Category Archives: Fitness

Endurance Athlete Brendan Walsh Climbs and Cycles the Six Tallest Mountains in New England in Under Five Days

Endurance Athlete Brendan Walsh Climbs and Cycles the Six Tallest Mountains in New England in Under Five Days

Beginning in Katahdin, Maine, Guinness World Record holder and endurance athlete, Brendan Walsh embarked on a challenge that involved climbing and cycling over 700 miles between the six tallest summits New England had to offer. This was the NE6. 

To keep himself focused and pedaling forward, Walsh was inspired by the thought that he was doing this challenge for the greater good. By completing this challenge, Walsh was raising money for the Alzheimer’s Association as well as hoping to inspire others to follow his footsteps and in this case: his tire tracks. 

“This journey, more than any other I have done before, was powered by belief,” said Walsh. “Things got hard, with challenges I had never faced before, but my belief was unwavering. Even in the darkest, hardest moments, I pulled out the strength to continue. This was not just to raise money but something that people can hang their hat on.”

Walsh pushed deeper and dug further than he had ever done before with any challenge. There were periods he spent hours without water in the Vermont summer heat. Despite these challenges, Walsh completed the NE6 in four days, 15 hours, and 34 minutes. 

Throughout the challenge, Walsh received constant support from his family, friends and the Kulkea team. Walsh recently joined Kulkea as a brand ambassador, which helped him reach his fundraising goals by donating 25% of proceeds to the cause. 

In the past, Walsh broke a Guinness World Record while raising over $10 thousand for the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI). Walsh traveled from Madawaska, Maine to Key West, Florida in 11 days, nine minutes, and 30 seconds; making him the fastest person to cross the U.S. from North to South by bicycle. 

To learn more about Brendan Walsh and the NE6 visit his website here.


About Kulkea 

KULKEA was founded by New Englanders with Finnish roots to solve the shortcomings of traditional outdoor gear bags. Their pioneering prototype quickly became the go-to for avid skiers. KULKEA stands for a renewed heritage of cleverly designed, premium gear bags that last for your adventure lifetime. KULKEA (cool-ke-ah) is named after the Finnish word meaning “to go” and “to travel,” and its goal is to free the adventurous spirit within all of us. It can be found online at www.kulkea.com or on Instagram @kulkea. 

SOURCE Kulkea

Endurance Athlete Brendan Walsh Climbs and Cycles the Six Tallest Mountains in New England in Under Five Days

GoatHouse Brewing Co

November 2017  By Elizabeth Smith

One of my first weekend trips to Placer County, California, included a stop at GoatHouse Brewing, which recently celebrating four years in business.

A few visits later, after their Farm Yoga experience, I caught up with co-owner, Catherine Johnson, about what it’s like to live the dream: owning a craft brewery which produces its own hops and raises its own goats, far removed from her past life living in the San Francisco Bay Area.

FullSizeRender (3)How did GoatHouse Brewing come about? Why goats and beer?

Michael and I were in the Bay Area rat race and knew we wanted something different for our life and young family. We met and fell in love over beer, and Michael has brewed since before he was old enough to buy (now over 30 years)! We knew we wanted space and a great community to raise our family. Being connected to where our food (or beer in this case) comes from has always been important — food or beer just doesn’t magically appear in the grocery store. I make cheese, so goats were the obvious choice. Hops are needed as beer isn’t beer without hops, and thus, the dream began!

Why Placer County/Lincoln, California?

We looked all over the state of California and we fell in love with the schools, community, and competitive landscape around us. We wanted rural farmland, yet close enough to city comforts and school sports, etc. The farmland around us is rich with mandarins, lavender farms, wineries, and many other innovative uses.

Why did you decide to offer farm yoga with the goats? Has it been successful? In what ways?

Farm Yoga evolved because we have tons of goats and beer! A good friend was recently certified as a yoga instructor, we got to talking (and maybe having a cold one), and the idea took shape. Farm Yoga at GoatHouse has been very well received and hopefully people enjoy it as much as we do! Animals don’t fake affection — when they choose to spend time with you, enjoying a rub, nibbling on edge of shirt, enhancing a stretch, etc. — it is genuine.

FullSizeRenderApproximately much and how many different beers do you produce annually?

