Choose From Our Extreme Adventure & Pretty Extreme Adventure#

Extreme Adventure, Rocky Mountains, Colorado: June 10 – 16, 2013. Think you’re tough enough to survive an entire week of adventures, thrills and the Tough Mudder itself? Then you’ll want to see if you’re tough enough to survive our “Outside The Zone” Extreme Adventure which will also include climbing 14ers, ziplining and whitewater rafting Class IV and V rapids.


Pretty Extreme Adventure, Rocky Mountains, Colorado: August 12 – 18, 2013. All right, you’re tough, but not quite ready for the extreme adventure. Then this adventure package is for you. We’ll climb a mountain to 12,000 feet, zipling, whitewater raft class III rapids and end the adventure week by getting muddy doing the Warrior Dash. “COMING SOON” . . .

5 Things you need to know before your first rowing adventure

Rowing is one of those sports which would make you feel alive and free just by spending five minutes on the water, but there are a lot of things which no one tells you about when you first plan to take this up as your profession.You might plan to take up rowing now or later, either way, you need to know these 5 things before you decide to take up rowing.

‘Cold’ is your new best friend

Rowing requires a lot of effort and practice and this means that you have to be prepared for all kinds of weather conditions and situations. You can’t ask the tournament to be postponed just because it is 1 degrees out there!

Often you’d need to row during harsh weather conditions and you will have to get used to the blue color of your skin and the constant cold feeling. It is going to be hard but it will be worth it and the sooner you make cold your best friend, the better it will be for you.

Early start is critical in rowing

This is one of those sports which require you to train hard and long, so if you are looking for something to chill every once in a while, then you are in the wrong sports mate.

Rowing requires a lot of practice and training where you have to get up at 4 a.m. in the morning and go back to sleep at 9 p.m. and there is no time to relax and enjoy. You let yourself loose for one hour and your whole hard work could go down in the drains. If you are one of those people who like to party out and sleep at 4 a.m., then this sport is definitely not for you.

Team spirit is important

This is not a one-man sport, so if you think that you are amazing at it and that is enough to win, then you are sadly mistaken. It is a continuous team effort and requires really good teamwork, so make sure you have a good team with you too.

Sure a few good rowers will help your team but equally weak rowers will ruin your chances too. Keep in mind that this is one of those sports when you win together and you lose together. So practice hard with your team and train your full team properly.

No pain, no gain

When you first plan to take up this sport, no one will tell you how much effort and training you will have to undergo to turn into a decent rower. It is a lot of hard work and you will suffer a lot in the whole process of it.

Although you might love the water and rowing might make you feel alive and free, do know that it is an endurance sport and requires a lot of physical pain for you to go through before you end up with a trophy.

The final part also matters

The thing about rowing is that you could practice and train for years but at the end, it would bowl down to those last 6 minutes on the racing arena. So if you screw that up, your whole hard work would have been for nothing and that would feel worse than anything else in this world.

So make sure that you bring your A-game during the final race and avoid making any kind of mistake which you might regret your whole life.

The Most Fun Way To Lose Weight Ever

Our goal on our Fitness Adventures isn’t to lose weight, but it just happens to be a natural result of what we do for the week. And boy do we have fun doing it.

Check out the video of our latest fitness adventure in the California Bay Area and Wine Country. What a week of fun! Bootcamp, yoga, hiking, biking through Napa, beach, cooking class, home cooked meals cooked for us every day.

Don’t miss our next adventure from May 23 – May 28 in the beautiful Rocky Mountains in Estes Park, CO.

Click Here To Join Us In Colorado…


Rocky Mountain Fitness Adventure – May 2011

At the end of May, it was time for another one of our Fitness Adventures.  This time we were back in the Rocky Mountains of Estes Park, Colorado.

A new addition to the line-up on this trip – whitewater rafting, which was a thrill for me because it’s one of my favorite activities.  10 ladies joined us on this life-changing adventure trip and we had an absolute blast.  In addition to the rafting, we had a morning boot camp each day, mountain biking, hiking, stretching, a cooking class and healthy, homemade meals served to us all day long.  As usual, the bonding experience was incredible and everyone left with new, lifelong friends.

