Tuesday, January 25, 2011

St. Joseph’s Hill Open Space Preserve

Here's a great post I found on 365 Things to do in Silicon Valley - Sounds like fun so I thought I'd pass along this link to the blog.
by Dawn Thomas on January 25, 2011
Post image for #344 – St. Joseph’s Hill Open Space Preserve In getting reacquainted with outdoor exercise once again this year, my husband and I have been to St. Joseph’s Hill Open Space Preserve twice in the last couple weeks...read the rest on the original site.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Today on San Jose Fitness Examiner: Boston Market touts healthy menu options: low-cal, low-sodium, gluten free

Boston Market touts healthier menu options; low cal, low sodium, gluten free

Just in time for that comfort food attack that hits you about this time of year, Boston Market is highlighting the healthier eating options now available at the popular chain's 490 locations.
Various Boston Market locations, including the four in the immediate San Jose area may not exactly be fitness eating, but the menu does fill a need

Continue reading on Examiner.com: Boston Market touts healthier menu options; low cal, low sodium, gluten free - San Jose fitness | Examiner.com http://www.examiner.com/fitness-in-san-jose/boston-market-looks-to-highlight-healthier-menu#ixzz1Bunt8ZZA

Most Romantic Recipe Contest calls for Valentine's Day strawberry recipes

88 percent of the strawberries grown in the United States come from California, and 50 percent from right here in the Silicon Valley area: Watsonville, Salinas, Santa Cruz.
PRNewsFoto/California Strawberry Commission

So it's only fitting that the competition to showcase sweet ways to use strawberries in Valentine's Day recipes should originate with the Watsonville-based California Strawberry Commission.

The prizes in the recipe contest for "Most Romantic Valentines Day Dish" (aside from bragging rights about how romantic you can cook) are: Amazon gift cards: First Place - $500, Second place - $350, Third Place - $150. Winning recipes will be featured on the California Strawberries website for all to enjoy.
How to enter the Valentine's Day recipe contest: 
  1. Submit recipe online at the California Strawberries Recipe Submission Page by Friday, February 4th, 2011.
  2. Upload the recipe photo at: California Strawberries Facebook Page (www.facebook.com/castrawberries).  Be sure to  include recipe name and the words "Most Romantic Recipe Contest."

Contest Rules:
  • Eligibility – Must be a U.S. citizen, 18 years and older.
  • Online Submission DeadlineFriday, February 4th, 2011
  • Prizes$500, $350, $150 Amazon Gift Cards will be awarded for 1st, 2nd and 3rd.
  • Who can enter?Anyone who enjoys cooking and food bloggers of all levels are invited to participate.
  • Criteria –The dish must include fresh or frozen strawberries. It could be for any meal of the day and be categorized by main course, salad, side dish, appetizer or dessert. Additionally, it should have a romantic quality. Visual appeal, taste, creativity and ease of preparation will also be considered in the judging.
  • Judging – Winning recipes will be selected by the California Strawberry Commission staff. Particular consideration will be given to recipes submitted with clear and creative photos. Further attention will be given to recipe photos that receive the most comments or "likes" on the California Strawberries Facebook page. Contestants are welcome to invite friends to "vote" for their photos.

Get Inspired!
For a little sweet inspiration, visit California Strawberries' recipe pages for romantic and alluring recipes such as Souffle Omelet with Balsamic Strawberries or Chocolate Dipped Strawberries!

Friday, January 14, 2011

Win trip to luxury fitness spa

My email box this morning had a note telling me about a chance to win a vacation at the Lapa Rios Ecolodge in Costa Rica...hikes, surf, yoga and more.  Ok, it's winter and frankly, a week any place where there are beaches, sand and trees sounds pretty great.  

Here's the info: 

Enter for a chance to win
a spectacular vacation at the beautiful Lapa Rios Ecolodge in Costa Rica. Set in 1000 private acres of rainforest, Lapa Rios overlooks the gorgeous wild Pacific Ocean. Staff naturalists will guide you on hikes in the rainforest; you can hang 10 in the surf, kayak into the sunset or marine watch via ocean mangrove boats. Need more? You can also do yoga, massage, or just indulge yourself in a hammock overlooking the heavenly beaches. 

 To enter:  Just complete the entry form
 and share a lifetyle tip on the Pure Bar Facebook page.  On February 21 they will draw a winner (each week, winners will also win some Pure Bars. )
So if you are ready for a chance to get away, or win free Pure Bars, CLICK HERE

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Tim Gunn teams with Weight Watchers

Ok, I didn't see this one coming. Tim Gunn teaming with Weight Watchers?  We've come to love his tidy, proper, tasteful input on Project Runway, but giving advice via Weight Watchers....well, we'll have to see how the organization uses him.  His quote toward the end, "If getting fashion right were easy, everyone would look fabulous, but it can be challenging."  is a little more in keeping with the Tim Gunn voice I'm used to hearing on TV.

