Metabolism 101

Metabolism happens to be one of those terms that turns out to be misunderstood or generally not well known.  So many factors are at play in the 'speed' of your metabolism and getting it going faster and maintaining a good metabolic rate. Metabolism is the rate at which you burn the calories you consume. Any movement speeds metabolism including fidgeting.  This means a sluggish metabolism doesn't always have to remain that way.  Standing instead of sitting on the couch is a great and easy way to increase your metabolism. Every increase in body temperature increases your metabolism by 14%. This goes back to our beginning days as humans.  Cold weather slows down your metabolism because your body needs to conserve energy to stay warm.  Warm weather does the opposite, your body constantly needs to cool itself down, ergo a faster metabolism. When you sleep your metabolic rate decreases by 10%.  Well there's nothing you can do about this one, but your body does burn on average 140 calories while you sleep which means you burn more calories sleeping than you do sitting on the couch watching television. When you fast for more than 12 hours your metabolic rate decreases by 40%.  Again back to 'caveman' days, any delay in the consumption of food signals to your body that you are starving.  Not kidding.  Your body goes into fat storage mode in order to keep you alive until your next meal.  This is another reason breakfast is such an important meal.  It jumpstarts your metabolism for the day. Adequate sleep regulates your metabolism.  Sleep is one of the most important things you can do for not only your body but your psyche.  Your body rebuilds itself during sleep, think of yourself as an iphone.  During the day you use up 'battery life' (energy and muscle) to go through your day and you burn more battery when you workout, at the end of the day you plug that phone into the wall.  If you don't leave it in long enough it doesn't get a full charge and yet is asked to perform the same functions on less battery life.  Get a full charge at night. 7-8 hours. Ways you can control your metabolic rate: Exercising: This one is a no brainer, your body has to work incredibly hard to keep your muscles going during a workout which means burning energy in the form of calories (yay metabolism).  This is one reason why Daily Hiit workouts raise your metabolism any where from 24-36 hours after a workout, your body does not know what is going to be asked of it to do so you are constantly challenging your muscles instead of letting them fall into a 'groove.' Eating steadily throughout the day: Now this is one I love, eat every three hours. After my daughter was born this was easy, I just ate when she did.  Slowly it became routine.  If you look forward to the food you are going to eat, you are much more likely to maintain 5-6 meals and a good diet. Staying hydrated: The mantra of 8-8oz glasses of water per day hasn't changed much through the decades.  Your body is made up of about 70% water (kind of like the earth).  Water is essential for performing almost every single bodily function necessary for life.  This is why dehydration is life threatening.  To help with the vast amount of water you need to drink, plan it out. A glass before and after every meal, and when you feel a craving coming on, drink a glass of water to help fill yourself up. meta Consuming certain foods: These include; green tea, grapefruit, broccoli, low fat and sugar yogurt, lean turkey, oatmeal, chili, as well as foods high in fiber, iron, and calcium.   If you need more nutrition guidance, click here to check out our 14-Day Nutrition Guide!

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