Day 7: Grandma Got Run Over by the Holiday Cold: Staying Healthy for the Holidays

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Day 7: Grandma Got Run Over by the Holiday Cold: Staying Healthy for the Holidays

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With the combo of the lower humidity that comes with cold weather, the tendency for people to stay huddled inside by the fire, higher stress levels, lower sleep hours, and of course the balanced holiday diet of booze, cookies and candies, the cold virus is in its glory during this time of year. So look out Granny! Below, I have gathered the leading ways to successfully fight off the common cold, as well as some key ideas on keeping the symptoms and duration of a cold to a minimum if you are already sick.

Feed a Cold…and Hydrate It

Hands down, the leading way to protect your body from a cold is to provide it with the proper fuel and nutrition it needs to run efficiently while keeping your immune system at full strength. I am personally a fan of feeding your body the correct balance of foods, as opposed to relying on vitamins and supplements to do the job. Our bodies have been digesting and breaking down whole, natural foods for generations and therefore are able to absorb and use more of the nutrients from foods as opposed to processed vitamin pills.

[one_half]"The population of people that were given probiotics in the study showed both a reduced duration of the cold (2 days instead of 4 days) as well as symptoms that were 34% less severe."[/one_half]

What are the best foods to eat when boosting your immune system?

1.   Colorful Fruits and Vegetables

  • Unanimously, every single source I spoke with highly recommends eating a large variety of fruits and vegetables during cold season, especially if you end up catching a cold.
  • For Sarah Koszyk, MA, RD, nutrition coach & registered dietitian at MV Nutrition, her top vote for antioxidant super foods to enhance your immune health are Carotenoids & Beta-Carotene.  “Time to get your colors on!” says Koszyk.  Purple, blue, red, orange, and yellow foods have beta-carotene and carotenoids which boost immune health and prevent free radicals from causing oxidative damage. Carotenes also include Vitamin A, which increases the production of white blood cells. White blood cells make up our immune health!”111

Koszyk recommends including these delicious foods this winter season:

  • Sweet Potatoes (eat them for breakfast with some cinnamon)
  • Carrots (you can mix them into a pasta sauce or soup)
  • Tomatoes
  • Pumpkin (add pumpkin puree to a smoothie)
  • Beets
  • Kale
  • Squash
  • Tangerines

To guarantee a good punch of fruits and vegetables every day, use this recipe and start off each day with a homemade Green Smoothie for breakfast.

2.   Cleansing Foods for your Liver and Kidneys

  • Naturally raised, organically grown fruits and vegetables are key in keeping the liver clean since the liver is the organ that detoxifies these chemicals in the body.
  • Traci Freeman, executive chef and founder of Lilah Belle’s Nutritional and Organic Meals to Go agrees. “A strong immune system is the best way to fight a cold or flu.  Good ol' garlic helps your liver activate enzymes that can flush out toxins. It also has a high amount of allicin and selenium, two natural compounds that aid in liver cleansing. Garlic packs the biggest antioxidant punch when eaten raw.  A quick ways to use garlic are put it in your salad dressing, or toss it in last minute with your cooked meal. The heat will release a punch of flavor and immune building compounds.”

[one_half]"To guarantee a good punch of fruits and vegetables every day, use this recipe and start off each day with homemade Green Smoothie for breakfast."[/one_half]

  • Freeman also adds that “ Beets are high in plant-flavonoids, which can improve the overall functions of your liver. Adding more avocados to your diet can help your body produce a type of antioxidant called glutathione, which is needed for our livers to filter out harmful materials.  You can make a wonderful salad with kale, walnuts, avocado, beets and mandarin oranges, with a fresh garlic salad dressing.  This will definitely make your organs healthier and stronger!”

Some other great foods that promote clean kidneys and liver include:

  • green tea
  • grapefruit
  • onions
  • broccoli
  • cauliflower
  • brussel sprouts

3.   Probiotics and fermented foods

  • A study posted in the October 2012 issue of the British Journal of Nutrition studied the effects of probioitic ingestion during the common cold. The population of people that were given probiotics in the study showed both a reduced duration of the cold (2 days instead of 4 days) as well as symptoms that were 34% less severe.
  • For probiotics, Chris Kresser, licensed acupuncturist and practitioner of integrative medicine in Berkeley, recommends, ‘Probiotics found in fermented foods like yogurt, kefir, sauerkraut and kimchi strengthen and maintain the mucosal barrier system (in our respiratory and intestinal tract), which is our first line of defense against pathogens. What’s more, 75% of our immune system is found in the gut.’
  • Kombucha is also an easy way to get your daily dose of probiotics. Traveling at SFO? You can even purchase a bottle of it in Terminal 2 at The Plant Cafe to drink during your flight home.

4. Bone Broths and Bone Marrow

  • Your Mom was right, that chicken soup and broth are great for beating a cold.
  • Both greatly assist the immune system by carrying more oxygen into the cells of the body.
  • You can easily make your own bone broth at home or Three Stone Hearth in Berkeley is an amazing source for grass-fed beef broths made fresh weekly and delivered to your door.

5.   Avoid or Reduce Inflammatory Foods

Chris Kresser’s worst offenders include:

  • Gluten
  • Soy
  • Industrial seed oil
  • Sugar
  • Kresser explains that, “Food toxins provoke an immune reaction that can make us more vulnerable to foreign invaders like bacteria and viruses.”

Also to avoid:

  • Junk foods and fried foods with hydrogenated oils (skip those airport food court fries and ask for a piece of fresh fruit or salad instead)
  • Alcohol since it slows down your liver’s detox function while your body is forced to process the cocktail you just drank.

6.   Keep Up with Your Fluids

  • Monitor your urine color to guarantee that you are keeping your body fully hydrated
  • Eating a well balanced diet is just as important as water intake when it comes to staying hydratedIMG_2861

Other than your food, there are a few other useful reminders to assist you in staying healthy this holiday season:

  • Wash your hands frequently, especially after being in crowded public areas or around people that are sick.
  • Keep your stress levels low. Stress will literally eat you alive if you allow it the opportunity. Check out Day 1: The Most Wonderful Yet Stressful Time of Year (LINK) for some good ideas on keeping your stress levels under control this season.
  • Sleep a minimum of 7-8 hours a night, catching even more Zzz’s when time permits. A rested body is a strong body.
  • Stay on track with your workouts and fitness activities. Keeping the body moving and oxygenated will assist with filtration and your immune system.

Follow these simple instructions, keep Grandma from wandering around the yard late on Christmas Eve, and we will all have a healthy and happy New Year!

 

DIAKADI’s The 12 Days of Fitmas: Welcoming the holidays and year’s end as a time for relaxation and celebration, The 12 Days of Fitmas will teach people to take the time to enjoy the fun of the season, while reflecting on the year and looking forward to the year ahead. The series tackles the biggest problems that many face: stress, holiday parties, eating well, preparing for the New Year, and more.

“The holidays tend to be one of the most challenging times of the year for our clients,” says Billy Polson. “The stress, over-booked schedules, party foods, alcohol and travel plans wreak havoc on their workouts and their bodies. The 12 Days of Fitmas are our effort to help people not only survive the holidays, but thrive throughout them.”

Through The 12 Days of Fitmas, DIAKADI will demonstrate the belief that fitness is about far more than dead lifts, burpees and the spin class. Rather, fitness and health encompass all aspects of one’s lifestyle including sleep schedules, stress levels, deep breaths, proper fuel for the body, and enjoying life every day. DIAKADI will use video to demonstrate topics like “Ultimate Destination Workout,” ensuring that whether one is at a beginning or an advanced level, they will learn proper form and technique for the perfect workout regardless of location. The principals discussed in the series will be applicable beyond the holiday season and throughout the New Year.

Originally published at Patch.com.

Day 1: The Most Wonderful Yet Stressful Time of Year: Managing Holiday Stress Day 2: The Holiday Hunger Games: Holiday Party Survival Tips Day 3: The 80/20 Rule: By Damn, Enjoy the Holidays Day 4: Healthy Holiday Recipes that Don’t Suck Day 5: Planes, Trains, and Drive-thrus: Smart Choices for Food on the Go Day 6: Travel Stretches to Make Coach Feel Like First Class Day 7: Grandma Got Run Over by the Holiday Cold: Staying Healthy for the Holidays Day 8: The DIAKADI Destination Workout: Anytime, Anywhere, No Equipment Necessary Day 9: Silent Night: How to Stay Rested Throughout the Holidays Day 10: The Holiday Hustle: Getting Off the Couch and Out of the House for the Big Day Day 11: Start the New Year Off with a Bang Not a Bust: Do What You Love this New Year’s Day 12: When the Clock Strikes Midnight: Successfully Setting and Reaching Your New Year’s Goals

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Day 6: Travel Stretches to Make Coach Feel Like First Class

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Day 6: Travel Stretches to Make Coach Feel Like First Class

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Are you and your body truly ready for what is about to happen next week? This is how I see it. You have booked a coach ticket using miles on Southwest to see your family in Milwaukee, connecting through Miami (3 hour layover), on a red eye. Your sister begs you to haul back all the sour dough bread and See’s candy you can carry-on so that she can give them as gifts to all of her neighbors. It is Christmas after all, so you agree (Note to Self: See Day 1 about learning how to say ‘No’). Then, when your favorite niece graciously explains that she will be giving up her fabulous Disney Princess canopy twin bed with the lumpy mattress for you to sleep in, I have a feeling that your body will be in need of a little TLC the next morning.

 

So when you wake up that next morning, gently roll out from under your pink canopy and down onto that ‘wall to wall’ luxurious pink princess carpet and slowly move through some of these stretches as your morning meditation and time for yourself.

[one_half]Then, when your favorite niece graciously explains that she will be giving up her fabulous Disney Princess canopy twin bed with the lumpy mattress for you to sleep in, I have a feeling that your body will be in need of a little TLC the next morning.[/one_half]

There is a lot of information and research floating around debating ‘To Stretch or Not To Stretch’. My personal belief and the philosophy that I follow with my clients, as well as my own body, is that stretches are useful and helpful  when performed on muscles that actually need to be stretched. Lengthening or over-stretching weak muscles often leads to further imbalances and joint issues. The challenge is that most people have no way of knowing which muscles in their bodies are actually in need of lengthening and inhibition versus which are actually long, weak, or taut and giving false feedback that they are needing a nice stretch. Sadly judging by sensation alone is never a reliable source. A great example of this comes from a client that came to me complaining that his hamstrings were always tight and painful and no amount of stretching would ever bring relief. After a quick assessment of his pelvic alignment and a flexibility screen of the muscles attached to his pelvis, we discovered that his hamstrings were actually too stretched, long and weak. He immediately started a prescription of hamstring shortening and strengthening, bringing about complete relief of his pain within a week. Not magic, just the physics of the body’s lever system. (For more information on stretch testing, check out this link to the complete trainer’s assessment.)art-seats2-420x0

So use these travel stretches as a body wake up, just like a puppy does his stretch and warm-up routine after laying down for an extended period of time. For full body mobility, I recommend moving in and out of each stretch initially. For example, for the hip flexors, lunging forward in the single knee, then coming back to your starting point.  Then as you find some of the movements are tight and difficult to move through, you can hold the stretch for 30+ seconds. Again, always stopping before any intense sensation of pain or pulling.

[one_half]The challenge is that most people have no way of knowing which muscles in their bodies are actually in need of lengthening and inhibition versus which are actually long, weak, or taut and giving false feedback that they are needing a nice stretch. Sadly judging by sensation alone is never a reliable source.[/one_half]

If you are home with a group of family or friends, try making it a fun activity for the entire family, getting the kids and granny to do them with you.  Nothing serious or intense, just a way of getting the blood flowing and joints moving. If weather permits, get outside and do them in a nearby park. Lastly, many of these stretches are designed to be done while traveling in coach on an airplane. On a crazy long flight and getting cramped up? Try some of these compact stretches to loosen things up a bit.

(Note: If you are not currently doing any type of exercise , injured or experiencing any type of body or joint pain, I always recommend consulting with a doctor or health professional before starting any type of new exercise program.)

For more information, or if you have exact questions on which stretches are appropriate for your body, feel free to drop me an email here at info@diakadibody.com.

Happy holidays and good luck making it to the Home Stretch!

1. Hip Flexors

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0K10-_fJjaI&feature=c4-overview&list=UUmVFpzoOajud7zArEm11NYg[/youtube]

For mobility alternate between shifting your weight forward then back, gradually increasing the range of motion as it feels comfortable for 12 reps per leg.

For a static stretch, try holding this for 30 seconds to begin with, continuing to hold the stretch for a longer amount of time if needed. Continue to breath throughout all stretches.

2. Quadriceps

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xa-5xFRDPdY&feature=c4-overview&list=UUmVFpzoOajud7zArEm11NYg[/youtube]

For mobility, you can start by alternating legs for the standing stretch, holding each leg for a quick second before switching for 24 reps. You can also use the toe on the wall stretch for mobility by lunging forward and back, gradually increasing the range of motion for 12 reps per leg.

