Kelowna Personal Training

Healthy New Year

Healthy New Year

Leigh Carter

Personal Trainer Kelowna

Private Gym Training

 

Recent surveys have shown that fewer than half of us now make a New Year’s resolution to get healthy by following a strict diet. It seems most people now have decided that eating a more sensible diet every day and ignore those short term fad diets.

Well this certainly is the most sensible approach, those diets rarely have the desired long term results. Apparently it takes 21 days to introduce a habit, so following a diet for a very short time is never going to be a success. It is far better to make small gradual changes to your diet that you are likely to stick with.

The answer is not always totally cutting things out of your diet, but looking at what changes you could make to make everything more healthy, making the portion sizes smaller, or maybe having some things as a treat to yourself instead of an everyday option.

A positive approach to healthy eating is all about looking at simple ways to increase the nutritional potential of your everyday diet. Simply sprinkling some berries and nuts over your morning porridge can increase the vitamin and mineral content. Vitamin C from the berries, potassium, iron and magnesium just some of the minerals from some nuts.

By choosing a wide variety of foods, a rainbow of fruit and vegetables, lean meat, fish, grains and pulses, whole foods for some fibre, you will not only be giving your body the nutrition it needs but also you won’t get bored eating the same things all the time.

To sustain a healthy diet you need to bring back the joy into eating. Mealtimes should be relaxing and enjoyable. If you focus on what you are eating, savouring every mouthful and thinking about the flavours, appreciating every bite, you will feel more satisfied at the end of each meal. Rushing around grabbing a bite where you can, unconscious grazing that many of us do daily, will just add stress to our already hectic lives. Slowing down is one of the best ways you can get your mind and body to communicate what you really need for nutrition, we often eat long after we are full. By slowing down we can give our body a chance to catch up to our brain and hear the signals to eat the right amount. Also by removing distractions like mobiles and TV we can concentrate on our food.

Make sure you are really hungry and not dehydrated. Hunger is often confused the need for a drink. Try a glass of water when you feel hungry and see how you feel.

And to compliment your healthy eating regime, why not think about improving your exercise. Just like your healthy eating, getting fit is about small steps and adding a little more each week. Again small changes and realistic goals that you are going to stick to are the only way to success. Your personal trainer can tailor a fitness program that will be realistic and sustainable, leading to a fitter you for 2018.

 

Contact Leigh Carter Personal Trainer Kelowna today for your free consultation

Start building a better body for your future

#personaltrainerkelowna

#leighcarterfitness

Healthy Christmas

Healthy Christmas

Healthy Christmas

Leigh Carter

Personal Trainer Kelowna

Private Gym Training

 

Is there any such thing as a healthy Christmas? Did you know the average person can consume a large 6000 calories on Christmas Day! Enough calories to last an average woman three days. This is not the end of it – there will be the Christmas parties, drinks and nibbles with friends, and all those left overs. It is a difficult time to stick to our usual healthy eating habits and exercise regimens. We need to enjoy ourselves but also not make it too difficult for ourselves in the New Year with a big weight gain and lethargic bodies to deal with.

If you’re going to a party straight after work, don’t skip lunch for fear of overdoing your daily calorie intake, you will be so hungry and probably make bad food decisions. By eating a light lunch and then shortly before you go have a snack such as a yogurt or a couple of pieces of fresh fruit and a handful of nuts, this should take the edge off your hunger. Faced with a buffet, resist the temptation to start filling your plate at one end of the table and continuing to add to it until you reach the other. Portion control at a buffet can be difficult for even the most determined healthy eater, so before you pick up a plate, pause to look at all that’s on offer, decide on perhaps three things you’re going to enjoy most and then help yourself to just these. Once you’ve selected your food from the buffet, step away. When food is within easy reach we’re prone to graze mindlessly, and try to avoid too many crisps and salted nuts, they’re loaded in calories and salty too which will make you drink more.

