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PATHWAYS RESOURCE GUIDE

The YMCA of Birmingham’s guide to healthier living


Pathways Health Coaching: a free benefit of membership

Contents Activity

Busy Family Active Tips Designing a Walking Plan Fitness in Stages

In this E-Book you will find a variety of topics to help you adopt a healthier lifestyle. Education is only one step in changing behavior - supportive relationships significantly increase your likelihood of success.

Home Workout

Health coaching can provide that support and encouragement. Please enjoy the materials you find in this book and then consider working with a trained health coaches to help you make changes toward a healthier lifestyle. For more information visit http://www.ymcabham.org/ pathwayshealthcoaching

Active Living Resource Guide

What are participants saying about health coaching?

Busy Family Meal Tips

“Many thanks for getting me started. After meeting with you, I came home really pumped over the opportunities that are offered by the Y for me to be a healthier me. You are a great encourager and I truly appreciate that.” “As far as my workouts, I think I am doing really well, I feel now more confident and I am also enjoying it much more, especially because I have finally seen results, I’ve lost 13 lbs since I met with you and Suzanne.” “Pathways is wonderful and so is the staff at the Y. I have just gotten started and I can already tell a difference, my energy level is higher than it ever has been. I have a ways to go still yet and look forward to being a member of the Y and living a healthier lifestyle!” “Thank you for keeping up with me, it is nice to know that I was missed.”

Travel Workout Tips Stretching Diagram

Food Travel Eating Tips

Eat for More Energy Grab a Snack Nutrition Risk Quiz Boost Your Metabolism Portion Proof Your Environment Healthier Eating Resource Guide

Balance Depression Diabetes Risk Quiz Sleep Stress Anxiety Balanced Lifestyle Resource Guide

Birmingham YMCA

2101 4th Avenue North • Birmingham, AL 35203 801-9622 • http://www.ymcabham.org/ •

Birmingham YMCA

2101 4th Avenue North • Birmingham, AL 35203 801-9622 • http://www.ymcabham.org/ •


ACTIVITY

Busy Family Activity Tips Hectic schedules can make down time turn into lounge time. Get up and get moving with these family exercise strategies. They can be planned or spontaneous activities. At the YMCA

• Try some group exercise classes together. Kids 12 and up can come with a parent to group classes. The schedule is available at the front desk and online. • Walk or jog on the track together, it’s a great time to catch up on the day. Check with your local branch for track guidelines. • Come during open gym times to shoot some hoops, bring a hula-hoop or just let the little ones chase the balls around. • Schedule a family swim. Play Marco Polo, practice dropping coins and retrieving them or time how fast they can swim to the wall and back. • Join a team and volunteer to coach. It’s a great way to be active and spend time together as a family. At Home • Go for a walk around the neighborhood after dinner or on the weekend. • Take the bikes and scooters to a park or empty parking lot to enjoy the outdoors. • Get a dog. Dog owners walk an average of 2.4 miles per week more than non- dog owners. Visit your local shelter for pet adoption opportunities. • Get up and move during commercial breaks. Make a rule that everyone has to get off the couch when a commercial comes on and can’t sit back down until all the commercials are over. • Visit local parks for a family hike. It doesn’t have be a long distance… you can start with a mile nature walk.

Birmingham YMCA

2101 4th Avenue North • Birmingham, AL 35203 801-9622 • http://www.ymcabham.org/ •

ACTIVITY

Designing A Walking Plan Walking is an easy way to get some exercise with little risk of injury. Walking has also been shown to be an effective strategy to reduce belly fat. When walking for exercise, make sure to wear shoes with good cushion and support. Always warm up and cool down to gradually increase and decrease your heart rate. Stretching after walking can help restore muscle length and reduce soreness. Counting laps/blocks with a pitch counter (handheld device deigned to count pitches in baseball) or counting laps/blocks on your fingers is a good way to stay motivated. Timing laps/blocks can be great motivation and keep you from cutting your workout short. Walking at the same pace can be relaxing, but alternating between fast and recovery pace will help you burn more calories and walk longer. Over time your pace will improve, so check periodically and adjust. 1. Find your recovery pace by walking a warm up lap/block at an easy pace. Walk your second lap/block at a normal pace. Time your second lap. This is your recovery pace. Recovery pace __________________________________ 2. Find your fast pace by walking a lap/block at the fastest speed you comfortably can. Time the lap/block, this is your fast pace. Fast pace______________________________________ Alternating fast and recovery laps Warm up with a few laps at recovery pace. Walk one fast paced lap. Walk as many recovery laps as it takes for you to catch your breath. Alternate one fast lap with as many recovery laps as you need. Cool down with a few laps at recovery pace. Stretch. Use games to increase speed: These games are fun to do with a friend or group to keep everyone laughing and walking faster without even noticing. With a partner or group 1. Do-si-do: After a few warm up laps, take turns passing each other for one lap. Walk as many recovery laps as it takes to catch your breath. Alternate passing laps and recovery laps. Cool down with about 3 recovery laps. Stretch. Over time Gradually add another passing lap until you reach 3 passing laps for each recovery lap. 2. Pace Car: After a few warm up laps, take turns leading for a lap as fast as you can walk. Walk as many recovery laps as it takes to catch your breath. Take turns leading at the fast pace. Cool down with a few recovery laps. Stretch. Over time Gradually add another pace car lap until you reach 4 pace car laps for each recovery lap. 3. Chase: Warm up together for a few warm up laps. Partner 1 begins walking at their fast pace for 10 seconds. Partner 2 yells, ‘recovery’ and partner 1 slows to recovery pace while partner 2 tries to catch up to them. Take turns ‘chasing’ with recovery laps in between turns. Cool down with a few recovery laps. Stretch. Over Time Gradually add another lap of chase until you reach 4 chase laps for each recovery lap.

