Friday, December 30, 2016

New Year Motivation

For many people, the new year brings with it a rush to make resolutions. Choose these strategies to keep your new goals from fizzling before February. Goals should be specific, measurable, have deadlines and be realistic.

Motivation Success: Journey to the Goal
When your goal entails acquiring a new skill set, say tennis or taekwondo, focus on the journey, not the destination. Setting a performance goal is less effective than setting a learning goal tied to gaining new knowledge and skills. Resolve to spend a certain amount of time each week practicing.

Motivation Success: Time it Right
Break long-term goals for the future into smaller, short-term aims. Framing your goal in the present is more likely to spark action. Achieve a set amount each month rather than looking at the end goal next January.

Motivation Success: Pace Yourself
Blowing all your energy at the outset of a new diet or exercise plan doesn't ensure success. Motivation at the critical four-week point is a better predictor of success. Avoid this mistake by choosing realistic weekly goals. Trade "No more suger, ever!" for " I will try one new low-sugar recipe each week this month." When goals are manageable, measurable and enjoyable, you're more likely to see success.

Spark your motivation this month and celebrate success in the new year!

Stay Active, Keep Moving and 
Enjoy Your Food

Friday, December 23, 2016

Merry Christmas!

 Merry Christmas! 
Thanks to all of you in my private training, group fitness and blog communities who have helped make 2016 a fabulous year for Priority Fitness Burbank. 
I've had a wonderful time getting to know some of you better and helping you prioritize fitness in your lives. It's great to see progress and have fun working out together. 
Anticipating many more times of fun and fitness in 2017

Plan ahead for Saturday Group Interval Training sessions three consecutive weeks this coming April.

Friday, December 16, 2016

Winter Workouts

It's cold outside - or the Southern California version of cold! You could move your workout indoors but if you brave the chilly conditions, you can boost your workout results.

You'll ramp up your metabolism the minute you step outside. When you exercise in cool conditions, you increase the amount of calories you burn. Chilly temps trigger something called non-shivering thermogenesis. This means your body isn't so cold it's shivering, but behind the scenes it's stoking your metabolism to keep you warm.

You'll get a "nature" boost. People who exercised outdoors reported less anxiety and more happiness than those who exercised indoors. Just looking at nature can raise your self-esteem and mood. Actually moving through the outdoors by walking, running or hiking, takes the feel-good benefits to another level.

Increase your VO2max and running speed. VO2max is a measurement of how fit you are. For most exercise situations, cold is safer and more accommodating than summer heat to work harder and longer. Use this season to push your workout to meet a specific fitness goal.

Tips for Cool Workout Comfort

Layer Up
Wear several thin layers. You'll trap and warm the air between each layer for an insulating effect. As you warm up, you can fine-tune your comfort level by peeling off layers.

Head & Hands
Any area of your body that is exposed is going to lose heat at a greater rate, so be sure to cover up. A hat and gloves can make a big difference.

Strip Quick
Post workout, remove your sweaty clothes as quickly as possible. Completely change your clothes, including undergarments. Sweat underneath your workout clothes will cause you to become cold at a much quicker rate.

With proper clothing and planning, you can rock your winter workouts this season.

Stay Active, Keep Moving and 
Enjoy Your Food

Friday, December 9, 2016

Tame Holiday Hunger

The holiday season is in full swing and every special event includes special treats. To help you manage and enjoy Christmas and abundant food, pay attention to your hunger signals.

Allow ample time to eat
People who eat slowly are more aware of what they are eating. This allows you to sense your feelings of hunger and fullness. Peaceful eating enables you to fully enjoy the sensation and flavor of the food, contributing to feelings of satisfaction. Think of it this way: if you quickly scarf that brownie while standing next to the dessert buffet, does that mean it has less calories? In addition, by eating quickly, you have just deprived yourself of the opportunity to really enjoy it.

Start your meal (event, party, etc) with 16 oz of water
Because water stays in the stomach for awhile, it helps reduce feelings of hunger and increase feelings of fullness. People who drank water beforehand consumed 75 to 90 fewer calories during a meal.

Eat breakfast
You may be tempted to skip the morning meal to "save up" calories for the upcoming party. This causes the body to go into starvation mode and metabolism slows. After fasting all night, your body needs fuel. Choose foods with staying power such as a veggie omelet with fruit or steel cut oats. Eating breakfast may reduce food cravings and prevent overeating.

Stay Active, Keep Moving and 
Enjoy Your Food

Friday, December 2, 2016

Take A Hike

Winter is the perfect time to hike in Southern California. The weather is cooler, the sky is clearer and the snakes are hiding. It doesn't take a lot to get started. You really only need two items: proper footwear and a water pack. No matter how challenging or easy your trail, every hike has it's perks.

Even a moderate one-hour hike can burn around 400 calories, while sculpting your core and lower body. As the elevation goes up, so do the benefits. Our local hikes here in Burbank all involve climbing a big hill and then coming back down, a combo that's a great workout for your legs. Going up is like doing lunges over and over, which is great for your glutes, quads, hamstrings and calves. But traveling downhill is what really sculpts your legs. To go downhill, your glutes and quads need to do a lot of slow and controlled work to stabilize your knees and hips so you don't fall. These types of contractions (eccentric) benefit muscle fibers the most because you're resisting the force of gravity against the weight of your body. This means that while you probably won't get short of breath on the descent, your muscles won't get a second to slack.

Research shows that experiences like gazing from atop a mountain or watching a burbling stream benefit your state of mind. People who spent 50 minutes walking through nature reported less anxiety and more happiness than people who walked near traffic. Exercising outdoors offers a wonderful combination of less stress and more happiness.

Hiking with others and working toward a unified goal - like making your way along an unfamiliar trail - strengthens relationships and builds bonds. Hiking usually involves solving little problems together, like "Which way to we turn?" Appreciating beauty in nature and sharing it with fellow hikers increases the communal mood-booster.

Whether you're a runner or love your Spinning class, scheduling some hikes can improve your fitness level in ways that up your running and cycling game. Cyclists tend to have strong quads but underdeveloped hamstrings and runners tend to have weak hamstrings and glutes. Hiking helps strengthen these muscles to eliminate those types of imbalances. A single hike won't have much of an effect. Consistency is the key.

Start a hike habit this winter!
Stay Active, Keep Moving and 
Enjoy Your Food