Archive for February, 2010|Monthly archive page

The Fitbit

Just heard about this thing…seems to be a useful product to help people get a better understanding of their own personal fitness.  Very reasonably priced too…check it out.

How does the Fitbit Tracker work and what does it track?

The Fitbit Tracker contains a motion sensor like the ones found in the Nintendo Wii. The Tracker senses your motion in three dimensions and converts this into useful information about your daily activities. The Tracker measures the intensity and duration of your physical activities, calories burned, steps taken, distance traveled, how long it took you to fall asleep, the number of times you woke up throughout the night and how long you were actually asleep vs just lying in bed. You can wear the Tracker loosely in your pocket or clipped to your clothing, even bras.
How accurate is the Fitbit Tracker?
Calorie data from the Tracker is very similar to those from energy expenditure measurement devices used in clinical research. The Tracker will give you a good sense of how your activity levels change from day to day.

The Tracker is also one of the most accurate pedometers. We’ve tuned the accuracy of the Fitbit step counting functionality over hundreds of tests with multiple different body types. For most wearers, the Fitbit should be roughly 95-97% accurate for step counting. We spent a lot of time ensuring that this accuracy is achieved even when you wear the Fitbit loosely in your pocket.

Sleep data from the Tracker correlates very strongly with results from polysomnograms found in sleep labs.

More information found at

Intense at home workout

A lot of people assume that at home workouts are more geared for women or people who aren’t in great shape.  Check the above video for some intense work out moves that are great for even the most experienced athletes.  Look for a huge database of of in home workout routines for all skill levels at in May

The 6 most annoying people you find at the gym

In no particular order…

1.  Mr. Imaginary Lat Syndrome –  You know the type.  In his mind he’s 6’6” 275 lbs of straight muscle.  He walks around with his arms a good foot from his body so everyone can see what large and muscular imaginary lats he has.  Reality sets in when he realizes he’s not even sure how to use half the equipment in the gym, and his routine consists of dumbbell curls, machine bench press, calf raises, exit.

2.  The Princess –  Typical attire includes full makeup, hair spray, jewelry, and a ridiculously expensive workout outfit. These damsels can usually be found congregating around the ellipitcals or ab machines.  They don’t do much work, they are just there to look pretty and take up space on the equipment.  God forbid they break a sweat. 

3.  The 20 to 30-something frat guy – He desperately wants the world to know that once upon a time he was a frat boy.  Seems to have an unending supply of party t-shirts, usually dating to the early 2000’s.  Typically he will cut off the sleeves of these shirts so everyone is able to see how big and strong he is.  He is a big proponent of the “beach work out”.  Goes hard on biceps, chest, and shoulders.  Neglects everything else and has toothpick legs to show for it.  Rock on braah!

4.  The Couple – The 105 lb woman spotting her bodybuilder husband while he’s benching 350.  The muscle man trying to show his, never-worked-out-a-day-in-her-life girlfriend how to properly perform a clean and press.  You know the type.  Add in a lot of kissing, back rubbing, and use of the word “babe” every other sentence, and you’ve got the makings for a perfect storm.

5.  The Grunter – You can hear him a mile away.  “UGHHHH”  “ARGGGGGH”  “HUMPHHHHHUGGH”.  Not only does he want you to see how hard he’s working, he wants you to hear how hard he’s working.  Typically an older gentlemen, who may or may not be suffering from an inferiority complex…or mid life crisis.  Take your pick.

6.  The Naked Guy – Strictly found in the locker room.  For some reason, he feels the community locker room is his own personal space.  It’s one thing to change into clothes, but another thing entirely to brush your teeth, do your hair, weigh yourself, go back to check your hair, towel off your already dry body…in the nude.  He hasn’t a care in the world.  He is seemingly oblivious to the view he is giving the rest of the locker room when he bends down for the 5th time to stretch out his “bad back”.  Picture not necessary.


This one is tough, no other way to put it.  Try cutting down the numbers if this is too hard for you to complete.

90 seconds of jumping rope

50 lunges

50 pushups

50 situps

90 seconds of jumping rope

40 lunges

40 pushups

40 situps

90 seconds of jumping rope

30 lunges

30 pushups

30 situps

90 seconds of jumping rope

20 lunges

20 pushups

20 situps

90 seconds of jumping rope

10 lunges

10 pushups

10 situps

HIIT train your way to a lean body – Jump rope!