Check out these pictures of the fitness adventure!

And check out this video of the entire trip.  I can’t wait for the next one in August!

Are You Living Life 100 % ?

First, I want to start by asking you, are you living your life to its fullest?

We all would probably agree that life is short, right?  I mean, I can’t believe that in a couple of months, I’m actually turning the big 3-0. How many of you out there are in a job that you dread going to each day?  Or in a relationship that’s making you angry, depressed or stressing you out?  Or you can’t stand the way you look in front of a mirror, how you look on the beach and you can’t fit into your favorite clothes?  How many of you are frustrated, sad or embarrassed with things happening in your life?

How many of you are NOT living your life to its fullest?

It may sound funny, but did you know that going away on vacation can change all of this for you?  And I’m not talking about a vacation to Disney World, although I was there just last week and had a blast.  I’m talking about a vacation that has some meaning.  Where you get to accomplish things you’ve never done before.  Where you get to do things you never thought you had the ability to do.  You rise up beyond what you thought your potential was.

An experience like this can drastically change your career, your relationships, and your health when you return home.  Don’t believe me?

Below I’ve compiled a collection of stories about people who went on vacation or a travel adventure and came home changed.  Transformed.  These people are now living their lives to their fullest.

I want to thank everyone for submitting their experiences to me and allowing me to use them.

I think you’ll find the stories inspiring.  And if you’re not happy with the way your life is going, I hope you strongly consider going on an adventure.


First I want to share the story of Lesa, who went on one of my fitness adventure vacations through Fitness Adventures USA.  I actually had the pleasure of interviewing Lesa, so you can hear her whole story first hand (below).  Here are the highlights of how her life has changed…

  • She has lost 61 pounds from the time she signed up for the trip in June 2010 to when we did the interview in January 2011.
  • She lost 12 pounds during the 5-day Fitness Vacation.
  • She has gone from a size 20 to a size 8 (Lesa forgot to mention this in the interview, but told me after we stopped recording).
  • She has hiked mountains and takes boot camp classes.
  • She has gotten 2 promotions at work and has more speaking engagements.
  • Her self-esteem is higher.
  • She is dating more.
  • It’s easy to take the stairs and play with her grandkids.
  • She will be participating in the Warrior Dash (the Warrior Dash is no joke – look it up online).
  • She has taken up running.
  • She has accomplished more than she ever thought possible.
  • Her life has completely changed.

Click Here To Listen To My Interview With Lesa About Her Life-Changing Story <— Download Here (or click the yellow play button below)

Now check out these life-transforming stories…


From Lena

My first trekking trip to mountains in Siberia changed my life as I fell in love with mountains from that moment. I went with my dad and a small group of other people, and since then it’s been our thing. My then-husband never understood freezing, altitude sickness, other noncomfort elements of such a trip, so he never went together and thought we were crazy. I definitely realized how much I’m able to do, how much strength (both physical and mental) I have, and I was over the moon when my dad, experienced alpinist, said he’d recommend me to any other group to accept me for any other type. Well, on the second trip to Kamchatka vulcanos, sitting on the peak of one, I’ve made a decision to get divorced after 5 years of marriage. And I did.

It was the void and silence that you find only on the top of the mountain. It was me and nothing else around. Great place to get away and collect your thoughts without any disturbances. It seemed only there I could see problems and solutions very clearly. I often imagine myself sitting there when I need to decide something important. And I long for that feeling over and over again.

Generally, it’s changed my view to holidays and I always try to go to trekking trips at least once a year since then. My father is not joining me anymore, but my current life partner loved it then went with me for the first time, so I’m lucky and sure we’ll do it again. It’s difficult for me to stay on beach holidays for more than a couple of days and I always try to make sure there is some sort of mountain nearby. Just in case.


