Fit Mommy Friday – Week 7

Vegan banana chocolate chip muffinsWow! I’ve made it to Week 7! This week has been kind of eventful on the health front. I did very well at the beginning of the week. It was FREEZING in Pennsylvania  and exercise was definitely a great way to warm up. I had cut back to 32 minutes a day (that’s how long my yoga routine generally takes on Wii Fit) but by Wednesday was back to my hour of exercise (aerobic and yoga).  Then the heatwave came through and besides light yoga I haven’t had the inclination to exercise anymore than walking through flea markets and on the beach with my children.

Heat has never really bothered me before, but I can see that this year I’ll be spending a lot of time poolside if I am going to workout with any frequency. It’s either that or exercise at 3 in the morning … which just might be an idea because that really cuts down on the possibility of someone saying “Mommy!” while I’m attempting to breathe and maintain a challenging yoga pose! [Read more…]

Fit Mommy Friday – Week 6

Brownies...
This week I am happy to report that I did not gain any weight, despite my husband’s generous gift of 12 chocolate brownies from Boston Market. And for the record I only ate 4 5 of the brownies. The rest went to my husband who is supposed to be working off his own weight, but that’s another story.

I only worked out 3 times this week because I was tired and didn’t want to push myself into another bout of skipping heartbeats and other annoyances. The downside of not exercising is that I started feeling those old aches and pains that I go to the chiropractor for, so I guess I have turned into an exercise junkie with painful affects when I don’t indulge.  At least that’s a healthy addiction. 🙂

Although I always eat my veggies, I need to up my ante this week to get myself back on track, especially since my exercise routine has been shortened from 60 minutes to 30 minutes a day. I’ve fallen in love with the organic lettuce my husband picked up from the store, so I’m thinking of growing my own this summer, in addition to the tomatoes and strawberries. What do you think?

Well, that’s all for now. I hope that everyone else had a successful week of being a Fit Mommy!!

Creative Commons License photo credit: jespahjoy

Fit Mommy Friday: Week 5

This week I didn’t get a perfect 7 day/1 hour exercise session in, but I did get 6 shorter sessions in so I guess I’m not a complete slacker. I was really having a hard time with my health this week, so I was trying to take it easier. I did lose the 1.8 lbs. from last week so that’s always a happy thing.

My friends/family have gotten me to admit that I’m exhausted so I’ve been trying to sleep when possible.  Also, I am stressing out about the stupid tests that I have to administer to my daughter to keep the state of PA happy. Does anyone else have to do testing?

Anyway, I digress. So, feeling kind of depressed I had a couple of peanut butter cups and fell back into eating after 9 p.m. So next week I definitely need to get back on the non-eating program after 9 p.m. I’ve found that to be one of the key ways that I’ve been able to lose the little bit of weight I’ve lost so far. I’ve also changed my exercise to just walking and yoga for the time being.  Once I get caught up on my rest I can start the more vigorous forms of exercise.

Well, that’s it for this week.  I hope to have great news (20 pounds disappeared overnight would be nice!) during Fit Mommy Friday: Week 6.

Fit Mommy Friday – Week 3

This week could be called “The Good, The Bad and the ‘Oh Come On'” Week.  So, what do you want to hear first? I’ll start with “Oh Come On” since we tend to remember the ending moreso than the beginning.

Oh Come On

I am living in a house of sick children. Four sick children to be exact. My step-daughter, Jasmin, came up last weekend to celebrate Alaya’s birthday and stayed the week. So, she’s sick, my three little ones are sick and of course my throat hurts too, but Mommy’s aren’t allowed to get sick so I guess it’s just a figment of my imagination.

The Bad

I gained 0.7 lbs. this past week, which is disappointing, but since this is a week before my normal cycle that’s pretty normal (I guess). I also went on a Doritos binge after I got the news, so I’ll have to add a few hundred more hours to work it all off, but such is life. With four sick children I think that I should be allowed to fall off the wagon, don’t you?

The Good

  • I’ve exercised 6 days straight so far (tomorrow will be Big #7) for an average of one hour at a time.
  • My saboteurs have been distracted this week due to illness and a new person in the house so I only had to step on one son’s feet (today) and one tail (can’t remember which animal-person) the whole week.
  • And before the plague took over everyone in the house has been exercising including my husband who is interesting to watch workout. Why? Well his memory of his physical ability and the reality of his physical ability are vastly different so hearing him talk to himself as he’s working out is entertaining.
  • This week I found out about Cooking Light Eat Smart Guide: 350-Calorie: Recipes – Hints – Tips: 90 Fresh, Quick & Easy Dishes, so I’m going to invest in that to help me with losing the 20 pounds I’d like to have off by mid-summer.