Jumping rope is a great exercise.  Jumping rope in high-intensity interval fashion is a greater exercise.  Follow along with the video above and aim for about 20 minutes.  Depending on your intensity, a 20 minute session can easily burn 300+ calories.  Give it a try to break up your boring cardio routine of running on a treadmill for 45 minutes.

Fat vs. Muscle

Powerful demonstration of what 5 pounds of both muscle and fat look like.  This should make it much more clear that losing 5 pounds of fat will make you much smaller than adding 5 pounds of muscle will make you large.  Many women are afraid of adding muscle because they don’t want big bulky bodies.  The only thing making bodies big and bulky is excess fat, as shown above.  Don’t be afraid to add muscle to your frame. In addition to it creating a lean, healthy appearance, it will help increase your metabolism which in turn will burn more calories while you are at rest.

Laughter Yoga

From Chicago Tribue:

Whitney Munro did not think that as a fitness specialist and mother she had to take a class just to learn how to laugh. But she signed up for laughter yoga class and second-guessed herself all the way to the American School of Laughter Yoga in Chicago.

Two days later, she returned home exhilarated, eager and certified to teach laughter therapy to the seniors she helps at Fairview senior living community in Downers Grove.

Now Munro, of Homer Glen, has 16 regulars in laughter class. The students come, some with the aid of canes or walkers, and begin by shaking hands and trying a fake laugh. But their fake laugh is short-lived. Soon one is truly laughing, and then another, and people in the hall are stopping to see what’s so funny in the fitness lab…

Full Article

Cardio for those with bad joints

Low-impact high-intensity cardio is a terrific way to get your cardiovascular exercise accomplished without compromising your knees, hips, and ankles. 

Exercise Picture
Warm up
Warm up for 2 or more minutes with light cardio, such as step touches (as shown).  Really use your arms to get your heart rate going.
csteptouch.jpg  csteptouch2.jpg
Side Lunge with Windmill Arms
Stand with legs wide, arms straight out to the sides and parallel to the floor.  Bend the right knee into a side lunge and bring the left arm down towards the foot.  Repeat on the other side, lunging from side to side and bringing opposite arm towards foot.  The faster you go and the lower you lunge, the harder it is.  Repeat for 1 minute.
cwindmill1.jpg  cwindmill2.jpg
Knee Lifts with Med Ball
Hold a light medicine ball or weight straight up overhead.  Lift the right knee up to waist level while bringing the arms down, touching the weight to the knee.  Return to start and repeat on the left side.  Alternate knees and repeat for 1 minute.  
kneeupsmedball1.JPG kneeupsmedball2.JPG
Front Kick with Squat
Stand with feet together.  Bring the right knee up and extend the leg in a front kick (don’t lock the knee!).  Lower down into a low squat (knees behind toes) and then kick with the left leg.  Repeat (right kick, squat, left kick) for 1 minute.
Diagonal Knee Smash
Shift your weight to the right foot and take the left leg straight out to the side, toe lightly resting on the floor and arms extended up and to the right of the body.  Bring the left knee up and across the body while bringing the arms down and towards the left with a torso twist.  Take the left foot down, tapping the floor and continue with the knee lift and arm smash for one minute, going as fast as you can.  Repeat on the other side for one minute.
kneesmash1.JPG kneesmash2.JPG (73906 bytes)
Side Lunge with Punch
Begin in standing position and turn to the right, stepping the left foot straight back and bending the right knee into a lunge while punching with the left arm.  Step the left foot back to start and repeat on the other side, lunging to the left and punching with the right hand.  Move as quickly as you can while keeping good form and repeat, alternating sides for one minute.
lungepunch1.JPG lungepunch2.JPG
Side Knee Lift and Kick
Shift the weight to the right leg and take the left arm straight up.  Bring the left knee up to hip level while taking the left elbow down towards the knee, squeezing the waist.  Lower the leg, shift your weight to the left leg and kick to the side with the right leg.  Repeat the knee lift, side kick for one minute then switch to the other side and repeat the same thing for one minute.
kneesidekick1.JPG kneesidekick2.JPG
Front Kick and Low Lunge
Bring the right knee up and extend the leg in a snapping front kick without locking or hyperextending the knee.  Bring the leg back and, keeping your balance on the left leg, immediately take the right leg back behind you in a lunge while touching the floor with your fingertips. Repeat the kick and low lunge sequence for one minute and repeat the sequence on the other side for one minute.
frontkicklunge1.JPG (72285 bytes) frontkicklunge2.JPG
March in Place
Use this as a cool down or a transition for repeating the entire circuit.
Stop here for a 12-minute workout or repeat the circuit one or more times for a longer workout. 


