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Don’t Weight to Lose
Power Pack Manual
Don’t Weight to Lose
Program designed and coordinated by
Jacques Courseault
Ryan Jupiter
Executive Directors
Melissa Adrouny
Lindsey Bazzone
Jaeson Courseault
Amanda Feige
Josh Orabone
Kieran Stober
Special Thanks to
Pastor Fred Luter
Franklin Avenue Baptist Church
Tulane University School of Medicine Volunteers
Timothy Harlan, M.D
Corey Hebert, M.D
Elma LeDoux, M.D
Felicia Rabito, PhD
City of New Orleans Health Department
Tulane University School of Medicine
Medical Student Government
Student National Medical Association
Reily Recreation Center
Tanita Scales
Contact us:
[email protected] call 225-910-6123
or visit
www.dontweighttolose.org
The Need for Disease Prevention in New Orleans
Hurricane Katrina, which made landfall near New Orleans on August 29, 2005, slammed not
only the infrastructure of the city but also the personal lives of many New Orleanians. Before the
devastation of Katrina, New Orleans was a city on the move to make improvements in government,
business, and healthcare. However, the impact of Katrina exaggerated the city’s weaknesses and
dramatically postponed any improvements that were being made. Now more than two years later,
the city is dealing with issues that existed before the storm in addition to new challenges that have
been presented in the wake of Katrina. Of these challenges, restructuring the healthcare system is at
the forefront.
Charity Hospital was the second largest hospital, which boasted the second best Level 1
trauma center in the nation. This hospital which served largely the uninsured African American
population now stands vacant in downtown New Orleans. Because of this huge loss, many African
Americans are not able to receive the healthcare that is needed. To make matters worse, the rates of
uninsured have dramatically increased because many people have lost their jobs. In addition, many
foreign workers are now in New Orleans without health insurance. Because of this increase in the
uninsured population and decrease in hospitals, there simply are not enough beds to accommodate
the healthcare needs of the city. Therefore, improvements need to be made in not only increasing
healthcare availability, but also in preventative measures. Preventing and reducing the already high
obesity rates in New Orleans can make a huge impact in reducing the dependency of the African
American community on a bleak healthcare system.
Of the many preventative measures that can be taken, reducing rates of obesity can drastically
prevent many of the diseases that plague the African American community. According to the U.S
Department of Health and Human Services, half of Americans are overweight or obese which are
attributed to over 300,000 deaths per year. Healthcare costs in 2000 as a result of obesity reached
$117 billion. Many studies have found that diseases related to obesity include but are not limited to
heart disease, diabetes, cancer, sleep apnea, arthritis and reproductive complications. New Orleans, in
particular, was ranked 7th in 2004 as the fattest cities in America. The CDC reports that 61.5% percent
of New Orleans citizens are overweight or obese, 21% consume five or more fruits per day, and only
24.4% achieve the recommended level of physical activity. Clearly, obesity is a common health
condition that if controlled can drastically reduced the chronic health conditions associated with it.
Program Description
Many studies have highlighted the advantages and obstacles associated with developing a
church based health program, but few have researched the best methods and combined them into a
single program. Don’t Weight to Lose is designed to incorporate the recommendations from previous
studies in order to promote self-efficacy and long-term behavior change in terms of dieting and
exercise habits. The main focus of the program is to gain maximum benefits in the least amount of
time, because most of us have intensely busy schedules. Most importantly, the context of this program
with Franklin Avenue Baptist Church provides the spiritual and community support necessary for
healthy changes to be effective.
Don’t Weight to Lose offers:
1. Biweekly lectures on topics focused on health and wellness
2. Group discussion about challenges and obstacles confronted
3. Body composition analysis
4. Blood pressure screening
5. Cardiovascular screening
6. Counseling session based on each individual’s assessment
7. Nutritional Advice
8. Arthritis Management Advice
9. Stress Management Advice
10. Home exercise Program with Equipment
11. Exercise and Nutritional Diaries
12. Email Newsletters
13. Workout DVD
14. Internet Activities
Don’t Weight to Lose is intended for EVERYONE!!! Your participation includes a personalized
wellness assessment by a health professional. So, bring your teens, parents, brothers, sisters and
friends!!!
Vision
Worship through the experience of health and wholeness of mind, body and spirit. A health
ministry responsive to the needs of the community.
Mission Statement
To initiate and maintain an effective long-term health program based on scientific research and
the specific needs of the African American community in post-Katrina New Orleans.
After all, no one ever hated his own body, but he feeds and cares for it…
Ephesians 5:29
Topic One- Exercise
Why is Exercise Important?
Have you ever heard the expression
"use it or lose it"? It's true! If you don't use your
body, you will surely lose it. Your muscles will
become flabby and weak. Your heart and
lungs won't function efficiently. And your joints
will be stiff and easily injured. Inactivity is as
much of a health risk as smoking!
Helps Prevent Diseases
Our bodies were meant to move -- they
actually crave exercise. Regular exercise is
necessary for physical fitness and good health.
It reduces the risk of heart disease, cancer, high
blood pressure, diabetes and other diseases. It
can improve your appearance and delay the
aging process.
Improves Stamina
When you exercise, your body uses energy to
keep going. Aerobic exercise involves
continuous and rhythmic physical motion, such
as walking and bicycling. It improves your
stamina by training your body to become
more efficient and use less energy for the same
amount of work. As your conditioning level
improves, your heart rate and breathing rate
return to resting levels much sooner from
strenuous activity.
Strengthens and Tones
Exercising with weights, resistance bands other
forms of resistance training develops your
muscles, bones and ligaments for increased
strength and endurance. Your posture can be
improved, and your muscles become more
firm and toned. You not only feel better, but
you look better, too!
Enhances Flexibility
Stretching exercises are also important for
good posture. They keep your body limber so
that you can bend, reach and twist. Improving
your flexibility through exercise reduces the
chance of injury and improves balance and
coordination. If you have stiff, tense areas, such
as the upper back or neck, performing specific
stretches can help "loosen" those muscles,
helping you feel more relaxed.
Controls Weight
Exercise is also a key to weight control because
it burns calories. If you burn off more calories
than you take in, you lose weight. Increasing
muscle mass allows you to burn calories
at rest! It's as simple as that.
Improves Quality of Life
Once you begin to exercise regularly, you will
discover many more reasons why exercise is so
important to improving the quality of your life.
Exercise reduces stress, lifts moods, and helps
you sleep better. It can keep you looking and
feeling younger throughout your entire life1.
African Americans are the leading
demographic of affected patients in 13 of
the top 15 deadly diseases directly related
to obesity2
61.5% are overweight or obese2
24% regularly exercise2
Exercise greatly reduces the risk of dying
early because heart disease, diabetes or
cancer!
1: Armand Tecco, January, 1999, 2:U.S Department of Health and Human Services
Resistance Training
The goal of resistance training is slow, step by step use of the body’s muscles so they get
stronger. It has been shown that this type of training 2-3x per week builds and tones muscles and
strengthens bones Resistance training should not be confused with weightlifting, power lifting or
bodybuilding, which are very different types of strength training.
Resistance bands are part of your Don’t Weight to Lose Power Pack and are a great way
to strengthen and tone the body anywhere and anytime. Resistance bands are a good option to use
for your workouts because they don’t cost much and let you do many different exercises at higher and
higher levels. There are some limits to resistance bands because they can only be stretched so far.
Weight Lifting
Weight lifting is also a very effective means of strengthening muscles and bones. Weight lifting
differs from resistance training because weights offer the resistance used in your workouts. Weight
lifting offers more benefit to those who are more experienced in exercise and when the resistance
provided by resistance bands is not enough. Weight lifting is less convenient than resistance bands
because they are more expensive, take up space, and increase the risk of getting permanently injured.
A weight lifting set will not be provided but advice on purchasing one is available.
Less is More
Believe it or not, working out too much can actually damage your body! 400 minutes a week
is the normal recommendation for the amount of exercise you should get. Most people do not have
that much extra time to exercise. This large amount of exercise will not allow your body to recover
from previous workouts. Each time you exercise, your body is put under a certain amount of stress. In
order to improve your fitness, your body needs time to improve from previous exercise by increasing
muscular strength, endurance, and cardiovascular strength. It is better to exercise every other day to
maximize your progress.
What is SLOW BURN?
The SLOW BURN workout is the best way to strengthen muscles in the shortest
amount of time. We all have extremely busy lifestyles, and this workout is designed to help you get the
―biggest bang for your buck!‖
-
SLOW BURN
Reduces risk of injury
Improves posture
Increases the size of muscles
