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website Weight Loss, Health, and Fitness Blog
Learn weight loss and personal fitness tips by reading this wellness blog on diet and the Chicago personal training experience.

Ill never forget the time it took me 30 minutes to stand from a seated position. The spasms debilitated my body over and over as it sent me back to the floor each time in excruciating pain. After 4 nights in the hospital for 2 bulging disks (L4/L5, L5/S1), I quickly changed my approach to fitness and my overall health. The following tips have nearly eliminated my back pain since, and they will help you too (with the help of Kelly Starrett's book Becoming a Supple Leopard)!

The Neutral Spinal Position

Personal Trainer Wisdom: Poor spinal mechanics can lead to a host of biomechanical compromises and increase the potential for injury. Organizing your spine in a braced neutral position means that your ears are aligned over your shoulders, your ribcage is balanced over your pelvis, and you're engaging the musculature of your trunk to stabilize (brace your position). (Starrett)

Keep the natural curves of the lower back and neck! When you maintain this position, the pressure on your disks (the green) is minimized. On the other hand, the flexion spinal fault (rounding your shoulders forward) and overextension spinal fault (tilting your hips forward and downward) seen in Image 2 will increase the pressure on the disks. Translation: Rounding or arching your back can produce a destructive effect on your disks...possibly leading to a bulge or herniation (among other physical problems and imbalances).

Any time a fitness professional asks you to "flatten your back" always adjust your alignment to reflect the neutral position instead. If you literally flatten your back, you are not only using force on your spine to achieve this instructed effect but you are also adding pressure to your disks and compromising the principles of the Neutral Spinal Position. Every time you bend your spine out of this line you risk injuring yourself (even if you're just sitting or standing in a stationary position).

 Image 1: Neutral Spinal Position

Image 1: Neutral Spinal Position

 Image 2: Flexion and Overextension Spinal Faults

Image 2: Flexion and Overextension Spinal Faults

Perfect your Posture: How to Organize Your Spine

Personal Trainer Wisdom: The bracing sequence is the blueprint for organizing your spine in a braced neutral position. You should run through the bracing sequence every time you set up to perform a movement, get ready to sit down, or need to reset your posture (until it becomes automatic/autopilot). Here's the step-by-step setup in a nutshell:

1. Stand with your feet straight and your posture upright. Squeeze your butt and externally rotate from your hips to set your pelvis in a neutral position. 

2. Align your ribcage over your pelvis.

3. Engage your abdomen to lock in the position.

4. Pull your shoulders back into a stable position and align your ears over your shoulders, hips, and ankles. (Starrett)

 Image 3 The Bracing Sequence Step by Step

Image 3 The Bracing Sequence Step by Step

 Image 4 The Bracing Sequence Step by Step Step 3 to Finish

Image 4 The Bracing Sequence Step by Step Step 3 to Finish

Braced Neutral Sitting and Texting Positions

Personal Trainer Wisdom: Sitting and standing are skills that take practice. Use the bracing sequence to set your posture and maintain a neutral position while sitting and standing (even if you are leaning forward or back). Refer to Image 5 for an example.  (Starrett)

 Image 5: Braced Neutral Sitting and Texting Positions

Image 5: Braced Neutral Sitting and Texting Positions

Pelvic Rotation While Sitting

Personal Trainer Wisdom:  I know...all this talk about a neutral spine position makes you want to curl up into a ball. I will assure you that most of your injuries and discomfort are, in one way or another, a result of how you have been compromising your spine. You may want to think twice about curling up. In fact, you may want to think twice about sitting. Not only does this position keep your hips flexed (causing an imbalance), you are likely to lose your neutral spine over the course of your stressful day. Take a look at Image 6. Every time you fall out of the neutral spine position by rounding or arching your back, you are compromising your spine (specifically the disks). Although it doesn't seem like enough force or pressure on the spine, the compression will certainly add up over time. Just ask the 1 in 3 people around you who experience chronic back pain.

 Image 6: Pelvic Rotation While Sitting

Image 6: Pelvic Rotation While Sitting

Standing Up Out of the Bottom (Seated) Position

Personal Trainer Wisdom: While Image 4 demonstrates the proper way to squat or sit with a neutral spine, Image 5 shows you how to stand up out of the bottom (or seated) position. Please keep in mind that Starrett is referring to a neutral spine whenever he mentions a flat back.

1. Sitting is just a squat with a long pause in the bottom position. Even if you remain seated for an extended period, your back stays neutral, shins vertical, and knees out. 

2. When you stand up, reclaim tension by loading your hips and hamstrings by hinging forward at the hips. 

3. Keeping your back in a neutral position, shove your knees out and stand up, just as you would when performing a squat.

 Image 7: Standing Up Out of the Bottom Seated Position

Image 7: Standing Up Out of the Bottom Seated Position

My Specific List of Lower Back Rules

Personal Trainer Wisdom: Here is my specific list of lower back rules:

-          Sleep on my back in a neutral postion. Sleeping on your stomach will put you in extension (arching your back) and sleeping on your sides (rounding your back and internally rotating your precious shoulders) will put you in flexion. No bien for sustained periods of time.

-          Only sit in chairs or stools where my knees fall just below my hips. Most booths and chairs compromise my neutral spine by forcing a posterior pelvic rotation (rounding my back).

-          Use a self-inflating back pillow for the natural curve of my lower back on flights. I adjust the inflation based on whatever is a natural fit for my lumbar curve and allows me to sit comfortably in a neutral spine position.

-          Carry my work gear and computer in a backpack (using both straps over my shoulders). Slinging any bag on a single side will create an imbalance. That includes a purse of any weight and size, my female friends.

-          Don’t run. I train many marathon runners and certainly encourage you to continue if you don’t feel discomfort. If you do, though, accept that running (or jumping) can be quite a bit of compression on your spine. Remove the unnecessary stress and walk on the beloved Stairmaster instead (less impact on the joints).

Photo Credit:
sqactive .com–No matter the cause of your back pain, all of us should take the same preventive approach.

 Article Credit:
Author: Michael Moody Fitness

How I've Prevented More Lower Back Pain in the Last 12 Years (After 2 Bulging Disks)

Learn how to lose weight from a personal trainer in Chicago.

09/18/2018 11:30 AM

Michael Moody Fitness





Although I haven’t attended school in years, Labor Day Weekend still prompts me into a different mindset. The fall is usually the time I review systems, habits, needs, and wants, and these are the inspirational quotes that are steering my approach this year!

"Be the change you want to see in the world." - Gandhi


Personal Trainer Wisdom: This quote is always at the top of my list. If you want something different in the world, you certainly should be the example of it first. With the current streams of consciousness, it seems like society needs to be more selfless. It needs to think beyond its selfish needs and become more empathic and sympathetic. And so do I. I too succumb to my basic needs of survival and often think of myself first.

Now, though, I ask myself: How will my action affect others? Is it for a greater good? Who will suffer from this decision? How can others benefit from this decision?

From this introspection, I recently have taken more strategic action like starting a neighborhood watch group with my wife, Sammy, to build a community and curb criminal activity. Meanwhile, I continue to guide my personal training clients in their transformation process. All little efforts close to home that, hopefully, spark a fire for greater change.

"Ignore the unfairness – there is no fair. Play the hand that you’re dealt to the best of your ability. People are highly consistent, so you will eventually get what you deserve and so will they. In the end, everyone gets the same judgment: death." – Naval Ravikant


Personal Trainer Wisdom: I typically don’t look at challenging situations as unfair. Instead, I see them as games with most of the pieces out of my control (and I accept this). While I’m not the gamemaster, I certainly hold a pawn that can produce results, too. There will be times when I will have the advantage and then times when others will. Either way, I put my best foot forward and hope that it’s returned to me over time. And so this is life, and everyone has the same judgment at the end (at least in the physical sense).

"We accept the voice that talks to us in our head all the time as the source of all truth. But all of it is malleable, every day is new, and memory and identity are burdens from the past that prevent us from living freely in the present." – Naval Ravikant


Personal Trainer Wisdom: I like the thought of the voice in our head as malleable. It insinuates that I have some level of control over who I am and what I choose to do. While my memory and identity are certainly the foundation of who I am, I fully recognize how they can be burdens from my past that affect my present awareness (e.g., fears, insecurities, etc.). I think we should recognize how the chains of our past (whether good or bad) ultimately filter the world in front of us and assess their value in the moment. It might help us make more fruitful decisions that will lead to a more satisfying life.

"Desire is a contract that you make with yourself to be unhappy until you get what you want." - Naval Ravikant


Personal Trainer Wisdom: Desire is a sexy and dangerous word. While it infers a lustful, passionate stream of feeling towards something, it does teeter on obsession and wishful thinking without a strategic effort to achieve a purpose or want. A person might end up fixated and unmoving instead of productively pursuing this goal. Since he or she is leaving this attainment to chance, he or she may consistently feel dissatisfaction, frustration, and/or deprivation instead. Why lust over that "something" when it simply leaves you in an emotional cloud unattached to a specific path? There are trips, products, and experiences that I want but I quickly jump to the question "What do I need to do to obtain or achieve it?" instead of sitting in place wishing passionately for such things.

Article Credit:

Author: Michael Moody Fitness
4 Quotes That Steer My Approach to Life Right Now Learn how to lose weight from a personal trainer in Chicago. 09/11/2018 16:30 PM Michael Moody Fitness
Helping my personal training clients with weight loss is the easy part! How do you get out of a submerged car? Where is the best sound in a movie theater? How do you stop a runny nose….with your finger? How do you instantly stop someone from towing your truck? These are the real questions in life….and Keith Bradford’s book "Life Hacks" gives the answers to these life problems and more! Test them and see for yourself!

1. Use leftover coffee from the morning to make coffee ice cubes (which will cool down your coffee without diluting it).

2. When making hard-boiled eggs, throw one teaspoon of baking soda into the water. The shell will come off without a problem once the egg is cooked.

3. Any citrus fruit like an orange, clementine, or grapefruit becomes easier to peel when you gently press and roll it on the table before peeling.

4. Take pictures of friends holding items you’ve lent them with your phone, so you remember down the road who borrowed what.

5. If your car is about to get towed, get in it. Tow trucks are forced to stop to avoid kidnapping charges.

6. If you’re with Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, or Sprint, you can now text the police (911) in case of emergency.

7. If you ever get trapped underwater in your car, use your car seat’s headrest to break the window.

8. If you ever get kidnapped, and they tie your hands together and put tape over your mouth, lick the tape. It will eventually fall off, and you’ll be able to yell for help.

9. When you call 911, the first thing you should always say is your location. They immediately send police when they have an address.

10. When you get a call from a telemarketer, don’t say anything and press "9" on your phone. This will automatically add your number to their "don’t call" list.

11. For the best sound in a movie theater, sit two-thirds of the way back and as close to the middle as possible. This is where audio engineers sit when they mix sound for movies.

12. When you feel like you’re about to yawn, touch the roof of your mouth with your tongue to prevent it.

13. Clogged drain? Unclog it with 1 cup of baking soda mixed with 1 cup of white vinegar.

14. The most effective cough syrup that exists is honey.

15. Believe it or not, rubbing a walnut on damaged wooden furniture can cover up a lot of dings and scratches.

16. Place a rubber band over any stripped screw to easily unscrew it.

17. Nothing kills weeds and keeps them dead for longer than white vinegar straight from the bottle.

18. Placing an envelope in the fridge for an hour will unseal it. Good tip to know if you forget to include something in a package.

19. Runny or stuffy nose? Push your tongue against the top of your mouth and push a finger between your eyebrows. Hold it for about twenty seconds. Your nose should clear.



Photo Credit:
Splendidtable .org - Can honey stop your cough?

Article Credit:
Author: Michael Moody Fitness
19 Hacks to Solve the Biggest Problems in Your Life Learn how to lose weight from a personal trainer in Chicago. 08/01/2018 12:30 AM Michael Moody Fitness
Recently I asked my personal training clients and friends "Which lifestyle changes in the last year positively affected your life the most?" and here are their answers (they may give you an idea for a change you can make today)!!!

* Diet! I have made this change recently, but I can already read my body so much better based on what I eat. - R.K.

* Adopting a more plant-based diet as well as (trying to) reducing alcohol consumption! The second one is more of a work in progress...lol - A.S.

* Two things coming to mind: Weight training twice a week and cutting out any sweetener/flavor syrups from coffee drinks! - J.K.

* I have definitely become more veggie-centric in my life, as opposed to my former cheese-centric existence. That, tracking my meals without becoming obsessed about every little thing I'm doing, and generally looking at my overall health and fitness goals in the macro, not the micro have affected me most positively. I know I have a long way to go and have had some setbacks, but I also know I am on the right path and that has made all the difference! - C.M.

* Beyond Sausages. - W.W.

* Starting each morning with light workout. Stopped purchasing and eating breads and pasta during the week. - D.P.

