Excuse me while I gush about York County

Leave my apartment and turn left, and I can spend a few miles running through lightly traveled tree-lined neighborhoods.

This is only a few miles outside of the city.

This is only a few miles outside of the city.

Leave my apartment and turn right, and I can go from the heart of the city to cows grazing in a pasture in 5 miles.

This is why York is an awesome place for runners. Running the same type of road gets boring. If I was stuck running straight, rural routes I’d never make it through marathon training. Same if I was stuck stopping at a traffic light every block for mile after mile. For me, York is a perfect size for running.

Running early morning? I like to stay within the city where there are lots of well-lit sidewalks. Continue reading

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Weight Loss Basics

By John Kerchner, personal trainer,  performance coach, Share Care Elite trainer,Weight management coach at Unique Physique

There is one key element in determining your weight: Calories!

No, it is not, genetics, slow metabolism, thyroid problems, I’m not “eating enough.”

Let’s face some FACTS:

If you were stranded on a deserted island and there was no food, do you lose or gain weight? Common sense tells us that answer!

Common sense also tells us, if you want to lose weight, you must eat fewer calories than you burn. Plain and simple: Calories in < Calories out = weight loss!

Easier said than done, but here are 5 keys to aid weight loss:

1) Determine how many calories your body requires daily (average calories needed daily would be 1500 – 2000) and track ALL calories consumed. Even calories consumed in drinks! Many unnecessary calories are liquids. For example, substituting soda with a flavored water can save you 150 calories. Drink a regular coffee instead of a blended coffee and you can save 300 calories. EVERY calorie counts. Why is calorie tracking critical in the weight loss journey? Tracking calories will help you determine where you can cut back or make changes. It also holds you accountable with what you are consuming. Those that track calories lose more weight and are more successful in keeping the weight off. Remember, even small changes add up!

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CSA Summer: Week 18, featuring kale pesto and curry potatoes

I can’t tell you how excited I was about our CSA produce from Goldfinch Farm this week. Goodbye tomatoes and hello, leafy greens!

Roughly clockwise, from bottom left: Green onions, sweet potatoes, basil, green lettuce, green beans, kale, Asian pears, bell peppers, onion, potatoes and spinach. Photo by Chris Dunn.

Roughly clockwise, from bottom left: Green onions, sweet potatoes, basil, green lettuce, green beans, kale, Asian pears, bell peppers, onion, potatoes and spinach. Photo by Chris Dunn.

(Jeff did snag some green tomatoes for frying, but they were from the “seconds” bin.)

Earlier this week, I read a brief Real Simple piece about why you should sign up for a CSA. I’m a little biased, but I agree wholeheartedly with all the reasons listed and can heartily vouch for #2. When our CSA at Goldfinch wraps up at the end of the month, we’ll go back to determining our weekly menus and shopping at the grocery store accordingly, but I love our 20ish-week break from that routine.

On to the recipes!

We used our big, beautiful kale to make kale pesto:

Kale pesto served on toasted bread and topped with fried eggs. Photo by Chris Dunn.

Kale pesto served on toasted bread and topped with fried eggs. Photo by Chris Dunn.

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How to incorporate locally-grown produce in hummus

Cheryl Ness, co-owner of Saucy Girls, pours chickpeas into a mixer while making hummus at her stand at Central Market on Thursday. (Jason Plotkin - York Daily Record/Sunday News)

Cheryl Ness, co-owner of Saucy Girls, pours chickpeas into a mixer while making hummus at her stand at Central Market on Thursday. (Jason Plotkin – York Daily Record/Sunday News)

Hummus is a popular Middle Eastern bean dip that has made eating vegetables more bearable while providing a great source of protein. You don’t have to stick with the standard chickpeas though, try mixing up the ingredients you use to incorporate some locally-grown produce. All you need is a food processor and the willingness to experiment.

Beans, beans the magical fruit

Hummus is really flexible, so you can try using different beans. For different flavors, you can use edamame, beets, split peas or carrots as well. Using canned beans are perfectly acceptable, but Cheryl Ness, co-owner of Saucy Girls in York Central Market prefers to use dried beans from Penderbrooks Whole Foods, also in market. Dried beans have a different texture, but you also avoid the tin taste from a can, Ness said. Soak the dried beans in water overnight before you cook them and add them to the food processor. Some of the other names chickpeas go by include garbanzo beans and salad peas.

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Spare your friends, brag about your runs in a training log.

calendarI’ve been keeping a training log pretty much since the day I started training for my first race. It’s one of the 80 billion things you read that you’re supposed to do that I actually stuck with. (Wearing a heart rate monitor, eating and then waiting like two hours before long runs and yoga are among the 79,999,999,997 things that didn’t stick.)

For me, the training log is a multi-purpose machine.

Purpose #1

Validation. Yes, I did complete the 15 mile run in the rain! I wrote it down and now that record will exist on my google calendar forever! I live with a cat and the only thing she cares about when it comes to my running is how salty I am when I get back. Can she get a lick in before I tell her she’s gross and get in the shower? It’s a race against the clock! Writing down my run on my calendar gives me the same satisfaction as making a list and then checking items off that list. It just feels good.

Purpose #2

Countdown to new shoes. Sneakers vary, and so do runners. I’ve found when I get close to 400 miles, it’s time for me to get some new sneaks. Having my mileage written down lets me calculate how close I am to that point, and plan ahead. For example, if I can tell I’m going to hit the 400 mark right before a marathon, I’ll buy new sneaks a few weeks in advance so I can break them in instead of turning into one giant blister one race day.

