“The only way you can hurt the body is to not use it.” -Jack LaLanne, fitness icon who died Sunday at age 96.
In 1936, a time when lifting weights was taboo, Jack LaLanne opened his first fitness studio. He spread the message that being active and eating healthy is something you do for the rest of your life.
The exercise equipment he used with his TV audience: a chair and a towel.
Opportunities to be active are everywhere. If your excuse is you don’t have the $$ to join the gym or you do not have the time to get to the gym – I am here to get you over that obstacle. You can simply use your own body, a chair, your couch, the floor, your stairs, etc to be active. If you want to buy one piece of exercise equipment – I suggest a pedometer. This little device will encourage you to move. Set a goal for yourself. Give yourself incentives. Have someone else hold you accountable. Whatever it takes. Taking 8,000-10,000 steps per day is associated with weight loss.
Beyond weight loss, beyond fitting into your spring clothes, is your health. Why not live your best life? YOU are in control of this. Today is the time to take responsibility for your health and get up and MOVE. It is bitter cold here in CT and trust me, you will feel a whole lot warmer if you MOVE around. So put on your favorite song and dance around, climb your stairs a few times, race your kids around your basement. Exercise exists in many forms. Find what works for you and MOVE
I know, for a lot of us its cold, dark and did I mention cold? Tough to get out of bed let alone set the alarm to get up early to get a workout in. Those good intentions of stopping at the gym on the way home? Something conveniently keeps coming up.
This is a good one. On this site you set your goal, you can then set a monetary penalty if you do not meet your weekly goal. You can choose a referee who keeps you honest (a friend,coworker or spouse). Then you choose a recipient who will receive any money you lose if you do not keep your goal. If your goal is weight loss, you will set a realistic goal and each week you will check in. The website is very clear to understand so I won’t go into great detail. I will mention that your recipient can be anyone or you can choose from their charities or anti-charities. That means you could really motivate yourself by choosing a charity against your beliefs. I recommend challenging a friend, spouse, etc and choosing each other as recipients for a little friendly competition. ( You do not have to set a monetary penalty).
According to this site, it takes 21 days to break a habit. Whatever your habit may be, once you register on this site, you will receive an email every day checking in with you regarding your success or set back. Once you’ve gone 21 consecutive days, you should be free of that habit.
Wondering if it’s still safe to eat those leftovers? This site will help you determine the shelf life of food, how long leftovers can stay edible, the best way to store your food, how accurate expiration dates are and more. It is a very helpful site.
Self Nutrition Data
If you are trying to keep track of your calorie intake but do a lot of home cooking, you can go to this site and click on Analyze Recipe to determine the calorie intake based on the ingredients you use in the recipe. You can save ingredients to make it faster each time you visit if you use them frequently.
And then there are plenty of Free or low cost apps for your phone that can help you.
Here is a link to the top ten free iphone apps for weight loss:
Blackberries also have some great fitness apps like iFit, fitdeck, gymtechnik, weight loss sensei, weight loss assistant (free).
Tomorrow is a new day.Make sure you lay out your workout clothes the night before. Then, pull back the covers and start your fitness regime by jumping out of bed and running to the bathroom to get dressed - it's usually the warmest room in the house :)
Should you eat before a workout?? YES
- A piece of whole grain (wheat, oat, etc) toast or 1/2 an english muffin with a tbsp of nut butter (peanut, almond, cashew, etc).
- A piece of fruit. (however, the acidity may bother you especially if you have acid reflux so know your body). bananas are usually the safest bet.
- A granola or power bar. But keep it small. Try to keep the calories below 150 as the higher calorie bars will contain too much fiber and fat for your pre-workout meal.
- A piece of lean turkey breast deli slice wrapped around a small piece of cheese.
