HEALTH AND FITNESS

THE GUMPTION OF GATORADE

By  Christine Velez-Botthof

Now that the New Year is in full swing, so are many New Year’s resolutions.   The list-topper seems to always be cutting calories and getting into shape.  Judging by the packed conditions in my usually easy-to-find-a-spot yoga class, I can see many people are taking their resolutions seriously.

So as we twist ourselves into pretzels, run with no end in sight, lift too much, stretch too little and catapult ourselves and our bodies into a healthier and shapelier year, it’s important to remember one very important key ingredient to our success:  Hydrate.

There is no doubt that water is important.  Every living thing needs it to survive.  It not only covers 70% of the earth, but also 60% of our bodies, 90% of our lungs and 70% of our brains.  About 83% of our blood is water which helps digest food, transport waste and control body temperature.  Each day, we humans need to replace 2.4 liters of water via drinking and eating…mostly drinking.

For some, drinking the required 8 glasses of water a day is no sweat.  For others it’s worse than setting the treadmill on its highest incline and running backwards.  Without any real taste, you either do water, or you just don’t.

Which is why, sports drinks and flavored waters have become so popular.  They have taste.  The taste propels people, not just athletes, to consume more, with the idea they are doing a good thing for their bodies.

Unfortunately, sometimes this is not exactly true.  For as long as I can remember, Gatorade has been the “hydrant” of choice for a lot of athletes and in recent years has almost become its own apothecary as the cure-all for stomach bugs and yes – heart conditions (I can’t make this stuff up).   While it’s true, Gatorade is high in sodium and potassium – both of which you lose in your sweat or as a result of dehydration from sickness – it is in fact a great way to replace those two electrolytes.  However (and there’s always a however), it’s the sack of other “stuff” you’re ingesting in Gatorade that has tossed it straight to the top of my list of “do nots” for 2012.

Let’s study what’s actually IN Gatorade:

-        Water:  Good.

-        Sucrose syrup and glucose-fructose syrup:  Sugar = bad (unless you are a hardcore athlete and in that case the carbs provided by these sugars may (key word is MAY) help to sustain you and help prevent dehydration.

-        Natural and artificial flavors:  ?

-        Salt, sodium citrate:   Provides sodium, electrolytes.

-        Monopotassium phosphate:  Provides potassium, another electrolyte.

-        Ester gum:  An emulsifier derived from wood (unless you’re into eating furniture you may want to avoid this additive).

-        Sucrose acetate isobutyrate:  An emulsifier and used for orange flavor = artificial.

-        Yellow 5:  coloring that causes problems in asthmatics and some homeopaths believe it to be one of the root causes of ADHD and ADD symptoms.  Being phased out in some countries (yikes).

If you consume an entire bottle of Gatorade you are actually taking in 56 grams of sugar.  Suffice to say, if you are leading a sedentary lifestyle, this is not the drink for you.  If you’re on the go and active and sweating at least once per day, is this really the best drink for overall health and wellness, not to mention hydration?

It would take hours of profuse sweating to lose enough to warrant this type of “rescue” from a drink.  Except for instances where diarrhea and vomiting are involved, water is perfectly adequate.

Tell that to the $750 million dollars a year Americans spend on sports/energy drinks alone.  Big profits for a not-so-big health gain.

So if you’re sedentary, don’t drink it.  And unless you’re Carl Lewis you probably shouldn’t drink it after a workout either.

And if you like your teeth…don’t drink it.

You heard me.  The most shocking revelation to me on my hunt to uncover the truth behind the bottle was this:  The pH levels in Gatorade are incredibly low.  Normal pH is 7.  Gatorade is 2.9.   A pH that low is considered highly acidic and can break down tissue as well as bone and teeth.

Teeth exposed to a pH of 2.9 undergo “acid shock”.  I will spare you all the huge technical terms here but, in essence, the low pH acids can dissolve tooth enamel and once it’s gone – it is gone baby.  There’s no bringing it back.

