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Keeping it Healthy During the Holidays Part II

In Part I, I blogged about how to cook your holiday meals healthier.  Here in Part II, we’re talking about Party Planning. Here are some tips for you to follow when going to a Holiday Party in the next few weeks.

  • Eat small, healthy meals throughout the day of the party. Doing so actually decreases your hunger levels for the party, therefore you won’t want to eat as much.
  • Eat a healthy snack – fruit, yogurt, whole grain crackers – just before going to the party. This takes the edge off your hunger before you get there.
  • Limit yourself to just one trip to the food table; Prepare your plate and then move away from the food table to eat.
  • Pick a good mix of foods INCLUDING LARGER PORTIONS of raw vegetables, fresh fruits, whole grain breads and crackers. GO EASY on dips, chips, cheese, and high fat meats.
  • Take some time to determine what foods are on the food table, the pick the ones that you REALLY, REALLY want and will enjoy. Leave other foods off.
  • If you are eating at a sit down dinner, take small portions the first time around. When your host(ess) insists on seconds, your total amount will “even out.”
  • Take your time getting to the food table. Stop to greet people and get into some conversation before you eat.
  • If you do drink alcoholic beverages, alternate them between and non-calorie, non-alcoholic beverages. Alcoholic beverages are high in calories and can cause you to eat more.
  • Have a sweets table? Try to limit yourself to ONE small serving. Fresh and dried fruit also make a good alternative.

Part III, Avoiding the typical “holiday weight gain” is coming soon!

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Keeping It Healthy During the Holidays Part I

We are a week from Thanksgiving and I felt this would be an opportune time to share some ideas on making your recipes “healthier” so you won’t go through the typical holiday weight gain. So here are tips for you folks that plan to cook some items for the Thanksgiving table:

  • Choose “low-fat,” “light,” or “fat-free” versions of sour cream, cream cheese, cheese, salad dressings and mayonnaise.
  • Replace heavy cream or whipping cream with evaporated skim milk. This will decrease the fat content of the dish.
  • Use two egg whites in place of one whole egg. Again, this will lower the fat content, but with increase the protein values.
  • Dried fruit can be substituted for nuts in some recipes. Now some nuts are completely fine, like almonds, but others with higher fat content are what this point is referring to. But be sure that the dried fruit does not have added sugar to it.
  • Substitute an equal amount of unsweetened apple sauce of fat-free plain yogurt for the oil, margarine, or butter in muffins and quick breads.
  • Use low sodium, fat-free chicken broth in mashed potatoes to lower fat content.
  • When shopping for products for your recipe, be sure to look for the “trans fat free,” or “0 trans fat” varieties.
  • Stay away from ingredients that contain saturated fat or hydrogenated oils.
  • Toast chopped nuts in the oven before preparing your recipe. this will enhance the flavor and allow you to use less.

I hope this helps you make some good decisions on what you are providing on the table for your family next week. It may seem odd, and the taste will change somewhat, but you will feel good knowing you helped make some healthy choices, and your family will thank you for it.

A Note From Tony Horton, Yes, THAT Tony Horton

Boys and girls,

I’m unaware of your financial situation but I do believe that you’re reading this page because you care about your health and fitness. If you have plenty of income and love your job then what I’m about to tell you might not be for you. If you’re not thrilled with the way you make a living, would like extra income, love Beachbody products, like the way they make you look and feel, enjoy helping other people feel and look better, enjoy setting your own hours, get excited about being the captain of your own ship as opposed to working for the man – then listen up.

The reality is, your health and fitness moves beyond you. It impacts the people around you. You (whether you like it or not) have the power to change lives based solely on your own personal transformation. Inadvertently you become a catalyst for change. This is how I got started. I was clueless, asked a few questions based on my need to be strong and healthy, stayed with it and people in my life wanted to know what I was doing. Simple yet powerful.

