Archive for September 2011

Friday Fitness: What you may not know about Devin’s Dash

Devin’s Dash is only 8 days away!!! We’re so honored to be able to celebrate Devin’s life through such an event, as his passion for running and healthy living was evident in his everyday life. Help us spead his ‘Pure Energy’!

The big day is next Saturday, October 8th!! The race starts at 8 am and will be followed by a pool party celebrating the life of Devin and all those touched by cancer. Join us for some H3 snacks, Yoga, Zumba Latin dancing, award announcements and raffle prizes! There’s still time to register – just visit the websit below:

Don’t miss this year’s packet pick-up and Sponsorship Expo on Friday, October 7th from 3-7 pm, for your chance to purchase raffle tickets, reunite with members from the cast of “HEAVY,” listen to a special presentation from H3 Education Director Bob Wright, receive free blood screenings and visit with exhibitors from local businesses.

If you are unable to attend this year’s festivities, you can still support the American Cancer Society by making a donation in Devin’s name through this website:

Contact Jeff Ford at for more information.



Getting Your Spouse on Board

It can be difficult to leave the supporting environment at H3 and return to your ‘old’ life. One of the most challenging parts of this transition can be getting your spouse or support system at home on board with your new healthy lifestyle. Here are some tips on how to integrate your healthy diet with your loved one’s.

  • Incorporate your partner into your routine.
  • Engage in non-food related activities.
  • Cook together!
  • Show your love by preparing lunch for them.

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Get H3 Inspired: Karen McCarty

There are many compelling reasons that motivate people to come to Hilton Head Health. The most obvious is weight loss but the programs there go much deeper than calories and exercise.  Before coming to H3, my eating schedule was haphazard at best.  Many mornings all I had was coffee and wouldn’t eat until mid-morning or afternoon. Usually, I had only two meals a day. In July, I saw my physician and was diagnosed with diabetes.  I should have seen it coming; poor eating habits, sedentary lifestyle, a family history of the disease, and gaining weight in the perfect apple silhouette. That’s when I knew I had to make a change and commit to managing the disease with diet and exercise.

After researching dozens of health and weight loss retreats, I chose H3 and traveled from Oregon to South Carolina. When I arrived, I was immediately impressed with the courteous and friendly staff.  I checked into my “cottage” which resembles a townhouse, complete with washer and dryer. It felt like home. You’re given a backpack, water bottle and a notebook/binder. The binder is a terrific idea; it has sections for Nutrition, Exercise, Self, and Schedules so you have all your notes and handouts organized for you when you go home.

I was surprised to learn that lunch and dinner were sit down meals, elegantly prepared and served—no cafeteria lines here! And the food is delicious, nutritious and low in calories to promote weight loss. The ingredients are fresh, many coming from the H3 Garden.  A main principle at H3 is to eat smaller portions throughout the day, so you never feel hungry and your blood sugar is stable. In addition to the three basic meals, you eat a “Metabo Meal” (snack) three times a day. This simple routine made a significant change on my health.

I decided to stay at H3 for three weeks, giving myself the benefit of time for the things I learned in the program to stick and to participate in the Diabetes Enhancement Week. It completely surpassed my already high expectations. I’ve lost 5% of my weight and my glucose levels are now in the normal range—all from the healthy H3 diet and exercise.

But let me share with you, this is no “boot camp” environment. The professional staff and long history of H3 (founded in 1976) provides an atmosphere that rivals any spa or resort. The outdoor pool and hot tub are salt water; there’s no chlorine to dry out your skin.  The common areas are immaculate and fresh white towels are provided all day long. If you’re poolside and it’s time for the Metabo Meal, fresh fruit and veggies miraculously appear.

The exercise classes are fun and there is enough variety offered to satisfy everyone. There are classes that target strength training, flexibility and cardio. And, H3 is such a supportive environment that you can experiment with classes there that might be more intimidating at home. I found that the cardio-boxing class was a lot of fun, but would have been reluctant to try it at home if it weren’t for H3.

