Archive for the ‘Healthy Living’ Category

Having the Workout Mindset for a Better You

Saturday, July 30th, 2011

“I can’t do it”.  “I’m too tired”. “It’s too hard”. “I’ll never be able to finish this”. “I’d rather do something else”. “It’s too hot”.  “I’ll never lose this weight”.  “I’ll never have that ‘perfect’ body”.  Do you recognize those quotes?  I’m sure you have said those any many others to yourself before, right?  I’ve done it, we’ve all done it.  It’s all about mindset and we need to have the right mindset if we want to accomplish our goals.   How are you going to be able to lose that weight or get that body you want if you don’t think you can do it?  That’s right, you won’t be able to.  It will never happen.

So, what are you going to do to get yourself in the right mindset?  We all seem to find excuses not to workout.  It’s easy isn’t it?  You get home from work late, you are tired, you have chores, the kids need help with homework or soccer practice, you have to make dinner for the family…there is always something going on and working out comes at the bottom of the list right?  It shouldn’t.  Take those excuses and throw them out the window.  You can find 30 minutes in the day for you, for your health, for your mental well-being.  I know you can.  It will not only help you but it will help your family, your friends, and those people who have to be around you all the time.  Working out will help improve your mood, your focus, increase your energy and in general will make you feel better.  The people around you will be happier just as much as you will.

You have to realize that getting and staying in the right mindset sometimes means you can’t do it alone.  You might have to have a support system or a supportive partner that is there with you along the way.  That is important to me and has helped me a lot along the way.  You may have a partner who works out with you and if so, that is great.  You may have a partner who could support you in other ways like making dinner, helping with the kids or cleaning the house so you can have some free time to workout and do what is important to you.  That is a different kind of support but important nonetheless.  Lastly, we have support systems out there from online communities like Facebook or Beachbody, people doing the same thing you are.  Reach out to those like minded individuals who are enjoying the same thing you are.

What motivates you to workout?  Do you have a particular goal you want to reach?  Do you want to lose that last 10lbs?  Do you want to fit into that pair of size 6 jeans that you haven’t worn since high school?  Do you want to get that six pack or just get big and buff?  What about marathon, are you training for that?  There are so many reasons people start and continue working out, what motivates you?  Once you figure that out maybe you need to write it down, register for that marathon, look at those jeans daily, or grab an old photo of yourself and put it on the fridge.  You need to look at your goals regularly and you’ll want to reach them.

One thing that I believe is important is that you like the workout that you are doing.  If you don’t enjoy your workouts you are not going to stick with them.  When I first started on my mission to lose weight back when I was 220lbs I really like cycling so I started riding my bike.  It was fun for me so I did it everyday.  Not only did I enjoy it but it was a great workout for someone who was in not so great shape.  Some of you may love lifting weights so P90X is a great workout and others may love intense cardio  and sweating so INSANITY is a great workout.  Then there are others that like dance workouts so TurboFire or TurboJam is a great workout.  There is something for everyone but you must enjoy it.

Think about what you are fueling your body with.  If you are eating fast food all day and things that weigh you down you are going to feel sluggish, have no energy and will not be in the mood to workout or do anything productive all day.  You need to make sure you eat foods that give you energy and fuel you properly.  Do not skip breakfast, do not eat a couple large meals a day but instead make sure to eat healthy small meals every three hours that provide all the nutrients you need to get through the day feeling great!  Your body will thank you and you will thank your body.  It is amazing how different you will feel when you eat well and fuel your body properly.

So are you ready?  Are you motivated?  Are you ready to reach your goals?  It’s time for no excuses anymore, get in that right  mindset and create a better you.

 

Why Am I So Bloated?

Monday, July 4th, 2011

“WHY AM I SO BLOATED???”

Here are some things to consider as to why you might be feeling bloated, even though you have been exercising, which does help decrease being bloated.

