MEAL OF THE MONTH FROM REVIVE WELLNESS: Chicken and Wild Rice Soup

Chicken and Wild Rice Soup

Makes 8 Servings (1 ½ cup per serving)

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb. chicken, diced
  • ½ cup wild rice
  • 1 cup carrots, peeled and diced
  • 1 cup celery, diced
  • 1 cup onion, diced
  • 2 cups mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • ½ tsp. pepper
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • ½ Tbsp. thyme
  • ½ Tbsp. basil
  • ½ Tbsp. oregano
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 6 cups chicken stock, low sodium
  • 1 cup 2 % milk

Preparation:

  1. Combine all ingredients except milk into a slow cooker.
  2. Cook on low for 8 hours or high for 4.
  3. Once the time is up and the rice is soft, add the milk and continue to cook for 10 minutes.
  4. Serve and enjoy!

*Make ahead of time and freeze for up to three months.

 

Nutritional analysis per serving: 132 calories, 2 g fat, 13 g protein, 16 g carbohydrate (13 g available carbohydrate), 3 g fibre, 186 mg sodium

Why Hire a Personal Trainer?

It’s simple — hiring an SVPT certified personal trainer can take out the confusion and guess work about proper training as well as reduce the risk of injury. In the long run personal training can help save you time and money all while getting you fitter and healthier, and living a fuller life.

  1. Assessment
    Many of you are doing exercises and programs that just aren’t suited for your body, fitness level, or goals. This is why many exercise and see no results.  Assessments can teach you about the imbalances, strengths and weaknesses in your body. Assessments help SVPT personal trainers create a program that is individually suited to you so you can train to your full potential, without wasting time and risking injury.
  2. Knowledge
    Hiring a personal trainer is an investment. During your sessions, you will learn the how and why to train effectively, efficiently, and safely. We educate you so you can take away as much knowledge as possible, so when the time comes you can train on your own, and do so with confidence. We expect you to leave the nest eventually, in fact that is our goal, is to have you feel so educated and confident, that you can train on your own. When you leave the nest it means we have done our jobs in teaching you how to train properly.
  3. Motivation
    We all struggle with training motivation at some point. A personal trainer can give you the extra little kick in the butt when you struggle. We can’t do the work for you and we can’t make you want it, but we can give you a little nudge in the right direction.
  4. Accountability
    Accountability is strongly tied to motivation. A personal trainer can keep you on track with your goals so you can get the results you seek. Life can get in the way, and usually the first thing to go is exercise. Consistency is the key to success, and having someone to hold you accountable can keep you consistent and on track.
  5. Goal Setting
    Sometimes we want everything all at once, but that is usually a little unrealistic and overwhelming. Our personal trainers can help you set realistic fitness goals that are achievable and in-line with your lifestyle, fitness level and budget.

So now that you know the WHY, learn what you should be looking for in a personal trainer and check out our blog from January 2018 – “What Makes a Good Personal Trainer?

Shara Vigeant, BA, NSCA-CPT*D, CFSC

T’is the Season for Maintenance

For many personal trainers, the month of December might be properly referred to as a “Maintenance Month.” December is typically filled with social obligations, and stress surrounding the holidays in general for clients.  Your regular routine and schedule goes out the window and all the holiday parties and gatherings mean you’re tempted to indulge in foods you otherwise would avoid and to also skip workouts.  As it is, committing to a regular nutrition and exercise schedule can be tough year round from life’s ups and downs, but the holidays in particular can exacerbate these stresses.

The holidays can bring about added stress from shopping, increased food preparation, house guests, frequent visitors, financial stress, more demands on time, and simply a change in schedule.  A change in routine, whether it is good or bad, equates to stress.  The biggest complaint personal trainers hear during this time of year is clients not being able to fit in workouts or stick to their nutrition regime, due to all the added obligations.

One of the reasons personal trainers and nutritionists really stress creating exercise and nutritional habits year round, is so when life happens, like the busy holiday season, the repercussions of missing a workout or indulging in holiday goodies will not set you back to square one.  In fact, if you are consistent  (not perfect) all year round, you might welcome the relaxed holiday season. Consistency year round allows you to have some time to just maintain, which might look a little more relaxed.

