Collage Video Blog

Vacationing Without Neglecting Your Fitness Routine

Hello Fitness Family! Allow me to introduce myself, my name is Kate and I am an employee at Collage Video. I am passionate about maintaining a healthy lifestyle; however, my body has had its struggles keeping up with the level of physical fitness it used to handle with ease. I’ve realized that it is far more difficult to get back on a fitness regimen after stopping, than it is to push through when you just don’t want to. I recently went away to Florida and I tried to implement a (reasonable) fitness plan that could work with - not against - my vacation. I am here to tell you some of my takeaways – the do’s and don’ts that I learned along with some tips so that you can plan for your vacation with the peace of mind knowing you aren’t giving up fun in the sun or your thighs and buns!  You’ll also find these takeaways & tips applicable to your everyday life!

Firstly, plan ahead! I took the time before my trip to plan out my vacation days and I highly recommend doing this. I made sure to know what days I was doing what, and plan both the amount of time spent on working out as well as which zones on my body I would be targeting, based on the activities of that day. For example – I spent a day at the beach and a day at an amusement park. I made sure to allow more time to do intense cardio on my beach days since most of those days were spent laying out relaxing. On the day we visited an amusement park, I knew I would be walking around all day – so I focused more on upper body exercises and stretching.

(Disclaimer: Not me..but I wish!)

I brought along a couple workout DVDs to play in the condo we rented (I am a Collage employee after all!).  However, I really wanted to take advantage of my surroundings, especially when we stayed at the beach. I normally watch my yoga or stretch videos in the morning, so I got up and performed some poses to the early morning sun on the beach. Admittedly, I only got to my DVDs once... but I found success using my phone and watching workout ideas on YouTube.  If you have a phone or tablet, they can be immensely useful for working out while away from home.

One of the things that I had to accept was that I would not be able to exercise the same amount of hours as I would on my normal schedule. If for no other reason, because I wanted to spend as much time relaxing on this vacation as possible, while still maintaining a certain level of physical activity to keep up with my routine. It’s all about a reasonable balance.  I also knew it wasn’t realistic to bring my dumbbells or weights with me, so I brought a resistance band and used it sporadically.  As a side note, you can utilize home objects to sub-in for exercise equipment too - like an (unopened) gallon of water to supplement a kettlebell (within reason!). Being resourceful can be fun when supplementing away-from-home versions of your workouts!

I certainly hope my tips help you plan a strategy to fit in your fitness activities with your vacation time!  Remember you can always make time to have fun, relax, and stay fit! You can do it all!

By Collage Video | | exercise, fitness, fitness tips, health, Healthy, tips, Wellness | 0 comments | Read more

American Flag Caprese Salad

This recipe was found on the Food Network and is courtesy of the Food Network Kitchen
Photo By: Matt Armendariz

We find the Food Network's American Flag Caprese Salad to be the perfect compliment to any 4th of July party!  Although it's a bit time-consuming, the salad is easy to prepare, yields 12 servings, and will WOW your family and friends!

Ingredients:

  • 18 Small Purple Tomatoes (About 1 Pound)
  • Kosher Salt
  • 1 Pound Herbed Cheese Spread (Room Temperature)
  • 1/4 Cup Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1/3 Cup Fresh Basil Leaves, Roughly Chopped
  • 26 Cherry Tomatoes, Halved (About 2 Pounds)
  • 24 1-Inch Mozzarella Balls In Brine, Drained Well & Halved 

Directions:

Before you start, gather a large wooden cutting board and a pastry bag fitted with a small star tip.  (If you want precision - follow this link for exact dimensions).

Step 1 - Cook the potatoes in generously salted boiling water until fork-tender but not falling apart (~ 20 minutes). Drain well and allow to cool completely. Cut in half crosswise.

Step 2 - Fill a pastry bag, fitted with a small star tip, with the herbed cheese spread. Grab your cutting board and cut a piece of parchment large enough to fit it.  Squeeze a dab of cheese spread on the underside of each corner of the parchment to help it adhere to the cutting board. 

Step 3 - Spread a thin rectangular layer of cheese in the upper left corner of the parchment. Arrange the potatoes in rows, cut-side-up, on top of the cheese. Using your pastry bag, pipe the remaining cheese in between the potatoes to make stars for the flag. 

Step 4 - Drizzle the remaining empty portion of parchment with half of the oil then sprinkle all over with the basil. Starting from the top, make a line of tomato halves, cut-side-up, followed by a line of mozzarella halves, cut-side-down. Repeat with the remaining tomatoes and mozzarella. Drizzle everything with the remaining olive oil and sprinkle with salt.

If you would like a video as a visual aid for this recipe, click this link!

And if you like this one - checkout another Food Network Recipe: Flag Cake courtesy of Ina Garden!

