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The Pulse - March/April 2010

Many people fail in life, not for lack of ability or brains or even courage but simply because they have never organized their energies around a goal. —Elbert Hubbard

Man is a goal seeking animal. His life only has meaning if he is reaching out and striving for his goals. —Aristotle

10 Ways to Reach Your Health and Fitness Goals

As we enter the third month of the year 2010, all the positive changes we resolved to do in the new year still feel attainable, whether or not we have been following through with our resolutions. Because this is the year of 10, our newsletter theme is focused on providing you helpful information in the form of lists of 10. Before you make or re-adjust your health and fitness goals, consider the following 10 ways that may help you be more successful in attaining your goals this year.

  1. Positive self-talk.
    Support and encouragement come in all different shape and forms; from other people and from within. Fortunately and unfortunately, we can listen to ourselves a little too much when it comes to critiquing our own progress. We tend to focus on the fact that we are our own worst critic; but it is important to realize that in order to succeed, we must also be our own biggest fan. This is because we are the only ones who can truly know what we are doing every second, minute, hour, and day that may be supporting our sabotaging our goals. Sadly, most weight-loss programs begin with negatives attitudes and feelings about our own self image. We become angry with ourselves for letting things get to this point. We cannot believe we have let ourselves go for this long. We vow to make a change, and often times this change is drastic, as if to punish ourselves for all the wrong we have been doing. This tougher than tough love self-talk is only setting us up for failure. Feeling this way, will only increase feelings of resentment, deprivation, and hopelessness. It is very counterproductive because energy is spent feeling this way, when that energy could be and should be put towards action steps that will help your achieve your goals.
    It is important, however, that we not ignore these feelings, since feeling this way is what is driving you to make change in your life. The key is to recognize your strengths and weaknesses and learn to work with them in efforts to achieve your goals. Here are a few ways to do just that:

