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Archive for depression

Keeping on track through the holidays

I know that someone out there must also feel this indulgent tendency to overeat this time of year. It sucks: you want to sleep more, eat more and be less active.
You know how hard it is to shed the winter fat layer. It takes a lot of hard work and strict eating. Avoid putting on those extra 10 pounds in the first place, by just being a little less indulgent at your next holiday party. And by following some simple tips.fitnessSanta

1. Drink more water. About 8 x 8 oz glasses per day. Add a little mint sprig or lime slice to jazz it up.

2. Track What You Eat. The only way to improve upon your diet is to actually know what you’re currently eating. Keep a food journal, or download a free food tracker app, and input all of the calories that you consume over the course of a week. This will give you a broad look at where your low quality calories are coming from (high sugar, empty calories).
Your first step will be to eliminate these fattening calories and to start replacing empty calories with nutrient-filled whole foods.

3. Space Meals Apart. Much has been said over the past decades about the importance of eating small frequent meals throughout the day. This is old, outdated science. New research has proven that there’s more harm than good to eating more frequently than every 4 hours.
Stick with 3 meals each day, and fill in a protein-based snack if your meals are going to be more than 4 hours apart.

4. Prioritize vegetables. When you first sit down for a meal, eat the vegetable, salad, or other plant-based foods first, before moving on to the rest of the meal. The reason for this is to fill up on the higher fiber, higher nutrient foods first before eating the less-healthy items at your meal.

5. Lastly, have an attitude of gratitude. Eating well and being well studies have shown are linked to a healthy mind. Therefore lift your spirits, just by being grateful. The more you are grateful, the better you’ll feel, the better you’ll eat, and you may even go do that jog you’ve been wanting to do.

Have a happy Healthy holiday season!


Don’t let injuries set you back

Plantar Faciaitis, Patella syndromes, IT Band syndrome, and other chronic aches and pains can be difficult to detect and even more difficult to heal. If you’re an athlete, it’s inevitable you’ll be nursing some wound sooner or later. Many endurance athletes I know get repetitive stress injuries particularly in the knees, shoulders and back. Over the years, I’ve had dozens of injuries, and most of them I was able to nurse back to health and be back out doing my sport within days. The difficult thing, is that doctors tend to give mixed results and often refer you to a specialist, who may refer you to someone else. I find the whole process of dealing with our healthcare system doesn’t give quick or clear answers, especially in the case of chronic conditions. Don’t let the process of healing your injury get you frustrated.

What do you do when you are limited from an injury?

1. The first thing you should do is rest the sore area. And stay positive: the power of positive thinking can heal you!

2. If it’s muscular-related, and it’s not a bone fracture, then ice it. Typically the pain is due to inflammation and one of the best drug-free ways to reduce inflammation is 10 minutes of icing once an hour.

3. Ibuprofen is a great anti-inflammatory to take, in moderation, to reduce the pain and swelling.

4. After a few days of healing and it’s feeling better again, you may want to do modified exercise to keep up your conditioning so you don’t lose too much muscle.

5. Then after a healing period, carefully try your sport again.

Keep in mind, you may be limited with your range of motion or with as much strength as you had originally, so it may be discouraging. However, one step at a time you’ll be back to doing activities you love. Don’t let the injury limit you. Some people have missing limbs and yet they still find a way to overcome life’s obstacles! Check out these amazing athletes! Whatever you do, don’t give up. Don’t let injuries keep you from accomplishing your dreams and goals. “All we have to fear is fear itself.”

Sunny weather = showing more skin

Are you ready to unveil to the world all your glory on the beaches and boardwalks of summer? How is that tummy looking? How are those thighs? Do you look good nearly naked? If you are confident in your physique then you probably don’t need to read this. But those of us who are striving to look a little better this spring and summer than we did last year, read on.

First off, it IS possible to achieve a lean healthy looking body! Now stop all that negative chatter and have hope.

Slim down before hitting the beaches!

Slim down before hitting the beaches!

Two of the greatest methods for getting that ideal body is through exercise and good nutrition. Easier said than done, eh? From my experience, we have to make it an on-going lifestyle to get the fat off and keep it off. Here’s a few tips this spring for looking slimmer and leaner.

  • Cut back on sugar. Sweets are a big culprit in adding extra empty calories to our diet, especially when consumed not before, not during nor after training. Like at 10 PM! Ease off on those girl scout cookies…
  • Drink more water. Staying hydrated
  • Drink less sweetened beverages. Or cut it out completely. Sodas, flavored drinks and other sweet drinks are a huge source of extra calories that just turn to fat! Just stick to water as the best beverage.
  • Speaking of fat, easy does it on the Easter candy, and other foods high in fat such as trans fats and saturated fats, like butter, cream and cheese. Instead eat healthy fats occasionally like plant-based foods, for exampl avocados, olive oil, and flax seed oil.
  • Don’t skip meals and get really starving and binge. Eat every 2 – 3 hours and prioritize eating more of the calories early in the day and taper off for a light meal at dinner.
  • Workout, get outside in this beautiful spring weather and go for a jog, go ride a bike, or just walk. Soon you’ll be showing the world your tan lines and if you skip workouts today, you’ll regret it in the summer!
  • Buy a nice new pair of running shoes to inspire you to feel excited to run, and throw out those old smelly shoes. Running shoes have limited miles available, so don’t use the same pair for too long.
  • Set a plan and schedule your workouts. If you have a job, you make sure to schedule that into your day, that will pay your bills. Well, if you schedule exercise, it will keep your heart healthy and help you to enjoy your life longer after you retire for that “job.” You are going to have your job your whole life, you are not going to have your job. Make fitness a priority.
  • Track your progress. If you can, take measurements of your waist and hips with a tape-measure to track your progress, instead of just weighing yourself.
  • Lastly, try to team up with a friend or join a running group, softball team, or bootcamp, like http://www.upyourfit.com/ my class in PB San Diego, CA! Power to the teamwork!