Get Healthy – Create your own Condiments!

Have you ever looked at the back of a ketchup, mustard, or mayonnaise bottle and wondered what the heck is in there?  Aside from huge amounts of sugar and salt, there are tons of unpronounceable preservatives and chemicals.  Do you really want these going into your body?  No way.  Aside from making you fat (sugar) who really knows what these chemicals are doing to your insides.  It’s easy, healthy, and tasty to make your own from scratch.  Follow these simple recipes.


Provides 2 cups

  • 1 1/2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 28 ounces of fresh tomatoes.  Canned is fine if you cannot get fresh.  Puree in a blender and strain to remove seeds
  • 1 1/2 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper

Heat oil in large pan over medium-high heat.  Saute onion and garlic for 7 minutes.  Add the remaining ingredients and combine well.  Bring to a simmer and leave uncovered for 1 hour, with an occasional stir.  Remove from heat after 1 hour and blend until smooth.  Store in airtight container for up to two weeks.


  • 3 tablespoons yellow mustard seeds
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons brown mustard seeds
  • 1/3 cup drinking-quality white wine
  • 1 shallot, minced (about 2 tablespoons)
  • Pinch ground allspice
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon white pepper

In a non-reactive bowl, combine all ingredients and refrigerate overnight, covered.

Transfer the mustard mixture to a blender and process until mustard has obtained the desired texture and thickness; it is equally delicious whether you leave it chunky or smooth. Store in an airtight, non-reactive container in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

Mustard recipe courtesy Emeril Lagasse

Lemon Tartar Sauce

Provides 3/4 cup

  • 1/4 cup non-fat Greek yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 1/2 dill pickle, finely chopped
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1/8 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 5 drops hot sauce (or to taste)

Combine ingredients in a small bowl and mix well.  Store for up to three days.

Share It Fitness Pro Bio – Ben Hogan

Our next pro bio will take a look at PGA golf instructor, Ben Hogan.   Ben’s video above gives a quick look into his meticulous  approach towards golf instruction and technique. 

From Ben:

My name is Ben Hogan and golf has been part of my life since I have been able to walk. I have been playing competitive golf since the age of nine and have played in professional tournaments for the last 7 years. I played NCAA Division I golf for George Mason University and was the team captain my senior year.
As a highly accomplished amateur, I was fortunate enough to have worked personally with Kirk Lucas, an instructor to PGA and LPGA tour players, for over ten years. Recently I have had the opportunity to work with many of my fellow PGA Professionals such as Dick & Mary Canney and Quin & Jimmy Sullivan. Through their knowledge and wisdom I have been able to develop my own teaching methodologies. I have extensive knowledge in techniques and drills to help correct swing faults. I receive great satisfaction from helping students improve and enjoy the great game of golf.

As the late Ben Hogan once said “golf is not a game of good shots. It’s a game of bad shots.” What does that mean? The game of golf was not meant to be played hitting perfect shots every time, but rather minimizing and managing our miss-hits. I believe in and teach this very theory. Most golfers don’t have the time to build a great swing, but with guidance and instruction everyone has a chance to produce their own solid repeating swing.
I believe that the golf swing starts with a solid foundation, which every golfer can accomplish no matter what level they are on. A solid foundation consists of posture, grip, stance / aim, and ball position. Once the foundation is established, a golfer has the ability to produce a consistent repeating swing. Without it, a golfer is doomed before the club goes back.
To help reinforce my instruction, I like giving my students simple drills to perform. I believe swing drills help simplify more complex  movements that occur in the golf swing. Drills help to ingrain the proper movement of the swing and make the swing feel more natural.
My main goal as an instructor is not to build robots who all swing the same, but rather to help the student learn about their own swing. I want my students to know why/how I am changing their swing so that they can learn from it and help themselves later down the road.

Looking forward to working with you on all on Share It Fitness,

Ben Hogan

Look for more information from Ben in the coming months, and as always, check back at in May to book your 1-on-1 lessons with the expert.

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