Thursday, July 1, 2010 by kate

I don't know if you've noticed, but I've moved. And I got a makeover! Check out my new digs here!

Lunchtime love affair

Friday, June 18, 2010 by kate

Just wanted to share with you my absolutely favorite place to go for lunch.

I believe I've mentioned before that I stole a recipe from Life Alive. This just so happens to be the recipe I stole! It's called an Explorer Wrap and contains shredded beets*, shredded carrots, greens, homemade hummus, corn, sesame sticks and a drizzle of honey wasabi dressing. Delicious!

What's your favorite guilt-free go-to for lunch?

*Live Alive made me a beet convert. I never liked them before!

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Cupcakes: the sweet & silent killers

Wednesday, June 16, 2010 by kate

Weigh In Challenge: It’s crunch time. Summer starts next week, which means our Weigh In challenge is coming to an end. How have you been keeping up? Have you made any big changes since the challenge began months ago? Are you drinking more water? Eating more veggies? Getting your TLC fill while working out on the Elliptical machine*?

If you’re a part of the challenge, email me your weight update for the second-to-last time. Ever. If you joined in the beginning, but fell off the weigh-in wagon, feel free to shoot me an email anyway, letting me know what you’ve been up to!

It’s pretty obvious that being overweight isn’t the healthiest option out there. But a panel recently decided obesity is this century's single greatest public health threat. Sad, isn’t it? That we’re killing ourselves with cupcakes.
Cancer, heart disease, strokes. These are all tangible threats to our health. But obesity? That’s a bigger problem. You can’t pick up a cigarette without the pack slapping you with a skull and cross bones. But what about that sweet, innocent donut? Is there a killer warning label on the side of the box? No – just some happy, bubbly, pink and orange font. Seems harmless enough.

And it’s not all our fault that things have gotten out of hand. According to the experts, we’re being inundated with more and more unhealthy foods.

“It is harder and harder to eat well," says Margo Wootan, director of nutrition policy at the Center for Science in the Public Interest. "For Americans today, healthy eating is like swimming upstream. It's not that you can't do it, it's just it's so hard. Without changing the food environment, people don't stand a chance of following the advice in the dietary guidelines."

And now about two-thirds of us – and a third of children – are overweight or obese.

Wootan offers three tips for cutting calories:
1. cut portions
2. eat less when dining out
3. drink fewer sugary drinks.

How do you cut calories without cutting out all the fun?

*I swear I burn hundreds of extra calories just so I can watch the end of “Say Yes to the Dress” or “What Not to Wear.” Can you tell I don’t have cable at home?

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Trainer Tip

Monday, June 14, 2010 by kate

Today's tip is brought to you by celebrity trainer Gunnar Peterson*, who has buffed up the likes of Bruce Willis, Hugh Jackman, J. Lo and Angelina Jolie.

"If you’re spending a lot of time at the pool during the summer, fill water bottles with water and use them in the pool as dumbbells to bump up what you’re getting from your water time. It’s also a great conversation starter."

*According to an interview in Glamour, Peterson hasn’t always been the fitness guru he is today. He used to be a fat kid. “My mom sent me to Weight Watchers meetings in Houston, Texas, when I was 10 years old.” For some reason that makes me trust him more.

Do you break a sweat swimming? What other summer activities do you do?

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10-minute workout pays off

Thursday, June 10, 2010 by kate

Sometimes I like to sleep in. Correction – Sometimes I like to set my alarm for 6:30 and hit snooze every 10 minutes until 8. And since I’m a morning-workout person, this tends to cramp my exercise style. But, a new study has opened my eyes to mini morning workouts. It claims that just 10 minutes of brisk exercise (I’m thinking Jillian Michael’s 30-Day Shred or maybe a little Sweatin' to the Oldies!) triggers a metabolic change in your body lasts at least an hour.

Rich and I, we go way back. I like to call him Slimmons.

I know “metabolic change” sounds a bit coded, but I think it’s a good thing.

Researchers put 70 healthy people on treadmills and found a bunch of their “metabolites” changed during the workout. Some of the metabolites that revved up process fat and some stress-causing metabolites decreased with exercise.

Of course thinner people had greater hikes in a metabolite that's involved in blood-sugar control.* And people who were more fit burned more fat than the less fit.**

"We have a chemical snapshot of what the more fit person looks like. Now we have to see if making someone's metabolism look like that snapshot, whether or not that's going to improve their performance," said Dr. Robert Gerszten of Massachusetts General Hospital.

So, I guess this doesn’t mean we should shrink our hour at the gym to just 10 minutes, but if you’ve got a dime of time to spare, hit up that new workout video, or go for a quick jog.

What’s your favorite mini workout? I’m a fan of the jump rope! Doesn’t take up a lot of space and definitely gets my heart pumping.

Also- I forgot to remind y’all to send me your Weigh In weight loss updates yesterday, so send them along! We’ve got less than 2 weeks before the beginning of summer and the end of our contest. If you haven’t been so successful, don’t give up now! You’ve got 2 weeks to jumpstart your weight loss!

*Damn skinny people.
**Damn fit people.

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I’m in trouble.

Monday, June 7, 2010 by kate

A new study links clean homes with physically active people. The study, conducted by Indiana University researchers, looked at the living conditions and health of 998 people.

"At the end of the day, the interior condition of their house seemed to be the only thing affecting their physical activity. It was not at all what we expected," said Nicole Keith, a professor at Indiana University-Purdue University.

What do these research people know anyway? I’m not saying I’m messy … it’s just that my cat's a clutter fiend! She never washes her dishes, or sweeps – and god forbid she fold the laundry every once in a while! Damn messy cat.

So these findings would suggest I’m some kind of couch potato. But my cat's the one lounging on the couch, not me!

What do you think? Are you a neat freak AND a gym rat? Is there any truth to this study? I don’t like to think so. But maybe I'll just go excavate the duster when I get home. You know, just in case.

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Skip cereal before the gym

Friday, June 4, 2010 by kate

I work out in the morning, so unless I’m going on a long run I usually don’t hit the fridge before I hit the road. Little did I know my munching schedule has an effect on my body's fat-burning skills. A new study shows that working out on an empty stomach might actually help you lose more weight!

European researchers have found that cyclists who trained without eating burned significantly more fat than cyclists who ate. Apparently, eating carbs interrupts your fat metabolizing abilities for about six hours.

“When you exercise (after fasting), your adrenalin is high and your insulin is low," said Peter Hespel, a professor of exercise physiology at the University of Leuven in Belgium. "That ratio is favorable for your muscles to oxidize (break down) more fatty acids."

Performance vs. Pudge
It’s important to note that the hungry bikers may have burned more fat, but they performed worse than those who ate. So if you’re an uber athlete in pursuit of performance, maybe you should still munch before you crunch. I guess it depends on what you’re looking for. But if you want to lose pudge, skip the snack.

What do you do? What’s your favorite pre/post workout munchie?

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Kate grew up on Oprah’s skinny jeans, Richard Simmons and the Cabbage Soup diet. So she’s basically an expert. Follow her updates on the latest health news, trends and tips.

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