WSPT is pleased to announce that it will be assuming management of Park Central, a Physical Therapy and Wellness clinic in Yonkers,NY.
Park Central opened its doors 14 years ago. Park Central offers the same level of care that you have come to expect from WSPT, including: physical therapy for all ages in a caring and professional environment, state-of-the-art equipment and knowledgeable, experienced and compassionate physical therapist and wellness experts.
Park Central is located 1915 Central Park Avenue,Yonkers, NY. Their warm and welcoming staff will be glad to answer any questions. Please feel free to reach them at: (914) 771-9666. We encourage you to inquire about this new venture. Please visit Park Central’s website, and spread the word to friends and family.
Member Appreciation Day was fun! We had tons of friends stop in and visit, and a lot of new faces. Despite the rain, it really was a great turnout. (It probably helps that the Hutchinson Metro Center has covered parking).
The first event was a seminar on the hip. Attendance was awesome as usual. After setting up the projector and computer, I ran back to my desk to listen in to the webinar. Danny had just bought a brand new microphone and the quality was great. People were asking really insightful questions. I learned something: it is not always good to stretch a muscle before a work out. This is because doing so will expend some of the muscle’s energy and it will fatigue quicker. Very useful!
The seminar ended around 4, and it seemed a good time to put out the food. I have to say, the wraps were delicious.Turkey, Swiss, tomato, and an extremely tasty spread that had everyone walking around asking, “What’s on this that makes it so good?” Turns out it was a cranberry-cream cheese spread. Definitely will be using that to take my wraps up a notch!
Once everyone had been fed and refueled, the classes began. Circuit, taught by Rebecca, was awesome to watch, and it felt like I was getting a workout by just standing there. I can’t imagine walking out of that class without having burned hundreds of calories.
Yoga was packed. Yesterday was absolutely the type of weather day that made you yearn for your bed. It was nice to see so many people come out for an activity just as appropriate for a gray kind of day. The instructor, Denise, was excellent at modifying the poses for the multitude of flexibility levels in the class.
The final class of the night was TRX and it was taught by John. All ages and fitness levels can totally rock this class. The best part, as an observer, was seeing the smiles on the faces of those who had never taken the class before.
The trivia game was awesome. Every staff member had a question that visitors were meant to ask – and members were really excited to find out our questions! Every question answered correctly got a raffle ticket. Our members know their stuff! That pot was full of tickets!
All of us at WSPT would like to formally thank all of you for making this place an amazing place to be! See you in a few months for our next Member Appreciation Day!
Jess has been working at WSPT as a yoga instructor for many years; she would make the early 5:30 trip from Manhattan just so WSPT's founder, Danny, could get his morning fix of yoga. Since then, Jess has grown a loyal following of "yogis". As I was interviewing her, one of her classes' attendees was patiently waiting to give Jess a ride to the train - not because she asked, but because Jess teaches the kind of class that inspires you to give something back and pay a nice favor forward.
I was immediately attracted to Jess's enthusiasm. I caught her right after her 10:30 class, and she was explaining to me the art of putting her normal clothes over her yoga clothes, and how hard she had been working to master this task.
Born and raised in Brooklyn, Jess’s hobbies as a kid were reading books and swimming. Jess was never really into sports, and she proudly states she dropped out of Nerf soccer in kindergarten. Her adventures off the playing field were vast; she spent two semesters abroad, one at Hebrew University in Jerusalem, and another semester at University of Glasgow in Scotland. She graduated Dartmouth Collegewith a duel Bachelors in English and Creative Writing. She received her Masters in English from the University of Chicago.
Jess joined the Peace Corps and served in Bulgaria, teaching English and helping draft grant programs with the local government. Jess thought she might want to return to the states and become and English professor. However, she found herself at a corporate job that had become suffocating. While in college, Jess had dabbled in yoga for the first time. Shortly after, she found a yoga studio she loved, and yoga quickly became a huge part of her life. Feeling unfulfilled at her office job, Jess decided to abandon the cubicle for the studio, and she has been teaching yoga fulltime ever since.
Her first job was at WSPT, and she has developed a fierce loyalty to the facility as well as the faithful class attendance. Jess is an expert in modification; everyone “brings a different body to their mat,” she says. Yoga is meant to be a healthy practice; an instructor needs to make sure it is comfortable and safe for every member, that way it remains a beneficial and fun practice.
When Jess isn’t teaching Yoga, she is busy working with MCC Theatre, writing grants for the office in Manhattan. Check out their latest production, Carrie.
Come take Jess's Class Thursday mornings from 10:30-11:30!
