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Holiday Eating
Got (Healthier) Milk?
Working out and learning!
60 inches lost??? WOW!

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Muscle Weight Vs. Fat Weight
Should You Lose Weight before Resistance Training?
Eating Before Exercise Promotes Fat Loss
Flatten Tummy With These Tricks
Work Intervals


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Holiday Eating


Celebrate but don't go overboard.
Plan ahead to avoid holiday overeating and weight gain.
The holiday eating frenzy has started! Halloween brought a sugar-packed caloric jump start to the holiday celebrations, and with all that candy still around and more seasonal treats to come, it’s not easy to eat healthy during the holiday seasons. With a little pre-planning and creativity, those traditional and often calorie-dense, fattening, foods will not lead to a hefty holiday weight gain.


"Nutrition is the hardest part for me."

Countless people have said those exact words. Have you?

We live in a time when we can get any food we want, almost immediately. Our grocery stores are packed with towering shelves and freezers. There are food delivery services. Streets are lined with restaurants and convenience stores. Heck, I live in the city that's been called "the fast food capital" in the USA; we have the most fast food restaurants per capital.

This surplus of easy-access food is a privilege .

Got (Healthier) Milk?

Another reason to spend a few more bucks on organic: Researchers from Washington State University found that while both organic and conventional whole milk have the same amount of fat, organic has a better balance of essential fatty acids, including 62% more mega-3s and 25% fewer omega-6s.  Limiting intake of the latter can help reduce the risk of a variety of chronic conditions like, cancer, cardiovascular disease, and autoimmune disorders.  "By switching current dairy consumption from conventional to organic, a fit woman will significantly improve the ratio of omega-3 to omega-6," says Charles Benbrook, Ph.D., lead author of the study.

Working out and learning!


Congratulations to Carolyn!! In her 1st 6 weeks she's getting the hang of it and lost 8.5 inches and 4 pounds.

60 inches lost??? WOW!


Congratulations to Peggy!! Still working hard and has lost 60 inches and 59 pounds!  Excellent work! 

10 pounds in 6 weeks!!


Congratulations to Pam! She lost 10 pounds and 11.5 inches in the 1st 6 weeks of training!  Keep up the excellent work! 

Exercise and arthritis

Two-thirds of those with arthritis are younger than 65.

Research conducted at Ohio State University shows that exercise can trigger physiological changes that decrease inflammation and lessen the impact of the condition.

Researchers say exercise stimulates anti-inflammatory effects over a 24-hour period, which highlights the need for regular, frequent workouts.

The Type of Protein You Eat Affects Calories Burned & Appetite

Have you ever felt lost in the supplement section of your local health food store when trying to determine what type of protein is best for after your resistance training workout? 

An article published in theAmerican Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that the protein content of a meal will influence your appetite, your satiety (fullness), and caloric expenditure.  All of which is why protein is very important in a weight loss diet.

Scientists found that Whey protein triggered greater post-meal caloric expenditure and fat use than soy or casein protein.

Pinpointing the higher cost of a healthy diet

Weight loss challenge

Weight Loss Challenge
Congratulations on losing 15 pounds and 8 total inches in 6 weeks!!!
Awesome work!

Weight Loss Challenge Winner

Weight Loss Challenge Winner!!!
Congratulations on losing 23 pounds and 15.5 total inches in 7 weeks!!!
Amazing work!

High Intensity Interval Training Burns Fat Fast

High-Intensity interval training - performing repetitions of a series of high-intensity exercise bouts followed by rest - builds up your fitness levels and DECREASES FAT faster than longer aerobic training.  Training at this higher intensity level can be done on a treadmill, stationary bike, rowing machine, elliptical or with no machine involved. You can increase your endurance, power and strength in a fraction of the time than the traditional aerobic workout. 
No two people are the same when it comes to levels of intensity.

Crunches Don't Cut Fat

I have come across clients or random exercisers who insist that the best way to carve a tight midsection is through endless repetitions of abdominal exercises.  Here's a study that may help those to understand that it takes more than crunches to get that six-pack.