* Removing negative people. - S.R.

* Seriously, hitting the gym, even if only 30 minutes a day. I don't look drastically different, but feel much better! - B.L.

* Cut out (simple) carbs, down 30lbs. - A.H.

* Starting out each day fresh and putting yesterday behind you! - A.R.

* Sleep. - A.Z.

* Doing more things for myself. - K.H.

* I’ll give you two. I started calling my mom nearly daily after my dad passed. Also, it sounds bad for someone my age, but I cut time spent playing video games, which led to less time on devices, which led to being more engaged with my family. - G.S.

* Eliminating caffeine, gluten, dairy & soy for almost 6 months now. Total Game Changer! - S.M.

* It’s very simple. I decided to be more active. Get up and move. Stand. Walk. Go outside. Stretch. Practice breathing. Continue to be more active than the previous day. I use steps on Fitbit as one form of measurement. - R.L.

* Going to church every week. - J.L.

* Picking what is worth fighting for and what will not matter 5 minutes from now. - J.O.

* Moving home from San Francisco. I now have time to exercise again!! - L.V.

* Moving to VA. That and eliminating dairy. - M.C.

* Working it, everything, from the TOP DOWN. Going after the big things relentlessly, instead of wasting effort on building small step by steps. - R.J.

* Listening to others rather than just hearing...and being more patient (it's automatically increased if you have a toddler at home :-) ). - C.C.

* Letting go of unhealthy/ toxic people in my life. Learning to lower my expectations in a lot of situations so I will not be disappointed as often. - M.D.

* Reading God’s word and praying daily. Brings light into darkness and peace over despair. - B.H.

* The lifestyle change that affected me the most was the consistency of doing workouts and other activities like sleeping at the same time. This helped me in being able to work out efficiently as well as feeling more rested in my life. Overall feel like the most healthy person I can be! - B.C.

* Getting help from others. Eating better (not as much sugar and salt). - S.S.

Photo Credit:
The Independent. Co. com–What are you running towards in 2018?

Article Credit:

Author: Michael Moody Fitness
My Clients (and Friends) Share the Lifestyle Changes that Positively Affected Their Life the Most Over the Last Year Learn how to lose weight from a personal trainer in Chicago. 07/25/2018 11:30 AM Michael Moody Fitness
After nearly 17,500 hours of one-on-one personal training sessions, here is a list of my client’s worst habits that have quietly affected their weight loss and fitness goals. Are you a prisoner of these habits too?

They eat the same amount as their spouses


Personal Trainer Wisdom: Your weight loss or fitness success will always depend on how well you understand your body, determine your needs, and set appropriate boundaries. It’s safe to assume that your partner in crime will have a very different combination (and need) from you. It’s as simple as this: You determine how much fuel you need….no one else. If you eat exactly the same amount as your partner, chances are that you may be eating too much or little.

They eat snacks


Personal Trainer Wisdom: Please keep in mind that "snacks" are really filler foods or indulgences that rarely meet your entire nutritional need at a given time (such a tease!). You’re probably seeking food because you’re hungry, and a small meal is most ideal (even if it’s only 100-300 calories). Since you now eat with intent, you want to choose a nutrient balance of vitamins, fiber, protein, fat, and more.

They depend on exercise for weight loss


Personal Trainer Wisdom: Never forget that usually, the one thing you're avoiding to do is probably the one you need to do the most. You can exercise 2 hours per day 7 days per week, but it will still be avoiding the dietary change you probably need to make. Eventually, you should figure out what you can get away with (drinking beer, restaurant dinners, etc.). Right now, though, you should figure out how you should really eat. And if you read Dr. Fuhrman’s book End of Dieting and begin disqualifying the claims, you should consider where those opinions stem from. Are they threatening your current habits? Would you rather believe a theory closer to your wants?

They eat too many simple carbs (and the good carbs at times too)


Personal Trainer Wisdom: Is more than 25% of each of your meals fruit, whole grains, and simple carbs? Ever wonder why vegans and vegetarians struggle with weight loss? It's most likely a result of their fruit sugar, whole grain, and simple carb (delicious Girl Scout cookies, ALL breads, rice, crackers, chips, candy, ice cream, and everything else devilish that you crave) consumption. Anything above 15 grams of fruit sugar per meal will spike your blood sugar levels...not ideal for losing weight and maintaining stable insulin levels (refined sugars have a worse, quicker acting effect). Simple carbs, as well as whole grains, can do the same. Disclaimer: The fiber in the whole grains will offset this effect in smaller amounts. What is the refined and fruit sugar breakdown of your favorite meals? Are there more nutrient dense alternatives than your typical fruit sugar, grain, and simple carb choices that will provide the fiber you need?

They drink more alcohol than their body can handle


Personal Trainer Wisdom: How many calories do you think you consume in a single week from alcohol? If you live in the Midwest, eating and drinking is most likely part of your culture (not your fault :) ). Since alcohol is basically a liquid grain packed with a lot of sugar (of course, there are exceptions), it will also spike your blood sugar levels. If drinking alcohol is part of your diet, what are you willing to exchange in return? In other words…when you order alcohol, what other simple carbs or sugars are you exchanging (i.e., 1 beer instead of 2 scoops of rice)? What low calorie, low sugar alcohol options are you willing to consider to achieve your weight loss goals?

They don’t develop an eating routine


Personal Trainer Wisdom: I’m sure you can imagine that a life on the edge of a cliff could be destined for trouble with a big enough wind. That’s exactly what’s happening when you don’t develop a healthy eating routine as a foundation. While most of us would like to think we shouldn’t have to think about food constantly, I have bad news: We’re human…and this is what we need to survive. Lucky for you, a solid, consistent routine with the right system in place will help you operate on autopilot (which means that you don’t have to consciously obsess over food). If you choose to do otherwise, any big event or binge will certainly send you into the weight gain abyss.

They believe that injury prevention begins inside the gym


Personal Trainer Wisdom: No matter what any personal trainer tells you, the greatest indicator of your success isn't what you do inside the gym-it's what you repeat daily. Your body is an amazing adaptive system that loves to learn quickly. Although you don't realize it, you've been training your body to handle a vast variety of movements and postures in auto-pilot over a lifetime (after all, your body doesn't have 10 minutes to fully assess your movement as you sit in a chair every time). How wonderful! Now you can think about the million other things you need to do instead!

While this ability is a great strength, it most likely has led to the weakness, discomfort, pain, or injury that you have experienced. Your body wants to work efficiently, and it also can be easily convinced. If you always drive your knee forward while lunging to pick an object off the ground, your body will most likely (automatically) guide you the same way the next time you do it without thinking (even though the movement overuses your quads and imposes additional force and stress onto your knees). Call it the "Fight or Flight System." It wants to learn quickly so that it can react quickly (when demand is placed on it).

"Fair enough, Michael...I appreciate your lecture. Can we just workout now?" Well, maybe. I could simply throw you into a circus act of a fitness program (a crazy Cross Fit, ballet, Cirque de Soliel, bodybuilding, marathon extravaganza), but do you really know your body well enough, though, to confidently say that it can handle this demand on the body? Have you ever studied the way you move? Have you identified all of your imbalances and weaknesses? Most likely, your answer is no. If you are like my 20-year-old self, you probably haven't stopped and listened to your body. Instead, you jumped into the hottest new program that Joey the Trainer (not real) is selling and ended up hurt 1-3 months later.

Nothing against Joey, but you don't need a personal trainer to achieve a lifetime of injury and imbalance. You can simply choose a new workout on Men's Health, Youtube, or anywhere and blindly attempt it. If you truly want to minimize ALL pain and tightness and achieve peak fitness, now is the time to NOT take a haphazard approach. It is the time to rewire your system. Understand you so that you can efficiently and effectively adapt ANY program to fit your needs. Look at the way you sit, stand, run, walk, sleep, etc. Become a human scientist and identify your tendency to move out of a neutral position. Your observations might shed the true narrative on your physical self and what you need to change.

Photo Credit:
Matt Armendariz (2015) and Whats Gaby Cooking .com–Are granola bars really healthy?

Article Credit:

Author: Michael Moody Fitness
A List of my Personal Training Clients’ Worst Habits from the Last 13 Years (and Why it Affected their Weight Loss and Fitness Efforts) Learn how to lose weight from a personal trainer in Chicago. 07/11/2018 11:30 AM Michael Moody Fitness
Not surprisingly, most of my personal training clients are incredibly busy and must resort to whatever’s most available for breakfast. Unfortunately, many of the breakfast choices at Starbucks may reverse their (and your) weight loss efforts. Stay away from these choices if you’re trying to tighten not stretch the waistline of your pants.

Chicken Sausage & Bacon Biscuit


Calories 450, Fat (g) 22, Fiber (g) 1, Protein 26, Sodium 1160 (mg)

Double-Smoked Bacon, Cheddar & Egg Sandwich


Calories 490, Fat (g) 27, Fiber (g) 1, Protein 21, Sodium 910 (mg)

Sausage, Cheddar & Egg Breakfast Sandwich


Calories 500, Fat (g) 28, Fiber (g) 1, Protein 15, Sodium 920 (mg)

Seared Steak, Egg & Tomatillo Wrap


Calories 410, Fat (g) 18, Fiber (g) 2, Protein 21, Sodium 780 (mg)

Slow-Roasted Ham, Swiss & Egg Breakfast Sandwich


Calories 450, Fat (g) 22, Fiber (g) 1, Protein 24, Sodium 790 (mg)

Spicy Chorizo, Monterey Jack & Egg Breakfast Sandwich


Calories 500, Fat (g) 30, Fiber (g) 3, Protein 26, Sodium 860 (mg)

Personal Trainer Wisdom: I think we see a glowing trend among these Starbucks breakfast items: high amount of calories, fat, and sodium; adequate amount of protein; and very little fiber. Perhaps we’re being unfair to Starbucks….especially in comparison to other fast food competitors (i.e. the 1000 calorie options at McDonalds). There are always worse options, right?

Surprisingly, though, these choices are deceptively more dangerous than you think. Each sandwich is just a little "more and above" than what’s recommended for a healthy lifestyle (not just weight loss). If your healthy goal is only 350-450 calories and 20-25 grams of protein per meal, maybe you’re not doing too bad. What happens when you add 50 extra calories, twice the amount of sodium, and 12-24 grams of extra fat per meal (instead of 3-6 grams of fat), though? You might not realize that this subtle flexibility could be the reason why you’ve gained 1 lb of weight per year….for the last 20 years.

As the book Compound Effect explains, 50 extra calories and 12 extra grams of fat becomes troublesome when the pattern continues for every meal (not just breakfast) over the course of time. Consequently, you really won’t have any wiggle room for those days that you really indulge (like holidays and special occasions).

While I understand the need to grab something quick in the morning, don’t fool yourself into thinking that the amount of calories and protein make up the total equation. Ultimately, your health (and weight) depend on a balance of protein, fiber, healthy fats, vitamins, phytonutrients, and more. Do your homework and choose the best items ahead of time instead of choosing when in a rush.

Photo Credit:
Yelp .com: Do you have as much weight loss wiggle room as you believe choosing this breakfast option at Starbucks?

Article Credit:

Author: Michael Moody Fitness with nutrition facts from Starbucks . com.
6 Breakfast Items at Starbucks that Will Lead to Weight Gain Learn how to lose weight from a personal trainer in Chicago. 06/26/2018 12:13 PM Michael Moody Fitness
Recently, Sammy, Preston, and I had set out for a European adventure to explore earthquake ruins, port, and Spanish tapas. We started in historic Lisbon, Portugal and headed North to Porto before finishing in the Spanish metropolis, Madrid. Here is the quick itinerary of interesting places to stay, historic things to do, and an expansive list of restaurants to indulge in.

General Itinerary

25-26: Fly to Lisbon from Chicago
26: Lisbon
27: Lisbon
28: Lisbon
29: Lisbon
30: Train from Lisbon to Porto
1: Porto
2: Porto
3: Fly to Madrid from Porto
4: Madrid
5: Madrid
6: Madrid
7: Fly to Chicago from Madrid

Sprint International Call Settings

Iphone 7

Go to settings, click on cellular, click cellular data option, click roaming (turn voice and data on), International CDMA should be off. We’ll receive a welcome message when we arrive.

Samsung Note 8

Go to settings, click on connections, click on mobile networks, click data roaming, turn off all domestic roaming (voice, text, and data), turn on all international roaming (voice, text, and data). We’ll receive a welcome message when we arrive.

Money Overseas

Charles Schwab Brokerage Checking Account

Transfer cash for free ATM withdrawls and no transaction fees.

Credit Cards

Bring the Chase Sapphire, Mileage Plus Explorer, Chase Business Ink, and Delta Skymiles Gold Amex for no transaction fees. Call to see which exchange rate is lower (Most base it on the Wall Street Journal).

