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Doctor Lee's Blog

Musings from The Doctor of Fitness: Fitness Trainer, Nutrition Expert, & Sports Medicine Physician

The purpose of this blog is to write informally for anyone who is interested in fitness, strength and conditioning, sports nutrition, sports medicine, and breaking fitness and nutrition news. If you'd like to reach me directly, you can contact me here. Feel free to take a look at my professional bio and my not-so-professional bio.

Winter Weather Tips and Tricks

on Tuesday, 16 January 2018. Posted in Doctor of Fitness

It’s cold, snowy and dismal outside. You don’t have to be one of the Starks on Game of Thrones to know winter is coming. In the spirit of the season, here are some ways to get through this chilly time of year.

  • Dryer sheets can do more than make your clothes smell fresh. Rub them on your clothing and even your hair to counteract that pesky winter static.
  • Just walking around in the dry winter air can build up a static charge on your fingers. It’s why you get zapped when you reach for a doorknob. Touching a glass or wood surface before reaching for the door knob helps discharge the static, saving you from an annoying surprise.
  • Tired of shelling out money for rock salt? Try cat litter to add some extra grit to those slippery surfaces. Since cat litter is really just hardened clay pellets, it's also easier on the environment.  
  • Winter is a great time to do some baking. The extra heat from the oven can offer a welcome respite from winter’s chill.
  • Enjoy some mood lighting with candles. Not only do they provide the perfect atmosphere, but they produce heat as well. As always, take the appropriate safety precautions with open flame.

Winter may be a tough time of year, but it doesn’t have to be miserable. If you’re not able to hibernate until spring, use these tips to make life easier this season.

Living on Purpose: How Are You Helping Others?

on Tuesday, 09 January 2018. Posted in Doctor of Fitness

In a 1957 speech in Montgomery, Alabama, Dr. Martin Luther King told his audience: “Life’s most persistent question is ‘What are you doing for others?’”  It was a motto that Dr. King lived his life by, and even years after his passing, it can still serve as an example. There is a lot of wisdom and happiness to be found by helping others.

It isn’t always easy. Though we’re told it’s better to give than to receive, giving can often make us feel worn out and even worse - taken advantage of. Here are some ways we can give and feel good about it:

Find something you love and share it.Whether it’s art, music, bike riding or skateboarding, chances are you’re passionate about something. Share it with others. Your love will show through and make the effort more genuine and more fulfilling.

Give to organizations you believe in.Giving for the sake of giving often doesn’t bring us any happiness, but giving to an organization we believe in can lead to a profound sense of accomplishment. We actually feel like we made a difference rather than just checking off a box.

Share in ways that fit you the best.Not everyone is a great public speaker or is at ease going door to door to raise awareness. You don’t have to be. Contribute in a way that makes you comfortable. If you’re a writer, then write. If you’re a coach, then coach. Find your niche and pursue it with passion.

Dr. King believed in serving his community, so honor his memory this year by helping others.

Health and Fitness Resolutions

on Tuesday, 02 January 2018. Posted in Doctor of Fitness

“May all your troubles last as long as your New Year's resolutions!”

—    Joey Adams

No resolutions are made (and broken) as often as the ones concerning our health. At some point we have invariably promised to lose weight, quit smoking, exercise more and generally treat our bodies more like shrines and less like industrial waste dumps. So how can we actually keep the promises we make? 

Make it social.It’s not only a lot more fun to exercise with a buddy, but it provides us with extra motivation. You might be inclined to skip a workout, but not if it means letting a friend down. If you’re an outgoing sort of person, you might also consider joining a local running or walking club.

Set definite goals.Whether it’s to fit into that suit you got for Christmas or to run a 3-minute mile, set goals and make sure to write them down.

Don’t get discouraged. While setting goals is great, don’t be disappointed if you don’t hit them as quickly as you think you should. Stay positive and keep working at them. You’ll get there!

Don’t overdo it.One of the most common mistakes would-be exercisers make is to start too aggressively. Build up slowly so you can avoid muscles strains, sprains and other injuries that can derail your workout plans.

Most of all, just keep moving. Even if you can’t compete in a 100-meter Olympic sprint, you’re building your way to a healthier, happier you. The benefits of good health will affect every aspect of your life. 

