Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Are You Gonna be Frivolous or Fabulous?

Everyone wants to look great and be healthy when they reach 50 years and beyond right? And everyone’s heard the phrase “Fabulous at 50”! So why be frivolous with your health and fitness now! If you’re going to look great and feel great when you get into your older years, you have to start thinking about what you eat and how active you are now, regardless of if you’re in your thirty’s, forty’s, coming up on 50, or even if you’re already past. This goes for both men and women.

If you start now to eat healthier, leaner meals and snacks, and incorporate fitness, sports, or some kind of physical activity into your daily or weekly routine, you’ll definitely be on your way to becoming the fit, healthy and energetic person you can be, well into your older years!

You have no idea how many times I’ve heard people say “When you hit 40, it’s all downhill”! Well you know what... In most cases it’s true! You start to feel tired all the time, you seem to get sick often, your metabolism slows down and you start gaining weight. One day you just wake up, look in the mirror and think “Oh my God, what’s happening to me!” Then you start to panic, and all you can think about is “How am I going to fix this”!

Well it doesn’t have to be like that and fortunately you can fix things! But, by the time you think you need fixing, it’ll take a little longer to get there than if you had been working on it all along. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that you have to be a fanatic about fitness, or even be a nutritionist, but, you do need to stop being frivolous with your eating habits now and start being smarter and more aware of how you eat, how much you eat, and how active you are in your daily life.

You can start by ditching the junk food, and stop being a couch potato! Get up and do something! What you should be eating, are smaller portions of healthier, leaner snacks and foods like fish and chicken, nuts and whole grains, make sure to include a variety of colorful fruits and veggies, and you should also add at least 30-45 minutes of some kind of physical activity to your daily routine, even if it’s just walking, riding your bike, or walking your dog… well, that is, if you have a dog! Make it a speed walk or a power walk!

Believe it or not, you don’t even need to have a Gym membership to get into physical shape either. With the economy the way it is today, and “Frugal being the New Cool”, everyone is trying to cut corners to save money. You can get yourself into great physical shape with little to no money! It’s true!

First of all, think about getting a Fitness DVD and working out in your living room, your bedroom or wherever you have a little space! They’re inexpensive and you can have your very own “Personal Trainer” right in your own home as often as you want, whenever you’re ready, at no extra charge! One that I can recommend and have used for years and find to be easy, fun, and with excellent results is Tank Top Arms, Bikini Belly, Boy Shorts Bottom,by Minna Lessig. It works out every part of your body and is designed to accommodate multiple fitness levels. This DVD Rocks!!

Another option is, why not join a Fitness Meetup Group in your area where you might be able to work-out or exercise for free, or for a very small fee, with others who have the same goals as you do. There’s no fee to become a member of Meetup, the events are really fun, offer a wide variety of groups from Yoga to Bootcamps and everything in between... and a lot of them are run by Certified Personal Trainers! I use Meetup’s for fitness and fun all the time and can highly recommend them.

Whatever it is that you decide to do, you need to start by making a plan, writing it down, staying focused and disciplining yourself. Figure out what you’re going to eat at each meal, at snack time, and what you’re daily physical activity is going to be and write it down in a planner or on whatever works for you. Work on coming up with some kind of a regular routine that you are comfortable with and stick with it! Be sure to change it up a little bit every now and then by adding new foods and activities, because your muscles have memory and they need a change too. It will also keep you from getting bored with the same ol' thing.

“You’ve gotta stop being Frivolous with your health and fitness NOW if you want to be Fabulous and happy later in life!” So, don’t procrastinate… go ahead and give yourself a challenge!! I know you can do it!! Push yourself just a little bit more every time and one day, you‘re gonna look in the mirror, regardless of what age you are, and think “Hey, I’m looking Fabulous and feeling Fine!” That’s when you’ll know that all of your efforts were well worth it!!

So what’s it gonna be? Frivilous or Fabulous… You decide!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Let’s Get It Started!

True or False – "Skipping breakfast is the best way to prevent overeating at dinner and to lose weight."

