6 Benefits of Running
It’s National Running Day, and I found this awesome article by Jacquie Cattanach!
Everyone knows that running is a great way to get into shape, but did you know that it can benefit almost every part of your body, as well as lift your mood? Running is incredibly effective at making you healthier in a number of ways. While it may not be everybody’s favorite form of exercise, knowing what it can do for your life just may make you look at running in an entirely new light.
Improve Your Health
Believe it or not, running is actually a great way to increase your overall level of health. Research shows that running can raise your levels of good cholesterol while also helping you increase lung function and use. In addition, running can also boost your immune system and lower your risk of developing blood clots.
For women, running can actually help to lower your risk of breast cancer. It can also help reduce the risk of having a stroke. Many doctors today recommend running for people who are in the early stages of diabetes, high blood pressure, and osteoporosis, and it is proven to help reduce the risk of having a heart attack. By helping the arteries retain their elasticity and strengthening the heart, your chances of suffering a heart attack can be significantly reduced.
Running is one of the best forms of exercise for losing or maintaining a consistent weight. You will find that it is a leading way to burn off extra calories and that it is the second most effective exercise in terms of calories burned per minute, following only after cross country skiing.
Boost Your Confidence
Not all of the benefits of running are physical. Running can provide an noticeable boost to your confidence and self-esteem. By setting and achieving goals, you can help give yourself a greater sense of empowerment that will leave you feeling much happier.
Stress can actually cause a number of health and mood problems. It can also diminish appetite and sleep quality. When you run, you force your body to exert excess energy and hormones. Running also helps to reduce your chances of developing tension headaches.
When you are depressed, the last thing you likely want to do is to get up and go for a run. Yet you will find that after only a few minutes of running, your brain will start to secrete hormones that naturally improve your mood. In fact, there are few things in the world that can better or more rapidly treat depression than exercise such as running.
It may seem surprising to learn all of the different ways that running can improve your health, but the truth of the matter is that these are only a few of the many benefits that it can offer to your body. Running really is incredibly beneficial to the body, mind, and spirit, and you will find that even short runs can leave you feeling more energized, more focused, and better able to enjoy all that life has to offer.
…obviously these are also benefits of general exercise. Happy Running!
10 Gadgets for Getting Fit at Work
Who doesn’t love technology!? Here are a few items we can use on a daily basis to reverse the effects of a sedentary lifestyle! …of course a well balanced diet and an active lifestyle are the largest contributors to health, but these make the journey a little easier. Some of these prices are crazy, but great article here:
1) Dumbbell Alarm Clock
Start your workout from the instant you wake up with the Dumbbell Alarm Clock. When the alarm sounds at 6 a.m., you’ll have to do 30 reps before it will stop. Use your rage and groggy frustration to draw on strength you didn’t even know you had. Soon, your arms will be strong enough to hurl it out of the window with ease. $16.49 — Lightinthebox
2) Tato commuter bike
Instead of driving or taking public transit to work, get your cardio in by riding a bike. The Tato bike even has the added convenience of a cage that snugly fits many briefcases or laptop bags in the center of the frame. You could even add on one of these Travel Trac Book Caddies to get work done while you ride. Actually, on second thought, you might want to skip the book caddy if you are concerned about staying alive. $1,500 — Tato via CubicleBot
3) Withings Wi-Fi scale
When you arrive at the office, the first thing you should do is analyze your progress by consulting the data collected by the Withings Wi-Fi Scale. When you weigh yourself at home on the handsome glass and aluminum scale, it automatically beams your weight and body fat analysis to own your private stats page on the internet via Wi-Fi. Now you can review the data breakdown on a work computer or an iPhone at your convenience. Just don’t leave the page up on your computer for your co-workers to see. You should be extra careful with your iPhone, too. I mean, losing data is one thing — but you never want strangers and cellphone thieves knowing how fat you are. $164.99 — ThinkGeek
4) GymGym chair
The GymGym chair doesn’t look too far removed from popular Herman Miller style office chairs (or some sort of torture device), but it provides a complete workout in addition to an ergonomic design. Resistance bands positioned in several areas on the chair provide a full range of exercises for the arms, back, shoulders, legs and core. So, yeah — I guess you could say it is a torture device. $599 — GymGym via CubicleBot
5) Champ sofa
This piece of concept furniture from designer Tobias Fraenzel would be an excellent addition to the decor of an executive’s office. By lifting up the red cushion in the back and fixing it into position, you transform the Champ sofa into a punching bag. It would be a great workout, not to mention great for relieving stress, but explaining why your clients have a footprint on their back when they leave the office might be problematic. Price not available — Tobias Fraenzel
