Stay in touch Facebook

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.

Five Tips for New Dads

on Tuesday, 12 June 2018. Posted in Doctor of Fitness

If you grew up on old TV shows (remember Leave It To Beaver?) and cartoons, fatherhood seems pretty simple. When your new bundle of joy comes into the world, you just pass out a few cigars. Later on, you’ll come home from work to dispense some sage advice (and maybe a little tough love) and settle down to watch some TV.

Of course in the real world, fatherhood isn’t nearly that easy. Becoming a dad might be the toughest job you ever take on. Here a few survival tips:

Take a break. Your life has been turned upside and punted into the next county. It seems like chaos. Stepping away, even for a few minutes, can help you keep calm and in control.

Make time for your baby. The more time you spend with your little one, the stronger of a bond you’ll be able to build. If possible, try to schedule time off from work during your baby’s formative months.

Babies are portable. In many cases, you don’t have to leave your child behind with a sitter. Instead take them with you. The outside stimulation will help them develop, and you’re sure to get lots of attention.

Take care of yourself. Having a new baby can be stressful, and it can be easy to neglect your own health. Don’t. You’re one of your baby’s most important long term assets, so behave accordingly.

Get advice. Children don’t come with a manual, so talk to other new fathers about your experience and theirs. Whatever situation you may encounter, chances are there’s someone who been there, seen that.

No, fatherhood might not seem as simple as Ward Cleaver made it out to be, but it doesn’t have to be the end of your world either. For a few more tips, check out this handy survival guide.

Basics of Aromatherapy

on Tuesday, 05 June 2018. Posted in Doctor of Fitness

A fragrant flower in the garden. The smell of salt at the beach. The unmistakable odor of corn dogs and cotton candy at a county fair. The world is full of smells. While we take in the bulk of our sensory information through our eyes, smell remains one of our most powerful senses. A particular smell can brighten our mood, dredge up old memories or even raise old fears we thought we’d gotten over.

Because smell affects us in such a primordial way, it can also be used to promote the health of the mind, the body and the spirit. That’s where aromatherapy comes in. It’s both an art and a science that utilizes naturally extracted aromatic essences (usually, but not always from plants) to enhance an individual’s innate healing process. Common aromatic essences include: lavender, peppermint and rosemary and many more.

Aromatherapy doesn’t heal the body directly. Instead it boosts the body’s natural defenses and regenerative abilities. It helps the body help itself by:

  • Kicking the immune system up a notch
  • Getting rid of toxins more quickly
  • Enhancing new cell growth
  • Increasing digestion and circulation

You can take in the aromatic essences in one of two ways: through inhalation or through the skin. In other words, breathe it in or rub it in. In either case, it’s absorbed into the body and makes its way into the circulatory system where its benefits are distributed to the rest of the body.

Whatever your ailment or mood, with a little research you can find just the right essence to help. So if you’re looking for something a little different, give aromatherapy a try. Good health never smelled so good.

What Will You Do With Your Kids This Summer?

on Tuesday, 29 May 2018. Posted in Doctor of Fitness

It’s summertime and, as much as you might want to ignore it, there’s one simple fact of life right now: school’s out soon and the kids are home. The question now is what you’re going to do with them. Here are a few suggestions:

Your town has cheap or free attractions. Use them. Smaller less popular museums may seem like old hat to you, but the first time may be the charm for your kids. Less busy sites may offer them more personal attention or the opportunity to take their time and learn more. If the entrance fee is a struggle for you, check out the free passes at your local library.

Encourage your children to put away their cell phones and play traditional card or board games. There is a higher level of interaction with these types of games, and remember these days they’re not old-fashioned, they’re called retro.

There’s always camping. Now you may be thinking about summer camp, and that’s always an option, but you don’t have to spend money to pack them off. Take them camping - even if it's just in the backyard.

Let them express their inner artist. Everybody had a creative streak somewhere in them, and summer is a great time to let it out. Whether it’s painting, writing, music or something even more avant garde, give your kids the chance to see what they can do.

