The Number Way to Make Your Trainer Angry

The Number Way to Make Your Trainer Angry

The Number One Way to Make Your Trainer Angry

Top 10 tips on how-to stay motivated to exercise all year-round.  

There are a few things that can frustrate me. Slow internet speed, no access to WiFi, sale items at grocery stores that are sold out, traffic, weeds (I hate gardening), and even Facebook frustrates me when they change their algorithms – yet again!

As I gotten older technology, and such, is frustrating me at faster pace than it used.

People, however, aren’t.

The number way to make your trainer angry

With age I am finding I actually have greater patience with clients and individuals than I ever have had before. That is until they do this:

They head out of town for a vacation, or a business trip, or because of family matters, and they leave their home and their runners behind.

They decide that because they are “away” they don’t need to maintain their fitness and health program.

I’m not quite sure why they do this.

I have heard a variety of excuses, though.

For instance: I didn’t have time, there wasn’t a gym, or my personal favourite, I never workout when I’m away.

It baffles me that people would consciously and purposely lose the strength, flexibility and aerobic capacity that they have just spent the last 9 to 10 months working so hard to get.

Fitness-with-PJ-Nikes-Quote

How fast you will lose your fitness?

Because you will lose it.

Your aerobic fitness will start to diminish in as quick as seven to fourteen days.

As for those muscles that you have been working so hard to build, in the most drastic scenario studies have shown that you can lose as much as 80% of your strength and tone in as little as two weeks.

80%!!! That’s a big loss.

For the more deconditioned individual, you will lose even more with any hiatus.

Studies have followed new exercisers as they began an exercise program and then stopped it and found that after two months of quitting their newfound fitness program they had lost all of their original gains!

They were back to square one again.

Fit people – your outcome is not as bad, but it is still worrisome.

After 2 months off of your program it is estimated that you will lose about 30% of your gains.

How quick can you get your fitness back?

The question then begs to be asked – how long will it take to get it all back then?

Researchers say that is hard to predict, but for athletes it could take as much as three months to regain your previous fitness level, and for new exercisers it might be as much as three to four months.

So, let’s do the math. Say you’re a new exerciser who started a regular fitness program in January with the rest of rush and you decide to stop exercising for the summer.

You then start up again, say after the kids go back to school in September. It will now take you until the beginning of December to gain back the fitness that you originally had in June when you stopped.

But, then guess what? It’s Christmas.

Now there are parties to go to, schedules that are busy, and the mentality of “I will start up again in January” sets in.

And then after Christmas comes winter holidays, because most people take off some time in the January to March months.

Then there is spring break and then guess what? It’s summer again.

It’s a vicious cycle, with no end in sight and absolutely no fitness gains to be seen.

That is, unless, you decide to break the habit of thinking that exercise is something that can be dropped from the schedule and put back in again when it suits you better.

Exercise is a necessity at maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

It is our only proven fountain of youth, disease-fighter and “I-feel-awesome” medicine all rolled into one.

So I ask you, why would you purposely give all of that up?

Fitness with PJ quote

10 Tips to stay motivated all year-round

1/ YouTube.

There are a plethora of awesome fitness YouTube channels that will warm you up, work you out and cool you down. If you haven’t already subscribe to my channel and you will have access to workouts that you can easily do in your home, with some of them under 20-minutes.

Fitness with PJ YouTube channel

2/ Never allow more than two days without exercise.

I live by this rule. Why two days? Because once two days has gone by it’s way to easy for that to turn into three days, then four days and before you know days become weeks and months.

3/ Always pack your runners.

Where ever you are in the world if you have your runners you can get a workout in. Whether it’s a quick jog, or a series of bodyweight exercises you can maintain your fitness.

4/ Google.

Before you head out of town Google the area and see what there is available. Try a fitness class there to keep you motivated and to try something fun. I have done STEP in Hong Kong, yoga in Mexico, spinning in New York and Zumba in Hawaii.

5/ Wear a tracker.

Wear a fitness tracker and aim for the same step count and calorie expenditure as you would at home.

6/ Wake up earlier.

