Category Archives: Cardio

Get Fit In The Kitchen

Thurs. 5

With the new year comes all manner of resolutions. Have you made yours yet? One of the most common resolutions that most of us make is to use the coming year to get fit. Sadly, although that’s one of the most common promises we make to ourselves, it’s also one of the first to be broken.

It’s not hard to understand why so many of us allow our hopes of getting fit to fall by the wayside. Finding time to head out to the gym in our already packed daily schedules is just too difficult. If you can find the time, sometimes it’s the gym memberships themselves that keep us away. The financial cost can often be prohibitive.

Skipping the gym scene for a do-it-yourself approach is a great idea. Heading out for a daily walk alone with your music, or with your favorite person can be a perfect way to stay on track with your goals. But, if you’re anything like me, the novelty soon wears off … especially in the dead of winter or height of summer heat.

So, what’s person to do? The easiest way to stick to your get fit resolution is to make it easy on yourself. Think about it. You’re in the kitchen every day as it is. Why not add a one minute exercise routine to your kitchen time. Instead of using cooking time to taste test, use it to tone muscles! Here’s how:

10 Squats. Putting something into the oven? Great! Being careful not to open the oven door, place your hands on the handle. Do as many squats as you feel able to do.

10 counter push-ups. Place your hands on the edge of the countertop. Stand about three feet back. Slowly lower yourself toward the counter then back up.

10 tri dips. Stand with your back to the counter. Reach your hands behind you until you can grip the edge of the counter. Stand about three feet away from the counter. Slowly lower yourself backwards toward the counter then back up again.

If ten repetitions are too many, don’t worry about it. Reduce the amount to whatever you can handle. Because you’re doing this routine in the kitchen while you’re preparing meals, you won’t give up on it. You can also gradually increase the repetitions month by month as you strengthen your muscles.

What were your resolutions for this year?

Benefits of Cooking with Coconut Oil

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You may or may not have heard of coconut oil before. It’s not exactly new, but it’s becoming increasingly popular among health fanatics and those who are interested in losing weight. Originally, coconut oil received a bad rap for being high in saturated fat, but we now understand that saturated fat actually has quite a few nutritional values and that it’s really not so bad as we once assumed. On the other hand, coconut oil has many positive traits and can be used for many purposes, even outside of cooking. Groups of people who eat a lot of coconuts and coconut products are much healthier than western civilizations. Cardiovascular health is much higher in these people group. So, if you want to learn more about cooking with coconut and the benefits that it might bring to you and your family, we’ve provided a list of some of the most valuable benefits of cooking with coconut oil.

Helps Control Blood Lipids and Cardiovascular Disease
Unrefined coconut oil improves blood lipid profiles. Coconut oil can maintain appropriate levels of cholesterol, as well. Coconut oil helps to reduce LDL (the bad) cholesterol and it helps to increase HDL (the good) cholesterol. It’s been shown to have a positive impact on blood coagulations and antioxidant status. Coconut oil has also been discovered to ward off the chances of getting heard disease.

Aids in Weight Loss
There is considerable evidence that suggests that coconut oil helps you to lose weight. Compared to other types of cooking oils, coconut oil stands out in aiding weight loss endeavors by those in comparison studies. Coconut oil can increase energy expenditure, lead to a greater level of satiety with the foods cooked in coconut oil, and it can also lead to a greater proportion of weight loss.

Amazing Health Benefits
Coconut oil is likely to turn into ketone bodies in the liver. Ketone bodies can provide energy for the brain and they are especially useful in fighting epilepsy and other various disorders. Furthermore, coconut oil applied to the surfaces of skin acts as a ministrant, on teeth it can act as a natural whitening solution, and can even be used in place of shampoo has a cleanser and restorative treatment for damaged hair.

These are just some of the main benefits that come with heavy usage using coconut oil in the kitchen, but there are many more and we encourage you to do your own research to explore the ways in which coconut oil can be useful for you. Are you an avid coconut user? Let us know what your favorite uses for coconut oil include. Never heard of coconut oil before? Drop us a comment and let us know if you’d be willing to experiment with it for cooking and health purposes.

Weight Loss Tips During the Holidays

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So, you have an end-of-the-year weight loss goal, or you’re planning to start 2016 a significant weight loss goal as one of your New Years’ resolutions. But we all know that it’s hard to maintain your current weight, let alone lose weight during the holidays. It seems like wherever you go, there’s always delicious aromas wafting in from the kitchen. With all those freshly baked holiday treats that only seem to make an appearance once a year, it can be hard to stay away. Most folks end up hoping they don’t gain too many pounds over the holidays, let alone think about losing weight over the holidays, which is what makes weight loss such a popular option for a New Years’ resolution.

So, if you’re one of the few people in the holiday weight loss boat, we’ve got a few simple tips and suggestions that might help you not only keep the pounds off this year, but shed a few more while you’re at it.

Don’t Skip Meals
We all do it. You know you have a holiday party in the evening and you want to indulge in all the great food and deserts, but skipping meals and arriving to a feast on an empty stomach is never a good idea. When you’re feeling famished you’re more likely to go a bit stir crazy, scarfing down food without really tasting it or thinking about how much you’re putting into your mouth. Being among friends and food on an empty stomach is likely to cause you to overindulge and walk away feeling disappointed in yourself. Instead, eat your meals throughout the day as you normally would and maybe even have a snack right before you go to that holiday party so that you’re less likely to over-stuff yourself once you finally get there.