Birmingham YMCA

2101 4th Avenue North • Birmingham, AL 35203 801-9622 • http://www.ymcabham.org/ •


ACTIVITY

Fitness In Stages There is no one size fits all approach to fitness. The first step is determining which stage you are in. Read below the purpose of strength and cardiovascular exercises then choose which stage you are in to learn the most effective approach. Strength Muscle toning exercises help you get stronger and strengthen your bones. Calories are burned during strength workouts and for about 48 hours after the workout is completed. Muscle burns approximately 50 calories/pound per day. Because of this, higher muscle mass increases metabolism and gives a firm shape to the body. • How much weight to lift: muscles have to be challenged enough to get stronger. Each stage requires a different number of repetitions. Choose the weight that is comfortable for the number of repetitions recommended for each stage. • How often: more than 4 days rest between workouts can stall progress so plan for at least twice a week to see results • Rest: muscles need to rebuild and recover so avoid working the same muscles two days in a row • Sample schedule: you can make your own routine or try one of these 2x week- full body (upper and lower body) • 4x week- upper body two days, lower body two days-alternating Cardiovascular Cardio exercises train the heart and lungs to be stronger and more efficient. Calories are burned during exercise and for about 30 minutes after the workout is completed. Always begin workouts with a warm up and end workouts with a cool down. • How hard: your heart rate during exercise determines what type of fuel your body uses. Easy to moderate cardio exercise burns primarily fat for fuel. Moderate to hard intensity exercise burns a combination of fat and muscle for fuel. A good cardio routine begins with easy to moderate intensity workouts and gradually progresses to include short bursts of harder intensity (interval training) • Type: anything that raises your heart rate for a period of time is considered a cardiovascular exercise

Stages

Starting a new routine or rest phase- Try for at least10 minutes per day or 70 minutes/week • Intensity: Easy to moderate • Strength Goal: Learn exercises for large muscle groups (chest, back and legs). Choose a weight you can comfortably complete 12-15 repetitions with. Repeat for a second set if you have time. • Cardio Goal: Learn which activities you enjoy. Try new machines and classes. Begin with 10-20 minutes of whatever you choose and gradually build up to 30 minutes. Do exercises at an easy to moderate intensity. Building Muscle- Try for at least three a week. Work towards 150 minutes/week • Intensity: Moderate with short bursts of harder intensity • Strength Goal: Begin challenging the muscles enough to tone and build strength. Focus on all muscle groups (chest, back, legs, shoulders arms and abdominal muscles) Start with large muscle groups in the beginning of the workout and progress to small muscle groups toward the end of the workout. Use a weight that you can comfortably complete 5-7 repetitions with. If you can do more than 7 repetitions the weight is probably too light. • Cardio Goal: Focus on moderate intensity exercises with easy recovery when you get out of breath. On days when you feel ambitious, you can add a few harder intensity intervals- 30 seconds to a minute with a easy intensity recovery in between. Maintaining- Work towards 150 minutes/week • Intensity: easy to moderate with occasional harder intensity bursts • Strength Goal: Do strength exercises least every 4 days. Choose a weight you can comfortably complete 8-12 repetitions with. • Cardio Goal: Make cardio a regular part of your schedule by scheduling workouts and incorporating more exercise in your everyday routine. Choose exercises you enjoy and work out at an intensity that challenges you without feeling exhausted.

Birmingham YMCA

2101 4th Avenue North • Birmingham, AL 35203 801-9622 • http://www.ymcabham.org/ •

ACTIVITY

Home Workout Tips When the kids are sick, you can’t find your keys or the day just doesn’t go as planned, don’t make skipping your workout another thing that went wrong. These exercises can tide you over until you can get back to the YMCA for your regular workout. Be sure to wear good shoes when working out at home to support your feet and reduce impact. Walking It’s wonderful to get outside and enjoy the scenery while you exercise. Start with a short distance and gradually add longer routes over time. Even a walk around the block can make you feel better. Wear reflective clothing and carry a flashlight if walking at night. Jumping Jacks Get your heart rate up with this easy exercise. Jumping jacks help to increase the heart rate and strengthen bones. Start with a few at a time and gradually build up to a minute or more before taking a break. Floor or wall Pushups On the floor, try them with your knees down at first to build up strength. Start with a small movement and build up gradually. Avoid keeping the hips up too high or dropping the stomach to the floor- your back should be straight. For wall pushups, do these standing with your hands on the wall pushing away from the wall with your back straight. Leg Lifts Lie on your back or side and lift legs together or one at a time. You can also bend your knees to make it easier at first. Leg lifts strengthen your legs, stomach and low back. Crunches Start with a small movement- don’t feel like you have to get all the way up. Avoid pulling on your head or neck- placing arms across the chest will help reduce this urge. Also, it may be helpful at first to anchor your feet under something sturdy like a couch or coffee table for leverage. Over time you’ll build up enough strength to do the full range of motion. Make the movement slow and controlled to avoid building up momentum. Jogging In Place Jogging is a great exercise for your heart. Your body doesn’t know if you’re running on a track or in your living room. The movement will burn calories, strengthen muscles and improve bone density. Squats Begin with sitting in chair with legs at a 90 degree angle (avoid tucking your feet under you). Try to stand up without using your hands to push off. If you find balance is a problem- use your hands at first to brace yourself but try not to push. As you get stronger spend less time on the chair in-between repetitions. Bands and hand weights Resistance bands and hand weights are a great way to strengthen muscles. They are small and easy to store. Look for bands with padded handles and weights that are covered with neopropane so they won’t scratch anything. Exercise Videos Whether it’s a channel on t.v. or your favorite workout video, instructor led workouts can get you motivated. Don’t feel like you have to do the whole workout- start with the warm up and build up over time. Stop if anything hurts or take a break if you need to catch your breath. Stairs Using the steps in your home, you can tone your leg muscles and get your heart pumping. Walking up and down will be enough- avoid running which can be dangerous. Use handrails when tired.

