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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.

Do You Have a Book Inside You?

on Tuesday, 30 October 2018. Posted in Doctor of Fitness

They say everybody has a least one great story inside of them screaming to get out. Of course, given the fact that anyone with a keyboard and little spare time can produce an e-book these days, there’s also a school of thought that says maybe you should keep that book to yourself. The question of whether you should take a bold step forward and put pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard) is a personal one. Before you make that decision, here are some things to ask yourself.

Is it a recent idea or it is something you’ve always wanted to do? If it’s the former, you might want to let it percolate and see if you’re still as enthusiastic about the idea a week or a month from now.

Why do you want to write? If you’re searching for fame and riches, you’re likely to be disappointed. Most writers toil in anonymity, and are lucky if they can make a living from their writing, let alone become famous.

Is there a more rewarding way you could spend your time? Writing is a slow, tedious affair, and it’s often frustrating and lonely. Do you want to be hanging out with friends or family, or alone in your study banging away at the keys while the rest of the world goes on by?

If, despite all the challenges in front of you, you still want to proceed, congratulations— you might be a writer. You don’t need a smoking jacket or a fancy pipe and you don’t need a degree from a prestigious university. All you need is a good story to tell and the willingness to put in the hard work to tell it.

Getting Started with Yoga

on Tuesday, 23 October 2018. Posted in Doctor of Fitness

You’ve probably heard that doing yoga is good for you. Of course, once you saw a few pictures of people doing yoga, your views may have changed. Faces contorted in painful grimaces, limbs bent at angles that surely can’t be natural.

“Not for me, thank you,” you say.

Not so fast. Yoga can help clear your mind, relax you and give you a sense of clarity. Not only that, but it can increase your flexibility, reduce joint pain and it’s a great way to get those morning kinks out.

If you’re looking to get started with yoga, the best way probably isn’t by rushing off to buy a yoga mat. Instead, a quick search on ‘Google’ or your browser of choice can give you an idea of what yoga is and isn’t, and whether it fits into your overall fitness goals. Also, since there are many different types of yoga, you can find what style may be right for you.

If you’ve decided to take the plunge, the next step is to find a class in your area. If you live near a college or university, you can likely find a class to sign up for. If not, try your local parks and rec or see if there is a class available through your gym. At least at the beginning, working face-to-face with an instructor can provide you instant and valuable feedback as well as encouragement. If a class simply isn’t available in your area, there are also plenty of online or DVD instruction videos that are almost as good.

Yoga is a great way to stay fit without spending a mint on equipment and gym memberships, so ‘stretch’ your workout routine by giving it a try.

Healthy Halloween Treats

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

Halloween is spooky, scary fun that the whole family can enjoy. It does come with a few down sides though. One look inside the average trick-or-treat bag will tell you there’s enough sugar in there for ten lifetimes and plenty of strange ingredients you can’t even begin to pronounce. To avoid the belly-aches and trips to the dentists that sometimes follow a successful evening of trick-or-treating, how about some healthy alternatives?

Scary spiders and Halloween go hand-in-hand, so why not make it a healthier combination with these spider bites?

Carve your way into a different kind of pumpkin with some pumpkin caramels made with toasted pumpkin seeds, maple syrup and, of course, caramel.

An apple a day keeps the doctor away. Well, maybe not, but apple mummies are a great way to try and see.

With raisins, almonds, and a few strategically placed white chocolate chips, gobbling down creepy crawlies never tasted so good.

Jazz up your holiday fun with some sweet and spicy pepitas, made with popcorn, pumpkin seeds and a little ghoulish glee.

As a healthy change of pace from the sugar-laden goodies that are normally passed out to the would-be ghosts and goblins that knock at your door, you can also offer healthier choices like pre-packaged mini-pretzels, yogurt-covered raisins, chewy granola or fruit chews.

Have a fun (and healthy) Halloween.

Allowances for Kids

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

Allowances have always been a big part of being a kid. If you were lucky, you got an allowance without any strings attached. But more often you had to do some chores around the house, whether it was taking out the trash or cleaning out the garage. It might seem a little old-fashioned these days, but providing your child with an allowance still has a lot of advantages.

An allowance shows the value of work. If you want something, you’ll have to work for it. It’s a lesson we have to learn as adults, so the sooner we get started, the easier it’ll be.

An allowance helps kids learn how to manage money. Should they spend all the allowance on one big-ticket item or save it for a rainy day? Making these decisions early on can help kids understand financial decision making and budgeting.

An allowance teaches responsibility. Will your kid leave that skateboard out in the rain if they worked hard to get it? Maybe, but if they have to sweat to get it, they’re more likely to value it and take better care of it.

It’s really hard to be good at something if you’ve never had a chance to practice, so it makes sense that the best way to learn how to manage money is to actually have some to manage. An allowance is a great place for kids to start.

Budgeting for the Upcoming Holidays

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

Holidays often fall into a familiar pattern. Every year you celebrate them, you indulge yourself a little and you try to make sure your friends and family have a great time as well. Invariably, you end up spending a little more than you wanted to, and, invariably, every year you dread January and February because you have to pay for all that holiday extravagance.

Break the cycle this holiday season by making a plan.

Make a budget and stick with it. It’s easier said than done, but you can’t win if you don’t play. At the very least, starting with a budget gives you something to work from and lets you plan out expenses in advance.

Don’t forget the little things. The holidays are more than just gifts, so don’t forget to include small items like gift cards, gift wrap and holiday decorations in your budget. They’re small, but they can add up fast.

Make a list (and check it twice). Try to find one or two ideas within your price range for every person on your list. A list means order, and you’ll want all the order you can get during the chaotic holiday rush.

The early bird gets the sales. The sooner you start your holiday planning, the more sales you can take advantage of. After all, that Columbus Day deal might just be better than anything you’ll find on Black Friday.

This year, instead of treading through the same holiday rut all over again, change things up with some preemptive holiday budgeting. The work you put in now will save you plenty of work (and money) down the road.

Exercising in the Fall Splendor

on Tuesday, 25 September 2018. Posted in Doctor of Fitness

The withering summer heat has finally relented and there is the first stirring of a cool, dry breeze in the air. Already the leaves, once a pristine green, have now started to don their fall coats. If you’ve been sheltering in the safety of your air conditioning all summer, fall is the perfect time to start your outdoor exercise regimen back up.

Return to a routine. Exercise is about routine and the more of a routine you have, the better. With summer, you have vacations to work around, summer camps to plan and more. If you have kids out of school for the summer it can be even more hectic. Fall is a return to a settled routine, making it much easier to settle into yours.

Competitive events and sports leagues. It’s called the ‘lazy days of summer’ for a reason. Who wants to go out and play anything when the mercury is pushing through the roof? Fall brings with it plenty of events like marathons and the opportunity to sign up for sports leagues. It’s the perfect time for you to add a little competitive spice to your workouts.

The weather. It almost goes without saying, but we will anyway. The weather is crisp and clear and the foliage is beautiful. Why wouldn’t you want to be outside?

There may not be a better time of year to get out and get fit. Fall is fleeting, so don’t let the great weather and beautiful color pass you by!

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