For many people, winter seems to bring a certain degree of weight gain. The introduction of cold weather comfort foods, sugar laden warm drinks, holiday party overload combined with the tendency for decreased physical activity can lead to the packing on of a few extra pounds. However, it's not necessary to succumb to these "natural" tendencies. My preference is to retrain my mindset: Instead of focusing on the possible causes of unhealthy weight gain during the winter months, use the off-season and crummy weather as an excuse to hit up the gym more and put on some muscle mass!
With the plethora of diets and weight loss schemes available on the market and internet these days, it's a no brainer as to why we're all confused about how to take care of ourselves! But, taking steps towards a healthier lifestyle doesn't have to be overly complicated.
As a dietetic intern, I had the unique opportunity of promoting a wellness program called 9-5-2-1-0 © in Winchester, VA. The purpose of the initiative was to prevent and tackle the issue of childhood obesity. 8-5-2-1-0 © is the adult version of this same initiative and the numbers represent some simple health concepts to improve your overall well-being:
8 - Aim to get 8 hours of sleep per night
5 - Eat five servings of fruits and vegetables per day
2 - Limit screen time to 2 hours per day (TV, computer, etc)
1 - Aim to get 1 hour of physical activity per day
0 - Eliminate intake of sugar-sweetened beverages
These number are a great reminder that health and nutrition don't have to be as complicated as we sometimes make it out to be! Keeping these simple principles in mind each day can help you to move in the direction of living a healthier lifestyle, improving your overall well-being and quality of life and preventing long-term disease risk.
For more information on the 8-5-2-1-0 © program for adults (or 9-5-2-1-0 © for youth), check out the Northern Virginia Healthy Kids Coalition at: http://tippingthescales.net
Kristen Chang is Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN), Certified Specialist in Sports Dietetics (CSSD) and triathlete residing in southwest Virginia with her husband and dogs. Follow along as she shares favorite fueling recipes, general wellness and sport nutrition tips and stories from her athletic endeavors.
Another year has flown by, which means it's time to sit back and reflect on the past season. It has been a season of challenge in many regards, and most definitely not the season I had hoped or planned for. Thinking back to my coaching meeting in January, coach Jim and I had discussed taking things to the next level and I set some pretty high goals for myself. That remained the plan through June, until I through a complete 180 by dropping Chattanooga and deciding to focus on my health. I can vividly remember that day, sitting next to the pool after a short workout when coach asked if Chattanooga was still in the cards. I don't remember whether or not I actually responded, but I do remember the emptiness and defeat I felt in that moment knowing in my heart that the answer was no. I consider myself a "fighter"... being Italian makes me stubborn to the core and I am very loyal to the commitments that I make. However, in that moment God was calling me to let go of my own personal plans and trust in Him instead. As humbling and difficult as it was to walk away from Ironman training this past season, I'm incredibly glad that I did.Hearty Miso Soup
My Motto for 2018
2017 End of Season Wrap Up
Training Updates: 3rd Quarter 2017
Asian-Inspired Fish & Veggie Platter (The Recipe Redux)
Peace is always beautiful
Tart Cherry & Orange Sports Drink
Crew Report: Tahoe Rim 100
Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Ice Cream
Stress Buster Trail Mix
Proud Athlete Of
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