For static stretching, when possible, use the kneeling toe on the wall version in order to relax your body during the stretch. Hold this stretch initially for 30 seconds, feeling for the muscle to relax and the fibers release.

3. Hamstrings

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Z4ePzixMcA&feature=c4-overview&list=UUmVFpzoOajud7zArEm11NYg[/youtube]

For mobility, i recommend slowly moving in and out of the bent over toe touch (5 count down, 5 count up), increasing the range of motion as able for 12 reps.

For a static stretch, when possible, use the floor version with one leg resting against the wall in order to relax your body during the stretch. Hold this stretch initially for 30 seconds, feeling for the muscle to relax and the fibers release.

4. Piriformis and Hips

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rsZ_70O75Jc&feature=c4-overview&list=UUmVFpzoOajud7zArEm11NYg[/youtube]

For mobility, I recommend sitting in the piriformis cross leg stretch (shin parallel to the floor) and slowly rocking forward into the stretch and back sitting straight up for 12 reps per leg.

For static stretches, hold these stretches initially for 30 seconds, feeling for the muscle to relax and the fibers release.

5. Lower Back, Hips Twist

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kd8nxvs2R0g&feature=c4-overview&list=UUmVFpzoOajud7zArEm11NYg[/youtube]

For mobility, alternately kick your legs across your body, pulling the knee across with opposing hand for 24 alternating side reps.

For static stretching, try holding the stretch for 30 seconds per leg to begin with, continuing to hold the stretch for a longer amount of time if needed. Continue to breath throughout all stretches.

6. Calves

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dqlu8IiC2KU&feature=c4-overview&list=UUmVFpzoOajud7zArEm11NYg[/youtube]

For mobility, use the wall lean version of the stretch and rock back and forth between (1) your back heel down and leg straight and (2) your back knee bent and rolling up on your toes with heel off. Try 12 reps on each leg by alternating heel up, heel down.

For static, hold these stretches for a minimum of 60 seconds to begin with due to the density of the calf muscles. Hold the stretch for a longer amount of time if needed. Continue to breath throughout all stretches.

7. Chest

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d0aJCziKCnI&feature=c4-overview&list=UUmVFpzoOajud7zArEm11NYg[/youtube]

For mobility, slowly twist your upper body and spine into the stretch and back out of it for 12 reps per side.

For static, try holding these stretches for a minimum of 30 seconds to begin with, holding the stretch for a longer amount of time if needed. Continue to breath throughout all stretches.

8. Neck

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SJ246W0pApI&feature=c4-overview&list=UUmVFpzoOajud7zArEm11NYg[/youtube]

I recommend using this stretch as a static stretch only as opposed to a mobility movement. Try holding these stretches for a minimum of 30 seconds to begin with, holding the stretch for a longer amount of time if needed. Continue to breath throughout all stretches.

9. Latissimus Dorsi (Lats)

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J4y40FwPoFw&feature=c4-overview&list=UUmVFpzoOajud7zArEm11NYg[/youtube]

For mobility, I recommend rocking in and out of the stretch by alternately (1) shifting your hips with chest drop and (2) shifting your hips back front with chest up for 12 reps.

For static, try holding these stretches for a minimum of 30 seconds to begin with, holding the stretch for a longer amount of time if needed. Continue to breath throughout all stretches.

DIAKADI’s The 12 Days of Fitmas: Welcoming the holidays and year’s end as a time for relaxation and celebration, The 12 Days of Fitmas will teach people to take the time to enjoy the fun of the season, while reflecting on the year and looking forward to the year ahead. The series tackles the biggest problems that many face: stress, holiday parties, eating well, preparing for the New Year, and more.

“The holidays tend to be one of the most challenging times of the year for our clients,” says Billy Polson. “The stress, over-booked schedules, party foods, alcohol and travel plans wreak havoc on their workouts and their bodies. The 12 Days of Fitmas are our effort to help people not only survive the holidays, but thrive throughout them.”

Through The 12 Days of Fitmas, DIAKADI will demonstrate the belief that fitness is about far more than dead lifts, burpees and the spin class. Rather, fitness and health encompass all aspects of one’s lifestyle including sleep schedules, stress levels, deep breaths, proper fuel for the body, and enjoying life every day. DIAKADI will use video to demonstrate topics like “Ultimate Destination Workout,” ensuring that whether one is at a beginning or an advanced level, they will learn proper form and technique for the perfect workout regardless of location. The principals discussed in the series will be applicable beyond the holiday season and throughout the New Year.

Originally published at Patch.com.

Day 1: The Most Wonderful Yet Stressful Time of Year: Managing Holiday Stress Day 2: The Holiday Hunger Games: Holiday Party Survival Tips Day 3: The 80/20 Rule: By Damn, Enjoy the Holidays Day 4: Healthy Holiday Recipes that Don’t Suck Day 5: Planes, Trains, and Drive-thrus: Smart Choices for Food on the Go Day 6: Travel Stretches to Make Coach Feel Like First Class Day 7: Grandma Got Run Over by the Holiday Cold: Staying Healthy for the Holidays Day 8: The DIAKADI Destination Workout: Anytime, Anywhere, No Equipment Necessary Day 9: Silent Night: How to Stay Rested Throughout the Holidays Day 10: The Holiday Hustle: Getting Off the Couch and Out of the House for the Big Day Day 11: Start the New Year Off with a Bang Not a Bust: Do What You Love this New Year’s Day 12: When the Clock Strikes Midnight: Successfully Setting and Reaching Your New Year’s Goals

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Top 5 Tools to Help Master Your Indy Business

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Top 5 Tools to Help Master Your Indy Business

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Whether you are an accomplished trainer with your own studio or making the transition to become an independent trainer, running your business brings challenges of all kinds. Don’t get too stressed though, we have put together 5 great tools to help you manage your personal training business and become more independent! Get better results out of your work, increase your bottom line, and have the ability to teach the practice that you desire. From programming to accounting, client management to anatomical references, these tools have been tested, tried and DIAKADI approved!  

everynote12345

 

This easy to use multiplatform application is great for programming, organizing clients, storing  notes and forms, and sharing resources and information directly with your client. Evernote allows you to easily create notebooks for each client and share their workouts, meal plans, programming, and goals through email or the app. Store files, forms and photos within individual notes or a notebook, and be able to access them on any device. Encourage your clients to reference their past workouts, and keep progressing even on their off days! One of the best qualities of Evernote for trainers is the loose structure that gives you flexibility to organize your notes however you want, wherever you want on any platform you work with.

 


 

essentialanatomy1

 

The maker of this one of a kind anatomy app, 3D4 Medical, specializes in medical, health, fitness, and educational programs and applications for just about anyone who wants to learn. Essential Anatomy 4 is a total body, easy to use, detailed anatomical reference app that is the perfect tool to have in any healthcare professional’s pocket. This brilliant app includes detailed 3D images of 11 of the body's systems and 4,800 anatomical structures, the ability to see them in isolation from any angle, and detailed descriptions of each structure. The graphics are stunning, the layout is clean and polished, and the navigation is seamless. I highly recommend this reference tool not just for trainers and healthcare professionals, but for clients and patients as well.

 


 

googleapps

Google has come a long way since its first debut as a search engine. With intuitive platforms and industry leading cloud infrastructure, Google’s Apps for Work is an all-in-one productivity suite for businesses of any size. Most of us already use google in one way or another and it’s free, so, why pay? The premium feature allows you to create your personalized website, and host your professional email through Gmail. It also features a higher level of synchronicity, larger storage capacity across Gmail and Drive, and 24/7 phone support. Google’s immaculate cloud proficiency enables hassle free storage of all of your files, always accessible on any device and synced wonderfully. From building your website to scheduling clients, creating spreadsheets and updating them across platforms, Google Apps for Work makes work is our most well-rounded tool for becoming an independent  trainer. It feels great to have all of your stuff in one place everywhere you go.

 


 

typeform

For those of us who balk at having to write with a pen and paper (so old school), there is this wonderful website called Typeform for all of your trainer forms. Typeform's goal: make forms awesome!  Easily create any type of form in a number of beautiful layouts customizable with your business logo and information. Creating your par q, client intake forms, liability waivers, surveys and client questionnaires have never been this easy. Typeform also walks you through attaching your forms to your website and provides you with the paid options of collecting payments, personalized automatic responses, logic jumps calculations for those par q’s! No more paper or bulky notebooks required, Typeform just made your life digital. 

 


 

As trainers, one of the aspects of business we commonly struggle with is finance and accounting management. The ideal accounting tool for a trainer would include cash flow sheets, expense reports, the ability to invoice and create receipts, and whatever the accountant needs to do our taxes. Depending on the size of your business, we have come up with three tools to assist you in the complex world of money management.

 

googlesheets1

 

As mentioned above Google Apps for Work allows you to create spreadsheets that work with all popular file types. Create a cash flow and have the ability to sync it with Microsoft Outlook. For trainers just getting your business started this is the ideal tool. It involves a little more hands on work, but is simple and easy without too many options that you can’t afford.

 

xero2

 

For the more established business owner seeking a little more synchronicity there is Xero.This cloud based accounting software comes with many features relevant to our business including: detailed cash flow analysis, bank reconciliation, invoicing and client management. It also includes add ons for payroll, expense reports, inventory, and more. Running from 9$ - 70$ monthly (depending on features) Xero can be your full time  financial assistant.

 

 

mindbody123

 

Our third and most inclusive suite for accounting and finances is MindBody, but it doesn’t stop at accounting. Mindbody is a completely customizable scheduling and online booking platform, POS station, accounting hub, and multi faceted client management and marketing tool. With packages from $85 - $150 monthly, Mindbody is catered toward the well established fitness entrepreneur, fitness studio, or multi practice professional.

 


 

With these 5 tools, you will be able to overcome the challenges of growing a successful business and flourish to new heights. By utilizing one or all of these tools, you can stay organized, clean up your financials, digitize your business, and bring relevant knowledge into the hands of both you and your clients.

 

 

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Day 5: Planes, Trains, and Drive-thrus: Smart Choices for Food on the Go

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Day 5: Planes, Trains, and Drive-thrus: Smart Choices for Food on the Go

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Tickets? Check. Money? Check. Passport? Check. A delicious, organic carry-on meal and healthy snacks for your flight? Ooops...I knew I had forgotten something. If you are traveling this holiday season, be mentally prepared for those crazy security lines, delayed flights, and sprinting through airports to make tight connections. All of these will leave you with limited time to shop for healthy food at the airport. Even if you do have time, the healthy options are usually going to be few and far between. Trust me, there is nothing worse than eating some airport Chili's To Go meal, then hopping on a coast to coast flight, only to run into your own 'major turbulence' 3 hours in. Add in those damn changes in air pressure and you are carrying a 'bomb' that no security scanner would catch! Remember that these planes are a shared, controlled air environment people. Help a brother out!

My simple advice for food options while traveling, stick to 'Plan and Simple'.

PLAN AHEAD

Once again we return to this same advice. If you are able to just plan a bit ahead, then you should have no problem staying on track with both your food choices as well as your food volume while traveling.  

[one_half]"Trust me, there is nothing worse than eating some airport Chili's To Go meal, then hopping on a coast to coast flight, only to run into your own 'major turbulence' 3 hours in. Add in those damn changes in air pressure and you are carrying a 'bomb' that no security scanner would catch!"[/one_half]

1. BYO MEAL: Headed on a long flight back east into the cold, or for you lucky dogs headed west to Hawaii, pack a small meal to bring with you on the plane. You want to land at your destination feeling healthy and happy, not bloated and uncomfortable. And yes, we are allowed to transport food through security lines. Try these easy carry-on ideas:

     BREAKFAST:

  • 2 hard boiled pasture raised chicken eggs and a piece of organic fruit with a homemade Green Smoothie. Smoothies are always a better option than pressed juices because you get all the fiber. Not sure which eggs to purchase or worried about eating egg yolks? Get more information using our blog on Pasture Raised Chickens.   
  • Organic, plain greek yogurt, a piece of organic fruit, some gluten free granola ('Giddy Up and Go' granola is local to SF and delicious)

     LUNCH/DINNER:

  • Bring your own salad with some protein (boiled eggs, ground beef, chicken, etc). I always bring an avocado to mix with meat and greens for dressing.
  • Pack a simple meat and vegetable meal from your leftovers the night before
  • Nothing in the house? Save yourself an extra 20 minutes on the way to the airport and run by Whole Foods hot/salad bar to make your own salad to carry with you.

2. USE YOUR RESOURCES: I realize that time to plan ahead may be tough to find for most busy travelers, so use your resources to assist with the process.  In San Francisco, take advantage of great meal delivery companies like Lilah Belle's or Munchery to pre-order a healthy meal to take on the plane with you. I have been using Lilah Belle's delicious organic food service for over 10 years now to order a few meals a week as back up for when I arrive home from work too exhausted to cook something healthy. These meals have not only kept me on track with my food choices, but they have also helped me continue to introduce a great variety of organic, sustainably farmed foods into my meal plan every week.