Increases muscles endurance
Promotes better recovery
-
Normal Recommendation
High risk of injury
Does not focus on posture
Increases muscle size to an extent
No focus on endurance
Little rest between sessions
How to do SLOW BURN
USE 8 SECOND REPETITIONS (MOVEMENTS)
Whenever performing a specific exercise you should make sure that:
1. Abdominal muscles and back muscles are tightened.
2. Each movement is SLOW AND NOT JERKY. Each movement (repetitions) should move at a
count of 4 SECONDS DOWN, 4 SECONDS UP.
Example- ―Down,1 Mississippi, 2 Mississippi, 3 Mississippi, 4 Mississippi, Up- 1 Mississippi, 2 Mississippi, 3
Mississippi, 4 Mississippi…..‖
DO 2 SETS OF 10 REPETITIONS (MOVEMENTS)
Each exercise is performed 2 times. 10 repetitions (movements) are performed each time you
do an exercise (2 sets of 10 or 2 X 10. Therefore, 20 total movements are done for each exercise
group.
Example- 20 total pushups are done, but are broken up into 2 sets of 10. It’s that simple!
Things to ALWAYS DO:
- Stand up straight
- Breathe Correctly- In other words, make sure you COUNT as discussed above EVERY
TIME!!! Your muscles need oxygen, so make sure you breathe!
- MOVE SLOWLY
- Drink water during workout. AVOID SPORTS DRINKS WITH HIGH FRUCTOSE CORN
SYRUP.
- STOP if you feel dizzy or nauseated!!!
- Last movement should be ―everything you got!‖
What to do when your workout becomes too easy
-
-
When you can easily perform 2 set of 10 then it is time to increase the resistance to make
sure that you improve.
o How to improve with resistance bands: Will be discussed with each exercise
o How to improve with weights: Increase the weight by 2.5 to 5 pounds
Your goal after increasing resistance should be to find a point where you can do the first
set of 10 repetitions, but in the second set you should only be able to do 8-10 repetitions.
Your last movement should be ―everything you got!‖
Materials needed: (Don’t Weight to Lose Power Pack)
- Resistance Bands
- Yoga Mat or Carpet
- Chair or Step
- Water
Exercises
Follow Schedules to see when to perform given exercise.
Biceps Group
2 Hand Bicep Curl
Isolated Bicep Curl- Using one hand at a
time
1. Stand with one foot in the middle of the
resistance band, or two feet at shoulder width
apart to make it harder.
2. Stand up straight. Your elbows should remain
stable, in a fixed position, next to your sides.
3. Under control, lift your hands directly up while
focusing on your biceps. This should take 4
SECONDS.
4. Stop when your hands are at the level of your
chest.
5. Lower your hands back down, stopping just
before your elbows are straight. This should take
4 SECONDS.
1. Stand with one foot in the middle of the
resistance band. If this is too easy, put your foot
on the band closer to the hand that you are
moving.
2. Stand up straight. Your arm should be to your
side with a slight bend.
3. Under control, bend your hand up to your
shoulder. This should take 4 SECONDS.
4. Stop when your hands are at the level of your
chest.
5. Lower your hands back down, stopping just
before your elbows are straight. This should take
4 SECONDS.
Triceps Group
Triceps Dips
Triceps Extension
1. Begin sitting on a step or chair with hands next
to thighs.
2. Balance on your arms, moving backside in
front of the step with legs straight (harder) or bent
(easier).
3. Bend the elbows and lower body a few
inches, keeping the shoulders away from your
ears and the elbows parallel to one another,
going no lower than 90 degrees. This should
take 4 SECONDS.
4. Push back up to starting position. This should
take 4 SECONDS.
5. If you have any wrist or shoulder problems,
skip this exercise.
1. Begin by standing with one foot on the
band. Use right foot is working right arm, left
foot with left arm.
2. Make sure your elbow is pointing directly in
front
3. Straighten you arm to the ceiling. This should
take 4 SECONDS.
4. Return to starting position. This should take 4
SECONDS.
Abdominal/Back Group
Pilates Crunch - Total abs and Back
1. Lay on Yoga mat or carpet with your back flat
on the ground.
2. Keep legs straight (easiest) or bend knees and
place feet flat on the ground (hardest).
3. Extend your hands out in front of you.
4. Slowly tighten your abs and back and move
your upper body into a sitting position. This
should take 5 SECONDS.
5. Slowly return back down to the floor until the
top of your back touches the ground. This should
take 5 SECONDS. Try not to rest for too long
between sets.
6. Repeat 10 times.
Leg Lifts – Lower abs
1. Lay on Yoga mat or carpet with your back flat
on the ground.
2. Keep legs straight.
3. Place hands under buttocks to help support
back.
4. Slowly lift your legs while keeping them
straight. Lift until legs make an ―L‖ to the floor.
This should take 5 SECONDS.
5. Slowly return legs back down to 1 inch above
floor. This should take 5 SECONDS.
6. Repeat 10 times.
Shoulder Group
Side Shoulder Raise
Front Shoulder Raise
1. Stand with one foot in the middle of the
resistance band, or two feet at shoulder width
apart for increased resistance.
2. Stand up straight. The palm side of your hand
should face the side of your legs.
3. Under control, lift your arms to the side with a
slight bend in your elbows.
4. Stop when your hands are even with your
shoulders. This should take 4 SECONDS.
5. Lower your hands back down to your side. This
should take 4 SECONDS.
1. Stand with one foot in the middle of the
resistance band, or two feet at shoulder width
apart for increased resistance.
2. Stand up straight. The palm side of your hand
should face the front your legs.
3. Under control, lift your arms to the front with a
slight bend in your elbows.
4. Stop when your hands are even with your
shoulders. This should take 4 SECONDS.
5. Lower your hands back down to your side. This
should take 4 SECONDS.
Lower Body Muscles Group
Squats- Total lower body workout
Vertical Lunges- Total lower body
workout
1. Stand with one foot in the middle of the resistance
band, or two feet at shoulder width apart for increased
resistance.
2. Hold the resistance band at shoulder level with both
hands. Start into a full squat while holding the band at
shoulder height. This should take 4 SECONDS.
3. Return to the starting position. This should take 4
SECONDS.
1. Stand with feet hip width apart. Take left leg
and step back approximately 2 feet standing on
the ball of the foot. Place resistance band under
front foot and hold each end with your hands.
2. Start position: Feet should be positioned at a
staggered stance with head and back straight.
3. Lower body by bending at right hip and knee
until thigh is parallel to floor. Body should follow a
straight line down towards the floor. This should
take 4 SECONDS.
4. Return to start position. This should take 4
SECONDS.
Chest Group
Push up- Chest, shoulders and Triceps
1. Lay on your stomach on the floor or other hard surface that's able to support your body
weight. Keep your feet together.
2. Place your hands under your shoulders with your palms on the ground. Curl your toes
upward (towards your head) so that the balls of your feet touch the ground.
Beginner Pushup- Place your knees on the floor instead of your toes.
3. Raise yourself using your arms. At this point, your weight should be supported by your
hands and the balls of your feet (or knees if beginner). This should take 4 SECONDS.
4. Lower your body to the ground until your elbows form an "L" shape. Keep your head facing
forward. Try to have the tip of your nose pointed directly at the ground. This should take 4
SECONDS.
5. Repeat steps 4 and 5 for the remainder of the exercise.
Exercises to do EVERY TIME
Calf Raises
Superman – Lower back
1. Find a raised step, preferably with a railing or
other object you can hold onto for balance
nearby, if needed.
2. Stand on the step with your heel and arch
hanging off the back of the step; keep just the ball
of your foot and toes on the step.
3. Raise up on your toes as high as you can in a
slow and controlled manner. This should take 2
SECONDS.
4. Pause for a second at the top.
5. Slowly return to your original position. Don't
dip the heel below the level of the step. This
should take 2 SECONDS.
6. Repeat 10 to 50 times per leg, only exercising
one leg at a time.
1. Lie face down on the floor, legs together and
straight, arms straight and extended above your
head.
2. Keeping limbs straight (but not locked) and
body stationary lift your arms and legs up toward
the ceiling to form a gentle curve with your body.
3. Hold for 15-45 counts.
*Don't hold your breath! Try to keep breathing
steady and even.
Beginners: Hold for fewer counts and don't raise
legs/arms quite as high.
Variations: You can do this seated if your ankle is
healing from an injury.
For more of a challenge, step on a resistance
band and hold the handle in your hand on the
same side you're raising your calf.
Why does Soreness occur?
Muscle soreness is a common reason why many don’t continue exercise programs. It
usually occurs within one or two days of initiating or improving a workout program. It
is not completely clear why muscle soreness occurs but most theories suggest that
soreness can be caused by micro-tears in muscle fibers and/or waste metabolites.
Most people will experience soreness especially if you have never exercised before.
DON’T BE ALARMED, it’s natural process! Just make sure that if you experience too
much soreness to the point where you cannot function, then contact your physician.
P.R.I.C.E
Prevention: Don’t overdo it!
Rest- DO NOT EXERCISE THE SAME MUSCLES ON CONSECUTIVE DAYS!
Ice the affected area for 15-20 minutes 4x a day until soreness is controlled.
Place a paper
towel between the ice and skin to prevent frostbite.
Compression:
If it is a joint that is sore, such as an ankle, knee, or elbow wrap the joint with an
ACE bandage or other type of brace. Make sure that your hand or foot does not become
numb, tingle, or loose color. If it begins to feel or look this way, then loosen your bandage or
Elevation:
Elevating the affected limb will reduce the swelling which is what is most likely
causing the soreness from pain. Keep the affected limb above the level of your heart.
Once again, if the soreness is to a point that you can’t continue your daily activities please seek
help from a physician.
Stretching
Regular stretching is a powerful part of any
exercise program.

