Physical Funness for the Motion Starved

Fit more fun into your fitness while exploring the outdoors.


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5…4…3…2…1… and we have liftoff!

Climbing to the moon

Climb to the Moon has launched! We are up and climbing. It’s all up to you now. We can’t get to the moon in a year without you, so get up and start moving!

Remember, you can walk, you can run or you can climb stairs. Whatever you choose, be sure to count your steps and tweet us your progress. Thanks to our master programmer Skinny Scott, moonclimb.com will grab our tweets, count the steps and mark our cumulative progress on site. Don’t fret; Skinny has taken into account retweets and potential cheaters so it’s all covered. We even have the ability to figure out which one of us has climbed the most steps so maybe one day we can award prizes, or give a special mention to the most dedicated climbers. The Moon is our oyster!

If this is Greek to you, here’s the short back-story.  Please read it!

If you’re gonna join us on our adventure to the moon, please remember you need to tweet us your steps, you can say anything you like but you must include the number of steps you took. Use the word steps and mention moon climb, moonclimb, #moonclimb or @moonclimb. You can use hash tags and we’d love it if you sent us photos to share with the other climbers. We have folks climbing all over the world and it would be super cool to see photos from other places!

Also, if you count miles, you’ll need to convert them to steps. There are 2000 steps to a mile and about 15 steps to a flight of stairs.

Stay hydrated and hang on tight! We’re on our way…

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Does your core measure up? Time to test, or retest!

Flying Baby Pose

This is Lucia. Lucia’s not at the point yet where she’s worried about growing a Muffin Top, but very soon she’ll be taking her first steps and given that she’s already working on a strong core, I see great athletic promise in her future.

In case you’ve forgotten, “core strength” refers to the muscles of your abs and back and their ability to support your spine, keep your body stable and balanced. A strong core basically supports every physical movement you make. It’s the body’s center of power, the stronger you’re core, the easier your life will be. This means, riding your bike, running, picking up your kid, a watermelon, surviving that killer boot camp class or simply getting out of bed.

Wondering how your core measures up? I was, so I found a test for us to take. The senior athletics coach with the United Kingdom’s National Governing body for Track and Field developed it. It’s a good one! Give it a try it only takes 3 minutes. If you fail, there’ll be a link at the bottom of this post where you can find core strengthening exercises.

The Core Muscle Strength & Stability Test
The objective of this evaluation is to monitor the development and improvements of core strength.

To prepare for the assessment you will need:
Flat surface
Mat
Watch or clock with second counter

Conducting the Test
Position the watch or clock where you can easily see it

Start in the Plank Position (elbows on the ground)
Hold for 60 seconds

Lift your right arm off the ground
Hold for 15 seconds

Return your right arm to the ground and lift the left arm off the ground
Hold for 15 seconds

Return your left arm to the ground and lift the right leg off the ground
Hold for 15 seconds

Return your right leg to the ground and lift the left leg off the ground
Hold for 15 seconds

Lift your left leg and right arm off the ground
Hold for 15 seconds

Return you left leg and right arm to the ground

Lift your right leg and left arm off the ground
Hold for 15 seconds

Return to the Plank Position (elbows on the ground)
Hold this position for 30 seconds

Results
Good Core Strength – If you can complete the test fully, you have good core strength.

Poor Core Strength – If you cannot complete the test fully, your core strength needs improvement. If you are unable to complete the test practice the routine three or four times each week until you improve. By comparing your results over time, you will note improvements or declines in core strength.

I hope you’ll try the test. It certainly couldn’t hurt to know where you stand. If you want to work on your core check out this site for a really comprehensive list of core exercises you can do anywhere.

Go get ‘em…


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12 days of December (The Season of Eating – Navigation Tip #3)

Eight Santa's Running

I wrote you a little song. It’s also a workout. For 12 days you’ll add one new task to your fitness routine until you have 12 tasks. It’ll be fun. Give it your best effort and sing along if you dare!

On the first day of December my trainer said to me… drop & give me 20 burpees…

On the second day of December my trainer said to me… eat protein for breakfast, and drop & give me 20 burpees…

On the third day of December my trainer said to me… 30 minutes of cardio, eat protein for breakfast, and drop & give me 20 burpees…

On the fourth day of December my trainer said to me… run up 4 hills, 30 minutes of cardio, eat protein for breakfast, and drop & give me 20 burpees…

On the fifth day of December my trainer said to me… eat 5 colors fruits & veggies, run up 4 hills, 30 minutes of cardio, eat protein for breakfast, and drop & give me 20 burpees…

On the sixth day of December my trainer said to me… 60 bicycle crunches, eat 5 colors fruits & veggies, run up 4 hills, 30 minutes of cardio, eat protein for breakfast, and drop & give me 20 burpees…

