Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Can You Out Run McDonald's?

Before we get into out-running McDonald's, let's first examine what a calorie is...

Is it...

  1. The thing on the side of a food package?
  2. I don't know, but cookies have a lot and fruit doesn't.
  3. A measurement of heat?
Really, all of the above, but most people simply know if something has 'a lot' or 'a little' amount of calories.

But with that said, all calories aren't created equal.

While 100 calories is 100 calories -- there's a big difference between 100 calories from soda and 100 calories from an apple.

Make sense?

So when it comes to losing unwanted body fat, and fueling the body for optimum health and energy, we need to focus on overall calories, but then we also need to focus on the quality of those calories.

Quantity AND quality of foods is important.

It's not enough to cut calories and live off prepackaged dinners and 100 calorie snack packs. Yes, you can lose weight, but since you want it to be permanent and a lifestyle you can lead forever, packaged processed food void of quality nutrients is not the best approach.

Instead, learn to read food labels.

Learn the amount of calories in your favorite foods (PER SERVING, not per bag or per box) ... then make smart decisions.

Is THIS food worth it?

Sometimes that answer is YES...

...but more often than not, it's no, knowing regular consumption of "Food X" won't get you to your goals as quickly.

I do not advocate deprivation by any stretch of the imagination. Rather, I'm an advocate for getting the most nutrition for the least amount of calories.

These 5 strategies will help you do just that.
  1. Replace 1 major meal each day with a large salad, using spinach as the base.
  2. Plan ahead so you're not "caught" starving, which means you'll quickly turn to poor choices.
  3. 90/10 -- 90% of the time, eat clean, 10% of the time loosen up a bit (as long as 10% of the time doesn't become 20%, etc.).
  4. Replace calorie containing drinks with their non calorie equivalent.
  5. Get 7+ hours of sleep -- yes, this helps you eat less because very often people eat more when trying to boost their energy levels.

And finally, exercise does give you a little more wiggle room in terms of the quantity or amount of calories you can consume. But, be careful! Just because you had a good 1-hour workout, that doesn't give you a license to gobble down a 1400 calorie Chipotle burrito (if fat loss is one of your goals).

To illustrate how quickly you can "out eat" your exercise, I'd like to share a race between Leigh running on the treadmill, and Gabe consuming 1100 calories at McDonalds. Enjoy the event!

Click here to watch Leigh Race Gabe!

Your friend in fitness,

Brian Calkins

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HealthStyle Fitness, Inc. 4325 Red Bank Rd Cincinnati, OH 45227 513-407-4665 www.CincinnatiFitness.com

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Did You Miss National Donut Day?

Did you know June 5 was a holiday? It was, of sorts: June 5 was National Donut Day, a celebration of America's longstanding favorite morning treat. The tasty donut far outstrips its plainer cousin, the bagel, in terms of longevity, devotion and well, sugary goodness.

In honor of National Donut Day, Hostess (makers of more than two billion donuts a year) did a little "donut recon." And they came up with some interesting information. It seems that our home city and the surrounding environs encompass the Donut Regional Capital of the United States. Our riverside neighbor, Louisville, KY, eats the most donuts per capita in the country, while the fair Queen City itself comes in second on the list. Rounding out the top 5 are Roanoke, VA, Knoxville, TN, and Indianapolis. Clearly, this area loves its holey treats.

In the donut holiday spirit, I thought I'd do a little recon myself. After all, there's no disputing the fact that donuts are an awesome accompaniment to a good cup of java, not to mention an easy way to make that morning staff meeting a little less boring. So - if you're committed to living healthfully, as I know you are - how can you indulge in the occasional donut without eventually looking like one yourself (round and soft)?

Let's take a look. Cult favorite hot 'n fresh Krispy Kreme's glazed donut comes in at 200 calories and 12 grams of fat for a single treat. If you opt for the chocolate iced version, you're up to 350 calories and a whopping 20 grams of fat!

If Dunkin Donuts is your preference, calorie intake ranges from 220 all the way up to 470, for a single donut! Oh so delicious going down, but quite a caloric wallop for something that looks so innocent.

So how do you combat that occasional indulgence?

For the average 35-year-old woman who stands 5'7" and weighs in at 144 lbs., burning off 200 or so calories takes a bit of effort:

  • 61 minutes of walking at a moderate pace (power walking will burn calories faster)
  • 34 minutes of cycling
  • 25 minutes of jogging
  • 18 minutes of swimming

Stick to just one, and then carefully manage your nutritional intake throughout the rest of the day, and you can burn your morning donut off in one workout. Keep your indulgence to once per week and just "donut" make it a daily habit!

And, if you're looking for some professional guidance in transforming your health, fitness & body, there's never been a better time than now!

HealthStyle Fitness has 2 incredible June Specials designed to get you in tip-top shape and feel better than ever - and at a HUGE savings!

Option 1: Five Weekly Small Group Sessions in the Total Fitness Makeover for the price of three - that's about $11 per session with a top-level personal trainer! An Incredible Value - limited spaces available and will sell out quickly.