  • You are not drinking enough water. Water will not make you bloated. It might make you feel full, but it is not the cause of you being bloated. (8 glasses a day). **Stay away from carbonated drinks which will cause bloating.**
  • Eat more fiber. Such as blueberries, strawberries, dried apricots and dried plums, but do it in moderation. If you eat to0 much fiber too quickly, then you will feel more bloated that you originally were. 5 grams of fiber is suggested. Vitafusion Fiber Gummies are really good and you can purchase a decent amount (220 gummies) at Costco for $17.00. They are sugar free.
  • Moderate eating of beans and vegetables like cauliflower, cabbage and broccoli will minimize bloating and gas.
  • This one might sound strange, but chew with your mouth closed. One huge cause of bloating is swallowing too much air when you eat. Think about how often you chew gum and workout. That is a lot of mouth movement at one time.
  • If you like milk, yogurt or other dairy products, start with a small amount and slowly increase it over time to minimize bloating.
  • Eat more protein. Too little protein in your diet can cause you to be bloated.
  • Salt, salt and more salt. Bad, bad, bad. Even a small amount of excess sodium will cause you to be bloated. Dang Chinese Food.

I hope these suggestions help. If you have decided to drastically change your diet since you have started working out, you might want to evaluate what your putting in your mouth and how much. This sudden change to “get fit” could be that cause of you feeling bloated.

 

Healthy Summer Foods

Tuesday, June 21st, 2011

As summer begins we all want to look good so we can go to the beach and pool in a little less than a parka and snow pants, but to do that we need to realize that exercise only does not cut it. You need to continue to eat well, and I don’t mean fat free ice cream. Let’s discuss some ideas for healthy summer foods that are still tasty but will help you stay in shape throughout the summer.

The first goal is to keep the foods light and refreshing. No one wants to eat a heavy meal in 100 degree weather. Nor do you want to cook that heavy meal and heat up your kitchen with the weather being hot outside. The beauty of the summer is that is when the farmer’s markets come to town, the fruit is abundant and the veggies are at their peak. Not only do they taste great, well, most of them, but they are low in calories, they have lots of vitamins, minerals, fibers and other great stuff that is good for you. Of course, the best part is that fruits and veggies are very refreshing when the temperatures peak.

Besides tasting good, being super refreshing in the summer, fresh fruits and veggies are what I call “free”. Do not worry about overeating these items, but do make sure you are getting fresh fruit and fresh veggies, not the canned stuff that soaks in syrup. You can happily eat these without worrying about how much you are eating. Free!

Just think how tasty a piece of watermelon on a hot summers day sounds or a cold salad with some grilled chicken instead of a heavy peace of steak. Next time you think about eating on a hot day, try some fruit and vegetables instead of something heavy.

Do Your Measurements Right

Tuesday, June 14th, 2011

So the folks at Beachbody posted a video today that I thought was worth posting here for everyone to see.  It shows you how to do all of your measurements correctly.  I thought it was the perfect follow up to my last post about how you should stay off of the scale and measure your success by inches and not pounds.  Watch this video, make sure your are taking your measurements properly and again, stay off the scale.

So grab your measuring tape, your body fat tester, a friend and a notepad and let’s get measuring!

Muscle Does Not Weigh More Than Fat

Friday, June 10th, 2011

I know you hear it all the time, muscle weighs more than fat but that simply isn’t true.  1 lb of fat weighs the same as 1 lb of muscle.  The issue at hand is the density of both materials.  Muscle is more dense than fat and that is what we need to understand here.  Muscle is clearly heavier by volume than fat but as far as weight goes, 1 lb of muscle on the scale is the same as 1 lb of fat on the scale.  Now a 1 lb lump of fat will take up more space, hence, volume, than a five pound lump of muscle.  I hope that makes a bit more sense now.

Picture a person who weighs 130 lbs with 15% body fat, they will look much smaller and leaner than a person at 130 lbs with 30% body fat. They weigh the same but since the fat is big and  lumpy and takes up more volume that person is bigger. Because muscle is more dense than fat the person with less fat and more muscle will look smaller and leaner.

This leads to the bottom line.  Get rid of your scale.  Do not weigh yourself obsessively, it won’t tell the whole truth.  It would do better for your self-confidence and for the truth about how you are doing with your workouts if you take measurements (both body fat and with a tape measure).  Next thing you know you’ll be fitting into those jeans you haven’t worn in a while and you wouldn’t have even expected it.