From Jodi of Play it Forward Adventures (writing on behalf of her neighbor, Robert)

I run a St. Paul, MN-based adventure travel company called PLAY it Forward Adventures. All our international tours combine active outdoor adventure with volunteering abroad. I have many travelers who’d be willing to give you their testimonials, including my 58-year-old neighbor, Robert Johnson. He’s a 58-year-old retired postal worker who’s done 3 trips with me now. In October he went to Nepal with PIF for 16 days. First, we built a sewing room for women rescued from the sex trade and then completed a 9-day trek to Annapurna Base Camp. Robert trained daily for the trip and ended up losing 16 lbs during the trek!

Robert has also done hiking, biking, kayaking and home building for a Mayan family on PIF-Guatemala. And last week he returned from PIF-Costa Rica where he went canyoning, zip lining, kayaking and did some improvements at a women’s coop in an indigenous community.


From Camille

I’ve had two vacations that have created significant “shift” in my life. The first one was when I went to Bolivia. It was after a year of politicking and overtime to get a promotion and I needed to “get outta Dodge” in order to consider my options. I went to Bolivia with a small group (11) of strangers. We were visiting community development projects under the guidance of Quaker Bolivia Link. Between the perspective created by visiting poor rural villages and traveling with strangers, I came back a new person. Refreshed and rejuvenated, you can imagine my surprise when I was offered my boss’ job on my first day back in the office. Thanks to new communication skills, I was able to negotiate the best raise of my corporate career.

The second adventure that made an impact was my trip to China. It was unlike any trip I’d taken before and, due to a number of “lessons learned” during my vacation, I had the courage to leave my corporate J-O-B and start my own business within six months. Now, my business, the National Holistic Chamber of Commerce, has associated chapters in five states and members throughout the U.S.

Additionally, my book, THE EXHILARATION EFFECT: Building the Courage to Take Your Leap of Faith, co-authored with Barbara Schiffman, made it to the top 25 (out of 2,800 submissions) in last year’s Next Top Spiritual Author competition.


From Anna

I took 6 months off work several years ago to hike the Appalachian Trail. I hiked 700 miles before coming back to my regular life. Being an overweight woman, I couldn’t help but notice that there was no one that looked like me on the trail! That trek inspired me to return home and create Trail Dames, a hiking club for women of a curvy nature. I now have 5 chapters across the US and over 1,200 members. I don’t make a penny off of it, but I am helping women to do things they never dreamed they could, and that has completely transformed my life.

By the way, Anna also shared that she broke her foot 100 miles in, sat in a wheelchair for 8 weeks, then finished the other 600 miles.  Now that’s determination!


From Marie

The most compelling trip I’ve had, as in life-changing, is the most recent one I made to Peru last March 2010, for 10 weeks.

I went to Peru ostensibly to try out teaching ESL before committing myself to grad school in New York City for my Masters in Education in the Fall. I was already accepted and all I had to do was register for classes. Before I left, a friend asked if I was going to see some Peruvian shamans, since they are quite famous. It didn’t occur to me to do so, but after doing a quick google search, I came upon an article in the National Geographic about Ayahuasca retreats; the article talked about a place called Blue Morpho near Iquitos.

I was immediately entranced and did more research. I found out about other temples and I ended up choosing to go to the Temple of the Way of Light in the same part of Peru. I picked this temple because it focused on the Divine Feminine, which resonated with me. Without a moment of hesitation, I scheduled a 2-week retreat at the Temple towards the end of my trip, after my 6-week teaching stint in Huaraz.

The retreat experience was out of this world. I drank the Ayahuasca brew (6 times, actually) and connected with the Divine and I am still reeling from the experience. Long story short, the ancient medicine of the shamans took me to a place where I literally communed with Divine Mother. Not sure if you are familiar with Ayahuasca; if you are, then you know what I’m talking about. If not, then I urge you to read more about it. It is enjoying a resurgence – Timothy Leary partook of it ages ago – and it is worth checking out.

I can say that my life has not been the same since.