If your family is not keen on exercising while on vacation then set your alarm 30 minutes earlier and get your workout in before they get up.

7/ Pack it.

If you know you won’t have access to any equipment pack some exercise tubing, your iPod, a timer and a skipping rope.

8/ Track it.

Use an app, or write your workouts down, but track what you are doing. When it’s on paper it makes it more real and real will help keep you accountable.

9/ Penalize yourself.

Studies have shown that people who have to pay others when they don’t stick with their goals tend to achieve their goals. You see we hate giving away hard earned cash, so make a deal with yourself for every day you don’t exercise you owe your favourite charity $5.

10/ Make food and sleep a priority.

Eat the best you can and get a good night’s sleep and you will make it a lot easier on yourself to stay motivated with your fitness all-year around.

When I travel I eat the same way I would at home for breakfast and lunch and do my best for dinner. I still enjoy my travels, while my body continues to appreciate good healthy food.

TIRED OF TRYING TO FIGURE WHAT WORKOUTS YOU
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8 High Protein Breakfast Recipes

8 High Protein Breakfast Recipes

8 High Protein Breakfast Recipes

Healthy High Protein Breakfast Recipes To Help You Lose Weight

In last week’s blog I revealed one tried, tested and true method to help you eat less throughout the day – eating a high protein breakfast.

A higher protein breakfast has a lower glycemic control on the body meaning your blood sugar levels will be more stable, which in turn will lead to the desire to eat less through the day.

All of this then translates to a slimmer and trimmer you.

8 High Protein Breakfast Recipes

To help you get the recommended 25-35 grams of protein every morning I have put together eight of my favourite high protein breakfast recipes (each recipe serves one woman – so adapt for kids and men).

1/ Egg Whites with Feta and Spinach 

1 cup egg whites

2 tbsp crumbled feta cheese

1/2 cup chopped spinach

Pepper to taste

Directions: Scramble egg whites with feta and spinach until cooked, adding pepper to taste.

Calories: 173

Protein: 31.1 grams

2 / Berry Banana Protein Pancake

1 scoop protein powder (I am in love with this brand!)

1/2 ripe banana, mashed

1/4 cup blueberries

1/3 cup large flake oats ground in blender or food processor until it becomes a fine flour

1/2 cup liquid egg whites

1 tbsp ground flax seed

1 tbsp unsweetened almond milk

Cinnamon to taste

Directions: add everything in a bowl and mix together. Spray a medium-sized skillet with nonstick spray, then place on medium heat. Pour the batter in and once you see tiny bubbles on top of the pancake, flip. When each side is golden brown breakfast is ready!

TIP: I like to make 5 of these at once and freeze them individually. The night before you want to eat one pull it from the freezer and toast it in the AM. Try topping with smashed raspberries, or almond butter or jam.

Calories: 380 (this depends on your protein powder)

Protein: 39.7 (this depends on your protein powder)

3 / Breakfast Bento Box

2 hard-boiled eggs

1.5 ounces goat’s mozzarella (or whatever cheese floats your boat)

20 almonds (about an ounce)

Half-cup of grapes, or a small orange, or small apple

Directions: prep it the night before in a container and BOOM, breakfast is waiting for you in the AM. This is a great breakfast idea for those of you who do not like to eat first thing in the morning and instead would rather wait until you got to work.

Calories: 400

Protein: 25 grams

4 / Avocado Toast with Cottage Cheese and Tomatoes

2 slices Ezekiel bread

1/4 cup cottage cheese

1/4 of an avocado

A few slices of tomato

Pepper to taste

Directions: toast your bread, spread the cottage cheese on top, layer with avocado and top with tomatoes and pepper.

Calories: 400

Protein: 31 grams

Super food selection for health diet in porcelain bowls over distressed wooden background.

5 / Apple Cinnamon Yogurt Parfait

1 cup 0% fat Greek yogurt

Half an apple, chopped

One ounce walnuts, chopped (about 14)

2 tsp raw honey

Cinnamon to taste

Directions: combine everything in a bowl and stir.

Calories: 419

Protein: 29 grams

If you have trouble choking down anything but coffee in the a.m., stop feeling guilty – you aren’t going to kill your metabolism by skipping breakfast. Instead, enjoy your cuppa joe and have your breakfast mid-morning.

