By Christina | September 27, 2009
It is challenging enough to get me to convince people to add resistance training into their exercise programs, let alone convince them of the merits of switching up their resistance workouts for maximum effect. The truth is we are all creatures of habit, but being creatures of habit in fitness is one of the surefire ways to guarantee your body won’t change. Read full entry »
By Janine Fitzgerald | April 16, 2012
Are you tired of feeling tired? Wish you felt more energized in order to fully accomplish everything on the to-do list? Well, help is just around the corner! Dr Michael Roizen, chief wellness officer at the Cleveland Clinic, has various strategies to put the pep back in your step. And I’ve selected my personal favorites.
We all know that proper sleep is fundamental in order to feel energized. My
1. Various studies show that sniffing lavender oil before bed allows subjects to
get to sleep faster and remain in a deeper sleep. I like to rub some on my
neck and chest.
2. Blue wavelength lights, which are found in light bulbs, televisions, and laptops, interrupt
our production of melatonin, which assists us in sleeping. An hour before
bed, turn off tech gadgets and dim all lights.
There are three more important things that you can easily do to enhance your
3. Get outside! According to a recent Canadian study, desk bound employees
that walked outdoors for 15 minutes showed increased productivity.
4. Drink a little caffeine, particularly from tea which has theanine, an amino
acid that allows you to feel calm yet energized. Aim for no more than 150
mg. per day, and cut yourself off by 2 PM. Coffee is fine, but keep in mind
that a small serving contains about 100 mg.
5. Last, but not least, the other simple component to increased energy…..
you can discover by contacting me.
By Janine Fitzgerald | February 22, 2012
The majority of
us at some point have embarked on a journey to alter some part of ourselves or
our lives. Perhaps we’ve decided to
engage in more physical activity, stop smoking, start eating more fruits and
vegetables, or save more money.
Typically, these things don’t occur overnight. They require time and some work. And they usually go through a five stage
process called the Transtheoretical
Model of Change, or TTM. It’s
sometimes called the “readiness-to-change” model and allows people to reevaluate
their assumptions about the best ways to support themselves in achieving their
goals. By identifying which stage you
are in, (and you might be in different stages for different goals) you will
know what actions to take in order to move forward.
1. Precontemplation: I’m not ready now.
In this stage, you may feel hopeless from past failed attempts or believe
that it will require too much work. But
by educating yourself on negative consequences of not changing and working on
getting a better sense of confidence and self-worth, you can move forward.
2. Contemplation: Maybe soon-I’m thinking about it.
this stage, you may have difficulty balancing competing priorities or feel that
you don’t have the proper things in place in order to support your change. At this point, it is important to connect
with the reasons for wanting to make a change and be inspired by success
stories or role models.
4. Preparation: I’m ready and taking small steps.
may hold you back in this stage is not having the proper skills or knowledge,
or not asking for support from others.
You might not know where to turn to for information. What will move you forward is doing research
and having a coach or mentor. Write down
on a calendar the specific action you will take and tell friends and family
what change you are going to make.
So far what stage
or stages do you see yourself? There are
still two very important stages remaining.
To find out more information on the proper steps to take in order to
make your goals a success, call me at the number below. Together, as a team, we will make it happen!
By Janine Fitzgerald | January 12, 2012
the World Health Organization, there are now more overweight people than
undernourished people throughout the world? Were you aware that only one in
twenty adults engage in all of the top six health behaviors: maintaining a
healthy weight, eating at least five servings of fruits and vegetables a day,
regular exercise, healthy fat consumption, limited alcohol, and non-smoking? And
according to the Institute of Medicine, two-thirds of healthcare costs are
driven by our daily choices. Why is this you may ask?
