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Calories Diet Fitness

Is Canned Tuna Good For You?

Looking at the problem with Ramen, I was worried that canned tuna fish – my next favorite for a quick and easy meal – may not be healthy for me either.  Happily, it looks like tuna fish is still good for you.  One article on Healthy Eating SFGate listed all sorts of happy news:

  • Omega-3 Fatty Acids: The small amount of fat present in canned light tuna is mostly the healthy unsaturated kind, including omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3 fatty acids support a healthy brain and promote proper growth and development. These essential fatty acids reduce inflammation in your body, which can reduce your risk of heart disease, cancer and arthritis.
  • Niacin: A 3-ounce serving of canned light tuna contains 11.3 milligrams of niacin toward the 14 milligrams women need each day and the 16 milligrams that men need. Niacin is a B-vitamin that helps keep your digestive system, skin and nerves healthy.
  • Vitamin B12: You need 2.4 micrograms of vitamin B12 each day, and a 3-ounce serving of canned light tuna supplies 2.5 micrograms. Vitamin B12 supports the normal function of your brain and also aids in the formation of red blood cells.
  • Mercury: You can safely eat a serving of canned light tuna every three or four days and a serving of canned albacore tuna every nine-to-14 days, according to the Natural Resources Defense Council.

There’s only 179 calories in a can of tuna fish so it sounds like I may be eating a lot more of it at lunch.

Just as a side note, there was a recall of Bumble Bee and Chicken of the Sea cannd tuna fish in 2013.  “There have been no consumer reports of illnesses attributed to these products,” Steve Mavity, Bumble Bee’s senior vice president of technical services and corporate quality assurance, said in a statement. “But because we’ve identified an issue with seal tightness, we’re voluntarily recalling products to ensure the highest margin of safety and quality.” Loose seals and seams can lead to bacterial contamination, which can cause food poisoning, according to the FDA.

Chicken of the Sea and Bumble Bee, two of the major tuna brands that you’re likely to see on the shelf at your local grocery store, will combine into one as the owner of Chicken of the Sea.  The merger, if approved, would probably happen in the second half of 2015.

Greenpeace has posted notes that Bumble Bee and companies like it, continue to rely on fishing practices that kill millions of marine animals every year, including sharks, turtles, rays and juvenile fish of all kinds. These practices threaten the very ecosystems that will keep our oceans healthy for generations to come.

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Calories Fitness Home New York Tools Weight

Using The Tools on This Site

I wanted to revisit all the Fitness tools and Calculators included on this site.  I had mixed results but the bottom line is that my tummy must be trimmed down. Stepping through the main page, we have the:

  • Body Fat Calculator  from http://www.fat2fitradio.com/tools/bf/  The formula provided will not calculate your exact body fat percentage but should give you a consistent measurement you can use as a guideline and determine if you’re losing body fat and/or muscle. Oddly, the calculation says I have body fat percentage is 27.4%.  My scale tells me it is 39%. I think I’m measuring something incorrectly.

    From http://www.fat2fitradio.com/
    Fat 2 Fit #144 – New Measurements Of Success Written on March 3, 2013 – 12:00 am | by Helana Brigman

Looking at this photo, I’m sadly inclined to believe my scale.

  •  How much should you weigh?  Inputting 39% body fat into the Fat 2 Fit Tool, the ideal weight for my age with 35% body fat is 168 pounds.  That seems doable.
  • Calories and Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) –  Fat 2 Fit Tools advocates eating like the thin, healthy person that you want to become. The calorie levels in the chart are not extreme, but  create that all important caloric deficit that is required to get you to your goal weight in a safe manner.  Based on my goal weight of 168 and assuming light exercise/sports 1-3 days/week,  the tool suggests a daily caloric intake of 2005! As I get closer to my goal weight, my weight loss will start to slow down. It is OK to eat a few hundred calories less per day (200-300) to speed up your weight loss at this point.
  • Covert Bailey Body Fat Calculation – The formulas in this body fat calculation are based on the Covert Bailey book The Ultimate Fit or Fat. The formula does not calculate your exact body fat percentage but should give you a consistent measurement you can use as a guideline and determine if you’re losing body fat and/or muscle.  Again, this weirdly gave me a body fat percentage of 27.8%.  This is not right.
  • Waist to Hip Ratio – Carrying extra weight around your middle, indicated by a high waist to hip ratio, increases health risks associated with obesity.  This tool tells me my Waist to Hip ratio is: 0.93.  Anything over 0.85 signifies a high health risk!
  • Waist to Height Ratio – The waist to height ratio is the best predictor of cardiovascular risk and mortality. My Waist to Height Ratio is 58.3%.  According to the tool, a ratio 54 to 58 means “Seriously Overweight” and a ratio over 58 means “Highly Obese“. That’s not good.
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Calories Diet Exercise Fitness Injuries Kickboxing sports Weight

