Stressing Out, Gaining Weight, and Finally Losing It

A GREAT article that explains what happens to our bodies when we are stressed. I found this very interesting because I’ve been more stressed this last 6 weeks and it does affect you. This article explains how.

Stressing Out, Gaining Weight, and Finally Losing It

Your phone is ringing, breakfast is sizzling, and you’re trying to get the kids off to school — all the while getting ready to go to work yourself. Sound familiar, or are you stressed out just by reading these words? If you’re a living breathing human being, chances are you experience some type of daily stress. And it’s true: Stress can cause you to gain weight.

In fact, a recent study conducted by Susan J. Melhorn and colleagues from the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine, found that not only can stress can take a daily toll on you in terms of physical and psychological well being, but it can cause weight gain. According to recent studies, social stress — public speaking, tests, job and relationship pressures — may cause overeating and weight gain.” But you probably already knew that; stress makes many of us want to eat more.

You gain weight for two reasons:

Biological Interference: Biologically your body is designed for a “fight or flight” response to stress. So when you’re stressed, your body releases hormones to help you do either. And since you’re most likely not being chased by a saber tooth tiger, this response is not exactly helpful when your boss sends you a stressful email or you have an argument with your spouse.

What happens (in the most basic terms) is that your body releases chemicals when you’re stressed. The brain sends out a stress hormone called cortisol, which regulates energy by tapping into the body’s fat storage and protein, converting it into glucose and bringing it to muscles and to the brain. Additionally, it can move fat from storage depots and relocate it to fat cell deposits deep in the abdomen; researchers have shown that the abdomen is the best place for fast energy retrieval.

Cortisol may linger in your body long after the cause of the initial stress has passed and trick your body into thinking it has done something active in response to a perceived ‘threat.’ What’s even more surprising is that cortisol acts like a biological green light, which sends signals to your brain to refuel your body as soon as possible.

Eating Comfort Foods: When things are stressful, what can we do? How can we feel better? How about brownies, donuts, candy, ice cream, pizza, mashed potatoes, and fried chicken? This type of comfort food is always quick to the rescue in our time of need. Over the past year we’ve comforted ourselves by gravitating toward this kind of food, thinking, “You only live once, so I might as well enjoy myself now.” When tension and anxiety are high in one aspect of life, it’s not unusual for other areas to seem trivial or less important.

Why do we crave these foods? First of all, it’s what we’re used to having in times of discomfort. Parents gave you ice cream when you had a bad day at school. I know my parents did. I do it for my daughter. I can’t help it — she feels better.

Secondly, carbohydrates make you feel better by releasing the hormone serotonin, which is a brain chemical that makes you feel good. So those are the reasons, now what?

Here are a few tips to relax and stay healthy during stressful times:

  • Create a “Stress Snack Eating” Kit. Assemble an actual kit that has healthy snacks. Keep this kit around your office or at home and break out when needed. Make sure that you have portion controlled foods in there that are low in calories in case you over-indulge. Also put in a few non-food items, such as an iPod loaded with comedian sketches, a jump rope.
  • Keep Away Unhealthy Snacks. This becomes very important when you know you’re going to have a stressful day. Researchers have shown time and time again that snacks in sight are snacks that are eaten.
  • Enjoy Healthy Comfort Foods. My favorite is popcorn (made in a pan or air popped) made at home with a bit of butter spray, salt, and garlic. You can find more recipes in my column, Healthful Comfort Food Recipes for Rough Times.
  • Exercise the Stress Away. Yes, go out for a walk, take a spin class, go for a run — research shows that a bit of exercise can help you fend off unhealthy eating and reduce stress.

Article by… Charles Stuart Platkin, PhD


** 2 Supplements that I’ve found that help with stress and controlling your cortisol levels are… Estracort and Glutamine. I use these 2 supplements and they DO work really well.


Clifta Coulter Perez

Reno Personal Fitness Trainer

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Reno Personal Trainer Posing 2 days before Figure Show

Want to get in the best shape of your Life??? Whether you want to get ready for a competition or just want to fit into the sexy bikini… I can help!

Below is a clip from June 1o, 2010… 2 days before my Figure competition! I’m 42 years old and if I can do it… YOU can too!!!!

BELIEVE… and Stay Positive and True to Yourself…

Clifta Coulter Perez

Reno Personal Fitness Trainer

775-996-7183

Lose Body Fat with These Good Sources of Proteins and Carbs

Just wanted to list some really clean & healthy sources of proteins & carbs.

These are what I’ve been eating for the past 5 weeks.

Proteins

Egg Whites

Egg Beaters

Chicken Breast

Turkey Breast

Salmon (can)

Tuna (can)

Carbs

Oatmeal

Brown Rice

Potatoes

Sweet Potatoes

Pasta (occasionally)

My Favorite Veggies

Broccoli

Spinach

Carrots

*I eat about every 3 hours and usually have a protein, carb, & veggie with every meal except my last meal before bed… no carbs.

*I also use stevia, ketchup, bar-b-que sauce, fat free dressing, & spices that contain NO SALT.

*I don’t use butter, mayonaise, or sugar.

*I drink water (1/2 my weight in ounces), crystal light, tea, coffee (1 cup in A.M.), & diet pepsi (maybe 1/2 to 1 per day).

*You can see my supplements here.

Thank you,

Clifta Coulter Perez

Reno Fitness Trainer

Reno Bootcamps

Better Bodies Bootcamp in Reno

3 Minute Series- Completion

Watch this to see some of the different ways you can use this Series.
This is the last clip of additional information that you will need for my 3 Minute Series… “NO MORE EXCUSES”!