    1. Don’t say anything to yourself that you wouldn’t say to someone else
    2. Look at the whole picture. Focus on what is going right and not just what is going wrong
    3. If you mess up, do not dwell on it. Simply acknowledge it, learn from it, and move on
    4. Learn to reward yourself for changes seen off of the scale. Celebrate positive attitude changes that result in or are a result of more encouraging self-talk
  2. Seek outside motivation.
    Even if it is our own motivation that is ultimately going to be what dictates our level of success, we all can benefit from a little help from outside sources as well. Do not be afraid of telling your friends and family members about your goals. In fact, make it a priority. Many times these people will help you stay accountable, whether they say anything or keep quiet. Because you have revealed your goals to them, and because they care about you, you know they will be watching and will, hopefully, be the encouragement you might just need to get through tough times when they arise. An added bonus would be if one of your friends or family members has a similar goal; then you can be each other’s support system.
  3. Seek assistance from a professional.
    Sometimes, we may have the best intentions and all the motivation in the world, but have no earthly idea where to start. There are many self-help websites, magazines, and books available with loads of information on exercise and nutrition. While these may be a great place to help you get started, it is important to understand that one size does not fit all. Most articles and recommendations are written for the general public. This is where a health and fitness professional can be invaluable. A qualified* professional will sit down and talk with you in detail about your goals, your obstacles, your health history, and your exercise experience. From this information, he/she should be able to develop a plan that will help you reach your goals in the most effective and efficient way for you.
    *When searching for a qualified professional, look for highly regarded certified and/or degreed individuals from established health and fitness organizations and programs. Top of the line certifying groups are: The American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM), The National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA), The National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM) and American Council on Exercise (ACE). If you are looking for strictly nutritional aid, verify that the professional has a MS degree and is a Registered Dietician (RD).
  4. Make short-term goals.
    Most of us start on our health and fitness journeys with an ultimate goal in mind. In fact, it is this goal that gives us motivation to begin in the first place. But if one’s goal is to drop 50+ pounds, and they learn that realistically, to do it the right way, they will be losing about one pound a week, 50 weeks can feel like an eternity. This is why it is important that while focusing on the long-term goal, we learn to create short-term goals that will help us feel success and therefore, keep us motivated along the way. Aim for creating goals that can be attained in 6-8 weeks and others that can be met in 1-2 weeks. Remember daily goals, too. Reaching these smaller, more attainable goals, can give you the boost needed to endure the seemingly endless weeks, months, or years ahead.
  5. Include the three main aspects of a fitness program: weight training, cardiovascular training, and flexibility.
    It is a well known fact that exercise is a key component to any weight loss and/or health and fitness achievement program. Often times, however, cardiovascular exercise takes precedence in one’s workout plan, over weight training and even flexibility. It is true that cardiovascular exercise is very efficient at burning the most amounts of calories in a shorter amount of time, given your heart rate is elevated to an appropriate level. However, the more lean body mass (muscle) you have, the more easily your body will burn those calories, as well as the extra stored calories we know as fat. Weight training will also help keep you strong and at a lower risk for injury. Flexibility is also very important because the tighter your muscles are, the weaker they may be and therefore are at more of a danger for strain or injury. Gaining flexibility will also help your body move the way it is
    supposed to and help keep your joints healthy. It is very important to include all three of these components when looking to improve your fitness. One is certainly not independent of the other. In fact, all of these components work together to help your body become one fit, lean, limber, fat-burning machine.
  6. Do what you enjoy.