You can rent a bike to explore the island along easy bike paths. There are also off campus excursions like kayaking, golf, tennis and even movie nights. Several times during the week, one of the H3 chefs will have a cooking demonstration where I learned to make cherry ketchup! It’s fantastic!

Other superb options include scheduling a massage, a one-on-one session with a trainer, a consultation with the chef to help you plan for meals at home, or a private meeting with one of the fitness experts to create a customized workout plan for you to do at home—one of the services I have found most useful. The staff there is totally committed to your success. The guests are friendly and it’s possible to make lifelong friendships with some of the people you meet during your stay.

The website and H3Daily blog offer a lot of resources for guests after they return home, and H3 also offers a H3@Home Coaching program to help you stay on track after you leave with one-on-one emails and strategies for success.

When I ask other guests their impression of H3, everyone concurs, “This place is fantastic.”  Often heard is, “This is the best thing I have ever done for myself.” I would encourage you to try it too.

Thank you!

-Karen McCarty; Portland, OregonKaren_McCarty



Deadlines – Good or Bad?


What deadlines are you facing right now?  How do you feel about them?  I’m not sure which kind is worse – the deadline that sneaks up on you and you miss it before even realizing it, or the one that you dread for weeks on end, still procrastinating that dreadful task.  Deadlines can certainly cause extreme stress at times, but sometimes you may find them extremely helpful.

Deadlines are set to help you establish priorities.  They help you protect your own time by refraining from working too long on a project, and they help you respect others’ time as well by completing your task so the next person can get their job done.  They also help you adapt and respond to change. 

Here are some other benefits of setting deadlines:

  1. Provides a framework for setting a schedule.
  2. Improves your work ethic
  3. Prevents procrastination
  4. Moves you closer towards your goals
  5. Provides a sense of accomplishment after meeting a deadline
  6. May prevent you from overloading your schedule

Moving into the final quarter of 2011, what are your deadlines?  Personal deadlines?  Business deadlines?  Focus on making these goals realistic so that you finish the year on top, rather than moving into 2012 with “unfinished business”.  Taking some time now to prioritize and delegate will help save you in the end, when the holidays also consume your thoughts, time and energy.  Sharing your deadline with others can also help you stay committed to your goal.  Would you like to share yours with us?



H3 Recipe: Roasted Pork Tenderloin with Apricot-Ginger Sauce

pork tenderloin

Roasted Pork Recipe


2 each Pork tenderloins, cleaned and trimmed, plain

½ teaspoon Sea salt

¼ teaspoon Ground white pepper

Meat thermometer


½ cup Soy sauce, low sodium

½ cup Maple syrup, sugar free

1 Tablespoon Rosemary, fresh, chopped

1 Tablespoon Thyme, fresh, chopped

1 Tablespoon Garlic, chopped

1 each Shallot, chopped


  • Marinate pork tenderloin or pork medallions at least an hour before cooking. 
  • Reserve some marinade and place in sauce pot, reduce to use as sauce.
  • Preheat oven to 350º F
  • Place parchment paper on baking sheet, or simply spray sheet with cooking spray.
  • Place each tenderloin on the baking sheet and season.
  • Bake in oven for 20 minutes or until the internal temperature reaches 145º F. This internal temperature will cook the pork at a medium.  If a well done center is desired, cook to an internal temperature of 160ºF.
  • Once tenderloin has reached your desired doneness, slice on a bias and serve with your favorite sauce, our apricot-ginger sauce (below) or our spiced apple compote.

Number of Servings: 6

Serving Size: 4 ounces

Calories: 170

Fat: 2

Apricot-Ginger Sauce


2 ½ Tablespoons Shallots, minced

1 Tablespoon Ginger, grated

1 cup Apricot nectar

1 cup Chicken stock

2 Tablespoons Dried apricots, diced

2 Tablespoons Currants

1 ½ Tablespoons Brown Sugar

1 ½ Tablespoons Dark balsamic vinegar


  • Heat pot.
  • Coat pot with cooking spray.
  • Sauté ginger and shallots.
  • Add remaining ingredients.
  • Simmer for 20 minutes

Chef’s Note:  This is a great sauce over Mahi Mahi, pork tenderloin, grilled salmon and even duck breast.  Another variation is to only add: ginger, garlic, shallots, soy sauce, chicken stock and brown sugar.  If serving with Mahi Mahi, I would also add fresh or canned pineapple if available.