Stretching increases flexibility. Flexible
muscles can improve your daily
performance. Tasks such as lifting
packages, bending to tie your shoes or
hurrying to catch a bus become easier
and less tiring.
Warm up first. Stretching muscles
when they're cold increases your risk of
injury, including pulled muscles. Warm
up by walking while gently pumping
your arms, or do a favorite exercise at
low intensity for five minutes. Better yet,
stretch after you exercise — when your
muscles are warm and more receptive to
stretching.

Stretching improves range of motion
of your joints. Good range of motion
keeps you in better balance, which will
help keep you mobile and less prone to
injury from falls — especially as you age.
One caveat: If you plan to stretch only
after your workout, increase the intensity
of the activity more slowly than you
would if you had stretched your muscles
before exercising.

Stretching improves circulation.
Stretching increases blood flow to your
muscles. Improved circulation can speed
recovery after muscle injuries.

Stretching promotes better posture.
Frequent stretching keeps your muscles
from getting tight, allowing you to
maintain proper posture and minimize
aches and pains.

Stretching can relieve stress.
Stretching relaxes the tense muscles that
often accompany stress.



Hold each stretch for at least 30
seconds. It takes time to lengthen tissues
safely. Hold your stretches for at least 30
seconds — and up to 60 seconds for a
really tight muscle or problem area. That
can seem like a long time, so keep an
eye on the clock or your watch. Then
repeat the stretch on the other side. For
most muscle groups, a single stretch is
often enough if you hold it long
enough.