greater. Second, we are faced with an abundance of health guidelines, products,
and services which make it challenging to create a personal formula for our
specific needs and lifestyle. Third, many people have a history of repeated
failures which leads them to the belief that they are unable to achieve optimum
health and wellness. Now feeling frustrated, it’s no wonder why there are so
many “quick fixes” out there which, ultimately, don’t work. We all have that
innate desire to be in control of our health and to feel better, but there is
often times a large gap between the desire to feel great and the consequences of
minimum physical activity, overeating, and very little time to
Are you tired of feeling tired and burned-out on unsuccessful attempts to look
and feel your best? Are you ready to make changes that will last? Then three
things need to take place:
1. Focus on your strengths and what IS working in your life, as opposed to
2. Connect your health and wellness to what you value most, knowing why it’s
important to you. For example, “I want to eat better so that I will be a better
role model for my kids.”
3. Schedule the specific action that you will take (the who, what, when, and
well-being, then perhaps wellness coaching is for you. To find out, call or
visit my website below.
Certified Personal Trainer and Pilates
By Janine Fitzgerald | December 20, 2011
Doesn’t it seem
like yesterday that you were making your New Year’s resolutions for 2011? Well, that time is here again. When you think about your resolutions from
last year, how successful were you?
Studies indicate that 60% of people who make resolutions do not achieve
them. Why is that you may ask? Resolutions are examples of “outcome” goals
(e.g. “I want to lose 15 pounds”). However, without the “behavioral” component
or the necessary actions, individuals are not likely to succeed. It’s very important to combine “outcome”
goals with “behavioral” actions in order to be successful.
So in regards to your health and wellness,
what is it that you envision for your future self three or six months down the
road? Through proper goal setting, you
turn your vision or intention into actions and reality. When creating a vision of you at your best
self, think about what you do want, rather than what you don’t want. So what is wellness? Wellness is a state of good physical and
mental health, particularly when maintained by quality nutrition, exercise, and
life habits. A good wellness program
should include specific strategies to manage diet, exercise, and stress.
your wellness vision, think about the following:
Outcomes (What do I want to achieve?)
Behaviors (What actions do I want to be doing
Motivators (Why is this important to me?)
Strengths (What talents and abilities can I use
to my advantage?)
Challenges (What barriers will I need to
Supports (What structures will I need in place?)
are best when written in the present tense, as if it is already occurring. Examples of a vision statement may be any of
“I am stronger and 20 pounds lighter with plenty
of energy to maintain my busy life.”
“I am exercising 5 days a week, managing my
stress better, and have lower cholesterol.”
“My increased stamina has improved my tennis, I
am eating more fruits and vegetables, and I am getting 8 hours of sleep per
in mind that motivation alone, without a specific health, wellness, or fitness
plan, typically does not lead to success.
It’s important to not only identify the particular actions and behaviors
that you want to take, but also to measure your progress against your initial
baseline. It is crucial that if want to
succeed in reaching your vision for wellness, you must have SMART goals in
place. SMART goals are Specific, Measurable, Action-based,
Realistic, and Time-lined. When being specific about the actions that you will take, it is also necessary to pinpoint the how and when because that will give you a timeline in which to accomplish the goal. It’s a matter of scheduling the activity as
opposed to “getting around to it” when there’s time. Be sure that your goals are measurable, so you will know when
success has been achieved. Lastly, realistic goal setting is essential to
increase the odds for success. Having
quick, small wins will enable you to continue to move forward. Setting unrealistic goals, however, hinders
one’s self-efficacy and self-esteem
If you are ready
to make 2012 your best year yet, call or visit my website below:
By Janine Fitzgerald | November 20, 2011
We can’t add more hours to the day, but we can increase our energy which will allow us to accomplish more throughout the day. By adopting a few extra healthy behaviors, you will soon find yourself zipping through your day!
When one of my clients comes to me with the intent of improving their energy level, one of the first things I will have them do is to keep a food log of everything that they eat or drink over the course of at least one week. It’s a means of seeing if there is a proper balance of complex carbs, protein, and healthy fats. Maintaining a food log will also make it clear as to weather or not they are eating enough fruits and vegetables in order to have sufficient levels of vitamin C which aids in energy production.
