It "can" be easy to know how to become physically fit. In just 4 steps you will be well on your way.

  • Calculate the number of Calories you eat daily.
  • Calculate the number of Calories you need to burn daily.
  • Know your Maximum Heart Rate (MHR).
  • Exercise - walking at your normal pace is perfect if you are not a gym-rat

Those are your 4 basic steps. You will also need to learn: how to eat the right foods and avoid "bad" fat; how much protein you should eat daily; the proper method to perform exercises; etc.

Now that you have the first 4 most important steps, continue to learn the right foods, simple exercise, and when to eat so that your body has the most time to digest all your food for the day.

FACT! You CANNOT change the way your body works! You can only "try", but your body will and must function as it does or you would not live. Maybe you eat less and "think" you are retraining your body. But all you are doing is forcing your body to adjust. When you eat less than what your body requires, you lose...muscle...and increase fat. Since fat weighs less than muscle, you may see a lower weight on the scale, but your body will have "more" fat (A.K.A. "sagging skin"). You will never train your body to use fat just because you want that to happen. The only way to get rid of that unwanted fat is to burn more calories. But you can learn enough of how your body works to attain the goals you want right here in Garrison Body.

Here is what creates fat:

  • If you eat more Calories than you burn daily, your body will store the extra Calories - no matter where the Calories come from. It can be 100% natural food without any fat, but your body will create fat to store the additional Calories.
  • Your body will ONLY store fat. If you have too many Calories for the day, your body simply stores the extra - as fat.
  • No food nor drink will burn fat. There are foods and drinks that increase your heart rate. But they don't burn fat by themselves. The only way to burn fat is to do "something" other than nothing - like exercise, which could be as simple as just walking. But you must burn more Calories than you eat in order to burn fat.
  • If you eat too "little" food, your body will eat your muscle for the nutrition it requires...and not only leave the fat storage, but increase the fat storage because it knows it's not getting enough food and it's doing what it has to in order to survive - store. Store = fat.
  • Your body will not "use" (burn) fat unless it knows you are eating the proper number of Calories daily, and, your heart rate is below 65% of your Maximum Heart Rate (MHR) during the exercise. When your hear rate is over 65% of your MHR, your body no longer seeks only fat to burn. If your heart rate is over 65% of your MHR, your body requirements change because your body needs more than fat for fuel. The higher your heart rate, the less fat you burn.

If you have eaten properly, your body will use recently ingested food for fuel when you are over that 65% MHR. If you have not eaten properly, your body will use muscle for fuel. That will have the opposite effect of losing fat in order to become more healthy.

Your body is constantly protecting itself - from you and from the elements around you. You cannot "trick" your body into doing what you want. Any attempt will force your body into creating and storing more fat.

  • Exercise can be easy or hard. That decision is up to you. But our proprietary calculator will detail the Calories you need to eat daily and the Calories you need to burn daily for whatever goals you have. Armed with that information you are ready to know that you are doing what's necessary to meet your goals. Read more...

You need to know whether you are gaining or losing fat or muscle. Scales only tell you your total weight. They won't tell you anything about how much fat you have, or if you have lost fat - only total weight. If you have too much body fat it's unhealthy. If you have a scale that provides your body fat percentage, IGNORE that! Scales with body fat information attain the number through a highly inaccurate method of testing - BMI.

Your heart has to work extremely hard to get your blood through all the fat in your arteries. It's pretty much the same as pouring grease down a sink drain. Eventually, you'll have to call the plumber to free up the clogged pipes because the water will not go down the drain. With your body, typically a person waits until they have a heart attack before doing anything about the fat build-up in their body. That's the same as the sink overflowing. When your heart has to work so hard to pump blood, eventually it stops - A.K.A. Heart Attack - or slows so much that you pass out as you are feeling a great deal of pain.

Review the "Body Fat Charts" in order to see what percentage is healthy for your age. If you do not know how to check your body fat percentage, you can ask someone who knows how to use skin calipers in a gym to check for you. DO NOT use an electronic device and DO NOT use the Body Mass Index (BMI) method.

There are 2 methods to check your body fat percentage that are accurate. The first method is called Hydrostatic weighing (a "dunk tank") that many hospitals have and you may have to pay to use. The dunk tank is the most accurate method of measuring body fat - within 1 percent accuracy.

The second method is using skin calipers - accurate to within 3 percent (with trained personnel). ALL other devices can be as much as 20% "over" (or higher depending on who is administering the test) your actual body fat percentage. Make sure you get as accurate as possible when measuring your body fat.

