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Archive for June 2018

2018 NSCA Personal Trainers Conference

The 2018 NSCA Personal Trainers Conference is more than just an event – it’s an experience that will power your potential. Join the industry’s more forward-thinking innovators and influencers in Baltimore, MD or online via Live Stream for a weekend filled with cutting-edge science and application designed to advance fitness professionals.

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Boning Up on Skeletal Health

A strong skeleton is just as important as a healthy heart.

Bones form the frame that keeps our bodies from collapsing and serve as a bank for minerals essential to multiple bodily functions. In fact, 99% of the body’s calcium is found in the bones and teeth (NIH n.d.). The skeleton anchors everything fitness professionals deal with every day: muscles, joints, tendons, the whole kinetic chain.

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Sample Class: Indoor Cycling for the Whole Family

Every Thursday morning, my cycle studio fills with an array of participants, ranging from accomplished Ironman® finishers to preschool moms trying to maximize their minutes—and Nora, a 92-year-old great-grandmother. Together, we pedal like maniacs, laugh, sing a few refrains and walk out soaked through with sweat. In the cycle studio, participants of all ages and abilities can be motivated by being in a group, but riders can still slow down when they need to without sticking out. In fact, my own cycling journey began when I was pregnant and in search of a low-impact workout.

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Who Is (and Isn’t!) Reading Food Labels

The Nutrition Facts panel displayed on all packaged food can relay critical nutrition information like calorie, sugar and fiber content—but only to those who read the label.
An investigation by the University of Minnesota’s School of Public Health and Medical School found that a mere one-third of adults aged 25–36 report frequent use of the Nutrition Facts label. Women, people with more education and income, those who cook more of their own food, and people who exercise regularly were more likely to examine their food purchases carefully.

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Question of the Month

Do you or your clients drink energy beverages to get a lift? Do you think government agencies should better regulate these drinks? What do you consider the major health concerns of heavy consumption? Or do you believe the reported dangers are overblown? Send your responses to Sandy Todd Webster at [email protected]

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More Sugar, Less Nutrition

Eating too much sugar is not only bad news for our waistlines; it can also make our diets less potent. Dietary survey data from 6,150 adults in an American Journal of Clinical Nutrition (AJCN) study revealed that high intakes of “free sugar” (sugar added to packaged foods like yogurt and cereal or to home-cooked foods) can coincide with lower consumption of several important micronutrients, including calcium and magnesium.

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Mind Over Matter

People who suffer from frequent cravings for unhealthy foods might benefit from tapping into the power of the mind. A review of studies published in the journal Clinical Psychology Review concluded that practicing mindfulness can effectively quell a hankering for “vice foods” like candies and ice cream, making it easier to achieve health and weight loss goals.

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Go Fish for Stronger Bones

A trip to the fishmonger can help your bones and your heart. Scientists have long noted a link between eating omega-3 fats in certain fish and improving heart function, but these mega-healthy fats are not a one-hit wonder. Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition published a meta-analysis of previous research (which included 292,657 people)—and reported an inverse relationship between fish consumption and risk of hip fracture. Mechanisms still need to be sussed out, but in the meantime it’s a good idea to work fish into our diets at least twice per week.

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Weight Loss Runs in the Family

It turns out that people who make an effort to shed a few pounds aren’t just in it for themselves; they may be helping their significant others trim down, too. Research published in the journal Obesity recounted a University of Connecticut study that monitored the weight loss progress of 130 people for 6 months Ñhalf of them on a structured Weight Watchers® program and the other half on a self-guided program combining education, healthy eating and exercise.

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Researchers Find a Link Between Activity Level, ALS

Made famous by legendary baseball player Lou Gehrig, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or ALS—a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord—has affected many athletes. As such, researchers have wondered if high levels of physical activity might have something to do with the disease. Data from a new study out of Europe furthers the conversation.

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The Long-Term Benefits of Pedometer Use

Studies show that tracking daily steps with a pedometer leads to higher activity levels. A new report out of the U.K. suggests the practice can inspire people to take more steps for many years.
The report included data from two separate 12-month studies; one involved inactive adults aged 45–75, while the other featured older adults aged 60–75. In the first, participants were assigned to one of three 12-week pedometer-based interventions—consultation with a nurse, support by mail or no consultation. In the second, there was no mail support group.

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Research Review: Pros and Cons of Standing

Sitting for extended periods of time is now considered as dangerous as smoking cigarettes, and as a result, many people have taken to standing during the workday. New research is shedding light on both positive and negative effects of the current trend.
Stand Up for Weight Loss

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Body Fat Is Better Indicator of Type 2 Diabetes

Here’s more reason to apply a battery of assessments when determining a client’s health status. Scientists have found that body fat percentage is a more accurate indicator of a person’s risk for prediabetes or type 2 diabetes than other popular measures like body mass index.

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Top Money Tips for Fit Pros

Money is often a dirty word among fitness professionals. Most get into the business to help others, but you can’t pay bills with good intentions, says Frank Pucher, owner of Fitness 121 Personal Training in Roseland, New Jersey, and author of Smart Money Moves: A Practical Approach for Earning, Growing & Protecting Your Money. He adds that the financial side of fitness should receive as much detailed attention as the programs you design.

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