Posts Tagged ‘physical’

Plan Ahead to Prepare Your Meals!

Wednesday, October 5th, 2011

Kelly Kalbfleisch, NPTI Certified Personal Trainer

Manager of CoachMeFit Ann Arbor


What do you eat for breakfast and lunch?  Are you eating on the fly or feel you have no time for lunch?  I’m a firm believer, and I do this myself, in preparing meals for breakfast and lunch on one particular day during the week.  This way, I have everything in the fridge ready for me to grab to take to work.  I’ve fallen victim to the “I didn’t have time to eat” or “I have to eat whatever is fast” excuses.  I am now prepared and even if I only have 10 minutes to eat, I have healthy food instead of take-out.  I found this article that has really good tips to help you get focused and prepared.

“You wouldn’t start your day, go on vacation, or show up to a job interview without a plan, right? So think of meal prep and packing your cooler as your plan for a healthy body.  Your biggest obstacle is going to be managing your time so that getting fit and healthy doesn’t compete with the rest of your commitments.  Prioritizing and planning ahead will actually make life easier and help facilitate your success in the long term.  While it may seem trivial and even stressful at times, preparedness is one of the most important elements of a healthy lifestyle.  Having everything packed and ready to go will be less stressful than leaving your meal choices up to chance and heading to whatever take-out joint is nearby at mealtime.

Try these tips:

1.       Schedule some prep time: A lot of people (including myself) use Sundays as our shop and prep day.  Pick a day when you have a few free hours to buy and prepare your food for the week.

2.       Pack Cook-Free Snacks: Toss these items into your bag for effortless re energizing:

Raw almonds

Protein Powder

Low-fat String Cheese

Chopped Veggies

Fruit

Ezekiel Bread

Hummus

3.       Get yourself a cooler: Invest in a good, manageable-sized cooler (12-can size or larger) for storing your meals and snacks.  Pack it the night before and store in the fridge so you can grab it and go.

4.       Don’t forget your Gym Bag: Being prepared doesn’t stop with meals.  Pack your gym clothes and sneakers the night before, not as you’re flying out the door.”

-Oxygen Magazine

Engrave this word into your brain:  PREPARE

If you need more tips on what foods to prepare and/or pack, ask your trainer!

 

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Be Creative With Your Vision!

Sunday, February 27th, 2011
Kelly Kalbfleisch, NPTI Certified Personal Trainer
Manager of CoachMeFit Ann Arbor

I can’t change the direction of the wind, but I can adjust my sails to always reach my destination.

 -Jimmy Dean

The other day my client, Jennifer, told me she put together a vision board.  I had created one before so I knew exactly what she was talking about.  Do you?

A vision board is a collage of images, pictures and affirmations of your dreams and desires.  Vision boards are a great way to make you feel positive.  At first, it may seem a little juvenile to get out your scissors and glue, but once you have created a vision board it is amazing how refreshed, inspired and motivated you will feel.   A vision board can be focused on fitness, work, travel, family etc…whatever you desire! 

 

I took time this weekend to put together my own vision board.  I used it to motivate and drive me not only physically, but mentally as well.  I have included pictures from my board to give you an idea of what one may look like.  Soon, I will do another one geared towards other aspects of my life.

      

I encourage and challenge you to take a little time for yourself and put together your own vision board.  Be creative and personalize it.  Once created, hang it someplace you will see it every day.  Jennifer put hers in her office at work.  I hung mine on the wall right outside of my bedroom so I see it every morning and walk past it more than once a day.

 

If you do take me up on this challenge, I would love for you to send me a picture.  My email address is kelly@coachmefit.com.  Be proud of what you create and if it’s not too personal, send it my way!

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Burn Baby Burn

Wednesday, July 1st, 2009

Quick Notes on Energy Expenditure and What it Means for Weight Loss

By Catherine Munaco

Owner, CoachMeFit West Bloomfield

As a trainer, I have one basic rule for clients aiming to lose significant amounts of weight: You must know roughly how many calories you consume relative to how many calories your body is burning on a daily basis. Surprisingly, very few people have looked into their energy consumption and expenditure, and instead take what we call “uneducated guesses”. As humans, we tend to underestimate the calories in our food and overestimate the energy we use during our daily routines and workouts. Clients are often reluctant to spend time tediously logging entries into a food diary, and even nutritionists will say that calculating calories in food is a time consuming process. I simply don’t care. I’ve logged my food consumption, its annoying—yes—but vital, read: VITAL, to progress with weight loss. Luckily, online food journals make tracking easier and less time consuming than it used to be (try fitday.com for a free online food journal). If tracking food every day isn’t something you’re likely to stick with, then track for three days (making sure one of those days is on the weekend). Because we tend to be creatures of habit, you’ll get a general idea of how many calories you eat in a typical day. Most likely you’ll be shocked with the amount of calories you’re consuming. If you eat out, be sure to look up calories on the restaurants website, which can also be shocking. I’ll never forget when I learned that my “healthy” Panera salad contained over 30 grams of fat. Simply substituting the dressing would have saved me over 200 calories.

