Category Archives: Fitness Blog

Younger Every Year!

January is the month when many people make New Years Resolutions.  Unfortunately, as we already know, 85% of these resolutions will fail within the first 3 months. Instead of making a resolution, at the beginning of each new year, I perform a Polar Bodyage Fitness Assessment for myself and my clients.  Together, we look back at what was achieved during the previous year and we agree on new goals and objectives for the upcoming year

This year, I decided to compare my very first Polar Bodyage Assessment ( 2004) to my present assessment.

Our Polar Bodyage Assessment uses a combination of assessments (strength, flexibility, cardio-vascular (VO2), body composition, girth measurements and nutrition) to calculate your body’s present biological age compare to your chronological age.

As you are able to see from the results of my assessment, the goal is to maintain as low a Biological Bodyage as possible.
Svetlana 2016

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Svetlana 2016

 

Svetlana results 2016

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What I have done to have a biological bodyage 15 years younger than my chronological age is not a secret.

  • I am extremely active person
  • I dislike driving, therefore I prefer to walk or ride my bike as often as possible
  • I lift weights 2 to 3 times per week. I enjoy lifting heavy weights and this has never made my body look bulky. The regular weight lifting has kept my muscles lean and strong.
  • I enjoy hiking, some aerobic classes and swimming when I have time
  • Due to the hormonal changes which happened during the last 10 years, I had to re-examine my food intake and I am much more aware of the type of nutrition which best suits my body type.
  • I have used vitamins and supplements for the majority of my life and this last year, I have discovered and began to use many wonderful nutritional and age defying products from Isagenix.
  • I love my job, my clients and my friends. I adore my family. I LOVE to be a Grand mother. It does take a lot of energy to keep up to a 4 years old girl. However, many times she finds that “grand-ma” has too much energy! J
  • I believe that two of the secrets of a long healthy life is be positive and to wake up every morning with a purpose for the day.

FIND PURPOSE IN YOUR LIFE. STAY ACTIVE, HEALTHY AND YOUNG.

Train Smarter – Not Harder!

Svetlana

How to Stay Bike Fit during the Fall/Winter Season? How to minimize the effects of “Detraining”?

Being an athlete and a coach, the effects of Detraining is something I have to deal with every year. Here is a typical scenario: As a cyclist living in the Vancouver area, riding from early April until the end of September is fun. Sun is out and the weather is warm. The regular and constant stimulus of long, fast and hilly rides increases everyone’s ability to ride strong and the majority of the riders have their best rides in late July, August and September. They feel strong and have good endurance.   Now that the wet weather and shorter days are here, many cyclists will put their bikes away and not think about cycling until next March or April. And then, it will be the same thing that happened in the past years. The first few rides will be rough! Hills will seem steeper; Keeping a certain speed on the flats will seem harder than the previous year; Butt will, once again, hate the bike seat; … You get the picture?

You will also be able to notice the difference which not exercising regularly for six months will make:

  • Increased body weight and body fat level
  • Your muscle mitochondria becomes less efficient at using oxygen to produce energy in your muscles. This decline can be up to 25 to 45 per cent after a 12 weeks period of inactivity.
  • After 2 to 3 months of detraining, you will begin to notice more stress hormones are released during exercise. This means that the exercise intensity you used to manage becomes more stressful for the body, which in turn increases recovery times.

The good news is that you can definitely make a difference of what your 2016 riding season will look like by making changes to the your fall/winter workout plan. And yes, you guessed correctly, I am talking about keeping your bike out for some winter riding.

It is simple really. Researches and studies have proved it: To be a strong cyclist you MUST get on a bike and ride on a regular basis all year long! “Use it or Lose it”!

Yes, I know that when it is wet and dark outside, it is hard to get on the bike and go for a ride. And I do completely agree with you!

How ever, there are many other ways for you to maintain and even increase your cycling fitness and strength without having to get wet.

  • Indoor bike trainers. They vary from the most basic trainer to the virtual indoor trainers which will make you feel like you are part of a group ride on the roads.
  • Spin classes: There are a large numbers of spin class centers in the Lower Mainland area: http://www.bcliving.ca/health-fitness/vancouvers-best-spin-classes
  • Indoor Track: We even have our very own Indoor Velodrome: http://www.burnabyvelodrome.ca/
  • And yes, you can always get on your bike and go for a road ride whenever the weather allows you to.