And on a totally unrelated fitness note my niece Lela Corrinne was born on March 31st out in Sacremento.  She’s the subject of the picture gracing this post.

Have a good weekend everyone!

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Fit Mommy Friday & Me

Michael Eating Ice CreamOkay, Denise at Got Chai? has inspired me to take my fitness goals public so every Friday from this day forward I will be confessing my eating sins, exercise triumphs and whatever else pops into my little mind.  My ultimate goal is to lose about 50 pounds since that will get me well out of the danger range for Type II diabetes which does run in my family.

Since my three children assisted in adding the extra 50 pounds they are also part of my fitness plan. I got Wii Fit back in December and we’ve been using it on an almost daily basis. I, however was taking the easy way out until a couple of weeks ago. What’s the easy way out? Well, with Wii Fit your time goal is just 30  minutes and you can set how many calories you want to burn. So being lazy economical with my time and energy I did the bare minimum. I did a couple of yoga exercises and then played games like Snowball Fight (I am the Champion thank you very much) and other calorie burning, but very easy exercises.

But three weeks ago I stopped fooling around and added boxing, step aerobics, hula hooping, as well as a full 30 minutes of yoga. And low and behold I’ve lost a pound a week (so I’m down 3 pounds!) I am now working out for at least an hour a day which is challenging, not from a physical standpoint, but from a mental one. You see I live with saboteurs — one short one and two furry ones. They’re all cute, but dangerous.

Saboteur #1 is my three year old son Michael who you see in the corner is determined to either have me trip over him or his toys while I work out. If I’m doing step, he finds it necessary to circle me in ever shrinking circles until I step on him. At which point he goes into his death throes and other theatrics.

Now, once he’s tired of that he leaves and sends in his henchmen, my golden retriever named Candy and our resident panther, Diamond. Saboteur #2 (also known as Diamond) wants to rub my legs, walk in between my feet and plop down on the floor to be petted as he swishes his long tail back and forth daring me to step on it.  After about 5 minutes of this I call his “mama” Alaya and have her remove the fickle feline. Of course he comes back until I threaten to shoot him with my water pistol. (He hates water … lucky me!)

Once Candy (Saboteur #3) sees that the cat is out of the way she decides to do her rolling over, puppy dog sad eyed look of “rub my belly” act. So I give her a dirty look and she looks all sad like I kicked her. Then she’ll go directly behind where I’m working out at to lie down and lick her wounded feelings.  And for the rest of my exercising time she’ll make sure she’s somewhere inconvenient for whatever exercise I’m attempting.  But now Spring is here and I kick the lot of them out of the house.  (hee hee evil laugh)

The good thing is that the girls want me to succeed in my goals and will take the little trio outside and away from me for my 30 minute yoga exercises. Now my question is, with all the shooing and fussing and moving people and animals around, don’t you think I should get some extra calorie points? I mean it’s only fair … why all mothers aren’t size 0 is beyond me with all the running around we do all day, but I’ll save that rant for another week.

Fit Mommy Friday here I come!

GyMathtics: Math That Really Makes You Sweat

Gymathtics: Math that Makes You Sweat
Since math makes so many people sweat, why not combine the basic math concepts with some healthy exercise? And that’s exactly what Gymathtics from Exploracise has done.  I had my reservations at first, especially since the first set of exercises involved some geometry (which is definitely not my favorite subject — high school trauma LOL!), but I warmed up (both mentally and physically) as we progressed through the exercises.

I liked the pace of the exercises that are on this DVD. The stretches (geometry) were simple to copy and effective.  My six year old sometimes has troubles following other video exercise programs, but I think the pace in this one makes it easier for her to maintain. After shape stretches warm ups we moved on to the Counting Calisthenics which I enjoyed a lot. Not only do normal counting and skip counting, but we moved our bodies to the prime number beat as well.  They puzzled over the prime number pattern, which led us to a brief discussion of them. So it was a great preview of math to come.

Now we move Jade’s favorite part – Pattern Power! The patterns that are used are pretty simple when you watch them, but can be a bit challenge in the actual execution. Jade’s favorite was the basketball pattern (which she still does too fast in my humble opinion). Everyone’s favorite part was the Well-Being Wind Down.  It’s a series of yoga poses and other stretches to round out the 30 minute workout.  I really liked the quiet (can you tell I’m getting old) nature of the wind down after the exuberant sound effects from the kids while they went through the paces of earlier exercises.

