Enjoy Holiday Meals Without Weight Gain or Guilt

17 12 2016

Santa’s on his way

Updated, 17 December 2016 Marc Woodard

I can’t believe how fast the end of year Holidays roll upon us.  And for some it can be a stressful time.  Especially if you have a hard time managing body weight.

I have an 8-Tip Holiday Meal Plan that may alleviate fears of eating your favorite traditional Holiday meals and without gaining weight.

These tips can help many resist the temptation to overeat during this time of year.  I’m sharing a “no weight gain strategy.”  This strategy has helped past clients stay on weight loss target.  Admittedly most didn’t lose weight… however most didn’t gain any either.  And some even shed a few pounds by applying all 8 tips below.

Back History on the 8-Tip Holiday Meal Plan – I was asked during a client consult if I could create a work around food strategy.  One that allowed someone to eat favorite foods during the Holidays without derailing a current weight loss plan.

Of course I told the young lady there’s always a risk of falling back into a bad food habit when overeating hyper-palatable foods.  But for this individual it was worth the risk to modify the current diet plan.  That is to enjoy a traditional Christmas meal with family and not fear losing control over foods and body weight.  Prior to this request she had avoided all Holiday meals in fear of weight gain.  And now doesn’t want to avoid them any more.  After applying the 8 tip program she acknowledged the following results.  There was no weight gain and she continued to stay on weight loss target for the following Year.

For some, it’s almost as if we have to harden the body for the rigors of war because of all the food temptations in front of us.  The smells and tastes are enough to drive anyone crazy and want to go on a food binge.

The worse part of consuming too many calories in a day, as we age our body’s metabolisms become less efficient at processing the excess.  Instead the metabolism gets very efficient at storing body fat weight.  It is also true during the Holidays most have a tendency to over indulge and then continue this pattern the following Year.

I also understand some of you have had tremendous success in melting the pounds away last year as you stuck to your new year’s weight loss resolution commitment.

Congratulation to you!

For those still struggling to lose weight don’t give up!  I’m sharing the same client tips I know can work for you.  And quite possibly may be habit changing enough to incorporate into your current weight loss program.

However the tips alone may not be enough to meet your ultimate weight loss goal.  Whereas ill-health conditions warrant medical doctor advisement prior to changing a daily routine.  The point being these food strategy tips will not help if you are in poor health, have substance abuse problems, personality disorder, e.g., obsessive compulsive tendencies, etc., and/or carry excessive body weight and grossly obese.  Moving on…

IMG_0186

A Time to Celebrate With Family

I’m no different than anyone else with regard to foods during the Holidays.   I’m greatly tempted to eat more than I need.  However, awareness of our food habit weaknesses combined with a food plan strategy is the best deterrent to minimize an uptick in body fat weight during the Holiday season.

The fact is as you age the body simply doesn’t require the excess calories it once needed during the developmental and active adult years.  This does not mean you have to give up all your favorite foods.   For the most part you can consume a selection of your choosing.  Your only real requirements are to follow the satiety suggestions below, reduce over processed food consumption and don’t eat or drink your calories after 8pm.  And participate in some form of low stress aerobic exercise activity daily [i.e., walking, biking, hiking, jogging, dancing, yard work, rowing, cross country ski, swimming, etc.].

Since everyone’s metabolism is different due to age, sex, health and medical condition, genetics, etc.,  I can’t predict or provide a one fit “hold the body weight line” solution that will work for everyone.  Especially when I know the program below was designed and worked for a few client types that wanted to indulge during the Holidays without experiencing weight gain.

However I do know these tips are worth sharing because they can be advantageous for you.  Especially if your the type of individual that has the will power to continue a healthy habit food course after partaking in an infrequent celebration or Holiday meal.

Can this 8-Tip Holiday Meal Plan strategy work long term?  Yes I believe it can for certain individuals.  But determining each individuals commitment to a successful weight loss goal and plan is best accomplished through 1:1 consulting services where information sharing is a two-way street and the program is relative to individual needs and wants.

For those of you that are disciplined enough to pace yourself and turn off the feeding frenzy… My hats off to you!  You have will power most of us can only dream about.  For others, to help reduce calorie consumption during the Holidays my 8 Tip Holiday Meal Plan may be of consequence.

Best Time Ever

Best Time Ever

If you take this 8 Tip Holiday Meal Plan to heart and apply parts of it or the whole, it can work short and possibly long term.

Tip#1Never!  I repeat Never!  Go to your mother, mother-in-laws, or Grandmothers home for Holiday meals hungry!

The habit of starving ourselves in preparedness for the Holiday meal seems to be ingrained within the American spirit and culture.  I know my family like so many others during the Holidays have repeated this ritual.  It’s no wonder we can’t stop ourselves.  Before you know it, we’re all lying around like beached whales on a lido deck with “Hot… Hot… Hot,” playing in the background.  So, it stands to reason, you must eat a normal meal not less than 2-3 hours before you go over for a Holiday meal.

The way our digestion system processes food after a meal, the stomach will not be empty for the next 4-6 hours depending on metabolism.  This digestive function varies with each one of us.

I don’t suggest being selective when choosing Holiday foods.  Just serve the foods you want to eat and don’t over load your plate.  The point is when you get to the table you won’t be as hungry or want to eat as much.

Tip#2Never!  I repeat Never!  Drink alcohol prior to going into the meal.

Tasty Beer Cheer.

You don’t drink and drive do you?  Well, what makes you think you could drink and consume without injury to your body prior to sitting for the meal?  Although I’m being facetious, I’m also serious in the way I want to make my point.  Alcohol is a depressant, pain killer, relaxant, taste intensifier and social inhibitor.  The point is easy to understand here, eat and drink like Vikings… No pain equates to much inhibited calorie gain!

Limit yourself to two 8oz glasses of cheer after the meal (your choice).  Remember alcohol also contains calories that add up fast.

Tip#3Drink plenty of water throughout the day when attending Holiday meals.

Water is a natural solvent, absorbs well in the stomach and intestinal lining assisting the body’s digestive system to process food intake more efficiently and that means less calories stored as fat.  Plus, water will make you feel full faster and has no calories.

Tip#4Do not stay at the dinner table after eating.

This is where most of us fall prey to over eating indulgences.  It is very difficult to resist picking at the Holiday turkey, cranberry, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, pies, olives, sipping on Champaign…  “Ohhhhhh the dressing and gravy… Give me a break!  I’m dying here.  I think I just made myself hungry.”

See how hard this is and I’m supposed to be giving you advice.  Look, I never said I wasn’t human, or this would be easy.  More so the reason to have a pre-meal battle plan strategy that moves one away from the table and out of the kitchen after the meal.

Tip 5#Take your first serving.  After you consume it wait 20 minutes before you think about seconds.

Take at least 20 minutes and enjoy the meal.  “Seconds is not recommended.”  This will be the hardest part of the meal plan.   It takes your brain approximately this much time to register whether you’ve eaten enough or not.

Focus on satiety not a feeling of fullness.  But if you do decide you can’t resist a second helping focus on a favorite serving that doesn’t take up more than 1/2 the plate diameter.  And no piling food on the plate.   Focus on 50% less than what you’d normally put on the plate for 1st’s and 2nd’s.

Tip#6Never!  I repeat Never!  Eat dessert after you’ve eaten your meal.

This will only add insult to injury.  Your body simply is not designed to handle this mass blood sugar spike without consequence, especially if you’ve achieved satiety after eating the main meal.  Wait 1 hour to see how your body processes the feeling of what you ate.  If you experience a feeling of satiety and not overfull after a period of time then do enjoy some dessert.  While eating dessert take your time to gage feeling of gut comfort. But if you begin to experience the feeling of near full, back off and leave the remaining portion of dessert.

Tip#7 Never!  I repeat never!  Take home left over’s.

This can set you up for failure early on into the New Year.  Simply by continuing to eat these foods addicts some to a similar eating pattern for months.  And thereafter another 10 pounds can be added quickly.

Walk where ever you find yourselves during the Holidays.

Tip#8Don’t quit your exercise program during the Holidays.

This is very important!  When you consume excess calories on “any day,” you will need to mobilize the body to remove the unspent fat fuel.  I highly recommend a daily walking program, or other Low-Impact aerobic activity at least 30 minutes daily.

You’ve now learned how it’s possible to embrace Holiday foods that don’t compromise the meal experience or add guilt.  And best of all when applied with conviction you won’t gain weight.  You may be surprised and even lose a little.

Marc Woodard wishing you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.  If fortunate enough to get covered in the white stuff, walk around in it. It’s a fantastic exercise activity experience.

Have a wonderful Holiday season with family and friends and don’t let your food fears and weight loss plans prevent a great meal experience with loved ones.

Plan, prepare and participate in the spirit of the Holidays without fear of being around the foods you love to eat.  You’ll be glad you did.

MirrorAthlete wishing everyone a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Author: Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, ARNG, CPT, RET. 2016 Copyright. All rights reserved, Mirror Athlete Inc., http://www.mirrorathlete.com, Sign up for your Free eNewsletter.

