Fitness

Beauty & Health, Fitness

The Annual New Year Resolution Pep Talk

By Nicole Flanagan The Annual New Year Resolution Pep Talk Do you have a New Year’s Resolution? Well, if you’re like most, you have at least one resolution, and, if you are like the majority of these promise-makers, your resolution is probably related to health and fitness. While resolutions are well-intentioned, unfortunately most people fail at keeping them. With all the hype surrounding these promises, it’s easy to get caught up in them without really taking them seriously. We live in a throw-away society and even our resolutions, I’m afraid, are not immune. However, especially for promises that include improving our health it’s in our best interest to not take them lightly. So, what’s the secret to successful resolutions? While you can’t wave a magic wand and make your resolution come true, there are some easy steps to take to make it easier to fulfill your promise to yourself. Choose an obtainable goal. Resolving to look like a super model is not realistic for the majority of us, but promising to include daily physical activity in our lives is very possible. Avoid choosing a resolution that you’ve been unsuccessful at achieving year after year. This will only set you up for failure, frustration and disappointment. If you are still tempted to make a promise that you’ve made before, then try altering it. For example, instead of stating that you are going to lose 30 pounds, try promising to eat healthier and increase your weekly exercise. Create a game plan. At the beginning of January, write a comprehensive plan. All successful businesses start with a business plan that describes their mission and specifics on how they will achieve it. Write your own personal plan and you’ll be more likely to succeed as well. Break it down and make it less intimidating….

Continue Reading

Beauty & Health, Fitness

Keeping Up Your Workout In the Winter!

By Nicole Flanagan Keeping Up Your Workout In the Winter! With the cold weather rolling in and the days getting shorter it seems like we all have less time on our hands. With an already jam-packed schedule we tend to skip out on workouts (or stop exercising entirely) and by the time we get to the New Year we all feel compelled to get back to that pre-holiday shape. This year let’s try to do things a little different. Instead of slowing down on the exercise routine and abandoning your diet completely, keep up the good work and by the time the New Year gets here you will be starting off on a positive foot.  Pay attention to what you eat at your holiday parties and keep your butt moving through the last leg of the holiday season. Here are just a few tips to keep you looking and feeling your best! Keep Moving: Without realizing it we sometimes slow down on our exercise routines. This time make a steadfast commitment to workout.  Just like you make your work schedule, take time to pencil in a workout.  If you end up missing a workout make it up as soon as possible. Remember it is easier to stick to a fitness program than it is to start one after months of inactivity. Take your workout outdoors: Most people will bring their workouts inside when the weather starts to get chilly. Instead, take advantage of what the weather has to offer.  Bundle up a bit and take a walk, you’ll have to walk a bit faster to keep yourself warm while also burning more calories. Travel Smart: Don’t abandon your workout because of traveling for work or family holiday parties. If you are on a business trip try staying at a hotel…

Continue Reading

Beauty & Health, Fitness

Staying Fit For The Start Of The Holiday Season

By Nicole Flanagan Staying Fit For The Start Of The Holiday Season Last month I said how fall is the best time to get yourself back into a fitness routine and gear up for the cooler months ahead.  Well it has been thirty days since then and hopefully everyone has been able to stick with his or her fitness routines.  In case you are starting to falter from your schedule, here are some tips to keep you motivated for the next month. I’m sure that some of you have had a little extra time to set aside for your workout now that the kids are back in school.  Just remember that dedicated workout times are great but you can get your exercise other ways as well.  You don’t necessarily have to set aside a whole hour to workout. Exercising can actually be a lot of fun.   Wondering what to do on a Saturday afternoon? Look for an activity that suits the whole family! Check out a local climbing wall or hiking trail. Push your kids on the swings or climb with them on the jungle gym. Plan a neighborhood kickball or touch football game. Find an activity you enjoy, and go for it. If you get bored, try something new. If you’re moving, it counts! Exercise helps us deal with stress and can increase the energy we have to deal with all of our daily activities. Exercise stimulates various brain chemicals, which may leave you feeling happier and more relaxed than you were before you worked out. You’ll also look better and feel better when you exercise regularly, which can boost your confidence and improve your self-esteem. Exercise even reduces feelings of depression and anxiety.  Use regular exercise as a way to improve your own well-being and as a way…