Many festive favourites are loaded with calories, fat and sugar (mince pies, Christmas cake, Christmas pudding, big tins of chocolates), but there are plenty of healthier seasonal options to enjoy, Brussel sprouts, dried dates, chestnuts, cranberries, salmon, satsumas, almonds, Brazil nuts, pomegranates and fresh figs are all more healthy seasonal treats. So try to go easy on the fat laden, sugary treats and nibble on the healthy ones. Avoid overloading on starchy carbs by replacing some roast potatoes with parsnips, celeriac or sweet potatoes.

Dinner with family and friends often means we spend longer sitting around the table and the longer we linger, the more likely we are to keep eating even if we’ve had enough. So clear the table when everyone has finished eating and move into another room to continue the conversation this way you won’t be tempted to overeat. Also listen to your body and give it a chance to feel hungry before you eat and it’s good to make sure you really savour the indulgent things and eat them slowly and mindfully.

So try to pace yourself, it’s so easy to cram in too much then wonder why you’re so worn out.  Burning the candle at both ends also affects your waistline, as too little sleep causes leptin levels to drop and trigger hunger, while levels of ghrelin increase telling the brain we need to eat.

Try keeping some healthier snacks to hand in your bag when rushing around doing the Christmas shopping, this means you won’t succumb to those fat-laden coffee shop options when you need a mid-shop energy boost, some fresh fruit, or small bag of nuts and seeds will keep your energy levels up.

Don’t forget alcohol is packed with empty calories, and research shows alcohol not only increases our appetite but can weaken our willpower, meaning we’re even more likely to overindulge on festive nibbles. By adding ice to alcoholic drinks you will dilute them, choosing lower-alcohol drinks such as spritzers and punch will cut the calorie count.

Exercise will help you to maintain your weight during this time, so instead of sitting in front of the TV go for a walk with the family, hit the golfing range with friends, go for a swim or if it snows build a snowman, and don’t forget your personal trainer is on hand to help you get through this season of excess.

Remember everything in moderation and have a very Merry Christmas.

Contact Leigh Carter Personal Trainer today for your free consultation

Start building a better body for your future

#leighcarterfitness

#personaltrainerkelowna

Boost Your Mood

Boost your Mood

Boost Your Mood

Leigh Carter

Personal Trainer Kelowna

Private Gym Training

 

We all have times when we feel a bit down, especially when the days are shorter and darker and the temperatures are lower, our mood needs a lift. Many of us turn to guilty pleasures like a glass of wine or some chocolate to cheer us up, but these treats can actually have the opposite effect, because after the initial rush of energy that they give us, we’re hit by a drastic comedown, and unfortunately too much caffeine and sugary food can have the same effect.

When your blood sugar drops you might feel tired, irritable and depressed, so you need to eat regularly to keep your sugar level steady, and choose foods that release energy slowly. By starting your day with a hearty breakfast, perhaps porridge with its blood-sugar-stabilising low-glycaemic index (GI), with some nuts and fruit, or maybe eggs which are a great source of choline, a building block of brain tissue, and the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, which is important for memory and general mental functioning. These will ensure you give yourself a good chance of starting the day in a good, bright mood. Throughout the day it is a good idea to replace a large lunch with smaller portions regularly spaced out.

Nuts are a good mood booster, walnuts, linseeds and pumpkin seeds, are best for omega-3s and monounsaturated fats, which is crucial for brain cell health and neurone communication, whereas according to research people who are deficient in omega-3 fatty acids may be more susceptible to depression and low mood, as these fatty acids make up a large percentage of our brain tissue, about 60% of the dry weight of the brain is fat, with about 30% of that in the form of omega 3. So by eating oily fish, nuts (especially walnuts and almonds), olive and sunflower oils, seeds (such as sunflower and pumpkin), avocados, milk, yoghurt, cheese and eggs, regularly you will keep your brain healthy and improve your mood by keeping brain cells flexible, so the brain’s messaging chemicals can work more effectively.

Selenium is a mood managing mineral, found in Brazil nuts and is also found in fish, sunflower seeds, meat, eggs and wholegrains.

Having a meal spiced with chillies can trigger the brain to release feel-good neurotransmitters known as endorphins, this is due to the natural compound capsaicin which gives chillis their fire.