6 / Brownie Batter Overnight Oats

1/3 cup unsweetened almond milk

1/2 cup 0% fat Greek yogurt

1/2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder (or more to taste)

1 pack of stevia (more or less to taste)

1/3 cup large flake oats

1/2 scoop chocolate protein powder

Directions: in a small bowl mix everything together, cover and store in the fridge. In the morning give it a stir, add some more almond milk if you it’s too thick for you and enjoy!

Calories: 245 (depends on your protein powder)

Protein: 28.3 (depends on your protein powder)

High Protein Breakfast Recipes - Fitness with PJ

7 / Berry Protein Shake

1.5 cups of water

1 cup raw spinach

2 cups frozen berries

1/2 cup 0% Greek yogurt

1 scoop of vanilla protein powder

Directions: Put all your ingredients in a blender, blend well and enjoy!

Calories: 354 (depends on your protein powder)

Protein: 27 grams (depends on your protein powder)

8 / Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies

1 heaping scoop of chocolate protein powder

1/4 cup natural peanut butter

1 ripe banana, mashed

1/2 cup chopped walnuts

1/2 cup quick oats

1/2 unsweetened coconut

2 egg whites

Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, mash banana and add remaining ingredients and mix until smooth. Spoon onto a parchment paper lined tray and bake for 15-minutes. Should make 6 cookies.

Calories: 184 (per cookie)

Protein: 10.5 grams (per cookie)

 

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PJ ox

10 Awesome Hacks That Will Make You Healthier

10 Awesome Hacks That Will Make You Healthier

 

10 Awesome Hacks that will make You Healthier

I don’t know of a single soul who has not wished for a pill that they could take for better fitness.

It would be so much easier, wouldn’t it?

Easier than all that time, that commitment and sweat you have to deposit for a better-looking body that will stay above ground for the longest period of time.

However, we don’t have that… yet.

Currently there are no secrets, no pills and no magic formulas (no matter what Dr. Oz says) that will get us healthy.

What I can share with you, though, are some life hacks that you can add into your day. Easy hacks that will improve your health, your fitness and your waistline.

10 [awesome] hacks that will make you healthier

1/ Have protein for breakfast.

Specifically over 30 grams. A study by the Biofortis Clinical Research team at the University of Missouri showed that protein in the morning can help you consume fewer calories throughout the day, as well as burn more fat over time.

The likely reason is due to an improved glycemic control protein has on the body. In other words, your blood sugar levels will be more stable, which in turn will lead to the desire to eat less, while that in turn will lead to a slimmer and trimmer you.

Some examples of a high-protein breakfast are:

  • 1 egg + 1 cup of egg whites (33 grams) scrambled with veggies
  • Egg, black bean and cheese burrito. Try this recipe – it rocks!
  • ¾ cup of plain Greek yogurt and mix in 10-15 grams of protein powder to both up the protein count as well as change the flavour (I love strawberry protein powder in my plain yogurt)
  • A quinoa parfait mixed with Greek yogurt is another great high-protein non-egg option
  • High-protein overnight oats, with added tablespoon of chia seed to add another 4 grams of protein
  • Protein Pancake
  • Slow Cooker Frittata
>> Never Eat This for Breakfast

2/ Ditch the car.

While fitness is important for better health, you cannot ignore the other 23 hours of the day. In fact the science is showing us that it is what we do throughout the day that will better health.

These incremental movements we do throughout the day are called non-exercise activity thermogenesis (NEAT). This is the energy (calories) the body expends for everything we do that is not sleeping, eating or sports-like exercise.

The more NEAT we have in our lives the better off our body weight is, as well as our blood pressure, blood sugar levels and stress levels.

Control these and we also ward off a host of diseases.