If you’re sitting there reading this article and sipping on your cherry flavored Gatorade all the while, take heed:  You can combat the low acid level of Gatorade by drinking twice the amount of water with it.  Drinking the water would “buffer” the acid and sugar deposited by this dastardly drink onto your teeth.  Also, chewing sugarless gum would stimulate saliva production and “clear the liquids” from the teeth, according to Dr. Studen-Pavlovich, a pediatric dentist.

A 2009 study found that Americans now get nearly 25% of their calories from liquids.  Most of those calories are in the form of sugar and carbs derived from sugar.

I started this article with the intent to promote a healthier alternative to Gatorade in the form of a sports drink already on the market.  Vitamin Water Zero by Glaceau.  However (there’s that word again), after donning my journalist fedora and doing the appropriate research, I would be remiss to recommend it to you.  While it is loaded – loaded people – with vitamins, provides 100% of the daily supply of vitamin C and contains all the good sugar alternatives like Stevia and Erythirtol – both non-caloric, natural sweeteners, it also contains pesky additives like “natural flavors” and Gum Acacia (in that yucky emulsifier family).  It does NOT contain dangerous food colorings, but rather colorings from natural sources like blueberry, apple, acai and pomegranate.  Vitamin Water Zero has almost no sugar or additives, but I cannot, in good conscience promote it as the BEST alternative.  And I blame Gatorade.  Vitamin Water is here because of Gatorade and so let’s just put it on them.  The same companies did not form the two drinks, but the basic premise of promoting a “healthy” drink to the sports minded and water-loathing people of the world, was a joint and now fiercely competitive mission between the two.

I don’t know if I’ll discontinue drinking Vitamin Water Zero, but I will think more closely about giving it to my kids and how much I will allow myself to have.

One thing I can in good faith recommend to all you sports drink-minded, water flavor-adders out there, is this:  Emergen-C by Alacer.  Let’s talk health here.  This stuff is jam-packed with it and it’s got a little fizzy thing going on with it to boot.

Emergen-C is a dissolvable vitamin supplement with 1,000mg of vitamin C and other vitamins.  It has 25 calories and 6g of carbs, 5 of those grams from fruit sugar (fructose).  Other vitamins in Emergen-C include all the B vitamins, folic acid, calcium and magnesium and a bunch more electrolytes.  It’s most often taken as an immune booster, mainly to combat the common cold.  It contains a plethora of antioxidants and its caffeine free.  The rush from all the vitamins it contains, gives it the “energy drink” stamp of approval.   The only side effects known to this product involve the problems that may arise with too much vitamin C build up in the body.  Most vitamin C is flushed away with sweat and urine and you’d actually have to ingest 25,000mg for this to happen, but I thought I’d just give it a mention, so as to help you avoid an Emergen-C – OD.

Another very safe and pleasant alternative is Smart Water also by Glaceau.  This is water, brimming with electrolytes, but low (as in zero) on taste.  A great way to maintain those very important molecules in your system – the ones we never hear from unless something goes terribly wrong.  This product is like water on steroids – think Jenifer Anniston in a slinky red dress.  That could be you my friend.

So, for now, I’ll raise my glass of Emergen-C to a new year, a new yoga pose and a new you.  Here’s to a safer, tastier, healthier way to rehydrate.  Happy 2012!

 

DO YOU KNOW SOMEONE IN CRISIS?

By Jennifer Jones

On December 21st, 11 years ago my sister, Jill took her own life.  I have never forgotten the moment I found out or the feeling of sheer horror that she was no longer with us.  To say you go through stages of shock and grief is an understatement.  I will never forget my sister,  how she died or how it changed the dynamics of our family forever…but with each passing day I deal with it a little bit better.

I share this very personal and painful story for many reasons…for the family members out there that grieve a loved one lost to suicide and for those out there that think life is so hopeless that they can no longer go on. There are too many victims…

This week I had the opportunity to interview the Executive Director of  American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.