The answer is False, False and False! What is "True" is that breakfast is the most important meal of the day!

Breakfast jumpstarts your metabolism for the day. If you’re thinking of skipping breakfast or lunch to save up the calories for dinner, you’ll be slowing down your metabolism and you’ll actually end up gaining more weight! Not only that, by the time you get to dinner, you’ll be so starved that you won’t make sensible choices and you’ll end up eating much more than you normally would. So if you normally skip breakfast in your effort to try losing weight, you’ll actually lose weight faster by having breakfast in your diet. Research has shown that breakfast eaters are much more successful in losing weight and at keeping the lost weight off than those who skip it.

Eating just anything for breakfast won’t give you the health benefits you’re looking for either. The right choices in breakfast foods will help start your day with immune-boosting vitamins and minerals. You need to choose foods that are low in fats and sugars, loaded with vitamins & minerals and high in fiber to protect your cardiovascular system, sharpen your mind, and strengthen your immune system. Also, studies have shown that you should try to get at least 6 grams of fiber at breakfast.

Why not get your morning started with a few of these quick ideas or come up with a few of your own. You’ve got nothing to lose... except maybe a little weight!!

So... what’s on your breakfast menu?

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Rock Your World… With Rock Climbing of Course!

Is this winter weather keeping you inside and climbing the walls? Have you been thinking about looking for something new and fun to take your fitness routine to another level?

Well I have just the thing for you. Why not try some Indoor Rock Climbing where you can climb some real walls!

Climbing is an extremely challenging sport that’s also a bunch of fun, a total thrill, and a great physical workout all at the same time! Not only will it give you an enormous sense of self satisfaction and self reliance, it will also build self confidence, mental control, improve your balance and increase your positive thinking.

Most Climbing Gyms provide numerous routes that offer a full range of climbing workout levels from "Very Easy" to "Extremely Challenging". Climbing walls are generally constructed of steel beam structures with fiberglass sheathing or a molded "Rock Like" texture. "Climbing Holds" are then placed on the walls to simulate rocks that a climber uses to grip as they climb the structure and they’re changed out periodically to keep the routes fresh. Climbing Routes are sometimes designated by colored holds or tape on the wall, and they’re typically given a name and a difficulty level. This allows the climber to track their progress as they improve their skills.

Beginners will usually be given an orientation where they are shown how to put on the harness, how to tie the figure 8 knot, how to "Belay", and how to lower their partner. Once you get the basics down, you’re ready to start climbing!

If climbing up to high places is not really your thing, you can always try "Bouldering". This kind of climbing is usually not more than 12 feet or 4 meters off the ground and it generally uses more strength than endurance. Most gyms will have a "Fall Zone" padded with either gym mats, pea gravel, or shredded tire tread to break the falls. The climbing routes are usually shorter and more difficult, but they require very little climbing equipment... usually just climbing shoes and chalk.

For a list of Rock Climbing Gym‘s around the world and maybe one near you, click on this link www.indoorclimbing.com/worldgyms.html.

Rock Climbing is an excellent exercise for the whole body and mind... So why not let rock climbing "Rock Your World"!

Friday, January 16, 2009

Your Brain on Fitness!

Ever misplace your car keys somewhere, forget an old friends name when it comes time to introduce them, even though you’ve known them for years, or even better, ever put something in that special place so you’ll always know where it is... only to not be able to find it when you need it? I know you’ve all been there at least once or twice in your life and you’re not even old yet! Well if you want to live with an active brain when you do get older, you’re going to have to keep your brain healthy with exercise now. That’s right... Fitness for your brain!

Did you know that eating healthy is not only good for your body but it’s also important to keep your brain healthy and sharp too? Include lots of colorful fruits and vegetables that are packed with antioxidants and essential vitamins and minerals. They’re low in fat and generally low in calories too. You should also include foods rich in Omege-3 Fatty acids like Almonds, Walnuts, Wild Salmon, Tuna and Sardines. Omega-3‘s are important to maintain your brain function and they may help to protect your brain from aging as well.