Some examples of adding NEAT into your life are:

  • Walk whenever you are on the phone
  • Have a walking meeting at work, or instead of coffee out with your friends enjoy your java while walking
  • Take the long way to the bathroom at work
  • Go for walk and do some stretches at lunchtime
  • Get a pedometer to encourage you to walk more
  • Always use the stairs
  • Get up and move around every 30 minutes when on the computer
  • Park your car in the farthest stall away from your destination’s door
  • Stretch while watching television (I am always stretching when watching a movie at home – now if only the movie theatre would be so accommodating!)
  • Do some squats at every commercial break, or before you park your butt on the toilet
  • Perform 10-minutes of yoga before bed. Try this stretch routine.
  • Wake up with 10-minutes stretches or yoga. Try this workout.
  • Walk to the store
  • Make it a point to never go from the dinner table to the living room couch! Spend at least 30-minutes, following dinner, on your feet and moving around.

3/ Get some sleep.

The science on sleep and its importance to our health is abundant. The consequences of lack of shut eye range from higher disease risk, lower mortality, increased waistlines, lowered immune system, depression, memory problems and even accidental death.

>>> How to Improve Your Sleep

Sleep is just as important to our bodies as the air that we breathe and the food that we eat. You see it’s during sleep that our body is tending to our physical and mental health and getting us ready for another day.

>>> Try my Stretches for a Better Night’s Sleep tonight!

Some sleep hacks that you can add into your life for better quality shut eye:

  • Turn off all electronics at least one hour before bed
  • Maintain the same time you go to bed and get up all week
  • Keep your bedroom clutter-free, dark and on the cooler side
  • Try meditation and/or yoga before bed to help calm the mind and central nervous system
  • There are also natural sleep aids such as: melatonin, valerian, chamomile, magnesium and calcium. Talk to a health practitioner, however, before adding any natural herb or supplement to your diet as they can interact with certain medications.
>>> Click here for more awesome sleep tips.

4/ Have your workout clothes ready.

Whether you workout in the morning, or after work, have your gear ready and waiting for you. This one tip has even helped me!

I have started performing fasted cardio 2-3 mornings a week and knowing my gear is out and ready for me gets me out of bed.

I have everything set up. My water with BCAAs is sitting by the sink and my workout gear, my runners and my iPod are in the spare bedroom (so I don’t wake loving husband).

On the flip side, if you want to workout in the evening have your gear in your car and do not go home until you workout.

In my experience most people see more success with sticking to their workouts if they get them done in the morning, or before they go home from work – because once you get home chaos usually ensures, or the couch starts to beacon.

Follow my 1-month training program for fast results.

1 Month FREE Workout Plan - Fitness with PJ

5/ Eat off of smaller plates.

Smaller plates, as well as taller thinner glasses, gives us the illusion that we are eating and drinking more than we really are.

Yes, as ridiculous as it sounds we are actually able to fool ourselves from ourselves.

Here’s a good example. Take a look at the picture below.

Each dot is the exact same in diameter, but doesn’t the one on the left look bigger?

So, if this were a plate or bowl of food it would also seem bigger to your brain, and in turn your brain would mentally “think” that it’s eating more food than it really is therefore telling our stomach to shut up and be satisfied.

Yep, like I said it’s that easy to trick ourselves!

5/ Drink water.

Our body cannot distinguish whether it is thirsty or hungry. Rather it has one signal that it releases when it craves either, and in my experience people are usually dehydrated before they are actually hungry.

TRY THIS: When you get the “signal” from your stomach have a large glass of water and wait 10 minutes. Stomach still grumbling? Have another glass and wait another 10 minutes.

In addition, do not want you to drink too many of your calories either.

Recent studies have found that the calories we consume in liquid form don’t “register” as food in the brain’s satiety centres.

Water is the only liquid that will “fill us up” – anything else is simply extra calories to our waistline.

6/ Keep your workout short and sweet.

Perform a higher intensity workout, like a HIIT or a Tabata, so you can reap the benefits without having to spend a lot of time working out.

This is key for those days you do not want to workout because simply the act of knowing your workout is only 15-20 minutes makes it that much easier to get your runners on.

Need some workout ideas? Try these workouts:

7/ Listen to a podcast or audiobook to get you through your cardio.

Keep your brain busy and learn something new – all while performing your cardio.