Please take the time to hear our conversation, CLICK HERE

BROKEN HEART {ATTACK}

By:  Christine Velez-Botthof

A dear friend of mine just suffered what her doctor called a “broken heart-heart attack” brought on by a sudden collapse of the spirit. Or in layman’s terms – stress.

A broken heart-heart attack in fact, does exist. It’s labeled BHS for Broken Heart Syndrome or more technically; stress cardiomyopathy. 90-95 percent of patients with BHS are middle aged or postmenopausal women who have suffered what they believe to be a heart attack following an episode of extreme emotional stress. The condition is recognized by severe, acute cardiac symptoms like chest pressure/pain, shortness of breath and a general sense of impending doom.

It surprised me to learn that upon immediate evaluation, patients with BHS are initially thought to be having massive heart attacks. However, the changes on the EKGs are not typical for a heart attack, nor are the cardiac enzyme tests to confirm a heart attack. Most of these patients, not excluding my friend, do not have the blockage of coronary arteries that is seen in most heart failure. On the contrary, their arteries are pumping along just fine.

Having said that – most patients with BHS are – without question – in severe heart failure and require aggressive cardiac care due to a “ballooning” of the left ventricle apex. The Japanese have labeled this type of heart condition as Takotsubo Cardiomyopathy – which means Octopus trap – for the large balloon-like appearance on the left side of the heart.

Suffice to say, there are days when I myself feel like my heart is going to explode. Perhaps my left ventricle apex – at those moments – is in fact ballooning out and waiting to burst. It saddens me to think that may actually happen one day, but I also find great relief in knowing the cliché I have been using for years is actually a scientifically accurate one.

People with BHS can and do become critically ill for a period of time following an emotional meltdown. Critically – as in – might die. It’s a fact not just a metaphor. All of my adult life I have viewed the term “died of a broken heart” as a very poignant and poetic way to label someone’s heart failure, never really considering the profoundness of the why or how. But now, after seeing someone close to me endure BHS and knowing exactly why she went through it (a nasty argument with a loved one), the only thing I can surmise is how very, very fragile our mortality is.

It’s hard to say why women suffer from this condition more than men. I do believe men are under tons of stress. Everyday type stresses that a lot of women don’t face. I think men put burdens on themselves that women just don’t. For most men (operative word here is most, not all), being a provider, protector, hunter and harbor are of the utmost importance. However, a slight misstep or colossal failure to do any or all of the above does not usually result in a ballooning emotional turmoil of a mess.

I, on the other hand (and ok, lots and lots of women I know), find myself at the very end of my own rapidly fraying rope – on a daily basis. Trudging through the minutiae of my everyday life provides me with lists and lists of things to do, piles of chores, dozens of errands, sporting activities for the kids, friends for them, friends for him, volunteering for me and goals goals goals.

In the midst of it all, my need to nurture, soothe, cleanse and sanctify reigns supreme. My want to take care of people (self included) is priority one – and yet that very goal – that one very important thing I strive for every single day – may one day kill me.  As in the case of my girlfriend, I may one day say something in an effort to “help” someone and end up with an exploded heart because of a misstep in speech and unwelcome guidance. Someone may one day say something so hurtful to me, I might actually become critically ill from it. At least this is what almost happened to her.

So do we as women – love too much? Too hard? Too recklessly? Does putting our spirit into everything we do, and everyone we cherish, actually, in the end, harm us?

368,000,000 hits on Google later, all fingers point to YES. Every psychotherapist on earth has an opinion on the topic and self-help books abound, outlining everything from where to go to get your inner-sanctum on, how to have a “wrinkle-free” Wednesday and when to drown your love in chocolate. Amazing. And it’s all aimed at women. The long-suffering love mongers we are.