 Number of servings: 8

Serving Size: ¼ cup

Calories: 23

Fat Grams: .2



Coaching Corner: Make the Most of your Mornings


Mornings are by far my favorite time of the day.  Each beginning of the day brings about new opportunities; there is great hope in mornings. What is your morning routine?

Most people start their day when the alarm goes off; they open up their eyes just wide enough to find the snooze button and then go back to sleep.  They wake up again when the alarm goes off, hit the snooze button and close their eyes again. This can go on for some time. Many of us even set our alarms a few minutes early so that we have time to hit the snooze button a few more times before we have to get up.

Getting out of bed at the first beep is your first opportunity to say “yes” for the day.  By establishing a good and efficient morning routine, we will no longer succumb to hectic mornings, but establish our own pace for the day.

Below are a few ideas of how to take back your mornings. Implementing just one of these suggestions can have a huge impact on your morning and ultimately your day.

Hydrate: The first thing most of us stumble for in the morning is the coffee machine. There is something so comforting and warming about a cup of coffee. Before you pour that first cup, drink one full glass of water.  You may not realize it, but your body loses a good amount of water throughout the night. Hydrating first thing will replenish that lost water. We all know the benefits of proper hydration. Why not get a jump on the day?

Prepare the night before: This is a great strategy for an energized and efficient morning. Instead of trying on every outfit in your closet in the morning or digging through the laundry for your kid’s favorite t-shirt, lay out clothes the night before. We called it “laying out your bodies” growing up. Pick out everything from shirt to socks, taking all of the guess work out of “what will I wear today?” If you bring your lunch to work or pack meals for your family, try assembling what you can in the evening and add the finishing touches in the morning. This will cut down on the work to be done first thing as well as give you more time to preparing healthy options.

Eat breakfast:  Breakfast really is the most important meal of the day for a variety of reasons.  For one, It helps you make better choices throughout the day. If you skip breakfast, then you are more likely to overeat or make poor choices later on in the day when the hunger catches up with you. Remember that food is fuel; breakfast will replenish your glycogen stores and give you energy to dive into your day.

Quite time: How often do we sit down at the end of the day and realize that we have not really checked in with ourselves that day? That we have been going all day and we have not taken an inventory of what is happening in our lives, what we are doing, or how we are feeling? Mornings are the best time for a little “me” time.  Sitting even 10 minutes in the quiet can do amazing things to positively impact your day. This is a time to reconnect with you. Review goals for the week and how they are going, do some spiritual reading or meditate. Whatever it takes for you to relax, check in and mentally prepare to be present in the day.



Smart Cart Top 5

Grocery cart

Going to the grocery store can be a challenge; the colorful advertisements, bustling customers, and trying to shop on a budget and nutritionally. Where do we begin? Here are my top 5 tips to make your grocery shopping a breeze!

1. Whole wheat: Whole wheat pasta, bread, pita bread, english muffins, cous cous, orzo, tortillas, and rice. Given the opportunity choose whole wheat grains. Multi-grain can be a combination of flours and not pack as much fiber and protein as a whole wheat option. Whole wheat is loaded with fiber and protein, keeping you fuller longer.

2. Ground chicken breast or turkey breast: Buying ground chicken or ground turkey is a step in the right direction. However, it is best to choose ground chicken breast or ground turkey breast when choosing poultry. For 4 ounces of ground chicken you are looking at about 12-16 grams of fat per serving. If you choose ground chicken breast, you cut the fat to about 1.5 -4 grams of fat per serving. Big difference!

