Archive for Fitness


Obesity, Fitness and Women

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Fitness requires regular movement

How many of you struggle with motivation to exercise?

Perhaps you feel that because you are overweight, it will not have any positive effect. Maybe you feel you have to loose weight first before you can be fit or you feel there is no point to exercising since you are already overweight. Many of you may feel, or know some one who feels that they cannot exercise for some reason.

A new study published in the journal- Medicine and Science, evaluated the effect of cardiovascular fitness on rate of death in women considered overweight. This study can easily give overweight women the encouragement they need to begin any sort of exercise program. The study revealed that cardiovascular fitness was a better determinant for risk of death from all causes, rather that being overweight.

11,335 women were followed from 1970 to 2005, degree of obesity was determined by measurement of waist to hip ratio, BMI, waist to height ratio and body fat percentage. Degree of fitness was determined by performance while walking on a treadmill to their fullest effort.

Researchers found that those women who had higher cardiovascular fitness despite higher body fat percentage or weight, had similar low death rates as compared to women with lower body fat and similar levels of cardiovascular fitness. This suggests that cardiovascular fitness is a stronger predictor of health than weight or body fat. This is one of the only studies which included cardiovascular fitness in determining risk of death in overweight or obese women. It suggest that being fat does not necessarily mean that a woman is unhealthy. The researchers also state however, that morbid obesity was not included in this equation. A BMI over 40 significantly increases risk of death regardless of cardiovascular fitness.

So what does this study mean for you? It means that regardless of your weight, you can improve your health with modest exercise. Something as simple as brisk walking. Remember, these women were asked to walk as briskly as they could on a treadmill. You can do that on a street, mall, track at a local school! The important thing  is to move, increase your heart rate to get your blood moving, use those muscles you have!

How do you talk to your medical provider about this? Ask them for an eating plan or guideline if they have one; or a referral to a nutritionist. Ask your medical provider if it is safe for you to start exercising by walking. Discuss this study with your health care provider and ask them how it relates to you.

Many work places have programs to help employees start an exercise or health program. Check with your human resource person at work and ask them about this. There are many affordable exercise facilities that provide opportunities to improve fitness without being an intimidating  gym. Check out what is in your community by searching the yellow pages and asking friends and co-workers.

What is your plan? Discuss it with me in the comments section here.I look forward to discussing this with you.

How many of you would like to talk on the phone with me, as a group call? Tell me in the comments section.

One last thing use the widgets at the end of the post to recommend it to friends on Facebook, Twitter and other places you meet people online.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Join our membership site to gain access to more information (audio and video are all there) by signing up on the home page.

Anne V. PAC

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BetsyC.ITSI want to thank you for reading our blog.

It is a labor of love. Anne’s desire in starting this

was to make the life of every woman “her age”

meaning around the time of menopause

better. She wanted you to have the

best information from the smartest people

around and to have access to have your

questions answered too.  Today we want to

share with you some of our favorite online authors

for you to read also. Not in any particular order:

Mark Sisson of Mark’s Daily Apple. The link will take you

to the page of his blog with all the blog posts he has

written about fitness. He has some great information

and I will be telling you more about Mark next week.

Read about what he thinks is a great fitness program.

If you are plus size, you need to know Jimmy Moore.

He writes and interviews people around the subject

of weight loss from a high fat, moderate protein and

low carbohydrate diet. Jimmy has lost 200 pounds

and he struggles with the right combination to keep it

off and improve his health. Listening to his interviews

is a good way to get to know him. He is quite transparent.

Scott and Angie of Fat Loss Quickie have achieved

what many of us want. They do know what it takes and

cater to the highly motivated. Their advice is sound.

Get the gifts they are offering on the link above.

The daily Spark has been around a while. I like the

confession article linked here about giving up sugar.

What help do you need create a vision of what you

want, set a goal with steps and then begin while regularly

repeating your affirmation and doing a mind/body practice

to reinforce to your mind what you are doing.  We can help,

just join our membership club, get access to more info and

get the help you need to make menopause a pleasant experience.

Tell us what you think, want and need in the comments section.

Share your favorite fitness site with us.

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Fitness – How do you define it?

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Fitness requires regular movement

Fitness requires regular movement

If I asked you what fitness means, what would you say?

