Strength Training Benefits

It’s that time of year again. The holidays are over and the New Year is often a time where we can sort of hit “reset” on ourselves and commit to new goals. The days may feel colder and darker, and perhaps, your clothing may feel a little more snug.

Like many people, if you are committing to increasing your physical activity this year, congratulations! Daily physical activity can be very important in maintaining, managing, and losing weight. Often times when we exercise or increase our physical activity we focus on activities like walking, jogging, using a treadmill, or use other cardio-type machines. We focus on those activities that are only aerobic. But did you know that research tells us that people tend to lose and maintain more weight when they combine aerobic activities with strength activities?

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When we engage in both activities, we burn more calories than when we focus on just one activity instead. The combined activities help us burn calories (lose fat) and build muscle. As a result we tend to feel stronger and leaner, and our clothing may feel a little more snug because of our big muscles! No, I joke with you. Unless you are doing strength activities with heavy, heavy weights, you will not “bulk up.” Instead, strength training activities will help you to tone your body.

To read more about the benefits of strength training and to watch short, easy to follow how-to videos, checkout .



Get moving: continued motivation


Exercise or physical activity is a hard blog for me to write about because I yo-yo with exercise. Some of you know what I am talking about. For years, I exercised every day to the point of being a compulsive exerciser. I had a good solid exercise routine that really worked for me, and I faithfully stuck with it. I even managed to pull my husband into my exercise routine. We walked 2 miles every day together. Then, for whatever life reason happened, we stopped.

My daughter and I joined a yoga class together, and I loved every minute of our yoga sessions. We had a dynamite instructor and great classmates. I am not sure why I quit doing yoga, but when that class was over, I did not sign up for another class, and my doing yoga was over. The reasons I quit exercising are not important, nor do I think they really matter.

Here is the thing. I am motivated once again to exercise and have been in a good exercise routine for the last month and I want this motivation to continue. I am worried with the holidays approaching that I will get side tracked and stop exercising. Please encourage me to continue to exercise and give me some advice on staying motivated to continue exercising especially during the holiday season. I want to make sure that some type of physical activity remains a constant in my life. Help me out!


Tips to Move More After School

When I came home from school as a kid, I couldn’t wait to watch television before diving into that night’s homework. For me, sitting down, putting my feet up, and watching my favorite show was my favorite way to wind down from a long day at school. But that got boring after I was about an hour in. Encouraging your kids to Move More after school can help them establish exercise habits that stay with them as they grow up. An immediate benefit to them is just having something else to do when they get home from school! Here are some activities to help your kids enjoy their weeknight evenings:

  • Take a Family Walk: This is a great way to get the whole family moving while also catching up on each other’s days. Does everyone get home at different times in the afternoon? Schedule the walk for after dinner! I always love a quiet evening walk. Screen Shot 2015-09-02 at 11.03.12 AM
  • Simon Says-Exercise Edition: For a more active twist on a classic children’s game, try commands such as “Simon Says do a push-up” or “Simon says do five sit-ups.”
  • Sports: If possible, get your kids involved in a school or community sport they enjoy. Some sports and games can be played as a family at home in the yard, such as soccer and freeze tag.
  • Use Technology to Move More: Is the weather outside bad? Try finding exercise videos online or on television that children can understand and participate in. Also, there are many game systems now that have games to help you be more active-try one if it’s available to you! I still enjoy playing those games!

For more ideas, check out this website: . I hope you enjoy this time with your children!


Cara is an EFNEP student intern.