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How to stay fit with bad knees

September 5th, 2017 ernie Posted in Exercise No Comments »

Are you suffering from bad knees? Perhaps you have a lot of pain in your knees every time you walk up the stairs or even take a step. Many people who run for exercise, enjoyment and sport find that their knees are starting to hurt a great deal. Consumers who play squash, racquetball and other sports cause the knee to be injured from the twisting and turning in those sports.  The continuous pounding, twisting and turning wheel overtime damage ligaments and cartilage in your knee. You may find that your knees ache, or there’s a lot of pain when you climb stairs. It may be time to consider something different in terms of exercise that has less impact on your knees . Otherwise, you may find that you need knee replacement operations sometime in your future.

The writer played squash until he was 35. Climbing the stairs was painful with sharp needle like pain in the knees. He decided to stop playing squash and take up another sport that was less painful and damaging to the knees.   In the writers case, he took up cycling and within six months a pain in the knees was gone and he was able to climb stairs with no pain whatsoever.

If you were beginning to experience pain of the sort from the continuous pounding of running or some other sport it may be time to consider a different sport. The following is a list of potential sports to be considered  to help prepare your bad knees.

Alternative sports for bad knees

Swimming – is an excellent sport to consider and has one of the least impact on joints. It also exercises almost all of the muscles in the body as well as work on your cardio system.

Running in the pool –  if you do not like swimming or cannot swim consider running in the pool. Running in the pool has far less impact on joints with additional resistance from the water providing you with great exercise and cardio improvement.

Cycling –  is another sport that you can do anytime and has the flexibility of just getting on your bike and going out for a  ride. You can spend a lot of money on a bicycle, define one of the lightweight ones that allow you to go really fast. However you should remember that your goal is to gain exercise, cardio exercise so the heavier the bike the more exercise you’re going to get .

Gym –  not everyone likes to go to the gym, but this might be the best approach for many people with joint problems. There are many exercises that you can do at the gym that avoid joint irritation. Avoid the treadmill, use the stationary cycling or some of the cross trainers.

Remember, you want to avoid the pounding on your knees and joints, while at the same time strengthening the muscles around your knees together additional support and avoid that pain and eventual knee replacement surgery.   Bad knees can be a thing of the past with the proper exercise. Get started today.

 

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Burn more Calories by Fidgeting

December 21st, 2016 paulr Posted in Exercise No Comments »

Burn more Calories by FidgetingYou can burn  more calories by fidgeting. the actual number varies a great deal depending on the person. Estimates by experts put it at 300 to 400 calories a day for the average person who fidgets a lot. When you think about it, this is an easy way to burn off calories. Some people do this naturally. They are the type of person who really cannot sit still and have to be doing something all of the time. You know who they are. They are constantly moving. They are waving their hands, moving their feet while sitting and constantly getting up and down from their seat. Donald Trump has a lot of energy and never stops. He probably burns a great deal more than 400 calories with his schedule.

Burn more Calories by Fidgeting

Using the couch potato as a base, burning more calories should be easy. Someone who is always on the couch, not moving, watching TV and snacking will burn fewer calories. Getting up often, moving around the house, standing while working etc is a good start to burning those calories.

Just become more active. Use an app on your smart phone to send an alarm every 15 or 30 minutes to remind you to get moving. These apps are great and sometimes annoying. But they do the job of reminding you to get moving. They are helpful if you are not a normally fidgety person.

Look around you. Watch the people who are slim. Are they more active? Are they the fidgety types? Some will be naturally athletic, however many will just be active and this really helps to burn the calories. Now is the time to start. Get up from your desk or couch and start walking. Carry your smart phone with you if needed, but get moving and make it a habit.

For a lot more information on exercise, click here.

 

 

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Do Fidgety People Burn More Calories

November 21st, 2016 paulr Posted in Exercise No Comments »

Do Fidgety People Burn More CaloriesDonald Trump claimed on the Dr Oz Show that he burns more calories by waving his hands. We wondered Do Fidgety People Burn More Calories in general? Donald Trump seems like a pretty high action / energy kind of guy. He apparently is overweight but looks great and does not seem to tire easily. We decided to look into this general question and see what a few experts think about this claim. Bottom line is that people who are fidgety and wave their hands a great deal will burn approximately 300 more calories a day compared to some one who is more calm.

Do Fidgety People Burn More Calories – Experts

Fidgeting clearly burns more calories than sitting behind a desk. Donald Trump may be better off on the campaign trail than running his business says Elizabeth DeRobertis, head dietitian at the Scarsdale Medical Group in Scarsdale, N.Y.

Just observe people at the mall the next time you are there. In general over weight people are moving more slowly and are generally more relaxed. Many, not all, slim people are moving quicker, perhaps fidgeting more and burning more calories.

It just makes so much sense. The more you move, the more calories you are going to burn. However fidgeting while burning calories will not help with things like improving cardio vascular capabilities. Muscle groups will not be strengthened. You need to focus on other types of exercises to improve in those areas.

For a lot more information on exercise, click here.

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What is Age Appropriate Exercise

March 7th, 2016 paulr Posted in Exercise 1 Comment »

What is Age Appropriate ExerciseWhat is age appropriate exercise? It is really any exercise that does not put your body into a stress condition in terms of heart and lung capacity, does not cause more aches and pains than you can handle and certainly does not cause injury. You have to know your body. Different people can tolerate various levels of exercise based on past levels of exercise, their general health and their weight. As we get older we also cannot do all of the things that we used to do. We might not be able to bench press as much weight, run as far or swim as far. The point is that everyone should exercise and push themselves a little more each day without causing undue stress to their bodies.

What is Age Appropriate Exercise

Take for an example someone who has been a couch potato all of their life and suddenly decides that they are going to begin exercising. If they approach this challenge to aggressively, they could hurt themselves and they will get discouraged, leading to quitting before they even get started. Admittedly this is an extreme example, but this person should start out by walking a short distance every day and gradually build up the distance and the speed. After a few months they may want to consider adding weights or cycling etc.

Someone like the writer who has exercised all of their lives, you begin to realize that you just cannot do all of the things you used to do. This does not mean you should stop exercising.  Rather it means that you should again do what feels comfortable. Someone with bad knees for example may not be able to walk, but they can cycle etc. they can also lift weights and do other exercises that lead to burning calories and maintaining muscle mass.

Each person must find the right mix and the right level of intensity that allows them to stay fit, burn some calories and maintain their overall health. Get started today with your own personalized exercise health plan.

For a lot more information on exercise, click here.

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Choosing a Walking Exercise Program

February 28th, 2015 paulr Posted in Exercise No Comments »

exercise program Walking EquipmentBelow you will find some sample exercise programs. See a doctor before beginning any exercise program. Have a physical examination and have the Dr. recommend one of the  exercise programs or another version for you. If your doctor does not make a recommendation, Make a self-assessment of your physical condition and choose a program yourself. Once you’ve begun the program, reassess your choice. If you feel like you are overexerting yourself, slowdown. If you aren’t feeling effect from your walk, try a faster pace.
10,000 steps a day program:this is a great and easy program to get you started on your lifetime walking habit. The 10K at day program is to walk 10,000 steps a day, which exceeds the Surgeon General’s physical fitness recommendations of 30 minutes of exercise three times a week. When you accomplish this you will be burning more calories and you’ll be walking your way to a healthier life.
Your pedometer will count every step you take during the day. It will add new motivation to your exercise and program will keep you focused on your goal: 10,000 steps a day
You may find however that your steps vary day to day due to activities. A suggestion is that you monitor your weekly, not daily totals. Going for 70,000 steps per week rather than 10,000 steps per day can help ward off those feelings of failure. If you’re trying to lose weight, you might even try to walk 12,000 steps per day, while maintaining a reasonable diet and drinking lots of water.
To get started on your 10 K a D program, put on your step pedometer in the morning and start walking. Keep track of your daily steps on the notepad, calendar, or in a walking journal. After three days calculate the average number of the steps you’ve taken for three days,  this is your start point.
You may wonder how far you have walked, having taken so many steps. One way you can determine the distance you have traveled is to own a distance pedometer. There are put on the nurse that can tell you steps, distance, calories burned, time spent exercising, and heart rate.

Exercise Program – Dues and don’ts:

  • Do see a doctor and talk to your doctor before beginning an exercise program and get a full physical. Let the doctor choose an exercise program that is right for you.
  • Do drink water, extremely important on hot and humid days, drink before, during and after your walk.
  • Do you eat well, avoid Junkfood and all products with high-fat think cholesterol. Eat 3 moderately sized meals a day.
  • Do you choose a smooth level surface which will result in less fatigue and fewer injuries.
  • Don’t continue walking if you have chest pain, or overly tired, dizzy, feel pain or experience shortness of breath or can’t hold a conversation with someone. Stop walking and immediately see a doctor.
  • Don’t walk right after or before meals. Walking two hours after meal and waiting 20 minutes after you walked to eat should be sufficient
  • Don’t walk outdoors if it is extremely cold, hot or humid. Try an inside track or mall instead.
  • Don’t walk on ice or walk during a lightning storm. Head for cover but not under a tree.

