Posts tagged childhood obesity

Healthy Vending Needs to Rethink Healthy

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It’s been way too long since I updated the blog –I know, I know. So much ‘life’ going on –that any downtime I have is not spent on the computer. I haven’t even taken a look at Pokemon Go if you can believe it. My kids have of course!

 

The latest on the refocus on my health and wellness – I’m down about 12.5 pounds and want to lose about 10 more but I am struggling. It’s a constant battle in my head to eat more carbs vs protein. I want, love, am obsessed with carbs. But I definitely notice that I am hungry much sooner than if I had eaten protein. It all comes down to planning and being prepared -which I have not been great at the last few weeks. Lots going on work wise and the kids are out on summer break and have camps to carpool to.  Nothing major but it all adds up to being stressed out.  I have also been working to de-clutter my house. My 14 year old daughter has been helping me go through the piles and piles of clothes, shoes and random junk. Her help has been awesome but I am finding it’s an exhausting process. It definitely has been weighing me down and I don’t have issues with actually getting rid of stuff. My issue is with setting aside the time and focus to do it.  I wouldn’t say that the stuff has any real deep meaning to me –there just is so much of it, collected throughout the years that it’s an overwhelming feeling to make any progress. Does that make any sense?

 

But as I am feeling better overall — I am doing it. I even scheduled a pickup for the crap this week, so it will be completely out of my life!  Freedom….

 

Training is going well – My work with Wayne, my trainer has been great. I can see my body changing. I am seeing real definition in my arms and back – something I have NEVER had before. 30 minutes/2x a week with his expertise and my focus and ability to work and focus, the changes are happening. I’ve been trying to get to Solidcore 2x a week and Boxing 2/3x a week. I also have been wanting to try Muay Thai Boxing as a nice progression from just heavy bag boxing work. I sent a note to a friend who trains at a place in Herndon and am going to check it out next week I think. The key to staying active and fit is to continually challenge yourself and keep learning new things. Which is why I am attached to so many fitness programs. I get bored way too easily and need the constant challenges.  I will share an update about that experience afterwards, of course!

 

My daughter has been in a Volleyball camp the past two weeks and when I go to pick her up, I see this “Healthy” Vending machine. They share some of the profits to combat childhood obesity. Sounds Great, Right?  Well, it would be if they actually sold healthy foods. I would say that most of what they are selling CONTRIBUTES to childhood obesity. I’m not saying that my kids don’t eat stuff like that, but I am not making claims that the money goes to fight obesity when the foods I am offering contribute to it. This is the problem…  Goldfish, Potato Chips, Gatorade – Sugar, Processed Foods, Chemicals. This is not HEALTHY VENDING!  When I mentioned it to HB, she said well the food choices are healthier than others … REALLY?  This is what my daughter thinks or is that what she tells herself?  Scoty said well they wont get any money to contribute if they only stocked healthy food. SMH! WTF?

 

I understand the challenges with keeping fresh food in machines like this — but then don’t disguise it as healthy and that by buying stuff you help combat obesity? You aren’t — you are contributing to the problem in your own community.

 

Healthy Vending - Not

 

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Allowing Kids to be Sedentary is Asking for Trouble

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Neurological Connections Created During Exercise

As a CrossFit Kids Coach – I am always wanting to learn more about neuroscience related to exercise. It’s so influential in how a child learns and grows that not encouraging kids to exercise is just asking for trouble.

Here’s yet another study:

Exercise is a powerful tool for enhancing mental performance and cognitive health.

Exercise is a powerful tool for enhancing mental performance and cognitive health.Whether you want to improve your memory[1][2], enhance your problem solving abilities[3], reduce your risk of Parkinson’s or Alzheimer’s[4][5][6][7], or bend metal and shoot lasers with your mind – exercise has an important role to play in all but two of those activities. In particular, richer exercise regimens – regimens consisting of aerobic and resistance training methods[8][1], produce the greatest overall improvements in cognitive performance. Note, however, working out for sixteen hours each day won’t turn you into the next Stephen Hawking. There are diminishing returns[9], and the favorable cerebral environment promoted by exercise is only as good as the active learning that accompanies it.

