Saturday, October 25, 2008
Ok, where do I start?.... October started off with me baking a red velvet cake for a friends birthday. Well, I also made one for the house. I won't go into how many sticks of butter are in one of my cakes but it's a lot, a whole lot. Anyway, I ate at least half of the cake by myself (over a few days). Ok, one mess up is not so bad but it just kept going from there. I also had a minor surgery at the beginning of the month that took me away from exercise for almost two weeks. During my down time I just ate, ate, ate. By the middle of the month I finally came to my senses. I got on the scale to assess the damage and surprisingly I had not gained or loss anything. After that I got serious, I stuck to my meal plan. I asked my husband for help in the exercise department and we started on a weight training and cardio program, 30 min - 1 hour exercise monday through friday. My goal for October was to make it into Onderland. I didn't quite make it there but I came very close by losing 5 pounds in the last two weeks of the month. November is going to be different, I am starting to LOVE exercise and I am eager to make a lot of progress before Thanksgiving comes around. Do I have a plan for Thanksgiving?.... I've been thinking about it but any suggestions from my SP friends would be greatly appreciated. My family has already put in a request for my macaroni and cheese (more butter & heavy whipping cream & loads of cheese), another red velvet cake and a few other goodies. I'm thinking one day of indulgences won't do too much damage providing I keep up with my plan all other days. The problem is I will have some left over food around the house for a day or two. What to do? What to do?
Wednesday, September 24, 2008
Its been one full month since I began with SP. It wasn't easy, I had some really good days and some really bad ones along with a few in between days. However, most of my days were good and I'm really happy with the progress I've made thus far. 12 pounds gone in one month! Yeah Me!
I was very successful with calorie counting and monitoring what was going in my mouth but I still admit I did not make much progress in the exercise department. I know that's my weakness and struggle and I am still working to conquer that.
I've made a goal to do 30 minutes on my treadmill Mon-Fri first thing every morning. I'm sure I can stick to this. I also bought a pedometer a few weeks back and was attempting to do the 10,000 steps per day program. I'm still working on that and confident I will get there eventually... I never realized how few steps most people take in a day.
That's pretty much my first month and what I have planned going into the next month. Please feel free to share your progress with me and any suggestions that may help me conquer my exercise phobia.
Thursday, September 11, 2008
01:00 AM EDT on Sunday, May 27, 2007
BY JAMES A. FUSSELL
If you haven’t gotten your 10,000 today, maybe you should.
Steps, that is.
Many of today’s fitness regimens recommend walking 10,000 steps per day. There’s only one problem: Almost nobody knows how far that is.
Puttering around your house in the morning before work, do you burn 200 steps or a thousand? Does a walk around a neighborhood block knock off 5 percent of your daily goal or less than 1 percent? Sure, you can guess or try to count all your steps. But that’s inaccurate at best and annoying to say the least.
Recently, in the name of good health, we bought a pedometer and measured various daily activities step by step. Walking the dog around the block? Going to the grocery store? Two hours of clothes shopping at a local mall?
We know how many steps it takes.
But we didn’t stop there. Just for fun we set out to find how far we’d go if we walked 10,000 steps all at once.
The answer: much farther than we thought. With our 10,000th step we wound up where? Roughly 5 1/2 miles away.
We can hear your incredulity now: 5 miles every day?
Relax. You don’t have to do it all at once, and everyone’s stride length is different. Remember, every step counts.
BUT WHY EVEN BOTHER trying to get 10,000 steps per day?
Two words: your health. And, yes, just by walking, you can make significant gains.
“I think 10,000 steps should be everybody’s daily goal,” said Kristie Harbaugh, owner of Twin Fitness in Overland Park, Kan. “I tell my clients to buy a [pedometer] and see how many steps they get,” she said. “Most people only get about half that.”
The idea of walking 10,000 steps per day is enjoying a renaissance in the United States. It originated in the 1970s with Japanese researcher Yoshiro Hatano, who advocated walking to help slim down his increasingly obese country.
Today walking has gained popularity for many reasons. It’s easy, there’s no equipment to buy and, unlike jogging or other high-impact exercises, there’s virtually no risk of injury.
And talk about health benefits. A University of Tennessee study published in the journal Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise revealed women who averaged more than 10,000 steps per day had 40 percent less body fat and waist and hip measurements that were more than eight inches narrower than those who averaged fewer than 6,000 steps.
Then there’s the Amish. Researchers measured the daily steps of 98 Amish adults and found that men took an average of 18,425 steps and women took 14,196. Compare that with about 4,000 steps for the average American adult (other studies put this number at less than 3,000), and it is easy to see why only 4 percent of Amish adults are considered obese compared with 31 percent of the general population.
And attention older Americans: If you walk long enough, you could even trigger biochemical changes that grow new neurons in your brain. A study by researchers at the University of Illinois, published late last year in the Journal of Gerontology, says three hours of brisk walking per day can help reverse brain shrinkage.
BUT YOU DON’T NEED to walk that long to see benefits. In an eight-year study involving 6,000 women, researchers at the University of California at San Francisco found that even a little extra walking can help you hold onto the neurons you have. High-energy walkers, the study found, held the line on cognitive decline far better than the more sedentary subjects.
By all accounts, your brain loves to walk. Walking increases blood circulation, and because it’s not particularly strenuous, your leg muscles don’t hog all the extra oxygen and glucose it produces. As you walk, you’re oxygenating your brain. It’s good for the rest of your body, too.
It increases your breathing, your heart rate and your lung capacity while shaping and toning your muscles. What’s more, numerous studies of senior citizens who walk regularly showed significant improvement in memory skills compared with non-walkers. Walking also improved their learning ability, concentration and abstract reasoning. Additionally, one study noted, stroke risk was cut by 57 percent in people who walked as little as 20 minutes per day.
Dixie Thompson, director for the Center for Physical Activity and Health at the University of Tennessee, said that because extra walking lowers blood pressure and helps the body process glucose, it also can dramatically reduce your risk for heart disease and Type 2 diabetes. Of course, slow walking isn’t as good as fast walking, Thompson said, but it beats inactivity and still has health benefits.
CONSIDER THE SOCIAL and family-bonding benefits.
“People can walk in groups of two or three,” said Harbaugh of Twin Fitness. “The time passes very fast. That’s key, because people often become bored with their workout. If we can make it more fun, people will work out more. And I encourage families to go on walks right after dinner twice around the block and take their dog with them. If children see their mom or dad walking, that’s going to encourage them to become active, too.”
There’s nothing to lose by aiming for 10,000 steps per day. Look at it this way, experts say: Even if you reach only 8,000 steps, you’ve still doubled your amount of daily walking. And that will still pay big benefits.
Now get out there and start walking.
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