Having eight hours of uninterrupted sleep is another sure way to gain energy. To improve your sleep quality, try a few of the following: avoid fluids two hours prior to bed; an hour before bed, dim the lights and turn off the TV and the computer; practice deep breathing while you give thanks for the positive things in your life; avoid caffeine after noon; create a relaxing bedtime ritual like gentle stretching or reading. Give me the couch and a magazine, and within 15 minutes I’m off to snooze land!
Feeling stressed the majority of the time will certainly deplete energy levels. I always ask my client to write down at least three things that “fill their cup”. This might entail spending time with friends and family, gardening, exercising, or being in nature. Then it’s just a matter of scheduling these activities on your calendar and regard it as you would any other important meeting.
Studies show that engaging in physical activity at least five days a week increases energy levels. Once again, it’s important plan your activity in advance and schedule it. Exercise also counteracts stress and insomnia. On that note, get up now and get movin’!
Start living your life to the fullest today by visiting the website below.
By Janine Fitzgerald | October 31, 2011
Winston Churchill once said,”Success is the ability to go from failure to failure without losing your enthusiasm”. A prime example of that is the life of Abraham Lincoln who had eight business and political failures in a row before he was elected president. So what is it about failure that is so scary, leading us to a life of unfulfilled dreams? Has the fear of failure ever stopped you from starting your own business, pursuing a new degree, or moving to a different state?
Take charge over your fear by using the following strategies to begin moving towards your desires: first, define success based on your own values. What good is it to get public recognition and respect when your in poor health due to neglecting your needs? Second, ensure that your pursuits align with your true aspirations. Often times children choose a career in order to please their parents, only to endure years of unfulfillment. Third, be willing to learn from the past and try not to label things as mistakes but rather experiences. And last, honestly ask yourself what’s the worst that could happen if you’re not 100% successful. I sometimes find myself worrying about the what-ifs, but when I ask myself that question, I instantly feel more calm and confident.
If you are ready to overcome your fears and would like to explore the possibilities of creating a step by step plan that is specific to your lifestyle and needs, visit my website below.
By Janine Fitzgerald | October 31, 2011
Like death and taxes, change is unavoidable; yet, most people resist it. Fear of change involves the unknown future. As much as we would all like to be in control of our lives, absolute control is nothing but a myth. Those that tend to “go with the flow” tend to be less stressed and more content with life. You may want to try some of these solutions for embracing change and learning how to let go:
1. Begin to develop a mindset for change by doing small things a little differently. For example,
you may want to go to a different coffee shop in the morning, use a different piece of cardio
equipment, or drive an alternate route to work.
2. List the benefits of change versus the temporary inconvenience or discomfort.
3. If you are going through multiple changes at once in your life, remain consistent with the
activities that keep you anchored to what truly matters and is important. For me, this in-
cludes physical activity most days of the week, having my morning hot tea, and talking
with my parents a couple of times a week.
4. Take charge of your fear! At times when I deal with fear, I place a couple of post-it notes
that might say something like “I am not fearful. I am brave”.
If you would like to discuss further ways in which you can develop specific strategies to overcome fear of change in your life, visit my website below.
By Janine Fitzgerald | October 23, 2011
Every year, Americans spend millions of dollars on supplements that supposedly reduce the appetite, and if those products really worked, wouldn’t everyone be a lot thinner? According to my friend, Dr. Jason Schwartz, author of “Fit Into Your Genes”, it’s important to increase our level of leptin. Leptin, a hormone which is produced by fat cells, sends a signal to the brain that allows us to know when we’re full. Individuals who are leptin-resistant have a much higher tendency to be obese and therefore, should avoid certain foods that lower the body’s production of leptin. Some of those foods include:
-oils such as corn, safflower, sunflower, cottonseed, peanut, and soybean, in addition to items like margarine and mayonnaise
-meat and eggs from grain-fed animals
-partially hydrogenated oils and fried foods
-white flour and refined carbohydrates
Foods that tend to increase our production of leptin include:
-legumes, fruits, and vegetables
-grass-fed beef and omega-3 eggs
-raw almonds, walnuts, and cashews
-pumpkin seeds (they contain twice the amount of iron as beef)
-spices like garlic, ginger, fennel, and red pepper (I love them all!)