BIrmingham YMCA

2101 4th Avenue North • Birmingham, AL 35203 801-9622 • http://www.ymcabham.org/ •


ACTIVITY

Travel Workout Tips

Sure, exercise can be difficult when you’re out of town, but this is the perfect opportunity to breathe some life into your routine and do something different. Equipment to pack Resistance bands small, inexpensive and versatile, resistance bands. These are a traveler’s best friend, often hooking onto furniture or door handles. They come in different resistance levels and colors and those with padded handles offer more comfort. Jump Rope Jumping-rope is a great exercise to get your heart pumping and help you burn calories. If you haven’t jumped rope in a while, start with trying to get 10 jumps in a row and then march in place until your heart rate recovers. You can also practice the motion of jumping without the rope at first- try to stay on your toes as much as possible. Gliders or Paper Plates These plastic, paper or nylon disks provide the perfect tool for abdominal and leg workouts. They are compact, plastic don’t require much room. They work well for lunges and other movements. Gliders often come with an exercise guide that a personal trainer can demonstrate. En route Airports Your best bet is to walk the airport, avoiding the escalators and other short cuts throughout. Use delays and layovers as an opportunity to walk around and get moving. Remember to wear comfortable clothes when traveling to encourage you to move around. On the Plane Get up every thirty minutes or so and walk the length of the plane. Anything you can do to keep the circulation going will help reduce stiffness. Also, you can practice isometric exercises by squeezing different muscles and holding for 20 seconds at a time. Activities outside the room Swimming A great low impact exercise, swimming targets every muscle of your body. If you’re at a hotel with a pool, swim laps. If you’re at the beach, you can try something more athletic like surfing, boogie boarding or riding the waves. Be mindful of the weather and water safety guidelines. Walking and Running You don’t need much more than a good pair of shoes to get a great walk. If you’re at the beach, get more out of your walks by using the sand to your advantage. If you’re going for a long walk, you’ll want to wear shoes since walking barefoot for a long time can cause shin or calf pain. Machines Check out the hotel gym equipment. Focus on machines that work large muscle groups like chest, back and legs. Remember that all machines are different and you may use a different weight than the machines you normally use. YMCA Away program With the Y away program you can often use YMCA’s in the city where you’re traveling. Just check in at the front desk or call and ask how many visits you can have within the calendar year.

Birmingham YMCA

2101 4th Avenue North • Birmingham, AL 35203 801-9622 • http://www.ymcabham.org/ •

ACTIVITY

Travel Workout Tips

Continued

Room Workout Just like at home, you can do exercises in your room. Choose 5 exercises and complete a minute of each with rest in between for a 10 minute workout. Repeat for a 20 minute workout. Jumping Jacks Get your heart rate up with this easy exercise. Jumping jacks help to increase the heart rate and strengthen bones. Start with a few at a time and gradually shoot for a minute or more before taking a break. Pushups Try them with your knees down at first to build up strength. Don’t try to go all the way to the floor or wall, start with a small movement and build up gradually. Avoid keeping the hips up too high or dropping the stomach to the floor. Your back should be straight. You can also do these standing with your hands on the wall if the floor is too challenging. Leg Lifts Lie on your back or side and lift legs together or one at a time. You can also bend your knees to make it easier at first. Leg lifts strengthen your legs, stomach and low back. Crunches Start with a small movement- don’t feel like you have to get all the way up. Avoid pulling on your head or neck- placing arms across the chest will help reduce this urge. Also, it may be helpful at first to anchor your feet under something sturdy like a couch or coffee table for leverage. Over time you’ll build up enough strength to do the full range of motion. Make the movement slow and controlled to avoid building up momentum. Jogging In Place Jogging is a great exercise for your heart. Your body doesn’t know if you’re running on a track or in your room. The movement will burn calories, strengthen muscles and improve bone density. Squats Begin with sitting in chair with legs at a 90 degree angle (avoid tucking your feet under you). Try to stand up without using your hands to push off. If you find balance is a proble, use your hands at first to brace yourself but try not to push. As you get stronger spend less time on the chair in-between repetitions. Bands and hand weights Resistance bands and hand weights are a great way to strengthen muscles. They are small and easy to store. Look for bands with padded handles and weights that are covered with neopropane so they won’t scratch anything. Machine Workout If you’re staying somewhere with a multi-purpose machines and cardio equipment, this is a workout you can do in 20 minutes. 1. Warm up with 5 minutes of brisk walking on the treadmill or light cardio 2. Do as many chest presses as you can in one minute 3. Do as many leg presses as you can in one minute 4. Do as many lat pull downs or seated rows as you can in one minute 5. Do as many crunches as you can in one minute 6. Jog in place or jump rope for one minute 7. Repeat steps 2-6 8. Cool down with 5 minutes of walking or light cardio and stretching

Birmingham YMCA

2101 4th Avenue North • Birmingham, AL 35203 801-9622 • http://www.ymcabham.org/ •


ACTIVITY

Stretching Guide

ACTIVITY

Active Living Resource Guide Equipment Orientation Learn how to use everything from the treadmill to the chest press. A Pathways Health Coach can get you scheduled for an appointment. Free member service. To get branch contact information click ymcabham.org/locations Group Exercise Classes Group exercise classes offer variety, convenience and professional instruction. Free member service. To see branch schedules click ymcabham.org/groupexercise Specialty Small Group Training Affordable way to work in a small group with a certified personal trainer. Small groups offer more one on one attention than large group exercise classes and more affordability than private personal training. For more information click your branch location on: ymcabham.org Personal Training Personal training meets you exactly where you are and makes a plan customized to your needs and goals. Either as a good way to get started or as ongoing support, the expertise and motivation of a personal trainer can help you achieve success.