 Preston is excited for his first flight overseas....and so is the guy sitting behind him.

Preston is excited for his first flight overseas....and so is the guy sitting behind him.

Flights/Trains

25-26th: Fly to Lisbon from Chicago

United Flight UA972 from Chicago to Brussels
Total cost: 60k miles per person plus taxes and fees
Seats: 34E, 34G (Priority boarding with a child, check stroller with car seat at the gate)
Depart: 6:00 pm (04/25) ORD (8 hr 5 mn with bassinet)
Arrival: 9:05 am (04/26) BRU

TAP Portugal Flight TP647 from Brussels to Lisbon
Seats: 16B,16A (Priority boarding with a child , check stroller with car seat at the gate)
Depart: 11:30 am (04/26) BRU (2 hr 50 mn)
Arrival: 1:20 pm (04/26) LIS

30th: Train to Porto from Lisbon (Unconfirmed seats)

Train 125
Total cost: $130 (1st Class, choose seats at checkin, child on lap), arrive 1-2 hours to book train time and seat
Depart: 12:09 pm Lisboa Oriente (flexible time)
Arrival: 2:44 pm Porto Campanha

3rd: Fly to Madrid from Porto

Ryanair Flight 5423 from Porto to Madrid
Seats: 2F, 2E (Already checked in month early)
Total cost: $217.94 (Priority with 2 cabin bags per person, child on lap)
Depart: 3:35 pm OPO
Arrival: 5:50 pm MAD

7th: Fly to Chicago from Madrid

Lufthansa Flight LH1113 from Madrid to Frankfurt
Seats: 20A/20B (Priority boarding with a child, check stroller with car seat at the gate)
Depart: 12:55 pm (05/07) MAD (2 hr 30 mn)
Arrival: 3:25 pm (05/07) FRA

Lufthansa Flight LH432 from Frankfurt to Chicago
Seats: 34G/34F (Priority boarding with a child, check stroller with car seat at the gate)
Depart: 5:15 pm (05/07) FRA (9 hr 5 mn with bassinet)
Arrival: 7:20 pm (05/07) ORD

 View of Lisbon at sunset

View of Lisbon at sunset

Airbnbs

26-30th: Lisbon

Listing: Comfortable, versatile best quarter with Fadoflats
Travessa João de Deus 8 (2nd floor right)
Lisbon, Lisbon 1200 Portugal
+351 91 985 8312
fadoflats-c2vmqwuwpkay6y9d@host.airbnb.com
Check-in: 4:00 pm
Check-out: 11:00 am
-Directions: A taxi from the airport should take you to the flat in about 30 minutes and cost you around 15-20 euros (please tell the taxi driver flat is in Chiado quarter, very close to Cervejaria Trindade - Trindade Brewery). In alternative you can take the subway and drop out at Baixa-Chiado station. It will take you about an hour and cost you 2 euro per person.Third alternative is hiring our private transfer service (for you only): a 7 seats van will be waiting for you at the airport for the price of 30 euros to be paid directly to the driver. In any case I would appreciate if you could text me or call me after picking up the bags and passing passport control at the airport.
Notes: Great 2 bedroom, vintage space that once was a palace before the 18th century earthquake. Great location and size for our needs. Plenty of nearby restaurants and more. The Alfama neighborhood to the East is another option (more historic and quaint).

30th-3rd: Porto

Listing: Caldeireiros Home Two - feel at home with Fadoflats
Rua dos Caldeireiros, 4050-250 Porto, Portugal
+351 91 714 1223
alcina-77maoh3q8wdkxxbx@host.airbnb.com
Check-in: 3:00 pm
Check-out: 11:00 am
Directions: Walk to the flat from the Sao Bento train station 2 blocks away.
Notes: Great modern space with the perfect location. Truly a wonderful host.

3rd-7th: Madrid

Listing: Pta. del Sol- Pza. Sta Ana, Madrid with Miriam
Calle Núñez de Arce 10 2b, 28012 Madrid, Madrid, Spain
+34 699 915 788
miriam-zu29zer8pxbllkz5@host.airbnb.com
Check-in: 2:00 pm
Check-out: 11:00 am
Directions:
-Taxi: You will find taxi stands ouside all the airport terminals. Always use the official taxi services and do not take offers from drivers inside the terminal. Trip duration up to 30 minutes depending on traffic. -Bus: The yellow airport express bus runs 24 hours a day, 365 days per year. You can take the bus from terminals T1, T2 and T4 and the ticket costs 5 euros. The journey takes aproximatelly 40 minutes and the bus makes only 3 stops along the way, the corner of O’Donnell and Doctor Esquerdo, Plaza de Cibeles and Atocha train station (from 6:00 am until 23;30 pm).
-Metro: You can take metro line 8 from all the terminals of the airport and head to Nuevos Ministerios station at the center of Madrid. From there you can hop to another metro line until your end destination. The journey until the Nuevos Ministerios station is 15 minutes and the metro operates daily from 6:00 am to 2:00 am. Tickets can cost up to 5 euros depending on your end destination.
Notes: A very central location but we don’t recommend staying here unless it’s cheap and you don’t mind a Super 8 hotel experience.

 Exploring the historic Belem area of Lisbon

Exploring the historic Belem area of Lisbon

Things to do in Lisbon, Portugal

Random Notes

-Use ‘The Fork’ phone app or call to book restaurant reservations
-Restaurants (5-10% tip and bread/olives aren’t free), most restaurants open 12-3 and 7-10
-Most museums free until 2:00 on Sundays
-Taxes after 9 pm cost more
-Lisboa card for attractions (askmelisboa.com)
-Buy 24 hour pass (metrolisboa.pt)
-Book a tour: https://www.withlocals.com/experiences/portugal/lisbon/?adults=2&children=1
-Travel with kids: https://kindertravelguide.com/destination/europe/portugal-with-a-baby-or-toddler-2/lisbon-with-a-baby-or-toddler/

Belem Ruins

-Jerónimos Monastery, Praça do Império (free entry to the church, €10 for the rest of the monastery) -Monument to the Discoveries (Padrão dos Descobrimentos-entry fee €4) -CCB (Belém Cultural Center), Coach Museum (Museu dos Coches) -Statue to Afonso de Albuquerque

Rossio Neighborhood

-Parque Eduardo VII (northwest of Rossio Fountains, down the Ave da Liberdade)
-Confeitaria Nacional near the Praca de Figueiro for pastries
-A Ginjinha – Local sweet liquor spot near Igreja de Sao Domingos
-Rossio Fountains/Park (24 hour cafes nearby)
-Churches: Igreja de Sao Domingos, Praca da Figueira (next to each other)
-Elevador da Gloria: Take you from the Praca dos Restauradores up to the Bairro Alto neighborhood
-Ride the Tram 28 to see the historic parts of the city on a ride. Expect lines.

 Rooftops of the Alfama neighborhood in Lisbon

Rooftops of the Alfama neighborhood in Lisbon

Chiado Neighborhood

-Elevador de Santa Justa down to Baixa Neighborhood
-Convento do Carmo & Museu Arqueologico
-R Garrett Street: pedestrian street
-2 Michellin Star Restaurant: Bellanto
-Nightlife strip: Tv Carvalho

Baixa Neighborhood

-Nucleo Arquelologico (free underground tunnels)
-R Augusta: Pedestrian street from the Praca de Comercio on the water

Bairro Alto Neighborhood

-Church: Igreja & Museu de Sao Roque
-Elevador de Gloria
-Miradouro de Sao Pedro de Alcantara
-Restaurant: Lost in Coffee Café (corner of Tv da Agua da Flor and R Sao Pedro de Alcantara)
-Public toilet under Largo Trindade Coehlo
-1800’s Beer Hall on R Nova da Trinidade
-Fado bars on R da Alalara

Alfama Neighborhood

-Tram 28 stop: Near Se (free Gothic Cathedral)
-Restaurants and Fado: Cruzes Credo Café, Clube de Fado (8 pm – 2 am), Memmo Alfama Rooftop Bar, Guitarras de Lisboa – Food and Fado, Senhor Fado (8 pm -2 am), Mesa de Frades (Fado in old small chapel 11 pm)
-Museu do Teatro Romano (free Roman Ruins)
-Igreja de Sao Vicente de Fora (monastery)
-Panteao Nacional (10 am – 6 pm)

 A taste of Lisbon....plenty of seafood and fish!

A taste of Lisbon....plenty of seafood and fish!

Restaurants in Lisbon

-Fabrica
-Pasteis de Belem
-Manteigaria
-Café A Brasileira
-Cervejaria Ramiro
-Feitoria
-A Taberna da Rua das Flores
-Belcanto
-Bica Do Sapato
-Prado
-Café Tati
-Merendinha do Arco
-Cantinho Lusitano
-A Baiuca
-Marisqueira Nunes
-Tasquinha do Lagarto
-Beco dos Surradores 5
-Tasco do Vigario
-Varina da Madragoa
-Zé da mouraria
-Bairro do Avillez (went twice)
-Time Out Market (Such a neat food scene on the weekend)
-Cantinho do bem estar
-Cevicheria
-Solar dos Presuntos
-Palácio Chiado: Renovated palace turned into food court
-Restaurante Carmo
-The Sandeman Chiado (best salmon we’ve ever eaten, try the 40 year Tawny)
-Royale Cafe (best octopus we’ve ever eaten)

 Exploring the rooftops of Porto

Exploring the rooftops of Porto

Things to do in Porto, Portugal

Sightseeing in Porto

-São Bento station
-Use ‘The Fork’ phone app or call to book restaurant reservations
-Take the train or drive to Duoro Valley for wine tastings (2 hour ride)
-Walk over the Ponte de Dom Luís I and take viewing cart (teleférico) over the river to the port warehouses (major port producers have their warehouses in Vila Nova de Gaia, on the south side of the River Douro)
-Visit the bar Vinologia for port flights and charcuterie
-Garrafeira AMS (wine shop)
-Sé do Porto (free admission)
-Armazém
-Ribeira Square
-Handy Resources: What to Do in Porto: http://portoportugalguide.com/porto-guide/porto-in-2-days-itinerary.html, https://catavino.net/travel/portugal/porto/
-Clérigos Tower (Igreja E Torre Dos Clérigos)
-Lello bookshop (Livraria Lello): Inspiration for the book store in the Harry Potter movies
-Sao Bentro Train Station
-Porto Cathedral and Bishop’s Palace (Sé Do Porto)
-Stock Exchange Palace (Palácio da Bolsa)
-Igreja de São Francisco
-Villar d’Allen

 Spoiled with shrimp in Porto

Spoiled with shrimp in Porto

 A raw approach to food in Porto.

A raw approach to food in Porto.

Restaurants in Porto

-Confeitaria Serrana
-Cantinho do Avillez
-Michelin-starred Pedro Lemos restaurant
-Stash
-Centro Português de Fotografia (free)
-Torre de Clérigos (admission 3 euros)
-Caldeireiros
-Trasca
-Porta’O Lado
-Brasão Cervejaria
-Fonte dos Leoes for a francesinha, a Portuguese sandwich filled with cured ham
-Café Guarany
-Café Majestic
-Matosinhos
-Vila Nova de Gaia
-Flor dos Congregados
-Rei dos Galos de Amarante
-Adega Quim
-Casa Aleixo
-Tasca da Piedade (Adega Rio Douro)
-Conga
-Casa Nanda
-Adega Vila Meã
-Taberna do Largo
-Taberna Santo António
-Maus Hábitos
-Guindalense Futebol Clube
-O Buraco
-Cantina 32
-BASE
-Miss’Opo
-Café Candelabro
-Traça
-Casa de Ló
-Bar Tolo
-Bite Me
-Boa Nova
-Vinum restaurant at Graham’s port lodge: Gorgeous rooftop
-Ode Porto Winehouse
-Camafeu
-Pedro Limos
-Casa da Horta
-Bacalhua
-O Comercial
-Bufete Fase
-O Paparico
-Grelhador da Boavista
-Pateo das Flores (loved the francesinha and tuna poke cones)

 Gorgeous cathedral in Madrid

Gorgeous cathedral in Madrid

 Plaza Mayor in Madrid

Plaza Mayor in Madrid

Things to do in Madrid, Spain

Random Notes

-Many dine out at 9 pm or later
-Handy Resources: https://www.nomadicmatt.com/travel-blogs/madrid-food-tour/, https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2017/09/21/travel/what-to-do-36-hours-in-madrid-spain.html, https://www.eater.com/maps/best-madrid-restaurants-38

Sightseeing in Madrid

-Plaza España
-Gran Via (shopping)
-Palacio Real
-Plaza Oriente
-Barrio de la Latina
-El Rastro (Spain’s largest flea market, Sunday)
-Puerta del Sol (popular plaza)
-Chocolateria San Gines
-Plaza Mayor
-Mercado San Miguel
-Watch a flamenco show at Cardamomo
-Retiro Park (huge park)
-Palacio Cristal
-Reina Sofia
-Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza
-El Prado (world famous art museum)
-El Bernabeu Stadium
- Las Salesas (shopping)

 Our food tasting tour of historic bars and restaurants in Madrid.

