Researchers from the Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research looked at data about the diet, exercise and personality type of more than 7,000 people and discovered that personality definitely has an effect on weight loss and good health. Those people who, like “The Little Engine That Could,” believe they can change their lives through their own actions eat healthier food, exercise more, smoke less and stay away from binge drinking.
People who are more like Eeyore, (the donkey from Winnie-the-Pooh), believe that luck or fate are responsible for their situation. These people tend to be less healthy because they don’t see themselves as fully in charge of their own lives.
Simply said, a “can do” attitude leads to a healthier lifestyle. Join us now in a chorus of “Anything you can do I can do better!”[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WO23WBji_Z0[/youtube] Men and Women Differ in Weight Loss Motivation
Interestingly, the motivation for leading a healthy life differs for men and women. Women are motivated by the desire to enjoy the benefits of a healthy lifestyle, while men want physical results. Pump me up! Go Hans! Go Franz! Go Fun! Go Fit!
We asked the number one obesity expert and our go-to-guy, Dr James Hill, Executive Director of the Anschutz Health and Wellness Center, for his take on this latest twist. (Get more of his insights on weight loss and obesity here: Lose 2 Pounds in 2 Days. You may also enjoy Lose Weight or Maintain Weight? prompted by another Anschutz professor, Dr. Holly Wyatt).
“It totally makes sense that expectations about the benefits of a healthy lifestyle would affect outcomes. Interesting that men and women have different expectations. I definitely believe we need different weight management programs for men and women – and not just for different expectations. Men and women approach weight loss very differently. Women have to have a comprehensive experience while men just need to understand what they need to do and do it.” Dr. James Hill
Aren’t we all lucky to have optimistic personalities so we can control our own health and weight outcomes? Info and education alone don’t cut the mustard … or pounds. The belief in our ability to make change is the ultimate tool to a healthy life at any age or either gender.
Photo credits: CreativeCommons.org – infomatique (multi-tasking woman)
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Kymberly Williams-Evans, MA and Alexandra Williams, MA
Alexandra: The best approach is to sleep in and get someone else to do all that early morning exercise for you. Sadly, that only addresses #D – energy level. Let’s go in order because that’s the way we swing at the start of the week – the whole salad, dessert, main course thing is only reminding me that I’m writing when I could be eating breakfast. Luckily, we addressed the question of weights or cardio first right here.
Kymberly: Dear Joe Ray of Sunshine: Let’s assume you are willing to work out 5 days a week. Discount rate advice:
Supreme total package, full price advice (aka = free)
Three of the 5 days do medium intensity cardio training first, followed by resistance training; the other two, switch the order. In all cases, end with gentle stretches, especially across your chest (pick a pack of pickled Pumpkin pecs). Here’s the twist (and not to your rotator cuff, Jabba Joe!): On the two days you do cardio after weights, limit your cardio time to 21 minutes. Aaaaand, make those the most intense 21 minutes you can muster up. Interval train by doing 5 minutes of medium high intensity followed by 2 minutes of super high, all out, “I want to outlast those boys of mine when we hit the WWF mat at home” supreme intensity. Repeat the cycle three times (5 mins-2 mins-5-2-5-2-whew! Notice that adds up to 21 minutes?) The high intensity, interval approach will be most time efficient plus more likely to jump start your energy gain and weight loss.
On the 3 days that you start with cardio, roughly divide your time in half leaving some time for post workout stretches. When it comes to the weight training, aim for one set of each exercise, with about 8-15 reps total per exercise. (Kind of a big range, I know, but I’m advising in semi-general terms here since we are close, personal, best strangers. Avoid fatiguing in fewer than 8 reps as that intensity makes the risk too high for your body). Yes, you heard me– ONE set per exercise! Ignore those multi-set grunters around you as they must have time to kill and different goals. Most training gains come in the first set, so take advantage of every rep with no fluff time in between, get in more exercise variety, and select resistance that allows you to achieve muscular fatigue in that one set. No dilly dally for you Joe Ray Dear, a He-Male Dear, Ray a Drop of Golden Sons. Quick- from what musical?
A: With your concerns about your rotators and the hernia, I’d say you need to be cautious about adding heavier weight to your workout. Is there an experienced, certified (by one of the quality organizations) personal trainer at your gym who can check your form? You could be doing your core or shoulder moves incorrectly. Rather than advise you to increase the resistance, we’ll go with “Keep a food journal.” Time to see where the snackin’ is packin’ so you can ditch any Budweiser Tumor.
K: If guys get hernias, what do gals get? Himnias. Ah haaaa I have been waiting years to throw that one down! Given your prior hernia, make sure you are BREATHING throughout all moves. You will be tempted to hold your breath. I say verily unto you, “resist that temptation and be healed!” Also, drink lots of water the rest of the day as that will help with energy levels.
