Is CrossFit Really Dangerous??

ABSOLUTELY NOT! CrossFit is defined as “constantly varied, functional movements performed at relatively high intensity .”CrossFit is one of the fastest growing strength and conditioning programs around today. CrossFitters are trained in explosive plyometrics, speed training and gymnastics movements while maximizing strength to weight ratio and flexibility. A heavy emphasis is also placed on Olympic and power-style weightlifting.

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Training the CrossFit way encourages you to work out 3 to 5 days a week. The workouts are highly intense and short, taking about 5 to 15 minutes to complete. In total, each workout lasts about an hour- including stretching, warm-up and the WOD (workout of the day). People joke that the CrossFit warm-up exercises are tougher than the workouts at a “regular” gym- that’s not a joke. With regard to healthy eating, CrossFit recommends a daily eating plan of meat, fish, vegetables, nuts, seeds and some fruit. little starch and no sugar. This diet is similar to the popular Paleo and Zone nutrition plans.

CrossFit may be one of the most extreme exercise workouts around these days but in my opinion and from the research I have done, I do not believe that CrossFit is inherently dangerous. The CrossFit I belong to, CrossFit Central LI located in Syosset, NY was established in 2007 and was the first CrossFit certified gym on Long Island. It’s owner, Chris Isernio is also the hands-on manager and a certified trainer of the CrossFit gym. We spoke about all the negative publicity and criticism that has plagued CrossFit recently. According to Chris, “the negative feedback stems from people training with inexperienced coaches. Maybe there is a great athlete who gets his Level 1 coaches’ certification and then without much other training opens a CrossFit gym.” In addition to the inexperienced CrossFit coaches, Chris said that another problem is overzealous coaches. According to Chris, he has heard of incidents where certain coaches just want to work the CrossFitters to the bone, “they keep pushing and pushing- it’s unhealthy.” According to Chris, “overstraining is a real problem and experienced coaches know this. Experienced coaches advise their athletes to work out hard (if they want to and are able to) 3-4 times per week not 7 days per week.”

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So why has CrossFit’s safety been and continues to be a hotly debated topic? Here are some points to consider:

1) Rhabdomylosis- In a recent HuffPost article, Eric Robertson, an assistant professor of physical therapy at Regis University in Denver, Colorado, wrote about the dangers of Rhabdomylolysis (Rhabdo), a potentially fatal condition that can be caused by severe exertion, among other things. Rhabdo occurs when skeletal muscle is damaged causing proteins to be rapidly released into the blood. This results in harm to the kidneys and can ultimately lead to kidney failure. Rhabdo is not a common condition and not unique to CrossFit. There have been cases of Rhabdo in football players, triathletes, marathon runners and body builders. In the same article, to prevent Rhabdo, Dr. Richard Besser, chief health and medical editor for ABC News, recommends staying hydrated both before and during exercise, taking breaks during workouts and listening to your body.

2) The possibility of injury is increased with participation in ANY high-intense fitness regimen. This is especially true if you are new to Olympic-style weightlifting and plyometric workouts or if you have a previous injury. Performing exercises when you are in a fatigued state increases the risk of injury. Listen to your body. In other words- if you are tired- REST!

3) Not all CrossFit coaches are created equal. Before you join a CrossFit gym, make sure that the coaches have the appropriate certified CrossFit training. Make sure you ask about credentials for any coach who is responsible for teaching you proper lifting technique. CrossFit is dangerous when done improperly or without a well-trained coach.

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4) CrossFit is mostly geared towards healthy people who enjoy vigorous exercise. If you have an injury or weakness, tell your CrossFit coach. They will work with you to tailor the specific exercise to your needs and limitations. A year after my hernia surgery, I was skittish about the GHD machine ( Glute-Ham developer torture contraption, seriously- google it). I felt the machine was straining my abdominal muscles at the hernia scar site. My coach immediately told me to stop what I was doing and to lay off abdominal workouts for a few days or until I felt comfortable. He then showed me other abdominal exercises to do instead of the GHD machine if I thought that it may bother me again.

5) Know your body. This cannot be emphasized enough. Injuries usually occur when someone is making poor decisions about their body or doing too much too soon. Athletes get caught up in the competition of the classes and push themselves too far. No pain, no gain should NOT be your mantra.