    We all want to do what we like. Unfortunately, exercise has been labeled as something that we know we have to do, we just do not always want to do it. If you feel this way toward exercise, we encourage you to try different activities until you find something that you actually enjoy. Because the more we enjoy something, the more likely we are to do it and therefore, be more successful at reaching our health and fitness goals. Try exercising with a friend, hire a personal trainer (*see above for recommendations on choosing a fitness professional), take an exercise class, or use cardio equipment and listen to music, an audio book, or watch TV to help pass the time. If you simply do not enjoy exercising in a gym, take your fitness outside the gym. Pick up swimming, hiking, biking or even rock-climbing. There are plenty of outdoor boot camp style workout programs offered these
    days. Or simply, plan a daily walk in your neighborhood.
  7. Cross-Train.
    While it is important when starting an exercise program, that you find something you enjoy, you may find that as you continue to gain fitness, you will more feel adventurous and decide to try another activity. This type of cross-training is greatly encouraged. Cross-training can help your body continue to gain fitness because it will challenge it in ways that your current training program may not. Cross-training can also help prevent boredom which will keep you on track toward your health and fitness goals.
  8. Participate in community and charity fun walks/runs.
    Getting up early on a Saturday or Sunday morning, pulling on your walking/running attire to face traffic and crowds in blocked off streets downtown may not sound like your ideal way to spend a weekend morning. However, if you have never participated in a community fun walk/run, we think you will be pleasantly surprised. It is incredibly rewarding as well as beneficial. Just being surrounded by a crowd of other fit-minded people can do wonders for energizing you in your journey towards health and fitness. Plus, most of the walk/runs raise money for a particular cause, and this too, can make you feel good that your exercise is going to help raise awareness or even find a cure. Often times, there are teams you can join to walk/run the event together, which makes the experience even more fun! Check out the information (below) on the Body Basics team that participates in the Race for the
    Cure every year. Be a part of our team, and you will receive a t-shirt to show off your Body Basics pride!
  9. Be an encouragement to others.
    Have you ever noticed that if you are the one who needs encouraging, some days it can be hard to muster up the energy to even smile? Yet, if suddenly, you come across someone who also needs encouraging, perhaps more than you, you somehow find the extra boost of energy needed to offer encouragement to them. This is a very powerful tool and can be used to help you successfully achieve your goals. As you continue on your journey, and learn more about your struggles as well as successes, look for opportunities to share your experiences with others who may benefit from hearing your story. Talking about where you have been, and how far you have come can not only encourage others, but it can give you confirmation that you really are headed in the direction toward your goals. This can be very a very satisfying experience and can keep you moving forward preventing you from slipping back into old
  10. Allow yourself to succeed.
    Many of us have been down this road before. We have set goals, made steps toward achieving those goals, and then, for some reason, life gets in the way, and we fail at ever really coming close to reaching our goals. In fact, some of us have done this so frequently, that the feeling of failure has actually become familiar. It is something we are accustomed to and feels almost comforting simply because it is known. If this is something you have experienced in the past, it may be that when you actually start to succeed, you panic. You will have reached uncharted territory and this can be scary. In fact, if you are not aware of this potential feeling, you may find yourself subconsciously sabotaging your efforts toward success. Therefore, we suggest that you prepare for the possibility that you may feel this way. Then remind yourself that this is truly what you want and that you are working
    hard for this goal. Really pinpoint what fears you have and work through them. Talk to friends that may have had similar experiences, keep a journal, or turn to websites that have message boards where you may be able to connect with others in your same situation. However you choose to get through this time, know that this is just another obstacle and it is certainly one you can overcome to allow yourself to feel the sweet success you deserve.

