Blog Archives

The Health Hazards of Sitting – In picture form!

I realize there are lots of words to this but still take a look. Countless of times we hear sitting is bad for you, but we don’t always know all the repercussions. Take a look at this picture and use it as motivation to get up and move as much as possible!

The picture wouldn’t upload on the blog so check it out in the link below:

http://apps.washingtonpost.com/g/page/national/the-health-hazards-of-sitting/750/?utm_content=buffer81fc9&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter.com&utm_campaign=buffer

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Joy McCarthy’s 5 Tips to Beat the Monday Blues!

I don’t know about you, but the weekends never seem long enough. They feel like they fly by faster than anything else. Here is Joy McCarthy’s list of 5 Types to Beat the Monday Blues. Check out her website for all the details. I have added my own notes in brackets):

1. Get moving — exercise! (Being a Registered Kinesiologist, Certified Personal Trainer, Certified Health Coach, I totally agree with this one. Exercise is the cure to everything, in my opinion… I would love to be up and moving right now instead of sitting)
2. Give someone a compliment (Yep, it helps… that’s all I can say)
3. Practice gratitude! (Definitely something I have to work on and I m trying to get better at that)
4. Dress Nicely! (I notice that I feel a lot better when I dress nicer/put on makeup. For a while when I was at the office I am working at, I would wear very minimal makeup. Sometimes I would go out of the house looking the same way. I noticed a HUGE difference with my self-esteem and how I felt. I was actually embarrassed about walking around looking like that. My excuse would be “well, I’m not trying to impress anyone at work because a) I’m not currently working in my field yet and everyone knows I’m only there temporarily and b) my boyfriend isn’t at work”. I noticed a difference with not wanting to talk to people as long because I didn’t want them to look at me and would try to avoid meeting someone… both things that are totally not me. Therefore, trust Joy and trust me when I say… always dress nicely and try to look your best. It makes you feel a hekofa lot better)
5. Eat Mood Boosting Foods: (Esp. Vitamin B’s…  wow baby. Not getting enough vitamin B’s sure as hek makes a huge difference. I forgot to take my vitamin B’s today and I feel like running home just to take them to help bring back my mood).

Hope you all have a great Monday and make the best of it. Monday is almost like hitting a restart button. Had a bad week last week? Hit the restart button and make this next one better! Use it as motivation. Exercise, eat healthy and be grateful. If you had a lapse, it’s okay… that’s normal.

Check out the link below with Joy’s explanations on why this list helps beat the Monday Blues:

http://www.joyoushealth.ca/blog/2013/10/07/have-a-nice-day-5-tips-to-beat-the-monday-blues/

Find What you Like and Just Move!

I recently had a conversation with the ladies that I work with at my office about different types of activities that we like to do for exercise. It’s funny how each of us were so different. For example, one lady likes to run on the treadmill for cardio, the next one said she preferred water aerobics, another said she hated water aerobics and I mentioned how I like exercise classes but hate solely running on the treadmill. All completely different responses! What one person likes, the other hates. This got me to thinking again how it’s important to not tell someone what to do, but let them find what types of activities they like and to stick with it. There is no rule stating “Thou must run on the treadmill to gain benefits of exercise”. You just have to move! Just because you like to do something, doesn’t mean your spouse, friend, sibling etc. will like it too. I could (and have) promoted zumba until I was blue in the face, because that’s truly an exercise I love. This same exercise I love could be torturous for the uncoordinated and socially nervous individual.

What’s my point? If you’re trying to help someone become more active, DO NOT and I repeat, DO NOT tell them what to do. Sure, you can make suggestions because there may be activities out there they have no idea about (i.e. intramural sports, community centre facilities, bootcamp classes at the park, snowshoeing clubs, mall walking clubs etc.).

Time and time again I have read and learned that when it comes to exercise, no one likes being told what to do. We all like to be autonomous and make our own decisions about our lives. We like being in control. If you want to hear more about the psychology behind it, check out the Self Determination Theory (created way before my time in the 70’s-80’s 😉 I wasn’t even thought of at that point). Here’s a quick example: If you’re a smoker, don’t you feel super defensive if someone tells you to quit? It’s not as simply as:
Person A: Quit Smoking.
Person B: Okay.
If that was the case, I’d be telling you all right now, “Go out and get at least an hour a day of moderate to vigorous activity”. How many of you are up and off your bums right now? Believe it or not, if you tell someone what to do, the exact opposite will happen. They’ll think of reasons why they don’t want to do it and they won’t do it. Why? They are controlling their life by saying no. They are making the decision to not do what you just told them to do instead of complying to your request.

