Fit Forever with Kathy!

Posts in the fitness category

5-Min Belly Dancing Video

by Kathy Smith

 

Kathy Smith, New York Times bestselling author, has stood at the forefront of the fitness and health industries for over 30 years. The numbers speak for themselves: Kathy has sold more than 20 million exercise DVDs - landing her in the Video Hall of Fame - and $500 million in Kathy Smith products. With her revolutionary approach to fitness, Smith has touched millions of people, inspiring them to move, live, and love.

By Collage Video | | fitness, Kathy Smith, love your body, Weekly Blog, Wellness | 0 comments | Read more

Peel Years Off Your Neck!

by Kathy Smith

Giraffe closeup portrait with blue sky as background

What ages you faster than any part of your body? Surprisingly, it’s not your face. It’s your neck. Often left out of sunscreen application and the victim of additional reflected sun, your neck’s wrinkles and slack skin often look years older than the face you protected with SPF and a wide-brimmed hat.

Your skin is the first thing people see when they look at you. It’s considered the largest organ in the human body — right up there with the intestines, lungs, and liver. It serves many purposes, including acting as our first defense against germs and the environment, and converting sunlight to vitamin D. The layer of fat under the skin’s surface helps ensure that the important fluids inside our bodies stay inside our bodies.

The ironic thing about skin is that when people are young, their biggest concern about their skin may be how to get a tan. But as we get older, our top skin priority becomes firming the muscles in the face and preventing wrinkles.

The epidermis – top layer of skin – on your neck is very delicate with only a thin layer of fat under it. A thinner fat layer means fewer oil glands so your neck also doesn’t get as much natural moisture as your face. And it often doesn’t get its share of topical moisturizers. On top of all this, “tech neck,” which you might be susceptible to if you are frequently looking down at mobile devices, helps set deep lines in your neck.

Although you may rarely hear about exercising your neck, those delicate muscles need movement just like the rest of your body and I’m going to show them to you in today’s video.

One way to naturally firm your neck muscles is with a technique called neck yoga. These simple exercises can help reduce wrinkling, and make your neck look younger.

 


Let’s start by stretching your neck.

This stretch involves bending the head forward and downward, toward the floor. It is important that your posture is straight and correct. In a normal range of motion, your chin should be able to touch your chest, without opening your jaw.

And now, let’s do a Lateral Flexion…which means “to the side.”

1. Tilting the head, moving your ears toward your shoulders, is the basis of this stretch. Be sure to keep your shoulders flat and do not lift them during this stretch. Normally, your head, while looking forward, should be at a rough 45-degree angle from your shoulders.

Now that the neck is stretched, let’s start working those muscles with three exercises.

1. Begin by placing one or both hands on your forehead.

2. Push your head against your hand(s) while providing resistance with your hand(s) so your head does not move beyond its original position.. You should feel your neck muscles working. Hold for 10 seconds

3. Place your right hand against the right side of your head and push your head to the right, maintaining that same resistance so your head doesn’t move from its original position. Hold for 10 seconds.

4. Repeat with the left hand on the left side of your head, pushing to the left. Hold for 10 seconds.

5. Finally, clasp your hands behind your head, and push your head backward against your hands to create pressure, and again hold for about ten seconds.

Now for the second exercise, stand with your back straight and shoulders relaxed.

1. Open you mouth in an “O” and cover your teeth with your lips.

2. Gently tilt your head back about 45 degrees. You should not feel any pain.

3. Now open and close your mouth 10 times. Take a break and repeat.

The third exercise involves your kissing muscles.

1. Tilt your head back, looking at the ceiling.

2. Now start kissing the ceiling, being sure to really purse and push your lips toward the ceiling. Complete two cycles of 10 kisses each.

Oh, don’t those simple exercises make your neck feel tighter already? Do them twice a day and you’ll start seeing results! Here’s to your health.

Kathy

By Collage Video | | fitness, goals, Healthy, Motivation, tips, Weekly Blog, Wellness | 0 comments | Read more

The 3 F’s Of Fitness

by Kathy Smith

Exercise can be categorized as 3 F’s:

Fun – dancing, hoola-hooping, or playing a sport.
Formal – specific cardio and strength training routines.
Functional – everyday activities like walking, carrying groceries, climbing stairs, etc.

In the weight loss world, every little step counts, and you don’t have to be at the gym to increase your calorie burn.

FUN

When it comes to the FUN stuff, spring is a perfect time to explore new types of movement.  My daughter Kate called me from San Francisco to announce her new passion:  Ultimate Frisbee!  While running has always been her competitive sport of choice, she was looking for something new, and decided on a whim to join a friend for a huge Ultimate Frisbee competition in the park. Since she’s a pretty hardcore athlete, she wasn’t expecting much of a challenge, but she was amazed that, after an hour of playing, she got what she dubbed “the workout of a lifetime.”  If you’re in a rut, you’ll be amazed at the results when you try a new type of movement.

So this spring, jump into your own game of Ultimate Frisbee, head to the tennis courts with a friend, or consider adding a few new new dance moves to your weekly routine. 