If you want to share what you’ve learned with people in your life who want better health (and could use extra income in the process) then you should consider becoming a Team Beachbody Coach.   I felt so strongly about this program that I’ve encouraged many of my friends to become coaches, even my own sister.  She is doing great (even though my contract with Beachbody won’t let me help her).  She is a perfect example of someone who had plenty of doubt and hesitation regarding the coaching opportunity and still found a way to make it work for her. A busy working wife and mother with three very active kids doesn’t sound like a good candidate to start an in-home multi-level marketing company. Did you say multi level marketing? What? Ick! You mean pyramid scheme right? Okay chill out. All these fears would be true if BeachBody were selling hats or kitty liter, but this is Beachbody people! The number 1 in-home fitness company on the planet! P90X is steadily becoming the most popular fitness system in US history. Shakeology is the revolutionary replacement meal on the market today. We sell life-altering change – not soap. Tens of thousands of regular folk around this country are doing something they love because of this coach opportunity.

The unemployment rate still hovers around 10% but it doesn’t have to be that way if more people were willing to see that new opportunities exist all around them. The Team Beachbody Coaching opportunity is one of them. Health care companies, pharmaceutical companies and our government are not capable of solving this obesity crisis and we can’t wait around for them to do it. The crisis is now and the answer is YOU! I know that sounds a bit Rah Rah but it’s true.

Cynics don’t need to apply, but if you’re sick and tired of the status quo and want to make a difference in your own life and in the lives of those around you, then open the door.  The two major issues of our time – the health care issue and unemployment rate could be resolved if a million more people in this country decided to get healthy and share the wealth. This is a brand new industry waiting to explode. It’s not happening in boardrooms or factories – it’s happening in the homes of tens of thousands of Team Beachbody Coaches and in the homes of their customers.  With a tiny investment (actually the company is waiving the enrollment fee through the end of 2010) and a willingness to help people the sky’s the limit.

TH-

Do You Know Where You Are Going?

I was recently in a bookstore and came across a memoir of Yogi Berra. I figured I’d thumb through it and find his zany quotes that I had forgotten about. It turns out, each chapter was a quote of his, so I read down the table of contents and came across the last chapter, and this quote was there:

“If you don’t know where you are going, you might not get there.”
Yogi Berra

Now, as silly as that sounds, it makes a ton of sense. I began to place it in context of my fitness and business. If I don’t know where I’m going, I might not get there. Here’s what I came up with:

Fitness: Do I know where I want to go? Did I set a goal? If you want to have a successful outcome in your fitness, you must know where you want to end up, right? So I began thinking about what I am doing for myself. I am still doing P90X and having much success with it. My goal hasn’t been met completely, but the path I’m on is taking me there. This path I’m on is taking me to my destination. I chose the path of P90X to achieve my fitness destination. So yes I KNOW where I am going.

Business: I applied the quote to my business as an Independent Team Beachbody Coach also. Where do I want to go? What do I want to accomplish? The all important question: How do I get there? I want to achieve so much with my business, but what is going to take me there? Well the amazing thing is, I have help! Team Beachbody gives me so many resources to be successful, all I have to do is cater them to my needs. I follow the Game Plan, by letting people know about this business, and show them they can be successful too. Plus I have an awesome resource in my Team. Team Genesis is one of the most successful teams with Beachbody, and they have helped me through so much already, along with my mentor Kevin Kane. I am still traveling on this path to my destination, but again, I KNOW where I am going.

What I ask is this: Do you know where you are going? You can apply this to every aspect of your life: family, finances, fitness, work, etc. Look for the path that will lead you to where you want to go, and you will get there, every time.

J

Nutrition for Intense Workouts

Football Practice in AUGUST?? Drink your Water!!

Ok, for today’s tip, in honor of Football two-a-days EVERYWHERE (especially since I was taking part in them with my job today in 100+ degree temps) it’s all about nutrition and hydration.

Nutritionally, I have a super example for you. I was having to tend to a couple of athletes going through some signs of heat illness and through my history questions I ask, I find that 2 of them did not eat breakfast, and one of those two hadn’t eaten since lunch the previous day! Now, I am sure most of you reading this realize that you must have a certain amount of calories daily for basic body function. For me, before I began exercising regularly, it was 1500 or so. That is just for your body, all the non-voluntary muscles in your cardiovascular system, your digestive system, and every other system that runs smoothly in the background that you are only aware of if there is a problem. All the rest of the calories go to voluntary muscle fuel, just doing day-to-day things like walking from the chair to the kitchen, or doing a workout.

