Friday, February 24, 2012

5 Traps

It is interesting that we say we are ready to start a diet plan to lose weight but then quickly lose the enthusiasm of those first days of dieting and fall into one of the traps. I am talking about diet failure traps that are waiting to entice, persuade, and beckon dieters toward the traps.
Diet failure traps come in many forms, but if you have ever been on a weight loss plan you will probably recognize these.
1. Impossible goals - When a goal is set to lose a large number of pounds within a short time period, it is a diet failure trap because it is impossible to accomplish without hurting your health and quickly regaining any weight lost and probably more. A part of the impossible goals is impatience because we expect immediate results. These irrational expectations can rapidly defeat the good intentions that were gathered up when starting the diet.
2. Unsatisfying meals - Many diet plans offer unappetizing meals that tend to simulate cardboard rather than food. New products are regularly entering the diet foods market that promise delicious meals. That is a matter of individual taste if your choice is a plan with packaged meals. Another option is to cook your own meals depending heavily on seasonings and portion control. Nothing is a faster path to failure than foods that have no flavor and are unsatisfying.
3. Hunger - There is no question that hunger is part of a weight loss diet. The best way to overcome hunger is to load up on bulky foods like salad and green vegetables and include a good portion of protein in each meal. Protein will satisfy sooner and stave off hunger longer than any other food.
4. Cravings - It hardly matters whether it is something salty and crunchy or chocolaty and rich, cravings have been the downfall of many dieters. Here is where portion control can allow a few salty treats or a square of chocolate to satisfy a craving and avoid a diet failure trap.
5. Loss of willpower - Willpower is a matter of self-discipline or self-control and can be challenging to maintain if you are dining out with friends or serving yourself at a buffet. It is helpful to avoid situations that test your willpower, but to be a successful dieter, one must apply willpower in every environment or they will find that the diet failure trap has firmly closed on them.
A healthy diet that results in a 1-2 pound loss per week is considered successful. It may seem like a snail's pace to lose at that rate, but it is also a pace most likely to result in maintaining the weight loss. Remembering these diet failure traps and how they are triggered or avoided will help you achieve your diet goals.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Top 5 Questions Regarding Spine Injury

Injury to the spine is very serious can could be even be deadly. If someone you know has had a spine injury, medical attention should be sought immediately. Spine injuries cause problems and can be temporary or even permanent. Here are some of the most common questions asked regarding spine injuries.
1. What are spine injuries and what causes them?
Spine injuries are damages caused to the spine which affects functions in our body such as mobility and feeling. The spinal cord does not have to be broken in order to lose some of the body functions. The spinal cord can be intact yet loss of functions can occur. Around 50% of all spine injuries are caused by vehicle accidents, 28% by sports injuries and 22% caused by falls. As such, the main cause of spinal cord injuries are by sudden impact and the damage will be felt immediately.
2. What are the effects of spinal cord injuries?
Effects of spinal cord injuries are largely dependent on the type and seriousness of injury. Spinal cord injuries can be complete or incomplete. A complete injury is when there is totally NO function below the injured area. No sensation, feeling and movement can be felt or made and both sides of the body will be affected. An incomplete injury patient will still be able to carry out some function below the injured area such as moving a limb or have some sensation. Patients who have had an injury above the first thoracic vertebra will suffer paralysis of all four limbs. Patients whose injury is below the first thoracic spinal nerve will have full control of their upper limbs but suffer paralysis from the abdomen down.
3. What is the prognosis?
Prognosis is all dependent on how serious the injury is and what exactly is damaged. Most people who have had spine are able to regain some functions within half a year. After that, the chances of recovery drop to a very low percentage. However, physical therapy may help to reduce long term disability.
4. What treatments are available?
Although our body has an amazing self repairing mechanism, it doesn't have the ability to heal the central nervous system. As such, there is no cure for spinal injuries. The only way is to limit cell death and any secondary damage to reduce loss of functions. Scientists are still trying to regenerate functions by growing nerves but are no easy task.
5. Will I be wheelchair bound for the rest of my life?
The effects of spine are dependent on the severity of the injury. Sadly, most spine injury patients require the use of a wheelchair to get around. Patients who suffered an injury to the top of their spinal cord will need to get around with the use of an electric powered wheelchair as they will lose control of all their limbs. Patients who suffer an injury below the top of the spinal cord are able to use a manual wheelchair as they still have control of their arms. Rehabilitation and physical therapy may help to reduce the dependent of a wheelchair but is largely dependent on individual.
It is of utmost importance for us to protect our spine. When the spinal cord is injured, people can be permanently paralyzed and as of now, there is still no cure for spinal cord injuries.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Exercise Plateaus and Your Creative Mind

