The Get Healthy Holiday Challenge!

The holiday season is almost here, and we all know what that means— temptation! As much as we look forward to holiday parties and dinners, many of us fear enjoying it too much – and packing on the pounds.

The average American consumes approximately 4,500 calories and 229 grams fat from eating a traditional Thanksgiving dinner. And that doesn’t include breakfast, lunch, or late-night snacking on leftovers, or the bounty of holiday sweets that are consumed in December!

Studies show that the average American gains 1 to 2 pounds during the holiday season. And, those extra pounds tend to become permanent baggage. Year after year, those pounds can add up, and contribute to overweight or obesity later in life.

Although we may not all gain weight over the holidays, there is no question we tend to eat and drink more — and exercise less. With the hustle and bustle of holiday shopping, parties and festive traditions, healthy eating and exercise are usually the first things to go.   No one wants to be on a strict diet during the holidays. We want to enjoy the bounty of traditional favorite foods. How can you enjoy the holidays and still maintain those healthy habits?  Join the Get Healthy Holiday Challenge!!  It begins Monday, October 13 and will challenge you to adopt new healthy behaviors during the holiday season.

Each week you will be emailed a ‘health challenge’ on Monday.  Each challenge encourages healthful living, such as a daily 15-minute walk or eating three servings of vegetables each day.   You can track your weekly progress by using the online tracker on the website and be eligible for prizes!   We’ll also provide lots of tips, resources and motivation to help you meet the challenge. To register or sign in: http://www.gethealthyclarkcounty.org/hhc/.

Get Outdoors Nevada Day 2014!

Southern Nevada has lots of great ways for you to get out and be active!!  On Saturday October 25, 2014 you can come and celebrate all the recreation opportunities that we have at Get Outdoors Nevada Day.  Get Outdoors Nevada Day is presented by The Outside Las Vegas Foundation in partnership with the City of North Las Vegas. This celebration will be held from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Craig Ranch Regional Park located at 628 W Craig Rd, North Las Vegas. The Get Healthy team will have a booth promoting healthy eating and encouraging physical activity. Feel free to stop by and say hi!

Attendees will find out the “how to’s” and “where to’s” for outdoor recreation in our Southern Nevada.  Learn about the many ways you can enjoy the outdoors in new, fun and accessible ways. Participants at Get Outdoors Nevada Day can try out sporting demos, try out the latest sporting equipment, see recreation demonstrations, and enjoy an outdoor picnic and more.
For more information about Get Outdoors Nevada Day, call 702-997-3350 or visit
www.getoutdoorsnevada.org/day.

Exercise can help reduce stress

Many people are starting to recognize the ill effects of stress and use exercise and getting active as a way to help reduce the effects that stress can have in our lives. Often times we think we are too busy and stressed to make time for exercise but when we do we can reap the many benefits that come from moving our bodies.

Being active is often thought of meditation in motion. It can also boost the production of those feel good endorphins. Moving your body creates opportunity to release energy and it can help you feel less tired and sleep better. When we are stressed often times the first thing effected in our life is our sleeping habits. Being active is a great way to ensure a good night’s sleep. Virtually any form of exercise, from aerobics to yoga, can act as a stress reliever. If you’re not an athlete or even if you’re downright out of shape, you can still make a little exercise go a long way toward stress management. Make the time for a little physical activity in your busy life. Any form of physical activity can help you unwind and become an important part of your approach to easing stress!

Start the school year off healthy!

With the sound of school bells just around the corner, it’s important to refocus your efforts to ensure healthy eating with our kids. Providing healthful meals and encouraging physical activity are essential for your child’s growth and development, and will help your child build healthy habits for the rest of his or her life and improve their academic achievement.

Not sure how to keep your child excited about eating healthy and moving more? Here are some tips to get on the right track.