After I arrived back from Peru, I had a strong compulsion to move back to the Bay Area. I had just moved from San Francisco to upstate New York the year prior, so I was very surprised by this sudden desire to move back West. To me, the Bay Area is the place that would support my newly established healing path. Although I was unsure as to what kind of healing Id be doing, I knew that moving West was the first step.

I arrived back from Peru in June, canceled my acceptance into grad school, started making plans to move to San Francisco, and by October I was back in the Bay Area. Since then, Ive been inspired to start a wholeness center (my professional background is Advertising) which entailed cashing out all my savings and going full force into something I had no clue about.

For the record, I was once a very active and social party planner and goer, and so opening a place that focuses on healing and connecting with the divine may be a bit counter-intuitive, and yet, feels so right.

As I write this email to you, I am getting ready to open the wholeness center, called Tall Tree Tambo (the name was inspired by my Peru experience) on Feb. 20th.


From Alan

Mine was about transitioning careers. In 2000 I made my first trip to Tanzania Africa. It was a life-changing experience for me, but I stuck with my job because of 2 kids in school and tied to expenses. In 2005 for my 50th birthday I climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro and watched the sunrise over the glacier on top. I tell people in presentations that I give that no matter what religion you are, or whether or not you believe in God seeing that proved to me what an amazing planet we live on.

But it was in 2008 that things really changed. I went kayaking off the coast of Tanzania and became one of the first to paddle in areas that no one had been. It was so incredible that I as a lawyer began to transition from law to operating Infinite Kayak Adventures which is a unique boutique safari company that takes people on a wildlife safari and kayak trip to Tanzania.

Our trips are designed for all. It has been said that going to Africa and seeing the wildlife is the number one trip one should make in their lives. Seeing and experiencing Africa and all it has to offer is a powerful experience that should not be missed. It will change you. It will move you. It will affect you.


From Kimberly (

After 3 months in Costa Rica, I came back to America to break up with my boyfriend of 3 years.

After an adventure trip in Panama last year, I came back to break up with my boyfriend of 3 years. Again.

When you travel and see different parts of the world and are opened up to new experiences, it is hard to settle for less when you are back home.


From Sally

Many years ago, I took my 14-year-old nephew on an Outward Bound trip thinking that it would help him mature. Being a person who has been involved with personal growth (as well as many bicycling trips) for many years, I didn’t consider that PERHAPS I could be changed by this trip. Well, I was shocked to realize that no one comes out of these types of experiences without changing. It’s part of the turf of the experience. Sometimes you have to get farther away from the experience to see the long-term effects. After that trip, I became much more open to many different types of traveling, took my physical activities to a new level, gained tremendous respect for my body’s capacity to stretch itself, and have less fear in general (even after loads of psychotherapy!) And I felt good about helping a young person to boot!


From Maureen

I used to work in the software industry, doing interesting work and making a good salary. But I never felt completely connected to the industry. In 2002, I took an adventure cruise aboard a 92-foot schooner to Haida Gwaii (Queen Charlotte Islands, Canada), also known as the Canadian Galapagos. Cruising this wild archipelago, watching dozens of humpback whales breach and splash around me, and learning from a naturalist who knew all about the research on these whales was an incredible experience. I felt so alive, as I never had in my 10 years in high-tech.

I traded work for a second trip on the schooner, called Maple Leaf, this time in the Great Bear Rainforest (British Columbia) in 2003, and then I left high tech altogether and convinced the company to hire me. Now I work for the very company that had started me on this incredible journey. I also married the company’s president in 2007. It’s been 7 years now and I love what I do – feeling totally engaged with the natural world and the wildlife that I love. The company I work for is Maple Leaf Adventures, a Canadian adventure cruise company that is rated as one of the best adventure travel companies on earth by National Geographic Adventure in their most recent survey (2009).

That is how an adventure travel vacation changed the course of my life.


