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Posts Tagged ‘Exercise’

So I’m taking the 40 Days of Fitness challenge and have been doing some form of fitness activity each day. Yesterday was busy and it was 1:00 am (which was actually today, but details!) before I got to my fitness activity. So I did about 10 minutes of static squats against the wall. It burned so that is a good sign. I intended to do Dr. Oz’s 7-Minute Workout yesterday, but didn’t get to it until today. I must say I was a bit skeptical, even after I watched the video. But tonight I did the exercises (at 7:30 pm, not 1:00 am!) and it is a good workout. Heavy breathing, heart rate up, muscles fatigued (ok, maybe I’m just out of shape). But I like the workout (it is yoga-based) and I can’t really ever say I didn’t have time to do a 7-Minute Workout, so I think I will add it to my basket of fitness tips to keep. Try it out too!

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40 (actually 36) days of fitness: Day 35

Day 35 (counting backwards): All I could fit into my schedule yesterday was 100 crunches and 10 minutes of yoga. And it was at 11:45 pm last night! But I did it! Still, I am proud of myself for doing something – anything – to keep me on track for 40 Days of Fitness. Anything is better than nothing, right?! I seem to recall a link to a 7-Minute Workout in the Livestrong blogpost. I’ll check that out and maybe do that today, on Day 34. It’s looking like I am on track for another near-midnight fitness routine. Sigh…

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I am a goal-oriented person. I like to achieve. I am able to accomplish work projects, and DIY home projects, and personal projects by setting a goal and a deadline. It works great for me. I am not so great at keeping up with a fitness routine when life gets really busy (it always seems really busy these days). So when I saw this challenge at Livestrong.com, I knew it was perfect for me. It is a 40-day (well, at this point, a 36-day) challenge to do at least one fitness-related thing each remaining day of 2012. Here is the heart of the challenge:

Thanksgiving marked 40 days left in 2012, and I want to make them 40  Days of Fitness. Rather than fall apart in the home stretch like most  people, we can fight back. How?

By making one healthy choice every day.

That choice could be to work out, or it could be to stand by the veggie tray  instead of the cookie tray at a holiday party. Maybe you’ll be able to get in a  long run, ride, or gym session, or maybe all you have time for is Dr.  Oz’s 7-minute workout. Or perhaps your healthy choice will be to relax with  a massage or gentle yoga routine to de-stress from holiday shopping madness.  What you do will change from day-to-day. But throughout these 40 Days of  Fitness, we’ll commit to making our own health a priority -no matter how hectic  things get.

Why is this so important during these last 36 days of 2012? You already know, of course, but here it is, laid out specifically:

[S]tudies show that the average American gains about a  pound to a  pound-and-a-half during the period from Thanksgiving to New Year’s. With  parties and family events tying up our time, keeping us out of the gym and often  in front of cookie trays, we tend to eat more–and move less–during this time  of year than at any other period.

Worse yet: Most of us never  lose that extra weight. It accumulates over time. Multiply that  pound-and-a-half a year by 20 years and you’re 30 pounds overweight.

Dogs on a hike

Emily & Samantha

So I started today. I power-walked/hiked a local trail with my dogs this morning. It was only a 20 minute trek but it would have made me sweat if it wasn’t 30 degrees outside. And now I’m drinking a cup of detox tea while I tell you about it.

I’d like to say that I’ll blog every day about my next 35 days, but life is busy right now (just like for everybody else), so I’ll keep you updated as time allows. I hope you will join me and Brian Sabin (the creator of this challenge) on our Days of Fitness! Let me know what you are doing!

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In his book The Complete Guide to Natural Healing, Tom Monte states that humans were built to walk. Walking is a wonderful exercise that doesn’t feel like work and is free. A half hour’s worth of walking conditions the entire body by exercising the muscles, heart, and respiratory and circulatory systems. It also provides perspective while you walk off tension, or can provide time to catch up with a friend or partner if she or he is walking with you.

Have you been hesitating in starting a new exercise regime? No need. Just go for a thirty minute walk, every day if possible. Make it the first step in your new attitude toward exercise.

Share

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I really like the Eating Well blogs; I always find helpful information there and I almost always agree with the advice. Today is no exception. Brierley Wright has a great article on chronic inflammation, what it is and how to avoid it. All the tips are simple changes to your diet and guidance for an exercise regime. Her ten ways to beat inflammation are:

  1. Increase Omega-3 fatty acids and reduce Omega-6 (i.e. add salmon and olive oil to your diet)
  2. Practice yoga.
  3. Consume soy.
  4. Get a massage.
  5. Limit trans-fats and saturated fats.
  6. Eat green leafy vegetables.
  7. Keep stress at bay.
  8. Sleep at least 6 hours each night.
  9. Exercise often.
  10. Drink green tea.

Read the entire post here.