Need some podcast ideas? Here are a few top the rated health and fitness podcasts that can be found on iTunes:

Fitness

Nutrition

Health

Self-Improvement

8/ Prep!

Prepare for the week ahead by menu planning and prepping your breakfasts, at least four lunches and a large salad (I call them BAS – big ass salads) to carry you through for dinner side dishes.

This one act alone can help you drop inches and fat, as well as save a lot of time for you during the hectic work week AND you will also get the bulk of your dishes done in one go. Awesome, eh?

9/ Pay yourself.

Start a “tip jar” and tip yourself a dollar (or a loonie for my Canadian peeps) every time you workout and meal plan and prep.

At the end of the month you should have yourself enough coin to buy a new workout top, or a treatment at the spa, or flowers to brighten your kitchen.

10/ Join.

Accountability will hold you true to your health and fitness goals, and nothing breeds accountability than registering and paying for a fitness class, program or a trainer.

This is one of the reasons my 30-Day Diet Bootcamp has quickly become one of my most popular programs.

Each week for four weeks my client meets me one-on-one or on Skype. This personal meeting encourages them to stay on point for the week because they are now answering to more than just themselves.

Got some fitness hacks that you use and work? Share below!
WAIT, BEFORE YOU GO

Want a full month’s workout plan? I’ve put together a one-month plan using my workouts from my YouTube channel.

Follow my 1-month training program for fast results.

1 Month FREE Workout Plan - Fitness with PJ

 

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PJ ox

The Best Vitamins You Should Be Taking

The Best Vitamins You Should Be Taking

The Best Vitamins You Should be Taking

In a perfect world we would consume all of the needed nutrients for good health through diet alone.

However, this is far from a perfect world.

Our diets are not nourishing us like they should be, and this is due to a number of reasons.

Why we need vitamins

First, most of us don’t eat “clean” 100% of time. We don’t always eat the recommended servings for fruits and vegetables and we have been known, on occasion, to eat from a box instead of a home-cooked meal.

Second, the foods today do not possess the same nutrients that they used to (due to poor soil quality and GMOs), and third we are not getting the variety of foods, on a daily basis, that we should be to cover the gamut of nutrients we need to function our best with.

All of these leave gaps in our diet that need to be filled by vitamins and supplements.

This does not, however, give you free rein to eat what you want because you can supplement good health.

You will always get more from a vegetable and a piece of fruit than you will from a pill.

The best vitamins you should be taking

To find out what the best vitamins and supplements most people should be taking on a regular basis I consulted with Halina Kwiatkowska, owner and operator of Ladner’s sweetest little health store Parsley, Sage and Thyme.

I wanted to know if there were certain vitamins that we should be taking, and if so, do these recommendations change as we get older.

For all ages Kwiatkowska recommends a:

– A good multi-vitamin

– A probiotic

– Omega-3

(Note: These are general recommendation. Grab a more detailed and specific recommendation for your health by visiting Parsley, Sage and Thyme).

Multivitamin

She explains that a multivitamin is a “foundational supplement” containing vitamins and minerals (and in some cases other nutrients as well), considered necessary for our daily functioning.

Think of a multivitamin as our “insurance”. A little extra added protection for our health.

You can also buy multivitamins specific to your gender, as we well as your age group and other specific conditions like prenatal or active multi’s for athletes, tailoring your multi to your life and lifestyle.

I am in love with this brand of multivitamin and I buy the over 40 women blend.

Health is like money. We never have a true idea of its worth until we lose it. #Truth Click To Tweet

Probiotics

Probiotics are recommended for a healthy digestive tract and gut. They are the healthy bacteria keeping our gut, and our health, happy.

Unfortunately, our modern North American diet, accompanied with overmedication and over-sterilization, has stripped us of essential, beneficial bacteria in our gut and we need to supplement with a probiotic to counteract this.

Probiotics will help to keep our digestion and absorption going, not to mention help support our immune system so we can fight off infections, flus, colds and other illnesses.

Probiotics can be found in fermented foods such as:

Sauerkraut

Kimichi

Kosher pickles

Tempeh

Kombucha tea

Miso soup

Kefir

Yogurt

These are not foods a lot of us eat on a regular basis, though, which is understandable why they are a recommended supplement.