[one_half]"From this day forward, remember that packing your food is just as important as packing your underwear when traveling. (Maybe even more important for those of you commando fans.) "[/one_half]

3. SMART TRAVEL SNACKS: Don't rely on processed, prepackaged protein bars or trail mix as your snacks, when it is just as easy and way healthier to make your own by combining raw nuts with a piece of seasonal organic fruit. (Note: Remember that 6 raw nuts = 1 serving of fat, so don't start shoving tons of raw almonds in thinking that you can eat all you want because they are healthy.)

MY VOTES FOR THE BEST TRAVEL SNACKS: DSC_0432-1024x680

  • 6-12 raw nuts (almonds, walnuts, etc) with a piece of organic seasonal fresh fruit
  • Homemade trail mix: combine raw nuts with unsweetened, dried organic fruit
  • Local, grass fed beef jerky. In San Francisco, The Fatted Calf butcher has delicious varieties for purchase.
  • Hard boiled pasture raised chicken eggs are also a great, easy travel snack.

MAKE SIMPLE CHOICES

The travel date arrives and you have been running a sprint for days in advance with no time to plan in any way. Do not fret, there are still some healthy options for food while traveling. In general, my advice is to stick to the most simple options available. 

1. GRAB A BITE ON THE WAY TO THE AIRPORT: Again, save just an extra 20 minutes to run by your favorite healthy food bar (i.e. Whole Food) or restaurant to pick up a meal to take with you on your flight. Stick to simple salads, meat and veggies, fresh fruit.

2. THE DREADED AIRPORT FOOD COURT: Whether you are dining at Hot Dog on a Stick or

airport

Sammy Hagar's Diner, always choose the most basic items on the menu at airport restaurants. Boiled eggs, salads, grilled chicken breast, basic meat and veggies are your smartest options. This is no time to order the fettucine alfredo. Always look for the lowest fat meats when you are unsure of the quality of the source, since the fat is where any toxins would be stored.  One final option before boarding, you can almost always count on the Protein box from Starbucks. It is definitely better than getting stuck eating the foil wrapped, flattened croissant egg-wich with Jimmy Dean Sausage and cheddar cheese that is being served on your morning flight.

3. SPRINT TO TERMINAL 2: In San Francisco, get down to Terminal 2 and pick up a salad and a kombucha from The Plant Cafe. Then you can also stop by the Napa Farm's Market for some raw nuts and fresh organic fruit. Heck, you can even squeeze in some vinyasa and a little Warrior 2 in the yoga studio in Terminal 2 if you have time. Yeah, we are pretty much spoiled rotten here in San Francisco. Use this link for a full break down of the food options at SFO.

From this day forward, remember that packing your food is just as important as packing your underwear when traveling. (Maybe even more important for those of you commando fans.)  In the end, you will be saving calories, probably saving money, helping to preserve the air quality of your flight, and definitely reducing the stress of staying healthy during your holiday travel.

 

DIAKADI’s The 12 Days of Fitmas: Welcoming the holidays and year’s end as a time for relaxation and celebration, The 12 Days of Fitmas will teach people to take the time to enjoy the fun of the season, while reflecting on the year and looking forward to the year ahead. The series tackles the biggest problems that many face: stress, holiday parties, eating well, preparing for the New Year, and more.

“The holidays tend to be one of the most challenging times of the year for our clients,” says Billy Polson. “The stress, over-booked schedules, party foods, alcohol and travel plans wreak havoc on their workouts and their bodies. The 12 Days of Fitmas are our effort to help people not only survive the holidays, but thrive throughout them.”

Through The 12 Days of Fitmas, DIAKADI will demonstrate the belief that fitness is about far more than dead lifts, burpees and the spin class. Rather, fitness and health encompass all aspects of one’s lifestyle including sleep schedules, stress levels, deep breaths, proper fuel for the body, and enjoying life every day. DIAKADI will use video to demonstrate topics like “Ultimate Destination Workout,” ensuring that whether one is at a beginning or an advanced level, they will learn proper form and technique for the perfect workout regardless of location. The principals discussed in the series will be applicable beyond the holiday season and throughout the New Year.

Originally published at Patch.com.

Day 1: The Most Wonderful Yet Stressful Time of Year: Managing Holiday Stress Day 2: The Holiday Hunger Games: Holiday Party Survival Tips Day 3: The 80/20 Rule: By Damn, Enjoy the Holidays Day 4: Healthy Holiday Recipes that Don’t Suck Day 5: Planes, Trains, and Drive-thrus: Smart Choices for Food on the Go Day 6: Travel Stretches to Make Coach Feel Like First Class Day 7: Grandma Got Run Over by the Holiday Cold: Staying Healthy for the Holidays Day 8: The DIAKADI Destination Workout: Anytime, Anywhere, No Equipment Necessary Day 9: Silent Night: How to Stay Rested Throughout the Holidays Day 10: The Holiday Hustle: Getting Off the Couch and Out of the House for the Big Day Day 11: Start the New Year Off with a Bang Not a Bust: Do What You Love this New Year’s Day 12: When the Clock Strikes Midnight: Successfully Setting and Reaching Your New Year’s Goals

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Day 4: Healthy Holiday Recipes that Don’t Suck

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Day 4: Healthy Holiday Recipes that Don’t Suck

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Stressing out about what to cook for your family meal during the holidays? Want to prepare dishes that will have your guests asking you for the recipe? Worry no more. We have attended local cooking schools, phoned in favors with distant relatives and reached out to the most experienced cooks we know in order to gather delicious AND simple recipes that are guaranteed to bring you rave reviews. You have heard trainers and nutritionists say it a million times, but trust me, the selections below are finally the proof. It IS possible to cook healthy dishes that have an amazing taste and are quite easy to prepare.

Curried Butternut Squash Soup

I was a student in a cooking class called 'Everything But the Turkey' at SF Cooking School back in November and discovered this delicious AND healthy recipe for Curried Butternut Squash soup. Of the 16 dishes we cooked in class that day, it won 'Best in Show' by far.  I then cooked it for my family's Thanksgiving dinner and it was a huge hit there as well. It really is incredibly delicious and healthy and a perfect appetizer for both vegetarians and meat lovers alike.  I hope it will become a new favorite for your next holiday meal. Enjoy it!download (2)

  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • ½ medium onion diced
  • 1 clove garlic finely chopped
  • Coarse sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
  • 2 teaspoons red curry paste (recommended brand Thai Kitchen)
  • 1 medium butternut squash (about 2 lbs) peeled and cut into 1” pieces
  • 1 medium baking potato, peeled and finely chopped
  • 4 cups vegetable (or chicken) stock
  • 1 can (about 2 cups) coconut milk, well shaken

[one_half]"We have attended local cooking schools, phoned in favors with distant relatives and reached out to the most experienced cooks we know in order to gather delicious AND simple recipes that are guaranteed to bring you rave reviews." [/one_half]

Heat a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add coconut oil and, when hot, add the onion, garlic, and ginger with a generous pinch of salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are translucent but not browned, 4-5 minutes. Add the curry paste and cook, stirring, until very fragrant, a minute more. Stir in the squash and potato with another pinch of salt. Add the stock, increase the heat the medium high, and bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium low; add the coconut milk, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the squash and potatoes are very tender, about 20 minutes. Using an immersion blender, puree the soup until completely smooth. Heat the soup gently, taste, and season as needed with additional salt and pepper. The soup can be cooled, covered, and refrigerated at this point for up to 3 days. Ladle the hot soup into warm soup bowls, add a pinch of scallions and serve. For total cheat meals, feel free to add a bit of crème fraiche to the bowl as well when serving. Serves 4-6.

Orange Cranberry Sauce

Also from the SF Cooking School, this is a fun, unique twist on cranberry sauce or relish. It is super easy and a bright, colorful dish due to the tweak of keeping the rind on the oranges. The best part of preparing the dish is enjoying the scent of freshly ground coriander seeds. DO NOT use pre-ground coriander seeds for this recipe, or ever again for that matter. Also a great recipe to make ahead and store in mason jars, which can be a great gift for friends and neighbors.

  • 1 pound fresh cranberries
  • 2 oranges, coarsely chopped, seeds removed (do not peel, orange rinds stay on)
  • 3-4 tablespoons honey
  • 2-3 tablespoons Grand Marnier or Triple Sec
  • 1 teaspoon whole coriander seeds
  • 1 teaspoon coarse salt

Grind the coriander seeds yourself using a mortar and pestle (be sure to enjoy the incredible scent of the ground seeds). Put all ingredients in a food processor and process until the cranberries and oranges are coarsely chopped. The relish is ready to serve (and lasts for approximately 2-3 days in fridge), or it can be stored in sealed, sterilized jars and refrigerated (lasts approximately 1 month in sealed jars). Makes about 3 cups.

Aunt Barbara’s Beef Loin

I tend to prefer simple, high quality meat dishes as the main course. This recipe is incredibly easy IMG_7971but so damn delicious.

  • Whole boneless beef loin.  (Figure 8-12oz per person)
  • Crushed garlic cloves (1 clove/8 oz)
  • Olive oil
  • Coarse sea salt and fresh ground pepper

Let meat sit at room temp for about 1 to 1 ½ hour. Mix fresh crushed garlic, olive oil, pepper and salt. Rub mixture all over meat. Pre-heat gas grill until VERY hot.  Place meat on grill and sear, turning gently until all sides are browned. Do not leave it on the grill too long, maybe 10-20 sec per side. You do not want it to begin cooking. Then place in shallow pan and bake at 400. I highly recommend using a meat thermometer to gauge the desired doneness. Let stand about 10-15 min lightly covering with a foil tent. It will cook a little more while standing. Slice and serve.

Brian and Max’s Hawaiian Holiday Bark

[one_half]"Stressing out about what to cook for your family meal during the holidays? Want to prepare dishes that will have your guests asking you for the recipe? Worry no more."[/one_half]

So this combination dessert idea actually comes from 2 of my good friends, Brian and Max. Thanks guys! It is actually two completely separate dishes that when served as simple dessert options, or as party appetizers, will quench the holiday sweet cravings of any guest without sending them away feeling completely bloated and miserable.

Brian’s Dark Chocolate Holiday Bark

Brian’s holiday bark relies on your creativity in designing healthy AND delicious bark varieties from an endless list of possible toppings including nuts (walnuts, pistachios, almonds, etc), sea salt, orange zest, candied ginger, dried cranberries, etc. Or any combination of these!  You can also choose your own percentage of dark chocolate: (over 85% = Unsweetened, 65-85% = Bittersweet, Semi-sweet 35-65%, Milk 10-20%) Keep in mind that the higher the percentage of cocoa, the darker the chocolate and the healthier they will be.

  • Dark chocolate
  • Coconut oil for pan
  • Whatever toppings you choose

Melt dark chocolate slowly using a double boiler or a steel bowl over a pot of simmering water. Usually the higher end chocolates will have less stabilizers and therefore must be handled gently during the melting process.  Once melted, pour onto wax paper or a cooking sheet that has been greased with coconut oil. Pour it out super thin, no thicker than 1/4”. Place toppings on top of chocolate while still melted and hot so that it sinks in. Let cool and break apart to serve.

Max’s Grilled Pineapple

As I said, I always prefer simple, and this idea (it really is more of an idea than a recipe since it only has one ingredient) from Max could not be more simple, yet tasty.

  • 1 whole pineapple (skinned and chopped into large chunks)grilled-pineapple-with-honey

Heat your grill to medium heat. Place the chunks on the grill, rotating them as they minimally char on each side. Allow to cool just a bit before serving.

 

DIAKADI’s The 12 Days of Fitmas: Welcoming the holidays and year’s end as a time for relaxation and celebration, The 12 Days of Fitmas will teach people to take the time to enjoy the fun of the season, while reflecting on the year and looking forward to the year ahead. The series tackles the biggest problems that many face: stress, holiday parties, eating well, preparing for the New Year, and more. “The holidays tend to be one of the most challenging times of the year for our clients,” says Billy Polson. “The stress, over-booked schedules, party foods, alcohol and travel plans wreak havoc on their workouts and their bodies. The 12 Days of Fitmas are our effort to help people not only survive the holidays, but thrive throughout them.” Through The 12 Days of Fitmas, DIAKADI will demonstrate the belief that fitness is about far more than dead lifts, burpees and the spin class. Rather, fitness and health encompass all aspects of one’s lifestyle including sleep schedules, stress levels, deep breaths, proper fuel for the body, and enjoying life every day. DIAKADI will use video to demonstrate topics like “Ultimate Destination Workout,” ensuring that whether one is at a beginning or an advanced level, they will learn proper form and technique for the perfect workout regardless of location. The principals discussed in the series will be applicable beyond the holiday season and throughout the New Year.

Originally published at Patch.com.