GoatHouse Brewing is a 3BBL nano-brewery. We grow 20 different varieties of hops. We brew small-batch seasonal beer as a farm brewery based in agriculture. We use 90% of the hops we grow onsite, bringing in only those that are proprietary and patented. We also use seasonal fruit from our orchard such as mandarins. Most years, we brew 40-50 different styles, with only one being on tap 100% of the time, Darkside, our stout, our favorite to drink and brew! The rest comes and goes with the season.

How do you come up with the names of your beers, such as Wet N’ EZ, Honey Baby, Jackin’ Jill, Amberillo, Philip D’Glass, and Dirtbag Red?

Songs, life, kids, inside jokes, nicknames, family, riffs on just about anything. Typically, it starts a bit inappropriate, some vetoing that goes on, then we lock in and go!

We are craft beer manufacturers and hop farmers, so at least two businesses rolled into one, but beer helps make the world go around!

Do you have children and are they involved in the business?

We have two kids, Nolan, 14 and Amelia, 11. They help with Farm Yoga and most of the critter care on the farm. Nolan is on a USA swim team and he’s thankfully strong to haul hay bales. Amelia has no fear and can wrangle a goat like no one’s business (might be from her competitive soccer playing skills). They also grow pumpkins and have a farm stand in the brewery where they pick fruit from the onsite orchard, or veggies from our large garden to sell. They save their money to buy new seeds for the next year or something special.

IMG_1452Tell me more about the goats. What kind of goats, etc.?  Do you produce (or sell) any goat products such as milk and cheese?

The goats are all dairy goats. The plan was to open a small-batch dairy, but currently the regulations are hundreds of thousands of dollars and price prohibitive, so we are not licensed, nor do we sell any milk products. All hope is not lost, but development is currently on pause. In the meantime, we eat a lot of cheese with our beer! Our daughter has three Nigerian dwarf goats from 4H and their milk is like heavy cream. Alpines and La Manchas make up the bulk of the herd and their milk is sweet and plentiful – no funky aftertaste. Despite their reputation, our goats are very picky eaters and VERY spoiled.

What are the challenges you face as a local craft brewer?

Being one of the only true farm-to-tap breweries in the State of California – where the farming and brewing happen on the same land – has been challenging as the government isn’t really set up for innovation or the unknown. Being tenacious and the first to market has been character building as my mother says! We are craft beer manufacturers and hop farmers, so at least two businesses rolled into one, but beer helps make the world go around!

 Do you sell your beers only at the brewery?

The majority, yes. Since we are based in agriculture, production is limited. The old farming model was that the farms brought food to the people. Today, people like to come to the farms to see where everything is produced. It’s a connection that has been lost in society that we are hoping to rebuild. People don’t know how hops grow, so it’s a bonus to share the knowledge while they are enjoying a beer on the farm.

What other events do you offer at the brewery?

We are starting to work on some beer pairing events with local farmers and a fantastic farm-to-table chef. More to come, so stay tuned!

Is GoatHouse Brewing everything you dreamed it would be?

GoatHouse Brewing is exactly and more than what we planned extensively for and dreamed of. Our unique business model, as the first in the state, has been very well received and our passion and love for what we do, we hope, shines through. With all the planning we did, the one thing that surprised us, and continues to surprise us, is the outpouring of love and support from our customers. It is truly staggering and we are honored to be part of so many celebrations: engagements on a regular day in the brewery, baby showers, and birthday parties for the young and old.


600 Wise Road, Lincoln CA | info@goathousebrewing.com | Goathousebrewing.com

Michael and Catherine Johnson  |  Tasting Room open Thurs, Fri, Sat & Sun

 


Elizabeth Smith HSElizabeth Smith is a French and Spanish professor turned wine professional. In 2013, her part-time role as executive assistant to a wine broker and importer became her stepping stone into the wine business. She moved to the Napa Valley from Virginia in January 2014 to begin her new full-time winery career. Elizabeth holds a doctoral degree in community college education from George Mason University as well as Wine & Spirit Education Trust’s advanced wine certification. She is currently the wine club and social media manager at Ehlers Estate and writes about wine tourism and wine for various online media outlets, usually while sipping wine with her cat, Einstein, by her side.
Follow Elizabeth at TravelingWineChick.com and AmericanWineryGuide.com

Healthy competition leads to weight loss success By Caleb Radford

WORKPLACE rivalry and mobile technology are proving to be successful tools for battling obesity and heart disease.

pexels-photo-large (1)A three-year study by researchers at Flinders University in South Australia found that exercising in groups, particularly co-workers, helped provide the motivation required to lose weight.