Welcome Distraction
When you’re holding a conversation over dinner or trying to impress your crush from across the table, you’re likely to eat less. Distractions while you feast are a good thing, allowing your body to signal how full you really are so that you naturally stop eating instead of eating too quickly and not feeling the effects on your stomach until it’s too late. Whether it’s a fascinating conversation among friends, or helping a youngster with their own meal, welcome distraction when it comes to the dinner table.

Pace Yourself
Instead of allowing yourself to eat whatever you want in the first thirty minutes or hour of the party, pace yourself throughout the duration of the gathering and only eat small amounts at a time. When you eat everything you want in the first little bit, you’re food is likely to start digesting by the end of the party and you will be left with the temptation to go back for unnecessary seconds. Instead, pace yourself throughout the function, starting with a light main course, then going for deserts a few hours later, and maybe snacking a bit here or there toward the end of the party. Ultimately, pacing yourself will still allow you to get a bit of everything without packing on the calories by doing so.

Don’t Neglect Exercise
It’s easy to forget about working out in the midst of the holiday hustle and bustle. There’s so many extra tasks that need attention – the house needs to be cleaned, gifts need to be bought, things need to be wrapped, the pantry needs to be restocked, and there’s so many parties and events to attend, but in the middle of all these, you can’t neglect your daily or weekly workouts. Schedule your workouts like they’re any other kind of appointment. You wouldn’t miss work, a doctor’s appointment, or a gift exchange with a friend, so don’t skip out on your workouts either. Even if all you can do is offer to stand at the sink washing dishes, take out the trash, or putting things away, it will get you moving and help burn some calories. With all the holiday snacking temptations, your constant workout schedule may be the only thing that keeps you on track and losing weight throughout the holiday season.

Snag Some Sleep
With all the busyness that the holidays bring, it can be easy to lose sleep. Whether it’s putting up holiday decorations, wrapping gifts and getting everything ready for Christmas morning, or simply staying out late at those holiday get-togethers, you might not realize how much sleep you’re really losing. But sleep loss slows your metabolisms, causes you to eat more, and interferes with your weight loss goals. Try to get a minimum of 6-7 hours of sleep each night, anything less boarders on sleep deprivation and hazarded health.

At the end of the day, it’s important to remember that anything helps. If you’ve had a binge eating type of day, don’t neglect your workout routine under the assumption that it will be pointless. If you’ve over indulged on a specific treat, don’t just throw in the towel and start eating the rest of the treats on the table, too. Ultimately, any sacrifices that you can make for your health will be worth it in the end. Saving yourself just a few pounds in calories that could be eaten in a single night will save you weeks worth of dieting and weight loss efforts down the road.




Best Exercises for Weight Loss

For most people, the holidays are a time full of fun, food and family and for many folks, it’s the best part of the year. One down side to all that delicious food, however, is that somehow the pounds just seem to creep up on you before you’ve had a chance to think about cutting back or getting more exercise.  Whether you’re doing the cooking yourself or just standing by as a taste tester, those extra calories always seem to creep up around the holidays. So, if you want to be proactive and lose a few pounds before tacking on more, or if you just want to get a game plan in place to tackle those extra holiday calories, we have some ideas that could help. Ultimately, it all comes down to spending less time in the kitchen and more time in the gym.

Stress the Cardio
Getting your heart pumping is essential to getting healthy and dropping those extra pounds.  Studies show that the best way to lose weight quickly is to do interval training. High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) is one of the most recommended forms of circuit training for weight loss and increasing overall aerobic endurance.  HIIT training can be done in nearly any form, including running, walking, bicycling, elliptical sessions, etc. The basic idea of HITT cardio is to interject small periods of intense effort, followed by a brief rest period. The high-intensity bouts can last anywhere from thirty seconds to one minute, and should leave you breathless, counting down the seconds until the interval is completed. The low-intensity intervals should be two to three times longer than the high-intensity bouts, or at least give you adequate time to fully recover.  Over time, you should be able to increase the distance you can cover during the high intensity intervals, and it should begin to take you less time to recover from each interval.

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Weight Training is Important
When trying to lose weight, people sometimes avoid weight training because of the assumption that cardio will burn more calories and help shed the pounds faster. While this is partially true, and cardio should definitely not be neglected in any workout, strength training also has a lot to offer in terms of overall health and fitness. While your body needs fuel, so do your muscles. As your muscles grow, your body begins to burn more calories at rest, giving you a bigger caloric deficit, increasing your health and allowing for weight loss. Even just 30 minutes of weight training per day can greatly increase both your aerobic and anaerobic capacity and help your body burn up any additional calories for energy before they can be stored as fat.

Weight Training

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For the best results, try to make regular exercise a routine from which you won’t let yourself deviate. Exercise must be something that is done consistently in order to have an improvement on your health and promote weight loss. Try to exercise at least 3 to 4 times a week or every other day. Once you’re in the habit with a specific workout routine, try to increase it to at least 5 days. It’s much easier to tell yourself you can make up a day later in the week if you are only working out 2 or 3 times a week, but much more difficult to excuse taking a day off when you are attempting to exercise at least 5 or 6 days a week.