Sleep & Weight, The Connection

April 11, 2014 By: office Comments Off

By Amber Ketchum

We all hear that sleep is important, but the reality is that most of us just don’t get enough of it. One important aspect of health people often overlook is the connection between weight and sleep. Let’s look at a few factors that can create a cycle of poor health habits:

Not getting enough sleep makes you tired. This sounds pretty obvious, but being tired is one of the biggest reasons that keep people from exercising, which is an important component to weight loss and overall health. Ironically, exercise can also help improve sleep.

Sleep1

Many of us are also much more likely to swap out healthy snacks for sugary, caffeinated foods and beverages to get enough energy to make it through the rest of the day after an insufficient night of sleep. Caffeine acts as a stimulant, so while it helps provide a quick boost of energy, its effects often linger later in the day, making it hard to fall asleep. This results in staying up late, which can create several extra hours of opportunity to eat/snack. Many people consume hundreds of extra calories in the evenings simply because they are up late and more likely to eat at that time.

One more factor to consider is the effect that a lack of sleep can have on our hormones. Insufficient sleep has been found to alter the balance of our appetite-regulating hormones. This basically means that people often feel hungrier as a result of poor sleep. Similar to how we often mistake thirst for hunger, we can interpret the need for sleep as hunger.

All of these create a cycle starting with bad sleep, which leads to exercising less, eating more, and sleeping worse, bringing us right back to the beginning of the cycle. If you’re stuck in this cycle, it’s important to evaluate your day and sleep patterns. Fist, cut out stimulants like caffeine after lunch. Focus on eating fresh, healthy foods at regular times throughout the day, drinking plenty of water, and fitting some kind of exercise into most days. You might consider stopping the use of electronics (computers, phones, TV) about an hour before bed, as well as going to bed earlier. Sleep is essential to the body repairing and rejuvenating, so start making these changes for a better night’s rest, improved control over your lifestyle habits, and a more energized life!

Journey of A Weight Loss Camp For Adults Intern: Post 4

March 19, 2014 By: amiller Comments Off

This week has probably been one of the best as far as nutrition and fitness goes.  I finally found a caloric range to stick with, one number for days that I work out, and another (smaller) number to stick with for days that I rest. I have been sticking with those numbers for about a week now and I feel good.  I think my next goal will be to tackle the skill of meal preparation.  You have to plan for success if you want it!  Over the weekend a friend and I spent about four hours making all sorts of meals and chopping vegetables. The problem with so much meal prep is then finding room in the fridge and freezer for all the containers. But if storage is my biggest problem, I think I have it pretty good.  I also have to say that meal prep is so much more fun with good music and good company.

This week is my spring break but in the wonderful land of Carrie-ville there is never such thing as a break. I am always going, going, going.  I am trying to get in 40 hours at my job while school isn’t in the way and then getting in my 30 hours at my internship here at Shane weight loss camp for adults.  But like I said, you have to plan for success, so earlier this week I wrote down everything that I had scheduled in my planner and I scheduled my workouts around that. I read a quote that said “Workouts are important meetings that you make with yourself, and bosses don’t cancel.”   I will not cancel a workout on myself even if it means getting up at 5 am.  So now, my question for you is…..How much are you willing to deal with for success?

Journey of a Weight Loss Resort Intern

February 24, 2014 By: consultant 7 Comments

1/29/14- Hey y’all my name is Alyssa and I am one of the two fitness interns at the weight loss resort, Shane Diet & Fitness Resorts in San Antonio! This internship is required to finish up my bachelors degree in Sports and Exercise Science at the University of Northern Colorado. Previously I have worked in the medical field as and EMT and as a volunteer firefighter, all while finishing up school and trying to have a social life. My social life in my last semester of college consisted of working with a football team in Kersey, Colorado where they took the 2A Championship and I earned the title of coach medic. Not only did those boys teach me a lot about fitness but they taught me what working hard can really get you.

Finding an internship was no small task, I sent out over 100 resumes and heard back from the one that I was most interested in first, Shane Diet & Fitness Resorts. I was stoked to get the email back. My now boss Debbie and I set up a Skype call that lasted for about two hours in total, I was thrilled! Then I set up two more calls with the owner of Shane and Jackie who runs the New York weight loss resort. After some fantastic conversations and many questions exchanged I was told I had received my internship at Shane. I am blessed with the opportunity to come to Shane and work with clients who are ready to change their lives.

