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3 posts from June 2010


Hellping Kids Eat Right

There's no denying it – as a nation, we're getting heavier and heavier. And, our poor diets and sedentary lifestyles are affecting our kids, too. Just as adults are struggling with the "battle of the bulge", statistics show that our kids are getting heavier and that they are experiencing obesity-related health problems at very young ages.

Parents face an uphill struggle when it comes to getting kids to be more active and to eat healthy foods. Like adults, many kids face pressures of too much work and too little time for leisure-time activity, and the lure of television, video games or surfing the net often keeps them indoors. Food choices are influenced by taste, cost and convenience, and many foods are marketed as "cool" – something kids may value more than healthy nutrition.

Ultimately, parents are responsible for helping kids to make proper choices, and making sure there are healthy foods at home is a great place to start. Parents also need to set an example for their kids by eating right and staying active, too. Here are some tips to help your child eat smart and play hard:

1.    Keep a bowl of fresh whole fruit on the kitchen counter where it can be seen, or some cut up fruits or vegetables in plain view when the refrigerator door is open. By making these items convenient and easy to consume, kids are more likely to eat them.
2.    Take kids to the grocery store with you and use the time for some nutrition education. Older kids can learn how to read food labels, and often enjoy making comparisons between items and trying to find healthy alternatives. You can also do some negotiating with your kids by selecting items together that you both agree are acceptable.
3.    Get your kids involved in food preparation. Children are much more likely to eat foods when they have helped to prepare them. If you enjoy cooking, encourage your child to try new foods by preparing new dishes with you.
4.    Be patient when trying to get kids to try new foods. Studies show that repeated exposure does work – so keep offering foods, and encourage kids to try "just a bite". It may take more than a dozen tries, but it's worth the effort.
5.    Be a good role model. It's difficult for busy parents to put a balanced meal on the table every night, but kids need to know that their parents value their own nutritional intake. Try to include veggies or a salad at mealtimes, and serve fruit for dessert.

6.    Help your kids (and yourself) with portion control. Serve foods from the kitchen, rather than placing serving dishes family-style on the table, to avoid taking "just another spoonful". Studies show that we tend to eat what we are served – whether it's a little or a lot – and empty plate usually signals that we're finished.
7.    Don't be a couch potato yourself. Your kids need to know that you value an active lifestyle. Get outdoors with them for a bike ride, a jog, or to shoot some hoops, and make sure they know how good you feel when you get your blood pumping.

8.    Plan ahead. It's easier said than done, but planning meals ahead of time, making a shopping list, and preparing meals in bulk so you have extras on hand can help make evening meals less stressful.

9.    Snack smart. Active kids need snacks, but typical snack foods are loaded with fat and sugar. Keep the sodas and chips out of the house, but have fruit, yogurt, string cheese, nuts or soy nuts or healthy cereals on hand for those snack attacks. Kids also like making their own smoothies, so keep some milk, fresh or frozen fruit and some protein powder around and let them experiment.

10.    Build exercise into your day, and encourage your kids to do the same. If you're on the phone, walk around the house or yard while you talk, instead of sitting down. Find errands you can walk to, rather than taking the car. Take the stairs instead of the elevator, and park a few blocks away from the mall. By Susan Bowerman, M.S., R.D., C.S.S.D.

Susan Bowerman is a consultant to Herbalife


Achieving Your Desired Work-Life Balance

Vesna Grubacevic, Qt

We all have the same amount of time (24 hours in a day, 7 days a week), yet some people seem to do so much in one week, while others feel like they have accomplished very little.

How you relate to time and how you spend your time determines how much of a balance you achieve and, therefore, how fulfilled you feel.  Because people who have balance in their life are generally more fulfilled than those who feel there is something missing in their life.   How you spend your time depends on:

1.Your values and beliefs

Because your values and beliefs determine your priorities and how you spend your time, it is important that they are aligned with the results you are seeking.  For example, feeling inadequate, not being good enough or needing approval from others may find you doing things to please others and putting your own needs and goals last; you may find that you are always running out of time to do things for yourself.  Having a fear of missing out on things may also result in you having a “finger in many pies” and you ending up not doing anything 100% and, therefore, you miss out on having what you want anyway. Once you resolve these beliefs, you will find it easier to say “no” to distractions which will allow you to make more time for your goals and for you!