Our food tasting tour of historic bars and restaurants in Madrid.

Restaurants in Madrid

-Bocadillo de Jamón y Champán
-Duquesita Pastelería (century-old pastry shop)
-La Venencia (sherry bar)
-Bar Cock
-Pum Pum Café
-Círculo de Bellas Artes (drink with a panoramic view)
-Amazónico (an opulent jungle-inspired space)
-Chocolatería San Ginés (since 1894, a mug of hot chocolate and six churros)
-El Imparcial
-DiverXO
-San Mamés
-Lakasa Restaurant
-Kappo
-Sala de Despiece
-Nakeima
-Quesería Cultivo
-Bread at Panic
-StreetXo
-Tortilla de Patatas at Casa Dani
-Coffee at Toma Café
-1862 Dry Bar
-Bodega de la Ardosa
-Vermouth at Ángel Sierra
-El Cisne Azul
-La Tasquería
-La Tasquita de Enfrente
-Casa Salvador
-Del Diego Cocktail Bar
-Tapas at La Catapa
-Takos al Pastor
-Horcher
-Viridiana
-Pastries at La Mallorquina
-Sherry at La Venencia
-Chuka Ramen Bar
-Cocktails at Salmon Guru
-Casa Revuelta
-Bistronómika
-Corral de la Morería Restaurant
-La Sanabresa
-Yoka Loka
-La Copita Asturiana
-Santurce
-Bar El Boqueron
-Cocido Madrileño at Cruz Blanca Vallecas

 Our personal tour guide

Our personal tour guide


With the recent increase of crime, there's no better time to make your home and street safer. Here is a quick list of ways to deter any uninvited guests:

Increasing Safety on Your Property

-Lock the doors and windows of your cars and homes at all times (only keep inaccessible windows open).
-Triple lock your patio doors with the door lock, bolt, and a stick and install door plates on the other entrances.
-Install an alarm system and display signs and stickers on your property.
-Install live cameras and display signs on your property.
-Lock access gates to the back of your property.
-Place your exterior lights on your patios and front stairways on a timer starts at dusk. The street lamps shouldn't be the only lights that turn on after sunset.
-Install motion sensor lights on the sides and back of your property.
-Pull down your curtains in the evening and/or remove valuables visible outside of your windows.
-REPORT a crime after it occurs to increase police attention to your street.

Bringing Your Street to Life and Making It a Community

-Say hello to a neighbor or any one on your street when you see them.
-Turn on patio/exterior lights to minimize blindspots (the street lamps aren’t enough light).
-Build a community to exchange ideas, organize events, etc.
-Contact owners of unkept properties (i.e. the empty lot).
-Organize quarterly events to increase communication among neighbors and to create more presence on the street including an annual garage sale, block party, neighborhood cleanup, holiday events, etc.
-Add neighborhood watch signs up and down the block.
-Build a relationship with the alderman to close off dangerous pathways.
-Invite an officer to provide a safety assessment. Ask local law enforcement to a street sponsored event to give safety tips.
-Encourage your neighbors with cameras to also post video monitoring signs and register their camera with local law enforcement (for crime review when necessary).
-Develop an immediate response phone tree.
-Help residents create a less appealing appearance for burglaries (i.e., lights on timers, electronics away from the windows, etc.).
-Beautify the neighborhood (i.e. create areas for gardens).
-Help nearby streets take the same steps.

Photo Credit:
wjbf .com–How can you stop the crime before it occurs?

Article Credit:

Author: Michael Moody Fitness
22 Ways to Make Your Home and Street Safer in Chicago Learn how to lose weight from a personal trainer in Chicago. 05/31/2018 12:13 PM Michael Moody Fitness
Recently, a friend reached out about his frustrations with trying to lose weight. Here is my advice. It might help you overcome the weight loss wall you’ve hit too.

My Advice to a Friend


Hey! Thanks for the specific notes and questions! It says a lot about your dedication to this process.

Losing weight is a complicated goal. It is a constant battle with your needs and wants. No matter hard you try...you will compare everything to your long-term eating habits and what you want. This makes change very challenging. You've already established a foundation on autopilot that is comfortable and free of deciding or testing (even though it hasn't helped you reach your goal). It's no wonder you may be more likely to talk yourself out of the new food than figure out a way to integrate it into your diet. Unfortunately, you may end up spending a lifetime of dietary cycles and weight fluctuations to protect what you love the most (of which I understand firsthand).

If you follow the guidelines in the article How to Lose Weight Without Exercise, though, you will....absolutely....without a doubt....achieve your weight loss goal number. Surprisingly, it can be achieved without killing yourself in the gym. Other people would rather never attempt this approach for reasons that make sense: It is a drastic contrast from their norms (as mentioned above). They basically have to revise their social lifestyle (to a degree not as great as most people think) and their decision-making process, as well as conduct necessary check-ins on their health, etc. It's a lot of work (in the beginning). Once you set your new normal on autopilot, though, it's no longer work-it's automatic (similar to your food interests now). Essentially, you're building a new physical and emotional relationship with your food.

Your questions are fair, and you deserve an extensive, comprehensive answer. At this point, I've reframed the answers in many different ways. Nothing will explain them more thoroughly than Dr. Fuhrman's book End of Dieting. I highly recommend reading the first 180 pages of this book this weekend. If you need a copy, I have an extra one for you!

Never forget that usually, the one thing you're avoiding to do is probably the one you need to do the most. You can exercise 2 hours per day 7 days per week, but it will still be avoiding the dietary change you probably need to make. Eventually, you should figure out what you can get away with (drinking beer, restaurant dinners, etc.). Right now, though, you should figure out how you should really eat. And if you read the book and begin disqualifying the claims, you should consider where those opinions stem from. Are they threatening your current habits? Would you rather believe a theory closer to your wants?

This isn't an easy road, and I have the most respect for you hitting it dead on! Let's reach that number! Let's make this happen!

Personal Trainer Wisdom: When Tom (name changed) originally emailed me about his recent frustrations with the weight loss process, his pain, anguish, and frustration bled through each of his written words. He battled 2 cycles of losing 9 lbs and gaining it back in the months that followed. At the time of the email, Tom reached his highest weight once again. You can imagine the emotional ups and downs for him during that time. While it appears on the surface that Tom failed over the last year, it did indeed reveal a mindset and set of habits that have led to these patterns….valuable information for a long-term change. It also showed that he is persistent and possesses the ability to set boundaries…even though these boundaries aren't ideal right now for his health.

I wish I could say that weight loss is as easy as commonly advertised. No matter what any personal trainer, advertisement, or "weight loss professional" tells you, it REQUIRES a mental, emotional, and physical approach. While it may seem like a daunting task, it could be the push to truly learn about yourself. It’s time to think about the advice above. Update: Tom has lost 12.5 lbs with consistency, patience, and persistence since my email response.

Photo Credit:
Health US News .com–What will really cause a change on your scale?

Article Credit:

Author: Michael Moody Fitness
My Advice to a Friend’s Frustrations While Trying to Lose Weight (And Why it Worked) Learn how to lose weight from a personal trainer in Chicago. 05/23/2018 10:49 AM Michael Moody Fitness
I’m currently helping one of my personal training clients train for the FBI physical test. Using their guidelines and scoring system below, see if you have what it takes too!

The PFT test consists of four mandatory events that are administered in the following order with no more than five minutes of rest in between each event. There is a strictly defined scoring scale and protocol for each event. Applicants entering under the Tactical Recruitment Program (TRP) must also complete the pull-up event.

1. Maximum number of sit-ups in one minute
2. Timed 300-meter sprint
3. Maximum number of continuous push-ups (untimed)
4. Timed one and one-half mile (1.5 mile) run
5. Pull-ups (TRP applicants only)*

Passing Score: Applicants must achieve a minimum cumulative score of 12 points, with at least 1 point in each of the four events.

TRP applicants: TRP applicants must achieve a total of 20 points, with at least 1 point in each of five events (including pull-ups).

Personal Trainer Wisdom: When training for such a test, determine your strongest and weakest events (your baseline). From there, evaluate the amount of time you’re willing to spend on each and whether or not it’s worth it based on the point system.

PFT Protocol and Scoring Scales: Sit-Ups


Trainee lies back with tops of shoulder blades touching the floor; hands behind the head with fingers interlaced. The knees are bent at a 90-degree angle with the feet placed flat on the floor (feet are held in place by a partner with partner's hands at the tongue of the trainee's shoes and knees on the trainee's toes). Trainee raises upper body until the base of the neck is in line with the base of the spine (back is perpendicular to the floor); trainee then returns to the starting position (i.e., the tops of both shoulder blades must touch the floor). This is a timed one-minute continuous motion exercise.

Score Female Range Male Range
-2 29 and below 31 and below
0 30-34 32-37
1 35-36 38
2 37-40 39-42
3 41-42 43-44
4 43-46 45-47
5 47-48 48-49
6 49-50 50-51
7 51-52 52-53
8 53-54 54-55
9 55-56 56-57
10 57 and over 58 and over

Personal Trainer Wisdom: Sit-ups are soooooo 1950….but I can see why the FBI still includes them on their test. We need to jump out of bed and get off the floor after all! Unfortunately, you most certainly will be compromising your neutral spine while completing the movement. Instead of building up inflammation during training, don’t be afraid to focus on the transverse abs (lower abs) while performing a crunch.

PFT Protocol and Scoring Scales: 300-Meter Sprint


The 300-meter sprint event usually takes place on a 1/4 mile oval track (although this may change based on individual circumstances). Trainees will start from a standing position and run 300 meters (3/4 of one lap).

Score Female Range Male Range
-2 67.5 and over 55.1 and over
0 67.4-65.0 55.0-52.5
1 64.9-62.5 52.4-51.1
2 62.4-60.0 51.0-49.5
3 59.9-57.5 49.4-48.0
4 57.4-56.0 47.9-46.1
5 55.9-54.0 46.0-45.0
6 53.9-53.0 44.9-44.0
7 52.9-52.0 43.9-43.0
8 51.9-51.0 42.9-42.0
9 50.9-50.0 41.9-41.0
10 49.9 and below 40.9 and below

Personal Trainer Wisdom: Interval sprints within a progressive program will help you reach a faster time in no time.

PFT Protocol and Scoring Scales: Push-Ups


Trainees begin in front leaning rest position (i.e. hands on the floor one to two hand widths beyond the shoulders with elbows away from the body, arms fully extended, and body held straight, with the feet no more than three inches apart and the toes touching the floor). As the arms are flexed, the body is lowered toward the floor until the upper arms are parallel to the floor (straight line from center axis of elbow to center axis of shoulder). Trainees complete the exercise after returning to the starting position. This is a continuous motion exercise.

Score Female Range Male Range
-2 4 and below 19 and below
0 5-13 20-29
1 14-18 30-32
2 19-21 33-39
3 22-26 40-43
4 27-29 44-49
5 30-32 50-53
6 33-35 54-56
7 36-38 57-60
8 39-41 61-64
9 42-44 65-70
10 45 and over 71 and over

Personal Trainer Wisdom: While most people compromise their shoulders, elbows, and wrists during a pushup, you can build up the necessary strength through planks, dumbbell chest presses, band chest presses, and a mix of shoulder and tricep exercises.

PFT Protocol and Scoring Scales: 1.5 Mile Run


The 1.5 mile run event most often takes place on a 1/4 mile oval track (although this may change based on individual circumstances). Trainees run six laps around the track.

Score Female Range Male Range
-2 15:00 and over 13:30 and over
0 14:59-14:00 13:29-12:25
1 13:59-13:35 12:24-12:15
2 13:34-13:00 12:14-11:35
3 12:59-12:30 11:34-11:10
4 12:29-11:57 11:09-10:35
5 11:56-11:35 10:34-10:15
6 11:34-11:15 10:14-9:55
7 11:14-11:06 9:54-9:35
8 11:05-10:45 9:34-9:20
9 10:44-10:35 9:19-9:00
10 10:34 and below 8:59 and below

Personal Trainer Wisdom: While long endurance runs should be included in your program, your sprint training will exponentially increase your speed in this area too.

PFT Protocol and Scoring Scales: Pull-Ups


*Note: Only candidates in the Tactical Recruiting Program (TRP) will complete this event. The candidate hangs from a horizontal bar, hands and least shoulder width apart (but no more than twenty-three inches apart as measured from the outsides of the hands) with palms turned away from face and arms fully extended. As the candidate flexes their arms, they pull their body upward until the candidate’s chin is higher than the bar. There can be no swinging or jerking of the body or use of the legs in an effort to propel the body upward. The candidate then lowers their body back to the hanging position with their arms fully extended. This is a continuous motion exercise.