So imagine not having any supplemental energy from food in your body for your activities, and then not have the energy it takes to run your body’s multiple systems… It’s a scary thing. Your body has to draw energy from somewhere. And you would think it would just come straight from storages places like the spare tire people try to get rid of. Alas, it is not true. It will gather some from fat stores, but your body will also break down cells, like muscle cells, for energy. This in turn will cause many problems like electrolyte imbalances, muscle atrophy, hypertension, kidney failure, heart attack… Obviously what no body wants.

Just take the advice I gave today to these athletes. DO NOT EVER skip breakfast when you know you have to do strenuous activity, like football practice. Same goes for those doing workouts like P90X. Plyo, on an empty stomach? You might pass out!

Now the other knucklehead I had to care for was dehydrating. Why? Well again through my history gathering, he had been drinking energy drinks before and nothing but sodas the day before. DIURETICS! (Among other things) They dehydrate more than they rehydrate, unlike some claims from major soda companies. So this is a short tip: DRINK YOUR WATER!!! People survived for thousands and thousands of years on water, I am pretty sure it can keep you around too.

In conclusion, be sure to eat well, and for those of us doing extra activities like football practice, or working out, get some extra calories in you. And DRINK the H2O! You may not be exercising in the 100+ degree temps, but everyone who exercises can benefit from these tips.

Go from Regular 2 Ripped!!

Welcome!

Thank you for your interest in our workout group! Our goal is to create a group that will help keep each other both accountable and motivated to Keep Pushing Play over the next 90 days using the proven system of P90X! Whether it’s your first round or your fifth, we welcome all who are wanting to go from Regular 2 Ripped!

Regular 2 Ripped has had successful groups already this year. In fact that is where I got started with my P90X workout. Thanks to that group, I Kept Pushing Play and got results. I lost 30 pounds, 3 inches off my waist, dropped my body fat percentage 5%, added 1″ to each arm, and 2″ around my chest. Some others have had similar success with our Regular 2 Ripped group from March and April.

We are beginning our 90 day Regular 2 Ripped transformation in August, and that means ANY day in August, not just August 1st. We know that schedules are different for everybody, so if you start on Aug. 2nd, Aug. 12, or Aug. 31st, you can be part of the group. We are running on all cylinders already! Come along for the ride with us!!

So here’s what you need to do:

Step 1: Get P90X!
We’re so sure you’ll love this program, we’re giving you our 90-day money-back guarantee. If you’re not completely satisfied, simply call Customer Service to return P90X within 90 days for a refund of the purchase price, less shipping and handling. But keep the Ab Ripper X routine and the 3-Phase Nutrition Plan as our gift just for trying P90X.

Order here and get TWO FREE WORKOUTS from Tony Horton’s P90X ONE on ONE series!

  • Fountain of Youth – Tony’s favorite yoga moves in less time. Perfect for when you don’t have the time to complete Yoga X.
  • Mammoth UML – Tony’s ultimate Upper-Middle-Lower workout. Great for when you’re on the road.

If you already have it, go to Step 2. If this is your first time to go through P90X, you can get it here.

Step 2: Sign up for your FREE membership at TeamBeachbody.com and fill out your profile..
This is one tremendous resource to helping you get results. It’s not just our group, but a whole online community there to help you achieve your goals. Then there are the nutrition guides, tips from Beachbody Trainers like Tony Horton, and the chance to win money and prizes just for working out. You can also sign up for a Team Beachbody Club Member and get 10% discount on your P90X and all other products. Both memberships are eligible to win money and prizes by working out in the WOWY Gym on Beachbody.com, but the Club membership allows you to use an invaluable resource in the daily meal planner that you can specify to your needs. After you sign up…

Step 3: Get involved with the message board thread.
The thread is where we will post info to help you achieve your goals and ask you to post daily after your workouts to stay accountable, not only to yourself but with the rest of the group. You will find that there are so many others going through it with you, experiencing the same things that you are, and you will be amazed at how much that keeps you wanting to Keep Pushing Play everyday!

