Top Six Reasons Why Running Rocks!

fitness health running workout Aug 30, 2020

1) Running is Good for Your Heart

Running doesn’t just strengthen your heart muscle, but also improves your entire circulatory system by making the lining of your blood vessels more flexible. When your blood vessels are more flexible the heart doesn’t have to work so hard to pump blood throughout your body. Another bonus is blood vessels of a fit person tend to accumulate less plaque than those of an unfit person, leading to a much lower risk of a heart attack or stroke.

2) Running Boosts Your Mood

When you run, your brain pumps out a feel-good hormone called endorphins. Endorphins are natural pain killers. The cool thing is these endorphins don’t just last during your run, but they also stay in your body for hours after, helping to boost your mood throughout the day.

3) Running Strengthens Your Bones and Joints

A recent study showed that runners were half as likely to suffer from knee osteoarthritis compared with walkers. The reason for this is every time your...

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Living with Irritable Bowel Syndrome

health recipes Aug 24, 2020

This isn't something I often advertise to my clients, but I have a condition called IBS: Irritable Bowel Syndrome. I was diagnosed in my early 20s and I have lived with it's symptoms for over 25 years. I attribute it to beginning my mission to eat healthy. 

IBS is caused by abnormal muscle contractions in the intestine. What causes these atypical  contractions is unknown, however, specialists believe that abnormalities in the nerves in the digestive system can cause a faulty connection between your brain and your large intestine, causing it to either slow down contractions or speed it up. There are certain triggers: specific foods, stress, hormones, and the condition may be hereditary. 

Symptoms of IBS

  • the number one symptom is severe diarrhea
  • the other symptom is constipation, though I rarely experienced this, I know other IBS sufferers do
  • pain in the lower abdominal area
  • bloated abdominal area
  • fatigue (from lack of nutrients being absorbed)

When I...

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The Importance of Exercise Recovery: Step 6 Sleep Hygiene

Sleep Hygiene: What Is It and Why Do We Need It?

Over the past several weeks I have been exploring methods of recovery. It’s not simply about resting the body after an exercise session, but about intelligently helping the body heal and move to reach healthy balance within the body.

In the first post I explain there is a constant play of stability and mobility. Certain areas in our body function best when strong and stable and other parts of the body function best when flexible and mobile.

In the second post I explore how strength training helps build the body to function optimally. I highly recommend strength training with a plan designed by a certified personal trainer, as it’s important to have a solid program and system built to work with your unique set of strengths and weaknesses. More info about training here.

In the third post I delve into stretching and self-massage.

In the forth post, I explored how stress can limit...

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The Importance of Exercise Recovery: Step 4 De-Stress Techniques

 

Over the past several weeks I have been exploring methods of recovery. It’s not simply about resting the body after an exercise session, but about intelligently helping the body heal and functionally move to reach healthy balance within the body.

In the first post I explain there is a constant play of stability and mobility. Certain areas in our body function best when strong and stable and other parts of the body function best when flexible and mobile.

In the second post I explore how strength training helps build the body to function optimally. I highly recommend strength training with a plan designed by a certified personal trainer, as it’s important to have a solid program and system built to work with your unique set of strengths and weaknesses. More info about training here.

In the third post I delve into stretching and self-massage.

In today's post, I am exploring step four of six of my recommended recovery methods: ways to...

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The Importance of Exercise Recovery: Step 1 Strength Training

 

Last week I wrote an article on exercise recovery and mentioned that within the body there is a constant play of stability and mobility. Certain areas in our body function best when strong and stable and other areas of the body function best with more range of motion. I also briefly explored how six practices can help your body recover from exercise. Each week I will explore the six in more detail. 

The first practice I list is strength training, which at first may seem like a funny activity to put in a list about ways to recover from exercise. And while strength training doesn’t directly help our bodies recover from bouts of exercise, what it does do is far more important. Strength training lays the foundation to building a highly functional body. In the end this helps your body perform optimally so that it eases the demands on the body when you exercise, so less recovery is needed.

Strength training develops better force-couple relationships, which in turn creates a...

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The Importance of Exercise Recovery

 

Exercise recovery is more than just resting after a workout. In this article I go over a few important practices that can help increase your body’s ability to recover from exercise.

