Snap Fitness Health & Fitness Blog

Posts 391 - 400 of 610

My Snap Success: Daniel H. Drops 70 lbs. in 7 Months

By: Snap Fitness

Daniel H. was never a “health nut.” He was always active, balancing two part-time jobs, sports and academics all the way through high school, and his father owned a construction business, meaning Daniel’s afternoons and weekends were jam packed full of manual labor. Still, he never watched his diet or thought about what he ate. Fortunately for him, his active lifestyle canceled out those calories and kept him in decent shape. Then one day, it all changed.

 

Five months after graduating high school, Daniel’s parents bought a local grocery store, and he traded in his long days of working in the sun for a new job that came with a cozy chair and air conditioning.

 

“I was sitting behind a cash register all day, just eating anything and everything I could possibly want,” he explains. “Then about two months later they opened a pizzeria in the store, and the eating continued. Next thing I knew I had gained more than 60 pounds.”

 

Realizing he needed to make changes, Daniel tried dieting on his own. Unfortunately, it didn’t stick.

 

“I would go on a diet for a couple of weeks, then break down and end up gaining twice the amount I had lost,” he says. “At one point I was really low, and thought ‘I’m miserable when I’m dieting, but I’m happy when I’m eating. Who cares if I’m fat?’ which was a bad place for me to be.”

 

That’s when Daniel joined the Snap Fitness in Lockport, N.Y. and finally got on a workout and eating plan that were right for him.

 

“Snap Fitness helped me shatter my old habits,” he says proudly. “I’ve lost over 70 pounds in the past seven months, and created a new life for myself. I’ve never felt better.”

 

When it comes to getting started on the path to losing weight, the first step is always the hardest. But just like Daniel experienced, having the right group of people around you can make a world of difference.

 

“I want to thank the Snap Fitness crew for helping me get back in shape. They’ve been great, and I couldn’t have done it without them.”

Featured Recipe: Spicy Black Bean Burgers

By: Snap Fitness

Veggie burgers are a fantastic, guilt-free alternative to burgers. Most people shy away from veggie burgers because of their bad rap as being too bland. There are many variations of veggie burgers out there, but none compare to the taste of a black bean burger.

 

If you’re looking for a meal that is simple to make, full of protein and fiber, and not to mention, delicious, you came to the right place! We added a touch of spice to these bean burgers for a burst of extra flavor that will wake up your taste buds sing. We suggest topping these bad boys with avocado, lettuce, and tomato.

 

Ingredients:

1 16 oz can black beans, drained and rinsed

1/2 white onion

1/4 green pepper

1/4 red pepper

2 cloves garlic

1 egg

1/2 cup panko ( bread crumbs)

1 tbsp cumin

1 tbsp chili powder

4 100% whole wheat burger buns

4 cheese slices if desired

 

Directions:

1. Chop onion and garlic finely, or use a food processor and pulse until chopped.  Set aside

2. In a medium size bowl, add beans, bread crumbs, egg, cumin and chili powder. Add finely chopped onion/garlic to bean mixture

3. Mush up bean mixture until thoroughly mixed, but not runny

4. Form your burgers into 4 patties. Heat a nonstick skillet to medium heat. When pan is fully heated, lightly coat with olive oil or cooking spray. Place your burgers down and let them cook for about 5 minutes, until flipping. There should be a light brown crust on the very top layer of the burger

5. After flipping, add the sliced cheese (If desired) to the top of the burger, and cover your skillet, allowing cheese to melt quickly and evenly

6. Remove burgers from skillet and let cool before serving

7. Enjoy! 

Treadmill Interval Calorie Burner

By: Snap Fitness

 

Interval training is an effective way to get more out of your workout and burn more calories.

 

With Interval Training, you should be working at or above 85% of your max heart rate for a period of time, followed by a recovery period at 60-70%. This type of workout has a lingering effect, which helps your body burn more calories after your workout.

 

To learn more about Interval Training, check out Jodi’s blog on "The Importance of Varying Exercise Intensity.”

