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Stories written by darrendunn

Holiday Survival Tips

   Food is an important part of many holidays, celebrations, and family
and cultural traditions. In fact, special occasions often center around
food. As a result, many people gain a little (or a lot of) weight
between Thanksgiving and the New Year.
   What’s to blame? Perhaps it’s all the tempting treats available
during the holiday season or the pressure from family, friends and
co-workers to overeat. Maybe it’s the increased emotional eating
(whether it be from holiday stress or holiday joy) or the extreme
laxity with eating and physical activity regimens in anticipation for
the strict “new diet and exercise plan” you’re going to start Jan. 1.

Keeping the family fit this summer

Kids are more likely to gain weight during the summer. And this is especially true for children who are already overweight.
Kids have less structure during the summer, often staying up late and
sleeping in, and don’t have regular mealtimes during the day. Staying
up later means having more opportunities for snacking, and sleeping
later in the day means losing opportunities to be active.

Safety First…

In this hard economy we are all counting our pennies and trying to make
sure we put them to good use.  That being said, there is no greater
investment than your health and that comes with some pretty important
questions that we all should be prepared to ask.  Whether you decide to
invest in a trainer (which in and of itself is a serious decision) or
decide to join a gym, you have every right to make sure you are getting
your money’s worth while protecting your own safety in that decision. 

2009 Fitness Trends

American Council on Exercise (ACE) announced its research results for
the top fitness trends for 2009 on Dec. 9.  While many of them are
variations on old ideas, some of them are a reflection of society’s
need for variety in fitness.
I bring to you the top fitness trends and a little explanation of
each.  The overall theme for all of these activities seems to be
getting the most out of your exercise time and/or getting the most out
of your money.

Finding your steppingstone to overall fitness

Every year the same thing takes place right around Jan. 1.  New Year’s
resolutions are made and the gym is packed for about four weeks and
then suddenly the numbers begin to dwindle and as January turns to
February many of those “fitness resolutions” have been broken.  
I know many of you have already decided that “getting in shape” is your
goal for 2009.  But have you really taken the time to reflect on what
that means to you?  Deciding to “get in shape” is a great idea, but
without specifics, then the goal is often blurry.

New Guidelines for a New You

Many of us have seen the old Food Guide Pyramid that takes you on a
journey through eating that is sometimes difficult to follow. Many
people simply don’t want to spend a lot of time measuring out their
food based on ounces and whether or not it fits into the palm of their
hand.  
The new food guidance system based on Dietary Guidelines for Americans
by the Department of Agriculture and Health and Human Services (2005)
introduces us all to a new way to individualize programs and emphasizes
weight control and the importance of physical activity.

Everyday Hurdles

Getting motivated and staying motivated to exercise can be challenging
for everyone from the average exerciser to the competitive athlete. 
Since most people fall into the latter category, it seems that
motivation is blocked by any number of excuses.  
After much exhaustive research (I asked some people at the gym), I
heard the same thing over and over again: “I’m just not motivated.” 
Furthermore, lack of motivation is encouraged as we create our own
excuses to avoid physical activity.  “I can’t possibly exercise when my
closet is such a mess!”

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