Exercise Program – It’s now up to you!

Now that you have found out all about walking, it’s up to you to make walking a part of your life, once you’ve selected one of the above exercise programs or have designed your own is a good idea to do the following: set goals, make a time commitment, keep track of your progress.
Set goals: goal setting is one of the most important aspects of any exercise program. While one of the above exercise programs is a start, it is still necessary to set your own personal short-term, intermediate and long-term goals. These goals may be based on weight, distance, time, heart rate or any other measurable unit. Try to avoid having bagels such as I want to feel better. What you have set a goal, make a plan to reach these goals. Part of this plan should include the above exercise programs, but may include non exercise actions such as going on a diet.
Make a time commitment: find time for walking. It may not be necessary to walk the same time every day, but make sure you schedule your walks. Every time you miss a session, it will be that much harder to reach your goals.
Keep track: measure your walk, record those measurements and write down your progress in reading your goals. The predominant are you just purchased is perfect for helping you keep track of your walking accomplishments. Keeping a journal is a perfect way to keep track of your walking program.
For more posts about exercise programs, click here.

 

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Fitness in Winter Months

February 21st, 2015 paulr Posted in Exercise No Comments »

Fitness in Winter Months is important. There are safe ways to accomplish or maintain your fitness regimen. This lady is enjoying herself, out on the road jogging. She is jogging on the gravel portion to maintain her grip and not slip on the ice. She has conditioned her body to deal with the colder air. As long as she keeps moving she will be warm with even the light clothing she is wearing. The only criticism that we have is that she should be running on the left hand side of the road facing oncoming traffic. She should not be wearing earphones so that she can hear vehicles coming from behind her. We are not totally sure that she is wearing ear phones, but many joggers will wear them to help them focus and maintain their pace. This can be very dangerous for joggers in that they are not aware of their surroundings and are often hit by oncoming vehicles. Fitness in winter months or anytime really is also about being safe.

Fitness in Winter Months

If you are going to work out outside in the winter time, take the time to condition your body to deal with the cold weather. Not only do you have to build your muscles up to be able to jog for longer distances, you need to condition your lungs to deal with the deep breaths of cold air. In extremely cold weather protect your lungs by covering your face and especially your nose and mouth. In addition plan your route. For example you never want to be in a position where you have a chance to cool off and no where to go to get warm. The clothing you wear needs to be ready for cold weather. Your shoes are probably the most important since you need to have a really good grip to deal with ice and snow. In fact you may want to have several pairs to allow one pair to sufficiently dry out when using another.

Fitness in Winter Months – Workout Inside

In extremely cold climates, many people head off to the gym or walk in malls to avoid the cold weather, the snow and the ice. This can be far safer than working out outside. however there are other sports to consider such as cross country skiing, down hill skiing and snow shoeing.

For more exercise information, click here.

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Walking Equipment

February 14th, 2015 paulr Posted in Exercise No Comments »

Walking EquipmentShoes make the Walker: shoes are the single most important piece of equipment for the walker. They can be the difference between having a fun, relaxing walk and an uncomfortable painful walk. It is important to get a good pair of walking shoes with the following characteristics.

  • Provide support and comfort to all parts of the foot.
  • Have enough toe room that you can wiggle your toes.
  • Add firm support at the heel.
  • Have flexible cushion so in order to aid in the walking gate and to absorb shock.
  • Be made of breathable material, preferably leather, or fabric to allow perspiration to dissipate.
  • Be lightweight

Walking Equipment

There are many shoes at various price ranges designed specifically for walking. A running shoe or tennis shoe will also serve for walking so long as it is comfortable and has the above characteristics.
Cool down: after you walk, slow down gradually. Spent five minutes walking slowly. Abruptly stopping your exercise can result in dizziness. Again, these five minutes should not be included in your exercise time.
Keep your heart rate on target: one way of determining how hard you should exercise is by measuring your heart rate. To get a true aerobic benefit of walking, without the risk of over or under training, it is necessary to keep your heart rate within its target zone for a minimum of 15 to 30 minutes. This target zone is between 60% and 85% of your maximum heart rate, the fastest your heart can beat. Below 60%, your walk will have little aerobic benefit, and above 85%, it would be too strenuous. If this is your first walking program, it is advisable that you keep your heart rate within 60 to 75% of the maximum aiming for 60%. Only someone in excellent physical shape should aim for 85%.
How to Measure your pulse: there are a number of methods to to determine your pulse. Place two fingers, (don’t use the thumb since it has its own pulse) on either your wrist or throat or temple. Count the pulse beats for 10 seconds and multiplied by six to get your pulse rate per minute. Use of  a pulse meter is another good method to do this. You should periodically check your pulse during your walk, to make sure you are still in the target zone.
For more exercise related posts, click here.

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Stay Fit During Winter Months

February 7th, 2015 paulr Posted in Exercise No Comments »

Stay Fit During Winter Months

An Athletic woman jogging in the winter.

It’s cold outside and you are really not up to running in the summer time let along in the middle of winter like this women shown in the picture. She is trying to Stay Fit During Winter Months.  So how are you supposed to stay fit during winter months? This is the question many people ask themselves, especially those that do not belong to a gym and those people who prefer to exercise outside. With winter snow conditions, even running is questionable due to the slippery conditions. Biking is possible provided that you have the right equipment, such as knobby tires and perhaps even studs in your tires. But what do other people do who want to Stay Fit During Winter Months.

Stay Fit During Winter Months

There are many exercises that individuals can use to help them stay fit during winter months. We will list as many as we can think of here, knowing that some may not appeal to everyone. Select those that work for you and they may include one or a combination of exercises that grouped together allow you to burn the calories you need to over the cold winter months. Here we go:

  • Walking anytime, outside, the mall, to work etc at least 10k steps
  • Basement Gym, lifting weights, skipping, treadmill etc
  • Watching your diet and reducing the number of calories
  • Completing a series of exercises – sit ups, push ups, chin ups etc
  • Staying active all of the time and avoiding the couch
  • Skiing – Downhill and cross country
  • Snow shoeing
  • Standing at work

From the above you should get the idea that being active will burn calories and keep you from eating when you are bored. For many people this can be extremely important. Staying inside away from the cold can be very boring, however if you do not get moving and take advantage of your lifestyle to keep moving, then not only will your fitness decline, you will probably gain weight as well.

For more information about exercise, click here.

 

 

 

 

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Walking for Exercise

January 28th, 2015 paulr Posted in Exercise 1 Comment »

Walking for ExerciseRunning – no….cycle – No… Skating – No. None of these activities can make the claim that walking can! Walking for exercise is the number one participation sport worldwide. Why? Well here are a few good reasons.

Easy to do. There is no great challenge to walking. It does not require any special skills or advance conditioning. Walking doesn’t require any special equipment or clothing. All you need is a good pair of walking shoes, comfortable clothing, a pedometer, and you’re all set.

Healthy when Hippocrates said that walking is man’s best medicine, he didn’t realize that thousands of years later, new benefits of walking would be discovered daily. Some health benefits of walking include:

  • Burns almost as many calories as jogging
  • Eases back pains
  • Slims your waist
  • Lowers blood pressure
  • Reduce level of bad  cholesterol
  • Reduces heart attack risk
  • Enhances stamina and energy
  • Lessons anxiety and tension
  • Improves muscle tone
  • Easy on your joints
  • Reduces appetite
  • Increases aerobic capacity
  • Can be done in short bouts
  • Slows down osteoporosis bone loss
  • Can be done when you’re traveling

Walking for Exercise – Safety

Safe walking: walking is probably the safest exercise you could do. It doesn’t require prior training or conditioning and doesn’t involve a great deal of physical exertion in the beginning. Studies have shown that due to the design of our body, walking is more natural than sitting, standing or running, and walking is not as stressful to the body as other exercises. For example, running is much more stressful on the heart and joints and leads to many more injuries. The shock impact of a runner step is 3 to 4 times the person’s weight. For walking is only 1 1/2 times. Some sports like basketball and tennis can have as much as seven times a person’s weight.

While walking his easier on your body, it can be just as beneficial as running helping you lose weight. If you run for 30 minutes at 5 mph you will burn about 285 coats. If you walk for 30 minutes and 165 cal, 225 on a slight incline of 5%, and 360 cal on a 10% incline.