The study, in collaboration with corporate fitness company Stepathlon, involved almost 70,000 employees from 64 countries including India, Australia and the United States.

Participants were organised into worksite-based teams of five and issued with Stepathlon hi-tech pedometers. Mobile technology was then used to calculate results globally.

Teams were given a 12-month program, which included healthy meal plans and mini-fitness challenges to prepare them for a 100-day “race”.

The race is the foundation of the program and has individuals competing in a virtual world where they are set the daily challenge of 10,000 steps (about 6.5 km).

Flinders University Associate Professor Anand Ganesan said Stepathlon participants increased their average step counts by about 3500 steps per day and reduced sitting time in the workplace by 45 minutes per day.

He said participants lost about 1.5 kg each during the 100-day challenge.

“The unique thing about this program was that it was delivered on a very large scale using mobile device technology,” he said.

“All the participants in previously published studies have all been from high-income countries and none of them have been on any scale that’s comparable.”

Assoc Prof Ganesan said the motivating factor that led to successful Stepathlon campaigns was social reinforcement.

“The use of social camaraderie and teams to encourage physical activity and improve people’s lifestyles is really important and effective,” he said.

Assoc Prof Ganesan said the use of mobile phones and the internet to increase fitness incentives could also be applied to participants from low and medium income countries.

“It’s very hard to engage people to change and modify their behaviour. Physical inactivity and bad dieting are clear drivers of cardiovascular disease around the world,” Assoc Prof Ganesan said.

“The numbers of people that are physically inactive and overweight is way in excess of the numbers of people that can be reached through conventional clinic means.

“What this study demonstrates is that you can use mobile technology and the internet to reach large numbers of people and encourage them to change their behaviour in terms of physical activity and weight.”

In 2011-12, circulatory diseases affected an estimated 3.7 million Australians, including about a million people with cardiovascular conditions such as stroke and heart disease.

Cardiovascular disease was the leading cause of death among Australians in 2012, with almost 45,000 deaths recorded.

The study, International Mobile-Health Intervention on Physical Activity, Sitting, and Weight: The Stepathlon Cardiovascular Health Study, is published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

It was also presented April 3 at the American College of Cardiology’s 65th Scientific Session & Expo in Chicago, USA.

South Australia’s capital Adelaide has three-long standing public universities, theUniversity of South Australia, the University of Adelaide and Flinders University, each of which are consistently rated highly in the international higher education rankings.

Craig Ramsay’s healthy tips to shape up for summer

Craig RamsayIf you were one of the countless people who made New Year’s resolutions to hit the gym this year, more than likely life got in the way and your determination fizzled out. You are not alone. An estimated 92% of people who make this goal do not follow through. There is another reason right around the corner to start eating lighter and exercising more.

Do you hear that? It’s the beach calling and as we move in to warmer temps an estimated 54% of women and 45% of men are unhappy with their bodies. While layering in the winter can hide a few extra pounds the impending arrival of summer has some of us looking for healthy ways to lose those last pesky 10. For this, we look to an expert in the health and fitness industry.

With over 12 years in the health industry, Craig Ramsay is listed as one of People Magazine’s top fitness experts and was first introduced to the American public on Bravo’s Thintervention, where he co-hosted with Jack Warner. Craig’s approach to wellness is one of the most inuque and effective was of promoting health, movement and self-care. Colin Farrell called him genius and Sharon Osbourne said he is brilliant. Here are Craig’s guidelines for losing those last few pounds.

Cutting the calories where you typically won’t miss them, breakfast and late night is key. Replace your usual breakfast with a protein shake and ditch those on-the-go bars that are full of calories AND a ton pf sugar for a lower calorie and satisfying shake treat. Recipes below

Craig RamsayMake it easy for yourself to workout – organize your fitness: 

Prep the night before:

  • Choose and pack your workout outfit, necessary toilettes, makeup, hair clip/elastic, sweat towel, your running shoes and lock.
  • Prepare your morning coffee the evening before. Program the coffee maker timer 5 minutes before your alarm is set to ring, so your sense of smell will wake you up with your alarm.
  • Place a bottle of water in the fridge ready for morning use.
  • Squeeze a half lemon and toss it in a large glass of water, then leave it on your night stand. Drinking lemon water immediately after waking up, will not only help your pH balance but lemons are high in pectin fiber, which helps fight hunger cravings. It also has been shown that people who maintain a more alkaline diet lose weight faster. And my experience is that when I start the day off right, it’s easier to make the best choices for myself the rest of the day.
  • Boost your metabolism easily by including cinnamon, grapefruit, spicy foods and green tea into your daily eating plan.

