Happy Summer BMI crew!

We hope you all had a great 4th of July celebration and are staying on track with your fitness and life goals. Heading into the so called “Dog Days of Summer,” it’s a period of time where we tend to get a little lazier and less productive. But whenever you need a little motivational boost, our team of trainers and instructors are always here for you!

If you are a travel buff, foodie, or simply looking for some vacation health and fitness tips, don’t miss Amy C Rad’s article about her 2-week Baltic Cruise Vacation.

Our Good For You Recipe this month is a Mozzarella, Basil & Zucchini Frittata. It’s a 20-min meal that you can use for breakfast, brunch, lunch or dinner. How awesome is that?

Lastly, check out our Facility Updates and Group Fit Happenings sections to see out latest and greatest offerings and the good times we’ve had over the past few weeks.

Fight for your health, just like your freedom this month!

BMI Fitness Team

Quote of the Month

Group Fit Happenings

Join Amy C Rad on Saturday July 28 for a FREE U-JAM Master Class at 9:30am. Even better, stay for the rest of the day and learn the skills to become a U-JAM instructor so you can help inspire others and changes lives one beat at a time! Click here to register for the instructor training. United We JAM!

Facility Updates

As the saying goes, “Abs are made in the kitchen.” With that in mind, we’ve added a new “FUEL” station at the studio! You will now have access to a fridge full of high quality healthy drinks and snacks that will help fuel you up before your workout or refuel you right after especially for those of you who are always on the go. To name a few of our offerings: Harmless Harvest Raw Coconut Water, Kombucha, Perfect Bar, RXbar, Pasture Raised Organic Hard Boiled Eggs etc. You can simply grab what you want, write your name and item(s) down on our tracker and either put some cash in the envelopes provided in our cash box or tell us to charge it to your account. If there are items we currently don’t have and you’d like to see, please feel free to let us know as well! Enjoy!

BMI Crew Memories

It’s a rare occasion to have our BMI Co-Founders and Pound Pros Amy & Thao rocking out in the same class so it’s definitely a picture worthy moment.

It’s a proud and heartwarming moment to see one of our students rise up and taught her first full hour U-JAM class and our Group Fit community who came out to support! Way to go Cammie!

Reflections From My 2-Week Baltic Cruise Vacation

By: Amy Chang Radosevich, MA, ACSM, ACE, AFAA

For those of you who read my blog from last month, you might recall that I was getting ready for a 2-week culinary centric cruise to the Baltics. It’s definitely a splurge for us but totally worth it since my Dad turned 70 end of 2016 and my Mom is turning 70 this year. Also, none of us have been to Northern Europe and Russia so this was the perfect opportunity to celebrate and create new experiences and memories.

Growing up in a city like Hong Kong, an obsession with all things food is almost ingrained in my DNA. My passion for health and wellness, however, did not develop until I was in my early twenties. If you didn’t already know, I was an overweight kid turned group fitness instructor and personal trainer. So, my adult life has pretty much been a constant battle between the dichotomy of my food obsession and my desire to help inspire others to live a healthy and active lifestyle. I am a keen observer of how our environment affects our health related behaviors and decisions. That said, I couldn’t help but ask myself, “What was I thinking? Why would I put myself in an environment with endless temptations?” We’ll have to chalk it up to a moment of mental confusion, or thinking I have ironclad willpower, or the saying we often hear, “Relax! You’re on vacation so live a little!”

If you’ve ever struggled with your weight or body image, you may better understand what I mean when I say I have a love hate relationship with vacations. According to Merriam-Webster dictionary, vacation means “a period spent away from home or business in travel or recreation,” or “a respite or a time of respite from something.” For a lot of us, it becomes a time of respite from work, working out, everyday responsibilities and of course - eating healthy. I fully agree that we all need a break from our daily routines from time to time and give ourselves the permission to live a life of leisure and indulgences. Allowing ourselves to be a bit lazy may actually recharge and re-energize us to get into a higher gear when we get back. It’s very much like the periodization concept in strength and endurance training. The question becomes where do we draw the line between a reasonable indulgence versus a full blown binge fest? Is it possible to get so off track that we have to exhaust ourselves post vacation to undo the damage versus just undoing our pant buttons? So, all these thoughts lead me to reflect on what worked for me on this cruise and hopefully some of you might find a few useful tips and tricks from my experience:

Do you travel as much as you can and as often as you can?