On the seventh day of December my trainer said to me… climb seven flights of stairs, 60 bicycle crunches, eat 5 colors fruits & veggies, run up 4 hills, 30 minutes of cardio, eat protein for breakfast, and drop & give me 20 burpees…

On the eighth day of December my trainer said to me… drink 8 glasses of water, climb seven flights of stairs, 60 bicycle crunches, eat 5 colors fruits & veggies, run up 4 hills, 30 minutes of cardio, eat protein for breakfast, and drop & give me 20 burpees…

On the ninth day of December my trainer said to me… 90 walking lunges, drink 8 glasses of water, climb seven flights of stairs, 60 bicycle crunches, eat 5 colors fruits & veggies, run up 4 hills, 30 minutes of cardio, eat protein for breakfast, and drop & give me 20 burpees…

On the 10th day of December my trainer said to me… 100 bench dips, 90 walking lunges, drink 8 glasses of water, climb seven flights of stairs, 60 bicycle crunches, eat 5 colors fruits & veggies, run up 4 hills, 30 minutes of cardio, eat protein for breakfast, and drop & give me 20 burpees…

On the 11th day of December my trainer said to me… 11 minutes of stretching, 100 bench dips, 90 walking lunges, drink 8 glasses of water, climb seven flights of stairs, 60 bicycle crunches, eat 5 colors fruits & veggies, run up 4 hills, 30 minutes of cardio, eat protein for breakfast, and drop & give me 20 burpees…

On the 12th day of December my trainer said to me… use your foam roller, 11 minutes of stretching, 100 bench dips, 90 walking lunges, drink 8 glasses of water, seven flights of stairs, 60 bicycle crunches, eat 5 colors fruits & veggies, run up 4 hills, 30 minutes of cardio, eat protein for breakfast, and drop & give me 20 burpees…


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The Season of Eating is now in session (Navigation Tip #1)

Sweating it out

How did you folks manage over Thanksgiving? I must admit, I ate more than I should have, but I wasn’t totally out of control. I did however let my exercise regiment go to complete shit.

As I was driving home from my holiday away I spent half of the 3.5 hour drive stressing about how much of a slug I had become over the past 4 days. Then my brain kicked in and reminded me that it’s okay to slack off once in a while. Give your body and brain a break. You’ve got to think of this, “slacker time” is recovery time. Like when you train for an event. You can’t work hard or be perfect all the time. The key however is not to beat yourself up and to get back on the program post-haste. You all know that. Right?

As I drove I realized that the first thing I needed to do was to get rid of the excess water that had hitched a ride in my body from all the extra carbs I’d mowed down. Remember, carbohydrates in the body hold water. When you cut them out of your diet, your body will naturally lose water, which is why those low carb diets are so popular. On the other side of the coin, when you drastically increase your carb intake with stuffing, two kinds of taters, rolls, pie, etc, you puff up like a balloon and feel like a stiff cow. You know the feeling?

So, I’ve come up with Step One, of The Season of Eating Navagation Plan – De Puffing, aka, ridding the body of extra water and toxins brought on by a few days of cheer. (Take notes, you may need this again in a few weeks!)

  • Drink lots of water — I know it sounds wrong but water flushes the body of all the excess water and toxins. If you don’t eat a bunch more carbs, the fresh water will flush everything out.
  • Get your sweat on — This week, start ramping up your activity level. I’m not suggesting you attempt a half marathon. I am asking you to SWEAT! Do it any way you can. Taking a steam at the spa will even help. As much as I hate it, I went to a Bikram yoga class last night and I’ve committed to another 4 classes this week (Gawd, help me!) Go for a walk, but walk up hill! SWEAT your booty off (literally)!
  • Stretch — When you stretch you stretch your insides. This allows all the stuff in your intestines to get out. Think about it. All those nooks and crannies need a little help sometimes. Best thing is get yourself to a yoga class at least once a week but three times would be impressive and cleansing!
  • Clean up your diet — You know the drill. If you want to clear your system of toxins, water and nasty stuff you need to eat clean. That means lots of fresh, organic fruits, veggies and non-processed foods. Do the best you can; I know it’s hard! An easy way to eat clean is to “juice.” While I am not into juicing, it does help to clean you out and feel spry again. I’ll share some info on juicing with you Wednesday. I need to give it a try myself before I pass on. It could be crap.

There you go. An easy, effective start. Now all you have to do it is drink up and sweat it all out.

Stay tuned for a full month of tips on how to safely navigate The Season of Eating…


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The Season of Eating 101

Too much turkey

It’s started. I call it The Season of Eating. There’s really no way to get around it, one way or another your healthy living tendencies will go to shit during this period. Some of us will manage better than others, but basically we’ll all suffer a shift in our waistlines and our exercise regiment.