Is it hard to find time to workout? Do you dread working out? Do you not have any money for a gym membership? Is it hard to leave the office to get your workout in? Do you have kids that keep you busy with very little time for yourself?

Then this Series if for YOU!

This is a 3 minute workout series for Monday thru Friday or Saturday.

3 minutes a day is ALL you need!

You can spare that… can’t you?

These workouts are quick, to the point, and effective!

Try it… and see if you can GET RESULTS in just as little as 3 minutes a day… 5-6 days a week!

Thank you,
Clifta Coulter Perez
Reno Fitness Trainer
Bootcamp Instructor

3 Minute Workout- Day 5 Shoulders

This is Day 5 of the 3 Minute Workout Series called “NO MORE EXCUSES”!!!!
This is a Shoulder Workout that’ll get you pumped!
You can use this workout as your Friday workout or you can take all the Days 1-6, and spread them out over your whole day and do that 2-3 times per week, or you can do them all at once for a 25-30 minute workout… and do that 2-3 times per week. All kinds of ways you can use this series.

If you have a hard time finding time to workout, or dread working out, or don’t have any money for a gym membership, or find it hard to leave the office to get your workout in, or have kids that keep you busy with very little time for yourself…

Then this Series if for YOU!

This is a 3 minute workout series for Monday thru Friday or Saturday.

3 minutes a day is ALL you need!

You can spare that… can’t you?

These workouts are quick, to the point, and effective!

Watch this clip to see Day 5 of this series and then 1 more clip after that for the weekly series that you can use to get your workouts done even with a busy schedule.

Try it… and see if you can GET RESULTS in just as little as 3 minutes a day… 5-6 days a week!

Thank you,
Clifta Coulter Perez
Reno Fitness Trainer
Bootcamp Instructor

3 Minute Workout- Day 4- Legs

This is Day 4 of the 3 Minute Workout Series called “NO MORE EXCUSES”!!!!
This is a Leg Workout that’ll get you pumped!
You can use this workout as your Thursday workout or you can take all the Days 1-6, and spread them out over your whole day and do that 2-3 times per week, or you can do them all at once for a 25-30 minute workout… and do that 2-3 times per week. All kinds of ways you can use this series.

If you have a hard time finding time to workout, or dread working out, or don’t have any money for a gym membership, or find it hard to leave the office to get your workout in, or have kids that keep you busy with very little time for yourself…

Then this Series if for YOU!

This is a 3 minute workout series for Monday thru Friday or Saturday.

3 minutes a day is ALL you need!

You can spare that… can’t you?

These workouts are quick, to the point, and effective!

Watch this clip to see Day 4 of this series and then 2 more clips after that for the weekly series that you can use to get your workouts done even with a busy schedule.

Try it… and see if you can GET RESULTS in just as little as 3 minutes a day… 5-6 days a week!

Thank you,
Clifta Coulter Perez
Reno Fitness Trainer
Bootcamp Instructor

From Bodybuilder to Bootcamper!

Someone sent me a message asking how much weight I can lift???

I get that question alot so I thought it might be good to post my answer to my blog. 🙂

Well, when someone asks me that question it’s hard to know what kind of lift they are talking about. For some it means how much can you bench and to others it means how much can you curl and to a third, it may mean how much can you lift over your head. So I tell them that my weights will vary depending on what type of lift I’m doing and will then ask them to be more specific.

One year while training for a Power lifting meet, in 1991, with me at 114 lbs…

My max squat was 300 lbs. (I could squat 225 lbs. for about 4-6 reps)
My max bench was 190 lbs. (I could bench 135 lbs. for 20 reps)
My max deadlift was 245 lbs.

articleimg054Getting ready for a bodybuilding contest & off season…

My dumbbell presses for chest were 60-70 lbs. for about 6-8 reps, I could curl about 95 lbs. for 6 reps with a barbell, and did one arm DB rows with 100 lbs. for about 6-8 reps. LOL… I couldn’t come close to those lifts now!

I don’t lift like I used to when I competed… I do more of a bootcamp style workout with lighter lifting and more reps now. It’s still a very challenging workout, but just not as heavy. There are alot of bodyweight exercises, along with free weights, yoga, pilates, agility moves, jump roping, etc.

I’m about 102 lbs. now and don’t try to lift heavy anymore. I don’t have the desire to train like that and got tired of being big. I just want to be toned and fit with a little bit of muscle.

It was hard for me to get away from my comfort zone, the bodybuilding workouts, and try something new, like bootcamp workouts, but I finally did in July and I love how they are changing my body. I have some clients that I’ve been training in bootcamp style workouts for a while now and I now they work because they have all lost weight and toned up and are fit and look Great!

So I thought since my goal wasn’t to be BIG anymore, my workouts had to change. I even tried not working out as often for about 4 years. I would workout maybe 2 – 4 times per month. I did enough to keep some tone, so I thought – haha, but on July 18th, 2009 when I took “MY OWN” before pictures… I was SHOCKED! at what I saw. So, I said that’s it! I can’t slack on working out anymore! I’ve got to try something NEW!

Those BEFORE Pics were my lightbulb moment and is when I changed my mindframe from Bodybuilder to Bootcamper!

Keep a look out on my progress as a bootcamper!

I might even post my before and after photos! haha.

Thank you,
Clifta Coulter Perez

Reno Personal Fitness Trainer
Bootcamp Instructor
Former IFBB Pro Bodybuilder