Archive | Health and weight loss RSS feed for this section

April Challenge

This month we’re going to work on your butt!

The first week (April 1-6) do 10 squats, 5 bridges, and 10 lunges each day.
The second week (April 7-13) do 20 squats, 10 bridges, and 15 lunges each day.
The third week (April 13-20) do 30 squats, 15 bridges, and 15 lunges each day.
The fourth week (April 21-28) do 40 squats, 20 bridges, and 20 lunges each day.
The last few day (April 29-30) do 50 squats, 25 bridges, and 20 lunges each day.

You can do this!

March Challenge

Let’s work on abs this month!

On odd days, you’ll do 30 russian twists, a 30 second plank, and 30 seconds of mountain climbers.
On even days, you’ll do 25 reverse crunches, 25 crunches, and 25 arch ups.

If you’re a beginner, you’ll do 2 sets per day.
If you’re an intermediate you’ll do 3 sets per day.
If you’re at the advanced level, you can either double your numbers or do 4 sets per day.

If you’re not sure, ask me if you’re a beginner, intermediate, or advanced level. Let’s get strong!

February Challenge

This month I’d love for you to keep your step count up near where we ended last month. I also am going to let you choose one of the following challenges. Tell me when we meet what you’re choosing.

You can do a pushup challenge – start with 4 and add 2 per day so that you end up doing 60 pushups by the end of the month (it’s a leap year so we get a bonus day!!).

You can do a squat challenge – start with 5 and add 5 per day so that you’re doing 145 squats by the end of the month.

You can do a crunch challenge – start with 10 and add 10 per day so that you’re doing 290 crunches by the end of the month.

Let me know what you’re going to do — stay accountable!!

January Challenge

I’ve been asking people over the last month how many steps they normally take a day. This month we’re going to get you moving so that we can start the year off right!

From January 1-6 you’re going to add 500 steps a day to your normal number.
From January 7-13 you’re going to add 1000 steps a day to your normal number.
From January 14-20 you’re going to add 1500 steps a day to your normal number.
From January 21-27 you’re going to add 2000 steps a day to your normal number.
From January 28-31 you’re going to add 2500 steps a day to your normal number.

November and December Challenges

Ok, so we’re entering the time of year when people get busy and many activities center around food. So your challenge this month is to be thoughtful about how and what you eat. How you do that is up to you.

You could: Keep a food diary
Drink a glass of water before you eat food
Make sure that you plan ahead before going somewhere food will be served
Try to eat vegetables
Use an app that tracks calories or points
Pay attention to portion sizes (compare to the size of dice, the palm of your hand, etc)
Ask yourself if you are hungry or are you mindlessly eating?
Think about the foods that are central to your holiday celebrations. Can you make them more
healthy? Is there a way to decrease portion size? Why are those foods important?

I’m thankful for each of my clients and my readers, and I hope that you have a wonderful holiday season!

Metabolism and Midlife

As people age, their metabolism slows and muscle breaks down. Sounds depressing, doesn’t it?! But just because you have hit another decade doesn’t meant that you can’t get in shape or stay in shape. It just means that you have to be smarter about it.

Gone are the days when activity can be relegated to the weekends or just a few times per year. The emergency rooms are full of weekend warriors who strain knees, shoulders or backs because of that pick up softball game or working in the yard.

So what should a person do? Find 10 or 15 minutes a day to do *something*. Maybe that something is a walk after dinner. Maybe it’s a hot yoga class. And maybe it’s a full on strength training workout. But begin moving on a regular basis. Find something that you enjoy and do it.

Metabolism slows approximately 5-10% per decade, so you can’t eat the huge quantities of pizza and beer that you lived on in your 20s without gaining weight. But you can increase your metabolism by increasing the amount of lean muscle mass you have. How do you do that? By strength training! And if you add in some high interval intensity training, the afterburn you get will also burn calories.

Another way to increase your metabolism is to make sure that you eat every few hours, but that doesn’t mean that you can just blindly graze all day. Small meals and snacks that are mostly vegetable and protein with a little bit of healthy fat and a small amount of carbohydrates will help you speed up your metabolism.

And finally, make sure you get enough sleep. Your body needs time to repair muscle and other tissues and make blood cells. Various hormones that signal satiety (the feeling of “fullness”) are linked to a good amount of sleep. Turn off the screens — TV, computer or phone — at least an hour before going to bed. Try and get at least 7 hours of sleep per night.

We cannot control the calendar, but we can control our attitudes towards aging. Weight gain is not inevitable. The more we move and the more we focus on the things under our control, the better off we’ll be. Change your attitude, get motivated and move!!

“Lose 10 pounds in 10 days or your money back” and other claims

“Lose 10 pounds and still eat cake.” “You’ll do no work but you’ll get a new body.”

The real question is “WHY are we tempted by those claims that assure us that with no work we can lose amazing amounts of weight in no time?”

The answer is that we didn’t work to gain the weight, and we feel a bit put out that we have to make changes to take weight off.

Obviously, losing 10 pounds in 10 days is not healthy. A weight loss of 1-2 pounds a week has been proven to be more sustainable than a quick loss, which is often followed by a steady gain. And we do not live in a society that handles delayed gratification well. We want things NOW, including our weight loss.

So what should a person do? Realize that your weight did not go on in a day and it will not come off in a day. Realize that you will be needing to make changes and that they may be difficult. Realize that muscle weighs more than fat, and so focusing only on the number revealed by the scale is not the only point. Take measurements. Figure out your body fat percentage and work on lowering that. And realize that your self worth is not measured by a number on your scale or by the size of clothes you wear.