That’s it! No more necessary! But if you have questions, please feel free to email me at kineticcoach@beachbody.com

If you want to be in the Regular 2 Ripped group and also save 25% on your P90X order, click here before you go through the steps above to learn about becoming an Independent Team Beachbody Coach!

How to Add Muscle to Your Frame

We all know that getting fit has different definitions for different people. I, myself, wanted to slim down the fat surrounding my midsection while also bulking up muscle, and defining that muscle, in my upper body, because frankly, I wanted to look better with my shirt off. In this post, I will tell you some steps to take to get some mass in your arms, shoulders, chest and back.

There are two essential things that have to get done in order to build muscle mass. One is working the muscle groups that you desire to improve hard enough that they have to change the way they work in order for you to move the resistance (i.e. weights, bands). Now, they will function the same way, but the muscles themselves will have to make more cells (hyperplasia), or change their size (hypertrophy) to accommodate the demands being put on them. Hyperplasia is not a common way to gain strength, but in ill-used muscles, it has happened. The most common strength gains and mass building is through hypertrophy. So, what you must do is work your groups with weights that are hard enough that you can repeat the motion, but you can only do it 6,8,10 times, so your muscles will increase in size. If you are able to do more than 10, then you are working more of an endurance angle with your muscles vs size, and you will become lean and defined.

How to work them? I find it best to work your upper body 2 different days concentrating on 2 different motions. You always want to work the groups that compliment each other on the same day vs groups that work against each other. With that in mind, one day working out your chest, triceps and shoulders, and the other biceps and back. One day is pushing the resistance away from you, while the other pulls it towards you. There are many exercises out there that work each muscle group, and many that work multiple groups. Just remember to combine the exercises that work those groupings above on the right days. For example, I would do a routine that would first isolate the triceps, then the shoulder, then the chest. The reason is the triceps is isolated more freely than the shoulder and chest, which will inadvertently work other muscles by the nature of the exercise. I would even go in that order. Start with a triceps exercise, then shoulder, then chest, back to triceps, then shoulder, etc. Same goes with the biceps and back day. Work the biceps and then the back. There are so many exercises that isolate elbow flexion, but it is very hard to isolate a back exercise to just work one of your back muscles. So you are getting a lot of work on your Bis and Tris, but don’t leave out the variations like hammer curls, reverse curls, or different angles like front and lateral raises, upright rows and bent rows, and regular bench, incline and decline bench.

Now part two, which is probably the most important, of the essential things that must be done for muscle growth is, NUTRITION! If you do not eat properly, you are just moving around and not gaining anything from it. First thing you must do if figure out how many calories per day are necessary for your goals. I made the mistake of just thinking a 2000-2200 cal/day diet would get me there, even if I ate the right things. WRONG! I had to increase to almost 3000-3500 cal/day. With the increase in activity, your body will burn more calories, LONGER, and use up body stores more and they will need to be replenished. Once you have that figured out, then you’ll need to know…

WHAT TO EAT! If you are looking to gain mass, you are going to need lots and lots and lots of PROTEIN. There are various ways of obtaining it, but the best is through LEAN cuts of fish, skinless chicken, beans, and to some extent red meat. The fish has omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids which will in turn burn the fat off, but there is hardly any fat in fish. Most fat in chicken is in the skin, and beans are naturally high in protein. The red meat gets tricky, because you have to know what part it is coming from, and most red meat purchased in the US is coming from animals raised specifically to be eaten, and they aren’t always the healthiest or leanest cuts of meat. Be more speculative of red meat in your diet. Eating these, along with decreasing your dairy and carbohydrate intake, and increasing your veggies daily, will help with the protein synthesis that is necessary to build muscle.

You will also want to use some protein supplements with your workouts. Whey protein has been found to be more easily absorbed than any other type of protein out there, which is why it is advertised so much as a workout drink. I have always used EAS Myoplex powder that I mix with water right after my workouts are done, but there are many many others out there. You have a 30-60 minute window for this whey protein to get into your system and help with the muscle rebuilding process. That will also decrease any soreness that comes with the workout.

Good luck to you and I hope this helps you achieve your goals.