Pregnant women who remain healthy and fit during every trimester are more likely to have fewer complications during pregnancy, have quicker and less complicated births, and recover faster postpartum.
Yet, the body is going through massive changes with every week of pregnancy. Exercise that is too strenuous or complicated has the potential of doing more harm than good.
Exercises For Every Trimester
The first trimester marks a time when the body is getting adjusted to your new body. Nausea and fatigue are common. Take it easy to start with and build only when you feel like it.
The second trimester is often the most enjoyable for women as they are past most of the nausea and the fatigue has begun to fade.
The most growth is going to occur during the third trimester. Major changes in the body mean major changes to your workout routine.
Having a personal trainer who can work with you during each stage of pregnancy will keep you fit and healthy through delivery day. Amarillo personal trainer Ralph Roberts can help you every step of the way. Ralph has experience working with clients throughout every stage of their pregnancy. Contact Ralph today to schedule a personal training session.
Eating healthy is a commitment that requires discipline, but it also comes with a near-endless list of positive benefits for your fitness and wellness.
You can make it easier on yourself by not only replacing unhealthy meals with healthy ones, but by also replacing unhealthy ingredients. Here are eight healthy cooking hacks to help you stay on track.
8 Healthy & Tasty Food Swaps To Try
1. Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
Extra-virgin olive oil is considered a "go-to" fat when it comes to heart health. Use it as a substitute for butter, while olive oil mixed with balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper, and a squeeze of lemon is the perfect substitute for creamy salad dressings.
2. Refried Beans
Look no further than refried beans if you're cooking Mexican food and looking for a great replacement for cheese. Cut the fat from your favorite dish by replacing half the cheese with refried or black beans. You can also put beans in enchiladas to get that same gooey texture.
3. Greek Yogurt
Greek yogurt is great on its own but it's also a versatile food that can be use as a substitute for many ingredients. Instead of sour cream, squeeze fresh lemon into yogurt instead. It's important that you choose plain, all-natural Greek yogurt, however, to avoid extra sugar.
Yes, avocado has a high fat content, but it's the kind of fat that's heart-healthy. Use avocado instead of cheese or mayonnaise on your sandwich. It's not only good for your heart, but it will provide the same creaminess you often crave.
5. Healthier Hamburgers
There's nothing quite like a good hamburger, but we all know what eating too much red meat can do to a healthy diet. But you can still make a great, tasty burger by substituting beans, oats and veggies while including just one ounce of beef. One recipe idea is to use a mixture of red beans, mushrooms, onions, oatmeal, and tomato paste (and the one ounce of meat).
6. Unsweetened Apple Sauce
Unsweetened applesauce is another great substitute for butter. Used with canola oil, it's a great butter substitute in many baking recipes. If you want to cut even more fat from the recipe, substitute flax seeds in place of the canola oil.
If you love your carbs and pasta, you can use squash instead of wheat pasta. Spaghetti squash is an excellent pasta substitute (as its name suggests), or you can use ribbons of zucchini. After it's cooked, prepare the squash just as you would regular pasta.
Working with a personal trainer like Ralph Roberts can help take your fitness to a new level. Contact Ralph today to schedule a free personal training session!
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Cheating on your diet isn't always a bad thing. When you're on a strict diet in an effort to lose weight, the occasional cheat day can actually boost your progress. It may seem counterintuitive, but research has shown that splurging every once in a while is not only OK but, in fact, beneficial.
Why You Need A Cheat Day
Losing weight is all about creating an energy deficit. This generally means significantly lowering your fat and carbohydrate intake. Consuming lean protein (think baked chicken and egg whites) and cutting way back on sources of bad carbs, such as bread and pasta, is key.
But there's a downside to limiting calories in such a way that this type of energy deficit is present. Your body begins to become accustomed to the calorie deficiency and it burns fewer of them in order to preserve energy. Taking an occasional break from calorie restrictions (in other words, cheating) causes your body to pick the calorie-burning speed back up.
In addition to slowing down the burning of calories, diets that limit fat often cause thyroid hormones and leptin levels to decline. Why is this a bad thing for shedding unwanted pounds? Because both of these directly affect your body's ability to burn fat. Going outside the confines of your diet on occasion can stabilize these levels.
Cheating On Your Diet The Right Way
So now that you understand the benefits of giving yourself a little break every once in a while, let's discuss how to go about doing this without causing a dietary disaster. Here are a few tips.
Dieting is hard, but it doesn't have to be impossible. Anything challenging is always easier with a support system on your side. To learn how personal trainer Ralph Roberts can help you stick to your plan and reach your fitness goals, reach out today.