Option 2: Or, for those looking for the best of private, personalized 1-on-1 training, and small group fitness, our combo Personal Training/Total Fitness Makeover program is perfect for you. You pick 3 or 5 sessions per week, combining private training and small group fitness - as low as $30 for a nationally recognized fitness program!

Click here for details!

Have an great Thursday!

Your friend in fitness,

Brian Calkins

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HealthStyle Fitness, Inc. 4325 Red Bank Rd Cincinnati, OH 45227 513-407-4665 www.CincinnatiFitness.com

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Your Total Fitness Makeover!

I wanted to share a couple of things: First, a Total Fitness Makeover Special we’re offering for the month of June only, and a few training and nutrition questions that I’ve received from clients over the past week...

June Total Fitness Makeover Special!

For anyone who joins the TFM (or extends their existing sessions) for 3 or 6 months in June, you have the opportunity to come 5 days per week instead of 3! That’s 2 extra heart-thumping, muscle shaping workout EVERY WEEK at no extra cost!!!

Here are the groups and times that will meet 5 times per week:

Mon through Friday at 6am - click here to register- 3 spots available
Mon through Friday at 7am - click here to register - 5 spots available
Mon through Friday at 8am- click here to register- 5 spots available
Mon through Friday at 6pm - click here to register - 5 spots available
Mon through Thursday at 7pm, Saturday at 8am- click here to register- 5 spots available

You pay for 3 sessions and get 5, every week when you register for 3 or 6 months of TFM!The June TFM special is good through June 30, 2009 or when the available spaces are filled!

Okay, I’ve received a few questions from clients over the past week, and thought you might find value in the following Q & A…

Q: Why is frequent eating the recommendation?

A: A few reasons -- you want to keep your internal "furnace" going – think of your metabolism as a furnace – wholesome foods stoke your metabolism (sugar, bleached, processed, enriched foods do not). Eating more frequently also prevents you from reaching that intense starvation feeling where you can eat anything in the entire house.Remember, an eating episode can be something like a handful of raw nuts and a piece of fruit, yogurt and fruit, veggies and hummus, etc. I’m not suggesting a buffet style meal each time you eat.

Q: Is Diet Coke Okay?

A: Well, I suppose it’s better than regular soda, from a calorie standpoint, for sure. I’d prefer everyone consumed lots of water, and some green tea; the less "artificial" ingredients we can put in our body, the better we'll be. After all, they are artificial...and there is some research that suggest diet drinks lead to weight gain - Click here for the video “Are Diet Drinks Killing Your Diet”

Q: What is metabolism? What can you do to improve it?

A: Metabolism is the sum of all metabolic processes in the body. Now you may be saying, "Thanks Brian - that textbook definition was clear as mud!” Okay, you want the non-textbook definition?

Well your total metabolism is made up by a number of things. You have:

1. Resting Energy Expenditure (REE) - the number of calories you burn by breathing, maintaining your cells, and keeping yourself alive. In general, REE is higher in men and younger individuals, individuals with more lean muscle tissue and taller individuals.

2. Thermic Effect of Food (TEF) - you burn more calories by eating and breaking down food than you do at rest. That's why nutrition experts suggest eating small, frequent meals throughout the day rather than 2-3 large ones; each time you eat, you get a little boost in your metabolism. And certain foods, like protein, have greater thermic effects than carbohydrate and fat. Now, I don't want to convey that means eat more food and live off protein - because you don't burn that many more calories and we absolutely need whole grain carbs and essential fat.

3. Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis (NEAT) - this refers to the calories you burn in activities other than exercise. Walking, standing, pacing, shaking your leg when you sit at your desk, fidgeting. It all adds up. In fact, in a study done at the Mayo Clinic, researchers found that lean individuals expended 350 more calories per day than obese men and women because they spend on average about 2 1/2 hours more per day standing up and moving around!4. Exercise Expenditure - the number of calories you burn doing exercise like the TFM, walking, running, etc. The higher the intensity of exercise, the greater the energy expenditure.

So, if you believe your metabolism isn't working for you, you do have many things within your control.
  1. Make sure you're exercising -regularly. Got this one covered with the 5-day per week TFM Special.
  2. Choose to move - on the days you don't workout, or even when you do - decide to move more. Spend more time standing, walking, playing with the kids or grandkids - those calories add up over time.
  3. Choose small frequent meals of lean protein and complex whole grain carbohydrates and whole fruits and vegetables that take longer to break down and require more energy to digest.

Make sense? Three take home points.

  1. Everyone has a metabolism.
  2. Exercising increases metabolism.
  3. Eating smaller, more frequent meals that includes protein will increase metabolism.
Have an awesome Tuesday...we look forward to seeing you soon!

Your friend in fitness,

Brian Calkins

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HealthStyle Fitness, Inc. 4325 Red Bank Rd Cincinnati, OH 45227 513-407-4665 www.CincinnatiFitness.com