5 MINUTE FAT BLASTING WORKOUT

Here are the moves:
1. Single-Leg Balance and Touch
2. Alternating Lateral Lunge
3. Alternating Dumbbell Raise
4. Reverse Dumbbell Lunge with Curl
5. Side-to-Side Hops

TAKE 5-MINUTES FOR A HEALTHIER YOU!

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WHY CAN’T I LOSE WEIGHT?

THIS COULD BE THE REASON!

EXERCISE BLOCK

SERIOUSLY, I KNOW YOU’RE REALLY TRYING WITH CUTTING BACK ON CALORIES, REDUCING FAT INTAKE, AND EXERCISING MORE.  BUT YOU MAY BE DEFEATING THE PURPOSE BY MAKING A FEW COMMON MISTAKES – SOME INGRAINED HABITS THAT ARE DIFFICULT TO BREAK.  IF YOU FIND ONE OR MORE OF THESE FITS YOUR LIFESTYLE, FOCUS ON OVERCOMING THEM AS YOUR NEW YEARS RESOLUTION AND YOU SHOULD SEE A SLOW (1/2 TO 1# PER WEEK) WEIGHT LOSS.

1. You “Fall off the Wagon” with one small slip and  decide to binge the rest of the day!

CAKE

Sometimes this happens at work because there are loads of goodies around the water cooler or the staff is celebrating a birthday.  Sometimes it’s on the weekend and there is a football party where everyone brings something loaded with fat! Or you just have a craving.  Then after you have had that one taste, you say to yourself, well, I’ve blown it for the day so I’ll have a little more…This might only happen once a week but it can sabotage the rest of your weekly efforts quickly. You haven’t blown your diet by having a portion-controlled “treat” occasionally,  just don’t guilt yourself into eating more!

2. You Drink Your Calories

eggnog

We just went through the Blizzard of 2014 in Lake View, NY!  We shoveled several hours for days on end.  We cross-country skied at least an hour every day.  We ate healthy, home-cooked meals.  My husband stepped on the scale and found he had gained a few pounds!  I could argue that he built muscle from all the work he did, but more likely it was from the calories consumed from all the cappuccinos he drank throughout the day.  Granted we had 30 below wind chills but 3 or 4 cappuccinos a day at 300 calories a piece (900-1200 calories) is enough to gain 1-2 pounds a week!  Think about what you’re drinking!

3. You Don’t Eat Enough Protein

Adequate protein intake is especially important if you are cutting calories to keep your muscle while you lose fat.  The RDA for protein is about .4 grams per pound of body weight (ex: 150 lb x .4 g/lb = 60 gram) . You may want to add 10-20 grams and cut your calories from fat first, then carbs (since you need carbs for energy).

4. You Skip Breakfast

When you skip breakfast your metabolism slows down so that when you do eat, you don’t burn those foods off as efficiently.  Your slower metabolism also leads to a sluggish day where you have little energy for that workout you really need so you may do it with less enthusiasm and reap less of a reward.

5. You make excuses why you simply cannot work out

Danskin Toning Band (2) (570x428)

There are so many excuses and I have made them myself:  there isn’t enough time in the day; it’s too cold, rainy, icy outside; I don’t want to go back out and drive to the gym….The key is to make sure to do something everyday (not just walking around the block as above!).  It can be something different every day and it must be at a time that works for you that day.  For example, I might grab a quick lunch and take a walk on my lunch break because I have a meeting after dinner and know I won’t be able to do my usual routine.  I might use the elliptical inside during the blizzard because there truly is life threatening wind chills outside.  I might pack my toning band since I’m traveling and won’t have any weights to work out with.

THE LIFESTYLE CHOICES YOU MAKE EACH DAY WILL MAKE OR BREAK YOUR WEIGHT CONTROL EFFORTS SO CHOOSE WISELY!

ADAPTED FORM THE BEAUTY AND FITNESS BLOG

HOLIDAY ROUNDS WITHOUT GAINING THE POUNDS!

Healthy Holiday Eating

Food is everywhere during the holiday season, making it tough to stick to your healthful eating and exercise habits. However, with a little attention, you can make it through the holidays without losing track of your healthy lifestyle.

Is it true that the average person gains 5 pounds between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day?
People often do gain weight during the holidays, but how much weight? In 2000, a study of 195 adults showed an average holiday weight gain of between .75 pounds (lb) and 1 lb. However, 14% of those studied gained 5 lb or more. In this study, those who were overweight or obese gained more holiday pounds than those who were normal weight. According to the study, while most people gain less than 1 lb during the holidays, the holiday weight gain is one reason that your weight creeps up from year to year.