Within the body there is a constant play of stability and mobility. Certain areas in our body function best when strong and stable and other parts of the body function best with more range of motion.

ACE Personal Trainer manual (5th Edition) has a helpful list locating key mobility and stability areas within the body’s kinetic chain: 

  • Glenohumeral (ball and socket joint where the top of the arm and the shoulder meet): mobility
  • Scapulothoracic (shoulder blade attachment to upper back): stability
  • Thoracic spine (upper back where ribs are): mobility
  • Lumber spine (lower back): stability
  • Hip (ball and socket joint where the top of the leg and side of pelvis meet): mobility
  • Knee: stability
  • Ankle: mobility
  • Foot: stability

If you have ever taken one of my classes, you may have heard me speak...

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How to Stay Motivated

fitness health running May 09, 2020

Staying motivated can definitely be much harder than initially starting an exercise plan. It’s just a fact of life. Starting a new habit and sticking to it is super hard. In this article, I am going to provide a few helpful tips to stay consistent with your habits so you can reach your health and fitness goals.

Just as we gradually train our bodies to develop strength and endurance, so need to do the same for our minds.

  • Think of yourself as an athlete. If you put effort into consistently working out you are by definition an athlete. Your goal may be to feel better, to look thinner, and have more energy, but in the end, you are an athlete. And if you put yourself in that mindset, psychologists say you’re more likely to act like an athlete. And athletes stick to their workout program regardless if they feel like it doing it or not.
  • If you have ever taken one of my classes you know I usually say “oohhh isn’t this so much fun?” or “wasn’t that...
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A Simple Method to Avoid Injury and Live Pain Free

fitness health Apr 26, 2020

Now that is an important topic we all are hoping for, eh? Now let’s see if I can deliver…

I am super passionate about this. I’ve been for quite a while. It’s always been a focus, but definitely since I had my rotator cuff (the muscles under and over your shoulder blades) injury back in August 2018. You can read about it on my blog here.

At the time, I read a book about shoulder injuries called Framework for the Shoulder and the author, Nicholas DiNubile, mentioned that once we are in our 40s the rotator cuff muscles have received so much wear and tear and with changes in our tissue composition as we age we are quite likely to injure those muscles. A bit disheartening I should say, but I wasn’t satisfied with that answer. Nope. My plan is to not experience that pain again.

Being a Corrective Exercise Specialist with the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM) I knew exactly what happened. I was training 6 times a week with heavy weights with...

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Three Helpful Tips to Keep to Your Resolution of Becoming Healthier

goals health Jan 02, 2020

New Year’s Resolutions. We all make them with the best of intentions and I actually love them. Every year, the week before January 1st, I begin contemplating about what I’d like to change in my life for the upcoming year. On December 31st I carve out a bit of time with my journal to write out my plans. 

Now, truthfully, as the year unfolds some of those carefully crafted ideas don’t even get implemented. Some of those ideas live for about a month or two and then get dropped. But thankfully some of my changes do stay and new habits are formed. 

If your Year 2020 resolution was to develop healthier lifestyle habits and you are worried you may not stick to your new plan, you are reading the right article! As a Certified Personal Trainer, working for the Township of Langley, I have seen lots of success with clients reaching their goals. 

I have noticed three important steps that have led to successful outcomes for clients sticking to their...

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Somatotypes

health nutrition Jan 31, 2019

A little while ago I was complaining to my hair stylist. I was complaining about the fact that for the past four weeks I hadn’t been consistent in my workouts because of a serious chest cold that just wouldn’t go away. You remember that nasty chest cough that everyone had in December? During cardio (or really just laughing) would send me into a flurry of deep chest coughing. I could still do weight training, but I thought it wouldn’t be so considerate to be at the gym hacking away spreading my germs everywhere, so I focused on performing light weights at home. 

My biggest complaint was that I was losing weight. And that made me annoyed because I knew I was losing lean muscle mass, not body fat. And that muscle was hard earned. For the past year I trained 6 days a week, lifting 6-12 reps for 3-5 sets, twice a week per body part. 

So here I was in my stylist’s chair complaining about losing weight because I wasn’t exercising. I said...

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