Archive for Holiday

Tackle Turkey Day with Ease

Some people treat Thanksgiving like an annual marathon (for those of us that don’t actually run them), starving themselves beforehand and mentally preparing by visualizing eating all that delicious food. It’s easy to do, after all, because everything on the dinner table tastes fantastic.

This year, though, we’re hoping you follow a smarter Thanksgiving Day nutrition plan. You can still enjoy all your favorites without feeling like you need to be rolled home afterward. So without further delay, lets start game-planning for this marathon.

Breakfast

That’s right, breakfast. It’s easy to think skipping breakfast is the smart move because that means you can eat more later. However, that’s a trap that leads to overeating and a general feeling of hatred towards your past self. Eat a balanced breakfast on Thanksgiving morning with a carbohydrate, protein and color option. We promise you’ll feel better at the end of the day.

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Thanksgiving Plate

We’ve arrived at the main event. Building a mountain on your plate may seem like a good idea, but it’s best to pace yourself. Eat slower to better gauge how full you’re getting and don’t stuff yourself. Remember, pumpkin pie is still to come, and you want to save room for that. Similar to your breakfast plate, you want 1/3 of your meal to be carbs, 1/3 to be protein, and 1/3 to be colorful veggies. If you feel comfortable, don’t get seconds. You can box that food up and eat it later!

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Hydrate and Exercise

Hydration is key when eating big meals. Sometimes when the body says it’s hungry it’s really craving more fluids. Make sure you’re drinking adequate water throughout the day and during your meal. You’ll also want to get some form of exercise. Whether you hit the football field in the morning or go for a walk after dinner, make sure you’re doing something. A large meal followed by sitting on the couch is not only terrible for you, it also makes you feel terrible.

With your game-plan in place, the only thing left to do is execute. Follow this guide and you’ll be good to go Thursday and the rest of your holiday weekend.

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Brace Yourselves: Winter is Coming

It’s inevitable in this part of the country, but that doesn’t make it any easier. The weather becomes cold, the days become short and those holidays allow for easy overeating. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to counteract the fitness doom and gloom of winter.

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Plan Ahead

If you’re not prepared, winter workouts (or lack thereof) can eat you alive. Formulate a plan of attack to stay in shape, and stick to it. Write your plan or schedule down, and check things off when you accomplish them. They can be as easy or hard as you like, just get in the habit of sticking to your schedule.

Utilize Your Surroundings

There are plenty of workouts you can do with no equipment needed. Our Jeff Richter knows plenty of awesome cardio workouts you can do in the warmth of your living room. You don’t have to go to the gym everyday if you use your surroundings well.

Be Accountable

It’s easier to be motivated in the summer sun when beach days are prevalent and outdoor activities are endless. Having someone hold you accountable to your goals can go a long way in the winter time. Accountability is a must when it comes to your winter diet as well. After all,  slacking off is tougher when someone has the opportunity to call you out on it.

 

Your fitness doesn’t have to fall behind when the temperature drops. Create a plan, utilize what’s around you, and don’t fly solo. Stick to it, and come January, you’ll already be way ahead of the curve.

 

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Be thankful, but don’t be afraid to say, “Thanks, I’m full.”

It’s that time of year when even vegetables get topped with marshmallows. With each year’s holiday season, people are surrounded by numerous calorie-dense food choices. According to The American Council on Exercise, the average adult consumes 3,000 calories at their holiday meal. And that’s one meal, let alone the whole day.

 

Here are some tips to keep your diet in check during this Thanksgiving from St.Vincent Sport Performance, Lindsay Langford, Sports Dietitian, MS, RD, CSSD:

 

Build the Rainbow:  When sitting down to a table full of food, be sure to add “color” to your plate. Foods that are rich in color are generally rich in nutrients. From reds to purples, antioxidants, fiber, vitamins and minerals fill these foods to provide high quality fuel. See how many colimagesors your plate can represent.

 

Drink Up:  Often times, hunger pains are more likely due to dehydration than true hunger. Be sure to drink at least 8oz of water, 30 minutes prior to mealtime to help prevent overeating. During the big meal, skip the sodas, sweet tea and lemonade. These are drinks that contain high volumes of sugar and add a lot of calories, but won’t help you to feel fuller. Stick with water, unsweetened tea, or low fat milk.