Let’s be clear — not being perfect does not make you a failure. All areas of our lives have ebbs and flows, which are necessary elements of life. The easiest way to understand this is using the term burnout. We all know what causes burnout – not enough balance and/or recovery. It’s ok to hammer away at something for a while, and it is just as ok to back off when you need to. And this might mean using the holiday season to do so.

Maintenance might be one of the least sexy words out there, but maintenance is about doing the little things in order to keep us at the same level, or not allow us to go backwards.  Just like life doesn’t need to be a continual march forward, neither does your fitness journey.  Sometimes we need to march in place when competing priorities are difficult to manage.  So you had to skip a few workouts for a social event or other holiday obligations? In the long run and the bigger picture of a year round commitment to a healthy lifestyle, this is inconsequential. Even 3 or 4 parties like this are not likely to affect your overall health if you are  maintaining a routine of health and fitness year round. Your batting average is still going to be high.   It also might be argued that a little break from your routine will help you appreciate it a little bit more when it comes time to get back into it.

So what does maintenance look like?  It’s just simply, marching in place, getting it done.  It can also be defined as keeping healthy and injury free, while not moving backwards – keeping status quo.  If you exercise 4-5 days a week in your regular routine, maintenance might look like 3 exercise sessions.  And should that get away from you, aiming to do any kind of movement for 30 minutes, regardless if it’s in your regime or not.  Any physical activity is better than nothing.  Walks, skiing, skating, etc. with the family are a great way to stay active.  You do what you need to do not go backwards and just maintain.  If you are not worried about maintenance during the holiday season, then use exercise as a great form of stress relief and a welcome break from the hustle and bustle.

This season the last thing you need is added stress.  Give yourself permission to maintain, do your best, and just enjoy the holiday season for all it has to offer.

 

Kristen Hansen, BA, CSEP-CPT, PFT-NAIT, NASM-CES, FRCms

Shara Vigeant, BA, NSCA-CPT*D, CFSC

MEAL OF THE MONTH FROM REVIVE WELLNESS: Mini Turkey Meatloaf

In preparation for spending more time in the kitchen(our theme for November) with the holiday season, we suggest doing some batch cooking and meal prep so that your regular meals don’t fall to the wayside. Try these mini meatloaves that you can keep in the freezer for the nights you are too busy or too tired for cooking.

Makes 9 mini loaves

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb. ground turkey
  • 1 ½ cup zucchini, grated, and some water removed
  • 1 cup carrots, peeled and shredded
  • ½ cup onion, diced
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tsp. onion powder
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 2 tsp. oregano
  • 2 tsp. basil
  • 2 tsp. sage
  • 2 tsp. thyme
  • 1 tsp. pepper
  • ¾ cup bradrumbs
  • 1 Tbsp. ketchup

 

Preparation:

  1. Heat oven to 350 °F.
  2. Combine all ingredients except the ketchup into a bowl and mix.
  3. Form the mixture into a ball then press into a mini loaf pan or muffin tin.
  4. Distribute the ketchup on top of each loaf.
  5. Bake for 20 minutes.
  6. Serve and enjoy!

 

Nutritional analysis per serving: 142 calories, 2 g fat, 22 g protein, 8 g carbohydrate (7 g available carbohydrate), 1 g fibre, 76 mg sodium

No Trends, No Fads, No Quick Fixes

Some might say what we do at SVPT is boring.  From a certain point of view that is true, as we aren’t sexy, we aren’t flashy, and maybe the cool kids don’t dig us.  But what we are great at is teaching you to master your movement and build fitness that will ultimately make you a bad-ass in life…….for the long term, not just for the next 2 months.

There is no screaming at you, making you puke, or trying to crush your soul.   We believe in building you up, not breaking you down.  I mean, isn’t that the reason you started exercising in the first place – to feel better physically, mentally, and emotionally? No one likes to walk away from a workout feeling worse than when they walked in.