Nutrition Corner: 10 “Superfoods” for a Long and Healthy Life

Many times when we begin a nutritional overhaul of our current diets, we tend to focus on eliminating certain bad foods. It is true that making healthy choices can mean ridding our pantries of processed foods and sugary snacks, but it is also important to emphasize bringing the right foods into our homes and our bodies. The following is a list of 10 foods that have been selected by the authors of Eat This, Not That 2010 edition. These foods are super-foods that can help improve your health and prevent disease.

  1. Eggs. The egg as a whole is so great because it is a nutritional powerhouse. For a mere 72 calories, one large egg yields 6.3 grams of high-quality protein and a load of vital nutrients including: vitamin B12, Vitamin A, and Vitamin E. Once thought to be a no-no for those who battle high cholesterol, new research is helping the egg make a comeback in healthy diets. New studies have shown that those who eat at least four eggs a week had significantly lower cholesterol levels than those who ate less than one. The once feared egg yolk has proven to have little impact on one’s cholesterol levels. That being said, the yolk is the source of the fat and saturated fat in an egg, so eating in moderation is advised. The egg whites, however, are the source of protein in an egg, so if you are looking to add more protein in your diet without the added fat, the whites are the way to go. If
    you are not excited about separating the yolks from the whites by hand, look for egg whites in a carton in the refrigerated section of your grocery store.
  2. Green or White Tea. A study published by the American Medical Association in 2006 followed more than 40,000 Japanese adults for 10 years. After seven years, researchers checked in with the subjects and found that those who had been drinking five or more cups of tea per day were 26% less likely to die (of any cause) compared to those who averaged less than one cup per day. Another study measured the effects of tea on weight management. At the end of a 12-week study in Japan, those drinking green tea had significantly smaller body weights and waistlines than those in the control group. Scientists believe the antioxidants called Catechins explain these findings. Catechins are found very concentrated in the leaves of tea plants and have been shown to be effective in preventing disease and boosting metabolism. It is recommended to drink up to four cups per day. If you are concerned about
    the amount of caffeine in green tea, opt for white tea, which is naturally lower in caffeine levels.
  3. Garlic. This aromatic ingredient is used in many dishes and tastes oh-so-good roasted, sauted, and even raw in dips and spreads such as hummus and pesto. Not only does it add wonderful flavor to foods, it can also boost your health. Garlic contains an antibiotic and antifungal compound called Allicin. This chemical, which helps keep garden pests away, is very beneficial in your body for fighting diseases such as cancer. It also strengthens your cardiovascular system, decreases fat storage, and helps keep your skin glowing by fighting acne inflammation. The best way to release this chemical is to finely chop, mince, grate or press the garlic before cooking. Also, be sure not to overcook it (just to a light golden color), as it will turn very bitter, and kill all the beneficial chemicals.
  4. Grapefruit. You’ve heard what an apple a day can do, but did you know a grapefruit a day may help in weight elimination? The Scripps Clinic in California conducted a study of 100 obese people, separating the subjects into two separate groups. One group ate half a grapefruit with each meal and over 12 weeks, reported a loss of an average of 3.6 pounds. The second group (the control group), did not eat any grapefruit and lost only ½ pound over the 12 weeks. The grapefruit eaters also showed a decrease in insulin levels, indicating that their bodies were better able to metabolize sugar. Grapefruit also contains a large dose of lycopene, an antioxidant thought to help prevent cancer and most commonly found in tomatoes.
  5. Greek Yogurt. Thicker and creamier than regular yogurt, greek yogurt goes through a separation process that eliminates the watery whey which sits on top of regular yogurt until it gets stirred in before eating. This separation process removes extra sugars such as lactose and therefore increases the amount of protein per serving, creating a rich and thick spoonful of yummy, healthy protein. Because of the higher levels of protein, greek yogurt will tend to fill you up more quickly and keep you feeling full for longer than regular yogurt. Another added bonus is the high levels of calcium your body will enjoy. A single cup of yogurt yields about a quarter of your day’s calcium needs. Calcium is important in keeping your bones and teeth healthy and has also been shown to aid in the loss of body fat.
  6. Avocado. Similar to eggs, avocados, at one time, were banned from the diets of those watching their cholesterol levels. The truth is, while avocados do have high levels of fat, the fat in avocados is all healthy fat called monounsaturates. Monounsaturates have been shown to both improve cholesterol and decrease levels of triglycerides floating around in your blood. Both of which can significantly reduce your risk for heart disease and stroke. Also, there have been no links between monounsaturated fat and body fat. So, feel free to have your avocado, and eat it too. Just remember, as always, in moderation. Limit intake to about 1/8 to 1/4 an avocado per serving.
  7. Quinoa. Pronounced Keen-Wah, it is in short, a perfect grain. Full of protein and fiber, this grain boasts a stronger distribution of nutrients than any other grain. Quinoa has a near perfect blend of amino acids, your body’s essential building blocks. In addition to all the fiber and protein, quinoa contains a dose of healthy fats as well as a relatively small dose of carbohydrates, all of which will help insure a low impact on blood sugar. It’s a wonderful nutty grain, and cooks just like rice in about 15 minutes.
  8. Bell Peppers. When you hear to eat the rainbow, that will definitely include all the brightly colored bell peppers. All bell peppers are loaded with antioxidants, but the red, yellow, and orange bell peppers have the most due to the caroteniods that are concentrated in the flesh of the pepper, giving them their wonderful, bright color. The colors are not only pretty, but offer excellent health benefits to include: improved immune function, better communication between cells, protection against sun damage, and a diminished risk for several types of cancer. If you have a more adventurous palate, try cooking with chili peppers. Chili peppers are cousins to bell peppers, and carry much more heat, but also have the added benefit of capsaicins. Capsaicins are temperature-rising phyotochemicals that have been shown to help relieve headache and arthritis pain as well as boost
  9. Almonds. These wonderfully filling nuts make up a perfect snack to help you get through those hungry times of the day. About a quarter of almond’s calories come from fiber and protein. Plus, one serving (about 23 nuts) is filled with 9 grams of the heart-healthy monounsaturated fat, Oleic acid. This nutrient has been shown to provide a myriad of health benefits; one in particular is memory function.
  10. Swiss Chard. This dark, mild-flavor green is considered nature’s multivitamin. It is so nutrient dense that it provides substantial amounts of 16 vitamins and vital nutrients for a very low calorie cost. Only 35 calories worth of cooked swiss chard will give you more than 300% of your recommended daily intake Vitamin K (essential in bone-strengthening), 100% of your daily intake of Vitamin A (a cancer-fighting and vision-boosting nutrient), and 16% of hard-to-get vitamin E (which can help improve mental ability). Recent research has also shown that the combination of phytonutrients and fiber in swiss chard may provide defenses against colon cancer.