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Swim lessonMy toddler and I are returning to swim classes tomorrow. She loves the water and will be happy to be in swim lessons again. Which got me thinking about all the great benefits of swimming as a form of exercise.

According to Tay Stratton, head swim coach at the Little Rock Athletic Club, who was interviewed for a WebMD article, “Swimming recruits all the major muscle groups, including the shoulders, back, abdominals, legs, hips, and glutes, she says. And because water affords 12 times the resistance as air in every direction, it really helps to build strength.” In other words, swimming is unique because it is cardio and strength training simultaneously.

So how do you get started? The same as all new exercise routines: Start slowly. Try to swim for 10 minutes, then build up to a 30-minute workout, three to five times a week. And include a warm-up and a cool-down, just like you would on a treadmill or in another cardio workout. You can also join a swim club or work with a swim coach.

We’ll be in the pool tomorrow. How about you?

Source: WebMD article entitled “Fitness Basics: Swimming Is for Everyone

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Attorney at Work logoHere’s the intro to a blog post I wrote for Attorney at Work:

“Most people make a New Year’s resolution related to their health. But by the end of February, more than 75 percent of them have given up on it. If one of your resolutions was to get healthy in 2012, don’t despair. You can do it with these five ways to get healthy, starting now.”

While the intended audience is attorneys, the advice is useful to everyone. Read the rest of the post here.

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Here are six simple strategies to help you achieve and maintain a healthy weight:

1. Plan your meals in advance. Know what, when, and how much you will be eating. Then you don’t have to worry about making less-than-great decisions when you are pressed for time.

2. Cook. Find healthy recipes that are simple, with few ingredients, and that take 30 minutes or less to prepare. I like my crockpot. Fish is also quick and easy and delicious.

3. Eat slowly. Give your mind time to register your fullness. When you eat quickly, you eat more than you need to feel full.

4. Watch your portion size. For example, a portion size of meat is the size of the palm of your hand. For most men, that is 4 ounces of meat. For women, it is about 3 ounces.

5. Keep hydrated. We often confuse thirst for hunger so always drink a glass of water first if you feel hungry.

6. Get moving. Try to exercise regularly, whether that means going to the gym or going for a walk or running up and down the stairs at work. Just move!

Source: Stop and Shop

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Here’s my last ten simple tips for losing weight and getting fit:

  1. Eat your burger without the roll, or at least eat it on a whole grain roll.
  2. Eat apple slices with your sandwich instead of chips.  Apple slices are also a good substitute for crackers when eating cheese or peanut butter.
  3. Eat natural peanut butter.  It still has a lot of calories, and calories from fat, but at least it doesn’t have sugar and extra “crap” in it.  And, the best benefit?  It takes like real peanuts!
  4. When having mixed drinks, use water or sparkling water for your mixer instead of juice or soda.  It’s not better for your health, but it has less calories.
  5. If you are going out for a splurge dinner, lift weights, or participate in some other good, hard workout, about two hours before your splurge so your metabolism will be up and ready to burn those calories.  Your metabolism can stay high for up to four hours after a good workout.
  6. Never supersize.  Never.  There are no exceptions to this one; no one needs that much food or beverage at one sitting.
  7. Make lunch rather than dinner your largest meal of the day.
  8. When you just don’t feel like working out, go for a leisurely walk.
  9. Do 25 crunches in bed before you get up each morning.
  10. If you drink coffee, don’t use sugar or cream.  If you like your coffee light and sweet, wean yourself off over several weeks.  First, cut the sugar by a little each day until you are no longer using sugar. Then switch cream, to whole milk, to 2% milk, to skim.  Think: if you need lots of sugar and cream in your coffee, perhaps you don’t really like coffee.

I hope you found those tips helpful!

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Here’s ten more ways to get fit and lose weight.

  1. Never beat yourself up for not being perfect.
  2. Remember that doing something – anything – to lose weight or get fit is always better than doing nothing.  Little things can add up to big things.
  3. Don’t watch TV; you’re sitting and doing no physical activity, and oftentimes snacking.
  4. If you are watching TV, do some other activity simultaneously.  For example, fold clothes, walk on the treadmill, do 50 crunches or jumping jacks, do your arm workout with hand weights, do lunges or squats, stretch, sit down and stand up repeatedly.  The point is to keep moving so that you are not sedentary.
  5. Make love to your significant other – it burns lots of calories.
  6. When you feel hungry, especially if you want a snack, first drink something, preferably water or herbal tea.  Oftentimes we mistake dehydration for hunger.
  7. If you must eat candy occasionally, eat sugar-free candy.
  8. Brush your teeth a lot.  No one wants to eat right after she brushes her teeth.
  9. Stand up straight and sit up straight.  Good posture takes more energy and makes you look thinner.
  10. Skip the potatoes and have green veggies instead.

This brings our total to 30. I have ten more I’ll share tomorrow!

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