The other half of the equation, of course, is calories expended. Here, we also see inaccurate guesses. Clients will often tell me they went for a long walk, but when I put them on the treadmill they realize how slow they were really moving. For a more accurate calorie count, I usually suggest a heart rate monitor. Cardio machines typically have a spot for calories burned in a workout session, but even they can overestimate. One time, the treadmill said I burned 800 calories in a 40 minute run; my heart rate monitor said 425. (I would have loved to believe the treadmill, of course, but a female my size would have to run faster than 6 minute miles to expend that much energy in 40 minutes, and I don’t think I’ve ever run a 5:50 minute mile, let alone 8 of them.)

Additionally, my clients usually have no idea how many calories they use at rest. The most simplistic estimation of this value is what exercise physiologists refer to as resting metabolic rate, or RMR. RMR accounts for the energy required by cells to maintain normal bodily functions and homeostasis at rest. Similar to RMR, basal metabolic rate, or BMR, is the minimum energy needed to sustain vital life functions. In laboratory conditions, BMR is typically only slightly less than RMR, so the two tend to be considered interchangeable. Regardless, knowing your daily BMR or RMR is crucial to weight loss. Again, people are often shocked to learn how little they burn at rest. Equally frustrating—BMR is lower in females (a result of lower muscle masses as compared to males) and decreases with age. To calculate your age, gender, and weight adjusted BMR, go to http://www.bmi-calculator.net/bmr-calculator/

Aside from physical activity and exercise, BMR ends up being the most important form of calorie expenditure simply because we spend most of our day at rest. Having a basic understanding of our daily energy needs allows us to regulate and change the foods we eat to better accommodate energy expenditure. In the long run, we want eating HABITS that fit our energy needs. Knowing BMR also highlights the importance of physical activity. On days that we put in a significant workout, our caloric expenditure is as much as 25% greater than our resting levels. That means we can eat more! Exercise increases weight loss when calories are carefully monitored and helps to buffer “bad eating” days (you know you’ve had ‘em).

Research has also shown that exercise can have a counter effect on the natural decrease in BMR with age. Age-related decreases in BMR are typically explained by loss of muscle tissue and increase in fat tissue. Some changes in metabolic activity for muscle also exist as we age, but for the most part we lose active muscle tissue, and therefore burn less calories at rest. However, weight training can help maintain muscle mass that we would otherwise lose, thus keeping basal metabolic rates from plummeting. Some research has even suggested that regular aerobic training in older individuals causes increases in BMR with no increase in muscle mass.

BMR often decreases with age

BMR often decreases with age

So what does this mean for the average person? It means that you need to keep moving and you need to know what you’re consuming relative to what you’re eating. Weight loss only occurs when energy out is greater than energy in, but if we don’t at least have some general idea of what our individual caloric consumption and usage is, we can’t begin to know what to change to see results. Is it a pain in the butt? For some of us, yes. Is it necessary? YES. Fitness is a lifestyle, not a temporary fix. Knowing what your body is doing is the first step to changing habits and creating new patterns for a lifetime of health and wellbeing. Smaller pant sizes are the satisfying bonus.

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Weekly Update 2 and 3

Monday, January 26th, 2009

“Biggest Loser” contestant Joelle Gwynn is a client at the CoachMeFit studio in West Bloomfield,  MI.  She works out with the owner of the studio, Catherine Munaco.

“Biggest Loser” airs Tuesday’s at 8:00pm on NBC.\

Catherine will be blogging weekly first-hand updates from Joelle’s training

(Oops!  Week 2 must have been busy!)