It’s not about being flashy or sexy, cool or stylish – it’s about building fundamental movement skills through challenging fitness fun.  Mastering fundamentals reduces injuries, slows aging, and builds a body that allows you to live a fuller life. When you move better, you live better.  Isn’t that what fitness is supposed to be about? Living a better and more full life, because you are physically able to.

We frequently get asked, “Hey have you seen the latest fitness trend _______ on social media?”.  We see it.  We have cringed at it, and we don’t do it.  We don’t get caught up in the latest social media phenoms.   (And we won’t name any of the current trends/fads out there, because this is not about bashing them, it’s about explaining why we don’t buy into them.)

Training trends and fads are usually the ‘latest and greatest’ exercise, system, or concept to gain attention in the fitness industry or achieve notoriety on social media.  However, just as the latest diet and fashion trends die off, training fads and trends will fade.  And after they fade, you will see many coaches and trainers reverting back to tried and true ‘boring’ systems, because they work.

Boring works.  Simple is genius.  So yeah, we are kind of geniuses.

While we do continuously educate ourselves about the “new” fitness trends, we have found that the common themes of most good fitness systems in our industry involve simplicity.  As we continue our education, we continue adding more tools to our training toolbox.  But more importantly, we learn through experience when it is appropriate to use those tools.  This would include knowing when to use non-traditional or “fancy” implements such as kettlebells, bands, chains, TRX, stability balls, etc. We also know when and when not to use more advanced training methods such as eccentric training, tempo, volume, etc.

A lot of the trends and fads can be effective (for a time), but it comes down to understanding if these trends and fads serve the client’s purpose and goals LONG TERM, because we want to see you continue with your fitness, not blast a 30 day challenge twice a year.  Quick fixes in fitness are just that – quick.  Often not long lasting.  Building fitness is a skill and takes time, just like any other skill.  If you are jumping around from trend to trend, you are more than likely risking injury and not truly building a solid fitness foundation. A foundation is what you need to sustain fitness for the rest of your life.

Great coaching, efficient programming, and good results will never go out of style. More importantly, they will never stop being effective.  Mastering the basics and building a foundation will never be wasted time, and learning quality movement will always be important.  It’s a matter of understanding when the basics can be modified to make them more challenging and fun, but still effective and safe…not a circus act to post on Instagram that will eventually make the Gym Fails compilation.

So when a client vocalizes their disdain for a certain exercise due to boredom or simply because it is a hard exercise, we remind them of the why.  Something wonderful happens when you explain to a client why they are doing something. They become empowered.  All of a sudden they do that exercise just a little bit better.  Ultimately our job is for you to feel confident enough to leave our little gym nest……FLY BIRDIE FLY!   Our job is to have you not need us anymore, and if we are constantly bouncing from trend to trend, we aren’t giving you the foundations to understand fitness and do it on your own.

You will notice we do not sell anything or push anything flashy, sexy, or trendy on you except good old-fashioned hard work, consistency, and sound programming.  That is the secret, our “secret”.

 

Shara Vigeant, BA, NSCA-CPT*D, CFSC

MEAL OF THE MONTH FROM REVIVE WELLNESS: Autumn Roasted Salad

We are focusing on mindfulness this month; the word mindful meaning to be conscious or aware of something. Further, it can relate to being present in the moment, focusing on one task at a time, and as it relates to eating: being in tune with hunger and fullness cues.

A simple way to increase your nutrition (and often satisfaction with a meal) is to be mindful of what is in season. Fruits and vegetables are fresher and have more flavour when eaten in season. Roasting autumn’s veggies brings out their flavour even more- give it a try in this salad.

Makes 4 servings

Ingredients:

  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 cup beets, peeled and chopped
  • 1 cup Brussels sprouts, sliced in half
  • 1 cup acorn squash, peeled and chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cups kale, stemmed and chopped
  • 1 apple, seeded and chopped
  • 2 Tbsp. feta cheese
  • 1 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 2 Tbsp. pumpkin seeds
  • 1 Tbsp. dried cranberries

Preparation:

  1. Heat oven to 350 °F.
  2. Combine beets, squash, and Brussels in a bowl and toss with ¾ Tbsp. of olive oil
  3. Lay on a tray with parchment paper and roast in the oven until almost soft, ~ 30 minutes.
  4. Toss the kale and garlic with the remaining olive oil and add to the pan. Continue baking for 8 minutes.
  5. Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly.
  6. Then add in the apples, lemon juice, feta, pumpkin seeds and cranberries.
  7. Serve and enjoy!