Researchers from the department of kinesiology and health education at Southern Illinois University, Edwardsville, had one goal: to determine the effect, if any, of abdominal exercises on abdominal fat. Two groups of people were gathered for the study.

Runner's Knee and Faulty Biomechanics

“Runner’s knee” is a term that describes a painful and sometimes debilitating ailment of the knee present in a quarter of active people. Researchers identified several circumstances associated with the condition: weak hamstrings and quadriceps increased the probability of developing runner’s knee. Prevention programs should focus on increasing strength of the lower-extremity musculature along with proper mechanics.

Eating Before Exercise Promotes Fat Loss

Glycogen, otherwise known as sugar, within the muscles and liver decrease in the night as you sleep. Conventional wisdom suggests that exercising on an empty stomach would promote fat burning and weight loss.

A study from the University of Padua in Italy found the opposite to be true: physical activity after a light meal WORKED BEST best for losing body fat. Researchers studied fat metabolism in 8 males who ran on a treadmill at 65% of their maximum heart rate for 36 minutes on two different occasions - either without eating and after a light breakfast.

A Summer of Fun!

What's on your mind as summer approaches? Is it fun, sun, enjoying the beach and life itself? Or does your heart fill with dread as the thought of shorts, swimsuits and the beach -- add up to pure mental and emotional torture?

Unfortunately, if you are like most people, as the temperature starts to rise and the coats go back in the closet, fear and anxiety is triggered--all focused on the dreaded summer wardrobe and activities.

It doesn't have to be that way! Lets make today the day that you start the transformation of your body AND your mind!

The Power of Purple Produce

Recent research published in theAmerican Journal of Lifestyle Medicinesuggests that consuming purple and blue foods, such as purple cabbage, eggplant, raisins, Concord grapes and 100% grape juice, may help Americans get more of the nutrients they need and consume healthier diets (McGill et al 2011).
In this study, researchers examined the diets of more than 15,000 adults and children and found that in general, those who consumed purple and blue produce ate more fruit and had healthier diets compared to those who did not eat purple and blue produce.

Study: 42% Will Be Obese by 2030

Study: 42% Will Be Obese by 2030 -- News Review From Harvard Medical School
2012-05-15 - General Health

A new study says 42% of U.S. adults will be obese by 2030. Just over one-third are obese now. The new study says the rate of increase in obesity is slowing down. But even the smaller increases will add up. Also by 2030, about 11% of Americans will be severely obese, the study predicts. That's at least 100 pounds overweight. People who are severely obese have the greatest increased risk of heart disease, diabetes and other illnesses. The new research was presented at a health conference. The Associated Press wrote about it May 7.

Treadmill Running Burns More Calories Than Track Running

Running is one of the best ways to lose fat and improve fitness. Many people prefer running on a treadmill at home or in the gym because its more convenient than running on the track or at the park. 
A University of Wisconsin, Eau Claire study found that people burn more calories and consume more oxygen when they run on a treadmill at a 1% grade and a self-selected pace compared to when they run on the track. Treadmills force you to exercise at a specific pace, while you can slow down when you get tired on a track.

Weight Loss Challenge

Congratulations to Melissa of Romeoville, Illinois!!!  She lost 31 pounds in 12 weeks! Keep up the excellent work, girl!

Exercise Prevents Cancer

Exercise Prevents Cancer

Exercise is connected with a lower occurrence of colon cancer in men and women, and of breast cancer in women. In the November 2003 issue of Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, it has been reported that moderate to vigorous physical activity has a greater protective effect against cancer than lower intensity physical activity.  It seems that about 30–60 minutes of moderate to vigorous exercise per day is needed for risk reduction. In addition, physically active women have a 20%–40% reduction in relative risk for breast cancer compared with their inactive counterparts. 

Reebok Forced to Pay Millions in Refunds

Shoe and apparel company Reebok International Ltd. recently agreed to pay out $25 million in refunds to customers who bought its toning shoes. According to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), the company falsely advertised that its line of toning shoes would help consumers activate more muscle. Reebok’s various ad campaigns famously claimed its shoes could shape and tone the glutes, hamstrings and calf muscles more than regular walking shoes. When an FTC-commissioned study could not produce research to support those claims, charges were filed against the company.

