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Today we are often told that to be successful, we must give up sleeping. We are convinced that we must constantly be on the go and we can ‘sleep when we’re dead’. We are also led to believe that we can train our body to require less sleep and still be able to function.

The truth is, none of this is accurate. You cannot train your body to require less sleep and sleep can be the difference between success and failure. It plays a significant role on how our bodies function, as well as its ability to lose fat effectively.

In this post, you’ll learn:

  • How our body controls our sleep cycle
  • Ways we disrupt our sleep cycles
  • The relationship between sleep and your metabolic system
  • Top 3 sleep hacks

It is pretty well understood that getting adequate sleep is important to our overall health, yet many of us push ourselves to the limit, too preoccupied with our hectic lives, to get enough of it. Many of us also tend to fail to recognize the importance of combining adequate sleep with a regular sleeping routine. Having a sleeping schedule that is all over the place can be detrimental to our overall physical and mental health. More specifically, though, erratic sleep cycles can slow your metabolic system, which in turn can have a huge impact on your weight loss. Learning how to control your circadian rhythms could be the key to using sleep in your favor.

What Controls Our Sleep Cycle?

Our lives and our sleep habits are naturally governed by circadian rhythms, which is the natural biological rhythm our bodies follow a 24-hour cycle, letting our bodies know when it is time to sleep and when it is time to be awake. One thing that controls our circadian system is the SCN, or suprachiasmatic nucleus, a tiny region of the brain located directly above our optic chiasma. We get environmental cues through our optic nerves that trigger our SCN. When our eyes begin to take in less light, the SCN triggers the release of melatonin, the sleep hormone. Our ancient ancestors would get this same trigger with the setting and rise of the sun, signaling to their bodies when to sleep and when to wake. The presence of the sun naturally helped to keep our ancestors on a natural circadian rhythm [1].

Light, Disruptions, and Electronics 

With the invention of artificial light and its increasing use, especially with the increasing use of artificial light from electronic devices, such as smartphones, our circadian rhythm is constantly being affected. This can have damaging effects on our mental and physical health [2].

The study shows that the disruption of our circadian rhythm, which is often disrupted by late-night activities, shift work or frequent jet lag, has been linked to health issues such as metabolic disturbances, obesity, metabolic syndrome, under chronic conditions, diabetes and mental disorders [3].

Research suggests that disruption or alteration of the circadian rhythm, brought on by the lifestyles and lighting conditions of the modern world, can lead to a wide range of mood disorders, such as impulsivity, mania, and depression, as well as the loss of internal temporal order and neurobiological and behavioral dysfunctions. This happens as a result of the altering of hormones, such as serotonin, noradrenaline, and dopamine [4].

Sleep and Metabolic Regulations

Disruptions and alterations of our sleep cycles, especially when related to an internal biological clock, also alters our feeding times and the way our metabolism works. It has been noted that people who regularly get too little sleep or too much sleep are more at risk for type 2 diabetes, as well as developing a higher risk for a night eating disorder. One reason was that an altered sleep/wake times increase the range of circulating leptin, the satiety hormone, with the lowest leptin levels occurring upon wakefulness [5]. When we are low on leptin, it tells our body that we need to eat to replenish our fat storage, as if we were going into starvation mode. This causes us to overeat.

People often think that lean muscle gain and fat loss just happens at the gym. But the truth is that muscle building and fat loss happen during the recovery. Your body does the most important recovery when you sleep, there for skimping out on good sleep will hurt you and be a roadblock in your goals in the long run. So how do you use sleep to your advantage?

If you’ve been following us on social media, then you know we just finished reading the book, Sleep Smarter, by Shawn Stevenson. This book provided many tips on how to get better sleep, so we wanted to share our favorite ones with you.

Here are our top tips to hacking your sleep cycle: 

  1. Creating a schedule is one of the best ways to get the most benefits from your sleep. Going to sleep at the same time every night and waking up at the same time every day will help you regulate your sleep, making it easier to fall asleep every night and easier to wake up every morning. When your body gets used to sleeping on a schedule, you wake up more refreshed. To help you get into a schedule, try creating a routine around bedtime, something you only do when you are about to sleep. Little things like routine, and the simple act of getting into bed, helps to tell your mind that it is bedtime as you learn to associate specific triggers with sleep.
  2. We are hardwired to be awake during the daytime and modern lighting can tell our bodies that it isn’t time to sleep. This is especially true of the light emitted by screens, such as television screens and smartphones, due to the blue light that they emit. Turn off any screen and electronic device at least an hour and a half before you get into bed. Instead, reach for a book and include this in your nighttime routine.
  3. Turn your bedroom into a sleep sanctuary. Get some houseplants to improve air quality and make your room as comfortable and relaxing as possible. Keep your bedroom activities limited, as it should be associated with bedtime. Make an agreement to keep your workspace out of the bedroom. This will teach you subconsciously that when you enter into the bedroom, that it is time for sleep.