Walking: no advanced degree required there is no need to buy expensive videos, computer programs or manuals in order to learn how to walk. All you have to do is walk. Find a method that is comfortable to you and that’s all there is to it. Here are a few helpful hints on walking:

Posture is King:

In order to get the most out of walking, good posture is crucial. Keep your head up and your spine straight and look straight ahead. Keep your arms and shoulders loose, do not look down  to avoid possible Road obstacles.

Take the regular breaths: never hold your breath.

Walk don’t run: to get the most out of your walk you should keep a brisk pace, but not fast. We should be able to individually determine the correct place shortly after starting our walk. If you think it is difficult to breathe easily, you’re obviously walking too fast.

Is your body trying to tell you something? The expression, ” if it feels good do it”, applies to walking in the opposite is also true. If you have a lot of pain or discomfort, check with your doctor.

Stride: try to take long, smooth strides. Your motion should be fairly effortless, with your arms at your sides for balance.

Watch for future posts about Walking for exercise. The next one will be “walking equipment”. For more posts about getting enough exercise and how to approach exercising, click here.

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Setting Dieting Goals

January 27th, 2014 paulr Posted in Exercise No Comments »

Setting Dieting GoalsSetting goals and objectives is one of the first steps to ensuring that you meet your weight-loss goals. The objectives or goals must be realistic. If you need to lose over hundred pounds for example setting that objective to lose the weight in six months is probably not realistic. Focus on losing the first 10 pounds within a month and then celebrate that weight-loss. Once you have lost the first 10 pounds you can go on to lose the next 10 and so on. Celebrate each goal that you

Setting Dieting Goals

Track results and celebrate your weight loss. This does not mean that you get on the scales every week or every day. What it does mean is that you should track how much you eat, cut down on large portions, focus on eating small meals all the time and give up those items that contain a lot of calories. If you can track what you doing there’s a lot less chance that you overeat. Also you can plot your weight loss where everyone can see the results and display them where it’s obvious to everyone.

Increase objectives as you achieve results. By adding exercise, you will increase your metabolism, improve your overall health and be able to endure additional exercise overtime. You may be able to assume more aggressive objectives and achieve those results. For example if you start by walking around the block after a week or so we will find that the walk around the block is quite easy. You’ll be able to make the walk longer and faster and burn more calories.

Get Serious about Weight Loss

Be serious about your weight loss. It is important for your health to achieve a reasonable level of weight. This will improve your overall health condition, your heart condition, blood pressure and sugar levels in your system. You will live much longer as a result. The only way that you can achieve all of this is to be serious about weight loss.

Enlist friends or family to help meet your goals. They can assist from everything including managing the food that is available in your home, encouraging you to go and exercise, and helping you through those times when you’re discouraged. A buddy is a fantastic way to help you achieve your weight loss goals and improve your overall health.

For more exercise ideas and life style suggestions, click here.

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Diabetes and losing weight

January 20th, 2014 paulr Posted in Exercise No Comments »

Diabetes and losing weightA friend of ours who’s about 5’6″ tall weighs about 200 pounds. He recently informed us that he had pre diabetes. In other words when he measured his blood it was indicating that he was on the borderline of being diagnosed as having diabetes and would have to take or start to take medication unless he did something about it. Diabetes and losing weight are directly linked.

His reaction was to go on a diet. He did not want to take medication of any kind and also felt that he was overweight. He had been going to the gym, but had given that up about six months ago and then found out that as he gained more weight he was becoming closer and closer to being a diabetic.

He decided to go on a diet and basically cut all carbs. He does not eat bread, he does not eat buns, he avoids rice and potatoes and focuses on eating chicken and vegetables and fruit. He has to watch how much fruit he eats because that will generate a lot of sugar in his blood. But by reducing the carbs and focusing on eating a lot of protein he has lost over 22 pounds in the last three months.

Diabetes and losing weight

Not only does he look thinner, he’s able to wear clothes that he hasn’t worn for over two years. The best part is that his blood sugar level has dropped from around 12 to below six. This is a fantastic achievement for him in controlling his blood sugar and also getting his weight under control. He wants to lose another 10 pounds and will continue doing so by following this diet. By the way he has not yet gone back to the gym, although he plans to do so to build up his strength.

We Decided to write this post in an effort to help other people who may be struggling with pre-diabetes, being overweight and trying to focus on controlling their diet. It takes a bit of discipline but if you cut out the carbs, you can almost be sure to lose weight provided that you control how much sugar you take from other sources such as fruit.

For more information about diabetes and losing weight along with exercise, click here.

 

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Jawbone weekly results Jan12

January 13th, 2014 paulr Posted in Exercise No Comments »

UP WeeklyWeekly exercise results as recorded by the jawbone wristband. The Jawbone wrist band can be tailored to the size of your wrist to ensure that it accurately records both your sleep patterns as well as the total number of steps that you take each day. Use the web sites wrist band sizing guideline to help you order the correct size of wrist band.  You will need a small tape measure to measure your wrist. Compare the measurement to the table and select the proper wrist band. The newer models also have bluetooth capability so just hold your iPhone close to the wrist band and it will auto connect and update the app with your latest results. You can also use the app to tell your wrist band that you are going to sleep for the night or just push the button on the end as usual.

Jawbone Results

Each week your account will send an email with your results as shown below. this can be useful to keep track and to take stock of how you are doing. Users should use these results as a guideline and a trigger to improve or increase your activity level to help meet objectives in losing weight or improving overall fitness.

The app on your smart phone can also be used to compare results and trends for the amount of sleep you get each night as well as the amount of exercise you also obtain. Set an objective of adding more steps each day to gradually increase your activity level and meet the 10,000 step goal.
Weekly Summary Jan 6 – Jan 12
Last sync: Jan 12, 6:56pm
You’re getting UP there, Paul.
See how your daily sleep and step averages compare to the week of December 30.
– 10 m /night
+ 1,019 steps/day

You got the most sleep
Friday 7 h 54 m

This week’s average sleep 7 h 5 m

You hit your goal 0 times

Average bedtime 11:36 pm
Uninterrupted Sleep 5 nights
Average wake time 6:45 am

A good night’s sleep is like bad mood insurance…
Everyone gets a little down now and then. A good night’s sleep works wonders for your attitude and helps you snap back into a positive frame of mind.

Your best day of steps-Wednesday 5,267 steps
This week’s average steps 4,043 steps/day
You hit your goal 0 times

Idle watch
You were most idle 9 am – 10 am

Total distance 12.8 miles

For information exercise issues and more, click here.

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UP Weekly: Jumpstart Your Week

January 8th, 2014 paulr Posted in Exercise No Comments »

UP WeeklyUP Weekly : Weekly Summary for Dec 23 – Dec 29
Last sync: Dec 30, 8:12am
Let’s start strong, Paul.
See how your daily sleep and step averages compare to the week of December 16.

This is a report that is sent to the users email account that summarizes all of the activity for the week.  It is nice to receive this report as a reminder of what your activity has been and also the areas that you need to focus on to improve your overall health and activity levels. The jawbone is easy to wear and in fact after awhile you do not even notice that you have it on. It is easy to take on and off and also to recharge the battery. In fact you just use the USB adapter that comes with it and plug it into your computer to recharge it. Within an hour it is fully charged and can be used for the next 10 days without needing another charge.

We are not sure but we think that the number of times you update the application on the iPhone will impact the battery life and maybe shorten it by day if you update the report once a day or more often. Other than that it works really great and gives me much more information about activity levels and sleep patterns that I never had before.

UP Weekly : Report for the Week

– 39 m /night
– 510 steps/day
You got the most sleep
Saturday
7 h 9 m
This week’s average sleep
6 h 13 m
You hit your goal
0 times
Average bedtime
12:02 am
Uninterrupted Sleep
3 nights
Average wake time
6:49 am
Your best day of steps
Saturday
9,624 steps
This week’s average steps
4,407 steps/day
You hit your goal
0 times
Idle watch

UP Weekly : You were most idle

8 pm – 9 pm
Total distance
14.2 miles
Exercising consistently can make you happier…
Exercise releases endorphins, the feel good chemicals in your brain. People
who workout regularly are happier, so get after it!
Having trouble reading this email? View it in your
browser.

For more exercise ideas, click here.

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Load Pacer onto Your Iphone

January 8th, 2014 paulr Posted in Exercise No Comments »

load pacer onto your iphoneWe just added a new app onto our iPhone 5, which takes advantage of the A7 chip in the iPhone to keep track of our activity during the day. It tracks your steps every day using a combination of motion, GPS if turned on, WiFi readings and tower connections for data service. There is a free version of the app as well as a paid version with more features.

