Archive for Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Setting small goals key to losing weight

January 9, 2008

It's New Year's resolution time, and that means many people are deciding to lose weight after celebrating a bit too much during the holidays.

Sacha Dick, who teaches yoga and Pilates classes at the Eudora Community Center, 1638 Elm St., and Frankie Beyer, who owns and also is a trainer at Curves, 704 Main St., said this is when they typically see an influx of people entering their respective programs.

"There's usually an increase at this time," Beyer said. "People step on a scale after the holidays and go 'Oh my.'"

Dick said when beginning a weight-loss program, it's important to realize that results will not be immediate.

"People want instant results, and it takes time," she said. "Sometimes you'll see results right away, and then you'll hit a plateau and that's when people get frustrated and they give up. You just have to make small changes."

Beyer agreed that small changes are the key.

"My advice is to set small goals, like stepping-stones, that you can reach in a small amount of time," she said. "Usually, if you set big goals like losing 50 pounds, you get overwhelmed, or frustrated or you get disappointed."

Those small steps also involve the manner in which people diet. Beyer said one shouldn't cut out everything all at once.

"If you're a chocoholic, don't totally cut out chocolate because then you're going to freak out and binge," she said. "Try to find healthier options like fat free pudding or even chocolate vitamins."

Another contributing factor to people not following through with their weight-loss resolutions are busy schedules.

"One of the problems people run into with the new year's resolutions is they get really excited, they're gung-ho and a lot of times they over-extend themselves, and one of the first things to go is exercise," she said.

Beyer thinks it's just a matter of committing to the program you've set up for yourself.

"You have to be ready," she said. "You have to come to a point in your life that you are ready to make the time."

Yoga and Pilates focus on balance and flexibility, though Pilates works the core muscles of the stomach and back. Dick has classes available for all ages and all levels. Dick said her classes do not infuse the Eastern mysticism that was so closely tied to early versions of yoga.

"It doesn't go into the totally spiritual side of it," she said. "It goes into some quiet time and allowing you to breathe and relax but I don't push any of the spiritual stuff because I want everybody to feel comfortable and enjoy themselves, and that is a big turn off for a lot of people."

Dick's tips for a healthy 2008 are:

¢ Take quiet time for yourself Take time each day to just sit and breathe. Close the eyes, clear the mind and focus on the breath, even if it is just a couple minutes a day.

¢ Make fitness a family event Take walks together, enroll in a fitness class together, turn on the radio and dance.

¢ Incorporate small fitness steps into your day Park farther away and walk, take the stairs instead of the elevator, etc.

¢ Drink lots of water a minimum of four 8-ounce glasses. The more the better.

¢ Instead of making lots of generic "resolutions," set small specific reachable goals. For example: instead of "I am going to lose weight," set smaller goals, such as "I am going to enroll in a fitness class," or, "I am going to cut out processed sugar."

¢ Eat lots of fruits and vegetables Buy organic when possible.

¢ Replace the junk food with healthy snacks When you go to the store, buy healthy snacks. If it is not in the house, you can't eat it.

¢ Celebrate the good Instead of worrying about what we didn't do, can't do, etc., focus on the good and what we are able to do!

Her yoga classes are from 7:45 to 8:45 p.m. on Tuesdays until Feb. 26 and Pilates classes are from 8:30 to 9:30 a.m. on Tuesdays until Feb. 26 and from 7:45 to 8:45 p.m. on Thursdays until Feb. 28. Both classes are held at the Eudora Community Center and cost $55.

For more information, call 423-1150 or email

The program at Curves was designed for women, with the focus being a 30-minute workout that works all muscle groups using machines that allow you to not only push, but also pull weight. The program consists of a five-part workout: warm up, strength training, at least 20 minutes of cardio work to keep your heart rate up, a cool down and stretching.

This program is done three times a week and also includes a weight management system.

Beyer's tips for a healthy 2008 are:

¢ Keep a food log.

¢ Try to work with a buddy for accountability.

¢ Do a water cardio or strength training program.

¢ Cut your calorie intake to 1600 calories.

¢ Eat small meals every 3-4 hours.

¢ Eat breakfast.

¢ Don't overdo your first day; start out slowly and then build as you go.

¢ Always stretch.

¢ Check your heart rate.

Curves is open from 6 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 4 to 7 p.m. on Monday, Wednesday and Friday; from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. and 4 to 8 p.m. on Tuesday and Thursday; and from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Saturday. Beyer suggests making an appointment to workout three weeks in advance and said their most popular program is $29 per month.

For more information, call 542-2389 or visit the Web site at


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