Looking for some healthy, yet yummy snacks to help you on your weight loss journey?
Wouldn't it be great if you could burn calories without having to constantly work out? Well, you can. Of course, this doesn't mean you shouldn't still spend time exercising, but it's good to know that many of your everyday activities are burning those calories.
What Activities Burn Calories?
It's summertime, and that means that you are naturally more active. You may be getting to all those outdoor chores and projects that you have been putting off, such as getting your yard in tip-top shape for entertaining or tackling home improvement projects like painting. These activities not only burn calories, but also improve your cardiovascular health.
Here are some typical activities that help burn calories and keep you active and fit, as well as how many calories are generally burned.
Even fairly low-key activities such as planting flowers and pulling some pesky weeds burns between 200 and 400 calories an hour. That's not bad at all. Mowing the lawn is comparable, but if you really want to up the burn, try more intensive yard work like raking. If you really get going, you can burn between 400 and 600 calories PER HOUR.
Are you thinking of painting? It's a big job. Three hours of painting can burn over 1,000 calories, so break out those color swatches and get busy.
Cleaning, mopping floors, dusting and organizing closets are a few more house chores that can make you sweat.
Whether you're running around the air conditioned mall or getting groceries, you are burning calories. You can burn a good 500 to 600 calories during the course of a three-hour shopping trip. Maximize this by parking as far from the entrance as possible, and moving around in a brisk fashion.
This summer, in addition to your normal exercise routine, be sure to keep in mind that working around the house and running errands can burn calories, too. Knowing this may make your activities more purposeful and effective.
Can A Personal Trainer Help Me Reach My Goals?
If you are struggling to lose weight and get fit, a personal trainer can help. By creating a custom health and fitness plan, tailored to your lifestyle and body type, a personal trainer can be your coach, fitness partner and can keep you motivated and on track. Ralph Roberts works with clients of all shapes and sizes to help them achieve their goals. Contact Ralph today for a free personal training session and see what you think.
Wondering how fit you are? Download Ralph's FREE Fitness Level Body Challenge and find out!
They've been around for centuries, but chia seeds have only recently been recognized for their nutritional and health benefits. Native to South America, chia seeds were used by the Aztecs and Mayans as a source of sustainable energy and endurance.
What Are Health Benefits of Chia Seeds?
Chia seeds are a source of protein, dietary fiber, healthy fats, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Incorporating chia seeds into one's diet has been shown to lower LDL cholesterol and triglycerides, reduce inflammation, as well as lowering the risk of heart disease and Type 2 Diabetes.
Studies have also shown that chia seeds contribute to feelings of fullness and satiety because of their combination of fiber and protein. Just two tablespoons of chia seeds contain about 10 grams of fiber.
How Can Chia Seeds Be Incorporated in My Diet?
Chia seeds are a bit bland in taste on their own, but they can be added to a variety of foods. Unlike flax seeds, they don't have to be ground up. Here are ways to include chia seeds in your diet:
From yogurt and applesauce to smoothies and oatmeal, chia seeds can be added to virtually any dish. They will take on a gel-like texture after they mix with liquid, so sprinkle them on just before eating if you prefer a crunch.
2. Peanut Butter & Honey Chia Oats
Looking for ways to fuel up your day? This combination of peanut butter, honey, chia seeds and oats is the perfect morning kick-start.
Chia seeds can easily be used as a healthy and delicious replacement for bread crumbs. Blend them with finely ground nuts and your favorite spices as part of a gluten-free breading for fish, meat or vegetables.
4. Lemon Chia Seed Salad Dressing
Store-bought dressings can be high in calories and fat, but this easy recipe will add zest - and nutrition - to your favorite salad.
5. Salmon Rub
This simple and quick recipe will add a crunchy crust to your salmon. Mix chia seeds with olive oil, salt and pepper as a rub before baking or grilling.
6. Homemade Jam
Blend chia seeds with berries and Stevia sweetener for a healthy homemade jam. You won't need pectin to make the jam gel-up because chia seeds will do the job on their own.
Create an excellent dessert with this Pina Colada Chia Pudding recipe. It will satisfy your sweet tooth and is loaded with healthy ingredients.
Amarillo personal trainer, Ralph Roberts, can design a custom exercise and nutrition plan that best suits you, and will help keep you motivated and accountable. Contact Ralph Roberts today for a free personal training session.
Pregnancy is a beautiful time in a woman’s life, but it’s also a time when women must be acutely aware of dangers. When you’re carrying a baby, something as simple as getting too hot during a workout can have serious implications. For that reason, we’ve compiled a list of ways you can beat the heat and remain active during the summer months of your pregnancy.