6) Balance ball chair
If the GymGym chair is a bit too much but you would still prefer a seating solution that provides health benefits, the Gaiam balance ball chair just might do the trick. By sitting and balancing yourself on the stability ball seat, you can improve core strength and posture. Then again, you could just pick up one of those hopper balls we all used as children and use it to bounce around the office. What employee wouldn’t respect a boss riding a smiley face hopper ball at work? $71.99 — Amazon via Nerd Approved
7) Springflex UB
According to the product page, attaching the Springfield UBE resistance arms to your desk allows you to perform up to 120 exercises just about anywhere. I ‘m not sure about all that, but I’m pretty confident that it’s not a good idea to go shirtless with short shorts in the office. $89.95 — Skytel
8) Gamercize PC-Sport Stepper
The Gamercize PC-Sport works like a little elliptical machine that you place under your desk, only it will hijack your mouse and keyboard when hooked up to a PC or laptop if it detects you are slowing down to unacceptable levels. In other words, you need to keep moving to stay productive. Additional software can be included to help you keep track of your workouts, but I suspect you’ll know that your endurance is improving when you start getting your work in on time. $187 —Gamercize
9) Hand Fitness Trainer
If you suffer from arthritis or repetitive-motion injuries as a result of your job, the Hand Fitness Trainer might be of help. It slips on like a glove and provides resistance when you open your hand — strengthening the extensor muscles in your hands, wrists and elbows, which is said to reduce the symptoms associated with maladies such as carpal tunnel, tennis elbow and tendinitis. Plus, you can freak people out when you try and give them a high-five. $39.95 — Hammacher Schlemmer
Chances are you’ve heard several reports throughout the years that discuss the health risks associated with sitting down for long periods. One way to combat that problem and get some exercise in the process is to use a Walkstation. Basically, the Walkstation is a walking speed treadmill that’s integrated into a desk — allowing you to work and keep your body moving at the same time. Like a traditional treadmill, it also shows your progress on a console with the distance traveled, time, speed and calories burned. However, I’m not sure if this is appropriate for a suit-and-tie kind of office. It would look weird, for one thing, you might sweat and, most importantly, if you fell and got your tie caught in the belt the results could be disastrous. On the flipside, it could be hilarious for anyone in the office with a cellphone camera. $4,199 — Steelcase
Why Being Skinny Doesn’t Mean You’re Fit
By Dr. Arthur Agatson from active.com. It’s what I’ve been saying all along! He writes:
Remember when a total cholesterol reading of under 200 was the standard for judging cardiovascular health? Today, of course, we know that it’s the components of cholesterol (LDL, HDL, the size of those cholesterol particles, and triglycerides) that are much more predictive of heart health. Well, our understanding of total weight and its effects upon your heart has evolved in similar fashion. It’s not your total weight but the characteristics of that weight—how much is fat and where it’s deposited—that matter most.
Surprised? Thank the scientists at the Mayo Clinic, who are behind this recent discovery. After comparing various health markers with the weights and body mass index numbers of thousands of adults, they found that more than half of those with normal weights and BMIs actually had “high body-fat percentages as well as heart and metabolic disturbances.” In other words, they had the same risks of coronary disease, diabetes, and other chronic illness as people who weighed much more.
This research, and its sobering implications for millions of Americans, led to the establishment of a new condition called normal weight obesity (NWO). This is more than just the latest fat phobia. It’s worth paying attention to because the accumulation of fat in the body, especially in the belly and around internal organs, causes low-level inflammation that gradually damages tissue and blood vessels. (Think of it as metabolic rust.) So even though your weight or BMI may be within acceptable limits for your height and age, don’t be lulled into a false sense of security. Do your own analysis, starting with these steps:
1. Stop being preoccupied with pounds. As with total cholesterol, total weight is just one general assessment of your health. Yes, people who are trying to lose weight are more likely to succeed if they weigh themselves often. But seeing numbers that are within a healthy BMI range may actually disguise your heart disease risk. Keep them in perspective.
2. Measure your body fat. For a quick estimate of this key factor, wrap a cloth measuring tape around your naked waist just above your belly button. If your weight is fairly normal but the number you see above your navel is 35 inches or more (40+ inches for men), you may have NWO. For a more exact reading, ask your doctor (or health club) to measure your body fat. This can be done using a variety of noninvasive methods. If it’s higher than 30 percent (20 percent for men), you likely have NWO.
