Thursday, January 3, 2013

Tasty Tips for 2013

"We're going to eat better this year!"

I hereby resolve to share ideas and specific strategies to help make that pledge a reality for 2013 and then some.

Numero Uno:  Produce fresh from the local/often organic farm, delivered to your doorstep, couldn't be more convenient, couldn't be a better value -- and the quality of the fruits and veggies is Tip-Top/Grade A/Super Duper Gold Star.  Friends, if you are anywhere near Savannah, GA, join up and enjoy the harvest.

Every meal should consist mostly of vegetables and fruits.  Two-thirds to 3/4 of your plate covered with colorful complex carbohydrates, and lean, quality protein to cover the rest.

Next Several:  Pay attention and regain some control of your eating.  The November/December issue of IDEA Food and Nutrition Tips offers these great research-based suggestions:

  1. Place your meals, snacks, and drinks in smaller plates, bowls and glasses to help reduce how much you eat.
  2. Eating breakfast can control your appetite all day.  (You know who you are... I know you can hear me...)
  3. Watching TV while eating creates a distraction that causes you to eat more.  Tune out and go sit at the table.
  4. The more you chew, the fewer calories you are likely to consume.  Good for your digestion, too.
  5. Serving smaller sized portions on plates and putting the extra in the fridge right away tends to trim your intake. Cutting food into smaller pieces can also help you eat less.
  6. Don't fall for "low-fat" food labels, they often replace the fat with extra sugar, making calorie savings an illusion.
  7. Sleep deprivation often causes overeating. Sleep better, eat better.
  8. Eat your calories. Studies show drinking your calories leads to more post meal hunger than when you eat solid food.

Do you see anything on the list, just one or two things, that you can pay extra attention to right away and strengthen your resolve to eat healthier?  Starting right now?

Yes, You Can.

Eat better, move better, live better.  Be Well, and happy New Year :-)

That's Why We Call it a Workout and Not an Easy-out

The title is one of my longest running jokes/barbs/snappy answers to the inevitable client plea, "This is hard!"

Training is supposed to be hard.

Is it supposed to make you vomit? No. I don't care what you saw on "The Biggest Loser," it truly is NOT okay to train so hard that you vomit. Even if you are morbidly obese. (Because it seems as though humiliating obese people on television is the fashionable custom.)

Is it supposed to cause sharp pain, numbness, dizziness, heat stress, or anaphylaxis? No.

Does the good personal trainer take into account your activity history (or lack thereof) when deciding how hard is appropriate to push your intensity level on any given day? Yes.

Will the good personal trainer help you adjust your intensity level, taking into account the body you brought into the studio with you on any given day, as it reflects your sleeping/eating/hydration/stress load/activity habits over the last 24 to 48 hours? Yes.

Can the good personal trainer read your mind? No.

Your expressions and reactions are quite readable to the experienced personal trainer, but you may be expert at minimizing your discomfort or masking pain. The good personal trainer will frequently ask you for feedback about how easy or challenging an exercise is, while watching for signs of failure of form.  Please, give candid feedback. 

You can coddle yourself (er, um, come on), you can cripple yourself (clearly not recommended), or you can challenge yourself (oh, yes, pick me! pick me!). 

Move more, move well, and move with deliberate intensity.  And over time, you'll move better. :-)