Here’s to a great (and healthy) new year!

Get Outside and Enjoy Winter

on Tuesday, 26 December 2017. Posted in Doctor of Fitness

Once the weather turns cold, many people’s idea of winter sports is going inside, breaking out the hot chocolate (or the beer and nachos, depending on the sport) and comfortably watching the whole affair slouched in their favorite recliner. You don’t have to hibernate for the winter though.  Here are some fun ways to enjoy the chilly season:

What’s the point of snow if you can’t have fun with it? Take advantage of that powdery goodness by making snow angels and snowmen. You don’t have to stick to a generic looking ‘Frosty the Snowman’ either. Be creative and wow the neighborhood.

It might be a winter wonderland out there, but it doesn’t have to be all white. Add food coloring to some water and then freeze it into blocks and other shapes, using ice cube trays, muffin tins, Jell-O molds, or anything else you can lay your hands on. You now have a brilliant pallet of colors to work with. It’s instant ice art.

You’ve probably built snow forts at some point in time, so why not take it a step further and build your own igloo? Think of it as a winter tree house, your little home away from home. For instructions on how to get started, check out this handy guide.

If the options above seem a little tame, you can always try something more extreme like ice golf, shovel racing and or Yukigassen, a Japanese-inspired cross between a paintball and snowball fighting. Regardless of whether you choose to be creative, extreme or both, get outside this winter and enjoy the season.

Behind the Scenes of Our Favorite Christmas Classics

on Tuesday, 19 December 2017. Posted in Doctor of Fitness

Have you ever watched a great movie or television show and been so wrapped up in it that you went to the Internet to find out more? Maybe you watched ‘Behind the Scenes’ videos or read about the personal lives of the cast. With that in mind, let’s take a behind the scenes look at some of Hollywood’s greatest holiday stories.

It’s a Wonderful Life might be a classic film, but it started out as an overgrown Christmas card. After trying unsuccessfully to sell his short story, The Greatest Gift, author Philip Van Doren Stern printed up copies of the story and sent them out as 21-page Christmas cards.

Coca-Cola originally sponsored A Charlie Brown Christmas, so the original broadcast included several product placement scenes that had to be cut out of subsequent televised versions. Deleted scenes included Linus crashing into a Coca-Cola sign after being thrown by Snoopy.

Is the Grinch too scary? When horror icon Boris Karloff was cast to voice the title character in How the Grinch Stole Christmas, Dr. Seuss initially disputed it, fearing that Karloff’s Grinch would be too terrifying for children.

A Christmas Story is supposed to take place in Cleveland, Ohio during the cold and snowy days leading up to Christmas. It was a warm winter in Cleveland that year so much of the ‘snow’ is actually a mixture of potato flakes, shredded vinyl and firefighters' foam.

May your holidays have the same sense of wonder as these timeless stories. We wish you a blessed season and many happy endings to your own holiday stories.

Eating Healthy During the Holidays

on Tuesday, 12 December 2017. Posted in Doctor of Fitness

We know the holiday food line-up. There are the usual suspects, of course. From Aunt Edna’s famous double chocolate cake, to neighbor Bob’s extra rich holiday fudge, we know them well. That low-calorie hummus dip might do just fine during any other part of the year, but it pales in comparison to the mouth-watering avalanche of cookies, cakes, pies and other holiday treats that dance before our eyes. 

Eating healthy during the holiday season can be challenging to say the least, so here are some tips to help you make it through the holidays without busting your waistline:

  • Those holiday parties aren’t for just for food; there are actual people there. Go talk to them and enjoy their company, because when you’re talking, you’re not eating. 
  • Calories aren’t just found in food. That holiday punch can pack a wallop when it comes to calories, so watch what you drink and try to limit your alcohol consumption. As an alternative, opt for sparkling water.
  • When all else fails, you can always bring your own food. That way you know there’s at least something you can eat.
  • After a tough day’s shopping at the local mall, just about anything at the food court looks good. Avoid this fate by bringing healthy snacks to tide you over or better yet, make sure you eat a quality meal before you hit the stores.

While holiday food is great, it’s not the only reason for the season. Take advantage of everything the holidays have to offer - fun, family and joy - and you can still enjoy a slim and trim you when the new year rolls around.

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