If you feel like you are starting to struggle, remember, success is achieved one step at a time.
I may not be there yet, but I’m closer than I was yesterday. – Unknown
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Yield: 4 servings
Nutrition Information: 1 serving (1.5 cups) – 140 Calories, Protein 3.1g, Total Carbs 60.4, Fiber 9.2g, Total Fat 15.3g, Saturated Fat 2.2g, Cholesterol 0g, Sodium 47mg.
Adapted from: Food and Nutrition Magazine
Working out in water is like not working out at all! It is fun, don’t you think?
This exercise is very safe because no joints or bones are forced to bear too heavy a load.
In addition, pool workouts give you better balance, agility and endurance as well as being an excellent confidence boost for anyone who has shied away from exercise in the past; plus, it is a great fat burner too!
Water jogging is one of the easiest and more effective pool workouts. At high intensity, this popular exercise can burn 17 calories per minute — more than on land.
However, there are other fun and effective workouts that will keep us moving while jumping into the pool this summer – check this out!
1. Spiderman -> Challenge your core and back muscles!
How to do it: While standing in water at the side of the pool, stabilize your upper body by sweeping your hands back and forth as you run your legs up the side of the pool and then back down to the floor. Do four Spiderman exercises, alternating the leading leg each time you reach the end of one jogging circuit.
2. Pool Plank -> Strengthen your core!
How to do it: Stand on the pool floor. Hold a noodle (long cylindrical piece of foam that floats) vertically in both hands. Press it straight down into the water and lean forward until your body is on an even incline. Try to keep yourself stable for 1-2 minutes.
3. One-Legged Balance -> Improve your balance while strengthening your core and leg muscles!
How to do it: Standing in waist-high water, lift your left knee up and place the middle of a noodle under your left foot. Keep your hands by your side and balance with your left foot on the noodle for one minute. Then move your left knee out to the side and balance for another minute. Switch legs and repeat with the right knee lifted and the right foot resting on the noodle.
For an extra challenge, lift both arms up over your head as you balance.
4. Fly Backs -> Improve posture while strengthening arms, upper chest and back muscles.
How to do it: Start in a lunge position with your right knee bent and your left leg extended straight behind you. Reach your arms straight out in front of you at chest height — palms touching, fingers extended and thumbs up. Open your arms straight out to the sides, then return them to the starting position to complete one repetition. Do four sets of 8-15 reps, switching the forward leg each time you lunge.
5. Cardio Core Ball Running -> Core, core, core
How to do it: Hold the ball with both hands directly in front of your navel. Run across the pool as fast as you can for one minute. Rest for 30 seconds, then repeat three more times, increasing speed through each repetition.
To get the most of your water workout, follow these tips:
1. Start your day with a BIG glass of water.
Make it a goal to start each day by drinking a full glass of water to get a head start on your fluids. Try putting a glass of water by your bed to drink right after you wake up.
2. Get a water bottle and refill.
A water bottle is the most successful and practical way to complete your fluid goal! Refill your 16 oz. water bottle three times a day to get at least 1500 ml or 50 oz. of water. Take it with you everywhere and exercise your arms at the same time; remember that you can use water bottles as weights too!
3. Make it more interesting!
If you’re tired of plain water, flavor it adding some fruits, vegetables or herbs. These will not just add incredible flavor, it will provide the nutrition that helps keep your metabolism moving throughout the day. Some infused water combinations include some berries, cucumbers slices and fresh mint leaves or just a few blueberries with citrus such as sliced oranges or lemons. Go ahead and create your own favorite combinations.
4. Start a hydration journal.
Just like a food journal, write down how much water you are drinking up and keep on track with your daily goal.
5. Give yourself extra fluids.
Make sure to drink extra fluids during exercise, especially if you’re exercising outdoors or in a really hot weather. Even if you are not sweating a lot, it is important to replace those fluids to prevent dehydration.
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Yield: 4 servings (about 20 ravioli)
Adapted from: Sumptuous Spoonfuls
Nutrition Information: 5 raviolis – 265 Calories, Protein 17g, Total Carbs 11.8g, Fiber 1.8g, Total Fat 11g, Saturated Fat 6.7g, Cholesterol 38.4 mg, Sodium 261.4 mg.
*Not included on nutrition information.
Also, our mood and anxiety levels are improved by slowing us down mentally. Practicing this complete exercise, also recognized as a physical therapy routine will increase our sensitivity to inner signals such as hunger, satiety and cravings.