Advertisements




Chronic Disease Caused by Consumer Demand

23 05 2016
Traveling and enjoying good company keeps a mind and body fit healthy. Astoria OR, column.

Traveling and enjoying good company keeps a mind and body healthy.  Marc at the Column, Astoria OR.

One of the first articles I wrote in November 2007 was inspired by a network news and publications article titled “Is Cancer in Your Tub?”  What caught my attention were two glycol ether solvents used in everyday household, food and hygiene products.  Also a key ingredient used in anti-freeze.  Well I knew I didn’t want to drink or eat anti-freeze, so this caught my eye.

The thing I didn’t put into perspective back then was how the consumer created a convenience demand in the marketplace.  A choice that continues to make the populous sick and cause disease.  And the best way to bring “you” the reader up to speed is to start from the beginning… 8 years ago.

What exactly are these two solvents and why would an anti-freeze ingredient be in our home cleaners, hygiene and food products?  “Glycol ethers are a group of solvents based on alkyl ethers of ethylene glycol or Propylene Glycol (PG) commonly used in paints and cleaners.  These solvents typically have a higher boiling point, together with the favorable solvent properties of lower-molecular weight ethers and alcohols [Wikipedia 2016].”

AntiFreeze

Note the main Ingredient: ethylene glycol and Warning Label.

Note the main Ingredient: ethylene glycol and Warning Label.

“Ethylene glycol are still used in anti-freeze preparation, household, automotive cleaners, laundry cleaners, etc.  Propylene glycol is also used in many of the same consumer products, such as home cleaners, hair, cosmetics, creams, lotions, soaps, shampoos, toothpaste, pet foods, deodorants, etc. (GoodGuide 2011).”  The list of products containing both glycol ethers is long.

Propylene glycol is also used as a food stabilizer in many processed foods as I’m now more familiar.  And the FDA stands by their PG approval-to-market SAFE for human consumption like tens of thousands of other consumer chemicals.  “The Food and Drug Administration has classified Propylene Glycol as “generally recognized as safe,” which means that it is acceptable for use in flavorings, drugs, and cosmetics, and as a direct food additive. According to the World Health Organization, the acceptable dietary intake of propylene glycol is 25 mg of propylene glycol for every kilogram (kg) of body weight (ATSDR 2015).”

The unique qualities of PG is it “provides unique inherent properties with regard to holding/attracting both water- and oil-based substances.  In food, it is used to retain food color pigments and provide for homogeneous distribution within the mixture.”

    IMG_20130405_175029It is also used as a “Solvent and carrier for flavor and color in food and beverage manufacturing processes, for drinks, biscuits, cakes, sweets.  ‘Thickener, clarifier and stabilizer in food and beverage such as beer, salad dressings or baking mixtures (PO/PG 2016).”

PG is also used as the main liquid component of e-cigarettes.  For example, “PG exposure per puff of the Ruyan® e-cigarette.  The cartridge of the Ruyan® e-cigarette contains approximately 1g [or 1000mg’s] of PG, of which 0.9 g is extractable from the pad. The concentration of PG in the mouth from one drag of the Ruyan® e-cigarette (900 mg per cartridge, 300 puffs = 3mg) is 3 mg per mouthful.”

It should also be noted within the report there is an “Inhalational Minimal Risk Levels (MRLs)” citation.   “No MRLs for acute- or chronic-duration inhalation exposure to propylene glycol were derived because data are insufficient.”  And this report also highlights “Carcinogenicity.  Stating ‘There is no evidence that PG is a carcinogen.”

But a “SAFE use” contradiction is also apparent within the same report.  “MRLs of acute- or chronic duration inhalation… data are insufficient (Laugesen 2008).”  Or to better clarify and understand the meaning of this statement, ‘absent of long-term risk data on health’ OR ‘No Evidence for lack of long term data.’

To better relate to the FDA approval process, think about it this way.

NW Nutria

NW Nutria is not used in lab studies and is much more interesting to gander upon than a field mouse.

Most FDA approvals are based on animal studies of relatively short duration.  Whereas the data is extrapolated to make relative to human metabolism, weight, environment, habits, dosage, frequency etc.  One last point to make, we are humans, not rodents.  So one must ask… how relevant are these studies to human DNA and disease?  And how much pressure is there to release and approve a new product to market?   And once released don’t industries have something to loose should an approved SAFE chemical be recalled from the marketplace?  The answers to these questions are economically and politically by design and connected.  The short of it is, It’s all about special interest power, control and money!

To date, I was curious to see if GP was removed, banned or listed as a health risk on any consumer product.  Of course I wasn’t surprised to find anything of the kind.  However glycol ethers may be the least of consumer product toxin worries.

Prior to reading that November 2007 publication, consumer safety advocates warned the world years earlier of carcinogenic household items.      For instance,  On February 23 a “1998 CBS’s morning talk show, ‘This Morning’ reported the findings of a study from the US Department of Health and Human Services’ National Toxicology Program that sent shock waves throughout the cosmetics and personal care products industries.”

Personal hygiene should be replaced with green products to reduce health risk associated accumulative daily toxin uptake.

Personal hygiene and home cleaners can be replaced with green products to reduce health risk associated with daily toxin uptake.

Fast forward… the moment of truth, our everyday household items have carcinogenic toxins as exposed by various laboratory controlled studies.  They “confirm serious health issues with long term use of our FDA Qualified “SAFE” products! (Young 2011).”  [Shocker?  Not at all.  Simply look at the billions of dollars industries spend and profits made.  Changing profitable industry culture course is an act of God.]

During 2007 I also procured brochures from author Debra Lynn Dadd, “Please Protect Yourself from Household Toxics.”  I handed them out to clients for consumer safety information and audit of household products.

Clients audited bathroom and laundry cabinets. They replace all cleaning and hygiene products with natural/organic products.

Clients audited bathroom hygiene and laundry cabinets. They replaced toxic products with natural/organic ones.

I recommended they audit and remove the toxic products and go green.  And advised them to keep diaries of certain medical symptoms which had abated after removal of certain toxic products after reading Dadd‘s article.

She stated, “While certain people may be more sensitive than others, and some chemical(s) may bring on reactions only after many years of repeated exposure, I discovered household cleaning and bathing chemicals may bring on reactions only after many years of repeated exposure.”

Many of the home use product(s) that increased certain health risks listed in the brochure were cancer, birth defects, genetic changes, heart disease.  Literally any symptom imaginable both physical and psychological could be linked to a common household product.

“Scientist admit these toxic chemicals can lodge in our endocrine system contributing to thyroid problems, diabetes, weight gain, and infertility.  At greatest risk are fetuses, children, the elderly, and those who are already ill, but these chemicals are threatening the health of everyone, every day (Barry 2013).”

I also cited an AARP Bulletin from May 2008, Vol.49 No. 4, titled “Hazards at Home,” within that original 2007 article by Reed Karaim.  Making similar statements as Debra Lynn Dadd.  Karaim followed in suit, “older people are more likely to have conditions – such as cardiovascular disease, cancer, respiratory disease and diabetes.”  Adding to the collective demographic concern “Older people are more like infants and children in their ability to fend off toxic assaults says Sandra Steingraber, the author of Living Downstream:  An Ecologist Looks at Cancer and the Environment.”

What's in your Laundry Room?

What’s in your Laundry Room?

Within the same Bulletin a statement of stern warning is made over the use of home “Cleaners – Chemicals to avoid in cleaners, says McRandle (Paul McRandle, Deputy Editor at the National Geographic Green Guide), run from ammonia, which is known to trigger asthma, elements in chlorine bleach, which is a lung irritant and will kill you if you swallow it, to things like glycol ethers, which are used to dissolve grime and dirt, and can cause nerve damage (Karaim 2008).”

PG is still listed safe by the FDA.  However, I’ve no doubt science will prove the long-term PG health risk effects through e-cig smoker data.  By studying habits of consumption, dose, toxicity and patients presenting similar “cause and effect” symptoms, diagnosis, treatment and disease connections, and discovery commonalities will occur over time.

Convenience does not come without a health risk price.

Convenience does not come without a health risk price.

The most disheartening and overwhelming reality is there are more chemicals used in foods and household products than ever before.  Including expanded use of glycol ethers in foods.  Also “Of the more than 80,000 chemicals currently used in the United States, most haven’t been adequately tested for their effects on human health (NRDC 2016).”

It appears most likely disease is linked to a cocktail of multiple consumer products, not just one.  “Chemicals found in household products may be causing significant increases in cancers, diabetes, obesity and falling fertility, the European Environment Agency has warned. ‘In recent decades, there has been a significant growth in many human diseases and disorders including breast and prostate cancer, male infertility and diabetes. ‘Many scientists think that this growth is connected to the ‘rising levels of exposure’ to mixtures of some chemicals in widespread use (Smith 2012).”

“Some of the most pervasive chemicals are used in plastic products, and are known as “endocrine disruptors.” Convenience food products are bagged, bottled and plastic lined canned containers.

Almost all food and drink containers have varying levels of toxins that leach into consumables.

Almost all food and drink containers have varying levels of toxins that leach into consumables.