Incorporating exercise into your routine is a great way to learn to stick to an exercise program but sticking with it when you've reached a plateau can be a motivational challenge. Use the tips below to apply your own creative thinking to your exercise routine to sustain motivation to continue exercise.
Remind yourself that exercise is a lifestyle change you successfully added to your life and fight to keep it in place. Recall times when you or someone you know stopped exercise and had to overcome the additional obstacles of a weakened body and a schedule that incorporated other activities into the times formerly reserved for exercise in order to pursue exercise goals.
When your motivation is sagging because you just don't feel like your exercise is making a difference establish concrete goals to pursue. For instance, if you started an exercise routine to lose weight and although you still have weight to lose your weight has remained unchanged for some period of time, your motivation will lessen. Redefining your goals to tone up specific muscle groups or to add a few minutes of exercise a day or to change where you exercise such as from a gym to outside can help you get over the inclination to stop exercising.
Think about the unseen benefits of exercise for your body if you find yourself becoming less motivated to exercise because you've reached a plateau. You accept the unseen benefits of eating healthier foods that they will ultimately keep your organs and body healthier internally than if you alter your diet and include wrong choices. Use the same philosophy to stick with exercise, focusing on benefits to your organs and muscles that though not visible to you on a daily basis are being supported by your exercise program.
Reserve a time for exercise and when you reach a plateau don't replace your exercise time with increased activity around the house or garden as an equivalent exchange. You might build up a sweat vacuuming or pulling weeds but exercising with the goal of working specific muscle groups for strength or maintaining a certain heart rate for cardio or increasing your endurance are very different from the benefits you get from moving around as you do household chores. Your body deserves your full attention during your exercise time.
Change your exercise goals based on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention from 150 minutes a week to the higher recommended number of minutes of 300 per week. Shooting for the minimum is a quick way to lose motivation if you're not "seeing" results. Instead of counting minutes to reach 150, reset your counter to achieve the recommended amount of exercise for healthier living to 300 minutes a week of exercise.
Consider hiring a trainer or other exercise professional for several sessions to leap start your efforts.
Feeling less motivated to exercise when you feel like you reached a plateau in your exercise routine is an important indicator that you should switch something up in your exercise program instead of avoiding or skipping exercise. Pay attention to your feelings and use the tips above to re-commit to your exercise program.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Dealing With Negative Comments About Your Exercise Practices

Once you've incorporated exercise into your lifestyle, it will impact other aspects of your life that might invite comments or criticisms from people you know. Use the suggestions below to respond without anger to comments that are critical of your new routine.
If someone you know claims they don't have the kind of time you have for exercise, that may be true for a variety of reasons. Always validate the statement by acknowledging the person is busy and explain how you've made time for your exercise routine.
If someone you know claims that exercise is a selfish activity that takes time away from doing for others, acknowledge that exercise is something that you are doing for yourself but that you hope to set an example to others, including those in your family, that pursuing a healthy lifestyle should be part of their goals.
If someone criticizes the money you spend on gym membership or training, the first thing you should consider is who is doing the complaining. If your spouse is complaining or someone who supports you in some financial way is complaining, then you do owe that person consideration of the objection. Determine whether you can incorporate an exercise routine into your life that uses videos or outdoor exercise such as biking or walking instead of paying for a gym membership. Also communicate that a gym membership is a priority for you and that your budget goals include a gym membership.
When someone remarks on how much money you're spending on workout clothing, don't respond unless you've calculated how much money you spend on workout clothing and can provide that person with a dollar amount. Use the comment as an opportunity to add up all the costs from sneakers to tops that you spend on these clothes over the course of a full year. You can communicate that you're not sure how much you spend on workout clothing, but you're going to determine that amount and you'll get back to the person.
If someone comments to you that all you talk about is exercise and food and it's true, explain that healthy lifestyle changes are still new for you and you're excited about the possibilities they offer. You should also try to stop talking about exercise and fitness with someone who's not interested in the subject matter just as you would with any other topic.
Don't start giving exercise advice to people if they don't ask you for advice. While your own success may encourage you to feel like you've got the answers, you aren't really an exercise expert unless you've been trained as such. Until then, you're a person who exercises. Your advice, when you appropriately offer it to someone else, should always reflect that your knowledge comes from your own exercise experience rather than formal training.
Lifestyle changes such as incorporating exercise into your life can frequently prompt some negative comments and reactions from those you know. Use the suggestions above to respond appropriately to some criticisms you might hear as a result of starting an exercise program.