Personal Trainer Kelowna

Mood Food

Mood Food

Leigh Carter

Personal Training Kelowna

&

West Kelowna

 

Did you know that eating the right foods can boost your mood? Foods high in omega-3 fats and certain vitamins can boost levels of feel-good brain chemicals. Oily fish contains omega 3 fatty acids that are essential for brain tissue and enabling neurotransmitters to work effectively. People with low levels are more prone to depression and low moods. Include more of these foods in your diet.

Oats, pulses and pasta release energy slowly to keep blood sugar and mood stable and help you stay calm. US researchers found carbohydrates play a vital role in enabling the amino acid tryptophan, which is converted into the neurotransmitter serotonin, to enter the brain.

Greens like spinach, broccoli and Brussels sprouts are a great source of folic acid – studies show that people with low levels are more likely to feel depressed. We need to boost are intake of these.

Chicken, turkey, nuts, seeds, beans, lentils and chickpeas – these are packed with tryptophan, an amino acid that the body uses to make mood-boosting serotonin.

Eggs are rich in choline, a nutrient said to help lower the risk of depression.

Brazil nuts are packed with selenium, and low levels have been linked with depression, irritability and anxiety.

Eating more fruit and vegetables can lift your mood and energy, but you need seven to eight portions a day for a significant boost. After tracking the food diaries of 281 people for 21 days, researchers in New Zealand found when people ate this amount of fruit and veg (excluding juice and dried fruit), they felt calmer, happier and more energetic. One portion is 85g (3oz) – about one apple or the amount of veg that fits in your palm. Try half filling your plate with vegetables at eat meal and eating fresh fruit for snacks. Vitamin C found in citrus fruit produces feel-good endorphins and improves the body’s ability to cope with stress.

And finally chocolate, everybody’s favourite ‘pick me up’, contains the stimulants caffeine and theobromine as well as phenylethylamine, which helps trigger the release of feel good endorphins. You sometimes need to have a bit of this!

 

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Personal Trainer Kelowna

Stop eating junk food

Stop eating junk food

Leigh Carter 

Personal Training Kelowna

West Kelowna

 

Whilst speaking to a client today who has recently moved to Kelowna from Toronto I asked her what she thought of Kelowna, she replied that it doesn’t seem as health conscious as she thought it would be. Having lived in Toronto where she explained to me that there was a health food store, smoothie bar or organic restaurant etc on every corner, Kelowna does not seem to offer the same. This got me thinking about the ratio of junk food restaurants in Kelowna to those that are healthy ones, I have not lived here for a long time but I really couldn’t think of many places that sell clean healthy food. I understand that there are some out there and some I am yet to discover but the healthy image that Kelowna promotes is a little tainted by this ratio. I feel junk food has its place in society but not to the degree that it currently has, the food is essentially all about taste and not a great deal about health. So here’s the thing, do you need to keep eating this crap all the time? It makes you fat, sick and dependent on more (addicted). Going back to my previous statement it does taste amazing though! But if I were to eat it more than a few days in a row I would definitely feel worse for it. So why don’t you sit back and think about this and really evaluate what you are putting in your mouth and the justification that you are giving yourself to why it is ok for you to do so. The only actual reason you should be eating this food is that you don’t have any respect for your body and don’t really care for the consequences. I doubt anyone can really say that though. So why don’t you try something real simple, keep eating junk food but half one of the meals that you usually have this week, next week completely remove that junk food meal and have something real and healthy, the following week cut another meal in half, the following week remove it and replace it. Keep doing this for as long as it takes to clean up your diet, it might take ages but eventually your diet will be clean and the transition towards health would have been a smooth and easy process. The terrible side effects of this process are that you will, lose weight, feel more active, sleep better, look better and live longer. Sounds terrible eh………..

 

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Personal Trainer Kelowna

Its getting hot out here

Its getting hot out here

Leigh Carter 

Personal Training Kelowna

&

West Kelowna

Well it’s certainly hot in Kelowna and keeping cool right now is something we all need to think about. Risks of getting too hot in warm weather include dehydration as you go about your daily activities or overheating and risking suffering from heat stress, heat cramps or even heat exhaustion. Keeping your body cool will also help to keep your mood calm too. There are lots of simple and effective ways to stay cool in warm weather.

Stay hydrated. Water is essential for keeping your cool during hot weather. Water keeps your body cool and should be drunk even if you don’t feel thirsty. Buy a durable water bottle or water pack that you can carry everywhere and refill at any safe water tap. Freeze a bottle of water to carry around with you. It’ll be solid when you leave the house but the heat will start melting it from the moment you take it out of the freezer and you’ll benefit from the continuously chilled slowly thawing water.

Stay away from sugary drinks such as sodas and do not drink alcoholic drinks. Minimise caffeinated drinks, such as tea and coffee because these tend to increase dehydration. As well as drinking water, use it to spritz yourself cool by filling a spray bottle with pure water and place in the refrigerator at home or work. And when you feel too hot, spray a fine mist of the cooled water over face and body to help cool you down quickly.