Is fitness how you look naked?

Is fitness a certain weight you think you should weigh?

Is it a distance you can run?

You can tell me the result of being fit, but what is fitness?

Do you want to be fit or

just thin and sexy?

For me, I want to live a long time and be able to walk around all day in cities I want to

visit.  I want to be able to eat good food, sleep like a baby, and have energy to burn.

I would like to be resistant to disease too, of course.

Fitness, then for me, is a way I can live and will help me to be more vigorous.

How long does it take me to get fit?

Remember fitness is a process.  It is never over. You stay fit you don’t get fit.

You can become fit at different levels, but the first level is basic fitness.

Basic fitness is the ability to do 3 things – Touch your toes easily, walk more than a

mile and a quarter in 12 minutes and lift 25 % of your ideal body weight off of the floor

to your waist. (If your ideal is 160LB, then you should be able to lift 40 pounds from

floor to waist several times.)

Most people think that fitness equals weight loss.  You are not fit if you are way overweight.

But, if you have a fitness plan, then you will approach your ideal weight as your fitness

level increases. Being fit will allow you to perform all 3 of the functions mentioned

day after day without excess fatigue or soreness.

Can you see yourself as fit and see what you would do to stay that way?

Close your eyes and imagine yourself as fit. How does it feel? How do you

look? Take a piece of paper and write down words that describe you

as a fit person. It doesn’t matter that you aren’t, or even if you never

have been, what describes you as fit?  You might say things like

I enjoy, appreciate, I am strong, I feel, accept, invite, connect,

allow, focus and so on.

Can you write an intention, goal and affirmation about fitness?

If you can’t you need our help.  Let us know through the contact

page that you need help with the planning. Do you think what I

have written here is crazy?  Tell me what you think by leaving

a comment.

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If You are Alive then You can become Fit

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Fitness requires regular movement

Fitness requires regular movement

Fitness is associated with good things for your health!

I can not find one bad fact about being fit.

Recently, Exercise Scientists have proven

the benefit of improved fitness no matter

at what age you begin.

Lets get first things first though.  How do you begin?

Taking an assessment!

Download the PAR-Q now.  par_q

This is a questionnaire about your health.  Fill it out now. Any question

that you answered YES? If so, you need to see your doctor before you

increase your activity.  All answers no, great!

You are ready for step two, Assessment.

To assess your fitness, take the 12 minute walking test.

The test is simple, walk on a flat

measured course for 12 minutes and measure the distance you travel.

The link shows you a graph of results by age and fitness level.

For Women age 45-55 you need to be able

to walk more than 1.33 miles or 5.3 laps on a 1/4 mile track,

indoor tracks are often 1/16th

of a mile so it would be 24 laps on an indoor track in 12 minutes.

Poor condition is more than 3 laps but less than 4 on a 1/4 mile track

and more than 12 but less than 16 on the 1/16 mile track.

Last thing to assess is flexibility.

There are several ways to do it but the best way is to sit on the

Sit and Reach test test box

Sit and Reach test test box

floor, put your stocking feet flat against a wall,

knees straight, and see if you can touch your toes.

Don’t bounce. It is what it is and can be improved,

but you have to know where to start.

Monday I will give you some ideas on what to do first

if you have not exercised regularly.

Leave a comment and tell us what you found out as you tried it.

You can leave a question in the comments section also.

What is your feeling about getting fit? Is it crazy to encourage you?


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Why some People will Always be Fat

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Some people will be fat all their lives. It does not have to be that way.  To be thin, they will have to have some help, but they will have to tell themselves they can do it.  They will need some people around them saying the same thing. They will have to see themselves as OK despite being overweight. This slide show is an information tool. Anne and I want to be part of the support and accountability group for any woman who is in this situation over the age of 45.

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Why am I gaining weight during Menopause?

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Anne discusses the reasons for weight gain during menopause. Did you know you had testosterone before menopause and after menopause you don’t.  What is the effect of testoterone on women?  What happens when they lose it?  What can a peri-menopausal or menopausal woman do about the lack of hormones?