Well, if nothing else I hope this gets you pumped up to be healthier and connecting to your physical body. We are in our heads so much, it’s time to get out and go for it! You have the potential to be so much more than you can even imagine.

Do what you love. Love what you do.

Exercise. Many dread it. Some never do it. But it can save you from disease and illnesses. Still, some avoid it like the plague. As a fitness professional, it’s difficult to imagine hating it, since I live it and breathe it. However, if someone asked me to work in a lab all day dissecting mice I would probably avoid that just as much! We all have activities we detest that we know are good for us, like flossing, eating vegetables and getting in some cardio workouts each week (not in that order).

Have you been feeling that there’s a shortage of fun active hobbies in your life? Here are some options: hiking on a beautiful forest trail, or just walking around a park or a pretty lake, dancing at the club or just dancing at the Zumba class, or maybe you just like dancing around your living room when no one is watching! My point is to find an active hobby, whether it’s a jog along the beach, bowling, biking, stand-up paddle boarding, skiing, surfing, boxing, jumping rope or rock climbing. Humans have invented more forms of moving the body in a dynamic way than any other species on this Earth! We are meant to move, not to sit all day. Yet, we love to sit . . . sit in our cars, sit in a meeting, sit at out computers, sit at the table, sit until we have the highest percentage of obesity in human history!

I found the love of the sport of triathlon to get me to sit a lot less. It was the best motivation for me. It’s possible that discovering a new active hobby could make you healthier, happier and more motivated to get in the best shape of your life! If you try some new activity, let me know how it goes. Remember, as Mahatma Gandhi said “You may never know what results come of your action, but if you do nothing there will be no result.”

Lighten Up

If you can't relax on a boat in Key West, try soaking in a tub with epsom salts!

With all the stresses in life, it’s always a good reaction to have a healthy stress-reliever. Whether you’re basking on a sandy beach, soaking in the bath tub or getting a massage, find some healthy outlet from all the wear and tear you deal with each day. Creating good habits of releasing the stress can drop your blood pressure and help your relationships. If you go to the gym and you can’t find the energy to workout, sit in the sauna instead. Many times I encourage people to get motivated and exercise, but don’t beat yourself up if you don’t. If you get angry at yourself — come on, admit that you do this sometimes — then it may end up being more stress than it’s worth!

Recovery can be a quintessential part of a proper training plan, so schedule it in sometimes. Going hard all the time and never going easy will create a fitness plateau that is hard to shake off. But with a little downtime and healthy recovery, it’s possible to come back stronger and faster than ever!

Conversely, if you’re just making excuses and being lazy too much, then reassess your priorities and keep on track! But, be good to yourself regardless. We have an abundance of stress in our busy lives. Don’t add to it by getting frustrated for your lack of training. Tomorrow is a new day. Get a good night’s sleep, right after you have a good soak in the hot bath. Then, start refreshed to begin a great workout regime.

Change it up this year

Inspirational video: How great are you?

Humans are creatures of habit. We like to get into a routine that is comfortable and familiar. The beginning of a new year is the time to think about positive changes we can make to our lives. Generally, there are two types of New Years Resolutions:

  1. Bad habits we want to break.
  2. Goals we want to achieve.

Then, we set about accomplishing those resolutions (sometimes half-heartedly). But do you have a plan to get what you want? Are you just randomly trying to get in shape and randomly resisting the temptations of fattening foods? While these are great attempts at getting your healthy body back, chances are not very high that you’ll actualize your goal.

If you shake it up, and try a really different approach to your lifestyle, this can be a way to break bad habits. If you have compulsive eating habits, a drinking problem, drug addiction or another unwanted bad habit, consistency is key to really quitting! For example, you can’t just do a “crash diet” and expect to have a nice slim body for the rest of your life. The older stubborn fat cells can sometimes take many months, and even years, to finally be evicted from your body.

To start up a new fitness routine, start small, then build slowly. One of my clients started with just walking four miles a few days per week and he built on that by adding more days, and longer distances. He is still improving and getting stronger all the time . . . but it is a slow process.

If you want live the greatest life possible and achieve greatness physically, one must practice discipline, concentration, and patience in order to be successful. These three qualities are the keys to practicing your art. Life is over in the blink of an eye. Make the most of your life today and every day. It’s never too late to begin really making the most of your life. Have a great 2012!

Inspirational video

How Bad Do You Want It?

Video of How bad do you want it?

Half-heartedly pursuing sports is a fun “hobby” to have as an adult. We don’t REALLY think that we can passionately play sports, like we did when we were kids, unless someone is a professional athlete. We have fun dabbling in sports, and frequently grown-ups get injured. Often injuries occur more because those sports dabblers are de-conditioned, or out of shape. If we adults played hard and trained hard, like we did as kids, we’d be transported to a level of fitness many think is not possible.

2012 is officially here. 2011 flew by and many of last year’s resolutions were never actualized. So how will this year be different? It all comes down to what’s in your heart. How badly do you want to be the best player on the field, on the court or on the road crossing that finish line? How serious are you about sacrificing a little social life or facebook-time, to really up your game in 2012? You are capable of SO much more than you think is possible! People rise up from adversity all the time. So contemplate: what excuses are you making up today why you can’t go lace up those shoes and run out the door? How badly do you want to accomplish something new in 2012? Your body has the most amazing adaptable abilities to climb great mountains, swim oceans, and jump to the highest heights. Don’t let it simply slump into a lazy piece of flesh that types at a computer. I know you have it in you to blow away your mediocre expectations! Go do it.

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