From Daryl of Sylvan Rocks Climbing School

When I was in college, fresh out of the Air Force and off an Illinois farm I went on a college rock climbing trip.  I was hooked.  Growing up in IL, Id never really even heard of rock climbing.  From there I became a rock climber, a guide, and now 20 years later I own my own climbing school and guide service here in the Black Hills of SD near Mount Rushmore.

Now I help people from all over the planet realize their dreams of adventures on cool summits, and create memories with them and their friends and families that will last a lifetime.  It been a good journey, and all started from a little trip to a little crag.

I still enjoy the family farm and visit often, but this is nothing like the life of a farmer that I envisioned before I took that trip.

We are all looking for something when we travel, and sometimes we find more than we bargain for.


From James

My name is James Peden and I am currently entering my 70th day traveling Australia and New Zealand.  The starting date being Dec 9.  I attended the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and studied Communication Studies: Media and Production & Management and Society.  Currently, I am 22 years old and upon finishing degrees in the spring of 2010 opted for a 9th-semester study abroad in Australia on a Sustainability and Environmental Studies program through the Vermont based organization SIT.  I entered the program Aug 27 and set a return date Mar 4 due to a high school friend and college roommate getting married Mar 19.

Upon leaving the States on Aug 25, I weighed 205 pounds and was a borderline alcoholic.  I had no career plans but knew that I needed to leave the United States and get away from everything to see something new, challenging, and exciting.  Currently, my weight is 185 pounds (getting into better shape daily) and would not consider myself anywhere an alcoholic, if even a casual drinker.  As another side note, I had never been hiking before in my 22 years before this trip.  Now, I can not get enough of hiking and truly excited to “tramp” my way around New Zealand.  Tramp being the kiwi word for hiking.

Here is a very abridged version of my life since Dec 9.

  • Took a train from Byron Bay to Sydney to hike the blue mountains Dec 9 – 14
  • I had no travel plans for 3 months and spent the 14 – 17 in Sydney planning this adventure
  • Train from Sydney to Alice Springs via Melbourne and Adelaide 17 – 20
  • Alice Springs, Uluru, Kata Tjuta, and Kings Canyon 20 – 27
  • Train Alice Springs-Darwin 27 – 29
  • Picked up a wicked campervan on the 29th and spent 24 days traveling from Darwin to Perth.  Highlights from this adventure include
    • 2 days hiking Kakadu
    • 1-day hiking Litchfield
    • 2 days hiking Katherine Gorge
    • 1-day hiking Gregory
    • multiple full days driving through the outback
    • 3 days Broome
    • 2 days snorkeling Ningaloo Reef (encountered sharks snorkeling over 1km offshore)
    • 2 days exploring shark bay watching sunsets over the Indian Ocean
    • 2 days hiking 6 peaks in Stirling Ranges National Park (Toolbrunup Peak involved some free base rock climbing)
    • 3 days exploring Southwest Australia forests and relaxing day in Margaret River wine valley
  • Jan 21 – 23 spent in Perth
  • Jan 24 – 25 spent on a train to Adelaide
  • 25 picked up another campervan in Adelaide and traveled 9 days.  Highlights include
    • 2 days hiking Grampian National Park
    • 1 day great ocean road
    • 1 day hiking Dandenong Ranges
    • 1 day hiking Alpine Ranges
    • 3 days hiking Wilsons Promontory Point (encountered 2 larger snakes)
  • I was then struck with a cyclone 2 Feb canceling a scuba trip in the Great Barrier Reef
  • Spent my last days in Australia on the Gold Coast and traveled early to Queenstown.
  • In Queenstown, bungy Jumped the Nevis which is 134 meters and 8 seconds of free fall and swung on the arch upside down backward
  • I am now picking up a campervan for 20 days doing a counter-clockwise circle around the South Island of New Zealand doing tramps every day to the highest peaks possible.

As a general note, my hike days are 6 – 12-hour returns or multiple 2 – 4 hour.  On a daily basis, I am currently up to 110 push up and situps.  Each week is an increase by 10.