Weight Training Improves Blood Sugar Control

Blood sugar control declines with age and is influenced by genetics, diet, and physical activity.  Muscle accounts for approximately 42% of total body mass, so it is an important issue for regulating blood sugar.  A study from Arizona State University focused on the effects of weight training intensity and volume on blood sugar control in adult men and women (average age about 30) with slightly elevated resting blood sugar levels (100-125 m/dL).

High intensity weight training controlled blood sugar better than low -intensity workouts.

Make Sure Your Gym Supports Your Goal

I recently came across a new "gym" franchise.  Being a fitness professional, I was pretty sure what to expect, weights, cardio equipment, showers. What I DIDN'T expect was a "no grunt" or no body-builder sign, a fish bowl full of tootsie rolls and members being served pizza.

If you surround yourself with the lifestyle you want, it will be the lifestyle you get. Your gym should not make it more difficult for you to lose weight by keeping tempting "foods" in fingers reach.

Should You Lose Weight before Resistance Training?

Strength training is an excellent way to increase your lean muscle mass and the good news is that this will help you reach your fat-loss goal even faster.  Always equate an increase in muscle mass to an increase in your body's fuel-burning engine. By lifting weights you will go from a four-cylinder to a six-cylinder engine. By increasing your muscle mass, the amount of calories you burn at rest each day will rise as larger muscles need more calories to be maintained.  And since muscle is not as bulky as fat, the size of your clothing will go down and your overall shape will become more scultped while our weight may remain stable.

Find Your Motivation

Why is it that January 1st the day when everyone seems to decide to begin being healthy, to lose weight, to get in shape? Where does this magical motivation come from?  One theory: it's a great time for "my fresh start," a new beginning. Why does that motivation drop off around April and how do we keep that from happening this year? My answer: find your motivation and keep it in sight!
Find your motivation in other places to keep it alive.  Like pictures in magazines of fitness models, pictures of people moving or dancing that make you want to get up and DO SOMETHING!

Growth Hormone Increases with Exercise

Growth Hormone is a vital hormone for those who want to lose weight.  Growth hormone enhances fat loss and helps control how your body uses protein, fat and carbohydrates when you are resting and during exercise.  So what does this mean to you? For optimal fat loss, exercise at a higher intensity, especially if you are older and obese.  Literature from the University of Virginia, found that it is with high intensity exercise that  growth hormone is released.  Growth hormone release is decreased four to seven times as people age and is lower in obese people than it is in lean people.   Also, if you eat before your workout make sure it is a meal that not high in fat.  Fatty meals consumed shortly before exercise reduce growth hormone release and decreases the benefits of exercise on fat burning and weight loss. 

Vibration Training Does Nothing for Weight Loss

Some vibration exercise equipment manufacturers claim that 10 minutes of "training" on a vibration platform is the same as doing one hour of cardio. This is not true according to research from Massey University in New Zealand's (Scandinavian Journal Medicine Science Sports).  No 10-minute vibration exercise program will promote much fat loss.  The effects of vibration training on your metabolism is less than walking or jogging.  So, if you are considering buying cardio equipment, then beware:  the claim that vibration training reduces body fat is ridiculous and fraudulent.

Sweating for Two

Being pregnant is no time to ditch the gym. Moms-to-be who frequently worked out doing moderately hard workouts ( a 5 to 7 on a scale of 1 to 10) in the first trimester had a lower risk of preterm birth, reports a new study.  Their bodies may replenish more nutrients to their placentas after they exercise, says study author Anne Marie Jukic, Ph.D., a researcher at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences. Talk to your doctor about exercising while you're expecting she says: If you have certain risk factors or didn't exercise regularly beforehand, you may need to take special precautions.

How Dedicated Are You to Your Training-A Quiz

How Dedicated Are You to Your Training.

How many of these describe YOU?

1. If, on a job application, under "Previous Employment," you've listed weight training and under "Hobbies" you've listed your actual previous employment.