Day 1: The Most Wonderful Yet Stressful Time of Year: Managing Holiday Stress Day 2: The Holiday Hunger Games: Holiday Party Survival Tips Day 3: The 80/20 Rule: By Damn, Enjoy the Holidays Day 4: Healthy Holiday Recipes that Don’t Suck Day 5: Planes, Trains, and Drive-thrus: Smart Choices for Food on the Go Day 6: Travel Stretches to Make Coach Feel Like First Class Day 7: Grandma Got Run Over by the Holiday Cold: Staying Healthy for the Holidays Day 8: The DIAKADI Destination Workout: Anytime, Anywhere, No Equipment Necessary Day 9: Silent Night: How to Stay Rested Throughout the Holidays Day 10: The Holiday Hustle: Getting Off the Couch and Out of the House for the Big Day Day 11: Start the New Year Off with a Bang Not a Bust: Do What You Love this New Year’s Day 12: When the Clock Strikes Midnight: Successfully Setting and Reaching Your New Year’s Goals

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Day 3: The 80/20 Rule:  By Damn, Enjoy the Holidays

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Day 3: The 80/20 Rule: By Damn, Enjoy the Holidays

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On Day 1 of DIAKADI’s The 12 Days of Fitmas, we calmly warned you about the danger of letting stress ruin your holidays, and darn it if Day 2’s Holiday Hunger rules didn’t come along and completely freak folks out about the ‘hopeless effort’ towards a successfully healthy holiday season!

But remember, I mentioned at the end of Day 2 that the single most important rule for Holiday Party Survival was going to be revealed today. Believe it or not, this single rule has the power to supersede just about every other piece of advice we will give you during these 12 Days of Fitmas. In order to reduce the idiotic and worthless holiday stress many of us carry around and to begin enjoying the truly magical and FUN excitement of the holidays, a delicate balance must be achieved between the extremes of perfectly healthy behavior and full all out holiday debauchery. For this, I give you the 80/20 Rule.

[one_half]"If you are aiming to achieve aggressive goals in your fitness or health, such as efficient body fat reduction or muscle mass increases I would recommend living life more as 90/10 or even 95/5."[/one_half]

The basic idea of the 80/20 rule is that by following ideal nutrition, lifestyle, fitness and health practices when making 80% of the choices in your life, then you earn permission to make some not-so-healthy decisions for the other 20% of your choices. I find that this philosophy can be a great way of reducing the stress and pressure of always having to make ‘perfect’ lifestyle decisions by allowing folks to enjoy special treats in all aspects of their life.

To clarify, when I say that the ‘80’ should be ideal, I mean that you are making some near perfect decisions 80% of the time.

A typical 80 version of life includes:

  • Eating the appropriate volume of fresh, whole, naturally raised foods and the proper ratios of macronutrients (protein, fat, carbohydrates) for your body’s metabolism and your daily life activities
  • Avoiding inflammatory foods such as dairy, soy, alcohol, processed foods (cereal, crackers, canned foods), and artificial sweeteners
  • Sleeping a minimum of 7 hours a night80-20-1
  • Hydrating well with water daily
  • Consistent strength workouts plus cardiovascular activity that matches your goals
  • Keeping your stress levels low and using stress reduction practices such as meditation, qigong, yoga, stretching or simple breathing exercises as necessary

My definition of not-so-healthy decisions that fall under the ‘20’ category include:

  • It is your first weekend of the season snowboarding in Tahoe and at the end of the day, a giant mug of hot cocoa by the fire pit at Northstar would be the ideal ending to a perfect day
  • On date night each week, you enjoy trying a new glass of wine with your spouse in hopes of learning more about wines and their distinguishing characteristics
  • Your favorite food is a truly good hamburger, so you love to try a new burger with all the fixings at new restaurants around San Francisco each month
  • You love to dance, so you choose to stay out late dancing one night a week, but keep the alcohol at low levels in order to avoid a hangover
  • At your nephew’s 6th birthday party, you really want a big piece, or even 2 of his chocolate birthday cake…so you have 2
  • Work gets out of hand for a couple of weeks due to a deadline, so you are forced to limit your workout days, finding only 15-30 minutes a couple times each week

Make sense?

One disclaimer on the 80/20 philosophy:

If you are aiming to achieve aggressive goals in your fitness or health, such as efficient body fat reduction, muscle mass increases, improving your triathlon time in a month, etc… I would recommend living life more as 90/10 or even 95/5. 80/20 is often what I would call a healthy maintenance lifestyle.

Now for the holidays and 80/20, I have to admit that the holidays in general tend to be the full throttle ‘bachelor weekend in Vegas’ version of ‘20’! Instead of it being a single weekend night of splurging, it is a 6 week marathon of ‘20’ that kicks off with the food fest known as Thanksgiving and thanksgiving-630x419drags us through the gluten gluttony of Christmas until we crawl across the drink fest finish line of New Years (see Day 2: The Holiday Hunger Games for details).  So my advice is to try and keep the majority of your life and easy decisions as close to ‘95’ levels as possible during this season. That way, your frequent ‘20’ level temptations do not start adding up and the pounds start packing on.

In the end, remember that life is too damn short to miss out on the many treats for us to experience and enjoy during our lifetimes. But remember that life is also too damn short to miss out on the pride of taking care of your body, being happy with your physique, and feeling good every morning you wake up and with every step you take. It is about finding the ideal 80/20 balance in every decision you make.

[one_half]"Don’t you dare let that little guilt voice inside your head ruin every part of the holidays. Trust me, your Mom will be giving you enough guilt back at home."[/one_half]

So give yourself permission to enjoy the most special parts of this holiday season that make you smile and giggle like you did as a kid. Don’t beat yourself up for enjoying one or even two homemade smores with handmade Tahitian Vanilla Bean marshmallows from Tout Sweet! They are just too good to pass up!

Don’t you dare let that little guilt voice inside your head ruin every part of the holidays. Trust me, your Mom will be giving you enough guilt back at home. No need to add more yourself.  Just remember it is all a balancing act. Shoot for 95/5 when things are good so that 80/20 will keep you content and smiling during the holidays or other challenging times that come your way.

 

DIAKADI’s The 12 Days of Fitmas: Welcoming the holidays and year’s end as a time for relaxation and celebration, The 12 Days of Fitmas will teach people to take the time to enjoy the fun of the season, while reflecting on the year and looking forward to the year ahead. The series tackles the biggest problems that many face: stress, holiday parties, eating well, preparing for the New Year, and more.

“The holidays tend to be one of the most challenging times of the year for our clients,” says Billy Polson. “The stress, over-booked schedules, party foods, alcohol and travel plans wreak havoc on their workouts and their bodies. The 12 Days of Fitmas are our effort to help people not only survive the holidays, but thrive throughout them.”

Through The 12 Days of Fitmas, DIAKADI will demonstrate the belief that fitness is about far more than dead lifts, burpees and the spin class. Rather, fitness and health encompass all aspects of one’s lifestyle including sleep schedules, stress levels, deep breaths, proper fuel for the body, and enjoying life every day. DIAKADI will use video to demonstrate topics like “Ultimate Destination Workout,” ensuring that whether one is at a beginning or an advanced level, they will learn proper form and technique for the perfect workout regardless of location. The principals discussed in the series will be applicable beyond the holiday season and throughout the New Year.

Originally published at Patch.com.

Day 1: The Most Wonderful Yet Stressful Time of Year: Managing Holiday Stress Day 2: The Holiday Hunger Games: Holiday Party Survival Tips Day 3: The 80/20 Rule: By Damn, Enjoy the Holidays Day 4: Healthy Holiday Recipes that Don’t Suck Day 5: Planes, Trains, and Drive-thrus: Smart Choices for Food on the Go Day 6: Travel Stretches to Make Coach Feel Like First Class Day 7: Grandma Got Run Over by the Holiday Cold: Staying Healthy for the Holidays Day 8: The DIAKADI Destination Workout: Anytime, Anywhere, No Equipment Necessary Day 9: Silent Night: How to Stay Rested Throughout the Holidays Day 10: The Holiday Hustle: Getting Off the Couch and Out of the House for the Big Day Day 11: Start the New Year Off with a Bang Not a Bust: Do What You Love this New Year’s Day 12: When the Clock Strikes Midnight: Successfully Setting and Reaching Your New Year’s Goals

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Day 2: The Holiday Hunger Games: Holiday Party Survival Tips

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Day 2: The Holiday Hunger Games: Holiday Party Survival Tips

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Have you noticed that the majority of holiday gatherings involve a combination of (1) eating the most decadent array of treats from prosciutto and gruyere palmiers to pumpkin gooey butter cakes and (2) toasting in the celebrations with delicious holiday beverages ranging from Grandpa’s secret White Minx Cocktail to Toasted Marshmallow milkshakes for the kids (and kids at heart!). Don’t get me wrong, I love all of these tasty treats. But, it is no wonder that weight gain ranks as one of the top stressors of the holiday season.

So before we even start with food advice, let’s all make a pact to arrange festive gatherings with friends and family that are reliant on activities instead of eating and drinking. Watch for Day 8: The DIAKADI Destination Workout and Day 10: The Holiday Hustle: Out of the House Activities for the Big Day, in the up-coming DIAKADI 12 Days of Fitness for some great ideas on creating new traditions centered around active holiday events.

Now, some advice on surviving the Holiday Hunger Games.

HOLIDAY COCKTAILS

Let's start right off with the booze. First up, if you are trying to have the healthiest and happiest of holidays, I recommend that clients eliminate the alcohol or keep the drinking to a minimum. Maybe set yourself the goal of no alcohol during weeknight events. Not only are there extra calories involved, but since your body processes alcohol first, this leaves the carbohydrates and fats you consume to be stored as fat instead of being used as fuel. Alcohol also lowers your inhibitions and lessens your ability to make smart decisions on food and drink later that night.

Then add the sluggishness and bloating in to the mix and the jolly meter definitely starts dropping, and often so do your workouts.

But also be realistic, it is the holidays... When you get stuck talking to your Uncle Jack about the exact details of the past 2 months of weather patterns back home in Oklahoma or when trying to choke down your Aunt Fannie's award winning Christmas ambrosia salad with Miracle Whip, a cup of holiday cheer might be the perfect solution.  So plan for it and keep these thoughts in mind when making decisions on what to drink.

CLEAN ALCOHOL RANKINGS

1st: Wine or liquor straight up at 100 cal/drink. Personally, I think champagne is the perfect holiday choice. From the cork pop to every last bubble, nothing says celebrate better and cleaner.

2nd: Liquor with clean, minimal mixers at 100-200 cal/ drink. Flavored vodka and soda water are always great choices here.image

3rd: Beer at 100-300 cal/drink, but remember that these pack a big gluten bloat along with them.

4th: The grand array of mixed drinks packing 300-600 cal / drink. Absolutely avoid sugary drinks and mixers, especially crappy processed, prepackaged ones. Cheap alcohol and mixers are the perfect recipe for a restless night's sleep followed by hangover hell. For mixers, only use the best, fresh squeezed ingredients in creating your libations. Plus the clean ingredients will help keep your hangover to a minimum. Want to be the host with the most healthy and unique concoctions? Check out the drink mixing class at SF Mixology or the fun hands on classes at the Bourbon and Branch Beverage Academy.

Also, pace yourself. As my friend Malcolm says, "It is a marathon not a sprint." Always try to alternate alcohol, water, alcohol, water.  If drinking 'boring water' between cocktails is tough, order a Pelligrino with lime squeeze as your re-hydrator ‘between drink’. Trust me, you will be thankful the next morning.

[one_half]"Why not decide to make this the year where you actually feel great about your life and body as you head into the New Year by buckling down now and getting ahead of the game?"[/one_half]

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THE HOLIDAY FEAST

For food and beverages, there are two main guidelines I recommend to clients: 1- Track and 2- Plan.

TRACK YOUR FOOD and drinks every day during the holidays. No matter how ugly it may get, track every meal, each Starbucks PSL, each incredible hand crafted bite of deliciousness you choose from the trays passed at your friend’s holiday gala, every piece of that damn peppermint bark in the break room at work, and definitely every glass of champagne. Myfitnesspal, Meal Logger and EatingFree are all smart and easy ways to keep track of your intake, food group ratios and calories using your computer or smart phone. (Of course a pencil and paper work just fine as well.) Simply having to track all food and drink, then looking at the amounts will help keep you aware of the damage and will assist you in making smart decisions each day.

PLAN AHEAD for dangerous parties and unhealthy family meals. Whenever possible, offer to bring

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a healthy dish with you to events so that you have control over at least some of the food choices. If you are headed in to a big dinner or party, for a couple of days leading up to it, eat a little less fat each day in order to balance out for the extra fat and alcohol you will be consuming at the big event. Have several nights of parties in a row, reduce your ‘day-of’ fat and calorie intake for breakfast and lunch to bank for each evening’s festivities. Also try eating a healthy meal before heading into events, to help balance out your alcohol and to avoid over eating the pass around finger foods. A chunky salad with some protein and a quality starch like sweet potatoes or quinoa is always great pre-party fuel for me.

 

CHOICES, CHOICES! Your smartest selections off the buffet or trays are foods that are quality meats like salami, chicken skewers, or prosciutto. Grab the low sugar, low glycemic index choices like stuffed mushrooms or endive salad pick-ups. These will help to keep your blood sugar levels balanced and to keep your cravings in check. The earlier you make the mistake of boarding that Holiday Sugar Energy Roller Coaster, the longer that damn ride is and the harder it is to get off of it, often leading into the following week. If you are going to grab sweets, get super small tastes of them and try to set a limit up front in your head.