Understanding why sleep is important to our overall health is the first step in understanding how to live healthier. It’s also the first step in regulating your metabolism and understanding how to use it to your advantage. Sleep controls so many of our essential functions, including metabolic rates, that ignoring it, not only can make your health journey difficult, can put your long-term health at risk.

The second step is committing to enough sleep each night. That means, realizing that choosing a workout over enough sleep hurts you more in the end than just rescheduling your workout. The same goes for overcommitting your day, and sacrificing sleep to “get a little extra done.” Remember it’s all connected: from the foods you eat, and the workouts you do, to how you let your body recuperate. Putting sleep first puts your health first.

If you are interested in seeing what other books we are reading, make sure to check out Morellifit on Snapchat!

Does fasted cardio speed up fat loss?

Fasted cardio is when you are doing cardio on an empty stomach. This doesn’t mean that it is the first thing you do when you wake up, it just means that you do your cardio when your stomach is empty. If your body is still breaking down the food you had previously eaten, your body is in the fed state. You are not back into a fasted state until your body has completely digested the food. Digestion time typically depends on the size of your meal, with the average time being around 12 hours.

Be sure to continue to read after the video to learn more about the after-burn effect!


In theory, when you do fasted cardio, you would think that your body would tap into fat stores and use it as fuel to get through the workout. This would make it seem like fasted cardio would be great for fat loss, but this isn’t the case. The problem is when you go the gym on an empty stomach, or a fasted state, your body is not only going to attack your fat stores, but it can also attack your muscle stores. While there are a few people that can benefit from this, the majority of us won’t.

Depending on what your fitness goals are, there is other cardio you can be doing in place of this, one of them being HIIT (high-intensity interval training), such as HIIT MAX® (FREE 30-Day Trial)

The AFTER-BURN Effect

The difference between using a fasted cardio and using HIIT, is you are using a different energy source. Many people argue that when you do HIIT, you are only using glycogen as fuel, rather than tapping into fat stores, and while this is true, the difference comes after you are done working out. When you do HIIT, your body continues to burn calories after you are done working out.

This is called the after-burn effect. A fasted cardio, which is a low-intensity steady cardio (LISS), does not have this same after-burn effect. So you actually end up burning more using HIIT, which is also known as EPOC (excess post oxygen consumption).

What happens is, when you complete the rigorous activity (HIIT), your body has to pay back the oxygen used, much like a credit card which you use and then have to pay back. After you are done, your body has to continue to work in order to pay back that O2 debt, causing the after-burn effect. Once you finish the workout, you can actually burn 7 – 11% more calories.

For the majority of people, a fasted cardio is irrelevant and isn’t valuable, but there are some that can benefit from it. Fasted cardio can be useful for someone who is already lean and needs to get rid of the very last percentage of body fat. For the majority of us, for 98% of us, we are not at that state. For that small percentage that is, the fasted cardio should be on low carb days. It should be done when in a catabolic state. That is who fasted cardio is for and when it should be used.

Fasted cardio should be used to get those last little areas of stubborn fat, but until you are at that point, HIIT will be much more effective for fat loss. Don’t believe me? Take HIIT MAX® for a test-drive FREE for 30 full days.

If you are doing any fasted cardio, be sure to be drinking BCAAs (which should be taken during any workout), so you can train more intensely without getting as tired as quickly. It also helps preserve lean muscle tissue which is ideal when training in a fasted state.

Always make sure to consume a fast absorbing protein right after your workout, such as a whey protein isolate.

At the end of the day, doing any sort of workout fasted, will not speed up your fat loss, unless you are in a deficit for that day, even fasted HIIT. Fasted cardio is a tool and a good one I’d used properly. If your goal is faster fat loss then HIIT MAX® is the solution.

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Dial in Your Nutrition – #SweetPotatoDiet

If you are not on a custom meal plan at the moment and you are struggling with dialing in your nutrition, I want to tell you some things you can do to help you shed those extra pounds. Here are 4 things that you should do in with your diet if you are still struggling to get those extra pounds off and you want to tweak your nutrition to work in your favor.

  1. Replace all of your carbohydrates with sweet potatoes. It doesn’t matter if the carb is processed, unprocessed, refined or unrefined, I want you to replace all the active carbohydrates in your diet with sweet potato. These don’t mean to replace your vegetables with sweet potatoes as they are not active carbs. If you are eating your sweet potato with a meal, you will want to eat about the size of your fist and if you are eating them as a snack, you will want to eat about half a fist.

While you are doing this and posting to your social media accounts, please use the hashtag #sweetpotatodiet. This is because I will have a book coming out in January 2017 called The Sweet Potato Diet and it will be 250 pages of carb cycling, why it makes sense, anabolic versus catabolic and how to balance it.

