Savory sweet potato & lentil soup

This gallery contains 1 photo.

This savory soup’s addition of apples, fresh ginger and paprika are just a few star ingredients that make this divine soup brilliantly vibrant and a must have during the colder months of the year. Enjoy! INGREDIENTS: 1/4 cup coconut oil … Continue reading

More Galleries | Comments Off

Shrimp Scampi with Zucchini Noodles

This gallery contains 1 photo.

Being Italian, there is NOTHING more comforting and fabulous to me than a big bowl of pasta. It’s my go to answer when someone poses the question, “If you by chance ended up on death row about to face the … Continue reading

More Galleries | Comments Off

How to REALLY get strong abs & core

pelvic_pyramid2

It seems like every gym ad, fitness infomercial, and DVD workout touts exercises that “build the core”.   Six-pack abs and chiseled obliques on magazine models depict “strong and fit” core muscles and many of us search for exercises or trendy equipment that might transform our own tummies into flat, sculpted abdomens for all to admire.  But are these perfect looking abs equivalent to a healthy core system? Are exercises such as decline oblique crunches and abdominal crunches really the secret to functionally fit abdominals?

It might be surprising to know that our core is actually a combination of TWO muscle systems that work synergistically to provide spinal stability, support our organs, and help efficiently move our bodies through space. The local muscle system, also know as the Pelvic Pyramid, consists of the transverse abdominis, multifidus, and pelvic floor muscles. These deep muscles, or “stabilizers”, attach directly to the pelvis and lumbar vertebrae and help pre-set our body for movement by stiffening or energizing prior to activity. These are also the muscles that support our organs and help maintain continence and allow us to successfully “squeeze when we sneeze” to avoid leakage.   The global muscle system is comprised of the large muscles, or “movers”, that link our pelvis and trunk and help carry out large, integrated body movements. These include our more superficial muscles such as the latissimus dorsi, internal/external obliques, and rectus abdominis. which are traditionally referred to as our “abs”. For fitness purposes, the goal for all core strengthening exercises is to achieve optimal coordination of the local and global muscle groups in order to provide spinal stability and prevent pelvic health disorders caused by muscle dysfunction.

Flabby abs and beer bellies are sure signs that our global core muscle system may be weak and in need of conditioning. But less obvious is the changes that occur in our Pelvic Pyramid. It is common for this deep muscle system to weaken due to age, weight fluctuation, or changes due to pregnancy. This can lead to disorders such as stress/urge urinary incontinence, prolapse, pelvic pain, low back pain and balance deficits. If experiencing any of these conditions, it is especially important to achieve muscular balance and coordination when training these systems. As our deep core or stabilizing system weakens, our global or larger muscles can become dominant in an attempt to compensate for this imbalance and cause further problems such as increased spinal compression, compromised breathing patterns and worsening incontinence.   It is important to be educated specifically on proper strengthening exercises directed at conditioning and integrating both systems of the core to promote pelvic health.

So whether you are out to get those washboard abs, anxious to make a little dent in your muffin top, or have your sights set on running that next 5K without stopping to pee, remember that true core fitness requires attention to both local and global core muscle systems.

For further information regarding specialized core training classes aimed at flattening tummies and improving continence, sexual function, sleep patterns, and balance, please contact Julie Yunaska, MPT, Pelvic Floor Specialist, Certified Total Control® instructor at Wholistic Fitness, LLC.

For information on physical therapy services for pelvic floor dysfunction, visit our webpage at www.wholisticfitnessonline.com/physical-therapy.php

Posted in Fitness, Physical Therapy | Tagged , , | Comments Off

Oh so yummy Pumpkin Bread

This gallery contains 1 photo.

I love Pumpkin Bread but sometimes when I sink my teeth into it I can tell it’s laden with fat and possibly some not to wholesome ingredients. Nothing feels and tastes better than a delicious pumpkin bread that feels just … Continue reading

More Galleries | Comments Off

Lisa loses 22lbs and improves biometrics. WF success story!

This gallery contains 1 photo.

“It was May, and summer was fast approaching. I still hadn’t lost the five pounds I gained earlier in the year or the five pounds from the year before that, etc… I thought I was eating the right foods, I … Continue reading

More Galleries | Comments Off

Are your shoulders lonely?

This gallery contains 2 photos.

If you’re like most women, you have a tendency to overemphasize working out your abs and legs, crunching and squatting away. We often remember to work out the backs of our arms (the triceps) too, all the while, giving our … Continue reading

More Galleries | Comments Off

Benefits of Mindful Eating

mindful eating-blog

It can be easy for any of us to devour food without giving it a second thought. Do you ever finish a meal and realize you didn’t taste the food or you still feel unsatisfied despite having had eaten a large meal? These feelings may have resulted in the fact that you weren’t mindful while you were eating. So where do you begin with practicing mindful eating?

Here are a few tips:

1.) Start with planning ahead. Think of different meal ideas, look online for recipes, and ask friends what they are having for dinner. Know what you want before the meal begins. Prepare it, put it on a plate, and sit down to eat it. This can help avoid situations where you’re standing at the refrigerator or walking around the kitchen bingeing on foods you don’t even want to be eating.

2.) Turn off technology. Put away your phone, turn off the TV, and don’t eat at your computer. It’s hard to be in the moment with your food when you’re distracted by so many outside sources. In 30 minutes, the meal will be over and you can return to it all.

3.) Use your senses. Pay attention to the way the food tastes. Does each bite taste the same? Pay attention to the way the food feels. Is it soft? Crunchy? Spicy? Check in with your body. Are you tense? Relaxed? Using your senses is a way to stay connected to your feelings and can reduce engaging in mindless eating habits.

Posted in Health and Nutrition, Holistic Health, Psychotherapy | Comments Off

Simply Fabulous Pumpkin Soup

This gallery contains 1 photo.

It’s a cold rainy day here in PA and I could go for a great bowl of soup, one that I don’t need to labor over for an entire day. One that I can throw together, put my P.J’s back … Continue reading

More Galleries | Comments Off

Let’s stop the “It’s All or Nothing” mindset!

This gallery contains 2 photos.

Here’s a little tip from one our therapists, Mel Strunk, LCSW: Do you struggle with all or nothing thinking? If you say things to yourself such as, “I won’t let myself eat dessert or I’ll end up eating the whole … Continue reading

More Galleries | Comments Off

Are you up for the “300″ Workout?

This gallery contains 2 photos.

Who is up for a challenge? Give this workout a try! Time yourself and see if you can beat our ladies’ times of just a wee bit over 11 minutes.

More Galleries | Comments Off