FORMAL

While this might not seem as enjoyable (or even practical) as the other stuff, make no mistake: jazzing up your regimen can transform your workouts from a tired chore to a ton of fun.  So call up a friend and start a buddy system to meet for workouts – you’ll exchange tips, ideas, and keep each other motivated.  Jump into a new kettlebell or bootcamp class you’ve never tried.  Make an awesome workout play list on your phone that inspires you to push it to the next level.  Or try working with a personal trainer: many gyms offer one complimentary session, and it’s a great way to learn new techniques and jumpstart your routine.  And, of course, you don’t have to  leave  the comfort of your home.

Remember, having the right tools on hand is the key to success! Your at-home fitness space can be the corner of a room, filled with kettlebells, a step, and a stretching strap

FUNCTIONAL

Maybe you’ve never before thought of housecleaning as an exercise, but the next time you dread it just shift your mind-set.  Fact is, if you clean vigorously—dusting with a passion, vacuuming with diligence, washing floors enthusiastically—you’ll burn about 60 calories every 15 minutes.

This is a great example of functional exercise, meaning you’d have to do these activities anyway but now you get to think of them as helpful to your health.  Other examples include gardening, parking a little further away from work, or walking to do your errands.

I recommend mixing up formal, functional and fun exercising.  It keeps things interesting, and helps work a variety of muscle groups.  But even if you’re getting little or no exercise, and you’re just not thrilled by the idea of a four-mile jog, it’s easy to find something that burns calories and moves your limbs. Here are 15 ways from Harvard Health Beat to burn 150 calories in fun, functional and formal ways!

When fitness is your goal, at some point you’ll need to mix in fun and functional activities with the formal.  The fun and functional don’t usually give you enough of a cardiovascular workout by themselves.  But they’ll keep your interest level high and help you on days when formal exercise isn’t an option.  They may even lead you into whole new fitness horizons.

Kathy Smith, New York Times bestselling author, has stood at the forefront of the fitness and health industries for over 30 years. The numbers speak for themselves: Kathy has sold more than 20 million exercise DVDs - landing her in the Video Hall of Fame - and $500 million in Kathy Smith products. With her revolutionary approach to fitness, Smith has touched millions of people, inspiring them to move, live, and love.

By Collage Video | | exercise, fitness, goals, Healthy, Kathy Smith, Motivation, practice, tips, Wellness | 0 comments | Read more

New Science: How Yoga Boosts Your Immune System

by Kathy Smith

After age 40, a strong immune system is more important than ever before. And new research is showing that practicing yoga 1-2 times a week can help.

The study showed that women fit in a regular yoga routine had “significantly lower blood levels of the inflammatory protein interleukin-6” than the non-yogis did. And, if you have lower levels of inflammatory cells, you’re less subject to the inflammation that damages the immune system.

Here’s why this is critical…

After age 40, your immune system steadily begins to decline, because the number of T lymphocytes drops by tenfold. (T lymphocytes are the white blood cells that help your body fight viruses and bacteria.)

Then once you reach 50, your production of new T lymphocytes is minuscule, making you more susceptible to unfamiliar bugs.

Today, I’ll guide you through an 8-min yoga video. This variety of continuous poses will flow from downward dog to chair pose to forward fold…all while boosting your immune system :)

Buy entire workout here!!!

Kathy Smith, New York Times bestselling author, has stood at the forefront of the fitness and health industries for over 30 years. The numbers speak for themselves: Kathy has sold more than 20 million exercise DVDs - landing her in the Video Hall of Fame - and $500 million in Kathy Smith products. With her revolutionary approach to fitness, Smith has touched millions of people, inspiring them to move, live, and love.
By Collage Video | | exercise, fitness, Healthy, Kathy Smith, Motivation, practice, tips, Wellness | 0 comments | Read more

10 Science-Backed Ways To Feel Euphoric

by Kathy Smith

1 – Set Your Oven to 350 – Science shows that watching a treat rise in the oven is emotionally therapeutic. Plus, it boosts your confidence and you feel more accomplished when your goodies are ready to eat. For a double boost of happiness, share your creation with coworkers or neighbors. Where to begin? Try a few of my favorite recipes…Protein Brownies or Frittata Muffins

2 – Walk or Bike to Work – Traffic can be a real drain on your happiness. If changing your commute is possible, try walking or biking to work, because research shows that you’ll arrive feeling more cheerful! If it’s not in the cards for you to avoid traffic, then try listening to a podcast on your way to keep your brain stimulated during the drive.

3 – Cha Cha! – Shake it baby, shake it! A study from the University of Derby showed that depressed patients who took salsa lessons improved their moods. Click here for a 5-minute salsa video from my Latin Rhythm workout!

4 – Take It In – At the top of every hour, try this simple breathing exercise to lower your heart rate… Breathe in through your nose for four counts, hold your breath for one and exhale through your mouth.

5 – Pay It Forward – Treating the person in line behind you at the coffee shop can give you a bigger happiness boost than only paying for your own tab. Spending just $5 on another person can make a significant difference in your mood…and it will make them happier too!

