Healthy Resolution Ideas to Set for Your New Year

new_year_resolution_2015

Happy New Year, LifeVest friends! We’re excited to kick off 2015 with you, and want to take the time today to help you create some healthy goals for the year ahead. Goal-setting is important for driving motivation and focus so you can stay on the path towards a healthy, happy you. As they say, New Year, New You. Determine the “you” that you want to become, and then set the goal(s) that will take you there. A dream written down becomes a plan you can achieve.

While resolution-making is a common New Year tradition – 40% of Americans will set one this month –  we know getting started can often feel like a challenge. We’ve got some ideas for you below to help get the wheels spinning. Choose one, or use it to inspire your own goal-making for finding health and happiness this year. Let’s see those dreams to reality, together!

Your 3-step plan:

  1. Choose a goal.
  2. Make it specific. Perhaps your over-arching goal is to “lose weight” or “get healthy” or “be happier”. To make that objective achievable, break it down into smaller goals. Consider setting a different goal to focus on for each month of the year that will take you towards your larger goal.
  3. Write it down. Putting pen to paper is proven to make you more successful in actually achieving your plan.

Healthy Ideas to Get You Started: Read the rest of this entry »

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5 Ways to Burn 500 Calories

The best way to not just slim down, but keep that weight off, is to stick to a steady and achievable weight loss goal. Experts say aiming your efforts to lose within the one to two pound range per week is ideal.

So, what exactly will that take? The solution to lose one pound is as straightforward as cutting and/or subtracting 3,500 calories per week. With simple math, we can break that down into a burn of 500 calories per day, and we’ve got you covered with some activities to do just that below. Choose your favorite, and see your way to a slimmer, long-term you.

zumba

1. Zumba: One hour, moderate intensity; 536 calories

Love to dance? For many, Zumba helps burn calories without ever feeling like a chore. The fitness activity combines choreographed dance and aerobics to get your heart rate going and your dancing feet moving. You might even learn a new move or two that you can use on your next night out on the town. Find a class near you, here. To ensure you’re reaching a moderate intensity and burning those 500 cals/hour, you should be able to talk, but not sing throughout your workout. For even more of a burn, power it up further to high intensity, which will mean you’ll feel slightly out of breath and unable to engage in conversation during the routine.

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6 Ways to Have a Healthier Thanksgiving

This Thanksgiving, we encourage you to give thanks to your health, your greatest asset in life.

Below, find six ways you can be mindful of that, and create a healthier, happier Thanksgiving for you and your waistline.

Yogurt for breakfast

Make the Most of Your Morning: Yoga & Yogurt

Start off strong by fitting in an a.m. stretch session when you wake up. This will leave you feeling relaxed, yet energized for the day ahead. Then follow it up with a healthy breakfast. Skipping this meal to save calories for later in the day can end up leading to an even higher intake overall, since hunger often results in overcompensation at the main meal. Try adding sliced bananas, cinnamon, walnuts, and a slight drizzle of honey to a bowl of plain, low fat Greek yogurt. Six ounces of Greek yogurt contains around 15 grams of protein, which will not only fill you up but also help keep you feeling satisfied until later in the day.

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Link Love: Healthy Thanksgiving Recipes

4,500 – The average number of calories eaten per American on Thanksgiving.

This whopping number makes us feel that as a nation, we’re not giving nearly enough thanks to our bodies. Even with exercise to the rescue, that splurge would take a 155-pound person six hours of running to burn it all off. If you’re taking a slow jog around the track, make that ten hours.

Rather than take on that fitness feat, this year we’re making a commitment to give thanks to our health. Join us as we celebrate Thanksgiving both by practicing moderation, and also by revamping some of our favorite holiday dishes. The menu below allows you to dig into many of the classics with a slightly healthier spoon, mashed potatoes and pumpkin pie included.

Choose one or two to bring to your celebratory table, and then allow yourself to enjoy what else is offered. Just be mindful not to go too overboard so you can walk away feeling energized and thankful (rather than passed out on the couch!).
Baked Greens Casserole

Green Sans Bean Casserole: Baked Greens Casserole with Crusty Crumb Topping via Cia Chow Read the rest of this entry »


Life-Changing with LV: One Couples’ Journey to Lose Weight Together

Couple Getting Healthy TogetherLaura Meier, 52, on a health journey with her husband, Brice

Goal(s): Lose a combined total of 150 lbs

Six months ago, Laura Meier joined LifeVest, and set out with her husband Brice on a mission to lose weight. They planned a trip to the Caribbean as motivation, and began making significant changes that would move them towards their goals. Each now two clothing sizes smaller and two energy levels higher, the two set sail this week and are ready to celebrate.