BMI uses your physical measurements. Those measurements do not take into consideration that you may have built a lot of muscle. Even if you have high body fat, you could still have a lot of muscle you've built. BMI is a measurement created between the years 1830 and 1850!!!!!

You need to know your body fat measurement so you know if you are gaining muscle or fat. Or, if you are losing muscle or fat. This is "critical" to your health.

If your exercise is pushing your heart rate too high, you will burn muscle. More accurately, glucose and glycogen are used when your heart rate increases over 65% of your maximum heart rate. Since glucose and glycogen are a large part of muscle, your body will eat muscle for the nutrition from which you are starving your body.

YOU CANNOT TRICK YOUR BODY! There is no way to "train" your body to do what you want. You have to understand how your body works in order to get the results you want. THAT is why Garrison Body created this site in 1996. Yes. Garrison Body has been around since 1996 - one of the first Web sites on the Net.

U.S.R.D.A. states that the average person needs 2,000 Calories daily just to maintain their weight. But if you are not burning enough Calories, eating 2,000 may be too much, and eating less than 1,500 may be too little. You first need to know how many Calories you burn daily.

If you are over 50, that 2,000 Calories daily can be way too much if you are not highly active daily. As you get older you become less active. That means you need fewer Calories. BUT...don't just assume you know how many Calories you need or have been eating. That will also get you into trouble - translation, it will create more fat.

Each individual has different requirements. This varies with body type, activity level and metabolism. In "general", the U.S.R.D.A. recommendation is "sort of" correct.

Garrison Body has created a proprietary calculator that calculates your daily activities, food you consume, your body weight and takes the "guess work" out of what you need for your goal. You may access the calculator which will provide the answers for "each" individual specific to their daily routine by following the link to the Calorie calculator.

Our calculator, used correctly, will show the Calories necessary to consume daily for the individual using the calculator, total Calories burned during a 24-hour period for that individual, whether that person has eaten too many or too few Calories for the day as well as how many Calories you were over or under. Because this calculator is based upon weight, the calculations are different from any other Calorie calculator so that the person using the calculator is provided the correct information - not just a "guess" which is what most Calorie calculators provide.

You may not know your maximum heart rate, but you need to know that number in order to assure you are only burning fat - not muscle.

When you exercise to reduce fat, you must be certain that your heart rate does not go higher than 65% of your maximum heart rate. 60% of your maximum heart rate is best for reducing fat. If your exercise has your heart rate beating higher than 65% consistently (or for most of your routine), you are burning food that has recently been ingested, or, muscle if you have not had enough food. If you do not reduce your heart rate to 65% or less, all of your exercise will be doing the "opposite" of why you are exercising. When your heart rate is over 65% of your MHR, you are no longer burning fat.

Most people refer to fat as "weight". But weight is simply the combination of fat, muscle and bones. There is nothing on a typical scale indicating that you have too much fat, or you are losing fat or gaining fat when using only a scale. Even the scales that have that information are as much as 15% "off" (or more) from being correct.

Fat is...fat. It's what the body creates when you eat too much food, too little food, when you exercise without having the proper nutrition and the body then uses muscle to provide you the energy to exercise.

Fat is the body's method of "storing". You want to stop the storing and use what is already stored - fat. Your body is always trying to protect itself. Therefore, you cannot "train" your body to do what you want. To "get" what you want from your body, you must first understand how some of the basics work. Anything other than eating the "correct' number of Calories daily will force your body into storing whatever you eat. If you exercise above 65% of your MHR, your body will "eat" muscle (if you have not had the proper amount of food prior to your exercise).

Here's a simple way to know if your diet is good or bad. Answer the following question.

Are you tired after you eat a meal? Tired enough to want to go to sleep?

If you said yes, then your diet needs to be addressed! You should be energized after you eat.

If you want to nap after most meals (or all meals), your body is shutting down when you eat in order to restore energy and to "STOP" using energy - which is food.

When you eat, whatever you eat should have the proper amount of nutrition and proper number of Calories. If that food provides what the body needs, then your body is ready to continue - you will have energy and feel good.

The only way to answer that question for any 1 person requires our proprietary calculator.

Most calculators don't provide that sort of information. But it's "mandatory" in order to find the "correct" answer. That answer requires a list of everything you have done for a 24 hour period. And, the answer is only valid for that one day.

Everybody burns Calories differently. Meaning, everybody has a different metabolism in addition to a lot of activities you may perform that others do not. Even sleeping must be taken into account.