3. Low sodium: When choosing stock, soups, seasoning packets, or beans. Decide to choose the package labeled “low sodium”. Many prepackaged foods are loaded with salt. Choose the low-sodium option and if you need to add more salt, you can control how much salt you add and consume.

4. Skim or Low-fat Dairy: Cottage cheese, yogurt, milk, and cheese are all delicious! Here at H3, we use low-fat or non-fat dairy products most of the time. Try different brands and see which ones you can live with being low-fat or non-fat and stick with them. When making a sandwich or you H3 Pita Pizza, you can use a half ounce of full-fat cheese, such as feta or provolone. Choosing a full fat option and cutting the portion will satisfy you and will make it easier to use less.

5. Convenient Produce: In the produce isle you can find several fruits and vegetables pre packaged. This produce is already prepared for you, which will make throwing dinner together quick, easy, and nutritious. Buying fresh pre cut fruit is a great idea for your breakfast too, throw some berries onto your H3 Eye Opener Oatmeal every morning.

Don’t let the grocery store scare you. It’s easy, go in there with a Metabo Meal in your stomach and a shopping list; you will dominate that grocery store before you know it!



Friday Fitness: New Target Heart Rate Formula For Women

For the past 40 years, the standard heart rate zone guidelines had been based on studies conducted solely on men. Ohio State University Medical Center cardiologist Martha Gulati has found that women have a different exercise capacity that should be measured using a gender specific formula. A target heart rate zone can help you determine how hard you should be working during aerobic exercise.


Gulati’s study recruited 5,437 women in the Chicago area 30 and older and followed them for over 20 years. Her team conducted stress tests to find that women’s peak heart rates are generally a bit lower than men of the same age. So, she set out to create a more female-friendly equation. Granted the new equation requires a little more math than the previous autonomous model.

Here is a nice graphic courtesy of USA Today to help explain the new formula versus the standard guideline:




Get Fooducated

A guest recently made me aware of a new app that sounds pretty interesting. It’s called Fooducate.

Pick a product off the shelf in the store, scan the bar code and Fooducate gives you a nutritional breakdown of the products, assigns it a letter grade ( A would an excellent choice, D not so good) and when available, suggests more nutritious options with in that food’s category. According to the website, Fooducate was created by dieticians and concerned parents. It has a data base of over 200,000 products and more are being added daily. It uses your mobile phone’s camera to scan the UPC barcode and works on the iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Android OS version 2.2 and up.

Since I am still in the dark ages of cell phones, I have not used the app myself. I have talked to a couple of people who have used it, however, and they found it helpful. If you have it or get it, I would be interested in in hearing what you think about it.



How to Prevent the Common Cold


It’s that time of year—the time of year when you want to rush into your office and shut the door to keep the germs out; the time of year when you want to stand at least five feet from everyone you talk to; the time of year when you’d rather tap fists instead of shake hands to say hello. Instead of going to those extremes, we’ve got something else that can help you ward off disease… I’m talking about exercise! It is believed that moderate exercise and physical activity throughout the week can reduce the number of colds you get in a year.

You may already know that exercise helps prevent the development of chronic diseases such as diabetes and heart disease, but did you know it can also help you ward off the common cold? The answer is yes! According to the Harvard Medical School, a healthy lifestyle is the single best step you can take toward keeping your immune system strong and healthy. Regular exercise keeps your body strong, alert and ready for battle! According to the publication, exercise contributes directly by promoting good circulation, which allows the cells and substances of the immune system to move through the body freely and do their job efficiently.

So as the temperature begins to change and we enter cold & flu season, remember these healthy lifestyle practices to help you defend against the common cold:

  • Don’t smoke.
  • Eat a diet high in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, and low in saturated fat.
  • Exercise regularly.
  • Maintain a healthy weight.
  • Control your blood pressure.
  • If you drink alcohol, drink only in moderation.
  • Get adequate sleep.
  • Take steps to avoid infection, such as washing your hands frequently and cooking meats thoroughly.
  • Get regular medical screening tests for people in your age group and risk category


Source: “How to Boost Your Immune System,” Harvard School of Medicine



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