Originally published on Richard “Dick” Talens website. Richard is the co-founder and chief growth officer of Fitocracy, one of the web’s most popular fitness tracking sites. To learn more, check out his site and follow him on Twitter.
There are few morning things that have the power to absolutely dictate my mood for the day. A loss in my fantasy league, for example, will pretty much ensure that I’m scowling, even on the nicest of days. More relevant thing to you, my dear reader, is the number that I see when I step on the scale while on a fat-loss diet.
Fortunately the scale reading is only a number. Like all pieces of data, this number may or may not be an accurate reflection of whether or not you are losing fat. Let’s look at problems with over-relying on your scale weight and how we can better interpret said weight.
Modeling Scale Weight
Let’s say that there were a hypothetical universe where someone’s weight had no variability. In this universe, Joe has 150 lbs of lean mass and 50 lbs of fat mass. That means Joe weighs 200 lbs at 25 percent body fat.
Now let’s transport Joe to our universe. The one where the scale can be a fickle bitch. How much does Joe weigh? Joe would probably weigh somewhere between 196 and 208 lbs. Why the difference? One’s “scale weight” can be broken down into the following formula:
Scale Weight = True Weight + Weight Variance (AKA weight of the annoying little gremlins that mess with your weight)
True Weight: The weight that you would be in our hypothetical universe above (there are ways to get close to this).
Weight Variance: A value that adds or subtracts from your weight, given the conditions below.
Something interesting that I’ve seen from clients is that the upper and lower limits are asymmetrical. The upper limit of one’s scale weight is about +4 percent of his/her true weight, whereas the lower limit seems to be about -2 percent of his/her scale weight. Hence, why Joe’s scale weight is 196 to 208.
A new study shows that people who eat fruits and vegetables 7 times a day can cut the risk of early death by 7 percent. Here’s how to do that every day without even trying.
By Brittany Linn
You’ve been told since preschool that getting five daily servings of fruits and vegetables is essential for health. Now…forget you ever learned that. It turns out, seven is the magic number, according to a new study from the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health.
Getting two more daily servings of fruits and vegetables, the researchers found, led to a 42 percent lower risk of death during the study period, a 25 percent reduction in deaths from cancer and a 31 percent dip in deaths from heart disease and stroke.
So how good are you at getting seven servings a day? Our American go-go-go lifestyle doesn’t exactly allow for a stroll through the farmer’s market during lunch break, or dining on a fresh green salad for dinner, while your children sit quietly enjoying their apples and oranges. However, there are simple ways you can fit fruits and veggies into your everyday menu.
To hit your seven every day, as recommend by the new research, try these easy tips and you’ll get your daily dose in no time! And remember to buy organic, not only to avoid pesticides and toxic chemicals, but also because organic agriculture is the best hope for a sustainable food supply that can feed the world.
• Keep them visible. If your fruit is in a bowl on the kitchen counter, you’ll be much more likely to grab it after your busy day, rather dive into the bag of chips hidden in the pantry.
• Fill half of your plate with fruits and vegetables. Make that a habit, as depicted on the new USDA food guide, and you’ll be well on your way to getting one to two servings in a single sitting.
• Eat them whole. The peels of most fruits and vegetables contain fiber, which many Americans are lacking in their diets. Eat them skin and all and you’ll be getting extra benefits. (Not recommended for bananas or pineapples.)
• Make them more interesting. Sauté some veggies with olive oil and add your favorite spices. Dunk them in your favorite dressing, hummus, or low-fat dip.
Spring is around the corner which means we will be going outdoors for Fit Mama Strollerfit. Looking to meet new friends in a fun, non-intimidating environment while exercising outdoors with your baby/toddler? There is no need to look any further. This program will provide you with everything you need to get fit, get educated and most of all maximize your time as a busy mom. Bring your baby and/or toddler to this workout and spend quality time together while getting fresh air and exericsing. MOMS LOVE IT….BABIES LOVE IT. Don’t have a baby…..NO PROBLEM! All ladies are welcome.
√ RESULTS ORIENTED √ HIGH LEVEL OF ACCOUNTABILITY √ EDUCATION & SUPPORT
√ FAT-BLASTING EXERCSIE PROGRAM √ 19 YEARS OF EXPERIENCE √ BBB AFFILIATE
This intense program will efficiently work your entire body by moving from one exercise to another with minimal rest as we power walk our way through Springbank Park. Reap the benefits of this ultimate calorie-burning workout, which combines the best of cross-training conditioning with speed drills, plyometrics, resistance training, hill work and power exercising. A complete workout with the benefits of camaraderie and social support. Your challenge is to push your body to its limit…..you work…you sweat…and, best of all, you burn calories like crazy.
√ Weight, measurements and body fat taken.
√ Food plan to follow with supporting documents.
All levels and everyone welcome. Mamas and babies/toddlers (stroller required), mamas with no babies and soon to be mamas.