This trip has inspired me to truly reorganize my life, set clear definite goals, and as soon as possible, go see more of the world (also in an abridged version)


From Sally

My name is Sally. My friend, Tracey, and I would love to share our life-changing travel adventure with you:  climbing Africas highest peak, Mt. Kilimanjaro, and raising nearly $20,000 for Africas AIDS orphans.

It all began last summer, when we decided that we needed a new challenge. I am a mid-life career changer on a quest to reinvent myself; Tracey is a military spouse trying to lose weight.  Both of us are avid triathletes (always in the back-of-the-pack) looking for new ways to stay fit.  We knew that whatever adventure we take on, it would have to be something BIG. But we also didn’t want this journey to be all about us; we really wanted to help someone else along the way.

So, in September we launched the Triathletes Hiking Kilimanjaro fundraising campaign to benefit Global Alliance for Africa and its mission to help children who’ve lost their parents to HIV/AIDS ( We will travel to Tanzania in August to visit orphanages and meet some of the children who will be impacted by our efforts. Then we will trek to the summit of Kilimanjaro!

We will spend the next few months hiking and raise money (so far we’ve raised more than $16,000 toward our goal).  We will also be competing in triathlons and training for the ultimate in triathlon challenges—Ironman Arizona in November! Needless to say, it’s going to be a life-changing year for us.


Wow.  What amazing and inspirational stories and journeys and lives changed.

It reminds me of one of my favorite quotes from Dale Carnegie, who said, “The person who goes farthest is generally the one who is willing to do and dare. The sure-thing boat never gets far from shore.”

I hope these stories have inspired you to live your life to its fullest and perhaps take a life-changing adventure trip if it feels right to you.

Lose 61 Pounds On Vacation?

By Scott Colby

Owner, Fitness Adventures USA

I want to start this by sharing one of my favorite quotes with you. It comes from Dale Carnegie, who said, “The person who goes farthest is generally the one who is willing to do and dare. The sure-thing boat never gets far from shore.”

Along the same lines of this quote, It boggles my mind that there are overweight people who don’t exercise, but yet they watch The Biggest Loser and watch OTHER people lose weight. And there are people who hate their jobs, but they spend time watching folks on American Idol chase THEIR dreams. Why would anyone do these things? Don’t sit on the sidelines and watch. Take action and do something!

Now I want to introduce you to my good friend, Lesa.  Last May, Lesa looked in the mirror and was very unhappy with what she saw.  She was overweight, and despite having a gym membership, never exercised.  As luck would have it, as she was searching around on the internet for a solution, she stumbled upon the Fitness Adventures USA website and immediately signed up for our Rocky Mountain Fitness Adventure, without any hesitation.

Lesa was kind enough to let me interview her about her experience on the trip and her journey to a healthy life for the last 8 months.  Now I’ve done hundreds of interviews with diet, fat loss and fitness experts, but my interview with Lesa was by far my favorite interview.  I loved hearing how her life has changed and how she has totally transformed.

Lesa called the Fitness Adventure the most “phenomenal, life-transforming, positive experience” she has ever been a part of.  Boy does that make me feel good to have been a part of that!!

You can listen to the interview below, but some of the highlights of her journey are:

  • She has lost 61 pounds from the time she signed up for the trip in June to when we did the interview in January.
  • She lost 12 pounds during the 5-day Fitness Vacation.
  • She has gone from a size 20 to a size 8 (Lesa forgot to mention this in the interview, but told me after we stopped recording).
  • She has hiked mountains and takes boot camp classes.
  • She has gotten 2 promotions at work and has more speaking engagements.
  • Her self-esteem is higher.
  • She is dating more.
  • It’s easy to take the stairs and play with her grandkids.
  • She will be participating in the Warrior Dash (the Warrior Dash is no joke – look it up online).
  • She has taken up running.
  • She has accomplished more than she ever thought possible.
  • Her life has completely changed.

I would love for you to listen to her story.  It’s a 20-minute interview and it’s very inspiring.  Just click the Play button below, or you can download it.


