Fitness with Fido


How you can have fun with man’s best friend and get a workout in the process.

He loves you unconditionally, always has an open ear when you need to talk, and welcomes you with open paws when you need a hug. Now, you can have an even tighter bond with your dog, as you and your pooch get healthy together!

Here are five ways to turn your favorite four-legged friend into your new workout partner.

1. Walking

The most obvious way to exercise with your canine pal is to simply go for walks together. After all, it is recommended that all dogs go for walks every day, and doing so is a great way for you to get the 30 minutes of cardiovascular exercise your doctor recommends. As if those perks weren’t enough, the regularity of a daily walk helps develop a stronger relationship with your dog, helping your dog trust you and be more obedient.

2. Fetching

Many dogs love chasing after tennis balls, tree limbs, or whatever else you can find to throw. To get a workout that will benefit both of you, throw the object to be fetched and take off after it with your dog. You’ll probably get beat most of the time, but the running back and forth and friendly competition will do you a world of good.

3. Swimming

It may be difficult to find a pool where your pool is welcome. So if you can’t find a neighbor’s pool where Fido is welcome to take a dip, head to a local lake, river, or ocean and get swimming! The movements work both you and your dog in ways that no other exercise does, leaving you exhausted and stronger. As you’re in water during the exercise, you also get to stay cool in the process.

4. Dancing

A little bit less common than walking or swimming, dancing with your dog may seem a bit odd. All you have to do to dance with your dog is toss on your favorite CD or record and start moving. Allow your pooch to run around you as she wishes. Gradually, encourage your dog to sprint through your legs, jump after a certain move, and even stand on his or her back paws in a standing position on occasion. The constant motion will help both of you burn plenty of calories and will leave you in a pile on the floor, laughing and loving the kisses your new dance partner lavishes upon you.

5. Bicycling

Years ago, bicycling with man’s best friend by your side was extremely dangerous. Fortunately, there are now contraptions that allow your pooch to be attached safely to your bicycle for a ride/run. With one of these devices, you won’t fall over every time Fido decides to lunge after a squirrel or cat while running down the road. But you will be in great shape after a few months of riding alongside your exercise-loving doggie!

A Few Rules to Obey

Working out with your canine pal can be rewarding in many ways. To make sure your workout is safe as well as effective, you’ve got to take a few steps, as your dog’s safety is in your hands.

  • Unless you’re exercising in your home or backyard, keep your pooch on a leash to prevent him from getting loose and running away or getting injured.
  • While you may think you can push a dog as hard as you can go, you may be wrong. Understanding your dog’s breed will help you cater your workout to be fitting for your dog’s abilities.
  • Never leave your dog alone in a public area, as it could lead to a variety of unwanted events.
  • If your dog doesn’t know how to sit, stay, heel, or perform other necessary obedience skills, don’t take her in public, as it could result in a frustrating outing filled with pulling on the leash, pleading with your dog to obey.
  • Be sure your dog is up to date on vaccinations and has the tags and identification necessary in the event he gets loose and runs off.
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Working Out Outside

A handful of ways you can get a good workout in the great outdoors.

As the sun breaks over the horizon, and a gentle light falls over the landscape, you’re faced with another beautiful day. Suddenly, you’re hit with the same urge you had as a college student. You want to skip your workout and play all day. Why not skip your way to an energizing workout outside, along the very hills and valleys you’re admiring?

Read on to find out a few things to consider in order to get a great exercise using the terrain surrounding you.

Alternate Terrain

One of the biggest perks of working out outside is that doing so forces you to move on a lot of different types of terrain. This benefit is particularly strong if you’re going to go walking or running. During an outdoor run, you’ll be going from a sidewalk to grass to the street and then up and down staircases. This varied terrain mimics what you’ll experience during real life, making it easier to navigate your way from point A to point B with minimal difficulty.

If you happen to be near a beach, working out in the sand not only puts you on an alternate terrain, but offers a fabulous workout that cannot be replicated on any other surface. Of course, while on the sand and other outdoor terrain, exercising caution and proper technique will ensure you don’t wind up suffering injury.

Air Out There

In addition to a change in terrain, exercising outside allows you to breathe air that will bring different threats your way than may be found inside. As a result, you should be particularly attentive to any health issues that may indicate an allergy. In the event you begin sneezing or suffering headaches, a runny nose, itchy eyes, or allergic swelling, you may need a little help.

With a quick trip to an allergist, you can learn what you’re allergic to in your outdoor exercise environment and you can receive appropriate medication to help you battle against the allergies. However, if you feel your allergies are too strong to deal with or would prefer to not depend on a physician for your ability to work out outside, you may have to stick to your indoor routine.

Drink in the Sun (and Water)

One of the benefits of working out beyond the confines of a gymnasium is the ability to get some vitamin D and a great tan in the process. Unfortunately, the sun is also one of the dangers of taking your workout into the outdoors. The most obvious sun-related danger is the threat of sunburns. By wearing sunscreen and sunglasses and reapplying if you’re outside for longer than an hour or so,

Also, since you’ll be sweating more when you’re outside, keeping hydrated is more difficult and important. Before beginning your outdoor workout, be sure to drink plenty of water. You should also keep a bottle of water on hand to drink from on a regular basis. With proper hydration and a good outdoor workout, you can have the skin color and muscle definition you want, all while breathing that fresh outdoor air.

How to Get It Done

Exercising outside is more than walking, running, or lifting weights at muscle beach. There are actually quite a lot of ways you can get some exercise without driving to the gym, including the following:

  • riding a bicycle
  • playing tag with your children
  • trail running
  • playing on an outdoor soccer team
  • walking on a trail that includes exercise stations and using the stations
  • gardening
  • rock climbing
  • backpacking
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Game On! Diet Challenge Lose Weight While Kicking Your Friends Butt

We are gearing up for our next Game On! Diet Challenge starting
next Monday April 19th.

When we held our first Game On! Diet Challenge it was an eye opening
experience for everyone involved, both participants and bystanders.

The team aspect held campers accountable and got everyone’s competitive
juices flowing!

Az Ferguson, co-auther of the book and “Body-for-Life Million
Dollar Champion”came out to Maplewood and led our Maplewood Boot Camp.

Both he and co-author Krista Vernoff held coaching calls with our
campers as well.

In addition, we were featured on CBS News, the New York Times Local,
Maplewood Patch and more.

Some of our campers were also asked to go to the Good Morning America
studios for an interview.

Well, we’re at it again. Our next Maplewood Boot Camp starts this
Saturday April. 17th.

We will officially start the Game On! Diet Challenge on Monday
April 19th and it will end on May 16th. All campers interested will
be placed onto teams.

The first 20 people to sign up for camp will get  a complimentary
copy of the Game On! Diet book and 20% off any boot camp purchase
of $267 or more. Use the coupon code GAMEON at checkout.