For more information click your branch location at ymcabham.org

Birmingham YMCA

2101 4th Avenue North • Birmingham, AL 35203 801-9622 • http://www.ymcabham.org/ •

Birmingham YMCA

2101 4th Avenue North • Birmingham, AL 35203 801-9622 • http://www.ymcabham.org/ •


FOOD

FOOD

At a restaurant Choose an omelet filled with vegetables and order a side of whole-wheat toast instead of a stack of pancakes and syrup. A bowl of oatmeal with fresh fruit If you want something sweet, choose a bran muffin or whole-grain toast with jam or jelly.

Hectic schedules, a car that looks more like a taxi, last minute meal decisions and regret sound familiar? Choose from these strategies to cut down on stress, improve nutrition and save money.

At the hotel continental breakfast bar Choose a whole grain cereal with low-fat milk. Fresh fruit gives you vitamins and fiber. Yogurt or hard-boiled eggs are good sources of protein. Avoid sugary muffins, sweet-rolls, and pre-sweetened cereal.

Get your servings of fruit and vegetables the easy way. Use smoothies, fruit salads, green salads, veggie trays with light dips, rice with vegetables mixed in, pasta with veggies mixed in to get the daily requirements for fruits and vegetables.

At the service station Look for single-serving whole grain breakfast cereals and low-fat milk. As a last resort, choose a hot breakfast sandwich or small breakfast burrito over donuts and sweet-rolls.

Plan your meals a week at a time. Include meals that are easy and quick or meals that make enough for leftovers.

Travel Eating Tips

Fast food restaurants Most breakfast choices have lots of calories and saturated fats, but breakfast burritos may have less than other selections. Fruit and yogurt parfaits will give you some calcium and protein without too much saturated fat. Drink low-fat milk or 100 percent juice instead of sodas and orange-flavored soft drinks. Snacks on the Run Load up on fresh-cut vegetables and fruit. Bring along a small cooler with ice packs to keep your snacks fresh. Stay Hydrated! Pack plenty of water. Bring individually wrapped portions of string cheese that can be kept in the cooler with the fruit and vegetables. They are a great source of calcium and protein. You can also pack sandwiches made with whole grain bread and peanut butter or lean meats. Nuts such as almonds, cashews, and walnuts contain polyunsaturated fats and are easy to take on a trip in either individual bags or larger containers. Dining Out Right Order a soup or a salad to eat with your main course to help fill you up. Split a meal with your dining partner. Most restaurants serve huge portions, so there is usually enough food to share. Eat your vegetables! Most entrées come with at least one vegetable. If not, be sure to order a vegetable side dish. Skip dessert, or choose some fruit. A full meal that ends with a sugary dessert may make you feel sleepy. Fast Food Restaurants Find sandwich shops that let you select your sandwich ingredients. Choose whole grain breads, lean meats, and lots of vegetables. Many fast food restaurants offer salads, but you need to be careful when you select one. Some of those salads are very high in fat, especially taco salads or those topped with fried chicken strips. Don’t super-size your meal. Super-sized meals contain too many calories, fat, and sodium. Order sandwiches made with grilled chicken rather than fried chicken. Dining at a Hotel Find a local grocery store and buy healthy snack items such as fruit, nuts, or healthy choices from a salad bar or deli section. If your hotel has a microwave, you can find healthier frozen dinners or soup. If your only choice for a snack is the hotel vending machine, skip the candy and chips and look for nuts or microwave popcorn. If you go for a pizza delivery, don’t order extra cheese or meats high in saturated fat. Choose lots of vegetable and mushrooms. Order a side salad too.

Birmingham YMCA

2101 4th Avenue North • Birmingham, AL 35203 801-9622 • http://www.ymcabham.org/ •

Busy Family Meal Tips

Designate busy nights as the same meal every week. For example, football practice night is turkey burger night, breakfast for dinner, leftovers or tacos. Predictability reduces last minute decisions. Take baby steps with meals you need to improve. Choose one meal at a time to work on. Once you’ve been successful for about a week, move on to the next meal. Eat often. 3 meals and 2 snacks keeps blood sugar levels more steady which improve mood and attention. Feeding kids a healthy snack after school sets the tone for the rest of the afternoon. Low blood sugar can lead to impatient, emotional reactions to homework, chores and fun after-school activities. Pack portable snacks and water when you’ll be away from home. Keeping a box of granola bars and some water in the car is a great way to avoid the drive-thru and hunger tantrums. Use frozen fruit and vegetables. Frozen can often be as nutritious as fresh because they are frozen right after harvest and don’t travel long distances to the supermarket. Frozen vegetables keep longer than fresh. Keep healthy snacks in reach Hide those more unhealthy ‘treats’ so they’re not as tempting to young hands. Encourage everyone to drink lot of water. Kids and adults alike do not drink enough water. Offer the kids a glass of water before they can have one of juice or another beverage or limit sweet drinks to 1 per day. Let the kids choose a meal or snack and help prepare it on a less busy night. Let them gather the ingredients and help you figure out what to do first. It may work better on the weekend if your weeknights are hectic. It may be time consuming at first, but as they learn to help it will save time in the long run and allows them to have some ownership in their food choices.

Birmingham YMCA

2101 4th Avenue North • Birmingham, AL 35203 801-9622 • http://www.ymcabham.org/ •


FOOD

FOOD

Food can be related to energy levels. Choose from these strategies to use food to improve your energy levels.