Regarding how often and how long each rides should be, there’s strong
evidence that even smaller volumes of the right kind and intensity of training can reduce the effects of detraining to a minimum.

Research shows that reducing your training volume by two thirds won’t harm your fitness, provided you include some 
very intense work, such as 
intervals, in the remaining one third.

My advice is to sit down and write yourself a weekly training plan and to try to include 2 to 3 hours of riding per week, minimum.

For example:

  • Tuesday and Thursday: spin classes
  • Saturday or Sunday: plan for a road ride if the weather is good or simply put your bike on your trainer and do a similar workout under the roof of your house.

By varying the type and intensity of these 3 weekly workouts, you will be able to maintain your hard earned riding strength and fitness and will be able to reach a higher level of riding in the summer of 2016!

See you on the roads.

Michel Pelletier/Bodyage Fitness

 

Keeping your body weight down through the winter time

November is here! The days get shorter, colder and it rains more.   There just seem to be less opportunity to exercise on a regular basis, right? And then soon, there will be all the Christmas parties… Finally, by the end of January 2016, the number on the scale will much higher than they were last summer.

We all know the story. Every year it happens to some of us. Let’s change the script of the story this year and make it a goal to keep your body weight within 1 to 2% of your pre-winter level. Deal??

Here are some simple tips you can use to help:

  • Drink more water: Being well hydrated is always important but drinking extra water will help in curbing your appetite. 2 glasses of water before leaving for a holiday party will be a valuable ally in controlling your caloric intake and also help counteract the dehydrating effect of alcohol.
  • Never arrive at a party hungry: Planning ahead and eating a small amount of food before you leave will help you maintain your discipline and avoid the temptation to over-indulge on the goodies.
  • Take it easy on the starches and instead go for the fruits/veggies and lean meat/seafoods: When looking at the buffet table, pass on the breads, white rice, sauces, cookies, cakes… and pick more tomatoes, peppers, grapes, kiwis, chicken bites, shrimps… They are all very tasty and much lower calories per bites.
  • Pace yourself when eating: Since you will not be hungry when you arrive, there is no need to try to eat as much as you can in the first half hour of the party. Try to sample only 1 item at the time and walk around the room to talk to different people instead of standing by the same table and picking food from it consistently.
  • Please limit the drinking of alcoholic drinks to one serving: In case you did not know, wine, beer and other alcohol all contain between 100 to over 200 calories per serving. And since alcoholic drinks are usually paired with food, these extra calories quickly add up.
  • Get plenty of sleep: Research has proven that not getting 8 hours of quality sleep will affect your body’s insulin and ghrelin (hunger hormone) levels, leading to overeating. Improving the quality and duration of your sleep will enhances growth hormone release and helps your immune system stay strong.
  • And of course, there is the “exercise before/after you go out to the party”: By burning some calories through a cardio-vascular and/or resistance training workout, you will indeed create a small caloric deficit and you may then indulge in one maybe 2 of your favourite treats!

Stay fit and lean this winter! Your body will thank you for it.

Eat Smarter – Train Better!

Svetlana & Michel

EATING THE MOST IMPORTANT MEAL OF THE DAY, EVERYDAY: BEAKFAST!

We are pretty certain that the majority of your mothers told you (still are…) that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Well, guess what? She was/is correct! (as always, moms are the BEST!)

In our household, the first thing we NEED to do every morning is eat breakfast. Our bodies & minds are calling/begging for some nutrition. We are still amazed as to the numbers of people we meet and begin to train who tells us they have not eaten breakfast for many years. People, it is time to change this. Here is why!

Many different studies have proven that eating a healthy balanced breakfast will:

  • Held provide daily essentials nutrients:
    • Most people who skip breakfast will be unlikely to make up their daily requirement for some vitamins and minerals that a balanced breakfast would have provided
  • Allow you to have better focus, attention to details and productivity:
    • Studies on those who work in labor intensive type of jobs have shown that the people who do not eat breakfast were unable to work as hard until lunchtime and studies on children reveal that they are unable to complete school work
  • Increase your daily metabolic rate and help maintain healthy body weight:
    • Studies have showed that people who skip breakfast have a metabolic rate four to five percent below normal, which may lead to an expected weight gain of eight pounds per year (one pound every seven weeks).
    • People who do not eat breakfast have showed to choose less nutritious and convenience foods to curb their appetite. Poor eating choices will often lead to eating throughout the evening and calories are stored as fat during the evening hours as your metabolism does naturally slows down each evening.
  • Provide you with more energy to exercise more on a daily basis
    • All research have showed that people who eat breakfast have higher energy levels, during the day, and often engage in more physical activity than people who don’t.