The Dangers of Getting Overheated
Before we dive into how to stay cool, it’s important to discuss the reasons for paying attention to this issue. Becoming overheated during pregnancy, also referred to as hyperthermia, can lead to several dangerous problems, including:
It’s easy to become overheated when you’re pregnant during the summer months, especially in the Texas Panhandle! But the good news is there are ways to stay safe while still enjoying the season and remaining active. You simply need to be smart about your activities and follow the tips below.
Most people don’t think of personal training as a beneficial tool for pregnant women, but it can help a great deal when it comes to keeping expectant mothers safe during exercise. Get in touch with us today to learn how personal trainer Ralph Roberts can help you safely stay active during pregnancy.
Staying fit is a lifelong journey. It's not just about losing weight; it's about feeling energetic and strong, staying healthy and creating balance in your life. Exercise can benefit you at all stages in your life, from childhood to your later years, and at every point in between. This includes pregnancy and postpartum.
Working out with a partner has multiple benefits. A partner can help encourage and inspire you. Exercising with others increases motivation and accountability, and it's also safer. This is especially true if you're expecting. In your last trimester, you may be more likely to lose balance, so having someone there is always a good idea.
How Can Working Out With A Friend Benefit Me?
If you want to get fit and stay motivated, group personal training is a wonderful idea. It offers a social setting with lots of personal attention. Here are some ideas for workout moves perfect for exercising with a partner:
A strong core helps prevent back pain and injuries, and improves posture. There are a number of ways you can modify the plank exercise to make it easier or more challenging.
This ballet-inspired move helps strengthen the legs and firm the glutes. It's important to use a sturdy chair (or partner!) for balance. Keeping your back straight, plant your feet firmly and wide apart, then lower yourself as though doing a squat. Raise back up and repeat.
3. One-Armed Rows
Again, with the help of a chair, bend yourself at the waist, supporting yourself with your left arm and knee on the chair. With your back parallel to the floor, pull your right arm back to a 90 degree angle, hold and return to the starting position. Use a 5 - 8 pound dumbbell for this exercise.
4. Bicep Curls
These can be done sitting in a chair or standing. All you need are a set of weights. You can start with 3-5 pound weights and work your way up.
5. Side-Lying Leg Lifts
You can use a pillow to give you added cushion and support. These leg lifts help tighten and tone your inner thighs, and strengthen your core.
There are many other exercises you can do in a group personal training setting or with a partner. Regardless of your current level of fitness, you can start right now.
If you are looking for direction and motivation, consider a personal trainer. Ralph Roberts works with people just like you to help them achieve their fitness goals. Contact Ralph today for a free personal training session or to learn more about group training classes.
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There's nothing quite like a summer vacation when it comes to getting away from it all, seeing news things, and spending quality time with family. It can also present some challenges in terms of maintaining your healthy lifestyle. But there's no reason you can't stay on track with some planning and taking proper steps.
1. Plan Ahead
Let's face it, you're probably going to eat out more while on vacation, so do your research before your trip by checking out menus online. You can also pack snack bags of fruit, veggies and/or trail mix to take with you when you're sightseeing.
2. Stock up Where You Stay
Choosing a rental house or condo instead of a hotel gives you the option of eating in, while also filling the refrigerator with healthy snack items such as low-fat yogurt and veggies. If you opt for a hotel room, take advantage of its mini-fridge by stocking up on bottles of water and nutritious snacks.
3. Schedule Your Workouts
Exercising on a daily basis while on vacation can help minimize the effects of overindulging on food. Set aside 45 minutes each day for some form of physical activity. You can swim laps in the hotel pool, go for a long walk on the beach, or rent bikes for the entire family.
4. Don't Drink Your Calories
Did you know that a frozen margarita can contain 700 calories? While there's nothing wrong with unwinding with a couple of drinks, you can make healthy choices when it comes to alcohol. Choose lower-calorie drinks such as light beer, red or white wine, or a white-wine spritzer instead of those loaded with sugar.
5. Have an Active Layover
If you're stuck in an airport because of a long layover, taking a walk to help eat up the time. Many airports have exhibits, or even museums, that will also help your mind stay active.
6. Visit a Farmer's Market
Take advantage of a local farmer's market if it's available. You'll be able to load up on the area's best fresh food like berries and vegetables, plus it's a great way to take in local culture and its people.
7. Have One Splurge Meal
Every location has a food or meal that they're famous for, so don't be afraid to indulge for one meal or one day - in moderation, of course.
A personal trainer like Ralph Roberts can design a custom exercise plan that best fits your health and fitness needs. Contact Ralph today to learn more.
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