Wednesday, May 09, 2012
I didn't record this myself. I glommed it off of YouTube. youtu.be/Ib3Duz_6a9M
My last blog, I made a promise to never do Zumba in public. But there is something else that I have done in public, then I saw it on a you tube posting: Dance Walking. It is a fun work out.
We are working on a family outing in NYC to dance walk down Broadway. You do know I have eleven siblings, right? Spouses, kids, maybe cousins, a crowd of about thirty people doing this in Times Square.
We might get arrested.
Then again, it IS New York.
Wednesday, May 09, 2012
Looking around for health and fitness subject with the letter Z proved to be slim pickings.
So I settled on Zumba.
I have some musical talent. I can sing moderately well. I can play a number of instruments. I even learned a little ballroom dancing at some point in my life.
So I do have a sense of rhythm.
I tried a Zumba class several times. I stood in the back of the room doing my best to imitate the moves the class leader was doing, but I was stumbling and bumbling all over myself. I finally decided that it would be best for everyone if I stopped embarrassing myself and just left the Zumba move to those who had a modicum of talent for it.
But I like the music. And I like to move to a dance rhythm. So I promise to the world that like many other things that are best kept private, I will only do it behind closed doors, pulled blinds.
Tuesday, May 08, 2012
Make your own yogurt!
And you don't need to buy a yogurt maker. Except for a thermometer, you probably have all the equipment in your kitchen already. Maybe even the ingredients.
1 Half gallon of milk
2-3 Tbs of plain yogurt (as a starter)
1 8-10 Qt stock pot
1 4-5 Qt pot with lid (This creates a double boiler so you don't burn your milk)
1 Metal or plastic spoon
1 Dial thermometer with clip
6 one-pint mason jars
1 six-pack size cooler
While not required, this step will save you time, and ensure consistent results every time out. Further, it prevents you from scalding the milk, which will ruin your yogurt.
Place larger pot in sink. Place smaller pot inside it. Fill larger pot until water line is about half way up the side of smaller pot. The smaller pot is going to want to float on you. Hold it down with your hand while filling larger pot with water. Don't fill the larger pot more than half way up the side of the smaller pot.
Have your milk and 2-3 Tbs of yogurt out at room temperature throughout the following steps.
(You could probably skip this step, but since you need to bring your water to a boil anyway, it removes any possibility of contamination.)
Place your jars, lids, rings, thermometer and spoon in the large pot of water. Place smaller pot upside down over larger pot. Heat water until boiling. Once a boil is reached, use oven mitts to remove hot items, and dry with paper toweling. If you have a set of tongs, use them to quickly sterilize the smaller pot lid by dipping in boiling water.
Place the smaller pot into the larger pot of boiling water. Carefully pour your milk into the smaller pot. Clip your thermometer to the rim of the smaller pot. The smaller pot is going to want to float when empty, so pour very slowly. Once all your milk is in, check to see that water level in larger pot and milk level in smaller pot are about the same. Too much water, and the pot will float, too little water, and you won't heat the milk evenly. Add or remove water if there is a big discrepancy.
Heat milk to 185ºF. You want the milk to reach 185ºF to prepare the milk proteins for yogurt culture production. If you do not have a thermometer, this is also the temperature at which milk begins to froth, like in a latte.
Keep water boiling. Stir frequently. If you hold the milk at 185ºF for 30 minutes, you will get a very thick consistency. While you are waiting for the milk to reach 185ºF, fill your sink about 1/4 of the way with cold water. Add some ice to the water.
Cool the milk to 110ºF. 110ºF is the temperature at which the yogurt cultures will consume the lactose in the milk, and reproduce themselves. You could wait for the milk to cool on its own, but this is much faster and more efficient.
Carefully place pot of milk in cold water bath. Stir occasionally. Like before, you want the level of cold water in the sink to be about even with the level of milk in the pot.
Pitch Your Yogurt. Pitch simply means to add, and comes from the world of homebrewing. Brewers pitch yeast to make alcohol, you'll pitch yogurt to make more yogurt! Pour your 2-3 Tbs of yogurt into your pot of 110°F milk.
If this is your first batch, use only a good quality plain yogurt with active cultures. All future batches you will make using your own.
Fill two of the mason jars with boiling water and place them into the cooler. Distribute the mixture to the other four jars. Place them into the bag and close the bag. You now need to wait seven hours. You may need to refill the hot water jars in a few hours. Check it now and then to make sure the temperature inside the bag stays around 100-110ºF.
After eight hours take the yogurt out of the bag and place into the refrigerator for about 12 hours to cool. When you are ready to enjoy your yogurt, take it out and fruits and sweeteners as you desire.
