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What to Do After a Workout

Monday, October 20, 2008

SparkPeople Exercise of the Day email:

What to Do After a Workout

Many of us have a great workout routine. We drink plenty of water, warm up, stretch, work the entire body, and even get in some cardio. Then, after the last exercise, we promptly head back to the locker room, change, and journey home.

You may have done the majority of the work, but how you treat your body in the minutes and hours after you exercise has a direct effect on muscle soreness, muscle strength and growth, and staying hydrated.

Cool Down: The first thing you need to do is cool down. Try some light cardio for a few minutes. This brings your heart rate down at a slow and steady pace, which helps you avoid feeling sick after a workout. Walking on a treadmill for five minutes is a good and easy way to cool down.

Stretch: Stretching allows your muscles to rebuild, growing bigger and stronger, and thus allows you to get the full benefit from your efforts. Stretching after exercise also relaxes your muscles, helps speed circulation to joints and tissues, and helps removal of unwanted waste products, thereby reducing muscle soreness and stiffness.

Drink Water: It's recommended that you drink another 2-3 cups within two hours after you have finished exercising. You may not feel thirsty anymore, but you still need to replenish yourself to avoid getting dehydrated.

Refuel: You need to repair your muscles and boost your energy level, and you need to do it fast. It's recommended that you eat within 90 minutes of your workout, but the sooner the better. Look for foods that are packed with complex carbohydrates and protein. A perfect example is a tuna sandwich on whole wheat bread.

Exercise Extra: The longer you cool down after a workout, the less sore you will be the following day.


Family Health and Wellness Article (Be a child again!)

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Sometimes the Littlest People Know the Most

Forget about talk radio, research labs, late night TV, or a magazine rack full of scantily clad cover models. Everything you need to know about fitness and nutrition, you can learn from your kids.

Here are 11 things children can teach you about healthy living:

1. Everything can be a game. Why slog through the same workout routines in boredom, when you can add a little fun? Make up rules, shoot for personal records, and regain your competitive spirit.

2. Don't walk when you can run. Every day is full of opportunities to increase your fitness. This rule is closely related to "don't drive when you can walk."

3. If you don't like it, don't eat it. Chances are, your eating habits won't stick around long if you hate what you're eating. Healthy eating involves balance and moderation.

4. Laughter feels good. Kids seem to inherently know that laughter can ease blood pressure, help your brain function, give you energy, and help you reach your goals.

5. Playtime is important. We get so caught up in work, and "have-to's" that we forget to take time for ourselves. Not only does relaxing make life worthwhile, it has real health benefits.

6. The world should be full of color--especially on your dinner plate! Splash it with as many colors as possible; paint it like a rainbow with food. It's more fun to look at, the most colorful produce options often pack the most nutrients, and chances are you'll be eating a healthy, balanced meal.

7. It's always more fun with friends around. Children tend to gravitate toward other children. It gives them spirit and makes them want to play all day. Working out with other people is almost like having your own little playgroup.

8. Adventures are found outside, not inside. Every kid knows that the good stuff is in the great outdoors--fresh air, wide open spaces, limitless possibilities. You can't find those things cooped up in a tiny, stale gym. Open the door and start a new adventure every day.

9. It's important to use your imagination. You can be Major Fantasia or Stupendous Woman any time you want. Give yourself permission to believe in your own super powers and let your mind take you wherever it wants to go.

10. Anything is possible. No fear, no self-doubts, no negative self talk, no self-criticism, no worries, no destructive anxieties or thoughts of failure. To a child, he/she can do anything. And do you know what? They're right.

11.You have your whole life ahead of you. Here's your chance to do it right.


First steps, first pound

Monday, October 13, 2008

I'm down one pound, but hey, it's something! I start my new job tomorrow and I'm a little nervous. I've had so much free time lately that I hope I can adjust to the new busy schedule I'm going to have.

I hope the stress of this new job doesn't effect my weight goals.

*another reminder to myself...
next read the Fire section on

And, my motivational collage looks great!!!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

WANABE160 10/14/2008 9:44AM

    Awsome job with the first pound!

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SUSIECANDOIT 10/13/2008 1:23PM

    That's great, to lose any weight you have to lose that first pound, that's gone now.
Good luck with your new job, try to track your meals while out, taking a packed lunch would be great if you can and have planned what you will have when you get home. Try to fit a walk, even just 10 minutes into your break time, you will soon get into a routine


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Great references

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Reminder to myself:
Go to and finish reading when I have the time. Next section is Fitness.

So, I'm going to make my motivational collage today. That should be fun!


Slow Start

Thursday, October 09, 2008

My husband and I went for our first walk together since we've joined Spark People. We're both trying to lose weight. I hope we can do this together. I think it will increase our relationship.

I'm giving myself a lot of slack with this losing weight thing to begin with because I know how I can burn myself out really quickly. Plus, like they say, I'm trying to get rid of habits that I have been doing for years. It's going to take some time to get rid of them and keep them away. Slowly, but surely.

One downfall is my husband and I just bought a house(which is a good thing), but I lost my job 3 days after that. The company shut down because it wasn't making any money in this economy. I finally got a part time job, but I don't start until next week. It will be almost a month without a second income that we depended on. Our savings is near depleted.

We have a bunch of food, cheap food, in the house that I bought to last us a while until I can make money. Unfortunately, things like mac n cheese, beanie weenies, and cheese n crackers aren't the best things to be filling up on health wise. At this point, I am not able to buy the healthy fresh fruits and veggies I need.

So next week, when I go shopping, I'm going to get as much good food as I can afford. I'm allowing myself that much.


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