Medicine Ball 300 Workout To Lose Belly Fat

By Scott Colby

Owner, Fitness Adventures USA

Whether you’re hiking, biking, skiing, snowboarding, rafting or taking a boot camp, things will be much, much easier on your with a strong core.  And one of my favorite pieces of equipment to use to strengthen my core is the good ‘ole medicine ball.

Here’s a great workout to strengthen your core, flatten your belly, and increase your upper and lower body strength and endurance all in one quick workout – the Medicine Ball 300 Workout.

A video demonstration of the exercises is below, but here’s what you’ll be doing:

MB Push Ups x 25 total
MB Squat Jumps x 25
MB Circles x 25 each direction
MB Step Jumps x 25 (or MB One Legged Step Ups x 25 each leg)
MB Overhead Woodchoppers x 25
MB Russian Twists x 25 each

Perform 2 rounds of this as quickly as possible, and rest as needed.  Keep track of your time so you have something to beat the next time you do it.

Hope this helps you stay fit and be lean.  If you liked this, please Click The Like Button.  That’ll help me out.

Should You Drink Sports Drinks?

By Scott Colby

Owner, Fitness Adventures USA

Do you ever wonder what you’re really putting into your body when you drink a sports drink, like Gatorade or Powerade?  Are sports drinks really as healthy as the commercials claim they are?  I mean, after all, if you drink Gatorade, you “can be like Mike.” (that’s Michael Jordan for all of you kids out there that may not have seen the commercial).

I know that’s one of the reasons I chugged down a lot of Gatorade growing up.  But have you seen how much sugar is in some of these sports drinks?  Isn’t it too much?

Perhaps there is a difference between drinking one after walking for 30 minutes and drinking one after 2 hours of intense basketball.  Or drinking one during an afternoon of hiking or biking on one of our Fitness Adventures.

So what’s the real scoop?  Should you ever be drinking sports drinks? Or will drinking them actually sabotage the healthy, lean body you’re trying to develop?

How To Train To Run Your First 5K

By Scott Colby

Owner, Fitness Adventures USA

If you’re new to running, then a goal of running your first 5K race is both realistic and attainable.  I mean, after all, you don’t want to go from never running to running a marathon, do you?  That would be pushing it and you would have a pretty decent chance of getting injured.

In case you didn’t know it, 5K is 3.1 miles, which is a great goal for beginners.  With this training schedule below, only go on to the next level when you feel comfortable with your current stage.  You want to avoid injury and burnout first and foremost.

A 7-week program should be just enough time for you to learn how to run for 30 straight minutes, which is the approximate amount of time it will take you to run 5K.  With this training schedule, you’re not looking to set any world records.  The goal is to have you run 5K without stopping and finish the race.

First, get consent from your doctor to make sure it’s safe for you to begin a running program.  Week 1, you’re just going to be walking.  Start by walking 20 minutes straight at a comfortable pace for the first 2 days.  Days 3 and 4, you’re going to walk for 25 minutes straight and days 5 and 6 you’ll walk for 30 minutes straight.

Assuming your 1-week walking program went well, you can move onto stage 2 of the training which will be a run/walk combination training.

In week 2, you’re going to run 1 minute and walk 5 minutes for 5 straight rounds (30 minutes total).  You’ll do this 3 days per week until you feel comfortable.  Each week you’ll add 1 minute to the runtime and subtract 1 minute from the walk time until you can comfortably run for 30 minutes straight.

So your Training Schedule looks like this

Week 1 (Complete the 6-day walking program)

Week 2 – Run 1 minute, walk 5 minutes for 5 straight rounds –> 3 days per week

Week 3 – Run 2 minutes, walk 4 minutes for 5 straight rounds  –> 3 days per week

Week 4 – Run 3 minutes, walk 3 minutes for 5 straight rounds  –> 3 days per week

Week 5 – Run 4 minutes, walk 2 minutes for 5 straight rounds  –> 3 days per week

Week 6 – Run 5 minutes, walk 1 minute for 5 straight rounds  –> 3 days per week

Week 7 – Run 30 minutes consecutively  –> 3 days per week

Remember, you’re just getting started, so don’t be too concerned with pace or distance.  Aim for running 30 minutes, 3 days per week and sign up for a few 5Ks in your local community.  Once you get comfortable running in a few races, you can work on increasing your speed and running longer distances.  Not only is running a great way to get fit but participating in 5K races helps local charities too!