“On February 19, the World Health Organization (WHO) announced a report co-produced with the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP), titled: State of the Science of Endocrine-Disrupting Chemicals.” Concern over the increase of chemical use in convenience foods, household and personal use products.

My takeaway and interpretation of past and current trends, scientific studies and consumer health risk and industrial data; these chemicals are destroying or mutating DNA within cellular structures of endocrine [hormone] and neurological function leading to serious and chronic disease.

“The report suggests a ban of endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs) may be needed to protect the health of future generations. ‘Health risks include: Non-descended testes in young males, breast cancer in women, prostate cancer in men, developmental effects on the nervous system in children, attention-deficit hyperactivity in children, thyroid cancer (Mercola 2013).”

Marc clearing his Northern CA backwoods property. Wilderness living has its perks.

Marc clearing his Northern CA backwoods property.  Wilderness lifestyle has its perks.  And is as close as I can get to the way the pioneers lived.

“In some ways, our ancestors had it easy. Because they didn’t have chemically treated food and chemically enhanced kitchenware, their diets and cooking practices exposed them to fewer toxic hazards (Breast Cancer Fund 2016).”

Unfortunately Big-Ag, food processors and manufactures see a huge demand for convenience products with chemicals that make our foods smell, and taste and look more appetizing with long storage life.   Including cheap and toxic convenient household and hygiene products.  We’re addicted to all of them.   As long as consumer convenience demand and profits are high and long term health risk is not connected to an FDA approved SAFE chemical… the toxic environmental uptake and increase of insidious disease won’t be in decline anytime soon.

Nothing has changed much after years of health risk warnings from consumer safety advocates, epidemiologists and independent lab studies, etc.   Chemicals used in products are on the rise and so is disease.

Big Ag-Corps may appear green. Health conscious consumers should qualify... was the product produced by a certified organic farm?

Big Ag-Corps may appear green.  Health conscious consumers should seek to qualify the quality of product on labels… I.e., was the product produced by a certified organic farm?

The big winners are Chemical, Pharmaceutical, Big-Ag and Health Care industries.  To include a plethora of consumer product and processor manufactures.  Why do I list Health care services and Big-Pharm industries?

Treating acute and chronic disease is big business.  Cures are not.

“If it’s not about the money, what is it?”  I’d say it’s 2-fold.  Customers need and want lower cost and convenience products.  And industries are more than happy to continue providing profitable and cheap product that meet demand.

Until consumer demand changes to provide healthier products for you and your family, there are things you can do to reduce household and environmental toxins.

Recommendations,

What can you do to protect your family?

What can I say. I like sponge Bob. But this ones not made out of plastic toxins.

What can I say. I like sponge Bob. Although not made out of plastic toxins… it is likely made of a percentage of synthetic materials with toxins.

1   Don’t give plastic toys to small children unless marked BPA or Phthalates free.  “On October 15, 2007, California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger signed into law AB 1108 (also known as the California Toxic Toys Bill), making California the first state in the country to ban the use of phthalates from children’s products (West 2016).”

2   Eat less processed and convenience foods and consume more whole foods.

3   Purchase organic ‘green’ home cleaners, cosmetics and personal hygiene products.

4   Wear PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) e.g. gloves, mask, boots, hoodie, pants, long sleeve shirts, apron when using non-green cleaning products.

5   Read food, home cleaning products and hygiene labels – if you can’t pronounce the ingredients, it’s most likely a chemical preservative, additive, stabilizer, dye, solvent, etc., of varying toxic quality.  Go Green and Organic as often as possible and available.

Purchase green-organic when possible..

Purchase natural/organic when possible..

6   Don’t consume the same drinks and foods every day, especially convenience and fast foods.

7   Consume plenty of fruits, vegetable and water.

8.  Infrequently purchase water, juice, sodas and foods stored in plastics and cans.  Glass is the best container to store foods and drinks.

9   Check dates of frozen foods and use within a 30 day window.

10  Vent and circulate fresh outdoor air throughout the home by leaving windows cracked ¼” open.  Clean HVAC systems and ductwork per manufacturer recommendation.

11  Become a conscientious consumer safety advocate and practitioner and family educator of green/natural products.

12  Become a voice and vote.  Use your 1st Amendment rights to petition government and special interests to win voter-consumer choice.  Be an advocate, or support to ban or remove certain toxic ingredients from consumer goods and services.  Or call for label laws that inform shoppers ingredients known to cause cancer and other chronic disease.

Conclusion,

If consumers don’t demand the marketplace change; then realize cost and convenience has greater value to a majority populace than long term health risk.   With this reality and without consumer and health risk prevention education in our K-12 schools, it should be no surprise new generations don’t value healthy lifestyle.  While disease and health care costs continue to rise.

We have no one to blame but ourselves.

Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, ARNG, CPT, RET. 2016 Copyright. All rights reserved, Mirror Athlete Inc., http://www.mirrorathlete.com, Sign up for your free monthly newsletter.

References,

ATSDR. “Public Health Statement for Propylene Glycol.” ATSDR. Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, 21 Jan. 2015. Web. 20 May 2016.

Barry, R. M. “Please…Protect Yourself from Household Toxics Pamphlet by Debra Lynn Dadd.” Melaleuca Cleaning Products. RM Barry Publications, 2005-13. Web. 20 May 2016.

Breast Cancer Fund. “Chemicals in Food.” Breast Cancer Fund. Breast Cancer Fund, n.d. Web. 20 May 2016.

GoodGuide. “What Kinds of Consumer Products May Contain This Chemical?” ETHYLENE GLYCOL — Consumer Products. GoodGuide, 2011. Web. 20 May 2016.

Karaim, Reed. “Hazards at Home.” AARP Bulletin Today. AARP, May 2008. Web. 20 May 2016.

Laugesen, Murray. Safety Report on the Ruyan® E-cigarette Cartridge and Inhaled Aerosol. Rep. Christchurch, New Zealand: Health New Zealand, 2008. Print.

Mercola, Dr. Joseph. “Common Household Chemicals Linked to Human Disease.” The Huffington Post. TheHuffingtonPost.com, 8 July 2013. Web. 20 May 2016.

NRDC. “Health, Toxic Chemicals.” NRDC. Natural Resources Defense Council, 2016. Web. 20 May 2016.

PO/PG. “Food, Taste, Fun and Convenience.” – Propylene Glycol. PO/PG Sector Group of Cefic, Brussels, n.d. Web. 20 May 2016.

Smith, Graham. “Chemicals in Household Items Are ‘causing Huge Increase in Cancer, Obesity and Falling Fertility'” Mail Online. Associated Newspapers, 11 May 2012. Web. 20 May 2016.

West, Larry. “Toxic Toys: Chemicals in Toys Endanger Children.” About.com News & Issues. About.com, n.d. Web. 20 May 2016.

Young, Dr. “Is Cancer in Your Tub.” Is Cancer in Your Tub. Dr. Young, 19 Jan. 2011. Web. 20 May 2016.





Marc Woodard Reflects on MirrorAthlete

24 04 2016
Marc Woodard Founder of MirrorAthlete

Marc Woodard
Founder of MirrorAthlete, Inc.

Sid asked specific questions regarding information I posted on our first web site in 2007.

This provided an opportunity to share more of the company’s history with readers and reflect on MirrorAthlete moving forward.

Question(s) from Sid, 

    I can’t seem to locate your MirrorAthlete pain chronicles I read back in the early years.  I remember it as a unique informational pain management website. I can’t find the chronic pain tab at your new site.  Have your memoirs been moved?  Where can I find them?  And do you still take on clients for consultation and customized fitness programming?  I’m interested to catch up and learn more on how you regained your fitness levels after injuries and chronic pain. 

    A friend of mine coincidentally lives in your neck of the woods.  He said you also produced and sold nutritional supplements under the name of Dynamic Dimensions in Tigard and surrounding cities, while offering 1:1 services in fitness assessments in the 90’s.  You also programmed specialized training routines for a fee.  I’m looking for answers to keep the muscle mass I’ve worked so hard to achieve.  But now feel I’m losing ground because of back pain.  Although I’m working with my doctors and yet another fitness trainer, they don’t have that unique pain management perspective and experience I remember you had.  I see you’re on LinkedIn, FaceBook, and Twitter and also a city councilor in your home town since 2011. 

I do walk miles daily. Best aerobic activity one could perform daily

I average 55-60miles/week. Best aerobic activity for fat burning, body tone and muscular endurance and cardiac health at any age.

You appear to look fit, healthy and productive.  I also hear you’re walking over 8-12 miles daily on a regular basis.  I’d like to read the rest of your story and learn how I can get back on track with my strength training routine and other activities. 

Sid, your memory of the site and what I was doing years ago is impressive.  This caused pause to reflect on the makings of a company and personal growth.  Thank you for providing an opportunity to share more history and update our readers.

