Friday, January 30, 2009

Fitness Routine for the Beginner

This routine is the one I follow as I recover from Cancer (Follicular Lymphoma). Start by doing one set per exercise before you progress to two sets per exercise. The routine is to be repeated every fourth day. Example: Train on Monday and then again on Friday and then again on Tuesday and then again on Saturday and so on and so on.

Squats: 2 x 8
Standing Calves: 2 x 15
Bench: 2 x 8
Deadlifts: 2 x 8
Seated Back Supported DB Press: 2 x 8
Pulldowns: 2 x 8
DB Shrugs: 2 x 8
Seated DB Curls: 2 x 8
Crunches: 2 x 12
If you have any questions, call me! I answer my own phone!
George Pragovich
Cancer Recovery and Fitness Specialist
Skype: georgefitnesstrainer

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Three Big Reasons Why You Don't Want to be a Vegetarian

Below is an article from the web site of Al Sears MD.

Meat is Your ONLY Source of These Must-Have Nutrients
When I ask my university students if they’re vegetarians or meat eaters at least two-thirds of the class claims to be vegetarians. But most of them admit to eating fish, poultry and dairy products.
This wishful thinking is common to vegetarians. Even nutrition students are misinformed. Avoiding red meat doesn’t make you a vegetarian… and it doesn’t make you any healthier.
Here’s the bottom line: If you follow a true “vegetarian” no-meat diet, you may be robbing yourself of three critical nutrients you need to stay healthy.
Today I’ll show you how this happens and how you can avoid it. I’ll also give you easy-to-follow guidelines for safely enjoying the kind of red meat your ancestors thrived on.
On a Vegetarian Diet There’s a 93% Chance You’re Not Getting Enough Zinc
By avoiding beef, you are over 7 times more likely to suffer a zinc deficiency. 1 Check out this graph:
And that’s bad news. As a mineral, zinc is second only to iron in concentrations in the body. It helps in the production of hundreds of enzymes that are responsible for regulating your bodily functions.The prostate has the highest concentration of zinc in the body. And a deficiency has been linked to inflammation of the prostate known as prostatitis. Zinc also has many anti-aging benefits. It is essential for making superoxide dismutase (SOD), the most potent antioxidant that your body has. It also gives your skin a more youthful look. Zinc is essential for your body to use collagen which makes your skin more resilient and elastic – to fight off wrinkles and saggy skin.Zinc also keeps your vision sharp by transporting vitamin A to the retina, improving night vision. And it protects retinal cells from free radical damage while helping to slow down the progression of age-related macular degeneration (AMD). The list of zinc’s crucial role in your health is long, including:
Promote a healthy immune system
Growth of reproductive organs
Fertility and conception
Prevent acne and regulate the activity of oil glands
Aid in protein synthesis and collagen formation
Cell reproduction and wound healing
Perception of taste and smell
Protect the liver from chemical damage
Bone formation
Maintain both vitamin E and vitamin A in the blood
Decrease the amount of copper absorbed
Zinc deficiency is just the start of “veggie-only” dangers. There are two other critical nutrients you only get from red meat…
Avoiding Beef Robs You of Energy …
You’ve heard me talk about it before: CoQ10 is vital to your heart’s survival.
Every cell in your body uses CoQ10 for high-octane energy. And your heart needs massive amounts of energy to pump blood… around the clock… every day.
I hope you’re paying attention, vegetarians, because red meat is the ONLY dietary source of heart-critical CoQ10.
In my own practice I see it all the time… vegetarians with critically low levels of this vital nutrient.
CoQ10 is not only vital to your heart’s ability to pump blood, it’s essential to life itself. That’s because every single organ in your body uses CoQ10 to get the energy they need to function. And if you don’t eat red meat, you’re not getting enough from your food. Period.
…And Weakens Your Mind
Here’s the third critical nutrient missing from vegetarian diets: Vitamin B12.
The body uses B12 to create red blood cells. It also helps maintain the nervous system, and is critical for brain health. B12 forms a protective layer around the nerve cells in your brain. Without that protective layer your brain can’t function properly.