Another Excellent Kickboxing Workout

Despite coming down with a bug, I worked out with John Salgado today and did pretty well.  Because we’re still working around my cranky knee, we started out doing some drill on the Bosu Ball: jogging on it, Dome Toe Taps [you can watch the video below but I can say she’s a lot better at it than I am LOL],  side squats [again, very small movements because of my knee], and squat thrusts.

Other exercises for today included wall squats with a stability ball and a 10 lb ball.  A new item for today was assisted dips.  We rounded out the work out with punching and kicking combinations on the bag.

Wall Squat with Stability Ball by http://www.workoutz.com

The good news on weight loss and nutrition is that I am still within my recommended calorie intake for my BMR.  I must confess that I had vanilla ice cream with blueberries last night [yes, I entered it into the SparkPeople.com Nutrition Tracker and I remain in calorie range :-)]  I’m down another half pound but that could be just water weight.

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Calories Diet Exercise Fitness New York sports Weight

Light Strength Training at Crunch Gym

It’s been raining but I still made it to Crunch to work out with Frank.  We had another light strength workout in deference to my bad knee.  My warm ups comprised running sideways back and forth.  We then did a series of modified inchworms; modified planks, leg extensions [using the wall]; and standing abductions.  As I enter my workouts into the SparkPeople.com fitness tracker, I can see how much less I do at Crunch but I don’t mind as I’m feeling really tired and it’s about as much as I want to do today.  It’s still 100 percent more than I would do without Frank. 🙂

Nutritionally, I am staying within the recommended calorie range for my BMR.  Breakfast included my favorite fruit protein shake.  Dinner included a lovely spinach and feta cheese salad.  My weight continues to creep down.  Hooray! 

 

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Fitness

Short Walk Today

I didn’t make it to the gym this morning but went for a short 1 mile stroll.  I’m looking forward to kickboxing tomorrow.  I am down another pound!  Woo hoo!

I’ve read that people over 50 have a slower metabolism so it’s harder to lose weight.  Strength exercises help increase metabolism and muscle mass so your body burns more calories even while at rest.  Livestrong.com adds to that and says that:

the frequency and amount of food eaten affects how quickly the food is converted to energy. Skipping breakfast gets the metabolism off to a slow start. Eating large, infrequent meals causes metabolic rates to slow down, keeping the food longer, as if in a starvation mode. Eating smaller, more frequent meals allows calories to be converted more quickly to energy and increases metabolism. Proper nutrition habits include following food pyramid guidelines. Focus on nutrient-rich, and fiber-rich fruits, vegetables and whole grains.

I’m trying to not skip breakfast and will eat smaller meals.  🙂

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Calories Diet Fitness Weight

Weighing In

I took the day off from exercise today. 🙂  I checked my weight this morning directly after waking up.  Although most sites discourage you from weighing yourself every day, I find I cannot help myself when I am trying to get fit.

I liked the tips provided in the Medicinenet.com article To Weigh, Or Not To Weigh…That Is The Question [Medical Author: Melissa Conrad Stoppler, MD,  Medical Editor: William C. Shiel, Jr., MD, FACP, FACR]

Whatever weigh-in frequency you choose, keep these tips in mind when stepping on the scale:
1. Weighing yourself first thing in the morning is usually best. Because of variations in food and fluid consumption, we often “gain” different amounts of weight throughout the day.
2. If you’re weighing frequently, remember that daily fluctuations in weight are common. Just because you’re heavier today than yesterday doesn’t mean your weight control program isn’t working. Don’t become a slave to the numbers.
3. Monthly variations in weight are also common in menstruating women.
4. “Plateaus” in weight loss aren’t necessarily bad. If you’re exercising a lot, your weight may remain constant for a time even though you’re still decreasing your body fat content and getting healthier.
5. Finally, cues other than the numbers on the scale are equally important. How do you feel? Are your clothes getting looser or tighter? Do you feel stronger, healthier, leaner? Your own perceptions can be the most valuable tools to help you track your weight control progress.