⚡ Related: The Top Benefits of Consuming Sweet Potatoes

  1. Make sure you are staying hydrated. You should be drinking half of your body weight in ounces every single day. For example, if you weigh 200 pounds, you need to consume 100 ounces of water a day.
  1. You need to be eating a palm-sized piece of protein at every meal throughout your day. Whether you are eating beef, chicken, pork, lamb, or turkey, you need to be eating a palm size amount of protein for each meal. The catch is, when you begin to eat, you need to eat your protein first, before your carbohydrates or your fats. This is because protein is the most satiating food and has the highest thermic effect of food, which means it takes more for your body to digest it. This means that you burn more calories digesting protein than your carbohydrates or your fats.
  1. The last thing you should be doing is drinking an 8-ounce cup of coffee 30 minutes before your workout and you need to drink it black. No sugars and no cream. Down it. Not only will it give you added energy, but it also boosts your metabolism and acts as a fat burner.

The key to getting this strategy to work is consistency. Proper nutrition is a lifestyle and consistency is what makes it work.

It is also crucial to remember that nutrition only plays half the role in losing fat and getting into shape and its fat loss is your goal, HIIT workouts are the best because they target fat, only take 15-20 minutes, and will keep burning fat hours after your workout is done.

Now, mix HIIT workouts, as seen in HIIT MAX™, with an easily to follow, Custom Meal Plan, in which you can incorporate all of these tips, and you will be burning fat faster than you ever have before! You won’t have to wait for results, as you will begin to see them for yourself, fast!

There is one thing that we all do, whether we are willing to admit it or not, that we shouldn’t do and it is something that even I am guilty of. We all want to make ourselves better and to make our lives better, but too often we define “better” by comparing ourselves to others. We tend to look at other people and tell ourselves that somehow, that other person, is better, for whatever reason. Some do it more often than others, but we have all done it. We try to convince ourselves that we need to keep up with other people. We tell ourselves, “I want a big house like that guy”, or “I want to be famous like that person”.

What Happens When We Compare

What happens when asking ourselves these questions? What do we do to the mind and the psyche when we tell ourselves this? And what happens when we become obsessed with our own deficiencies, as opposed to the things we are really good and efficient at?

Instead of looking at another man or a woman and comparing ourselves to them, telling ourselves “I’m not that” and “I’m not as good as him or her”, why don’t we look at our own achievements and accomplishments? This type of thinking and comparing ourselves to others does nothing but cause us pain through envy and jealousy.

Let me put this into perspective for you, because it is something that we do every single day. We are only human after all. We do it when we see an ad in a magazine or when we are on social media.

Looking In On Ourselves

Instead of comparing ourselves to others that we see on the street, in magazines, television or social media, take a look at yourself in the mirror and identify the progress that you’ve made. Learn to recognize your accomplishments and achievements and allow yourself to be proud of the things you’ve done. The reality is that when you compare yourself to others, there is a chance you are comparing your beginning to somebody else’s middle or end. Are you comparing yourself to somebody who has been in the gym for their whole life, yet you are just starting out on your first training program?

Be you, be authentic and be transparent. Serve others unconditionally and live a more simplistic life. Many people chase the things that they don’t have and often these things are items and materialistic things that we don’t need. We keep buying more stuff because we think that it will make us better and make us happier, yet almost right away we are wanting the next thing and then the next. Understand why you are doing this, understand why you are constantly comparing yourself to others and telling yourself you are deficient in some way so that you can be truly happy and proud of yourself for being you.

We all struggle from time to time with motivation. It seems like just as we pick up steam in our fitness journey, as fast as we find it, we can lose momentum. Instead of just giving in, there are several ways to restart or continue finding the motivation to keep up your progress.

  1. Vision board: Know EXACTLY what your goal is. Know 100% what your goal looks like, feels like, smells like and what it represents. If your goal, like most people, is losing weight, what will you gain from it? How many more things in life will you accomplish out of more confidence and self-love? When you think about your goal, does it resemble something positive? Making a vision board with pictures and quotes will allow you to see your “vision” daily in an area that is visible multiple times a day. Think of this as manifesting a goal and making it come to fruition. Envisioning your future self and who or what you are emulating is one of my favorite forms of motivation and keeping myself excited for the future. I keep my vision board directly in front of my bed, so as it’s the last thing I see as I’m reading before bed and the first thing I see when I wake up.
  1. Motivational videos and music: Who doesn’t need a little good kick in the tush to get on track and motivated? Motivational videos are ALWAYS my go to when I’m feeling a little down on drive and need something more. The best way to stay motivated is to never lose the motivation. My best advice for this is after waking up, put on something motivational, whether it be a podcast, YouTube video, or your favorite quotes to jump-start your day and keep you hungry for more. YouTube videos are free, and this is a habit that you have no excuse to not live out daily.
  1. Affirmations: Never underestimate the power of daily affirmations. The easiest way to do this is to buy post-its and write down quotes or certain words that you find will inspire you and keep you on the grind. I keep these in my car, on mirrors in my room, you could even put them in the fridge if you have issues with eating late at night! The point is that you need to do whatever you have to in order to keep you on track. Don’t let anyone try to talk you out of these small steps that will lead you closer to your goal. Do whatever you possibly can to keep yourself on track.
  1. Journaling intentions daily: This is also called goal setting, which will set your intentions from the beginning of the day. Intentions are powerful because it programs your brain to know exactly what you need and want to accomplish that day. These do not need to be large tasks. Even something small like smiling at everyone you see will, in turn, have a huge impact on that person as well as yourself. Larger intentions such as, “I will work out for at least 45 minutes today, and after I will make sure to eat the proper foods to replenish my body properly” is a great example. Do not look at these as “to do” lists, they are not one in the same. Intentions have more of a deeper meaning and are more related to your goals in life, rather than things you need to check off for the day.
  1. Accountability partner: Support from like-minded people is crucial. You are the company you keep, and if you do not surround yourself with those who have similar goals and intentions you will set yourself up for failure. Find someone in the challenge group who is very similar to you and hold each other accountable. Exchange phone numbers or email addresses and check in with each other daily. When you feel you are slipping in any area or loving motivation, reach out to that person so they can check you. At the end of the day, like-minded people have similar goals. If you try to reach out to those who aren’t making health and fitness a priority, it’s more than likely they will discourage you instead of encourage.