So now on to the hard stuff, after an injury and extensive rehab I am still not back to the weight I want to be, fitness and being healthy is huge in my life yet my body does not show it. Carrie (the other intern on a journey) and I were both tasked to come up with blog topics, so with the help of some previous clients and the idea of motivating clients, both previous and potential, we decided on taking the Shane journey ourselves, all while going home every night to temptations and trails to inhibit both of our goals.

So as Carrie would say, Challenge ACCEPTED!

These are my starting measurements

Weight: 203lbs
Height: 5’10”
Neck: 14.5
Chest: 49.5
Abdomen (U): 36.5
Abdomen (L): 39
Hips: 45
Thigh: 25.25
Bicep: 15

Long term goal: To get to a figure athlete’s body figure

Short term goal: To gain back healthy habits all while trimming inches off of those unmentionable places!

1/31/14- Shane Challenge Explained

Unlike most of the guests at Shane I will not being jumping into the program with full force, instead I will get to go home every night to the temptations, have days off and be running around getting intern duties done and classes prepped. I will be following the 1,500 calorie diet, as closely as I possibly can, and working out as often as work allows me. Sounds familiar right?!? The Shane experience I will be putting myself through is one that has been expressed by many clients as the hardest one of all, GOING HOME! Duhn Duhn Duhn.

Doesn’t sound all that daunting right? Well I am here to give you the details of my journey, what I do while I am at work, what my pedometer says, what meals were my favorite, the different temptations during the day and how I chose to overcome them, if I was able to overcome all of the temptations etc.

Today is one, so far I work out, got some work done, dealt with the dogs, they will be explained in further blog topics, and got to work on time, at 12 pm, with my hair still wet! Great start to the first day!! Oh I had coffee and a bowl of cereal for breakfast, sorry Amber!

2/3/14- First day of Nutrition Logging

So this morning I woke up, after a fun night of football (not so much) and a crazy dog incident (gotta love those guys) I decided to take the day while the sun was still in bed and so were the birds. Got the dogs all taken care of with a few tangled leashes, a few curse words and some tripping we all managed to get back into the house safely. Bowls were filled and jowls getting in the way of teeth is the way their typical morning goes, mine on the other hand took a twist. I decided to make breakfast. Looking into what I had normally had for breakfast I thought this would be easy! Until I opened that black abyss, the one that shines so bright and sends false hope to those looking inside, also known as the refrigerator. Daunting task sat ahead, what to make?!? I settled for 3 large eggs, 4 pieces of turkey bacon and a chiobani yogurt for a total of 420 calories go me!

Weight Loss Camp KIND Bar Kitchen Experiment

January 31, 2014 By: consultant Comments Off

We’re always looking for ways to eat better and save money.  At Shane Diet & Fitness Resorts, our weight loss camp for adults, did a fun little experiment for a quick snack bar that that tastes just like the real thing you’d find at the grocery store.  Take a look at the recipe we used for a homemade version of a “KIND” bar.

This recipe is great!  It really tastes just like a KIND Bar, and instead of paying $1.50 per bar, Monica Matheny, the author of the post, estimates the cost around $0.44 per bar, which is a huge savings!

This recipe makes 20 bars, so you can wrap them individually in parchment paper and pop them in the freezer for later use.   These make a tasty snack or quick breakfast on the go.  They are also a great source of heart-healthy fat found in nuts, they contain protein, fiber, and less sugar than many other bars out there. Can it get any better than that? Take some time to have a little fun in the kitchen – find recipes for some of your favorite healthy snacks, try them at home and tell us how they turned out!

Homemade KIND Bars

Our adult weight loss camp made their own version of KIND Bars. See before, during and after!

Office Tips and Exercises from A Weight Loss Camp Trainer

January 20, 2014 By: consultant Post a Comment

According to research, only 20% of jobs in the work force require moderate physical activity. That leaves 80% of jobs that are sedentary or require very little physical activity.  Research is also showing that 1 in 3 Americans are obese. Coincidence? I don’t think so! But instead of blaming your job, use it to your advantage. A trainer at our weight loss camp came up with the below tips and exercises to do around the office and get you moving!

Treadmill Desk from TrekDesk  is a treadmill attached to a desk. It lets you workout while at work.