 

Now turn up your tunes and get to work! 

 

Jump Into Fall Playlist

By: Snap Fitness

There are two things that make that trip to the gym worthwhile:

 

1. The feeling you get when your workout is finished

2. Music

 

A kick butt playlist can make all the difference. Think back on the times when you either forgot your music, or didn’t work out with music at all. Was it tougher to get motivated? Exactly.

 

To help inspire you to work harder, we’re revamping your fall playlist with some new tracks to keep your feet moving!.

 

Grab your headphones and hit the gym! 

 

 

The 411 on a Nutritious Diet

By: Snap Fitness

Everyone wants to eat healthy. But what does “healthy” really mean?


Is it nothing but fruits and veggies for every meal? What about fast food restaurants that have healthy options; do those count?


Understanding a healthy, nutritious diet can be overwhelming if you don’t know what you’re looking for. That’s why this week we’re helping you get down to basics.

 

A nutritious diet has five characteristics: 

 

1. Adequacy – provides all the essential nutrients, fiber and energy in amounts that are sufficient to maintain health and body weight 

 

2. Balance – all nutrients are being consumed proportionality  

 

3. Calorie control – the foods you eat provide the amount of energy you need to maintain your appropriate weight 

 

4. Moderation – the foods you eat do not provide excess fat, sugar, salt and other unwanted constituents 

 

5. Variety – the foods chosen differ from day to day

 

Any one of these principles alone cannot ensure a healthful diet. 

 

Now that you’ve got the characteristics, what types of nutrients should you include in your diet? Are you trying to think back to grade school and remember what nutrients are? Don’t worry, we have you covered!

 

Nutrients are absolutely necessary for a body to function properly and can only be provided by the food you eat. Nutrients provide energy, maintain or repair body parts and support growth.

 

There are six essential nutrients -

 

Water – most important nutrient because your body uses water 24 hours a day, carrying nutrients to the cells in your body

 

Carbohydrates – primary energy source for the body – power every system in the body (brain, heart, muscles, organs)

 

Fat – primary purpose of fat is energy production

 

Protein – essential for building and repairing body cells

 

Vitamins – essential for regulating body functions such as preventing nutritional deficiencies, promoting good health and aiding in building body tissue

 

Minerals – play a significant role in helping your body properly function. Calcium is an example of a mineral – it is crucial in the formation and maintenance of bones.



Now that you know more about the characteristics and makeup of a nutritious diet, it’s time to start putting it into action. The next time you’re at the grocery store, look at the nutrition facts on the food you’re buying. How does it stack up when it comes to nutrients? Most fast food websites also include nutrition information, and now you have a better idea of what to look for.



It’s the little changes that can make the biggest difference, and understanding the basics of a nutritious diet is the first step to getting the results you want!

Optimal Upper Body Superset Workout

By: Snap Fitness

In a superset, you perform two exercises back to back without a rest. For this superset workout, each superset is made up of two exercises that work on opposing muscle groups or joint actions.

 

The added bonus for superset workouts? You are cutting out that resting period between sets, so you will get out of the gym and on with your day that much quicker!

 

Be sure to set up your equipment before you start to make the most of your time.

 

The Warm-Up:

 

High knees – 60 seconds

Mountain climbers – 60 seconds

Jumping Jacks – 60 seconds

 

The Workout:

 

8-10 reps of each exercise

Complete 3 sets of each superset and move on to the next

 

1a. Dumbbell or barbell bench press

1b. Bent-over dumbbell row

 

2a. Dumbbell shoulder press

2b. Pull-up / Assisted pull-up

 

3a. Dumbbell curl

3b. Tricep kickbacks 

 

The Cool-down:

 

End your workout routune with some ab work and stretching

 

1. Straight Arm Plank (1 min.)

2. Bicycle crunches (30)

3. Elbow Plank (1 min.)

4. Stretching exercises for 3-5 minutes

 

 

Click here to get a printable version of this workout! 