When it comes to staying motivated, especially when you are trying to lose weight or put on muscle, the best way to stay motivated and stay accountable is by participating in a challenge. Join our list so you can be sure to stay informed and be alerted for our upcoming challenges.

Next time you feel yourself stalling, and you cannot muster up what you need to get to the gym or eat the right meals, use one, two or all of the motivational tips to keep going. Vision boards, music, and affirmations are all great to keep to goals in mind and keep focused. Journaling is a great way to keep yourself aware of how far you have come. And of course, the best motivator of all is the accountability partner.

Having someone to talk to, who shares your goals and feelings, is the best way to help keep you motivated. Look to friends, family, or even coworkers who might be on a fitness journey as well. Even without identical goals, just support in changing your life is enough to help keep you on track. If you need further support, check into our community through HIIT MAX™ Elite, where get support from like-minded people and even our own coaches.

How Do We Get More Done?

There is nothing like going to bed at night and feeling accomplished because you attacked your tasks and got it done. I know we would all like to increase our productivity tenfold and I would like to talk to you about how I am increasing productivity in my own life.

We all want to be more productive and if you continue reading after the video, I’ll show you:

  • Why you should adopt the Art of Scrum
  • How to plan things out so you are more productive
  • Ways to break down your to-do list to get it all done
  • A supplement that will make you focused and more productive

The Art of Scrum

Recently, I have brought key people into my organization that has taught me the Art of Scrum. If you are a business leader or an entrepreneur, I recommend that you check out the book, Scrum: The Art of Doing Twice the Work in Half the Time by Jeff Sutherland. Scrum is what we use for productivity and it works by holding yourself and your team members accountable. This allows your team to be more productive and efficient and allows you to remove any roadblocks that may be creating tension, inefficiency, and standing in the way of accomplishing your tasks. You must be able to remove roadblocks and plan ahead.

Planning Things Out

For those of you who do not plan, it is important for you to start to plan things out in order to increase your productivity. Whether you make your plans at night or in the morning, you need to plan, do it and then review. For me, I make a plan at night, I do the plan throughout the day and at the end, I review. Once complete, do a self-audit and find those little pockets of time where you perhaps weren’t very productive. Also, take a look what you were able to get done. Do the same the next day, applying what you have learned.

Breaking Things Down

While I think it is best to narrow this down and do it in small increments, such as a day at a time, this can be implemented a week at a time or a month at a time. If you get into this habit, you will increase your productivity.

As you plan, construct your day so that the first thing you do is the hardest thing you will do. By doing this, it will make everything else easier. Whether you are trying to accomplish things within your business, your personal life (such as your fitness or nutrition), or your even relationships, by doing the hardest thing first, it will help make everything else fall into place.

Take that action for one week. Plan, do, review and self-audit. In 7 days, we will reassess. Don’t tell yourself that you will “try” to do this, tell yourself you will plan, you will do, and you will review.

Thrive

Sometimes we can plans things our and break it down to make the tasks easier and smaller. This can be easier, but sometimes you still have trouble focusing on these tasks. If you’re like me, part of the issue of being productive is staying focused. I cannot, for the life of me, focus on a task long enough to get it done. That is why I take Thrive. This all-natural supplement really works in helping me focus and zone in on the task at hand. Since I’ve started taking this, I get twice the amount of work done. I’m twice as productive. If you have trouble focusing, this is one supplement you don’t want to pass up.

 

I want to talk to you about something very important. Lately, there has been some different energy around here and that is because of self-awareness. I’ve made some of the hardest, most critical decisions I’ll ever make in business so that I can advance this company. I’ve had to admit where I am weak and be able to recognize my strengths and go all in.