 

Childhood Obesity Awareness Month: The Hispanic Community

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I want to start off by sharing with you what I saw on the news this AM: The Donut Burger! I honestly have no words. Do we really think that this what America needs? And for that extra marketing push – let’s aim it at football fans. I am all about personal responsibility but we do all have to be in this together and the people who create shit like this are clearly playing for the other team. I am still shaking my head.

Since I am very interested in education and helping the younger generations get set up for success, I love that many of our CrossFit Impavidus athletes are teachers or work at schools. Mike, a bud of mine from the 6A CrossFit class, is a gym teacher at an elementary school in a local low-income area. 98% of the students at his school qualify for free or reduced lunch. They come from poor, under-educated families and many start life already at a disadvantage.  Tonight is their back to school night and he told me that very few parents will show up. Happens ever year. Many of these students are being raised by their older siblings who are students themselves. The parents work long hours to barely make ends meet. So there is very little parental involvement day to day in their education – which we all know is a key component to students’ success.

We were talking about how this year, he and his co-worker have begun to implement the CrossFit Kids curriculum into their gym program. He mentioned that a large majority of his students are Hispanic and are seriously overweight. Just a quick search of Hispanic obesity rates and its effects served up some alarming statistics from the U.S. Department of Health.  In 2010, Hispanic children were 1.6 times more likely to be overweight than children who are not Hispanic.

We have a serious issue on our hands with all kids and obesity but if you are seeing an entire demographic trending in the wrong direction – that makes it an even bigger problem and one you have to look at not only from the kids’ perspective but from their families as well. 

This month is National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month. I wrote a blog post for the K12 thinktanK12 blog – where I work, about the seriousness of this issue and the effects it has long term on all of us. A lot of what I wrote about was how parents, along with educators, along with national leaders have to work together to address this issue and if we all do our part, we can force changes. But, think about what I told you earlier in this post, many of the students at the school above are not being raised by their parents on a regular basis.  How do you address the issue the teen sister or brother helping raise their younger siblings and they themselves haven’t learned what living an inactive life with poor nutrition can do long-term?

I don’t have any answers — I wanted to put it out there to help spread the awareness and get people talking about some of the real challenges we all have with influencing change among large groups of people who are barely holding on, trying to make ends meet.

Today’s workout was upper body and it was a hero workout – a way to honor a hero that lost their life while in the line of duty.

warmup
3m of double under practice
DROM

skill
TGU

WOD
Arnie” 

With a single 2 pood kettlebell:

  • 21 Turkish get-ups, Right arm
  • 50 Swings
  • 21 Overhead squats, Left arm
  • 50 Swings
  • 21 Overhead squats, Right arm
  • 50 Swings
  • 21 Turkish get-ups, Left arm

15:18 (did lighter KB – 18-20#)

Los Angeles County Fire Fighter Specialist Arnaldo “Arnie” Quinones, 34, was killed in the line of duty on Sunday, August 30, 2009 during the Station Fire. His emergency response vehicle went over the side of the road and fell 800 feet into a steep canyon during fire suppression activities protecting Camp 16 outside the City of Palmdale, CA. He is survived by his wife Lori and daughter Sophia Grace, born three weeks after his death.

Kids: Obesity & Its Effect on Learning

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childhood obesityI have been doing a lot of research about Childhood Obesity and its effect on learning and have compiled a list of recent articles and research about how lack of exercise and feeding kids crap affect their ability to learn big time. You can’t dispute all of the studies and once you go through them — it should really hit you how important it is for us to instill the healthy and fit foundations that will affect them for the rest of their lives.