Purpose #3

Reflect. The good, the bad, the ugly. Logging your workouts gives you a concrete look at what you did and when. It’s easy to have a few bad runs and convince yourself it’s been months of terrible runs. I tend to note if I’ve been struggling so I can see when that garbage started and what I was doing around that time. Oh look at that, your crummy runs started the day after you tried to teach yourself powerlifting? I think we found the culprit! Have a really successful race? You’ve got a personalized guide to what you did to get there! I’ve had a rough patch training recently and it was so helpful to be able to look at how my training this time has differed from last. Continue reading

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Hot yoga. It’s a powerful thing

There are things I have done in my life, that had you asked me if I was going to do them a month before – or in some cases even an hour before – I did them, I would have said, “I will never do that.”  Getting a dog was one of those things.  No way I saw that in my future, and then one day I was laying in bed with a dog’s butt in my face, thinking, “How exactly did this happen?” Running was another one of those things.  I never saw that coming either.

I can now add hot yoga to that list.

Mark and I went to a hot yoga class last night, at a yoga studio here in York.  Our friend Craig invited us.  I mean, I thought he was our friend.  Now I am not so sure. He failed to mention that this was a hot yoga class.  I have taken a few beginner yoga classes at Lotus Moon in York city.  Those classes were easy going, the room was the perfect temperature, there was happy morning sunlight streaming through the windows, and they played spa music, burned incense, and talked in a soothing voice about thanking yourself for all the beautiful things you do and how cool you are that you came to yoga.

Hot yoga is nothing like that at all and Craig failed to mentally prepare me for what was about to happen.  Pretty sure I will never forgive him for that.  Ever. Continue reading

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Disc golf great for family exercise

Submitted

Submitted

By Julie Stefanski, Clinical Dietitian at WellSpan Health, Twitter: @foodhelp123

Until this past Saturday I was an official disc golf rookie. If you’re looking for a fun way to get more active and enjoy the outdoors, disc golf may be right up your alley. Our family has fun causally tossing discs into a goal in the backyard or into the entrance to our trampoline, but we were ready to aim for some real holes this time. We didn’t know where to find a real disc golf course so we checked out the website www.dgcoursereview.com. It was a cloudy, cool day as we headed out to Samuel S. Lewis State Park to tackle nine holes of a woodsy, fun course.

Official disc golf takes place on a set course, much like real golf. There’s a set place marked to begin (a putting green) and an eventual “hole” to successfully get your Frisbee or disc into along with a par for the number of tosses deemed as a good performance.

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CSA Summer: Week 17, featuring cauliflower pasta shells, loaded baked sweet potato

Our full CSA share from Goldfinch Farm took a decided turn toward autumn this week. Take a look:

Roughly clockwise, from bottom left: Sweet potatoes, bell peppers, basil and parsley, beans (green, wax, purple and dragon tongue), cauliflower, lettuce, potatoes, onions, hot peppers, garlic and pears. Photo by Chris Dunn.

Roughly clockwise, from bottom left: Sweet potatoes, bell peppers, basil and parsley, beans (green, wax, purple and dragon tongue), cauliflower, lettuce, potatoes, onions, hot peppers, garlic and pears. Photo by Chris Dunn.

I really love this time of year because it’s peak garlic season, we’re no longer flooded with tomatoes and now we have sweet potatoes.

But first, cauliflower with shell pasta:

Cauliflower with pasta shells. Photo by Chris Dunn.

Cauliflower with pasta shells. Photo by Chris Dunn.

We used Food52’s recipe, with no alterations. I was really excited because, minus the cauliflower and substituting the shells for spaghetti, it’s basically the same way I make my emergency pasta — which is so-named because I can throw it together whenever I need a quick, easy meal. Continue reading

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Ear health: Know how to clean your ears

Larry Clemens, 80 of Manchester Township, takes an audiogram test conducted by audiologist Alisa Kauffman during an ear appointment at York ENT Associates in Spring Garden Township. (Chris Dunn — Daily Record/Sunday News)

Larry Clemens, 80 of Manchester Township, takes an audiogram test conducted by audiologist Alisa Kauffman during an ear appointment at York ENT Associates in Spring Garden Township. (Chris Dunn — Daily Record/Sunday News)

Everyone has ear wax, but not everyone has the same understanding of how to safely get rid of it — or if they should even get rid of it at all. So, we asked Dr. Brian Flowers, otolaryngologist at York ENT Associates what to do about everyday ear health.

What should people know about cleaning their ears?

In general people should not have to clean the ear canals regularly. The canals have a self cleaning mechanism… (the wax) will fall out in most cases. The use of a gentle washcloth in the shower is probably almost people need, but cotton swabs can be used carefully to try to tease wax out of the ear canal. The problem is when people stick the cotton swab into the ear and push the wax that is about to, extrude back into the ear canal. When this happens, the wax will then accumulate and be too heavy to come out on its own. In addition, cotton swabs can be used too aggressively and can abrade the ear canal.

We want some wax to remain lining the skin of the ear canal as it keeps it waterproof. Everyone makes a different amount of wax and the wax can have different consistencies. The need to truly clean an ear canal thus varies between people.

The ear suction (a sort of vacuum) is a device used to remove wax of a certain consistency without pain. It is best with a soft wax which then adheres to the suction better. In our office we have a number of tools to remove wax and I assess the consistency and character of the wax and then used the appropriate tool. Many primary care offices will use an irrigation system. This also only works if the wax is not overly adherent to the ear canal. I use a combination of either the suction, a small forcep to grasp the wax, a spoon to remove the wax which is known as a curette, or irrigation.

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YWCA York Walk A Mile in Her Shoes event

For more event details and to join the No Sweat team, click here. Note the event has been postponed to Nov. 6.

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