Perhaps there is no day so completely free of gastronomic guilt than Thanksgiving. It is the day when the confines of societal standards permit us (and even encourage us) to throw caution to the wind with pride and indulge in a joyful bounty of feasting with our loved ones. Let me convey my belief that these rituals are vitally important, especially in times like these when parents may be working overtime (and sometimes even two jobs) to make financial ends meet. For many families this year, Thanksgiving may be one of only a handful of days in which the entire family is able to come together. Thanksgiving always affords us a gentle reminder of how much we have to be grateful for, if we so choose.
In kind, however, there may also be no greater opportunity for "awareness" of our level of well-being than "The Day After" Thanksgiving. The Day After may be the exact day when a year of subconscious denial suddenly seems to come exploding out of our waistline. It is also the time of year when we begin to reflect on the year gone by, and usually some pre-contemplative cogs and wheels begin turning in our minds about the things we would like to see manifest in the New Year ahead.
When I read my daily mediation this morning (in one of my most cherished books), it occurred to me that we are exactly as we are supposed to be, today. The theme of the meditation is ultimately the primary principle, the very mantra, I teach when beginning to work with new clients: awareness. I am grateful for the venue & opportunity I have to share it with you.
"When we first become aware of a problem, a situation, or a feeling, we may react with anxiety or fear. There is no need to fear awareness. No need. Awareness is the first step toward positive change and growth. It’s the first step toward solving the problem, or getting the need met, the first step toward the future. It’s how we focus on the next lesson. Awareness is how life, the Universe, and our Higher Power get our attention and prepare us for change. The process of becoming changed begins with awareness. Awareness, acceptance, and change—that’s the cycle. We can accept the temporary discomfort from awareness because that’s how we’re moved to a better place. We can accept the temporary discomfort because we can trust God, and ourselves. Today, I will be grateful for any awareness I encounter. I will display gratitude, peace, and dignity when life gets my attention. I will remember that it’s okay to accept the temporary discomfort from awareness because I can trust that it’s my Higher Power moving me forward."
~Melody Beattie, The Language of Letting Go.
A primary reason clients seek a personal trainer or fitness coach is because they want and/or need to make significant & lasting lifestyle changes.
A semi-private “Target Training” plan may be just the answer you are looking for!
- Target Training encourages consistency in your workouts. Consistency is a vital part of effective behavioral & lifestyle change. Implementation & entry into the “action stage” occurs within the first 3 months, with successful arrival at the “maintenance stage” (the integration of these changes into your daily life) becoming evident after 6 months of sustained action.
- Target Training provides a specific duration and time period for training. Goal achievement is more effective when objectives are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, & time-bound (SMART).
- Target Training offers flexible and affordable pricing. You can choose a time frame & duration of training that fits your budget. Semi-private training & coaching is considerably more affordable on a lifestyle level; & long-term success is, in turn, exponentially greater.
- Target Training memberhsips are limited to a maximum of four (4) participants. This ensures that you will receive the individual attention you deserve, while simultaneously creating a motivational group dynamic that helps keep you focused.
- Target Training membership includes unlimited access to any of our Pro Fitness locations, so you don’t have to worry about paying for additional membership fees if you want to use the facilities outside of your Target Training group or schedule.
Target Training is not a group “class.” The exercise programs are personally tailored to meet your needs & goals. For example, sometimes participants may execute the same exercise because they have similar needs & goals. Often times, however, exercises will be specifically tailored & designed for you & your goals.
When you become a Target Training member you will also receive an initial (and follow up) well-being assessment and a customized nutrition plan. Additionally, your trainer/coach will always be available to answer your questions and address your concerns.
As your trainer & coach,
“My goal is for you to reach yours; and I will do everything possible to make that happen.”
The semi-private Training Training offers benefits to both you & your trainer/coach:
“The fact that I am only one Personal Trainer & Fitness Coach makes it difficult to serve a large number of clients. There are only so many hours I can work in any given day. Some people are initially hesitant at the thought of joining a ‘group,’ but they eventually realize its value. When people come to see me, they often think they want one-on-one personal training, but when they explore the Target Training option, they find they enjoy it even more. It creates greater accountability and is often more fun. I’ve noticed that clients become friends and even exercise together outside of the studio.
“Before joining any Target Training group, I will help you to evaluate whether or not it is appropriate for you. Suppose you have never exercised before or maybe you have a pre-existing condition that places limits on the type of physical activity in which you can participate; in either of these instances I may suggest that we work together one-on-one for a specific time period. As you improve your fitness level or exceed your previous limitations, joining a Target Training group may be just on the horizon.”
The Target Training calendar is always a work in progress, new groups form as existing ones fill up. (For an example of the Target Training calendar and how it works, see below.) Whenever you choose to join a Target Training group, you are guaranteed the scheduled days and times for the duration of your membership, regardless of the number participants (which is always limited to four). If you are the only person in attendance at a given session, then LUCKY YOU! You will get a private one-on-one session for a fraction of the regular cost!
