It's About Time

If you have ever spent more that 5 minutes with me, it is fairly obvious that I love fitness. I have learned so much (sometimes the hard way) in the 30 years that I have been teaching. What better way to share my passion than to start a blog and pass on the information that I share with clients on a day-to-day basis.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Do we need Protein and How much?

Proteins are an part of every organ, tissue and cell in our bodies.  We are constantly breaking down and replacing these proteins so it is very important that we supply our bodies with the right nutrients.

You can find protein in:
Nuts and seeds
Milk and Milk products
Grains and some fruits and vegetables.

Other  lesser-known  but good sources of protein are:
Pumpkin seeds
Chia seeds
Plain Greek Yogurt
Hemp Protein
Lentil Chips
Roasted Soy Nuts

Our body uses proteins (when broken down-amino acids) as building blocks.  Our body can make some of these proteins but there are other Essential amino acids that we need to get through our diet.  Our protein demands depend on our age, activity level and size.  It is recommended that 10-35% of our calories from protein.   That is about 46 g of protein for women and 56 g for men.  

Monday, March 3, 2014

Lean Mean Mexican Enchiladas

1 C chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped green bell peppers
1 TBSP olive oil
4 oz fat-free chicken broth
1 C grated zucchini (about 1 small zucchini)
2 C shredded, cooked skinless chicken breast
2 Tbsp Chopped cilantro
3 oz can chopped green chili peppers
1 tsp garlic powder
1 C grated reduced-fat Monterey Jack cheese
15 oz can red enchilada sauce
8 small corn tortillas

Preheat oven to 350.  Saute' onion and bell peppers in oil and chicken broth for about 5 minutes.  Add zucchini and saute' for about three minutes or until just cooked.  Remove from heat and pour off any excess liquid.

In a large bowl, combine chicken and vegetable mixture.  Add cilantro, green chili peppers and garlic powder.  Mix thoroughly.  Stir in 3/4 C grated cheese.

Layer about 1/2 C of enchilada sauce on the bottom of the pan.  Pour remain enchilada sauce into a large bowl.

Dip tortilla into the bowl of enchilada sauce util it is completely coated on one side.  Then fill with two large spoonfuls of the chicken mixture.  Roll tortilla into a tube and place in baking dish, seam side down.  Continue dipping and filling tortillas, and place each tortilla in baking dish so they touch.

Top enchiladas with remaining sauce and cheese.  Cover baking dish loosely with foil and bake 12-15 minutes.  Remove foil and bake 10 more minutes.

Calories 268.  Servings 8.  Protein 28, Fat 10, Carbs 16

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Pilates for preventing and treating low-back pain

Pilates for preventing and treating low-back pain
Low-back pain is the most common cause of job-related disability in the United States, accord

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Yummy Spicey Meat Loaf

I just thought I would share a recipe given to me by my friend Ashli.  I made it this weekend and it is a great and healthy alternative to regular meatloaf.

1Tbsp Butter
2 C chopped onions
1 8 oz. package presliced mushrooms (I chopped them up)
3 Garlic cloves, chopped

Saute in skillet about 8 minutes.

3/4 C Panko
1/4 C low sodium Chicken broth
3 Tbsp Fresh Parsley (Chopped)
1 Tbsp Low Sodium Soy sauce
1 Tbsp Sriracha Hot Chile Sauce
t Tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper
1 1/2-2 lbs ground turkey
1 large Egg, beaten

Combine ingredients above and pat into a pan

3/4 C Ketchup
2 Tbsp Brown Sugar
2 Tbsp Bacon Mustard

Mix and pour over top of meat loaf.  Bake at 350 for 45-60 minutes.  Yum

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Double Ladder or HIIT Workout

This workout can be utilized a few different ways.  You can perform each group of exercises for 30 seconds each and do them for 4 rounds which works well in a class setting.  You can also use each group of exercises and perform them as a double ladder.  Exercise A would be done 12 times and Exercise B would be done 1 time.Then do A 11 times and do Exercise B 2 times.  You can see how the pattern goes.