[one_half]"The earlier you make the mistake of boarding that Holiday Sugar Energy Roller Coaster, the longer that damn ride is and the harder it is to get off of it, often leading into the following week."[/one_half]

FOCUSED MAINTENANCE = GOOD, EXCUSE TO LET IT ALL GO = BAD. Once again, I return to the reminder to be realistic. Depending on your lifestyle, the holidays can be an impossible time to lose weight, especially for you social butterflies. Be aware of your life and your abilities so that you do not set yourself up for failure. If one of your typical holiday traditions is to gain 5-10 lbs every year between Thanksgiving and New Years, a goal of simply maintaining current body fat levels may be just right and plenty challenging for you. At the same time, do not use the holidays as your excuse to under achieve. Why not decide to make this the year where you actually feel great about your life and body as you head into the New Year by buckling down now and getting ahead of the game?

GO TEAM! Having a supportive partner or team mate (friend, relative, spouse) to set goals with, check in with, party hop with, and share challenging office party stories with is always a great help when aiming your sights on achieving difficult holiday health improvements.

TRAVELLING A LOT DURING THE HOLIDAYS?  Worried about finding healthy foods during transport or back home in Inorganicaville, NC?  Keep an eye out for Day 5: Planes, Trains and Drive-thrus: Smart Choices for Food on the Go. We have some great tips headed your way.

I do have one final piece of advice, and it is honestly the most important rule I have for you concerning holiday party survival. It is so vital in fact that it deserves it’s own blog post. So it will be revealed tomorrow on Day 3: The Rule of 80/20. Stay tuned!

 

HOLIDAY PARTY SURVIVAL TIPS REVIEW:

  1. Realistic and reachable personal goals for your holiday food plan are key
  2. A strong support team always helps
  3. Smart decisions around alcohol consumption
  4. Make an effort to plan ahead
  5. Track your holiday intake
  6. Be choosy with the ‘treats’ you partake in at parties
  7. Final piece of advice to come tomorrow in Day 3

And may the scale be ever in your favor!

Bon appetit!

 

DIAKADI's The 12 Days of Fitmas: Welcoming the holidays and year’s end as a time for relaxation and celebration, The 12 Days of Fitmas will teach people to take the time to enjoy the fun of the season, while reflecting on the year and looking forward to the year ahead. The series tackles the biggest problems that many face: stress, holiday parties, eating well, preparing for the New Year, and more.

“The holidays tend to be one of the most challenging times of the year for our clients,” says Billy Polson. “The stress, over-booked schedules, party foods, alcohol and travel plans wreak havoc on their workouts and their bodies. The 12 Days of Fitmas are our effort to help people not only survive the holidays, but thrive throughout them.”

Through The 12 Days of FitmasDIAKADI will demonstrate the belief that fitness is about far more than dead lifts, burpees and the spin class. Rather, fitness and health encompass all aspects of one’s lifestyle including sleep schedules, stress levels, deep breaths, proper fuel for the body, and enjoying life every day. DIAKADI will use video to demonstrate topics like “Ultimate Destination Workout,” ensuring that whether one is at a beginning or an advanced level, they will learn proper form and technique for the perfect workout regardless of location. The principals discussed in the series will be applicable beyond the holiday season and throughout the New Year.

Originally published at Patch.com.

Day 1: The Most Wonderful Yet Stressful Time of Year: Managing Holiday Stress Day 2: The Holiday Hunger Games: Holiday Party Survival Tips Day 3: The 80/20 Rule: By Damn, Enjoy the Holidays Day 4: Healthy Holiday Recipes that Don’t Suck Day 5: Planes, Trains, and Drive-thrus: Smart Choices for Food on the Go Day 6: Travel Stretches to Make Coach Feel Like First Class Day 7: Grandma Got Run Over by the Holiday Cold: Staying Healthy for the Holidays Day 8: The DIAKADI Destination Workout: Anytime, Anywhere, No Equipment Necessary Day 9: Silent Night: How to Stay Rested Throughout the Holidays Day 10: The Holiday Hustle: Getting Off the Couch and Out of the House for the Big Day Day 11: Start the New Year Off with a Bang Not a Bust: Do What You Love this New Year’s Day 12: When the Clock Strikes Midnight: Successfully Setting and Reaching Your New Year’s Goals

 

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Day 1: The Most Wonderful Yet Stressful Time of Year: Managing Holiday Stress

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Day 1: The Most Wonderful Yet Stressful Time of Year: Managing Holiday Stress

Day 1: The Most Wonderful Yet Stressful Time of Year: Managing Holiday Stress

DIAKADI's The 12 Days of Fitmas: Welcoming the holidays and year’s end as a time for relaxation and celebration, The 12 Days of Fitmas will teach people to take the time to enjoy the fun of the season, while reflecting on the year and looking forward to the year ahead. The series tackles the biggest problems that many face: stress, holiday parties, eating well, preparing for the New Year, and more.

“The holidays tend to be one of the most challenging times of the year for our clients,” says Billy Polson. “The stress, over-booked schedules, party foods, alcohol and travel plans wreak havoc on their workouts and their bodies. The 12 Days of Fitmas are our effort to help people not only survive the holidays, but thrive throughout them.”

Through The 12 Days of FitmasDIAKADI will demonstrate the belief that fitness is about far more than dead lifts, burpees and the spin class. Rather, fitness and health encompass all aspects of one’s lifestyle including sleep schedules, stress levels, deep breaths, proper fuel for the body, and enjoying life every day. DIAKADI will use video to demonstrate topics like “Ultimate Destination Workout,” ensuring that whether one is at a beginning or an advanced level, they will learn proper form and technique for the perfect workout regardless of location. The principals discussed in the series will be applicable beyond the holiday season and throughout the New Year.

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3 Health Apps on the Market that We Dig

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3 Health Apps on the Market that We Dig

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Guest writer Jared Hill is an eclectic, Chicago based blogger. His articles mostly focus on fitness and NBA team reviews and have been featured on NewHope360, Los That Sports Blog, & Dr. Premm's Global Community.  Have you been seeing people intently studying their smartphones at the gym, track, and court?

While they might be ordering takeout, or furiously swiping left on Tinder, it’s slightly more probable that they've been using a health app. These miraculous “health monitors” are widely used today; within the fitness community, most obviously, but increasingly among the general population as well.In this article, you'll find details on the best of the best in the fitness app trend.

With this advantage in mind, we begin with one of the top apps favored by both health seekers and their doctors.

 

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As BusinessInsider.com explains, Apple's HealthKit isn’t “an app, exactly. It’s more of a hub where you can monitor daily health stats, and see them over longer periods of time,” making HealthKit something of an all-around organizer. It collects data from medical devices, fitness trackers, and other health apps and stores them in an organized format. Additionally, it translates data into medical metrics, ensuring accuracy.

HealthKit will track calories, blood sugar, cholesterol, weight, and heart rate. In its "Medical ID" format, you can document medical conditions, allergies, medications, doctors, and emergency contacts. By having all your health data in one location, you can see the relationship between your diet, exercise, weight, stress, and sleep. Seeing "cause and effect" in this way can guide you in achieving your fitness goals. A "Dashboard" enables you to decide which data you want to share or keep private. HealthKit works with apps of health care institutions, such as Cleveland Clinic, Mayo Clinic, and Mount Sinai. HealthKit operates on a closed platform, and Apple restricts access by unapproved developers and apps.

 

Bottom Line - Apple HealthKit scores as a data store.

 

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Google Fit has taken a bite out of Apple's profits as a competitor with HealthKit. Fit tracks the same fitness elements as HealthKit, but it interfaces with other Android devices and apps. Fit has various partnerships with device manufacturers, such as Adidas, RunKeeper, Withings, Polar, and Nike Fuel. With Fit, you access information by opening individual apps separately. Fit operates on an open platform, and users have unrestricted access to other apps.

 

Bottom Line - Google Fit is an app that rivals Apple and is compatible with Android devices.

 

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MyFitnessPal is an app designed to help you achieve a weight loss goal. You establish a calorie goal and input your daily exercise and food intake. The app tracks calories consumed and burned, and its database is the largest among calorie counters, with nutritional information on thousands of brand-name, generic, and chain restaurant foods. You can also calculate calories from a recipe. A "Food Search" feature enables you to call up information by name.

 

Do you want the scoop on that Häagen-Dazs chocolate ice cream? MyFitnessPal will give you the nutritional breakdown in calories, fat, carbs, and protein for a specific serving size. As USA Today notes, “the great thing about [this app] is that [it] learns your tastes,” making it easy to track your favorite foods and restaurants you frequently visit. MyFitnessPal is compatible with numerous other apps and fitness-tracking devices.

 

Bottom Line - MyFitnessPal is a great weight loss buddy that enables you to accurately track calories as part of a weight reduction program.

 


One word of caution: there are some health apps on the market that may cause more harm than good. “Health apps are expanding at a rapid rate, so quickly that the FDA, despite its best intentions and efforts, has been unable to regulate each new app before it hits the market,” says Tim Cannon of HealthITJobs.com. It’s generally a good idea to check on the app you’re interested in using before you install it to make sure it’s got a good reputation, and a large enough base of users to generate meaningful reviews. If you can’t find any reviews for a specific app on the internet, steer clear.

That said, with the above three apps at your disposal, better health is just a download away!

 

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A Gift Guide for Your Clients

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A Gift Guide for Your Clients

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Holiday season is here! We came up with 5 gift giving ideas to get the creative juices flowing so you can start brainstorming how to say 'Happy Holidays + Thank You' to your clients.

They're the gluten free bread and low sodium butter of your business! Show them some love with a personalized gift.

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Get creative and zen out. Few things are more therapeutic than giving life. This is not only a unique and thoughtful gift for your clients and their homes, but a great way to relax and explore your creativity while making them.

Check out Flora Grubb and Succulence for some inspiration. Prices start at $22.


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You be the artist! Creating your very own artisanal gift bag full of delicious and healthy treats is a thoughtful and welcome change of pace from the endless junk food tempting your clients.

Here are a few of our favorite DIY gifts: Granola // Frozen Steaks + Spices  //  Infused Olive Oils.


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For those of us with little time, but good intentions, order a sample box of juices delivered to your clients home.

Just $35-$45 for yummy sampler boxes.


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If shopping is your thing, then join us for an endless array of stylish sports and outdoor gear at our Sports Basement Holiday Party. From beautiful water bottles to expressive socks, find something stylish for anyone on your list. Trainers, clients and guests of DIAKADI receive a 20% discount on all items purchased!

Join the Party! When: December 13th // Time: 11a-1p // Where: Sports Basement Potrero Hill


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For those clients near and dear to your heart, a personal handwritten letter can trump any physical gift. A few words of inspiration and praise for their hard work will help solidify a lasting relationship, and show that you truly care.

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We're Reading: The Truth About Carbs

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We're Reading: The Truth About Carbs

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DIAKADI Trainer, Nate Miyaki, named one of Greatist's 100 Most Influential People in Health and Fitness has just written a new book, The Truth About Carbs: How to Eat Just the Right Amount of Carbs, To Slash Fat, Look Great Naked, & Live Lean Year- Round.  Nate touches upon some of the key misconceptions of carbohydrates such as Paleo low carb diets vs. Atkins no carb diets and Whole Grain Groupies vs. Carb Cutting Cults; emphasizing the differences in diets based on individual physical activity levels. If you're looking to stop fearing carbs, educate yourself on proper nutrition, and understand what foods will work best for you based on your lifestyle, this is the book for you!

Grab the Kindle Edition for $2.99 here: The Truth about Carbs: How to Eat Just the Right Amount of Carbs to Slash Fat, Look Great Naked, & Live Lean Year-Round - Kindle edition by Nate Miyaki. Health, Fitness & Dieting Kindle eBooks @ Amazon.com.

Love holding a book in your hands? Us too! Purchase the Paperback for $6.33 here: The Truth about Carbs: How to Eat Just the Right Amount of Carbs to Slash Fat, Look Great Naked, & Live Lean Year-Round.

 


 

And now, we break down the first three chapters of Nate's new book with some of our favorite quotes and facts. Take a look.

 

Number 1

THE GREAT CARB DEBATE

"The Carbohydrate Wars--they’re a real doozy. They have been raging in gyms, kitchens, and nutrition conferences for decades, and will continue to do so into eternity.  There's religious-like passion and cult-like followings on both sides of the fence. The pendulum of popularity seems to swing back and forth between the two.

So unless you take a little time to educate yourself, you will continue to be Dazed & Carb Confused.  You’ll keep following the trends, marketing madness, and cookie-cutter diets vs. finding what work best for you.  You will yo-yo back and forth between quick-fix extremes and rapid rebounds instead of living lean year-round by following a customized lifestyle plan.

 

You want the Carb Truth?  Do you think you can handle it?

 

Both sides of the battle can be right.  Both approaches can work.  Real world results and evidence among athletes, fitness models, and physique enthusiasts prove that.  So does a plethora of research.  For the geeks like me, you’ll get to see a lot of this research later.  For the non-geeks, it is separated out so you can skip over it.  The main goal of this book is to get you on a targeted fat loss plan, not to make you fall asleep in a lecture.