1 weekly workout for 9 weeks $140 (9 classes)
2 weekly workouts for 9 weeks $215 (18 classes)
Payment options; Cash, Cheque, E-transfer
STARTING Tuesday, APRIL 1
Tuesdays & Thursdays 930-1030 am Springbank Park see calendar for map
by Nick English on March 21, 2014
It’s a debate that’s raged since the first weight was lifted: Is it better or worse to work out on an empty stomach? Wars have been waged and nations have fallen (okay, that’s a slight exaggeration) during the eternal battle of fed versus fasted exercise, but it’s time for this madness to end. We have the final answer.
It’s time to dismantle some old myths about eating and exercise.
Well, not the final answer. Different people work out best under different circumstances, and deciding whether someone should eat before training can be like telling them what time of day to work out or which diet they should follow—it largely depends on what works best for the individual. But it is time to dismantle some old myths.
Contrary to popular belief, research suggests that eating many small meals throughout the day won’t speed up the metabolism, skipping a meal won’t make you fat, and exercising on an empty stomach will not nullify a workout.In fact, skipping a meal or two, also known as “intermittent fasting” (IF), can be downright beneficial.
Optimizing Hormones (Fast)
If the fact that Huge Jacked-man practiced intermittent fasting to gain muscle for his latest Wolverine movie isn’t convincing enough, consider this: An empty stomach triggers a cascade of hormonal changes throughout the body that are surprisingly conducive to both building muscle and burning fat.
Want to ditch BPA ASAP? While it’s basically impossible to reduce contact to zero, taking the following precautions can greatly reduce the chance of exposure:
- Watch for containers with recycling numbers 3 or 7, which indicate types of plastic that may — but do not always — contain BPA. Containers labeled number 7 that also say “BPA Free” should be safe.
- Go fresh! Food bought fresh will have dramatically less BPA exposure than canned goods that use BPA liners.
- Choose stainless steel water bottles over aluminum containers, which often require liners made with BPA.
- Don’t using hard plastic containers in the microwave, and avoid filling containers with BPA with hot liquids. High temperatures can cause more BPA to leech into food and water.
- Avoid handling receipts (when possible) or wash your hands immediately after touching them.
- Shop smart! A quick online search will indicate whether there are BPA-free alternatives to your favorite containers.
Don’t smoke? Doesn’t matter. You could still be doing damage to your long-term health.
Not so fast! It seems like every day, a new study comes out finding that habit X is “as bad for you as smoking,” whether it’s sitting all day or eating too much fat. So is there any legitimacy to those claims? We checked out a bunch of those studies to find out what the researchers mean when they claim that those things are as bad for you as cigarettes, and in most cases, they’re not lying. The following six unhealthy habits either expose you to the same contaminants in cigarette smoke or lead to cancer rates equivalent to those caused by smoking. Fortunately, these are easy to fix with a few modifications to your daily routine so you (and your heart and your lungs) can be glad you don’t in fact smoke.
#1: Sitting all day.
Even if you exercise regularly, habitually sitting for prolonged periods, whether at a desk or in a car, is being increasingly linked to a variety of health problems. According to Alberta Health Services-Cancer Care in Canada, inactivity is linked to nearly 160,000 cases of breast, colon, prostate, and lung cancer every year, about two-thirds as many cancer cases caused by smoking.
Make it right: Make it a habit to take breaks on-the-move at work, and even make (or buy) a standing workstation so you’re less apt to sit all day. At home, resist the temptation to veg out in front of the TV. Go for a short walk around the block to relax, spend a few minutes cleaning, or schedule a gym date with your significant other.
BY DR. KHANDEE AHNAIMUGAN
MARCH 12, 2014
Most women find that as they get older, it becomes harder to manage their weight. Diets that worked in the past become less and less effective because their metabolism has slowed. Contrary to most weight loss advice (which seems to treat everyone the same), I believe that women over 40 need to approach weight loss differently. So if you’re over 40 and want to lose weight, here are 8 things that you should know:
1. Exercise isn’t enough.
Exercise is a must for your health and wellbeing. But women over 40 can’t rely on it alone for weight loss. If you’re working out regularly and still not losing weight, it’s because you have to pay more attention to what you’re eating.
2. You can’t lose weight as quickly as you did when you were 25.
I’ve seen it many times. If you’re 55 years old and trying to lose weight, and expect it to happen at the same rate as when you were 25, you’re asking for trouble. Unrealistic expectations mean that even when you’re making good progress, you’ll feel frustrated at the pace of your progress. This can often lead to second-guessing your approach and then finally giving up (which is what most people do).
3. You can’t turn to quick fixes …. and that’s a good thing!
This is the number one reason why women over 40 have an advantage with losing weight. (Yes, that’s right, an advantage!) You might think that it’s a bad thing that you can no longer drop 10 pounds in a week. But what this means is that you have to focus on making long-term changes, which is the cornerstone of successful weight loss.
Not only can you not rely on quick fixes, but you really can’t rely on dieting anymore, either. I’ll see clients who say things like “I never want to go on another diet again!” This makes them much more focused on long-term change rather than a quick fix. Again, that’s a good thing!