3. Get a blood test. Ask your doctor to order a thorough blood analysis at your next physical. Warning signs of NWO include low HDL (total cholesterol and LDL may be normal), along with elevated triglycerides, blood sugar, and blood pressure.
4. Target belly fat. If you’re diagnosed with NWO, take aim at visceral fat. Despite how entrenched it may seem, you can lose it. The keys are: Avoid the white stuff (white bread, rice, pasta, and other refined carbohydrates). Add monounsaturated fats, which target belly fat, to your diet. And do interval exercises to burn more fat and strength-training to build lean body mass.
5. Keep tracking fat. Just as you hop on the scale to keep tabs on your weight, do the same with your body fat. Have it measured periodically at your doctor’s office or health club. Or just observe the notches where your belt buckles.
Conversely, if you’re considered overweight by current standards, there may be some good news here. If your body-fat percentage is lower than 30 percent (20 percent for men) and your blood chemistry is normal, then you are among the “fat and fit.” (Many athletes are in this category.) Continue to eat smart and exercise, but accept your body for what it is and know you’re not unhealthy because of it. Feeling fat and feeling healthy are no longer mutually exclusive.
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How To Break Bad Eating Habits
I Love this article by Sally Wadyka about Breaking Bad Eating Habits:
Bad habits are made to be broken. Learn easy tricks to help you eat better every day.
1. If You’re a Serious Snacker
The fallout: You may end up overeating. A healthy snack or two between meals is fine. Snacks can keep blood sugar steady as well as allow you to rack up more servings of fruits and vegetables.
“It’s when you snack in place of eating real meals that you’re more likely to lose track of how much you’re eating,” says Tara Gidus, R.D., an Orlando, Florida–based spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association. Of course, what you eat matters, too. Typical snack foods (chips, cookies, pretzels) aren’t that nutritious or satisfying, so it’s easy to overdo them.
The fix: To keep your energy up and hunger at bay, allow yourself two snacks a day of 100 to 300 calories each. “Rather than a cookie or a candy bar, opt for something that feels like real food―half of a small sandwich, whole-grain crackers with cheese, a handful of nuts, baby carrots with hummus, or yogurt sprinkled with cereal,” says Gidus.
2. If You’re a Mindless Muncher
The fallout: Television makes people particularly prone to spaced-out eating. In fact, “folks who eat while watching the tube take in 20 to 60 percent more than if they are focused on their food,” according to Brian Wansink, a professor of marketing at Cornell University and the author of Mindless Eating.
The fix: Figure out which situations trigger mindless eating for you, then consciously make an effort to eat only when you’re fully engaged. If you need a few snacks, set limits on what you’ll eat. Dole out a single serving before you sit down on the couch, or delay your snack until you can pay attention. Minimize damage by dipping into low-cal foods, such as cut vegetables, air-popped popcorn, rice crackers, and whole-grain cereal.
3. If You Eat Your Way Out of a Bad Mood
The fallout: It may be soothing in the moment, but feeding your fears and frustrations, instead of confronting them, can lead to a cycle of more bad moods as well as steady weight gain. Many people turn to carbohydrates, in particular, which produce tryptophan, a type of amino acid that is used by the brain to manufacture serotonin.
“When the brain makes more serotonin, your mood improves, but only temporarily,” says Judith Wurtman, Ph.D., a coauthor of The Serotonin Power Diet.
The fix: Stop to think about what’s bothering you before reflexively open the cupboard. Then try a nonfood mood booster, such as taking a walk, seeing a movie, or calling a friend. “If nothing but carbs will do, get the serotonin boost without triggering a binge,” says Gidus. “Opt for a whole-grain treat so at least you get more fiber and less sugar.”
4. If You Eat Carefully All Week, Then Blow It on the Weekend
The fallout: It is possible to undo five days of good with regular weekend free-for-alls. In 2004, data from the National Weight Control Registry revealed that people who were consistent in their weekly eating habits, even if they weren’t perfect, were 1.5 times more likely to stay within five pounds of their weight over one year than were those who were vigilant on weekdays only.
The fix: Since much socializing around food takes place on weekends, it pays to strategize. “Have a mini meal before you go out to help you have more self-control, and offer to be the designated driver to limit alcohol intake,” says Gidus. (Alcohol has more calories than you probably think.)
And don’t restrict yourself so severely Monday through Friday that the weekend feels like your only time for indulgence.
Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/health/2011/08/08/how-to-break-bad-eating-habits/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+foxnews%2Fhealth+%28Internal+-+Health+-+Text%29#ixzz1pyZ8Pwx3