Yoga can help with weight loss by activating the parasympathetic nervous system, which regulates breathing, digestion and hormones; it basically accelerates our metabolism by stimulating endocrine glands that regulate the metabolic rate. Calories burned during yoga vary from 180 to 360 per hour depending on the type of yoga we practice. Remember that the deep breathing techniques heat our body up inside helping to flush out toxins, water weight and boost performance of the lymphatic system and organs.
1. Shoulder Stand Pose
2. Fish Pose
3. Lengthening Child’s Pose
4. Cobra Pose
5. Down-facing Dog and Upward-facing Dog Poses
Mindful eating is about experiencing food more intensely, especially the pleasure of it. Creating this amazing state of mindfulness, we will be able to distinguish between the urge to eat and the emotional impulses taking us to a higher level of consciousness and self-awareness; it is living the moment without judgment. Leaving mindless eating behind us will improve our relationship with food; it will become more intimate, enjoyable and why not, full of excitement.
If we develop a very personal relationship with food, we will amplify our volume of body’s cues so we can hear loud and clear when we are hungry and full.
We begin this journey differentiating hunger and satiety. By definition hunger is a sensation that represents the physiological need to eat food; in contrast, satiety is the absence of hunger; it is the sensation of feeling satisfied.
1. Starving, weak, dizzy
2. Very hungry, cranky, low energy, a lot of stomach growling
3. Pretty hungry, stomach is growling a little
4. Starting to feel a little hungry
5. Satisfied, neither hungry nor full
6. A little full, pleasantly full
7. A little uncomfortable
8. Feeling stuffed
9. Very uncomfortable, stomach hurts
10. So full you feel sick
Now that we have been introduced to satiety and hunger, we are ready to listen to what our body is telling us. Let’s get prepared! Reserve time for each of your meals, turn off the TV, put away the newspapers, books, magazines, laptops or smart phones and let’s give ourselves a moment of peace, as well as the opportunity to establish an intimate connection with the food we’ve decided to eat.
Don’t give up. Don’t ever give up. – Jim Valvano
Do you have a favorite inspirational quote to share?
The triangle area has so many unique and delicious restaurants, and we want to support restaurants that provide local, fresh, and homemade foods! Our blog will feature many of Raleigh’s most popular restaurants, and include information on the healthiest items to choose on the menu. This will be a great reference for the frequent girls nights, date nights, or sporting events. If there are any special requests, please let us know, we would love to haveour clients involved!
The first restaurant that Tracy and Ashley visited was Sassool, a Mediterranean restaurant and market located off of Strickland Road in Raleigh. Sassool is family owned and operated, and is the sister restaurant to Neomonde. We had the pleasure of eating lunch with Simone Saleh, the assistant general manager of Sassool. We learned a lot about their company’s history, food preparation, and nutritional information. I am happy to say that there are plenty of healthy options to choose from at Sassool!
Sassool is a family – owned cafe, bakery and market serving authentic Lebanese and Mediterranean cuisine in a fast and casual setting. In addition to fresh, healthy Mediterranean fare, Sassool offers a wide selection of specialty groceries and baked goods. Formerly known as Neomonde Café & Market, Sassool rebranded on May 11, 2014 to honor the owner’s mother, Cecilia, for the authentic recipes that she brought with her when she immigrated from Lebanon with her family to Raleigh in the 1970s. The name of the restaurant, Sassool, is the nickname that Cecilia was called by her father when she was a child.
Sassool offers fresh meals, daily specials, and catering services. Their most popular daily special is the Chicken and Bechamel pasta, served on Fridays. They have a variety of protein, sandwiches, pies, and platters to choose from. What I found wonderful about their restaurant is the flexibility to dine in or take meals to go! This is a great option when there is no time to cook at home! There is also a grocery attached to the store, in order to purchase additional ingredients. In addition, all dishes are coded for special diets and allergies. For instance: vegetarian, vegan, nuts, gluten free, eggs, and dairy are the most common codes found on their dishes.
While visiting the restaurant, I tried the mediterranean chicken salad, kale salad, roasted beet salad, sweet potato salad, and hummus with pita.
My absolute favorite dish is the Super Salad, filled with kale, quinoa, kidney beans, black beans, chickpeas, celery, and spices…..yum!
We will be serving this delicious salad at all of our upcoming health fairs. Sassool makes it simple to eat healthy!