8 Tips To Get More Fruit Into Your Diet

By: Snap Fitness

Do you find it hard to stay consistent with your fruit consumption as the winter months approach?  If so, you aren’t alone. Fruit contains loads of vitamins, minerals, and fiber that keep your body functioning properly. The benefits are endless!

 

We’ve already given you tips for 5 Tips to Get More Veggies Into Your Diet, but the question remains: How do you incorporate more fruit into your diet?

 

The answer is quite simple. Fresh fruit can easily be added to some of your favorite foods, if you have the willingness to be creative.

 

Here are a few ways to sneak more fruit onto your plate.

 

1. Add fresh fruit to your greens. Yep, we said it! Try adding fruit such as; peaches, apples, pears, or berries to your salad. Fresh fruit adds a bit of sweetness that goes great with mixed greens

 

2. This one is a no-brainer! Mix fresh fruit into your daily smoothie. Cut up fresh fruit and freeze for smoothies. The fruit not only acts as a sweetener, but also as ice when frozen.

 

3. Keep fresh fruit easily accessible. Cut up fruit right after you get home from the grocery store. Being prepared is key!

 

4. Slice up a banana or add fresh blueberries to your morning cereal or oatmeal.

 

5. Break out the grill! There is nothing better than fresh fruit on the grill. Grilling fruit brings out the sweetness. Try pineapple, peaches, or bananas

 

6. Frozen fruits are just as nutritious as fresh. Use frozen if it is more convenient for you.

 

7. Stuff apples with raisins, dried apricots and walnuts and bake in the oven for a healthy dessert.

 

8. Don’t forget AVOCADOS! Yes, they are a fruit. Add these to your favorite sandwich, salad, or dip.

 

How are you going to add more fruit to your diet today?

 

Three Fitness Costume Ideas for Halloween

By: Snap Fitness

In just a few short weeks, people from all over the world will dress up in their scariest, funniest and weirdest costumes for trick-or-treating and Halloween celebrations. 


While having all sorts of candy and Halloween treats constantly floating around during the month of October can be challenging, we’ve got some fitness-themed costume ideas that might give you some extra motivation to keep up with your fall workout routine while being the hit of your next Halloween bash!


Knock-Out Boxer


You can go a few ways on this one. On one hand, you could go the Rocky route, complete with the robe, boxing trunks, and gloves. For this look, we would like to recommend the optional well-feathered Sly Stallone 1978 hair, and if you have a Russian friend, that costume pretty much plans itself.


The other option is the Katy Perry look, which is definitely a little more intense, and shows a lot more skin. Musical ability optional.


Tennis Star


This is probably the easiest fitness-themed costume there is. Step 1: Find headband. Step 2: Pull up knee-socks. Step 3: Carry racket. Boom – costume.


The tennis star look is easy for men or women to pull off, and can be kicked up a notch by adding in either a tennis skirt or some short-shorts. Time for squats!


Richard Simmons


Timeless. He’s one part curly wig, one part tank top, and all parts sass. Grab some wristbands and white sneakers and you’re almost there. However, just remember that no one wants a sad-sack Richard Simmons at their party, so make sure you keep up that enthusiasm!


No matter what your plans are for Halloween, these fitness-themed outfits will be a gentle reminder to drop the fun-sized candy bar and keep up your workouts this October.

Featured Recipe: Applesauce Pumpkin Bars

By: Snap Fitness

If you love the taste of pumpkin, you’re going to LOVE this recipe! The problem with pumpkin bars is most recipes call for one cup of oil, which can add up. We decided to substitute applesauce for the oil to lighten the load of these bars.

 

This recipe still contains sugar and eggs, but those ingredients can easily be swapped out for egg substitute and brown rice syrup. You will be more than happy with these deliciously moist bars.

 

Feel free to cut out the cream cheese frosting, but sometimes you need a little extra goodness on top. We used low-fat cream cheese, which cut the fat in half. These bars are sure to be a winner in your house!

