I was a young bride. 24 years old. And ‘Everyday Cooking’ by Dr. Dean Ornish was all the rage. I mean, Everyday cooking? That means it’s something that I can do. Right? I don’t recall why – maybe it was because I desired to be healthier, or if I felt like it was my role as a wife to cook – but I chose a recipe from the book, bought all of the ingredients, and started following the recipe. That was 1/2 of my lifetime ago – but I still recall standing in that kitchen, looking in the pot of food, wondering where I went wrong?!? It did not look like the picture. And as the end result started to get more and more away from the picture in the cookbook, I started course correcting, however as a new cook, I ended up with a soupy mess that tasted just Read More . . .
For folks who love traveling, or who travel for their job, it’s one of the downfalls that goes along with the luxury of going to wonderful new places: traveling is disruptive to even the best intentioned person, when it comes to their health. I recall when I started my first job where I would be traveling 100% of my time; I knew that business travelers often gained weight. I was already bigger than I felt comfortable with, and didn’t want to gain more. I was young – in my late 20’s. I had never exercised before in my life and my diet was sh*t. I knew my diet was bad. I loved bloomin’ onions, burgers, fries, and beer. I knew that I should be eating more vegetables, but I didn’t know how to do that – so I did it the only way I knew how – I became a Read More . . .
It seems to happen without our even noticing it. Seemingly all of a sudden one day, your pants seem a little bit more snug around the waist although not in the hips and thighs. Huh. I wonder why? So, you set out to lose that belly fat: go low carb, and wake up earlier so that you can dedicate more time at the end of your workout for ab exercises. Running! That’ll do it! Move more & eat less! But it doesn’t seem to be working. Nothing you do seems to be working! As we age, the calories in versus calories out approach doesn’t work like it used to. Gone are the days of just working a little harder at the gym to drop a few lbs. Here are the top reasons why you might be having trouble getting that belly fat to budge. You’re getting older This is especially Read More . . .
We all have exercises that we like, and therefore do a lot; and there are exercises that we dislike, and don’t do, unless we’re forced. I have them too. We tend to gravitate towards those bodyparts that we enjoy training, and steer clear from those that we don’t. The problem with doing the same exercises over and over again (and not doing others ever) is that you risk injury. When one group of muscles is significantly stronger than another group, you will move differently than if your muscles are balanced in strength. Strong muscles pull on other muscles in the body, and weaker muscles stretch out. An example of that might be if you have weak lower back, the stronger muscles in the glutes and hamstrings will pull on your lower back muscles. That could pull your pelvis out of alignment, and cause pain not only in your lower back, but also Read More . . .
So, here’s the scene: It’s after dinner, and you want something. A banana. But you don’t eat it. Because you heard that it’s got a lot of starch in it. And sugar. And they can also have a lot of calories! And all of that is bad to have before you go to bed. So you eat a handful of almonds. Because even though they can be higher in calories, at least they don’t have any starch or sugar. And that’s good because you’ve heard that at least it won’t raise your blood sugar before bed. But the almonds don’t really hit the spot. So you find some fat free Greek yogurt. And you put a touch of honey in it to sweeten it a little. But that’s okay because you read that you should always eat carbohydrates with protein – because protein slows down the spike in blood sugar. And Read More . . .
There are hundreds upon hundreds of personal trainers in your city – let alone the US or the world. Have you ever had one? How did you pick him/her? What do you look for when you hire a personal trainer? Certification? Years of experience? Did you stalk her, watch her train other clients to see how she interacted with them? Or did you select her because of her body? Choosing a trainer based on looks is a bad idea. Deciding on a trainer based solely on appearance is as bad of an idea as picking a life partner out of a magazine. I don’t need to explain that. Do I? Most people have a disconnect about what a trainer can do for them. They hire a trainer with the idea that they’re going to lose weight and look toned, and so they hire a trainer who has the body style that they, themselves, desire. There Read More . . .
When clients come to me saying that they want to lose weight, I understand what they mean. If I were to be snarky, I could say, ‘oh, you want to lose 10 lbs? Let’s just chop off your right arm. Would that make you happy?’ …but that probably wouldn’t make a good first impression now, would it? When folks say that they want to lose weight, what they mean is that they want to lose body fat. We want to look ‘toned’ – like our muscles are flexing even when we’re sitting on the couch. The degree of muscularity desired, however is different depending on the individual, and what they perceive to be an ideal physique. What’s counter-intuitive, though is we say that we want to lose weight, even though we want to lose fat, but we’re measuring that success with a tool that only measures our gravitational pull to the earth – the scale. Read More . . .
There are no shortage of memes about goals. “A goal without a plan is just a wish” “Set your goals high, and don’t stop until you get there” “Goals that are not written down are just wishes” Aaaah! They’re endless! Not only were goals a huge part of my early success with my weight, but they were a cornerstone of my health coaching business for a long time. I would teach folks about SMART Goals. How to create them, and help them through the process. But I’ve changed my attitude about goals. I don’t think they’re necessary anymore. I have a client who’s daughter is one of the most disciplined kids that I know. Every year, she’d create New Years Resolutions, and actually complete them! I Know! Who does that?!? I think they were tests of her willpower. When she was in high-school, she created a New Years Resolution to perform Read More . . .
Although I realize that January is the beginning of the calendar year, and folks like to make health resolutions at that time of the year, but I think it’s a terrible idea. It’s no wonder that by Superbowl weekend, most resolutions are broken and forgotten. There are many reasons why resolutions go by the wayside: often times they’re vague (I’m going to get healthy!), or overambitious (I’m going to start running every day – even though I haven’t run a mile in 5 years), or there’s just no real planning behind the resolution (HOW are you going to get healthy? What steps are you going to take to accomplish that?). When looking at people’s behaviors and what factors make them change their habits, researchers discovered that many folks changed their habits after a major life event. They didn’t even realize that they were doing it. But when their life changed due to Read More . . .
It’s one of the most common questions I get asked, “Elizabeth, which one should I do first? Strength train? Or cardio?” And, as always, the answer is, “It depends.” It depends on your goals. Why are you doing one or the other, or both. Do you have goals to run a sub 3 hour marathon? Or do you have a goal to compete in a strongman competition? Okay – I realize that you probably don’t have either of those goals in mind, BUT you might want to run a 5k, or just look toned – like your muscles are flexed even when they’re not. While doing higher amounts of cardio to prepare for your race is going to compete with muscle growth and maintenance, the flip side is that having a ton of muscle is going to slow you down for your speed goals. The short answer is that you want to Read More . . .