Ingredients and Directions by Food Network. 

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Important: Notice Regarding Our Shipping Policy

To all our Customers,

Please take a moment to review the following change in our return policy.

We currently accept any DVD, opened or unopened, to be returned within a 15-day window after delivery.  Effective July 1st, we will continue to accept DVDs that are both opened and unopened, but our return window will now be 7-days following delivery.  All other elements of our return policy will remain the same at this time.  You can find our full return policy here.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us via phone (1-800-819-7111) or email (collage@collagevideo.com).

We appreciate your business and are thankful for your understanding.

Thank You,

Collage Video

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Green Salad with Brown Butter Walnut Vinaigrette

This recipe was found on the Food Network, courtesy of Amy Thielen.
salad
Easy to Make     Only 15 Minutes Prep Time     Yields 8 Servings

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup walnut halves or pieces *Walnuts contain a lot of fat, and therefore, a lot of calories.  Although they have many health benefits, and have their place in a healthy diet, be cautious of your intake.
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 5 tablespoons olive oil *Similarly to walnuts, olive oil is filled with healthy fat and is a high-caloric food. 
  • 2 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 1 sprig fresh rosemary
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt, plus more for the salad
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 10 cups mixed garden greens
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon aged balsamic vinegar
  • 2 ounces crumbled aged blue cheese *You can also try feta of goat cheese

Directions:

  • Heat a small skillet over medium-low heat and add the walnuts, butter, 2 tablespoons of the olive oil, the garlic, rosemary, salt and pepper. Cook very gently, stirring often, until the walnuts turn golden brown and the garlic has cooked, about 10 minutes. Add the remaining 3 tablespoons olive oil to the skillet to slow the cooking, and set aside.
  • When ready to serve, toss the greens with a little salt and pepper. Add the lemon juice and vinegar to the walnut mixture and spoon the nuts over the salad, adding as much of the dressing as needed to lightly coat the leaves. Add the blue cheese, and toss again.
Additional Resources:

Ingredients and Directions by Food Network.  Comments on Ingredients and Resources Found by Collage Video!

By Collage Video | | Healthy, Recipe, Wellness | 0 comments | Read more

3 Tips To Get Rid of Stubborn Back Fat

By Jari Love & Collage Video

stubborn back fat

 

Ever hear the slang term Muffin Top? Or Spare Tire? These terms refer to fat above the waistline, a common weight distribution problem that torments both men and women. To make matters worse, it’s usually the last of our fat to finally go away. Women have the added struggle of dealing with fat around the bra area as well.  Back fat is considered visually unpleasing to most, but more importantly it's not healthy in excess amounts. It’s important to remember that our health is not determined by how many pounds we weigh, but it is influenced by how many pounds of fat we store. 

Advertisers know how common fat accumulation is at the waistline and exploit the concept of "spot-reduction" to sell their exercise-related products. For those who may be unfamiliar with the concept, spot-reduction is the claim that fat in specific areas can be targeted and reduced through exercises around the desired area(s). This is a myth.  Do not fall into the persuasive trap that convinces people who are trying to lose weight (which, is most of us) that spot reduction products like pills or special contraptions work.  However, there are ways you can reduce fat in these areas and feel more confident in your own skin! The solution just requires a little extra effort and determination.  These healthy tips can help you achieve the results you’re after!

Tip #1: When Muffin-Top Strikes, HIIT Back with Cardio! 

If you’re serious about weight loss and health, you’ve got to get serious about cardio. Performing cardio exercise five times a week can help your body lose weight noticeably.  For even more-intense cardio, opt for interval training (HIIT) that alternates between periods of pushing your body and recovery, since it offers the after-burn effect. After-burn means once you’ve exercised, your body can continue to burn calories — an extra 200 calories throughout the day.

Tip #2: Tighten Your Posture & Sculpt Your Muscles!  

Your body’s silhouette can greatly improve simply through adding moves that sculpt your back, shoulders, and obliques to reveal the strong muscles that lie beneath. Toning up your body can do wonders when paired with cardio. Posture-improving exercises can also help muffin top areas!

Tip #3: A Lean Diet Leads to a Lean Physique

To lose fat you must eat in a caloric deficit. Think lean protein, low sugar, and high in vitamins and minerals. Weight loss occurs when the number of calories burned throughout the day through walking, working, and exercising exceed the calorie intake that day. Keep this in mind when choosing what food to consume.  Food journals can help immensely.

 Comment your thoughts below!

Jari Love – original creator of Get RIPPED! DVD series and group exercise classes. The hot-selling and critically acclaimed Get RIPPED! series enables individuals of any fitness level to burn up to three times more calories than the traditional weight-training program and has received rave reviews from fitness critics throughout North America since the first title debuted in late 2005.

