LAKE EFFECT SNOW STORM “KNIFE” HOMEBOUND SOLUTIONS

SOUTH BUFFALO, NEW YORK HAS CERTAINLY MADE THE NATIONAL NEWS RECENTLY WITH LAKE EFFECT SNOW STORM “KNIFE”.  I AM IN THE HEART OF THIS STORM AND HAVE BEEN “STUCK” INSIDE FOR THE LAST 4 1/2 DAYS.  THE ROADS REMAIN IMPASSABLE AND PEOPLE ARE REALLY BEGINNING TO GET CABIN FEVER. 

BOTH OF OUR SNOW BLOWERS WERE UNABLE TO HANDLE THE SHEER VOLUME OF SNOW DUMPED IN OUR DRIVEWAY SO WE HAVE GOTTEN OUTSIDE AND HAD PLENTY OF EXERCISE SHOVELING (ABOUT 6 HOURS EACH DAY)!  STILL HAVEN’T SEEN A PLOW DURING THE ENTIRE EVENT.

WHILE I DON’T FEEL THE NEED TO DO ANY EXTRA WORK OUT (I FEEL IT IN MY ABS, BICEPS, DELTS, PECS, GLUTES, HAMSTRINGS, QUADS AND EVEN MY FINGERS!), THERE ARE SOME PEOPLE WHO DON’T HAVE TO SHOVEL – THEY HAVE A PLOW SERVICE OR LIVE IN AN APARTMENT OR CONDO OR COMMUNITY THAT DOES MAINTENANCE.  IN ANY EVENT, THERE ARE ALWAYS TIMES WHEN YOU CAN’T HIT THE GYM AND NEED A WORKOUT AT HOME OR IN THE OFFICE.

HAD SOME TIME ON MY HANDS TO LOOK AROUND FLIP BOARD WHILE STRANDED.  IT WAS PERFECT TIMING THAT USA TODAY POSTED THIS ARTICLE The Best Free Workout Videos on YouTube

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THERE ARE 21 VIDEOS FROM 7 MINUTES TO ABOUT AND HOUR FROM A VARIETY OF GENRES: YOGA, KICKBOXING, MARTIAL ARTS, PILATES, DANCING, ZUMBA.  WHILE I HAVEN’T HAD A CHANCE TO TRY THEM ALL I WILL DEFINITELY WORK THROUGH THEM OVER THESE WINTER MONTHS AND LET YOU KNOW HOW I LIKE THEM.  I LIKE VARIETY SO THIS IS A GREAT FIND FOR ME.

I HOPE YOU LIKE THESE VIDEOS  AND WILL LET ME KNOW YOUR FEEDBACK AS YOU TRY THEM!  PLEASE LEAVE COMMENTS AND SUGGESTIONS!

ULTIMATE LUNCH WORKOUT

For a 20-minute routine, do these moves in order, using weights heavy enough to challenge you without compromising your form (try five pounds to start). Rest for 15 to 30 seconds between moves if needed, and rest for one minute at the end of the set; do two more sets, using heavier weights in each round (e.g., eight pounds, then 10 pounds).

NO SWEAT 1

 

Stand with your feet hip-width apart and hold a dumbbell in your right hand; push your hips back until the weight is just below your knees (a). Push your hips forward and pull the weight to your chest, then quickly rotate your palm away from you and press the weight directly overhead (b). Slowly reverse the movement to return to start. That’s one rep. Do six, then repeat on the other side.

NO SWEAT 2

Holding a dumbbell in each hand, stand on your right leg, bend forward, and raise your left leg behind you, arms straight, palms facing your leg (a). Row the weights to your chest, elbows out (b), then lower. Do six reps, then switch legs and repeat.

NO SWEAT3

Start In a pushup position, with your body in a straight line from head to heels (a). keeping your back flat, bend your elbows and lower your body as slowly as possible (b). Return to start. That’s one rep. Do 12.

NO SWEAT4

Hold a pair of dumbbells above shoulder height, elbows bent and palms facing you; step your right foot forward about two feet and bend both knees. Hold this position (a). Press the weights overhead, rotating your palms away from your body (b). That’s one rep. Do six, then switch sides and repeat.

NO SWEAT5

Lie on your left side, legs and hips stacked, arms straight out at shoulder level; hold a dumbbell with both hands (a). keeping your upper body steady, slowly lift both feet four to six inches off the floor (b). Pause, then lower. That’s one rep. Do 10, then repeat on the other side.