I began MirrorAthlete as an informational site to show how to alleviate and manage pain and still achieve fitness goals.  At that time I was also learning how to write and become a webmaster due to injury and years of limited mobility.  I focused on pain management because at the time I was injured with weight bearing and radiating nerve pain and other issues you apparently recall.  Those Chronicle entries read like a memoir reflecting upon better days.  And how I’d apply pain threshold limits using unique exercise and range-of-motion technique to increase fitness levels.  Then eventually regain my former fitness levels and physical abilities.  We’ll leave it at that… Most of “how” I got through the mental, physical and spiritual pain challenges is now divulged in a ~350 page manuscript soon to be published.

Initially I didn’t plan to make what I started a business when I began the MirrorAthlete pain chronicles.  I only knew I wanted to reach out and help others that were going through a similar physical adversity challenge.   At the time writing gave me something to do, kept my brain working and to remain productive somehow with limited mobility.

I also understood the value and application of continuing education, self-referred physician consultations and medical research data and information.  If there were solutions to be found, maybe I could fix a broken body full of pain.  And through sharing others might benefit.  Then one day I could put that information in a book and reach more than a few clients.  These actions ultimately changed my career path and the way I viewed life and the world.

At the time, I didn’t reveal to most including family and friends the encompassing battle I faced for years working through painful and depressing disability…  Eventually I found natural solutions to heal and much more about our industries, marketplaces, consumers and world commerce.  I also know there are mega-industries that don’t want a majority of you to learn what I found to get well.  Why?  Because it would impact and change generational values, habits and behavior.  In short, eventually cripple their power and control over social, political and economic matters.

Marketplaces are globally connected.

Marketplaces are globally connected economically, socially and politically.

To answer your question directly, the pain center tab link contained the pain chronicle memoirs throughout 2007 and those entries remained until early 2008.  I ran that journal for just over a year.  The chronicles also conceptualized my thoughts on a unique fitness trainer-consultant book. I jotted down those ideals in a notepad during a 1999 Mexican Rivera cruise while on vacation.  A book was one of those bucket list items.  Little did I know ‘those notes’ would be pulled sooner than later to write a manuscript.  It would also become larger than any project I’ve undertaken and harder to put into words than ever imaged.

Love Cruises. Coming back from Alaska. Last stop Victoria B.C., Canada. I walked a couple miles to get the shot, then walked another 4 to the heart of the city.

Love Cruises. Coming back from Alaska. Last stop Victoria B.C., Canada. I walked a couple miles to get the shot, then walked another ~ 3 into the heart of the city.

In early 2008 I decided to pull the MirrorAthlete Pain Chronicles from the site to begin writing the manuscript in hopes a publisher might take interest.  “Why not, it wasn’t as if I was going anywhere soon stuck using a wheelchair, crutches and cane.”  I wrote many manuscript versions, but lacked a creative vision and writing style.  For the most part I was a technical and communicative writer throughout my military and corporate career, not a creative one.  Two very different and distinct animals.

So there you have it.  It took years of failed articles and manuscripts to learn how to connect the industrial consumer dots, share my expertise in fitness and health matters, while writing with a factual-narrative flare to capture reader interest and imagination.  I look back at those Chronicle entries and early publications from 2007-2010; the writing style and grammar wasn’t good but the content had competitive potential.

In 2011 I nearly quit writing.  Those early manuscripts literally went up in flames.  But not the hundreds of chronicle pages I saved in archive files.  Those stories represent everything MirrorAthlete could become.  I knew something was missing to make the connection and conversion from “original MirrorAthlete concept-to-chronicles-to-book.”  Eventually I’d figure it out and the result would be a fantastic educational and thought provoking fit-healthy lifestyle, trainer-consultant book for all demographics and generations.

Luckily one day in early 2012 while on a long walk, a light bulb went off in my head.  I figured out what was missing.  It was a principled philosophy of tenets I believed in, lived by and provided to my clients.  I should have seen this years ago, but I didn’t.

Jefferson Library within Congressional Library Washington DC

Jefferson Library within Congressional Library Washington DC

If I would have taken a philosophy course in college maybe I would have got it sooner than later.  Oh well, a decade later is better than never.  Once I incorporated those principles into the umpteenth manuscript “I don’t know I lost count.” I knew I had something a publisher might take interest in.  This is when the real work began.  The publisher sent it back, you know “my umpteenth manuscript” with 550 change requests.  What a defeating blow to my ego!

Putting my pride aside, I had to make a decision.  Quit or press on.  I’ve never quit anything I began without exceptional effort to achieve a win.  Of course we don’t win at everything in life.  However, I know without trying, you never know what you’re made of and what can be accomplished.  So it’s no surprise to anyone who knows me well.  I don’t quit easily, especially when motivation and passions run high.

Now 4 years later I’ve learned how to write a book, build and maintain a website, edit and publish articles online [a continuous learning process].  I’m now in the final stages of detail required for book publication.  The manuscript now fully incorporates our 18 tenets listed below.  These are the beliefs I lived by as a fitness trainer and instructor and used to develop customized fitness programs for clients.  Currently, my role in the company is a healthy lifestyle writer-consultant for MirrorAthlete Corp.

MirrorAthlete® Principled Fitness and Healthy Lifestyle Philosophy is based on these 18 tenets by Marc Woodard

1   “Optimize fitness results by defining and relating to applied fitness practices.” 

2   “When kids value healthy habits future generations benefit.”

3   “Working muscle metabolism prefers specific fuel mixtures to optimize fitness results.” 

4   “Due diligence prior to purchasing fitness product or services is wise.” 

5   “Balanced food nutrients and activities sustain health and fitness levels” 

6   “Consumer needs and wants determine the marketplace supply and demand.”

 7    “Removing a bad habit may require a substitute practice to achieve the objective.” 

8   “Man adds hyper palatable ingredients in foods that addict and harms health.”

 9    “Relating to lab results can influence lifestyle change and consumer choice.”

 10   “Successful Weight Loss does not Require Abstinence from the Foods you Love.” 

11   “Select’ Cooking Fats Benefit Weight Loss, Health and Fitness Goals.” 

12   “Childhood experiences influence adult habits and behavior.” 

13   “Commit to healthy lifestyle and achieve fitness goals.” 

14   “Chemically and genetically engineered foods are bad on health.” 

15   “Healthy lifestyle releases body chemicals that support well-being.” 

16   “Oxygenate the body, burn more fat and lower risk of illness and disease.” 

17   “God’s universal design shows us how to live happy, healthy and long lives.”

 18   “Relative exercise programming optimizes fitness and health and lifestyle results.”

I’ve included similar pain chronicle stories in the book manuscript never seen by anyone including my family.  They are documented at the end of each chapter under “Personal Fitness Challenge.”  The chapters’ content is also backed by hundreds of professional citations which substantiate MirrorAthlete unique principled philosophy.

And to make it a more entertaining read there are ~50 satirical cartoons and tables and charts.  Humor is good for the encompassing being.  And our cartoonist John Fiedler does not disappoint.  Reacquaint yourself with our home website and learn more about the book project and release date.

Sid, “you won’t have a long wait to hear the rest of the story.”

I’ve pushed off the publication of this manuscript for personal and family reasons throughout the last 3 years.  However I can say in all honesty the book is 95% complete.  I still need to perform one last editorial review before sending it back to the publishing house for their final editorial critique.  Also I have not written the conclusion, or finalized the front and back inner/outer cover text and art.

Marc at the capital.

Marc at the capital.

I am accepting book endorsements at this time from professionals in related fields.  Especially in fitness, nutrition, health, medical, sports training, exercise science [physiology], vocational rehab, natural healthy lifestyle products and services, etc.  Simply send your bio, or [LinkedIn Link] and why interested in endorsing our book.

If selected you’ll receive ‘select’ sample chapter writings of our manuscript.  And if sample writings meets your endorsement requirements and approved by mirrorathlete… you’ll be given personal-company recognition with ‘your’ approved endorsement statement on back of our book cover.

Send book interest and endorsement request to:  marcwoodard@mirrorathlete.com

The book release date was recently listed 2nd quarter 2016 at our website.  Now a new release date, 1st quarter of 2017 has been agreed upon per Corp., annual minutes of the meeting.  I’m very hopeful this new deadline will be met.

My wife often asks when it will be done.  I simply reply, “It’ll be ready when it’s ready and not before.”  I’ve also had other writer’s say, “You know Marc it will never be good enough in your eyes.  ‘Just submit it, let the publishers tweak it in the editorial process and get it published.”  I’ll admit I’m a much better writer and editor than those earlier years.  However the quality of content and terminology must be consistent, relative, interesting, up-to-date, and valuable to all consumers and thought provoking enough to stand the test of time.  These are my standards which I will not compromise and will ensure this book is second-to-none in class.

I know the quality and competitive writing style and consumer value is there.  I’ve read each chapter a hundred times over.  And to tell you the truth the content is captivating to a point where I look forward to a reading it again, as I know others will.  Why? I teach anyone how to apply the skill-sets I spent a lifetime learning through simplified, interesting topics and client and consumer examples anyone can understand and relate too.  Then readers will often refer back when healthy life choices and changes require guidance through timeless literary consultation.  And for those struggling with physical, mental and spiritual adversity I believe the “Personal fitness Challenge Stories” at the end of each chapter will resonate on a personal level and be of great support, motivation and comfort to all who need and want to improve an adversity situation and live life to the fullest.