2. If you've ever made yourself so sore that it either takes you a full minute to sit on the toilet or you have to fall down onto it.

3. If you've been banned from an all-you-can-eat buffet restaurant, especially on a leg day.

4. If you've ever broken a bone and tried to "train around it.

Does Organic Mean Healthy?

In the fitness industry we generally promote organic food, but some people don't understand what the "organic" label really means. According to several surveys, people reportedly associate organic products with overall health and higher nutrient value. 

What the label DOES mean:The guidelines for organic products set out by the USDA prohibit genetic engineering, pesticides, ionizing radiation and sewage sludge. Animals can't be infused with antibiotics and hormones, and have to be allowed access to the great outdoors.

Coffee Reduces Inflammation and Increases "Good Cholesterol"

Coffee is looking more and more like the healthier choice. It contains essential minerals and antioxidants, which promotes metabolic health and is high in caffeine, which boosts energy levels.

A German study led by Kerstin Kempf showed that coffee drinking decreased markers of inflammation and increased HDL (the good cholesterol) both of which reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease. Regular coffee drinkers gave up coffee for one month, drank four cups per day during the second month, and eight cups per day during the third month.

National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month

September is National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month

While data shows that obesity numbers continue to rise, perhaps the most frightening numbers related to obesity are those among the children in the United States. More than 23 million children over the age of 2 are either obese or overweight. This month, organizations across the country are joining forces to increase awareness about this alarming trend of childhood obesity. The fitness industry can play an important and active role in educating the public a

Make Workouts and Healthy Eating Easier

What is the best way to make workouts and healthy eating easier?
Focus on why you workout. What is the prize you aim to achieve? When you're tempted to splurge at a restaurant, envision that part of your body that you dislike and how much you want that to change.  Then think about how great you felt when you lost those last few pounds or inches.  

Focus on why you workout BEFORE you order something to eat.  Is the pasta or that plate of french fries worth it?  Be conscious of why you are eating.

Weight Training Burns Fat

It's a common mistaken belief that cardio should be done primarily if you have a lot of weight to lose, maybe even before starting a weight-training program. Actually, the opposite is true, weight training always accelerates fat loss. Muscle is a metabolically active tissue that burns fat. Lifting weights builds muscle and is a necessary part of every fat loss program. This doesn't mean that you need to lift like an Olympic champion. It simply means that weight training is necessary when your goal is fat loss.

Burning Fat: Myths and Facts

A popular myth is that there is a specific range of heart rates in which you must exercise to burn fat. Even many cardio machines display a “fat-burning zone” on their panels, encouraging people to exercise in a specific heart rate range. Have you ever wondered if you really have to exercise in a specific heart rate zone to lose fat? And what happens if you venture out of that zone? Jason R. Karp, PhD, a nationally recognized speaker, writer and exercise physiologist who coaches recreational runners to Olympic hopefuls through his company, RunCoachJason.

Flatten Tummy With These Tricks

Does your stomach puff out somewhat, despite strict dieting and exercise? Check your standing posture. Stand straight. See if you can keep a book balanced on your head while walking. How do you sit at work? At home at the computer? While watching TV? Don't slump in your chair. Slouching or slumping will accentuate tummy fat. Sit straight and you'll look trimmer.

Good sitting and standing posture will strengthen lower back muscles, and stronger lower back muscles will make you more efficient at performing ab-targeting exercises as well as fat-blasters like deadlifts and barbell squats.

Break Your Plateau

Be consistent! Have you been missing workout sessions?  Not getting results?  Perhaps you haven't been training for that long, which means your body may not have had enough time to learn how to be efficient when workouts are skipped.  This physiological learning process will be expedited once you start training with more intensity and consistency.  Make sure that your workouts are progressively challenging or hire a personal trainer to do the exercise programming work for you.  

Exercise Trumps DNA

If your mom is overweight, your own figure isn't doomed.  A study in PLoS Medicine found that doing any amount of exercise is linked to a 40% reduction in the genetic risk of being overweight - and people with the most obesity-related DNA sequences saw the biggest benefits from exercise. No excuses now.