Score Female Range Male Range
0 0 0-1
1 1 2-3
2 2 4-5
3 3 6-7
4 4 8-9
5 5 10-11
6 6 12-13
7 7 14-15
8 8 16-17
9 9 18-19
10 10 and over 20 and over

Personal Trainer Wisdom: Very few people can perform a proper pull-up. Have no worries, though. A progressive approach with planks, pulldowns, assisted pull-ups, and exercises for your scapula could help reach and surpass the minimum for this event.

Photo Credit:
Theintercept .com–Do you have what it takes to pass the FBI physical fitness test?

Article Credit:

Author: Michael Moody Fitness with the excerpt sourced from https://www.fbijobs.gov/sites/default/files/PFT_Guide.pdf.
Do you have what it takes to pass this physical test to join the FBI? Learn how to lose weight from a personal trainer in Chicago. 05/17/2018 12:13 PM Michael Moody Fitness
Let me help you take the guesswork out of your planning. My wife, Sammy, and I took our babymoon in London about 2 months before our son, Preston, was born. Here is the DETAILED itinerary from that memorable English long weekend of history, food, and afternoon tea! I’ve also included a list of the top 141 restaurants in the Queens land! Thank you, Allison, for all of your help planning this unforgettable trip (Thank your friend for us too!).

General Itinerary


March 1: Fly to London
2: London
3: London
4: London
5: London
6: London /Fly to Chicago

Flights


1st: Fly to London
United Flight UA 938 from Chicago
Depart: 9:15 pm (03/01) ORD
Arrival: 11:05 am (03/02) LHR

6th: Fly to Chicago
United UA959 from London
Depart: 3:25 pm LHR
Arrival: 6:25 pm ORD

Stays/Airbnbs


2th-6th: London
Gorgeous Central Luxury Apartment with Henry
10 Craven Street Flat 6, Greater London, WC2N 5PE, United Kingdom
44 7482 158077
Checkin: 2:00 pm
Checkout: 10:00 am

Specific Itinerary for Each Day


Day 1 Thursday


-Check-in at the Airbnb: Sleeping is for the dogs! Get exploring!
-Take a stroll through the nearby Trafalgar Square and Covent Garden Market Square. Watch street performers embarrass your spouse.
-Eat Spanish tapas at Barrafina.
-Stroll through the streets of London until you fall asleep.

Day 2 Friday


-Visit the free British Museum and grab an audio tour guide to see the Rosetta Stone and statue representations of Hugh Grant from each of his ironic romantic comedies (not true) under an hour.
-Shop at Harrods Dept. Store and Oxford Street.
-Sip a cocktail at Rules Restaurant (one of London’s oldest restaurant from 1798).
-Eat dinner at Ivy Restaurant: Look for English politicians and celebrities.
-Grab an after-dinner drink at the skyscraper, The Shard, to see London alive at night.

Day 3 Saturday


-Eat an early breakfast at NOPI.
-Watch the changing of the guard at the Buckingham Palace at 11:00 am and stroll through St. James Park and Kensington Gardens.
-Walk around Parliament Square and observe Big Ben looking down on the protestors. So judgmental! Too bad your name isn’t really Ben!
-Take the audio tour in Churchhill's War Rooms.
-Enjoy Afternoon Tea at the Savoy (Thames Foyer): Make reservations ahead of time and prepare your tiny fingers for little tea cups, sandwiches, and sweet goodies.
-You’re dressed up and ready for a night out! Go to see ‘Wicked’ or another musical in the Piccadilly Circus area.

Day 4 Sunday


-Grab breakfast at Dean Street Townhouse and then a walking cup of Monmouth Coffee.
-Sign up for a free 45 minute Beefeater tour with the men in red at the Tower of London. No samples of gin apparently. See the royal jewels and remind your loved one of your upcoming birthday. Take a look at the London Bridge and wonder why you thought the other bridge was the London Bridge.
-Visit the Tate Modern Art Gallery.
-Head to Lamb and Flag Pub for bangers and a beer (the favorite watering hole of Charles Dickens from the 1700s).
-Explore Covent Garden until you find an antique map store. Purchase geographic representations of England, France, and Spain from the early 1700s for your son’s nursery/man cave. Continue exploring the surrounding neighborhoods.
-Eat dinner at the Italian indulgence, Bocca Di Lupo, and sneak across the street for gelato.
-Grab an after-dinner cocktail at the Ham Yard Hotel.

Day 5 Monday


-Grab a quick bite near the Airbnb.
-Take a tour of the Westminster Abbey: Arrive early to avoid long lines or attend the Choir Evensong at 3:00 pm on Sunday instead.
-Fly home!

London Restaurants for Dinner (Be sure to make reservations on Opentable.com at least a few days in advance)

10 Greek Street (British)
28-50 Wine Workshop & Kitchen
8 Hoxton Square (sis of 10 Greek St)
Amaya (Indian)
Anchor & Hope (gastropub)
Andina (Peruvian)
Bar Boulud (French American)
Barbecoa (Jamie Oliver's, meat)
Barnyard (meat)
Barrafina (Spanish, sis of Fino)
Berners Tavern (British)
Bistrotheque (European)
Bocca Di Lupo (Italian)
Brindisa, London Bridge (Spanish)
Bubble Dogs (hot dogs & champers)
Bull & Last (gastropub)
Busaba Eathai (Thai)
Ceviche (Peruvian)
Cecconi's (Italian)
Chiltern Firehouse (European)
City Social
Coq d'Argent (French)
Dabbous (British/ burgers)
Dean Street Townhouse (British)
Dinner by Heston (British)
Ducksoup (wine bar)
Eight-over-eight (Asian) Ember Yard (basque tapas)
Fino (Spanish)
Flat Iron (cheap steak)
Flesh & Buns (Asian)
Four Seasons (roast duck)
Foxlow (steak, owners of Hawksmoor)
Galvin at Windows (French)
Granger & Co (Aussie brunch)
Gymkhana (Indian)
Hakkasan (Chinese)
Hawksmoor (steak & burgers)
Hereford St (gastropub)
Honey & Co (Middle Eastern)
Honest Burgers
Hummus Bros (Middle Eastern)
Iberica (Spanish)
Il Baretto (Italian)
Jin Kichi (Japanese, Hamstead)
Kitchen Table (private dining)
Koffmans (British)
Koba (Korean)
Kopaya (tapas)
Koya (Japanese)
Kurobata (Japanese, sis of Nobu)
La Bodega Negra (Mexican)
La Petite Maison (French)
Latium (Italian)
Lantana (Aussie brunch)
Le Poulet au Pot (French)
L'Entrecote (French steak)
Lima (Peruvian)
Little Social (French)
Lupita (Mexican)
Lyle's (degustation)
Mandarin Kitchen (lobster noodles)
Meat Liquor (steak/burgers)
Medlar (French)
Mele e Pere (Italian)
Mien Tay (Vietnamese)
Momo (African)
Morito (tapas, next door to Moro)
Moro (tapas)
NOPI (Israeli)
Ottolenghi (Isreali)
Patty & Bun (burgers)
Pitt Cue Co (BBQ)
Pizza Pilgrims
Pollen Street Social (British)
Polpo (Italian)
Polpetto (Italian, sis rest of Polpo)
Providores (tapas)
Red Bull Expert (Argentinian steak)
Riding House Cafe (brunch)
Roka (Japanese)
Royal China (dim sum)
Salt Yard (Spanish)
Scott's (seafood)
Señor Ceviche (Peruvian)
Signor Sassi (Italian)
Smiths of Smithfield (meat)
Social Eating House (British)
Song Que (Vietnamese)
Spuntino (Italian)
St John (British)
Story (degustation)
Sumosan (Japanese)
Sushisamba (Peruvian Japanese)
Sushi Tetsu (Japanese)
Tay Do (Vietnamese - Sammy's rest)
Tayyabs (Indian)
Terroirs (French wine bar)
Texture (European/ Scandinavian)
The Eagle (gastropub, Farringdon)
The Garrison (gastropub)
The Grazing Goat (gastropub)
The Ledbury (French)
The Palomar (Israeli)
The Punch Bowl (gastropub)
The Square (French)
Trishna (Indian)
Trullo (Italian)
Typing Room (British)
Ukai (sushi)
Vinoteca (wine bar)
Yalla Yalla (Middle Eastern)
Yauatcha (Chinese)
Zafferano, Knightsbridge (Italian)
Zoilo (Argentinian tapas)
Zuma (Japanese)
Zucca (Italian)

London Restaurants for Brunch

The Modern Pantry
The Riding House Cafe
The Breakfast Club
Duck & Waffle
Towpath
Dishoom
Ottolenghi
NOPI
Jackson & Rye
Kopapa
Providores
Lantana
Granger & Co Workshop Coffee Co, Clerkenwell
Village East, Bermondsey
Electric Diner, Portobello Rd
Tom's Kitchen, Chelsea
Sunday Cafe, Islington
Caravan, Kings Cross or Exmouth
Honey & Co, Fitzrovia
Quo Vadis, Soho
Plum & Spilt Milk, Kings Cross
Kin Cafe, Fitzrovia
Curators Coffee Gallery

Article Credit:

Author: Michael Moody Fitness
The Detailed Itinerary You NEED for a Long Weekend in London (And a List of 141 of their Best Restaurants)! Learn how to lose weight from a personal trainer in Chicago. 04/22/2018 5:20 PM Michael Moody Fitness  The British Museum (Not Pictured: Hugh Grant)

The British Museum (Not Pictured: Hugh Grant)

 Afternoon Tea at the Savoy in London

Afternoon Tea at the Savoy in London

 Oxford Street in London

Oxford Street in London

 Westminster Abbey in London

Westminster Abbey in London

 Italian Delight in London

Italian Delight in London


When I encourage my weight loss clients to eat breakfast, they usually respond with the answer "I don’t know what to eat." This is a fair response since we’ve been overwhelmed with advertising for donuts, sugary cereals, and bacon….all of which aren’t conducive for a healthy living.

Fret no more! I’ve handpicked 17 breakfast items from the local diners, Eggsperience and Griddle 24 (with modifications). While I hope this list will guide your dining experience, you can certainly recreate these easy meals at home, too.

Please keep in mind that I always recommend a vegan meal as a first option. Ill repeat this again: You’re better off if all of the options below were a wonderful mix of vegetables, fruits, seeds, nuts, legumes, and beans. If you have your daily animal consumption in check, you may be able to get away with eggs in the morning though (be sure to leave the dairy, toast, and pancakes off the table). Good luck, be creative, and enjoy!

Granny's Berry Berry Oatmeal

Description: Blueberries, red raspberries, and strawberries stirred in, topped with all-natural granola and honey
Personal Trainer Modifications: Substitute the milk with almond milk. Add pecans instead of granola. Add a type of seeds (hemp, chia, etc.) too.

Mmm-Mushroom Spinach Skillet

Description: A great combination of flavors… fresh spinach, lots of mushrooms and onions (and potatoes)
Personal Trainer Modifications: No cheese or milk. Add a side of vegetarian beans, seeds (hemp, chia, pumpkin, sunflower, etc.), and avocado or nuts.

Tiny Tim's Farm Stand Frittata

Description: Fresh spinach and mushrooms accented with diced bacon and topped with jack and cheddar cheeses
Personal Trainer Modifications: No cheese. Replace the milk with broth if possible (otherwise move to the next menu item). Add a side of vegetarian beans, seeds (hemp, chia, pumpkin, sunflower, etc.), and avocado or nuts.

Buenos Diaz Breakfast Chilaquiles

Description: Homemade corn tortilla chips cooked with green salsa, topped with mozzarella cheese and two eggs any-style. Garnished with refried beans, lettuce, tomato and sour cream
Personal Trainer Modifications: No cheese or sour cream. Add a side of vegetarian beans, seeds (hemp, chia, pumpkin, sunflower, etc.), and avocado or nuts.

Banana Oat Pancakes

Description: Fresh diced bananas in an oat batter, perfectly griddled and topped with more fresh bananas
Personal Trainer Modifications: If you must have your pancakes, a banana, oat, and almond milk batter will be your best bet hands down. Top with pecans to add healthy fat and protein and limit the syrup (1 teaspoon as a generous treat to a meal that already has a lot sugar from the bananas).

Egg Scramblers

Description: Scrambled with three grade AA farm fresh eggs, served with hash browns and choice of toast or pancakes. Pick your three favorites for a custom scrambler! Green Peppers, Mushrooms, Spinach, Tomato, Onions, Broccoli, or Scallions
Personal Trainer Modifications: I’ve left off the other meat and cheese options that will get you in trouble. Add a side of vegetarian beans, seeds (hemp, chia, pumpkin, sunflower, etc.), and avocado or nuts.