There you go folks. Above are 4 great reasons why you should indeed, eat breakfast every single day.

If you are one of these people who have not eaten breakfast for awhile, starts slowly and small. A blended liquid protein shake with whey protein, your favourite fruit and some healthy fats is a great way to start!

Remember that Healthy Body = Healthy Mind = Longer Healthier Life!

Eat Smarter – Train Better

Svetlana & Michel!

 

Living your Life like a “Mentally Tough Athletes” Will Help You Defy Aging!

The more different people we work with, the more we realize that the same principles Top-Athletes use everyday can also be used to help everyone fighting against the aging process have a better chance of winning their battles.

Below are 3 distinct character traits ” Mentally Tough Athletes” have in common which will definitely enhance your ability to Defy the Aging Process and Win!

COMMITMENT

Just like athletes who train everyday, you need to commit a good amount of your time and energy, everyday, to live an active – healthy lifestyle which, in return, will reward you with a strong – fit and healthy body!

Committing to your Defy-Aging goal will mean that you will have to make, on – the – spot choices, which will lead toward your long-term goal of maintaining an healthy body weight and strong and resilient muscles…

Training/Living Tips:

Just like when training for an event, set yourself some short term & long terms goals and do not allow yourself to stray from the path leading you to these goals! As discussed in previous posts, make realistic goals and reward yourself when you have reach these goals.

FOCUS

Mentally tough athlete have the ability to focus on their task at hands which allows them to consistently perform well regardless of the many different issues which may arise during the competitions.

By FOCUSING on the present moment, doing what needs to be done now, without worrying about the many distractions outside of your immediate task, you will also be much more productive. This fact will make your feel good and your resulting positive attitude will lead you to make smart decisions about your everyday choices: type and quantity of food to eat, going to the gym or sitting at home watching TV, amount of alcohol to drink…

Training/Living Tips:

Live your life “in the moment”! Living life in the moment—also called mindfulness—is a state of active, open, intentional attention on the present moment/action. Living mindfully is not always easy. Many times, our minds are overwhelmed by regrets about past events and/or anxiety about the future.   These tensions make it very hard to enjoy the present moment. There are some easy to do strategies which may help.

Do start with “Small actions”. Meditation is a great way to live life in the moment and doing mindful meditation for 2 – 3 minutes is a GREAT way to start. No need to try to do 20-30 minutes of meditation to begin with. Start small and learn tricks on how to keep your mind on the present moment.

For example, the next time you sit down to eat a meal notice the smell of the food. Take a small bite and focus on the first taste of the food. How the food feels between your teeth as you are mindfully chewing. You can easily turn a meal into a “meditative event”. Simple isn’t it?

RESILIENCE

Mentally tough athletes strongly believe that there are not many obstacles which cannot be overcome. They quickly assess the situation at hands and adapt themselves to meet the new, unexpected demands. Since their bodies are strong and fit, they can manage any situation which comes their way and when many people see obstacles, they see opportunities!

Training/Living tips:

Properly defining the many different challenges you are facing on a daily basis will often allow you to want to “get up and fight” instead of “giving up”!

Instead of thinking “ There is no way I can do this” start thinking more along the lines of “This is going to be a challenge but I can do this!”

Just like the Mentally Though Athlete, start looking for “Opportunities instead of Obstacles” and you will most likely amaze yourself as to how resilient you really are.

As you can see, being mentally tough is not just one skill, it involves many different skills/behaviours. The great news is that no one is born mentally tough, they became mentally tough! And so can you! Having the attitude to regularly challenge yourself to learn a new skill – sport… is a great place to start.

Svetlana and I are also finding that becoming older brings about new challenges every single day. We do our very best to embrace these challenges and look for ways to become stronger individuals every single day! Join us in our “Defy-Aging – Process!”

Train/Live Smarter – Not Harder!

Michel & Svetlana