We’ve all been there: hunger striking before the dinner time, a sudden craving for something sweet, the need for a quick energy boost before working out. The solution? A small and satisfying snack that won’t tip that calorie count over the edge.
The problem with snacking is when a quick nibble turns into enough calories to count as a meal. But these healthy, low calorie treats can please any palate while still leaving room for dinner. This list is filled with sizeable options enjoyable enough to devour (without any diet damage).
1. Mini PB&F: One fig Newton with 1 teaspoon peanut butter.
2. Chocolate Banana: Half a frozen banana dipped in two squares of melted dark chocolate.
3. Frozen grapes (any color): 1 cup (about 28 grapes), stuck in the freezer for 2+ hours.
4. Honeyed Yogurt: ½ cup nonfat greek yogurt with a dash of cinnamon and 1 teaspoon honey.
5. Spiced Orange: One orange— about the size of a tennis ball— sprinkled with cinnamon.
6. Grilled Pineapple: 2 ¼-inch thick pineapple rounds (about 1 cup), grilled (or sautéed) for two minutes or until golden.
7. Berries n’ Cream: 1 cup blueberries with 2 tablespoons whipped topping.
8. Stuffed Figs: Two small dried figs with 1 tablespoon reduced-fat ricotta stuffed inside. Sprinkle with cinnamon.
9. Oats n’ Berries: ⅓ cup rolled oats (cooked with water), topped with cinnamon and ¼ cup fresh berries.
10. Dark Chocolate: One block, or three squares.
11. Nut-Stuffed Date: One date filled with one teaspoon natural unsalted almond butter.
12. Chocolate Milk: 6 ounces skim milk mixed with 2 teaspoons chocolate syrup.
13. Cinnamon Applesauce: 1 cup unsweetened applesauce. Sprinkle with cinnamon.
What you’ll need . . .
- A bag of apples (3-1/2 to 4 lbs)
- 1/2 cup cider or other juice (I used orange juice!)
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
Method . . .
- Peel, core, and slice apples. Toss them into a large stock pot.
- Pour cider and sprinkle spices onto apples. Then cook over medium-high heat until you reach a strong simmer — let stay at this heat for about 5 minutes, stirring frequently. (Note: You can get creative with your spices. Add whatever you like!)
- Lower heat, cover, and let cook for another 10 minutes. Again, return to the pot to stir on occasion.
- Then use a masher to mash apples for a nice, thick and chunky sauce. Or use a food processor for a smoother applesauce.
and…….Day 12 is complete…..challenge is OVER!!! Congratulations to everyone that participated in the 1st Annual 12 days of Fit-Mas Challenge. I hope you enjoyed it. I would love to hear from you to let me know your thoughts. I know it kept me accountable to doing something active through the holidays.
Donations are still being collected. However at this point we are over $1500. So thank you so much for you all of your contributions. With matched donations this will allow for us to purchase over $3000 worth of items through Plan Canada. This is just fantastic. I am just thrilled.
If anyone is interested in giving a donation please contact me. For more information on the incredible work that Plan Canada does visit:
Plan is a global movement for change, mobilizing millions of people around the world to support social justice for children in developing countries.
Founded in 1937, we are one of the world’s oldest and largest international development agencies, working in partnership with millions of people around the world to end global poverty. Not for profit, independent and inclusive of all faiths and cultures, we have only one agenda: to improve the lives of children.
Plan works in 69 countries around the globe, including 50 developing countries across Africa, Asia and the Americas. We give children, families and communities the tools they need to break the cycle of poverty and build sustainable solutions for improving their own lives.
Because I am a Girl is Plan’s global initiative to end gender inequality, promote girls’ rights and lift millions of girls – and everyone around them – out of poverty.
In 2012, our work impacted the lives of over 174 million people – including 84 million children – in over 90,100 communities around the world.
Looking to give the gift of HOPE this Christmas? I am looking for as many people as I can to participate in my 12 Days of FIT-Mas Challenge. This will be a very worthwhile fitness challenge with an opportunity to help yourself (gift of health) while helping to raise money for Plan Canada. All that is required is a donation amount of your choosing and I will send you the 12 Days of Fit-Mas Challenge. What you are committing to is completing a daily challenge for 12 days — Monday, December 23 to Saturday, January 4th.
Once I receive your donation I will email the challenge to your inbox on December 22. There will be three daily challenges of either a timed or rep exercise. You can do all 3 exercises at once or break it up over the day. The commitment will be to do each challenge over the course of the 12 days.
The benefits are two-fold in which you will be doing something active over the Christmas break as well as donating money for an amazing charity.
For more information on the incredible work that Plan Canada does please visit their website www.plancanada.ca/hopegifts
Message me if you would like to donate. Tell your friends…get a group together. Help to raise as much money as we can to help the thousands of real people in developing countries!!
Plan Canada Gifts of Hope – Charitable Gifts | Unique Gift Ideas
Gifts of Hope are ethical gifts that give twice: here and abroad. Shop the online charitable catalogue to find unique gifts that make a difference.