The right food can keep you cool too – salads, fresh raw food, vegetables and fruit, this also avoid turning the oven on – less heat! Avoid eating meat and protein-heavy foods during the heat of the day because these can increase metabolic heat production, which can add to loss of water.

Air con is good but if you don’t have it try using fans – hand-held or electric, fans can keep you cool by continuously circulating air to keep the air circulating freely and to reduce the mugginess of heat.

Stay out of the sun while it’s at its hottest. Avoid unnecessary traveling, exercising and walking about when the sun is at its hottest, probably between midday and 4pm. When you are outside during these times, limit your exposure to heat by retreating to shade as much as possible and not exerting yourself. Most of all, drink plenty of water.

While sunscreen and sunglasses don’t necessarily have a cooling effect, their protective effect is vital during warmer weather, as well as being painful and damaging, sunburn reduces your ability to release heat from your body and causes you to lose body fluids.

Choose lightweight, loose-fitting clothing will help to keep you cooler, even better if it is light in color as this will reflect the heat and sunlight better. Lightweight long sleeved shirt and pants are preferable if you’re hiking or working outdoors for any length of time, as this provides more protection against the UV rays.

Wearing a hat can helps to keep you cooler by providing shade. Or try using a bandanna folded into a triangle and wrapped over your head as is often seen on bikers – this actually wicks sweat away from your head, spreads it over a large area where it evaporates and reduces your scalp temperature.

Wear footwear that breathes. Flip flops are great for some activities, but more strenuous activities require arch support, durability, and comfort. Sport sneakers are great, but be sure you have worn them beforehand, so they won’t rub your feet and give you blisters. Remember to wear socks, preferably ones that wick away moisture to help keep you cool and comfortable. If you’re going to the beach or pool, wear water shoes to protect your feet from the heat of beach sand and from sharp items in the water. For urban wear, sandals and flip flops are generally ideal for keeping your feet cool.

Enjoy the sun but be careful and stay cool.

Contact Leigh Carter Personal Training Kelowna & West Kelowna today for your free consultation

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Personal Trainer West Kelowna

The art of competing against yourself

The art of competing against yourself

Leigh Carter 

Personal Trainer Kelowna

West Kelowna

 

When was the last time you woke up in the morning with a clear head, feeling ready to take the day on and thought back to your decision last night to not drink any beer and thought “mmmmm I really regret not getting drunk because I would love to be a little bit fatter today and feel like crap” Hopefully never. Its these little battles with your inner fatty that I class as a competition sport. I watch the television very rarely, but sometimes when I do I accidentally flick over to some kind of football or competition sport, briefly I watch analyze and respect the enhanced athleticism of the players, then I realize I am exceptionally bored and flick back over to the food channel. Sport to me has never been about competing with others, I do not like playing any group sports or watching it or hearing about it. I have a healthy respect for different sports and the athletic abilities of the players, but it simply bores me to tears. My sport is with myself and as my above statement explains it can be anything from beating my urge to drink that beer in the sunshine or lifting just 1lb more weight on a lift I have been working on. This self competition has served me well over the years, sometimes I lose and sometimes I win, its always happening and I am always fighting some particular urge or beating a particular performance goal. My brain has a million and one different ways to justify eating that bad thing or not doing the extra days cardio but over the years I have come up with a million and 2 ways of convincing myself that I shouldn’t eat the bad thing and that cardio is going to happen. I suppose if I didn’t spend most of my time competing with myself I might have a little more time to try to like watching the game, but I doubt it ………………..

 

Contact Leigh Carter Personal Training Kelowna & West Kelowna today for your free consultation

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Personal Trainer Kelowna

Protect your bones

Protect your bones

Leigh Carter

Personal Trainer Kelowna

&

West Kelowna

 

When it comes to osteoporosis, it’s never too early to start protecting yourself and a few simple changes could really help.

Sunshine provides 90% of the vitamin D our bones need, so take advantage of it when it does appear. You need to build up your supplies during the summer, aim for two 10-minute sun breaks a day between May and September, without sunscreen, to allow skin to soak up the sun and strengthen bones naturally. Your body makes vitamin D from the action of UVB rays in sunlight on your skin.

There are very few dietary sources of vitamin D, oily fish, eggs and fortified margarines or cereals are the main ones – but even eating these every day won’t give you enough from your diet alone. Although learning about the foods that are rich in calcium, vitamin D and other nutrients that are important for your bone health and overall health will help you make healthier food choices every day.

You don’t need daily vitamin D, because your body can store it for several months. So, in theory, it is possible to build up stores in the Summer to last you through the dark Winter months. The level of UVB from the sun is affected by cloudy weather, pollution, sunscreen and clothing, which stop those vital rays from reaching your body.

A BMI of less than 19 is a risk factor for osteoporosis, so think slim but not skinny.

80% of bone health is inherited – so your mum’s broken hip could affect your health. But having a father who fractures a bone, as one in five older men do, also increases your risk.

Resistance exercise such as weight training tones muscles and strengthens bones. Using your own body weight such as in press ups can improve the bone density in the forearm. If you’re fit and active, aim for three sessions a week, leaving a rest day in between to let your body recover.

 

Contact Leigh Carter Personal Trainer Kelowna & West Kelowna today for your free consultation

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