Don't bounce. Bouncing as you
stretch can cause small tears in the
muscle. These tears leave scar tissue as
the muscle heals, which tightens the
muscle even further — making you less
flexible and more prone to pain.

Focus on a pain-free stretch. Expect to
feel tension while you're stretching. If it
hurts, you've gone too far. Back off to the
point where you don't feel any pain,
then hold the stretch.

Relax and breathe freely. Don't hold
your breath while you're stretching.
Stretching may help prevent injury.
Preparing your muscles and joints for
activity can protect you from injury,
especially if your muscles or joints are
tight.
Stretching essentials
Ready, set, stretch!

Target major muscle groups. When
you're stretching, focus on your calves,
thighs, hips, lower back, neck and
shoulders. Also stretch muscles and joints
that you routinely use at work or play.
How often to stretch is up to you. As a general
rule, stretch whenever you exercise. If you
don't exercise regularly, you might want to
stretch at least three times a week to maintain
flexibility. If you have a problem area, such as
tightness in the back of your leg, you might
want to stretch every day or even twice a day.
Know when to exercise caution
Exercise: 6 benefits of regular
physical activity
Need motivation to exercise? Here are six ways
exercise can improve your life — starting today!
And there's more. Regular exercise can help
you prevent type 2 diabetes, osteoporosis and
certain types of cancer.
Exercise Benefits!
3. Exercise helps you manage your weight.
-
Improves Mood
Combats Disease
Controls Weight
Strengthens heart and lungs
Promotes Sleep
Is fun!
1. Exercise improves your mood.
Need to blow off some steam after a stressful
day? A workout at the gym or a brisk 20minute walk can help you calm down.
Exercise stimulates various brain chemicals,
which may leave you feeling happier and
more relaxed than you were before you
worked out. You'll also look better and feel
better when you exercise regularly, which can
boost your confidence and improve your selfesteem. Exercise even reduces feelings of
depression and anxiety.
2. Exercise combats chronic diseases.
Regular exercise can help you prevent — or
manage — high blood pressure. Your
cholesterol will benefit, too. Regular exercise
boosts high-density lipoprotein (HDL), or
"good," cholesterol while decreasing lowdensity lipoprotein (LDL), or "bad," cholesterol.
This one-two punch keeps your blood flowing
smoothly by lowering the buildup of plaques in
your arteries.
When you exercise, you burn calories. The
more intensely you exercise, the more calories
you burn — and the easier it is to keep your
weight under control. You don't even need to
set aside major chunks of time for working out.
Take the stairs instead of the elevator. Walk
during your lunch break. Do jumping jacks
during commercials. Better yet, turn off the TV
and take a brisk walk. Dedicated workouts are
great, but activity you accumulate throughout
the day helps you burn calories, too.
4. Exercise strengthens your heart and lungs.
Exercise delivers oxygen and nutrients to your
tissues. In fact, regular exercise helps your
entire cardiovascular system — the circulation
of blood through your heart and blood vessels
— work more efficiently. When your heart and
lungs work more efficiently, you'll have more
energy to do the things you enjoy.
5. Exercise promotes better sleep.
A good night's sleep can improve your
concentration, productivity and mood. And,
you guessed it; exercise is sometimes the key to
better sleep. Regular exercise can help you fall
asleep faster and deepen your sleep. The
timing is up to you — but if you're having
trouble sleeping, you might want to try late
afternoon workouts. The natural dip in body
temperature five to six hours after you exercise
might help you fall asleep.
6. Exercise can be — gasp — fun!
Looking for an activity that suits the entire
family? Get physical!
Exercise doesn't have to be drudgery. Take a
ballroom dancing class. Push your kids on the
swings or climb with them on the jungle gym.
Plan a neighborhood kickball or touch football
game. Find an activity you enjoy, and go for it.
If you get bored, try something new. If you're
moving, it counts! - The Mayo Clinic
What is FAST PACE?
The FAST PACE Workout allows you to reap the maximum benefits of your cardiovascular
workout in the minimal amount of time. A cardiovascular workout (cardio) includes walking, running,
biking and other exercises that cause you to breathe hard or fast. Breathing harder or faster helps to
strengthen your heart and lungs. The goal of the FAST PACE Workout is to exercise as hard as you
can for a duration of 20 minutes. This method is beneficial because it forces your heart and lungs to
operate at a higher level which promotes improvement. Walking or running faster will burn more
calories that will help manage weight better. Slowly exercising at a slow pace does not allow one to
maximize the benefits of cardiovascular exercise. Your body adapts quickly to slow exercise which
allows it to use less energy. Therefore, step up the pace so your body can burn those calories quicker!
The Workout
Exercise (run, jog, walk, bike, etc.) at a pace that will keep your heart rate in the range of 6585% of your Maximum Heart Rate for 20 minutes.
How do I find my Heart Rate?
Take your pulse for 15 seconds then multiply it by 4 to get your heart beats per minute/
Example: 20 beats in 15 seconds= 20 X 4= 80 Beats per Minute
220-AGE X 50-85%= Target Heart Rate
Example: AGE= 45 years old
220-45= 175
175 X 50-85%=88-149 beats per minute
Therefore, when exercising this 45 year old should have a heart rate of 88-149 for 20
minutes to maximize cardiovascular benefits. The higher the better.
Use the following table to calculate your Target Heart Rate during exercise:
Age
Average Maximum
Heart Rate
100 %
Target HR Zone
50–85 %
20 years 100–170 beats per minute 200 beats per minute
25 years 98–166 beats per minute 195 beats per minute
30 years 95–162 beats per minute 190 beats per minute
35 years 93–157 beats per minute 185 beats per minute
40 years 90–153 beats per minute 180 beats per minute
45 years 88–149 beats per minute 175 beats per minute
50 years 85–145 beats per minute 170 beats per minute
55 years 83–140 beats per minute 165 beats per minute
60 years 80–136 beats per minute 160 beats per minute
65 years 78–132 beats per minute 155 beats per minute
70 years 75–128 beats per minute 150 beats per minute
Examples of Cardiovascular Exercise:
-
Running
Jogging
Walking
Rowing
Group Exercise Classes
-
Biking
Elliptical Machine
Jumping Rope
Hiking
Swimming
Get 10,000 steps per day!!!
At the office:




Stand up while you are talking on the
phone
Take regular breaks to stretch and take
a short walk
Keep a pair of walking shoes in the car
and walk during lunch
Take the stairs instead of the elevator





Park your car further away from the
entrance
Instead of phoning or emailing, walk
over to a co-worker and talk in person
Brainstorm about project ideas while
taking a walk
Participate in or start a recreation
league at your company
Get a membership at a local gym

Always carry your gym bag full of
workout clothes just in case you get a
meeting cancellation


At home:









