Saturday, June 27, 2009

A, Like, Totally Awesome Class

On Friday, June 26th, we had an all-80's-themed dance class. What a blast!

Since Michael Jackson passed away the night before, and since I know his music certainly shaped the 80's childhoods of many of us, all the music that day was by Jacko -- including hits such as Bad, Billie Jean, and Beat It.

Mamas came ready for a totally rad time, decked in leg warmers, side pony tails, and - yes, even a few leotards.

We were sweatin' to the 80's with moves from the Molly Ringwold to the running man to the Robot, and it was, like, so cool.

Excellent job, mamas!

Fun Pic of the Week

Robot. 'Nuff said.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Family Class and Picnic!

On Saturday, June 20th, we had our Family Class and Picnic in honor of Father's Day.

Daddies, uncles, and even grandmas were on hand to participate in a fun Stroller Strides workout at Veteran's Memorial Park, and everyone brought a delicious potluck-style item to share afterwards!

I hear there were a lot of sore daddies the next few days!

Thanks for coming out on a weekend to show your support of Stroller Strides, get your families involved, and best of all -- give us an opportunity to wish all our wonderful husbands and dads a Happy Father's Day!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Lean Mommy: The Golden Rules of Good Nutrition

When you're consumed with mommyhood, you may feel too busy to eat right or follow a diet. Or you may not know where to begin if you are restricted from dieting because you are breastfeeding, or because all the information can seem overwhelming! Lisa Druxman's book Lean Mommy sets some simple guidelines that will help you to not only make healthy eating choices and turn them into habits, but to know why these choices are the best ones for you and your family.

Rule Number One: GO FOR COLOR

One easy way to take in the variety of nutrients that you and your family need is to make every meal as colorful as possible. Nutrients in plants known as phytochemicals are often found in the pigment that gives food its hue. So create a plate that has plenty of green, red, orange, and yellow foods. Healthful beans and grains and meats, poultry, and fish will add neutral shades of white, beige, brown, and pink.


Every food has calories So, in theory, if you eat too much of anything, you can gain weight. (But I'm still looking for the person who got fat eating too many strawberries and oranges.) The truth is, fresh foods usually have lots of fiber and so it's hard to eat too much of them. Processed foods like pasta, animal products like cheese and oils, on the other hand, are calorically dense, which makes it easy to overload on them. Learn what a sensible portion really is. (And no, it's not the two-foot-wide plate you're given at some family restaurants!) Read the labels and notice if the foods says three servings for the whole can or box you were about to eat.


Plant ingredients like wheat grains that have been processed into manufactured foods like pasta or bread are known as bad carbs. High-sugar foods are, too. These foods are broken down quickly and tend to be absorbed into the body very quickly, too. This is not a problem unless you are overweight and inactive and are glucose intolerant. Then too much insulin may be released to help carry the glucose into the cells of your body that use it for energy. Over time, this overload can lead to diabetes. ... You will always make a better choice when you choose brown rice over white rice or whole grain bread over white.


Protein is the term for the different amino acids. There are 11 amino acids that cannot be made within the body, so they must come from food. If you eat a variety of healthy food, you'll have no trouble obtaining all the needed amino acids. That's why a vegetarian will have no problem getting enough protein if she eats a healthy range of foods. Animal foods - meat, fish, poultry, eggs, and dairy - contain all eleven of these amino acids. They are called "complete" for that reason. But research shows that we should take in a higher proportion of protein from plant foods that from animal foods. So when you think protein, don't just think meat, think vegetables, nuts, beans and grains, too. When eating animal protein sources, go for organic, grass-fed, low-fat, and/or lean when you can.

Rule Number Five: CHOOSE GOOD FATS

Not only are fats yummy, some are beneficial to your health. Animal fats in meats, poultry, and dairy products are mostly saturated fats since they have a chemical structure that makes them solid. That's why you can cut off a piece of fat from a steak or slice through butter or cheese. Less than 10 percent of the fat you eat should be saturated. Unsaturated fats are found in all foods, but are predominant in plant food. They have been shown to help reduce, not raise, your levels of bad cholesterol (your LDLs) and raise levels of your good cholesterols (HDLs). So that's why, even though foods like olives, avocados, and nuts can have a high percentage of fat, they're still great for you.
Unsaturated fats tend to be liquid (sunflower, walnut, olive, and corn oils). Trans fats are good fats gone bad. Food manufacturers take a healthy oil, like soybean oil, and modify it in a process called hydrogenization so that it becomes solid, and more like saturated fat. Think Crisco or margarine. It's cheap and has a longer shelf life. That's why most fast food restaurants and big companies that make packaged foods use loads of the stuff. The fact is, no known about of trans fat is considered safe. The best way to avoid it is to stop eating processed, packaged foods. If you do eat packaged foods, look for 0 grams of trans fat on the label.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Lean Mommy: Tubes and You

We LOVE our tubes! These resistance bands, specially designed by SPRI for Stroller Strides classes, are instrumental in our classes, and I always love finding new ways to utilize these great workout tools.