Snacks can enhance, rather than hurt your diet. Snacks can provide binge control, add extra energy and nutrients, control hunger pangs, control insulin levels and improve metabolism. Opt for snacks of 100 – 200 calories to stay within your daily calorie goal. Your caloric goal for snacks is dependent upon your activity level and current food routine. Great options for snacks usually come from these food groups.

Eat For More Energy Avoid skipping meals. By eating frequently, your blood sugar is stabilized which will prevents mid-day crashes that lead to fatigue and moodiness. Avoid simple sugars, like soda or candy through the day. Simple sugars lack substance to sustain blood sugar which may result in an energy crash and tend to give a short-lived energy spike that may not last as long as you need it. Eat at least 5 servings of fruits and vegetables every day. Fresh produce will help keep you hydrated because they are filled with water. The more color you can add to your day through a variety of fruit and vegetable colors, the more vitamins and minerals you will eat. Drink at least 8- 10 eight ounces glasses of water. Dehydration and fatigue go hand in hand. Studies suggest that mild dehydration slows the metabolism and reduces your energy. Water makes it possible to digest, absorb, and transport nutrients. Water also helps regulate body temperature by allowing your cells to receive nutrients for energy efficiently so your body can properly expend heat through sweating. The solution to dehydration is simple – drink plenty of water at regular intervals. Aim to drink 8-10 eight-ounce glasses of water a day. Other sources of fluid include flavored water, sports drinks, and herbal teas. Eat breakfast. Studies show that people who eat breakfast every morning enjoy more energy and a better mood throughout the day. The ideal breakfast will deliver a mixture of fiber through whole grain carbs, healthy fats, and lean protein. Eat healthy fats, limit saturated fat. Saturated fats tend to make you lethargic by lowering the amount of circulating oxygen in your bloodstream. Eat more monounsaturated fats like salmon, almonds, avocados, seeds, nuts, olive oil, fish oil, flaxseed oil, canola oil, and wheat germ. Eat foods rich in magnesium. Magnesium is a mineral that plays a vital role in converting sugar into energy by activating certain enzymes needed to metabolize protein and carbohydrates. Magnesium can be found in cashews, almonds, hazelnuts, whole grains, bran cereals, halibut, dark green leafy vegetables, bananas, dried apricots, peas, legumes, yogurt, and tofu. Eat lean meats. Lean meats are healthy sources of protein that provide your body with an amino acid called tyrosine. Tyrosine boosts brain chemicals that can help you stay more focused and alert. Lean meats also contain vitamin B12 which combats insomnia and depression. Lean meats include pork, lean beef, skinless chicken, water-packed sardines, eggs and turkey. Eat beans. like lentils, navy beans, chickpeas, kidney beans, and black beans. Beans are a super food because they provide carbohydrates, protein, and fiber which translates into a slow release of glucose and are packed with B vitamins, iron, magnesium, potassium, zinc, calcium, and copper. Eat leafy greens. Folate found in dark leafy green vegetables can be helpful in reducing the risk of depression. Folate can be found in dark leafy green vegetables, including spinach and romaine lettuce, legumes, nuts and citrus fruits.

Birmingham YMCA

2101 4th Avenue North • Birmingham, AL 35203 801-9622 • http://www.ymcabham.org/ •

Grab A Snack

Fruits and vegetables. Eating fruits and vegetables provides a feeling of fullness with no fat and only a small number of calories. Fruits and vegetables also provide vitamins, minerals, fiber and other nutrients. Whole grains. Whole-grain snacks are rich in fiber and complex carbohydrates, which give you energy with staying power. Look for items such as low-fat whole-grain crackers, whole-grain pretzels and whole-grain crisp breads. Nuts and seeds. Nuts and seeds provide protein, so you will feel fuller longer. They can be high in fat, but it’s mostly monounsaturated, a healthy kind of fat. Nuts and seeds are high in calories, however, so don’t eat them in large quantities. Low-fat dairy products. Dairy products are good sources of calcium and protein, plus many other vitamins and minerals. Dairy products can be high in fat, so choose the low-fat versions. Some yogurts have extra added sugar, so look for low-calorie or “light” varieties. Healthy Snack Ideas • A handful of frozen grapes or raspberries, or a small bowl of fresh fruit salad • Small bowl of wholegrain cereal with skim milk • A few whole wheat crackers with 1-2 tablespoons of Natural Peanut Butter or ½ cup Low- Fat Cottage Cheese • A small handful of mixed unsalted nuts • A bowl of frozen berries with low-fat yogurt or Greek yogurt and 1 teaspoon of honey • 1 slice of lean roast beef on 2 multigrain crackers, topped with tomatoes and cucumber • Mini rice cakes with ½ cup Low-Fat Cottage Cheese • 1/2 cup 100% pure orange juice, Frozen and Eaten as Sorbet • 1 Pita, Warmed, and Filled with Salad Leaves, Tomatoes and 3 Tbsp Hummus • Chopped Raw Vegetables with 1/4 cup of Low- Fat Veggie Dip • 3 cups of Unbuttered/Unsweetened Popcorn, seasoned with herbs • ½ cup Low-Fat Yogurt with ¼ cup Granola (Recommend Quaker or Bare Naked) • 3 Tablespoon of Dried Fruit • 1 slice of Whole Grain/Multi-Seed Bread (Big Sky Bakery) w/ 1 Tbsp Natural Peanut Butter • A Fresh Fruit Smoothie Made with Skim Milk • ¼ cup Tuna Salad Natural Yogurt and Herbs, Spread onto 3 Celery Sticks. • 4 carrot sticks, 2 cherry tomatoes, and 4 green beans served with Guacamole Dip. • 2 Multi-Grain Crackers topped with a 1oz Serving of Cheddar Cheese and 6 Sliced Green Grapes. • 1 Small Apple Sliced, 1 Tbsp Natural Peanut Butter and 2 Tbsp Raisins Sprinkiled on Top • ½ cup Natural Yogurt or Greek Yogurt Topped with 1 Tbsp pumpkin, sesame, or sunflower seeds, and a Pinch of Cinnamon. (cinnamon has been shown to help stabilize blood sugars!) • 1 cup of Low-Sodium Vegetable Soup. • 2 Rice Cakes Spread with Hummus and Topped with Cherry Tomatoes. • 2 Small Kiwis, Sliced and 6 Almonds • 1 Hardboiled Egg with 1 Slice Whole Wheat Toast and 1 slice Cheddar Cheese Courtesy of Suzanne Pirkle, MA, RD, LD Licensed & Registered Dietician

