Archive for March, 2010

Spring is here, finally

Thursday, March 18th, 2010

The_Picture_of_HealthWow, what a winter it has been here in Lexington.  It seemed like it would never end. Even though I grew up in Chicago and should be used to long, cold, dark, snowy winters, I have lived in Lexington for the past 24 years and my Chicago winter toughness is long gone.

I am used to a few inches of snow a year, peppered with days warm enough to hit the golf course. This year it was day after day and week after week of below freezing temperatures and much more snow than usual. The negative consequeces of the harsh winter are many; inactivity, weight gain, depression, just to name a few.

If you have suffered with some or all of these ill effects of winter, don’t worry, spring is here………..really.

Don’t worry about the past few months. Focus on the next several. The days are longer, the temps are higher, the sun is out. Now is the time for you to concentrate on getting back into the groove of moving, everyday. This is especially important if you have put on some unwanted weight over the winter. Several of my clients have complained that, even though they have kept up with their workouts in the gym, they have gained weight over the winter.

by joannalovesyou; flickr

by joannalovesyou; flickr

This is not surprising. Even keeping up with your 1-3 gym workouts, if your overall activity is significantly decreased, so is your overall caloric expenditure. Burning fewer calories day after day and not reducing the amount of food you eat will definitely tip the scales in the wrong direction.

Again, don’t worry about this; it is in the past. Now is the time to look to the future. Make a plan to get moving, everyday, in addition to your normal gym workouts. I think the best way to increase caloric expenditure is to increase what is called your “ADL’s”, or your “activities of daily living”. ADL’s are  tasks or work you do as part of your life; they are not formal exercise. An ADL might be cleaning your house, grocery shopping, raking the yard, washing the car, etc.

During the winter months, it is common for your ADL’s to be reduced, thereby reducing the number of calories you burn. Now that the weather is warmer, it is much easier to get yourself motivated to get moving and increasing your ADL’s. It is important to note that ADL’s make up the majority of the calories you burn in a day. Increasing your ADL’s is one of the best ways to help your body shed unwanted pounds.

Now is the time to make a plan about what ADL’s you can and will do. I really like cutting the grass and yard work in general; these are big calorie burners. Also, if you are a golfer, think about walking the course, instead of taking the cart. 18 holes of golf is the caloric equivalent of walking 4-6 miles! Also, walking to run errands or get a bite to eat is an easy way to burn an extra couple hundred calories. Whatever it is you like to do, now is the time to do it. Get motivated and start moving to shed that “winter roll”.

Get the most out your workouts with your trainer

Tuesday, March 16th, 2010


Get the Most Bang for Your Buck
by Sheila Kalas,
Owner and Personal Trainer
One of my favorite sayings, in regards to any workout, is “get the most bang for your buck.” Your “buck” can be money or time, both of which are very valuable. What I mean by this is to get the absolute most out of every workout, with no wasted movement or energy. This takes good communication between you and your trainer. Both you and your trainer need to be on the same page as to what your goals are. You, the client, have the major role in this relationship. Trainers can not read your mind and should try to guess what is important to you. You must communicate it to them; it is their job to help you reach YOUR goals, not theirs. Several of my clients have, as some part of their goals, to lose or maintain their weight. So, it is my job to focus on burning as many calories as I can each and every workout. That type of workout is very different from a workout designed for a client whose main goal is to improve balance and stability, or for someone who is training for a specific competitive event. I am confident that I can design a workout program that can help someone achieve their goals, but I have no idea how to provide success to someone who does not tell me what they want. Remember, personal is training is just that, personal. Talk to your trainer about what YOU want and need to insure you always get “the most bang for your workout buck.”