To stay up-to-date on our book project and monthly articles publication, click on Book Project Details, or 1st Book Release Update links.  Also learn more about topics of interest within our publications repository and/or subscribe to our free self-published articles at MirrorAthlete Fitness Secrets.  Also visit MirrorAthlete FaceBook page and “Like” us and share this exciting book release news.  Follow us on Twitter.  You can also visit our home site.  To learn more on Marc Woodard Bio, visit LinkedIn.

    Sid’s final question.  “Do you still take on clients for consultation and customized fitness programming on-line, visits or by phone?” 

No I haven’t taken on any clients, instructed fitness classes or manufactured supplements for some time.  My focus in 2007 was to get back to my Exercise Science roots.  First help myself, thereafter find a vehicle to share the knowledge I’ve learned and show others how to live life to the fullest.  There is so little time in life to give something back to others.  I had a story of immense value to tell and I wanted to share it.  A book was the best way to spread these principled fitness and healthy lifestyle truths from a fitness trainer and healthy lifestyle consultant perspective.

Now thousands of consumers will have a 1:1 consultant guiding them in natural fitness, health, wellness, nutrition, well-being, longevity, consumer safety and anti-aging best-in-class practices.  Including hard to find insider secrets the mega-industries hope you never find.

After the book publication maybe I’ll venture into new MirrorAthlete business opportunities.  For now I’m grateful and content living life to the fullest while giving back to my community as a local politician, writer and family business consultant.  I hope you continue to follow us and chime in through social media, etc.

Sid, thanks so much for this opportunity to share more history in the making with our readers.  Also I know when the book is published, everything you’re looking for and more will be there.

If any subscriber has a unique question, or article ideal simply send email to: marcwoodard@mirrorathlete.com and it may be published in our monthly newsletter.

Good health to you and your family!

Sincerely,

Marc.

Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, ARNG, CPT, RET. 2016 Copyright. All rights reserved, Mirror Athlete Inc., http://www.mirrorathlete.com, Sign up for your free monthly newsletter.





Enjoy Holiday Meals Without Weight Gain or Guilt

21 12 2014

It’s that time of year again. What will be your New Years Resolution?

I can’t believe how fast the end of year Holidays roll upon us.  And for some it can be a stressful time.  Especially if you have a hard time managing body weight.

I have some food management and modified behavioral habit tips that may help alleviate fears of eating your traditional Holiday meals without gaining weight.

These tips may help you resist the temptation to overeat foods craved at this time of year.  I’m sharing a “no weight gain strategy” I’ve provided past clients and have helped to keep weight off within a 48 hour window of time and longer.  Although most didn’t lose weight… they didn’t gain any either.

It was through a diet consulting session a client asked if I could create a work around food strategy so they could eat their favorite foods during the Holidays.  And without derailing a weight loss diet plan.  Of course I told them there’s always a risk of falling back into a bad food habit when you eat rich foods.  But for this individual it was worth the risk to enjoy a good Christmas meal with family and not fear losing control over foods and body weight.

For some, it’s almost as if we have to harden the body for the rigors of war because of all the tempting food nemesis in front of us.  The smells and tastes are enough to drive anyone crazy and want to go on a food binge.

The worse part of consuming too many calories in a day, as we age our body’s metabolisms become less efficient at processing to remove the excess food fuel from it.  Instead, our metabolisms get very efficient at storing body fat weight.  It is also true during the Holidays we all have a tendency to over indulge and then continue this pattern through the New Year.

We all know excess body fat has a direct correlation to poor health conditions and disease.  Some of the better know diseases directly related to obesity for example are diabetes, atherosclerosis, congenital heart failure, weight bearing joint pain, etc.

I also understand some of you have had tremendous success in melting the pounds away last year as you stuck to your new year’s weight loss resolution commitment.

Congratulation to you!

For those still struggling to lose weight don’t give up!  I’ll provide the same client tips to help you modify food habits in a way to enjoy a tasty meal in good company without fear of weight gain.  And quite possibly this may be a habit changing plan to supplement  your continued weight loss effort during the New Year.

But the tips alone may not be enough to meet your ultimate weight loss goal.  Since weight loss, health condition, medical history and fitness levels are all interrelated it is advised you seek a medical doctors consultation if you have a serious obesity or health problem.  These food strategy tips will not help if you are in poor health, have substance abuse problems, obsessive compulsive tendencies and/or carry excessive body weight.

IMG_0186

A Time to Celebrate With Family

I’m no different than you with regard to all the tempting foods during the Holidays, I’m greatly tempted to eat more than I need.  However, awareness of our food habit weaknesses combined with a food management strategy is the best deterrent to minimize an uptick in body fat weight you don’t want.

There are many reasons one may over consume foods daily [stressful environment,  compulsive behaviors, bad relationships and depression to name a few].    However when over consumption occurs frequently, the body tends to accept this habit as the norm.  Hence a new habit of overeating is formed and weight gain is inevitable for most of us.

The fact is as you age the body simply doesn’t require the excess calories it once needed during the developmental years.  This does not mean you have to give up all your favorite foods.   For the most part you can consume a selection of your choosing.  Your only real requirement is to cut out excessive calories and participate in some form of low stress aerobic exercise daily [i.e., walking, biking, hiking, jogging, dancing, yard work, rowing, cross country ski, swimming, etc.].

Since everyone’s metabolism is different due to age, sex, medical conditions, genetics, etc.,  I can’t predict or provide a one fit “hold the weight” solution that will work for everyone for a few days.  Especially when I know the program was designed and worked for a few client types that wanted to indulge during the Holidays without experiencing weight gain.  But since I know these tips can work through short-term modification of food behavior and habit it’s worth sharing because it can work for you.  Especially if your the type that has enough “will power” to apply a short term off-the-wagon dietary strategy to self control within the 8-Tip Holiday Meal Plan guidelines below.

Can this food tips strategy work long term?  Yes I believe it can for certain individuals.  But determining each individuals fitness and weight loss goal nuances, habits and behaviors within environment etc., is best accomplished through 1:1 professional consulting services that make these connections and provide relatable  information  that resonate with clients.   Personalized fitness programming with a safe weight loss long-term strategy has the best chance to succeed when unique lifestyles are analyzed and prescribed relative to the individual.

For those of you that are disciplined enough to pace yourself and turn off the feeding frenzy… My hats off to you!  You have will power that most of us can only dream about.  For others, to help reduce calorie consumption during the Holidays, My 8 tip Holiday Meal Plan plan may be of some assistance.

Best Time Ever

Best Time Ever

Now, let’s get to the meat of what you’ve been waiting for. Here are the tips clients and I have used to minimize weight gain during the Holidays.  If you take this 8-Tip Holiday Meal Plan to heart and apply it, it can work for you short and possibly long term.

Tip#1Never!  I repeat Never!  Go to your mother, mother-in-laws, or Grandmothers home for Holiday meals hungry!

The habit of starving ourselves in preparedness for the Holiday meal feeding frenzy seems to be ingrained within the American culture.  I know my family, like so many others during the Holidays have repeated this ritual.  It’s no wonder we can’t stop ourselves, before you know it, we’re all lying around like beached whales on a lido deck with “Hot… Hot… Hot,” playing in the background.   So, it stands to reason, you must eat a normal meal not less than 2-3 hours before you go over for a Holiday meal.

The way our digestion system processes food your stomach will not be empty for the next 4-6 hours after each meal depending on metabolism.  This digestive function varies within each one of us.   I don’t suggest being selective when choosing Holiday foods.  Just serve the foods you want to eat and don’t over load your plate.  The point is when you get to the table, you won’t be as hungry and you just won’t want to eat as much.

Tip#2Never!  I repeat Never!  Drink alcohol prior to going into the meal.

You don’t drink and drive do you?  Well, what makes you think you could drink and consume without injury to your body?  Although I’m being facetious, I’m also serious in the way I want to make my point.  Alcohol is a depressant, pain killer, relaxant, taste intensifier and social inhibitor.  The point made of over consumption is easy to understand here, eat and drink like Vikings… No pain… Much calorie gain!

Limit yourself to two 8oz glasses of cheer after the meal (your choice).  Remember alcohol also contains calories that add up fast.

Tip#3Drink plenty of water throughout the day when attending Holiday meals.

Water is a natural solvent, absorbs well in the stomach and intestinal lining assisting the body’s digestive system to process food intake more efficiently.  Plus, water will make you feel fuller faster.

Tip#4Do not stay at the dinner table after eating for further conversation.

This is where most of us fall prey to over eating indulgences.  It is very difficult to resist picking at the Holiday turkey, cranberry, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, pies, olives, sipping on Champaign…  “Ohhhhhh the dressing and gravy… Give me a break!  I’m dying here; I think I just made myself hungry.”

See how hard this is and I’m supposed to be giving you advice.  Look, I never said I wasn’t human, or this would be easy.  More so the reason to have a pre-meal battle strategy that advises one to move away from the table and out of the kitchen after the meal.