Deficiency can cause memory loss, “brain fog” or worse… not to mention anemia and neuropathy where the degeneration of nerve fibers causes irreversible neurological damage.
And even vegetarians admit you can’t get reliable dietary sources of B12 from anything but animal sources like liver, fish, eggs and meat.
Urban Legend versus Real Science
Vegetarian ideas are not backed by real science. Many are simply myths or urban legends. And some of them are dangerous.
Here are a few examples:
Animal fats cause heart disease – Studies have shown that the plaque in arteries that causes heart disease is mostly made of unsaturated fats, especially polyunsaturated ones (in vegetable oil), not the saturated fat of animals like vegetarians believe.2
In fact, the body needs saturated fats to be able to use other key nutrients, like fatty-acids and fat-soluble vitamins.
Here’s another vegetarian slip-up:
Vegetarians live longer and have more energy – This one is misleading… The reports of vegetarians living longer are likely due to the fact that most of them also choose to exercise, eat less junk food, and not smoke.
One massive study on heart disease by Russell Smith, PhD. showed that when the consumption of animal products increased, mortality rates decreased!3
Moreover, a study by Burr and Sweetnam in 1982, revealed that, although vegetarians did have a slightly lower (0.11%) rate of heart disease than meat eaters (again, probably due to other healthy choices), the overall death rate was much higher for vegetarians!4
In spite of the evidence, religious and politically correct groups continue to perpetuate the myth that meat-eating peoples have shorter life spans.
Here’s another baseless myth:
Humans evolved as vegetarians – Think so? Here’s a fact: There are NO native vegetarians. Every native culture known to man – both past and present – has prized meat above all else.
You can start by looking at the modern equivalents to our ancestors. There are many native people today who live in a fashion similar to our cave man ancestors, and they have much lower rates of heart disease and other degenerative conditions than we do. What are they eating? Lots of animal fats.
Take the Aborigines of Australia. They eat a diet rich in animal products, and are renowned for their longevity (at least before Western diets entered the picture).5
Explorers report remarkably old ages among the Eskimos or Inuit (again, before western influence) who eat large quantities of whale and seal fat.6
How about the Russians of the Caucasus mountains? They live to great ages eating fatty pork and whole raw milk products.
Then there are the Hunzas, who are legendary for their robust health and longevity. They eat large portions of goat’s milk which has higher saturated fat content than cow’s milk.7
Yet, the mostly vegetarian Hindus of southern India have the shortest life spans in the world! That’s partly because of a lack of food, but also because of a distinct lack of animal protein in their diets.8The bottom line: Vegetarians say that a diet of meat and animal fat leads to a premature death. Anthropological data from primitive societies do not support that claim.9Here’s a common vegetarian misconception I would find laughable if it weren’t for how tragic the results can be:
You can get what you need by substituting meat and dairy with soy – Hello? Has anyone preaching the “vegetarian gospel” even read the facts?
The fermented soy foods like miso, tamari, tempeh and natto are definitely healthful in certain amounts, but the super-processed soy products that most vegetarians consume are not. This is because unfermented soy is high in phytic acid.10 That’s an anti-nutrient that actually binds to minerals and carries them out of your body!
Vegetarians are known for their tendency to be mineral deficient. And the high grain and legume-based diet, which are full of phytates, is to blame.11, 12
Just look at the nutrition of soy. Like all legumes it’s low in cysteine, methionine, and tryptophan, all vital amino acids. Worse, soybeans contain no vitamin A or D, both of which are needed by the body to absorb the beans’ proteins!13
Check this out. Here are three key nutrients the body needs for optimal health. This chart shows beef versus vegetarian sources. You be the judge.
Vegetarian Foods Contain ZERO B12 and CoQ10
Daily Value
6 mcg
15 mg
%Daily Value

