How to Keep Your Muscles, Traveling to Brussels

 Beats, Fit & Fine, The Well  Comments Off on How to Keep Your Muscles, Traveling to Brussels
Feb 242013

Author: Kendall Greenwood

Hiking is a great form of exercise that gets you outside and seeing the sites! Photo Courtesy of Sylvia

Hiking is a great form of exercise that gets you outside and seeing the sites! Photo Courtesy of Sylvia Usery.

Hiking, kayaking and biking. CSU senior, Sylvia Usery, 21, did these activities every weekend during her study abroad in New Zealand in spring 2012. Not only could she check out the scenery and be social, but she could stay healthy during her time away.

Traveling can create a challenge for a healthy lifestyle. There can be decreased food options and no gym to do normal exercise routines. To stay fit while traveling abroad requires a balance of two things: nutrition and exercise.

According to Albert Powell, 33, a strength and conditioning personal trainer at Anytime Fitness, the two most dangerous foods to eat when traveling are starches – like bread, rice and noodles – and sugars.

“The starch is your bricks and your sweets are basically the concrete,” Powell said. “So what you’re doing with your body is you’re blocking everything up [with starches] and [with] the sweets you’re pasting everything.”

This can create future unhealthy habits, but it also has adverse effects on the health you gained.

“So you go on this vacation, you look and you’re like ‘man, I put on five pounds,’” Powell said. “Well, you’ve been eating nothing but carbs and sugar.”

Usery adapted to meals in a similar way while in New Zealand.

“I actually paid for a whole semester of dining hall food, but I stopped going because it was just disgusting,” Usery said. “They have like 5 kinds of potatoes and bread every night.”

Instead, she bought her own food at the grocery store to give herself more balanced meals. She was able to afford some healthier options on a student budget. Avocados were cheap so she was able to eat plenty,Usery said.

Exercise is the other important key to staying in shape. According to Powell, exercising while traveling is very easy.

Workout routines can be easy to keep up when you have been properly trained. Photo by John Sheesley

Workout routines can be easy to keep up when you have been properly trained. Photo by John Sheesley

“If you want to stay in your room and [workout] for a quick hour,” Powell said. “[Get a] resistance band and exercise ball.”

These two objects can work your biceps, shoulders, back, abdominals and legs with the right movements. The exercises will keep your muscles toned and ready for when you can get back into the gym.

“As soon as my clients come back and we pick back up where we left off,” Powell said. “They felt like they never left.”

Plus, they are not a strain on luggage.

“[The exercise ball] comes with a pump so you can just take the air out and hold it in your luggage,” Powell said. “The pump is small, so it’s easy to travel [with].

Target has resistance bands available for anywhere from $12.99 to $19.99. Exercise balls at Target are priced from $19.99 to $29.99.

When Usery was abroad she chose to participate in activities where she could see the scenery and connect with people.

“Every weekend we would go somewhere,” Usery said. “Hiking is always fun and they had such beautiful terrain there that it didn’t feel like you were exercising, because you were just looking at everything around you.”

Powell says you can incorporate this group dynamic into resistance band and exercise ball exercises by doing partner and group workouts.

He has experienced first-hand what these kinds of workouts look like. Before becoming a personal trainer, Powell played international basketball. As his team traveled they had to alter their normal workouts.

“When you’re on [season], you don’t want to come in and lift a bunch of weights because it throws your shots off,” Powell said. “So a lot of what we would do is what I’m telling you [about].”

For Usery, being able to mix exercise and friends added to her experience.

“I would definitely say stay active,” Usery said. “It’s a great way to meet people and just get around the country.”

Getting the most out of your snowshoe

 Fit & Fine, The Well  Comments Off on Getting the most out of your snowshoe
Oct 082012

Author: Lia Conger

Hopes are high that this winter season is going to have downpours of fresh powder to make up for last year’s pitiful snowfall, so if you’re looking for a sport that’s a medium between hardcore skiing and plopping marshmallows in your steamy hot cocoa, then snowshoeing is quite possibly the perfect sport for you.

We will help you cover the basics: how to get started, where to get your gear, what trails are close-by, which relatively close excursions are taking place and a few health benefits.

Snowshoes come in three variations: recreational, aerobic and backpacking. The type of snowshoe you use depends on the difficulty level. The recreational snowshoe is a great fit for the first-time snowshoer and good for using on simple terrain. If you’re looking to do a little cross country, you should look into the aerobic shoe because its polished design is perfect for more agile movements. Lastly, a backpacking snowshoe is made for durability, with its aluminum frame and resilient bindings to support boots.

“Something that most people don’t realize about snowshoeing is the level of difficulty,” said Rob Sharp, a sales associate at Sports Authority. “They’re just not aware how difficult it really is until they actually do it.”

The length of your snowshoe depends on your weight; lengths range from 25, 30 and 36 inches long.

Sports Authority rents and sells snowshoes, as does REI. According to Snowshoe Magazine, prices usually range from $100 to $300 when purchasing snowshoes. The most popular type of snowshoe is the aerobic because it makes movement easier, Sharp said.

The top five things to bring with you on your excursion would be a friend or hiking partner, leather boots, a GPS, a plethora of layers and gaiters, which keep snow out of your boots when you’re trekking in deep snow. Whatever you do though, don’t wear anything cotton because it will soak up and store moisture. Make sure to wear wool or polyesters and, if you can, waterproof your whole body to avoid any frostbite.

As for places to go snowshoeing, you can go anywhere snow has fallen. For a laid-back hike, you can visit Cirque Meadows and Emmaline Lake, which is 6.5 mile trek and has a view of Pingree Park. There’s also Little Beaver Creek Trail, which is just two miles. To ramp up the pace to a moderate difficulty, you can visit Crown Point Road, which is 12 miles, or take a trip to Signal Mountain, which is five miles. For the daredevils, you can trek Stormy Peaks trail, which is six miles in length, or visit Lake Agnes for a strenuous five mile hike.

The CSU Rec Center is organizing a snowshoeing day hike to Lory State Park for Dec. 1, starting at 10 a.m. to go till 5 p.m. The last day to register is Nov. 29.  The hike costs is $20, which includes transportation, instructors, gear, food and poles.

The health benefits of snowshoeing includes little risk of injury and little energy exertion while working wonders for a person’s cardio fitness. Snowshoeing can burn more than 600 calories per hour.

“I loved it,” said Victoria Suha, a CSU freshman who has snowshoed before. “I did it at Steamboat Springs. It’s quite a different experience because you are able to see things you wouldn’t have otherwise seen while skiing because you are taking things in at a slower pace. It’s very peaceful and makes me feel adventurous.”