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5 Audio Fitness Tips to Avoid Mid-Life Weight Gain

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Avoid Weight GainFitness is in many ways more important than your weight.  If you are fit and overweight, you are in a better position than the person who is normal weight but un-fit in the 3 ways fitness is measured but especially in dynamic and static strength.  This MP3 audio file will help you establish progressive habits to create the level of fitness needed to maintain strong muscles, bones and brains. Yes, your brain is better off if you exercise regularly.  Listen, then apply.  Need application help, contact Bruce for some advice. Just use the contact page or leave a comment on this posting.

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Betsy Collie is an active woman and has been active her entire life. She has been involved in dance, athletics, group BetsyC.ITSfitness, personal training, and instructing Kettlebell exercise classes in her new studio Rapid Results Fitness. In this interview with Bruce Bair, PAC,  Betsy addresses many of the issues that can influence a woman’s health, fitness and quality of life after age 45.  Betsy is in her 40′s and looks just like the photo. Bruce met her at a wellness event for Durham Public Schools where both were presenters.

[private_basic] Bruce was helping her set up her sign and had to move a kettlebell sitting on the table.  He reached out to lift it and barely did so – it weighed 35 deceptive pounds.  Then for the rest of the day, he watched Betsy lift and swing this in demonstrating basic kettlebell moves to the people involved.  She is petite but packs more muscle than some collegiate wrestlers. Yet, in her exercise clothes Betsy just looks slim and small.

If you like this interview, you are going to want to subscribe so you can know when interviews like this are posted.  We  offer a membership with an interview of the month, live monthly calls and coaching depending on your membership level. For now, some content is free but you should sign up. Look at the top right side of the page to do so.

Your comments, questions and suggestions are always welcome.  Please leave them in the comments section below.

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Exercise and Fitness – How to hire a personal trainer

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BetsyC.ITSBetsy Collie is an exercise studio owner, a fitness instructor in kettlebell classes, yoga and a personal trainer.  Bruce asks her about why an exercise studio versus a gym. They discuss what a personal trainer is and how you can determine if the person you are hiring is good or a dilettante trainer.

Before you invest your money in a trainer, listen to what Betsy has to say.

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Are hormones the cause of weight gain during menopause?Distress on Scale

The short answer to that question is yes!  Surprised?  It may surprise you when I tell you that it isn’t estrogen and progesterone that are the problem.  It is hormones named insulin, cortisol, and adrenaline.

How do you control the hormones

responsible for weight gain?

The main culprit in weight gain is insulin.  Insulin is a very important hormone and without it functioning correctly we become diabetic.  No one wants diabetes, but too much of a good thing is harmful also.  It is sort of a Catch 22 situation.  Too little insulin equals diabetes, too much can cause weight gain around our middle and that can lead to heart disease and type 2 diabetes.  We have to control insulin!

There are other hormones involved


There are two more culprits that can be great in the right situation and terrible if that situation becomes more than a few hours long.  The situation I am referring to is the stress response.  It is a response intended to get us out of danger and help us recognize it more quickly.

When we perceive danger, like an attack, or a serious injury, our body prepares to fight or flight (run). When the amygdala in the brain receives signals about an emergency, it looks at past memories and sends a query to the frontal cortex to ask if it agrees that the evidence points to an emergency.  Emergencies cause a hard-wired response from the amygdala to the adrenals. Adrenaline (epinephrine) is dumped into the blood, raising blood pressure, pulse and causing muscle tremor.

Another signal is sent to the Hypothalamus – Pituitary – Adrenal axis and via signals delivered in the blood the adrenals secrete cortisol.  Cortisol shuts off all glucose to the muscles to insure an uninterrupted supply for the brain.  It causes the liver to dump stored sugar into the blood which spikes our blood sugar.  Guess what hormone shows up now?  Yes, INSULIN!  It lowers the blood sugar by having the muscles absorb as much as possible and then has the liver make triglycerides so they can be stored in fat cells close to the liver within the abdomen (and other areas close-by).

If you really have an emergency, this only lasts an hour or two.  But, if you are “stressed” by perceived dangers that do not go away, this reaction can occur over and over for days or weeks and sometimes years at a time.  Sleep is interrupted! Platelets are extra sticky and may clot inflamed areas within vessels – both veins and arteries – causing serious situations.

What I want you to remember is insulin and the stress hormones cause weight gain anytime.  The reasons it is worse in menopause will be explained in part two of this article. 

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