The Best Smoothing Making Guide I’ve Ever Seen

I’ve been trying to find a decent “How to Make Smoothies” guide forever.

The internet is littered with millions of smoothie recipes, but very few guides on the basics of smoothie making.

I was ecstatic to find this Smoothie Making Guide at Eddie On Everything.  It tells you everything you need to know about making smoothies, from what type of blender to get (Surprise – it doesn’t have to be expensive!), to liquid/fruit ratios, to what fruits work best with which juices.

It advocates using frozen fruits instead of adding ice, which I have to say, works out deliciously!

The guide even contains tips for making delicious smoothies on the cheap, and highlights a few things you can add for added nutritional benefits.  Flax seeds, why didn’t I think of that?

All in all, it’s a great guide. Print it out and stick it in your kitchen.

Thanks Eddie!

Planks – The Best Stomach Ab Exercise You’re Probably Not Doing

Sure, you probably know all about sit-ups, crunches, and leg lifts, but have you ever heard of planks?

Planks are a very simple abdominal core exercise that you’re probably not doing.  And chances are that you’re really missing out – doing planks for just 5 minutes each day will strengthen and tighten all of your core muscles, not just your abs.

The basic plank maneuver is as follows:

Lie flat on the floor, and raise up on your elbows and toes.  Now hold that position for as long as you can. Personally, I like to shoot for one minute.

If you’re new to planks, you may find your whole body shaking after as few as 15 seconds!

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I like to do about 5 minutes of planks each day, in one minute intervals.

There are many variations of the plank exercise as well – you can try a side plank, where you rest on one elbow and just one foot.  To do this, lie on your side, place one foot on top of the other, and lift up on one elbow. You can place your free arm on your top side or above your head.

Planks are a great core exercise that will strengthen your core and get you on the path having 6-pack abs before you know it!

Egg and Cholesterol Myths – Eggs aren’t as bad as you think

If you’re age 25 or older, you were probably taught that eggs cause all sorts of health problems – elevated cholesterol levels, heart disease, even cancer.  Turns out that eggs aren’t as bad as everyone thought.

Yes, egg yolks contain a ton of cholesterol – over 2/3 the recommended daily intake for an average person.  Yes, egg yolks are high in saturated fat.  But more recent studies have shown that dietary cholesterol has almost no effect on blood serum cholesterol levels.

Here are few articles that crack the many egg myths floating around.  Article 1  Article 2 Article 3

Some snippets:

In The Cholesterol Myths Dr. Ravsnkov shows that despite millions of dollars spent on research, scientists have repeatedly failed to produce good evidence that diets rich in saturated fats or cholesterol promote heart disease or cancer.

The famous Framingham Heart Study found that dietary cholesterol has no influence on serum cholesterol.

Eggs have gotten a bad rap from the cholesterol crowd. But according to a study done at Harvard University, eating one egg per day does not increase the risk of heart disease or stroke. The Harvard study’s team of nutritionists, epidemiologists and physicians tracked 115,000 men and women and measured their health against egg consumption. They concluded that healthy people can eat an egg a day without raising their cholesterol to harmful levels.

Although many health organizations caution against eating more than three eggs per week, there is absolutely no scientific justification for such restriction. Researchers have noted an inverse relationship between egg consumption and death from heart disease. A 1996 analysis of world wide of egg consumption found that France, Spain, and Japan all have a high per capita consumption of eggs the lowest rates of death from heart disease!

And, last but not least, some of the findings from Dr. Ravsnkov’s study:

3.  Your body produces three to four times more cholesterol than you eat. The production of cholesterol increases when you eat little cholesterol and decreases when you eat much. This explains why the ”prudent” diet cannot lower cholesterol more than on average a few per cent.

4  There is no evidence that too much animal fat and cholesterol in the diet promotes atherosclerosis or heart attacks. For instance, more than twenty studies have shown that people who have had a heart attack haven’t eaten more fat of any kind than other people, and degree of atherosclerosis at autopsy is unrelated with the diet.

 

So what does all of this mean, for you? Should you eat only one or two eggs per day, or stick with only a few per week as others recommend?  I’d check with your doctor before making any huge changes in your diet.  But I also wouldn’t worry too much if you’re only eating one egg per day.

What is Body Pump?

Body Pump (or, more accurately, “Bodypump”) is a group exercise class that combines aerobic exercise with weight training.  It’s exploding in popularity right now, making it hard to use “My gym doesn’t offer Bodypump” as an excuse for not trying it!

Each class is designed to be about an hour long.  Your instructor will play a specially designed music track and lead you through exercises designed to target all of your major muscle groups with barbells and hand weights.  I know, many of you ladies are probably worried that if you start lifting weights you’ll gain muscle mass – this is a myth!  Lifting weights will help you become more fit and toned, and will not cause you to bulk up.

It’s a great workout, and it’s a lot of fun, too.

And it’s not just for the ladies – Men, you won’t be alone in a Bodypump class.  I’d estimate that most of my classes are at least 40% males.   And you might be surprised at what a great workout it is, too - after my very fit male friend finished his first Bodypump class, he remarked, “Wow, that was rough!”, and was sore for days.

Definitely try Bodypump if you haven’t already.  You won’t regret it!

Welcome to my Website!

Hello, Everyone!

My name is Heather and I’m an NCSA certified personal trainer.  I’m also a full time student and mother to one beautiful baby boy.  I’m currently studying to get a dual degree in kinesiology and dietetics.

I will be blogging here about my fitness and dieting tips.

Please feel free to join in the discussion!

Thanks,

Heather