A is more strength based using heavy weights and B is more cardio based.  I don't count in singles but do a rep on both Right and Left to count as 1.  Each pair of exercises tries to emphasize same upper body movements to help create fatigue.

1A.  Squat down and up with overhead press

1B.   Jacks with overhead

2A.  Curtsie squat side to side with Bicep curl

2B.  Rapid fire lunges with alternating bicep curls (Front foot lunges onto step)

3A.  Canoe row with lunge then press overhead (Alternate R and L Leg on each round)

3B.  Long Over-the-top of step

4A.  Plank Row and Twist side to side

4B.   Skater Lunge Side to Side

5A.   Squat with front raise

5B.  Alternating squat with kick

6A.  Tricep Kickbacks in lunge position (Alternate R and L Leg on step each round)
6B.  Lateral Squat side to side with straight arm extensions

7A.  Lateral Flys
7B.  Step  lateral touch/Jump Up (Use length of step to measure lateral movement)

Have fun.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Macro nutrients-Yes Please-All of them

Figuring out a meal plan that can help you reach your goal can be so overwhelming.  There are the low or no carb coaches or the protein pushers and many more.  No matter where you get your advice, make sure it is nutritionally sound.  There isn't a One-diet-fits-all meal plan.  You need to base your decisions on a few things like your basal metabolic rate, your activity level, your food preferences, your lifestyle, your availability to certain types of foods, etc.  Just reducing your calories may give you temporary success but you can’t base your health solely on the number on the scale.  A huge reduction in calories can definitely produce weight loss but it may not just be fat.  Count on losing muscle mass as well.

Below is a list of macro nutrients and why your body needs them.  After studying those lists, you can see why it is not a great idea to radically eliminate any of them from your diet.

Carbohydrates are the macro nutrient that we need in the largest amounts. According to the Dietary Reference Intakes published by the USDA, 45% - 65% of calories should come from carbohydrate. We need this amount of carbohydrate because:
  • Carbohydrates are the body’s main source of fuel.
  • Carbohydrates are easily used by the body for energy.
  • All of the tissues and cells in our body can use glucose for energy.
  • Carbohydrates are needed for the central nervous system, the kidneys, the brain, the muscles (including the heart) to function properly.
  • Carbohydrates can be stored in the muscles and liver and later used for energy.
  • Carbohydrates are important in intestinal health and waste elimination.
  • Carbohydrates are mainly found in starchy foods (like grain and potatoes), fruits, milk, and yogurt. Other foods like vegetables, beans, nuts, seeds and cottage cheese contain carbohydrates, but in lesser amounts.
According to the Dietary Reference Intakes published by the USDA 10% - 35% of calories should come from protein. Most Americans get plenty of protein, and easily meet this need by consuming a balanced diet. We need protein for:
  • Growth (especially important for children, teens, and pregnant women)
  • Tissue repair
  • Immune function
  • Making essential hormones and enzymes
  • Energy when carbohydrate is not available
  • Preserving lean muscle mass
Protein is found in meats, poultry, fish, meat substitutes, cheese, milk, nuts, legumes, and in smaller quantities in starchy foods and vegetables.

Although fats have received a bad reputation for causing weight gain, some fat is essential for survival. According to the Dietary Reference Intakes published by the USDA 20% - 35% of calories should come from fat. We need this amount of fat for:
  • Normal growth and development
  • Energy (fat is the most concentrated source of energy)
  • Absorbing certain vitamins ( like vitamins A, D, E, K, and carotenoids)
  • Providing cushioning for the organs
  • Maintaining cell membranes
  • Providing taste, consistency, and stability to foods

Fat is found in meat, poultry, nuts, milk products, butters and margarines, oils, lard, fish, grain products and salad dressings. There are three main types of fat, saturated fat, unsaturated fat, and trans fat. Saturated fat (found in foods like meat, butter, lard, and cream) and trans fat (found in baked goods, snack foods, fried foods, and margarines) have been shown to increase your risk for heart disease. Replacing saturated and trans fat in your diet with unsaturated fat (found in foods like olive oil, avocados, nuts, and canola oil) has been shown decrease the risk of developing heart disease.

