Exercise Away Stress and Lengthen Your Life

Scientists from the University of California in San Francisco (UCSF) have demonstrated the importance of exercise for reducing stress.

When we experience traumatic events, for instance the death of a loved one, our bodies endure a tremendous amount of stress.  These events and other forms of chronic psychological stress can shorten the life span.

Here’s why:

Psychological stress leads to shorter telomeres – the protective caps on the ends of chromosomes that measure of cell age and, thus, health. Telomeres are tiny units of DNA at the ends of chromosomes that protect and stabilize chromosomes. Every time a cell divides, some telomeres drop off. After a certain number of cell divisions, which varies depending on the cell type, the telomeres reach a critical length and the cell typically dies.  When too many cells die, serious medical conditions can result such as Parkinson’s.

The good news is that findings of this study suggest that exercise may prevent this damage. Scientists are still working to figure out the exact relationship between length of telomeres and exercise.  However, they speculate that exercise has an important role in reducing the amount of cortisol (the stress hormone) that is released in the body.

We saw a relationship between childhood trauma and short telomere length but the relationship seems to go away in people who exercise vigorously at least three times a week, says co-author Jue Lin, PhD, associate research biochemist in the laboratory of senior author and Nobel laureate Elizabeth Blackburn, PhD, professor of biochemistry and biophysics at UCSF.

So, if you’re reading this and you’re thinking I really need to start work exercise, but [ fill in appropriate reason/excuse ]  Don’t stress over exercising, its counterproductive.  Smart Workout offers variety with 140 classes a week and over 30 different types of classes so you’ll never get bored. Also,classes run from open to close which makes it easier to fit in a exercise at on your time.  Visit our website for more information about Smart Workout at www.smartworkout.net

Adopted from Jonathan Kantrowitz, Health News Report

Spring into Season: Reach your weight loss goals with these recipes

Spring has certainly sprung, and with it, an abundance of fruits and veggies come into season.

Not only will in-season produce be a little easier on the wallet than other produce- but the nutrients are also at their prime. This means all in-season produce will have their maximum benefit, so if losing weight is your goal, here is a great way to start.

Most of us know that to lose weight, eating well is a key factor. However, even when we know this the allure of a cheeseburger and fries can still hit you from time to time. The truth is, just as some of us need a personal trainer to help motivate us physically, some of us need a little motivation nutritionally.  Thats why its important to find a program, like Smart Workouts Weight Management program, that will combine all aspects of your health. These types of programs that combine an individualized exercise program, nutritional education, and healthy eating counseling are the ones that we have found to be the most successful in helping people reach their weight loss goals.

Eating more fruits and vegetables can be a key component to weight loss, but sometimes incorporating fruits and vegetables into your diet, whether in season or not, can be tricky. Your goal should be to find recipes that are not only easy- but taste great as well.  There is also a bonus: in season produce will also taste the very best during their season.

Here is a short list of healthy fruits and vegetables in season now:







Two of my favorite recipes (from eating well.com) using two in-season items are below.  Not only are they healthy, they are easy and taste great too!

Happy Spring Eating!

-written by Sandra Partyka, C.H.C.

Strawberries: Not only will one cup of strawberries provide 3 grams of fiber and keep you fuller longer, it also packed a full day’s dose of vitamin C.

Strawberry Bruschetta


  • 4 thick slices whole-wheat bread
  • 6 tablespoons light brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 3 cups sliced or diced hulled strawberries
  • 4 tablespoons mascarpone, (Italian cream cheese)


  1. Toast bread in a toaster.
  2. Meanwhile, heat a large skillet over high heat. Add sugar, lemon zest and lemon juice and cook, stirring, until the sugar melts and the mixture begins to bubble, 30 seconds to 1 minute. Add strawberries and stir until juices begin to exude and the berries are heated through, 30 seconds to 1 minute more.
  3. Spread 1 tablespoon mascarpone on each piece of toast. Top with the warm berries.