Take a walk after dinner with your
spouse or significant other
Reorganize a closet
Wash the car
Do gardening and yard work
Listen to music while you do your
chores and throw some dance moves
into your cleaning regimen
Cook an extravagant meal (low fat of
course)
Take your dog for a walk
Do some type of task while you are
watching your favorite TV program
Use exercise videos at home

Take a jump rope and some exercise
bands in your suitcase for a quick hotel
room workout
Plan your whole day out, including
when you will be able to fit in some
physical activity
Go sightseeing on foot instead of on
wheels
On the town:

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
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
Walk or ride your bike to do errands in
the neighborhood
Meet a friend to walk in the morning
Go to a nearby park with your family to
shoot some hoops
Walk at your local mall
Window shop after a huge dinner
If you are able to walk to work, do so
Walk the golf course instead of using a
cart
On the road:


Take a walk around the airport while
waiting for your flight
Use fitness centers and pools at hotels
while traveling
-
www. howtobefit.com
Topic Two- Nutrition
NUTRITION: The Main Components of a
Healthy Diet
By Kieran Stober
If eating healthy were easy, you
wouldn’t be here right now. In the society we
live in, you can’t just wake up one day and say,
―From here on out, I’m gonna start eating
healthy!‖ There are many too obstacles, from
misinformation, expense, time constraints, and,
of course, your body’s natural instinct to crave
unhealthy food, that stand in your way. At
Don’t Weight to Lose, we know how difficult it
is to eat healthy, especially in a city where fatty,
salty foods are prevalent and the culture
revolves around eating these foods. We are
aware of the challenges that you face on a
daily basis and have created a program with
the nutritional struggles of a New Orleanian in
mind. While the main goal of our program is to
help you lose weight, we also provide advice
that will help reduce your risk of disease and
improve your overall health.
The simplest concept of a healthy diet
is arguably the most complicated to actually
follow: portion control. Weight loss is equal to
calories IN minus calories OUT. Exercise takes
care of calories out, but what you eat is calories
in. This means that you need to eat less to lose
weight. As hard as it is to do, you must attain
the will power to eat substantially less than you
do now. Try taking your normal plate size and
approximately cutting it in half. This will
substantially decrease your calories IN and help
you lose weight.
With that being said, we also need to
change what we eat. Our diet program
revolves around a specific diet that has shown
by medical research to improve overall health
in various ways: The Mediterranean Diet. This
diet was discovered by medical researchers
when studies showed that people inhabiting
the Mediterranean region (those countries
bordered by the Mediterranean Sea) tended to
have lower incidences of the diseases that are
the leading cause of death in the Western
world, like heart disease, stroke, diabetes, etc.
This lead to characterization of the main
components of the Mediterranean diet and
medical research to see if individuals who
changed their diet to a Mediterranean style
diet actually got healthier. The end results
showed the adherence to the Mediterranean
diet helped people lose weight, but also
decreased mortality from all causes. This means
that people who are able to strictly follow the
Mediterranean diet suffer less from the most
common causes of death in this country.
The Mediterranean diet has 6 main
components:
1) Vegetables
Eat as much as possible then eat more
2) Legumes
Beans, peas, lentils and peanuts. That
means eat more chili, red beans, white beans,
black eyed peas, etc.
3) Fruits and Nuts
Great snack items; also eat as much as
you can
4) Better fats
Olive oil and Canola oil instead of
butter, lard, Crisco or vegetable oil
5) Better Carbohydrates
Whole grains instead of processed
grains: Oatmeal, wheat bread, brown rice,
wheat pasta
6) Low fat dairy (sparingly)
Eat less dairy and choose low fat
yogurt, milk, and cheese for the dairy you eat
7) Fish
Eat less beef and pork; Eat lots of fish
and chicken instead
8) Moderate alcohol intake
1 glass of wine/beer per day improves
overall health, but drinking more than that is
bad for your health
Using these criteria, Don’t Weight to
Lose has adapted five specific areas of your diet
where you can make changes in order to
better adhere to the components of the
Mediterranean diet:
Fats
If you are like most Americans, you
probably share the two problems that we all
have in regard to fat intake: we eat too much
and the wrong kinds. First of all, the Western
diet includes too many foods that are high in
fat. Fried foods, potato chips, frozen dinners,
foods made with pork fat, buttery sauces,
gravy, sausages, creamy salad dressings are all
examples of foods that have way too much fat.
Fat is an energy dense-molecule that stores
tons of calories. So, foods high in fat are
inevitably high in calories. Thus, to lose weight,
it is best to avoid foods that are high in fat.
Secondly, we tend to eat the wrong kinds of
fats (bad fats). Bad fats, like saturated fats and
trans fats, tend to raise your LDL cholesterol
and Triglyceride levels (a measure of fats
circulating in your blood stream). LDL is your
bad cholesterol, and can buildup on the walls
of your arteries increasing your risk of heart
attack or stroke. On the other hand, good fats,
like polyunsaturated fats, monounsaturated
fats, and Omega-3 fatty acids have various
beneficial effects on your cardiovascular health.
For example, studies have shown that
replacing bad fats with good fats can raise
your HDL (good cholesterol) and lower your
LDL (bad cholesterol), thus protecting your
blood vessels from atherosclerosis. A good way
blood sugar control and better digestion, since
you will also be taking in more fiber.
to start eating the right fats is to stop using
butter, margarine, Crisco, bacon fat, lard, pork
fat, or vegetable oil in your cooking and
replace it with good oils like olive oil, canola oil,
peanut oil, safflower oil, walnut oil, or sesame
oil. The latter oils have a higher percentage of
unsaturated fats and can be used in any recipe
that calls for the formerly mentioned bad fats.
Fiber
Carbohydrates
Carbs are a hot topic in nutrition
because of the Atkins diet craze, which has
successfully proven to help people lose weight,
with one catch—they are rarely able to stick
with it. Unlike proponents of the Atkins diet
would have you believe, all carbs are not bad.
In fact, like with fats, our problem with eating
carbs is two fold: too much and the wrong
kind. Meals with lots of carbohydrates tend to
be higher in calories, so it is a good idea to eat
less carbs to help lose weight. However, you
don’t have to eliminate them. Instead, make
sure you are eating the right carbs. This is
where whole grains come in. Whole grains are
natural carbohydrates that have been
minimally processed after harvesting so that
most of the grain is still intact. Unfortunately
most of the grains that we normally eat, like
white rice, white bread, enriched white buns,
anything baked with enriched white flour, and
instant oatmeal are processed so that only the
starchy inner portion of the grain remains. This
not only decreases the content of vitamins and
minerals in the grain but also makes it so that
your body instantly converts it into sugar in
your blood, rapidly raising your blood sugar
and causing various changes that result in fat
storage. Thus, it is better to eat whole grains,
like whole (or 1-minute) oats, brown rice,
wheat bread, couscous, and barley.
Substituting these grains will mean better
This is another area where Americans
are lacking. Studies have shown that most
Americans do not eat the recommended 2030g of fiber per day. Fiber is a nondigestible
carbohydrate present in natural foods. Fiber
improves digestion, helps lower cholesterol,
slow blood sugar increase, and helps eliminate
fats. Legumes, whole grains, fruits and
vegetables are all naturally high in fiber. A
good rule of thumb is unprocessed foods are
always higher in fiber than their processed
counterpart. To increase your fiber intake, eat
more legumes, fruits, vegetables, and replace
your processed grains with whole grains.
Vitamins/Minerals
Fruits and vegetables, as we have all
been told by grandmothers, aunts, fathers, and
mothers, are good for you. They are naturally
low in calories, and provide vitamins, minerals
and antioxidants that you need for the millions
of chemical reactions going on throughout
your body. Antioxidants, in particular, help to
detoxify harmful and damaging chemicals that
can cause cancer in your body. You probably
don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables, so you
need to try to find ways to incorporate more
into your diet. Try eating fruit with every
breakfast, and taking another with to work for
a snack. Eat large helpings of vegetables at
both lunch and dinner if possible. If you can,
try to find fruits and vegetables that are locally
in season, as these will taste the best and have
the highest nutritional content. For example,
eat strawberries and citrus during the early
Spring.
Proteins
Proteins are broken down by your
body and then used to construct our own
proteins. Americans take in plenty of protein,
but we eat the wrong kinds. Dairy products,
which are high in protein, have a lot of
saturated (bad) fat. Eat low fat dairy and eat it
spairingly. We also eat way too much beef and
pork, which are both very high in saturated fat
and cholesterol. Instead, we should try to eat
more fish, chicken, and legumes, all of which
are high in protein, but do not have such high
levels of saturated fat. Fish, especially certain
kinds of fish—like tuna, salmon, mackerel,
herring, and lake trout have high levels of
Omega-3 fatty acids which have beneficial
effects on cardiovascular health. Legumes are a
hearty, low fat food that can be eaten as a
healthy substitute for meat that will fill you up.
Try to eat fish two or three times a week and
eat chicken, legumes, low fat dairy and eggs as
your other main protein source. Keep pork,
beef, and regular dairy products to a minimum
(yes, I’m sorry, that does include bacon).
By addressing the above mentioned
areas of your diet you will be able to more
closely adhere to the Mediterranean style diet,
resulting in weight loss and improved overall
health. Most of the items mentioned are things
that you already eat, you probably just have to
adjust the relative quantities and make certain
substitutions. The Don’t Weight to Lose
program is geared to help you make long term
changes to your diet, so it may take you
months to years before you are able to
completely change the way you eat. Lifestyle
changes are hard to make, so don’t get
discouraged by the struggles that you will
encounter as you try to eat healthier. We are
not just with you for these 8 weeks, but we are
also available by email, through our website,
and subsequent follow up sessions to help you
with your specific needs for months and years
to come. Good luck!!
Topic ThreeWeight
Management
Successful Weight Loss: Top 10 Tips on
What Works and Why
By Kathleen Goodwin, RD
For many people weight loss is a chronic
endeavor. All too often the shedding of
