Make time to Exercise

by Jenny Gaal, Fitness Director

Finding a full 30-45 minutes free every day to devote to exercise can be a challenge for anyone- Especially during the holidays!  Time is one of the biggest barriers for everyone in finding fitness.  We tend to view being active as an “all or nothing” condition.   There is no right or wrong way to move more-anything that gets your heart beating faster and you breathing heavier counts as physical activity. Everything from a brisk walk to gardening, housework and body weight exercises, like squats, push-ups, or planks anytime, anywhere. The best choice of activity is whatever works for you!

It All Adds Up…  

Fortunately for all of us busy folks, your 30 minutes of exercise doesn’t have to happen all at once. It is works equally as well to fit it in throughout the day in 5 or 10 minute increments until you hit the 30-minute (or more) mark.  It’s best to be active throughout the day and since walking right after a meal helps with digestion, you can use your meals as reminders to take an activity break.

Myth: You need to sweat for 45 minutes to get a health benefit.

Fact: Even if you’ve got just half an hour to spare a day—or a mere 10 minutes—you have enough time to bolster your cardiovascular health. More and more studies are pointing to the power of short workouts—consistently improving lower blood pressure readings on average when they split their daily walk into three 10-minute segments rather than tackling one 30-minute stroll. However, to drop some pounds you’ll still need to get more active most days of the week. Aim for at least 250 minutes of moderate to vigorous exercise a week for the ultimate slim-down success.

But I work…

In many workplace settings, finding ways to stay active throughout the day can be challenging without utilizing specific fitness tips. Even if you spend most of your time behind a desk, there are ways you can break away and incorporate some mild physical activity into your daily office routine. The fitness tips listed below are all things that can realistically be squeezed into your workday; no need to worry about changing into different clothes or looking goofy doing office exercises.

  1. Don’t Sit during Your Entire Lunch Break

Make a point not to stay seated during the 30 to 60 minutes you’re allotted for lunch. Instead, take half of the time to eat and use the other half to squeeze in a mini, but mild, workout. Go outside and take a short walk. You can also walk up and down the stairs in your building. Walking at a moderate or slow pace is still more beneficial to your mind and body than sitting around for an hour. The change of scenery and the little bit of activity is a good way to break up the day.

  1. Pack a Bag and Work out right after work

Face it, when we make it home the last thing we want to do is get up off the couch and go work out.  Make it part of your routine after work, even just for a quick 30 minute workout, to stop by the gym or park to fit in some exercise before heading home.  At the end of the week that is 2.5 hours of exercise!

  1. Say “No” to the Elevator

Speaking of elevators, make it a habit to start taking the stairs instead. Begin your work day by walking up the stairs to your office and then ending the day by walking down the stairs to the exit. Start to think of the elevator as a non-option.

Remember with fitness than every bit counts. Just because you don’t do pushups or sprints during lunch doesn’t mean your body still isn’t benefiting from the movement.

Best in Fitness,

Coach Jenny

reducingstress

by Jenny Gaal, Fitness Director

Many will admit that the holidays are a very stressful time. So it is no surprise that most Americans will gain between 1 and 3 pounds during the holidays—and most will not lose this extra weight. Finding healthy ways to manage stress is imperative! Here are 10 effective tips:

  1. Focus on the Positive.
  2. Let Go of the Past- Stay in the Present
  3. Maintain Your Routine, especially Exercise
  4. Hold Realistic Expectations 
  5. Breathe
  6. Start making Healthy Family Holiday Traditions
  7. Drink Warm Water-To maintain an active digestive system, drink half your body weight in ounces of water each day. You can boost your metabolism by drinking warm water so your body has to work to bring it to your core body temperature.
  8. Eat Mindfully
  9. Replace Emotional Eating with an Activity

Quickest reminder, keep the definition of holiday in mind…. a day of festivity or recreation when no work is done.

Have a really wonderful and restful Holiday Season!!

metabolism

 

by Jenny Gaal, Fitness Director

Metabolism is a process that involves biochemical and hormone reactions by which your body converts everything you eat and drink into energy. Age, Gender, Heredity and Body Size and Composition are all factors that affect metabolism. Metabolism directly impacts one’s fitness levels.

  • Age: For many, metabolism decreases 5 percent each decade after the age of 40. This is due to a loss in muscle mass. Muscle takes more energy to properly function, so it burns calories faster than fat or any other tissue.
  • Gender: Men usually have more muscle mass than women, and therefore metabolism is generally higher for men. Since women generally have less muscle mass, fat deposits tend to stay in the body longer, especially after the childbearing years.
  • Heredity: The way your metabolism works may be in your genes. Every function in your body is determined by your genes, including basal metabolism. The expression of those genes, like the rate in which your body burns fat, may be inherited; which means that it may run in your family.
  • Body size and composition: People with a larger body mass burn calories faster.

In addition to metabolism, Digestion and Physical Exercise determines the way your body metabolizes food and burns calories. The body needs essential nutrients—chemicals the body itself cannot synthesize—to maintain a steady metabolism. Major food groups like carbohydrates, fats, proteins, minerals, and vitamins supply these essential nutrients. Minerals and vitamins do not contribute directly to the body’s metabolism, but they play an important role in metabolic pathways.

A healthy eating plan that includes a good balance of fresh foods from all food groups is key to having an adequate metabolism. Did you know that there are some foods that may increase your metabolism? This is because they contain important elements that are vital to maintain a steady metabolism, they take more calories to break down in the digestive system, or they contain protein.

Consider incorporating these nine foods into your metabolism-increasing diet:

  1. Green tea
  2. Coffee:
  3. Milk
  4. Egg whites
  5. Lean meats
  6. Water
  7. Chili peppers
  8. Whole grains
  9. Lentils

Others habits that may increase metabolism are:

  • Increasing daily physical activity
  • Exercise
  • Eating regularly