 

Pleasing Protein:  Lean protein sources such as turkey, chicken, or fish can be a great way to please the palate. Protein sources take longer to digest, helping your stomach to have the feeling of fullness. By making ¼ of your plate skinless turkey breast, you will find yourself less tempted by the dessert table.

 

It is important to realize that food is fueling your performance. Eat well to play well this holiday season. Stay tuned for more Thanksgiving tips as the big day draws near.

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Top 5 #SVSP Moments of 2013

What a year! From a successful NFL and NBA Combine Program, to a bigger and better Spirit of Sport Awards in June, to the grand opening of SVSP Clay Terrace, St.Vincent Sports Performance had a great 2013.

 

Check out some of the highlights from the year:

 

1. Clay Terrace Grand Opening – In September, St.Vincent Sports Performance opened a second location in Hamilton County and celebrated with a fun and interactive open house. Read about the new facility.

 

2. Tony Kanaan winning the Indy 500 – In May, long time SVSP friend and client Tony Kaanan won the 97th running of the Indianapolis 500. Everyone at SVSP couldn’t be more proud of all the hard work Tony has put in over the years, and were so happy to see him in Victory Circle!

 

3. Get in Shape Harlem Shake – The social media trend “Harlem Shake” took off in February, and SVSP put together our own version.

 

4. Combine Confessional – The athletes in the NFL Combine Training Program took part in Combine Confessional videos, providing an insider’s look into how training for a career in professional football was going. Watch all the videos here, but check out one of the favorite videos, The Gauntlet.

 

5. SVSP Tip of the Month – 2013 was filled with great performance, nutrition, training and psychology tips for any athlete in any sport. Check out two of the best performance and nutrition tips from Certified Strength and Conditioning Coach Jeff Richter, CSCS, USAW and Registered Sports Dietitian Lindsay Langford, MS, RD, CSSD.


 

Here’s to a great 2014!

 

 

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Get a Jump on the Holiday Season with Thanksgiving Resolutions

The holiday season is around the corner, and the average American consumes more than 4,500 calories and 229 grams of fat in one traditional holiday meal. With about 3,500 calories in one pound, that’s enough to gain about a pound and a half in just one meal.

 

Instead of letting holiday eating or gym closures offset your performance goals, SVSP is challenging you to see this Thanksgiving as an opportunity to set your New Year’s resolution early. Here are a few suggestions to transform your indulgent Thanksgiving traditions into successful workouts.

 

  1. Trot away the turkey at a Thanksgiving-themed race. A great way to kick off Thanksgiving with the entire family is to participate in a local 5k race. Running in the USA lists 1,167 Thanksgiving-themed races held throughout the United States, so there’s likely to be one in your neck of the woods.
  2. Transform Black Friday into a workout. On average, a 150-pound person can burn about 470 to 500 calories in three hours of shopping. Not bad after consuming thousands of calories at your Thanksgiving meal. Here are a few fun ways to change up your Black Friday experience:
    • If shopping with a friend, have walking races to see who can get to the next store faster.
    • Take the stairs or use the escalator as stairs whenever possible.
    • Carrying shopping bags burns extra calories, and if you’re up to it, incorporate a few curls while you carry them. Just be sure to evenly distribute the weight on both arms.
    • Partake in in-store displays, like interactive gaming in electronics stores or a climbing wall in sporting goods stores.
  3. Come to the SVSP Clay Terrace Black Friday event. Looking for an alternative to shopping on Black Friday? Come to SVSP – Clay Terrace! Training is free when you bring a non-perishable food item. Check out the training times for runners, middle school, high school and college athletes here. Space is limited, so reserve your spot today.

 

Need more ideas for Thanksgiving resolutions? Check out what some of the St.Vincent Sports Performance staff have committed to for the resolution challenge.

 

Whether your resolution is to lose weight, perform at a higher level, or just set a consistent workout routine, this Thanksgiving marks your chance to finally get a head start! Post your resolution on Twitter or Instagram using #SVSPResolutions.