Breakfast Tacos

Description: Eggs Scrambled with Chorizo, jalapenos and onions stuffed in three corn tortilla accented with green salsa and cilantro. Garnished with refried beans, lettuce, tomatoes and sour cream.
Personal Trainer Modifications: No cheese or sour cream. Substitute the chorizo with Green Peppers, Mushrooms, Spinach, Tomato, Onions, Broccoli, or Scallions. Add a side of seeds (hemp, chia, pumpkin, sunflower, etc.) and avocado or nuts.

Elena’s Egg White Scrambler

Description: Spinach, mushrooms, roasted red peppers and low fat Mozzarella. Served with fresh fruit instead of hash browns.
Personal Trainer Modifications: No cheese or milk. Add a side of vegetarian beans, seeds (hemp, chia, pumpkin, sunflower, etc.), and avocado or nuts.

Eleni's Egg White Delight

Description: Talk about guilt-free indulgence! Feast on fresh spinach, mushrooms, roasted red peppers and low fat mozzarella. Served with fresh fruit instead of hash browns
Personal Trainer Modifications: No cheese or milk. Add a side of vegetarian beans, seeds (hemp, chia, pumpkin, sunflower, etc.), and avocado or nuts.

The Mediterranean

Description: A sunny omelette of fresh spinach, tomatoes, kalamata olives, oregano, and imported feta cheese
Personal Trainer Modifications: No cheese or milk. Add a side of vegetarian beans, seeds (hemp, chia, pumpkin, sunflower, etc.), and avocado or nuts.

The Bannockburn Green

Description: For the veggie lover! Fresh broccoli florets, tomatoes, green peppers and onions mixed with Swiss and cheddar
Personal Trainer Modifications: No cheese or milk. Add a side of vegetarian beans, seeds (hemp, chia, pumpkin, sunflower, etc.), and avocado or nuts.

Griddle 24 Egg White Omelette

Description: Baby spinach, avocado, tomato salsa, turkey bacon
Personal Trainer Modifications: No cheese or milk. Add a side of vegetarian beans, seeds (hemp, chia, pumpkin, sunflower, etc.), and avocado or nuts.

Steel Cut Oats

Description: Steel cut oatmeal with 2% milk served with a side of brown sugar
Personal Trainer Modifications: Substitute the milk with almond milk and add blueberries, strawberries, or bananas as well as pecans and a type of seeds (hemp, chia, etc.).

Espanola (3 Egg Skillet)

Description: Jalapeno peppers, avocado, onions, mushrooms, jack cheese, potatoes, and tortillas
Personal Trainer Modifications: No cheese or milk.

Veggie Garden Delight (3 Egg Skillet)

Description: Green peppers, onions, mushrooms, tomatoes, broccoli, spinach
Personal Trainer Modifications: No cheese or milk. Choose a side of fruit.

Acapulco Scrambler (3 Egg Scrambler)

Description: Diced chicken, jalapenos, tomatoes, avocado, jack cheese
Personal Trainer Modifications: No cheese or milk. Choose a side of fruit.

Veggies (3 Egg Scrambler)

Description: Green peppers, mushrooms, onions, broccoli, avocado, spinach, tomatoes, jalapenos, Kalamata olives
Personal Trainer Modifications: No cheese or milk. Choose a side of fruit.

Photo Credit:
willcookforsmiles .com–Can you eat your skillet and lose your weight too?

Article Credit:

Author: Michael Moody Fitness
The 17 Healthiest Breakfast Options from a Diner Menu Learn how to lose weight from a personal trainer in Chicago. 04/16/2018 1:17 PM Michael Moody Fitness
Here’s the list of quotes that have inspired me over the last year. Worth posting on the mirror or your computer!

Personal Trainer Wisdom:

"You can't reason someone out of something they didn't reason themselves into." - Tim Ferriss

"He who suffers before it is necessary suffers more than is necessary." - Seneca

"When you say 'yes' to others, make sure you're not saying 'no' to yourself" - Paolo Coehlo

"When you have exhausted all possibilities, remember this: You haven't." - Thomas Edison

"Happiness is wanting what you have." - Tim Ferriss

"It’s in the valley of failure that we sow our seeds of success." - Entrepreneur James Altucher

"While human nature largely determines how we hear the notes, it is nurture that lets us hear the music." - Jonah Lehrer

"Well-adjusted is not an accidental state." - David Foster Wallace

"Surrender yourself to the moment." - Google :)

"Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I’ll spend the first four sharpening the axe." – Abraham Lincoln

"I’ve learned an important trick: To develop foresight, you need to practice hindsight." – Jane McGonical

"Success is the ability to go from failure to failure without losing your enthusiasm." - Winston Churchill

Photo Credit:
Georgebthomas .com–When was the last time something inspiring lit up a new idea within you?

Article Credit:

Author: Michael Moody Fitness
12 Inspirational Quotes that Have Shaped My Life Over the Last Year Learn how to lose weight from a personal trainer in Chicago. 04/10/2018 12:09 PM Michael Moody Fitness
Did you know that Guinness used THIS to clarify their beer? Did you know that bees are fed THIS? Did you know that THIS part of the beaver is used in your baked goods? IF you’ve wondered, you’ll find these answers and more here…and you’ll be shocked. Thanks for the insight, Wes!

Guinness Brewery used fish bladders to clarify their beer


Guinness, like many other brewers, use isinglass, a by-product of the fishing industry that’s used to clarify the beer and make yeast settle faster. While most of the agent is filtered out during the brewing process, there are still traces of fish bladders in the finished product. – Reported by Fox News in 2015

Personal Trainer Wisdom: An interesting process that I don't believe is used too often for other beers. Although Guinness just discontinued this practice, it's a reminder that it’s worth learning about your favorite products (especially if you're a vegetarian).

Cattle bone char is used to process sugar


Bone char, which is used to process sugar, is made from the bones of cattle from Afghanistan, Argentina, India, and Pakistan. The bones are sold to traders in Scotland, Egypt, and Brazil who then sell them back to the U.S. sugar industry. The European Union and the USDA heavily regulate the use of bone char. Only countries that are deemed BSE-free can sell the bones of their cattle for this process. Bone char—often referred to as natural carbon—is widely used by the sugar industry as a decolorizing filter, which allows the sugar cane to achieve its desirable white color. – Reported by Peta

Personal Trainer Wisdom: Another process that may be harmless to your health but a violation of your ethical principles regarding animals. How important is this need for a decoloring filter?

Bees are fed high fructose corn syrup


Beekeepers feed their hives over the winter, when the bees are not working pollinating crops. Because of its cheaper expense, beekeepers, like processed food manufacturers, have moved away from supporting the bees and the baby bees (grubs) with high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) instead of honey. – Reported by Hopkins Medicine

Personal Trainer Wisdom: You are what you eat, and you certainly are affected by your prey’s diet as well. Think: Cellular and genetic levels.

Eggs are not dairy.


Eggs and dairy are lumped together on the prehistoric food pyramid….but eggs are not dairy.

Personal Trainer Wisdom: Due to decades of misinterpretation, generations are now convinced that eggs, like butter, milk, and cheese, are considered dairy. Besides the obvious physical differences, eggs don’t contain lactose or casein…defining characteristics of dairy. All forms of dairy are essentially the product of an animal (ie milk). While you can argue eggs are a product of animals, their structural makeup is essentially the beginning stages of life (ie chicks).`

The secretion from the anal glands of beavers are in your baked goods.


Castoreum, which is used as vanilla flavoring in candies, baked goods, etc., is actually a secretion from the anal glands of beavers. – Reported by Wikipedia

Personal Trainer Wisdom: Have no wisdom here. Poor beavers.

Photo Credit:
Mental Floss .com–Is fish bladder really necessary for making beer?

Article Credit:

Author: Michael Moody Fitness
Weird Facts About Your Food that You’ll Want to Know About Learn how to lose weight from a personal trainer in Chicago. 03/29/2018 7:20 AM Michael Moody Fitness
Nothing is more frustrating than putting in the effort to lose weight and not seeing any difference. You might be surprised to find out which factors may actually be holding you back. I’ve carved out the top 6 ways from the MSN article "44 Ways You’re Sabotaging Your Weight Loss Goals" Review.

YOU RELY ON PROTEIN BARS


Protein bars and shakes are "healthy" treats that are sabotaging weight loss goals because they have too many artificial sweeteners, Felicia Romero, celebrity fitness and nutrition expert, says. While this is a zero or low-calorie alternative, it has been found that adults consuming diet beverages tend to have increased consumption of solid-food matter; so much so that it offsets the calorie savings from the artificial sweeteners, Matt Thorsen, masters in Exercise Science and product specialist at SportsArt, says. "Acute and chronic intake of artificial sweeteners can lead to decreased insulin sensitivity which can set one down the path of type 2 diabetes."

Personal Trainer Wisdom: The moral of this story is that artificial sweeteners can lead to diabetes and weight gain just as much as sugar. While this is important, there is a bigger picture too. Protein bars and shakes are highly processed supplements of protein that rarely match the nutrient-dense benefits of their whole counterparts. You should probably ditch the bars altogether. "They’re easy and convenient!", You say? Meals prepared ahead of time will also be easy and convenient.

YOU EAT "HEALTHY" SNACKS


"Granola is always considered a ‘health’ food –however, it’s riddled with sugar and added fat," Brenkus says. "The flavored yogurts have tons of sugar too." Sugar is your nemesis –as it provides no nutrient and plenty of empty calories. Keep it low, he adds.

Personal Trainer Wisdom: It’s time to start reading packages. Your granola or yogurt may pack as much sugar as a can of Pepsi (38 grams). Let’s define "keep it low" since people may interpret that however they see fit. Anything above 15 grams of sugar per meal is taking a weight gain risk. Save the sugar for a more celebratory time!

YOU DRINK YOUR CALORIES


The only "calorie talk" Marcellus does is in asking people to try not to drink them. "Caloric drinks – juices, sweetened nut ‘milks,’ blended coffees, sweet teas, etc. – are always a place to look if you don’t seem to be reaching your fitness goals. A glass of wine is OK each night, or strategizing as close to only 7 alcoholic drinks per week as possible, she adds. "And, pouring a little less than you usually would or using a smaller glass can make a big difference to your waistline."

Personal Trainer Wisdom: I hope Marcellus says please!! The sweet drinks are certainly a secret killer. If you have a hard time kicking the craving, you may want to subtract one packet of sugar at a time from your morning java until you find the minimum amount of sweetness to satisfy your wants. One of my personal training clients changed her habit from 4 to 1 packet of sugar in each of her 3 daily coffees and lost 9 lbs in 4 weeks.

In regards to wine consumption….Let’s agree that we shouldn’t be drinking alcohol. It’s a toxin after all (eat grapes for antioxidants instead). Since we love life and the fruits of the land, I don’t expect you to completely remove your favorite vino, though. Test your body’s sensitivity to alcohol. In your current diet, how much wiggle room do you really have for a nightly glass? If you are already eating a lot of dairy, bread, meat, and candy, you may have to sacrifice the number of liquid grapes in your nightly habit.

YOU OVEREAT ON HEALTHY FOODS


Almonds and avocado, for example, are very healthy for you. However, they are also high in calories and fat, although it’s a good fat, Brenkus says. "The key is portion control. Like any type of food –if you eat too much of it—even though it’s healthy –it still can be stored as extra calories." Too much fat can be an overeating of calories, Romero adds.

Personal Trainer Wisdom: Just because something is healthy for you it doesn’t mean that it doesn’t come with limits. Try to limit your fat to 15 grams per day. I assure that your whole avocado at lunch will surpass that amount (and that doesn’t include the nuts and olive oil on your salad). Cut everything in half and see if the weight loss follows.

YOU DON’T EAT ENOUGH


"I believe in eating when you’re hungry," Brenkus says. "It goes without saying, that if you’re starting an exercise program, it will require you to eat more often and having extra calories – food is fuel." You may not know it, but starving is actually dangerous.

Personal Trainer Wisdom: If you’re hungry, respond with the proper nutrient dense fuel. Be sure to decipher between mental and physical cues. Are you reaching for food because you’re bored or stressed or has it really been about 3-5 hours of proper digestion and absorption and you’re ready to refuel.

NOT MOVING


Diet AND exercise are so often clumped together but not always equally put into practice, Thorsen says. Diet has a major contributing factor but so does being physically active. Along with simply burning more calories there are a host of additional benefits to exercise, and resistance training specifically: "increased muscle mass helps to burn more calories throughout the day, improved strength, osteoporosis prevention, improved blood lipid profile, more energy, and psychology benefits."

Personal Trainer Wisdom: Correction: Diet is the biggest contributing factor. I’ve witnessed personal training clients push physical limits within our sessions without losing an ounce of weight. While muscle mass helps to burn more calories throughout the day, it isn’t significant enough to counter poor dietary habits. At the same time, I do agree that both are necessary for optimal health for the reasons described above.