I may be naïve in thinking that everyone must like something in order to be active, but I feel as though it has to be true. Please, find what you like and just move. Make this newly Registered Kinesiologist happy and try different activities so you can get the benefits of exercise. There are countless of benefits exercise for health and it also helps boost your mood and look your best.

Yes it’s hard, but JUST MOVE!

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Good News for Over-Eating in the Holiday Season

Do you overeat during the holidays? I do too. There are just so many good foods that are enjoyed during this time of the year. Some of my favourite: Candy Cane ice cream, mashed potatoes with cream cheese, stuffing and short bread cookies. Apart from the food being so delicious, there is just SO MUCH of it!

I read an article from the New York Times called the Power of a Daily Bout of Exercise (You will see the link for it at the bottom of my blog). This article examines a study published by researchers in Bath England that looked at exercise when you’re over-consuming calories. Here are some key points from the article:

– Participants in the study were told to reduce their physical activity and over consume food for one week (Physical activity was reduced from ~10,000 steps per day to ~4,000)
– Half of the participants were told to exercise for only 45 minutes once per day, moderate intensity and the other half was told to remain sedentary for the whole week

Results:
– Non-Exercise Group: decline in blood sugar control (bad thing), fat cells developed a malicious streak (having a big impact on metabolism)
– Exercise Group: Not similarly afflicted, blood sugar control remained robust and fat cells did not drastically change
– Quote from the article: “Exercise seemed to completely cancel out many of the changes induced by overfeeding and reduced activity,” said Dylan Thompson, a professor of health sciences at the University of Bath and senior author of the study. And where it did not countermand the impacts, he continued, it “softened” them, leaving the exercise group “better off than the nonexercise group,” despite engaging in equivalently insalubrious behavior.
– Quote: “if you are facing a period of overconsumption and inactivity” — also known as the holidays — “a daily bout of exercise will prevent many of the negative changes, at least in the short term,” Dr. Thompson said. Of course, his study involved young, fit men and a relatively prolonged period of exercise. But the findings likely apply, he said, to other groups, like older adults and women, and perhaps to lesser amounts of training. That’s a possibility worth embracing as the pie servings accumulate.

BOTTOM LINE:

This holiday season, spend approximately 45 min each day being active and you will greatly reduce your chances of packing on the pounds. Get up, move around, but still enjoy your holiday goodies.

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http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/11/27/the-power-of-a-daily-bout-of-exercise/?_r=1&

5 Cheap Exercise Equipment Needed for Home-Based Workouts

Many of us struggle with the “lack of time” barrier when it comes to physical activity. I know I have mentioned this before, but why not exercise while you’re at home? If the idea of that sounds great, but you don’t know where to start, here are a list of things you should have at your home to help you get a great workout! Remember, some activities can be performed solely using body weight.

1. Dumbbells – get yourself more than one weight. You may want to have a few options because different muscle types are stronger than others (ex. Our legs are generally stronger than our upper bodies). Lots of places, such as walmart, come with a few different sets of weights. Play around with different weights and choose the right one for you. Remember, you want the weights to be somewhat challenging otherwise you will not reap the benefits.

2. Resistance Bands/elastic bands – resistance bands such as tubing are great ways to do resistance training. You can do SO many activities such as seated rows, internal rotations, bicep curls, leg extensions etc. by using a simple band! Bonuses to resistance bands? You can easily take them with you if you’re traveling, staying over at a friends house or you can even bring them to work! Make sure you get a set of easy, medium and hard. Again, you want that challenge!

3. Stability Ball and or Bosu Balls – I’m sure you’ve seen these balls before. There are so many things you can do on both a stability ball and a bosu ball! You can do anything from squats to seated dumbbell raises. Why are these so awesome? By doing activities while sitting on a unstable surface, you can also strengthen your core and work on your balance! Make sure you get an appropriate ball for your height. In order to tell if you’re getting the right size, your thighs should be parallel to the floor when you’re sitting on the ball.

4. Skipping Rope – skipping is a great way to do cardio. Skipping increases your heart rate. This is also a great way to get the lymph fluid to circulate through your body which can help with immunity. Don’t like skipping? You don’t even need a skipping rope! Just jump on the spot and pretend you have a skipping rope in your hands!

5. Yoga Mat – yoga mats aren’t only beneficial when you’re doing yoga. These mats provide cushioning for different exercises you are doing on the ground and also are great for post-workout stretching.