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SVSP Nutrition- Healthy Holiday Eating

Holiday celebrations have begun, and the temptation to over indulge is around every corner. St.Vincent Sports Performance Registered Sports Dietitian Lindsay Langford, provides a few tips to keep holiday eating under control.

 

Food Modifications:  With each traditional holiday food try and chose a “healthier” counterpart. Take the flavors of a favorite holiday dish, and try to eliminate extra fat and calories. Most of these extra calories come from cooking foods in oil and using excess dairy. Here are a few food substitutions to make holiday favorites lower on the caloric budget.

 

-Roasted Turkey breast instead of Fried Chicken

 

-Baked Sweet Potatoes instead of Brown Sugar Pecan Sweet Potato Casserole

 

-Fresh Green Beans instead of Green Bean Casserole

 

-Whole wheat rolls instead of White rolls

 

-Crust-less Pumpkin Pie vs Pecan Pie

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Slow Down:  The meal isn’t going anywhere, so no need to rush eating. Enjoy conversation, take breaks between foods, drink plenty of water, and place your fork down between bites to help slow down.  When you slow down and truly savor your food, it allows hunger signals to register.  When you eat too quickly, you generally don’t feel as full and eat more than the body truly needs.

 

 

Limit Dessert:  An average slice of pecan pie is over 500 calories with 20-30 grams of fat. That’s almost 25% of the recommended daily calorie intake. You don’t have to completely bypass holiday desserts, but limitations should be set. Try a small slice of crust-less pumpkin pie, fresh fruit with Cool-Whip, or an oatmeal raisin cookie.

 

For extra tips on eating well during the holidays, watch Lindsay’s Sports Nutrition Tip of the Month video.

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How To Eat Well To Feel Well On Thanksgiving

Fresh baked breads, cookie decorating and the cheddar popcorn tins…it’s that time of year again. With each year’s holiday season, people are surrounded by numerous calorie-dense food choices. According to The American Council on Exercise, the average adult consumes 3,000 calories at their holiday meal. And that’s one meal, let alone the whole day.

 

Here are three tips to keep your diet in check during this Thanksgiving from St.Vincent Sport Performance, Lindsay Langford, Sports Dietitian, MS, RD, CSSD:

 

Build the Rainbow:  When sitting down to a table full of food, be sure to add “color” to your plate. Foods that are rich in color are generally rich in nutrients. From reds to purples, antioxidants, fiber, vitamins and minerals fill these foods to provide high quality fuel. See how many colors your plate can represent.

 

Drink Up:  Often times, hunger pains are more likely due to dehydration than true hunger. Be sure to drink at least 8oz of water, 30 minutes prior to mealtime to help prevent overeating. During the big meal, skip the sodas, sweet tea and lemonade. These are drinks that contain high volumes of sugar and add a lot of calories, but won’t help you to feel fuller. Stick with water, unsweetened tea, or low fat milk.

 

Pleasing Protein:  Lean protein sources such as turkey, chicken, or fish can be a great way to please the palate. Protein sources take longer to digest, helping your stomach to have the feeling of fullness. By making ¼ of your plate skinless turkey breast, you will find yourself less tempted by the dessert table.

 

It is important to realize that food is fueling your performance, and how to keep a little slip from becoming a slide. Eat well to play well this holiday season.

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Trick-Or-Treat, Send a Tweet, Give Them Something Healthy to Eat

This Halloween, look to St.Vincent Sports Performance’s Registered Sports Dietitian, Lindsay Langford, MS, RD, CSSD, for strategies to make the candy-crazed holiday your healthiest yet.

 

Wait until the day before Halloween to buy candy to reduce the temptation to indulge early.

 

Keep the seeds from pumpkin carving to make a vitamin-rich snack. Pumpkin seeds are a great source of magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, B vitamins, and protein. Magnesium keeps bones strong and promotes healthy heart rhythm.  Sprinkle pumpkin seeds with sweet or spicy flavoring and roast in the oven.

 

Eat a filling and healthy meal before heading out to trick-or-treat. Foods rich in fiber and carbs will help keep trick-or-treaters and chaperoning parents full, keeping snacking to a minimum.