Make sure you are having enough protein throughout the day, as protein contains amino acids, which make up the chemicals your brain needs to regulate your thoughts and feelings. It also helps control your blood sugar levels. Your protein sources are found in lean meat, fish, eggs, cheese, legumes (peas, beans and lentils), soya products, nuts and seeds. Chicken and turkey breast also help increase your intake of the amino acid tryptophan, which the body uses tryptophan to make serotonin. It also helps to make the hormone melatonin, which regulates sleep. Lean poultry also contains another amino acid called tyrosine, which can help reduce symptoms of depression and help you avoid feeling in a bad mood in the first place. Tyrosine is used to make the hormone adrenaline and low levels of this have been associated with depression.

Vegetables and fruit contain a lot of the minerals, vitamins and fibre needed to keep physically and mentally healthy and by eating a variety of different coloured fruits and vegetables every day means you’ll get a good range of these. For instance tomatoes, mushrooms and bananas all contain high levels of potassium which is essential for your whole nervous system, including your brain.

Certain deficiencies in B vitamins have been linked to depression, as serotonin production can actually be hindered by low B vitamin levels. Important B vitamins to look out for include folate, vitamins B3, B6 and B12, so by including leafy green vegetables, such as spinach or broccoli, you will help keep your levels up. Bananas contain the amino acid tryptophan as well as vitamins A, B6 and C, fibre, potassium, phosphorous, iron and carbohydrate. Mood-boosting carbohydrates aid in the absorption of tryptophan in the brain, while vitamin B6 helps convert the tryptophan into the mood-lifting hormone serotonin. This helps to boost your mood and also aids sleep. Because of its ability to raise serotonin levels, tryptophan has been used in the treatment of a variety of conditions, such as insomnia, depression and anxiety.

It’s ok to have a cup of coffee but do watch your caffeine levels. Caffeine is a stimulant and having too much can make you feel anxious and depressed, disturb your sleep (especially if you have it last thing at night), or give you withdrawal symptoms if you stop suddenly. Caffeine is not only in coffee but also in tea, chocolate, cola and other manufactured energy drinks.

Besides eating the right kind of food for your mood, you must also make sure that you drink enough water. Water is extremely important for keeping our bodies functioning properly, by not having enough to drink could make it difficult for you to concentrate and think clearly.

Exercise is one of the most effective morning mood boosters, when you exercise your body releases endorphins, feel-good chemicals, in your brain, all the more reason to speak to your personal trainer and get started on a program that will get your body going and boost your mood.

And if all else fails, have a small square of dark chocolate which causes the brain to release endorphins and boost serotonin levels. In a recent study, 30 people were given 40g of dark chocolate, over 14 days. The results showed that chocolate eaters produced less stress hormones and their anxiety levels decreased. So there you are, permission to eat chocolate!

 

Contact Leigh Carter Personal Trainer Kelowna today for your free consultation

Start building a better body for your future

#leighcarterfitness

#personaltrainerkelowna

kelowna personal training

Anti Ageing

Anti Ageing

Leigh Carter

Personal Trainer Kelowna

Private Gym Training

 

The skin is our largest organ and our first defence to the outside world. We need to take care of it as it will start showing signs of ageing with fine lines and wrinkles. Although some of our skin ageing process is genetic the major cause of skin ageing is actually down to the external environment and multiple stresses that our skin can be exposed to daily.

Unfortunately we can’t stop the clock on the ageing process, as we get older, the body’s machinery begins to function a little less smoothly and we become susceptible to age-related and degenerative diseases. But there are certain foods that can help counteract the negative effects ageing has on the body. They won’t make you younger or stop you from getting older, but they can improve your overall health and vitality, and protect you against disease and illness, which could prolong your life.

Berries of all types, blueberries, raspberries, cranberries, strawberries, are all super rich in antioxidants, such as flavonols and anthocyanins, which promote cell health and can protect against disease. Anthocyanins in particular, found in large quantities in blackberries, are thought to help protect against cancer and diabetes. Darker berries, especially ones that are black or blue in colour, tend to provide the best anti-aging benefits because they have the highest concentration of antioxidants.

