Saturday, November 8, 2008

Kudos for local acupuncturist

I'd like to give a quick kudos to Olympia's Community Acupuncture Studio, which is offering treatments on a sliding pay scale. Owner Gianna McManus also offers discounts for seniors, people who walk, bike or ride the bus and military personnel and their families.
On Veterans Day, veterans and their families will get an even better deal: McManus is joining national nonprofit organization Acupuncturists Without Borders to offer $5treatments for people who have served in Iraq, Afghanistan and other places.
Acupuncture is used to treat an array of health issues, though most people think of it as a way to alleviate pain. Along with headaches and back, neck and shoulder pain, the 3,000-year-old practice can treat digestive issues, stress, depression, allergies, menstrual cramps, nausea, vomiting and numerous other conditions.
Read more in an article I wrote for The Olympian newspaper at

Fitness Me In Workout Series #4

Cardio Cooking

The day has gone by, and now it’s time to cook dinner with no workout in sight.
Here’s the solution: Cardio Cooking and Fish Sticks


1 Tb Canola oil
1 egg
2/3 c potato flakes
1 pinch salt
1 pinch cayenne pepper
2 pounds fish such as pollack, cod or haddock cut into 16 4-inch long, ½ inch wide strips

Nutrition information: Number of servings 8, Serving size 2 sticks, Calories 126, Calories from fat 24, Total fat 3 g, Saturated fat 0g, Cholesterol 75 mg, Sodium 78 mg, Carbohydrates 3g, Protein 21 g, Dietary exchange 3 very lean meat.

Copyright © American Diabetes Association. Reprinted with permission from The American Diabetes Association.

Quick note: haddock is an especially great choice because it is rich in B-vitamins, folate and iodine. It also has calcium, sulphur and zinc.

Workout Instructions

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
2. Groove out (that means Move It, Move It as you dance) to great tunes as you prep and assemble your ingredients.
3. Grease a baking sheet with the oil. Beat the egg in a small shallow bowl, and pour the potato flakes in a pie plate or shallow bowl. Meanwhile, do side leg lifts, 10 to 15 reps on each leg.
HOW TO DO THEM: Lift your leg straight out to the side until your foot is 6 to 12 inches off the floor. Slightly bend leg you are standing on and keep abs tight. At the top of the movement pause and count to 3. Return the leg to the floor, do the other side.
4. One at a time, dip the fish fillets in the egg mixture, then dredge in the potato flakes, pressing with your fingers to help the flakes adhere. Place the fish on the prepared baking sheet. Each time you dip a fillet do a plie squat. HOW TO DO THEM: place feet slightly wider than shoulder width apart and point toes out. Squat and hold before coming up. (16 reps)
5.When all of the fish are on the sheet, squat down again and pulse halfway up 16 times.
6. Sprinkle the fish with the seasoned salt and cayenne pepper. Repeat the side leg lifts – 10 to 15 reps each leg.
7. Bake, turning once, until puffy and golden, 20-25 minutes.
8. Meanwhile, shake that booty while you set the table.
9. Now is a good time to turn those fish sticks.
10. Do as many wall push-ups as you can. HOW TO DO THEM: stand about 3 feet in front of the wall. Lean forward and place hands on the wall, shoulder width apart. Push your body back. You should feel this in your chest muscles.

For more great information on recipes, calorie counts and how to cook to deal with or avoid diabetes see on the Internet.

Grocery Day

Have you been rained on yet in the parking lot of the grocery store? I have. You can do your walking – and even your workout -- inside instead of getting drenched. Don’t forget your cell phone so you can keep track of time.