 

 

Ingredients for the bars: 

 

4 eggs

1 2/3 raw cane sugar

1/2 applesauce ( plain or cinnamon)

15-ounce can pumpkin

2 cups almond flour ( gluten-free) or 2 cups whole wheat flour

2 tsp baking powder

2 tsp ground cinnamon

1 tsp nutmeg

1 tsp salt

1 tsp baking soda 

 

Ingredients for the icing: 

8-ounce package low-fat cream cheese

1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened

2 cups sifted powdered sugar

1 tsp vanilla extract

 

Directions for the bars:

 

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

2. Combine eggs, sugar, applesauce and pumpkin until fluffy.

3. In a seperate bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, salt and baking soda.

4. Slowly add dry ingredients to the pumpkin mixture and mix at low speed until batter is smooth.

5. Spread the batter into a greased 13 by 10-inch baking pan. Bake for 30 minutes.

6. Cool bars completely before adding frosting. 

 

Directions for the icing:

 

1. Combine low-fat cream cheese and butter in a medium bowl.

2. Mix with electric mixer until smooth and creamy, then add the sugar and mix at low speed. Add vanilla and stir.

3. Once bars are completely cooled, spread the icing on top.

4. Sprinkle top of bars with nutmeg for an added dash of flavor.

Featured Recipe: Butternut Squash Lasagna

By: Snap Fitness

The fall season calls for two things:

1. Recipes including: pumpkin, nutmeg, or cinnamon

2. Comfort food

 

The challenge is how to eat comfort food when you're watching your waistline? There are ways to eat your favorite foods AND still stay on track with your diet. You don’t need to deprive yourself; just find ways to modify the recipe to fit your dietary needs

 

One of the most popular comfort foods is lasagna. Unfortunately, lasagna can often be a no-no because of the added cheese, and carbs. In this recipe, we’ve taken traditional lasagna and modified its ingredients. What resulted is a low-fat version of the famous comfort food classic. In honor of October, we made it seasonal by adding butternut squash to the mix. You will be pleased and satisfied with this recipe re-do. 

 

Enjoy! 

 

Ingredients:

 

2 boxes whole wheat or gluten-free lasagna noodles

1 pound- ground turkey 

1 large Butternut squash

1 vidalia onion

1 garlic clove

1 bunch of spinach

1 12oz. container low-fat ricotta

1 12oz. container low-fat cottage cheese

1 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded

2 Tbsp olive oil

Salt & pepper to taste

 

Directions:

 

1. Bake butternut squash at 400F for 45 minutes. Remove from oven, remove contents of squash and place into a bowl. Mix until squash forms a sauce-like consistency and set aside.

2. Brown ground turkey in a medium skillet on low heat. Once browned, add 1 Tbsp olive oil, onion, and ½ garlic clove and allow to cook for another minute. Set aside in a small bowl.

3. In a large pot, cook lasagna noodles until al dente (partially cooked). Set aside.

4. In the medium skillet, heat 1 Tbsp olive oil and the rest of the garlic clove. Sauté for about 1 minute until the garlic begins to brown and add the spinach. Cook until spinach is fully wilted. Remove from heat.

5. In a medium bowl, combine ricotta and cottage cheeses. Add cooked spinach to mixture and mix until thoroughly combined.

 

Layering Lasagna Directions:

 

1. Preheat oven to 350F and lightly grease a 9x13 pan.

2. Lay four cooked lasagna noodles in the bottom of the pan, overlapping as you go.

3. Add a thin layer of meat on top of the noodles. Then add a layer of butternut squash. Lastly, add a thin layer of the cheese mixture on top of the butternut squash. Top with another layer of noodles, and continue with the same layering pattern. The last layer should be a layer of noodles. Sprinkle with one final layer of cheese.

4. Pop in the oven at 350F degrees for 20-30 minutes, until hot and bubbly.

Note: This recipe can be made ahead and frozen for a meal later on. 

Posts 391 - 400 of 610