Healthy Living in Connecticut Blog

Your Story! Your Voice! Your Health!

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Matt Manning made the national news a month or so ago, when he won $50,000 in a bodybuilding.com contest. I contacted him because I wanted to learn more about his incredible transformation and how he did it. He agreed to do an interview for the blog. I thought his story could inspire others who think they can't get in shape because of age, work or other issues. Matt proves that with hard work and determination, you can transform your body and improve your health.

Matt's story inspires me on a personal level as I'm trying to tighten my skin with the strength training. He didn't have as much weight to lose as I did, and I know my skin was stretched out for many more years than his. But still, it gives me hope that maybe I too will have tighter abs after all this weight loss.

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When I graduated college, I've had jobs that required sitting all day at the computer. I would sit hours and hours getting my work done without any movement at all. At lunch, I would hardly exercise at all. It's no wonder that I eventually got very obese.

There is nothing wrong with working an office job if you remember to get up and move every once in a while. If you just sit still for too long, not only are you getting little or no exercise, but you put yourself at risk for getting cancer, heart disease, diabetes and obesity.

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I'm getting closer to my goal of 13% body fat. Today, my trainer figured out what my body fat percentage is. When I first started the training, I believe my percentage was about 23%. I am now 16.76% and that's so awesome to me!

I've gained a lot of muscle, as my weight has been fairly consistent. I did lose about five pounds in the process but that was to be expected. I'm currently at about 215 pounds, which is still up from my lowest in December of 2012 at 212 pounds.

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It's been a couple weeks, so I thought I would show what my arms look like as I continue the strength training. I think my arms and my legs look in great shape… I still need work on my abs.

I've been hitting the weights five times a week as my trainer gave me tougher workout routine this time around. I work different muscle groups every other day, with two days off from the strength training. I'll see him again on Monday for a new workout routine. In addition, he's planning on checking the body fat percentage. I'll let you know how it goes.

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As we all know, eating healthy is important if you want to maintain a normal body weight. Beyond that, there are many other reasons why it's important to maintain a healthy diet.

By eating the right foods, you can help your body fight against developing certain diseases. I would rather steer clear of diabetes that runs in my family. I made the necessary changes in the hope that I avoid this disease. This is why I avoid the candy and ice cream I used to eat, and eat the vegetables I stayed away from for too long.

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I'm doing so much strength training, I thought I should begin taking pictures of my progress as I go along.

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b2ap3_thumbnail_IMG_0070.JPGI've worn a pedometer everyday for over two years now. I've been getting 10,000 steps a day everyday since then (with the exception of one day when I was sick last year). So you can imagine the panic I felt when I noticed my pedometer was missing!

A while ago, I was writing about possibly giving up the pedometer, but I never did. There were so many challenges that required one, that it's gotten to be such a habit to wear it. Plus, I think it motivates me to make sure I'm moving enough.

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I had my training today and it was another intense workout! He really worked me hard today. I probably sweat gallons, it was a tough workout!

I was doing stair climbing while holding onto a 35 pound bag of sand, three burpees with weights and two bear claws (walking across the floor like a bear), doing these exercises for a total of six minutes. I think I did well getting through his routine 3.33 times.


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