Exercise and Menopause

Menopause and how it effects exercise is a common topic.  The following is from an article that may help answer some of those questions:

If you're in the middle of menopause, you may be experiencing challenges such as weight gain, hot flashes or fatigue. Ugh! The good news is that exercise can make a positive difference.

Although there is much more to learn about exercise research and menopause, what we do know supports physical activity as a means to help manage menopausal consequences and protect against heart disease and osteoporosis, says Jan Schroeder, PhD, an associate professor of kinesiology at California State University, Long Beach.

Work Intervals

Do you spend all day inside an office, sitting at a desk?  It's time to break out of this sustained inertia; with intervals.

Replace snack intervals with workout intervals.  Step out onto the stairs during breaks or just prior to lunch, and perform a handful of interval climbs (taking 2-3 steps at a time) up a few flights of stairs.  Walk back down and repeat.  Put spunk into your movement when going up the steps. 

Start with a few intervals, but gradually build up to 6-8 intervals per break.

Muscle Weight Vs. Fat Weight

You have probably heard the saying, "Muscle weighs more than fat." While a pound of muscle weighs the same as a pound of fat, the volume is different. Muscle is denser than fat.

A pound of fat will take up about 18% more space then a pound of muscle. If squeezed into cans, you would need a can 18% bigger to contain the pound of fat.

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In addition to volume differences, keep in mind that muscle wraps tightly to the skeletal structure whereas fat hangs loosely.  So, all total, you can find two people of the same build and height who weigh the same appearing vastly different based on their lean body mass (LBM).

Are You Ready to Exercise?

Are You Ready to Exercise?

Studies have shown that seven out of 10 people who start an exercise program drop out within a few months. One problem is that most people jump into exercise without doing any planning up front.

Are you ready to make exercise part of your lifestyle? Sherri McMillan, MSc, discovered that people who stick with exercise buy into the following four “Laws of Success.”

1.The Law of Self-Efficacy: “If I think I can or I think I can’t, I’m probably right.”
If you immediately start questioning whether you can make the changes required to live an active lifestyle, you are going to have a difficult time.

To Best Fight Cancer, New Guidelines Urge Exercise

To Best Fight Cancer, New Guidelines Urge Exercise

People undergoing cancertreatment traditionally have been told to rest as much as possible and avoid exertion, to save all their strength to battle the dreaded disease.
But a growing number of physicians and researchers now say that people who remain physically active as best they can during treatment are more likely to beat cancer.

The positive evidence for exercise during and after cancer treatment has piled so high that an American College of Sports Medicine panel is revising the group's national guidelines regarding exercise recommended for cancer survivors.

Even a little extra weight can be detrimental

Even a little extra weight can be detrimental
An extensive, 10-year study of white nonsmokers shows that every 5-point increase in BMI translated to a 31% higher chance of dying.

Doctors and public health officials have been admonishing us for years that it's unhealthful to carry around extra pounds. A new study quantifies just how much that additional weight increases one's risk of death and finds that being even a few pounds overweight makes a measurable difference.

Researchers analyzed the body mass index, or BMI, of 570,000 white men and women who had never smoked and followed them for an average of 10 years.

Holiday Weight Management Strategies

Holiday Weight Management Strategies
The holiday season brings about many emotions and actually can be a time for heightened stress. The pressure to please, managing schedule arrangements, and travel are all too demanding; but seeing loved ones enjoying festive environments and letting loose on the buffet, add back in the reason people enjoy the holidays. Following the approximate month and a half between Thanksgiving and the Bowl games it becomes time to pay back for all the caloric exploits.

Stay Lean During the Holidays

It’s the time of the year when people on average gain 5 to 10 pounds. The next two months will bring ample opportunity for you to indulge, to enjoy and to expand your waistline. Of course the choice is yours.  Most will wait until January to begin a new training program, but there are a few who will hedge their eating and increase cardio to make up for the holiday food surplus.
Now is the time to begin re-establishing your fitness program so that by the time January 1st rolls around, you will already be in good shape.