Start the Day Off Right
Don’t skip breakfast. Studies show breakfast eaters tend to have higher school attendance, less tardiness and fewer hunger-induced stomachaches. They also score higher on tests, concentrate better, solve problems more easily and have better muscle coordination. If you are pressed for time, quick options include instant oatmeal topped with nuts or raisins, low-fat yogurt with sliced fruit or whole-grain toast with peanut butter.

Keep Lunchtime Interesting
•Plan lunch together. Encourage kids to pack their lunch with items they enjoy so they are less likely to throw their lunch away or swap with classmates.
•Try new foods. Pack exotic fruits such as kiwi, or allow them to pick fruits and vegetables they want to try at the grocery store.
•Celebrate special days. Plan lunch around special events. For example, pack an all-red lunch for Valentine’s Day or include a fortune cookie to celebrate Chinese New Year.
•Offer choices. Vary protein sources — tuna, peanut butter, turkey or beans — and offer different whole-grain items such as whole-grain bread, tortillas or crackers. Rotate whole pieces of fruit (banana, orange or grapes) and cut-up vegetables (celery, carrots or broccoli).

Get Moving
Regular physical activity is vital to strengthen muscle and bones, promote a healthy body weight, support learning, develop social skills and build self-esteem. Kids are encouraged to be active for 60 minutes per day. Involving the family is a great way to spend time together. Hike together as a weekend outing, ride bikes after dinner, play catch after work or take the dog for a brisk walk.

Be active and feel better!

Being active is not just about burning calories. Regular physical activity can help keep your thinking, learning, and judgment skills sharp as you age. It can also reduce your risk of depression and may help you sleep better. Research has shown that doing aerobic or a mix of aerobic and muscle-strengthening activities 3 to 5 times a week for 30 to 60 minutes can give you these mental health benefits. Some scientific evidence has also shown that even lower levels of physical activity can be beneficial.

Improving your mental health can help support a positive outlook on life. Research also shows that physical activity helps to relieve symptoms of depression & anxiety and leads to improvement of mood. Being active gets your blood flowing and releases neurotransmitters which are responsible for our energy levels and emotions.  Physical activity can leave you feeling invigorated sharp and full of energy. By making fitness activities social like taking a class with others, it can add another layer of benefit that can also improve your mood. Social interaction while performing the same activities is a great way to connect with like minded-people.
Don’t just think of exercise as a way to lose weight and look great—it can help you feel great on the inside too. Be active it just might change the way you feel!

Stay cool outside

Don’t let this heat get you down. Find ways to exercise inside if possible. But if you are heading outside to be active during the summer, a few things to keep in mind:

Time of Day. Avoid going out during the hottest part of the day. Plan to go out early in the morning or later at night.

Wear loose, light-colored clothing. The lighter color will help reflect heat, and cotton/dri-fit material will help the evaporation of sweat.

Sunscreen. Protect your skin and keep from getting burned.

Stay hydrated. Before you go out, drink water. Take water with you. Take a drink every 15 minutes, even when you’re not thirsty. Be sure to drink more water when you are done.

Look for shaded trails or pathways.  Do what you can to stay in the shade and out of the sun. Parks are a great place to find grass and trees.

Check the weather.  before you start your workout. If there’s a heat advisory, meaning high ozone and air pollution, you might want to take your workout indoors. These pollutants can damage your lungs.

Get Wet. It never feels like you’re sweating while you are working out in the pool so choose workouts like swimming, water aerobics classes or running in shallow water.

Most importantly, listen to your body. Stop immediately if you’re feeling dizzy, faint or nauseous.

Find the perfect fit!

Somtimes we think being “into fitness” means that we have to excel at every endeavor we try. Which is not possible!  Some activitiese leave us feeling energized and empowered (Hello running and Zumba!)  And others might make you feel defeated and embarrassed (Hello Insanity and tennis!) Exercise is not one size fits all.  Not every workout is suited to or even safe for everyone.  Sounds logical right, but when you hear your best friend swear up and down that hot yoga melted (not literally) the fat from her thighs, you feel like you must try it!  But if spin class is not your thing, you are not likely going to stick with it.  For exercise to be sustainable, you need to enjoy what you are doing.  It needs to feel good,  be something you desire to do, please your mind and get you closer to your goal whether you want to run a marathon or  just lose that baby weight.  So find what works for you, and it is OK if it is not the latest fitness craze or your friends sure fire weight loss workout! Do what works best for you!