Healthy Recipe: Black Bean Omelet

Black BeansThis recipe was inspired by a wonderful breakfast enjoyed at Cat Jasper.

Add a dollop of plain, non-fat greek yogurt (tastes like sour cream) on the side, half a grapefruit, and a mug of green tea and you will have included 6 of the 10 Super foods in one meal!

  • 1 whole, large egg
  • 2 egg whites
  • ¼ – ½ C. black beans, drained and rinsed
  • ¼ C. diced green chilies
  • 1-2 TBS shredded Mexican cheese
  • 1/8 -1/4 avocado, sliced
  • Salsa
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  1. Wisk whole egg and egg whites in bowl. Add green chilies and season with salt and pepper to taste.
  2. Spray a medium non-stick skillet with cooking spray. Heat pan over medium heat.
  3. Pour egg mixture in pan and let set for one minute. Using rubber spatula, gently pull eggs into center, away from the sides allowing the runny mixture to move to the outer parts of the pan. Continue this process until all the runny eggs have been cooked to a medium-soft consistency.
  4. Add the beans and cheese to half of the eggs. Use a pancake flipper to carefully fold the omelet in half. Continue to cook until cheese is melted and eggs are thoroughly cooked.
  5. Serve with sliced avocado on top and salsa on the side.

Serves : 1

Client Spotlight

Drew Donnellan – March

Drew DonnellanDrew grew up here in Tucson and is currently a sophomore at the University of Arizona. He is majoring in media arts. When he’s not working out at Body Basics, Drew enjoys reading and being outside with his dogs Wicket and Mochie. In addition to his course work, Drew just finished the book Life of Pi which he enjoyed very much.

Drew has been a client of Body Basics for the past two years after being referred to us by Carol Maxwell. He appreciates how knowledgeable his trainer Mike is as they work together to increase Drew’s range of motion and strength. Drew enjoys all of his workouts especially when he’s working on his chest or shoulders. He feels that the most important thing he has learned so far is to focus when using his muscles allowing him to be better able to tap into his strength. His advice for the Body Basics community is to, keep at it.

Drew’s trainer, Mike, likes that Drew is such a diligent worker. Drew never misses a workout.

Drew, you are a shining example of how hard work and perseverance can overcome adversity. Congratulations!

Bill & Heidi Baker – April

Bill and Heidi BakerBill and Heidi moved to Tucson three and half years ago from Bend, Oregon. Heidi is a retired government worker and Bill is a retired banker. When they are not at Body Basics working out, they most enjoy getting together with friends, reading and working on the computer.

Bill and Heidi both had trainers when they lived in Oregon and wanted to continue working out when they moved here. Their realtor referred them to Body Basics. They are also neighbors to the Litten family. Heidi said that the staff at Body Basics is superior to other studios. The trainers at Body Basics are very knowledgeable with a variety of talents and are very nice to work with. About their trainer Mike, they appreciate that he is very patient, keeping them moving forward at a pace they can handle. Even while working with two clients at the same time, Mike finds ways to challenge them both. Mike enjoys training the Bakers because they are such hard workers.

While working out, they like to listen to soft rock or country music. Heidi is currently working on increasing her strength, agility and bone density. She enjoys lifting weights and any exercise that involves the stability ball. Bill is currently working on improving his balance and weight loss. He enjoys working on the leg curl machine. Heidi’s advice for the Body Basics community is to, “take small steps and gradually increase your effort systematically instead of taking on a huge goal all at once.” Bill says, “Listen to your trainer and have patience because it’s a trip!

Bill and Heidi, you are such a great addition to the Body Basics community. We always look forward to your visits to the studio. The trainers congratulate you on being selected and encourage you to keep working!

Body Basics Crew 2010: Sign Ups Now!

Race for the Cure is a cause that is near and dear to all of us at BodyBasics. Breast cancer is, unfortunately, a form of cancer that is so prevalent that most of us know someone who has dealt with it. We support research to rid our planet of this very curable condition and we would love to extend an invitation to those of you who would also like to see the end of breast cancer. Join us to register for our team, Body Basics Crew, and/or to contribute funds through our team’s website that will go directly to Susan G. Komen and the fight to end breast cancer. Those of you who register for our team will receive a “BodyBasics Crew 2010” T-Shirt as our way of saying thanks and welcome to the team. You can choose to join us on April 11th for the actual Race for the Cure or just wear your shirt proudly in support of a wonderful cause and as a show of unity towards the
elimination of breast cancer! To register, follow these 6 simple steps:

  1. Go to
  2. Click on “Race for the Cure” logo
  3. Click on “Register” or “Donate to a Race Participant”
  4. Click on “Register Here”
  5. Click “join a team” and find team name (Our team name is “BodyBasics Crew”)
  6. Fill out all information

iPod Music at BodyBasics

Do you have a favorite workout song? What gets you pumped up? What songs make you want to move? Please email any and all songs that you would like to hear at the studio during your workouts. We’ll put them on the BodyBasics iPod song list! Thanks!

Our Mission

To empower people to realize their innate abilities by providing an environment that nurtures, educates, and inspires.

Keep Up the Great Work!

We are very proud of all of you!

Chris, Kathleen, Mike H., Maureen, Mike D., Jenny, Alex, Bri, and Terry

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