Friday, January 24, 2014

Metabolic Chain- Full Body Workout

This workout starts out easy and then slowly kicks your butt.  Every exercise flows right into the next exercise without stopping. Every round you add one rep to each exercise so at the end of the sequence you will be doing 10 of each exercise.  It will take you about 20-30 minutes to complete.  You can work up to doing 2-3 rounds.  Enjoy.

SQUAT down and then come up with OVERHEAD PRESS with dumbbells
Slowly lower down arms in front and do a DEAD LIFT
Come up and do straight ARM EXTENSION
Lower down arms and do a BICEP CURL with a CALF RAISE
Lower body down into a PLANK and do an alternating ROW


Monday, January 20, 2014

A Sugar is a Sugar is a Sugar ?????

This time of year we are reminded of all things sweet: Gifts from our SWEETheart for the holiday of love, Chocolates that satisfy our SWEET tooth or SWEET dreams of a healthy new year.   Beware- Being surrounded by all things sugary can be detrimental to your health.  Carbohydrates are a great fuel source and should compose about 45% of our diet per day.  When choosing your carbohydrates you should know there are several types of sugar and we should try and eat naturally occurring carbs and not added sugars  because not matter what, all sugars in excess can be stored as fat. 

My friend, Mary, who is a registered dietician, says a sugar is a sugar is a sugar.  She put together the list below and no matter what you call a sugar it all breaks down to the same thing;  It just depends on how fast.

Agave Necter                           Barley Malt                                 Beet Sugar
Brown Sugar                            Buttered Syrup                          Caramel
Carob Syrup                             Castor Sugar                               Corn syrup solids
Crystalline Fructose               Dextran                                       Diastatic Malt
Diatase                                      Ethyl Maltol                              Evaporated Cane Juice
Fructose                                    Fruit Juice                                   Fruit Juice Concentrates
Galactose                                 Glucose                                        Glucose Solids
Golden Sugar                          Golden Syrup                            Granulated Sugar
Grape Sugar                             High-Fuctose Corn Syrup       Honey
Icing Sugar                              Inverse Sugar                              Lactose
Malt Syrup                              Maltodextrin                               Maltose
Maple Syrup                            Molasses                                    Muscovado Sugar
Panocha                                    Raw sugar                                  Refiners Syrup
Rice Syrup                               Sorbitol                                      Sorghum Syrup
Sucrose                                     Sugar                                           Syrup
Treacle                                     Turbinado Sugar                        Yellow Sugar                                        

A very powerful tool when making good food choices and watching your sugar consumption  is reading the ingredient list on food labels.  We know that the farther down the list the ingredient is, the less there is of the item.  Sadly, manufacturers have learned to be very creative.  They may use two or more different types of sugars which when listed separately there is less of them so they can be placed further down on the list of ingredients.  But when combined (Sugar is a sugar is a sugar) they would be one of the largest quantities on the ingredient list.  See example below.

Six of the top eight ingredients are sugar.  Yikes.  They are so tricky. 

Take time to choose your carbohydrates wisely.  Your health will thank you for it.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Choose Your Hard

Full Body Weighted Bar Workout

This is a great workout to address every body part and use minimal equipment.  If you don't have a bar, use dumbbells.    Enjoy

12 Walking Lunges (R and L = 1 count)
12 Push Presses
12 Bicep Curls
12 Straight Leg Dead Lifts
12 Bent Over Rows
12 Single Leg Dead Lifts (Do 12 on both legs)
12 Over Head Tricep Extensions or Skull Crushers
12 Front Squats
12 Chest Presses
12 Hip Lifts