We found that with the GPS turned on, it really used the battery power and I needed to charge the phone more often. We are still testing to see how accurate this new app is from Pacer. I turned the GPS off and also the location service feature on the iPhone for this app off as well. The battery is lasting much longer and the app seems to be reporting the steps I take accurately. I also recently upgraded to an iPhone 6 from the 5 model. These apps work much better on this version of iPhone and seemed to be more optimized for to maintain battery life.

Pacer App

I have been using the Pacer app for about a month and I am very satisfied with it. I carry my iPhone everywhere so it tracks all of my steps quite well. It also does not seem to matter where I have it. It tracks just as well when it is in my pants pocket as well as in a shirt or coat pocket. This is a great app if you want to get an idea of how far you are walking each day.

Note that it is not 100% accurate, but it is good enough to provide an indication of how active you are each day. You can also record your blood pressure and weight each day to provide a record of these areas. The app can also provide a graph going back 30 days of all of these areas or much longer if you pay for the upgrade. So far we are pretty happy with the free version, but may upgrade to gain access to the historical information that is saved within the app.

Track Blood Pressure with Pacer App

While the Pacer App will not take your blood pressure, it can record your blood pressure results and provide a graph of them over time. Use a separate blood pressure monitor and record the results in the app so that you have a record of the results to show your doctor the next time you visit. It is an excellent way of keeping track of blood pressure, your heart rate and also your weight. While having these results saved, you can only look at the graphs for the past 30 days. you will need to pay for an upgrade to see 6 month graphs and also one year graphs.

For more information about exercise and how to get started, click here.

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Pacer results

January 8th, 2014 paulr Posted in Exercise 1 Comment »

I’ve walked 2116 steps with Pacer today! #Pacerstats http://t.co/02Oc7HeZcK. This is a great app that runs in the background on your smart phone.

pacer resultsThe App called Pacer is installed on my iPhone and apparently makes use of a chip on the iPhone called the A7. it is geared to measuring motion and also using GPS data to help measure how many steps are taken by the person carrying the iPhone. This is a little known feature that seems to work quite well based on several months of use. It is not totally accurate, but it is certainly within the proper level of accuracy for users to feel confident about tracking  the amount of activity each day. I noticed that when I am biking, pacer keeps track of how far I have traveled although I have no idea if it is accurate or not. The results for the day tend to skew the results for the week and all trends. Bottom line though is that it is recording activity which is really what I am after with it.

Pacer results – Location of the iPhone

According to the APP documentation, there is no right or wrong place to wear or carry the iPhone. What we have found over the past week or so is that it does seem to make a difference regarding where you wear it. Although I have yet to find the sweet spot in terms of where to carry the iPhone, it is working and seems to measure about 90% of the steps. You can also track blood pressure, heart rate and keep track of all of these measures to help manage your over all health. I tend ot just carry the iPhone in my pocket and it seems to work just fine. The battery does seem to go down fairly quickly because I have the GPS turned on which apparently not necessary for the chip to work and deliver results of my days activity.

If you have used this app and have comments, let us know what you think and any hints you might have regarding how to improve accuracy of the APP. Apple products are getting better and better all of the time. For more information about pacer results and getting exercise, click here.

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Couch Potato – Sitting Disease

May 7th, 2013 paulr Posted in Exercise No Comments »

couch potato Sitting can Kill YouYou probably have heard the term couch potato, but not sitting disease. It strikes most people who have desk jobs or spend a lot of time in front of the computer, sometimes many hours. If you kept track of the number of hours you spend sitting vs. being active, even if it is just a walk around the block, you would find that a higher percentage of your time is spent in front of the computer or just sitting down watching TV. Then there is the time spent in the car while you commute to work. prior to computers you would have to run errands and actually leave the house instead of paying bills online etc.

If this describes you and your current activity level, then you have the new disease called sitting disease.

Researchers all over the world including Australia and England have completed studies which suggests that if this describes you, not only do you have sitting disease, you also have a far greater likely hood of developing other diseases related to inactivity and weight gain. In fact you have an 18% higher chance of dying from cardio vascular disease as a result.

Doctors are recommending that you get up and move around, stretch every 30 minutes and actually walk around the office , your home whatever, but get moving on a regular basis.

From Couch Potato – Get Moving

Here are some simple ideas for getting moving during the day which can help you avoid the effects of sitting disease.

  • Stretching, turning, and bending.
  • Exercise in addition to  your workout.
  • Mix standing and sitting while working.
  • Take regular breaks from the desk.
  • Pretend it’s 1985, walk instead of sending an email.
  • Learn new habits.
  • Stand up at the office.
  • Take Advantage of new technology.
  • Walk at the end of your work day
  • Walk instead of  commuting by car
  • Stand up while watching television.

More Detail

Stretching, turning, and bending – whenever you have the opportunity and a few minutes of time, try  this simple workout even if it is only for five minutes to stretch the muscles and increase your heart rate.

Exercise in addition to  your workout – don’t just exercise during your workout. Use opportunities to walk up the stairs instead of using the elevator, walk further to the car and go for walks on a daily basis to add to your main exercise workout routine.

Mix standing and sitting while working – if you sit a lot on the job, stand up whenever you can. For example if you are on the phone stand up while you are listening or talking to stretch your legs and move about.

Take regular breaks from the desk – walk down the hallway and back, walk to a colleagues desk instead of calling, take the stairs instead of the elevator, and just get up and stretch at least once every hour.

Walk more Often

Pretend it’s 1985, walk instead of sending an email – walk to a colleagues desk instead of sending an email or calling. Meet somewhere for a coffee and walk to the location, avoid the elevator.

Learn new habits – look for different ways to exercise and build it into your regular routine. Stand up at the office, stand up while watching TV, walk to the corner store, walk at night, walk to work, walk from the back of the parking lot and so on.

Stand up at the office – whenever you can to stretch your legs and move about. Have your computer terminal elevated so that you can stand instead of sitting, stand up when talking on the phone, or use hands free and walk around the office while on the phone.

Take Advantage of new technology – use hands free technology to allow you to walk while talking, monitor your steps every day and use counters to keep a consistent distance every day.

Walk at the end of your work day – walk an extra bus stop, walk home, take the stairs, etc to increase the distance you walk every day to increase circulation.

Walk instead of  commuting by car – if you can walk to work, other wise take the bus or rapid transit and walk an extra bus stop

Stand up while watching television – stand while watching TV, iron your clothes, do your exercise while watching, arrange for your computer to be elevated while working at home etc.

These are all excellent methods of increasing your activity level without placing unreasonable demands on your time or your system. You will be amazed at how many calories you will burn off every day by doing these extra activities and avoid sitting disease. For more information about exercise, click here.

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Exercise Training Program

September 1st, 2012 paulr Posted in Exercise No Comments »

Exercise Training ProgramA previous post talked about joining Goodlife Gyms and how important it was to go with a partner and just get out their and do it.  Well I wanted to spend a bit more time on my chosen exercise training program to give people a feel for what is possible for pretty much everyone.

Exercise Training Program – My Goals

Your trainer will start off by trying to ascertain your goals or reasons for joining the gym. You may want to build muscle, improve your cardio, or strengthen your respiratory systems. In my case my goals or preferences were ; 1) improve my respiratory system ; 2  Improve my endurance and cardio and 3) lose 20 pounds.

Now if I do not lose the weight, but have a lot more stamina and respiratory functions in 3 months time, I will feel that I have succeeded. You always must have goals so that you can focus your training program accordingly. This is a starting place and it is expected that you will improve over time. Do more rep’s, go faster, lift heavier weights and in general improve.

Broad Exercise Training Program

In my case, I am doing a 40 minute cardio exercise training program to start with. My warm up is part of this 40 minute cardio program. Basically my plan is to do 20 minutes on the treadmill while keeping my heart rate in the 70% zone for my age and then do another 20 minutes on the stair master machine.  Then I am focusing on some muscle toning and development which involves the arms and shoulders as one group , the torso as another area and finally the legs as another basic group to focus on.

Let’s get Down to the Details of My Training Program

  • Each day do 40 minutes of warmup and cardio
  • Day 1 should include chin ups and push ups along with sit ups to work the arms and the torso along with the circuit of 9 machines that focus on the upper body.
  • Day 2 should include squats, lunges and more chin ups or sit ups along with the circuit of 9 machines that focus on the lower body.
  • In addition, the number of reps should be in groups of 3, with 8 reps each time. By number eight you should be just able to complete the last rep before your muscles give out. Take a rest and then repeat the 8 reps 2 more times.
  • Allow your muscles to recover from the strain by alternating between upper body and lower body.
  • Lastly only add weights when you find yourself doing 10 or more reps easily.