There are a variety of causes for BHS, like the death of a loved one, a bad break-up and even fear of public speaking. (Note: Staring down the barrel of a loaded .44 is surprisingly not on the list). A surge in adrenaline mixed with the trouble-making estrogen hormone, add some epinephrine and you have yourself a nasty cocktail of cardiac poison that can not only shatter your dreams but may also lead to congestive heart failure.

The good news is, once a person suffers from BHS it usually doesn’t happen again. It’s as if we only have one good heart break in us. And the symptoms can be completely reversed…never to surface again. So you can patch up your achy breaky heart and actually move on.

While BHS is not preventable there are some things you can do to avoid it all together. According to Dr. Ian Smith in his book “Happy” – yoga is a great way to calm your core. Any kind of exercise at all rates as beneficial. The release of endorphins can bring on a whole bunch of happy and that alone can help keep your heart strong enough to leap over life’s hurdles. Surrounding yourself with positivity as opposed to people and things that drain you, is another very good idea.

Taking things to heart…not so much.

For me, I plan to continue “living out loud” in the words of the insightful Holly Hunter. Loving much, laughing often and hopefully living longer. It’s risky business, but I’m all in, heart wide open.

HOLIDAY CHEER OR HOLIDAY FEAR?

By:  Christine Velez-Botthof


In my house, the month of October marks the kickoff of sugar season.  Halloween, the first of several holidays directly tied to chocolate, sneaks up on me, grabs me by the hand and takes me on a downward slope straight towards my annual race for the reeses.  Once the first bag of candy is opened, it’s all rugged terrain from there.  There is no stopping me once the whistle is blown and the sugar marathon has begun.  One piece is simply not enough – I don’t know anyone who wouldn’t agree.

The rest of the winter holidays maintain a close second to Halloween, with all the sugary treats they bring.

Coincidentally – this is also the same time I have found myself making my annual run to the local doc-in-the-box.  I start getting sick – not just tummy sick – but really ill – right around this time – every year – like clockwork.  I have always thought I was just getting sick because of the change of season, or blaming it on the heat being turned on or the kids bringing gunk home from school.  However, some new research may now provide answers to my ill-fated questions.

According to M.D. Cardiologist, Royce K. Bailey, there is a direct link between too much sugar and your immune system’s ability to stave off things like the common cold, pneumonia and bacterial infections.

So what’s the real danger of sugar anyway?  In short –A LOT.

“Around the holidays people tend to eat more sugary foods and refined carbs, thus having a direct and negative effect on their immune system”, says Bailey.  An increase in sugar is proven to boost the neurotransmitter serotonin –the feel good chemical – in our brains, making us feel happy.  But the joy is short-lived and comes with a very high price tag.  Short-term hyperglycemia (high blood sugar) negatively affects all major components of your immunity and lowers your body’s ability to fight off infections like staph and even bacterial pneumonia.  Basically sugar blinds your immune system.

And it gets worse.  Even cancer has a sweet tooth.  One researcher providing this proof is Graig Thompson, President of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York.  Thompson explains that the fuel for cancer is blood sugar.  “Insulin supplies cancer cells with the nutrients (sugar) and signals to grow and multiply.  Some cancers develop mutations that increase the influence of insulin on the cell while other cells simply take advantage of the elevated levels of insulin present in the body.”   Thompson believes that cell mutations occur when insulin drives cells to take up and metabolize sugar.  These mutations turn precancerous cells into malignant tumors.

So here’s the crux of the matter:  Sugar feeds cancer.  It may not cause cancer, but research shows sugar overload can negatively affect your insulin levels which can wreak havoc on otherwise healthy cells, causing them to become big lumpy globs of nothing yummy.

Too much sugar also turns into a syrupy compound that coats organs and blood vessels and creates glass- like shards in our system – preventing us from fighting disease full on.  Not a pretty picture.  And to top it all off in a ice-cream sundae like manner – let’s not forget that sugar may cause heart disease, obesity, diabetes, stroke, the list goes on and on.

