthy fats, and a lot less sugar.

Swap out unhealthy, artery-clogging fats from all sources to healthy ones. Processed and packaged foods are the main sources of trans fats, but meat also contains small amounts. Saturated fats are found in fatty meats, full fat dairy, butter, and coconut/palm oils. Use heart-healthy plant-based oils like nuts, olives, and avocados.

Remember that you can have a cheat meal, but make sure you earn it. You can use a reward system to earn a cheat meal. For example, you had a great week and stuck with it, and resisted that tasty looking potluck at work, you have earned a cheat meal. But lets say you missed a few days of workouts or didn’t eat as clean, you need to try harder next week. You are responsible for your health; take it seriously. 

Remember food has feelings too.

Why should we not drink our calories?





Die by the Diet!

Posted by James Kliewer on 1/4/2016 to Nutrition

As we stated briefly in our earlier post, diet is what you eat. I know what everyone wants to know is ‘what are the secrets to losing weight and keeping it off?’ Here it is, be dedicated to a better you. To achieve this your first steps would be to work hard in the weight room, complete cardio, and eat clean. Here is some information that can help provide insight on maintaining a diet.

You will need to know what your calorie intake should be to maintain your bodyweight. The percentage for carbs is 50-60%, proteins is 30-40%, and fats is 10-20%. The easiest way to see what your calories, proteins, carbs, and fats intake is from daily ingestion would be to use an app or, my personal recommendation, an excel spreadsheet. This takes time but puts the data at your fingertips. Being healthy doesn’t come easy and requires daily dedication.

 As we all know, to lose weight we need to have a calorie deficit but it doesn’t come that easy. To lose a pound of body fat we need to burn approximately 3500 calories on top of your calorie intake. This can come from daily activities and bodily function, cardio, and weight training. 

Some people think that if you eat a 1,000 calorie burger, you can just do cardio that burns a 1,000 calories and that will simply erase the burger you just ate. That is NOT true. You would actually need to do two to three times as much cardio to get rid of that single burger. So be mindful of what you put in your mouth.

The diet I recommend and use is the ‘zig zag’ diet. This means that you will have high calorie days and low calorie days. I cycle them so they match my activity days and calorie intake required to function on the high cardio and weight training days. The goal is at the end of the week there is a deficit to equal about 2,000 calories. This technique ensures my metabolism stays elevated while still having a deficit. See the link below for more information.



There’s a reason why diets don’t work. We need to make what we eat a lifestyle change.