Thursday, December 22, 2011


Bobby Morrow, ACE cPt, CES

1.      1Be realistic about your goals(if you want to lose 20-50 pounds, give yourself enough time to accomplish that…if you are wanting to run a marathon, give yourself enough time to build up your endurance, etc)…define them, make them “measurable”…how many pounds, how much body fat, how many inches lost or gained, dress or pant size, how much increase in speed or strength, endurance, lower cholesterol, lower blood pressure, decrease in meds required, increase of energy throughout the day, etc, etc….and add in what reaching those goals really means to you. Write your goals down…share them with folks that you know will support you in your process.

2.     2.   If losing weight is one of your goals…don’t be a slave to the scales! In fact, don’t even look at those numbers the first couple of weeks, and then no more than once a week until you reach your goals…THEN, once your goals are reached, check them EVERY DAY. That way you can get things back under control before they get out of hand again.  (It’s MUCH easier to drop 5 pounds than 10-15 or 20)  Also, look for other sign posts along the way  that will probably show up even before the scales start moving…things like energy levels going (way) up, sleeping better, breathing easier, fewer “aches and pains”, making healthier food choices more easily, and realize that your clothes are starting to fit a little more loosely, etc.  Probably someone you haven’t seen in a while will remark on your changes….

3.       3. Don’t OVER commitbe realistic here also.  Commit first to what you KNOW you can confidently (and consistently) “show up” for week after week…then add in more where and when you can.  Remember, you and your goals are important…so treat your fitness schedule with the same degree of importance as you would schedule a Doctor’s appointment, for example, (and truth is…you probably will be scheduling LESS of those!)  Sure life is gonna happen… (Illness of self or others, scheduling conflicts, vacations, etc…) just don’t let that be an excuse for giving up.

4.     4.  Don’t expect all the changes you are seeking to happen  in the first few weeks…realize that this process will probably take time…and and that’s okay…it’s more about lifestyle changes that you can live with for the long haul, rather than a quick-fix or patch. Then add to that whenever you can, as you feel led to...and enjoy the benefits of “compound interest”!

5.   5.    Be sure to include ALL areas of Health and FitnessCardiovascular Health, Muscular Strength and Endurance (don't forget to include Posture Evaluation and Corrective Exercise), and Healthy Nutrition…leaving any one out could seriously limit your success in reaching your overall goals, no matter how committed and consistent you are in the other areas.

6.     6. Finding activities that are enjoyable, fun, and exciting  are great…but realize that getting Healthy and Fit is NOT ALWAYS going to be a blast…sometimes you just have to show up and push through it(as NIKE says…”just do it”).

7.     7.  Making the financial commitment to join a gym or fitness facility for many is a good way to help you to following through on “showing up” to reach your Health and Fitness goals…but be sure to remember that it’s really about a lifestyle change, and not just a few days the week of working out…attempt to seek out and incorporate small healthier choices in as many areas of your life as you can, including ways to simply “move more” throughout your day.

8.      8. Allow yourself to be important enough to have this time for yourself…knowing that the healthier you are, the more you will have to share with others. And along those same gentle with yourself...sometimes you won't feel as committed as you do at other times...just keep telling yourself that you deserve and are worth the goals you are reaching!

9.      9. If you are new to fitness or have been away for some time…get some help in the beginning (in my 7 years as a Personal Trainer, I've yet to meet anyone who has been blessed with a "fitness gene").  Investing in a few hours with a Personal Trainer can help get you started on the right track, prevent possible injuries, give you the confidence to show up at the gym knowing what you need to be doing and HOW to do it…and can also help you avoid wasting weeks of struggling with unfamiliar equipment, confusing unrealistic information, and the frustration that can come from working really hard yet not actually seeing the results you want. Remember though, if you hire a trainer…YOU will still have to show up, and do the “work” required to reach your goals, a Trainer can’t do that FOR you! (find a trainer at