To sugar or not to sugar – that is the question.  If you’ve been paying attention here, I’d venture to guess you might say NOT.  So the only natural alternative would be to switch to exactly that – a sugar alternative.  Think again.

Despite being approved by the FDA – sweeteners like saccharin, aspartame and sucralose have more in common with pesticides than they do with food.  According to Dr. Marcell Pick OB/GYN NP; “the bonds holding the carbon and chlorine atoms together are more characteristic of a chlorocarbon than a salt and most pesticides are chlorocarbons.”

The manufacturers of Splenda conducted their own study that showed very high doses of sucralose caused shrunken thymus glands, enlarged livers and kidney disorders in rodents.  Granted you’d need to fill an 18 foot U-Haul with the stuff, and then ingest it – but still.  If you’re taking in various forms of artificial sweeteners several times a day, every day for years and years, well, you do the math.  A more recent study showed that sucralose significantly decreases beneficial gut flora.  I personally would chose to stay away from any food product that had a toxicity information center devoted entirely to it and its side effects.

The Sucralose Toxicity Information Center logs side effects as, but not limited to; skin rashes/flushing, panic-like agitation, dizziness, numbness, diarrhea, swelling, muscle aches, headaches, intestinal cramping, bladder issues and stomach pain.

Oye veh.   Don’t get me started on our old friends aspartame and saccharin.  You see where I’m headed with this, right?  Too much natural sugar = bad.  Too much artificial sugar = bad.  What’s a sugaholic to do?

Well like The Little Engine That Could – Stevia is slowly but surely gaining steam as the next biggest, bravest, greenest sugar substitute on the planet.  It’s been used in South America for over 400 years without ill effect.  Stevia has also been favored in Japan for more than 20 years as the alternative sweetener of choice.

Stevia Rebaudiana is an herb in the Chrysanthemum family which grows wild in exotic locales like Paraguay and Brazil.  The glycosides in its leaves account for its incredible sweetness.  And while Stevia has not been approved by the FDA (simply because they haven’t yet studied it), it has been thoroughly tested in dozens of countries around the world and found to be completely non-toxic and 100% natural.

It gets better.  There are no calories in Stevia.  It will not raise your blood sugar levels and is 10-15 times sweeter than actual sugar which means you use much less of it (think new boots with extra money saved).  You can use it in baking and cooking and it won’t increase your waistline, shrink your heart, clog your arteries or worse.  Studies by Purdue University’s Dental Science Research Group have concluded that Stevioside is fluoride compatible and “significantly” inhibits the development of plaque.  So this dream come true sweetener might actually help fight cavities.

Allow me to continue.  Raw herbal Stevia contains nearly one hundred identified phytonutrients and volatile oils.  When topically applied (in the liquid form) it can help soften skin, smooth out wrinkles, heal a cut and zap a zit.

So this wonder sweetener can help clean out my gut, whittle my waistline, prevent my gums from crudding over, smooth out my face AND sweeten my coffee?  Sold.

While research shows that intake of chocolate can produce the same warm, fuzzy feelings as falling in love – I don’t buy it.  My love of sugar just makes me feel dizzy – and not in a good way – bloated, irritable and ill.  With Stevia on board I can delight in the holiday season – minus the fear – and with all the trimmings.

*Mrs. Botthof is not a doctor.  All information in the above article has been highly researched after years of chronic illness brought on by what she now thinks may have been habitual sugar overload.

LASER HAIR REMOVAL

Some of us wax, thread or  shave .  What about laser treatments?  Listen to some of  the advantages and disadvantages of laser treatment and what you to look for when choosing a Doctor to preform the procedure?  Listen to Dr. Corey Hartman give us the facts.

To hear this interview, click here: Dr. Corey Hartman

THE SPF DEBATE


SPF 100! Wow, now that should give me some coverage. Nope, not necessarily. Sun Protection Factor labeling is confusing and misleading. Board Certified Dermatologist Dr. Cory Hartman brings clarity and tells us what sunscreen work best for the allergy prone skin.