“We’re looking forward to enjoying [the trip] together and being motivated to continue on,” says Laura who’s over halfway to her goal of losing 50 pounds. Brice has exceeded the halfway point towards his goal, too, down 65 pounds and on his way to 100.

Laura was initially motivated by the opportunity to earn money through LifeVest. However, this quickly became merely an added benefit of the experience. She earned a FitBit early into her program and soon after bought Brice one too, and it was at this point that Laura decided to make her LifeVest journey one that would last for life. Together, the couple began powering up their step count, and benefiting from the results.

“Brice has problems with sciatic nerves and back pain, and he used to hardly be able to make it to the corner with me,” says Laura. “Now, he’s sometimes walking 40,000 steps per day because he’s feeling so much better by getting the weight off and getting active.”

Through the weight loss, Brice has been able to relieve some of the pressure from his knees and back, and Laura says she feels better about herself than ever before. They’ve decided they won’t be stopping once they reach their weight loss goal, but instead continuing to find new ways they can lead a healthier life together. Laura shares some advice on what’s worked for them so far, and how her and Brice are make the changes together.

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Spiced Oven-Baked Rutabaga Fries

Rutabaga Fries

“They’re like French fries but without as many of the calories and fat,” said LifeVest member Laura Meier.

Bingo. Laura’s description of rutabaga fries sounded great to us, and it didn’t take us long before we set out to discover its truth.

Rutabaga

Since joining the program, LifeVester Laura is over halfway to her goal of losing 50 pounds, and now has a new goal of maintaining a healthy lifestyle for the long run.

“We’re going to keep encouraging each other and thinking smarter so we can remain feeling good,” says Laura who set out on her journey to health in partnership with her husband. “You have to think long-term. Otherwise, it’s all for nothing. Why go back when you could feel good for life?”

Laura told us she loves finding new ways to transform some of her favorite recipes into healthier versions. It keeps her feeling both satisfied and excited about continuing on.

She has always loved french fries, and we do too, so we were thrilled to hear about her latest version that enables her to remain on the right track toward her goals.

Rutabaga Fries

Rutabagas have just 1/2 the calories and 1/2 of the carbs that potatoes contain. So, inserting them into the standard oven-baked fry equation sounded like a genius idea to us.

Often mistaken for a turnip, the root veggie has that same sweet bite of a turnip with the starchiness of a potato. This makes them perfect for slicing up into flavorful fries, ones that luckily come without too much detriment to your diet.

Rutabaga Fries

At just 65 calories per cup, the winter veggie (in season Oct. – March) has become no small fry in our recipe book. Rather, thanks to Laura, it’s our new fry-making go-to.

We were thrilled with the crispy results upon our first batch, and are excited to experiment with other spices and herbs. We’d encourage you to do the same after first trying the chili powder version below.

Chili powder

As Laura shares, “It makes us, especially my husband, think we’re having a burger and fries.” She serves her ruta-fries alongside turkey burgers with lettuce swapped for the bun, a combo we can get behind.

Let us know in the comments, how do you make your favorite comfort foods healthier? We’d love to hear what you’re doing to transform some of your favorite recipes, and thank you to Laura for sharing this idea with us!

Click here for recipe…


5 Ways to Power Up Your Walk and Lose Weight Faster

Walking women

At LifeVest, we don’t take walking for granted. Requiring little else but our own two feet, walking helps us stay fit (burning about 100 cals/mile), smiling, thinking clearer, and feeling all around healthier. It has the lowest dropout rate of any exercise and can be an enjoyable and powerful tool for losing, or maintaining weight — especially with the tricks below.

We’ve got 5 ways for powering up your walk so you can get slimmer even faster, without needing to break into a full out run. So, ready to walk this way?

Walking

1.  Small strides make big differences:

While it might seem counterintuitive, the best way to boost your speed is to shorten your stride. Taking smaller steps enables you to take more of them, which results in an increased momentum and calorie burn.

MoveTip: The next time you’re out on a walk, time yourself for 50 steps. Then, see if you can fit 100 steps into that same amount of time by shortening your stride.

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