Carb confusion in the public and problems in the individual person arise when fitness writers and coaches try to slot everyone into one universal system and proclaim it is the best for everyone, everywhere.

The diet industry has lost the principle of Specificity--matching your plan to your individual situation and goal.  There is no "Perfect Diet" that can claim a throne.  The next time someone claims to be king, punch them in the high-carb breadbasket or kick them in the low-carb nuts.

There are multiple effective diets based on a variety of different situations and goals.  We will get you to the right one based on where you are currently at and where you ultimately want to go."

 


 

Number 2

THE DOWNSIDE OF MISMATCHED DIETS

"When I combined low-carb eating with consistent, intense, anaerobic training, it was a disaster.  I lost lean muscle mass, ended up skinny-fat, caught every cold that came around town, suffered from insomnia, was anxious and depressed all of the time (and I’m normally a laid-back, happy beach dude), and ended up with the testosterone levels of a 70 year-old.

 

It wasn’t until I returned to my Exercise Physiology roots, applied the principle of Specificity not only to my training plan, but to my diet plan as well, incorporated some Sports Nutrition principles back into my plan, and re-integrated some carbs back into my diet that my results took off.

Yes, if carbs are overeaten, they can inhibit the fat loss process. But in the right amounts and situations, they can support it."

 

 


 

Number 3

YOUR SIMPLE CARB SOLUTION

Match your carbohydrate intake to your individual activity levels, metabolic condition, and physique or performance goals.  It really is that simple.

A 300lbs, obese, sedentary, pre-diabetic office worker trying to improve biomarkers of health and save his or her life DOES NOT have the exact same nutritional needs as a 175lbs, lean, fit, insulin-sensitive athlete trying to reach elite levels of performance or physical development, and maybe has the less noble, but equally important goal of getting big guns and a shredded 6-pack. Neither does the relatively fit woman trying to turn it up for the next few months and rock a bikini come summertime.

Yet, that's what you have to believe if you buy into the dogmatic adherence to a one-size-fits all "diet system."

 


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You can check out the book’s description, table of contents, and read the first two chapters (The Great Carb Debate & The Downside of Mismatched Diets) for free by visiting the book’s page on Amazon here: The Truth About Carbs. To learn more about Nate Miyaki, visit his website or chat with him on twitter.

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Training to Get You Snowboard Ready

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Training to Get You Snowboard Ready

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Moving into December and the arrival of the season's first rains not only brings some much welcomed and long overdue drought relief, but it also signals the start of snow sports season. For avid snowboarders like Billy Polson, that means its time to start that winter sports conditioning! Watch Billy as he walks you through a few exercises to get those legs in top condition so you can take on the snowy mountain west.

In this video, Billy emphasizes adding a balance board to your BOSU exercises to help you stay on your feet and avoid injury. He also offers some advice on endurance training helping you take advantage of your time on the slopes without tiring out.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=Wu4Hb8MbRuI

 

One of our favorite tools for winter sports conditioning at DIAKADI is the Rolo Board.  Most balance boards only rock side-side (left to right), but the Rolo Board has multiple roller attachments enabling you to practice controlling the board as you rock front to back, perfectly simulating the heel-toe rock of your snowboard as you head down the mountain. This fun tool is no walk in the park, so make sure that you have mastered the Bosu and balance board before hopping on!

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=ikv9IVH7B20

 

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Top 5 Breathtaking Hikes in the Bay Area

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Top 5 Breathtaking Hikes in the Bay Area

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San Francisco's Indian Summer is coming to an end, but that doesn't mean it's time to head indoors. We are now entering the 9 week holiday stretch, which typically means an increase in our calories. Remember all that Halloween candy you didn't give out to kids? Standing in line for those pumpkin spice lattes, and you go for the pumpkin pie bar as well? All those Christmas cookies being brought into work? What better way to burn off some extra calories before your holiday feasts than to hike in the gorgeous Bay Area? Since it doesn't get really wet until January, take these next couple of months to get outside and explore the area! Take advantage of the sun while you can and go on a beautiful hike recommended by DIAKADI's top notch trainers.

 

Matt Davis Steep Ravine-Dipsea Loop, Marin County

"This is a great hike with beautiful views of the ocean, redwoods, Mount Tamalpais, a waterfall, and Stinson Beach. It is steep at points, even going up a small wooden ladder, but it's not super hard. I highly recommend checking this place before the rainy season comes!" - Sean O' Brien

Hiking trail pic seanobrien Just a short drive across the Golden Gate on the hills of Mount Tamalpais (Mt. Tam), one of our favorite hikes is located on the hills with views of Stinson Beach. This hike begins with a densely wooded steep climb up the backside of Mt. Tam. Scattered with waterfalls, gorgeous ocean vistas, and the greenest ferns you have ever seen, the variety of nature on this hike will surely leave a lasting impression. Once the trail flattens out you find yourself winding around rolling green hills with stunning views of Stinson Beach: the perfect place to sit and picnic. Make your way to the Pan Toll Ranger Station for a bathroom break and water refill, then continue down the Steep Ravine trail where there is no shortage of old growth redwoods and rushing waterfalls (seasonal). Lastly, Steep Ravine flattens out and opens up to the Dipsea Trail where you can stretch your legs for a nice run down the final mile of your hike while catching an endless breathtaking view of Stinson Beach. Once you are done, you can take those shoes off and dip your feet in the cool ocean water while watching the sunset!

Distance: 7.3 miles // Difficulty: Moderate // Directions

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Purisima Creek Redwoods Open Space Preserve, San Mateo County

"There are beautiful redwoods, a nice creek, and great views of the ocean. You will often see some wildlife out there. It is also far enough out that it stays pretty quiet and not-crowded, yet close enough that you can get there without too much difficulty. This hike is a bit of a hidden gem in my book." - Kaveh Gorgani

 

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Located just south of San Francisco, outside Half Moon Bay is another one of our top hiking spots and it's not just for the trailblazer, but also for the mountain biker. The first half takes you through lush redwoods where you will find no shortage of shade and banana slugs. After a steep climb, find yourself among colorful wildflowers and beautiful ocean views from the sunny ridge line. Bring a snack for a mid hike refuel, and don't forget to stretch!

Distance: 7 miles // Difficulty: Moderate // Directions

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Alamere Falls Point Reyes National Seashore, Marin County

"This is a beautiful hike that follows the coastal trail along the Pacific Ocean, giving you an amazing view for at least the first 4.1 miles. What makes Alamere Falls unique is that it is 1 of 2 major waterfalls in the state of California that plunge directly into the Pacific Ocean." - Alex Robinson

 

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Number 3 on our list is Palomarin Trailhead to Alamere Falls. This hike along the pacific coast has wonderful views whether it is foggy or clear. With little elevation gain, this hike is suitable for all levels of explorer, but it isn't a walk in the park. Make your way along the ocean side trail passing beautiful Bass Lake and Pelican Lake where you can take a dip or jump off the rope swing.  While hiking along the ocean side it is common to spot whales or sea lions during the right seasons. Advance to the Alamere Falls detour through thick foliage and witness the  stunning rare waterfall that spills out into the Pacific, but be careful as the off trails to the falls are not maintained.

Distance: 8.3 miles // Difficulty: Moderate // Directions

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Mt. Diablo State Park, Contra Costa County

"It's hard to find a more beautiful outdoor hike closer to San Francisco than Mount Diablo. Just be sure to bring lots of water, a sweat towel and be ready to work those buns and thighs! There are many trails to choose from as well as a whole host of wildlife! Be sure to keep your eyes peeled for any interesting animals." - Josh Christoper

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Also known as the "Grand Loop" this hike up and around Mount Diablo is packed with some of the highest unobstructed 360 degree views from anywhere in North America. On a clear day, not only can you catch a glimpse of the Bay Area, but also the Sierra Nevada Mountains, Santa Cruz Mountains, and the Farallons. This hike also comes with a downloadable audio guide so you can listen to the words of early explorers as they witness the breathtaking beauty of the vistas for the first time. Be sure to come prepared with sunscreen and plenty of water. During the winter there can be snow on the ground as well!

Distance: 6.2 miles // Difficulty: Moderate // Directions

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Rodeo Beach to Muir Beach, Marin County

"The highest point in the climb renders you a 360 degree view of the Pacific Ocean to the west, San Francisco skyline to the south east, and Bolinas and Point  Reyes to the north. I always enjoy bringing my dog and she loves jumping in the water. There is also nothing better then having a bonfire at the end of your hike at muir beach!" - Andrew Speros

 

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Another short trip across the Golden Gate Bridge is the endlessly scenic coastal trail at Muir Beach. This is an out and back trail, 11 miles each way, that will take you all the way through the Marin headlands to the Golden Gate Bridge. A better shorter option is to take the trail to Tennessee Beach and back, shortening the length to 7 miles round trip. This somewhat strenuous hike climbs and descends unforgivably along the coast. With vistas for miles and bountiful wildflower blooms during the spring this trail is definitely a must hike!

Distance: 11 miles // Difficulty: Strenuous // Directions

 

 

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Doris, Our Very Own Spirited Friend

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Doris, Our Very Own Spirited Friend

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There have been numerous reports that we have a ghost at DIAKADI. Seriously...Most of the staff is certain of the fact. Some of the trainers and even a couple of clients have had a run in with the ghost named "Doris" by front desk staff and trainer Cristian Luecke.

Not usually a believer in the hocus pocus spirit world mumbo jumbo, Cristian has felt a female spirit presence numerous times and even once saw a female form out of the corner of his eye at 9:45pm...yes, he remembers the exact time.

"As I was at the front windows of the gym, out of the corner of my eye, I saw a female form dressed in a 1920's era dress with blood on her apron. The first time she walked from the Consultation room around the bike parking and into the Trainer Lounge area. Since it was a “comforting” presence and I couldn’t believe what I saw, I went about my business. It wasn’t until I saw her AGAIN walking along the same path, that I got spooked. The gym was closed and no one else was inside. That is when I knew there was a ghost, and I named her Doris."

Later that week, DIAKADI owner Mike Clausen went to the main branch of the San Francisco Public Library to check the history records of 290 Division Street. He was shocked with what he found. From 1921 thru the 1940’s  the building was owned by Hormel and used as a meat processing factory. Have you ever noticed the slope of the floor? The building was built that way in order to allow meat run off to flow into the gutter system that was in place at the time. The majority of the 2nd floor was used as the offices, but also for dry food storage and meat brining.

Mike explains, "The way Cristian was so freaked out I had to do some further research. As soon as I found out about Hormel being located in the building, the hair on the back of my neck literally stood up. The bloody apron sighting by Cristian was an obvious match to a possible employee of a meat processing company. There is no way Cristian could have known.”

"One of my clients actually SAW Doris back by the boxing room...She saw a woman in a white dress with blood on the bottom round the corner and when she saw us, turned in a flash, so quick that the bottom of her dress then flipped around the corner…but there was nothing or no one there when I looked" says Mike.

Since then there have been numerous events involving Doris. Finding dishes randomly broken. Doors closing on their own. Seeing equipment mysteriously roll UP HILL across the gym floor. But all interactions have felt calm and safe for those involved.

Have you had any run-ins with Doris? Is there really a spirit who was not put to rest roaming the floors of DIAKADI? Could the flashing lights of the traffic, shadows of the gym and creative minds of people be an explanation for these sightings? Or is DIAKADI actually haunted? Who knows for sure. In the mean time, if a lady named Doris asks to work in with you while exercising at DIAKADI, I would let her if I were you. Happy Halloween!

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Foam Rolling the Upper Back [Scott: Draft in Process, need images in SS]

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Foam Rolling the Upper Back [Scott: Draft in Process, need images in SS]

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Since many of us carry our tension in our backs, you might be feeling a little extra tense this week, and we totally understand. With work conferences, Giants games, construction, and public transit delays, who wouldn't be feeling a little extra tight? But don't worry, we've got your back! If you suffer from the occasional upper back tightness that many of us do, look no further. In this week's Quick Tip, Jenny shows us a simple way to use the foam roller to release tension in the muscles of the upper back.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vFr7L43mFmI&feature=youtu.be

This exercise is great for pretty much everyone, but is especially good for people who use their upper back muscles often like baseball players, golfers, climbers, painters, parents of small children, etc. It can give the necessary release to the muscles that most commonly cause us grief.

Use a high density or low density foam roller, depending on the depth you prefer. Go slowly and allow your body to relax into the foam roller. And don't forget to breathe!

Note: If you feel any pain during the exercise, discontinue until checking with a professional.

We are always available to consult with you over the phone to help you with a treatment strategy. Call today to find out which therapist would be a great fit for your specific needs.

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How Much Sleep Do You Need? [Scott Updating, needs images in SS]

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How Much Sleep Do You Need? [Scott Updating, needs images in SS]

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As a sleep researcher and sleep educator, the most common question I get is, “How do I know how much sleep I need?” It’s a tricky question because the benefits of sleep are only partially determined by sleep duration. When people ask this question, what they really mean is, “What are the things I need to do in order for me to get all the physiological and behavioral benefits of a perfectly managed sleep-wake practice?” This article will help you answer that question, and one component of that question is understanding how much time you need to spend in bed per night. First, we need to review important fundamentals of sleep and wake regulation, otherwise the guidance here won’t make much sense.