Can't Find The Time To Workout?

not enough time

There’s a long list of excuses we can make as to why we “can’t” workout.  For many, time restriction earns a spot at the top of the list.  Our busy schedules are resulting in consecutive days of inactivity, despite setting intentions to exercise.  Inactivity is recognized as a serious problem as it significantly increases the risk of numerous diseases/disorders, including several forms of cancer, diabetes, hypertension, coronary and cerebrovascular diseases, overweight/obesity, and all-cause mortality, among others (according to PubMed).

So, have YOU ever planned to exercise but failed to follow through due to time restriction?  Perhaps you had time but didn’t feel it was enough time to endure a meaningful workout.  Hopefully we can offer some valuable input here.

Reflect on your day for a moment.  Although you may be swamped with typical “stuff,” most of us can identify incremental periods of free time- and I’m talking no more than 10 minutes.  Getting fit does not have to be synonymous with a long, hard and energy draining task.  Instead, look at physical activity as something that can flow throughout your day in the times that we have available.  Getting to the gym and exercising for an hour is not necessary to get on track with being fit and living a healthier, more fulfilling life (although it is encouraged!).  And here’s a tip: if you find it difficult to pick out 10 minutes of free time, wake up 10 minutes earlier in the morning than you normally would.  Problem solved.

Main takeaway utilize the smaller, incremental time slots available during your day for exercise.  Additionally, if you can do this more than once a day, they’ll certainly add up.  Exercise supplies the body with endorphins (or, feel-good hormones!) and the lowers the risk for all the nasty diseases/disorders listed earlier.  So, stop using “not having the time” as an excuse and get moving!

 

Check out these articles!
Short on time?  Here are some recommendations:
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Vitamin EX: The Magic Pill

It seems we are all looking for the magic pill, an easy-to-swallow drug that would help us lose weight, lower our blood pressure and cholesterol, put us at lower risk for diabetes, heart attack and stroke. And make it something to help our mental health too – decrease depression, eliminate insomnia, improve memory and protect us from developing Alzheimer’s. If there were a pill that could do all that, can you imagine the cost? And there would have to be troubling side effects, right? And of course, there is always that warning not to take a certain drug if you are allergic to it.

There is indeed a magic pill that will do all the good things mentioned about, with no side effects, and no possibility anyone would be allergic to it. This pill is actually a vitamin -- Vitamin Ex, its generic name is Exercise, and it’s been proven to be effective for years of trials and studies.

Did you know that lack of exercise is a bigger risk factor than smoking, obesity and high blood pressure? It is the number one cause of disease and death. But we often hear about exercise only when it relates to losing weight. And many of us only get motivated around the beginning of the year (when gyms run their membership specials.) The benefits of daily exercise go far beyond weight loss and affect all of our body functions.

But, you say, exercise is hard work! You don’t have time to start going to a gym every day. You may be surprised at how much (or little) exercise it takes to make a difference in your life. And you can stay close to home to do it.

How much exercise? Physical Activities Guidelines for Americans Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion recommends adults participate in a minimum of 150 minutes of moderate intensity or 75 minutes of vigorous intensity aerobic activity -- PER WEEK. That is just one 30-min walk or yoga session five out of seven days! The guidelines say that spreading out your activity over several days has better results than trying to do it all at once. If walking or yoga isn’t your thing, try kick boxing, strength training using resistance tubing or your own body weight. There are hundreds of exercise DVDs that will lead you through any length workout.

Any amount of Vitamin Ex is helpful. If you don’t have 30 minutes to walk, take a few 5-minute walks each day. Park in a space further away than usual to add a few steps to your day.  Reduce sitting and instead stand to do every day activities like reading the newspaper or talking on the phone.

Diabetes, insomnia, heart attack, stroke, Alzheimer’s and so many other risks can be taken care of with the same remedy – Exercise. 

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Important Notice Regarding Free Shipping

To Our Valued Customers,

We regret to inform you that we must increase the minimum price required to qualify for free shipping.  The postal service has raised their prices, which we must coincide with if we wish to offer you a free shipping option.  Currently, orders totaling $18.99 or higher ship free, but this threshold will soon be adjusted to $25.00.  We’d like to give you advanced notice prior to the implementation of this change, therefore, it will not take effect until Tuesday, February 19th, the day after President’s Day.

These changes will impact orders being shipped to the USA and via our standard shipping method (First Class Mail or Media Mail).  International orders and expedited shipping options, which do not qualify for free shipping, may also be adjusted.  You can find more information here: USPS Press Release & 2019 Price Changes.

We appreciate your open-mindedness regarding this matter.  If you have any questions or concerns, please e-mail us at collage@collagevideo.com.