Woman Standing on Scale

What can I do to prevent gaining weight over the holidays?
Are you dreading the holiday season because you think you will gain back all of the weight you have lost in the last 6 months? The best advice is to change your mind-set. Do not expect to lose weight between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day. Instead, focus on not gaining weight. For success, keep a regular exercise pattern and healthy diet during this time. After all, the fine food of the holiday is one of the pleasures of the season.

Allow yourself to splurge on foods that make your holiday season meaningful. Enjoy your favorites in small amounts. Try to cut back in other ways, and keep your exercise schedule on track.

What can I do to stay active when I am traveling and cannot get to my gym?
Exercising during the hectic and sometimes stressful holiday season can help you maintain your weight and sanity. If you are a true “gym rat,” most gyms will allow you to visit as a guest, although sometimes at a hefty fee! Walking, running, or stair-climbing are easy when you are traveling—you can do these activities almost anywhere. For resistance training, check your sporting goods store or online for rubber resistance bands (They are only about $10 and work really well.  I also posted several tips for quick work outs you can do anywhere – look for them!). They slip easily into a travel bag and are lightweight—use them to strengthen and tone almost any body part.

Danskin Toning Band (2) (570x428)

You may need to adjust your expectations for holiday exercising. Try to stay flexible. Know that you might miss out on some workouts. Sneak in exercise whenever you can by taking a walk after a large meal, for example. Make sure to get back to your regular exercise routine when you return home.

How can I stay on track and not overeat at holiday functions?
You can keep your calorie intake under control in many ways. Try these tips and see which ones work best for you:

  • Survey the entire table before you take any food. Decide what foods are worth eating and which you can ignore, and then stick to that decision. Why waste calories on foods that do not bring you pleasure?
  • Eat a snack before you leave home. If you arrive at a party starving, you are more likely to eat too much.
  • Eat your calories instead of drinking them. Stick to lower calorie or calorie-free drinks (diet sodas, water, lite beer, or a wine spritzer), instead of punches, eggnog, and mixed drinks that can have up to 500 calories/cup.
  • Sip a large glass of water between every alcoholic drink, nonalcoholic punch, or eggnog. This will help keep you hydrated, and you will drink fewer calories by the end of the night.

Woman Drinking Glass of Water

  • When you are hosting, make sure the menu includes lower-calorie foods, such as fruits, vegetables, and lean meats. When you are a guest, bring along a lower-calorie dish to share.
grinch kabobs

GRINCH KABOBS

GRINCH KABOBS:

Layer mini marshmallow, strawberry, banana slice, and a grape on a small stick and you get Grinch Kabobs!

  • Try not to hang out near the food. Find a comfortable spot across the room, and focus on people instead of eating.
  • Watch your portion sizes. Do not cover your plate completely with food. When it comes to holiday sweets and alcoholic beverages, less is better.
  • Drop out of the “clean plate club.” Leave a few bites behind every time you eat, especially if you are eating something you do not really care for.
  • Enjoy your favorite holiday treats, but take a small portion, eat slowly, and savor the taste and texture of the wonderful foods of the season.
  • Visit these Web sites for free reduced-calorie and reduced-fat recipes:

12 QUICK HOLIDAY NUTRITION TIPS!

CELEBRATE THE HOLIDAYS A LITTLE HEALTHIER AND AVOID THE UP TO 15 POUND WEIGHT GAIN!

  • Focus on weight management rather than weight loss.

Standing on Scale

  • Plan time for exercise. Exercise helps relieve holiday stress and prevent weight gain.

FLAT ABS 5

  • Do not skip meals. Skipping breakfast or lunch before a big holiday dinner actually may cause you to overeat.
  • If you know that you will not find any healthy choices, offer to bring something along, such as a salad, vegetable dish, chicken, or fish.

Fresh vegetables falling

  • Pace yourself and become more aware of what you are eating and drinking. Eat until you are satisfied, not stuffed.
  • Select small portions. This will allow you to enjoy all the different foods offered, while still controlling your calorie intake.
  • If you drink, select lite wines and beers, rather than mixed drinks. Alcohol is high in calories.  Use diet mixers if available.
  • Stand away from buffet tables and food trays to avoid the urge to nibble constantly. My husband’s problem!
  • Talk more, eat less. Make the holiday season about enjoying company, rather than all about the food.
  • Fill your plate with a rainbow of colors. Choose different varieties of fruits and vegetables often.

vegetables

  • Learn to say “no” politely. You can say: “No thank you. I have had enough. Everything was delicious.” This works even with someone who will not take “no” for an answer.
  • If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again!