6) CrossFit is challenging. The workouts are fast-paced, constantly varied and grueling. Crossfit is hard. It`s always hard! Crossfit never gets easier, you just get faster. I have done half-marathons, triathlons, kayaking, rollerblading, Spin, hot yoga, rock-climbing, yet nothing challenges me on a daily basis as CrossFit does. Working hard at CrossFit this past year has given me the confidence to enter an Olympic length triathlon this summer. My husband is the one who got me interested in CrossFit and we constantly challenge each other. I hope to always push myself to do more, to be more and to achieve more.

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People joke that CrossFit embodies a cult-like mentality. I think this is because CrossFitters feel a sense of camaraderie with others who CrossFit. Why? Because after a particularly grueling workout when your body is drenched in sweat, your breathing is labored, your heart is racing, when you collapse on the floor, only the person laying next to you can appreciate the effort it takes to lift your arm for a congratulatory fist-pump.

A special thank you to Jay Hoffman for the awesome pictures in this post and for all the terrific photographs in all my posts.

The Diet Dilemma- Mediterranean, Zone, Paleo- Which To Choose?

There has been so much talk lately about all the different diets out there. Years ago, it seems that the talk used to be mainly about Weight Watchers, Jenny Craig and the Atkins diet. Now people are talking about the Paleo diet, the Zone diet and the Mediterranean diet, just to name a few.

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I hear these diet or “lifestyle” discussions everywhere; at my gym, at work and at the supermarket. Okay, maybe not the supermarket- but you get the idea. Why are we so obsessed with following a specific “diet?” Why can`t we just eat the foods that work for our bodies and for our individual lifestyle? Is it so difficult to pick and choose what food groups we want to limit, which foods we want to eat more of and how we want to cook our food? I guess the specifics of our food consumption is indeed difficult to handle on our own that we feel compelled to proclaim, “I am now following the Mediterranean diet.” “For the next three months (if I can follow it that long), I will eat an abundance of olive oil, fish, beans (yikes- I know- beans are regarded as “poison” in some circles) and red wine- opa!”  So what are these latest diet crazes? Admittedly, these diets have been around for years and although I have not been living under a rock, these diets have only recently gained in popularity.  What exactly is the Mediterranean diet and must I travel to Greece to get started?

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The Mediterranean diet is a heart-healthy eating plan. As opposed to the eating plan that wreaks havoc on your heart. The Mediterranean diet incorporates the basics of healthy eating, with a splash of olive oil and red wine. So far, so good. Any diet that condones the drinking of red wine on a regular basis is a candidate for further investigation. This diet favors the traditional cooking style of countries bordering the Mediterranean Sea. The Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends the Mediterranean diet as an eating plan that can help prevent disease and promote good health.  Studies have shown that following a Mediterranean diet was associated with a reduced risk of death from heart disease and cancer as well as a reduced incidence of Parkinson`s and Alzheimer`s diseases.

The Mediterranean diet stresses: eating primarily plant-based foods, such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes and nuts. It emphasizes healthy fats, such as olive oil as opposed to butter and using herbs and spices to flavor foods instead of salt. This diet encourages the eating of fish and poultry at least twice a week and limits red meat to no more than a few times a month. Dairy is permitted on the Mediterranean diet but it emphasizes low-dairy such as skim milk, fat-free yogurt and low fat cheese. And finally- it permits the drinking of red wine, in moderation (about a glass a day). This diet also recognizes the importance of being physically active everyday and enjoying meals with family and friends.

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A gluten-free diet is a diet is a diet that excludes foods containing gluten. Gluten is a protein complex found in wheat, barley and rye. Following a gluten-free diet may be a lifestyle choice or a choice that may be necessitated by medical reasons.

The Paleo diet is based on the presumed diet of Paleolithic humans (cavemen). The Paleo diet consists mainly of fish, grass-fed meats, eggs, vegetables, fruits and nuts. This diet excludes grains, legumes, dairy products, potatoes, refined salt and sugar and processed oils. The Paleo diet is similar to the Zone diet.

The Zone diet is balanced in lean and natural meats, low glycemic fruits and vegetables and fat. The Zone philosophy is that with the right balance of protein, carbohydrates and fats, you can control three major hormones generated by our diet- insulin( a storage hormone), glucagon (a mobilization hormone that stabilizes blood sugar) and eicosanoids (a hormone that controls silent inflammation).