Beef (3oz)
Tofu (1/2cup)
Pinto Beans (1/2cup)
Black Beans (1/2cup)
Chickpeas (1/2cup)
Peanut Butter (2T)
Almonds (1oz)
Source: U.S. Department of Agriculture; Iowa State University
As you can see by the table above, there are no vegetarian sources of vitamin B12 or CoQ10… and only limited sources of zinc. That makes a balanced diet difficult.
Soy is no substitute for meat. Not only does soy rob you of essential nutrients, it can actually damage your health. Soy has high levels of phytoestrogens. Phytoestrogens feed tumors and can destroy your cognitive function. And they can severely affect development in children. Parents who feed their infants soy-based formula are feeding them the hormonal equivalent of 5 birth-control pills a day!14
Vegetarians Don’t Like to Admit It, but We Were All Born to Eat Meat
Simple fact is our ancestors thrived on meat. It’s part of the metabolism that is in your DNA. It’s perfectly natural to crave it, and to want to sink your teeth into a juicy steak. Don’t let myths or political correctness make you feel guilty about that.
Your body is telling you what you need. But you need to get real meat, not the poor excuse for meat that big corporations are shrink-wrapping for your local grocers.
Grass-fed beef is a much better option… It has a potent nutritional value, and is packed with CoQ10, zinc and vitamin B12 – and it has the proper ratio of omega fatty-acids. Commercial grain-fed cattle is poisonous by comparison.
Follow These 5 Simple Guidelines for Finding High-Quality Beef
Grass-fed beef is growing in popularity so you may find it at one of your local grocery stores. Places like Whole Foods usually have a wide selection of grass-fed meats, and they are often locally raised.
The best option I’ve found is HERE. I’ve been buying from them for years and I know the owner personally. Their quality is exceptional and they have a number of other raw and grass-fed products on hand. Their butters and cheeses are out-of-this-world delicious. By the way… when you order on line, your order is shipped to you by overnight mail – and your food is never compromised.
If you can’t get grass-fed, your best bet is beef raised without hormones or antibiotics. This meat will most likely be grain-fed but it’s widely available and clearly marked on the package. Usually grocery stores will separate this meat from the rest. If you’re unsure, just ask someone behind the meat counter and they’ll point it out if they have it. And don’t be shy about striking up a conversation… even if your grocery store doesn’t sell grass-fed or hormone-free beef they can often tell you where to find it.
If you’re not sure about the quality, here’s a simple rule of thumb: the cheaper the meat, the more contaminated it’s likely to be. When you see those super-saver sales… like the kind advertised on TV or stuffed into your mailbox at home, you can assume that it’s grain-fed and pumped full of every chemical and hormone known to man. It doesn’t pay to eat cheap meat.
Same rule applies when you’re going out to eat… meat from fast food restaurants is the worst. Especially those places offering you an entire burger or sandwich for 79 cents or whatever their offer of the moment happens to be. It’s poison.
If you’re still not convinced that a vegetarian diet is a disaster waiting to happen, you need to be vigilant about your supplements. You need a full range of B vitamins, minerals and a powerful CoQ10 source – preferably the reduced ubiquinol you find in my Accel. This is critical… no exceptions.
I recommend a homocysteine-reducing formula for your B vitamins, as they usually have a powerful blend of the ones you need most. They’re easy to find at your local vitamin store. For minerals – aside from zinc – I recommend you take chromium, selenium and boron. You can find them at vitamin or health food stores. Just follow the directions on the label.
For boron I recommend taking 3 to 6 mg a day. Selenium you should get at least 55 micrograms a day, and for chromium, 100 to 200 micrograms a day.
Die-hard vegetarians should have regular blood tests to protect against deficiency – especially for CoQ10. Many of my vegetarian patients have low CoQ10 levels, (1 mcg/ml or below). Try and at least double that. And for therapeutic levels, shoot for 3 to 4 mcg/ml.
If your doctor won’t order a test for CoQ10, you can go to Quest labs. You can find a location near you by searching their website: ____________________1Waylett, D.K.; The Role of Beef as a Source of Vital Nutrients in Healthy Diets. Prepared for National Cattlemen’s Beef Association. Arlington, VA: ENVIRON; July 1999.2 CV Felton and others. Dietary polyunsaturated fatty acids and composition of human aortic plaques. Lancet, 1994, 344:1195.3 R Smith and E Pinckney. Diet, Blood Cholesterol, and Coronary Heart Disease: A Critical Review of the Literature--vol. 2. (Vector Enterprises; CA)., 1991.4 ML Burr and PM Sweetnam. Vegetarianism, dietary fiber, and mortality. Amer J Clin Nutr, 1982, 36:873.5 WA Price. Nutrition and Physical Degeneration, 163-187.6 V. Stefansson. The Fat of the Land, (Macmillan; NY), 1956.7 G.Z. Pitskhelauri. The Long Living of Soviet Georgia. (Human Sciences Press; NY), 1982; (b) Thomas Moore. Lifespan: What Really Affects Human Longevity (Simon & Schuster; NY), 1990.8 HL Abrams. The relevance of paleolithic diet in determining contemporary nutritional needs. J Appl Nutr, 1979, 31:1,2:43-59.9 HL Abrams. Vegetarianism: An anthropological/nutritional evaluation. J Appl Nutr, 1980, 32:2:53-87.10 JN Freeland-Graves and others. Zinc status in vegetarians. J Am Diet Assoc 1980 Dec 77:655-611 BF Harland and others. Nutritional status and phytate: zinc and phytate x calcium:zinc dietary molar ratios of lacto-ovo vegetarian Trappist monks: 10 years later. J Am Diet Assoc 1988; 88: 1562-612 AS Sandberg. The effect of food processing on phytate hydrolysis and availability of iron and zinc. Adv Exp Med Biol, 1991, 289: 499-50813 L. Dunne. The Nutrition Almanac, 3rd edition, 306.14 M Fitzpatrick. Soy Isoflavones: Panacea or Poison? Jnl of PPNF, Fall 1998.