You’ve heard of the importance of personalizing your diet. But what about your sleep?

While we don’t know that a single purpose for sleep exists, we do know that many important things take place during that period of time between when you shut your eyes at night and when you open them again in the morning. A major breakthrough in the field of sleep research took place in 1982 when Dr. Alexander Borbely, Emeritus Professor at the University of Zurich, published an article in the journalHuman Neurobiology describing a concept of how sleep and wake are controlled over a 24-hour period. He dubbed his idea the 2-Process Model of Sleep Regulation, and building upon the evidence available at that time, he changed the way the world understood how sleep and wake are regulated. In Dr. Borbely’s model, he described that the regulation of these states is based primarily upon the combination of two different processes occurring simultaneously. To understand how to get the sleep you need, let’s explore those two processes further. 

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Process 1 – sleep pressure

The first process of the professor’s 2-Process Model is sleep pressure. From the moment you wake up in the morning, a pressure for sleep mounts continuously until you sleep again. At night, the built-up sleep pressure helps you 1) fall asleep, and 2) stay asleep until the next morning.During sleep, this pressure decreases, and after a night of complete sleep, you start the next day with low sleep pressure. Later in the article, I’ll talk about the concept of “sleep debt,” which happens when you don’t wear down all your sleep pressure before starting the next day.

If sleep pressure builds from morning to night, why don’t we become increasingly sleepy from the moment we wake up? That’s where the second process of the 2-Process Model comes into play.

Process 2 – wake drive

This second process is called “wake drive.” You can think of it as the result of multiple brain systems working together—a wake network—to produce an alerting signal that increases in intensity to counteract mounting sleep pressure. The result? While sleep pressure builds from morning to night, wake drive also builds from morning to night, and your alertness stays relatively even across the day (with some within-day oscillations). This process raises another question: If wake drive is high during the night, how do we fall asleep? To understand the answer, we need to discuss how sleep pressure and wake drive differ. 


Unlike sleep pressure, which is determined by time awake and time asleep, wake drive is controlled by a 24-hour rhythm, like an oscillating sine wave (i.e., a repeating wave-pattern with a high point and low point). For instance, assume someone typically wakes up at 7 a.m. and goes to bed at 11 p.m. and that his or her wake rhythm is stable and fixed to this time frame. Under these conditions, their wake drive initiates at 7 a.m., builds all day to counteract mounting sleep pressure, reaches its peak at 10 p.m., and plummets at 11 p.m., descending to its lowest point across a 24-hour period. At 7 a.m. the next morning, it begins to build back up all over again. 

This rhythm repeats day after day—you awake at the same time and feel sleepy at the same time, on a daily basis. Importantly, the timing of the rhythm can be shifted forward or backwards. In a second example, imagine the wake rhythm is shifted two hours forward: wake drive starts at 9 a.m., builds all day, reaches its peak at midnight, plummets at 1 a.m. to its lowest level, and then builds back up again around 9 a.m. the next morning. It is easy to see that the timing of this rhythm is crucial for daytime alertness and quality night-time sleep. Let’s explore what sets the timing of our daily wake rhythm.

Imagine you live in San Francisco and travel halfway around the globe to Rome, Italy. When you arrive, your internal rhythms are still synced to San Francisco. At the beginning of your trip, you’re awake at night when everyone in Italy is sleeping and sleepy during the day when everyone else is fully awake. But slowly, over the course of multiple days, your body starts to adjust to this new time zone. What signal is the body responding to in order to adjust the timing of its internal rhythms to be in sync with the environment? The primary signal that sets our 24-hour body rhythms, including the timing of our wake rhythm, is light entering the eye. 

There is an incredible amount of information regarding this topic, but I’ll get to the bottom line. To set the timing of your wake rhythm, your brain wants to coordinate the timing of your wake signal to daytime. It does this by measuring the intensity and hue of light entering the eye. Indoor light is far less intense than outdoor light and, more than ever in human history, we spend much of our day indoors. So, bright daylight anchors your wake rhythm, and when you don’t get enough daylight, your wake rhythm shifts forward. This effect is compounded by getting too much artificial light at night. Essentially, by having light enter the eye at night when the brain should be getting exposure to darkness, we are again telling the brain that it should shift the timing of the wake rhythm forward. So, living in the modern world causes a double-whammy—too little light during the day and too much light at night—shifting our wake rhythm forward. 

What is one implication of having your wake rhythm shifted forward? Let’s say you need to get up at 7 a.m. and want to go to bed by 11 p.m. Remember, you start to build sleep pressure as soon as you wake up. Not a problem if your wake rhythm starts at 7 a.m. too. Everything works really, really well when these systems are coordinated. But, when your wake rhythm is shifted forward, say, to 9 a.m., now you have a mismatch between sleep pressure and wake drive. There is a gap between the intensity of these two counteracting forces, and that gap is maintained all day. 

What do you experience when this happens? Day-long sleepiness and impaired alertness (and a host of other cognitive issues). But it doesn’t end there. Let’s look at what happens to sleep at night. In this scenario, you want to go to sleep at 11 p.m., and you’ve been sleepy all day, but since your wake rhythm is shifted forward, it’s at its most powerful at the time you want to go to bed. This can cause insomnia or it can make the first phase of sleep shallow. Incidentally, the first phase of sleep should be the deepest, and this depth of sleep corresponds with the fastest reduction of sleep pressure. If you don’t wear down sleep pressure efficiently, you have to sleep longer to do so. But if you don’t sleep longer, instead waking by an alarm as most people do, you wake the next day with “sleep debt,” which, as I described earlier, means you carry some of yesterday’s unresolved sleep pressure with you into tomorrow. So, a mistimed wake rhythm can either shorten your sleep by making it harder to go to bed at night or disrupt the depth of your sleep, either of which will cause sleep debt. What this means is that seven hours of sleep will feel more like six the next day. Conversely, you could get nine hours of sleep (which might be a lot for you) and still not feel well rested. 

You can see why it’s difficult to directly answer the question, “How much sleep do I need?” Sleep quality is not entirely dependent upon sleep duration. Sleep quality could be disrupted by a wake rhythm that is overly active in the first part of the night, making it hard to nod off, or making the first sleep phase, the deepest sleep phase, shallower. The big lesson you should learn here is to anchor your wake rhythm by maintaining smart light habits throughout the day, evening, and night. To do this, get at least 30 minutes of outdoor light exposure during the day. In the evening, dim all lights and reduce blue or full-spectrum light in your environment. At night, while you sleep, maintain a very dark room.

Determining your ideal sleep duration

Given that the timing of your wake rhythm can shift, and that this shift can then influence sleep duration ability and needs, sleep duration is an important part of the puzzle. Let’s explore the topic, assuming your wake rhythm is well-timed and stable. Scientists have taken many approaches to try to answer the question, “How much sleep does one need?” A series of early studies put subjects in a stimulation-free environment for 14 to 24 hours per day and then monitored daily sleep quantity. Each day for the first two days, subjects slept up to 12 to 20 hours! Then, on subsequent days, daily sleep times reduced until each subject arrived at a consistent daily sleep amount. Most people settled at an average of eight hours per night, although some settled closer to nine and others closer to seven. Once each subject settled at his or her stable daily average, after they had the chance to wear down additional sleep pressure, this average likely approximated their actual daily sleep requirement.

One way to interpret these findings is to assume that subjects entered these studies with extra sleep debt that built over time and could be attributed to less-than-optimal nightly sleep before they entered the study. When given way-more-than-normal time for sleep in the study, this built-up pressure caused long sleep periods in the first few days, and decreased over time to settle at a unique average for each person. Interestingly, although the volunteers reported feeling perfectly normal when they entered the study, after they reduced this extra sleep pressure, they had notable improvements in mood and energy levels.

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More recently, sleep researchers Siobhan Banks, David Dinges, and others have been exploring this topic further. In some of their studies, they restrict sleep time during the week to four or five hours per night, then give subjects recovery sleep for several days in a row. Recovery sleep means that the subjects were allowed to sleep as long as they could, only waking up on their own volition and not by external means. What they found is quite telling. Not only does performance on mental tasks increasingly degrade each day during night after night of insufficient sleep, but when finally given a chance to sleep longer, they do—much longer, in fact. It’s common for these subjects to sleep 125 percent of normal, going from eight hours a night at baseline to ten hours a night during recovery nights. But, their sleep debt wasn’t fully worn down by one long slumber. Subjects had increased sleep duration beyond their baseline needs lasting for about four nights. And this occurred after only five nights of sleep deprivation. In real life situations, people will restrict sleep beyond five days fairly regularly. In fact, one-third of the U.S. population reports sleep less than six hours a night on average. I won’t go into the all the associations that have been found between chronic sleep restriction and disease, but my global impression is that the effects of chronic, persistent sleep loss promote a whole-system pathological response in humans. In other words, lots can go wrong and does. 

What if I can’t sleep past 7 a.m.?

If you can’t sleep past the time you usually wake up in the morning, does this mean you’re getting all the sleep you need? Well, actually, no. Let’s say you have a fairly strong wake rhythm that starts at 7 a.m. each day. Excellent! But, even if you haven’t worn down all your sleep pressure from the night before, you still may wake up at your usual time. You just might be sleepier than you need to be under this condition. So, one way to evaluate sleep need is to look at how long you can sleep. However, given this potentiality, you might just be experiencing sub-functional mental capacity during the day. In this scenario, try an experiment. Attempt to get complete nightly sleep for three weeks in a row, plus maintaining smart light habits day by day, and then see how you feel. To start, consider how much time you typically spend in bed per night. Tracking sleep manually or with the sleep tracker on Dan’s Plan is very useful for this. One objective measurement to indirectly assess sleep quality is to evaluate reaction time during the day, which is a measure of vigilance. For the first three days of the experiment, at the same time each morning, do 20 tries of a reaction time test at HumanBenchmark.com. Write down your average reaction time across each day, then average those 3 days into one score and file it as “baseline” in a place where you can reference it later. 

Example: 

  • Day 1: 269 milliseconds (ms)
  • Day 2: 303 ms
  • Day 3: 277 ms

Baseline Reaction Time Score (3-Day average): 283 ms

Now that you have an idea of your average time in bed each night, add 30 to 60 minutes to that  time by going to bed earlier. Try not to wake by an alarm during this experiment. Do not spend too much effort in evaluating how you feel during this three-week period. Instead, evaluate how you feel after three weeks have passed. The goal of the Dan’s Plan Restorative Sleeper concept is to wake refreshed and feel alert all day. How do you feel? Noticeably different and better? Also, do another three days of morning reaction time tests at humanBenchmark.com and see if your scores differ from your baseline. If you do see improvements, you’ve identified that you benefit by getting more sleep than your previous “normal.” Many people are surprised by how good they feel when they undergo this experiment, and that experiential evidence can motivate you to maintain this propitious nightly bed duration over the long term. If you didn’t sleep any longer and don’t feel much different, then you may be getting all the sleep you need on a regular basis. Either way, you’ve added knowledge to your own sleep practice and can then make corresponding adjustments if need be.

I track my sleep nightly to help nudge me to do the behaviors necessary to get the sleep I need. Here is a screenshot of my last year of sleep data, indicating that I put my money where my mouth is. 

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Complete sleep

This is a term I created to describe your ideal sleep duration. When trying to determine how much sleep you need, you also must understand that your own sleep needs can change from day to day, depending on factors like fighting an infection, recovering from a higher-than-normal level of physical activity or stress, and more. So, even if you were to determine a number you felt was representative of your ideal, the reality is that your sleep need can change night to night. My recommendation is the same: allow for more time in bed than sleep you need. If you need eight hours of time in bed, plan to spend 8.5 hours in bed so you can wake under your own volition and not by an alarm clock. If your body needs a bit more sleep that night, you’ll have planned for this to happen. Give your body the chance to get all the sleep that it wants to get, and you will be doing yourself a favor. Wake up on your own volition and not by external means. It’s fine to set an alarm as a stopgap but you should aim, on average, to wake naturally.

Sleep science is complex, but sleep guidance doesn’t have to be. Good sleep is extraordinarily important for your health and daily performance. My view is that the reality of the modern world requires you to counteract its forces that impair health, and this is very true for sleep. Try the recommendations covered here and leave a comment reporting your findings after you’ve had the chance to let your experiment run for a few weeks. 

End note

This article does not address the all contingencies—especially sleep disorders and other conditions that disrupt sleep—that can alter what I discussed above. Additionally, the actual science is far more complex than what I presented here, but the message this article conveys, and the guidance it confers, is useful to help you view sleep in a healthy way, and ultimately, to maintain a healthy sleep practice throughout life. 

Daniel PardiAbout Dan: Dan is an entrepreneur and researcher whose life’s work is centered on how to facilitate healthy behaviors in others. He is the CEO of humanOS.meand dansplan.com, health technology companies that utilize the Loop Model to Sustain Health Behaviors—which he developed—to help people live a healthy lifestyle in a modern world (See Stanford MedX presentation on the Loop Model.) He does research with the Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences Department at Stanford and the Departments of Neurology and Endocrinology at Leiden University in the Netherlands. His current research looks at how sleep influences decision-making (current list of publications). Dan also works with Naval Special Warfare to help the most elite fighters in the world maintain vigilant performance in both combat and non-combat conditions. Follow him @dansplanhealth.