This is a pretty good program if I can keep it up. It should take about an hour each time, not including travel time. Also in my case I should only be exercising no more than 4 or 5 times a week so that my body has time to recover.

As I get stronger, I will do one or more of the following:

  • Increase the speed of the treadmill
  • Increase the speed of the stair master
  • Add more weight and continue with the same number of reps

For exercises such as push ups, sit ups, etc, doing more reps is the only answer in this case. Hope this helps our readers. Don’t forget to tailor your program to you body conditioning level and follow your trainers suggestions.

Can I stay With the Program

This is really the tough part. I have outlined a pretty good program for me personally, but the real test is whether I can stay with this program. I was pretty good up until the end of June of this year and then fell off the wagon so to speak. I caught a bit of a cold which developed into a bad asthma attack and pretty soon I had broken the habit of going every 2nd day to the gym. After two months I am not going at all which is not a good thing. As i sit here and write this post, my wife and I have decided that as of Sept 1st, we are going to restart our exercise program and go every 2nd day.

It has not been a total loss however. I recovered from the asthma attack in mid July and then began a lot of the outside work around the home that I do every year. I do not believe in hiring someone to do the work. I can do all of the landscaping myself just as well as the experts and I get some great exercise as well from doing it. Cutting the lawn, trimming trees, planting shrubs and the big project building a fence.

But as of Sept 1st, all of the major work will be done and it is time to go back to the gym and renew my exercise training program. I will let you know how it goes on a future post. For more information about exercise and how good it is for you, click here.

 

 

 

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Fitness for Older Adults

June 7th, 2012 paulr Posted in Exercise 1 Comment »

Fitness for Older AdultsWe are staying at a resort and have an amazing fitness story to tell. This particular resort caters to all ages of people and one couple has caught our attention because they are in their late 80’s. They swim almost a kilometer in the pool 5 days out of 7! We have been urging people on this website to just get started. Go for a walk around the block every day and build up from there. Just get moving and increase that movement every day to get in shape , to lose weight over the long term and to improve your overall health. This couple is an example of fitness for older adults. Many people also rent bicycles and ride every day. Once you get started and get over the sore muscle part of the adaptation, you will begin to look forward to every day getting outside and going for a walk, biking, swimming or whatever your preference is. Here is how they got started and why we wanted to write about fitness for adults today.

Fitness for Older Adults Training should start Slow

They did not begin swimming until their mid 70’s and they taught themselves to do the crawl at the age of 74. They started by swimming one length of the pool. This was all that they could manage and over time have built up from there. They believe in  fitness for older adults and try to swim almost every day. They do not swim fast, but they keep moving and they do not stop to catch their breath. We found that this was a really amazing story. They also walk a lot, in addition to their swimming. This is part of their fitness regime for the older adult. They are really the poster shot for older adults who want to strengthen their cardio systems.

They get out and go for a walk together every day for several miles, hold hands and enjoy life. If you were to look at them you might think that they were not in particularly good shape. They are both slightly overweight, however they have excellent respiratory capacity and they have a lot of energy for people who are in their late 80’s. They are not stuck in the lazy boy chair and can walk up stairs easily. We want to be like them when we get older.

People in Their 50’s Cannot Keep Up

At the pool were we swim, there are many lounge chairs around the pool with tables and chairs as well. It is an outdoor pool in a sunny warm climate of course, so it is very easy to swim every day. Many of these chairs are filled with 50 year old’s and up. Sadly they spend their days laying on these chairs sun tanning and not moving at all except to get into the pool once and awhile to cool off.

They watch this couple swim back and forth in the pool, admire them even and comment about how their swimming technique is. Most of these people will not make into their 80’s with their current track record for exercise, unless they change their ways , get moving and lose a few pounds.

We swim in the pool and following this 85 year old couple’s approach are also swimming almost a kilometer as well. You feel great when you get out of the water. we started the same way although we were able to do more laps at the beginning and just built up after that by swimming a little bit more every day.

This is the best way to get started. Just begin with a short walk or in this case a swim and build up as you become comfortable with the level of exercise. If you have motivational stories such as this, please leave us a comment. Our readers and I will enjoy hearing about these fitness stories for older adults. For more information about fitness and lifestyle, click here.

 

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Goodlife Gym

March 7th, 2012 paulr Posted in Exercise No Comments »

Joining the Goodlife GYM

Well I have been preaching on this web site about exercising and getting into a habit were you should watch your diet and exercise every day. I gained a little weight over the past few months and I thought it was time to practice what I preached. In our area, there are a number of Gym’s that we can join, however Goodlife is close to us and really has an awesome gym with all of the equipment, spinning classes and programs that anyone would need regardless of what shape they are in.

My wife also goes to this gym so it is much easier to go with a partner as well rather than go to a separate gym somewhere else. They make it really easy to join and once you have signed up, they give you a brand new gym bag that says GoodLife on it of course and they also give you a one hour consultation with an instructor as well. We will talk more about this a bit later, but I want to emphasize that this is something you should take advantage of and really listen to what they have to say. Following their advice can mean the difference between an effective workout vs. working out and not getting much for the effort you put in.

Why I joined the Goodlife Gym

I mentioned earlier that I gained a few pounds. This is true and since it is winter here were we really do not do a lot of outside activity, it is pretty easy to be a couch potato and put the pounds on.  The other reason was that I was sitting in my office trying thinking about topics for this blog and I thought why not talk about my own life and why I needed to join the gym. Practice what you preach and all of that.

It is so easy to do nothing. I am also the type that unless I motivated in some way, I probably will not work out. In my case once I joined the gym and I am paying money every two weeks for the membership, I feel I should get my monies worth out of it. Aside from wanting to lose a few pounds, I will go because I paid for it and do not want to pay for something that I do not lose.

My plans for Exercise

I mentioned earlier about taking advantage of the training session that comes with a new membership. This is something that I strongly recommend that you do. They are going to try to sell you more training sessions, however my advice there is to avoid this unless you really think you would benefit from this type of one on one kind of session. You can get the basics from initial free first session.

In my case, the plan is the following:

  • 40 min’s of cardio on the treadmill and the stair master machine each time.
  • On alternating days work the arms and the shoulders, then work the legs and the torso
  • Arms – Push ups, chin ups and weight lifting
  • Legs – Squats, lunges and sit ups along with some weights for the legs
  • While lifting weights, you should do 8 rep’s with the last rep really challenging you to complete. In other words use the right amount of weight that allows you to just complete 8 reps. Rest, then complete it 2 more times

Going with a Partner

We have talked about this suggestion in other posts, however this is really important. If you need help to get motivated to go the gym, then going with a partner is going to help you become more consistent in your workouts. We all have  our down time when we just do not feel like going to the gym. If a partner is also motivated to go, then they are going to encourage you to go and vice versa when they do not feel like it.

This is so important, because most of us just lose touch with our plans from time to time and besides it is more fun to go with someone you know than going by yourself all of the time. Be positive and take turns driving or calling each other. If husband and wife are going together this can also work out really well too.

Well in subsequent posts, we will let you know how we do, both with going to the gym and also how much weight we are losing. My objective is to lose 20 pounds! For more information about exercise programs, click here.

 

 

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Baby Boomers need to Exercise the Brain

February 21st, 2012 paulr Posted in Exercise No Comments »

Baby Boomers need to Exercise the BrainOur last post discussed baby boomers and exercise. Our theme was get moving, regardless of what kind of exercise it was, just get moving. This post is about Baby Boomers need to Exercise the Brain, which needs to be challenged and exercised. Admittedly, doing physical exercise will help your brain and give it lots of oxygen. This is a good thing for everyone and we strongly encourage the whole “get moving” notion.

But you also need to focus on the brain to keep it alert and capable of getting your through the day, recalling events and names and avoiding the onset of short term memory loss.  Physical exercise is great , but it is not enough.  You need to do things that are going to make you think, make you remember things and to help you solve problems. In effect you need to exercise the brain and do some or all of the things you used to do to maintain its function. You may never have been good at remembering names, but could do addition easily in your head without the aid of a calculator. You will lose that ability unless you continue doing math in your head. Examples include adding up the cash at the cash register and checking your change etc.  We all slow down as the years drag on and so we must do something to stay alert. Your mantra: Baby Boomers need to Exercise the Brain.

What Kinds of Things Can Help Baby Boomers need to Exercise

There many things that people can do to help them stay alert. The worst thing you can do is to allow yourself to vegetate.  Here is a short sample list of  possible suggestions. If you have ideas why not also leave us comments to provide additional assistance to some of our readers.

  • Continue working – also helps with your budget
  • Volunteer
  • Take the lead at work or volunteering – solve problems
  • Do Crosswords
  • Take on large complex projects
  • Read, Write and build blogs on the internet
  • Go back to school

These items admittedly are a bit general and obvious, so we know there are lots more. The point is you have to work at it and you have to challenge yourself too. Don’t go easy on yourself, in fact push yourself mentally beyond the limits.