Personally, I believe in any diet that works for you. I do not judge what diets other people follow and I don’t offer my opinion unless I am asked. Some people eat foods from one diet and follow certain beliefs from an entirely different diet. I recommend that everyone should do their own research and not just from the internet- before they embark on a new diet. Remember those free-standing buildings called, “libraries” that we visited as kids? Where we could borrow books for free? What a concept. And it’s a good idea to talk to your doctor before beginning any diet.

I have included a delicious carb-free Crab Cake recipe. It is easy to make and great for any time of day. I believe that this recipe can be eaten if you follow any of the diets discussed above. However, Paleo followers may want to substitute another ingredient for Worcestershire sauce since it contains sugar.

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Carb-free Crab Cakes

Ingredients

1 container of Chicken of the Sea real crab meat (8 oz.) or 8 oz. of fresh crab meat
1 egg
1 tablespoon mayonnaise
1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning or Mrs. Dash extra spicy, salt-free, seasoning blend
salt and pepper to taste
Hot sauce -optional

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and mix well. Prepare a fry pan with olive oil or any oil you choose. Use a tablespoon to form heaping spoonfuls. Press down lightly so they look like mini pancakes. Pan fry until golden brown on each side. I made 7 pancakes. Enjoy!

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Acupuncture For Relief Of Pain

I have been wanting to try acupuncture for a while to help alleviate the low back pain I sometimes experience. I was inspired to write this post about acupuncture because I have always heard positive comments about the practice.  Lately, my husband has been suffering from low back pain and radiating leg pain caused by several bulging and herniated discs in his back.

With the approval of his orthopedist who specializes in sports medicine, my husband has been back at the gym, lifting (not with his maximum weight) and vigorously working out. He is stretching religiously and going to a weekly yoga class.  Needless to say, he is trying to avoid pain relief injections and hopes to not have to consider surgery for this problem. Hence, the acupuncture discussions. Besides my minimal low back pain, at times I suffer from upper back/bi-lateral shoulder pain. During a recent massage session, the masseuse explained that I will continually suffer from this shoulder/back pain as long as I carry such a heavy work bag. I can’t help it. I like to be prepared. Always, no matter what the occasion. Admittedly, the work bag that I commute to the city with is so packed with essentials that a family of four could use what’s in my bag to camp out for a week.

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Acupuncture is an ancient form of Chinese medicine dating back over thousands of years . Acupuncture is most commonly used to treat pain but is also useful in treating many conditions. Acupuncture involves inserting extremely thin, metallic needles through your skin at strategic points on your body. It is a technique for balancing the flow of energy or life force (known as qi or chi)- believed to flow through pathways (meridians) in your body. When acupuncture needles are inserted into specific points along these meridians, it is believed that your energy flow will re-balance to bring about a healing response. As the acupuncture needles are inserted, most people feel nothing at all, or a mild tingling. The thin needles are then manipulated by the practitioner’s hands and/or through electrical stimulation.

The World Health Organization recognizes acupuncture as an effective treatment for more than 35 diseases, illnesses and conditions, including the following:
chemotherapy-induced nausea
fibromyalgia
headaches
low back pain
teeth grinding
cognitive issues- ADD and inability to focus
energy problems- lack of motivation and chronic fatigue syndrome
insomnia
asthma

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Acupuncture is also used to stimulate the immune system, relieve drug and alcohol withdrawal symptoms, aid in weight loss and to help stop smoking. Acupuncture treatments are often used with aromatherapy, massage and meditative exercises to enhance the healing benefits.  Most traditional medical doctors believe acupuncture is not an effective treatment, however, clinical trials have indicated that acupuncture can assist in pain relief.

Like any medical or alternative practice, there are risks involved in acupuncture treatment. However, the risks of acupuncture are low if you have a competent, certified practitioner. The most common risk is infection at the injection site or sites, especially if the practitioner does not use clean needles. It is important to ask your acupuncturist if he or she uses disposable needles. These are the safest type of needles when it comes to limiting the spread of infection. Diseases like hepatitis can be transmitted by using dirty needles. Acupuncture may be dangerous for patients who have bleeding disorders because they can bleed profusely from a small needle puncture. Also, someone who is taking steroids may not be a good candidate for acupuncture since they may have a compromised immune system and be less equipped to fight against needle-borne infections.