- A few whole wheat crackers and 2 tbsp of hummus. (or a piece of toast and hummus)
- Vitamuffin (has 5 grams of fiber so make sure this isn't too much for you)
- 1 serving of whole grain cold cereal with milk. Watch the serving size, it is often less than 1 cup. Watch the fiber - don't eat a high fiber cereal before a workout.
Some of you have asked me what the buzz is on quinoa.
I am on the road all day, every day and I still manage to make healthy choices. My secret is preparation. I take a little time each Sunday to make and portion out food for the week. It doesn't take that long and I put on hulu and watch the TV shows I never have time to watch. (This week I watched a few episodes of "Raising Hope" - great recommendation Chrissy! Sooo funny).
Here is one idea:
Egg White Patties:
I use 100% egg whites sold at any supermarket b/c it is easier.
PREHEAT Oven to 350
MUFFIN TIN: Grease muffin tin -I use my olive oil misto but you can use pam or whatever.
*Pouring the egg whites into a muffin tin, fill each about 1/2 way full.
*Add veggies: I like mushrooms but spinach, tomatoes, onions, carrots - whatever is fine.
*Sprinkle a little bit of part skim cheese in each one (optional of course)
*Add Flavor: I love garlic but you can add a little salt, pepper, or whatever you wish
Bake for 30 Minutes at 350.
Cool before removing from tin.
Store them in tupperware (use wax paper if you need to stack them to prevent sticking.
In the morning, toast an english muffin or 2 pieces of toast (I suggest ezekiel bread but at least choose 100% whole wheat or grain) you can pop 2 of the little egg white patties in the microwave for a few seconds to heat them. The patties fit perfectly on an english muffin or pieces of toast.
more to come...
Every new year you may set what seems like a simple goal for yourself: LOSE WEIGHT or GET IN SHAPE.
There are lots of tips out there right now about how to start a fitness program. But what if you are already a fitness fanatic but have hit a plateau? Here are some tips for you:
Planning meals is a major help when trying to lose or maintain weight.
I recommend joining the Eating Well Interactive Meal Planner http://tools.eatingwell.com
You start by determining your BMI. *Please note that this will not be an accurate representation of your BMI because it does not take into consideration your lean mass (muscle). It may also tell you that to lose weight you need to eat 1200 calories. Do not listen to this. Ask me to help you determine how many calories you need to lose weight. ***
This tool allows you to search for recipes and add them to the meal planning calendar. It will help you keep track of calories, etc and creates a grocery list of food you will need for the week or month.
On Eating Well you can check out recipe makeovers to discover healthier recipes of your favorite meals, get tons of recipes for low calorie meals and desserts and more. I have no affiliation with this site -I just think it's helpful.
Some Tips on how to BAKE HEALTHIER:
1. Replace white flour with healthy whole wheat flour. 100% whole wheat pastry flour has less wheat gluten than regular whole wheat flour.
2. Replace white sugar with a healthier substitute. For example, substitute honey for the sugar in the dessert recipe. For each 1 1/4 cups of sugar you would have used, use 1 cup of honey (You may also need to add an additional 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda to the recipe for each 3/4 cups of honey used).
3. Replace butter, shortening or margarine with applesauce in baked goods. You can also use mashed or pureed banana, pumpkin, prunes, raisins or pears to replace part or all of the unhealthy fat in your recipe. Substitute yogurt or light buttermilk for heavy cream.
**If you use applesauce, increase the baking soda and powder by 1/4tsp. Also if you are making cookies they will be very moist so you may want to use 1/2 butter and 1/2 applesauce. You will want to enhance the flavor (spices) as applesauce will make it a little bland due to the low fat content. You should always use whole wheat pastry flour when using applesauce as a replacement. I like to use a little applesauce and pureed bananas, personally.
4. Reduce the quantity of the fatty things in your recipes. For example, cut back on choc. chips - you can add some dried fruit or nuts like walnuts or almonds. Also, often recipes call for more sugar than you need. I always reduce the amt. of sugar in my recipes by at least a 1/4 cup if not more.
A great recipe to try: