November 2012

She's Fit News

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Fit Fitness into a Frantic Schedule

You know you should be exercising regularly, for your health and your body shape, but you just can’t seem to find the time to do it. We’ve got some quick tips on how you can incorporate exercise into your everyday routine. And we’ve got bigger ideas for helping you make fitness a permanent part your life.

1. Buy arm weights for your home. Arm weights can be used while you’re watching TV or talking on the phone. Start with 8-pound weights and do three sets of 15 bicep curls each day. After two months, graduate to 12- or 15-pound weights, and add another exercise to your repertoire. Check out our How-To Exercises for more ideas.

2. Buy a fitness video A 15-minute aerobic routine is an excellent, quick way to bring cardio into your life. Or if Pilates is more your style, invest in a Pilates video instead. Either way, whether your fitness style is high-impact aerobics or intense yoga, there are lots of great fitness videos that you can use in your own home.

3. Use your lunch hour wisely. A brisk 20-minute walk during your lunch hour is a great fitness solution, especially if you can do it three or four times each week.

4. Take 15 in the morning Wake up 15 minutes earlier and do a quick aerobic video routine.

5. Take 15 at night. Do 50 sit-ups and 50 push-ups before you go to bed each night.

6. Invest in a good pair of sneakers. Having the right equipment means you have one less excuse to avoid working out. Plus, once you glide into those comfy, bouncy new shoes, you’ll want to run or walk practically everywhere.

7. Take a walk in the evening. This is an excellent fitness activity to do with a loved one or a close friend. Leave your cell phone behind and it can become a time for bonding and connecting with one another, too. Or try it solo and use it as quiet time to reflect.



A typical restaurant entree (not counting the bread, appetizer, beverage and dessert) has between 1000 and 2000 calories.



CHALLENGE YOURSELF to change it up

Any fitness routine can become stale if done for too long a period of time. Things get boring and that can make you lose your motivation. Keep your program fresh by continuing to challenge yourself in a variety of ways. Here are some super tips for staying motivated and changing things up a bit:

  • Learn new exercises. Check out women’s magazines for new ideas or keep an eye out in the health club for moves you have not tried before.
  • Add weight and do less repetitions for a change of pace or drop the weight and do extra sets.
  • Try out new fitness classes for a different atmosphere.
  • Keep an eye out for new ab exercise equipment or other types of gear. Using new props can challenge your muscles in different ways.
  • Join a “boot camp.” Some places have them just for women.
  • Try out interval training to change up the routine. Bursts of cardiovascular exercise (such as jogging) mixed in with weight training can make the workout go more quickly.
  • Get out of the rut. If you find that you are using the same machines all the time, resolve to incorporate new ones. If you always walk on the treadmill, try out the elliptical trainer. Change things up — you will be glad you did!

Sign up for a group class at your SF or Club16 location.


How Gender Can Affect Exercise Attitudes and Performance

1. Muscle mass matters. The average woman has (approximately two thirds) substantially less lean muscle mass than her male counterpart.

2. “X” marks the spot. The angular displacement of the female forearm to her upper arm can hinder her performance in both throwing activities and activities requiring maximum leverage.

3. The eyes of the beholder. Statistics show that the percentage of men who are relatively happy with their weight is substantially higher than it is for women.

4. Limits of size. Physically, the man’s heart and lungs are larger than those of the woman. The larger male heart and lungs produce higher stroke volumes and vital capacities than those of women. Men also have more oxygen in their arterial blood than do women.

5. Taking it to the limit. The average woman is always operating at a level closer to her maximum capacity than the average man, and will reach exhaustion sooner.

6. More likely to participate. Women are slightly more inclined to exercise on a regular basis than men. Gender tends to influence the choice of exercise activities in which a person chooses to engage.

7. Steady as it goes. Among the effects of this lower center of gravity is that women tend to have a higher level of balance, a characteristic that can impact performance in a number of physical activities.

8. Not an obstacle. Research indicates that physical activity has little or no affect on the average woman’s menstrual cycle. Accordingly, no restriction should be placed on the physical activity level of the average woman at any phase of her cycle.

9. The heat is on. Women are more subject to heat stress than men and have to work relatively harder than men to achieve similar workloads under higher levels of heat conditions.

10 . Structural restraint. A woman’s pelvis is 1/2 inch wider and is rounder than a man’s. From the slightly wider pelvis, a woman’s femurs extend at a greater angle. All factors considered, the joint distensions and the softer joints and ligaments in the pelvic girdle of a woman can hinder her ability to perform physical activities that involve running and jumping.


Parmesan Glazed ChickenParmesan Glazed Chicken


  • 2 tsp parmesan cheese
  • 1 Tbl vinegar, red wine
  • ¾ oz chicken, broiled
  • 1 Tbl soy sauce, lite
  • 1 cup pasta, uncooked
  • 1 ½ cups mushrooms
  • 1 ½ tsp oil, high oleic safflower

Spices / Flavoring

  • 1 tsp garlic
  • ¼ tsp salt, lite
  • ¼ tsp black pepper


  • ½ cup green beans
  • ½ Tbl almonds, slivered


Cook pasta in boiling water until al dente. Drain water from pasta and set aside. Sauté mushrooms and garlic in oil until soft. Add soy sauce, vinegar, chicken, and spices, as desired. Serve over pasta and sprinkle with parmesan cheese. Microwave green beans with 1 tablespoon water on high until heated through. Garnish with almonds and serve on the side. Per serving: 450 calories, 42 g protein, 19 g total fat, 52 g carbohydrates.