To hear the interview please click here: Dr. Corey Hartman

 

EXCESSIVE SWEATING

We all sweat to some degree.  What about those people that have excessive sweating?  Feet, face, underarms… Is this a sign of something else?  What can we do about it?  Dr. Corey Hartman, a Board Certified Dermatologist has the answers to these and more questions.

To hear the interview, click here: Dr. Corey Hartman

NO MORE CARDIO

We spend hours in the gym on the elliptical, the treadmill or the bike doing cardio and burning calories. Prescription 2 Fitness owner, Steven Bottoms say put the brakes on. No MORE CARDIO! Is he serious. Conventional wisdom says we have to burn calories to lose weight but Steve has a different opinion. He says you can get in the best shape of your life without the pain of cardio fitness. Hard to believe, but listen and see if you agree.

To hear the interview, click here: Steve Bottoms

HAIR LOSS IN WOMEN


The common problem that we never discuss…Hair loss in women.  Dr. Corey Hartman, a Board Certified Dermatologist discusses the 4 main causes:

1. Androgenic Alopecia

2. Central Centrifugal

3. Telogen Effluvium

4. Alopecia Areata

Not all hair is falling out from the scalp.   He offers some terrific suggestions as to what to do.  For hair damage due to chemicals and coloring he suggests an over the counter shampoo, Biosilk Hair Serum.   You also might want to look into vitamins such as Biotan.
To hear the interview on Hair loss in women, click here:  Dr. Hartman

HUFFING CAN BE DEADLY, IS YOUR CHILD DOING IT?

Why is a teen texting me in the middle of the school day?

I get a text in the middle of the school day from my 15 year old daughter’s friend, which immediately gets my attention and raises some level of concern: She simply states “a boy in her class is sniffing white out”. Yes reader, you read correctly, sniffing white out and in class to boot. This alarmed her enough to reach out to me. She texted me that she was angry at the boy for doing it. Next text was that she was worried he was going to hurt himself, she knew that it was attention seeking behavior – which could have a tragic consequence, and she was amazed how teachers are so unaware of what is going on right under their noses. I asked her if she would speak to him directly and she said no.

The ultimate issue once again always comes down to reporting. She does not want to be considered a snitch. The main reason why kids don’t seek our help when it comes to issues of safety, bullying, drug use, abuse, drunk driving, etc. But she also understands that if this kid was “stupid” enough (her words) to be doing this in front of everyone in class than what is he doing behind closed doors?

To report or not to report, that is the question

This brought up many issues for both of us. Now that she has let me know – reported (this is not tattling), I am literally left holding the bag. Do I contact the parent? Does this girl assertively confront the boy? Do we inform the school? I spoke with her and her mom and explained that if it was her having done the sniffing and someone else’s parent became aware than her mom would want them to tell her. They could possibly be saving her life. She suggested I write a blog about teens, communication and sniffing/huffing.

Do you know anyone who has dealt with huffing and their children?

Thoughts race back to my friend Sandy. Her beautiful high school daughter died in the “safety” of her bedroom after huffing computer cleaner. Sandy was distraught and in despair. She had no idea about her daughter’s use nor was familiar with this type of “high” that so many teenagers today are dying of.

We don’t read about it in the paper, and many parents are fearful that if we tell them about the concept of huffing and the dangers we might be giving kids suggestions and “putting the idea in their heads.” But think of it along the lines of smoking prevention. Kids today are inundated with antismoking campaigns and antidrug campaigns as young as Kindergarten. It is not unusual for sniffing abuse to start as early as 10 or even as young as 7 years of age. Once again it falls to parents to be educated, informed and then to have the many conversations we need to have with our children. There is no 100% guarantee that we can protect our children from these dangers, the choices are theirs. But we as parents need to be confident that we are doing whatever is in our power to raise thinking, aware, confident kids who understand the consequences of the choices they make, positive and negative, every day.