YOGA WORKOUT: LIKE GOING TO CHURCH

MY YOGA WORKOUTS WERE STARTING TO MAKE ME FEEL LIKE I WAS IN CHURCH!  SOMEWHAT MEDITATIVE BUT STANDING, KNEELING, SITTING, GETTING ON MY BELLY.  Maybe that is all part of the workout but it just didn’t seem to flow for me.  This prompted me to create my own workout that flows from Mountain Pose all the way down to the Child’s Pose.  The whole routine takes about 45-60 minutes depending upon how many reps you choose to do (I usually do 7-10) or how long you stay in your static stretches (I usually stay static for 7-10 breaths).

Start with the Sun Salutation:

Reverse to Mountain pose.  You can do more than once as a nice warm-up.

Next:

Tree Pose 7-10 breaths then straight into next exercise each 7-10 reps. Repeat on other leg.

Triangle Pose

Triangle Pose

Repeat on other side.  Do more than once if desired.

For Rising Lunge, rise from one bent knee and raise arms. Lower back down and lower arms.  Repeat on other leg.

Chair with twist

Chair with twist

Alternate stretching to each side 7-10 times.

Crow Pose

Crow Pose

Can do more than once!

Half Push-Up

Half Push-Up

On hands and knees with hands slightly in front of your shoulders, bend and lower your elbows to almost touch the floor.  Then rise back up. 7-10 reps.

Begin in full push-up position, palms aligned with shoulders.  Place left knee on floor near shoulder and left heal by right hip.  Lower down to forearms.  7-10 reps.  Repeat on other leg.

Tuck and Extend

Tuck and Extend

Bring knee to chest and extend for 7-10 reps.  Repeat on other leg.

Seated Twist

Seated Twist

Repeat stretch on other side. Can do more than once!

Bridge Pose

Bridge Pose

Do several times.

Leg Pull Front

Leg Pull Front

7-10 reps and repeat on other leg.

Child's Pose

Child’s Pose

If you are not familiar with any of these poses and need explanation it is easy to “google” it (or send me a note!) – I probably don’t know or do all the poses perfectly, but at least I’m trying and it works for me.  I’ve seen some of the exercises done with light weights (1-3#) in hand as your strength improves but the beauty of this type of workout is that you need no special equipment.  You just use your body and its own resistance!  Plus, I don’t really count.  I just do what feels right and push a little bit to build strength.

WORK OUT AND ENJOY! No more sit, stand, kneel, stand!

7 AMAZING USES OF COCONUT OIL

COCONUT OIL 2

While Dietitians, myself included, advise against coconut oil in the diet, it may be surprising for you to realize that the naturally occurring saturated fat in coconut oil actually has some amazing health benefits. Try a drop of it to reap all offered myriad benefits. Plus, coconut oil is completely natural, affordable and readily available. Here are seven uses of this oil.

1. Skin care

Do you want to look like you have just come back from an hour of yoga? Is your wish to keep your skin youthful and healthy looking for a long time?  Coconut oil does wonders as a moisturizer for all the types of skin, especially dry and aging ones, leaving you refreshed and looking widely awake without requiring a headstand. The thing is that fat in the oil helps reduce the appearance of wrinkles without any irritation. Coconut oil can help with skin problems such as dermatitis, eczema, psoriasis and other skin issues. In fact, the coconut oil is frequently used in brandy skin care products.

2. Stress relief

Relieve mental fatigue by applying coconut oil to your head in a motion of circular massaging. The natural aroma of this oil is extremely soothing thus helping to lower your stress level and you will never feel exhausted even after long office day, nonstop screaming kids and your dog leaving a little present on the vintage bedspread. You will be provided with an immediate energy source.

COCONUT OIL 1

3. Digestion

The medium chained triglycerides are saturated fats in coconut oil, which have anti inflectional properties that help control bacteria and fungi causing indigestion and other gastro-intestinal system related problems even in irritable bowel syndrome. The fat in coconut oil also helps in the absorption of minerals, vitamins and amino acids, making you even healthier all around.  Moderation is key.

