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Get Great Exercise Running Stairs!

Rachel Fitness, Lifestyle Leave a comment   , , , , , , , ,

Portland OR is home to some great urban staircases…the best of which is located in Mt. Tabor Park.  This 280-stair monstrosity is like a playground for those of us who love to feel the burn, torch calories, release a tidal wave of endorphins, and generally have fun (athletic fun).  At any time of the day there are people slowly strolling up the stairs and avid fitness enthusiasts running up and down as fast as possible without tripping.  Either way, it is both FREE and REALLY GOOD FOR YOU.

Check out this article outlining all of the exercise (and more) opportunities in Mt. Tabor Park.  Then walk, run, skip, hop, jump or bike (or drive if you live across town but love this park despite the drive) there as soon as possible to begin spring training!

 

 

 

 

 

Runner up Portland staircases:

  • Large staircase off of 12th Ave in Downtown, by Portland State University and into Goose Hollow.
  • Staircase off of NW Cornell (a little hard to find, off of a neighborhood street) as you head up towards Pittock Mansion.

Small Businesses Check out Google!

Rachel Money, News, Wisdom Leave a comment   , ,

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Google is touring the country with a very cool ‘get your business online’ campaign.  They are offering free websites, as well as seminars and tools for promoting and leveraging the web as a business tool.  Having attended this workshop, it really is a good opportunity to learn new things and they are giving away $75 towards Adwords and Adwords Express!  Oh, and free pens, cookies, M&M’s and other great things 🙂

Some helpful links for other small businesses looking to grow their business online:

These are just a few of the places to begin, and apparently there is a giant bank of people out there waiting to help you set up your Google places, Adwords, etc. accounts.  It is always helpful, when trying to navigate the tricky world of online promotion, to get a little friendly assistance (read: be told exactly what to do and how).

Of course Google is doing this for a reason, i.e. driving advertising to its search engine and customers towards its tools; however, regardless of ulterior motives, as a small business owner it is very beneficial to have a whole day of FREE tools and information handed to you without obligation.  Plus, local agencies such as Mercycorps, the Portland Business Alliance, SCORE, and more were all on-hand to offer additional advice and potential avenues for resources.

Check out a local event near you; hopefully you can walk away with some new direction!


Pixie Project Auction!

Rachel Lifestyle, News, Wisdom Leave a comment   , , , , ,

How does an animal rescue relate to fitness and Pilates?  Well…dogs are amazing exercise partners!  Not to mention that animals make people happy and happy people are more active and generally involved in life including physical endeavors.  Thus, we here at Rachel Rettman – Fitness. Nutrition. Lifestyle. want to spread the word about the Pixie Project online auction for an authentic piece of furniture (Yin Yang table seen below) from the acclaimed movie Fight Club!  Check out the YouTube video with author (and donor) Chuck Palahniuk and Amy Sacks of Pixie Project here:

The Pixie Project is expanding in order to help 10 times as many dogs as before!  As a dog lover and avid Pixie volunteer this is personally very exciting; the idea of helping more animals is heartwarming and there will be so many more dogs to take on walks and help with leash manners!!  Yessss!!!
Please spread the word and tell people about the wonderful donation from famed author Chuck Palahniuk.  To bid on the table please click here:http://www.ebay.com/itm/290687911585

The Importance of Good Posture

Rachel Fitness, Lifestyle, Nutrition, Pilates, Wisdom Leave a comment   , , , , , , , ,

As fitness professionals it is often assumed that good posture represents itself in one way, namely correct skeletal alignment with respect to the plumb line, seen here:

While the plumb line is very important, the point that this article makes is that good posture involves the active use of ones postural muscles.  What does this mean?  Well, postural muscles support our daily movements (these are the core muscles utilized in PILATES class).  These muscles help us to sit up straight, or walk in a bio-mechanically sound way because they support our joints and therefore our skeletal system.  For example, when a person sits at a desk all day the lower abdominal muscles do not get to work, and muscles that do not get exercised stop properly functioning altogether.  Then it becomes the responsibility of other body parts to do a job they are not meant to do, which sets into motion a chain reaction of over-taxing certain parts of the body while under-utilizing other areas.