Birmingham YMCA

2101 4th Avenue North • Birmingham, AL 35203 801-9622 • http://www.ymcabham.org/ •


FOOD

FOOD

Nutrition Risk Quiz

Boost Your Metabolism

Not just what you eat, but how much, where and when you eat can affect your risk of becoming overweight. Take this quiz and find out how much of an increased risk you might have for each behavior. For everything with a “+” you have an increased risk. If you eat at least one midday snack you reduce your risk by 39%. Choose a habit to work on and set a goal to measure your progress. HABIT

Increase Risk of being overweight

Eating dinner as your biggest meal of the day Waiting more than 3 hours after waking to eat breakfast Eating more than a third of your meals in restaurants Going to bed hungry (3 or more hours after last food intake) Eating breakfast away from home Not eating breakfast

+6% +43% +69% +101% +137% +450%

Habit Reduced Risk of being overweight Eating at least one midday snack -39% Extracted from the book, The Abs Diet, David Zinczenko, 2007

Stay hydrated Drink a minimum of 8 to 10, glasses daily to help increase your metabolism and remove toxins and fat. Eat Something Every Three Hours This means eat small balanced meals every three hours with snacks in between. Meals and snacks should be balanced, meaning they should contain a complete protein, carbohydrates, as well as natural fat. Failure to eat consistently can lead to a slower metabolism and fat storage. Skipping meals can slow down your metabolism. Don’t Skip Breakfast Breakfast is the most important meal of the day- it gets your metabolism running in high gear. Your first meal sets your metabolism for the day and keeps it going as long as you eat every three hours. If you get up early and eat a late breakfast, you missed out on several hours of burning calories. Focus on Healthy Fat Fat is needed by the body. Those who follow a very low-fat diet have a harder time ridding their body of fat. Choose natural healthy fats such as olive oil, avocados, various nuts, flax, and natural peanut butter. Avoid Trans Fat Most trans fat is created during food processing through partial hydrogenation of unsaturated fats. Trans fat is a common ingredient in some types of margarine, shortening, snack foods and commercial baked goods and can increase your risk of heart disease. The 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommend avoiding trans fat as much as possible by limiting foods that contain synthetic sources of trans fat, such as partially hydrogenated oils, and by limiting other solid fats. Be Active Daily Take the stairs when possible or park further away to get that little bit of extra movement and keep the heart and lungs working optimally. Any chance to get up and get moving burns calories. Do Cardiovascular Exercise Cardio is exercise that involves the large muscles like legs and helps make your heart and lungs stronger. Cardiovascular exercise has lots of health benefits like lowering your blood pressure, and also it can burn lots of calories. Try Interval Training Type of physical activity that involves bursts of high-intensity work alternated with periods of low-intensity work. The high-intensity periods are typically at or close to maximum effort while the recovery periods may involve either complete rest or activity of lower intensity. **Work with a personal trainer or health coach to learn how to safely incorporate this into your workout. Weight Train Resistance training builds muscle, which is metabolically active tissue. One pound of muscle burns an average of 50 calories per day and gives the body a firm, toned appearance. Muscle also acts to absorb force which can reduce impact on joints like knees, shoulders and hips. Listen to Your Body Listen to your body and get proper rest. Don’t train if you are ill or just simply too tired.

Birmingham YMCA

2101 4th Avenue North • Birmingham, AL 35203 801-9622 • http://www.ymcabham.org/ •

Birmingham YMCA

2101 4th Avenue North • Birmingham, AL 35203 801-9622 • http://www.ymcabham.org/ •


FOOD

FOOD

Portions can sabotage your best efforts at healthier eating. Choose from these strategies to manage your portions at home, restaurants, work and on the go.

MyPlate.gov Visit this website to learn more about healthy eating habits. For more information click: www.choosemyplate.gov.

Portion Proof Your Environment Home • Don’t eat directly out of a package or container. Always portion it out first. • Use smaller plates, bowls, forks and spoons for your meals and snacks. • Keep the serving dish in the kitchen. You will be less likely to serve yourself additional portions if the food is in another room. Restaurants • Order an appetizer as an entrée or split an entrée with your dining partner. Portions at restaurants are often very large. When the food arrives, decide how much you will eat and only eat that amount. • Ask the waiter to put half of what you ordered into a ‘doggie bag’ before the food is brought to the table. You’ll be less tempted and you’ll get two meals for the price of one. Work • Schedule meals and snacks into your calendar so you don’t get so busy that you go hours without eating, which may put you at risk for overeating when you finally find time to eat. • Store midday snacks in your workplace kitchen rather than directly in your office. This will reduce the likelihood of “desktop dining” when you aren’t really hungry. • Always bring an afternoon snack with you to work to help refuel when that 3-4 p.m. slump hits. That way, you won’t be tempted by unhealthy options.