Adapted from http://www.womenshealthmag.com

WORKING ON MY VERY OWN COOKBOOK

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Do not expect this to be your usual run-of-the-mill cookbook.

I will share what is tried and true: some good recipes yes, some sound nutrition advice and some fitness tips that have worked for me. It will be a potpourri of recipes and life’s lessons. Please join me in this adventure!

My recipes are easy with ingredients you will generally have on hand.  They are kid friendly because my husband has finicky taste like a child and is hard to please.  They are tasty and nutritiousI have also included some vegetarian recipes and gluten free recipes.

My fitness tips and ideas are for a healthy lifestyle.  They may encourage activities for families or for individuals just beginning to change their lifestyle.  There are even ideas for those who are more advanced in their routines. I do not use fancy equipment or machines.

Lastly, my nutrition tips are simple ideas that can make a big difference.  I don’t recommend any special dietary supplements, protein powders or meal replacements.  I don’t use a lot of low-fat products but prefer to use just a little of the real thing.  I often offer tips on how to make a recipe healthier.

THINK OF THIS AS A MANUAL FOR A HEALTHIER YOU!

 

 

 

 

 

MORE FOR YOUR CORE – THE FULL PLANK

The plank is a balance and core conditioning exercise. In yoga, the plank is often done as part of the sun salutation sequence, or as part of a vinyasa in a yoga flow sequence. You can also perform the plank as a stand-alone exercise. There are two major types of planks, the full plank, where you balance on both arms, and the side plank, where you balance on one arm.

LET’S TRY THE FULL PLANK:

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Start off on a yoga mat in the pushup position. Starting with the pushup position is the easiest way to get into the plank.

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Lower both your forearms to the ground so that both your elbows and fists are flat to the ground. Your palms should be balled up, and directly underneath your shoulders.

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Curl your toes under and engage your abs by tilting your pelvis and pulling your belly button toward your spine.

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Straighten your body but keep your neck and spine neutral.  Imagine that you’re a plank of wood, and that you’re straight as an arrow.

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Flex your abdominals and squeeze your glutes. These are the two major muscle groups you’ll be working out in this exercise.

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Hold this position, also known as the plank, until after the burning begins. Keep your eyes on the floor in front of you. Avoid raising your behind. Your body should make a straight line from your heels to the back of your head.

TRY TO HOLD THE POSE A LITTLE LONGER EACH DAY! AND THEN, HAVE A FRIEND ADD A LITTLE WEIGHT!

the plank

YOU WILL NEED A LITTLE LEVITY AS YOU FEEL YOUR MUSCLES BURN!

I’VE ALSO SEEN THIS DONE ON A STANDUP PADDLE BOARD AS PART OF THE CORE WORKOUT.

TAKE CHARGE OF YOUR HEALTH

“A healthy attitude is contagious but don’t wait to catch it from others.  Be a carrier!”  Tom Stoppard

When asked who my “Health Hero” is and why, I immediately thought of my father.  Not only was he a World War II hero, he made sure to bring our family up to be active.

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We would go to the beach and swim and build sand castles and he would organize a baseball game if we started lazing around too much.  We played tennis, badminton and horse shoes and always took walks.  The entire family raked leaves and shoveled snow together.  We washed the car and we all had household chores.

Stuart McIntosh, former Olympian said, “When children are exposed to a routine that works, they learn it, understand it, and when done regularly it is locked into their memory.”  It sure worked for our family!

Now it is up to me to continue to make healthy lifestyle choices.

My husband and I really work as a team.  When his cholesterol level inched up to 199, my training as a Registered Dietitian kicked in and we were able to lower that level by 20 points over the last year.  Difficult for a real meat and potatoes man!  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 hotdog 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 months.  I don’t use artificial or “lite” products but use just a little of the real thing.  Most important we EXERCISE DAILY!

We just went through a winter of extreme cold, life threatening wind chills and two blizzards in Buffalo, New York.  But we dressed for the weather and enjoyed cross county skiing and walks/snow shoeing along the frozen Lake Erie shoreline at sunset not to mention we did loads of shoveling.  My husband also likes to kite ski.  We even have cleats for our boots for the typical ice storm.  The treadmill and exercise bike are a last resort to enjoying the great outdoors.