Contact me as soon as you are ready to get started!
Start with something simple:"Hi, this is Mandy, one of your Buddies from The 5th Food Group. I am calling you because I'm following the first suggestion. How are you doing today?" Talk about whatever you want or need to. Ask how your Buddy is doing with the topic of the month. Share how you are doing with the topic of the month. If you're having trouble with the topic of the month, ask for feedback. If your Buddy is having trouble, share your experience and strategies. The main purpose of the Buddy phone call is to help you establish a support network. For most of us, it is very difficult to reach out to another person we don't know; and like all things worthwhile, it takes practice to get good at it. You are asked to call AT LEAST one Buddy per day; but you are by no means limited to that. Call as many Buddies as you wish. The more the better! If you develop a habit of picking up the phone and calling someone, it is much more likely that you will be able to pick up the phone and ask for help in an emergency. When you support a Buddy, you are also helping yourself. So, if you are the Buddy in need of support, do not hesitate to call someone...you will actually be helping them too! It seems a little crazy, but it's TRUE. Try it and you'll see!
- What is...
The 5th Food Group?The 5th
Food Group meets at 9:00 AM on the first Saturday of every month in the World
of Fitness private studio room (13673-B Coral Way). The 5th Food Group is open
to anyone interested in improving their relationship with food. We open with a
brief discussion, the topic of the month, geared toward identifying obstacles
to healthy food relationships. We then explore motivators and develop
strategies to overcome these obstacles. The best way
to understand The 5th Food Group is to experience it!
- Our Philosophy...
enter this sacred space and time, you are a member of The 5th Food Group. As
members of The 5th Food Group, we recognize each other as unique and vital
individuals. Confidentiality, honesty, respect, and understanding make up the
core values of our group. We listen to
each other without judgment or our own individual agendas. We meet here to
develop and reinforce our foundation, commitment, motivation, and discipline
for improving and maintaining wellness; and we encourage each other to hold
realistic expectations and create achievable goals. We accomplish this by
sharing our experiences in, strategies for, and optimism about improving our
relationship with food.
There are no
requirements for membership in The 5th Food Group other than to
abide by our philosophy as long as you are within this sacred space and time.However,
these are our suggestions:
- Add your name and phone number to the
- Call at least one Buddy per day
- Immediately terminate your
relationship with “white” foods (i.e. refined sugars/flours and other processed foods)
- Begin and nurture a writing relationship
with your sacred journal
- Create your sacred space
- Schedule your sacred time
- Read a book on the Recommended
If you do
not understand all of these suggestions, just start
with the first one.
Alcohol and Fitness
- Alcohol is a toxin—a toxin that travels through your bloodstream to every organ and tissue in your body, thus slowing your body’s ability to heal itself.
- Consuming alcohol after a workout can cancel out any physiological benefits you might have received from such activities.
- Alcohol use diminishes protein synthesis resulting in a decrease in lean muscle preservation and repair
- Alcohol decreases the secretion of HGH by as much as 70 percent! (HGH is produced mostly during sleep. Alcohol disrupts the sleep process.)
- As the liver metabolizes alcohol it produces substances that directly counteract hormonal activity essential to lean muscle repair and synthesis
- Alcohol dehydrates muscle cells, thus altering their ability to produce adenosine triphosphate (ATP), which is your muscles’ source of energy. ATP provides the fuel necessary for your muscles to contract. When alcohol is oxidized by dehydrogenase (the enzyme that breaks down alcohol) it produces an elevation of NADH reducing the production of ATP (which is the muscles source of energy), resulting in lack of energy and loss of endurance. Because women have very little of the enzyme dehydrogenase, females experience the primary effect of higher intoxication even when drinking the same amount with a male their same size.
- Alcohol holds very little nutritional value. The relatively high calories in alcohol are not available to your muscles. The body treats alcohol as fat, converting alcohol sugars into fatty acids.
- Alcohol use inhibits absorption of important nutrients such as thiamin, vitamin B12, folic acid, and zinc.
- Alcohol consumption will reduce the number of fat calories you burn, alcohol can increase your appetite (and impair decision making about healthy nutrition).
- Less than five percent of the alcohol calories you drink are turned into fat. Rather, the main effect of alcohol is to reduce the amount of fat your body burns for energy.
- For several hours after drinking, whole body lipid oxidation (a measure of how much fat your body is burning) drops by a massive 73%. Rather than getting stored as fat, the main fate of alcohol is conversion into a substance called acetate. In fact, blood levels of acetate after drinking were 2.5 times higher than normal. And it appears this sharp rise in acetate puts the brakes on fat loss.
- Although an alcohol-rich meal does increase your metabolic rate, it also suppresses the number of fat calories your body burns for energy — far more so than meals rich in protein, carbohydrate, or fat.
- While the odd drink now and again isn't going to hurt, the bottom line is that alcohol and a leaner, stronger body just doesn't mix.