 

Use trick-or-treating as a time to get in physical activity. Set a goal for how many houses you want to visit, and try to achieve your goal. Wear a pedometer and keep track of how far you walk.

 

When collecting candy, opt for a smaller bag. A large bag, like a pillowcase, will encourage more candy gathering until pillowcase seems full. Pick a smaller sized bag that will fill up faster.

 

In the days following Halloween, try and pair a piece of candy with a healthy snack, such as an apple, a banana, healthy nuts, or celery. Add packets of M&M’s to trail mix with almonds, pumpkin seeds, and dry-roasted edamame, or chop up a candy bar and add it to Greek yogurt.

 

Share your healthy Halloween tips with SVSP! Tweet them to @DefiningSports and a few lucky tweeters will win a prize package from St.Vincent Sports Performance.

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Creating Successful New Year’s Resolutions

 

Now that the holidays have passed, focus moves from seasonal snacks and over-eating, to detox, diets, and New Year’s Resolutions.  Many Americans set goals each January, hoping to improve a part of their lives.

 

According to USA.gov, some of the most popular New Year’s Resolutions year after year are:

 

  1. Drink less alcohol
  2. Eat healthy food
  3. Get a better education
  4. Get a better job
  5. Get fit
  6. Lose weight
  7. Manage debt
  8. Manage stress
  9. Quit smoking
  10. Reduce, reuse, recycle
  11. Save money
  12. Take a trip
  13. Volunteer to help others

 

Whatever your resolutions are this year, Licensed Sports Psychologist and Neuropsychologist, Dr. Adam Shunk, PhD, HSPP, NCSP, provides a few tips on creating and attaining New Year’s resolutions.

 

Make your goals SCRAM.

Approaching a big goal with daily, structured, baby-steps makes the goal much more manageable and achievable.

 

Create a resolution with a partner.  If you both have similar goals, there is an increase in accountability, and an increase in the likelihood of success.

 

Many people fall short of their resolutions because their goals involve a drastic change in their behavior.  To increase the chance of success, create a resolution that increases in intensity, provides a system of accountability, and utilizes reinforcement.  These characteristics make ambitious resolutions easier to manage and keep over time.

 

To prevent burnout with a new resolution, start slow and build up.  If you never go to the gym, and you make a resolution to go seven days a week, the drastic change in your routine will be overwhelming and you are likely to not keep it up.  Start with a few days a week, and then build up from there.

 

The transition time is also an important factor when it comes to New Year’s resolutions.  Understand that results take time, and many resolutions may not show change during the month of January.  Keep with your goals and be patient, and the results will come.

 

For more help with starting a healthy diet this January, check out @DefiningSports Twitter page every Wednesday at noon for the Mid-Week Lunch-Break Health Tip of the Week!

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SVSP Holiday Eating Tips

 

 

The time between Thanksgiving and New Years is filled with large meals, holiday treats, and overeating.  Registered Sports Dietitian Lindsay Langford, MS, RD, CSSD, provides useful tips to minimize over consumption during this holiday season.

 

 

 

 

– Before entering the big holiday meal, be sure you are hydrated.  Often times, a feeling of hunger is disguised by dehydration.  Drink 12-16 oz. of water 30 minutes prior to eating.

 

 

– Mimic rainbow colors on your plate.  Generally, the more color, the more nutrients.  This will add more fruits and vegetables to your holiday meal.

 

 

– If eating a buffet-style meal, be careful that your plate doesn’t begin to look like the Rocky Mountains.  Take small portions of each dish, about a ½ cup.

 

 

– Serve yourself with a smaller plate.  The larger the plate, the more real-estate to fill, resulting in taking more food than you need.

 

 

– Fill up on fiber. The more fiber you eat, the more full you will become.  Go for the whole-wheat rolls, fruits, vegetables, and nuts.

 

 

– Lastly, slow down.  If you slow down and allow hunger signals to register, you will consume less calories.  Don’t start collecting that next bite until you have swallowed the current bite.  Ready, set, slow!

 

 

 

Keep these tips in mind when celebrating this season, and Happy Holidays from everyone at St.Vincent Sports Performance!

 

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