Focused On Fitness - April 12, 2007

   Spring is a time of birth, rebirth, renewal - and change. The five day forecast in Albuquerque these days is pretty much either windy or breezy with an occasional threat (actually promise) of showers. This is ideal because the showers moisten the soil and the wind moves seeds around so that they can germinate and create new life. Change occurs when it is windy, for instance, when the tumbleweeds (yes, we have tumbleweeds) roll and line up along fences or occasionally block a door to a house, making for an amusing picture in the newspaper. At the other end of the spectrum, older, weaker trees can topple and roofs can be damaged and change can be costly.
    Since we know the seasons, we can use them as we should. We plant in the spring as we have always done. We nurture in the summer and harvest in the fall for the "winter seasons of life". "Do you remember the old fable about the ant and the grasshopper? The ant works hard all year long to store up for the winter, while the grasshopper plays and gathers nothing. When winter hits and the snows fall, the grasshopper begins to starve and must go to the ants to beg in order to survive. Meanwhile, the ants are warm, safe, and secure--and they have plenty to help the grasshopper out in his need."
    And so it is in my life as you see me "planting seeds" that I will nurture in the coming months so that I have a harvest in the fall that I can store like an ant for the winter. Then when the winds of change blow again, although I may be an old "tree" I will have strengthened my roots and sent them in new directions to provide strength and stability for my "family tree".

Featured Articles 
   The Sunshine Vitamin - Here's something I bet you didn't know: vitamin D isn't really a vitamin. It's a hormone. That's right. What's the difference? Vitamin D is manufactured in the body and that makes it a hormone. Vitamins by definition are not manufactured in the body and must be obtained from food. Why all this discussion? Why not just let my body make the vitamin D it needs? Continued...
   Should You Exercise When You're Sick? - Spring is a time of inspiration. Flowers bloom, the days get warmer, and with summer around the corner, we start to get serious about how we're going to look in our bathing suits. But the onset of spring is also the final round of the cold and flu season. Let's look at the best way to survive it while keeping your results on track. Continued...
   Test Your Spring Calorie Burning IQ! - Find out how many calories we really burn doing all of those spring activities that we love to do. Continued...

Health News Headlines 
    Exercise linked to less anxiety, depression - A regular run through the park may improve not only heart health but also mental health, a study suggests. In a study that followed a group of middle-aged British men for 10 years, researchers found that those who got regular vigorous exercise were less likely to develop depression or an anxiety disorder over time.
    Mediterranean diet may ward off asthma, allergies - A traditional Mediterranean diet rich in fruits, vegetables and nuts during childhood appears to protect against symptoms of asthma and nasal allergies, according to a new study.
    TV-less family dinners best for healthy eating - The benefits of sitting down to a family dinner are lost if the television is on during the meal, according to a survey of more than 1,300 low-income families with preschool children.
    Colon-free athlete has guts to scale world's peaks - Scaling the world's highest peaks is a tremendous feat but Robert Hill's quest is even more extraordinary because he has no colon. But the loss of his colon - an organ responsible for absorbing water and nutrients into the body - didn't disrupt the ultra-active lifestyle he's always had.
    Diabetes complications swelling U.S. health costs - Poorly managed type 2 diabetes costs the U.S. health system an extra $22.9 billion a year in direct medical costs to treat heart, eye, kidney and other serious health problems associated with the disease, diabetes groups reported on Tuesday.
    Severely obese fastest-growing U.S. overweight group - People who are 100 pounds (45 kg) or more overweight are the fastest-growing group of overweight people in the United States, researchers reported on Monday. They found the proportion of the severely obese was 50 percent higher in 2005 than it had been in 2000 -- a startling rate of growth.
    Education may help parents use antibiotics wisely - Simple education measures can improve low-income parents' knowledge of proper antibiotic use, a new study shows. Experts hope that a better-informed public will help stem the growing problem of antibiotic resistance, where bacteria gradually become immune to the medications that once controlled them.
    Most Americans don't eat smart and exercise - Only one in seven Americans exercises enough and eats enough fruits and vegetables, and men are worse than women, federal health officials said on Thursday. "These results underscore the need to promote diets high in fruits and vegetables and regular physical activity among all populations in the United States.
    Is bottled water really better than tap? - Bottled water is not necessarily healthier or safer than tap water, Tampa, Florida-based sports nutritionist Cynthia Sass told the American College of Sports Medicine 11th annual Health & Fitness Summit in Dallas. Twenty-five percent of all bottled water is actually repackaged tap water, according to Sass.

Going On and On... 
   Why all of this discussion about change and being prepared? Because as a Polar Authorized Dealer, I have all of my eggs in one basket and that is never smart - especially when you don't control the eggs or the basket. It is pure coincidence and a blessing that the Million Dollar Body program came along and I absolutely love it. It is inexpensive, easy to learn and effective. I can update my blog every day because there is always something that I can share with you about the program. It also extends my fitness "roots" in another direction and gives me much more to offer you. Most of you have purchased Polar heart rate monitors from me and now I can offer you workout programs and products that will further help you reach your goals.

Free e-Books 
   Thank you for subscribing to Focused On Fitness. You can access your free e-Books by following the links below
    Big Fat Lies
    Easy Guide to Fitness
    Personal Guide to Fitness
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Happy spring everyone,
    Richard Dafter