Information ALL parents NEED to KNOW

So parents – here is some basic info about huffing and sniffing from an article from the Sacramento County Sheriff: “Inhalant abuse can kill. And if it doesn’t kill you, it can leave you with severe brain damage or severe respiratory problems. There’s no fooling around — even a first-time user can end up dead after “sniffing” or “huffing” inhalants.

Everyday products like glue, paint, lighter fluid, fingernail polish, permanent markers, Whiteout®, deodorants, and anything in an aerosol can are sniffed to get a rapid and dangerous high. While this type of substance abuse may seem harmless because the products are not legally classified as drugs, they are deadly chemicals and poisons. An inhalant “high” may give the feeling of well-being and reduce inhibitions, much like the effects of alcohol and other sedatives. Higher doses produce laughter and giddiness, feelings of floating, time and space distortions, and hallucinations. But the reality is inhalant abuse has serious short- and long-term side effects.

What Are Some Signs of Inhalant Abuse?

Inhalant abusers may show all or some of these symptoms:

- unusual breath odor or chemical odor on clothing
- slurred or slowed speech
- a general drunken appearance
- paint or other products on the face or fingers
- red or runny eyes or nose
- spots or sores around the mouth
- nausea and/or loss of appetite.”

So have I solved my dilemma about reaching out to the parent’s of the kid sniffing white out?

Writing this blog has been a helpful process. Perhaps this way we can raise many parents’ awareness. What would you do as a parent of a teen? Parents, KidSafe is all about communication – so don’t be afraid to open the conversation – we can promise you that your children know about this issue – do your research and give them the facts. Scare them if you have to. This is a real danger, common items in everyone’s home. I am going to sit my daughter, her friends and my 11 year old son down and educate them even more fully about huffing and the dangers. I am also going to send this blog to the parents of this child and offer some resources to get help. Then the ball is in their court – and hopefully they will catch it.

For more info about huffing: http://www.sacsheriff.com/crime_prevention/documents/substance_abuse_08.cfm

Sally Berenzweig, MEd, MA and Cherie Benjoseph, LCSW
www.kidsafefoundation.org

I CHEATED ON MY TRAINER LAST WEEK

I cheated on my trainer last week! I know! Yikes! He would be so hurt if he knew that I was unfaithful. Don’t get me wrong…I love my trainer (in the trainer sort of way) but after 5 years with the same “guy” I cheated!

I don’t even know if I really cheated. I actually just tried a new workout however I am  still going to my regular trainer too! I think I feel so guilty because I LOVED this new workout. I may be the last person in the free world to try it, but I went to Pure Barre last week and I felt like a million bucks after 55 minutes of hell.

Pure Barre has elements of ballet and pilates with controlled movements that engage your core for most of the workout. It was founded by workout guru, dancer and choreographer Carrie Rezabeck from Birmingham, Michigan. She now has studios all over the country.  Her technique is described as intelligent exercise that protects your joints and tones without jarring or jerking movements. Each section of the workout is followed by stretching to create longer, leaner muscles.  On their website it is described as a mental workout too. Now, I was a bit skeptical about this at first but the fact is, you do have to concentrate during the workout to find your muscles you are supposed to be isolating. It was a solid workout! My face was flush and I had worked up a good sweat. It’s a bit pricey but you can take advantage of specials each season. The music is great but there is not cardio. I didn’t feel like I got my heart rate up to burn calories but I think based on my appetite the rest of the day after the workout I was burning something because I was starving the rest of the day.

I did go back to my trainer the day after Pure Barre but I was so sore I could barely move. Of course, I couldn’t tell him WHY I was so sore so I muddled through his workout and went back to Pure Barre after his workout to get the soreness out! Good Grief. There aren’t enough hours in the days for all this. I think I am going to have to confess…

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