The Holiday Season gives us plenty of opportunities to eat, drink and socialize. With all the festivities, all of the endless tables of delicious food, the wine and egg nog, we don’t realize how quickly we can pack on a few extra pounds. The average weight gain over the holidays is 1.2 pounds, which may not sound like very much. But when you consider that people rarely ever lose the weight over the following year, that can add up to 15 pounds in less than 10 years. How can you avoid this common dietary pitfall?
Start off with a plan. And the plan should include the following suggestions.
- Here is the most obvious, and perhaps the most rewarding tip: EAT WHAT YOU LOVE. Imagine your calories to be a debit account, and everything you eat causes a withdrawal from a limited amount of calories. Why waste any on foods you don’t absolutely love, or food that you can eat all year round? Stick with seasonal, food-that-makes-your-mouth-water treats. Eat those in reasonable portions.
- Avoid over-indulging on the trimmings. Really eyeing those mashed potatoes? Have some! But skip on the butter and the gravy. Don’t over-do it on calorie packed extras like nuts, cheese, cream-based sauces and dressings, gravy, butter or whipped cream. Try skipping appetizers, or munch on the available veggies like celery and carrots.
- Alternate alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages. Alcohol is not only going to add additional calories to your evening, but it will lower your ability to pass up that second serving of pecan pie. Have a glass of water or diet soda in between glasses of wine.
- Wear snug fitting clothes. Wearing loose clothes will allow you to eat more; you won’t feel the belly bulge. A belly bulge is your stomach's way of letting you know it’s full... very full!
- Don’t skip meals that day. Start the day off with a high-fiber breakfast. Attending a holiday gathering with a ravenous appetite is the perfect recipe for disaster. Drink a lot of water to retain that full feeling. Adopting a starvation/binge-eating mentality is unhealthy and will not result in permanent weight-loss.
- Remember that the holidays are not just about food! Hang out and visit with family and friends! Plan to make the night more about conversation and closeness! It will help distract you from all of the tempting food.
- Contribute a healthy meal to the party! This will ensure that you and your family have a healthy alternative to a high-caloric, high-fat entree.
- Stay active! Add an extra 20 minutes to your cardio routine to burn off some extra calories, or add a workout to your week if you don’t exercise already! Physical Activity not only keeps you at a healthy weight, but is proven to help with a restful nights sleep and a decrease in stress levels.
Happy Holidays from WSPT!
Most of us are concerned with our weight. We live in a society that puts a premium on the ‘perfect body’, and for some of us, the pressure of looking good is what drives us to overeat. But a healthy body weight should not just be about looking good. Maintaining a healthy weight puts us at a lower risk for Heart Disease, Diabetes, Arthritis and certain types of cancer. That is something you have probably heard a million times, but it is one thing to know WHY slimming down is important, it’s another thing entirely to change habits, especially when food is such a big part of our culture and, well, it’s delicious.
One of the best ways to begin a ‘diet’ is to erase the term ‘diet’ from your vocabulary. Diet, in this situation, implies something that is only temporary - a means to an end - and once you reach the goal, the ‘diet’ is over, and you can go back to business as usual. That’s not going to work! Fad diets are so restrictive that your body almost believes it’s starving. That’s not a good thing! Humans have been around for so long that our bodies are biologically designed to anticipate periods of hunger; our bodies have not quite caught up to the times - we have more food than we need! So, if you restrict your calories, which seems to make the most sense if you want to lose weight, your body slows it’s metabolism down: it burns fewer calories, believing it needs to keep some in storage because it doesn’t think any more energy will be coming its way. When your ‘diet’ is over, and you have lost the weight you set out to lose, you have set yourself up for disappointment. You may be slimmer, but your metabolism is now slower, and those pounds will pile right back on.
So, what do you do? You look at healthy eating as a lifestyle change. Set realistic goals. If you want to lose 20 pounds, don’t panic and expect to lose them all at once. Losing half a pound to one pound a week has been proven to be the most effective way to achieve long-term weight loss. Why? Imagine for a second that food cravings have a mind of their own. Being conscious of food choices has never really been on your to-do list. Your body has grown accustomed to large amounts of high-fat, high-sugar foods. Suddenly, you eliminate those foods. Your body reacts like it would to a drug being yanked from its system. You don’t even notice yourself buying that cupcake - but there you are, eating one. And then another. Basically, if you deprive yourself of the things that make you happy, your brain will simply say, “NO!” and you will most likely binge on exactly the type of food you are trying to avoid. Treat yourself every day! They sell bite-sized candy bars for just this purpose, or maybe not JUST for this purpose. But they do the trick.