1. Walk around the perimeter of the store. As you walk, take a page out of the Pilates book: inhale through your nose and expand your belly. Then exhale through your mouth and draw your belly button back to the spine.
2. Walk down one aisle with your abs tightened the whole time.
3. Walk for 2 more minutes.
4. Go down two aisles. Tighten the butt cheek of the leg you are standing on each time you take a step. You need to walk slowly and make sure you keep your abs tight so you don’t feel strain in the lower back. I did this one in a crowded aisle without anyone looking twice (just gaze at the products as you go by).
5. Go down two more aisles. Each time you take a step raise up onto your calf. It’s good to do this one holding onto a grocery cart as you go (just for balance, don’t put any weight on it). This one almost did get noticed by one lady, but I stopped and looked at some beans until she moved on.
6. Walk for 2 minutes
7. Repeat the butt cheek exercise
8. Repeat the calf exercise
9. Walk again for 2 to 4 minutes and you’re done!

At a glance:

Walk perimeter and do Pilates abs
Walk one aisle with tight abs
Walk 2 minutes
Do “butt cheek walk”
Do calf raise walk
Walk 2 minutes
Do “butt cheek walk”
Do calf raise walk
Walk 2-4 minutes

Groggy Day

On Friday, my frustration meter was about to max out. I tried this 10-minute Pilates routine designed for flexibility and relaxation and was amazed at the sense of calm I achieved. See it on YouTube:
Pilates are strengthening and stretching exercises that develop the body's core, mobilize the spine and build flexibility. I have to admit I only dabbled in Pilates out of curiosity before I suffered a foot injury last spring. However, they got me through my months in THE BOOT -- and some workouts even left me with sore muscles.

Play Day

OK – It’s getting cold and dreary out, but you don’t have to give in to the gloom. You can exercise with your kids, have fun and be a positive role model all at the same time. Talk about a multitasking mom! Today you’ll go “surfing.” To get into the mood, you’ll need a good playlist. Check out - they’ve put some lists together. Now catch a wave! I like to “swim” around the room a bit and “dive” under a few waves before surfing the pipeline. To do that, I get down, do a push-up and pop up onto the board. You can get low on that board and come up to work those thighs. It’s also fun to have a wipeout -- and if you have kids like mine, to get chased by sharks!

Cleaning Day

Sounds wacky, but combining these two “chores” can actually be fun!
1. You’ve done this before: Dancing duster – 1-2 songs. That’s right, crank the tunes or get that iPod on and dance while you dust. If you want an extra challenge this time, try balancing on one leg as you dance (keep your abs tight). Each time you walk to a new spot, tap your heel in front, bend the leg you are standing on and raise your arms (abs tight of course). Place the foot you just tapped slightly in front of the foot on the ground to move forward.
2. Pickup squats – keep that music cranked. Squat down to pick up each item that needs to be put away. Tighten your abs and butt when you come up and hold for 3 seconds before walking to the item’s proper place. Keep your butt tightened as you walk.
3. Grab your broom. Do walking lunges on the way.
4. Now it’s time to dance again while you sweep – you go girl!! Don’t for get to throw in some air guitar, some spins and maybe even some jumps. When you need to use your dustpan, have the debris pile in front of both you and the pan. Squat and sweep the debris back toward you into the pan. Stand and squeeze that butt for a count of five.
5. Do another set of walking lunges as you return the broom to its spot.
6. Don’t forget to stretch and pat yourself on the back for working in a workout!

Legal junk/Disclaimer: The information provided on this site is for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for the advice or care of medical professionals. Consult with a healthcare professional before starting any diet, or exercise program, or if you have or suspect you might have a health problem.

Fitness Me In Workout Series #3

Cardio Cooking

Fajita Burritos

Precooked chicken from the store
1 package rice and beans mix
1 can black beans
2 bell peppers
1 onion
Sour cream
Shredded cheese
Garlic powder, salt and pepper
You’ll also need a Pyrex baking dish

