An Exercise and a Diet You Just Have to Try
Here’s How You Can Achieve Your Health and Fitness Goals
Need a partner, a coach and a cheerleader as you travel along your health and fitness journey? BeFitSRQ can be all of those things to you.
Get back on track with your exercising with our 30-minute, customized total body workouts. These workouts will help you build lean muscle and craft a sleeker, more defined body.
Throughout this newsletter, we have some great health and fitness information for you. From the exercise of the month to why you should try the Mediterranean diet, this is your guide to becoming your best self as we head into the summer months. Are you ready?
Exercise of the Month: Step Up on Bench
If you want to strengthen your butt muscles, quad and hamstrings, this exercise is perfect for you. Plus, it will increase your heart rate!
There are three ways to do this exercise depending on your skill and experience level – beginner, intermediate or advanced. Here’s how to do each one:
- Before you start, find a step, chair or bench that’s at the right level for your knee to bend to a 90-degree angle when you put your foot on it. Weight benches or pylo boxes are often the right height, but a dining room chair can work, too, for an at-home strength-training session.
- To start, put your entire right foot on the bench or chair. Press through your right heel as you step onto the bench, bringing your left foot to meet your right so you are standing on the bench.
- Return to the starting position by stepping down with your right foot and then your left so both of your feet are on the floor.
- Complete 15 steps leading with your left food and then repeat another 15 steps leading with your right foot. Do three sets.
- Start by stepping onto the bench with your right foot.
- Straighten your right knee to stand on the bench while lifting your left leg so your hip and knee are both at 90-degree angles (show in photo above). Keeping your right foot still, bend your right knee as you lower your left foot to tap the floor with your left toes without putting your weight onto your left foot. This completes one rep.
- Press through your right heel as you straighten your right knee to stand on the box. Your right glute should be engaged for the entire set of reps. (That’s why it burns!)
- Repeat for 15 reps on each leg. Do three sets.
- Try the beginner variation explained above while you’re holding dumbbells. Start with eight-pound weights in each hand and work up to 15-pound dumbbells. If you’re ready for an extra challenge, try the toe-tap version.
- Repeat for 15 reps on each leg. Do three sets.
Doggone it! Don’t Forget Your Pooch!
Did you think essential oils were just for humans? Think again! Essential oils can do wonders for your favorite dog, too!
There are three ways to use essential oils for dogs. Here they are:
- Diffuse oils
- Apply to your hand and hold up to their nose (don’t put it on their nose)
- Apply to a bandana, collar, bed or toys (one to three drops)
- Apply to the nape of the neck
- Apply to the groin (use caution around the genitals)
- Apply to the paws (between toes or pads)
- Apply directly on the affected area
- Apply to the spine
- Apply to the pinna (the hairless portion of the inside of the ear flap)
- Add to water bowl
- Add on food
- Serve in a capsule
- Apply directly to the gums (diluted)
- Apply via a dropper into the mouth
You can also add essential oils into dog shampoo or make a calming mist for your dog. Try using oils to repel fleas and ticks, too.
There are lots of different do-it-yourself varieties or you can purchase oils directly from BeFitSRQ. Your pampered pooch will be saying bow-wow in no time!
Let the Sun Shine In
Summer is almost here! This is the time to enjoy outdoor activities with family and friends, especially some fun on the water. But before you go dipping those toes into the Gulf, be sure to protect your skin.
One of the easiest ways to prevent your skin from being damaged by the sun’s harmful rays is by wearing BloqUV sun protective apparel. This clothing blocks 98 percent of the sun’s rays, and the protection doesn’t wash away when you launder it.
We have lots of different BloqUV items at the studio. Come by and look at our selection. You’re sure to find a great addition to your summer wardrobe in your favorite color.
What Do You Think You Are?
If you want to improve your body composition, you should consider the Mediterranean diet.
The Mediterranean diet ranked No. 1 as the best diet last year by U.S. News. (It tied with the DASH diet.) The rankings were developed after a panel of expert in nutrition, food psychology, diabetes and heart disease reviewed every diet profile to check for certain categories. They rated each diet in terms of these factors:
- Ease of compliance
- Weight-loss effectiveness (both short-term and long-term)
- Nutritional completeness (based on how well it conformed to the federal government’s 2015 Dietary Guidelines for Americans)
- Potential for preventing and managing diabetes
- Potential for preventing and managing cardiovascular disease
If you want to make your diet and lifestyle more Mediterranean, here are some steps to take:
- Add more vegetables to your meals, from salads to stews to pizza. Legumes such as kidney beans, lentils and peas are also common on the Mediterranean plate.
- Switch to whole grains or favor products made from whole gain flour. In addition to being nutrient-dense, the high-fiber content can improve your heart health and may lower your blood pressure. Think quinoa or couscous. Minimize consumption of refined carbohydrates such as white bread and breakfast cereals.
- Skip the chocolate cake for dessert once in a while and eat fresh fruits such as oranges, bananas and antioxidant-rich fruits such as blueberries and pomegranates.
- Use meat as a condiment instead of the main dish. For example, you can add strips of chicken or beef to a vegetable sauté.
- Have some seafood at least three times a week. You can never go wrong with sardines, herring, salmon, clams and oysters.
- Consider going vegetarian for at least one day a week. Steer clear of processed meats with high levels of preservatives including “low-fat” deli items.
- Find ways to add healthy fats to your meals such as avocados, sunflower seeds and nuts. How about adding crushed almonds to your whole grain pasta?
- Add some dairy into your life such as cheese and Greek or plain yogurt.
- Drizzle olive oil onto cooked fish or vegetables, or use it as a dip for bread. Vegetables that are grilled, roasted or sautéed in olive oil are more flavorful.
- Add more physical activity to your daily routine. Walk when you can. Go out for the evening and talk to family and friends.
It’s no surprise that MedDiet is touted as one of the best diets out there. There are many health benefits that can come from following these dietary changes. Studies show it can improve body composition and reduce the risk of chronic health problems.
Before you embark on the MedDiet lifestyle, get your body composition tested. That way you can set specific body composition goals that will help you achieve successful, sustainable health and fitness results.
Schedule your body composition at BeFitSRQ today.
My Picks for May!
There’s nothing quite like doing yoga in the great outdoors. On May 6, come out to Yoga in the Park at beautiful Nathan Benderson Park from 9 to 10 a.m. The class is free, but they’ll accept donations to a charity that supports Sarasota and a village in India. If you’re a beginner, advanced or anything in between, you’re welcome at this class!
Nathan Benderson Park is the sight of another exciting event coming up, too. During the SUP & Run 5K, you can run, paddleboard or both. And if you’re not quite the running type, you can also walk. The 5K benefits Operation Second Chance, an organization that helps wounded, injured and ill veterans.
The St. Armands Seafood and Music Festival is May 26 and 27. Enjoy live jazz, rock and reggae music in St. Armands Circle Park as well as a variety of seafood, including raw oysters, snow crab and peel-and-eat shrimp. I can taste it already!