Monday, January 28, 2008

Healthy Living Tips - Part I

1. The best place to begin healthy daily living is in your own living room. Every morning, before you begin your day, before you eat your first meal, sit quietly and breathe. (You may want to ingest a glass of room-temperature water before your meditation as most of us wake up dehydrated from a night’s sleep.) Yogis have done this for thousands of years and the benefits transcend the physical, transporting you into a spiritual dimension that will calm your whirlwind of thoughts. This internal stillness will remain dominant throughout the rest of your day and help you to maintain measured composure no matter what the day may bring.

2. Have a good attitude. Did you know that smiling actually makes you feel happier by signaling the brain to release mood stimulants? Your mood is partly dependent on what you make of it so get outdoors when it's not too cold, socialize, and take necessary breaks from work and stress. And smile. It’s one of the healthiest things you can do for your own well-being.

3. Exercise! Whether it’s Mambo Mania, yoga, Pilates, cardiovascular training (power walking, running, jogging, aerobic dancing, swimming, biking or working on cardio equipment) most everyone can enjoy the benefits of regular exercise. It can reduce the risk of heart disease, lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels, is a great de-stresser, helps weight loss, increases muscle strength, bone mass and endurance, and may even help reduce the risk of cancer. You can go to your local gym and take classes, hire a personal trainer, go for a walk around the block or go to your local pool for a regular swim. Heck, take your bike out and cruise the neighborhood. It’s all in good health!

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Did You See Us in the Los Angeles Times?

Personal Best was featured as one of Los Angeles' best neighborhood gyms last week. In case you missed it, here's what it said:

It's the small things

L.A. has its fair share of neighborhood gyms that offer less and more than big-box fitness centers.

January 7, 2008

>>PERSONAL BEST - Havana-born dancer and fitness trainer Clara Bassett, also known as Clarita, brings a touch, well, more than a touch, of Latin flair to the Mambo Mania fitness, yoga and Pilates classes at her new studio. In fact, Personal Best even offers a class called Yoga Suave, which combines Kundalini yoga with salsa movements to "reach the lower chakras," Bassett says. The studio, which opened in September, attracts an eclectic group of neighborhood artists and longshoremen, who seem to prefer the power yoga and salsa classes.<<

You can check out the entire article HERE

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Making that New Years Resolution Stick - Tips to Sustain a Workout Regimen

Bienvenidos and welcome. By visiting my blog today, you are already one step closer to a healthier new you. The goal of this blog is to accomplish my mission of helping you be your personal best so, I hope you’ll come back regularly and email me often. I’d love to hear from you.

It’s a new year, the best time for a fresh start and, if getting in shape is your goal…way to go! But, WARNING... if you’re like most people, you’ll find that adhering to a newly adopted fitness program may inevitably be overridden by your old habits. So, if you're watching NBC's Biggest Loser and wondering if you can get into shape too, here’s some advice to get started and, more importantly, sustain your exercise regimen.

Adopting and then adhering to a new exercise regimen is heavily based on behavior modification. If you don't exercise regularly, you have yet to develop the synapses that will ultimately strengthen that habit. A synapse is a junction between two nerve cells where the club-shaped tip of a nerve fiber almost touches another cell in order to transmit signals in your brain. You must cultivate the new habit of exercise by regularly stimulating those nerve cells to repeatedly fire signals between one another. Your synapses increase plasticity the more you stimulate the firing of signals between them just as a muscle becomes stronger the more you repeat a physical function. Through repeated thoughts connected to specific physically activity, you will strengthen those synapses and ingrain the new habit into your mind. At first, the habit of NOT working out is much stronger than the new habit of working out. So, you must cultivate and develop your newly adopted habit by simultaneously incorporating new actions and cognitive thoughts about that action, on a daily bases. As Nike says, “just do it”, over and over again.

Here’s how you can develop the habit of exercise.

1. First of all, you must set your sights on a "goal"- without it, the dream of becoming fit can easily fizzle away with any little distraction.

2. Goals must be "Smart" goals. They must be:

Specific- Example: "I'm going to lose 15 pounds.

Measurable- You need to be accountable to yourself by periodically checking your progress. To check your progress, you must have a “baseline” or starting point for future reference and comparisons. I recommend you measure weight, body fat and metabolic rate. Every 30 days, remeasure and compare. If you've been following a sound fitness program (and eating healthy, well portioned meals) you will realize several small victories along the way. Every little victory will compel you to continue and move closer to your ultimate goal.

Action- Discipline yourself to physically get up and move! Whether you hire a personal trainer, join a club, buy a bike or a treadmill, or follow along with my Mambo Mania DVD’s – the surgeon general prescribes a minimum of 30 minutes of cardio vascular exercise most days of the week. Now mind you, this is simply to maintain general health and well being. To reach your goal, you'll have to do more.

Realistic- The crux to successfully reaching your goal is to set a realistic goal. The only way to lose weight in a healthy fashion is to lose 1-2 lbs per week. If you have 15 lbs to lose, it will take you 15 weeks, (3 1/2 months). So, if your goal is to be in shape for that wedding, that family reunion, or some other occasion, you need to check you calendar and outline your strategy NOW!

Target- Make a circle on your calendar - keep that date in mind and go do something today! You may not be able to do 30 minutes of cardio in one fell swoop so, start with 5 minutes of cardio then do 2 or 3 muscle conditioning exercises (your trainer can help you with these. If you don’t have a trainer, go to my site order my Flex’n Stretch’n Pump’n Mambo Mania DVD-there are several muscle conditioning exercises in the “Flex’n sections of the workout.). I recommend a comprehensive workout for best results, meaning- include cardio, muscle conditioning, flexibility exercises along with proper nutrition. Your second week, increase your cardio to 10 minutes and add 2 new muscle conditioning exercises. Week 3- increase cardio to 15 minutes and add an additional 2-3 muscle conditioning exercises… so on and so forth. Attempt to increase your cardio to 30 minutes and to do 9-12 muscle conditioning exercise.

3. The current research says that it takes 21 days to develop a new habit. Do your program for 21 days straight and your chances of creating a new habit are in the bag! Good luck!
For great tips and workout programs to help you on your way, please visit my Mambo Mania website to check out all my DVDs and my Metabolic Cure nutritional program.