Well, we know that the workout is real, but does it really help the children get the basic math concepts under their belt? Well, here’s some information that really helped me to appreciate the wisdom of combining the physical activity and mathematical concepts:

(Quoted from NewsMax.com, July 28, 2007)

4. Hand Gestures Dramatically Improve Learning

Kids asked to physically gesture at math problems are nearly three times more likely than non-gesturers to remember what they’ve learned. In today’s issue of the journal Cognition, a University of Rochester scientist suggests it’s possible to help children learn difficult concepts by providing gestures as an additional and potent avenue for taking in information.

It turned out to have a more dramatic effect than Cook expected. In her study, 90 percent of students who had learned algebraic concepts using gestures remembered them three weeks later. Only 33 percent of speech-only students who had learned the concept during instruction later retained the lesson. And perhaps most astonishing of all, 90 percent of students who had learned by gesture alone — no speech at all — recalled what they’d been taught.

The article goes into more detail, but you get the gist. So this is a great way of introducing or cementing mathematical concepts into the minds of our young students. It’s especially good for kinesthetic kids (like mine) who need lots of action to keep the blood flowing to their brains. 🙂 So if you’re looking to engage your kids in some exercise, both mental and physical, this is definitely the right way to go.

So where can you get yours? Each DVD (there are two in the series so far) costs $24.99 at their online store Exploracise, as well as Amazon.

The Khalid family of reviewers rate this a 5 out of 5.

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Fit Factor for Kids

Raising healthy and athletic kids can be challenging in this age of computers, television and video games. Coupled with busy extracurricular activities, daily exercise is easily lost in the mix. So, what’s the answer? Make sure that you kids get a dose of Fit Factor each day.

What is Fit Factor? It’s a DVD concept hosted by two accomplished young people, Lizzy (15 years old) and Dean (12 old). The exercises are broken into ten minute segments which makes it great for my family of homeschoolers. Although my girls are in dance class and do go outside to play, with winter coming there’s not a lot of formal exercise going on at home. We’ve tried my yoga DVDs, but the adult formats can be a bit much for their attention span and my patience.  Yoga’s supposed to be relaxing and not peppered with:

  • “Move over.”
  • “Give Jade more space.” 
  • “Move over and give Alaya more space”
  • “Michael stop climbing on me!”

While breakfast is being prepared the kids can enjoy a stint of “Animal Crackers.”  The exercises are based upon mimicking animal movements to a nice musical background. My two-year old was entranced and participated the entire time. In a few more days he’ll be an excellent kangaroo. He’s already an accomplished monkey. The exercises don’t require a lot of extra space, so the whole family can participate without looking like a bad Three Stooges movie.

I really like the ability to break down their workout in ten minutes increments. I’m going to see how this one works, but I’m planning on breaking up the school day with the “Fit Factor for Kids” exercises. My children are physically active learners and would really benefit after a session of sitting and writing with some structured bouncing around. It will also allow my little one some more fun time with his sisters during their school day.

And best of all, for me at least, is that this will get me moving as well.  Besides teaching I do a lot of computer work which consists, obviously, of a lot of sitting, which isn’t the best for a healthy back and body. So now, I’ll just workout with them, burn some calories and get rejuvenated for the next lesson.  The music is fun and original (at least I didn’t recognize any of the songs!) The exercises are invigorating without being too difficult. And their supporting cast of Fit Factor kids are really demonstrate that these workouts are for children of all ages.

My Peanut Gallery
  • The workouts are a lot of fun. 
  • We really like the healthy eating/living tips at the end of some of the routines.  
  • Does Daddy know that each eight ounce can of soda contains eight tablespoons of sugar?! Yuck!
  • We have to pick better things to drink during the day
  • Video games should only be played during car rides and at night when it is too dark to play outside. (Moms Comment: Thanks Lizzy — they believed you much better than me on this one!)

There is one downside of the DVD — I will now have to listen to Jade & Alaya fight over which exercise routine to do while I’m making breakfast.  But come to think of it, it won’t be so bad because while they’re squabbling Michael will grab the remote and put on the one he wants to see.  Okay, so there’s no downside to “The Fit Factor Kids.”

You can learn more about Fit Factor Kids by visiting their website at http://www.fitfactorkids.com. They have sample videos, information about the hosts and cast as well as a newsletter that you can sign up for updates and other info.

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