About Me

My photo
BCRPA Weight Trainer * BCRPA Group Fitness Leader * BCRPA Personal Trainer * Cory Holly Institute Principles of Sports Nutrition Education Program * Body Training System Group Power Instructor *Body Training System Group Centergy Instructor * CORE Conditioning Instructor * TKO Fitness Instructor * Boot Camp Leader

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Warning Wednesday: “Swimming for weight loss”

This particular myth was specifically chosen as I notice the days getting longer and the sun making more guest appearances in the sky. One favoured activity, as the warmer season approaches would have to be swimming.

What swimming is great for is increasing lung capacity, musculature toning and maybe even burning off pent up tension. But if you are looking to lose a lot of weight on mainly swimming, then you better be spending a few hours in the pool every day.

The buoyancy of the water is what is supporting your body as you move which takes off any load (or resistance) of the activity so you end up working with much less intensity (as opposed to you using your own steam while running for example). That being said, it is also common to feel even more ravenous after a swim, which can be difficult for individuals on an eating plan.

While swimming has fantastic health benefits, try to keep your workout regime filled with various multi-joint exercises that challenge the cardiovascular and musculature systems for optimal weight loss. And lastly, don’t let your hard work go to waste, reward yourself with nutritious balanced meals often!

Until next time Team, if you’re only going to practice the same sport, get used to the same body
Health respect & happiness,

Friday, April 8, 2011

Foody Friday : The Avocado.

AKA the “alligator pear”.

Today’s food discussion will be of the ever popular, yet sometimes misunderstood, fruit: avocado. I personally love the fruit! It’s delicious, healthy, can be eaten just as or blended into other foods, and absolutely beautiful to look at.

The “GOOD”…
We all know carotenoids are most famous in our bright orange and red veggies, but did you know avocadoes also contain an array of carotenoids? Including: beta-carotene, alpha-carotene, lutein, neochrome, neoxanthin, chrysanthemaxanthin, beta-cryptoxanthin, zeaxanthin, and violaxanthin.

Two key carotenoid anti-oxidants: lycopene and beta-carotene, increases significantly when fresh avocado is added to a salad (or avocado oil). One cup (250 ml or 8 oz.) can increase 200-400% of carotenoids in your salad as opposed to having the salad without avocado.

Carotenoids are fat-soluble and would be provided with the fat they need for absorption from the avocado. Research has shown the highest concentration of carotenoid is in the dark green flesh that lies beneath the skin.

The “BAD”…
About 85% of its calories come from fat! Before you decide to add avocados onto the list with McDonalds and Burger King, remember this: NOT ALL FATS ARE THE SAME OR BAD! The fat components can be broken down into three different ‘categories’ or ‘jobs’; lets take a look at each of them and how they benefit our health.
First are the phytosterols that account for the majority of the fats. These phytosterols include beta-sitosterol, campesterol and stigmasterol. They are the key supporters of our inflammatory system and help keep inflammation under control. (These benefits are particularly well documented with problems with arthritis)
Second are avocado’s polyhydroxylated fatty alcohols (PFAs). PFAs are normally found in sea plants and very uniquely present in land plants which make the avocado tree and its fruits rather special in this regard. PFAs are similar to phytosterols in that they also provide you with anti-inflammatory benefits.
Third is the unusually high content of the fatty acid, oleic acid (over half the fat!). Oleic acid helps our digestive tract form transport molecules for fat that can increase our absorption of fat-soluble nutrients like carotenoids. As a monounsaturated fatty acid, it has also been shown to help lower our risk of heart disease. So don't be fooled by avocado's bad rap as a high-fat food. Like other high-fat plant foods (for example, walnuts and flaxseeds), avocado can provide us with unique health benefits precisely because of its unusual fat composition.

And the not-so “UGLY”…
Here is a list of health benefits that an avocado has been known to shine in. Definitely not ugly at all.

Nutritional Profile
Phytonutrients: phytosterols (especially beta-sitosterol, stigmasterol, and campesterol); carotenoids (beta-carotene, alpha-carotene, lutein, neochrome, neoxanthin, chrysanthemaxanthin, beta-cryptoxanthin, zeaxanthin, and violaxanthin); flavonoids (epicatechin and epigallocatechin 3-0-gallate); and polyhydroxylated fatty alcohols.
Key fats: Alpha-linolenic acid (an omega-3 fatty acid) and oleic acid.
Good source of: bone supportive vitamin K and copper as well as heart-healthydietary fiber, vitamin B6, vitamin C, folate, copper and potassium: they are higher in potassium than a medium banana.
Avocados have a high fat content of between 71 to 88% of their total calories-about 20 times the average for other fruits. A typical avocado contains 30 grams of fat, but 20 of these fat grams are health-promoting monounsaturated fats, especially oleic acid.

Until next time Team, who is up for a guac party?
Health respect & happiness,

Monday, April 4, 2011

Mommy Monday: Never too late to start!

Best case scenario, pregnancies are planned between you and your spouse which enables you to prepare for the miracle to come.

Being physically fit or at least be in the process of getting fit before conceiving is of course preferred. The stronger and healthier your body is while pregnant, the easier it is for your body to cope with the changes and labor. But don't feel discouraged if life threw you some curve balls and left you a bit behind. It is never too late to start on a fitness program, it just depends on what stage you are in your pregnancy that can determine what is best suited for your capabilities.

If you are at the stage of conception, this is a great time to find a trainer to get you started on the right track immediately. Extremely active and fit women never have fear for working out and you may notice that some if not most of them won't need to change up their routines too much except maybe a few modifications as the belly gets bigger and their movements are restricted. Exceptions would be if it is your first pregnancy or you have had complications in which your physician should be monitoring you.

If it is during the first trimester that you begin to start your training regime, you may not be able to perform as well. At this time, the body is adjusting to being pregnant, the fetus is grabbing all of the carbohydrates that it can, and your body is storing fat for the baby's needs at the end of the pregnancy and for nursing. After all that, there may not be much energy left for you. This isn't an excuse to skip your training sessions, but do take your time and rest whenever you feel the need.

Hopefully you aren't starting your fitness training during your second trimester, but if you are, your body has more or less adjusted to its new condition. That means fat storage has diminished leaving you with much more energy! Some women may be able to work out as hard or even harder than they did before they became pregnant, depending on their previous strength and fitness level. If you are just beginning, start easy and carefully!

Last trimester is a completely different story. With blood pooling, rapid breathing, big belly and loss of balance and stability, most exercising moms slow down about 30 - 45%. This is completely normal, no need to push yourself too hard anymore. I do not recommend starting a NEW fitness program now, listen to the body and do what feels good. Kegels (click here for my blog my kegels!), pacey walks, and some stretch exercises (click here for some examples) are great low intensity exercises to do if you are just starting here.

Your endurance level will pick up again postpartum - twelve to twenty weeks after delivery you will be able to work out much harder, particularly if you exercises throughout your pregnancy.

Until next time Mommys, if not TODAY, when?????
Health respect & happiness,