Healthier Eating Resource Guide Y Active Weight Loss Class Weight loss is about accountability, education, exercise and motivation. The active weight loss class offers all of these elements plus affordability. This program is open to members and non-members alike and includes citywide access to all the YMCA’s as part of the program. For more information click: http://www.ymcabham.org/activeweightloss Registered Dietician On behalf of the Alabama Dietetic Association, welcome! The Alabama Dietetic Association is a state affiliate of the American Dietetic Association (ADA) which is the nation’s largest organization of food and nutrition professionals. Here you will find information for the Alabama Registered Dietitians and Dietetic Technicians Registered that are committed to promoting optimal nutrition, health and well being For more information go online to www.eatrightalabama.org.

On the go • Apples. Though tasty, peaches, pears, and oranges can be messy to eat, and bananas get mushy. Apples can withstand a lot more abuse. • Protein-rich raw, unsalted nuts such as almonds, sunflower seeds, and walnuts. Tote these for their sheer indestructibility and relative indifference to air exposure. • Dried fruit. To keep the sugars in fruits like raisins from crystallizing, empty a few handfuls into re-sealable bags. (Toss the less airtight boxes.) For items like mangoes and apples, seek out those with no added sugar, to keep calories down and crunchiness at bay. • Vacuum-sealed tuna packets or tuna-salad kits (complete with mayo and crackers). • Celery sticks, baby carrots, olives, cherry tomatoes. These veggies can withstand a fair amount of jostling and time away from the refrigerator. • Packets of plain instant oatmeal. Empty one into a travel mug before a flight, ask an attendant for boiling water, and you have a quick breakfast with no cup necessary. • Drinkable yogurt or single-serving containers of applesauce. Punch a straw through the foil and it’s a spill proof, no-utensil snack.

Birmingham YMCA

2101 4th Avenue North • Birmingham, AL 35203 801-9622 • http://www.ymcabham.org/ •

Birmingham YMCA

2101 4th Avenue North • Birmingham, AL 35203 801-9622 • http://www.ymcabham.org/ •


BALANCE

BALANCE

Diabetes Risk Quiz

Depression

Depression is more than just sadness or “feeling blue”, and different from grief. People with depression may experience most of the following symptoms, for more than two weeks: How do you know if it’s depression you’re feeling? • Do you have a lack of interest and pleasure in daily activities? • Have you experienced significant weight loss or gain? • Are you experiencing insomnia or excessive sleeping? • Do you suffer from a lack of energy? • Do you have an inability to concentrate? • Do you have feelings of worthlessness or excessive guilt? • Do you have recurrent thoughts of death or suicide?

If you answered yes to any of those questions, what can you do? • Set realistic goals-do not expect yourself to be superhuman. You are not responsible for the world, or for the feelings or actions for others! • Exercise-a cost-effective treatment for depression and it’s just good for you! Start small and build up to a regular routine. • Social isolation-increases the risk of depression, but spending too much time discussing problems with friends could actually increase depression as well. • Good sleep habits-plenty of rest, keep a regular sleep schedule- read the sleep handout for more ideas and tips. • Eat healthy-keep track of what you eat, how you feel when you eat, how you feel afterwards. Do not eat just to feel better. • Limit alcohol intake when you are feeling down-that will only make you feel worse. • Challenge your negative thoughts-don’t think of circumstances in terms of “always” or “never.” • Try to pinpoint the life problems that make your feel bad-what can you solve or improve? • Do not take everything personally-sometimes people do not mean what you think they mean. • Seek professional help- if you have major problems getting through the day, if you are crying a lot, and especially if you have thoughts of suicide. Please check the Balanced Lifestyle Resource Guide for information on professional resources.

Could you be at risk for diabetes? Risk factors for diabetes can go unnoticed which can delay medical care. If you’re unsure of your risk you should speak to your physician. Check any risk factors that apply: q My blood pressure is 140/90 or higher, or I have been told I have high blood pressure.

 I have been told I have pre-diabetes

q I have been told that my cholesterol levels are not normal.

 I have had gestational diabetes (diabetes during pregnancy), or I gave birth to a baby weighing more than 9 lbs.

q I am fairly inactive. I do NOT exercise more than two times a week.

 I am overweight (BMI ≥ 25 kg/m2).

q I have or had a parent or sibling with diabetes.

 I am 45 years of age or older

If you have two or more of these risk factors speak with your physician and look into the YMCA Diabetes Prevention Program on ymcabham.org or e-mail nodiabetes@ ymcabham.org

From the American Psychological Association, www.apahelpcenter.org

Birmingham YMCA

2101 4th Avenue North • Birmingham, AL 35203 801-9622 • http://www.ymcabham.org/ •

Birmingham YMCA

2101 4th Avenue North • Birmingham, AL 35203 801-9622 • http://www.ymcabham.org/ •


BALANCE

BALANCE

We all have trouble sleeping from time to time. But you can make it easier to get a good night’s sleep every night with these simple steps.

Lots of things in our lives can make us feel stressed. Causes can include day to day events like heavy traffic and busy schedules or more complicated issues like relationships, family illness or loss. Even temporary, short-term stress can affect you. Stress is more dangerous when it interferes with your normal life for an extended period of time.

Sleep

Cut caffeine The effects of caffeine can take as long as eight hours to wear off. Cutting out caffeine at least four to six hours before bedtime can help you fall asleep easier. Caffeine is in foods and drinks so be careful of where you might be getting caffeine in your diet. Avoid alcohol Alcohol may initially help you fall asleep, but it also causes disturbances in sleep resulting in less restful sleep. An alcoholic drink before bedtime may make it more likely that you will wake up during the night. Relax before bedtime Periods of high stress can also lead to poor sleep. Developing a nightly pre-sleep ritual to break the connection between all the day’s stress and bedtime can improve sleep. Think about reading a book, doing a daily devotional, meditating or anything that begins the relaxation process. Read the stress handout for more ideas to decrease stress.