4 servingsSesame Sugar Peas with Carrots & Peppers
Serving Size: 3/4 cup
Preparation Time: 20 mins
Total Fat: 4 g
Saturated Fat: 1 g
Monounsaturated Fat 2 g
Sodium 168 mg
Carbohydrate 9 g
Fiber 3 g
Protein 2 g
Potassium 220 mg
Carving 5-10 minutes out of your day to increase your heart rate and focus on strength can burn about 100 calories.
Over time, this can really make a difference! Check out some of the moves below and start doing short burst exercises today!
Body Weight Blast!
Perform each bodyweight exercise for 1 minute, and immediately proceed to the next exercise.
1. Lunges: find a clear space and walk smoothly in long strides, extending your front leg until your thigh is parallel to the floor. Keep your front knee directly over your ankle and your back leg straight. Muscles worked: quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes, calves.
2. Tricep Dips: find a weight bench or chair with an edge thin enough to grip securely. With your back to the bench or chair, grab the edge and bend your knees, supporting your weight with your arms. Keeping your back as close to the edge of the chair or bench as possible, lower yourself as far as you can and then come back up, keeping your knees bent. Muscles worked: Chest, triceps.
3. Squats: stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, your arms at your sides. While tightening your abs and keeping your back straight, slowly bend at the knees and lower your body until your thighs are parallel to the floor, or as close as possible. Bring you r arms up for balance. Hold for one second, then slowly straighten your legs. Muscles worked: Thighs, glutes, calves, abdominals.
4. Pushups: begin in plank position, your torso elevated and your shoulders aligned with your arms. Keep your body in a straight line down to your feet, with your toes on the floor. Lower your body as close to the floor as possible on your descent, then press your body back up until your arms are straight. A modification of this exercise is to push up from your knees. Muscles worked: Chest, triceps, abdominals.
5. Bicycle Crunch: lie face up and place hands behind your head, lightly supporting it with your fingers. Bring your knees in to your chest and lift your shoulder blades off the floor without pulling on your neck. Rotate to the left, bringing your right elbow towards your left knee as you straighten the other leg. Switch sides, bringing your left elbow towards your right knee. Contin ue alternating sides in a “pedaling” motion. Muscles worked: abdominals, obliques, hip flexors.
Perform each of these exercises for the designated amount of time. Repeat twice for an extra metabolic boost!
Fast Feet- 1 minute
Plank n’ Saw- 30 seconds
Squat and shoulder press- 1 minute
Plank ‘n’ Saw- 30 seconds
Half Jacks- 1 minute
Plank n’ Saw- 30 seconds
Heirloom Tomato Salad
• 4 heirloom tomatoes
• 1 tablespoon olive oil
• 2 table spoons balsamic vinegar
• 1 bunch basil
– Slice tomatoes
– Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
– Pour olive oil and vinegar over tomatoes
– Top with basil leaves
Salmon Orzo Salad
• 1 pound asparagus
• I cup cooked orzo
• 1 skinless salmon filet
• I cup thinly sliced red onion
• Lemon-dill vinaigrette
– Boil water. Cook asparagus for 3 minutes
– Broil fish for 5 minutes (or until it flakes easily)
– Combined with all other ingredients and serve
Chicken Avocado Salad
• 2 ripe avocados ripe and removed from skin
• 2 cups finely shredded chicken
• I red onion finely chopped
• ½ teaspoon garlic powder
• ½ teaspoon onion powder
– In a medium bowl mash avocado
– Stir in garlic and onion power
– Stir in chicken
Lemon Peppercorn Tilapia
• 1 cup low sodium chicken broth
• ¼ cup fresh lemon juice
• 2 teaspoons of lightly crushed peppercorns
• 2 tilapia filets
• 1 tablespoon melted butter
– Combine broth, lemon juice and peppercorn
– Lightly butter hot skillet and cook tilapia on each side for approximately three minutes or until fish easily flakes with a fork.
– Remove fish from pan
– Add liquid mixture to the skilled with brown bits. Reduce to about ½ cup. Stir in melted butter
Baked Italian Chicken with Red Potatoes and Green Beans
• 1 pound of chicken breast cut into halves
• olive oil
• I packet dry Italian dressing
• 2 pounds red potatoes diced
• two cans French style green beans
– Preheat oven to 350
– Grease 9 by 13 baking dish with olive oil
– Divide pan into thirds. Create a section for the green beans, one for chicken halves and the last for the diced potatoes
– Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle packet of Italian dressing.
– Bake at 350 for 1 hour
Enjoy, and feel free to download and share it!
“There is no secret to success. What exists is the result of preparation, hard work, and learning from failure.”