OK, you know the drill – get your groove on while prepping your ingredients. Get the rice and beans going first, then cut up the chicken, onion and peppers into bite-sized pieces. Chop your cilantro.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Heat pan to med-high and spray with olive oil. Sautee your bell peppers and onion until onion is caramelized. Remove from heat and set aside. While cooking do rear leg raises. Try for 3 sets of 10 on each leg. How to do them: Abs tight, stand on one leg, knee bent slightly. Lift other leg straight back tightening your butt. Hold a moment and return foot to floor. Repeat.
Now drain and add the can of black beans to the rice and bean mix, stirring to warm the beans. Do 10 side leg raises on each side as you stir. Continue doing sets of side leg raises until rice and beans are ready. Remove from heat.
Spray your baking pan and grab your tortillas. Load each tortilla with a dab of rice and beans. Then put in chicken, peppers and onions. Add a pinch of cilantro. Roll up and place in the baking dish. Meanwhile do pile squats. How to do them: Stand a bit wider than shoulder width apart with feet at 45 degree angle. Keep tummy tight and squat so thighs are parallel to the floor. Return to standing. A good example of proper form is on You Tube at
Now mix equal amounts of sour cream and salsa together, and pour over the tortillas. Top with shredded cheese to taste. Meanwhile do calf raises.
Place in the oven and bake until cheese melts. Get back into the groove while you set the table, then enjoy the afterglow of your workout and your meal!

Grocery Day

Do 2 laps around perimeter of the store.
Do walking butt crunches down one aisle. How to do them: Drag your rear toe on the floor before you step forward, tightening butt as toe points. Go very slowly.
Walk down 4 more aisles.
Repeat butt crunches.
Walk for 2 minutes.
Find deserted aisle and do “soccer kicks” down the aisle and back. How to do them: As you step forward turn your toes out, mimicking the motion of kicking a soccer ball. You should feel this along your inner thighs.
Walk for 2 minutes with abs tight as possible. Don’t forget to breathe.
Find another aisle with no traffic. Squat down and look at something. Stand tightening your butt at the top, take a few steps and repeat. Make your way down the aisle, and try to do at least 10. TIP: You can always leave the aisle if someone comes down it and resume in another location.
Walk for 2 minutes.
Head for the cashier. During checkout tighten and release your abs as you unload your cart.

At a glance:2 laps around perimeter
Walking butt crunches
Walk 4 aisles
Repeat butt crunches
Walk 2 minutes
Soccer kicks
Walk 2 minutes with tight abs
10 squats
Walk 2 minutes
Abs at cash register

Cleaning day
Let’s mop that sticky floor!
Get out those dancing feet as you swish and slosh. I know it will be tempting to pretend you are in one of those trendy pole dancing classes, but RESIST. Your floor is wet! Instead do the 80’s dance and shake your hips.
When you are about halfway done, do sliding squats as you mop. Try for 20 reps. How to do them: Start with feet together. Step out to the right and squat. Return to center as you stand. Repeat on left.
Finish mopping as you dance.
Before you put the mop away, set it aside. Put your arms out so they are parallel to the floor and do 50 arm circles to the front and 50 arm circles to the back. Keep the circles small. Repeat.
Now put that mop away!

At a glance:
20 sliding squats
50 arm circles
50 arm circles opposite direction

Play Day
Play “Over, Under, Around and Through” with your kids. You make a pattern where you go over, under, around and through real or imaginary objects.
I like to visit the Amazon Jungle.
For example, place a body pillow (or huge boa constrictor) on the floor, straddle it and do quick steps forward to make it over.
Then you can crab walk under hanging vines full of monkeys.
Run around a huge anthill.
Go through a tangle of foliage using arm circles.
Repeat as many times as your kids want to!
You can find other examples of this game at:
Here’s one of their examples:
Over a sea of sticky peanut butter, under a cherry tree, around an ice cream cone, and through a sea of Jell-O.

Groggy Day
Here’s an 8-minute video you can follow on You Tube. NOTE: Make sure you have bare feet.
Don’t have time? Here’s a 2 minute workout you can do from your chair on You Tube!

Legal junk/Disclaimer: The information provided on this site is for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for the advice or care of medical professionals. Consult with a healthcare professional before starting any diet, or exercise program, or if you have or suspect you might have a health problem.