Tip 5#Take your first serving, after you consume this wait 20 minutes before you think about seconds.

Take at least 20 minutes and enjoy the meal before you even think about seconds.

“Seconds is not recommended.”  This will be the hardest part of the meal plan.   It takes your brain approximately 20 minutes to register whether you’ve eaten enough or not.  Focus on satiety not a feeling of fullness.  But if you do decide you can’t resist a second helping focus on a favorite serving that doesn’t take up more than 1/4 the plate diameter.  And no piling on.

Tip#6Never!  I repeat Never!  Eat desert after you’ve eaten your meal.

This will only add insult to injury.  Your body simply is not designed to handle this mass assault without consequences, especially if you’ve achieved fullness after eating the main meal.  Wait 1 hour to see how your body processes the feeling of fullness.  If you experience a feeling of satiety after a period of time then do enjoy some dessert.  But if you begin to experience fullness again back off.

Tip#7 Never!  I repeat never!  Take home left over’s.

This can set you up for failure early on into the New Year.  Simply by continuing to eat these foods stimulates and addicts some to a continued and similar eating patterns for months.  And thereafter another 10 pounds is added to body weight.

Tip#8Don’t quit your exercise program during the Holiday season.

DSC00495

Marc prepares for the Holiday festivities with family. A time of Year to reflect and be thankful for all we have.

This is very important!  When you consume excess calories on “any day,” you will need to assist the body in removing the unspent food fuel.   I highly recommend a daily walking program, or other Low-Impact aerobic activity at least 30 minutes daily.

Hopefully, I’ve provided a few tips you can relate to and apply this Holiday season.  You’ve now learned how it’s possible to embrace Holiday foods without guilt and doesn’t’ compromise taste buds or the social meal experience with family.  And best of all, if taken seriously and applied correctly, you won’t gain any weight.

Many can enjoy tasty meals during the Holidays without gaining weight when a reasonable food consumption plan is known in advance to help modify traditional Holiday food habits.

Please have a wonderful Holiday season with family and friends and don’t let your food fears and weight loss diet plans compromise having a great meal experience with loved ones.  Plan, prepare and participate in the spirit of the Holidays, you’ll be glad you did.

Merry Christmas and have a Happy New Year!

Author:  Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, ANG, MSC CPT RET.  2014 MirrorAthlete® Copyright,  All rights reserved.  Sign up for your free monthly eNewsletter.





New Year Resolution Guarantees Weight Loss Success

20 12 2014
Aerobic workouts good for the cardio Muscular endurance

Is this the secret to safe weight loss?  The answers may surprise you.

After all the Holiday festivities, one has to wonder what fitness and/or health resolution will be made this year and stuck too?

It seems as we age and for many of us, increased body is added each year.  And with that being said, we continually resolve to improve our eating and exercise habits and quit unhealthy vices.

We tell ourselves we’re going to get serious this time and get fit while losing weight.  I realize we all have good resolution intentions.  However, for most this is easier said than done.

If you lack will power to change bad habits long term, the results on the organic brain/body will experience more pain and suffering than necessary in the long run.  If one is not concerned about such things then risk of disease and shorten life span may ensue if positive change does not occur.

If your serious about healthy change and willing to follow a fitness plan that’s right for you, “you can” improve quality of life experiences in a more fit body.  But you must keep the following perspective in mind.  It took years to become unfit and unhealthy.  It may take some time to turn around an unfit condition.  The good news is this change can be done in a reasonable time with little effort, once the body chemical activation secret is understood.

Yah I know, easier said than done for some of you.  Because some believe “I can’t change, or I’m too old, or I’m going to die eventually, so what the hell.”  You say these things not because you don’t believe change is possible.  But it’s easier to talk yourself out of change for lack of knowing what dietary and exercise actions may actually work for you

What would you say if I could provide you valuable insight on how to improve health, lose weight safely, increase fitness levels and increase longevity odds at no cost and modest will power?

And this knowledge simply involved understanding how to activate addictive body chemicals produced by your own body. Thereby increasing will power to continue a fitness plan and achieve your desired fitness result?  Would you be interested in this insight?  Most would say yes, what’s the catch?

No Catch.

What, you thought I was talking about a magic pill or have some other hidden agenda?

Nope.

No need for pills or gimmicks, your body produces these powerful chemicals once you know how to activate them daily.  And I’m going to give you this known scientific information at no cost.  And believe me the marketers don’t want you to have this information, why?  Because they lose fitness and nutrition sales revenues.

If your looking to select a fitness or diet plan, don’t get duked into one that guarantees quick results!   Man-made products produced from unnatural chemical additives compromise the mind and body at the cellular level.  Also fad and fitness diet-exercise plans not relative to your lifestyle will only work short term, or not at all.

These “quick fix” fast weight loss and fitness fad concoctions are wrong for most of us long term.  Especially if one becomes dependent on them.  Thereafter has potential, if nothing else changes to cause more harm than good in the long run.

Now click on the following link and learn how to activate those powerful body chemicals naturally, lose weight safely and improve health and fitness levels long term.

Click: on Link:  “Get Skinny by Activating Addictive Body Chemicals.”

Author:  Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, ANG MSC CPT Ret. 2014 MirrorAthlete® Copyright, All rights reserved. Visit MirrorAthlete® home site and sign up for free monthly newsletter.





Resolve to Lose Weight through Simple Changes

11 11 2014

Wild Turkeys in California on Rural Walk

So your New Year’s resolution is to improve your fitness levels.  What will your fitness goals look like and how will you achieve them?

The most common and desired fitness goals by clients are:  weight loss, reduced body fat, muscle strength, increased cardiovascular and muscular endurance and flexibility.

One must also recognize the will power necessary to change habits and behaviors and is an essential mind set attribute if long-term fitness goals are to stick.  So what will be your fit-healthy strategy to succeed in your New Year’s resolution?  First you must know how to develop and apply a fitness plan that’s relative and right for you.

What fitness goal will you be working on?  The most typical New Year’s Resolution after the Holidays is weight loss.  Since I’m targeting weight loss as a fitness goal you will have to have a little will power and motivation to do this on your own?

First of all, “you know yourself better than anyone.”  Am I right?  Of course I am.  If you’ve been telling yourself for the last 2-3 years your New Year’s resolution is to lose weight and you’ve still had no success, hopefully this insight will help increase your will power and motivation to achieve a desired weight loss result.

I know many of you are conflicted with life events that seem to sabotage your fitness plan each year.  Like you, I can easily relate to these things.  For example, job stress, kid and adult care, relationships, feeling tired, addicted to bad habits that take away motivation-energy-will power (bad food & drink habits, smoking, drugs, etc.), lack of sleep, stressful and/or toxic environment, etc.  I could go on and on, but I’ll stop here.

You get the picture.

If any of these life events and issues are preventing you from achieving a fitness goal(s), you must find a workable solution to change a bad situation/ or stressful environment if you expect an opposite result.  If you cannot make the positive lifestyle changes needed that motivate you to achieve personal goals, you’ll forever struggle to enjoy life to the fullest while fitness levels, mindset and health continue to suffer.

And if you fail repeatedly and continue to feel bad about yourself and situation, you’ll eventually give up on other life ambitions and goals.  Repeated fitness failure and feeling miserable for too long is a recipe for “depression,” which is also a common cause of physical illness and disease.

Also, if you begin a restrictive and dangerous weight loss program out of desperation as a short cut to lose weight you may cause further harm to your mind and body.  When the body’s metabolism discovers it’s been duked unnaturally, it will eventually retaliate by packing on weight with a vengeance after the fact.  And if you become dependent on  yo-yo dieting abusive tactics, you’ll break your metabolism permanently, gain more weight and in time will cause more pain, depression and other unnecessary illness and disease.

When weight loss failure happens too often, this reinforces a defeated mindset, “I can’t lose weight,” therefore I’ll continue the bad habits and further compromise health and quality of life experiences.  The mind then accepts an unhealthy viewpoint which intern harms the encompassing being throughout time.   I’m here today to tell you, you don’t have to accept unhealthy weight loss short-cut practices to lose weight naturally.

Through years of personal client experience, I explain the healthy and unhealthy lifestyle habits and resulting effects and how to eventually change a poor dietary and/or bad activity habits.  But it ultimately is the individual, armed with useful and relatable information; and if medical help is needed seek it out; and where they must chose, decide and truly want to make change.  The key elements in achieving a desired fitness goal, if you’ve not been successful at it for years is to admit you need help in understanding the following concepts and applying the necessary lifestyle changes.

1)    If you have “repeated” failures at losing weight or your health is at risk, you must change the habits, or behaviors that are causing your weight problems.   If you are grossly obese and/or your health is at risk seek medical attention immediately!  See your primary care physician and seek a referral to a behavioral therapist, nutritional, life coach or fitness trainer-consulting service to help target your weight gain nemesis, or bad behavioral habits.  Then build an action plan and resolve to change to healthier lifestyle habits and/or healthier environmental conditions.

2)   It is my belief you must exercise to have effective long-lasting weight loss and sustaining results.  However, for those that have not participated in a fitness exercise activity and now find themselves overweight, a walking program will be your best course to aerobically burn body fat and lose weight with minimum risk of weight bearing joints.