For more information, speak to your doctor or contact a reputable medical facility that is  known for acupuncture treatment like Johns Hopkins Medical Center or the Mayo Clinic Health System. When choosing an acupuncturist, ask people for recommendations and check the practitioner’s training and credentials. Most states require that non physician acupuncturists pass a certification exam. It’s a good idea to find out what the requirements are in your state. Interview the acupuncturist before treatment and ask what is involved in the treatment, how it will help your problem and how much it will cost. Find out whether the treatment is covered by your insurance.

After doing the research for this post, I realize that there is almost no down side to trying acupuncture and I will definitely give it a try. Stay tuned!

Why Am I So Hungry Today?

get-attachment.aspx-30Why do we overeat? We have all been guilty of this at some point. Either we are mindlessly munching on a bag of pretzels or popcorn during a television marathon or eating a second helping of a meal when the first one was enough. Besides boredom, why else are we reaching for a snack when we should feel full? Some of it is pure habit and other triggers have to do with our body’s signals.

1)  Lack of rest stimulates fake hunger pangs.  Energy deficiency from lack of sleep makes us want to nourish our bodies. When you are thirsty or dehydrated you tend to overeat. Making sure to get at least eight hours of sleep each night can help to avoid the overeating pitfalls.

2) A lot of people misinterpret the feeling of thirst for a feeling of hunger. The symptoms of dehydration (low energy and sleepiness) are very similar to those of being overly hungry. Drinking a glass of water before eating and waiting ten minutes could save you hundreds of calories.

3)  Maybe you just worked out and after a strenuous exercise session, you feel ravenous. Your body needs a specific type of nourishment, not just empty calories. Try eating grilled chicken, other lean meats or a protein shake to replenish your muscles.  Ingesting protein after a strenuous workout will to help your body recover faster and ward off hunger longer.

4)  You’ve had a tough day or tough week. When people are stressed out, they are more likely to turn to high-fat, salty or sugary foods. These comfort foods may taste good going down but this emotional eating is hurting your body. Stress not only causes you to overeat but it makes you eat foods that are bad for you. Find another way to de-stress.

Appetite control is a product of decision making. It’s as simple as that. Before reaching for foods that you know you shouldn’t be eating, ask yourself, “Am I really hungry”, “What am I about to eat? Do I really want to eat this?”

This is a delicious recipe that is easy to make and is very filling. I sometimes skip my morning snack after eating these pancakes for breakfast. I used 2 tablespoons of 1% cottage cheese in this recipe. If you are a vegan, a vegetarian who does not eat dairy or if you follow a Paleo diet or a gluten-free diet- substitute another ingredient for the dairy. I also use 1/2 cup of oatmeal in this recipe. If you follow a Paleo diet or gluten-free diet, then  substitute another ingredient instead.

I understand that there are differing views as to the ingestion of dairy. I understand that there is a school of thought in the medical community who believe that dairy is the devil incarnate. I also understand that there there are medical providers, nutritionists and dietitians who believe that a certain amount of dairy in a diet is acceptable. My blog is not a thesis statement where I am obliged to address the pros and cons of every post. I usually issue a disclaimer that if you follow a Paleo diet then you do not eat this ingredient or substitute that instead. However, it is my opinion that the food posts and recipes which I have posted on my blog are not so inherently controversial- the food debates which can stem from one of my posts are more akin to differences in opinions- it’s not like I said that nicotine is good for you.

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Sweet Potato Pancakes

1/2 cup oatmeal (regular old fashioned, not instant)
1/3 cup egg beaters or 1 extra large egg
2 tablespoons 1% cottage cheese
1 small sweet potato (1/2 of a medium or 1/3 of a large)- cooked and mashed
1 scoop of chocolate or vanilla protein powder
1/2 cup of water or so- until batter becomes smooth
1 tablespoon nutmeg or cinnamon

To mash the sweet potato- peel and cut it in half, place into a saucepan filled with water, bring to a boil, uncovered. Once boiling, cover the pot and let it simmer for 30 minutes. Then mash the sweet potato and put into blender. Add the remaining ingredients and blend until smooth. Drop batter into frying pan sprayed with olive oil spray. Once pancakes start to lightly bubble, gently lift with a spatula and if it looks cooked, turn it over. Enjoy!

