Thursday , September 29 2016
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Prevent Colon Cancer, Part II

Q&A WITH THE FITNESS DIVA  Crystal Manjarres  Now that you know that the colon is considered the sewer system of the body, it makes sense to pay even closer attention to what we eat. In part one we learned that smoking increases our risk for colorectal cancer, as does high amounts of red meat and alcohol. We learned the importance of knowing our family history, getting screened, and the benefits of colon hydrotherapy to cleanse the colon of toxic waste. Now we will go over a few simple tips that will also help to keep your colon healthy. Keep ... Read More »

Prevent Colon Cancer

FITNESS DIVA Crystal Manjarres Did you know that your colon is considered the sewer system of the body? Picture a septic tank (or an actual sewage system) brimming with putrefying toxins and bacteria thriving in the moist, hot environment. Easy to see how ill health can be sure to follow, isn’t it? In a (extremely simple) nut-shell, the colon is designed to absorb water, salts, and minerals before evacuating the remaining waste. If your diet is chock-full of the Standard American Diet (S.A.D.) of refined foods, simple carbohydrates, packaged foods, empty-calories, etc. then your colon provides the perfect breeding ground ... Read More »

Build a Better Core

FITNESS DIVA Crystal Manjarres When you think of core, is the first thing that pops into your mind a six-pack set of abs? If so, you are not alone. Many people want washboard abs and are convinced that to have them means cranking out the crunches and will do whatever it takes to try to attain them. What most people don’t realize is that our core serves a more important function aside from esthetic appearance. Like the trunk of a tree or the center of an apple, it is essential to the strength and structure of our body. Can you ... Read More »

Baby Got Back

FITNESS DIVA Crystal Manjarres Do you sit at a desk all day or sit for the majority of the day? Do you practice strengthening your postural muscles when you stand or sit? Do you train those often neglected back muscles or forget that they’re there because they aren’t easily visible to you? Most people are desk jockeys and a larger waistline isn’t the only thing to be concerned about. Most of us have the memories of a parent or teacher reminding us to sit up straight—some of us didn’t. Either way, your mother may have been onto something. For one, ... Read More »

Are you a “desk” potato?

Q&A WITH THE FITNESS DIVA Crystal Manjarres Want to get fit, but can’t leave your desk? No problem! You know you need to exercise. No time for morning exercise between work, kids, and dog? Does evening exercise leave you too hyper to sleep? Then the office workout is for you! If you have 5-10 minutes…Go stair climbing—seriously! Go up and down for five minutes straight without rest. Too easy? Climb them two at a time and add jumping jacks for thirty seconds after going up/down each flight. Take a one minute break and repeat. If you have 20-30 minutes…Warm up with ... Read More »

Is Splenda really good for you?

Q&A WITH THE FITNESS DIVA  Crystal Manjarres We’ve all seen the commercials— smiling moms baking “sugar” cookies with Splenda, surrounded by giddy kids waiting to dig in. I’m sure you or a friend gives sugar the cold shoulder in favor of this calorie-free sweetener for your morning cup of joe. The advertisers market it as “natural” and “made from sugar so it tastes like sugar,” but the reality couldn’t be further from the truth. The truth is the FDA has no definition for “natural” whatsoever; that being said, Splenda is a man-made chemical— you can’t go out in nature ... Read More »

Turn that keg into a six pack! Part II

Q&A WITH THE FITNESS DIVA  Crystal Manjarres   This is Part II of how to turn your keg into a six pack. Enjoy!  Tip #3: Cut your carbs. We as a society are crazy about carbs—either we avoid them like the plague or consume them in excess. If you are overweight (or even obese), chances are, you enjoy a high-carb diet. If you were to simply cut down on your carbohydrate consumption, you’d be surprised at how quickly the pounds would fall off (and reveal that washboard hidden beneath). Try eliminating the heaviest carbs first: pasta, bread (including bagels), ... Read More »

Turn that keg into a six pack!

Q&A WITH THE FITNESS DIVA  Crystal Manjarres I’m constantly asked what is the best way to get abs? The truth is, there is no “best” way or “only” way to go when it comes to getting a toned midsection. Everyone is different and make take a different approach when it comes to leaning down; that being said, I have a few suggestions that tend to work for most people. Here are my top five tips to chiseling your own six pack: Tip #1: Watch what you eat. This may seem like a no-brainer, but you’d be surprised at how ... Read More »


Q&A WITH THE FITNESS DIVA Crystal Manjarres I keep hearing conflicting information about coffee—is it good for me or not? It is definitely confusing—one minute the news is touting the benefits of coffee, and the next, it is calling it a poison. The opinion can literally change day-to-day, depending on the angle of the story. I will provide the facts from both sides and you can decide if you want to continue consuming it or not. Fact: coffee contains antioxidants. In order to benefit from a high intake of those antioxidants, you would have to drink more coffee—more coffee ... Read More »


Q&A WITH THE FITNESS DIVA  Crystal Manjarres When should I eat- before or after exercise?  When and what you eat prior to and after exercise depends largely upon what type of exercise you are doing, as well as your medical history. For instance, if you are a seventy-five year old woman with diabetes and want to take a morning walk, your food intake would differ than that of a thirty-five year old male with no known medical issues, who wants to play racquetball after work. That being said, there are some safe guidelines that everyone can benefit from—just keep ... Read More »