Exercise activity can be performed in many different ways, e.g., resistive weight training, walking, hiking, biking, jogging, etc.   Basically anything that moves the body consistently for a period of time provides an aerobic fitness benefit.  Walking at a brisk pace (3-5 days/wk for 15-60mins) is the best metabolic fat burning, low-stress exercise activity which results in weight loss and cardiovascular benefits.  However, if you are just starting a walk program, “do not start out walking at a fast pace,” you may work your way to higher intensity, or brisk walking pace over an extended period of time if you’ve been sedentary for awhile.

When you incorporate exercise into a weight loss program you reap other benefits, such as:  Increased metabolism, muscle development, fat loss, body toning, mood enhancement, strength, flexibility.  And decreased cholesterol levels, blood pressure, mood swings, depression, stress and other illness and disease risk.

3)   There are certain habits that will sabotage any weight loss goal:  Uncontrollable and bad eating habits and smoking, drinking and legal/illegal drug addictions need to be addressed.  Behavior therapy or in combination with cessation treatment and group therapy may be ideal in order for you to be successful in your weight loss and healthy lifestyle objectives.

4)   As we age our bodies require anti-oxidant and whole food quality nutrients to boost metabolism, increase energy, mood; maintain weight and overall health.  So balanced diet in the form of healthy macro and micronutrients become more important especially if one expects to optimize weight loss results.  If you can’t get fresh whole foods in your diet, I highly recommend you supplement your food source with a high-quality vitamin-mineral product.  Food is energy and certain foods have more or less high nutrient concentrates that don’t always find their way into the daily diets for whatever reason.

5)   It is also true, in the short-term a weight loss program which incorporates exercise may add weight.  You say what?  That’s right, depending on body type and exercise activity it can increase muscle mass (muscle cells are more dense and heavier than fat cells).  When you exercise the muscle fiber can increase in mass and weight.  So as you lose body fat “at first,” muscle mass increase will keep your weight consistent and may even show a slight increase on the scale.  The trick here is to understand this is normal and eventually, the more muscle developed means greater fat burn.  This equates to greater fat weight loss in time.  Eventually, the weight on the scale begins to drop after the bodies muscles become better conditioned.

6)   There are simple weight loss measurements to measure success.  If this is not done you may lose focus on your goal.  The simplest and quickest form of weight loss measurement is a scale and the way clothes fit around the waste.  If my weight increases and waist band feels loose, I equate this to muscle mass weight increase.  If my weight decreases and waist band feels tight, I equate this to body fat increase and muscle mass loss.  If my weight decreases and waist band feels loose while aerobics walking activity continues; I equate this to lean muscle mass toning and body fat loss.  “For me,” this represents an easy way to measure my weight loss success.

Is this the best way to measure fitness and body fat weight loss success?  No it’s not, but it serves as an inexpensive base line reference that provides some positive feedback results for your efforts.

So what is the perfect weight loss program for you?  The answer lies within developing a relative daily exercise and balanced nutrition program relative to your lifestyle needs and wants, and a plan in place that can sustain healthier habits long term.

When exercise is included into the day then will power also increases to stay the healthy lifestyle course.  Why?  because the mind and body craves the addictive body chemicals released by exercise!”   Read article (Get Skinny by Activating Addictive Body Chemicals, November 2014, Woodard).

In understanding these concepts and principles you’ll experience more daily productivity, feel happier, healthier, have more energy, feel and look better and enjoy more quality living experiences.  You will also boost your MirrorAthlete image “the way you see yourself in the mirror” which will definitely boost your ego and motivate you to accomplish other life goals you thought impossible.

Author:  Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, USA Medical Services Officer, CPT, RET.  2014 Copyright, All rights reserved.  MirrorAthlete Corp., Publishing @: www.mirrorathlete.com, Sign up for your free eNewsletter.





10 Super Centenarians, How did They Live over 116?

18 06 2014

Healthy relationships contribute to long life spans

Updated:  18 June 2014

I wrote an article titled “How Did These Well Known Celebrities Live so Long?”  I thought it interesting next to look at the longest living “super” centenarians on record to better understand the similarities of the longest living celebrities (Ref #4 below).

How did average people live well past 100 years of age and significantly longer than the longest living celebrities on record with a  95 year average lifespan?

First let’s examine some of the longest living centurion biographies on record.   And after reviewing these biographies, I’ll attempt to make a correlation to their lifestyle secrets.

I’ll then render an opinion as to why I think they lived so long.  It should also be pointed out some of these biographies are rather thin in background.  This is because during the 1800’s, interviews before death and recording of this information was challenging, unlike our current time celebrity longevity data.

Jeanne Calment (21 February 1875 – 4 August 1997) she lived 122 years, 164 days, place of residence Arles, France.   Jeanne Louise Calment surpassed previous Guinness Book of Record holders as the longest living confirmed human.   It was said Jeanne smoked more than 2 cigarettes per day and after an operation in 1994 she weighed 99 pounds where she became dependent on a wheelchair for mobility.  She attributed her long life and youthful appearance to olive oil which she used religiously in her food and on her skin.  Included within her diet she drank port wine and consumed ~2lbs of chocolate weekly.  In total she outlived 329 undisputedly-verified super centenarians

Sarah Knauss-Clark (24 September 1880 – 30 December 1999) she lived 119 years, 97 days, place of residence, Hollywood and Allentown, Pennsylvania.  Sarah had a career as an insurance office manager and upon her marriage to Abraham Lincoln Knauss (December 19, 1878 – March 1, 1965) she spent her time as a home maker and was a skilled seamstress.  Mrs.  Knauss was known as an extraordinary woman that pushed the envelope of longevity.  It was said, the reason for her longevity stemmed from the fact she was a very tranquil person and nothing fazed her.  Also it is known that she enjoyed life because she had her health and could do what she wanted.  Her interests and foods included: viewing golf tournaments, needlepoint and nibbling on chocolate turtles, cashews and potato chips.  Her only child Kathryn Knauss Sullivan (November 17, 1903 – January 21, 2005) lived to be 101 and was 96 at the time of her mother’s death.

Lucy Hannah (16 July 1875 – 21 March 1993) she lived 117 years, 248 days, place of residence Born in Linden, Alabama and died in Detroit.  She moved in the great migration to escape the racial tensions that where prominent of the times in the Deep South.   Her parents survived slavery for which it is noted they were whipped daily until their freedom and thereafter suffered from trauma as a result of the physical and mental scars.   Lucy married John Hannah in 1901 and had 8 children together.  Two of her children were still living at the time of her death.  The two sisters lived to be 100 years of age.  And Hannah’s mother lived to the age of 99.

Marie-Louise Meileur (29 August 1880 – 16 April 1998) She lived 117 years, 230 days, place of residence Kamouraska, Quebec, Canada.  It is known that Marie was married twice and between the two marriages had 4 children with first husband Etienne Leclerc from 1900 and where he died in 1911.  And then the super centenarian had six other children through her second marriage with Hector Meileur whom she married in 1915 until his death in 1972.  She had 85 grandchildren, 80 great-grandchildren and 57 great-great- grandchildren and 4 (3 x great grandchildren).  Marie’s death was the result of a blood clot.

Maria Capovilla (14 September 1889 – 27 August 2006) She lived 116 years, 347 days and was recognized by Guinness World Records during her reign as the world’s oldest living person ever in South America and the southern hemisphere in Guayaquil. Ecuador.  It is also interesting to note she is also the oldest human that had a life span living within three centuries.  Born as Maria Esther Heredia Lecaro; she married a military officer, Antonio Capovill after his first wife died.  They had five children together, three (Hilda, 81, Irma, 80 and Anibal 78) of which were at Maria’s side prior to death.  Antonio passed in 1949.  She had 12 grandchildren, 20 great-grandchildren and 2 great, great grandchildren.  She enjoyed watching TV, reading and walked without the assistance of a cane, but helped by an aide prior to the day of her passing.  She also never smoked or drank hard liquor.

Although home bound for the last two years of life, she shared her home with eldest daughter Hilda and son-in-law.  In an interview her traditional view of men and women stated her dislike, about how women today are permitted to court men, rather than men courting women.

During 2006 near time of death Maria’s health took a turn for the worse.  She could no longer read, she nearly stopped talking and no longer could walk without the assistance of two people.  Just prior to her death she was able to sit comfortably in her chair and fan herself.  She died just 18 days before her 117th birthday.  Cause of death Pneumonia.

Tane Ikai (18 January 1879 – 12 July 1995) She lived 116 years, 175 days, place of birth Kansei, Japan.  She is the only fully verified person within Asia to reach 116 years of age.  She married at the age of 20 had 3 sons and one daughter.  At the age of 38 she left her husband.  At the age of 89 she entered a nursing home.  At the age of 109 she had a stroke where she remained bed ridden in a hospital until her death.   Cause of death kidney failure.