 

Girl Scouts vs. Health and Fitness

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Today is a much needed rest day for me — I’m sore! Not over crazy sore but definitely a good day to rest. What’s crazy is that I miss the gang though — that’s part of the draw about CrossFit. You want to go workout because you miss your pals if you don’t!

So last night, I coached an adult class and I loved it. At the same time, I was able to see my own two kids working out in their CrossFit Kids classes. I am so proud of both my kids and how they are embracing getting fit.  One of my goals for myself for them as they grow up is to really stress the importance of fitness and health. I want to make sure they have a healthy foundation and that it’s a normal thing for them to get exercise in daily in their lives and think about overall health and fitness.

This past weekend, I went to CrossFit for Hope in DC. At the same time 250,000 Girl Scouts hit the National Mall to celebrate the 100 anniversary of Girl Scouts. I love this organization. I have fond memories of being a brownie and my daughter is having a great time learning and experiencing some wonderful things. So what I am about to talk about is not an indictment against the organization as a whole — they do great things and anything that empowers girls to give back and learn about empowerment is all right in my book.

However – one thing that really bothered me this weekend was seeing many of the troop leaders we saw were very overweight. Here they are mentoring young girls, teaching lessons that empower them with little or no regard for 1. their own health and 2. the example they are setting for the girls in their troop. Yeah yeah, I know they are busy and don’t have time to workout. If you have read this blog for a while or know me — you know i call B.S. on that. If you are willing to make it a priority, you can and do have time!!!

I went and did a little research on how fitness and nutrition are incorporated into the Girl Scouts organization. The Girl Scouts of Central and South Jersey have a page about it, but it definitely is not stressed in any of their materials and they leave it up to their troop leaders and whether they want to stress it or not. I also found some info at the Fitness Guru about how they recently entered into a partnership with “the Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation (HWCF) to provide a turnkey customization of three Journey books (the national Girl Scout leadership curriculum) that will offer a focus on health and wellness. This will enable Daisies, Brownies and Juniors to learn how to be leaders who take care of themselves and inspire others to do the same.”

So that’s great but without the backing of the entire organization to make it a priority this means very little. How about investing in specific programs for the troop leaders themselves so that they will truly understand and embrace the importance of health and fitness. This will no doubt set the stage for their daughters and other girls to begin walking the walk and want to learn more about it.

Also about those cookies — I get that they bring in a ton of money for this non-profit organization. We all appreciate the cookies and it’s about personal responsibility and if you don’t want to buy them, don’t. But –they can certainly make healthier options across the board. “No one will buy them” then is the argument — Well, they can’t be crappy and slapped with a healthy label to solve the problem. People will buy great tasting cookies!

And if the Girl Scouts as an organization is truly behind empowering girls and helping them succeed in LIFE, they owe them nothing less than going all in and really backing up their words about overall health and fitness goals. Science and Research is all over the place about how obesity and type 2 Diabetes are huge threats to our kids and it’s not looking like that will be changing soon — so why not do what is truly in the best interest of those you are set up to help?

1. Set up programs that not only focus on the young girls but on the troop leaders as well. This will only help the younger generation they are mentoring and leading.

2. Look into healthier, great tasting cookie options to offer alongside the standards.

3. Rock the Mall — you could have invited some fitness groups to come and get those kids moving as opposed to just sitting on the mall. With music, comes dancing and fitness routines!!

4. Make one of the CORE programs (required) each year – fitness related. Service leadership is really important of course and most troops do a larger effort each year around that. They should be required to do one with their troop leader that is all about fitness and health and gets them moving and learning about how to be healthy and fit! Biggest Loser type program for all troops?

These are just some of the ideas — but come on parents — look at the example you are setting for your kids. Seeing so many of the overweight women leading these kids this past weekend not only saddened and disappointed me, it angered and annoyed me as well. I get it’s work and change to get moving and take care of yourself, but you owe it to yourself and those kids you love to do it!

 

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