IllinoisTimes - Get FIT Sat, 04 Jul 15 00:00:00 -0500 en hourly 1 Out of the belly of a whale Out of the belly of a whale
Trapped in a body? Here’s an easy and effective diet you might try - the Flat Belly Diet from the folks at Prevention Magazine. Basically this plan guides you through five days of cleansing (cleansing, meaning eliminating soda and fast food burgers and all the processed, empty calorie, bad-for-us-anyway foods). A specially-prepared water accompanies regular foods, many that are probably sit...]]>
Fighting the Fat Fighting the Fat
The name of this blog might be “Get FIT,” but that seems to be getting harder for more and more Americans. I know awareness on the issue of the obesity epidemic in the U.S. is improving, but are our habits really becoming healthier? A lot of times I think living a healthy lifestyle can be perceived as stiff or rigid. Stick to a diet. Exercise every day. Follow a steady sleeping schedu...]]>
Marathon time Marathon time
Once again, I must apologize for being so lackadaisical about posting here. I’m happy to report, however, that I haven’t stopped blogging because I’ve fallen off the wagon. In fact, it’s quite the opposite. I’ve been training intensely for my first marathon, and the big day is this Sunday! I’ve put in my double-digit miles on Saturdays, including a 20-mile run ...]]>
I had an ice run today... I had an ice run today...
5 tips for holiday health 5 tips for holiday health
Wow, it’s been months since I’ve updated this blog. To both people who read this, I’m sorry. (That’s the standard apology when a blogger comes back from a period of laziness: first comment on how long it’s been, then jokingly understate the number of people who read said blog. In reality, we actually have four readers. Hi, Mom and Dad!) If I were a bear – a...]]>
Hunger Challenge Days 4 & 5: Pols and parties Hunger Challenge Days 4 & 5: Pols and parties
I'm not hungry today. The challenge has been pretty easy lately, which is completely the opposite of what I expected. I am definitely learning a lot about the cost of food, though. A lot of my favorite things, like hummus, cost a ton of money for ingredients that are relatively cheap, which signals to me that I should be making these things at home instead of buying them already packaged. Yester...]]>
Hunger Challenge - Day 3: Cupcake Conundrum Hunger Challenge - Day 3: Cupcake Conundrum
Tracy Smith with Feeding Illinois poses this question for the day: The cupcake truck is outside your building, calling your name, but at $3.25 that decadent temptation is out of the question. What will you be snacking on instead to refuel? No sweat. I would (hypothetically) go with an old favorite: a spoon full of peanut butter, which has lots of protein, unsaturated fat and a boatload o...]]>
Hunger Challenge - Days 1 and 2 Hunger Challenge - Days 1 and 2
Public food aid is always a controversial topic. Critics say it’s rife with fraud and abuse, while proponents say it doesn’t do enough to help people avoid food insecurity and get back on their feet. Regardless of how one feels about public food aid, it’s important that we as a society recognize the challenges presented by poverty and hunger. With that in mind, I’ve decided...]]>
Conquering the Century Conquering the Century
The 38th annual Capital City Century was this past Sunday, and although I didn’t bike it, I did sleep in. It’s a 100-mile bike trek outside Springfield, and a few of my friends and family rode the whole thing. Here’s a video of the race put together by a friend. It’s pretty amusing, and it features on of my favorite songs ever. Cake - The Distance...]]>
Running buddy fail Running buddy fail
I’ve had a couple of great running buddies over the years. Key qualities include justthe right level of cheerleading and knowledge of such things as stretches, tennisshoes and running paths. (I’m also glad when they’re talkers – ‘cause runninggets boring, and I’m usually too busy panting to bring much to the conversation.)But far more than anything, the top qual...]]>
Do it right in the dog days of summer Do it right in the dog days of summer
Watch this: I love that clip from Will Ferrell's film Anchorman, and it fits tangentially into today's post. Summer in the Midwest is a time of wretched, smothering humidity and baking heat, the combination of which usually makes you sweat without exerting any effort. If you dare to move around while outside in this sweltering stew, you take on some very real health risks. Thes...]]>
Inside a runner's mind Inside a runner's mind
Perhaps it was the heat. By 9:30 in the evening, one would normally expect the sweltering fever and thick humidity of the day to dissipate, but the sultry blanket of summer seemed to defiantly drape itself over the park even as the waning crescent of moon slowly climbed into the night sky. Full of root beer caffeine and a week’s rest, I bounded down the stairs of my apartment building, eager...]]>
Pumpers gotta pump Pumpers gotta pump
            Drugs. In the world of fitness – and by extension – sports, they have become an issue impossible to ignore. Even though most of us amateur runners, cyclists and other athletes will never deal with steroids personally, we are constantly barraged by allegations about or confessions by the names we admire: Lance Arm...]]>
I ate one Skittle today... I ate one Skittle today...
My sister Natalie is awesome. (Both of my sisters are awesome, of course, but only one of them is relevant to this post.) A dietician by trade and an avid fitness enthusiast, Natalie recently turned me on to an online tool that holds a lot of promise for my future fitness. For a very long time, I’ve been kicking myself for not doing a better job of tracking what I eat. I know that if I did t...]]>
I want to go to Miami, too! I want to go to Miami, too!