Thank you,

Collage Video

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Kickboxing: Much More Than Just a Workout

Cardiovascular exercise is essential for good health.  Fortunately for me, I have access to a gym, I live in an area that I could safely run outside, and my living room is big enough that if I wanted to pop in an exercise DVD I could.  My only problem…I dread doing cardio.  So much that I would often neglect it.  When I did garner the willpower to get moving, my mind would convince me that my body was tired well before my limit was near – only to get me to stop.  And I knew this, but it was easier to stop than to muster up the strength to keep going.  How defeating.  Especially when you want to exercise.  I struggled with this for a while but was determined because I know the importance of cardiovascular activity.  I sought different ways to get this type of exercise into my routine.  Then I gave kickboxing a shot.

                I don’t need to preach that kickboxing is an incredible calorie-burning workout (but I sure can).  If you’re looking to lose weight and tone up, this activity can absolutely help you reach your goals when combined with proper nutrition.  And it’s fun, which is what drew me in.  But I unexpectedly gained much more than that.  Outside of fitness, my mind is always cluttered, and I find it difficult to focus on the “here and now” without making a conscious effort to do so.  Other than working on my physical health, kickboxing puts me in the present moment.  My mind eliminates other thoughts through the duration of the workout and I’m solely focused on my movement.  This sense of “clarity” has a lasting effect as I always feel less stressed and anxious following my kickboxing workout.  Oh yeah, and when you’re stressed, throwing punches and kicks definitely helps too.  Curious to see if others had this effect from kickboxing, I consulted the internet to see what I could find.  Turns out that there are other cognitive benefits that people experienced, perhaps myself included, that I didn’t even recognize.  Kickboxing requires motor coordination and spatial awareness, which activates important areas of the brain. 

                So to wrap this up, I’ll be sticking with kickboxing for a while.  Kickboxing has many more benefits that I excluded like increased flexibility, learning self-defense, discipline, and more.  I cannot promise that you’ll experience all these effects.  But I can assure you that it can be an excellent workout that extends past your physical well-being by aiding your mental health.  Thanks for reading!

PS – Kickboxing without the opponent!!

Collage Video Team Member

By Collage Video | | 3 comments | Read more

Thirsty? Doesn’t Matter. Go Get Some Water.

Seriously.  Go pour a glass of water and drink it while you read this.  Your body will thank me.  The importance of proper hydration has long been established, yet many people are still not consuming the recommended amount of water.  This topic resonates deeply with us for a couple of reasons.  For starters, it is simply vital for our overall well-being.  And secondly, as exercise enthusiasts, our craft can be a cause dehydration if you’re sweating and not replenishing fluids properly.  It would be irresponsible of us to not bring awareness to this.

Did you know that each one of the trillions of cells in your body need to be hydrated to work properly?  Losing just 1% - 2% of your body’s water content can cause thirst and at this point you’re already in a state of dehydration.  Mild to moderate dehydration can lead to some unpleasant side effects like headaches, fatigue, dry mouth and bad breath, dry skin, muscle cramps, and the list doesn’t stop there.  Severe dehydration can lead to more dangerous symptoms like low blood pressure, rapid heartbeat, and fever.  The best fluid to consume is water and you should be drinking before the feeling of thirst strikes.  If you’re one who does not like drinking plain water, try adding a lemon slice.

Staying adequately hydrated comes with perks.  Water promotes cardiovascular health, helps your muscles and joints, and helps maximize physical performance.  This makes sense considering muscle is about 80% water.  Being optimally hydrated helps ease the difficulty of exercise both physically and mentally.  Water also helps keep your skin supple.  Lack of hydration can cause your skin to be dry and tight, which makes it more prone to wrinkling.  Drinking water helps cleanse the body by helping to get rid of certain waste products.  It gives your kidneys the fluid to properly expel metabolic waste in the body. 

As we age, staying properly hydrated is more of a challenge due to physiological changes in the body, so it’s especially important to stay conscious of it.  Lastly, although it’s uncommon, it is possible to drink too much water.  So don’t go too crazy.  It’s best to consult with your doctor to establish how much water you should intake.

 

Collage Video
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From Our Blog

  • Vacationing Without Neglecting Your Fitness Routine

    Hello Fitness Family! Allow me to introduce myself, my name is Kate and I am an employee at Collage Video. I am passionate about maintaining a healthy lifestyle; however, my body has had its struggles keeping up with the level... read more

  • American Flag Caprese Salad

    This recipe was found on the Food Network and is courtesy of the Food Network Kitchen Photo By: Matt Armendariz We find the Food Network's American Flag Caprese Salad to be the perfect compliment to any 4th of July party!  Although it's a... read more

  • Important: Notice Regarding Our Shipping Policy

    To all our Customers, Please take a moment to review the following change in our return policy. We currently accept any DVD, opened or unopened, to be returned within a 15-day window after delivery.  Effective July 1st, we will continue... read more