Go ahead and do your measurements now…go here to do your measurements right.

Climb Michi’s Ladder

Wednesday, June 8th, 2011

Michi’s Ladder is not a diet. It’s a simple substitution plan. To lose weight, try swapping the foods you eat for similar foods in tiers 1 and 2. The more you eat in tiers 1 and 2, the more you’ll increase your chances of losing weight.

There are some healthy foods in lower tiers, but they’re either calorie dense or nutrient deficient. To lose weight, you want to maximize the nutrients in every calorie you consume.

Note on frying: Foods should be eaten raw, steamed, grilled, poached, baked, or broiled. Frying automatically drops even the best foods into tier 5.

Click here to download a PDF of Michi’s Ladder.

So tell me again…what’s your excuse?

Sunday, June 5th, 2011

I had the privilege of again being a part of this years Special Olympics “Wall of Honor” for those athletes participating in the Summer Games in events that consisted of swimming and track/field. As I stood there with other officers looking at and greeting the families of the Special Olympians and the Olympians themselves, some who needed the assistance of walkers or who were in wheelchairs, I saw them smiling and full of happiness that they were participating in an activity that brings them joy and some freedom from their illnesses or disabilities.

All of these athletes try their hardest, some wanting just to finish the race and some going for gold, but I believe that by them realizing they can do something active with the disabilities they have, then that brings them a huge amount of happiness.

So the next time it comes to you doing something active for your health and you hear yourself say, “Oh, I am too tired”. “My legs are sore”. “I don’t have time”, think about how lucky you are to be as healthy as you are and that you do not have to have anyone looking after you all of the time.

I am extremely grateful to be as healthy as I am and be able to do the things that I am capable of doing. So, tell me again what’s your excuse for not getting out and about and living the healthiest and happiest life you have been given to live?

The Best Part of Waking Up…

Sunday, May 29th, 2011

The best part of waking up is #1: actually being able to get up (especially at our age more things seem to be cracking and creaking) and #2: getting outside in the early morning hours of the weekend before anyone else does.


The advantage of #1 of course is that it still shows we are alive and able. There are a number of advantages for #2. Those being that I was able to get up and out to run before anyone was able to disrupt my quiet morning with the hustle and bustle of their day. The coolness of the morning definitely helped wake me up  and I was able to have “me time”, which I think everyone should be able to have. It’s better than a therapist and you don’t have to take the little white pill (or whichever medication your doctor has prescribed for you during your depression stage).


Today was the first day I went running since I started the Insanity program (so for about 2 months). Not to brag or anything, but I will so heads up, the five miles was effortless. I couldn’t figure out if all of the cardio through Insanity helped me or just that I had not run for so long, but I felt like Forrest Gump out there (without the leg braces of course).


Speedy, our 11 year old black Labrador Retriever who has the the gray muzzle of an 11 year old and the body of a 4 year old, stuck with me throughout the morning jog and never complained once. What a trooper! Fresh air does wonders for you and it can improve your mental well being and revitalize you. Adding to that, a majority of studies say that exercising outdoors not only increases energy and revitalizes you, but gives to “positive engagement, decreases in tension, confusion, anger and depression. ”


So, if the best part of waking up is only having that cup of coffee in the morning, consider heading outdoors for a walk, run, bike ride or hike. *Mind, Body and Spirit*


Michelle

Flatulence

Thursday, May 26th, 2011

People don’t only want to look good and feel good, but also smell good as well. That is why tonights blog I choose to discuss flatulence. We all have it, we all do it, no matter how loud or silent we are…it’s a natural way of life. A way to express oneself to put it mildly.


What makes flatulence? Well, it is what we eat for one thing and I am here to help you recognize those foods that are healthy for you, but might make you excuse yourself from the table for a second or “toot”. Apricots, carrots, lemons, bananas, oranges and lets not forget prunes to name a few fruits to be aware of. They have an excellent amount of fiber in them, some more than others, but be aware.