A: We had a reader a while back who was a bit similar to you, and we recommended High Intensity Interval Training, which Kymberly also advises. Take a look at that post too for more details and stalling. And stop eating so many of those Chicharrónes.
Readers: What ideas do you have for Joe Ray? And if you wrestle with your kids, who wins? Who cheats?
Photo credits: Creative Commons
Kymberly Williams-Evans, MA and Alexandra Williams, MA
Alexandra: Oh, Brad, there is a part of me that just wants to say, “because women are so totally
but that’s more of a Twitter word than a fitness word so I’ll just have to exhale and move along….
Kymberly: And a part of me wants to agree with Alexandra, but just a rare part, mind you. Some of the seeming ease women have with the equipment you list has to do with coordination. Coordination is learned and adaptable. By college age (which I assume you are or your signature needs parental permission), women have more experience, on average, than men with these specific types of balance and exercises. I am referring not only to specific equipment, but also to general activities like dance and gymnastics that require good balance, and torso and hip coordination.
The good news about coordination is that with practice, you and other men about town can achieve similar comfort and neuromuscular adaptation (a fancy way to say “coordination”).
A. I’ll speak from my experience working with thousands and thousands of exercisers over the years, many of them university students. Lots of men, especially the more broad-shouldered ones, tend to work the areas of their body they care most about, which is chest, arms and shoulders. These “mirror muscles” can look “hot” and “buff” fairly quickly, which is exactly why men care so much about them! Take a brief moment to yourself and see if you can figure out which area of the body women most care about. Well? I hope you didn’t come up with “booty” because that’s only in the top 5. Number 1 is abs.
So…..while women are getting strong in their core, men can bench-press their best friend (even the burly ones), yet have the strength of 37 butterflies in the mid-section. Stability balls (see the word “stability” there? It is just another way to say “ab strength”) and core boards (“core” is another way to say, “dang, it’s ab strength again, isn’t it?) are all about the mid-section (anywhere the belt touches, unless your belly hangs out and causes your belt to be lower in front than in back, but that’s a story for another day).
K: One more technical point about men and crunch-type exercises in the supine position (lying down on your back): On average, men have more mass distributed waist-up than women. Given men’s heavier and larger heads, wider shoulders and relatively heavier upper body mass, they are lifting slightly more weight than women. Add a destabilizing force, such as balls or boards and men simply have to work harder and get used to it. As for a bias with elastic resistance/ tubing, I have not seen a big gender difference. If there is one, I am tempted to say that women tend to follow directions better than men and tubing use is usually taught by a fitness teacher or trainer giving instruction. Let the wild rumpus controversy begin!
A: I’ll leave you with some heartening information – men tend to lose weight faster than women. Does that cheer you up at all? And Brad!? I suggest you do less of this:
and more of this:
Dear men and women readers: Why do YOU think core training is easier for women? Or do you…..?
Photo credits: Photobucket
Kymberly Williams-Evans,MA and Alexandra Williams, MA
Alexandra: Can watching TV make you more fit? Watch and learn, grasshopper. Watch and learn.
Or don’t, because watching TV really can’t do a thing for your hops, jumps or skips. But there sure are a lot of interesting show titles that almost make you want to get off your keester and kick some booty!
Kymberly was left unsupervised with the remote control, and look what happened!
Kymberly: TV is sending us healthy messages, which we at Fun and Fit have decoded for you. TV show titles are bold, just like us.
Are you 30 Pounds Overweight, want to Relieve Joint Aches or get rid of your Underbelly? You cry out that you want to Lose Inches Off Your Body, though not 300 because you feel Size Matters?! Yes, manly men, you can go from Two and A Half Men (when you should be just one) to Iron Man; from being Easy Prey and The Walking Dead to The Brave One or The Incredible Hulk. Women-personages, time to Stop Your Anxiety and become a DIY Dominator at any age — whether you’re in the Wonder Years, the Girls Gone Wild crowd, or one of The Golden Girls.
What is the The Law of Success? Do you ask yourself “How do I Run My Renovation and Sleep in Comfort?” Stay tuned for the answers next season.
A: Actually, the truth is that I whacked myself in the head today because I forgot to pay attention to the basics of car door-shutting mechanics, so am giving the heavy lifting of this post over to you, dear readers. Here are some more honest-to-gawd, dang me if these aren’t actual titles of TV shows. Your mission, if you decided to accept it, is to make up funny descriptions to go with the titles. No fair using the actual descriptions; yours will be more interesting anyway! Have at it. Once I’ve recovered from my bloody head pity party, we’ll read your comments and laugh ourselves silly. Oh, wait, we already are silly. So, we’ll laugh ourselves into Fits!
Back Pain Solved
Best Bra Ever
Carve Abs in Bed
The Karate Kid
How to Train Your Dragon
Rise of a Warrior
Whacked Out Sports
Photo credits: Creative Commons