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Feburary 2006 Newsletter

Conquering the Winter Blues


Dear Fellow Business Traveler,


Beware of weight gain that starts during the holidays and continues through the long winter months. If the winter weather has you off your fitness program, this month's newsletter can provide some ideas for how to put the spark back into your regime.


To Your Health,
Customer Service, Healthy Travel Network and Chief Fitness Officer


squareFight Boredom with Variety


Let's be realistic. Bad winter weather can really put a damper on your exercise program. Your outdoor choices are limited, and depending on where you live, getting to the gym might be really be a challenge. Creativity and variety can help you overcome the winter "dull-drums." Try some of our ideas or perhaps they will spark some new ideas for you.

Exercising at Home or on the Road
What better time to exercise than when you're snowbound and have ample time on your hands?! Here are a few ideas for indoor activities, even if you don't have a fancy home gym. The portable nature of all of these tools is also great for travel.

:: Exercise Kits -- Portable exercise kits make a great alternative to expensive home gyms. Lightweight, compact, and versatile, you can easily obtain a high-quality kit for under $100, as compared to almost $1,000 for an entry-level home gym. Look for kits that come with interactive CD's or DVD's to guide you in your workouts.

:: Jump Rope -- Jumping rope is a great cardiovascular exercise. A 130-pound female jumping at a moderate pace for 15 minutes burns almost 150 calories! Better yet, jumping rope only requires the rope and a bit of space. No jump rope? No problem; scrounge through the basement or garage for a piece of rope. Amazon has plenty of jump rope options as well, including this nifty one with a built in calorie counter.

:: Workout Videos -- Dozens of outstanding videos are available today, with all manner of programs from aerobics to yoga and Pilates to body strength exercises. With the Internet and home delivery, there's no excuse for not ordering one! One of our favorites is Strength, Balance, and Flexibility from Christi Taylor. Click the Amazon link at right to learn more, or search Amazon for more videos.

Jazzing up Your Gym Workout
When you just can't face another 45 minutes on the treadmill, jazz up your workout by turning it into an interval routine. Not only will you burn more calories, but the variety will keep you more interested and focused as your mind naturally gravitates to concentrate on each interval rather than the workout as a whole.

:: Cardio Intervals -- No matter what your favorite cardio machine is, you can increase the calories that you burn by more than 50% with an interval workout. Most cardio machines have one or more pre-programmed interval workouts, or try this easy formula:

Minutes

Activity
Rate of Perceived Exertion
5

Warm-Up
8-9
1

Base Station
11-12
2

Recovery
9-10
2

Climb
11-12
3

Recovery
9-10
2

Vertical Climb
12-13
3

Recovery
9-10
1

Summit
12-13
3

Recovery
9-10
1

Max Summit
12-13
3

Recovery
9-10
5

Cool-Down
8-9
30

Total Minutes


For more interval workouts, see our October 2005 newsletter.

:: Try Something New -- Spice up your regime by trying a new class or activity. I like taking new classes at least twice before making a judgment about whether I like it or not. Use the first session as a learning experience, and plan on finding your groove during the second session. Don't limit yourself to activities available at your gym: Is there an indoor pool nearby? Hiking? Snowshoeing? Ice skating? Think outside the box!

:: Find a Friend -- Make a workout date with a friend. There's nothing like a little peer pressure to motivate you to get to the gym. Exercise Friends is a nifty site where you can search for people in your area who are looking for a workout partner. Search for like-minded individuals in your area, or post your own profile. If you're traveling, Exercise Friends is also a great way to find someone to workout with while you are on the road.


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