Photo Credit:
Men’s Fitness .com–Is starving yourself really the answer to losing weight?

Article Credit:

Author: Michael Moody Fitness with excerpt sourced from the article "44 Ways You’re Sabotaging Your Weight Loss Goals" on MSN.com (The Active Times).
"44 Ways You’re Sabotaging Your Weight Loss Goals " Review Learn how to lose weight from a personal trainer in Chicago. 3/21/2018 7:40 AM Michael Moody Fitness
Let me help you take the guesswork out of your planning. My wife and I recently explored Australia for our honeymoon. Here is the DETAILED itinerary from that epic trip!

General Itinerary


May 2-4: Fly to Sydney
4: Sydney (booked bike tour)….buy OPAL travel card
5: Sydney (booked bridge walk)
6: Sydney (find a zoo ferry that day/booked tickets for the Opera House)
7: Sydney (booked blue ribbon blue mountain tour)
8: Hamilton Island (Booked sunset sail)
9: Hamilton Island (open)
10: Cairns (open)
11: Cairns (booked Seastar Cruises)
12: Alice Springs (booked sunset camel ride)
13: Alice Springs (booked 1 day Uluru trip)
14: Melbourne (open)
15: Melbourne (booked bike tour)
16: Melbourne (booked GOR tour with GoWest Tours: 7:30 pickup)
17: Melbourne (booked with viator Yara Valley Wine Tour)
18: Sydney /Fly to Chicago

Flights


2-4th: Fly to Sydney (confirmed with seats)
United Flight UA639 from Chicago/Flight UA839 from LA
Depart: 7:17 pm (05/02) ORD
Arrival: 6:45 am (05/04) SYD

8th: Fly to Hamilton Island (confirmed with seats)
Virgin Australia 1281
Depart: 9:55 am SYD
Arrival: 12:30 pm HTI

10th: Fly to Cairns (checkin at the airport for seats together)
Qantas 2504
Depart: 11:55 am HTI
Arrival: 1:10 pm CNS

12th: Fly to Alice Springs (confirmed with seats)
Qantas 1949
Depart: 8:15 am CNS
Arrival: 10:10 am ASP

14th: Fly to Melbourne (confirmed with seats)
Qantas 797
Depart: 12:35 pm ASP
Arrival: 3:40 pm MEL

18th: Fly to Sydney (confirmed with seats)
Virgin Australia 809
Depart: 6:45 am MEL
Arrival: 8:10 am SYD

18th: Fly to Chicago (confirmed with seats)
United UA870 from Sydney/UA458 from San Fran
Depart: 10:30 am SYD
Arrival: 4:11 pm ORD

Hotels


4-8th: Sydney
Sydney Harbour Bed and Breakfast
142 Cumberland St., Sydney
+61292471130
Checkin: 2:00 pm
Checkout: 10:00 am

8-10th: Hamilton Island
Whitsunday Apartments
14 Resort Drive, Hamilton Island, 4803, AU
+61749699999
Check-in: 2:00 pm
Check-out: 10 am

10-12th: Cairns
DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Cairns
121-123 The Esplanade and Florence St., Cairns, QLD, 4870
+61740506070
Check-in: 2:00 pm
Check-out: ?????

12-14th: Alice Springs
Chifley Alice Springs Resort
34 Stott Terrace, East Side, NT, 0870 Australia
+610889514545
Check-in: 2:00 pm
Check-out: ?????

14-18th: Melbourne
Heather’s Airbnb
377 Little Collins Street 31, Melbourne, VIC 3000
+61410872530
Check-in: 2:00 pm
Check-out: 10:00 am
Directions: Our preference from the airport is the Skybus which drops you at Southern Cross Station at a cost of $19 per person, you can buy tickets at the airport or online. One of us can meet you at the bus terminal and it's a short tram ride to the apartment. Taxi fare is $50-$60, the trip is around 25 minutes.

Tours


4-8th: Sydney
4th: Bike Buffs Sydney Bicycle Tours
Meeting Point: MEETING PLACE FOR YOUR TOUR IS THE GARRISON CHURCH AT THE CORNER OF ARGYLE STREET AND LOWER FORT STREET, WELL JUST OPPOSITE ACTUALLY ON THE VILLAGE GREEN. 0414 960332
Start: 10:30 am

5th: Sydney Bridge Climb
Meeting Point: 3 Cumberland Street, The Rocks, NSW 2000
+610282747777
Start: 12:05 pm (arrive 15 minutes early)

5th: Open PM (Tasting Tour???/Bondi or Manly Beaches)

6th: Open Am (Ferry to the Zoo???)

6th: Sydney Opera House (Concert Hall)
Meeting Point: Bennelong Point, GPO Box 4274, Sydney, NSW 2001
+69712101035
Start: 8:00 pm (arrive 30 minutes early to pick up tickets)

7th: Blue Mountains Tour
Meeting Point: We’ll be picked up.
+0421892760
Start: 7:00 am?????
Notes: Email them between 7am and 2pm the day before and quote the conf. number with our address. We will receive the pickup time then.

8-10th: Hamilton Island
8th: Sunset Sail Whitsunday Islands
Meeting Point: Resort Centre Tour Desk next to Sails Restaurant (7am – 7pm)/Reef View Hotel Tour
Desk in the Hotel Lobby (8am – 5pm)
+0749468305
Start: 4:45 pm (until 6:15 pm)

10-12th: Cairns
11th: Cairns Seastar Cruises (Great Barrier Reef): Michaelmas Cay and Hastings Reef Day Cruise
75 Esplanade, Cairns, Qld 4870, Australia
Meeting Point: Pier E1 of the Marlin Marina
+0740416218
bookings@seastarcruises.com.au
Start: 8:00 am (boarding starts at 7:30 am)
Notes: $15 fee pp is payable on the day on the boarding, call 48 hours in advance to reconfirm.

12-14th: Alice Springs
12th: Sunset Camel Ride
Pyndan Camel Tracks, 21259 Jane Road White Gums
+0416170164
pyndan@cameltracks.com
Meeting Point: We’ll be picked up 30 minutes before (4:30).
Start: 5:00 pm (until 6:00 pm)
Notes: Call or text 48 hours in advance to reconfirm pickup/tour.

13th: Uluru Adventure
Gray Line Office
Shop 7-9 Capricornia Centre (opposite Information Centre), Gregory Tce, Alice Springs
+610889522177
alicesprings@grayline.com
Meeting Point: We’ll be picked up at 5:50 am.
Start: 6:00 am (until 12:30 am)
Notes: Call or text 24 hours in advance to reconfirm pickup/tour.

14-18th: Melbourne
15th: Freddy’s Bike Tours
Meeting Point: See notes.
+61431610431
james@freddysbiketours.com
+0431610431
Start: 11:00 am
Notes: They will send details about the meeting point the day before or you can meet 15 minutes prior at their shop in Batman Park.

16th: Great Ocean Road Day Tour
Go West!
+0394855290
info@gowest.com.au
Meeting Point: Pickup at Adina Apartments, 189 Queen St.
Start: Pickup at 7:35 am
Notes: Call or text 24 hours in advance to reconfirm pickup/tour????

17th: Yarra Valley Food and Wine Day Trip from Melbourne including Lunch at Yering Station
Vinetrekker Wine Tours
Melbourne city hotels or St Paul's Cathedral/Cnr of Swanston & Flinders Streets, Melbourne. Located opposite Federation Sqaure and Flinders Street Train Station.
+61 3 96998148
Meeting Point: approx 8:45am-9:00am (confirmed the night before)
Start: 9:00 am
Notes: Call or text 24 hours in advance to reconfirm pickup/tour????

Article Credit:

Author: Michael Moody Fitness
The Detailed Itinerary You NEED for an Adventure in Australia Learn how to lose weight from a personal trainer in Chicago. 03/15/2018 7:40 AM Michael Moody Fitness The 12 Apostles Uluru
I most commonly hear "There isn't enough time in the day..." Despite my best efforts to create a 25 hour day, I think we're stuck with the standard clock. Don't be discouraged! Build these habits, and you'll find an extra 3-4 hours per week!!!

Schedule a grocery delivery service


My friend Matt S. jokingly (and not jokingly) recently advised hiring someone to do everything for you if you want to create more time. Hard to argue with this! While you should be strategic and hire a professional if you have the budget and/or need (ie, an accountant), let’s assume you’re willing to create more time without spending extra money first….with one exception: Scheduling a grocery delivery service. I mention this tip first for a good reason. It’s the easiest to begin today, and you’ll quickly benefit from the time it creates in your schedule. Typically, I spend 15 minutes driving to Trader Joes or Whole Foods, 20-60 minutes shopping, and 15 minutes driving home for a total range of 50-90 minutes each week. That’s nearly 4-6 hours per month spent on the shopping activity (which isn’t a big deal if you enjoy the experience)!

By signing up with Instacart, a grocery delivery service for Whole Foods, Costco, Jewel, and more, you can reduce this amount of time to 40 minutes per month. I save a list of staples that I renew weekly while adding new favorites and recipe ingredients for the week. Also, I can schedule same day delivery at times. Of course, it comes at a cost. An annual membership is $149, and you probably will tip $5 each week. Are you willing to pay $33 per month for at least 4 hours? If so, you may want to rethink your shopping approach (especially if it also saves you money from buying nonessential extras during your trip or eating out when you’re out of groceries).

Minimize repeat offenses


A great deal of our time is lost by the wasted efforts we make daily. Essentially, you’re a repeat offender by hitting snooze again, running to the dryer for 5 consecutive days, and looking for your car keys. What a waste of your valuable time! Here is the list of the most common repeat offenses and how to eliminate the habit:

- Snoozing: Eliminate this time wasting habit and create an average of 20 minutes of REM sleep instead. That’s right…I’m not telling you to get out of bed the first alarm. Stay in bed! You deserve and, probably, need it. On average most people snooze 2-3 times. Unconsciously you have a set time to wake up in your mind and will snooze until you get there. Quit disrupting your REM sleep!!! You plan to stay in bed anyways. Increasing the amount of quality REM sleep will make you more productive and efficient throughout your workday (leaving more time for enjoyment).

- Placing the contents of your pocket anywhere: Place your keys, wallet, phone, and/or purse/workbag in the same spot when returning home…no ifs, ands, or buts! How much time have you wasted in a frantic hurry because you mindlessly placed the contents of your pockets across your home? No further explanation needed.

- Running to your other drawer, the dryer: Only complete full loads of laundry and remove them from the dryer in one trip (quit running back and forth from the dryer for one pair of socks...it isn't a drawer). Bonus time saver: Wash all of your clothes in cold water to eliminate multiple small loads. Yes, your clothes will still be clean without warm water.

- Leaving the kitchen cabinet in the dishwasher: How much time do you waste looking for kitchenware every time you need something? Empty the dishwasher when it's complete and eliminate the number of locations you need to look to find your favorite coffee cup from Grandma. Bonus time saver: Place all of your dirty dishes inside after the initial rinse in the sink instead of rinsing the dishes, placing them in the sink, and then eventually placing them in the dishwasher. Cut out the middle man. You’re trying to grasp as much as time as possible!

Create a new storage system


I have wasted too much time in my life searching for things in the abyss of my storage. It should never take more than 5 minutes to find anything I need. With this being said, my storage is organized in the following way: Boxes are divided by 3 access categories-Relics, Annual, and Daily. The relics (keepsakes) are tucked in the back corner while the annual and daily boxes are placed in accessible locations with a clear list of items pasted on the front. Bonus time saver: Paste a map or list of boxes and its contents on the wall as a quick reference. Super bonus time saver: Donate, sell, or throw out anything that you DON’T use. Translation: Don’t save anything that you won’t use in the next month with certainty unless they’re holiday decorations or keepsakes.

Reduce mail


How much time have you spent moving piles of mail to different spots while also looking for specific pieces? Maybe 5 minutes a week? 20 minutes a month? 240 minutes (4 hours) a year? Wait...I forgot the 30 minutes per month you spend organizing a mail pile that really is 75% unnecessary....which is 6 hours per year. Wouldn't you like a 10 hour day this week to do nothing or to binge watch the show Breaking Bad...again. Sign up for ‘Do not mail’ lists and choose paperless statements for your utilities, credit card bills, bank paperwork, and other bills. As soon as you return home, discard the pieces of mail that you don't need and archive the rest. Do not leave any mail out. If you must, place it in a review file in your drawer.

Reduce email


I've been successfully keeping my email inbox around 105 emails since 2012 and you should do the same. If you're like the old me you probably have 3000 emails. Create a new account and make it the forwarding address for your new account. "But Michael, I can just search for what I need in my account with the right keywords...I don't need to delete anything or change accounts." Perhaps. It will still cost you valuable time, though. Whether you type in an email address or a specific topic, you'll still waste energy and time sifting through the new list of emails that pop up. Yes, it takes less time than rifling through your inbox but it is still very inefficient. Instead, decide when you open each and every email to delete, archive, or star it. If you must star it for future correspondence, don't let sit in your inbox for longer than 7 days. Once you respond, either delete or archive it.