Do you have a favorite quote? Please share it with us here, or on facebook.
If you’re looking to lose weight, consider thinking of your next workout as a fun activity or a well-deserved break, not dreadful “exercise”.
According to new study from the Cornell University Food and Brand Lab, you will eat less and lose more weight when thinking positively!
This new study was conducted by famous Cornell researcher, Brian Wansink, PhD, director of the Cornell Food and Brand Lab. The study analyzed the eating habits of people after walking 2 km (1.2 miles). One half of the participants were told the walk was purely exercise, while the others were told it was a scenic walk.
Researchers found that those who believed they completed an exercise walk ate 35% more chocolate pudding for dessert than those who had been on a scenic walk. On a different occasion, those thinking they were exercising ate 206 more calories than those who had been told they were on a scenic walk.
According to researchers, the study shows one reason why people in new exercise programs often find themselves gaining weight: new exercisers have a tendency to reward themselves by overeating after a workout!
Current research has suggested that consuming between 1 to 1.5 ounces of 60% dark chocolate or greater daily can reap some delicious health benefits.
Read on to find some of the healthiest qualities of dark chocolate:
Searching for a new recipe to include in your weeknight dinners that is simple, quick, healthy, and delicious? This sounds impossible to find for most people, but this Balsamic Chicken recipe is a super charged supper, filled with a variety of food groups and many super-foods.
I have to admit that many of my patients seem to have a “love/hate” relationship with exercise. Many cannot find the time, the patience, the energy, or the interest in incorporating a regular exercise routine in their lives. On the other hand, many people enjoy scheduling exercise into their day, and love how they feel after a good sweat session. I understand that it is also very difficult to get back into a fitness routine, especially after the holiday season, or a busy season at work or school.
Current research shows that it is not necessarily the number of hours you clock in at the local gym that attributes to overall health, but what really matters is how long you remain sedentary throughout the course of a day. The more sedentary you are at home/work, the more likely you are to gain weight and accrue health complications over time. Therefore, I would strongly suggest that everyone incorporate more movement throughout their day, whether or not they enjoy structured exercise.
Movement can be anything that breaks up the sitting and monotony in your day, it doesn’t need to be performed in a gym environment.
The following exercises can be adapted according to each person’s preferences and needs.
Day 1: 10 minutes of aerobic exercise
Day 2: 20 squats
Day 3: 1 minute plank
Day 4: 20 crunches
Day 5: 20 lunges
Day 6: 10 tricep dips
Day 7: 30 second bridge hold
Day 8: 10 low back extensions
Day 9: 30 second wall sit
Day 10: 10 pushups
Day 11: 1 minute side planks
Day 12: 10 burpees
Well, although there will never be a “miracle pill” to make you lose weight and get in shape, there are particular strategies that can help you lose weight and keep it off for a lifetime!
The National Weight Control Registry is a large, ongoing study to identify and investigate the characteristics of people who have been successful at long-term weight loss. The Registry is currently tracking over 10,000 individuals using questionnaires about their diet, fitness, and lifestyle. In order to join this Registry, participants must be at least 18 years old, have lost over 30 pounds and kept it off for over one year. As long as you meet this criteria, you are eligible to join this elite group of participants.
The research conducted by the Registry determined that there are several dietary and nutritional strategies that successful weight loss participants have in common. Check them out!
• They have changed the types of foods they consume, decreasing their intake of “trigger foods” associated with weight gain. For example, they reported eating fewer foods that are high in sugar and saturated fats.
• They have learned to eat smaller portions at mealtime. They’ve also learned to fill their plate with less calorie dense foods, such as fruits and vegetables.
• They eat a lower calorie diet, with about 20-24% of their calories coming from fat.
• They self-monitor their progress by weighing themselves regularly. If you catch onto the fact that you’re starting to put weight on in enough time, you can take corrective actions sooner rather than later.
• They aren’t afraid to ask for help! More than 55% of Registry participants sought some sort of support along the way, including weight loss programs, registered dietitians, or personal trainers.
• The majority of successf ul dieters eat breakfast every morning to jump start their metabolism.
• They prepare most of their meals at home, and only eat out about three times per week. Less than one meal per week is from a fast food restaurant, and when they do visit, they make healthier menu choices.
• They watch very little TV daily. The majority of participants watch less than 10 hours of TV each week, while the average American watches at least 28 hours of TV per week. These people realize they need to be more active than sitting on the couch!
• Finally, they engage in consistent physical activity. More than 75% of participants are active and walk for an hour daily.