 

Nutritional analysis per serving: 216 calories, 8 g fat, 7 g protein, 35 g carbohydrate (27 g available carbohydrate), 8 g fibre, 162 mg sodium

Strength in Many Forms

When a lot of us think of the word strength, our minds might jump immediately to a picture of someone hoisting a fully loaded barbell from the floor, squatting with an extremely heavy load, or cranking out rep after rep of pull-ups. And that isn’t necessarily wrong! Those activities obviously require a great deal of strength…but are they the only way to express strength? Are there many ways to be strong, and many activities to be strong in? We think so. Strength can be expressed in countless ways and is not pigeonholed into one activity, one lift, or one sport.

Strength is very much individual-specific and context-specific. A person may be incredibly strong for their unique work, life, or sport activities, but may not necessarily be strong in another activity – especially if it is a task they have never attempted before. For instance, a person who can squat an extremely heavy weight is certainly a strong human, but could he or she demonstrate strength in the same manner as a Cirque de Soleil performer? Absolutely not! By the same token, the Cirque de Soleil acrobat is an unbelievably strong athlete, but likely cannot squat an extremely heavy load.

This is obviously an extreme example, but hopefully it illustrates that there are many ways to be strong, and many methods to get there. Cyclists express strength by driving incredible forces into bike pedals, wrestlers express strength through tremendous grip and body leverage, gymnasts express strength through their ability to achieve and control extreme body positions…the list could go on. Every activity has different strength demands, yet all of these people can be classified as “strong”.

The key element that ties all of these different activities and types of athletes together is that they still all need to be strong! Whatever that might look like for any given person, the common thread remains – they need to be able to bring their specific strength to bear in a specific way for their activity.

It is important to note that we are not saying that strength gained by lifting weights in the gym has no carryover into sport or life activities. It most certainly does! Each athlete mentioned above could improve their general strength by performing a weight training program. However, improved ability to express strength through a squat or deadlift does not directly translate into improved ability to express strength through a bike race, wrestling match, or gymnastics event – the athletes must still utilize task-specific strength when they participate in their sports. The weight training program simply gives them more potential to do exactly this.

We can apply this overarching theme to ourselves as weekend warriors, gym enthusiasts, or people training for general health and wellness. Getting “strong” may not look the same from person to person, as everyone has their own unique life demands, jobs, or activities that they are training for. Different people may need to express strength differently in their daily lives. But regardless of what it looks like, everyone should still train for increased strength. Strength is king – it is required for almost everything in life, it is needed in many forms, and it is for everyone!

Erica Saunders, BPE, CSCS, FRCms

 

 

 

Meal of the month from Revive Wellness: Freezer Veggie Breakfast Wraps

September signals back to routine and often busier days—don’t forget to fuel up with a good breakfast! Try freezing our Veggie Breakfast Wraps to have on hand for mornings when you are short on time.

Makes 8 Servings

Ingredients:

  • 1 tsp. olive oil
  • 8 eggs
  • ½ cup broccoli, chopped small
  • ½ cup red peppers, diced small
  • 1 Tbsp. green onion, chopped
  • ¼ cup cheddar cheese, grated
  • ¼ cup milk
  • 1 tsp. pepper
  • 2 Tbsp. salsa
  • 8 whole wheat wraps

Preparation:

  1. Heat oil in a pan on medium-high heat and add broccoli and peppers.
  2. Cook for 4 minutes, then add the green onion and salsa.
  3. In a bowl, combine eggs, pepper and milk, whisk until combined.
  4. Pour into vegetable pan and cook until eggs are cooked through.
  5. Sprinkle ½ Tbsp. of cheese into each wrap and pour 1/8th of the egg mixture into each.
  6. Wrap up tightly and then wrap in plastic wrap.
  7. Freeze for up to two months.
  8. To serve, microwave from frozen for 4-6 minutes, turning half way.