Craig RamsayTraining:

Hot & Cold training (Intervals) 

  • While training, switch between lower, medium and high intensity for periods every minute. If you are already doing high intensity exercise, sprint for 30 seconds, rest for 30 seconds and repeat.
  • Buy a heart rate monitor so you can keep track of medium and high heart rates.
  • Try  circuit or interval-based classes. I recommend a spin class, boot camp, barre and/or flow yoga.

Craig Ramsay’s Shake Recipes

Breakfast or Morning Shake

  • VegaOne powder, chocolate or vanilla
  • 1 scoop of Protein powder
  • 1 cup of unsweetened Vanilla almond milk
  • 6 small blueberries OR 1/2 a banana
  • 1 tablespoon of ground flax seed or hemp seed.
  • Add Ice and water to reach your favorite consistency.

 Evening shake 

  • 1 scoops of protein powder
  • 1 cup of unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • NO fruit
  • Add Ice and water to reach your favorite consistency.

For additional fitness inspiration and healthy tips visit CraigRamsay.com Follow Craig on Twitter @CraigRamsayFit , Facebook and Instagram

Ask the Anytime People by Grant and Cathy Pritchard

Ask the Anytime People! Expert answers to your health and wellness questions

By Grant and Cathy Pritchard

Question: I know water is great for my health and hydration, but I get really tired of drinking it all the time. Are there any other healthy alternatives that will allow me to hydrate just as well?

Answer: Water is optimal for quenching your thirst and it’s important for many bodily functions, but many people just get bored with it and yearn for something else. A great way to spruce up water is to add fruits and vegetables right to the glass or pitcher. Add a citrus flavor to your water with orange or lemon slices, add cucumbers, or for a hint of sweetness, add strawberries or another sweet fruit. Another option is flavored seltzer water, or make your own seltzer by combining your favorite juice with seltzer water. Tea is another healthy alternative that can quench you’re thirst, as well as providing immune-boosting antioxidants that can help repair oxidative damage done to the body. If all else fails, try watering down a juice you like, or even better, try juicing your own fruits and vegetables to provide your body with the hydration and nutrients it needs.

Question: I am someone who regularly skips meals and workouts, thanks to both a busy work schedule and family life. I’m wondering if you have any tips that might get me back on track.

622 health and fitness 5Answer: Luckily, there are many people that lead busy lives while still finding the time for healthy meals and productive workouts—it can be done! You need to make sure that fitness and nutrition are priorities in your life. Once you make this commitment, doing the “right” thing will seem like a lot less work. Try taking an inventory of your week on Sunday night, figuring out which days are light and which ones are heavy in terms of work and family responsibilities. Then, you can schedule your workouts in your planner and resolve any meal planning issues as well. For example, maybe you need to pack more comprehensive snacks if you have a meeting during lunch, or maybe you need to create a reminder so you remember to take frozen meat out of the freezer the night before you cook it. These seem like small, almost trivial, changes, but they make a world of difference when you’re in a time crunch. We typically schedule things we don’t want to forget, so why not schedule meals and workouts too?

About the author: Grant & Cathy Pritchard are the club owners at Anytime Fitness in Buckley & Orting.To submit a question for future articles, please contact the author at grantp@anytimefitness.com.

 

Ask the Anytime People; Expert answers to your health and wellness questions

Grant and Cathy Pritchard

Grant and Cathy Pritchard

Ask the Anytime People – Expert answers to your health and wellness questions

By Grant & Cathy Pritchard

Question: I love fast food, but I am trying to lose weight and improve my health. Is it okay to eat fast foods while on a diet program?