George Pragovich
Skype: georgefitnesstrainer

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Why Would Anyone Go on a Gluten-Free Diet if He Didn’t Have To?

For the last few years, the number of Americans going on gluten-free diets has increased. It make sense: Doctors are diagnosing more people with celiac disease or gluten intolerance.
But a strange thing is happening: People who don’t have either condition are cutting gluten out of their diet in an effort to lose weight and cleanse their system. And that could lead to health problems—and even weight gain.
Gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley, rye, and oats (usually due to contamination). For people who have a gluten intolerance, eating breads or even drinking a beer can cause abdominal pain, gas, bloating, and diarrhea. In the most extreme cases, in which doctors diagnose celiac disease, consuming gluten can set off an autoimmune response that damages the small intestine and makes it difficult to absorb nutrients. The government estimates that there are more than two million American’s with this disorder.
To prevent these problems, sufferers exclude gluten from their diet. It’s expensive and difficult, but that hasn’t stopped people without celiac disease from trying it—including some celebs. Oprah Winfrey and Jennifer Aniston dropped gluten as part of cleansing diets.
Celebrities will do anything to lose weight. More disturbing are reports that college students and young people are turning to gluten-free diets because they perceive them to be healthy.
But not only is it hard to be on a gluten-free diet, it also isn’t very healthy, according to nutritionist Julie Miller Jones, a professor of nutrition in the department of family, consumer, and nutritional sciences at the College of St. Catherine in St. Paul, Minn. “Why anyone would want to do this diet who didn’t have to is really beyond me,” she says. “It’s sort of faddy and trendy right now.”
Foods that contain gluten are often rich sources of B vitamins, calcium, vitamin D, iron, zinc, and magnesium, among other minerals, and many wheat products are actually fortified with these vitamins. People with celiac disease have to find other sources for those vitamins. People on a gluten-free diet have to do the same.
Jones says it’s hard to tell if there would be any long term weight-loss benefits from adopting a gluten-free diet. Initially, dieters might eat fewer carbs or might lose weight just because they have trouble finding affordable gluten-free alternatives. “A loaf of gluten-free bread is between $7 and $9 and you have to go to special stores,” she says. “It’s more expensive. It’s really hard to eat out. It can mean you won’t be able to eat many whole-grain foods. It’s a hard diet to follow.”
But once gluten-free dieters start substituting with gluten-free foods, they often gain weight. “The replacement products that are available are very low in fiber and have a very high glycemic index.” And they can be higher in fat because manufacturers sometimes replace gluten with fat.
In the Kelley household, we know firsthand how hard it is to go gluten-free. Our son has a major allergy to wheat, and we often use gluten-free substitutes and strategies. It’s time-consuming, and it’s expensive, but we do it because we have no choice. And we’re constantly worried about whether he gets enough of his vitamins.
But just because a diet seems healthier for people with food allergies or food intolerances—or even helps them lose weight—doesn’t mean it’s a good idea for anyone else.

George Pragovich

Thursday, January 15, 2009

New Study of Splenda and Sucralose

Source: Citizens for Health
Chairman of Citizens for Health Declares FDA Should Review Approval of Splenda
New Study of Splenda and Sucralose Reveals Shocking New Information About Potential Harmful Effect on Humans
MINNEAPOLIS, Sept. 22, 2008 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- James Turner, chairman of the national consumer education group Citizens for Health expressed shock and outrage after reading a new report from scientists at Duke University. "The report makes it clear that the artificial sweetener Splenda and its key component sucralose pose a threat to the people who consume the product. Hundreds of consumers have complained to us about side effects from using Splenda and this study, published this past week in the Journal of Toxicology and Environmental Health Part A, confirms that the chemicals in the little yellow package should carry a big red warning label," said Turner.
Among the results in the study by Drs. Mohamed B. Abou-Donia, Eman M. El-Masry, Ali A. Abdel-Rahman, Roger E. McLendon and Susan S. Schiffman is evidence that, in the animals studied, Splenda reduces the amount of good bacteria in the intestines by 50%, increases the pH level in the intestines, contributes to increases in body weight and affects the P-glycoprotein (P-gp) in the body in such a way that crucial health-related drugs could be rejected. Turner noted that the P-gp effect "could result in crucial medications used in chemotherapy for cancer patients, AIDS treatment and drugs for heart conditions being shunted back into the intestines rather than being absorbed by the body as intended."
The study was conducted using male rats over a period of twelve weeks. The manufacturers of Splenda also used a rat study when they applied for and received approval to market the product from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. At the time, the findings from their rat studies were extrapolated as to possible effects on humans. This is standard FDA practice and this study is consistent with that practice.
Turner said, "This report followed accepted policies and procedures and the results make clear the potential for disturbing side effects from the ingestion of Splenda. It is like putting a pesticide in your body. And this is at levels of intake erroneously approved by the Food and Drug Administration. A person eating two slices of cake and drinking two cups of coffee containing Splenda would ingest enough sucralose to affect the P-glycoprotein, while consuming just seven little Splenda packages reduces good bacteria." Although the effect of consuming Splenda does not result from a one time use, the side effects do occur after accumulated use. Turner also noted unmistakable evidence that Splenda is absorbed by fat, contrary to the claims of Johnson & Johnson.
Turner announced, "We are calling today on the FDA to immediately accept our petition filed over a year ago and initiate a review of its approval of sucralose and to require a warning label on Splenda packaging cautioning that people who take medications and/or have gastrointestinal problems avoid using Splenda. The new study makes it clear that Splenda can cause you to gain weight and lose the benefits of medications designed to improve and protect your health. The FDA should not continue to turn a blind eye to this health threat."
Citizens for Health will testify in Sacramento, CA, on October 3, 2008, before the California Assembly Committee on Health which is examining the use of deceptive advertising to promote sales of potentially unhealthy food additives, particularly artificial sweeteners.
About Citizens for Health
Citizens for Health ( is an international non-profit consumer advocacy group working to broaden healthcare options, create an integrative health system based on wellness, and advance the freedom to make health choices. The group promotes the fundamental policies needed to improve health choices and information in the U.S. and internationally. The group works with grassroots and education organizations and partners to ensure consumer access to dietary supplements, safe foods, a healthy environment and a wide range of healing therapies. Citizens for Health fosters active citizen leadership and organizes natural health consumers to create political and legislative solutions that support those rights. CONTACT: Citizens for Health
Jim Turner