4. Fitness

Coconut oil has been proven to improve thyroid function, boost your metabolism and increase energy levels, all of that help decrease the unwanted fat and increase muscles. That is why coconut oil is gaining popularity among fitness buffs.

5. Energy

Your body sends medium chained fatty acids also called medium chained triglycerides directly to your liver to use as energy. It makes coconut oil a powerful source of instant energy to the body, a function, which is usually served in the diet by simple carbohydrates.

6. Healing

When applied on cuts and scrapes, coconut oil creates a thin chemical layer that protects the wound from bacteria, outside dust and virus. Coconut oil speeds up the healing process of injuries by repairing damaged tissues. In addition, it smells a lot better than anything from the pharmacy.

COCONUT OIL

7. Hair care

Why spend $ 25 on hair conditioners if you can get even more benefit for even less price. Coconut oil is one of the most nutritious products you can use to treat your hair. Massage a little of the oil onto your scalp and presto no more dandruff. Since coconut oil provides the essential proteins required for nourishing damaged hair, it is used in a ton of hair products anyway. So cut to the chase and skip all those unnecessary chemicals.  Spray a little on your hairbrush and transform your dried out, frizzy  hair into a lustrous shine!

SAVE MONEY AND USE COCONUT OIL IN YOUR OVERALL HEALTH CARE!

OATMEAL: YOUR SPA AT HOME!

oatmeal

Scrambled oats is one of the easy pack foods that may taste great on a cold morning while going to work. However, it makes you think. Instead of just using oatmeal for an ordinary breakfast or even a great breakfast for that matter, what if people use oatmeal to solve the impact of health and household problems? CREATE YOU OWN SPA AT HOME USING OATMEAL!

General skin problems
You can make oatmeal scrub or oatmeal soap and, of course, pricey commercial oatmeal skin products are also available for tackling other skin problems. An option is to grind two tbsp of oatmeal into a powder in a blender. Then add a tsp of baking soda and enough water to make a thick paste. Spread on a clean, dry face and rinse after 15 minutes. It is recommended doing a patch test first, as your skin can be sensitive to the baking soda.

Oatmeal can also be used as a remedy for Acne
If you are a teenager addled with acne or a menopausal woman with adult acne, make your breakfast oatmeal, let it cool and then spread it over your problem skin. Wait for about 10 minutes and then rinse. This old remedy has some sound logic, according to the research foundation. Oatmeal can remove and absorb oil and bacteria from skin and exfoliate dead skin cells, all of that can fight acne. Tea tree oil and honey are helpful additives too.

Poison ivy or chicken pox
If poison ivy, chicken pox or even sunburn makes you itch like crazy, try an oatmeal bath. Grind oats or oat flour into a fine powder, and then pour it into cheesecloth or an old but clean piece of pantyhose. Tie it around the bathtub faucet and draw a tepid bath and periodically squeeze the water into the tub or rub the pouch straight on the itchy skin. I don’t recommend putting the oatmeal directly into the bathwater as I have then had to work on a clogged drain at the end of the bath.

OATMEAL 1

Exhaustion
Oatmeal is not just good for ailing skin. You can make a rejuvenating and soothing facial mask right in your own kitchen. One digest book offers the following recipe: Blend a half cup hot water with 1/3 cup oatmeal for three or four minutes, then add two tbsp each plain honey and yogurt, plus an egg white. Spread thinly on your face, then relax for 15 minutes and rinse with warm water.

Stress
You do not need to get poison ivy to have an excuse for an oatmeal bath. Experts suggest adding 1 cup of milk, 2 cups of oats and 1 tbsp of honey to the bath to moisturize the skin and relax the body. You can also use scented oils in a ground oatmeal pouch, as described in the chicken pox paragraph above.  Again, I recommend the pouch for the oatmeal!

OATMEAL 2

Diet helper
Replace all flour with homemade oat flour
by grinding oats in a processor for baking pancakes, cookies and quick breads. You get two times more fiber so you feel fuller with fewer calories.

Exercise booster
Eat some oatmeal pancakes for a better training. Do not believe it? Researchers have found that oatmeal boosts endurance if eaten about two hours before workout. Oats trigger your body to burn fat more quickly for fueling muscles.

TREAT YOURSELF TO A DAY AT THE SPA AT HOME!

OATMEAL 3

ALSO LOOK FOR MY UPCOMING BLOG ABOUT OATMEAL BEING SAFE IN A GLUTEN FREE DIET! 

