Category Archives: Health

Sam Page with SpaceShipOne

Stay on Track When You Travel

When traveling, time matters. Schedules are precise, and often packed to make every second count. In my 10 years of training high level entertainment executives, I’ve observed that the VERY top producers also know that sleep, exercise and  nutrition (SEN) are among the most important “meetings” they take in any 24-hour period. Continue reading

Apple_HealthBook_App

Apple Takes a Bite at Health + Fitness

With iOS 8 firmly in place, and the new phones announced, Apple Inc  has taken another step into the health and fitness category. The health app makes sense of your overall health trends, tracking nutrition, fitness, weight and monitoring habits such as food intake, sleep cycle and hydration levels. Data will be also be collected by Apple Watch. Company officials promised that consumer privacy will be fiercely protected.  The app is developed with input from Nike, and also the Mayo Clinic, who are supporting the data collection and reporting aspects of the software.

As a former Apple employee (and one of the first personal trainers in the U.S. to switch from paper to 100 percent digital record keeping), I believe the future success of personal trainers is going to depend on their curiosity, adaptability to new technology, personal service and ability to educate clients. With electronic record keeping rapidly becoming the new minimum of what is acceptable, this is a VERY exciting time to work in health and fitness.

A good graphical overview of HealthBookhere:  http://9to5mac.com/2014/03/17/this-is-healthbook-apples-first-major-step-into-health-fitness-tracking/

Screen Shot 2014 06 02 at 11.49.03 AM 300x268 Apple Takes a Bite at Health + Fitness

The Best Organic Hangover Remedies

DEAR SAM:  What’s the best way to cure a hangover? 

Keep in mind a couple things. The first one is to resist the temptation to use over-the-counter medications, such as aspirin, acetaminophen or ibuprofen, because they can amplify serious side effects from alcohol (ranging from stomach bleeding, liver damage or thinning blood).

The most important thing is to hydrate, hydrate, hydrate to clean out the toxins. So drink plenty of water before, during and after drinking. Before bed, drop 50ML of milk thistle liquid extract into a large glass of water. The morning after, do it again, and add the milk thistle extract to the water your drink throughout the following day.  (Tomato juice with cayenne pepper, sugar, and lime is a good choice because it helps replenish electrolytes and return your blood sugar to normal).  If you don’t have tomato juice, you could also use a glass of water with a dash of sea salt and sugar before bed and immediately upon waking up.  Don’t forget to add the milk thistle extract.

Use Tiger Balm to help your headache. Tiger balm, a bled of camphor, menthol, cajuput oil and clove oil, is probably one of the best topical headache cures in existence. Dab a little bit on the back of your neck and temples, massage it in and wait a few minutes.

Use wasabi or mustard baths.  (Yes, wasabi as in sushi) Because about 1/3 of toxic body waste is cleared through the skin, wasabi increases blood circulation through the organs and promotes oxygenation of the cellular tissue, helping to clear cells of metabolic waste.  Soaking in a wasabi bath will help clear toxins through your skin. You can also try using a regular mustard bath.  If you can’t access these products, make your own by pouring 2TB of pure mustard powder into warm running bath water. Sit for about 20 minutes, then dry off, take a nap and let the mustard take effect.

Move your body.  Other well-proven organic ways to relieve hangover include reflexology )(i.e., rubbing your feet) especially the outer edge area on the right foot, halfway between the middle of the foot and the little toe.  Also some yoga experts believe yoga can relieve a hangover. The main pose I recommend is to perform the seated twist which some yogis say squeezes blood out of the organs, thereby bringing fresh blood in.

Finally, don’t underestimate the power of the green — taking a couple shots of wheatgrass or a glass of green juice is immensely helpful. This delivers powerful antioxidants and enzymes to support your body inside and out.  If possible, I recommend a glass of green juice at the end of the night, and another first thing in the morning.

How to Stay Healthy When You’re On the Road

For nearly a decade, I’ve specialized in training entertainment execs and celebrities, so I know that staying in shape while traveling is one of the biggest challenges they face.

It’s also the single most important thing they can do for themselves. Why? Because exercise enhances performance. It sharpens your game. By putting in a concerted effort to take care of your body on the road, you’ll reap countless rewards: better sleep, more energy, boosted mood, less jet lag, more mental acuity. Oh, and you’ll look better, too.