George Pragovich
Skype: georgefitnesstrainer

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

New Year's Resolutions

I received this from Ricky Dale Crain's Newsletter:

January is the time of year when health clubs and weight-loss organizations make most of their profit for the year. That’s because the beginning of the year is when we all start fresh with positive resolutions for improvement, which we hope will propel us to great success -- at least until February.
I ran across these exercise funnies....
~ I joined a health club last year, spent about 400 bucks. Haven't lost a pound. Apparently, you have to show up.
~ If God meant us to touch our toes, he would have put them further up our body.
~ I have flabby thighs, but fortunately my stomach covers them.
~ If you are going to try cross-country skiing, start with a small country.
~ I don't jog. It makes the ice jump right out of my glass.
~ I like long walks, especially when they are taken by people who annoy me.
~ I have to exercise early in the morning before my brain figures out what I'mdoing.

George Pragovich
Skype: georgefitnesstrainer

Monday, January 12, 2009

Questions asked in the Initial Consultation

What injuries do you have that affect your ability to exercise?
Are you currently seeing a doctor? If so, why? Will this affect your ability to do certain exercises? What has your doctor said you should not do physically?
Are you currently exercising? If you are currently exercising, who created your exercise program? If you had a program created by someone else, why are we talking today?
What type of exercise is your favorite?
What are your goals?
What results would like to have happen as a result of exercising?
Do you have any food allergies?
Do you smoke?
What time of day is the best time for you to exercise?
Do you have at least two days a week available to exercise?
What budget have you created for your exercise program?
Will you need to be trained, mentored or both?
Are you familiar with Skype?
If I am training you, where will your training take place: at home, at the gym or will you be coming to me?

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Cancer Recovery and Fitness specialist

George Pragovich

Loyola University: B.A. Psychology
Harper Jr. College: Cardiac Rehab: Classes included How to exercise adults, Anatomy, Cardiac Rehab, CPR
National Institute of Fitness and Sport: Personal Training Class
Chicago Bulls Seminar taught by Bob Vermeil: How the Chicago Bulls Strength Train
Dr. Peyton Davis: Nutritionist: nine year period of testing the various training programs promoted through bodybuilding/powerlifting books and magazines.
Personal Training Business: in Chicago and Los Angeles
32 years as a Personal Fitness Trainer
My greatest success while a Personal Fitness Trainer: Reversing the effects of polio
My greatest personal success: Overcoming Follicular Lymphoma which is still a job in progress and has opened a new area of preventative and recovery training

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Cancer Video

There are 6 great videos on this site!