Nutritional analysis per serving: 234 calories, 10 g fat, 11 g protein, 27 g carbohydrate (23 g available carbohydrate), 4 g fibre, 416 mg sodium

The ONLY Thing You Need to Get Fit EVER

Now that we have your attention, it’s about time we talk about this one thing that you need to get fitter, healthier and dare we say, happier:  SLEEP.

I am sure you have read or heard before how important sleep is.  Well, we are saying it’s the ONE AND ONLY thing you need to live a healthier and fitter life.  Big claim, right?  Well, we dare to say it because if there is one consistent factor we see in clients that affects their performance, mood, food choices, mental clarity, stress…it is LACK OF SLEEP.  Everyone wants to get more done in a day, and with our hectic lives, sleep is usually the first activity to be sacrificed.

We see a lot of people at SVPT and can honestly say that the one issue that keeps coming up with clients is their lack of sleep, or living in sleep deprivation.  They think it’s their training program or diet that is not working but actually it’s the fact that they just simply are not getting enough sleep! 

Proper sleep means normal energy levels. If you are trying to get in shape and sculpt your body you will definitely need energy. People who feel sleepy can’t find the energy to work out, prepare a healthy meal or simply take a walk.

On top of lack of energy, sleep deprivation also means that your body won’t have time to recover from training. In case you didn’t know, your body needs some time to repair muscle tissue after a workout and also restore chemical balances.

Here are a few other things that can happen with a lack of sleep (no citing sources here, but you can ask your doctor and the internet):

  • Memory Issues
  • Mood Changes
  • Weakened Immunity
  • Difficulty Concentrating
  • Accidents
  • Weight Gain
  • Poor Balance
  • Risk of Heart Disease
  • High Blood Pressure
  • Decreased Performance/Endurance
  • Injuries Won’t Heal 

You cannot crush fitness goals in a consistently sleep deprived state.  Normally we would say that consistency is the real key to fitness success, but without sleep you can’t apply consistency.  

Sleep is one of those things that needs to be trained, and made into a routine.  The body loves routine and homeostasis.  Make a plan to go to bed at the same time for 2 weeks.  Yes, even on the weekends.  Commit to getting a solid 8 hours for 2 weeks and see what happens to your energy, recovery and quality of life. 

We dare you.

A well-rested body (and mind) is a force to be reckoned with! 

 

Shara Vigeant, BA, NSCA-CPT*D, CFSC

Meal of the month from Revive Wellness: Pizza on a Stick

Cooking and preparing food is an everyday occurrence in most households, so why not try and let your kids help and learn along the way.

Bonus: children are more likely to eat what they help prepare!

Pizza on a Stick

Makes 12 skewers

Ingredients:

  • 2 whole wheat pita breads, chopped into squares
  • ¼ cup turkey peperoni
  • ½ cup chicken, cubed and precooked
  • ¾ cup small mozzarella balls
  • ½ cup cherry tomatoes
  • ½ cup red or green peppers, chopped into large chunks
  • ½ cup mushrooms
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 tsp. oregano
  • 1 Tbsp. parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1 cup marinara sauce
  • 12 wooden skewers, soaked in water

Preparation:

  1. Heat oven to 400 °F.
  2. Allow your child to build their own personal skewer, trying to layer as much variety as possible.
  3. Lay the skewers onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  4. Combine the olive oil, and oregano and brush over the skewers, being sure to put extra onto the pitas so they don’t dry out in the cooking process.
  5. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese.
  6. Bake for 6-8 minutes, until veggies are starting to soften and the parmesan cheese is melted.
  7. While the skewers are cooking, warm up marinara sauce either on the stove or in the microwave.
  8. Use the marinara sauce as a dip.
  9. Serve and enjoy!

 

For more kid-friendly recipes or health information, check out our blog.

-From Revive Wellness Inc.-