So, with no further commentary, here are bits from the press release- hot off the wires at 5 p.m. today, January 13, 2011:

Weight Watchers, the world's leading provider of weight management services, has teamed up with Fashion Consultant Tim Gunn, to inspire people on their weight loss journey.  In addition to providing fashion tips for the many stages of weight loss, Tim also served as a fashion consultant for the new Weight Watchers PointsPlus™ program advertising campaign featuring Jennifer Hudson and real life Weight Watchers success stories. During 2011 there will be other exciting opportunities for Weight Watchers members and Weight Watchers Online subscribers to benefit from Tim's tips and motivation to ultimately feel better about how they look. ... 
Here are some of Tim's top style tips:
  • Follow three fashion fundamentals: silhouette, proportion and fit. When they are in harmony and balance, anyone can look fabulous.  
  • Invest in the essentials: wrap dresses, belts and skirt/top combinations. Each of these items can be introduced into the wardrobe at any point during weight loss and will have long lasting staying power as you continue to lose weight.
  • Shop smartly: when people shop on a budget they are very thoughtful and mindful about how new items will fit into their wardrobe and lifestyle and how they will transition throughout the weight loss journey. Think strategically about your overall wardrobe and how the garments you are purchasing will fit in.
  • Embrace your shape: even if it seems that everyone is wearing a particular style one season, be sure to evaluate how it will work with your shape before committing to purchase it yourself. Embrace your own shape—it's beautiful -- and adopt the trends that accentuate your best features.

"I am so proud to be working with Weight Watchers on this extraordinary project and was so inspired by the stories of wonderful success. Nothing makes me happier than providing guidance and tips to help people look great as they lose weight and get healthier," said Tim Gunn. "If getting fashion right were easy, everyone would look fabulous, but it can be challenging. The combination of the PointsPlus program and providing helpful styling tips is great because it helps people celebrate their new look and recalibrate their thinking about style, while finding an enhanced self-confidence."
Visit WeightWatchers.com to view Tim Gunn's style tips for the weight loss journey and to check out Tim's work in the new advertising campaign.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Americans spending more on themselves in 2011

 I just posted an article on San Jose Fitness Examiner about how Americans plan to spend on health and fitness in 2011. Actually, I found the entire overview from American Express very interesting, and am printing a larger portion of the information here for those who, like me, get very wonkish about data:

Americans are ringing in the New Year with new intentions, according to the latest American Express Spending & Saving Tracker. More than half of adults are planning to spend more (14 percent) or the same (40 percent) in 2011 than they did last year, with the majority of that spending focused on themselves.  Personal savings rates are still well above pre-recession levels and consumers will remain focused on saving, but they will set aside less than they did in 2010.  After setting aggressive savings goals for 2010 -- $14,000 on average -- consumers are paring back their savings target this year to a more modest $2,600. 

The latest American Express Spending & Saving Tracker1 explores consumers’ views about their spending intentions and financial goals for the New Year.  The research sample of 2,025 adults included the general U.S. population, as well as two subgroups - the affluent2 and young professionals3.

“While consumers are still focused on getting their financial house in order as we head into 2011, it’s encouraging to see that they also feel more optimistic about their finances.” said Pamela Codispoti, senior vice present and general manager of Cardmember Services, American Express.  “They’re setting more realistic savings goals and believe they’ve gained some financial breathing room to spend a bit more than in 2010.” 

Spending More … On Themselves
In terms of where consumers will spend in 2011, maintaining their appearance is king.  Top categories include grooming (73 percent), health/fitness (70 percent) and clothing for themselves (61 percent).  Categories at the bottom of the list include video game systems and games (34 percent), jewelry (34 percent), portable media players (32 percent), and tablet computers (i.e. the i-Pad) or e-book readers (30 percent).

Slimming Wallets for Waistlines
Similar to 2010, consumers cited “exercising more” and “losing weight” as their top three and four New Year resolutions, respectively, behind saving money and spending more time with friends and family.  However, more than one in four (28 percent) consumers who are starting the year with a savings strategy would sacrifice a portion of their savings to achieve their goal weight.

To reach their fitness goal, consumers plan to put their money where their mouth is.  In fact, 47 percent of consumers plan to spend more on health and fitness in 2011, primarily on:
·         Gym Memberships: average of $131 per month
·         Fitness equipment: average of $127 per month
  • Personal trainer: average of $127 per month
  • Eating programs: average of $75 per month
·         Fitness-related video games: average of $60 per month

Significantly Reducing Debt Remains Top Financial Goal
While saving money was the top New Year resolution for 2011, fewer are setting financial goals this year.  (83 percent in 2011, down from 89 percent in 2010).  For those who set financial goals, significantly reducing or paying off debt before the end of the year tops the list (17 percent).  Other financial goals include:
·       Save a percentage of household income each month (15 percent)
·       Only buy what they can afford (14 percent)
·       Find a better or higher paying job (10 percent)
·       Save enough money to travel (6 percent)

American Express Spending & Saving Tracker research was completed online among a random sample of 2,025 consumers aged 18+. Interviewing was conducted by Echo Research between December 10 and December 15, 2010. Overall, the results have a margin of error of +/- 2.2percentage points at the 95 percent level of confidence. For access to previous American Express Spending & Saving Tracker results, please visit www.americanexpress.com/aboutus

Friday, January 7, 2011

Eye fitness becomes super chic with Lady Gaga at CES; GL20 camera glasses debut

January 7th, 2011 1:53 pm EST

We all know how important sunglasses are to eye fitness and to outdoor workouts in general.  January 6,  Lady Gaga and Polaroid amped that importance several thousand-fold by upping the  cool factor Gaga-style.  At the 2011 CES Polaroid press conference, Polaroid creative director Lady Gaga unveiled the Grey Line GL20 Camera Glasses: functional sunglasses that allow you to take pictures and display pictures on 1.5" LCD screens so others can see them.…

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