These past two weeks were difficult emotionally on Joelle. Week 2 and 3 aired episodes that portrayed Joelle as a slacker. It seemed that the cast’s attitude towards Joelle was less than cordial. Furthermore, Joelle was in the bottom two during the weigh-ins two weeks in a row. Joelle said this was the most difficult time on the ranch for her—Carla was putting a lot of pressure on her and so were her teammates. While this may motivate some people, it’s certainly not how Joelle is motivated. Because she is naturally quiet and not competitive, it actually defeated her more than it helped. It was initially hard to figure out what would motivate Joelle, but the more we trained together, the more I realized Joelle was motivated by positive feedback. What she really needed was a buddy (enter, Catherine!). While I feel it’s my primary job to give Joelle a tough, physically demanding workout, I also feel like she needs someone on her team. These past two weeks, we’ve tried to surround her with as much support as possible. Last Wednesday, after watching another difficult episode air the night before, she came in and said “I’m done worrying about the show. I want to focus on me.” SUCCESS! Let’s get rockin’

This week, Joelle and I also finalized a schedule for her workouts from now until the May 12 finale. We coordinated fitness class schedule with my availability and Joelle’s work schedule. When all was said and done, Joelle is working out a minimum of four hours a day, including multiple kickboxing classes, cardio interval workouts, and strength training sessions with me. We did allow Sunday to be a lighter day, so she could recuperate and prevent injury. Four hours a day is a lot for anyone, but it’s especially dense for someone who didn’t work out before starting at the ranch. Psychologically, Joelle mentioned having some difficulty getting her head around the idea of being skinny. Our schedule and workout plan put her on track to lose over 160 pounds since her initial ranch weigh in! That’s a lot of weight in a short amount of time. Even more noteworthy is that the last time she weighed less than 200 pounds was when she was ten years old. Joelle has literally never been thin—and the thought of success may take some getting used to. In the meantime, I’m keeping her on track and the weight is really starting to come off. Since starting at CoachMeFit, Joelle is losing weight at the same rate that she did while on the ranch. This is extremely encouraging. On the ranch, there is no job, no family, and few similarities to real life. It is infinitely more difficult to lose weight at home, where the demands of life can easily take precedence over working out. In this regard, Joelle seems most appreciative to have a trainer to keep her on track and motivated, although she has been teasing me about the phrases I use most as a trainer. She took a particular liking to my personal favorite, “Its only numbers”. I say it when we have 5 reps left and she’s hurting. Joelle said it puts things in perspective—only numbers! But I do use it a lot. I’ll have to scour the internet for some new motivating phrases.

As always, stay tuned…

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After elimination, Amy offers advice for others

Thursday, November 27th, 2008

“Biggest Loser” contestants Amy and Shellay are clients at the CoachMeFit studio in Birmingham, MI.  They work out with the owners of the studio, Derek and Kerrie DiGiovanni.

“Biggest Loser” airs Tuesday’s at 8:00pm on NBC.

Last night, Amy was voted off the show. Eager to stay at the ranch and continue the rugged regime, she would now have to go it alone. Instead of a TV star for a trainer she would look to Derek at the local CoachMeFit to “kick butt.” It’s working. Her weight continues to go down.

Amy has some advice for people who are seriously over weight but don’t have the luxury of a stay at the Biggest Loser ranch to help them.

    1) Make exercise a priority every day. If there is something else you want to do, tell yourself that you can’t do it until you do your cardio, or weights.
    2) Ideally find a “workout buddy” who is committed to exercising with you regularly. Of course, a personal trainer is your best support system.
    3) Diets alone don’t work.
    4) Realize that many physical symptoms—aching legs and feet, difficulty breathing, and a host of medical problems—are the result of your weight, and you can be free of them.
    5) Set small attainable goals, achieve them, and set more small goals. If you never exercise, don’t start with a goal of working out every day. You’re likely to fail, and give up completely.

This week’s pay-off for Amy was going to lunch with friends she used to work with and finding that many didn’t recognize her. Priceless.

In case you are curious … Amy and Shellay won’t be indulging in a 4,000-calorie (the average intake of an adult at Thanksgiving dinner) eating frenzy this Thanksgiving. They are eating turkey breast, salad, and cauliflower mashed “potatoes.”

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Personal Training Success Story

Thursday, November 20th, 2008

Everybody has different reasons for working out. Some of our clients want to lose inches and pounds, some want to improve their 5k times, and some simply want help improving the quality of their lives. Here at the CoachMeFit studio in Grand Rapids, we have seen success in many ways for our clients, and recently, we helped one of them enjoy the trip of her lifetime.