Answer: Yes, but as always, there are a few important points to keep in mind. We all know fast food isn’t necessarily the healthiest meal in town, but we also know that setting realistic goals is an important component of any successful weight loss program. Therefore, it doesn’t make sense to completely deprive yourself of fast food, especially if it’s appropriate for your specific situation. In other words, if you’re crunched for time, fast food may be the only reasonable option. That said, if an occasional trip turns into four or five weekly trips, your weight loss efforts and health goals will likely suffer as a result. The key is to become a savvy shopper and watch out for calorie-laden foods with added sugars, sodium, and fat. Look for a Nutrition Facts pamphlet in local restaurants and educate yourself on their menus. If you make the effort, you’ll be able to find a sensible meal no matter where you go. Remember, balance, variety, and moderation are the words to live by when it comes to food. If you apply these principles regularly, you won’t have to sacrifice your health and wellness goals when eating out.

Question: I’ve heard some people say dieting just doesn’t work, and that you should focus on exercise if you want to lose weight. Is this true?

fruitAnswer: No, this is simply not true. If you’ve ever looked at food labels and compared them to the calorie counters on your exercise equipment, you’ll likely come to some startling conclusions. It is much easier to decrease your calorie intake by 300-500 calories per day than it is to expend that many more calories each day through exercise. Researchers have addressed this issue as well, and it is generally accepted that diet is the more important variable when it comes to weight loss. Exercise is still beneficial however, and actually plays a much more prominent role in weight maintenance. Here’s the bottom line… incorporate both healthy eating and exercise no matter where you are in the weight loss process.

Question: My wife thinks she’ll get big and bulky if she starts lifting weights with me. How do I convince her otherwise?

anytime-fitness-logoAnswer: This comes up all the time, and it’s one of the biggest myths out there. First of all, women simply don’t have the proper hormonal balance to put on large amounts of muscle tissue. Secondly, even if they did have the right physiology, it would take some serious training to do it. Getting bigger muscles requires high-volume workouts (lots of sets and repetitions) and a pretty high intensity level as well. Picking up a few weights here and there isn’t a recipe for building mass—it’s what you do and how you do it that really makes the difference. Remind your wife that weight training programs can always be tailored to specific goals, so if she doesn’t want to put on large amounts of muscle, that’s just fine. Generally speaking, a full-body circuit with higher repetition ranges a few days per week would work well if she’s just looking to tone up or maintain her current level of muscle tissue. If she wants to get an individualized program based on her goals, look for a qualified personal trainer in your area.

Exercise is still beneficial however, and actually plays a much more prominent role in weight maintenance. Here’s the bottom line… incorporate both healthy eating and exercise no matter where you are in the weight loss process.

About the authors: Grant & Cathy Pritchard are the club owners at Anytime Fitness in Buckley & Orting To submit a question for future articles, please contact the author at grantp@anytimefitness.com

 

Ask the Anytime People; Grant and Cathy Pritchard

Expert answers to your health and wellness questions by Grant & Cathy Pritchard

Question: How do you manage healthy eating while on vacation?

Bring your own snacks

Bring your own snacks

Answer: There’s no doubt that eating healthy can be very tricky when you’re on vacation. Whether you’re short on time or you want to experience all of the different foods available, it can be difficult to stick to a particular diet plan. And you may not be as familiar with the local foods, so knowing how nutritious they are becomes a real challenge. If you’re traveling by car, you can certainly bring your own snacks for the ride. This may help you avoid the need to pick-up costly convenience foods. If you’re traveling by plane, asking the flight attendant for low-fat or heart-healthy options can also help. It might be wise to book hotel rooms that have kitchenettes, and if that’s the case, you can always visit the local grocery store to get some fresh fruits and vegetables and other healthful items. And if the hotel has a continental breakfast, you can try to fill up on fruits or yogurt before you head out on the town. Be sure to visit sit-down restaurants instead of fast food establishments, since servers are generally better equipped to educate you about the food they’re serving. But in the end, just do the best you can, and remember that you’re on vacation. If you do deviate from your normal eating habits, just be sure to get back on track once you return home.

Question: Is it alright to start an exercise program at the age of 50, and if so, what types of exercise would be advisable?

exercise anytime fitnessAnswer: First of all, it’s clear that individuals may need to do different exercises depending on their activity levels and overall health. And the sooner you start exercising, the more beneficial it will be in the long run. Being active can increase bone strength, improve cardiovascular function, and prevent numerous chronic diseases. Structured exercise can also increase mobility and stability, which can help prevent falls as you age. If you’re just beginning a workout program, it’s important to start slow and begin with the basics. It is also important to listen to your body. If you start to sense physical pain, make sure to stop immediately. And don’t forget to do a proper warm up and cool down. Keep in mind, it will take older individuals a bit longer to recover between workouts. As a result, light to moderate intensities are recommended. I would advise resistance training 2-3 times a week, along with some basic aerobic exercise as well. Walking and jogging are certainly reasonable exercise options, but swimming and biking will put less stress on the joints. In the end, it may be best to speak with a personal trainer so that he/she can create a customized workout program for you.