10. 10Find a workout buddy…so you can support, encourage, motivate, and commit to each others' success.  Many fitness centers offer a “buddy-board” (if they don't...ask if they could start one) where you can find a match for your fitness level, interests, and time schedule (like a “share-the-ride “board).
11. 11.  Realize that no matter your age, fitness starting point, or other perceived challenges… someone with those very same issues, challenges, and starting point(s) has already reached those very same goals you are seeking…

12.   visit for more tips, ideas, workout videos and articles to help you reach your goals
Bobby Morrow, ACE cPt, CES
National Spokesman for the American Council on Exercise

Saturday, July 16, 2011


Hi, and here's hoping your Summer is going great!  'Don't know about you, but I'm like'n the touch of "cooler" weather today here in NC!
My certifying agency (The American Council on Exercise) came out with an article this month reconfirming the latest data on recommended amounts of time being active
(exercising/moderate movement)per week per desired results. It also pointed out a few more interestingstatistics...that "33% of Americans never exercise, and 55% never engage in
vigorous activity (CDC2010).  I think it is striking that these numbers very nearly mirror the statistics that show 25-30% of Americans are obese, and another 50% are considered overweight!
Although any activity above and beyond what you are currently doing is a definite step in the right direction, it is recommended that 10-20 minutes moderately challenging (graded on a scale of "1-10", with "1" being "no challenge", and "10" being "all out"...working between a "4" and "6")activity(exercise) 5 or more days a week is the minimum recommended to begin seeing small improvements in general health
For greater improvements in Health (reducing risk for heart disease, lowering blood pressure, cholesterol, blood sugar
balancing, greater energy, improved general functioning of the body, etc) a minimum of 30 minutes 5 days per week of moderately challenging activity is recommended.
And for those that are interested in significant body-fat/weight reduction (more than 10 pounds), 60 minutes of
(combined) moderate intensity activity at least 5 days per week is recommended. 
All of us in the "industry" tend to agree that just getting folks moving can be challenging in the beginning.
I liken it to trying to pushing a stalled car across a flat paved parking takes a lot of effort to get that car moving, but once you have it moving it becomes a bit less challenging to just "keep it moving".  And of course if we let the car slow down, it takes a little more effort to get it started again.  I realize that some are pushing VW's and others are pushing SUV's, but once you've gotten some momentum built up and (you begin to see, and feel 
those great changes that everyone talks about) working for you
it becomes a bit more rewarding to stay in motion.

And to throw in a small doses of reality...if you expect the process to be (or become) "easy" you are simply kidding yourself...
"if it's not challenging, you're not changing"! 
A little more "reality-check" information for those looking to reduce their body-fat% (weight) is
to come to terms with how many extra "calories" your body has stored up for you, so you can start making more realistic choices to take you where you'd rather be. (1) Science has determined that one pound of body-fat is created from a stored excess of 3,500 calories.  
(2) So, if you are, for example, 50 pounds heavier than you'd like to be...your body has stored up a whopping 175,000 excess calories (50X's3,500)!!
Those numbers can be downright scary (and disheartening) at first!  But the first step is to "get real" about
where you are, and also with about how long it's actually going to take to get to where you'd like to be!  Then, start educating yourself on all the ways you can "burn-off" those stored up calories,  by choosing activities that you can work in throughout your day (not just at the gym) that will give you the most "bang for your buck"! For example, doing 10 minutes (straight) of ab crunches will only burn about 50 calories (and will NOT burn those specific calories stored in the belly anyway), but choosing 10 minutes of moderately challenging time on the tread-mill will burn off over 100 calories (the eliptical...even more)!
Be kind to yourself...realize you didn't get where you are over night (and I've yet to find anyone that actually did it on purpose!), and getting back to where you'd like to be won't happen over night either...but let that be okay, it's really all about creating a healthier lifestyle (I know you've heard that before) and letting
your new lifestyle do a lot of the "work" for you!
I've included an additional "page" listing some common activities and the amounts of calories they burn...check 'em out!  If you'll start adding some into your life, you will begin to see a "cumulative" effect taking place that will begin taking you to your Health and Fitness Goals!
Best of Luck!!
Bobby M