The point is, we need to exercise out muscles, especially postural core muscles, to keep them conditioned and on call to do their job!  Without them we end up with pain and, over time, potentially serious conditions.

If you live in New York you are in luck: Rachel Rettman will help you move your body in all planes of functional motion in order to preserve and build vital core musculature.  Other things, like food choices, daily habits, and more all go into this topic of posture.

Have you ever seen someone slumped over, stooping while either standing or sitting?  Do they look happy?  Usually not!  Our posture is also a reflection of how we feel about ourselves and the world around us, and proper (and improper) posture sends important messages to those with whom we come into contact.  When considering two equally qualified job applicants, you can bet the person with the great posture who stands tall and conveys confidence will have an edge over a counterpart who is slumped over and shrinking away from the world.

Lesson: remember to stand up, be proud, and most of all exercise those core postural muscles so that you can remain upright and pain free!  Head to our Individual tab to get going on some Pilates sessions!


Chocolate Strawberry Ice Cream Soup!

Rachel Nutrition Leave a comment   , , , , ,

Sometimes eating healthy can seem like a drag…especially when you are someone who houses a serious sweet tooth!  Do not give up hope – really healthy ingredients can be made to taste like chocolate strawberry ice cream!

Here is the simple recipe for a fabulous chocolate strawberry shake; or, eat it with a spoon like you would soup!

  • 1-1.5 cups frozen strawberries
  • tbsp cocoa powder
  • stevia sweetener to taste
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • a scoop or two favorite all-natural (no chemical fillers) protein powder.  This recipe used Pumpkin protein powder.
  • 1/2 cup chocolate unsweetened almond milk (or other milk of choice)
  • ice cubes (8-15 depending on desired consistency)

Just blend and there you go!  Sweet awesomeness in a glass or a bowl!  You can also experiment with flavors, i.e. blueberries or mixed berried, or flavored protein powder (keep it natural) and different milk or alternative milk flavors, flavorings, etc.

 


Foam Rollers

Rachel Fitness, Pilates, Wisdom Leave a comment   , , , , ,

Foam Rollers are amazing.  If you have never seen one, it is a cylindrical tube, about 3 or 3.5 feet long and about 7 inches in diameter and it is used to roll along the body to stretch and ease muscles pre- and post-workout.  Additionally, it is used as an exercise prop in order to increase the intensity of certain workouts.  For example, in Pilates one can lay on the foam roller so it is underneath the length of the spine, and it creates a balance challenge when moving ones arms and legs.  The core has to work overtime to keep the body still as it is now lying on a moving cylinder instead of on the floor!!

Here is a foam roller in action:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

By rolling it along the outside of the quads, one can loosed the hip flexors all the way down to the knee.  Oftentimes, knee pain can be attributed to tight hamstrings and quadriceps, and therefore rolling out those muscles for 5 minutes each evening helps to alleviate knee pain.  Try it for 3 weeks; if tight muscles and pains are not diminished, you can hold me to a free Pilates class (where we will deploy the foam roller)!!

Check out this link for some great foam roller stretches:

Fitsugar


Eat Right For Your Blood Type

Rachel Lifestyle, Nutrition, Wisdom Leave a comment   , , , , , , , , ,

Did you know that, according to Dr. Adamo, people require different diets (i.e. eating plans, not a lack of eating) according to their blood type?  Someone with Type A blood is optimally sustained by different foods than someone with Type O, Type AB, or Type B blood.  While fruits and vegetables are a mainstay for any and every human out there, there are even certain produce items that are recommended for or detrimental to various blood types.  It is interesting to learn about!

