Sunday, January 15, 2012

The Best Use of Your Time...."Eating In"

On of the most common question I get asked is "Can I swing kettlebells everyday?"  To which my answer is always...."If you could, I would!  Why do you think I took up yoga?"  So the answer is no.  To which is always accompanied with the look of disappointment.  (The quick answer is that you should not train any weight resistance exercises every day. Body weight exercises like yoga and walking (running) can be trained everyday)

But I never get asked the question, "Can I make my own meals everyday?"

I can get excited at the thought of pursuing many different physical sport/hobbies/practices.  I love the idea of getting back into the Martial Arts, I love the idea of getting back into cycling, or even learning how to swim and train for a mini triathlon.  I could get excited about training some of the power lifts, as well a signing up for beginning adult ballet lessons.  It would be easy for me to try and do it all, the only thing stopping me is...well, there's two...the first is, I kind of like spending time with Mark in the evenings more, and the second is that I have other things that take priority, like preparing my meals for the day/week.

I have all mornings, from the time Mark leaves for work, until he gets home, to do anything and everything I want to.  I train/teach and lead kettlebells for 2-3 hours 3 times a week, plus a few private lessons.  I have a 5-6 day regular Bikram's practice a week.  I walk 2-4 times a week either running errands around town on foot, or simply pounding pavement for 40-60 minutes.  All of those things, with the exception of my kettlebell training take a back seat to my other number one hobby, and that's cooking.  If I only had time for two things it would be those two, training kettlebells and that order. These two things have made, and continue to make, the biggest differences in my physical body and my life overall....not ballet lessons!  But why kettlebells before food/cooking, if food is indeed what made the biggest change in my body...the biggest body weight change.

Cooking and preparing food involves planning, shopping, prepping, actual cooking, clean up and that may include packing meals for another day.  I consider cooking a hobby, and there's nothing I don't enjoy about it....not even dirty dishes!.  Cooking is a hobby that satisfies all of my senses. Yes cooking is a science, but it's also an art that feeds my body, and for me, my soul.  I don't take it that seriously in the sense of perfection.  It's just one more"practice", and if there are two things I love, it's practice and repetition! (routine, regularity).

For most people regular exercise is easy compared to making your own meals regularly...that's why they want to try and exercise off the extra weight.  And swinging kettlebells especially is so much fun, (and why I hear the question) it would be awesome if we could just swing ourselves skinny!  When most people find an exercise they like, or at least find tolerable, they want to commit to it everyday, but won't commit the time for making the changes in their daily diets.

I'm telling you now that there is no better use of your time, for long term permanent weightloss than spending it creating the food and eating habits of a healthier lifestyle, besides, you'll get faster at it, and it will take less and less time!  You don't have to become a gourmet cook (unless you want to!)  I would find it surprising, not impossible, but surprising, if a person that eats out, and/or purchases fast, ready made foods, more often than not, could maintain a significant weightloss for any extended period of time, much less permanently....but that's my opinion.  Using your time to learn how to feed yourself is not something you try to avoid by choosing to overexercise instead, or doing exercises/workouts that produces little, if any, noticeable physical change.

I know how I feel after a good workout, and I know how I feel when I open my fridge and see the lunch I made for myself waiting for me!  The feelings are the same.  I feel accomplished.  I feel empowered.  I feel confident, in control and in charge!  And I bring those feelings to everything else I do!

How do you spend your time?  What are your priorities?  How do they make you feel?  Now, what's the next meal you are going to spend your time making?

PS But why kettlebells before food/cooking, if food is indeed what made the biggest change in my body...the biggest body weight change?  Because I've practiced making my own foods so much that it takes practically no time at all, it's a no brainer.  It's not hard, it's not bothersome, it's not's a joy.  Believe me, I spend and take more time designing, creating, journaling and posting swing routines than I do on "recipes", and that's a joy too! Each one inspires the other.  The better I feel about my health and body, with training the swing and eating good foods, the more I want to do those things....that's motivation!  Lucky me!


Diana said...

I guess I should have put cooking first before kb's in my should let people know that they can actually "swing themselves fat"...

I love doing's to me the best part of preparing meals. I have a great window right over the sink and I can look out into my awesome yard-I'm an animal freak, so I love to watch the birds and everything else that I feed!

My training is priority #1 because I know, when I feel good, all is good and to be honest, my mental "feeling good" is back big time-that's going to make all the difference in the world! ;)

Tracy Reifkind said...


Interesting..."swing yourself fat"

Well, I wouldn't go that far...but yes, you can't invest in thinking you can out-exercise overeating. I see it happen in Bikram yoga all the time.

Because Birkam yoga is hot and you sweat alot (ALOT!) people think they are losing they do more, and more...and lots of times they will actually gain weight! Yoga clothes hide nothing!

I don't mind doing the dishes or clean up in general, it's having a stinkin' dish drainer on my counter 24/7 that I'd change if I could....I'll have to work on that.

Maribel said...

There are so many ways to cook for yourself. I don't have the time to do it daily, but I do spend a good chunk of time one or two days a week prepping for the coming days.

I think that's the beauty of can personalize it to best suit your schedule and abilities. Maybe you'll use chicken broth from a box (good quality, of course), but eventually you can feel comfortable enough to make your own at some point.

At first, going out to eat may seem like it's time saving, but in fact it isn't. You have to get in your car, wait for a table, wait for your waiter, wait for your food, wait for the bill, then drive back home. In that time, you can grab a few ingredients from the fridge and make a slamming chopped salad.

Tracy Reifkind said...


Really, I think it's the clean up!

Easier to do an extra workout than wash those pots and pans!