Sunday, January 7, 2007

Healthy Turning Point

Did you resolve to lose a few pounds or get in a bit more exercise in the new year? Judging by what I have seen on tv, displayed on the newstand and stacked at the bookstore, the answer is yes. The Food Network shows geared towards a bountiful holiday and party table have been replaced with leaner menus. Two full tables at the front door of my local Barnes and Noble were laden with diet and fitness books. Sculpted bellies on magazine covers shout it is time to get our waists back in line.

My work keeps me active and by some miracle the holidays did not gift me anything to reduce. But I do have a habit of considering what progress I need to make to be more healthy this time of year.

Some strategies that I put into practice this time last year have paid off. I incorporated SuperFoods into our diet. Most evening meals consist of 4 oz protein grilled or broiled with a salad (greens, nuts, dried fruit, vegetables, 1 oz cheese with 1 tablespoon Newman's dressing) and green vegetable. Breads, pasta, rice and potatoes are eaten sparingly. A can of nuts in the car staves off hunger. Carrying a piece of fruit or yogurt manages snacking.

Sugar continues to be problematic for many of us. I recently discovered how to determine how much sugar I was really eating in the foods I buy. 1 teaspoon of sugar = 4 grams. My favorite brand of yogurt has only 160 calories but 7 teaspoons of sugar. That was for a 6 0z cup. Astounding. With this new tool of understanding, I am empowered to make better food choices.

If we hope to make any progress towards a more fit, healthy body, ultimately we must decrease our calorie intake and increase our physical activity. Those magazines and books that are beckoning us are great for ideas and motivation but less food and more exercise has to be the plan. (My ex father in law's quote is crude but true.)

I resolve to investigate getting in more cardio. The elliptical machine during PT was effective but boring. I am checking out a Nia class tomorrow. Learning salsa, tango or flamenco would be fun. And maybe it's time I got back to the stripper pole dancing!


Here are a few of my favorite thoughts on the subject:

"He who would keep in good health [should remember to ] avoid grevious moods and keep your mind cheerful." - Leonardo da Vinci

"When you look and feel your best, it is easier to do whatever you have to do." -Ivana Trump

"Physically, we seek health, affection and the ecstacy of sexual union." - Michael Gelb

"If your life stays the way it is now, your weight will get back to where it is now...changing on the inside is the key to making outer changes last." - Victoria Moran

"Healthy people are happier than unhealthy people. The reverse is also true, happy people are healthier than unhappy people." -Deepak Chopra

"If you want to lose weight, back up from the table." -Sidney Morgan

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