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Calories Diet Exercise Fitness Kickboxing New York sports

Healthy Eating and Walking

So the thought for today is to eat better and continue exercising.  It’s a lovely day so I did a 3.7 mile loop of the park this afternoon.  As for healthy eating, I like the advice of: Prospect Park Preserve

  • cutting out junk food, processed foods, sugars…[including the dreaded High Fructose Corn Syrup]
  • eating more colorful and fresh foods
  • eating in moderation [drinking more water as I might be thirsty rather than hungry]

I found a nice web page called Healthy Eating Easy Tips for Planning a Healthy Diet and Sticking To It from Helpguide.com that provides some common sense advice.

I had a weird diet day today.  I slept in this morning so ate fewer meals.  I’m not sure how that ranks in the BMR [Basal Metabolic Rate] calculation.  Given my 3-5 days/week of moderate exercise activity, I can eat about 2150 calories each day.  The Fat2FitRadio.com calculation is described as:

The chart shows the number of calories that you should eat on a daily basis to reach your goal weight. At Fat 2 Fit Radio we advocate eating like the thin, healthy person that you want to become. The calorie levels …create that all important caloric deficit that is required to get you to your goal weight in a safe manner. Once you reach your goal weight, you will continue eating the same number of calories for the rest of your life to maintain that weight. You’ll never be on a diet again.

Based on how much activity you do on an average day, the [calculation provides] the number of calories that you will be able to eat at your goal weight. If you start eating those calories right now (eating like the thinner you), you will eventually become that thinner person.

Given that I woke up late today, I only ate 2 meals and consumed approximately 650  calories today….. is that bad? I don’t know….

Optimum Nutrition - 100% Nat Oats & Whey ChocolateAlso,  the Helpguide.com article mentioned that we should avoid sugars in any form.  My breakfast this morning comprised a fruit shake made from frozen mangoes, Zico Coconut Water, and Optimum Nutrition – 100% Natural Oats & Whey Chocolate.  The Optimum Nutrition protein drink is very tasty.  The label says, however, that it contains 8 g of Sugars in the form of honey powder and evaporated cane juice powder.  I’m guessing that is not good news but I’m very fond of it.  The Livestrong.com site has an article titled Health Risks of High Fructose Corn Syrup that sums up many of the concerns about High Fructose Corn Syrup [HFCS].  Among other things, it notes that the human body process regular sugars differently than HFCS.

A couple of excerpts from the Health Risks of High Fructose Corn Syrup article:

The human body does not process HFCS the same way it processes sugar. Fructose requires a different metabolic pathway than other carbohydrates because it skips glycolysis, or normal carbohydrate metabolism. Because of this, fructose is an unregulated source of “acetyl CoA,” or the starting material for fatty acid synthesis. Furthermore, by ingesting HFCS, a vicious cycle can ensue. This is because eating HFCS can increase the feelings of hunger.

Liver Disease & Metabolic Syndrome
Metabolic syndrome is a combination of conditions that increase the risk of heart disease, stroke and diabetes. Metabolic syndrome includes elevated insulin levels, excess body fat, abnormal cholesterol levels and increased blood pressure. The journal, “Hepatology” noted in June 2010, “The rising incidence of obesity and diabetes coincides with a marked increase in fructose consumption and is higher in individuals with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease.” Furthermore, fructose consumption is a contributing environmental risk factor for increased fibrosis of the liver.

Read the entire article at: http://www.livestrong.com/article/259181-heath-risks-of-high-fructose-corn-syrup/?utm_source=popslideshow&utm_medium=a1

..and, yes, I remembered to log my nutrition and exercise into SparkPeople.com site .  I’ve been less consistent about logging into the Self.com Diet Club as it’s more cumbersome.