Saturday, February 12, 2011


from the Inside-Out!"
Bobby Morrow's
LifeStyle Fitness


Q: How many calories should I eat each day if I want to lose weight?
A: I recommend you start with approximately 10-12 calories per day for every pound of your goal weight. (Example:  goal weight 150 lbs…1,500-1800 calories…this is your “calorie bank account” for the day! But NEVER allow yourself to drop below 1,200 calories for females, 1,500 for males…your body needs at least that amount just to stay alive!! Also, too few calories will cause your metabolism to slow way down…you don’t want that because that’s what burns calories even when you’re just sitting around! OF COURSE YOU’RE NOT DOING MUCH OF THAT, ARE YOU??) If your energy levels should drop during the day (especially on workout days), that’s a sign you probably need to bump up your calories a bit…I’d start with an additional 100 calories per day until energy droops go away.

Q: How many times a day should I eat?
A: Most recommendations now focus on eating 5-6 times a day (3 regular meals plus 2-3 snacks)…the goal is to never allow yourself to get hungry (two reasons: one… if you are hungry you tend to make less healthy choices, and two…hunger is a signal from your body telling you it’s running low on fuel and thinks it may be “starving” and will soon begin to slow the metabolism in order to hold onto what "fuel" it's already stored (body fat)…and THAT is exactly what we are wanting to avoid!

Q: So, how many calories from my “calorie bank account” should I shoot for in each meal and snack?
A: A simple guide would be to divide your total daily calories by 5 or 6 (the number of “fuelings” you plan for your day)…then divide that number by 2…that would be your “snack” caloriesthen add that same number back to the original number for your meals…confused?? Here’s and example:  Total daily calories 1,800 divided by 6 equals 300…half of 300 is 150, this is your “snack” calories, add that 150 to your original 300 calories and you get 450 calories and this is for your meals.  3 meals at 450 equals 1,350 plus 3 snacks at 150 equals 450 for a grand total of 1,800 calories per day. Got it? ;o)

Q: Okay, I’ve heard different theories about Proteins, Carbohydrates, and Fats…what would be a healthy balance of these nutrients?
A: Again, generally speaking I would recommend you get about 25% of your calories from lean low-fat Proteins, 50-60% from Healthy Carbohydrates, and only about 20-25% from Healthy Fats and Oils.  Since your body needs all of these nutrients throughout the day (Proteins are the building blocks for every cell in your body…Carbohydrates are basically the “fuel” your body needs to run on, and also provide vitamins, antioxidants, etc…and Healthy Fats really do help keep the body running smoothly as well as many other health benefits)…shoot for this per cent balance in all of your meals and snacks.

Q: I think I’m with you so far…but what the heck IS a Healthy Protein, a Healthy Carbohydrate, and a Healthy Fat??!!!
A: Great question and I hear it ALL the time.  It CAN get pretty complicated, so I’m going to keep it as simple as possible…

Proteins: (remember, about 25% of your total calories)
The majority of our protein sources come primarily from Meats, Dairy Products, Nuts, and Eggs (however, there are also some high quality proteins in many beans, greens, grain sources, and other veggies).
“Healthy(er) Protein” choices are the leaner, lower fat choices  (take time to read food labels and simply try to opt for the next healthiest choice you can make rather than what you would normally select)…for instance 97% fat free lean deli ham instead of southern style country ham,  1%-2% milk instead of whole milk, or low fat cheese (mozzarella.string cheese) instead of full fat cheeses .  If you want a little help picking healthier (leaner, lower fat) proteins you might try this web site:  To KEEP your Proteins Healthy…use Healthy preparation methodsbaking, grilling, broiling, or boiling (and even stir-fry with a tiny bit of healthy oil)KEEP ‘EM OUTA THE GREASE and DON’T BATTER OR BREAD ‘EM!!!