5 MYTHS ABOUT GETTING FLAT ABS

FLAT ABS

We all want to have that sexy flat stomach and we are willing to work for it. The problem is that lots of people are wasting their efforts simply because they have a wrong information about getting flat stomach. Here’s 5 myths you should not believe about it:

Extra Crunches for A Flat Stomach

Extra crunches don’t lead to tight abs. The truth is that everyone has ab muscles. They just stay hidden underneath a thick layer of fat on the stomach. If you want a toned look, you need to focus on burning the layer of fat that may be covering your belly. The key is to not obsess about crunches, but focus on burning fat.

FLAT ABS 5

Starve Yourself to get A Flat Stomach

At times, you may think that starving yourself is the only way to lose weight and get a flat stomach. Starving yourself is not only ineffective, but also dangerous for your overall well-being. You may think that severe calorie reduction may lead to better and quick results. It is important to understand that the human body is complex. As a result, starving yourself may disrupt your body’s metabolism. This will only slow down results. It is important not to starve yourself, but eat wholesome meals after short intervals of time. Eating less may be the key to weight loss, but starving yourself is not.

Diet Pills and Supplements

Well, diet pills and supplements can be quite tempting. There are many pills and supplements which claim to give you a flat stomach. However, you should not fall for it as there is no ‘magic pill’ available in the market. In fact, diet pills and supplements are more likely to hurt your pocket than showing any results on your belly. Instead of popping a pill, it will be better to burn calories with intense exercise.

FLAT ABS 3

Packaged Diet Products for Better Results

There are many packaged foods which are considered to be a solution for weight loss. Usually, such packaged products are packed with refined sugar. There are also some artificial ingredients which your body does not really need. Some ingredients in packaged foods don’t lead to weight loss. In fact, they may have a high-calorie content. You should try to avoid packaged foods and stick to a nutritious diet. Whole grains can be a good choice.

FLAT ABS 2

Avoid Carbohydrates for Tight Abs

Many notions and misconceptions make you think that carbohydrates are bad for your health. However, if you are one of the people who believe this, it is quite unfortunate. You can eat carbohydrates while slimming down. As mentioned earlier, it is important to avoid packaged foods and stick with oatmeal, whole grains and brown rice. In other words, you should stick with wholesome carbs rather than giving up all carbohydrates.

FLAT ABS 4

I HAVE MENTIONED THIS BEFORE, BUT I THINK IT IS WORTH REPEATING:  You and your body are an individual shaped by your diet, your environment and your genetics.  I am lucky to have been brought up with a healthy diet (with 9 in the household we couldn’t afford anything fancy); my parents were active and encouraged daily physical activity; my genes are of the tall thin variety.

EAT HEALTHY, INCLUDING WHOLE GRAINS, (LIMIT SUGAR, FAT AND ALCOHOL) AND BE PHYSICALLY ACTIVE.  SOME STOMACH CRUNCHES, PILATES OR OTHER CORE WORKOUTS WILL HELP SCULPT A BEAUTIFUL YOU!  IF YOU ARE DOING ALL THESE THINGS, THEN YOU CAN BE HAPPY WITH THE HEALTHY “YOU” YOU SEE IN THE MIRROR!!

MEAT & POTATOES MAN LOWERS CHOLESTEROL! CELEBRATE WORLD HEART DAY!

WE WERE ABLE TO LOWER MY HUSBAND’S TOTAL CHOLESTEROL BY 20 POINTS OVER THE PAST YEAR AND HE IS A MEAT AND POTATO MAN! Yes, we ate more fish (grilled and cooked with a variety of spices), less chuck roast (20gm fat/serving) changed to tender chuck (3gm fat/serving), more beans and lentils added to ground beef dishes and using 96% lean beef (like meatballs, meatloaf, tacos, chili), haven’t seen a hot dog, bologna, salami, bacon or sausage – but like turkey sausage!  Milk products are all low fat and fresh fruits and vegetables are always “half the plate”! Whole grains are staples. A stick of butter lasts for months.  Sweet treats are not in the house unless we’re having company but I still try for something as healthy as possible.  I don’t use artificial or “lite” products but use just a little of the real thing – seems to work!  I don’t like the idea of cholesterol lowering medicines so give this a shot!  AND DON’T FORGET TO EXERCISE DAILY! 