Continue Reading

Beauty & Health, Fitness

Staying Fit for The Start Of The Holiday Season

Staying Fit for The Start Of The Holiday Season By Nicole Flanagan October marks the beginning of the holiday seasons. This is the time of year when we start making all those yummy baked goods and delicious homemade soups. Instead of letting all this wonderful food catch up to us this year, let’s make a goal to maintain our fitness. The kids are back in the full swing of things at school and your work schedule starting to fill up, be sure to take some time for yourself before things get too hectic. Working out is your time to unwind and de-stress whether it’s before the start of the day or at the end of a crazy work shift. I’m sure that some of you have had a little extra time to set aside for your workout now that the kids are back in school. Just remember that dedicated workout times are great but you can get your exercise other ways as well. You don’t necessarily have to set aside a whole hour to workout. Exercising can actually be a lot of fun. Wondering what to do on a Saturday afternoon? Look for an activity that suits the whole family! Check out a local climbing wall or hiking trail. Push your kids on the swings or climb with them on the jungle gym. Plan a neighborhood kickball or touch football game. Find an activity you enjoy, and go for it. If you get bored, try something new. If you’re moving, it counts! Exercise helps us deal with stress and can increase the energy we need to have to deal with all of our daily activities. Exercise stimulates various brain chemicals that may leave you feeling happier and more relaxed than you were before you worked out. You’ll also look better…

Continue Reading

Beauty & Health, Fitness

Rethink Your Exercise

Rethink Your Exercise We all have mental hurdles that we need to jump before getting into workout mode. For some of us it’s just getting up and out of bed and making it to the gym first thing in the morning. Sometimes it’s the end of the day exhaustion that you have to convince yourself will go away once you get on the elliptical. Whichever problem you may be having here are a few ways to rethink a pre-workout hesitation. Don’t think: “The scale doesn’t budge, why bother working out” Do think: “Keep up the good work and it will pay off” Stick with the scale: Love it and you’ll probably lose pounds. In a study at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities, of 3,026 adults who were watching their waistlines, those who weighed themselves more frequently lost more weight over two years or regained fewer pounds. Plateaus are part of the process, Stay motivated in the meantime by giving yourself credit for how much better your clothes fit and for improving your overall health. Fix the problem by changing up your routine. As your metabolism changes to accommodate your smaller size, you are going to have to change what you’re doing to keep your body responding and shedding fat.  If you’re eating light already (around 1,500 calories a day), don’t cut back more; turn up the intensity and/or increase the length of your workout session a smidge. This will not only burn more calories but also increase your cardio capacity, meaning that everything feels easier to do, so you can keep exercising. Crank the resistance on your stationary bike, push the pace of your walk or run for one-minute intervals, or add step-ups or jumping jacks between sets of toning moves: The cardio-strength mix of circuit training burns 512…

Continue Reading

Beauty & Health, Fitness

Does Working Out in the Hot Weather Burn More Calories?

By Nicole Flanagan Does Working Out in the Hot Weather Burn More Calories? A friend and I went out for a run last week, the temperature outside was still about eighty-five degrees and humid. As you can imagine, it took all of five minutes at a reasonable pace and we were both covered in sweat before we were even breathing hard. My friend asked me if we were burning more calories running in hot weather. I said no, we are just dehydrating faster than if we were running in cold weather. When you go for a walk in one hundred degree weather don’t be fooled that the sweat pouring off your body is excess fat just melting away. The fact is that you will burn about the same number of calories walking in hot weather than you would walking in cooler weather. If you were to step on the scale immediately after your workout you will initially weigh less, but once you re-hydrate, you replace the water weight that you lost during the workout. The most important thing to remember when working out in hot conditions is to keep your body hydrated. Your body can burn calories much more effectively if it is well hydrated, so the more water you drink the better you will feel, and the better your body will be able to cool itself. When working out in warmer weather, you should be doing whatever you can to keep your body cool in order to avoid any heat related illnesses. The same goes for exercise classes like hot yoga. A hot room may offer some advantage in terms of muscle flexibility, but as for calories burned it is going to be about the same as a cooler yoga class. As for those individuals who believe that working…

Continue Reading

Beauty & Health, Fitness

Summer Makeup Tips

By Kim Putens   Summer Makeup Tips It has been an unusually hot summer.  I have been struggling with every aspect of my grooming.  Every product I put in my hair either feels sticky or does not perform at all.  With such thin hair, I rely upon my products to perform.  But, in this heat and humidity, it is almost impossible.  My solution:  a ponytail almost every day.   Most daunting for me, however, has been my makeup.  I need to wear makeup.  I have dark circles under my eyes – thanks to heredity – and my skin can be sallow when I get a bit of color.  The problem:  the extreme heat and high humidity make my makeup feel like it is slipping off my face.   I wonder if others are struggling with this same problem.  So, I thought I would offer some tips and solutions I have found that help to keep my makeup in place and looking good.   Tip #1 – Lighten Up.  All of us, despite our best attempts to cover up, will get a little bit of sun this summer.   This presents an opportunity and a challenge.  The opportunity – to lessen the number of layers of makeup you would normally wear.  The challenge – the colors we wear when we are paler will change when we get a hint of color.   My suggestions: Put away the foundation.  Either switch to a tinted moisturizer or wear nothing at all.  I would lean toward nothing.  Even a tinted moisturizer will feel heavy in extremely humid climates. Substitute foundation or tinted moisturizer with a powder or bronzer.  If you use powder, however, only dust on your skin lightly with a brush.  Please resist the need to blot with a sponge.  If you use a puff or…