Portion control is very important, and it goes hand-in-hand with moderation. Here is a fun and interactive guide to choosing the right portions for your food!
The Food Plate is a great resource. A very fun, interactive version can be found here. Keep in mind that everyone’s dietary needs are different. The body needs over 40 different vitamins and minerals to function and thrive – feed it well with a well-rounded diet that includes the following: whole grains, fruits, veggies, dairy products, nuts and legumes, lean-meats like poultry, fish and certain cuts of steak and pork. If you have allergies, research alternatives to the foods you cannot eat.
And remember: there is no such thing as “bad” food – even fat is important! Certain vitamins are only fat-soluble. It is recommended that 30% of your daily caloric intake should come from fat. Of course, there are good kinds of fat and bad kinds of fat. Keep your saturated fat consumption down to 10% of your daily caloric intake – or lower! Here is a guide to good fat vs. bad fat.
Write it down! Time and time again you hear nutritionists telling you to journal what you eat. Why? Because it works! Keeping a log of what you eat not only helps you track problem foods (foods you are eating out of boredom, portions that can be reduced), but it forces you to take responsibility. Imagine keeping a food journal as the difference between using cash to buy something, and using a credit card. You are much less likely to spend all of your cash, because you can actually see the money and hold it, than you would be to run up a bill on your credit card, which you can forget about until later.
Make it fun! Try to new recipes. Become a part of the change you are making. Learn to love food without all the dressing. Experiment with different spices and flavors – you may find yourself leaving the fatty condiments like creamy caesar at mayo and the door.
It’s all about small, gradual changes that will last you your whole life! You don’t want a crash diet that will leave you fatigued, hungry, cranky, and bitter. You want delicious, healthful meals that leave you satisfied, energetic, and positive.
Don’t forget the importance of exercise! You need to burn 3,500 calories to lose one pound. That may sound like a lot – but if you shave off 500 calories a day by eating better and exercising more – it’s really not a lot AT ALL! There are so many options to get moving. Running, yoga, walking, Zumba… Increase your physical activity by 10% and you will see dramatic changes in your appearance, stamina, and confidence. Good luck!
Some of the worst and most harmful symptoms of diabetes can be warded off by lowering your blood sugar. Exercise is a great way to manage your diabetes. It can help improve your blood sugar control as well as boost your overall fitness levels and reduce your risk of heart disease and liver damage.
Here are some exercise suggestions:
- Be sure to check your blood sugar levels before you workout and watch for symptoms of low blood sugar while working out. Be sure to have a snack on hand if you sugar levels go low and make sure you check your levels again 45 minutes after working out.
- When you understand how exercise works, you are more likely to do it. When you exercise, your muscles use sugar for energy. When your muscles are using sugar, there is less sugar in your blood resulting in a lower blood sugar reading. The more strenuous the exercise, the longer the lower blood sugar will last.
- Cardiovascular exercise is the best choice for someone looking to lower their blood sugar. The best thing is find an exercise you enjoy such as jogging, walking, dancing, biking, swimming, or even taking an aerobic class.
- Do a minimum of 30 minutes of cardiovascular exercise to help you with your blood sugar.
Running is just as much a mental sport as it is physical. The very idea of taking on such an arduous task is overwhelming for even experienced runners, never mind the anxiety it instills in beginners. As with all things in life, it is best to have the right attitude. Get yourself in the mindset that you can and will achieve each and every goal you set - no matter how high or low you aim - and you will be putting your best foot forward.
There is such a thing as runners’ psychology: the thoughts that are with you as you embrace the path ahead. Negative thoughts make each step heavier and harder to bare; the body fatigues quickly as motivation dwindles from the start. It is so important to practice positive visualization.
What inspires you to run? The health benefits of running are well known - but beyond that, if you close your eyes and imagine yourself taking that first step, what excites you about the road ahead? Is it the trail? The scenery? Beating your own record? Envision the most perfect run. Practice these visualizations at least 10 times a day. Be detailed. Remember, you have complete creative control. Feel yourself breathing, feel your feet hitting the ground, feel the wind on your face. If you train your mind to respond with intense enthusiasm and excitement to running, your body will respond accordingly.
To help you stay positive, think up some affirmations or mantras. These should be short, strongly optimistic messages that you repeat to yourself until you trick the mind out of hearing that cynical voice always trying to break through. Some examples are: “I can do anything”, “I am getting faster”, “A race with fun is easy to run.” Affirmations should be said in the present tense, reminding you of the importance of the here and now.
Setting goals is a priority. Knowing where you are and where you want to be are two significant values. Set goals that are reasonable for YOU - don’t worry if someone is more advanced. Every runner began at the beginning!!