If you can’t afford an Amarillo gym membership or a personal trainer, there are still plenty of ways for you to get in shape and stay active. In addition to working out at home, there are several places to exercise in Amarillo that are free or low-cost.
Palo Duro Canyon
Palo Duro Canyon is the perfect place for hiking, biking, running, walking and more. There are a number of trails available, for all skill levels and all fitness types, from mountain biking and mountain biking to running and walking to horse-back riding. On a day that isn’t too hot, grab a friend and hike The Lighthouse Trail. About a six-mile round trip, it offers a great workout. Just be sure to pack plenty of water!
The Rock Garden Trail, which is one of the newest trails in Palo Duro Canyon, is perfect for cyclists and mountain bikers. You will surely get a good workout on this uphill trek. The Sunflower Trail is ideal for people looking for a smooth, leisurely walk. It is also nice for runners.
If you just want to do low-impact exercises, you can still go to the canyon and enjoy the scenery. Do a boot camp style workout. You can run, do some jumping jacks, squats and some push-ups, all while enjoying the great outdoors.
Palo Duro Canyon State Park does charge a $5 entrance fee, but it is good for the entire day.
Amarillo Dog Parks
Amarillo dog parks are the perfect place for you and your canine to get a great workout. John Stiff Memorial Park offers a fenced-in, 2-acre park for off-leash fun. At Ellwood Park, there is a small fenced-in area for dogs. Southeast park has a separate, fenced-in area for small dogs and a large dog area. At Thompson Park, there is a pond, agility equipment and an off-leash, fenced-in area for dogs.
Many of Amarillo’s parks have lighted walking trails so you can take your stroll or jog in the evenings, without worrying about it getting too dark. Try the half mile Arden Road School Park, the half mile Benton Park Trail or the longer Ellwood Park or Martin Luther King Park trails. If you are a swimmer, Thompson Park also has a pool, as well as disc golf and an athletic court.
You can also check out places like the Amarillo Family YMCA for pool access, water aerobics and other group activities. This is also a great place to get healthy and spend quality time with your kids.
Of course, nothing is more 'free' than working out at home. If you have a great neighborhood to jog or walk in, you have a workout right outside your front door. Take some workouts out of magazines or research at-home exercises online. If you can invest in workout equipment, even better.
If you need help devising a workout plan that is affordable, convenient and of course, doable, contact me, Amarillo personal trainer Ralph Roberts of the Downtown Athletic Club. I offer customized workouts plans, so if you can’t afford a gym membership or a personal trainer, have a hectic schedule or simply want to work out by yourself, I can create a workout regimen just for you. These workouts are on-the-go, so you can access them anytime on your mobile phone, computer, iPad or smart device. Contact me today for more information.
Everywhere you look, you find someone telling you what to eat, what to drink and what to supplement with. And when it comes to vitamins, there are a lot of choices out there. So what vitamins should you be taking to stay healthy? The bottom line is that it depends, and here's why.
What Kind of Vitamins Are There?
When you go to the grocery store, the health food store or simply shop online for vitamins, you will see a lot of choices. There are multivitamins, single vitamins, like Vitamins A, B, C, D and E; vitamins for women, vitamins for men, vitamins for kids, vitamins for seniors, vitamins for those who work out, vitamins for those who are stressed out, the list goes on and on.
First of all, the multivitamin products are typically a mix of several different vitamins that often have other supplements thrown in, like calcium, iron and the like.
Single vitamins, like a bottle of Vitamin C, will typically just contain C.
Which Vitamins Are Right For Me?
If you are wondering which ones are right for you, it will, again, depend upon you. Men and women's bodies are different, and they each need different things. For example, women should think about adding a calcium supplement to their diets, and a multi that has calcium and added vitamin D (to help with calcium absorption) is usually a good idea.
In addition, if you are someone who eats a healthy diet, rich in fruits and vegetables and always get your 10 recommended servings of veggies a day, you will need less supplementation than someone who tends to stick to fast food.
In general, if you get your 10 servings of fruits and vegetables a day, you are probably taking in the majority of the vitamins you need. However, if you work out hard, supplementing with a B vitamin is usually a good idea, as it provides energy.
Those who workout tend to need different vitamins than those who are sedentary, as the body will metabolize the vitamins in the body a bit quicker after a workout. A good multivitamin that contains 100% of your daily need for a B complex is a good idea.
Finally, most doctors agree that everyone could use a bit more vitamin C in their lives! It helps with cell turnover, helps improve immune function and more.
If you have more questions about eating right or supplementing, contact me, Ralph Roberts. I am a certified personal trainer at the Downtown Athletic Club and I’d be happy to answer any of your health and fitness questions or get you started a custom workout plan.
When you work out, you get thirsty, which of course causes you to reach for that water bottle. But how much water should you be drinking on a daily basis? And what can you do if you just don't like the taste of water?
First things first, how much water do you need per day? Typically, a good guideline to adhere to is eight to 10 glasses of water per day for adults, no matter if they are men or women. However, recently the Institute of Medicine set new guidelines for total water intake. It recommend that women consume a total around 2.7 liters of water each day while men take in about 3.7 liters per day.
Now, these totals are from all sources. Remember that many foods you consume have water in them. Fruits, vegetables and soups tend to have the highest water counts. Depending on your diet, most people get about 25% of their water from the food they eat.
However, if you are working out, you probably need more water. When the body is depleted of water, you can suffer from headaches, dry skin and even dizzy spells. Remember to keep the body hydrated as you work out, and drink water after you have finished your workout.