Ann Marie came to us looking to lose a few inches and pounds, but as we began to achieve those milestones, her goals began to change. Ann Marie scheduled a trip to Italy with her sister. This trip was going to cover a lot of beautiful territory they had wanted to visit their whole lives, and it was going to cover that ground mostly on foot. Ann Marie was worried that given her age and weight she would not be able to keep up with the pack or see all of the things she wanted to. We trained for several weeks with her trip to Italy specifically in mind. We focused on strength training with her lower body and maintaining it’s flexibility, as well as getting her heart and lungs ready for the cardiovascular demands.

Ann Marie returned home from her trip to Italy with a large smile on her face when she walked back in to the studio to resume her training. She was able to not only keep up with the pack, but said she often found herself waiting for them. Not once was she tired or sore and not once did her health keep her from seeing anything she wanted to see. She was very thankful that she put in the physical work that was necessary for her trip, and she was glad that her trainer at CoachMefit was able to help her do so.

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Weekly Update #5. Celebrity Status.

Friday, October 24th, 2008

The Biggest Loser airs Tuesdays at 8pm on NBC

Shellays celebrity status went up several notches with her live appearance on the Today Show last Tuesday. “I live in my workout clothes. Wearing Spandex is my signature,” she confirmed to a nationwide audience. Her “before” photo showed the dramatic difference the loss of 60 lbs has made in her body.

Shellay admits that her lifelong failure to lose weight led to an overall feeling of failure. She couldn’t muster the physical energy and confidence to work outside her home. Her husband encouraged her to “just get moving.” Now her “head is spinning” with ideas of what she wants to do with her life after December. In trying diet after diet, she learned what eating habits to adopt to lose weight. It was the role of exercise that surprised her.

There are greater challenges to losing weight at 51, than at 31. You’ve been living with the physical consequences of being overweight for a longer amount of time, and as a woman, you’re dealing with menopause. But Shellay is overwhelming proof that if you are determined you can transform yourself regardless of age. For Shellay, support from her husband, daughter, and personal trainers is keeping her on track without a weekly weigh-in in front of the cameras.

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Debunking Exercise Myths: A pound of fat is NOT a pound of muscle

Wednesday, September 17th, 2008

By: Catherine Munaco, Owner, CoachMeFit West Bloomfield (wb@coachmefit.com)

As a personal trainer and exercise coach, I find myself frequently having to “debunk” the most recent trend in exercise information. I’ve seen a lot of fads in dieting and exercise come and go (remember Atkins and Cinefit?) and the reason they fade out is because they all lack the one basic element in lifelong health and fitness: sustainability. Most fads aren’t well researched. At the end of the day, the programs that stick around are the ones that work for the long haul and include a mixture of basic cardio, resistance (strength) training, stretching, and, sigh, a bit of hard work. We have to think of weight loss and fitness as a permanent lifestyle change instead of a temporary fix. A consistent fitness regime will take WORK, but it can also be fun and rewarding. A good training program will improve muscular endurance, muscular strength, cardiovascular fitness, and flexibility, and will be sustainable for the long haul.

It is a common thought that the key to losing weight is packing in as much cardio (running, biking, elliptical, etc) as possible. Some of my clients come to me thinking that strength training isn’t an efficient way to lose weight. They have read that cardio workouts are all you need for weight loss. I would argue the opposite: it is nearly impossible to sustain any weight loss without resistance training. There are many reasons for this. In the simplest of weight loss equations, calories (energy) intake needs to be less than caloric output. Meaning, you need to burn more calories than you eat. Cardio workouts definitely burn calories, but they do little to build muscle, so once the workout is done and your body returns to its resting levels, the cardio workout is no longer “with you”. Here’s what I mean by this: if you build muscle via resistance training, your muscle works for you all day (and night) long. Muscle is a very active tissue; it’s designed to burn energy and can do so even when we are sleeping. Fat, on the other hand, is not active. Its main job is literally to take energy from your system and store it. With resistance training, you can increase your muscle mass. Even minimal increases in muscle can lead to increases in metabolic rate, or the amount of calories expended a minute, during rest. Therefore, your new arm muscle works for YOU. It’s a mutual benefit. (But don’t take my word alone for it:  http://preventdisease.com/news/articles/muscle_vs_fat_measure_what_matters.shtml )