pounds is a temporary event followed by a
steady regain of lost weight. Most popular
diets are unsuccessful in the long run
because they fail to address the multifaceted nature of what successful,
permanent weight loss entails.
10 Strategies for permanent weight loss
1. Exercise is essential for weight loss
It's nothing new, but exercise is probably
the most important predictor of whether
you will succeed at long term weight loss
and weight loss maintenance. Follow the
SLOW BURN and FAST PACE workouts
and you will be fine! This helps many in
combating the old "no time for exercise"
excuse. Be certain to find something you
enjoy. You'll be more apt to stick with it. Try
walking with a friend, joining an intramural
sports league, participating in outings, or
trying some classes at your local gym.
Once you give exercise a chance, you will
begin to enjoy its positive benefits on your
psyche as well; you will literally become
"hooked."
2. Weight loss and weight training
We chose to list this separately from the
"exercise" category because of the
significant weight loss benefits attached to
weight training in and of itself. The basic
equation is this: the more muscle tissue you
have, the more calories you will burn.
Muscle is active tissue, fat is not. Thus,
muscle "burns" a significant number of
calories each day for its own maintenance.
3. Keep a diary for triggers that hinder
weight loss
Keeping a food diary can be a huge asset
in successful weight loss. Devote some time
each day to record what you have eaten
and how much, your hunger level prior to
eating, and any feelings or emotions
present at the time. A food diary can
provide a large amount of self-awareness. It
can identify emotions and behaviors that
trigger overeating, foster greater
awareness of portion sizes, and help you
discover your personal food triggers. Study
any patterns that emerge from your food
diary and identify where you may be able
to make more healthful changes.
4. Stay focused on being healthy, not on
becoming thin
Many people become more successful at
long term weight loss when their
motivation changes from wanting to be
thinner to wanting to be healthier. Change
your mind set to think about selecting
foods that will help your body's health
rather than worrying about foods that will
affect your body's weight. The Food
Pyramid offers a basic outline of the types
and amounts of food you should eat each
day to give your body the nutrients it
needs for optimal health.
5. Find out why you overeat
All too often overeating is triggered by
stress, boredom, loneliness, anger,
depression and other emotions. Learning
to deal with emotions without food is a
significant skill that will greatly serve long
term weight control. You can also seek
help with behavioral and emotional eating
issues from a licensed counselor or
psychologist in your area.
6. Weight loss support: join a weight
management group
A big key in long term weight control
comes from receiving encouragement and
support from others.
7. Weight loss and portion control
With the advent of "super-size" meals and
increasingly huge portions at restaurants,
our concept of normal serving sizes is a
distant memory. Be mindful of the amounts
of food you consume at a sitting. When
necessary, divide your food in half and ask
for a take home bag. It is all too easy to be
a "plate cleaner" even when served
enormous portions. Learn to pay attention
to your hunger level and stop eating when
you feel comfortably full, not stuffed.
8: Lose weight slowly with small changes
Try to remember that "losing 15 pounds in
two weeks" is nothing to celebrate. It is
important to realize that the more quickly
weight is lost, the more likely the loss is
coming from water and muscle, not fat.
Since muscle tissue is critical in keeping our
metabolism elevated, losing it actually leads
to a decrease in the amount of calories we
can each day without gaining weight.
Strive for a weight loss of no more than 1-2
pounds per week. One pound of weight is
equivalent to 3500 calories. By making
small changes like eliminating 250 calories
a day from food and expending 250
calories a day from exercise, you can lose
one pound (of mostly fat) per week.
9. Eating slowly can lead to weight loss
Did you ever notice that thin people take
an awfully long time to eat their food?
Eating slowly is one method that can help
take off pounds. That's because from the
time you begin eating it takes the brain 20
minutes to start signaling feelings of
fullness. Fast eaters often eat beyond their
true level of fullness before the 20 minute
signal has had a chance to set in.
10. Weight loss through eating less fat but do it wisely
We've known for some time that limiting
high fat foods in the diet can be helpful
with weight loss. That's because fats pack
in 9 calories per gram compared to only 4
calories per gram from proteins or
carbohydrates. To many, the message to
limit fats implied an endorsement to eat
unlimited amounts of fat-free products. Just
to clarify, fat-free foods have calories too. In
some cases fat-free foods have as many
calories as their fat laden counterparts. If
you eat more calories than your body uses,
you will gain weight. Eating less fat will
help you to lose weight. Eating less fat and
replacing it with excessive amounts of fatfree products will not.
Topic Four- Stress
Management
How to Reduce, prevent, and Cope
with Stress
If you’re living with high levels of stress, you’re
putting your entire well-being at risk. Stress
wreaks havoc on your emotional equilibrium,
as well as your physical health. It narrows your
ability to think clearly, function effectively, and
enjoy life.
The goal of stress management is to bring your
mind and body back into balance. By adopting
a positive attitude, learning healthier ways to
cope, and changing the way you deal with
stress, you can reduce its hold on your life.
Taking charge of stress
Operating on daily red alert comes at the high
price of your health, vitality, and peace of mind.
But while it may seem that there’s nothing you
can do about your stress level—the bills aren’t
going to stop coming, there will never be more
hours in the day for all your errands, your
career will always be demanding—you have a
lot more control than you might think. In fact,
the simple realization that you’re in control of
your life is the foundation of stress
management.
Managing stress is all about taking charge:
taking charge of your thoughts, your emotions,
your schedule, your environment, and the way
you deal with problems. The ultimate goal is a
balanced life, with time for work, relationships,
relaxation, and fun—and the resilience to hold
up under pressure and meet challenges head
on.
Stress management strategy #1: Avoid
unnecessary stress
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Learn how to say ―no‖ – Know your
limits and stick to them. Whether in
your personal or professional life, refuse
to accept added responsibilities when
you’re close to reaching them.
Avoid people who stress you out – If
someone consistently causes stress in
your life and you can’t turn the
relationship around, limit the amount
of time you spend with that person or
end the relationship entirely.
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plate, then drop tasks that are least
important if possible.
Take control of your environment – If
the evening news makes you anxious,
turn the TV off. If traffic’s got you tense,
take a longer but less-traveled route. If
Avoid hot-button topics – If you get
upset over religion or politics, cross
them off your conversation list. If you
repeatedly argue about the same
subject with the same people, stop
bringing it up or excuse yourself when
it’s the topic of discussion.
Reduce your to-do list – Analyze your
schedule, responsibilities, and daily
tasks. If you’ve got too much on your
How Resilient Are You?
Your ability to handle and bounce back
from stress depends on many factors.
See ―Factors that help stress‖ and use
Stress Reduction Kit if needed!
Factors that help stress!!!
-
Belief in God
Healthy body
Optimistic attitude
Strong support system
Ability to adapt to change
Ability to handle unpleasant
emotions
Confidence in yourself
Sense of Control
Stress management strategy #2: Alter the
situation
If you can’t avoid a stressful situation, try to alter
it. Figure out what you can do to change
things so the problem is avoided in the future.
Often, this involves changing the way you
communicate and operate in your daily life.
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Express your feelings instead of bottling
them up. If something or someone is
bothering you, communicate your
concerns in an open and respectful
way.
Be willing to compromise. When you
ask someone to change their behavior,
be willing to do the same. If you both
are willing to bend at least a little, you’ll
have a good chance of finding a
happy middle ground.
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Be more assertive. Don’t take a
backseat in your own life. Deal with
problems head on, doing your best to
anticipate and prevent them. If you’ve
got an exam to study for and your
chatty roommate just got home, say up
front that you only have five minutes to
talk.
Manage your time better. Poor time
management can cause a lot of stress.
When you’re stretched too thin and
running behind, it’s hard to stay calm
and focused. But if you plan ahead,
you can avoid these stress-inducing
pitfalls.
Time management tips to reduce stress
Create a balanced schedule
Don’t over-commit yourself
Prioritize tasks
Break projects into small steps
Delegate responsibility
All work and no play is a recipe for burnout. Try to find
a balance between work and family life, social activities
and solitary pursuits, daily responsibilities and
downtime.
Avoid scheduling things back-to-back or trying to fit too
much into one day. All too often, we underestimate
how long things will take.
Make a list of tasks you have to do, and tackle them in
order of importance. Do the high-priority items first. If
you have something particularly unpleasant to do, get
it over with early. The rest of your day will be more
pleasant as a result.
If a large project seems overwhelming, make a step-bystep plan. Focus on one manageable step at a time,
rather than taking on everything at once.
You don’t have to do it all yourself, whether at home,
school, or on the job. If other people can take care of
the task, why not let them? Let go of the desire to
control or oversee every little step. You’ll be letting go
of unnecessary stress in the process.
stronger.‖ When facing major
challenges, try to look at them as
opportunities for personal growth. If
your own poor choices contributed to
a stressful situation, reflect on them and
learn from your mistakes.
Stress management strategy #3: Accept the
things you can’t change
Some sources of stress are unavoidable. You
can’t prevent or change stressors such as the
death of a loved one, a serious illness, or a
national recession. In such cases, the best way
to cope with stress is to accept things as they
are. Acceptance may be difficult, but in the
long run, it’s easier than railing against a
situation you can’t change
Don’t try to control the uncontrollable.
Many things in life are beyond our
control— particularly the behavior of other
people. Rather than stressing out over
them, focus on the things you can control
such as the way you choose to react to
problems.