Besse Cooper (26 August 1896 – 4 December 2012) 116 years and surpassing Elizabeth Bolden’s 116 years, 118 days.  Besse Berry Brown-Cooper of Sullivan County, Tennessee was married to Luther Cooper and had 4 children and widowed after 39 years of marriage.  Luther was 68 at the time of his death.  Mrs. Cooper lived on her farm and moved into a nursing facility at the age of 105.   Recently, Cooper reached her 116th birthday in August 2012, the second-oldest verified person from Tennessee and surpassing Elizabeth Bolden who died in December 2006, at the age of 116 years and 118 days.  When asked what the secret to her super centurion lifespan, she stated, “minding my own business” working outdoors and avoiding most junk foods and ate lots of vegetables.  Occupation: retired teacher.   Cause of Death: Respiratory Failure.

Elizabeth Bolden (15 August 1890 – 11 December 2006) She lived 116 Years, 118 days and at the time of her death recognized by Guinness as the oldest living person.  She was born in Somerville, Tennessee, the daughter of freed slaves.  She had 7 children, only two of which were alive at the time of her death (Esther, 89 and Mamie 86).   Elizabeth had 40 grandchildren, 75 great-grandchildren, 150 great-great grandchildren and 220 (3 x great grandchildren) and an amazing 75 (4 x great grandchildren).  And in her final days of life she resided within a Memphis Tennessee nursing facility.  Elizabeth also lived a life spanning within three centuries.

Maggie Barnes (6 March 1882 – 19 January 1998) She lived 115 years, 319 days, place of residence, Johnston County, North Carolina.  She was born to a slave and married a tenant farmer.  Eleven of her children preceded her in death, while 4 of her other children survived her after death.  Mrs. Barnes died of a complication from a minor foot infection.

Christian Mortensen (16 August 1882 – 25 April 1998) He lived 115 years, 252 days, last place of residence San Rafael, California.  Born in a village near the city of Skanderborg, Denmark, he then settled in Chicago and worked various trades: tailor, milkman, and restaurateur and factory worker.  He was married 10 years, had no children and never remarried.  Retiring near Galveston Bay, Texas; 28 years later it was claimed at the age of 96 he rode his bike to the Aldersly Retirement Community in San Rafael where he stayed until his death.  He’s the oldest living male to date.

When asked for advice on his long life; he stated, “stay away from alcohol; drink lots of water, keep a positive attitude, keep good friends and singing” will help you live a long time.  His diet preferences were mainly a vegetarian diet and he also drank a lot of boiled water.  He also smoked cigars believing if in moderation, it was not unhealthy.

In order to find these 10 centurions longevity secrets, we’ll compare their lifestyles, diet, behaviors and habits to compare common lifestyle habits and behavioral denominators that may have led to their long life spans.

Centenarian biographical and interview statements below: “in bold” are some of the lifestyle habits and behaviors claimed to contribute to their long lives.

Centurion Replies,

Use olive oil religiously in foods

Port “Red” Wine

Chocolate

Cashews

Potato chips

Drink lots of water

Mainly vegetarian

Drink boiled water

Junk foods

Hard Liquor

Rub olive oil on skin

Smoke Cigarettes and/or Cigars

Alcohol

Red wine

Very tranquil person

Mind my own business, stress reduction

Keep a positive attitude and sense of humor

Perceived and overall Good health

Needlepoint

Ability to be mobile

Singing

Watch TV

Listen to Radio

Watch Sports

Walking-mobility

Communication

Socialization

Working Outdoors

Good Family and friend relationships

Social gatherings

One has purpose in life

Interactive life

High Cancer Statisic- Environment (Reference article #11, 12, 13, 14)

California, Florida, Texas and New York (High Cancer States)

Centurions live mostly in Low Cancer States

Cause of death,

Mobility loss

Blood clot

Pneumonia

Kidney Failure

Infection

No cause listed, “respiratory failure”

Conclusion,

All but one of ten centenarians lived in a statistically low cancer state(s) [excluding those that lived outside of the United States].  And all but one of the 10 was male.  Christian Mortensen lived in Texas 28 years and then moved to a California nursing home at the age of 96.  He lived ~48 years in a statistically high cancer state(s), and where it appears he spent the majority of his first ~68 years of life in Skanderborg, Denmark.  He lived ~116 years of age beating all other fellow men in longevity.

It looks like all 10 of these individuals lived within large families; most were married and/or had large circles of various interactive social-family relationships.  It also appears mobility, stress reduction and positive mood disposition was important contributors to overall wellbeing.  As far as their habits and diets it appeared they moderated the good with “little” bad.  For the most part, their diets appeared healthy and most did not consume any or very little alcohol.

Recall, 9 out of 10 of these super centenarians where female.  It is a fact that women live longer than men.  This has a lot to do with genetics, diet, body weight, hormones, immune systems, habits and lifestyle.   What specifically separates men from women?  Men are greatly driven by hormones (read importance of testosterone on men’s health, Ref #8) that tend to cause more risky behavior and mood-stress characteristics.  Also when testosterone levels drop, or become unbalanced in men during the aging process, this change tends to have a significant impact on men’s health and longevity.

These centenarians shows us they lived relatively balanced lifestyles.  They were physically and mentally active throughout their life span; they enjoyed personal and social gatherings and relationships mostly within large circles of friends and family. And for those residing in the United States lived mostly within low statistical cancer states (Ref #11).

They lived purposeful and mobile lifestyles, had positive attitudes, maintained low levels of stress, had good sense of humor, enjoyed selfless endeavors and shared their life experiences and stories with others.  They also lived life to the fullest and without the crutch of habitual vices and little need of medications.

Reference,

  1.  Fadem, Mitch, Dr.  Health Benefits of Cigar Tobacco – Cigars and Medicine.  The Tobacco Leaf – Good or Bad?  About.com.  http://cigars.about.com/od/legalhealthissues/a/cigarmedicine.htm
  2. Rettner, Rachael.  Sweet Science:  The Health Benefits of Chocolate.  LiveScience.com.  11 February 2010. http://www.livescience.com/6111-sweet-science-health-benefits-chocolate.html
  3. Wikipedia.  The Free Encyclopedia. Oldest People.    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oldest_people#Oldest_people_ever
  4. Woodamarc.  How these Well Known Celebrities Lived So Long.  Hubpages.com.  20 August 2012.  http://woodamarc.hubpages.com/_sigsinmula/hub/How-Did-These-Well-Known-Celebrities-Live-so-Long
  5. Woodamarc.  Pain Depression Origins. Hubpages.com. 5 April 2010.  http://woodamarc.hubpages.com/_sigsinmula/hub/Pain-Depression-Origins
  6. Woodamarc.  Alcohol Consumption Good for You?  What?  Hubpages.com.  14 November 2008.  http://woodamarc.hubpages.com/_sigsinmula/hub/Alcohol-Consumption
  7. Woodard, Marc.  Disease is Scientifically Linked to Genetic Engineering of Food Crops.  MirrorAthlete Fitness Secrets.  22 August 2012.  http://mirrorathlete.com/blog/2012/08/22/disease-is-scientifically-linked-to-genetic-engineering-of-food-crops/
  8. Woodard, Marc.  Low Testosterone, another Man Made Risky Fix?  MirrorAthlete Fitness Secrets.  22 January 2012.  http://mirrorathlete.com/blog/2012/01/22/low-testosterone-another-man-made-risky-fix/
  9. Woodard, Marc.  Learn to Embrace the Pain, Exercise and Get Fit.  MirrorAthlete Fitness Secrets.  23 September 2011.  http://mirrorathlete.com/blog/2011/09/23/learn-to-embrace-the-pain-exercise-and-get-fit/
  10. Woodard, Marc.  Wisdom of Consuming Oleic Acid [Olive Oil].  MirrorAthlete Fitness Secrets.  23 January 2010.  http://mirrorathlete.com/blog/2010/01/23/mae-healthblog-wisdom-of-consuming-oleic-acid-2/
  11. Woodard, Marc.  Pancreatic Cancer Statistics and Recommendations.  MirrorAthlete Fitness Secrets.  24 November 2009.  http://mirrorathlete.com/blog/2009/11/24/mae-health-blog-pancreatic-cancer-statistics-and-recommendations/
  12. Woodard, Marc.  Is Pancreatic Cancer on the Rise?  MirrorAthlete Fitness Secrets.  24 October 2009.  http://mirrorathlete.com/blog/2009/10/24/mae-health-blog-is-pancreatic-cancer-on-the-rise-part-1/
  13. Woodard, Marc.  Can You Prevent Cancer?  MirrorAthlete Fitness Secrets.  1 May 2008.  http://mirrorathlete.com/blog/2008/05/01/mirror-athlete-enterprises-health-blog-can-you-prevent-cancer/
  14. Woodard, Marc.  Toxins in Every House Hold Consumer Product, What!  MirrorAthlete Fitness Secrets.  5 December 2007.  http://mirrorathlete.com/blog/2007/12/05/mirror-athlete-enterprises-healthblog-is-cancer-in-your-tub/

Author: Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, ARNG, CPT, RET. 2014 Copyright. All rights reserved, Mirror Athlete Inc., http://www.mirrorathlete.com, Sign up for your Free eNewsletter.