So why do fitness magazines and websites say that you don’t need resistance training to lose weight? Because in the initial stages of resistance training, you may not always see weight loss. Sometimes, people actually gain a small amount of weight before it starts to drop off. The reason comes from the physical properties of muscle and fat. Muscle is denser than fat, and density is a measure of mass per unit volume. In simpler terms, one pound of fat takes up more volume than one pound of muscle. Our volume is our size. It is possible to lose fat, gain muscle, stay the same weight and still be and look smaller. But how much smaller? Muscle has an approximate density of 1.06 g/ml, and fat has a density of approximately .9 g/ml. Pull out your conversion charts and do some math, and you can figure the volume of pound of muscle to be about 26.74 in3 and the volume of the same weight of fat to be about 31.50 in3 – a difference of 4.759 in3. This becomes a significant difference. In fact, many people who enter into a resistance training program often notice their clothes are fitting considerably looser and they are looking smaller well before they see any weight loss. This is why I always tell clients not to be a slave to the scale. It’s important to keep track of your weight for motivation and to stay focused, but weight is only one part of many important health facets. I have one client who lost four pant sizes and only three pounds, but she is sustaining her new body. Her muscles are working to keep her healthy. Not to mention increases in strength make daily living easier and keep us moving.

The bottom line is that to stay healthy and mobile as we age (and by the way, 60 isn’t old anymore) we have to stay strong. Resistance training helps to increase strength and maintain weight loss. This is why people who drop weight quick and don’t work out at all can’t keep the weight off: they have no method of sustaining their new body. At the end of the day, weighing less is nice, but so is being smaller, more energetic, and freely mobile. So don’t use weight loss alone as a benchmark of your fitness progress. Think about the bottom line and most important part of health and fitness: how do you feel today?

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Investing in your health?

Wednesday, August 27th, 2008

I recently found a small blurb on a website called coreperformance.com that got me thinking about CoachMefit and our mission:

Be Proactive not Reactive

“We all live busy lives, but what is more important than our health? Often we don’t think about our body until it lets us down. Try incorporating prehab exercises into your workout routine to keep your body from breaking down into a cumulative injury cycle. Think of the principle of investing your money. People often spend a lot of time and energy in investing their money to achieve a great return. In the same way, we should invest in our body by being proactive in order to achieve a healthier and more productive lifestyle.”

We live in a time where when it comes to physical health, a lot of people are reactive instead of proactive. Not everyone sees the value in spending time and money on avoiding injuries and major health problems, they would prefer to pay high insurance premiums and dish out their money for expensive medications.

A poet named Virgil once said “the greatest wealth is health”. Let’s all be a little more proactive and help others do so when it comes to health. Let’s not spend our healthy years gaining wealth, just to spend our wealth in order to regain health.

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Down Economy? I say the glass is half full.

Wednesday, August 6th, 2008

a Personal Trainer at Work

I’ve heard a lot of talk about the struggling U.S. economy as of late. Although this talk is spread across the entire country, it seems to be particularly prevalent in the state of Michigan where the CoachMeFit Franchise Corporation is based and where four CoachMeFit Private Personal Training studios exist.

The way I see it, there are two ways to deal with a down economy:

1) jump on the negative talk band wagon, plug along with whatever it is you’re doing, and hope that the economy will some day turn around

OR

2) treat the “down economy” as an opportunity to make things happen

The reality with a down economy is that it’s all about the attitude one has towards it. The majority of the population adopts option #1 above and never moves forward with a plan to create financial security and control.

A small percentage of the population adopt option #2 above and take the “bull by the horns”. These people typically have a better quality of life and are financially sound.

From a business standpoint, CoachMeFit studios are doing better than ever and we’re expanding our personal training studio concept across the Midwest despite many around us saying that we’re headed toward a recession. Why? Because there is a tremendous amount of opportunity out there right now. Landlord’s are desperate to fill their vacant buildings and are therefore willing to make concessions for tenants, building contractors are slashing their labor prices in order to remain competitive with one another for the jobs that are out there, and banks are willing to lend money at an all time low rate to those with good credit and a good business model. In addition, many people are running out of health a lot faster than wealth and CoachMeFit can actually help them.

If you’re currently a Personal Trainer and have thought about starting your own Personal Training business, but are hesitant to make the jump from employee to business owner because of what you read in the media about the economy, think again. The media statistics you should be focusing on are the ones that talk about the obesity epidemic and rising health care costs due to lack of physical activity. More than ever there is a need for Personal Trainers and Personal Training studios.

If you’re ready to capitalize on your dream of owning your own Personal Training studio, check out our website to learn more about us. We’re looking for the right people to join our team and to share in the vision of creating the highest quality personal training program worldwide.

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