Be Careful of Stress

You can over do the challenge part of this activity.  For example, if you take on a job and it is giving you everything you were looking for in terms of challenge, learning, social , extra money but the stress level is too much, it may be time to move onto something else or reduce your workload. Stress can also cause damage to your body and shorten your life.

Even volunteering can be stressful. Many times I have heard that volunteers start out with a couple of hours a week and gradually it increases to almost a full-time job, without pay and many times without a lot of thanks. In fact many volunteers find that they have lots of people to tell them what to do and how to do it and not enough actual workers.

Either don’t let yourself fall into this kind of situation or if you find that it has happened and causing a lot of stress, back out. Sure you will get complaints, but push back and ask why these same people are not offering more. You are retired and looking for a full and satisfying long term life, not another stress filled job. That is why you retired in the first place.

Well that’s all we have to say on this subject, comments are welcome. For more information about exercise, click here.

 

 

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Baby Boomers need to Move

February 7th, 2012 paulr Posted in Exercise No Comments »

Baby Boomers need to MoveSounds cliche, but the message everyone should be getting is that they need to get moving. It really does not matter what you do as long as you are moving and getting the heart rate up a bit.  When we were young we did not need to worry about exercise too much, we were always doing something. Now baby boomers need to move and increasingly younger people need exercise. We are all just consuming way too much food. This post will focus on the baby boomers who are retiring in huge numbers and looking forward to easy relaxing days, were life is good and you can pursue your dreams. This is clearly the wrong message and baby boomers really  need to give some serious thought about how they are going to live their lives after they finish work and even before they retire. We believe that you need to not only exercise the body, you also need to continually exercise the brain as well to keep everything in good shape to help you enjoy your retirement. We will discuss exercising the brain in our next post. Watch for it , Baby Boomers need to Exercise the Brain.

Baby Boomers need to Move

The main focus is on keeping moving so that you get exercise. Why is this so important?

An analogy will help to explain.

Think of your arteries as a small stream that flows through your neighborhood. We all have seen them at one time or another. In dry weather when there is little rain, these streams dry up to a trickle and they get clogged with debris that somehow finds its way into the stream bed and plants grow to clog the water flow.  This is your artery while you are sitting on the couch and your heart is not pumping much blood through your arteries. They is not much blood flow and the arteries become clogged with debris called plaque. Your muscles also shrink and become weak as well. Now when a storm comes along, there is a lot more water and the stream expands to clean out the debris and wash it away. Again this is an example of what your arteries go through when you exercise.

Your heart pumps more and stronger forcing blood through the arteries and delivering blood and oxygen to the surrounding muscles.  What a difference between the two scenarios? This is why we all have to keep moving doing some kind of exercise at least once a day. Go for a walk, bicycle, go to the gym. Do something for at least 20 minutes a day and build up from there. You will feel stronger in no time and feel much better as a result. We have included a list of things you can do to get started. If you are just beginning, start small and build up as your strength and stamina improve. Find something you enjoy and stay with it. Pretty soon it will become a habit and if you do not go and exercise your body and mind will tell you that you are missing something. We all want to live to a hundred and be healthy too. Keep moving and you will vastly improve your chances of getting there.

Here is our list for Baby Boomers need to Move

  • Walk around the block
  • Walk in the park
  • Walk up 10 flights of stairs
  • Go hiking on trails
  • Go to the gym every day
  • Do 20 minutes of exercise of some kind every day
  • Mix it up so you do not get bored
  • Play tennis, squash, hand ball, or racquet ball
  • Go biking – any kind of bike – mountain, road bike or high speed bikes
  • Play sports
  • Do your own work around the home – rake leaves, cut the lawn etc
  • Park your car a long way from the mall door
  • Walk instead of taking the car

There are probably hundreds of other ways to get some exercise. Just remember the main thing is to keep moving and get your heart rate up for at least 20 minutes a day. And if you really want to improve your chances of living longer cut down on your weight by eating less and eating low calorie foods.  Start by embracing the statement, Baby Boomers need to Move.

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Exercise and Live Long

September 21st, 2011 paulr Posted in Exercise 1 Comment »

Exercise and Live Long Slowing Metabolism with AgeRecent studies by scientists are uncovering a phenomenon that points to the an exercise and live long strategy. Exercise appears to ensure that more blood gets to organs and tissues. They are cleaned of impurities and they receive more oxygen, which contributes to overall health and longer life. Of course like anything else you can overdue exercise. You can begin to have to much wear and tear on muscles, joints and ligaments. For most people it means exercising moderately 4 or 5 times a week with out enduring extreme wear and tear on your body.

The scientists are reporting that not only that signs of premature aging were halted. They were even reversed — in virtually every tissue and organ in the bodies of exercised mice.

So instead of taking a pill or eating some exotic food, all you need to do is follow an exercise regime and you will longer  than your peers who do not. Your motto should be – Exercise and Live Long.

The particular studies that these findings are being based on consisted of allowing mice to receive regular exercise in one group . While in another group, they were allowed to lead a sedentary lifestyle. The mice that exercised, were much more lively , had more energy and were much more alert than the sedentary mice. They also looked more healthy as well with sleek shiny coats of fur compared to the group.

Exercising 3 times a week for perhaps 45 to 60 minutes a week is sufficient to achieve these stupendous results. Anti-aging effects of endurance exercise on the brain, skin, hair, gonads (ovaries and testicles), kidneys, spleen and liver were significant.

Exercise and Live Long – Real Life Example

Recently a friend of mind was talking about his father who had experienced a slight stroke. He was hospitalized and then caught a disease while in the hospital. The net result was that he was in bed on his back for 3 months with no exercise at all while he recovered. He was then shipped to a long term care facility.

He had lost a great deal of muscle mass, and strength. Her fatherinlaw was lethargic and had very little energy. Fortunately for him, his daughter in law was a former critical care nurse. She knew that she needed to get him up and walking.

They started slow with a walker, to the door of his room and back. This is really how bad he was. Later he progressed out the door and to the end of the hall. All of the time rebuilding his strength and increasing his heart rate just a little bit.
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Sitting can Kill You

July 21st, 2011 paulr Posted in Exercise, Health 1 Comment »

Sitting can Kill YouWell, it’s official, there is a study out now that concludes: Sitting all day is bad for you. This includes the people who sit in offices all day long, sit in the car or bus going to and home from work and sitting in front of the TV at night until bedtime! We all do it and even our kids are sitting more than they ever did. They are too busy plying video games instead of being outside playing with their friends and playing sports. We see this as an ever increasing epidemic of over weight people in our society and many do not realize that this inactivity literally can kill you.  There are many reasons for this and we will explore a few of them in this post. Read on and let us know what you think of our comments.  We enjoy hearing from readers. Why is this so?

  • You burn less calories, so you get fat
  • You do not use your muscles, so they get weak
  • You do not exercise your heart, so it gets weak
  • Your blood does not circulate as well, so all kinds of bad things happen
  • Your lung capacity decreases, so you cannot exert yourself as much

We did not really need a bunch of  “inactivity researchers” to figure this out, since it is pretty obvious when you compare active people to someone who sits much of the day, but now a study has been completed that proves it. Are we lazy or just get into a rut that causes us to avoid exertion?

Sitting can Kill You – Why is This So?

Basically, energy into your body is either burned off in exercise or converted to fat. People who sit all day will convert more food to fat than those people who are active, even if it just means going for a walk.

If you eat the same amount as someone who is active, the person who is inactive will gain weight! If you eat more calories than what you burn off even by sitting, you will also gain weight!  In addition your overall health is going to decline.

In the study, neither group exercised or participated in exercise programs. The active group just did not sit. They walked, they stood, and they took stairs instead of the elevator etc, while the other group sat all of the time and avoided any chance of exerting themselves. These people took the elevator, the escalator, even parked their car as close as they could to the entrance to the office or the mall.

They both ate the same amount of food. The inactive people gained weight, while the active folks did not or at least not as much! Being inactive doesn’t just make you fat. It makes you sick, too. The conditioning of the active people certainly did not put them in the status of being fit, but they could withstand more exertion for a longer period than those who were inactive.

Sitting can Kill You – What happens when you Sit:

  • Electrical activity in the muscles drops
  • Leg muscles begin to atrophy
  • Your calorie-burning rate immediately plunges
  • Insulin effectiveness drops within a single day
  • The risk of being obese increases
  • Cholesterol increases, which could cause heart attacks

Over a lifetime, sitting really can kill you:

  • Men who sit 6 hours a day are 20% more likely to die that men who sit 3 hours a day
  • Women who sit 6 hours a day are 40% more likely to die

Another bummer: You can’t counter the harmful effects of sitting by exercising once in a while. You actually have to stop sitting.  Or at least start moving around more. Once muscles atrophy (get weak and reduce in size), it takes a long time to rebuild them with exercise and activity. The only way to avoid this occurring it to stay active!