Treadmill Desk from TrekDesk is a treadmill attached to a desk. It lets you workout while at work.

Tips:

1.  Make the most out of your commute to work. Walk, run or bike.

2.  Walk around the office every chance you get. Instead of emailing the person four doors down, get up  and walk to deliver the message

3. Take the stairs instead of the elevator.

4. Trade your office chair in for a stability ball. Or stand at your desk instead of sitting.

5. Treadmill Desk – In fact, Mayo Clinic researchers estimate that overweight office workers who replace sitting computer time with walking computer time by two to three hours a day could lose 44 to 66 pounds (20 to 30 kilograms) in a year.

 

Exercises:

1.  Desk Push-up

2.  Desk Moutain climbers

3. Chair sit to stand or Squat

4. Knee lifts or jogging in place

5. Punches

 

Want a workout out of it? Try making the exercises a Circuit!

Grab your phone stopwatch, or a clock. Try completing as many reps as you can of each exercise for 1 full minute. Take a 15 second break in between, and then move to the next exercise. Repeat the circuit 2-4 times and you can get in a quick 10-20 minute office workout!

These days, living without a job is almost impossible, and with that job taking up so many of our waking hours it seems like our personal workout time is always the first thing to go, but now it doesn’t have to. Have fun working out around the office! And if you really want to make it interesting, start a friendly competition with some of your coworkers to see who can get the best workout done around the office.

Do you already work out at the office? If so, tell us what your favorite office exercises are! Or if you’re going to start, tell us how it’s going! We want to know how everyone is doing! 

Weight Loss Camp Discusses the Benefits of a Flexitarian Lifestyle

January 2, 2014 By: consultant Post a Comment

I’m sure you’re thinking what is Flexitarianism? Megan Ware, one of our weight loss camps RD’s explains. The newly coined term can be used to describe anyone following a plant-based diet that occasionally consumes meat. Any time you replace meat with vegetables, you are cutting back on calories and gaining valuable nutrients. If weight loss isn’t enough of reason, check this out:

  • It has been estimated that 8% of deaths in women and almost 10% of deaths in men could be prevented if people consumed less than half a serving per day of red meat, according to Adam Bernstein, research director at the renowned Cleveland Clinic’s Wellness Institute.

  • The National Institute of Health-AARP conducted a study on half a million people and found that those who ate the most red meat had a 30% higher mortality rate than those who ate the least.

  • The risk of colon and rectal cancer rises by about 20% for every serving of red or processed meat you eat in a day, according to the National Cancer Institute.

This doesn’t mean you have to become a strict vegan. Start small:

  • The next time you’re ordering or preparing anything from an omelet to a burrito, replace the meat with tomato, spinach, mushrooms, peppers, onions or any other vegetable you enjoy. You can turn any mediocre meal into healthier one using this tip—pizza, spaghetti sauces, wraps, sandwiches, you name it.

  • Go meatless one day per week. Participate in meatless Monday, a campaign launched in 2003 in association with the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. The “cut out meat one day a week” program is active in 23 countries and growing! Start by trying this alternative to the classic burger: 

Black Bean Burgers

Makes 6 servings

Ingredients:

  • 1 (15-ounce) can no-salt-added black beans, rinsed and drained

  • 1 egg

  • 1/2 yellow onion, chopped

  • 1 cup whole wheat bread crumbs

  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano

  • 1 teaspoon dried basil

  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder or granules

  • Salt and pepper to taste

  • Hot sauce to taste

  • 1 to 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive or canola oil

  • 6 whole wheat hamburger buns

  • 6 green leaf lettuce leaves

  • 2 tomatoes, sliced

  • 1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced

Directions:

  1. Put beans in a large bowl and mash well with a fork. Add egg, yellow onion, bread crumbs, oregano, basil, garlic powder, salt, pepper and hot sauce. Mix well to combine then shape into 6 patties.
  2. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Arrange patties in a single layer (working in batches, if needed) and cook, flipping once, until golden brown on both sides and cooked through, about 10 minutes total. Transfer to buns, top with lettuce, tomatoes and red onions and serve.