Self-awareness is critical and when you break it up, it basically means awareness of self. But how do you build that awareness? Being self-aware is simply being conscious of being… being conscious of your thoughts, emotions, and body…  being conscious that we are not our thoughts, our emotions or our bodies, but rather these are the things we experience life through. So, in this blog, I want to talk to you about the simple things that you can do with self-awareness in order to advance your company and your life.

Continue reading after the video to learn:

  • How asking for feedback matters
  • Why you need to be aware of your reputation
  • What you can do to make yourself stronger

When was the last time you took a look at your day or your week and thought, “I could be more productive during ‘this’ time or doing ‘this’ task”? When was the last time you thought, “I could work out a little bit harder” or “my nutrition could be a little more dialed in” or “I could have handled that conversation a little bit better”? These are things that you should be consistently asking yourself.

Why You Should Be Asking for Feedback

I want to share with you how I am applying self-awareness in this business in order to over-deliver content to each of you. I’ve asked for feedback from you guys, good or bad and whether that feedback was good or bad, it was good. Feedback of any kind is good, no matter what the content of that feedback is. I want to know what you’re thinking, because good or bad, if I know you’re thinking, I can make the appropriate changes. If I can’t make those changes, then I can’t over deliver and give you what you need. This is the same concept that you should be applying in your business or your personal life.

For example, I asked for feedback on our Snapchat and got a lot of positive feedback, so I wanted to make the changes necessary to improve what we were doing and bring you more of what you love.  As we reassessed what we were doing, we wondered if we could bring you more of what you want using fewer Snaps, and the answer was yes. So, we tightened it up a little bit and made them even better. Without self-awareness, we would not have been able to make those changes.

Because things are happening very, very fast, you have to be quick and nimble in order to manipulate the world around you. Tomorrow, there could be a new social media platform that takes the world by storm and you must be quick and able to adapt to the next big thing. It is all about hitting trends. I hit a trend on Instagram and it exploded. I hit a trend on Periscope, it exploded and now we are exploding on Snapchat, a place we were sending traffic before Snapchat was even a ‘thing’…and now we get 35,000 opens.

Why Your Reputation Matters

Whether you want to be good within your business or your personal life, it all starts with being self-aware. If you want to be really good at something, it is about repetition. Anyone who is great at something has done it over and over and over again. After repetition, the next important thing is routine. We all know how grumpy and agitated we can be when our routine is broken.  Self-awareness is key and how you become more self-aware is to be conscious of yourself, be conscious of your thoughts, taking a step out and realizing you are not your mind.

Then, through repetition and routine, you become really, really good. Once you’ve done this, the overarching is to simplify it all. Then continue to simplify again and again, just as we have done with Snapchat. Being self-aware can get you where you want to go. These days, for me, I want to know how aware you are and if you are paying attention to what I have to say if we are in a conversation. I care about how aware you are because the more aware you are, the more you will be aware of what changes need to be made on a daily basis and so that you can adapt, and the more successful I know you will be. If you want to be in this organization, you must be aware of what is going on in this world, around you, and in your relationships.

⚡ Related: Learn How To Improve Your Relationships Through Self-Awareness

So remember, the key is self-awareness, and the first step should be a self-audit, to take a look at what is going on and be present. Once you become self-aware, you can start to determine your fears, what you are good at and what you are not good at.

Supplement Your Weaknesses

The biggest pivot of my career happened this past week. I brought people in and gave up a big piece of my company, and you know why? I did this because of self-awareness. I realized that, while I may be great at a lot of things, I suck at things too. I suck at systems and I suck at managing people. Over time, I realized that there are things I am not good at through being self-aware, so I brought in people that are really good and really passionate in the areas that I suck. Now, through being self-aware and by realizing the things that I am not good at, I know we can take this company to the moon, as I am able to double down on my strengths and build the community, leading people, creating content and marketing. I am able to do the things that I love because I have people that I trust that can take those weaknesses away from me.

Be self-aware and remember that, no matter what it is, it is going to take hard work, repetition, routine, and simplification. This is what I tell my team. Simple works. If it can work for me in all aspects of my life, then it can work for you in any aspect of your life you choose to apply it to. Whether it is your workout routine, your nutrition and eating, or just your business or work, becoming self-aware is important. And as I have learned, you can always create repetition, routine and look for some place to simplify and improve your life.

what-cardio-works-best-for-fat-loss-banner

I’ve noticed a lot of people online have been posting about cardio and while I am not saying that there isn’t a time and a place for the elliptical, I want to make sure that I really shed some light on cardio and what we’ve been told. When you go to a gym, you’ll notice that they have very few machines and a ton of cardio equipment. So, today, I want to talk to you about cardio and why it really isn’t the best for fat loss.

Stay tuned after the video to learn:

  • If you should be giving up cardio
  • The best type of cardio for fat loss

Should You Give Up Cardio?