But remember to save a little to use as a starter for your next batch.
I found another method using a crock pot. I haven't tried it yet, but it looks a little less messy for my kitchen.
And I love the HIllbilly Housewife
About.com is always a good resource, too.
Monday, May 07, 2012
It is so hard to find a word that starts with an X.
But cross training is often abbreviated as X-training. So I will take the cheat.
What is it? One of the problems our bodies have in our workouts is that it gets accustomed to what we are doing and it stops responding. I am a runner. I reached a point where I was just running. Everyday. My legs were always tired. My times were getting worse. My weight loss plateaued.
Someone suggested Cross Training to me. At first, I just substituted one cardio for another. Instead of running everyday, I mixed in cycling and swimming. Then my brother-in-law, who is a certified trainer, suggested I mx in some strength training too. He uses a method called muscle confusion.
I am not yet seeing the results I want. I am certain that I am eating too many hidden/ignored Calories. But while my weight has not responded, my strength has, my endurance has, and my overall enjoyment of my workouts has most certainly responded. I now run only three or four days a week, bike outside one and inside one. ANd as soon as the OrthoDoc give me the go ahead, I will go back to swimming three days a week. I also do strength training with my trainer two days and two days with just me.
ANd I don;t have enough time to keep up with my favorite TV shows. What a shame.
So, bottom line? Mix it up.
Reference Guide to Cross-Training
"Why It's Beneficial and How to Do It"
-- By Jennipher Walters, Certified Personal Trainer and Fitness Instructor
9 Cross-Training Activities for Runners
"Boost Performance, Reduce Injury Risk and Beat Boredom"
-- By Nancy Howard, Certified Running Coach
Mix up Your Routine With New Types of Workouts
"Add cross-training to your weekly workouts to lose weight."
By Leslie Goldman
Image by Joe Wigdahl
From the April 2009 issue of Runner's World
Eight Benefits Of Cross-Training
"If you ask 10 other runners to name a benefit of cross-training, at least 8 of them will mention injury prevention. But although injury prevention is by far the most widely recognized benefit of cross-training among runners, it's hardly the only one."
By Matt Fitzgerald
From the August 2004 issue of Runner's World
Sunday, May 06, 2012
I just completed another half marathon today. That's number 5 for 2012.
People ask me, what should I do to become a runner. I think I would like to run a marathon too. I give them my best advice. "To become a runner ...
That's how I did it. When I started, I had no desire to be a runner. Me? A RUNNER? Are you nuts? I walked. A little at first, but more and lore and Is tarted to sprinkle in runs and ... well, it just happened.
And believe it or not, walking is better for you. No, you don't burn Calories at the same rate being a walker. In fact, running burns Calories about two and a half times faster. But running also puts you at risk for injury. Your joints take a real pounding when you hit the road or the treadmill. You risk a fall when you run. Walking is way gentler on you than running.
Is walking too boring for you? Here's a newsflash: I find marathon running incredibly boring. About mile 16 I just wish it was over already. Here's my analogy: I love baseball. But by the third inning of the second game of a doubleheader, I am sooo ready to go home.
And you don't have to walk. Here is a list of 21 low impact workouts for you. greatist.com/fitness/21-unexpected-l
1. Walking www.sparkpeople.com/resource/sparkwa
2. Rowing machine www.sparkpeople.com/resource/fitness
3. Kayaking www.smart-start-kayaking.com/
4. Strength training www.sparkpeople.com/resource/fitness
5. Swimming www.sparkpeople.com/resource/fitness
6. Water aerobics www.sparkpeople.com/resource/fitness
7. Yoga www.sparkpeople.com/resource/wellnes
8. Elliptical www.sparkpeople.com/resource/fitness
9. Stairmaster www.sparkpeople.com/resource/fitness
10. Cycling www.sparkpeople.com/resource/fitness
11. Step aerobics www.fitsugar.com/Benefits-Step-Aerob
12. Tai Chi www.sparkpeople.com/resource/wellnes
13. Hiking www.sparkpeople.com/resource/fitness
14. Cross country skiing (I really want to try this) www.sparkpeople.com/resource/fitness
15. Rock climbing www.sparkpeople.com/resource/fitness
16. Pilates www.sparkpeople.com/resource/fitness
17. Golf golf.about.com/
18. TRX (Total Body Resistance Exercise) www.trxtraining.com/
19. Snowshoeing www.sparkpeople.com/resource/fitness
20. Ballroom dancing www.sparkpeople.com/resource/fitness
21. Rollerblading (just don't fall on your head.) www.sparkpeople.com/resource/
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