Look for the upside. As the saying
goes, ―What doesn’t kill us makes us
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Share your feelings. Talk to a trusted
friend or make an appointment with a
therapist
Learn to forgive. Accept the fact that
we live in an imperfect world and that
people make mistakes. Let go of anger
and resentments. Free yourself from
negative energy by forgiving and
moving on.
Stress management strategy #4: Adapt to
the stressor
If you can’t change the stressor, change
yourself. You can adapt to stressful situations
and regain your sense of control by changing
your expectations and attitude.
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Reframe problems. Try to view stressful
situations from a more positive
perspective. Rather than fuming about
a traffic jam, look at it as an opportunity
to pause and regroup, listen to your
favorite radio station, or enjoy some
alone time.
Look at the big picture. Take
perspective of the stressful situation.
Ask yourself how important it will be in
the long run. Will it matter in a month?
A year? Is it really worth getting upset
over? If the answer is no, focus your
time and energy elsewhere.
Adjust your standards. Perfectionism is
a major source of avoidable stress. Stop
setting yourself up for failure by
demanding perfection. Set reasonable
standards for yourself and others, and
learn to be okay with ―good enough.‖
Focus on the positive. When stress is
getting you down, take a moment to
reflect on all the things you appreciate
in your life, including your own positive
qualities and gifts. This simple strategy
can help you keep things in
perspective.
Stress reduction tips
Beyond a take-charge approach and a positive
attitude, you can reduce stress in your life by
making healthy lifestyle choices and taking care
of yourself. If you regularly make time for rest
and relaxation, you’ll be in a better place to
handle life’s stressors when they inevitably
come.
Nurture yourself
Don’t get so caught up in the hustle and bustle
of life that you forget to take care of your own
needs. Nurturing yourself is a necessity, not a
luxury.
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
Adjusting Your Attitude
How you think can have a profound effect on
your emotional and physical well-being. Each
time you think a negative thought about
yourself, your body reacts as if it were in the
throes of a tension-filled situation. If you see
good things about yourself, you are more likely
to feel good; the reverse is also true. Eliminate
words such as "always," "never," "should," and
"must." These are telltale marks of self-defeating
thoughts.