6 – Do A Shot – Take a shot of my favorite ginger tea to stimulate the body and wake up on the bright side! Ginger root has been used for centuries to aid in better digestion, plus it’s a natural anti-inflammatory. Simply boil a cup of hot water, squeeze in a lemon, and add in a few few cubes of freshly-chopped ginger. Sprinkle with cayenne pepper!

7 – Walk Barefoot – Before breakfast, I enjoy a nature walk barefoot in the grass (I call this “grounding”). As silly as it sounds, studies have shown that grounding has remarkable health advantages, such as increasing antioxidants and reducing inflammation.

8 – Put On Your Party Pants –  Dressing up and making yourself look polished tells your brain that you’re valuable. So take out those heels and go out for a girls night on the town!

9 – Get It Om – According to Harvard, “Studies show that in the minutes right after meditating, we experience feelings of calm and contentment, as well as heightened awareness and empathy. And, research even shows that regular meditation can permanently rewire the brain to raise levels of happiness, lower stress, even improve immune function.”

10 – Take a Wonder Drug – I call cardio a “wonder drug,” because it is proved just as helpful as anti-depressants. And, cardio activities such as running, cycling, rowing, using an elliptical, or hiking outdoors release a whole flood of endorphins and feel-good chemicals into the brain. When you do cardio, you activate the same parts of the brain that are involved when you fall in love, or when you listen to music that gives you that “chill” feeling of euphoria.

Kathy Smith, New York Times bestselling author, has stood at the forefront of the fitness and health industries for over 30 years. The numbers speak for themselves: Kathy has sold more than 20 million exercise DVDs - landing her in the Video Hall of Fame - and $500 million in Kathy Smith products. With her revolutionary approach to fitness, Smith has touched millions of people, inspiring them to move, live, and love.

Lemon & Garlic Braised Chicken

by Kathy Smith

For the marinade:
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil1 Tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 Tablespoon chopped fresh basil
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 Tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • Freshly ground pepper
Directions:
Mix all ingredients together in a large non-reactive bowl.
For the Chicken:
  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves, pounded slightly to flatten
  • 4 Roma tomatoes, seeded and chopped
  • 1 tablespoon capers, drained
  • 1 tablespoon chopped Kalamata olives
  • Chopped fresh basil
Directions:

1.     Marinate the chicken breasts for 2–4 hours in the refrigerator.
2.     Remove chicken and discard marinade.
3.     Heat a nonstick skillet over medium high heat and sauté chicken on one side for 5 minutes, turn and cook another 5 minutes until cooked through.
4.      Remove chicken to a warm plate.
5.     Add chopped tomatoes, capers, and olives to pan and cook for a few minutes until tomatoes start to break down.
6.     Serve chicken topped with tomato mixture. Sprinkle with basil.

 

TIP: Serve with kale sautéed with garlic and olive oil.

Kathy Smith, New York Times bestselling author, has stood at the forefront of the fitness and health industries for over 30 years. The numbers speak for themselves: Kathy has sold more than 20 million exercise DVDs - landing her in the Video Hall of Fame - and $500 million in Kathy Smith products. With her revolutionary approach to fitness, Smith has touched millions of people, inspiring them to move, live, and love.

Yuletide Arms

by Kathy Smith

Kathy Smith, New York Times bestselling author, has stood at the forefront of the fitness and health industries for over 30 years. The numbers speak for themselves: Kathy has sold more than 20 million exercise DVDs - landing her in the Video Hall of Fame - and $500 million in Kathy Smith products. With her revolutionary approach to fitness, Smith has touched millions of people, inspiring them to move, live, and love.

New “Fit Forever with Kathy” Blog Now Posted!

The latest blog from Kathy Smith is now posted!

You can read it HERE!!!

Thanks!

Light Your Fire!

by Kathy Smith

Kathy Smith, New York Times bestselling author, has stood at the forefront of the fitness and health industries for over 30 years. The numbers speak for themselves: Kathy has sold more than 20 million exercise DVDs - landing her in the Video Hall of Fame - and $500 million in Kathy Smith products. With her revolutionary approach to fitness, Smith has touched millions of people, inspiring them to move, live, and love.

2 Moves To Improve Your Posture

by Kathy Smith

The saying “practice makes perfect” applies to everything in life…including POSTURE! Having a straight posture doesn’t just make you look thinner, but it also can help prevent headaches as well as shoulder and lower back pain.

So if you find yourself slumping while sitting, or looking down at your phone often, it’s time for POSTURE PRACTICE! Today’s 2-minute video will show you 2 moves to do when you wake up in the morning to help you stay upright. All you need is a pair of dumbbells!

Kathy Smith, New York Times bestselling author, has stood at the forefront of the fitness and health industries for over 30 years. The numbers speak for themselves: Kathy has sold more than 20 million exercise DVDs - landing her in the Video Hall of Fame - and $500 million in Kathy Smith products. With her revolutionary approach to fitness, Smith has touched millions of people, inspiring them to move, live, and love.

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