 

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Calories Diet Exercise Fitness Kickboxing New York sports

Finishing the Week with Core Exercises and Kick Boxing

I’ve gone to the gym 5 days in a row!!! It’s been years since that’s happened [as I’ve explained to my husband, I’m much better about researching exercise than doing exercise.]

Lots of stability ball exercises today, including:

  1. Crunches with Stability Ball
  2. Bridges on Stability Ball
  3. Push Ups on the Stability Ball
  4. Back Extension with Stability Ball
  5. Pendulum with Stability Ball
  6. Crunches on Stability Ball While Tossing Medicine Ball
  7. Superman on the Stability Ball

We finished up with:

  1. Punching Drills on the Bag
  2. Stretching After Strength Training

You can find descriptions of the Stability Ball exercises on SparkPeople.com’s Fitness Pages.

So, it’s the end of a successful week. Where does that leave us?  I want to go back to basics.  The pod-casts [see my Nutrition and Weight Loss Guidance page] that I enjoy so much and SparkPeople.com agree that setting real and measurable goals is very important to losing weight.  Both advise that you write down why you want to lose weight or get fit, and why the hard work and effort to accomplish your goal is worth it. Fat2FitRadio.com especially stress coming up with realistic weight loss goals.

Here’s an excerpt from the Fat2FitRadio.com Goal Setting Page:

Here are some ballpark figures that I worked out for a weight loss of 50 lbs.

5’5″ woman, 30 years old who exercises lightly (BMR x 1.375)

175 lbs – 2165 calories per day
125 lbs – 1850 calories per day

5’10″ man, 30 years old who exercises lightly (BMR x 1.375)

225 lbs – 2950 calories per day
175 lbs – 2550 calories per day

 

It is clear that diets don’t work because as soon as people go off of a diet, they start eating like they did before the diet. The best approach is to know your goal weight and then figure out how many calories per day you will need to eat to maintain that goal weight.

Start to eat your “maintenance” calories at the start of your weight loss. If you eat like a thinner person, you become that thinner person. You will gradually lose the weight and never feel deprived along the way. It’s not a sexy weight loss plan, but it works in the long term.

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Diet Exercise Fitness Kickboxing New York sports

Kickboxing Session Gets Tougher – Bosu Ball, Free Weights and Stability Ball

I met with John Salgado this afternoon for my kickboxing training session.  4 days in a row of exercise!  I’m proud of myself. 🙂

Bosu Ball:  We did warm ups on the Bosu Ball– running in place and front kicks.  Then a series of Bosu Ball exercises combining side lunges, side kicks and squats.  There are a couple of useful online videos available.

Bosu Ball available at Amazon.comHere are a couple of online videos from eHow.com:

Stability Ball:  We followed the Bosu Ball exercises with tucks and push ups with the stability ball.  Strength exercises for today used 15 lb. weights doing triceps exercises and biceps curls using the stability ball. John also had me begin wall squats with the balance ball.stability ball availale at Amazon.com

Here is a website called Ball-Exercises.com that lists a number of exercises for the Stability Ball.

Free Weights Continued:  Also John had me sit and stand while doing bicep curls and  dumb bell shoulder presses.

Cardio Rounds:  Clearly, the worst thing about returning to the gym after a long absence is the lack of stamina.  I couldn’t finish a whole round because I simply couldn’t breathe and felt nauseous.  I guess that’s my newest most important goal. 😉

To develop stamina, Livestrong.com suggests:

  • running  [can’t do it because of my knees right now]
  • sparring/training bouts) [yeah, I don’t appreciate people hitting me]
  • circuit training  Yes!
  • jumping rope [see bad knees excuse above 🙂 ]
Categories
Exercise Fitness Kickboxing New York sports

Strength Training at Crunch Gym

Looking at yesterday’s workout, it is clear that I haven’t been working as hard as I should when I am at Crunch. I felt ashamed at the amount of my whining. 🙁  So, this morning I told Frank that I needed to be pushed harder.woman lifting weights cartoon

Taking it to heart, Frank had me doing lateral pull-downs, rows, and bicep exercises with much heavier weights.  I had to do knuckle push ups [modified because I was on my knees] and modified jumping jacks [no jumping] with two pound weights.  The knuckle push ups are supposed to help strengthen my wrists and my forearms –  both of which should help with kickboxing as well.

All in all, I think we accomplished a great deal more today.  Excellent!