These activities are more than just something for your kids to do. They’re chances for them to grow. School may be out, but the opportunities for learning never stop.

The Basics of Health Savings Accounts

on Tuesday, 22 May 2018. Posted in Doctor of Fitness

One aspect of many health care plans that doesn’t get a lot of attention is health savings accounts, commonly known as HSAs. If your coverage has a high-deductible attached to it, an HSA may be just the thing to save your wallet from an unexpected (and unexpectedly expensive) medical bill.

An HSA is basically a savings account, but unlike ordinary savings accounts that you might open at a bank, the funds you place into an HSA are tax free. Like a savings account, you can contribute to them throughout the year. The only real catch is that you can’t use them to pay for that Florida vacation you’ve been dreaming about or a new car. Instead you must use them to pay for unreimbursed qualified medical expenses you incur. The list of what counts as a qualified expense is pretty broad, although as of 2011 you can no longer use them to pay for over-the-counter medications.

That’s not to say the funds are locked up. You can still access them if you choose to. If the funds are not used for qualified medical expenses, distributions are treated much like early distributions from an IRA for tax purposes, meaning you may have to pay a tax penalty when you withdraw the funds. And, like an IRA, you can keep your HSA account until you retire.

If an HSA sounds like it might be right for you, contact your employer and see if they offer the option. If you participate in an HDHP or high-deductible plan, you can also open an HSA on your own by going to your bank or financial institution.

Good luck and good health.

Why Walking is Good for You

on Tuesday, 15 May 2018. Posted in Doctor of Fitness

Have you ever been walking out on the foot trail and been passed by one of those sleek joggers in their fancy running suits? It can make you feel a little intimidated. They seem to be the ones getting all the great exercise. It isn’t too long before you’re counting calories and wondering how much more they’re burning than you.

It may surprise you to learn that it’s not that many. True, running burns more calories faster, but a 50-minute walk will get you the same calorie burn as a 20-minute run.

There are also some other benefits to walking:

Not everyone can run.Walking provides many of the same benefits as other forms of exercise without requiring the same level of physical exertion.

Walking is easier on your joints.Running may burn calories faster, but it also stresses your knees, ankles and hips. It’s the reason why walking is the first choice for older exercisers.

Walking is cheaper.To enjoy the benefits of walking you don’t need to spend a bundle on fancy exercise equipment. All you need to walk is a good pair of shoes, some comfortable clothes and the willingness to get started.

If all these other benefits weren’t enough, walking is a great way to start an exercise regimen. One of the mistakes many people make is that they try too much too soon, and then give up when the inevitable injuries hit. Walking is great to tone your body up so you’ll be ready to take on increasingly greater challenges.

Bonding With Your Baby

on Tuesday, 08 May 2018. Posted in Doctor of Fitness

New baby? Happy Mother’s Day! Spending quality time with your new baby is one of the best things you can do for both yourself and the baby. In fact, it’s one of the most important things you can do. New research is showing that a strong mother-baby bond may help ward off disease, strengthen immunities and increase a child's IQ.

The creation of a bond between mother and child starts from birth, so there’s no such thing as getting too early a start.

Here are some ways you can create that bond:

Spend plenty of time with them so you can get to know their likes and dislikes. These preferences are formed very early on, and the better you know your child, the stronger your bond will be. It works the other way too, so now is the perfect time to hum your favorite Beatles song.

Reach out and make contact. A baby’s senses are limited at first, so touch is one of the most important ways they gather information. It becomes almost an early form of language. In a very real sense, when you hold them or bathe them, you’re talking to them.

Start the day with a smile. Facial recognition is one of the first things a baby learns, long before they can process other objects. So even if it is three o’clock in the morning, greet them with a smile.

Remember that bonding is a process. As your baby grows, that bond will continue to get stronger.

<<  1 2 3 [45 6 7 8  >>