The places and sights I saw on this trip was nothing short of extraordinary! From the architecture, the art, the history, the cultures, the vibe and of course, the FOOD, it reminded me of how big the world is and how much more I have yet to see and taste. Although at the same time, it also reminded me of how you can never escape Starbucks, McDonald’s, Subway, and all the chain clothing stores regardless of where you are in the world! 🙄

Do you get your food served to you versus self-served?

On the cruise, you often have an option to eat at the restaurant where you order off a menu or the buffet where you help yourself. Try to always opt for the former. First off, when you have to wait for the food to be served to you, it slows down your eating and allows your body a chance to register the full signal. Also, for most people, our eyes are always bigger than our stomach and we tend to take more than we need at the buffets. Again, you’re needlessly putting yourself in an environment with more temptations when you go to the buffet.

Do you load your plate with fruits and veggies?

Flying and traveling tend to take a toll on your immune and digestive systems. One of the best ways to counteract that is to load up on nutrient dense foods that are rich in vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and fiber - aka fruits and veggies. Besides keeping you healthy and regular, they are also low in caloric density, which means you can fill up and be satisfied without going overboard on the more calorie laden and less healthy alternatives.

Do you say NO to the drink packages?

When aboard a cruise, you will likely get approached by crew members who are there to entice you to opt-in for their drink packages. Having prepaid alcohol at your disposal is a recipe for disaster. If you want a cocktail, order a la carte and if you like wine, purchase by the bottle and the cruise sommeliers are always happy to cork your unfinished bottle and bring it to you at your next meal. Your liver and waistline will thank you.

Do you give yourself permission versus exercise restriction?

Trying local cuisine is one of the joys of traveling. To fully experience a culture, I believe that you have to taste the local specialties. When we were in Copenhagen, we visited a street food market called Reffen. One of the food stands seemed super popular with the locals so naturally I was drawn towards it. Turns out they specialize in Danish Roast Pork Sandwiches with Crispy Pork Rinds, Pickled Cucumber and Red Cabbage. It looked and smelled amazing! It doesn’t take a nutrition label to tell me that this sandwich is on the other end of the clean eating spectrum. I was determined to try it so I ended up sharing one sandwich between the 4 of us so we each got a few bites. It was divine and one of the best sandwiches I’ve ever had and will forever be etched into my food memory bank! The point here is that it’s okay to give yourself permission to deviate from your disciplined and health conscious self within reason. Simply focus on quality rather than quantity. Go family style and share several different dishes so you can sample a variety of local foods.

Do you go for the active excursions?

This one is obvious. Walking tours allow you to see and experience places and people in way more detail than bus and boat tours. The extra step counts is a bonus. So, if physically capable and given the choice, always opt for the walking tours. Depending on the location, other great options are biking, kayaking or snorkeling.

Do you HIIT it hard at the gym?

I’ve been a cardio junkie for many years of my life. On vacation, I’ve been known to slave away on a treadmill or bike for an hour so I could feel less guilty about indulging. Not willing to spend hours at the gym while on vacation, I tend to neglect strength training. But research has repeatedly proven that strength training is key to building and maintaining lean muscle mass, which drives our metabolism. HIIT or High Intensity Interval Training is a great way to incorporate strength training with cardiovascular benefits. Due to the high intensity nature of HIIT, we may also benefit from EPOC (Excess Post Exercise Oxygen Consumption), where our metabolism stays at a higher level for a period of time after the workout. It’s also extremely time efficient so this is now my go to workout on the road. Vacations are all about exploring new places and experiences. So, why not challenge yourself to try new workout routines while you are at it? I looked up several HIIT workouts online and had a blast trying them all!

I hope my reflections got you excited and ready for your upcoming travels! As the late Anthony Bourdain said, “If I'm an advocate for anything, it's to move. As far as you can, as much as you can. Across the ocean, or simply across the river. The extent to which you can walk in someone else's shoes or at least eat their food, it's a plus for everybody. Open your mind, get up off the couch, move.” Bon voyage!

Good for You Recipe

This 20-minute Mozzarella, Basil and Zucchini Frittata is packed with fiber, protein, calcium and healthy fats. It’s also low carb, gluten free and vegetarian friendly. And if that’s not enough to convince you, the sun dried tomatoes make the color pop and add huge flavors to the dish. Try it for breakfast, brunch, lunch or dinner this month!