Lifestyle

Spend Your Tax Refund on Your Health!

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So you received your tax refund…now what?

Sure, there are always new pairs of shoes, new purses or that really cool necklace to be had, but the best thing to spend your tax refund on is personal enrichment in the form of health and fitness activities and classes!  No matter what, a healthy body and mind will take you far in life, and lets be honest…next season that purse will be in the back of the closet.

Take this time to invest in YOU…in your future and your well being.  Try something new, do something you already like, it does not matter; as long as it makes you happy and is healthy then you are golden!

Of course Pilates is the BEST thing to take up, but there are so many exercise programs, methods and ideas out there to explore; if you need any ideas feel free to reach out to us here!

Be happy, be healthy!


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.

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!


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.


Tipping Trainers

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tipping etiquette is a touchy and debatable topic, but the question of tipping personal trainers, Yoga & Pilates instructors, etc. is an issue worth addressing.

While tipping is technically never required, it is something we do to express gratitude for a job well done, and ultimately it is an engrained part of American culture (others as well, to greater and lesser extent).  Overall Americans are generous tippers.

It is standard to tip hair stylists, massage therapists, aestheticians, and other one-on-one service providers between 15% and 20%.  These service providers have undergone special training and are creating a (hopefully) positive experience that clients both want and need.  When it comes to trainers, private exercise instructors and the likes, in theory it should be no different.  Once again this is a specialized individual whom, at least in the case of a comprehensively trained Pilates instructor, has spent many hundreds of hours learning and honing his or her skill set.  A private session is taking place, and individualized attention to specific needs, conditions, concerns, and more are factoring into the interaction.

If you think about it, physical trainers are facilitating physical wellness; from a physiological, purely medical perspective this is very important to living a long, healthy life.  Indeed haircuts and facials are important and beloved services, but someone could suffer from serious and life-threatening conditions and find help through something like Pilates or Yoga (burn fat, build muscle); no one ever died from not enough hair cuts or too few massages.  Having said that, one would think a client would LOVE tipping the health instructor who is making life more livable.

It is also important to consider things like rental space and other costs that instructors incur.  Just like many hair stylists split their earnings with the salon, instructors give a (sometimes very large) percentage of earnings to the studio they use.  Or, if employed by a studio, work at a rate that is often far less than is paid by the customer.

Bottom line, as a society we are not conditioned to tip trainers in the same way as we are hair stylist, massage therapists, etc. and yet these services fall within similar categories.   If you see an instructor 3 times a week a smaller tip is certainly understandable, but overall a Pilates or Yoga instructor or Personal Trainer working in a private setting (versus a big box gym with certain policies) should be viewed like a ‘body’ stylist and tipped accordingly.  Remember, personal exercise instructors/trainers are not dieticians or acupuncturists; those are medical providers and often are dealt with and paid for by insurance companies.

Next time you take a private Pilates or Yoga lesson for $70 consider giving the instructor $10 -$15.  Of course there is no need to tip in group classes – the point is to express gratitude for a customized, individual service.

 

 


Hello Healthy (TASTY) Dinner Round 2…

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

The recipe in the last post was found courtesy of the Bob’s Red Mill website.  If you are not familiar with the comprehensive line of healthy baking and cooking items produced by this fantastic LOCAL Oregon company you are mission out!

Check out Bob’s Red Mill and get your healthy on.

By the way, healthy food tastes really good when done right.  There are ingredients such as nuts, olive oil, avocado, and more that are chock full of unsaturated, extremely beneficial fats that lend a rich flavor to all sorts of meals.  While vegetables, fruits, beans, legumes, nuts and seeds do make up the bulk of a natural and nutrient-rich eating plan, certain oils are a great addition to the menu.  Of course it is ok, even recommended, to splurge from time to time.  No one can be  good 100% of the time, so let yourself enjoy treats and mainly stick to the good stuff.

Have a great dinner!


Juicing

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

Has anyone seen the documentary Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead?  If not it is worth the watch and quite an inspiration!

While the film is not about promoting juicing (the practice of drinking your fruits and vegetables), it shows numerous examples of the benefits of allowing the body to receive such a high level of antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, and essential cell building blocks.  If a person tried to eat the amount of fruits and veggies used to make a nice tall glass of fresh juice they might explode.  There is way too much bulk when eating produce if one desires an extremely concentrated level of nutrients in one sitting.

Breville juicers are supposed to be very high quality; this one is on my short list:

 

 

 

 

 

 

Check out JUICING to find all kinds of juice recipes for different ailments or concerns.  From arthritic conditions to stomach problems to respiratory illness, there are juice blends that will assist in healing the body.

Looking forward to getting this juicer in the mail then going to Whole Foods’ organic produce section and picking up tons of fruits and veggies!


Installment 10 of 10 ‘Benefits of Pilates’

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

10. There are Many Ways to Learn Pilates

Pilates instruction is easy to come by these days. The ever-growing popularity of Pilates has put it on the map all over the world. This is good because when you start Pilates training, it is important to start with live Pilates instruction at a studio or gym, and from a certified instructor. But there are lots of ways to supplement your learning once you get going. You can practice at home and you don’t need one bit of fancy equipment, just comfy clothes and a mat.

The ‘learning from a certified instructor’ piece is key.  Because Pilates is not a regulated field with uniform certification requirements (like massage or acupuncture) it is important to check into the kind of certification your instructor has.  Someone could take a weekend course and call herself a certified instructor; more appropriately, your instructor will have taken a lengthy comprehensive course full of hundreds of personal practice, observation, and practice teaching hours.  All told, the Body Arts and Science International certification undertaken by yours truly required well over 500 hours of practice/teaching/observation/class time/studying in order to become properly and comprehensively certified in mat and all equipment-based Pilates.

As with anything, do your homework before you get going on a new exercise regimen.  Or just make your life easy and fill out our contact form and come see us!

 


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