Stretching And Bending Exercises- Beneficial To All

Bending, stretching and squatting exercises are beneficial for every age group. Maybe you are a 20, 30, 40 or 50 something weightlifter or fitness buff who wants to add more stretching to your workout routine. Or maybe you want to stretch more on your “rest day.” Perhaps you are a 50, 60, 70 something- who has heard about the benefits of exercise for years and now you want to join a gym or go on a daily walk. Keep reading because this post is for you.

If you are starting to exercise later in life, don’t be discouraged as flexibility decreases with age and physical inactivity. As we age, muscles become shorter and lose their elasticity. Regardless of your age, you can increase your flexibility by incorporating stretching into your daily routine. However, it is important to realize that aerobic fitness and strengthening are just as important if you are in your 20s or your 60s. Remember to always consult your doctor before starting a new exercise or stretching routine (for older adults).

What are the benefits of stretching? Daily stretching can improve physical performance. Increased flexibility makes it easier to perform daily tasks such as lifting, bending and turning. Stretching increases circulation and keeps tissues healthy by raising the temperature of your muscles. Lack of flexibility can lead to loss of balance, which can cause falls. A regular stretching routine can reduce injuries by helping to maintain a good range of motion.

The National Institute on Aging and the American College of Sports Medicine recommend stretching lightly before engaging in stretching and endurance activities and then stretch more thoroughly after your workout. If you are unable to perform strength or endurance exercises but are able to do stretching exercises, perform them at least three times per week for at least 20 minutes each session. Make sure to do each stretching exercise three to four times during each session. You should stretch slowly and as far as possible without pain. Hold the stretch for 10 to 30 seconds. Then relax and try to stretch further with each repetition. Warm up before you stretch- a bit of walking, stationary bike, jump rope should be sufficient.

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I have a friend at the gym who stretches for approximately 45 minutes before he works out. People sometimes give him a hard time- joking that he is warming up for the next day’s class. Yet he knows how his body would react to a strenuous weightlifting workout if he has not stretched properly.

It is never too late to start to get fit. The National Institutes of Health at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and other health professionals suggest that exercise is the key to overall health for seniors and older adults. Exercises and fitness routines that are highly recommended for every age group, especially older adults are ones that build, maintain or increase balance, strength, flexibility and overall endurance.

Try this squat exercise which can be done with a chair, anywhere. Okay, well, maybe not anywhere. Maybe not on line at the bank or at Starbucks, but you get the idea. This is a great exercise for strengthening hips, thighs and buttocks.

In front of a sturdy, armless chair, stand with feet slightly more than shoulder-width apart. Then extend your arms out in front of you so they are parallel to the ground and lean forward a little at the hips. Make sure that your knees NEVER come forward past your toes.

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Lower yourself in a slow, controlled motion, to a count of four, until you reach a near-sitting position. Pause. Then to a count of two, slowly rise back up to a standing position. Keep your knees over your ankles and your back straight. Repeat ten times for one set. Rest for one to two minutes. Then complete a second set of ten repetitions. If you are unable to go all the way down, put a couple of pillows on the chair or only squat down four to six inches. Do whatever is comfortable for you. Also, placing more weight on your heels than on your toes can help you keep your knees from moving forward past your toes.

Everyday is a new beginning. Make your tomorrow a day to stretch, strengthen or get fit. “Believe you can and you’re halfway there.”- Theodore Roosevelt

Beans- Love’em Or Hate’em?

Beans are so good for you. Some people love them and some people hate them. Which brings me to a point I want to discuss before I pontificate on the wonderful virtues of beans. We are all adults; inherently we know what works for one person may not necessarily work for another person. Whether it is a food plan, a fitness routine or how you drink your coffee; what works for your friend may not work for you. Just because Joe at the gym religiously takes every Wednesday off, this may not be good for you. So why do we get so obsessed sometimes with what the next person is doing? Is it FOMO? Fear of missing out?

For me, I know it’s because sometimes I think that if Stacy is doing a juice fast one day a week and she looks fabulous, well, then maybe I, too, should do a juice fast one day a week. It doesn’t matter that I am happy with what I am doing; I am losing weight, building muscle and feeling confident about what I am doing. But as soon as I hear that Maria is eating nothing but cabbage for a week, I pause to think that maybe I should try it. That is not to say that we should never emulate what someone else is doing. Some of the best diet/healthy eating plans I have tried have been based on someone else’s idea. But it is important to have confidence in what works for you.