-organic oils such as extra virgin olive oil, grapeseed, and almond oil
Another way to reduce one’s appetite is by increasing the body’s production of cholecystokinin (CCK). CCK is a hormone which is released in the small intestines and allows us to know when we are full. Chlorophyll, which gives color to plants and green vegetables, increases CCK. So just like mom used to say, “Eat your veggies!” You could also amp-up CCK by using an organic greens superfood powder.
For more tips or if you’re ready to make positive, lasting changes in your lifestyle, feel free to visit my website below.
By Janine Fitzgerald | October 10, 2011
Do you always feel like you’re hurrying through your to-do list, leaving you with little time to do the things that nurture and fulfill you? For many of us, being busy validates our sense of worth and makes us feel important. Managing our time is one of our greatest challenges today; however, we can’t equate busyness with importance or meaning. So here are some tips on how you can gain an extra hour a day in order to make time in your life for the things that really matter.
For clients of mine who wish to have better time management, I recommend that they begin by keeping a time log. Every hour for one week, track your activity. You may be surprised at how much time is spent on Facebook or watching TV. Another thing you may want to do throughout the day is take a few mini-breaks from technology. Again, it’s so easy to loose precious time scanning updates and responding to emails and texts that are not urgent. Once you see how you’re spending your time, think about which tasks you can delegate. For example, I think I can do a more thorough job than my housekeeper at cleaning the inside of the fridge, but I allow for imperfection and delegate it to her.
Now, look at your time log and cut one thing from your to-do list by asking yourself the following questions: Do you enjoy it and does it serve as a life purpose? If you answer no to both questions, remove it from your list. Next, schedule yourself a block of 30 minutes to sit quietly and make a list of passions that you once had as a child or hobbies that you always wanted to try. From there, write down in your schedule a block of one hour for you to tap into that passion. If you don’t have a passion, experiment with a few until you discover it. Keeping yourself engaged in meaningful activities is an important aspect of mental health and wellness.
By Janine Fitzgerald | September 25, 2011
Whether you’re dying for something crunchy, salty, or sweet, I’ve got some of the simplest ways for you to satisfy yourself without sabotaging your waistline. Often times when we are craving something crunchy, it’s because of stress or tension. Eliminate those feelings by snacking on pine nuts, which contain pinolenic acid, a type of fat that triggers the release of appetite-suppressing hormones. Or pick up a pen and write about those emotions. I often encourage my wellness clients to journal, whether it’s just a few sentences a day or several paragraphs once a week; it’s a means of staying in check with our emotions and minimizing tension. Another way to reduce those crunchy cravings and reduce stress is chewing sugar-free gum. According to researchers, chomping on gum lessens tension by 17%!
To turn off a sweet tooth, eat a baked apple with cinnamon to stabilize blood sugar and to keep yourself full for hours. And I’ve just come to find out that the L-glutamine that I have been taking for the last couple of months has another bonus: it helps to stop sugar cravings in as little as five minutes! Most doctors recommend 800 mg. a day. According to Dr. Fred Pescatore, renowned weight management expert, you can also halt that desire for sweets by as little as five minutes of activity. So get up and move that booty!
And what can you do about salt cravings? Often it’s due to mineral deficiencies, so gulp up some mineral water like Perrier, which I just so happen to be drinking right now as I write. And don’t be afraid to experiment with antioxidant-rich herbs and spices (personally, I’m an addict with cayenne and cinnamon!). Speaking of addict, I love lemon juice and various organic vinegars. In fact, anyone that knows me will tell you that I tend to drown my food with the stuff. Normal? No. Good to my palate? Yes!