Stress

How do you know if it’s stress you’re feeling? • Do you feel like parts of your life are out of control and you don’t know what to do? • Do you feel tired a lot, have problems concentrating, or feel more irritable than usual? • Are you having trouble sleeping, having more physical symptoms?

If you answered yes to any of those questions, what can you do? Identify the cause Some things may be easy to correct, and don’t seem so big when you stop a minute and think about it.

Exercise at the right time for you Some people find exercise relaxing before bed- others find it interferes with sleep. Pay attention to the type of exercise, the timing and your reaction to exercise before bed.

Monitor your moods Write down your thoughts and moods during the day. Take time for yourself at least two or three times a week Even ten minutes a day of “personal time” can be refreshing.

Keep your bedroom quiet, dark, and comfortable A cool, quiet and dark room promotes sleep for most people. Keep the room uncluttered, clean and peaceful. Avoid bringing work, bills or other distracting items within reach or view.

Exercise It is wonderful for your body and your mind. Walk away when you’re angry. Counting to 10 may not be enough at times. Learn to breathe—blow bubbles or try meditation for a few minutes each day.

Eat right Avoid going to bed hungry, going to bed overly full or drinking a lot of fluid right before bedtime.

Analyze your schedule—set some priorities and try delegating. Make to do lists that are reasonably short. Leave out those tasks that are “shoulds” but not “musts.”

Restrict nicotine Nicotine is a stimulant that can interfere with sleep.

Set reasonable goals for yourself and others—perfection is not attainable.

Avoid long naps Any more than a 20 minute nap can interfere with a good night sleep.

Expect less of people You will be pleasantly surprised when they exceed those expectations.

Keep pets off the bed Pets can cause sleep problems both from their movement during the night and allergic reactions.

Consider getting professional help from a psychologist or counselor if these suggestions are not enough. Please check the Balanced Lifestyle Resource Guide for information on professional resources.

Avoid watching TV, eating, and discussing emotional issues in bed Both can lead to disturbances in sleep and difficulty falling asleep.

Birmingham YMCA

2101 4th Avenue North • Birmingham, AL 35203 801-9622 • http://www.ymcabham.org/ •

Birmingham YMCA

2101 4th Avenue North • Birmingham, AL 35203 801-9622 • http://www.ymcabham.org/ •


BALANCE

BALANCE

Anxiety

Balanced Lifestyle Resource Guide

How do you know if it’s anxiety you’re feeling? • Do you have recurring intrusive thoughts or concerns; checking and rechecking?

The association Chaplain, Reverend Tom Rains coordinates their efforts. YMCA Chaplains: • Respond to the spiritual needs of members, volunteers and staff • Are inclusive of religious, ethnic and economic diversity • Guide devotions, scriptural studies, prayer, hospital visitation and spiritual events

Anxiety is a common emotion characterized by feelings of tension, worried thoughts and physical changes like increased blood pressure. Serious anxiety can be overwhelming and paralyzing. People with an Anxiety Disorder oftentimes have the following symptoms, for an extended period of time (six months or more):

• Do you have unrealistic worry about everyday occurrences and activities? • Do you experience fear and anxiety that appear for no apparent reason? • Do you avoid certain situations because of anxiety, worrying? • Do you experience physical symptoms such as sweating, trembling, dizziness or a rapid heartbeat? If you answered yes to any of those questions, what can you do? q Remember to breathe Calming breaths will slow down your heart, make you feel more in control. q Prioritize What do you HAVE to do, and what can you choose to postpone or eliminate from your to-do list? q Exercise Not only is exercise good for you, but it can also distract you for awhile from those intrusive worries and thoughts. q Write down your worries Wat do you control, and what do you have no control over? You CANNOT change the past.

YMCA Chaplains- As a dynamic and proactive ministry whose purpose is to build string spiritual and pastoral presence in the YMCA, Chaplains volunteer chaplains serve at all local branches.

Association Chaplain: Rev. Tom Rains Phone: (205) 801-7204 Email: trains@ymcabham.org

Alabama Psychological Association The Mission of the Alabama Psychological Association, the voice of Psychology in Alabama, is to represent and enhance psychology as a science and profession and a means of promoting human welfare. For more information go online to apa.org/helpcenter/anxiety-treatment.aspx To Find a Psychologist: alapsych.org. Crisis Center The goal of the Crisis Center is to serve the un-met needs of people experiencing personal crisis or mental health issues and respond with services that promote coping, emotional health and well being. For more information go online to crisiscenterbham.com. For immediate assistance call: (205) 323-7777 ( 24 hours, confidential)

q Consider looking at situations one at a time Don’t generalize into thinking that everything is “all bad”. Take life one day at a time, one hour at a time……. q Limit your alcohol intake That will only make things worse. q Do not avoid situations Just because you “might feel anxious” doesn’t mean you should avoid dealing with a situation. Avoidance actually only makes your fears worse. q Say your worries out loud Sometimes they will seem less overwhelming when you speak them. q Spend some time with friends and family Social isolation is not healthy for any of us. q Seek professional help If you continue to have these feelings and thoughts, have major problems with sleep, and also have feelings of depression. Please check the Balanced Lifestyle Resource Guide for information on professional resources.

Birmingham YMCA

2101 4th Avenue North • Birmingham, AL 35203 801-9622 • http://www.ymcabham.org/ •

Birmingham YMCA

2101 4th Avenue North • Birmingham, AL 35203 801-9622 • http://www.ymcabham.org/ •


YMCA Birmingham Pathways E-Book