Just because your trainer skips breakfast every day and eats his first meal at noon, this may not be your ideal eating schedule. If you get up at 6:00 a.m., noon may be too late for your first meal. Always do what works for you. Now who doesn’t love a good bean burrito? Not eating carbs this week? This month? How about a healthy three bean salad?

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The beans I am referring to are called legumes. They include: black beans, black-eyed peas, cannelloni beans, garbanzo beans (chick peas), kidney beans, lentils and lima beans. According to the Harvard Heath Publications from Harvard Medical School, legumes are an excellent source of protein and are low in fat. They contain plenty of nutrients, vitamins, minerals and fiber. Beans can be eaten at any meal, as a complement to a meal or as a snack.You can even make a bean burger from ground chick peas or use beans in salads or stews.

According to the Mayo Clinic, the Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends eating a variety of foods that are high in protein, including eggs, beans, peas, soy products, and unsalted nuts and seeds. The guidelines also suggest replacing protein foods that are higher in solid fats with foods that are lower in solid fats and calories. Solid fats are the fats that are in meats, poultry and eggs, while fats in seafood, nuts and seeds are considered oils.

Try this easy to make, yummy three bean salad. Eat it as a meal, with a meal or as a snack. For you Paleo followers, eat this on a “cheat day.” Add whatever beans you like and you can use a salad dressing of your choice or make your own.

Three Bean Salad

1 can of red kidney beans
1 can of chick peas (garbanzo beans)
1 can of cannelloni beans (white kidney beans)
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar or dressing of your choice

Rinse all beans thoroughly with cold water. Combine all beans in a large bowl. Add balsamic vinegar, Newman’s Own Lite Italian dressing or Ken’s Caesar dressing. Toss lightly and refrigerate. Ready to eat!

One Month After New Years…….

So it’s one month into the new year and I’m wondering how everyone is doing with their New Year’s resolutions. Did you vow to exercise more or eat healthier? Did you promise not to keep hitting the snooze button on your alarm so that you can get to work earlier and be more productive? Well, if you did resolve to make some sort of change in your life -one month in, why don’t you assess your progress or lack thereof.

I am doing moderately well with my resolve to eat healthier and practice what I preach. I have to work harder so as not to let personal setbacks and road bumps get in the way of the goals I have set for myself. My father had a heart attack last month (thank goodness he is fine now) but that shouldn’t give me free reign to eat chocolate for breakfast lunch and dinner. Well, I didn’t do that- but you get the idea. Then my trip to Florida to see my in-laws, who are rapidly declining in health, did not go well.  Unfortunately, this bad situation prompted a winefest like you’ve never seen.

When life throws us curve balls, we need to swerve so as not to get hit. We may need to re-adjust our plan- but keep going forward. Don’t get hit by the ball. Although my poor eating and drinking choices were offset by copious amounts of exercise, you can’t exercise away a bad diet. When I wasn’t by my father’s hospital bed, I was at the gym or running. One of the highlights of visiting my in-laws was that my husband and I were able to swim laps in their community pool and run outside. With triathlon training approaching, I tested the waters, so to speak, by swimming a continuous half-mile. And then I got sick, a respiratory infection that made it painful to breathe. Non-stop coughing forced me to take a break from cardio for a week. Again, not a reason to engage in an unhealthy eating free-for-all.

So what if you promised yourself that you would work out more and that hasn’t happened? Ask yourself- “What is preventing me from achieving my goals?”  Maybe you are in a fitness rut. If you live on the east coast- are the unending days of sub-zero degree temperature getting to you? Maybe you just need to change things up. If you can afford it- throw in a new fitness class every other week or once a month. Check out what cool fitness classes are in your area.

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In my neck of the woods there are many drop-in classes to choose from: Soulcycle (spinning), Zumba, kickboxing, hot yoga (bikram yoga done in a room heated to 105 degrees), swim laps at your local community center, try indoor volleyball, try Crossfit or a boot camp class. Groupon and Living Social are always offering fitness deals.

What if some days you don’t even want to leave the house? Workout at home. There is no excuse!  Try this workout:

5 Rounds

25 air squats
25 pushups
25 sit-ups

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Remember, if you haven’t started to achieve the goals that you have set for yourself….. start now. Everyday is a fresh start and a new opportunity to begin your journey. Good luck!