If your goal is fat loss, cardio equipment is not the answer. Now, I am not saying that if you are really overweight, that you shouldn’t start with cardio, and I am not saying that cardio isn’t right for some people. What I am saying is, if you are able to do high-intensity interval training, which is the best form of cardio for fat loss specifically, then that is what you should be doing.

When you go on a treadmill or an elliptical, you burn calories while you are doing the work, but once you get off that piece of equipment, you stop burning calories. When you are doing a form of high-intensity interval training, what happens is your body goes into O2 debt, or excess post oxygen consumption (EPOC), or the afterburn effect. High-intensity interval training was originally developed for sprinters and is proven through studies that have been conducted all over the world that show that it is the best for fat loss due to the afterburn effect. As you are working out at high intensity, your muscles start to fatigue and they fill with lactate, known as lactic acid build up. Once you stop working out, your body begins to repair and recover, going into O2 debt, working hard for the next 16-24 hours to repay it that debt. While this happens, your body is burning calories, making high-intensity interval training the most effective for weight loss.

Better Cardio for More Fat Loss

I created HIIT MAX™ because high-intensity interval training is so effective in comparison to cardio. If you know my backstory, then you know I come from the world where I was told that cardio was the key. 3-4 years ago, I was doing cardio, but I wasn’t seeing the results. Then I started doing high-intensity interval training, without really knowing what it was, as I started to string exercises together in my living room. Soon, I started losing weight really fast and for the first time, I could see my abs and muscle definition that I had never seen before. This is why I created HIIT MAX™, which has now sold over 112,000 copies in the last year and a half because of how effective it is at melting away the fat.

⚡ Related: Learn How HIIT Can Help You Lose More Weight

Now, I combine high-intensity interval training with weights, which is something I strongly encourage. The foundation should always be some form of strength training, but because not everyone is ready for strength training, high-intensity interval training is the answer.

When you do high-intensity interval training and then come back to the treadmill, you’ll find it to be much easier as your body will be much better equipped to handle LISS (low-intensity steady state).

When doing high-intensity interval training, or any training for that matter, you want your body to remain in an anabolic state and this is why I recommend carb cycling, like we do on our Custom Meal Plans, especially if you are looking to put on lean muscle. What carb cycling does is cycle your body between a catabolic state (where you are burning fat) and an anabolic state (where you are building lean muscle).

Also, when doing high-intensity interval training, what you do in an hour on a treadmill, you can do better with 15-20 minutes. Not only are the exercises more fun and customizable, you are accomplishing more, in less time. The idea behind high-intensity interval training is to do exercises at high intensity followed by exercises of low intensity or rest.

So, if you are doing cardio to lose weight, stop. If you are doing it because you enjoy it or because you are training for a marathon, awesome! But, if you are doing it solely for fat loss because you think it’s the best option out there, this is the mindset change I want you to have. If you make the simple changes and put HIIT MAX™ first, you will start to see results.

Levl, which premiered at the 2016 CES (Consumer Electronic Show) in Las Vegas, is the newest gadget for the fat burning world. This device is a breathalyzer that can actually detect how much fat you’re burning just by analyzing your breath.

This device comes in two parts, a docking station and a tube for you to breathe in. Once you breathe into the tube, place it into the docking system, which will then show you on the front of the dock how much fat you are burning. A corresponding app that you download goes into greater detail of what is going on, such as just how many calories you are burning at that time. This is a great way to keep track of what your body is doing and how efficient it is being.

This is an incredible device and the way it works is just as amazing. It works by analyzing levels of acetone, a proven method for detecting fat burning. The way Levl works is by detecting the amount of acetone contained within your breath, which is an indicator of how many calories you are burning and whether or not you are in a state of ketosis. We fuel our bodies by consuming carbohydrates, which is turned into glucose. When we have burned all of our carbohydrates, our bodies turn to burning fat instead. Acetone is created through the process of ketosis, a time in which your body is burning fat, so the more acetone in your breath, the more fat you are burning.

Until now, we have had to rely on blood and urine tests in order to know how much fat our body is actively burning, but this device allows for a more convenient and more personal review of our body’s efficiency. This can be used alongside our Custom Meal Plans to create a better diet so you can more easily keep track of what works and what doesn’t, and plan your meals accordingly. It can also be used with our training programs, such as HIIT MAX™, Weights for Women, or our Custom Training Programs so that you can maximize your results!

For more information on the study Levl uses for their product: Anderson, J. C. (2015). Measuring breath acetone for monitoring fat loss: Review. Obesity, 23(12), 2327-2334.

How many of you have heard of S.M.A.R.T. goals before? (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Time-based) If you haven’t, here is a quick review…

  • Specific – Set a goal that is specific.
  • Measurable – How will you know when it has been achieved? Is it measurable?
  • Attainable – Is your goal within your reach?
  • Relevant – Is it suited to your life?
  • Time-base – do you want to achieve it this year? Five years? Before you die? This puts some urgency on it.