Nutrition and Cooking Tips:

  • Black beans are included in the family of dried beans and peas known as legumes. They are high in protein and fiber, low in fat, and rich in several essential vitamins and minerals. The nutrients in black beans aid in normal body processes, maintain good health and fight chronic disease.  They are great source of iron and 5 percent of the daily value for calcium. Black beans also provide significant amounts of the minerals magnesium, phosphorus and manganese, and the B vitamins -thiamin and folate, or folic acid.  www.Livestrong.com

  • Make your own whole wheat bread crumbs. Either use stale whole wheat bread or toast up some whole wheat bread and process in a food processor until there are crumbs. Season with herbs.

  • Scoop out the whole wheat bun if serving on a bun. Other options are eating it open faced or on a bed of lettuce.

  • Top your burger with a variety of vegetables.

Nutrition Facts: Calories: 290 kcal Total Fat: 7 g Total Carbohydrates: 47 g Dietary Fiber: 10 g Protein: 12 g

 

“Eat food. Not too much. Mostly Plants.” – Michael Pollan

Weight Loss Camp Healthy Holiday Eating Guide

November 25, 2013 By: consultant 1 Comment

Come out of the holidays lighter and cheerier!

At our weight loss camp we know how important it is to continue our healthy eating during the holidays, but we also know that these holidays only come around once a year and it’s okay to indulge a bit!

On the actual holidays (Thanksgiving and Christmas), eat what you want!  It’s a special time of year with special foods that we don’t get everyday.  But for all the days in between and around the holidays (there are 54 days between Halloween and Christmas and 60 till New Year’s day), stick to your food and exercise plan and you’ll be successful in continuing with your health goals even during the most challenging time of year.

Tips for Parties:

  • Don’t go to parties on an empty stomach
  • Eat very well the rest of the day, being mindful of portion sizes – and eat a little lighter than usual if you know you’ll be eating extra for dinner
  • Limit snacking on appetizers.
  • One-bite rule – if you feel obligated to or just want to try all of the dishes at a party, just get one bite of each item so you get a taste but don’t end up with too much by the end of the meal.
  • Eat mindfully!  Especially if you’re going for the one-bite rule, eat slowly and savor each bite.  This will allow you to enjoy all of the same foods but be satisfied on smaller amounts.
  • Make sure you bring a healthy dish – this guarantees you’ll have “safe” food to eat no matter what the circumstances.
  • If you are in charge of planning a party (home or office party), give everyone a theme of “healthy holidays” where the goal is to bring lightened up versions of holiday recipes
  • Try to incorporate all of the food groups into your main meal like you would for other normal meals.  This helps to balance your plate and keep you from getting too much of any one item.

Socializing:

  • Try hanging around areas other than where the food is located (out of site, out of mind!)

The rest of the time:  (All the days around Thanksgiving and Christmas)

  • Have a little extra discipline with food choices, making sure to watch portion sizes and eat an overall balance among all food groups

 

If you follow these simple steps, you can’t lose anything but pounds!

 

Weight Loss Camp Trainer, Discusses Excuses

November 12, 2013 By: consultant Post a Comment

Liz-Team-PhotoAs a trainer, I hear “I don’t have enough time to workout” quite a bit and that is one of the biggest obstacles guests at Shane Diet & Fitness Resorts weight loss camp ask me how to overcome. Work, kids, job, school, errands, the list goes on. But I promise you there are ways to make time! Here are a few suggestions for you to be able to fit exercise into your daily life.

1. Take 10! 

For those of you that really can’t dedicate a full block of time for exercise, just commit to 10 minute exercise breaks.

The recommended amount of exercise for adults is a moderate to intense cardio respiratory exercise, 30-60 minutes; five times a week minimum and strength guidelines are to work each major muscle group two to three days a week. ACSM guidelines say this time can be divided up throughout the day with smaller bouts of exercise. For example you could complete 10 minutes when you wake up, 10 minutes on your lunch break, and 10 minutes when you get home from work and you have the recommended amount of exercise checked off for that day.

2. Plan ahead.

Here are a few ways to plan ahead:

  • First, plan what time you will exercise. Morning, lunch break, after dinner?
  • Second, schedule the time in your calendar just like an appointment you wouldn’t want to miss and keep that same schedule and time so it becomes a habit.
  • Third, set out your clothes, gym bag, water, iPod, shoes, pre or post workout snack, and whatever else you may need the night before so you can grab it and go the next day.

