Sometimes you can believe the hype

We’ve all been told that oatmeal and other fiber rich foods lower cholesterol, but do you know why?

It turns out that the bile in our stomachs is composed of 70% cholesterol. Since our bodies are very efficient machines we usually recycle that bile and use it again. However, when you eat oatmeal, the water soluble fiber attaches to the bile and it is excreted instead of recycled. To replace the bile that is lost your body has to pull cholesterol from your blood. And voila! Lower cholesterol.

I find that surprisingly cool.



What does a real woman look like?

Find out at My Body Gallery.

At this site you can search for images of real women using whatever stats you want. I looked up ladies like myself (5’2″) and my current weight, the weight I can comfortably maintain (if I lost a few pounds), and 10 pounds under that. Remarkably, the images weren’t all that different – reminding me once again that it isn’t the number on the scale that’s important. What counts is body composition and what you can do with what you’ve got.


Eat Something!

You might think that those super toned tiny little women at your gym are experts at eating as little as possible. You’d be wrong. Those women, and men, eat a lot and eat often.


Because they know that in order to keep their body at its most efficient they need fuel.

You’ve probably heard that the people who have been successful at weight lossĀ  eat 5-6 times per day and always eat breakfast. To some this seems counter intuitive. “How can I eat more AND lose weight?”

Think about your body as a house you have to heat and your metabolism is a wood stove. What’s more efficient? Putting in a log or two at a time throughout the day to maintain a constant temperature (calorie burn) or letting the fire burn out, then restarting it with a big pile of logs? You already know what you feel like when you let your own fire burn out. You get cranky and sluggish and want to take a nap. And forget about wanting to exercise.

An influx of calories (or a session of exercise) boosts your metabolism so you can keep burning fuel efficiently, i.e. burning more calories and fat stores throughout the day when you aren’t even doing anything. For this reason, snacking (healthfully) is your friend. It keeps you from overindulging at every meal because you are starving between them.

Do I have to channel an Italian grandmother? For goodness sake, eat something!


Soap Box: Push-Up Edition

I’d like to take a second to set the record straight.

There is no such thing as a “man” push-up. There are push-ups on your knees, on the wall, on a bench, and on a ball. There are push-ups with your feet elevated, one handed, with wide arms, with narrow arms, and blindfolded (just checking to see if you’re paying attention).

But there are no “man” push-ups.

Just wanted to clear that up.


An Update on the Accidental Trainer (That’s me)

I’ve been a horrible blogger. I’m not exactly sure where September went but it’s already gone and I’m going to just call it a loss – at least for posting purposes.

I’ve actually been incredibly busy. You may have heard about the flooding in Vermont caused by Hurricane Irene. I live on the border in Lebanon, NH and although I wasn’t personally affected, there were many, many victims of the storm. I’m on the board of North Country Community Theatre and our storage facilities were on the bank of the White River. They were completely covered with water and mud and I spent the first couple of weeks of September coordinating our flood clean-up efforts. There’s nothing quite like throwing away over 6 tons of vintage clothing and costumes, sets you’ve performed in, and props you’ve used. I was even interviewed for NPR.

On a happier note, the 4′ fiber glass pig, Rosie, I painted for Hanover, NH’s 250th Anniversary was auctioned off. The fitness club I work for was the winning bid so instead of going somewhere where I’ll never see her she now lives where I work! She has her own Facebook page if you’d like to check her out. Rosie has 19 siblings that you can learn more about here.

I’m looking forward to a calmer October. Although so far it involves me getting certified in Zumba, going to NYC to see Daniel Radcliffe on Broadway, helping out at RVC’s open house on October 15th, presenting Fitness 101 to our Lose Big Program, and co-producing a benefit concert for NCCT. Not seeing a lot of calm so far. Oh well, we’ll see how it goes.