Question: I have trouble remembering to stretch after my workouts. Is it really that important, and if so, what am I missing by not doing it regularly?

Answer: Yes, stretching is a very important part of an overall fitness routine. In fact, it’s just as important as strength training and cardiovascular conditioning, though many individuals don’t adhere to a regular program like they do with these other forms of exercise. Stretching offers numerous benefits, including injury prevention, an increased efficiency of movement and improved blood flow and nutrient delivery to the joints. It also improves muscle coordination, overall balance and postural alignment. It can even help to alleviate muscle soreness and stress after a workout. These are pretty impressive results for just a few minutes of relaxation. Unfortunately, people always seem to be crunched for time, and stretching is usually the first thing to go. In order to make it a consistent part of your training regimen, you need plan for it. Reserve the last ten minutes of your session for stretching, and try not to let your schedule get in the way. After all, you wouldn’t normally cut your lifting or cardio sessions short, would you?

Be sure to visit sit-down restaurants instead of fast food establishments, since servers are generally better equipped to educate you about the food they’re serving. But in the end, just do the best you can, and remember that you’re on vacation. If you do deviate from your normal eating habits, just be sure to get back on track once you return home.

About the author: Grant & Cathy Pritchard are the club owners at Anytime Fitness in Buckley & Orting.To submit a question for future articles, please contact the author at grantp@anytimefitness.com.

The Sunshine Booster Smoothie

Sunshine Booster Smoothie  ~ Photo:  Jennifer Cass

Sunshine Booster Smoothie ~ Photo: Jennifer Cass

I saw this recipe on the well and good site and thought, “my readers must see this!”  The trifecta of inflammation-fighters in the Sunshine Booster Smoothie include pineapple, turmeric, and ginger.

Come April, we’ve never craved sunshine so much. And we’ve just found it in a glass. This spicy-sweet smoothie recipe is layered with dynamic flavors, playing between a Pina Colada and a turmeric-ginger juice. Here’s why we’ll be sipping it all month long:

The star ingredient, pineapple, is one of the top fruits used in juice cleanses for its detox benefits. That’s because it contains the enzyme bromelain, which aids in digestion and lowers inflammation. (Bromelain is also a great skin-care exfoliant—it’s used in this great mask—and has even been researched as an anti-cancer agent.)

Turmeric has become a trendy ingredient, and not just in your curry. More than 20 current studies on its anti-inflammatory benefits make it worth sipping. (It might lend you a helping hand with allergy symptoms, skin issues like psoriasis, and even shedding a few pounds, since excess weight is also inflammation.)

Ginger makes this smoothie sublime and lends a super-dose of anti-inflammatory properties and a circulation-boosting buzz just in time for the new active energy that spring ushers in. Coconut water adds electrolytes for an extra punch of hydration and a hint of sweetness. —Jennifer Kass

The Sunshine Booster Smoothie

Blend and enjoy!

  • 1 cup frozen pineapple
  • 1 cup coconut water
  • 1 inch fresh ginger
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric

Top with a squeeze of lime

Contributor Kari Gran has pulled this directly from The Wellness Wire.  Please visit the site for great tips and recipes for healthy living.

Financial Incentives for slimming down

weight lossLosing weight isn’t easy.  The decision to change your eating and exercise habits is difficult to make.  An even harder choice, is finding the best way to go about it.

HealthyWage is a company that can help you make that tough decision to implement a lifestyle change.  In 2012, HealthyWage contests assisted more than 1,300 locals shed 16,700 lbs.  The dangling carrot, monetary compensation.  And it works.

Making the decision to lose weight is the easy part of the equation.  The rest is sheer willpower and that’s where cash based incentives come in to play.  Since we all think on different levels and our motivational process aren’t always the same, there are several challenges to fit individual needs.  If a group effort with continual support, positive peer pressure and team building works for you, then The Matchup might be your best fit.  Sign up, join a 5 member team, lose the most weight collectively and split $10,000.  That’s a sweet carrot.