First and foremost, do not to panic! Worrying will only stress you out causing you to eat or drink more, elevating the situation.

I’m not going to lie; I cave during The Season of Eating. I definitely dive head first into most opportunities to suck down yummy food and drink. Miraculously, I usually manage to keep the same jean size but it’s not a pretty picture nor is it easy.

Anyway, here are just a few little things that I personally keep in mind during these challenging times. They work for me and they’re pretty painless.

  • Baked goods – Eat only homemade stuff or things that you can be darn sure will be worth the calories. When confronted with a cookie tray from Cost-Co, skip it and wait until someone passes the truffles or homemade snacks.
  • The same goes for the cheese platter. If you can’t skip it all together then pass up the blocks of Safeway cheese and wait for the artisan cheese platter to surface. It might not appear for a day or two but it will at some point!
  • Sign yourself up for a workout class or organized event. Perhaps a New Years Eve or NY Day run, cycle or walk. There are tons to choose from. It’ll force you to stay on top of your workouts. I’ve signed myself for a New Years Eve half marathon that I’m not fit for at the current moment, so like it or not I’ll have to dig deep and train, impending cookie gut and all!
  • Keep moving. I like to keep moving. It tuckers me out sometimes but it helps keep the furnace burning.  Examples: Walk and take the stairs everywhere possible. Get up in the morning, have your coffee and go for a walk/run/ride or what ever you can manage for as long as you can manage it. 10 minutes is better than nothing! Mid day, walk/take a yoga class, just move for at least 10 minutes. Same goes for the evening, don’t just go home and sit on the sofa ever. Even if you can’t do this every day do what you can when you can. Make the effort it does help!

Here are some numbers that might motivate you. 10 minutes of: (The math will obviously vary depending on your body weight, composition and the pace at which you perform the task)

  • Walking at brisk pace will burn 54 calories
  • Heavy cleaning will burn 54 calories
  • Step-ups (using stairs) burns 175 calories
  • Raking leaves burns 40 calories

And, try these lean muscle builders. Remember, the more muscle you have the more calories you’ll burn just sitting at the table next to the cheese platter.

  •  Squats—Do ‘em while you brush your teeth
  • Walking Lunges — As you move about your home
  • Push-Ups — Do 10 every time you find yourself at the kitchen sink. (Against the wall or on the floor)
  • Curls — With a can of soup or bottle of detergent
  • Plank Position — While reheating food. Hold for 30 seconds and work up to 3 minutes.
  • Crunches — There are a thousand versions. Pick the ones you like and do ‘em while you watch the weather.

So there you go, these are things that help me. If you want to be, or if you can be super good, then skip all the holiday treats, simply walk past the cookie platter and when cooking, find ways to make healthier versions of the dishes you serve. Unfortunately total abstinence won’t work for me so I’ve found these other things that help me. As for you, it’s up to you to find ways to enjoy the season and manage your waistline at the same time, I can only offer suggestions.

The bottom line, enjoy this time, no matter what.

Happy Thanksgiving to you all! I’ll be on back Monday 11/28 with something very gripping to say…

P.s. Click here if you want to know how far you’ll have to run/etc to burn off the bits of your T-giving dinner. I say, just keep moving and stop counting!


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Somebody toss some cold water on me!


In my next life I’d like to come back with the ability to do this. Did you watch the video? You should. It’s inspiring and it’s freaking hot! Kinda like exercise porn in my mind. Maybe it’s the double Scorpio in me but regardless; it’s a fine way to spend 1:14. Watch the video and then think about what it would mean to be as focused and fit as this dude.


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Easy burning!

The cold & laughter, a good combo

Yes, apparently fidgeting can help you burn up to 350 calories a day. This, according to research done by the Mayo Clinic. Think about it, have you ever seen a fat hyper person? I can’t say that I have but maybe they exist.

Since I find fidgeting annoying I’ve found a few other ways to burn extra calories you may not have considered.

Laughing – 15 minutes of laughter can burn up to 40 calories. If you laugh for 15 minutes a day you could lose 4 pounds in a year. How easy is that?

Stand Up – Standing up burns 50% more calories than sitting down. So, by standing while talking on the phone, working at your computer or reading the paper, a 155-pound person can burn as many as 50 more calories per hour. Pace while you talk and you can burn another 35 to 40 calories per hour.

The cold is your friend – You burn more calories when it’s cold. Not only does your body have to work harder to warm itself, in cold weather we tend to wear heavy clothing. The more weight you carry around the harder you body has to work, hence the additional calorie expenditure. So bundle up and go for a walk, run, ride, in the cold air. Research claims you’ll burn up to 7% more calories.

So, by my calculations if I were to go for an hour walk in the cold with a funny friend I could burn an additional 173 calories. Hummmm…