2. The meaning you give to things
The meaning you give to the things you do determines whether or not you do them and how much you enjoy doing them.  For example, if you dislike doing paperwork, studying, tidying up or making phone calls, you will probably put off doing these things and allow yourself to be distracted by the things you think are more fun and enjoyable to do.  You’ve probably noticed how you’re motivated to do the things you really enjoy, how you do those things and how effortlessly you make the time to do them.  By changing the meaning you give to the things you dislike doing, you will change your motivation towards doing those things and making time to do them will be easier.

3. Your behaviours and actions
Instead of focusing on all the things you want to do in your day and therefore getting overwhelmed, focus on one thing at a time and you will stop the overwhelm and get a faster result.  Spend 10 minutes at the end of each week reviewing your successes over the past week and then planning the week ahead, including when you will make time for your goals and have some time out for you.  This will ensure that you have the balance you desire each week, and when you achieve greater balance you will feel even more fulfilled. 

By aligning your values and beliefs with your desired results, changing the meaning you give to activities so that you enjoy the journey of achieving them, and planning your desired work-life balance, you will become a master of your time and find greater fulfillment in your life!

Vesna Grubacevic is a Performance Transformation Expert™ with Qt, an NLP Trainer, holds a BEc, has over 26 years’ business experience and is currently studying towards her PhD.  Vesna has a proven track record of assisting clients to transform their personal and professional results.  For more techniques on achieving your desired work-life balance and for your FREE gifts, visit www.qttransformation.com today or call Vesna on (03) 9653 9288.


Why Personal Training?

Faster results and a better chance of success

A qualified Personal Trainer is a qualified professional who knows what is required for you to achieve your results and knows how to keep you motivated enough to succeed.

There are four stages of exercise adaptation and it takes 3-7 months to start seeing results. Imagine waiting that long to discover that what you are doing isn’t working, or to run out of motivation right on the cusp of success!

Initial Stage

Visual Stage

Results Stage

Maintenance Stage

30 Days

3 - 7 Months

7 - 15 Months

15 + Months

Your body is becoming used to training

You start to see some results

You achieve the results that you     are after and set new goals

Exercise has become a part of your lifestyle

Your energy levels increase

You exercise to maintain your results

People start giving you compliments

Your toxin levels are reduced

You constantly set yourself new challenges

It isn't easy staying motivated to exercise, especially if you're a beginner. After about 6 to 12 weeks, the doldrums can set in and that's when many of us will quit. Something happens after that initial excitement of starting an exercise program. The enthusiasm fades, we haven't seen significant results yet, and we give up.

The most frustrating part of all this is that it happens right when people are on the verge of success. Below are some of the mistakes that contribute to people’s failure in achieving their exercise goals:

·         Focusing on the scales. Weight loss isn't going to happen right away. For some people, it takes months to see significant changes. When starting a program, it's best to set measurable goals like getting a certain number of workouts in each week or lifting a certain amount of weight.

·         Working too hard. Beginners sometimes go at their new workout programs like veteran exercisers. Starting easy and working your way up to more frequent exercise makes your workouts more enjoyable and gives your body time to adjust to exercise.

·         Not working hard enough. On the other hand, some people don't take their intensity high enough to promote weight loss results. Personal Trainers are invaluable for learning what you should be doing in the gym, and determining how hard you should be working.

·         Comparing yourself to others. If your friend is losing weight faster than you are, it doesn't mean something's wrong with you. We all lose fat at different rates. Focus on the gains you're making, not someone else's.

·         Giving up too soon. If you're not seeing results yet, giving up is the last thing you should do. If you've been working out consistently, you may be well on your way to weight loss. Whether you've seen results or not, you are getting something out of exercising regularly. Better sleep, more energy, better quality of life.

·         Thinking negatively. Check out the table below for a comparison on how a successful exerciser gets past exercise obstacles and how a quitter handles things.

What You're Thinking

Quitter's Thinking

Successful Thinking

I don't want to workout today.

I quit

I'll just do a warm up. If I still don't want to exercise, I'll stop.

This workout is boring.

I quit

Maybe I'll try a new activity--like that spinning class.

I'm too stressed out to exercise.

I quit

I'll feel more relaxed if I get in a quick workout

I missed my last few workouts, why bother?

I quit

I've gotten off track, but I'm ready to get started again. I'll be back to where I was in no time.

I haven't lost a single pound.

I quit

If I quit now, I'll never see long-term results.

I don't have time.

I quit

I'll do what I can until things slow down. Something is always better than nothing.

Adapted from “The Difference Between Success and Failure” by Paige Waehner, About.com Guide