Source: Healthy Transformations Recipes

Healthy Living Tip

Start your morning with a glass of water

Start your morning with a glass of water with fresh lemon juice squeezed into it. Paradoxically, lemon juice helps to promote healthy alkalinity in your body. Almost instantly, you will feel calmer and better able to handle stress. Lemon juice also helps you to absorb minerals, so be sure to drink it when you take any nutritional supplements.

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Weight It’s no secret that booze—say an icy margarita to wash down some spicy fish tacos—adds extra calories to your meal. But you might be less clear on the other ways alcohol can mess with your diet. See if you can tell fact from fiction in this virtual diet drinking game.

True or false: While drinking alcohol, your body turns everything you eat into fat.

False. Your body doesn’t turn every food calorie into fat just because you wash it down with alcohol. However, there is some truth to the myth. Your liver recognizes the byproducts of alcohol as toxins, so your body stops processing nutrients from food you’ve eaten while it takes care of the “bad guys” first. As a result, your body burns empty alcohol calories (i.e., those low in nutrients) for energy while the digestion of nutrient-rich food is put on the back burner. When you consume more calories than you burn (a likely scenario when alcohol is part of your meal) your body stores the excess as fat. By the time your body gets around to burning food calories, it might not need the energy and end up storing the extra calories you’ve eaten as fat cells. Your best bet is to drink moderately, choose your drinks wisely (go for vodka-soda with lemon, or opt for a glass of wine over a sugary piña colada) and accompany them with a tasty, healthy, well-balanced meal, including loads of veggies, some lean protein, and healthy fats.

True or false: Drinking makes you hungry.

True. Even though alcohol contains calories, booze doesn’t satisfy us in the same way that food does. This means we don’t end up consuming fewer food calories to compensate for those we’ve drank. In fact, alcohol can make us want to eat more. Studies show that alcohol increases your appetite by suppressing leptin, the hormone which normally tells your brain to stop eating and negatively effects many other brain chemicals that are involved in appetite suppression. It also rather famously makes us lose our inhibitions, making the decision to grab a slice of pizza or order those chicken wings all the more easy.

True or false: Drunk eating is never a good idea.

False. In fact, it’s a bit of a catch-22: Sure, chowing down while drinking may not be so great for your waistline—particularly because your self-control is likely to be subdued at that time. However, eating food—even if it’s pizza—while drinking slows the rate that alcohol is absorbed into the blood stream, resulting in a lower level of intoxication, and warding off the hunger pangs that could lead you to reach for un-diet friendly foods.

True or false: It’s best to drink alcohol after you eat, not during the meal.

False. In fact, it’s probably best to consume alcohol in conjunction with a healthy, balanced meal to attenuate the effects of intoxication Also, the higher the fat content of the meal, the more time it takes for the stomach to empty, which slows the process of alcohol absorption, and wards off excess feelings of hunger that may have you reaching for un-diet friendly foods.



Fat is not something to avoid. For starters, it’s essential for normal growth and development. Dietary fat also provides energy, protects our organs, maintains cell membranes, and helps the body absorb and process nutrients. Even better, it helps the body burn fat. It is recommended that about a third of any weight-loss plan’s calories come from dietary fat.

Most of the fat that you eat—especially if you want to lose weight—should come from unsaturated sources, both monounsaturated (MUFA) and polyunsaturated (PUFA), Why? These good-for-you foods (like fish, seeds, nuts, leafy vegetables, olive oil, and, of course, avocadoes) pack tons of nutrients. Besides removing LDL cholesterol from arteries and promoting a healthier heart, unsaturated fat can help you burn fat big time without cutting calories.Avocado

The body needs three macronutrients for energy: Carbohydrates, protein, and fat. A gram of fat packs more than twice the energy of a gram of the other two. The body requires energy to keep its metabolism properly functioning.

Fat isn’t the easiest nutrient to digest, so it sticks around in the digestive system for more time than many other nutrients. MUFAs may also help stabilize blood sugar levels. That means you feel full longer, and you won’t feel the stomach-growling urge to raid the refrigerator after mealtime.

Many nutrients including vitamins A, D, E, and K are fat-soluble, meaning that the body can’t absorb them without fat. If your body isn’t absorbing nutrients properly, that can lead to vitamin deficiencies and bring on dry skin, blindness, brittle bones, muscle pains, and abnormal blood clotting.

These vitamins are also key to maintaining energy, focus, and muscle health, all of which contribute to a healthy weight. So while you can pile your salad high with nutrient-rich spinach, tomatoes, and carrots, you really need to thank the olive oil for sending the salad’s vitamins your way.


Ladies’ Corner



Fill most of your plate with fruit and leafy green vegetables. Also include a variety of whole grains, beans and legumes to give you filling fiber and keep you going throughout the day.


Women are at a greater risk than men of developing osteoporosis, so it’s important to get plenty of calcium to support your bone health.


Protein is an essential part of any healthy diet, but eating too much animal-based protein- such as the levels recommended in many low-carb, high-protein diets- is particularly dangerous for women. Eating lots of protein causes calcium loss.


Many women don’t get enough iron in their diet. On top of that, women lose a lot of this important mineral during menstruation.


Women who have more than two alcoholic drinks a day are at higher risk of osteoporosis. Caffeine consumption interferes with hormone levels and also increase loss of calcium.


Men’s Corner



It’s crucial that you continue to make regular exercise a part of your life. Plan to get a good work out of some kind on four to six days per week.


Always keep in mind your own fitness level and do not push yourself beyond your capacity. This will only lead to discouragement and, even worse, to potential injury.


The food that you eat may have a bearing on a lot more than just your weight. Your exercise levels, fitness, stamina, and long-term health are all affected by what you eat.


Abstain from drinking and smoking if at all possible. At the very least, you will be healthier if you do not smoke or drink to excess at any time.


It’s important to get a regular physical exam and to have any medical issues checked by a doctor.