Local peeps! If you need a kick in the a** to get your diet and waistline back in order sign up for my 30-Day Diet Bootcamp. You get the plan, weekly coaching and support for the 30 days.

Omega 3’s

Omega-3’s are essential to our health as well. However, as essential as they are our bodies we cannot produce them. We have to consume omega-3 rich foods and supplements from our diet.

Omega-3’s protect our cells from inflammation. They are able to envelope every cell of our body, giving them the protection they need from the stresses of daily life.

These stresses and inflammations can be brought on by a poor diet, a high stress life, an active lifestyle (yes, exercise is inflammatory), as well as current disease and sickness.

Omega 3’s can also be used to combat diseases like arthritis, as well as the prevention of Alzheimer’s.

Omega 3’s are most abundant in cold water fish, as well as in some seeds like chia, sacha inchi and flax.

When supplementing, look for an Omega-3 that has a higher EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) to DHA (docosahexaenoic acid). In addition, talk to your physician before adding them as a supplement to your diet as they can interact with some medications.

Over 40 vitamin recommendations

As we get older, into our 40’s and 50’s, Kwiatkowska recommends adding an adrenal support supplement, vitamin D3 and magnesium to our daily diet as well.

Adrenal support is particularly important for women in their peri and menopausal years, as well as anyone who has high levels of the stress hormone cortisol floating through their blood on a daily basis.

How do you know if that’s you?

Some classic signs of adrenal exhaustion are:

Fatigue

Depressed mood

Irritability

Unable to drag yourself out of bed, yet in the evening you can’t fall asleep

Brain fog and poor memory

You rely on sugary snacks and caffeine to get you through the day.

If that’s you, you need to start taking care of your adrenal glands and begin making some lifestyle choices that will lower your cortisol levels.

Vitamin D3 is important because it is involved in regulating the levels of the minerals calcium and phosphorus. It also boosts our immune system and is used for conditions of the heart and blood vessels, including high blood pressure and high cholesterol.

In addition, vitamin D3 is used for diabetes, obesity, muscle weakness, multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), asthma, bronchitis, premenstrual syndrome (PMS), and tooth and gum disease and certain skin conditions.

It’s lack in our bodies has been linked to every cancer ever known.

Health Canada has recognized the importance of D3 and recently raised the daily intake of vitamin D3 to 8,000 IU (International Units) per day, even in the summer months.

Magnesium is an important supplement as we age as it is needed to help combat diseases such as hypertension, diabetes, asthma, osteoporosis, and liver disease to name a few.

Magnesium will also help curb anxiety and panic attacks, relieve insomnia and reduce muscle cramping (important if you are active).

The Best Vitamins

Best time to take your vitamins

When the best time to take your vitamins?

Most supplements are best taken in the morning, but some require to be taken twice or even three times a day.

Most multivitamins are twice a day, with the first one always in the morning and the second one in the afternoon, but not too late in the evening.

Other supplements that are specific to a condition may vary on when the best times are to take.

For example, most minerals should be taken in the evening as they absorb better when you are sleeping.

Take your vitamins with or without food

Multivitamins, minerals and most supplements should be taken with food to help ease their digestion and absorption.

Kwiatkowska explains that in the presence of a snack or a meal, your vitamins will be broken down as part of that meal and enter the bloodstream slowly.

This will prevent a stomach ache, burping (which can be a tad embarrassing when out in public), or a digestive upset.

Taking your vitamins and supplements with food will also slow down the uptake of nutrients into the bloodstream.

In the end, though, it’s important to first eat real food, second supplement when you need to and third live an active and healthy lifestyle – no matter what age you are.

Parsley, Sage &Thyme Natural Health Store has been part the Delta/Ladner community since the early 1970s. www.parsleysagethyme.com

 

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The Truth About Standing Desks You Need to Know

The Truth About Standing Desks You Need to Know

The Truth About Standing Desks You Need to Know

The truth about standing desks you need to know…

We all know that sitting is bad for us. Heck, most of us feel it when we do sit for too long.