Employees that are healthier, cuts down on absenteeism and healthcare costs, both in the company and across the board.  If you are interested in joining a team at work, current participating companies in the Seattle / Tacoma area are Eddie Bauer, Tacoma Public School and The City of Tacoma.  If you would like to bring it to the attention of your employer, here is the link with more information.

If you are interested in any of the other challenges there are two options.  The BMI Challenge, which pays up to $1000 for a healthier weight after one year.  To qualify for the BMI Challenge, you have to start with a Body Mass Index (BMI) above 30.  This challenge is completely free to join.

The 10% Challenge costs $150 to be a part of, lose 10% of your weight and get paid $300.  That’s a great incentive, double your cash for meeting your weight loss goal.  HealthyWage is all about helping lose the weight.  There are management techniques and advice on their blog; healthywage.wordpress.com and they are currently working on a program to assist with maintenance following your weight loss success.

To find out more about this contest in the Seattle/Tacoma area, please visit Healthywage.com.  Not convinced yet?  Follow the link to their “press” page and read what Today, NBC News, Consumer Report, Weight Watchers, Time, CNN and many more have to say about their techniques and the success of the contestants.

 

 

Expert Answers to Your Health Wellness Questions; Ask the Anytime People

Authors:  Grant & Cathy Pritchard

Expert answers to your health and wellness questions

Question: Does cooking food in a microwave cause nutrient loss?

microwaveAnswer: This is a great question because microwaves are pervasive throughout society. In fact, they’re a staple in almost every kitchen. Despite their popularity, many people are convinced that radiation from microwaves destroys nutrients. Thankfully, research does not back this up. The primary determinants of nutrient loss are cook time, cook temperature, and the amount of liquid used. In other words, any form of cooking can lead to nutrient loss, but microwaving is actually a BETTER option. Microwaves do a great job of heating your food very quickly, and microwaves heat at temperatures that are lower than most other forms of cooking. The water-soluble vitamins, B-complex and C, are easily the most susceptible to heat, and are commonly found in beans, fruits, and vegetables. Bottom line—use the microwave as often as you need to, but try to avoid using water in the cooking process to avoid leaching of those water-soluble vitamins.

Question: I’ve never been the best sleeper. Is this having a negative impact on my overall health?

sleepAnswer: Unfortunately, yes, it probably is! There is a lot of emerging research revolving around sleep (or the lack thereof) and its associated health implications. There’s some data now indicating that those who get just one night of poor sleep end up with abnormal lab values indicative of pre-diabetes. That’s right, pre-diabetes!! Folks with poor sleep cycles can end up with suppressed insulin secretion after a meal, which leaves them with elevated blood sugar levels for far too long. They also have lowered resting metabolic rates, which could ultimately contribute to weight gain as well. Other researchers have discovered that hundreds of genes get disrupted after just one week of suboptimal sleep, thereby impairing the body’s ability to heal itself. Chronic sleep problems have been associated with heart attacks, stroke, diabetes, and obesity for years, but now we’re starting to see direct observations in the laboratory setting. In the end, optimal sleep is just as important as your fitness level and your nutritional status when it comes to overall health, so try to get at least 8 hours a night, and more when you can.

Question: I lift 5 days per week consistently, but my strength gains have flat-lined. How do I continue to get stronger?

anytime-fitness-logoAnswer:  Despite not having much information to go on here, let’s see if I can provide some insight. First of all, there’s the distinct possibility that you’re working out too much. Maybe your volume (the combination of sets and reps) is too high—a common problem for those looking to gain strength as quickly as possible. And how long has it been since you’ve taken some time off to allow your body to fully recuperate from the stress of exercise? Some much-needed rest may do the trick, and amazingly, people often come back even stronger. I also wonder if you’re changing up your workouts enough. Many people get into the habit of using machines or free weights, but then never gravitate toward other forms of exercise. Cables, tubing, bands, kettle bells, medicine balls, and even bodyweight exercises can all increase strength, so you should try to vary up your routine regularly. Lastly, you have to remember that strength doesn’t just increase exponentially on a continual basis. There is a threshold that you’ll reach at some point, and you could be there already. If you feel like you need help with your current program, talk to a certified personal trainer.

About the author: Grant & Cathy Pritchard are the club owners at Anytime Fitness in Buckley & Orting. To submit a question for future articles, please contact the author at grantp@anytimefitness.com.

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