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Top 7 Reasons Everyone Should Learn Handstands

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Top 7 Reasons Everyone Should Learn Handstands

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1. Practice Forming Healthy Habits

There are two ways to adopt new behaviors: increase motivation or decrease the barrier for entry. In fitness, attempting to increase motivation is the predominant form of behavioral modification, and most often through “negative incentivizing.” Have you ever been pressured or guilt tripped for not training hard enough? I certainly have.

Increasing motivation, especially though guilt, results in the gym-goer feeling bad about the very thing they are trying to do more of. One solution is to replace negative reinforcement with positive and the best trainers and coaches do this.

However, there is an even simpler solution - make new fitness behaviors much smaller and easier to accomplish. As one example, a gym-goer who adopts the goal a single, daily push-up is much more likely to continue to expand her fitness repertoire than the fitness-enthusiast who sets the goal of running a marathon next year. Running a marathon is too big a leap at the beginning.

Learning handstands is a goal similar to practicing a daily push-up.  It is difficult enough to be challenging and specific enough - if you know the steps - that learners continue on the path of skill acquisition.

(If you are interested in the learning more about increasing motivation versus decreasing barrier for entry, check out the “Fogg Behavioral Model” at http://www.behaviormodel.org/)

2. Handstands: The New Fitness “Gateway Drug”Robin 2

There are extensive scientific studies that show that push-ups are a “gateway drug” to increased physical activity. Push-ups provide an easy exercise, that can be done anywhere with little oversight. Push-up progress is easy to track (“How many push-ups did you do today?”) and lead to wanting more challenging physical activities.

Handstands are the new fitness “gateway drug.” Handstands are more challenging than a single push-up, but need not be impossibly so. Because handstands can be broken down into dozens of tiny, incremental steps, they can be equally easy to learn, and inevitably lead students to wanting even more physical activity. Handstands provide a relatively complete exercise – bringing into play the arms and upper body, chest and core, legs and balance. Like push-ups, handstands can be done anywhere, and with little oversight.

3. Break Down The Steps

People don’t learn handstands because of a lack of knowledge of the necessary steps.

Progressing through small, incremental steps to the ultimate goal is the fastest way to learn a new skill. Unfortunately, handstands are almost never taught in this way. Every student and most trainers want the outcome - the end result of balancing upside down - right away. The result is that a student is taught to repeatedly throw themselves into handstands, usually against a wall, and struggle to find a balance in this completely unknown position. It is human nature to see a goal and attempt to accomplish that outcome now. In the case of handstands, this impedes our progress.

Instead examine the steps that make up a handstand, just like an infant learns to scoot, crawl, and cruise before walking freely on her own. If you do, you’ll learn handstands much more quickly

For video tutorials of all of the steps necessary to learn handstands visit Robin’s “How To Learn To Do A Handstand” YouTube playlist: http://bit.ly/1wl1PGD

 

4. Learn To Learn

Breaking down the steps required to balance a handstand will teach you to learn how to learn. By focusing on a specific task, understanding the components, and the habitual patterns that keep you from progressing, you will strengthen your ability to learn. The skillset and confidence that you gain by learning handstands will transfer to other skills that you would like to master. To learn more about learning and mastery, join the Accelerated Learning mailing list, where I send out monthly tips on how to speed up your learning process. Visit www.robinpzander.com/blog/ to sign up.

5. Learn To Dance

My friend Ben Weston teaches men to dance so that women approach them in bars and clubs. I find this a hysterical career (although I almost never go out to bars), but know all to well what it is like to feel uncomfortable dancing in public. Learning handstands was one of the pivotal moves that allowed me to gain confidence in my ability to dance and move effectively. Learning handstands can be a pathway into greater physical comfort – on and off of the dance floor.

6. Overcome Fear

Standing out in a crowd is an important ability to cultivate, whether for getting a job, finding a partner or making an impact on the world. Some people have more natural charisma than others, but the ability to be noticed is a learnable skill. Training handstands develops the skill of standing out. Embarrassment and nervousness are antithesis of balancing a handstand. When you learn to overcome your fears in handstands, you will also overcome fears elsewhere in your life.

Most people training in a new skill aren’t even aware of how much fear plays into limiting their performance. Once in a while I’ll hear an expert gymnasts declare of their masterful double backflip with a full twist that they were scared, but more often, even though our fears play into every physical activity we do, none of us have been taught the simple tools to combat this condition. Practicing handstands is literally practicing the skill of overcoming fear.

 7. Have More Fun

Finally, handstands are fun! Handstands can be an empowering physical activity that anyone can learn. They need not be complicated. The daily practice and small victories that I teach in “How to Learn a Handstand” will reward you for incremental progress, and create a fulfilling experience. Practicing handstands, in the gym and outside of the gym, will give you connection to the reasons you want to get more fit to begin with – to look better, to feel better, to enjoy your body. Handstands will help you to have more fun.

The Book – “How To Do A Handstand”

I have together everything I know about learning handstands together with more than 50 images and videos into an e-book entitled: “How To Do A Handstand: Learn To Balance A Fearless Handstand in 20 Day or Less.” The book is available for free on Amazon for the next 5 days.

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Visit http://www.fearlesshandstands.com to learn more. You can reach me through my website http://www.robinpzander.com or through DIAKADI, where I coach people to learn and master new skills.

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The 6-Figure Fitness Professional: How You Can Live Your Dream

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The 6-Figure Fitness Professional: How You Can Live Your Dream

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You work hard. You hustle. You put your passion and soul into your client’s success and well-being. But you are still scraping by to make ends meet working over 60 hours a week as a fitness professional. You are tired, burnt out, and losing momentum. Time to switch up your game plan. Time to realize your worth, your product, and your specialized niche. Time to maximize your productivity, free your schedule, and gain back the powers that will allow you to take your career to the next level and make a 6-figure income.

Building a 6-figure practice takes knowledge and the right tools. Here are top tips from the experts on how to live your dream and own a 6-figure practice as a fitness professional:

Develop Multiple Income Streams: Joe DiBianca, World Champion Body Builder & Personal Fitness Trainer, advocates being open to many different income opportunities such as selling products, internet marketing, and online fitness programs. He still trains clients one-on-one to stay up-to-date with people’s needs and goals. However, in order to free up one’s time, develop a product or program to work with your ideal client. Products and programs are the machines working for you so you are not the “machine” that has to be with clients 24-7 to make ends meet. Haven’t you always wanted to take a vacation while still getting paid as you soak up the sun?

Use Your Resources & Delegate: Billy Polson, CSCS, owner/founder of Diakadi Fitness Performance Life, a personal training gym in San Francisco, hires the right people to get the necessary jobs done and delegates whenever possible. Polson knows that you don’t have to do everything to make it happen and it’s important to use experts when necessary to save you time and money in the long run. Use resources like O-Desk or TaskRabbit to hire website developers, social media marketers, or interns. DiBianca also recommends investing in a life coach or internet marketing coach to determine your niche/product and maximize your capital.

Know Your Ideal Client: In order to build a strong brand and maintain a powerful customer following, you have to know who you are serving. Polson suggests creating a diagram of your ideal client so you know exactly who that person is, what their needs are, and how you are going to help him/her. DiBianca agrees and emphasizes to “become that which you want to attract to get your ideal client.” By understanding your ideal clients’ wants, you can develop marketing tools, programs, and products that will attract and keep devotees. Here is one free template from YP Advertising Solutions on how to determine your ideal customer.

Maximize Your Time & Energy: Burn-out is common among fitness professionals due to improper time management. Polson maximizes his time by scheduling everything from his work, food, personal workouts, to family time in order to streamline his productivity and find that work/life balance. Make sure the calendar is always accessible in order to update and stay focused.

Believe In Your Worth: Know what you are worth and make sure to charge accordingly. Do your research on other people and their products/programs. Stay competitive with your pricing. Polson states to look at other industries to see what other health professionals provide and charge for their services so you can get an idea of what people pay for. Polson also proposes working for a private gym or being your own boss so you can charge $100-$150 per hour versus earning $40 per hour as a corporate staff member. DiBianca reinforces that if you come from poverty and lack, you will attract that, so aim high, believe in you and your service, gain the trust of others, and go for the gold. Anything is possible.

Many people are making 6-figures while enjoying their vacations and free time. You can, too. Do your homework. Develop your niche and brand. Believe in your work. Cater to your ideal customer. Delegate and make the machine work for you. Time to take action now.

Sarah Koszyk is the founder of Family. Food. Fiesta. A family-based wellness program and recipe blog where she also conducts cooking videos with kids. She is a Registered Dietitian and Nutrition Coach at Eating Free, an online adult weight management program. She also provides in-person nutrition coaching at a private practice, MV Nutrition, in San Francisco, CA, where she specializes in sports nutrition and adult and pediatric weight management. You can connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, or LinkedIn.

Sarah Koszyk is a Registered Dietitian and Nutrition Coach at Eating Free, an online adult weight management program. She also provides in-person nutrition coaching at a private practice, MV Nutrition, in San Francisco, CA, where she specializes in sports nutrition and adult and pediatric weight management. She is the founder of Family. Food. Fiesta. a family-based wellness program and blog. You can follow her on Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn.

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Find Your Fit Program

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Find Your Fit Program

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Jason Tawiah is a trainer and fitness enthusiast who works on building opportunities to make health and fitness easily accessible and enjoyable to all. By creating products and media that may be used for these purposes.
Find Your Fit Is a channel dedicated to bringing its viewers the latest in fitness in their communities. Highlighting gyms and classes taking fitness to the next level. Using original and creative philosophies, these gyms are offering intense and effective classes in unique facilities.
Watch the videos below to see the top notch assessments DIAKADI provides to personalize your workout plans to your needs.

 

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DIAKADI'S Mission is: Make a deep, positive and meaningful difference in the lives of every client by helping them develop an intelligent plan to achieve their ideal body and lifestyle.

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Owner Billy Polson goes over his posture assessment with Jason.

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z4o7KiPS9p8

Testing a clients flexibility and can really help a trainer make their program truly individualized.

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Jason learns his vo2 max so that he can crush his fitness goals.

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8WbNfyTxmis

Interested in training or having an assessment done? Visit diakadibody.com to find out how you can get started with one of our star trainers!

Jason Tawiah is a trainer and fitness enthusiast who works on building opportunities to make health and fitness easily accessible and enjoyable to all, by creating products and media that may be used for these purposes.
Find Your Fit is a channel dedicated to bringing its viewers the latest in fitness in their communities. Highlighting gyms and classes taking fitness to the next level. Using original and creative philosophies, these gyms are offering intense and effective classes in unique facilities.

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In a Funk? Here’s what to do about it.

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In a Funk? Here’s what to do about it.

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Ever have one of those days where you’re just not motivated? You can’t really focus. You don’t want to do anything. You’re in a funk? So what do you do? You take the day off, right?

But what if something has to get done. You have to be at work and the proposal is due today. Or you have people coming over and you have to prepare your special meal. Or like me, you have to get a blog post done. Then what do you do?

Here’s my advice:

1) Recognize that you’re probably burnt out. Note it and make a tentative plan to take a few days off.  Sometimes just knowing you have a break coming up will help. But even if it doesn’t help now, what it will do is prevent you from being in the same situation again. Rest is necessary to recharge our motivation.

2) Ask yourself, how can I make this EASIER for me? Since you are already in a state of low motivation - simply trying to inspire yourself will likely not work.  But reducing your workload will help you get it done when the normal task is too much. Can you recruit someone to help you? Maybe you could brainstorm together and come up with the big idea.  Do you really need to write three pages?  Maybe a shorter version will suffice.  Plan B is still getting the job done.

3) Get traction by breaking it up into small ‘bite-sized’ pieces and start with what’s easy. Whatever big project you have to do - divide it up into 3-5 tasks. For my blog post, my tasks were: brainstorming about topics, writing a first draft, revising the draft, researching an image, creating a final version. Once you have your tasks laid out, pick the easiest one and start with that. Pick the one that requires the least amount of thinking. The key is getting you in action. Just the act of starting to do something will provide you with success momentum. You will recognize that doing the initial act wasn’t in fact that difficult and you are now ready to handle what’s next. You will have overcome the hardest part in no time - starting.

4) Give yourself a time limit to get it done. In my post ‘Got 30 minutes?’, I outline, how giving yourself just 30 minutes can get you a long way in the direction of achieving your outcome. When you put a time limit around the task (and a short one at that!), it suddenly becomes more doable...not such a pain...and not one that requires a lot of motivation.

5) Let go of creating perfection. Whether it’s a project proposal, your favorite recipe or a blog post - accept that this is not the day for you. You may not do your best work. And that’s okay. There are ebbs and flows to life and somedays ‘okay’ is the best you can do.

Got a cool strategy for getting you out of a funk? Share it in the comments below!

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