3. Daily lifestyle and activities

Here are a few options to increase your caloric burn and fit in extra mini workouts:

  • Take the stairs wherever you can. This will increase your heart rate and calorie burn as well as build your backside.
  • Find a parking spot farther away from the entrance.
  • Take 10! Run around with your kids or dog, or take a short walk around the block.
  • Skip the chair. Standing may burn somewhere between 20-50 calories more per hour than sitting. This may not seem like much but over the course of the day it can definitely add up!

 

Most importantly, everyone is different!  See which workout-timing strategies work better for you then keep up the hard work for amazing results!

 

Written by: Liz Mitchell, BS, CPT, NASM WLS

Alcohol & Nutrition From Our Weight Loss Camp for Adults

August 4, 2013 By: consultant Post a Comment

Winegrapes3_custom-s6-c30If you’re over 21, sometimes it’s nice to have a drink every once in awhile. But often times, we feel that we can’t do this when we are trying to lose weight and knowing how to fit alcohol into your lifestyle isn’t easy.  Trying to stay in your caloric allowance while still having fun can be annoying and difficult to balance.  Fortunately, our weight loss camp has a few simple facts that can help you to alleviate this factor so you can focus more on socializing and having a good time.

When going out, keep this in mind; in general, a regular beer has around 150 calories, a light beer has around 100 calories, a 6oz glass of wine has 200 calories, and a shot has around 70 calories.   Your best bet when going out is to stick with a liquor that you combine with a low calorie mixer, such as diet soda, club soda, seltzer water, or even just tap water with a squeeze of lemon or lime.  If you’re not a liquor drinker, stick with a beer or wine that you can sip on slowly and won’t finish within a short amount of time.

Remember, in order to prevent hangover issues the next day, hydration is key.  Staying well hydrated is important, so be sure to drink as much water as you can throughout the day.   Once you are out, staggering your drinks with glasses of water in between will help as well.

Another great way to balance out your caloric intake is to add some activity into your drinking plans. This can mean going out dancing, playing softball for a bar league or even having friends over for a friendly backyard game of volleyball, waffle ball or soccer. Anything that is going to increase your movement is going to help negate some of the calories you’re drinking.

But the most important tip we can offer, is know your limit, watch your intake and keep moving. Just because you’re trying to stay healthy, lose weight or maintain, doesn’t mean you can’t have a drink every now and then with some friends.

Incorporate Whole Foods Into Your Diet & Help With Weight Loss: Part Two

June 26, 2013 By: consultant 2 Comments
Food

Wheatberry Salad made by guests at Shane Diet & Fitness Resorts New York location during a cooking demo.

By: Megan Ware, RDN, LD

We’ve all heard of all the studies done that describe the benefits of vitamins and antioxidants when consumed in a food, especially when consumed while working toward weight loss. But for some reason, whenever those same vitamins or minerals are isolated and studied in supplement form, they never seem to show the same positive results. Why is that?

Nutrition science is still in its early stage and we don’t know all of the components that are in a whole food that make it healthy. We are always discovering new components of foods that we didn’t know existed. When there is a health benefit or protection from various diseases that we get from eating certain foods, it could be due to the natural combination and interaction of all of the different and unique nutrients and proteins that each food naturally contains. Attempting to extract a single nutrient and consuming it by itself does not have the same effects. This is one of the best benefits eating whole foods has. By eating a whole food, you’re getting the natural synergy of all of these nutrients together.

Another benefit of whole foods: they’re cheaper! The more processed foods are, the higher the manufacturing cost, therefore making the food cost higher. For example, a whole potato is going to be cheaper than a bag of potato chips. Just remember, processed foods are made for shelf life, not human life! Food manufacturers spend abundant a lot of time, money and research on ways to lengthen the shelf life of their products, with little attention paid to how the processing will affect our bodies.

A lot of people have the misconception that eating healthier means they can only shop at expensive health food stores. But here’s a secret, you do not need to spend a fortune to get whole foods, and you certainly don’t need to shop at health food stores. Visit your local farmers market or buy produce in season from your local grocery. For instance, citrus fruits are cheaper in the winter months because that is their natural season.

You do not need to cut out all processed foods from your diet. The goal is just to decrease the number of processed foods you eat and increase the proportion of whole foods, always keeping in mind the 1st pillar of nutrition at Shane Diet & Fitness Resorts weight loss camp is, balance.

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