We feel our low back start to throb when seated on the plane. Or, our hip pain flare up when in the car for a long period of time. Or, the ache in our knees when seated at an event and we simply can’t stretch out our legs.

Some of these activities we can control while others, like sitting in front of a computer all day, we can’t. If you are one the many Canadians who has to work for a living, then you cannot not sit for your job.

Prolonged sitting has been linked to heart disease, a shorter lifespan, diabetes and cancer.

How to die quicker

One study compared adults who spent less than two hours a day in front of the TV or other screen-based activity, with those who logged more than four hours a day.

Those with the greater screen time/sit time had a nearly 50 percent increased risk of death from any cause, and about a 125 percent increased risk of events associated with cardiovascular disease – such as chest pain (angina) or heart attack.

What’s worse, is now they have found that spending a few hours a week at the gym or otherwise engaging in other moderate to vigorous activities does not seem to offset the damages that sitting does.

What does then?

Standing desks to the rescue?

For the past few years standing desks have been touted as the saviour to sitting.

These desks, which can be adjusted so you can work in either a sit or stand position, have become extremely popular (just Google “buy sit-stand desk” and you will get over 2 million hits).

But, do they really work? Does standing in one place do anything for your health?

Recently researchers from a Cochrane work group took a look at twenty different studies with a total of 2174 participants.

Their aim was to see if workplace interventions and changes actually helped, and if the participants sat less because of these interventions.

The variety of studies that were evaluated used different forms of interventions. Some used information and counselling to encourage people to move more through the day. Others looked at software, some at mindfulness training and almost half of all the studies assessed looked at the effects of active workstations (i.e. standing desks).

The truth about standing desks

What did they find? A big fat nothing.

They found that none of the interventions had any real impact on our sit time, and that sit-stand desks had “very low quality of evidence” that it reduced sitting at work in the short term (to date there are no long term studies).

The studies also revealed that sit-stand desks did not have any considerable effects on work performance, musculoskeletal symptoms (such as low back pain), or sick leave.

There were too few participants and too many poorly designed studies that no real data could be gleaned from them.

Some experts also argue that simply standing in one place is really no difference than sitting in one place.

There is no evidence that standing for four hours, as opposed to sitting, will provide you with health benefits.

In fact, both prolonged sitting AND standing are both shown to heighten your risk of enlarged veins (hello varicose veins).

What to really do

So, what do you do? How can you offset the ill-effects sitting has on the body?

Right now science does not have an exact answer for us. As indicated in the Cochrane study, more research, with a much larger sample group, for longer periods of time are needed.

In the meantime, we must move our bodies more. We have become a society of sitters. Whether it’s in the car, at a desk, or in front of the TV.

I think once we remember that our bodies are the machines that should be powering us through life, we will take the necessary steps (literally and metaphorically) to solve our sitting problem.

Until then, give me ten squats every time your butt hits a chair.

TIRED OF TRYING TO FIGURE WHAT WORKOUTS YOU
SHOULD BE DOING

GRAB MY 21 DAY FITNESS PROGRAM AND LET ME DO THE PROGRAMMING FOR YA.

 

FIT & FIERCE...
HERE WE COME.

 

PJ ox

10 Truths You Wish You Knew When You Were Younger

10 Truths You Wish You Knew When You Were Younger

10 Truths You Wish You Knew When You Were Younger

 

What if you could write a letter to your younger self?

 

What would you say? What life lessons would you share?

 

Would your letter go a little like the letter I would write to my 24-year old self?

 

Dear 24-year old PJ,

 

Hey PJ! So, we just celebrated our 46th birthday a few days ago (spoiler alert: we were in Mexico), and it got me thinking about some life lessons I wished we learned earlier.

 

But, before we get into that, how are you?

 

I know! That was a ridiculous question to ask. Since you are me and I know I was doing pretty good 22 years ago, even if I didn’t think I was at the time.

 

But, 22 years ago is when we married loving husband and launched our personal training business.

 

It was a big year girlfriend.

 

In fact, our 20’s were pretty good. But, unfortunately we were pretty busy being 20-something, and taking everything for granted like 20-somethings do, that we didn’t really appreciate what the hell we had.