Rethink your dirty and clean clothes approach


I'm well aware that most people don't like to organize their clothes. I think there's a great benefit to color coding your hanging clothes but I know you most likely won't do it (even though it reduces decision fatigue and time). Here are a few rules that can eliminate wasted time trying to figure out what's clean and dirty on your floor and also make finding an outfit easier.

- I've already discussed the advantages of placing things in the same spot. No need to rehash. I fully recognize how busy you are, and I know that you don’t have time to organize your drawers and closet. Why not find one designated spot where you can throw your clothes though (instead of scattering them across the room)? The corner of a closet is ideal. Too busy to open your closet door? Than place the hamper in the corner of the bedroom to catch your Michael Jordan shots. Just be sure to do laundry when it fills up.

- Organize your clothes on hangers or in drawers by categories. While most people already apply this to their drawers (ie sock and underwear drawer), their hanging clothes are usually a mess. Since you're taking the time to hang your clothes anyway, why not place them in one of the following distinct sections: pants, skirts, dresses, short sleeve, long sleeve, and suits. How nice would it be to quickly examine your supply of pants all in one section? Certainly, it will be less time than rifling through each and every item on the rack when you’re in a rush.

More random thoughts from busy professionals and parents


- "Routine routine routine. Making weekly meal plans and shopping lists on the weekends, picking and ironing my kids clothes for the week on Sunday. Having a regular breakfast routine: oatmeal on Mondays, pancakes on Saturday, etc." - Amanda M.

- "We use organizers in the boys’ closets and lay clothes out for the entire week, especially socks (ugh, trying to find matching socks before school is the worst) and underwear. We have a huge central calendar, and everyone is assigned a different color. I make double batches of our favorite meals and freeze one for the following week." - Kelly G.

- "It's really all about organization. I have calendar reminders for everything including changing air filters in the AC, oil changes, etc... These small maintenance items will save you a ton of time (and money) down the road." - Dan S.

- "Lunches made the night before, all clothes set out for the morning, everything is written on the home calendar and typed into phone calendars. School Bags gone through minute kids get home, things signed and sent back when you get them." - Gen S.

- "Dry erase calendar for the entire family. Keep in the foyer by the door. Easy to maintain schedules for everyone. Work around others with time." - Joey P.

Photo Credit:
Lifeadvancer .com–Is the key to stress management really controlling the clock?

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Author: Michael Moody Fitness
How to Create More Time Each Week (And It’s Easier Than You Think) Learn how to lose weight from a personal trainer in Chicago. 03/07/2018 2:30 PM Michael Moody Fitness
"'Follow your dreams.' It's impossible to do without self-knowledge, what takes years. You discover your 'dream' (or sense of purpose) in the very act of walking the path, which is guided by equal parts choice and chance." Maria Popova's response to Tim Ferriss's question regarding the worst advice she ever heard in the book Tools of Titans.


What Are Your Dreams Really Based On


'Follow your dreams.' You've heard this advice probably as often as I did growing up. Certainly, the most common words of inspiration given to a youngster and seen in coffee table books and wall art. What does it really mean and how serious should we consider this advice? Do you know?

As a student of psychology for the last 20 years, I've learned one very important thing: Most people aren't aware of themselves (or the influences on how they think). I fell into this category for a long time, and it's taken much effort to recognize and understand the trends and patterns of me....including my dreams. I'd love to believe that my dreams were an inspirational inner voice that always had my best interest in mind and guided me with a knowledge and understanding beyond my being.

Unfortunately, and fortunately, they most likely were a result of environmental influences, interactions, emotional interpretations, and unconscious cues from my history. At times, my dreams reflected insecurities and fears that plagued my unconscious or a disorientated interpretation of the day’s events. Often, they reflected a film I watched that day or an emotion I recently experienced. While I recognized the symbolism of those dreams, I also understand how easily misleading they can be.

The Interpretation of Your Dreams


You may not be any different. Have you observed your physical, mental, and emotional self? Have you ever observed the trends and patterns of you? Have you identified the underlying influences on your behavior (i.e., fears and insecurities)? Have you ever examined the underlying influences on your dreams? If you're like most people, you will say "No." Would you follow any other prompt or cue like a dream with so many unanswered questions?

Don't forget that at times your dreams are also completely ridiculous and nonsensical. You may disregard those dreams, but it doesn't mean that you should follow your dream just because it possesses a sensible, relatable narrative that seems like the truth about your path. As Maria points out, we learn about our true selves and what's best for us by walking the path...interacting with people and the world. If you don't know what you want to do next, be curious instead of following your dreams initially. Find invigoration and direction through the collision of your being and experiences in different environments with different people and see how itself manifests later. Maybe at some point, you can consider the prompt of your dreams or your gut instinct. Be sure to truly understand yourself first, though.

You're a Leader Not a Follower


Also consider that the simple act of following infers that you are not leading. It is a serious unconscious nudge to wait for a sign to help you make lifelong personal and professional decisions without sound evidence why. Do you really want to only follow something that can be interpreted a million different ways? Let's be honest. Most of our interpretations aren't 100% accurate and often are self-serving depending on the influences (which isn’t always a bad thing when it comes to survival but should be recognized). Why not follow the mantra ‘Create the life you want’?

While I always love words of inspiration, you may want to reconsider how sound the advice might be. No path is as easy as following your dreams.

Personal Trainer Wisdom

No matter if you believe that your dreams are a result of your personal history or a spiritual push, you can’t argue with the importance of self-awareness. Whatever cue you receive, you should still examine the path you walked and the ground you stand on. Your assessment may just provide the direction you need.

Photo Credit:
Thefinancialdiet .com–Should you really follow your dreams?

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Author: Michael Moody Fitness
Why 'Follow Your Dreams' May Be the Worst Advice You Ever Heard Learn how to lose weight from a personal trainer in Chicago. 03/01/2018 1:25 PM Michael Moody Fitness
What advice would your 10-year older self give you today? What do you think he or she would say about your approach to life, work, and relationships? What do you think he or she would advise you to adapt? I spent some time contemplating this scenario and know that the 49-year-old Michael would most likely encourage these 5 life-enhancing tips (and I’m sure you will relate).

Listen


The root all being is interaction. Be an active participant with your ears. Listen to your environment. Listen to the random sounds around you. Take your nose out of your phone, and genuinely listen to your wife and son (and the rest of your family and your friends and your colleagues and everyone else you interact with). Look a person in the eyes when you're engaged in a conversation. Show them your genuine interest and strengthen the bond you initially created.

Don't hold onto worry or anger for more than 5 minutes


Quit wasting away seconds, minutes, hours, days, years, and decades of life worrying about not being perfect, doing perfect, or acting perfect. Embrace your emotion and passion but bundle it into a positive adaptive package and act instead of stewing in your destructive emotion. Don't let the resentment, anger, hate, and worry prison your mind and distract you from the precious little life moments (even if those moments don't feel important). Bark if you need to. Step away to be alone (and this isn’t avoidance, by the way). Shake your fist at the sky. But DO NOT obsess, swim, or dance in this negativity for longer than 5 minutes. Indulge in this instinctual (or reinforced reaction) for a short moment and then let it go. Find the silver lining. Accumulate wisdom from your error. Accept. Adapt. Be fair to yourself. Be kind to yourself. See the world as perfectly imperfect and don't let it overwhelm you.

Trust your genuine and real you and quit second-guessing yourself


Act in line with who you are but don't second-guess yourself because of fears, insecurities, or other underlying influences. Just be. Be assertive. Be confident. Don't act like yourself, just be yourself. Trust that you unconsciously have other people in mind. Don't worry about being judged. Don't judge yourself. Be yourself (unless you're selfish, inconsiderate, unsympathetic, unemphatic, demeaning, judgmental, egotistical, or unrighteous).

Seek to understand FIRST instead of judging when in a disagreement


In a world of negativity, it's easy to judge and interpret someone or an incident through a personal lens (a filter you developed from a collision of internal perspective and your daily life). How accurate is this judgment or interpretation though? What are you overlooking? Do you truly know the full story? How do you think your emotion has affected your initial interpretation? Your initial reaction? Seek to understand first, and you will foster sympathy and empathy instead of the anger, disappointment, and frustration you most commonly feel when judging.

Find 1 positive attribute in every person you meet


Quit looking for the negative in yourself, your environment, and people….especially other people. Retrain your initial thought process when meeting someone new by finding 1 positive attribute in every person you meet. Instead of assessing, try searching for the best in them. They may not be you, someone you know, or someone you may hang out with for a lifetime, but they still deserve your respect, genuine interest, and a chance to show their best selves.

Photo Credit:
thenews.com .pk–What would your future self say to you?

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Author: Michael Moody Fitness
"Advice My Future (10 Years Older) Self Would Tell Me Today (And Why I Need to Listen) Learn how to lose weight from a personal trainer in Chicago. 02/21/2018 4:13 PM Michael Moody Fitness
Many of my personal training clients fear that they will sacrifice their health and weight loss goals while traveling. Fear not! Here is my quick guide to maintaining what you worked so hard for!

Don’t touch your face without washing your hands


Whether traveling by planes, trains, or automobiles, you most likely are hanging out in well-populated public places….which increases your exposure to bacteria and viruses. While I don’t think you should hole yourself in a closet for the rest of your life, I do advocate some boundaries. The first rule of staying healthy on the road is resisting the urge to touch your face without washing your hands. You might be surprised to learn how often you touch your lips, nose, and eyes each day. Each swipe of your hand gives germs access to your system. Considering that you’re sharing doorknobs, railings, counters, and faucet handles, your hands are constantly in contact with the world. Do yourself a favor and resist the urge to touch your face until you wash your hands.

Use disinfecting wipes while flying


Have you ever witnessed airline staff members wiping down tray tables and seat belts? Me neither. On average, each plane will see at least 2 flights each day (and we don’t know what special germs were left behind for us). Most likely, you will eat and/or drink off of the tray table….which makes cross-contamination easy. Before you sit, quickly wipe the seatbelt and the top and bottom of the tray table for 20 seconds. The little things that we overlook are the ones that affect us the most.

Always carry a water bottle


Too often, a cause of our exhaustion and hunger is dehydration. With the constant access of junk food on the road, it’s easy to convince yourself that you need an indulgence as a remedy (when all you need is a simple sip). Make yourself a rule: Any time you’re tired or hungry, drink 4-8 ounces of water and reassess. You might be surprised what you’ll find.

Walk


Usually your vacations are jam-packed with tourists activities….which rarely meet your minimum requirements of healthy physical movement. While I wouldn’t expect you (or my personal training clients) to exercise several hours per day during your break from reality, replacing your cab/uber rides with walks will still help you maintain your health and possibly weight loss. Believe it or not, walkers do lose weight while eating their way through Italy. Walking is the easiest way to move on the road and a great way to immerse yourself in new neighborhoods while keeping your engine revved up. Keep your senses alive and rise beyond the seat!

Split food


Enjoy the best of a dining experience while shrinking your portions: Split with a buddy! Instead of ordering 2 separate entrees (which are probably big enough for 3), share an entrée and an appetizer. This foodie approach is an easy way to enjoy more than one taste of the local culture while avoiding a belt-busting experience.

Finding a running group in the city that you’re visiting or signup for a 5k


Running is a global phenomenon that connects many cultures. Find another way to connect with the community that you’re visiting and find a local meetup for runners. What a neat way to participate in a social workout in a new environment! Google "running groups (insert location)" or "running clubs (insert location)" and extend yourself! You can also signup for a random 5k to enhance your workout too!

Make your food count with the ChefsFeed phone app


I always say that if you’re going to do it, do it well. Since my wife Sammy is an event sales manager in the restaurant industry, you probably know that I’m referring to restaurants. Exploring new dishes is a way of life-my life-and it tends to direct my travel choices. I can give you my normal personal trainer speel on following a true vegan lifestyle to achieve optimal health (even though all of us should). Instead, I’d rather try to persuade you to change your relationship with food. Stop eating just to fill up and eat with intent instead. Use the ChefsFeed phone app to strategically celebrate the favorite dishes and restaurants chosen by local chefs. Type in your location and sift through the many recommendations from the host culinary experts. It is possible to still meet your health goals while enjoying the best of life. You just need to be mindful and selective. Thanks for this suggestion, Carol!

Photo Credit:
Wanderlove. com –Can you wander and still keep your health in mind?

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Author: Michael Moody Fitness
The Personal Trainer's Guide to Staying Healthy While Traveling Learn how to lose weight from a personal trainer in Chicago. 2/8/2018 7:00 AM Michael Moody Fitness