JUST AN ASIDE:  My Mom had a cholesterol level over 300 for much of her adult life, yet when she was developing dementia and they checked her arteries for plaque, the doctors said “she has the arteries of a 16 year old!”  Not to make light of cholesterol but your gene pool, diet, environment and life style have a strong influence on developing heart disease!  Mom died at the age of 88 and four days of old age!

MEATLOAF, MEATBALL, HAMBURGER PATTY RECIPE:

1 pound 96% lean ground beef
1 (15oz) can organic lentil beans
1 cup cooked quinoa (1/2 cup dry cooked according to directions)
1 pkt (1.25oz) Onion Recipe Soup & Dip Mix

In large bowl combine ingredients. Refrigerate about an hour to allow quinoa to absorb some of the liquid. Then shape into loaf, balls or patties. Cook loaf in 350 degree oven for about 40-45 minutes. Cook balls in 350 degree oven about 20 minutes. Grill patties about 10 minutes a side.

*Sometimes I add worcestershire sauce and/or ketchup for a little different flavor.

FOR TACOS BROWN 96% LEAN GROUND BEEF WITH A CAN OF LENTILS AND ADD YOU FAVORITE TACO SEASONING – NO ONE WILL KNOW THE LENTILS ARE THERE!

 

Choose

Once in a While

Avoid

Meat, poultry, fish, and shellfish—up to 6 ounces/day
  • Lean meats without visible fat
  • Poultry with skin removed
  • All fish
  • Shellfish
  • Fatty meats
  • Duck
  • Liver
  • Sausage
  • Bacon
  • Processed meats
Dairy products—two or more servings/day; three or four servings for pregnant or breastfeeding women
  • Skim and 1% milk
  • Low-fat yogurt
  • Low-fat cheese
  • Low-fat cottage cheese
  • 2%-fat dairy products
  • Part-skim cheese
  • Imitation hard cheese
  • Lite cheese
  • Whole milk
  • Cream
  • Half-and-half
  • Whipped cream
  • Whole-milk dairy products
Eggs
  • Egg whites
  • Cholesterol-free egg substitutes
  • Egg yolks—three or four/week
Fats and oils—5-8 teaspoons/day
  • Olive oil for cooking
  • Canola oil for baking
  • Spreads that are trans-fat free
  • Most nuts
  • Seeds
  • Avocados
  • Olives
  • Peanut oil
  • Trans fat
  • Saturated fat
  • Lard
  • Bacon fat
  • Coconut
  • Palm and palm kernel oil
Breads, cereals, pasta, rice, dried peas, and whole beans—six or more servings/day
  • High-fiber grains—3 grams of fiber or more/serving, including:
  • Cereals
  • Breads
  • Pastas
  • Crackers
  • Rice
  • Starches
  • Commercial baked goods, including:
  • Waffles
  • Muffins
  • Quick breads
  • Pancakes
  • Danish
  • Croissants
  • Doughnuts
  • Products made with saturated/trans fat oils
Fruits and vegetables—five or more servings/day
  • Low-sodium fruits and vegetables:
  • Fresh
  • Frozen
  • Dried
  • Canned
  • Canned fruit in heavy syrup
  • Coconut
  • Creamed vegetables
  • Vegetables with sauces
Sweets and treats—limit to one or fewer servings/day
  • Sorbet
  • Ices
  • Low-fat yogurt
  • Hard candy
  • Gummy candy
  • Gingersnaps
  • Plain popcorn
  • Pretzels
  • 100% fruit juice
  • Tea
  • Coffee
  • Homemade cakes, cookies, and pies
  • Ice milk
  • Pudding
  • Commercial granola bars
  • Ice cream
  • Chocolate
  • Commercial chips and snacks
  • Store-bought desserts
  • Candy

BLAST 500+ CALORIES DOING YOGA

I LOVE THIS WORKOUT AND DO IT FOR ABOUT AN HOUR EACH DAY – POSES ARE “DOABLE” This calorie-zapping yoga routine will melt away pounds while sculpting every major muscle in your body. Remember cutting out or burning 500 calories a day leads to 1 pound of weight loss each week!!  It is also nice that this workout can really be done anywhere so if you’re traveling for work or vacationing and stuck inside, throw a towel on the carpet and work it!

Adapted from Alyssa Shaffer; Photographs by Dorit Thies

Lose Weight with Yoga

How much can yoga really do for you? A lot. This is a  total-body routine that is a mind and body booster. The workout is built around the classic sun salutation series, with challenging core and upper- and lower-body variations added for a fat-blasting twist. Do the entire sequence four to five times through (keep at it for an hour) and you’ll burn off the calorie equivalent of a banana split while sculpting your arms, chest, abs, butt, and legs and improving your flexibility.

