Tag Archives: Anytime Fitness

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; 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.

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.

Anytime Fitness Buckley   Anytime Fitness Orting  Anytime Fitness Official

Ask the Anytime Guys; Feb 2013

Expert answers to your health and wellness questions

By Grant & Cathy Pritchard

Question: If I get sick, will loading up on Vitamin C help me get better sooner?

Vitamin CAnswer: This question is coming at a great time, and many people will start to worry about how much vitamin C they are consuming when they feel an illness coming on. For the most part, studies have shown little to no benefit. Consuming extra vitamin C after you’re already showing signs and symptoms of an illness will not help you recover faster. However, for those that consume the proper amount of vitamin C regularly, this may help reduce the duration of a cold by about a day, and they may have fewer symptoms than a person not meeting their daily requirement. Unfortunately, relatively high doses of 1-2 grams may be needed to elicit these very mild benefits, so is it really worth it in the end? Keep in mind, the RDA for women is 75 gms per day and 90 gms per day for men. Vitamin C can be found in acidic foods such as oranges, strawberries, kiwis, and also in green, leafy vegetables. It’s also found in citrus juices or those fortified with Vitamin C. Bottom line—only you can decide if you want to dose up on vitamin C. It certainly won’t cause any problems, but the minimal benefits may not justify the added expense.

Question: I have taken some time off from the gym and gained some extra weight, not to mention the fact that I feel a bit weaker. Did all my muscle just turn to fat?

Anytime FitnessAnswer: This is a great question and all too often it may seem like this is actually happening when people stop working out. However, muscle and fat are two completely different types of body tissue. Neither can simply turn into the other. When people stop working out for long periods, food intake should decrease because if you’re not expending as many calories, you certainly don’t need to consume as many calories. It’s important to remember that the muscles in your body are active tissues that are constantly using energy even when you’re sedentary. This means the more muscle you have, the more calories you need. The opposite is true as well. Unfortunately, when workouts decline, people often consume the same amounts of food that they had been when they were working out. These extra calories are stored in your body as adipose tissue (body fat). If you make a conscious effort to consume fewer calories when you stop working out, then you should be able to avoid the added pounds.

Question: Foods seem to be so high in salt these days, and I’m aware of the dangers of hypertension, heart disease, and stroke. Can you please clarify the amount of sodium I should be consuming daily?

SaltAnswer: You’re right—salt is everywhere. Processed foods are the main culprit, but the increased reliance on fast foods and restaurant meals are problematic as well. To add to the confusion, people often have trouble differentiating between sodium and salt. Salt is actually 40% sodium, so when discussing recommendations, we need to be clear about what we’re talking about. The current Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends less than 2,300 milligrams of sodium per day (about 1 teaspoon of salt). On the other hand, the Institute of Medicine (IOM) recommends 1,500 milligrams of sodium per day (about 2/3 teaspoon of salt), and they set the tolerable upper intake level at 2,300 milligrams. It’s clear that your intake should fall somewhere between these two ranges, or even less, but it’s actually quite difficult to keep your sodium level as low as 1500 milligrams per day. In fact, the IOM points out that 95% of American men and 75% of American women consume sodium in excess of the tolerable upper limit—not good news for those of us looking to avoid chronic disease as we get older. In order to keep your sodium intake in check, you need to eat plenty of fruits and vegetables, and make sure you buy foods that are fresh and unprocessed. And don’t forget to avoid adding salt at the dinner table as well.

Grant & Cathy Pritchard

Grant & Cathy Pritchard

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 Guy!

Expert answers to your health and wellness questions

Grant & Cathy PritchardBy Grant & Cathy Pritchard

Question: Well, it’s that time of year again. Any advice on sticking to my New Year’s resolutions in 2013?

Answer:  To be honest with you, I don’t really like the whole resolution approach at all. Wasn’t it Einstein that said doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results is a sure sign of insanity? If that’s true, I find it ironic that people set similar goals year after year, and yet fail to reach those goals year after year. It’s clear you want to make some changes—that what resolutions are all about—but it sounds like it’s your mindset that needs to change. You have to determine how committed you are to living a lifestyle of health. After all, it takes dedication and hard work to exercise consistently, make healthy food choices most of the time, and get adequate sleep each night. And these are just some of the behaviors that define wellness. But here’s the thing—when you decide that revamping your lifestyle is more important than reaching some short-term goal for 2013, New Year’s resolutions will become a thing of the past!

Question: I’d love to run a 5K with some friends this spring, but I am not active at all right now. How should I go about training for something like this?

Eat well and excersiceAnswer:  This is a great question! There are actually several plans on the internet that can take you from the couch to the 5K course in as little as 8-10 weeks. In fact, you can even use one of these plans if you have no intention of running a 5K, but simply want to start incorporating fitness (running) into your lifestyle. Most of the plans start with combination walk/jog/walk session, 3 days per week, steadily increasing the actual jog time from just 2 or 3 minutes to about 10 minutes by weeks 4 or 5. At this point, you also start to add an extra day of training, totaling 4 sessions each week. As you continue to increase your jog time, you gradually remove the walking warm-up, thereby finishing each workout with just a basic walking cool-down. By the time you get to 10 weeks, you should be able to run consistently for 25-30 minutes without stopping. Not bad for a former couch potato, huh? Do a Google search for couch-to-5K training programs, or check out www.halhigdon.com for more information. Good luck!

Question: I’m looking to add some serious muscle mass, and I’m curious about the engineered weight gainers out on the market? In other words, do you think weight gainers should be used to gain weight?

protein smoothiesAnswer:  Weight gainer supplements can have a place when it comes to adding muscle, but here’s my general philosophy on the matter. First of all, we know calories are of prime importance if gaining weight is the goal. We also know that some people simply can’t eat enough to gain the type of weight that they’d like to. This means that liquid calories become pretty important because liquids obviously aren’t quite as filling as solid foods. But my personal preference would be to create my own weight gainer smoothies with real foods, like fruits, yogurt, protein powders, oats, milk, and even things like peanut butter, frozen yogurt, and a little bit of chocolate. Then, you can combine these “beverages” with some hearty meals, and you’ll be on your way to a bigger you in no time. If you’ve found a particular weight gainer supplement that you happen to like, and you can afford it, then you can certainly go that route too. I just happen to be a “food first” kind of guy, and I’ve always found my smoothies and shakes more palatable than what is on the market. In the end, do what you think is best, and don’t forget to train for weight gain as well.

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

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Grant & Cathy’s Anytime Fitness locations; Orting Club and FacebookBuckley Club, and Facebook