As I mentioned in our June Newsletter, it's time for you to conduct your summer tube inspections. Please be on the lookout for any signs of wear and tear, including fraying, splitting, holes, or cracks. I will be ordering new tubes next week; let me know if you'll be needing any.

From Lisa Druxman's book Lean Mommmy, here are some important tube reminders.

  • Hold handles with a loose grip. Don't squeeze.

  • Keep wrists in neutral during exercises.

  • Tighten slack by shortening tube or pulling it further to keep sufficient resistance.

  • Like any other exercise, breathe! The general rule is to exhale on exhertion.


  • Inspect exercise tubing before each use for worn spots, nicks, or tears. Discontinue use if damaged.

  • For excercises that require you attach tubing to something stable, use only a sturdy pole, beam, or fence. NEVER use the stroller or a chair.

  • Avoid exposing tubing to extreme heat or cold; never leave it in water or direct sunlight.

  • Avoid using tubing on rough or abrazsive surfaces.

  • Never pull tubing directly toward your face.

  • Never pull tubing in the direction of your child.

  • Never stretch exercise tubing more than three times its length. (If you can stretch the tube this far, you need a heavier-strength tube.)

  • A tube can break at any time while you use it. So use good judgement when exercising around baby, and be cautious if you are carrying baby in a front-pack carrier.


You can make and exercise hard or easier in several ways:

  • Use different sizes of tubes.

  • Shorten the tube to make it harder or lengthen the tube to make it easier (i.e., wrap the tube around your hand once or twice, or grip it closer or farther from middle).

  • Move both arms at the same time instead of one at a time.

  • When performing an exercise that involves standing on the tube, stand with one or both feet to adjust the tension.

  • Add balance to an exercise by lifting up one foot. Adding balance triggers more action from your core muscles to hold yourself steady.

Lean Mommy is on sale now! Click here to order Lean Mommy from!

Fun Pic of the Week

Little Kennedy shows off her fancy new bracelet after our cereal craft on Wednesday!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

And the Winner is...

CONGRATULATIONS to Dawn Simpson, the winner of this year's Get Fit Challenge!

Dawn has been incredibly dedicated to her healthy lifestyle choices over the last few months. She shows up for Stroller Strides classes at least twice a week and makes healthy choices at home with her family (which includes daughters Chloe, 4, and Hailee, 17 months, and husband Brian). She even trained to run the Susan G. Komen run last month and made great time!

Dawn's improvements were marked: She held her plank 30 seconds longer, her shuttle run was 1 second faster, she did 15 more pushups, and... drumroll please.... she beat her mile time by a whopping 3 minutes, 33 seconds!

Way to go, Dawn! You truly are doing a great job making strides in fitness, motherhood, and life!

Dawn Simpson shows off her winning prizes, which included a Luna Moms Club cap and a fabulous gift bag provided by Shu's Idaho Running Company!

Runners Up:

All our mamas showed improvements in each area of testing. Here are the runners up. Incredible job, mamas!

Plank (tie):
Christina Babin - 30 seconds longer
Dawn Simpson - 30 seconds longer

Claire Boyd - 21 more pushups (Amazing! Claire went from ONE pushup in February to 22 in May!)

Shuttle Run (tie):
Courtney Troutner - 10 second faster
Melissa Bollinger - 10 seconds faster

I am so proud of each and every one of you, and you should be proud of yourselves! If you didn't make it to today's awards ceremony don't worry; there are prizes involved for EVERY PARTICIPANT and I'll be sure you receive yours!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Lean Mommy: A Great Resource!

I know many of you have seen the great book Lean Mommy by Lisa Druxman, the founder of Stroller Strides.

This book is chock-full of ways to get in shape and bond with your baby, as well as ways to eat right, beat the baby blues, and even exercise while baby-wearing! Over the course of the next few weeks, we'll be bringing you some tips, tricks, insights, and even recipes excerpted from the book. If you don't have a copy yet, let me know and I can order you one!

This week's excerpt: No more excuses! - or, the Power of Positive Thinking

Our every behavior stems from the desire to feel good or avoid feeling bad. If you think of healthy eating and working out as painful, and eating cookies and sitting on the couch as pleasurable, then you will choose to snack and sit. But if you can redefine your thoughts so that you think of being active as invigorating and eating well as energizing, as well as thinking that eating cookies is self-defeating, and not getting a daily dose of movement makes you sluggish, then you're likely to choose to engage in healthy lifestyle habits.

Imagine scenes from your life where you consistently react in a negative way that becomes self-defeating. Create a more positive response that will help you make the healthiest lifestyle choices. Practice changing your mental tapes every single day until those new thoughts become your new tapes. For example:

I hope to see you in class soon!