Let’s take these S.M.A.R.T. goals and add some NLP™ tactics to them. I spent 7 weeks in LA learning about NLP™, also known as Neuro-Linguistic Programming. This NLP™ Training course was given by the Clarity Institute. With this, you learn to communicate better, not only with others but with yourself. The solution always lies in the questions you ask yourself. There is no problem that we cannot solve ourselves. The issue is that we can’t solve the problem with the same level of consciousness that created it, so we get frazzled. We have this problem and we’re trying to find the solution to the problem, but we’re so flustered that we can’t find the solution. The solution isn’t going to happen there. The solution is going to happen when you take a step out, when you relax, when you focus on your breath and you get present, you get out of that level of consciousness and into another level. That is when you will start to create solutions for the problems.

⚡ Related: Learn How to Set Goals to Lose Weight

Now, I’m going to talk to you about goals and how you can start achieving them using Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP™). There are 8 things that I am going to teach you that are an absolute must if you’re going to be successful setting S.M.A.R.T. goals. If you go to google or the web and search, you’ll see S.M.A.R.T. goals all over the place. I’ve seen entrepreneurs, thought leaders, and so many other people over the last week get on and record a video of S.M.A.R.T. goals. S.M.A.R.T. goals are nothing new, but what NLP™ does is it brings you something more concrete, and that is what I want to share with you.

People pay thousands of dollars for this type of goal setting information and I know that it will be profound for you because it was profound for me.

8 Intangible, Critical Components for Successful S.M.A.R.T. Goals

  1. State in positive terms: Ok, so the first one is something we know. You’re not going to state a goal that is negative, but let’s dig deeper. Describe the present situation and compare it to the desired future goal. So where you are now? Where do you want to be? What is it that you want? State it in a positive way.
  2. Specify the goal, sensory-based: Sensory-based is touch, taste, smell, hear and see. You have to be able to apply sensory based evidence to your goal What will you see, hear, taste, smell or touch when you have it? What steps, or stages, are involved in reaching this goal? This employs more of your brain and your nervous system.
  3. Specify the goal in a way that you find compelling: Be honest…if your goal isn’t really compelling, are you going to want to go after it? Does it make you want to get out of bed and go attack it?
  4. Quality control and ecosystems: Is the goal right for you and those around you? Are you factoring in your family and does it work around your family? What about your job, your career? Does it work within the ecosystems and the perimeter of your life? What will having the goal give you that you do not have now? Is your goal achievable and does it respect your health and your relationships?
  5. Self Initiated and maintained: This one is often overlooked. Is the goal within your control? Is the goal self-initiated and maintained by you? For example, my goal is to have my CSCS by the end of 2016, as long as long as they still offer the education. Notice how I add, “as long as they still offer the education”? This is because if the education were no longer available, I would automatically fail my goal since this is out of my control. State the goal in a way that ensures you are in control of the result, as well as the maintenance of the goal along the way.
  6. State the context of the goal: Where? When? How? With whom will you get this goal and can start to visualize this. If my goal is to lose 10 pounds in a month and drop two dress sizes and I am putting that into contextualization, I would ask myself, who am I with? What does it look like? Apply the sensory-based evidence. What will I see when I lose 10 pounds in a month?
  7. What resources are needed?: What resources do you need in order to achieve the goal? Who will you have to become? Who else has achieved this goal? Have you achieved this goal before? What prevents yours from moving forward or obtaining it now?
  8. Evidence procedure: How will you know when you’ve achieved your goal? What will let you know that you have attained that desired state?

I’m not saying that you shouldn’t shoot really high or have crazy aspirations, but your goals fall in line with those crazy aspirations. Use your S.M.A.R.T. goals that you created with NLP™ to reach those crazy aspirations.

Now, set one goal for today using the 8 things that I just described. Whether the goal is for your diet, workouts, business or personal life, get really specific with it and let me know what it is. I want to know what your number one goal is. If you’re serious about it, don’t create excuses not to do it and by the end of the day, set aside time to set one major goal using the philosophies that I have just given you.

If you find yourself unable to focus on one specific goal like me, check out Thrive and let this all natural supplement help you focus and take your brain to the next level. It took me a long time to try and focus on my own, which means it took a really long time to achieve my goals, but once I started taking Thrive, it was game over. This allowed me to focus on one goal at a time and before I knew it, I was knocking them out and getting way more done than when I was unfocused and trying to do too much. Click here to see the research behind the 8 herbs in this supplement and why they work.

So, you’ve been working out for a while now and have changed your lifestyle to a more healthy way of living. You have seen the pounds come off as you are rewarded for all of your hard work when suddenly, you hit a plateau. No matter how hard you try, you can’t seem to get past a certain point or you can’t get rid of that stubborn belly fat that just refuses to go away.

Everything you have been doing has worked up until this point, but now you find you’re self-stuck and frustrated. Don’t worry, it happens to everyone as our bodies simply get used to what we are doing and adjust and this can slow, or even stall your progress.