Continue Reading

Beauty & Health, Fitness

Neighbors Help Neighbors by Getting Vaccinated

Neighbors Help Neighbors by Getting Vaccinatedby Dr, Rina Bansal, President, Inova Alexandria Hospital Remember the Golden Rule? “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you”? As healthcare workers, we think about this rule quite a bit. If I was sick and in the hospital, how would I want to be treated? We work to make patients’ experiences the best they can be by not only providing excellent medical care, but also by treating others as we would want to be treated ourselves. So how does this relate to the COVID-19 vaccine? One of the reasons I hear most often from people not wanting to get the vaccine is that they think they don’t need it; that if they did get COVID, they would survive it; or that they already had it and are fine now. And yes, they could be right – in fact, I hope they are! A healthy person can get COVID and survive, and if you have already had it, you may still have the antibodies to keep you safe for a period of time. But what about your community?  It may not be readily apparent that a family member, friend or neighbor has an underlying health condition that puts them at higher risk for hospitalization or even death from COVID-19. Your choice to not be vaccinated isn’t just putting you at risk, it can impact so many others around you. In this wonderful community where neighbors help neighbors every day, there’s no better way to help than to get the COVID-19 vaccine.  As a member of this community trusted with the care of the most vulnerable, I got the vaccine not just for my health, but for that of my neighbors. I am treating others as I want to be treated myself. For…

Continue Reading

Beauty & Health, Fitness

Exercising in the Heat: How to safely work out in hot conditions

By Nicole Flanagan Exercising in the Heat: How to safely work out in hot conditions             The dog days of summer are upon us and with the warm weather and longer days we all have a chance to get outdoors and enjoy some summer activities. Whether you are participating in sports or other physical activities during these hot months, it is important to keep in mind the potential risks that come with exercising in the heat. As long as you understand how to safely work out in the heat, there is no reason not to take advantage of what summer has to offer.             There are many factors that contribute to how our bodies adjust in the heat. Air temperature and humidity play a major role in the body’s ability to regulate itself. Let’s say you’re running in 80-degree heat and the humidity is low. Your body will be able to regulate temperature easily because the environment is cooler than your body temperature—which is typically 98.6 degrees. Up the humidity to 95 percent, and your shirt is sticking to your body because the sweat is no longer evaporating. When the temperature outside exceeds our internal temperature, the body loses its only natural defense against overheating, which is the ability to sweat. The evaporation of sweat from the skin allows the body to cool down. However, when the humidity level is too high, there is less evaporation and therefore less cooling. This combination of high humidity and high temperature can be dangerous if a person is exposed for too long without proper hydration. Heat exhaustion and heat stroke are two dangerous side effects that can happen when the body can no longer handle the heat. Signs of heat exhaustion include general fatigue, weakness, nausea, dizziness, muscle cramps, and an increase in…

Continue Reading

Beauty & Health, Fitness

Get Fit For Summer

By Nicole Flanigan Get Fit For Summer             Whether you are an exercise pro or a beginner to the gym chances are you have a few questions about your workout.  With summer just around the corner everyone is stepping up the workout to get ultimate results.  Here are a few tips to keep that workout moving in the right direction. DO:             Work out every day: You don’t need to be at the gym seven days in a row, but try for at least five days. To get a good habit started you must be consistent. Doing something every day even if it is just a little is all you need to keep up the motivation.  For the best results, don’t overwhelm yourself.  You should aim for 30 minutes of cardio every day and strength training twice a week for the first month or two.  Once this workout has become a part of your regular routine you are ready to increase your intensity. Set new goals: It’s easy for gym regulars to hit a slump and stop seeing the benefits or having the fun that kept them motivated in the past. Before you start dodging gym dates, find a new challenge: Sign up for a 5K, or plan an active vacation like hiking or kayaking. Keeping your workouts interesting and goal oriented will make it more fun and also give you something to work toward.  Breathe better: To improve your performance, focus on your breathing. Next time you are jogging on the treadmill or out on the path try inhaling to a count of three and exhaling to a count of three. Steady your breathing with your pace and you will feel more energized during your workout.  Something new: Many advanced exercisers can get stuck in a workout rut.  Some…

Continue Reading

View More