Thinking outside the box and planning this unique garden for Spring:

IT IS IMPORTANT TO HAVE A PLAN FOR HEALTHY EATING!  You need only a very small plot of land to grow enough vegetables and herbs to feed a family.  Join me in this experiment.  Take a 2 cubic feet of potting soil (like Miracle Grow), rumple it around quite a bit to loose the soil, poke quite a few holes in the back side for drainage, then lay the bag on a smooth surface that will allow drainage and not get too hot.  Cut out the top leaving about a 4 or 5 inch border all around.  Lightly rake through the soil to even it out and loosen it even more, then carefully start planting your seeds.  Spray mist the seeds and plantlings when first watering until they are established, then you can water more vigorously.  Keep soil moist, but not sopping wet.  Come Summer, we plan to have loads of fresh vegetables for grilling and salads!

Summer plans also include tennis, biking, swimming, kayaking, windsurfing and paddle boarding.

REMEMBER, YOU DON’T HAVE TO DIET IF YOU LIVE IT!

THANKS FOR THE CHALLENGE: HEALTHY CAMPAIGN

LOADS OF NUTRITION TIPS, FITNESS ROUTINES AND RECIPES AT : FABULOUS FIT FOOD

SPRING CLEANING – IDEAL WORKOUT REGIMEN!

SPRING CLEANING

The calories burned while you’re doing household chores can really add up. In fact, many household chores burn just as many calories as workouts do. Here’s how some of your household chores stack up in terms of calories burned.

Indoor Chores

Chores you do inside the house also help to burn calories. Here’s how many calories are burned in the course of performing your daily tasks:

  • Scrubbing the bath for 30 minutes burns 200 calories. Removing that stubborn soap scum from your tiles is a great way  to tone the muscles of your arms and shoulders.
  • Carrying shopping bags for 30 minutes burns 190 calories, and maybe more if the bags are particularly heavy. Distribute the weight evenly on each hand, or swap back and forth at regular intervals. Carrying too much weight on one side won’t just overdevelop those muscles, it could injure your spine.
  • Making beds for 30 minutes burns 130 calories, the same number you’d use if you jogged on a treadmill or on flat terrain for 15 minutes.
  • Cleaning windows for 30 minutes burns 125 calories, the same number used in 20 minutes of power yoga (about one-third the length of a typical power yoga class).
  • Loading the dishwasher for 30 minutes burns 105 calories, which is less than the 160 calories burned when washing them by hand.
  • Vacuuming for 30 minutes burns about 90 calories, the same amount you’d burn in 15 minutes of kick boxing.
  • Dusting for 30 minutes burns about 50 calories.
  • Ironing for 30 minutes burns about 70 calories and tones the muscles of the upper body. Stand up straight at the ironing board and press down firmly. Switch hands periodically so you don’t overdevelop one arm.

Yard Work

Yard work offers some of the most labor intensive household chores. Tasks like digging and raking the leaves not only burn a lot of calories but can help tone muscles in your arms and legs. Here are some statistics:

  • 30 minutes of digging in your yard will burn about 315 calories, the same amount burned by 45 minutes of bicycling on flat terrain. Digging tones the muscles of your calves, thighs, arms and shoulders. If you do it vigorously enough and continue the activity for 20 minutes or more, you can raise your heart rate and strengthen your cardiovascular system.
  • Washing your car works your arms and abdominals. For every 30 minutes of car washing, you’ll burn 143 calories.
  • Weeding for 30 minutes burns 115 calories, the same amount you’d burn in 15 minutes of weight training. Weeding tones your thighs and buttocks. Just be careful to bend with your legs while keeping your spine straight, or you could hurt your back.
  • Raking leaves for 30 minutes burns 225 calories. The resistance offered by the leaves makes this chore a type of weight training. Raking leaves tones all the major muscle groups in your body.

Other Calorie Burners

Here are some other activities that burn surprising amounts of calories:

  • Climbing stairs for 30 minutes burns about 285 calories.
  • Painting and decorating your home burns about 160 calories.
  • Showering and toweling off for 30 minutes burns about 70 calories.  (WOW, that’s a long shower!)

REMEMBER EVERYONE BURNS CALORIES AT A DIFFERENT RATE BASED UPON BODY SIZE.  YOU MAY WANT TO TRY THIS CLEANING HOUSE CALORIES BURNED CALCULATOR FOR MORE ACCURATE MEASURES!

NOT ONLY WILL YOU FEEL ACCOMPLISHED WITH YOUR CLEANING EFFORTS YOU’LL GET MORE FIT ON TOP OF IT – WHAT I CALL A TWOFER!!

WHY CAN’T I LOSE WEIGHT?

THIS COULD BE THE REASON!

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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

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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

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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