What if I don't like water that much? How can I make it taste better?
Many people complain that they just do not like the taste of water, and wonder what they can do to make water taste better. Today, there are plenty of no-calorie, sugar-free water infusers that you can add to your glass of water to give it flavor. Or, you can purchase some very cool water bottles that allow you to add fruit, infusing the water with flavor. This is a way to make the water tastier, and healthier, as you can get some vitamins from the fruit.
How can I make sure I get enough water?
If you are worried that you aren't getting enough water, keep track each day. Simply note each glass that you drink in a food diary app, and note how much of your diet is fruits and vegetables. Keeping track can make you more conscious too, and it will probably encourage you to drink a bit more.
Have more questions? Consult with me, Ralph Roberts, a certified personal trainer in Amarillo, Texas. I can help you come up with a health and fitness plan geared just for you. Contact me today for a free personal fitness session.
photo courtesy of Stuart Miles / Free Digital Photos
Looking for some healthy snacks to eat between meals? And not just healthy snacks, but ones that actually have some substance to them and will help fill you up? Below I’ll tell you what some of my favorite snacks are.
Snacking is actually an important part of your day, especially if you exercise. Anyone that is looking to lose weight will benefit from snacking, and those who are looking to gain muscle mass will also benefit from snacking. Can't quite understand how both groups benefit from extra calories? Here's why.
Why are (healthy) snacks important?
When you are trying to lose weight, don’t stop eating! In-between meal nibbling will ensure that you do not go hungry during the day and then overeat at meals. Look at it this way; snacking on healthy snacks between meal helps you practice portion control when you actually sit down to your meal.
Additionally, this extra snacking keeps your metabolism up during the day, helping you burn more calories no matter what you are doing, even if it is just sitting at your desk or surfing the web.
Those who are looking to add mass will also need to make sure that they feed those muscles some healthy snacks, especially after workouts. Keeping the muscles fed will help keep them feeding the muscle tissue you already have when they need more energy.
What healthy snacks are recommended for in between meals?
While it is true that snacking on sugary sweets can add the pounds, snacking on healthier foods with fewer calories, can actually help you lose weight and keep up your energy in the long run. While doughnuts may look enticing, they will not actually satisfy you. This type of snack will likely make you feel sluggish. Veggies with hummus or fruits with cheese may not look as tasty, but they will help you get through the day without feeling groggy or crashing.
Remember you are snacking — not grazing. This means pre-planning your snacks to take to work or school with you. Know what you are going to snack on and make sure you have enough on hand.
Great snacking choices include:
Snacks with fiber are more filling, such as nuts, raw vegetables and fruits (like the apple and nut butter). These will keep you fuller longer than say a doughnut, cookie or crackers, because it takes longer for fiber to pass through the body. Fiber is a denser food, so there are fewer calories per ounce, basically.
If you are looking to get in shape and eat healthier, contact me, Ralph Roberts. I’m a certified personal trainer at the Downtown Athletic Club in Amarillo, Texas, and an expert on nutrition and exercise. I can help create a workout and recommend healthy eating habits. Get in touch with me today for a free personal training session.
Let's get back to reality. What are realistic fitness goals?
The biggest positive that you can take away from “The Biggest Loser" is the fact that contestants created a supportive environment and not a competitive one. They work as a group, a team. While they are competing in a reality show for prize money, ultimately all are working toward a common goal: getting to a healthy weight. That is an environment you should look for and take part in.
What is a realistic way to lose weight and get fit?
If you want to lose weight in a healthy, realistic way, one option is to work with a certified personal trainer, such as me, Ralph Roberts. A professional trainer can help you set achievable goals and start you on the path toward a healthy diet plan and exercise routine. I strive to show my clients the difference between realistic and unrealistic, and healthy and unhealthy goals and weight loss strategies. I genuinely care about my clients and I want to see them healthy, fit and happy. If you are interested in working out with me, schedule a free initial training session!
The Kinesis One is an interesting exercise machine to gaze upon. Many people see this machine and walk away from it because they just are not sure what it does. However, this piece of exercise equipment is ideal for beginners and is easy to use with the proper guidance.
What does the Kinesis One do?
The Kinesis One is an exercise machine for resistance. It has all the exercises you need, in one machine. This single, standalone station has two weight stacks, with an unlimited number of exercises. This allows you to perform them through your natural range of motion, unlike other machines where your motion is directed.
Sometimes, this directed motion can actually cause injuries. Everyone's body is different, including their ranges of motion. With a Kinesis One, your body is free to move in the way it should, building strength safely.
With the Kinesis One, you have a number of zero-impact exercises available to you, so it is useable for everyone, no matter your level of fitness or your current abilities. You can use it on your own, or have your personal trainer design a program just for you.
The exercises you can complete on this machine include those for balance, flexibility and strength.
What are the benefits of the Kinesis One?
Where can I use a Kinesis One?
The Kinesis One will truly make your workout more enjoyable, as your range of motion is much more free and natural. There are no restrictions. If you live in Amarillo, Texas, you can find a Kinesis One at the Downtown Athletic Club. It is the only place in Amarillo that has one.
If you are interested in using this machine, contact Ralph Roberts. He is a certified personal trainer at the Downtown Athletic Club. In addition to showing you how to use the Kinesis One, he can design a fitness program just for you, improving your strength, balance and flexibility. Contact Ralph today to learn more about his training services.
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