Let’s take a break from fitness for just a moment to discuss “The Decision.” I happened to catch hoops prodigy LeBron James’ announcement that he would play for the Miami Heat, and I just have to make a few things clear to the world of sports: 1) Professional athletes are a bunch of overpaid clowns. Basketball players throw an orange ball through a...]]>
A confession A confession
I have fallen off the wagon. I haven't run in several days, and the interval between my runs has grown lately. I know that exercise gives me energy and confidence while speeding up my metabolism, so why have I let myself get so far off track? I confess to having been lazy, distracted and unmotivated. Today, that ends. Below are a few of the things I'm doing to stay motivated and get back...]]>
Eating for Exercise Eating for Exercise
Hey, long time - no see! Where have you been? I was worried sick about you! You really ought to come visit me more often. (Yeah, I haven't posted on this blog in awhile. I'll change, I promise!)Now that you're back safe and sound, let's talk about diet. When you're exercising a lot, it's hard to balance your need for energy with the all-too-easy tendency to undo your workout by eating the wrong fo...]]>
Run it before they Ruin it Run it before they Ruin it
Any avid runner knows the joys of a road without cars. Though you only need about four feet of personal space, it’s a wonderful feeling to have an open road before you and no metal beasts whizzing by with seemingly total disregard for your safety. It’s the difference between feeling like you have the whole world to yourself and feeling like you’re being stalked by a thous...]]>
Just out of reach... Just out of reach...
I woke up Saturday morning at 5:45 – fifteen minutes before my alarm clock was set to being its annoying beep regimen. Here’s how it usually goes: The sound starts slowly. “Beep…Beep…Beep…Beep.” After about 8 beeps, it suddenly doubles in speed. “Beep, Beep, Beep, Beep” If I’m not up within a few seconds, it goes into t...]]>
Oh, for cryin' in the rain. Oh, for cryin' in the rain.
Some of you might remember that cartoon "Bobby's World" from way back in the '90s. Bobby's mom sounded like she was from Minnesota, perhaps because it was created by that crazy Canuck, Howie Mandel. Anyway, the mom always had goofy sayings like the title of this blog post, which leads perfectly into the topic: running in the rain. It’s supposed to rain this we...]]>
Treading on the indoor blues Treading on the indoor blues
As a southern Indiana native, I can openly admit that I’m not a big fan of Springfield winters. Ice and snow covered my neighborhood’s streets and sidewalks for weeks in December and January, making driving difficult, dog-walking unsafe and running nearly impossible. (Note: I can lend credibility to this complaint. I attempted to take my foster pup Gunther for a quick jog in the...]]>
April showers bring hardcore racers April showers bring hardcore racers
April is fast approaching, and it’s going to be a busy month for a couple of us in the Illinois Times office. Amanda Robert and I are running three races in April, back-to-back-to-back, and we’re pretty excited. We’ve been training officially since January, though we started running in November or December as a sort of “pre-training.” Now that we’re only a month...]]>
Here's to stairs! Here's to stairs!
Now that my legs have returned from the jelly-like state induced by the American Lung Association’s Fight for Air Stair Climb on Feb. 20 at the Hilton Hotel in Springfield, I’ve had a chance to chat with a few other people involved in the event. Lori Younker, director of Program Services and Development at the American Lung Association in Illinois, sent over some photos from the...]]>
Onward and Upward Onward and Upward
As I rounded the corner to the stair well, the radio-controlled timer reacted to the tag on my shoe, reminding me with a loud “BEEEEEP” that there was no turning back. I was participating in the American Lung Association's Fight For Air stair climb at the Hilton Hotel in Springfield, and all I could think about was flight after flight of endless stairs, challenging me, taunti...]]>
Polyphemus Polyphemus
Staring upward from the feet of Polyphemus, I feel a twinge of vertigo overwhelm me. The arrogant, towering cyclops seems to lean over me, mocking me and threatening to crush me. He is unmoving, yet he seems ready to raise his club and end me. %uFFFDA blink and a deep breath reveal Polyphemus to be the soaring Hilton Hotel - not the hungry spawn of Greek deities, but still intimidating enough ...]]>
Get fit - without going to prison! Get fit - without going to prison!
Exercise is not everyone’s cup of tea. You get sweaty, you get tired and many of us feel we have to go to the gym to get a real workout. But there are plenty of exercises that don’t require a lot of time, space or equipment. Lately, I’ve been doing the Prison Workout (here), a regimen of strength-building moves, including Burpees (video), planks (video) and more. I...]]>
What are you eating? What are you eating?
Ever wonder about the nutritional value of papaya? Ever wonder whether iceberg lettuce is really as useless as it tastes? The same folks who brought you Condé Nast Traveler, GQ, Vogue, Vanity Fair, Wired, The New Yorker and many other edgy national publications have compiled data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture to show you the value of your food. is derive...]]>
Halfwits at it again Halfwits at it again
When I decided to get my health and fitness in order, I took up running because it was the easiest way to make a change - easier than improving my diet, that is. Since then, I've come a long way, and one group in Springfield has helped me achieve something I thought impossible. The Half Wits X2 running group is a diverse collection of local runners who get together every Saturday morning starti...]]>
Eating Right Eating Right
As I sit here munching on all the goodies bestowed upon the office this week from wonderful friends and clients, I can't help but wonder why in the world would I think that I can write anything useful about eating right? But then I remember that eating correctly is the usual thing I try to do. This season just throws me off course a bit. As years have marched on for me, I have had to consider the ...]]>
Health care reform for Christmas? Health care reform for Christmas?
This could be a critical week in the national health care debate as Democrats aim to deliver reform by Christmas. Senate Democrats in Washington, D.C. have mustered the required 60 votes to stop a Republican filibuster of a health care reform bill, clearing the first of the remaining parliamentary hurdles before the massive bill can be passed. The reform measure has been watered down to attract ce...]]>