George Pragovich
Skype: georgefitnesstrainer

7 Energy-Boosting Styrategies

Dr. Mao's Secrets of Longevity
By Dr. Maoshing Ni
Our calendars have a way of quickly becoming overwhelming at this festive time of year. Coping with a demanding schedule and the ensuing stress requires a lot of energy. If you are dragging yourself through your work, family, and other daily commitments each day longing for the moment you can crash in an exhausted heap onto your bed, then take these tips to keep your energy level up!1. Feel berry energeticBerries are rich in antioxidants and can also help remove toxic residue from the system, which is often the cause of chronic fatigue and low energy. Berries include blueberries, blackberries, raspberry, cranberry, goji berry, hawthorn berries and cherries. 2. Make the most of magnesiumEvery time your body produces energy, your cells' mitochondria, which are tiny "power generators", need magnesium. Many people don't get enough of this essential mineral, because two common dietary habits leach magnesium from our bodies: too much salt and too much dairy. Whole grains are full of magnesium. So are seeds such as pumpkin, sesame, and sunflower seeds. And don't forget about nuts-especially almonds, Brazil nuts, and cashews. If you prefer capsule form, try taking 500 mg magnesium daily. Combine the best of berries and nuts by making your own trail mix of dried cranberry, plum, and raisin with any combination of nuts and seeds. It's an ideal between-meals snack packed with antioxidants, essential fatty acids, and fibers that help sustain energy over a long period of time.3. Food that fights fatiguePoor diet is a big contributor to low energy. For steady, robust energy eat foods that are low on the glycemic index, a measurement of how quickly the food you eat converts to glucose, the substance your body needs for energy. Foods with a high glycemic index (HGI), such as bread, pasta, baked potatoes, and most refined grains, give you a quick rush, but fatigue soon sets in when your blood sugar crashes. Foods that are low on the glycemic index help sustain energy over time. That include barley, bulgur, quinoa, amaranth, most nuts and seeds, beans and legumes, chicken, fish, and meat. Avoid an energy crash by eliminating sugar from your diet, including sodas, sweetened juices, and pastries. Also cut back on rich foods like dairy, meat, fats, sweets, and alcohol. As for when to eat, never skip breakfast or lunch and be sure to eat your last meal no later than 7 p.m. most of the time.4. Get green energyChlorella, spirulina, kelp, wheat grass, barley grass all contain chlorophyll and are high quality protein supplements that enhance long-term energy. Mix a powder of any of the above into water, juice, or green tea for an energetic boost.5. Ginseng: a potent pick-me-upGinseng is considered the king of energy tonics and has been used in Chinese medicine for 5,000 years. Unlike coffee, which stimulates the central nervous system, ginseng elevates energy gently. It has been classified as an adaptogen, meaning that it helps the immune system to withstand stress from the environment, and many people that take ginseng report an overall sense of well-being. It is available in the form of capsules and tea in health food stores, at offices of Chinese medicine practitioners, and online. Another herbal energy enhancer is our Combined Five Elements of Health Formula. This powerful herbal combination gives your whole body a tune-up, promoting physical vitality, high tolerance for stress, and strong immunity, among many other benefits. Click here for more information.6. Increase your energy with exerciseExercise every day can help you increase your energy level, cope with stress, and improve your mood. A daily 30-minute cardiovascular exercise combined with stretching and flexibility training is a sure way to get abundant energy. If you are intimidated by jumping right into exercise, begin with a daily walking routine. Start small and slowly increase the amount of time you walk. Walk 10 minutes a day for one week. Walk 15 minutes a day on week two, and so on until by week five, you are walking 30 minutes a day. In the meantime, a walk around the block builds your energy level as it clears your mind! 7. Press here for energyIn Chinese medicine, there is an acupuncture point called Foot Three Mile that can be stimulated to help strengthen the body╩╝s resistance to stress, enhance immunity, and strengthen the vital organs. You can stimulate the same acupuncture point on yourself with a technique called "acupressure." Instead of a needle stimulating the point, you can use your own fingers. The point is located four finger-widths below the kneecap on the right leg. Apply moderate pressure with your thumb until you feel soreness. Hold for 3-5 minutes. Repeat on the left leg. I hope that this article helps you boost your energy level! I invite you to visit often and share your own personal health and longevity tips with me. May you live long, live strong, and live happy!--Dr. Mao

George Pragovich
Skype: georgefitnesstrainer

Thursday, January 8, 2009

A great article from Ricky Dale Crain!

