Firstly, something I feel strongly about is what you do outside of that time you’ve spent slogging away in the gym is what sets you apart from the rest. In this day and age; we have become immune to a more sedentary way of living whether that’s being sat at your desk for long hours or getting home from a long day at work and slouching in front of the television. I feel it is 100% how we use our bodies away from that hour we get in the gym that makes all the difference to overall well-being and achieving the body we individually desire. My advice for readers is to stay as active as possible and MOVE MORE. Find something that resonates with you and your lifestyle whether that is walking the dog in the morning, allowing a little more time in your day to do your favourite hobby or even making more time to have some playtime with your family. Other examples could be using the stairs instead of opting to take the elevator, taking a few minutes in your office to do a little movement, get those joints lubricated, the blood pumping or even taking up a simple office workout using whatever is around you. Finding a little more time to MOVE more will make such a difference, not just in calorie expenditure, but for overall wellness emotionally and physically.
I’m all about the greens and taking a green’s is clinically proven to regulate fat loss whilst supplying our bodies with the right nutrients for immunity health, thyroid health and higher energy levels. I would highly recommend a good quality greens blend and taking this daily to optimise a healthier lifestyle and providing the body with the micronutrients (vitamins and minerals) we require. Now you’re probably thinking why a greens blend?
Unless we all prioritise the time to prepare our food accordingly and load up on leafy greens and all the good stuff we need to take to work with us a greens powder is a life saver. It’s convenient, cost effective and can be mixed in your smoothie, added with water or combined with a little coconut yoghurt. A green’s supplement is jam packed with phytonutrients, essential amino acids which are the building blocks for muscle tissue and the one’s we can only acquire from food sources. There has also been clinical evidence for greens to aid thyroid function, which is our regulator for metabolism so a healthy thyroid a healthy metabolism meaning A FAT BURNING MACHINE.
A very important factor for optimal health and something I rely on for maintaining the body I train so hard for daily. Sleep deprivation is one of the highest forms of overeating therefore making sure we get good QUALITY sleep is critical. A good source of nutrition and a natural remedy I like to include in my daily routine is the use of shrooms (mushrooms) like Reishi or Cordyseps. These two medicinal mushrooms provide the body with sleep regulating hormones and vital vitamins and minerals for facilitating quality of sleep whilst providing the body with high quality nutrients.
DON’T NEGLECT THEM FATS
Fat is not the enemy and as a matter of fact it’s very important for fat loss and overall wellbeing. Fats are a slow release energy source, they help satiety levels meaning when we are satisfied we tend to not pick on simple sugar snacks and foods like biscuits and/or potato chips. Fat sources also contribute to a healthier cholesterol fighting off the bad cholesterol known as low density lipids (LDL) which transport cholesterol from our liver to the skeletal tissues in our bodies.
I would suggest including some good quality healthy fats in your eating plan and some examples I use daily are foods like avocado’s, flax seed, chia seed, brazil nuts, raw almonds and walnuts are some of my favourite healthy fat sources. A source I do love to use daily is using the ultimate oil blend from UDOS CHOICE which supply the body with the perfect ratio of omega 3 & 6 fatty acids. Other sources like cold pressed coconut oil, clarified butter, oily fish sources like wild red salmon or mackerel are also great includers.
Water one of the most abundant and important substances in our bodies making a huge percentage of your total bodyweight. For me, water comes everywhere with me and it’s important to drink plenty of water, your liver can effectively metabolise body fat. It makes you feel fuller and a lot the times people nowadays mistake dehydration with hunger. A lot of the population today consume daily numerous cups of Starbucks coffee’s and/or fizzy drinks (AKA SUGAR WATER) and neglect the benefits of water. Not only is it an important role for correct functioning, a healthy internal environment but it aids healthy glowing skin and the delivery of nutrients to our cells.
EAT MORE PLANTS
Clean nourishing foods and not crash dieting all the time is so important. I have adopted 80% of my diet as plant based and filling my plate with more plat sources of protein and leafy greens, seasonal fibre rich vegetables. Something I would recommend is making more of a flexible approach to your food consumption and being more mindful with what we put into our mouths. With plant-based foods and more people living the life powered by plants there is plenty of information and food ideas for you to experiment with and try at home or when you’re on the move. You can check out some delicious ways of incorporating plant-based foods in a delicious way on the LA Muscle Knowledge page and by following my instagram. Link below.
Remove the processed meals and making a little time to cooking at home and choosing more wholesome foods, look for colourful foods and create a colourful plate and ditch the cheap carb sources like white bread, white pasta, pre-packaged sandwiches. Why not use little imagination and create your own healthy sandwich or homemade pizza using fresh wholesome ingredients, include plenty of dark leafy greens, colourful root vegetables and healthy fats through raw nuts, seeds and oils.
DO MORE OF WHAT YOU LOVE!!
Some of the best advice is doing what you love to do. What hobby resonates with you? For me dancing and climbing are my go to things when not going to the gym. A hobby is something you just enjoy, requires very little motivation at all because you LOVE doing it. Also hiking and being in nature is something I love and go to top escape the stresses of life along with being in the fresh air and away from toxicity. When you do things you love you release happy hormones, reduce stress which is a massive contributor to weight gain and fat gain. Stress as I said is a culprit to weight gain therefore; finding an activity that helps ease that stress, control the cortisol levels in our body and reduce stimulation in the brain for impulsive eating are some good notes to take with you from experience and studying the body.
A typical day of eating for Luke
1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar, mixed with 1 lemon, cinnamon and hot water
- Meal 1 – 1 scoop of greens (ORGANIFI), 1 frozen banana, 1 tbsp organic oats, 2 handfuls raw spinach or kale, ½ avocado and 240 ml coconut milk. Top with flax seed or pumpkin seeds.
- Meal 2 – Pea Hummus & rice cakes
- Meal 3 – Buddha Bowl – combination of marinated chickpeas, raw spinach, ½ avocado, shredded carrot, beetroot and cooked quinoa. I usually make a dressing using ginger, lime, tahini (sesame seed paste) and low sodium soy sauce and olive oil.
- Meal 4 – Post workout plant LA Muscle plant protein with 1 coconut yoghurt mixed together)
- Meal 5 – Wild salmon baked in miso marinade (miso paste, soy sauce and ginger), served with plenty of leafy greens and roast veggies like aubergine, carrots, courgette.
- Before Bed – Golden Milk – combination of ground turmeric, ground ginger, Reishi mushroom, almond milk or coconut milk and sweetened with maple syrup.
Luke’ Top 5 Core / Ab Exercises
1) Olympic ring knee/leg raises
2) TRX roll out
3) Swissball plank
4) Front levers
5) Cable rotation crunches (oblique crunch with cable)
See @lukebakerfitness for exercise and fitness inspiration