A few fun facts:

  • People with Type A blood are considered the first vegetarians, and are best served by a diet with no red meat, no dairy, little white meat, and a few servings a week of fish?  This blood type should primarily get protein from nuts, seeds, legumes, soy, eggs, and the occasional fish/chicken (they can also skip chicken and similar meats).
  • Type B individuals have a tolerant system and can eat most things (like difficult to digest dairy and red meat) but should not eat wheat, corn, or lentils?
  • Type O is the oldest bloodline, hence the O, and should only avoid wheat, grains and legumes but requires vigorous exercise (compared to Type A for which gentle exercise is recommended).
  • Type AB is a more modern blood type and its hallmark is a very sensitive digestive tract; people with Type AB blood should completely avoid meat, chicken, and pork.

While there is debate as to the scientific validity of eating for one’s blood type, it does make some sense in terms of historical origin, lifestyle, heritage, and ancestry.  But as a Type A, this blogger has to completely disagree with the prescription for gentle exercise; plenty of Type A individuals love and thrive on lots of vigorous physical activity!

Check WebMD and the aforementioned Dr. Adamo website for some interesting facts on blood type eating; if anything it is an education!

 


Mushrooms, Asparagus, Cabbage, and Onions Oh My!!

Rachel Lifestyle, Nutrition, Wisdom Leave a comment   , , , , , , , ,

 

 

 

 

 

 

All fruits and veggies are vitally important to our health and wellness.  Any time you can get your hands on a fruit or a vegetable, even if it is not organic, please eat it!!  While different produce items contain various types of essential vitamins, minerals, and cell building blocks, our ‘title’ veggies, i.e. Mushrooms, Asparagus, Cabbage, and Onions, contain high amount of SULFUR, which our bodies need in order to thrive.

Why do we need Sulfur??  Isn’t Sulfur that smelly gas we experimented with in elementary school science class??  In some forms, yes; but more importantly Sulfur is a building block for our brains and our mitochondria, and our liver and kidneys need Sulfur to remove toxins from our body and bloodstream.  Plus, when you chop up some mushrooms, cabbage and onions and saute with a little extra virgin olive oil you will have a fantastic side dish to a plump, fresh piece of wild caught fish.  MMMMmmmm….

Do not be afraid of Sulfur!  It is one of the best nutrients we can ingest, and you will save thousands of dollars on future medical care costs by eating healthy food now.


It’s Official…303 sold!

Rachel Fitness, Groupon, News, Nutrition, Pilates Leave a comment   , , , , , , ,

While a few more might yet sell in the coming weeks (I have yet to figure out how one can get a Groupon after the deal expires but apparently you can) I have sold a total of 303 Groupons in the last 1.5 months.  This is extremely exciting since building a business is a huge challenge and there is only so long a person can survive without covering expenses, going into more debt, etc. before re-evaluating and considering other opportunities.

But as of now things are on track and the business is poised to grow.  People are calling and emailing, excited to begin their new fitness plan, and we are delighted to have them on board!  Loving what you do is vital to success; working with people who are also excited to have your help and support makes it a lot better and that much more fulfilling.

Now that Groupon is over, it is back to other health-related topics, items, articles, monologues, and so forth.

Lets start here:  Happiest (and unhappiest) States in America!  The Huffington Post has some interesting articles in its Huffpost Health Living section, like this article:  Happy March! 7 In-Season Superfoods.


GROUPON ALMOST DONE!!

Rachel Fitness, Groupon Leave a comment  

We have sold almost 120 groupons!   Just 12 more minutes to go!

In the last month and a half about 300 Groupons were sold; Although some people bought multiples, this still equates to business exposure to hundreds of new customers.

Let’s admit it…Groupon takes a HUGE cut out of the deal (half to be precise).  So, when you have a class that usually costs $15, then it sells on Groupon for $5 the real take is $2.50.  As a business owner, it amounts to giving away a service for about 85% off (sometimes more).  Once you include expenses, think about time spent on preparing the deal etc. there is no money left!  BUT you did not have to pay to advertise with no guarantee of business, so that is a major plus.

Thanks again to all of our wonderful new clients!


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