Character Building in Being Persistent

I need to take a moment to encourage lifters and athletes to never give up. Steadfastness and desire can only be shown by that adage. Nothing can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. I have had a gym full of talented and naturally strong men and women who got bored and gave up.
Relentlessness in pursuit of a goal is its own reward. The world is full of educated derelicts; it is full of genius' who are lazy and full of naturally talented bums. Only persistence and determination are omnipotent. Persistence is the iron quality of character. Persistence is to the character of man as carbon is to steel. It is the absolutely indispensable quality that goes hand in hand with all great success in life. Very few athletes in today's world, though perhaps bigger, faster and stronger than those of yesteryear, have this quality. One of the great secrets of persistence and success is to program your subconscious mind for persistence well in advance of the setbacks and disappointments that you are going to have on your upward quest toward success. Resolve in advance that you will never give up, no matter what happens. Quitting never enters the picture or thought process. When you are overwhelmed with a problem or difficulty, you do not have enough time to develop the necessary persistence to deal with the setback or disappointment. But if you plan in advance for the inevitable ups and downs of life, when they come, you will be psychologically ready. You will be prepared. The courage to persist in the face of adversity and disappointment is the one quality that, more than anything, will guarantee your success. Your greatest personal asset can be your willingness to persevere longer than anyone else. In fact, your persistence is a true measure of your belief in yourself and your ability to succeed. Remember, all of life is a test. For you to have great success, you must pass the "persistence test." And this test is often a pop quiz. It can come at any time, usually totally unexpectedly and out of left field. As was mentioned in previous chapters, you should be prepared in all aspects of training and in a contest to control what you can, as some circumstances are beyond control. Be prepared to roll with the punches. You take the persistence test whenever you are confronted with an unexpected difficulty, disappointment, setback, failure, or crisis in life. This is where you show yourself, and everyone around you, what you are truly made of. In the summer of 2006, I had a Total Hip Replacement. The previous years before that had seen me as a world class athlete deteriorate to something that was beyond my control. Mentally and physically I was in a downward spiral. After the operation I was determined to once again get myself into shape, both in strength and muscle endurance that, for my age and weight was among the best in the world. Even though I had encouragement from all sides, I really felt that no one really thought a 55 year old, 165 lb, total hip replacement patient could come back and squat close to 600 again. After all as my doctor pointed out, no one had ever done it. If I am nothing else, I am persistent, and in being on February 18, 2008, my 55th birthday, I did 555 lbs (having already done 530 a few months ago). I foresee 600 to come around sometime next year. Now at that point, I will know what I can accomplish, but be smart enough to know not to push it any further, for safety sakes.
The one inevitability in your life is recurring crisis. If you are living a busy life, you will have a crisis ever so often. In between these unavoidable crises will be a continuous succession of problems and difficulties. The more goals that you attempt to reach, the bigger your dreams, and the more determined you are to become successful, the more problems and crises you will experience. The only factor you can control is how you respond to difficulties and setbacks. The good news is that every time you respond in a positive and constructive manner, you become stronger and better and even more capable of dealing with the next problem or crisis that comes along. Eventually, you will reach a point in life where you become absolutely unstoppable. Isn't life grand? As James 1:2 says, "Count it all Joy……when trials come". You will become like a force of nature. You will become the kind of person who never quits, no matter what the difficulty. No matter what obstacle is put in your path, you will find a way to go over it, under it, around it, or through it. You will be like the Energizer Bunny in the television commercials. You will keep going and going and going. So what is the most difficult situation you are facing in your life today? Whatever it is, imagine that it has been sent to you at this time to teach you a valuable lesson you need to learn to be even more successful in the future. What could that lesson be? From this moment onward, always seek the valuable lesson in every setback or difficulty. You will always find it, and it will help you in your quest to live the life you truly desire. One of the very best ways to improve your level of persistence is to know where you're going and why.

George Pragovich
931-378-7850: Home
206-202-0944: Fax
Skype: georgefitnesstrainer

Monday, January 5, 2009

Lifting Weights Beats Jogging

Research has shown that when volunteers performed circuit training for just 20 minutes, 3 days a week, they improved their fitness levelsby up to 11%. That's about the same cardiovascular boost a similar group got wheb they jogged thirty minutes, 3 days a week.

More recently, researchers found that when previously sedentary adultseither circuit trained or did endurance exercisessuch as cycling or cross country skiing for 40 minutes, 3 days a week, both groups have similar aerobic benefits, with the circuit trainers reaping the added benefit of increased muscle strength.

Another advantage of circuit training is that it's fun because you are constantly moving to a new exercise, which keeps it interesting.

The article above came from Total Body Firm-Up from the editors of Prevention.

Call me to find out about my consulting program for the long distance client. I answer my own phone!
George Pragovich
Skype: georgefitnesstrainer

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Agreat article about Soy!!

What is soy? What are soybeans? Well. Soybeans are legumes grown under the ground. They are not readily digested unless fermented or sprouted and the vast majority of soybeans harvested are genetically modified.
One of my biggest problems with soybeans is that they are so heavily processed. Soy milk, tofu, soy protein, soy lecithin, soybean oil… all products which are processed to an unhealthy level… so much so, that is more like a waste product. In fact that is what soy milk and tofu are… waste products. They do not promote health in the body and they are not extraordinary foods.
Another problem that I have with soy is that it stimulates estrogen production in both men and women which can lead to breast cancer or fibroid tumors in women, infertility in men, and decreased sex drive in both men and women.
Soybeans are high in phytates (like many grains are as well, such as wheat, spelt, and oats), which can inhibit the absorption minerals…. therefore they should be fermented or sprouted to remove the phytates. Also, due to the great percentage of genetically modified soybeans, one should look for organic soybeans which are not genetically modified and free of pesticides.
Soy is in so many products these days that it is difficult to avoid. If you are going to eat it, as I said it is best fermented or sprouted… so miso, tempeh, natto… or like in Food For Life’s sprouted cereal which contains organic sprouted soybeans. Or if you want to eat whole soybeans (edamame) then soak them and sprout them before eating.
Soybean oil also goes rancid easily. It oxidizes and promotes free radicals and you must then have anti-oxidants to reduce the oxidative stress on your body.
As far as soy protein goes. It really is not that high quality of a source. It is heavily processed unless taken in whole food form and there are much better sources. For example, goats milk protein… one of the best sources of protein for the body.
Soy lecithin is found in all sorts of products… products like chocolate. I am a big fan of chocolate so I of course had to research soy lecithin. Soy lecithin is an emulsifier… that means it stabilizes an emulsion… or a mixture of suspended ingredients. So for example, in mayonnaise to mix the oil you must use eggs to create the emulsion that is mayonnaise. Guess where the main source of lecithin was before soy lecithin? Eggs. Yep. So it would be nice to have the lecithin from eggs for my chocolate… and occasionally you can find it, but most of the time it is soy lecithin. My advice here would be to consume in small amounts and look for products that do not have soy lecithin as the emulsifier (when possible).
Having said the above, there is more, much more. Do not take my word from it. Do research on both sides. Read all of the terrible things said about soy and then read the glowing things. I have come to the conclusion that I will avoid it for the most part. I do not like it or the way it makes me feel in the long term. There are times when I have organic sprouted soy and if I used soy sauce or soy condiments I would use naturally fermented.