Q&A WITH THE FITNESS DIVA  Crystal Manjarres How much should I be exercising?  This is a multi-faceted answer; most experts recommend anywhere from thirty to sixty minutes of exercise per day. There is a lot of “conflicting” information out and about that has many people confused: some say ten minutes is all you need, while others tout twenty minutes or an hour; it all boils down to your goals. Are you looking to gain weight? Lose weight? Build muscle? Increase cardiovascular endurance? Enhance athletic performance? Maybe you just want to enjoy swimsuit shopping for once, or simply keep up ... Read More »


Q&A WITH THE FITNESS DIVA  Crystal Manjarres Are you stuck in an exercise rut? Try cross training!  Do you ever find that eating makes you happy? Do you ever notice that certain foods make you feel super happy? Women usually reach for comfort foods like chocolate, cookies, cake, (basically anything sweet) or salty. Men usually opt for salty and crunchy. Is your exercise mojo waning? Have you hit a plateau with your weight loss? Are you bored with your current workout? If you answered yes to any of the above, then you should incorporate cross training into your current ... Read More »

Sugar lover, part II

Q&A WITH THE FITNESS DIVA Crystal Manjarres Q. Are you addicted to sugar? A. Do you ever find that eating makes you happy? Do you ever notice that certain foods make you feel super happy? Women usually reach for comfort foods like chocolate, cookies, cake, (basically anything sweet) or salty. Men usually opt for salty and crunchy. Whatever your preference, consumption of carbohydrates is usually the food of choice; and the effects are real—thanks to your body pumping out serotonin. Serotonin is the hormone responsible for making you “feel good”. So, sad, happy, anxious, stressed, hungry, or bored, we ... Read More »


Crystal Manjarres Q. Are you addicted to sugar? – Part One.  A. If you’re conscious about your health, you’ve more than likely taken up exercise and watch what you eat. If you’re like most Americans, you’ve shunned fat, carbs, and salt; but what you may not know is that sugar is the one you should be focusing on. When people think of consuming too much sugar, the first thing they think of (aside from the pleasure derived from eating it) is diabetes. The second thought that crosses people’s minds is that they cannot get diabetes because _____ (you fill ... Read More »


Q&A WITH THE FITNESS DIVA Crystal Manjarres Q. February is American Heart Month! What are you doing to prevent heart disease? A. What is heart disease? Simply put, heart disease (also known as coronary heart disease) is “a disorder of the blood vessels of the heart that can lead to heart attack” according to the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute. When an artery becomes obstructed, oxygen and other nutrients are unable to reach the heart, and this subsequently leads to a heart attack. It is important to remember that heart disease is merely one of many cardiovascular diseases, ... Read More »

Bad knees

Q. I have bad knees. Can Pilates help to strengthen them? A. There are many things that can lead to “bad knees”: injury, arthritis, infection, degeneration and (rarely) tumors. Sometimes, misalignments of the joints above and below the knee are to blame, as well as years of overuse and abuse. But all is not lost. After getting the green light from your physician, seek out a knowledgeable and experienced Pilates instructor who can customize a workout specific to your needs. Movements done on the Pilates equipment can be a great way to not only assess an injury, but to treat ... Read More »

New Year’s goals and tips

Q&A WITH THE FITNESS DIVA Crystal Manjarres Q. We’re two weeks in! How are your New Year’s Resolutions faring? A. Now that the holidays are behind us, have you left your bad habits in 2011? Or, are they already threatening to creep back up on you? You are too busy to organize your meals, so you grab something quick on the go. You swore you were going to eat in every night for dinner and now you have guests coming in for the next couple of weeks who want to wine and dine. You promised yourself that you would ... Read More »


Crystal Manjarres Q. What are some tips for a healthier holiday season? A. When people think of the holidays, several images come to mind—generally yummy, indulgent food tops the list. We all know that the treats and eats are what can make or break us. Why not prepare ahead of time for the expected and unexpected? I generally workout in the days leading up to Christmas, so that when the big day arrives, I can squeeze in a morning workout if I want to, or sleep in and take it easy. We all deserve at least one rest day ... Read More »


Crystal Manjarres  Q. Thanksgiving is here! How can I avoid gaining weight? A. The fall season is littered with opportunities to fall off the fitness wagon: Halloween festivals and “fun-size” candies, November potlucks and the inevitable Thanksgiving Day feast, plus the holiday parties galore in December with Christmas, New Year’s Eve and so on. It is no wonder the holidays make fitness devotees apprehensive with weight-gain worry. After surviving many holiday seasons successfully, I can give you some tips that I have used to prevent the dreaded belly bulge. Rule number one: workout first thing in the morning! Seriously–pump some ... Read More »

Not motivated?

Crystal Manjarres  Q. What are some fun ways to boost my fitness motivation?  A. So many people want to work out, but lack the motivation or are intimidated by that first step. The obvious solution is to seek out a knowledgeable (and fun!) personal trainer. Ask yourself what is your “fitness personality”? Do you prefer undivided, one-on-one attention with an individualized fitness, nutrition and cardio plan? Do you desire a private atmosphere where you can dress down with comfy workout clothes, bad hair, and no make-up? Do you like to pick your appointment times and have someone train you on ... Read More »