Asparagus: Asparagus contains many anti-inflammatory phytonutrients, which can help alleviate certain chronic issues in the body, and can reduce risk associated with chronic diseases like Diabetes and Heart Disease. A cup of asparagus will also provide 3 grams of fiber, and a powerful punch of vitamins B1, B2, B3 and B6. It is also a great source of folic acid, which is critical for heart health.

Penne with Asparagus and Lemon-Cream Sauce


  • 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 pound asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1-inch diagonal pieces
  • 2 bunches scallions, trimmed and cut into 1-inch diagonal pieces
  • 3/4 cup part-skim ricotta cheese
  • 2 teaspoons freshly grated lemon zest
  • 12 ounces penne
  • Salt & freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 1/4 cup slivered fresh basil


  1. Put a large pot of lightly salted water on to boil.
  2. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add asparagus and scallions and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender and browned in places, 10 to 12 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, whisk ricotta and lemon zest in a large bowl. Cook penne until just tender, about 10 minutes. Measure out 1/4 cup of the pasta-cooking water; stir into ricotta mixture until creamy. Drain the penne and mix into the ricotta mixture; toss to coat. Add the vegetables and toss well. Season with salt and pepper. Serve, garnished with basil.

Kidz Fit at Smart Workout

Kidz Fit



(For kids ages 6 to 10)

Small Frye Cooking: Kids learn healthy choices, while doing hands-on cooking activities. They eat what they make, take home “leftovers”, and get recipes to try out on the whole family. Examples of our menus include: Whole wheat pita pizza with Italian green salad, and baked pears with low-fat ricotta; fiesta cheese quesadillas with confetti black bean salad, and toasted coconut fruit kebabs.

Mighty Muscles: Gymnastics, hula hoops, basketball drills, “soft weight” lifting, fencing (with foam swords), all help to develop your children’s strength, stamina, and co-ordination.

Big Kid Boxing: A non-combat class that teaches exercise and training methods used by boxers. There is no sparring or actual boxing performed, but kids will definitely feel like a young Sugar Ray. The class includes workouts using the trampoline, the physio ball, the step, Airopes, medicine ball relays, and of course, the punching bag.

Youngsta’s Yoga: Includes creative poses, yoga games, obstacle courses, and relaxation time with lavender eye pillows, and temple massages.

Parent’s Pump-Up: Kickboxing, Total Body Conditioning, Katami, Kettlebells, Zumba, and Warrior Workout. There is nothing kid-like about these heavy duty workouts.

Each session has 4 classes for Kids and 4 classes for adults.

All classes are held on Saturdays, from 11:30 to 12:30pm.

the dates of the Spring Session are 5/14, 5/21, 6/3, 6/10.

To find out more about Kidz Fit and/ or to register, visit our website http://www.smartworkout.net/kidsclassesnyc/exerciseandcooking.htm

Why Zumba can be the best workout you’ve done…

Zumba is one of the hottest workouts around for many different reasons. First, you work up a sweat while dancing and having fun, so you’re improving your cardiovascular health. It is also a workout for the brain. Having to focus on dance moves has been proven to stimulate brain function and memory.  Fusion dance fitness classes are perfect for those who want a fun and challenging workout.

At Smart Workout, we recently re-vamped our Zumba class. Zumba has been around for a few years now, and to keep up with the evolution of this exciting fusion class we’ve creating two new and different Zumba classes (Zumba 1 and Zumba 2) to keep you engaged, interested and loving working out!

To launch these new classes, we decided to give new customers a great deal. You’re invited to take one of our Zumba classes for FREE on one of our “Zumba Days.” Details are below, as well as a video to preview some of the great moves you’ll have in your upcoming Zumba class!

Zumba Days are as follows:

Thursday, 4/21. at 6:00pm Zumba 1

Tuesday, 4/26, at 7:30pm Zumba 2 

Thursday, 4/28, at 6:00pm Zumba 1

Any one who would like to take a complimentary Zumba class should send an email to smartworkout@verizon.net with their full name, phone number, and the date of the class that they would like to attend.