So get off your ass!

Go for a walk on a regular basis, go to the gym a minimum of 3 times a week, walk around the block, park your car a long ways from the entrance and walk. Find ways that will help you become more active.

Comments are welcome, our readers will appreciate any constructive comments you have about what sitting can do to you.

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New Years Resolutions – Lose Weight

January 1st, 2011 paulr Posted in Diet, Exercise, NY's Resolutions 1 Comment »

Lose WeightLet’s face it we all gain weight over the holidays. There are parties to go to and then there are the meals, not to mention all of the snacks that are everywhere. We consume thousands of calories with the drinks, the food and the deserts and lets not forget the snacks and munchies that seem to be available everywhere.

Unless you are a robot, it is really tough to avoid or resist all of these temptations. We all love to snack and when the food is so good, why not. Now it is time to make some new years resolutions, but will we stick to it?

New Years Resolutions – Lose Weight

I am sure you have made New Years resolutions in the past and you are probably going to make some this year as well. I know that I have and I will make some more resolutions which I will probably break within a few days of having thought about them or even gone as far as writing them down.  Doomed to failure , right!

Well they do not have to be broken right away. Many people some really drastic resolutions that call for them to make significant changes in their lifestyle. These are really difficult to keep. There are too many temptations and let’s face it our will power is just not up to it. Who wants to turn down that piece of chocolate cake or that extra helping of food.

My solution this year is to make smaller resolutions that are aimed at something I can actually complete. For example, instead of saying I am going to lose 50 pounds this year, I am going to focus on losing one pound a week and I am going to utilize small plates at supper which will limit the amount of food that I can pile on my plate! Hopefully this will work and if I lose some weight or half the weight I am trying to lose, well I will consider it to be a success.

Small Portions

It is all about limiting the number of calories we intake. If we can eat smaller portions pretty soon our bodies and our stomachs will tell our brains that we are full after we have eaten a small amount. Using a small plate is one way of doing this, so that you are forced to think about filling up a second time.

Stay away from buffets, were the natural tendency is to always eat more than you planned. I always take a little bit of everything, but before you know it I have an overloaded plate! This is where the small plate really works well. By the time you finish the first plate and are heading back for the second you are going to feel full and you just may avoid a second helping.

Most of us do not have the will power to stick with it, so playing these little tricks on our selves, is a great way to condition our bodies to expect less. Try it.

Exercise

We cannot write a post about New Years resolutions without talking about exercise as well. Many people will go out and buy a membership at a gym, only to quit a month later. Actually the gyms love these people, because they pay for a full year and then never use the facilities. Talk about profit margin!

Get out there and move. Walking around the block, walk around the mall if it is cold outside, whatever works for you, but move and get some exercise. If the gym works and you will stay with it, it is a really great way to exercise and get it done, but you do need to form the habit of exercising daily for at least 20 minutes a day!

Diet

Lastly there is diet. New Years resolutions cannot just be “I am going to lose weight”, or ” I am going to lose 10 pounds”. There has to be more than that. It has to encompass, eating less, exercising and of course diet. You might eat smaller portions, however if you are still eating high fat content foods, then you are probably going to lose some weight if you are reducing your portion size, but you could lose a lot more if you watch your diet and eat  food that is going to help you lose weight.

Eat salads and low fat foods, which means you have to limit what you eat that is deep fried, food that has a lot of sugar in them etc.

Good luck with your New Years resolutions. Remember – smaller portion sizes, exercise 3 times a week, eat a proper diet and set reasonable achievable goals! Comments and suggestions are welcome!

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Exercising When You Are Overweight

December 7th, 2010 paulr Posted in Exercise 1 Comment »

Exercising When You Are OverweightExercising When You are Overweight, how do you ever get started? Especially when you are uncomfortable and you feel that everyone is looking at you. You may already feel emotionally not up to the stairs and the lack of support, so how do you start and lose weight?

Who wants to go to a gym with lots of buff bodies looking at themselves in the mirrors? and you probably do not want to go to some sort of exercise class for the same reason. If you have you probably noticed that all the slim trim people are at the front of the class and the overweight people are at the back. There are still lots of mirrors and you cannot keep up with them anyway! It is very difficult to get started and a lot of people just give up and don’t bother, however this may be the wrong thing to do for your long-term health situation.

Exercising When You Are Overweight – A Turning Point

We all need a turning point that inspires us to lose weight and bear the pain that you know is coming. For some it is family, for others it is that final embarrassment at the office. Whatever it is you must be committed to losing weight and working hard to lose those pounds. It can be terrifying to get started, however if you have a buddy it can be a lot easier. The buddy should be someone similar to you with similar goals. Combine exercise with diet and the pounds will shed quickly with a regular intense exercise program and a controlled diet.

Small Steps Pay Off

If you cannot bear going to some sort of organized class, start by walking around the block. Each day as you get stronger, begin walking faster and further to build up your strength and stamina. Once you have lost a few pounds and have more stamina, then you can consider joining some sort of organized activity.

With a buddy and working out 3 to 4 times a week, you can lose weight and become more fit. Commit to a  year, working out three to five days a week and by then you will have lost weight and will have formed a habit of working out several times a week.

Danger: Emotional Hurdles Ahead

When it came to exercise, many obese women were more likely to say they were self-conscious, afraid of injury, daunted by the effort, and to report minor aches and pains. And they were less likely to be exercising a year later. While this is pretty common, you just have to push through all of this pain and discomfort and try to maintain that weight loss schedule.

Get Support

We have mentioned having a buddy to help support you. The closer you are in weight and commitment, the more likely a buddy system will work. If you do not have a buddy that can work with you and motivate you, meet some other people at the gym who are looking for support or work with a trainer to help motivate you while you are losing weight.

Most people can get to the gym on most days, but there is always a day or two in the week that you may just not feel up to it. This is where a buddy can really help and motivate you to do that workout.

You should always see your doctor as well to make sure the kind of exercise you are planning is suitable for someone of your age and weight.

Easy Does It

If you are prone to any of the following such as  high blood pressure, diabetes, or be prone to shortness of breath, dizziness, nausea, and overheating, build up slowly by pushing yourself a bit further every day. Being too aggressive can cause some of these problems above to become worse.

Even on the biggest loser, these people who are very overweight, are monitored very closely by doctors and there are medical staff around to deal with any emergencies. You will not have the same kind of support so it is important to go a bit more slowly and build up your strength gradually.

Dos and Don’ts

  • Get fitted with good shoes. For instance, running store staff can analyze your gait and make recommendations.
  • Wear comfortable clothing. Chafing is common in the leg and groin area.
  • Include strength training eventually. But to lose weight, focus on aerobic training in the beginning.
  • Consider a monitoring system to track weight, what you eat, and exercise. Many smart phones have applications or you can use online systems. Pedometers are helpful to get you moving.

But:

  • Don’t do high-impact exercise in the beginning. It’s fine to build up to, but jumping in with both feet landing on a hard surface is usually going to hurt something.
  • Don’t compare yourself to others in your class or gym or let feelings of self-consciousness overwhelm you.
  • Don’t be impatient. Don’t look for radical change in a short time or get fixated on big weight loss results like on The Biggest Loser.  As we mentioned earlier these people are very closely monitored and they are totally dedicated to losing weight. They do not have a job or family to worry about while on the biggest loser

The key, is to get moving, move more over time and eat less!

It will be definitely worth it in the end when you shed all those pounds and feel so much better about yourself! Feel free to leave us your comments and suggestions!

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Eat Less – Move More

November 21st, 2010 paulr Posted in Diet, Exercise 5 Comments »

Eat Less - Move MoreThis was a post By Madison Park, CNN on November 12, 2010, which we wanted to repeat on our blog with full acknowledgment, since it incorporates many of the things we have been saying over the past months on our blog. We used the terms Energy In must be less than Energy Out in order to lose weight. Tony Posnanski put it much simpler, ” Eat Less – Move More”. this mantra is useful for everyone who is trying to lose weight or maintain their current weight.

Eat Less – Move More

Here is the post, repeated verbatim!

(CNN) — There were no diet pills, shakes or detoxes. And no, it wasn’t caveman food, grapefruit, Twinkies, Taco Bell or Subway sandwiches.

Tony Posnanski’s 200-pound weight loss was straightforward, almost dull.

