Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Do You Find Yourself Sitting For Long Periods?

Perhaps at a desk, bookkeeping, photo editing, blogging..... You really need to consider what you are doing to your core. What I am about to suggest might not go with every decor. (See how well it goes with mine? And no, I am not painting my oak office armoir. I think it looks fine like it is.) But it is great for core strength building while sitting for long periods. Will also encourage good posture. And if you need a break, you can even stop for a few exercises. :-)

I love my ball. You can get them for 10-20 bucks anywhere. This one came from Walmart for 10. I used our black & decker air compresser to add air to it. I had one from a yoga or pilates kit once. It never held air. This one does. When I am not using it, I keep a Pilates Magic Ring under it to keep it from rolling all over the place. That is 15-25 bucks. You might can find one at a yard sale of thrift store. I would buy the ball new.

It will take practice to maintain balance on the ball for long periods. At first, you may even be sore if you spend a lot of time using it as a chair at your desk. But it will pay off. You back will stop bothering you, you will sit correctly, it tones the buns, you have to keep the core erect and engaged in an isometric contraction. And you will find yourself rolling back and forth on your heels... It does become very comfortable.

I will get my DH to take photos of me using the ball as a chair while working at my desk this weekend.

Have a Wonderful and Blessed Day!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008


I have had a couple of people recently post who are vegans or 'almost' vegetarians.

A Vegan eats no product that comes from a being with a face.

A Vegetarian will often eat dairy products.

An "Almost" Vegetarian usually is someone who has access to and likes a lot of fruits and veggies. Will eat some meats on occasion. Usually refrains from red meat and pork or will only eat meat.

I am a carnivore. I lift weights, I have to have a complete protein. I like meat. I limit red meat to no more than once a week, sometimes less. I rarely eat pork of any kind.

If you do a lot of weight lifting, you need protein to repair/build muscles (depending on which theory you follow). Rice and beans just will not do it for me. I am hypothyroid and have had part of my thyroid removed. Soy and soy products are out of the question for me. (And if you have thyroid issues, you need to limit your soy intake as well.)

Whey is a great protein supplement. I look for 100% Whey and it is hard to find. Almost every product has additives, a tad of soy added (sometimes listed as vegetable protein-read your lables and be careful!) There are many brands out there. All are good. I just prefer the kind with less ingredients.

On days that you lift weights (and even on days of rest) you need an additional 20-26 additional grams of protein. That is about 3-4 oz of fish or a lean chicken breast. Or a serving of Whey Protein. Could also be about 4-5 egg whites. It is a good source of protein.

If you are trying to lose weight, avoid the protein bars. They are full of calories. And.... high in sugar.

Have a great day everyone!

BTW, I believe National Bodybuilding Champion, Kelley Nelson, is a Vegan. To read more on Kelley, click here.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Spot Reducing

Many people are are asking me, "How do I lose my stomach fat?", "How do I lose the fat in my hips?" etc. Well, spot reducing is a myth. You lose fat when you lose fat. And it comes off where your body decides to pull it from. (There is really a lot more to it than that, but I do not have time to go into all that right now and that really starts going into courses, certifications, etc.)

Now you can "Spot Tone", but I will get to that at another time.

There are several things you must do to lose fat. Eat less calories than you burn. And I am talking about eating good quality calories. Not cookies and ice cream.

Portion sizes in this country have gotten way out of hand. A portion size is no larger than the palm of your hand. If your portions are larger than that, you are eating too much.

Always eat a complete protein with your carbohydrate. Eat 5 - 6 small meals a day. The protein shake I have posted in an older post can count as one of those meals.

Avoid white stuff! White sugar, white bread, anything made with white flour. Sugar and bread will put that belly fat on fast! And it does not want to come off.

White potatoes are OK. They are healthy for you as long as you eat them baked or prepared in a healthy way.

Avoid soft drinks. Even diet ones. Think about it. How many skinny people do you see walking around with a diet coke in their hands? I think I have seen one and she had a cigarette in the other.... As a personal trainer and diet consultant, I will take a client off of diet drinks. Allow them one regular coke over a 1 month period as a 'treat' (just one). Replace those diet cokes with water. Not do anything else to their diet and they will lose 7 lbs in 2 weeks. There is something about that stuff that makes people retain or something. I saw one gal drop a whole dress size.

Try a 2 week sugar fast and see the difference. You can do without anything for 2 weeks.

Another thing to do to lose 'fat' is a good cardio workout. It can be spinning, running, power walking, boot camp, circuit (my personal favorite), and make sure you add strength training 3-4 times a week to take care of that 'spot toning'.

Since I teach such a variety of classes my regimen is different. Mondays I teach 2 step classes, (1 am, 1 pm-temporary), 1 Essential Fitness Class (Sr. Aerobics-am), 1-Pilates also in the am. So, until someone takes over this pm class at a gym I sub at, I am teaching 4 classes on Mondays. That is probably more workouts in one day than most people do in a week. All the classes also have a weight and ab segment.
Tues-a Free Weight training class called Muscle Works. Wed I am off from Fitness-But I do work on lesson plans & practice new routines. Thurs I teach my favorite class, Interval Step Circuit (Gin Miller's style -I just love her!) then I teach an Advanced Pilates class with some Yoga thrown in. Most people can't tell the difference. Thurs night, I soccer scrimmage with my DD's team. (I also get calls to sub here and there on days I am off. But I try to keep those my off days b/c my primary occupation is a freelance photographer. My only reason to sub is when I have a shoot, I need a sub and you know all about payback right? ;-} )

Friday off but work one lesson plans and new routines and I do a lower body workout. Some Sats I sub at a local gym that I am currently teaching at on Monday nights. Or I will lift weights at home.

Sometimes I run, walk or bike on my own for variety. As you see, I am plenty active and it takes up most of my mornings everyday.

To lose body fat:
  1. Eat less calories than you burn
  2. Cut out the white stuff (except white potatoes prepared in a healthy way)
  3. Increase cardio
  4. Replace soft drinks with water
You may want to consider doing a sugar fast for a couple of weeks. :-) And this really works for losing belly fat. Change nothing else in your diet, but lose the refined sugar and the white breads.

Please post a comment!
I love to hear from you!

Monday, August 4, 2008

End of Sugar Fast

And I lost 5 lbs total and 3/4" in the waist. Feel great!

Did anyone else lose weight?

I plan on doing this from time to time and ... continuing to cut back on my sugar intake altogether.


I am double SORE!!! I taught 2 classes Saturday morning. The second class was a Pilates class. Afterwords a few of us hung around to do weird flexible things... I did a back bend. Well, I did 2 back bends. The 2nd one I held it for a while. Felt good too! Stretched some things I have wanted to stretch for a while. :D Now talk about deep core tissue being worked, it got worked and I am sore from my ankles to my armpits. Calves, hams, inner/outer thighs, obliques, lumbars, traps and gluts. I did them again today! I am going to do them again tomorrow!

This O'le Gal can still do it!