Monday, November 29, 2010

Yoga for Runners

Two common problems that runners face are short/tight quads and hip flexors and runners knee - when the knee cap doesn't track properly.

Dancer's Pose - this will help stretch quads and hip flexors

Warrior II - this helps knee tracking

click here for descriptions of how to do these do yoga poses.

Runners knee is caused when the muscles on the outside of the quad are stronger or tighter than the ones on the outside. This pulls the kneecap to the outside and is very painful.
To prevent runners knee- the inner quad (VMO) and Hip Adductors need to be strengthened.

Sit in a chair, or lie on the floor- feet planted.  Place your fists side by side between your knees, or use a ball, or rolled up towel and squeeze.  Start by doing 3 sets of 10 reps.

Leg lifts - raise the leg behind and hold for 10 seconds. Then pulse for 10 seconds. Repeat 3 times.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Take the 100 Push Up Challenge

This is a 6 week program designed to help you be able to do 100 pushups. 
Why would would want to do 100 pushups?  Because they are one of the most effective exercises ever! Yet are often over looked.
Push ups work you arms/triceps, chest, shoulders, back, and torso (core strength with increase right along with your arms!)
Imagine what you New Years Eve dress will look like with newly tones arms, shoulders and back.  - and imagine how good you will feel!

click the link to get started with a test, and a week by week program.
Keep me posted on your progress.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Food Cravings

What is the best way to combate food cravings or late night snacking?
Distract yourself.  Even better - distract yourself by doing something active

The average food craving lasts about 4-12 minutes.  So the next time you feel yourself reaching for those salty crackers, or hidden stash of cookies try these things first

1. Drink a glass or water. A lot of the time thirst is mistake for hunger - so try this first, you may be dehydrated.

2. Go for a walk. Go for a brisk 15-20 minute walk, in the park, with your special someone, or take the dog out. By the time you get back - the craving should be gone.

3. Stretch - stretch out your hamstrings, your back, your neck. -click here for a 4 minute yoga routine

4. Do a 20 minute at home workout - try the one here

5. Brush your teeth - you are less likely to snack with minty fresh just brushed teeth

-if you try these tips and you still feel like you want to eat - keep healthy snacks easily accesible. cut up peppers, carrots, apples and leave them in single serving bags/tupperwear in the fridge. Or keep bags or quarter cup bags of unsalted almonds in the cupboard That way nutrient dense snacks ready when you are!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Counting Calories?

When trying to keep track of how many calories you are getting it might seem helpful when restaurants provide calories counts on the menu -

but Boston researchers have found that restaurant meals contain on average 18% more calories than listed.
Frozen entrees contain on average 8% more. 

Monday, November 15, 2010

Concerned about beef?

Alberta is known for its beef - but how much do we actually know about beef?

I recently watched the CBC documentary Frankensteer at school.
It explores the mass production of beef at feedlots in Canada.  It definitely raises some good questions (along with a little fear mongering). 
Today, the cows that raised and sold on our market as beef at pumped full of antibiotics even if they are not sick, or at risk of becoming sick. In fact - 50% of all tonnage of antibiotics used in canada end up in our beef.
They are also given growth hormones to make them get bigger, and ready for slaughter faster - in Canada the hormone Estradiol is used - even though it is banned in the UK and has been linked to higher rates of cancer.

We often treat beef like it is toxic when we bring it into our homes - we know we much always wash our hands and all surfaces that raw beef comes in contact with - this is because of the bacteria that is found within the beef we bring home from the supermarket.
E.Coli comes from the intestinal tracts of animals and often gets mixed into meat during processing - especially ground beef. - fortunately heat can kill this bacteria
That's why cooking your beef to the proper temperature is so important
Steaks, roast and fish should be cooked to 62.8C or 145F
Pork and ground beef 71.1C or 160F
Chicken breasts  76.7C or 170.1F

In the case of ground beef - don't be fooled by the meat turning brown, always keep a thermometer close by!
And when travelling to the USA don't forget to order your hamburger well done - because despite what is approved for sale in restaurants in the states - rare ground beef is not safe.

If you want to watch the documentary follow this link

{i also want to caution people to do their research before jumping on the organic bandwagon - know the regulations in your area and consider getting to know your local providers via the farmers market.}

Friday, November 12, 2010

No more toys in SF

A new law in San Fransisco has been passed that will stop McDonalds from adding toys to Happy Meals.
The toy has long been the lure behind getting a McDonalds happy meal - and hopefully this will cut down on how many of these unhealthy meals are fed to kids.

In order for a meal to qualify to get a toy it must meet the following criteria:

-Less than 600 calories
-Less than 35% of the calories come from fat
-Less than 640 milligrams of sodium
-A fruit or vegetable

while this doesn't guarantee a healthy meal it is a least a step in the right direction
The adequate intake of sodium for kids 1-8 is between 1000-1200mg - so this qualified meal could still contain more than half the sodium your child should get in a day.

found on

Monday, November 8, 2010


If you read your nutrition labels you may have noticed a mystery ingredient Hydrolyzed Vegetable Protein (HVP).  It is especially common in soups. What is it? Well its basically MSG in another form.
Wheat, corn or soy is boiled in hydrochloric acid and then neutralized by sodium hydroxide.  (yummm right??)
Is it dangerous? Not necessarily - if you aren't already sensitive to MSG then HVP wont likely make you sick. However, there is not any information about what additives like this can do in the long run.

To read more about this check out the Glamour blog Vitamin G - link below

Thursday, November 4, 2010


"Witnesses at a recent meeting of U.S. Senate Committee said that if the food industry were propsing sugar today as a new food additive, its "metabolic behaviour would undoubtedly lead to its being banned""
John B. McKinlay A case for refocusinng upstream: The Political Economy of Illness

-the average american adult eats 126 pounds of sugar each year - and for children the number is even higher.
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