“He changed the way I ate,” wrote Posnanski, 34, who went from consuming 10,000 calories a day to 2,400. “I got rid of processed foods. I ate fruits, vegetables, lean meats. It is pretty boring, but the results aren’t boring.”

The basics of weight loss are simple: Eat less. Move more. But consumers still flock to the newest best-seller diets, hormone injections, alleged hunger-controlling cookies, enthralled by glowing testimonials about sumo-to-svelte slim downs.

“There’s nothing sexy about ‘eat your fruits and vegetables,’ ” said Keri Gans, a registered dietitian. “We want to hear something else.”

“Consumers need to understand that health and the ideal body weight are not found from a gimmick. It takes hard work. The end result is long-lasting success.”

This week, a CNN.com story about a professor’s diet experiment went viral, drawing more than 125,000 Facebook shares and more than 1,200 viewer comments. Some blamed portion control for the obesity epidemic in the United States: “People in France have fattening food but are thinner than Americans because they eat moderate portions. It’s how much you eat that matters”

Humor About Slimming Down

Others found humor: “Well, it’s not like Twinkies are food, so no wonder he is losing weight.”

People are attracted to these types of stories for one simple reason, Gans said.

“Most people think if they can eat junk and still lose weight, they’re going to sign up for that,” said Gans, author of the upcoming book “The Small Change Diet.” They don’t realize that losing weight can happen without deprivation or gimmicks.

It’s a lesson that Posnanski learned after trying a slew of diet products. Over-the-counter diet pills made his heart race. Weight-loss shakes left him hungry.

At 400 pounds, Posnanski learned he might never be healthy enough to have children with his wife, Rebecca. His doctor said he needed bariatric surgery. In February 2008, he vowed to change.

Posnanski, an iReport contributor in Orlando, Florida, stopped spending $30 during 3 a.m. drive-thru binges at Taco Bell. He stopped polishing off boxes of pizza and buckets of chicken.

Reduce Portion Sizes

He practiced what he had always heard — he reduced portion sizes and ate healthy.

There was no immediate difference, he said. “My pants were still large after that first day. But I felt like I could do this. It was different.

“Before, I would tell myself I’m going to do this for a little while. That day, I was like, ‘You know what — I’m done. This is the rest of my life.’ ”

That’s the key to weight loss, experts say. It can’t be a temporary fix; the changes have to be lifelong.

“It’s like the tortoise and the hare,” said Dr. Sam Klein, director of the Center for Human Nutrition at the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, Missouri. “You need to be the tortoise here. Rapid, short-term weight loss is not the way to go. It’s the slow, steady approach. Small changes you stick to forever is key.”

A drastic diet of snack cakes helped nutrition professor Mark Haub tried lose 27 pounds in 10 weeks because he reduced his caloric intake.

Critics warned that his over consumption of Twinkies would have long-term consequences and questioned whether such a diet could be sustained.

“Please bear in mind this was a class exercise to illustrate issues and concerns that occur during weight loss,” Haub said. “This project is not to promote a diet.”

The basic premise is that people can lose weight eating anything from Twinkies, apples or baby food, as long as they reduce calories.

“Most people find out on their own. They do the cookie diet or cabbage diet for a week or two, then inevitably, maintaining something that eliminates major food groups [is] just such an unrealistic lifestyle change, it doesn’t work,” said Katherine Zeratsky, a registered dietitian at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota.

That initial weight loss isn’t likely to last.

There are successful plans such as the low-fat diet and the Mediterranean diet that improve cardiovascular and metabolic health while also encouraging a range of healthy foods, Klein said. And programs that bring awareness to portion size such as Weight Watchers can help, because they essentially direct people to reduce calories.

“It’s not taking a single cookie to make you lose weight, a pill or product,” said Gans, a spokeswoman for the American Dietetic Association. “Eat your whole grains to lower cholesterol, fruits and vegetables to prevent cancer. The key to weight loss is about eating and creating a healthy relationship with food.”

For people who hope for shortcuts, Klein said: “There’s no magic bullet to lose weight and keep it off.”

Smaller portion sizes (no fewer than 1,200 calories) and daily physical activity can lower cardiovascular disease risks, he said.

Posnanski, is a former yo-yo dieter and restaurant manager, who gave up what he called “gimmicky” diets. He shared how he has managed to sustain his weight loss:

  • Monitor portions and keep track of food intake
  • Stay away from processed foods, and eat mostly vegetables, fruits, lean meats and whole grains
  • Work out one to two hours a day

“I don’t believe in quick weight-loss diets,” Posnanski said. “I believe in the rest of my life.”

What a great good news story that should motivate all of us. Feel free to leave comments on our blog.

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Common Sense Exercise

January 20th, 2010 paulr Posted in Exercise 1 Comment »

Common Sense ExerciseThis post is all about the approach to common sense exercise. One of the biggest concerns everyone has is how will exercise affect me? Especially when I have not exercised in some time. Will my  heart be able to handle the increased workload? Will my joints withstand the stress of carrying all of the extra weight around while we exercise? Can I withstand the pain of exercise due to sore muscles?

Common Sense Exercise – No Pain , No Gain

We have all heard this statement over and over, applied to many different topics including weight loss. If you have watched the biggest loser, it is obvious that these people are going though significant pain as they work to reduce weight. They are working out a large number of hours every day, with sore muscles, stomach cramps and pushing themselves harder and harder. Although this has great entertainment value, the concern is can their hearts withstand this additional physical stress.

The contestants on the Biggest Loser have a team of doctors monitoring their every move, monitoring the food they take in and monitoring the medications that they need to take. We have seen some people on the biggest loser actually collapse. for the first week, every muscle in their bodies must be sore, although they really do not show or refer to this, but you can be sure they are in a lot of pain.

From a common sense exercise point of view, by far the majority of people do not have this level of support when they begin to exercise. If you join a gym, you will always be asked to sign a document which absolves the gym of any blame should you have some sort of health issue while at the gym.

If you are concerned ask for a doctors assessment and recommendation regarding your exercise level. Start by walking around the block. Depending on the level of your health you may want to start slowly and build up to a more intense level of exercise. If you feel any discomfort other than sore muscles, take a break. Build up slowly and as you control your diet with the common sense diet approach and follow a common sense exercise  approach you will gradually get stronger and lose weight.

Common Sense Exercise – It Takes Time to Lose Weight

Contrary to the TV advertisements that suggest you can lose significant amounts of weight in a short time period and look like some of the hunks and beauties that advertise these products, no one can make that transition so fast. These people have practiced portion control and exercise programs all of their lives in order to look like the way they do on TV. It is just impossible to change your body to look like that in a short amount of time regardless of whether it is an exercise machine of some sort or a pill or liquid that is being advertised.

The message they are giving to you is that you should buy this product to look like the way these people do. It just will not happen, in the time frame they are suggesting. It takes hard work and focused effort on exercise as well as diet to get to look the way these people look.

Common Sense Exercise Programs

Note that we are not saying “Don’t buy these products”. We are saying that you should manage your expectations regarding these products. If you purchase some sort of weight bearing machine that slides under your bed when not in use, the machine could actually be an excellent addition to your exercise program.

Use the new exercise machine every day or at least 3 times a week and push yourself to your limit every time. Over time you will begin to see results. Add to these exercises to increase your level of fitness and as your strength builds you will be able to do more, exercise more and lift heavier weights.

Using this type of approach will vastly improve your chances of losing weight and keeping it off. One of the most important elements to keep in mind is that you must manage your own expectations. The TV advertisements build up unrealistic expectations and everyone gets disappointed when the results do not immediately come. Set some realistic guidelines and goals and then work towards achieving them over a reasonable amount of time.

Exercise is a Lifetime Challenge

For most of us, with the temptations we have, the life style we lead, exercise is becoming a lifetime activity. Whether you go to the gym, take the dog for a walk, bicycle or ski, everyone of us should know that we need to do some form of exercise all of our lives.

When we were kids, we participated in various sports and were always active. As adults we become more sedentary and burn less calories as a result. Most of us do not reduce the number of calories that we intake and as a result we tend to gain weight. Many people will gain a minimum of 10 pounds every decade, while those of us with eating problems may gain much more than that.

If you want to maintain your weight, the equation is pretty simple. Calories that you eat must be either burned off through daily activities, burned off through exercise or they will add to your bodies fat content. There is no getting around that fact. 2000 calories in less 1500 burned off by daily activities and exercise leaves 500 calories that your body will add on as fat! This is just a simple example to make a point. Individuals need to gauge your food intake with your activity level to assess how much exercise you need and how much you need to decrease your caloric intake.

In summary start slow and build up your exercise routine, stay with it, set up a program for yourself to follow and limit your caloric intake. Get a doctors assessment if you are at all concerned about your health level and your ability to exercise.

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