Studies have also shown that if you include a few simple and fun exercises into your daily routine you’ll boost your brain power enormously and maintain your mental sharpness. Why not try a few of these to smarten up and exercise that muscle between your ears!

Exercise & Yoga - Studies have shown that exercise improves your memory and concentration and may even delay the onset of Alzheimer’s. It increases blood flow to the brain and nourishes your brain cells allowing them to function more effectively and it also promotes the growth of new brain cells. Yoga has been known to affect mood and boost brain power.

Dancing – Why not try Ballroom dancing or learn that Salsa move you’ve always wanted to figure out. Learning new moves activates the brain motor center that develops new neural connections. It also calms the brain’s stress response.

Walking – Walk your dog or walk yourself! Walking 20 minutes a day can reduce your blood sugar and improve blood flow to your brain to help you think more clearly.

Sleeping – It isn’t a Luxury... it’s a "Must Have"! Get at least 7-8 hours of sleep at night and even take in a catnap later in the day. It develops proteins and other brain-boosting components. Sleeps boost to concentration and memory happens in the first 30 minutes so even that little half hour afternoon snooze will benefit your brain!

Play Video Games - Video games such as Wii or Nintendo DS offer Brain Teasers that force you to learn the games interface and stimulates your response to time and memory.

Look Around – I mean really look! While walking down the street, stare straight ahead and try to make out what’s in your peripheral vision. Also, try scanning your eyes to the left and right. This will activate parts of your brain that you rarely use which will stimulate brain cell growth.

Keep a Calendar in Every Room – Looking at your calendars will keep you focused and will help you to create a mental picture of the day in your head.

Drink a glass of Red Wine a day – It has powerful antioxidants that prevent free radicals from killing your brain cells. But no more than two glasses for women and three glasses for men or you’ll reduce that brain boosting nutrient Thiamine!

Socialize - Stay socially connected by getting together with friends and family. Studies have shown that people with active social lives have a reduced risk of developing Dementia and Alzheimer’s. The more activities and contact we have with others, the more it will increase our mental sharpness… and it’s also a fantastic brain exercise.

Read the Newspaper – It will not only keep you current on what’s going on in the world around you, it’ll activate multiple parts of your brain that encourage cell growth. It will also give you something to talk about when socializing with your friends and family.

Play Board Games – Playing games like Yahtzee, Pictionary, Scrabble or Boggle or any game similar to these will lower your risk of developing Dementia by activating spatial, strategic, and memory parts of your brain... and it encourages you to socialize!

Make Crosswords or Logic Puzzles – They stimulate your brain by challenging your mind and memory, contributing to better brain function.

Listen to Your Favorite Music – Music improves your focus and feeling of well being. It also reduces stress hormones that inhibit memory.

Have Sex – No explanation needed! Just kidding! It actually improves your sense of smell! Having regular and enthusiastic sex, even just a few times a week, increases the production of the Prolactin hormone, which in turn causes stem cells in the brain to develop new neurons in the brain’s smell center. And you thought sex was just for fun!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

They're Music to Your Waistline!

"Beans, beans the musical fruit, the more you eat the more you... Ooops!" Well, we all know the answer to that one!

Did you know that eating beans can actually reduce your waistline though? It’s true! Beans are low in fat and they’re packed with fiber, protein and antioxidants. According to Real Age expert, John La Puma, MD, author of ChefMD's Big Book of Culinary Medicine,bean eaters weigh nearly 6.6 pounds less than those who don’t.

So which beans will give you the biggest boost and have the most antioxidant benefit? It’s the darkest ones of course! Black beans are the best, followed by Red, Brown, Yellow and White... in that order.

Do you avoid these little numbers because you’re not really into sounding like a human symphony? I know the after affects can be a bit undesirable sometimes. The reason for that is the complex indigestible sugars that ferment in your digestive system releasing gas and making you a musical "Rock Star" whether you want to be one or not! You can always try using a product like Beano or some other product that contains a natural food enzyme that breaks down the sugars into those that your body can digest.

So, go ahead and eat your beans and make some music... or not! Your waistline will love it!