Set aside relaxation time. Include rest
and relaxation in your daily schedule.
Don’t allow other obligations to
encroach. This is your time to take a
break from all responsibilities and
recharge your batteries.
Connect with others. Spend time with
positive people who enhance your life.
A strong support system will buffer you
from the negative effects of stress.
Do something you enjoy every day.
Make time for leisure activities that
bring you joy, whether it be stargazing,
playing the piano, or working on your
bike.
Keep your sense of humor. This
includes the ability to laugh at yourself.
Source: National Victim Assistance
Academy, U.S. Department of Justice
Healthy Stress Reducers
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Spend time in nature.
Talk to a supportive friend.
Sweat out tension with a good
workout.
Do something for someone else.
Write in your journal.
Take a long bath
Go for a walk
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Play with a pet.
Work in your garden.
Get a massage.
Curl up with a good book.
Take a yoga class.
Listen to music.
Watch a comedy
Adopt a healthy lifestyle

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Stress Relief Techniques
Exercise regularly. Physical activity plays
a key role in reducing and preventing
the effects of stress. Make time for at
least 30 minutes of exercise, three times
per week. Nothing beats aerobic
exercise for releasing pent-up stress
and tension.
Eat a healthy diet. Well-nourished
bodies are better prepared to cope
with stress, so be mindful of what you
eat. Start your day right with breakfast,
and keep your energy up and your
mind clear with balanced, nutritious
meals throughout the day.
Reduce caffeine and sugar. The
temporary "highs" caffeine and sugar
provide often end in with a crash in
mood and energy. By reducing the
amount of coffee, soft drinks,
chocolate, and sugar snacks in your
diet, you’ll feel more relaxed and you’ll
sleep better.
Avoid alcohol, cigarettes, and drugs.
Self-medicating with alcohol or drugs
may provide an easy escape from
stress, but the relief is only temporary.
Don’t avoid or mask the issue at hand;
deal with problems head on and with
a clear mind.
Get enough sleep. Adequate sleep
fuels your mind, as well as your body.
Feeling tired will increase your stress
because it may cause you to think
irrationally.
You can control your stress levels with
relaxation techniques that evoke the body’s
relaxation response, a state of restfulness that is
the opposite of the stress response. As you
learn and practice these techniques, your stress
levels will decrease and your mind and body
will become calm and relaxed.
Making a stress management plan
Stress management starts with identifying the
sources of stress in your life. This isn’t as easy as
it sounds. Your true sources of stress aren’t
always obvious, and it’s all too easy to overlook
your own stress-inducing thoughts, feelings,
and behaviors. Sure, you may know that you’re
constantly worried about work deadlines. But
maybe it’s your procrastination, rather than the
actual job demands, that leads to deadline
stress.
Look closely at your habits, attitude, and
excuses. Do you explain away stress as
temporary (―I just have a million things going
on right now‖) even though you can’t
remember the last time you took a breather?
Do you define stress as an integral part of your
work or home life (―Things are always crazy
around here‖) or as a part of your personality
(―I have a lot of nervous energy, that’s all‖). Do
you blame your stress on other people or
outside events, or view it as entirely normal and
unexceptional? Until you accept responsibility
for the role you play in creating or maintaining
it, your stress level will remain outside your
control.
Start a stress journal
A stress journal can help you identify the
regular stressors in your life and the way you
deal with them. Each time you feel stressed,
keep track of it in your journal.
Write down:
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

What caused your stress (make a guess
if you’re unsure)?
How you felt, both physically and
emotionally.
How you acted in response.
What you did to cope or feel better.
log, you will begin to see patterns and
common themes. Your journal may help you
see that you don’t really have that much to
worry about, or it may bring overlooked
problems to light. Whatever your discoveries,
your stress journal should help you establish a
plan for moving forward.
Evaluate your coping strategies
Think about the ways you cope with stress.
Your stress journal can help you identify them.
Are your coping strategies healthy or
unhealthy, helpful or unproductive?
Unfortunately, many people cope with stress in
ways that compound the problem. These
coping strategies may temporarily reduce
stress, but they cause more damage in the
long run.
Putting your worries on paper has a marvelous
way of clarifying things. As you keep a daily
Unhealthy ways of coping with stress
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Smoking
Self-medicating with alcohol or drugs
Using sleeping pills or tranquilizers to relax
Overeating or eating too little
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Sleeping too much
Procrastinating
Withdrawing from friends, family, and
activities
Filling up every minute of the day to avoid
facing problems
If your methods of coping with stress aren’t contributing to your greater emotional and physical
health, it’s time to find ones that do.
Learn positive ways to deal with stress
There are many healthy ways to reduce stress
or cope with its effects, but they all require
change. You can either change the situation or
change your reaction. When deciding which
option to choose, it’s helpful to think of the four
As: avoid, alter, accept, or adapt.
Since everyone has a unique response to stress,
there is no ―one size fits all‖ solution to
managing it. No single method works for
everyone or every situation, so experiment with
different techniques and strategies. Focus on
what makes you feel calm and in control.
-www.helpguide.org
Copyright 2009, All Rights Reserved. Don’t Weight to Lose.