Some healthy carbohydrates that influence flatulence are: beans, peas, soy, sprouts (Brussels), celery, cucumbers, cabbage and cauliflower. (One reason why my momma told me to eat my vegetable and I chose not to.) If you chose to eat pan fried or deep fried foods, your result will be the same as eating any of the healthy items mentioned above, but stick with the healthy and go for tuna instead. Yes, tuna is also a contributing factor to flatulence.


Fruits and vegetables are good for you in more ways than one, but eating smaller amounts should result in less bloating and discomfort. Which brings me to ways to protect yourself from getting bloated. Eat the healthy stuff in moderation, especially if you are starting a “I am gonna get myself into healthy eating diet.” Your body needs to adjust to this sudden change in processing food so shoving in the healthy stuff will not allow your intestines to work properly at breaking down the food. Slow down.


I hope this helped a bit. Stay away from carbonated drinks as well to help prevent this. Drink plenty of water because it is the most healthy and natural resource we have at our disposal.


Michelle

Ah the day is almost over…time to lie back and relax

Wednesday, May 25th, 2011

Well, after a very mentally stressful day at work, which actually if you think about it, wears you out more than physically doing anything…I came home and was ready to get my Insanity on. I had to work out the days “oh my gosh I almost wanted to just squeeze my eyes closed really tight, click my heels three times and wish I was in Neverland” activity by sweating it all out. Just 20 minutes of the Insanity: Fast and Furious then I finished just in time to do P90X Cardio X with Jo-Anne. We were busy Downward dogging, upward dogging, Kempo punching, front-side-back kicking, jab-cross-hook-upper cut punching, etc…it was a good way to finish the day and even better way to finish the night by the wonderful chicken boob and Cajun sweet potatoes fries. All courtesy of Jo.


Now that I am comfortably full, not “roll off the dining room chair then onto the couch ah forget it, go to bed full”, but content enough to get ready for tomorrow and look forward to the very long weekend. Woo hoo. I learned that to get through days of stress, if I physically take care of myself and laugh it off to care for my mental well being, then I will be okay. Just remember, “You can’t fix crazy. You can just tip toe around it because the meds aren’t working.”


I have found that if you exhibit a good attitude towards people, situations and not let things bother you…that those around you who are being pissy, will just stop yapping because no one is paying attention to their drama  and they will have no one to talk to but themselves, because that is the only person listening to them anyway.


This blog was not so much about physical awareness per se, but mental well being because without it, you will give up on yourself to do better and will just be and feel blah…


Good night.

A Little Video From Me

Tuesday, May 24th, 2011
So I thought I’d make a little video for everyone to watch.  We will try keep the videos coming and change the up the topics every so often to make them more exciting.  This one is just an intro to me and my background.  Hope you enjoy.

Two More Days

Saturday, May 21st, 2011

Well, well, well. Two more days left of this Insanity program and I am loving it. Loving not that the program is almost over, but the efficiency, variation and effectiveness of it. The next step is to keep on keeping on and still getting busy. Insanity and P90X (hybrid). Now that it is almost Summer, we won’t be having to do these programs as often because our love of hiking and biking will take its place. I recommend Mt. Rose, Tahoe Rim Trail and Whites Creek for hiking. Biking in Sacramento along the American River Trail to Folsom (yes, it’s 60 miles round trip, but it’s flat so suck it up) and the approximate 20 mile loop in Verdi are nice biking ventures. These places are very convenient when you don’t want to travel to far from home-Nevada that is.

That being said, get outside as much as possible. It is true what “they” say about sunlight. It is very good for you. (In moderation though, not to where you become a crispy critter with sun spots all over the place looking 5 times your age).

Home maintenance, being outside and working on the exterior of the house. I am so looking forward to that this year. Getting some sun and getting a new fence up and looking good. It’s going to be a lot of work, but will keep me active and doing something different, plus it will work my upper body. Yes!

If you have ideas of things to do this Summer that would not only be healthy, but fun then let us know. Keep on being healthy and happy because life is precious and people like you being around.