Listen to your body

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By Alex Hurwitz Special to The Pineapple You’ve heard time and time again that exercise is good for you. Is it possible there can be too much of a good thing when it comes to your health? You can never exercise too much and eat too healthfully, right? Think again… In today’s society people are inundated with health and fitness knowledge more than ever before. In a country where the rates of preventable disease and obesity are on the rise this should be good news. However unfortunately as with most crazes, the new “fit lifestyle” is sometimes taken to an extreme. Those who choose to start exercising more and eating cleaner may think they’re taking all the right steps towards a better life but at what cost? Sacrificing all your free time, burning out or hitting a plateau are all common problems among new fitness buffs. Here are some basic guidelines to insure you find the best balance within your diet and workout regiment. 1. Practice moderation- Practice the 80/20 rule. Make 80% of your food intake healthy throughout the week and allow 20% for your favorite treats. This way you will reach your goals without feeling deprived. 2. Take rest days- Prevent the symptoms of overtraining by allowing 1-2 rest days per week from exercise. These days are crucial to both muscle repair and long term damage to your health. 3. Mix up your routine- Try to vary your workouts. Work different muscle groups each day or add in different forms of exercise. A mix of cardio, weight training and yoga is ideal. 4. Don’t focus on the scale- Instead of obsessing over the number on the scale, go by your energy level, how your clothes fit and your strength level instead. Remember if you’re gaining muscle while losing fat your weight may not change much even though your overall body composition is. 5. Prioritize sleep- Sometimes skipping your early am workout for an extra hour of sleep is best. Without adequate rest your muscles can’t grow and your weight loss could be hindered. Moral of the story is to listen to your body and don’t trust everything you hear. Everyone is different so what works for one person may not be right for you. The only way to find your perfect balance is through your own trial and error. Sometimes less is more! When all else fails considering enlisting the help of a certified personal trainer, nutritionist and/ or health coach. Keep up the good work and stay motivated! Alex Hurwitz is a NASM certified personal trainer at Mint Fit. She can be reached at info@mintfit.com (561) 274-7477. She can be reached at 561-274-7477 111 East Atlantic Ave, Delray Beach www.mintfit.com