Creating a daily physical activity routine

One of the best things we can do to incorporate being active into our daily life is to establish a routine. Most people live their life based on a schedule or a routine for each day. You can make physical activity part of your normal day as much as you would brushing your teeth. There is often no question as to whether or not you will brush your teeth; it’s a task you plan on doing every day for the rest of your life. You don’t give yourself an out or the choice to not brush your teeth. (We hope!)  By having a daily physical activity routine it can help to eliminate the possibility of changing our mind or thinking of the task as a choice. We often do things we might not want to do because of our daily routine.  Once the body gets going the body tends to stay on task and get things done.  Here are some ways to help make being active part of our daily routine.

  • Look over your schedule and find blocks of time that could be used for being active. Maybe you have time early in the morning or right after dinner. Perhaps you have more time in the evening. Find a time that works best for you and schedule it as part of your day and stick to your plan!
  • Keep workout clothes in your car so you don’t have to go home before heading to the gym or the park. Your routine can be to leave work and go workout before you ever get home. Sometimes showing up is the hardest part.
  • Schedule a regular time to go walking with a friend each day or week. By having someone else rely on you, you will be more likely to keep your commitment.
  • Drive past the park or the gym on your way to and from work. Seeing other people out and being active can help motivate you to want to join them.
  • Keep a pair of running shoes at work so you can take a quick walk during your break or lunch.
    If you have a favorite show you like to watch, tell yourself that you can only watch it if you are on the treadmill or doing strength training exercises.
  • Make a plan with your family to go walking before or after dinner. Stick to your plan! Use this time as a way to talk and have fun with your family.
  • Promise your dog that you will take him out walking. Nobody wants to let their dog down!
Let’s Go Back to the 80s!

Here at Get Healthy we are paying homage to the 80s and all the totally awesome fitness fads that have us laughing now. Even though that decade created some crazy trends our health habits were not what they are now. Our obesity rates in the 80s were much lower than they are now. And over the next 5 weeks we will be paying homage to the 80s and enjoying a trip down memory lane in an effort to roll back our obesity rates to what they were.  Signup and participate in our online programs (Nutrition Challenge & Walk Around NV)  and you could win some totally awesome 80s themed prizes! So join us for some fun at Back to the 80s!

Resolution Twists for the New Year!

Have you found yourself making the same resolutions each year without ever making any progress?? By December you feel  more like a failure than a new person. This year instead of making the same type of resolutions commit to doing something different.

New DAY resolutions. Real lifestyle change happens one day at a time.  Focus on each new day and living a healthy lifestyle. Just make small and simple changes. Take a walk, pack your lunch from home, drink less soda etc.

Add something.  Our resolutions often times involve  ‘taking away’ or eliminating something.  That never seems fun to anyone. So instead of eliminating something focus on adding something. Like add one more serving of vegetables or fruit to your meal. Or add a healthy snack to your day. Add more water intake to your routine. Add 15 minutes to your bed time.

Try something new. Everyone has something that they have thought about wanting to do or try. Focus on trying a new activity or class. Maybe you have always wanted to try yoga or zumba. You have heard how easy or fun these classes can be, but you haven’t ever tried it. Set a goal to try it out this year. You might find that you really enjoy it and will have discovered a new passion.

Resolution feelings. Focus instead on how you want to feel at the end of this year and not so much on the endless list of things you should do or accomplish. If you want to feel healthier or happier by the end of the year let that desire guide your actions and goals.

The bottom line is that in one year it will be another year regardless of what each of us does with our time. You can either be the same person you are today or you can use the time to become who you really want to be.

Happy New Year!!