George Pragovich
Skype: georgefitnesstrainer

Thursday, January 1, 2009


Many medical experts agree that sugar feeds cancer. The vast majority of the population consume large quantities of refined sugar, sucrose, or its partners, aspartame and saccharin, which have now been clinically linked to accelerated aging, cancer, heart disease, diabetes, Alzheimer’s and over 100 other serious health problems. These links are being deliberately ignored or downplayed by the hugely influential and profitable sugar and sweetener industry.

In the US, there are now five Aspartame detox centres. Symptoms reported to America's Food and Drug Administration include headaches, skin problems, stomach disorders, poor vision, depression, carbohydrate cravings, panic attacks, irregular heart rhythms and seizures. Geoff Brewer, Additives Survivors Network,

“In 1991, the National Institutes of Health listed 167 symptoms and reasons to avoid the use of aspartame, but today it is a multi-million dollar business that contributes to the degeneration of the human population, as well as the deliberate suppression of overall intelligence, short-term memory and the added contribution as a carcinogenic environmental co-factor.” Dr Joseph Mercola
"Soda is dispensed in American schools today like coffee in corporate offices. Over the past three years, the Center for Commercial-Free Public Education estimates that 240 school districts in 31 states have sold exclusive rights to one of the three big soda barons eager to hook teen-agers on Dr Pepper, Pepsi, or The Real Thing. Many teens are drowning in worthless sugar water.” Michael Jacobson, US Executive Director of the Center for Science in the Public Interest.
Aspartame is, by far, the most dangerous substance on the market that is added to foods. Aspartame accounts for over 75 percent of the adverse reactions to food additives reported to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Many of these reactions are very serious including seizures and death as recently disclosed in a February 1994 Department of Health and Human Services report. Department of Health and Human Services, Report on All Adverse Reactions in the Adverse Reaction Monitoring System, (February 25 and 28, 1994). A few of the 90 different documented symptoms listed in the report as being caused by aspartame include: Headaches/migraines, dizziness, seizures, nausea, numbness, muscle spasms, weight gain, rashes, depression, fatigue, irritability, tachycardia, insomnia, vision problems, hearing loss, heart palpitations, breathing difficulties, anxiety attacks, slurred speech, loss of taste, tinnitus, vertigo, memory loss, and joint pain.
According to researchers and physicians studying the adverse effects of aspartame, the following chronic illnesses can be triggered or worsened by ingesting of aspartame: Brain tumors, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, chronic fatigue syndrome, Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's, mental retardation, lymphoma, birth defects, fibromyalgia, and diabetes.” Betty Martini, Mission Possible, Atlanta, Georgia - a group dedicated to warning consumers about the dangers of aspartame. This list compiled by researchers, physicians, and artificial sweetner experts for Mission Possible. Aspartame consumption is not only a problem in the US. It is being sold in over 70 countries throughout the world.
ASPARTAME CAN BE FOUND IN:- instant breakfasts- breath mints- cereals- sugar-free chewing gum- cocoa mixes- coffee beverages- frozen desserts- gelatin desserts- juice beverages- laxatives- multivitamins- milk drinks- pharmaceuticals and supplements- shake mixes- soft drinks- tabletop sweeteners- tea beverages- instant teas and coffees- topping mixes- wine coolers- yogurt
Extracted from 'The Bitter Truth about Artificial Sweetners', Nexus Magazine, Volume 2, #28 (Oct-Nov '95) and Volume 3, #1 (Dec '95-Jan '96).
George K. Pragovich
Skype: georgefitnesstrainer

Questions Asked in the Initial Consultation

What injuries do you have that affect your ability to exercise?
Are you currently seeing a doctor? If so, why? Will this affect your ability to do certain exercises? What has your doctor said you should not do physically?
Are you currently exercising? If you are currently exercising, who created your exercise program? If you had a program created by someone else, why are we talking today?
What type of exercise is your favorite?
What are your goals?
What results would like to have happen as a result of exercising?
Do you have any food allergies?
Do you smoke?
What time of day is the best time for you to exercise?
Do you have at least two days a week available to exercise?
What budget have you created for your exercise program?
Will you need to be trained, mentored or both?
Are you familiar with Skype?
If I am training you, where will your training take place: at home, at the gym or will you be coming to me?

George K. Pragovich
Skype: georgefitnesstrainer