7 Tips To Eat Healthy At Any Restaurant

Creator of Fitness Adventures USA

Almost all of us probably eat out in restaurants at least once a week, and for some for some of us, it’s more like 5 or more times per week.  And I don’t know about you, but the portion sizes of the meals are about the size of Texas.  I should know – I lived in Texas for 11 years and the portion sizes were huge.

But there are some simple action steps you can take to make sure you stay lean and mean while eating out.  And it doesn’t mean all you get to eat is a house salad either.  Believe it or not, you can still eat healthy at a restaurant and not be the subject of your friends’ jokes.  Just check out these tips:

1). Eat something before you go out to eat. Believe me, you won’t be ruining your appetite.  Most restaurants have a bit of a wait, plus by the time you order your food and are brought it, a couple of hours have passed.  Eat something like an apple with some almond butter on it within a half an hour before leaving for the restaurant.  This also helps when it comes to ordering.  If you eat something before you get to the restaurant, you won’t be starved and it will be easier to say no to that loaf of bread that’s sitting there and all of the fatty appetizers.

2). As soon as you get there, order a side salad. Most restaurants nowadays will bring out some chips and salsa, or bread and butter when you first sit down.  Grab your server’s arm and order a side salad.  That way when your friends are stuffing themselves with some unhealthy carbs, you can enjoy a nice, healthy salad.  And make sure to order dressing on the side.  You don’t want to ruin your salad by drowning it in fatty, creamy dressing, do you?  And you shouldn’t have any creamy dressings anyway.  Stick to ones low in calories and fat.

3).  Just say no to the appetizers. The appetizers are probably the most unhealthy items on the menu.  Did you know that some are between 1500-2000 calories?  And most of them are fatty and fried.  Since you had a healthy snack right before you came to the restaurant and are now eating a side salad, you shouldn’t be hungry for appetizers anyway.

4). Choose healthier options of foods for your main dish. This means chicken, fish, lean cuts of beef and vegetables.  Pay attention, or ask your server, how the foods are prepared.  Order foods that are boiled, broiled, baked or grilled and stay away from foods that are fried.

5). Split the meal in half. Remember I told you that the servings sizes these days are as big as Texas.  Well, don’t eat your whole meal in one sitting for gosh sakes.  Split the meal in half, either with a friend or with your doggy….bag that is.  And while you’re at it, get your doggy bag as soon as your meal comes.  That way you won’t be tempted to sit there and finish your plate when you’re stuffed.

6).  Don’t get drinky.  Look, drinking alcohol just offers your body excess calories that it doesn’t need, and it can ruin all of your hard work that you’ve put into the gym.  If your friends are getting drunk and making fun of you for not drinking, then they aren’t your real friends.  If you must have a drink, make it a glass of red wine.  At least this way you’ll get some good antioxidants out of it.

7). Dessert or no dessert? As tough as it is for me to say (since I love chocolate), you probably shouldn’t get dessert.  Unless perhaps if this is your cheat meal.  Number 1, you’ve had plenty to eat as it is, so you shouldn’t be hungry anyway.  Number 2, someone at your table is going to order a dessert and probably more than one person will.  Just take a bite of theirs and be done with it.  That way, you get your sweet fix and save on the bill.

See, it isn’t that difficult to eat healthy at a restaurant.  And you’re still having fun, right?  In fact, you’ll have the last laugh as all your friends will be loosening their belt buckle and grabbing for the Pepto Bismol, while you’ll have an extra hop to your skip.

I hope you enjoyed these tips today and they help you stay healthy while traveling.