Hitting a plateau can be very discouraging if you don’t know how to move past it and it’s something that we all experience at one point or another. After all, we are happiest when we are making progress and improving, but when stop progressing, we can lose our motivation and become frustrated.

If you want to get through it, the first thing you must do is reevaluate what you’re doing. Look at your eating and workout habits so you can figure out why your weight-loss has stalled. It also gives you the chance to make appropriate adjustments.

If you hit a plateau and you can’t get past it, it means that what you are doing isn’t working anymore, as your body has adjusted to it. Being able to identify what needs to change or exactly how to tweak your nutrition or workouts can be a challenge for anyone, but once you are able to implement the correct changes, you are back on track to obtaining your goals. At times, it can almost seem like trial and error as you try to figure out what needs to change, what is still working and what parts are no longer benefiting you.

3 Tips So You Can Break Through Your Plateau:

  • If you haven’t already, add some HIIT (high-intensity interval training) to your routine. This can help you burn more utm_medium calories after you’re done working out.
  • Drink more water. It can be easy to overlook the amount of water you intake and this can have an impact on your metabolism.
  • Eat more veggies in your diet. Not only are they good for you, but they will help you feel fuller and curb your appetite.
  • Make sure you have a support system that holds you accountable. Having someone to support and is there to keep you on track will keep you from skipping workouts, especially if you are workout out with them.

⚡ Related: Learn How to Break Your Weight Loss Plateau in 7 Days

This is where turning to experts and getting advice can really help. Our coaches are trained to identify what works best for your body type, whether it is through creating custom nutrition or custom training. This takes out all of the guesswork in trying to get over your plateau on your own.

There is nothing worse than feeling like you are working hard and not seeing results. It can be incredibly discouraging and make you want to give up altogether. But, don’t give up and reach out. You don’t have to do it alone.

 

If you feel like your weight loss journey is an uphill battle with your metabolism, here are 6 amazingly easy ways to give it a boost.

In this blog you’ll learn:

  • Why sleep is important to your metabolism
  • What you can add to your diet to lose more weight
  • The best exercises to increase your metabolism

Get Enough Sleep

Sleep regulates your hormones and keeps your metabolism running the way it should. When you don’t get enough sleep, this can interrupt your body’s ability to regulate both [1].

A decrease in quality sleep can decrease insulin resistance and increase appetite, too. Getting enough sleep is important to staying balanced and regulating your metabolism [2,3].

⚡ Related: Learn How Sleep Can Affect Your Fat Loss

 

Add Some Spice to Your Meals 

Want to rev your metabolism with something simple that you already have in your kitchen?

Look no further than your spice rack and the cayenne and chili peppers! Cayenne increases thermogenic expenditure (which helps boost metabolism), it can increase fat oxidation (good for burning fat), and can curb your appetite [4, 5].

Have a Bit of Caffeine

Caffeine is a great metabolism booster and is widely available. Caffeine from coffee can give your body the extra edge it needs before a workout, while increasing fat oxidation [6].

Even better, drink oolong or green tea. On top of the caffeine, you also get a dose of catechins (powerful antioxidants) that can fuel your metabolism for a few hours after you consume them [7].

As with coffee, make sure you’re consuming organic and ethically-sourced tea to avoid pesticides and unfair trade practices.

Incorporate HIIT Training Into Your Routine

High-Intensity Interval Training has shown to have greater fat burning benefits when compared to steady state cardio. HIIT can create higher levels of energy expenditure for several hours after a workout [8, 9].

I developed my HIIT MAX™ program to get your heart rate up in very little time. It’s a complete workout in 25 minutes or less, and compared to doing steady state cardio, it keeps your metabolism going for hours post-workout, which can translate to greater amounts of fat burned throughout the day [10].

⚡ Related: Learn How to Use HIIT to Lose More Weight

Eat Potassium-Rich Fruits and Veggies

Whenever you can fit in more fruits and vegetables, you should. Try to focus on those that are rich in potassium, as there’s a strong correlation between a higher lean body mass percentage and high consumption of potassium-richfruits and vegetables [11].

The findings suggest that diets with a rich abundance of these foods can relieve the acidosis (increased acidity) caused by the standard American diet, which can be inflammatory. Inflammation can cause imbalances in the body, and of course, can affect our weight when our bodies are not running in balance [12].

Plus, vegetables and fruits with both soluble and insoluble fiber will keep you metabolism working properly and keep you fuller for longer [13].

Supplement with Protein

You might already be eating clean protein, but it’s important that you’re getting enough. When you’re working out, getting enough protein is important for lean muscle gain. A high protein diet can benefit the metabolism, reduce fat, and help build lean muscles [14, 15, 16].

In addition to your regular protein intake, you can supplement with a such as with Morellifit Nutrition Protein Isolate.

Let these easy-to-incorporate tricks work for you while you go about your everyday life.

Discovering the right nutrition for you and what works can be pretty tricky. Check out our Custom Meal Plans and receive help from our expert nutritionists so you can make sure you are on a proper nutrition program designed for your body and your goals.

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