 

Hence this letter.

 

10 Truths I Wish I Knew When I Was Younger

 

First, learn to forgive the a**holes in life.

 

It’s not easy, but you need to learn this important step.

 

You see, even if they were a jerk to you it doesn’t mean that it’s all about you. Yes, thinking that they are being an a-hole to just you means you believe life revolves only around you.

 

Huge life lesson here, it does not.

 

This a-hole could just be having a bad day. Or, someone may have been an a-hole to them earlier (which then put them in a bad mood). You just don’t know their story.

 

So please, forgive, turn the other cheek, smile and be nice (Yes, you may curse at them inside your head. We aren’t saints for crying out loud.).

 

Second, learn to love the journey as much as the destination.

 

We are very good at making goals. We have laser-like focus and will quite often narrow our vision to the finish line only.

 

What you need to start doing is paying attention to the journey as well.

 

This is where you will meet some pretty cool people (if you pay attention), as well as learn about yourself and create all the awesome memories that we can reflect on as we get older.

 

The destination is really secondary to the journey.

 

Third, learn to breathe for crying out loud.

 

Everyday take a few moments to just sit still and breathe.

 

These few moments I am asking you to take are what you are going to term “slow and useless”. They really aren’t and are quite the opposite.

 

The stillness will make us happier, rev us up and help get those creative juices running.

 

Trust me on this one*.

 

* Well, you kinda have to since I am you, and not trusting me would actually be not trusting yourself.

 

Fourth, flat abs and an inner thigh gap is not better health.

 

We were pretty overweight as kids, so I get why you are so concerned about your body image.

 

Flash forward 22 years later though, and with the loss of friends and loved ones from diseases, you will recognize that good health is actually vitality and vigour for life.

 

It is an inner glow and energy that one exudes when you are enjoying good food, a good life and doing those squats you love so much.

 

Fifth, appreciate loving husband (and those around you) more.

 

It is friends and family that will help you through some tough times ahead. You will need their support and their love, so give lots to them right now.

 

Yes, loving husband will still be eating junk food and hiding the wrappers in the garbage can when we are middle-aged. However, he puts up with a lot from us so you will learn to ignore these culinary indiscretions of his.

 

Sixth, use sunscreen.

 

This will save us both a lot of money in the future in laser treatments, exfoliates, anti-aging moisturizers and high-def make-up.

 

Seventh, quit buying the latest and greatest.

 

It is, in the end, just crap. You can live without that sweater and I promise you that owning matching dinnerware, cutlery and placements will not bring you inner peace.

 

Save our money and use it for trips and experiences. That’s the sort of thing that we will be remembering, and yearning for more of, in our middle years.

 

Eighth, be kind to yourself.

 

Love yourself and the skin that you are in. You are perfectly imperfect and embrace that.

 

Ninth, be kind to others.

 

The world runs at a really fast-pace nowadays. So fast that we can lose a bit of our humanity just because we are too damn busy to care.

 

Don’t let that happen. Don’t be an a**hole (refer back to tip #1). Care for others and be kind – however, don’t lose your attitude. That’s what makes us all unique.

 

And tenth, rely on your instincts.

 

Instincts can serve a girl well so start paying attention to yours.

 

When making the tough decisions that we have to make in life have a clear-head and trust your gut.

 

Your intuition, and that gut instinct you feel, will provide you with a very useful first step in any decision-making process.

 

However, there is one occasion that I strongly urge you NOT to trust your gut.

 

When we turn 40 we will think it’s a great idea to die our hair platinum blonde. It is not a great idea. In fact, it is an epically bad one. Blonde is not the way to go for us.

 

Trust me. We will regret that one.

PJ-blonde 

Love Me

 ps – being middle-aged is actually pretty cool.

 pps – you know how you are always cold? I got two words for you Hot. Flashes

 

 

TIRED OF TRYING TO FIGURE WHAT WORKOUTS YOU
SHOULD BE DOING

GRAB MY 21 DAY FITNESS PROGRAM AND LET ME DO THE PROGRAMMING FOR YA.

 

FIT & FIERCE...
HERE WE COME.

 

PJ ox

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