YOGA 500-1

How it works: Start and finish each circuit with a sun salutation, a four-move series done forward and in reverse that is the foundation of the workout. Every time you do this main series, you’ll add a challenging variation to keep your heart rate elevated while toning your whole body. Each sun salutation, plus all of our variations, should take about 15 minutes.

Sun Salutation (Main Series)

1.

YOGA 500MOUNTAIN

Mountain Pose Stand tall with feet together, shoulders relaxed, weight evenly distributed through your soles, arms at sides. Take a deep breath and raise your hands overhead, palms facing each other with arms straight. Reach up toward the sky with your fingertips.

2.

YOGA 500 standingforward

Standing Forward Bend From mountain pose, exhale, sweeping your arms sideways as you swan dive forward, bending at hips, until fingertips or palms reach the ground on either side of your feet; keep fingers in line with toes. (If your hamstrings or back are tight, bend your knees.) Think about drawing the crown of your head down and the backs of your legs toward the sky.

3.

YOGA 500 forwardflatback

Forward Bend, Flat Back From standing forward bend, keep feet together and place fingertips on ground near outer edges of your feet, in line with your toes. Inhale as you lift your torso halfway up, keeping your back flat. Look forward, reaching your tailbone away from the top of your head. If you feel tight in your hamstrings or lower back or can’t reach the ground, bend your knees and place your hands on your shins.

4.

YOGA 500- DOWNWARD DOG

Downward Dog From forward bend with flat back, bend knees, place palms flat on ground shoulder-width apart, and jump both feet back, landing softly in downward dog. Spread your fingers and make sure your feet are hip-width apart and parallel. Reach your tailbone up and away from hands and your heels toward the ground.

5. Reverse this series back to the start Bring your legs toward your hands and straighten legs, returning to forward bend with flat back. Drop your head and return to standing forward bend, then to mountain pose, sweeping arms out to the sides and overhead to complete the main series.

Build Your Workout Each time you complete the sunsalutation, add on a new challenge series until you’ve incorporated all the moves. Each full sequence will take about 15 minutes; do 4 to 5 times.

Add On: Half Push-Up Series

Part 1.

YOGA 500 tabletoptohalf

Tabletop to Half Push-Up From downward dog, get on all fours, aligning your knees on the ground under hips and your hands directly below shoulders (not shown). Keeping abs pulled in and head aligned with your spine, bend elbows about 45 degrees in a half push-up, arms close to sides. Straighten arms; repeat push-up 4 to 6 times.

Part 2.

YOGA 500 extendedchilds

Extended Child’s Pose From half push-up, straighten arms and bring your tailbone back toward heels, resting the backs of your thighs on your calves. Hold for a few breaths, feeling the stretch through your back and shoulders. Return from child’s pose to tabletop, then back to downward dog; do the remainder of the main series in reverse.

Add On: Lunge Jump

Do the half push-up series, returning to downward dog. Step left leg forward between hands, bending left knee 90 degrees while keeping right leg straight. Hold for a few breaths, then switch legs, jumping left leg back and right leg forward. Repeat 4 to 6 times. Return to downward dog and reverse the main series back to the start.

Add On: Warrior Series

YOGA 500 warrior

Warrior 1 with High Lunge Do the main series, adding on both half push-up and lunge jump, ending in downward dog. From here, step left foot forward between hands, bending left knee 90 degrees with toes facing forward; keep right leg straight and lift upper body. Raise arms overhead next to ears; hold for 3 to 5 breaths.

Straighten left leg while lowering arms; keep palms in and right heel lifted. Repeat 4 to 6 times. Return to warrior 1, then to downward dog; repeat on opposite side, ending in downward dog. Reverse the main series back to start.

Add On: Chair with Twist

Chair Pose

YOGA 500 chairpose

Do the main series plus each of the previous add-ons one time through, ending in mountain pose with arms raised. From here, bend your knees, pushing your butt back.

Bring palms together in front of chest and bend forward, pressing right upper arm against outside of left thigh as you twist your upper body to the left. Hold for 1 to 2 breaths, then come back to center and twist to the right. Continue alternating sides, 4 to 6 times in each direction, then return to a standing position.

YEAH!! YOU DID IT!!