Here are 11 practical ways to help you stick to your fitness goals when you travel:

KEEP WORKOUT GEAR PACKED AT ALL TIMES.  Producers and crew often keep their toiletries in a separate, ready-to-go bag, so they don’t have to re-pack for every shoot. Do the same thing when it comes to your workout gear. A pair of gym shoes can double as running shoes, a shirt made of moisture-wicking fabric, some shorts and a light jacket will usually do the trick. Pack a jump rope for a great cardio workout. If you feel more adventurous, throw in some resistance bands.

PACK WORKOUT CLOTHES IN AN EXTERIOR POCKET of your bag, so you don’t have to dig around looking for it when you arrive at your destination. This sets you up for success.

WORK OUT FIRST THING IN THE MORNING when possible. An early workout accomplishes two things: it sets the tone for the rest of your day, and it ensures that exercise gets on your schedule. Because you can’t always predict those last-minute meetings and business dinners. Personally, I know that the longer I wait to work out—the less likely it happens (unless you have a trainer).

CHOOSE HOTELS WITH GYMS.  One of my favorite websites, http://athleticmindedtraveler.com gives expert recommendations on hotels in cities around the world based on their gyms and fitness offerings. If they do not have a gym on site, ask the manager if the hotel partners with a local gyms for guests.

SET UP SESSIONS WITH A TRAINER IN ADVANCE.  Call the concierge ahead of your check in date to set up a session with a qualified fitness professional. If you’re going to be in a city for a week or more, booking some sessions with a great trainer can shake up your routine and keep you motivated while you’re on the road.

FIND OUT ABOUT GYM PARTNERSHIPS. Your home gym may allow you to work out at affiliated gyms around the world (e.g., If you’re a YMCA member, you’re usually welcome at other Y’s for free). If your gym doesn’t have clubs in other cities, ask the local gym if they have guest passes.

PRE-SHIP THE FOOD YOU NEED. Eliminate the option of eating poorly by packing or pre-shipping protein bars or shakes ahead of time. Fedex and UPS have ground and “super saver” options to make this less expensive than checking a second piece of luggage. For an extended trip, throw in some of your workout gear (a set of TRX straps, or resistance bands). That way it won’t take up space in your luggage.

REWARD YOURSELF at night with a tasty, healthy dinner. That way, when you have those crazy days, you will be looking forward to a delicious meal at night that’s both healthy and enjoyable. Red wine is encouraged!

ALTERNATE ALCOHOL WITH WATER. When you drink alcohol, you can automatically cut your consumption in half simply by alternating each alcoholic beverage with a large glass of water. Alcohol works against more than your waistline—it also interrupts sleep patterns, making the sleep you get less restful. And the importance of good sleep when traveling is huge.

TRY NOT TO EAT YOUR FEELINGS. Moving is life’s second most stressful event—and travel is stressful for many of the same reasons. When under stress, we turn to food that’s familiar and comforting. Resolve ahead of time to stick to your healthy routine. At a restaurant, make healthy meal choices—you can do it with a little extra effort.

DRAW BOUNDARIES. When you’re at the top of your game, there’s a lot of pressurestill, you’re a human being, and there comes a point where you’ll say: “Fuck it—my life starts with me.” Don’t be afraid to ask for what you need. I’ve often observed that my most successful clients are those who draw boundaries and enforce them. Don’t respond to e-mails or text messages after a pre-determined time. And unless it contains your music playlists, leave your smartphone behind for the duration of your exercise time. The world won’t come crashing down. And you’ll feel better because you took charge of your life.

Sam Page, CFT 

The Mindful Eating Challenge

Last week my fitness coach, Sam Page, issued a challenge:

“FOR ONE WEEK, I want you to shop for your food every day with a budget of $10 — more or less — and ONLY buy what you will eat that day… and chocolate is required.

He allowed me one modification — that I shop for each day’s dinner and the next day’s breakfast (since I have a night job and don’t always follow normal eating habits anyway). Intriguing, particularly since he asked me to blog about it, which makes it all the more real an experience for me.

DAY #1: MONDAY

I realize I didn’t plan ahead all that well, so I don’t have Monday’s breakfast lined up. That’s OK. I will start that evening. I don’t have an immediate goal in mind, so I do what I normally do – stay in the vicinity of work, and shop at Ralph’s. Right away, I am more aware of what things cost. If you only have 10 bucks to spend, you are going to make it count. When Sam explained a very Zen way of eating excruciatingly slowly, savoring every bite, I said, “Well I can’t waste all that effort on a Snickers.” Same concept. I need to make sure I favor quality over quantity. Maybe I should have gone to Whole Foods I think to myself. Besides being relatively healthier, it’s probably easier to get more single servings of things. But I’ll find something. Continue reading