According to some studies, blueberries may even help slow or reverse neurological degeneration, improve memory, restrict the growth of cancer cells and reduce inflammation. They are also good for urinary tract health.

Berries are also an excellent source of vitamins, especially vitamin C, which is good for your skin. Vitamin C helps repair damaged body tissues and has been linked to skin cancer prevention.

Eating fish or taking fish oil supplements, provides the body with omega-3 fatty acids that help protect against heart disease, helps your body regenerate healthy cells, reduce inflammation, decrease the risk of arrhythmia and lower blood pressure. Omega-3 fatty acids are found largely in cold-water fish, including salmon, herring, tuna and sardines. They help skin look youthful by producing and regulating sebum levels which helps skin appear more youthful and hydrated.

Another good source of omega-3 fatty acids is nuts. Apart from this and the protein they provide, they are also a good source of vitamins and minerals, including potassium, which helps lower blood pressure, vitamin E, which helps prevent cell damage, and calcium to maintain strong bones.

Vegetables are a great source of vitamins and minerals, including vitamins A, C, K and E. Studies have shown that a diet full of vegetables can help prevent cardiovascular disease, lower high blood pressure and, after a heart attack or stroke, lower cholesterol and unclog arteries. They’re also great for the immune system, helping the body fortify itself against sickness and disease.

Selenium is a trace mineral that contains an enzyme called glutathione that plays a major part in protecting our body from cellular damage that causes inflammation and ageing. Although selenium is available as a supplement, it is found in meat, grain cereals, egg yolk, milk, brazil nuts, mushrooms, garlic and seafood, so with a balanced healthy diet you should be able to get your requirements of this mineral.

Avocados are a fruit that has long been hailed for its anti-aging properties. Avocados with their vitamin E, potassium, monounsaturated fats and antioxidants provide a good mix of anti ageing properties. The vitamins and minerals in avocados have been shown to reduce cholesterol, improve skin health and lower blood pressure. They are also rich in folic acid (vitamin B), which have been linked to heart attack prevention and reducing the risk of osteoporosis. Avocados also contain a monounsaturated fat called oleic acid which has been shown to lower bad cholesterol, increase good cholesterol and protect against blood clots. They’re proven to act as antioxidants and combat the effects of overexposure to the sun. They are a good source of vitamin C which can boost levels of collagen, which plumps out wrinkles and fine lines naturally.

Eating whole grains is good for your digestive system and it’s the fibre that helps rid the body of unwanted substances, such as bad cholesterol and fats. Fibre also helps to control your appetite, keep blood sugar low and they are rich in vitamins and minerals which in themselves have anti ageing benefits.

Beans also contain fibre but are also rich in antioxidants, and all sorts of vitamins and minerals, including iron, vitamin B and potassium. The added benefit of being a good source of low fat protein therefore good as part of a balanced diet and especially good for those non meat eaters.

Along with all these foods a very important must is water, for without sufficient water in your body, your cells get congested, your skin can’t detox, and your bladder and kidneys won’t work properly, you’ll feel tired and eat more.

And don’t forget regular aerobic exercise is a must-do for anyone committed to slowing down the ageing process. Hundreds of studies show that exercise combats the loss of stamina, muscle strength, balance and bone density that increases with age.

So if you feel trying to juggle all these foods to form a good anti ageing diet is giving you worry lines, leave it to your personal trainer who can tailor a program and a diet to suit your lifestyle.

 

Contact Leigh Carter Personal Trainer Kelowna today for your free consultation

Start building a better body for your future

#leighcarterfitness

#personaltrainerkelowna

Kelowna Karate

Women’s Self Defence Class Kelowna

Women’s Self Defence Class Kelowna

Friday December 1st 2017 6:00-7:45pm

 

Learn the basics in Strategies/Awareness to avoid violence. Develop fatal striking techniques that are simple to learn and easy to remember. Mental preparation in most common dangerous situations. Just a few points this class will cover.

 

Registration fee : $45/ per person please register by November 27 2017

info@kelownakarate.ca

www.kelownakarate.ca

10 – 1925 Kirschner Road Kelowna BC

#kelownakarate

#womensselfdefencekelowna