Did you know that cardiovascular disease is the number one cause of death?
Did you know that cardiovascular disease is the number one cause of death among physicians?
It has been exactly four weeks since I changed my lifestyle to focus on both school and fitness. I never was the type to ever love going to the gym for strength training, for the ridiculous reasons being –
1. I don’t want my arms to look like a man’s arms.
2. I won’t ever need to go to the gym because I am already skinny enough, and therefore I’m healthy.
3. I am too embarrassed to go to the gym because I don’t know what to do.
4. My personal favorite: I don’t have the time.
If any of those reasons sound like any of your reasons, here’s why those reasons are only excuses.
1. Your arms will never look like a man’s arms…unless you’re a man. Yes, there are women who might have bigger biceps than men, but given the normal circumstances, they’re probably stronger and healthier, too. Who doesn’t want that?
2. Skinny will never equate to healthy. There are millions of people who have been labeled “skinny” but have suffered from heart disease, stroke, malnourishment, and many more, just like anyone else. Sometimes, the scale doesn’t mean anything. It’s all about your body fat percentage- and that goes for what you put into your body and how you treat your body.
3. Weeks leading up to committing to this new lifestyle, I used Instagram to follow fitness gurus and personal trainers who post videos and descriptions of their workouts. I researched the best way to reach my fitness goals, and found the perfect exercises for me, and eventually, I found the courage to step foot into the gym and got to sweating!
4. You have time. If you don’t, believe it or not, you can make time. That’s how you know that you are truly committed. You can make room for an hour’s worth of exercising into your day. You really can. You can make room for at least 3-4 hours in your week to work out. The only one stopping you from helping yourself is, well, yourself.
Mai Current Fitness Plan
- I try to go to the gym seven days a week for an hour each day for strength training. Of course, if I truly have a valid reason why I can’t or won’t go to the gym for a day, it’s okay.
- My “rest days” include me training my abs and doing cardio.
- Strength Training is exercising to build muscle, and of course, to increase your strength at every part of your body.
Mai Fitness Goal
To tone my body by turning my fat into muscle.
Mai Typical Week at the Gym
*Even if it says, “Media File Error,” click play again, and the videos will play!
Day 1: Chest, Triceps, and Shoulders
💪🏼 Lateral Raises: 4 sets of 12.
💪🏼 Seated Rear Delt Pulls: 4 sets of 12.
💪🏼 Plate Raise with Twist: 3 sets of 15.
💪🏼 Cable Bent-Over Tricep Extensions: 4 sets of 10.
💪🏼 Incline Bench Dumbbell Chest Fly: 4 sets of 15.
Day 2: Legs/Glutes
🔥3 sets of 12 reps, 4th set til failure!
🍑 Hack Squats
🍑 Hip abductors
🍑 Sitting Barbell Squats
🍑 Barbell Squats
Day 3: Cardio and Abs
Cardio: HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training)
🔥 3 rounds
💪🏼 Thrusters: 12x
💪🏼 Single leg box hops: 12x each leg
💪🏼 Box jumps to squat: 12x
💪🏼 Single leg hip thrusts: 12x each leg
🔥 3 rounds
💪🏼 20x each side for each exercise
Day 4: Back and Biceps
🔥 4 sets x 8 reps
💪🏼 Close-Grip Straight Bar Bicep Curls
💪🏼 Single-Arm Dumbbell Preacher Curl
💪🏼 Cable Lat Pulldowns
💪🏼 Seated Cable Rows
💪🏼 Inclined Cable Face Pulls
Day 5: Legs/Glutes
ACCESSORY LEG/GLUTE MUSCLES
💪🏼 3 sets of 12 each at the heaviest weight for you
🔥Lying Leg Curls
🔥Hip Adductor Machine
🔥Hip Abductor Machine
🔥Booty Blaster Machine
🙌🏼 Tractor Tire: 100kg across the field
🙌🏼 Prowler Sled: 345 lbs in total (270 in weights + 75 sled weight)
Day 6: Cardio/Abs
Day 7: Chest/Triceps/Shoulders or True Rest Day
- I am constantly working on improving my form and increasing my weight. Form is very important so that you don’t injure yourself! Research your exercises before you do them.
- Go at your own pace. Don’t worry about what everyone else is doing or how much stronger/weaker someone else is. It’s easy to get discouraged when someone else can lift heavier than you. Don’t give up. Focus on yourself.
- I change my workouts constantly so that my body never gets comfortable!
- Consistency is key.
What you do with your body is just as important as what you put into your body. I’m not trying to lose weight, so I am not counting my calories, but I have started to portion my meals into thirds.
- One third of my plate is complex carbs.
- One third is protein (mostly lean meats)
- The last third is vegetables.
Some examples of what I eat:
- Chicken Breast
- Roasted Veggies
- Garlic & Herb Chicken Breast
- Snow Pea Leaves
- Lentil Bomb
- Boiled Fish
- Water Spinach
Part of the reason why I began to workout was so I could eat whatever I want and not feel guilty because I have the tendency to indulge in fatty foods when I’m really craving them. However, since I started working out and cleaning my diet, my cravings for sugar and salt went away! Of course, I have my cheat day during the week because everyone needs a cheat day. But, eating clean has made me appreciate my cheat days even more without me feeling bad by the end of the day.
I want to mention this: heathy foods are actually very tasty. It all depends on how you cook it!
Now that you’ve seen some of the things I do and eat, I can finally answer this:
Why am I so passionate about fitness all of a sudden?
Because I am an aspiring physician, and it is a doctor’s job to be an advocate for people’s health. How could I possibly advise someone to take care of their health when I can’t take care of my own?
The most important determinant of your health is your own lifestyle. Believe it or not, most diseases, such as heart disease, stroke, and Type 2 diabetes can be preventable with exercise and healthy eating.
Only 20 minutes of physical activity per day is recommended to have a healthy body. On average, we spend at least 90 minutes on our phones everyday. You say you don’t have time? Yeah, right. That sounds like nothing but a bunch of excuses.
Need more convincing that you should start exercising?
Benefits of Healthy Living
- You are stronger.
- You are healthier.
- Your mind is sharper.
- You become more focused and driven.
- Your reflexes are faster.
- Your bowel movement is better.
- You fall asleep easier.
- You become more toned and see your naturally designed shape.
- You live longer.
- You are more positive.
- You prevent depression.
- You begin to love yourself and value your life more.
- You can inspire people to live a healthy life.
I am so grateful to be able to work out for leisure, and not because I need to to save my life. More importantly, I am so grateful to have a normal life that I am able to train my body to become stronger, whereas many people are not as fortunate to have that privelege in the first place.
You only have one body your entire life. I don’t think people realize this, but ever since you were biologically created, your cells have done nothing but to try and heal itself from all the crap you put it through. Be on your own side, and take care of yourself. You don’t have to be the strongest person out there, but at least make an attempt to be healthier than who you are now. There’s always, always, always, room for improvement.
I am a big believer in the fact that healthy living – along with laughter, of course – is the best medicine.
It is health that is real wealth, and not in gold and silver.