Carbohydrates: (50%-60% of your total calories)
Simply, if you get it from trees, bushes, from the ground or any plant source, (we’re talking about fruits, vegetables, grains, nuts and seeds here folks)…it’s a Carbohydrate! However, food manufacturers tend to over-process these great Carbs when they can, freeze or otherwise attempt to extend their “shelf-life”…so choose “fresh” whenever possible, then frozen!  Also be aware that when they process “grains” they tend to remove many of the healthy parts…so avoid the white breads, white pasta, and white rice… choose  the darker, denser “whole wheat”, “whole grain”, “high fiber” breads,  pastas, and rices.  You can usually pretty much “load up” on most “green” vegetables, but just be cautious again with preparation, baking, steaming, boiling, stir-frying, or fresh are your best choices (DON’T FRY ‘EM!!).  I also recommend, especially in the beginning,  that you try to limit the high-calorie fruits (you know the super-sweet ones you’ll actually eat, like grapes, bananas, peaches, etc, which are mostly just water and sugars)…small amounts are fine, but focus more on denser fruits like apples, pears, etc.  And of course there’s the “potato question”…until you reach the Health Level you want to achieve, I recommend that you stay away from “white potatoes” and opt for sweet potatoes instead.  And for heavens’ sake let’s not forget the great old American standby…CEREAL!!  This one is actually pretty simple…go for the higher fiber, and lower sugar (again no more than 10 grams of sugar per serving) and measure your servings (most are only one cup)…it’s okay to have more than one serving, if that’s in your calorie budget…just make sure you are doing it consciously!

Fats and Oils: (these make up the balance of your calories)
I won’t get too complicated about Fats and Oils, but there are a few things you should be aware of in order to make healthier choices.  The first is that Fat and Oils carry TWICE AS MANY CALORIES as an equal amount of Proteins or Carbohydrates!  Second, your body NEEDS Healthy Fats and Oils…they  help keep your body lubricated and insulated, allow your body to use certain Vitamins and other Nutrients, help eye function, ease inflammation to keep metabolism and immune system healthy and functioning…and Fats compose 60%  of your brain (so if somebody calls you a “fat-head” say thank you!). Healthy Oils used in food preparation and cooking include canola oil, peanut oil, and olive oil… other good sources of healthy fats and oils are avocados; nuts such as almonds, pecans, hazelnuts; and seeds such as pumpkin and sesame. There are also a group of Super Healthy Fats called Omega-3’s…the best sources of Omega-3’s are from fatty fish such as salmon, herring, mackerel, or even anchovies and sardines…if you don’t eat much fish I recommend you invest in a Fish Oil Supplement and take 1,000-2,000 milligrams per day (choose the ones with ZERO cholesterol)the research is still coming in on these Fats, but it’s ALL very positive including reducing Heart Disease, Dementia, Depression, Some Cancers, and some research even indicates they help in weight loss…so you should try to include some of these several times a week (or take a supplement daily)!  And actually FATS are your body’s preferred fuel, that’s why we store our calories that way!  So Fats are definitely NOT our enemy…we just want to select the ones that will give us the most benefit and try not to overuse them…for instance Almonds, Pecans, and Walnuts make GREAT for snacks but are VERY high in calories as just a quarter cup will provide around 150 calories!

I hope you’ve found this information understandable and usable…I’ve tried to keep it condensed down to what I believe are the absolute basics you need to know in order to start making Healthier Choices for yourself and those you care about. There are unlimited resources on the internet that will provide you with more in-depth information…the more you know, the more you can take an active role in your Health, Fitness, and General Well-Being, so take advantage of those!

Bobby Morrow


First and Formost...FORGET FAST FOOD!! (It is NOT your Friend!!)

"It's VERY important to plan out your meals (and snacks) in advance...even put together 3 or more
"menu's" for each meal...that way you'll have a plan (as well as some variety)and will less likely wander off course."

“If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always got!!”

“Do I want to feel, look, and be healthier…or do I want that food choice??”

If you don’t know what’s in it…don’t put it in your mouth!”

(For Now) If it’s fried…don’t eat it!

If it has 10 grams or less of sugar (per serving) in it, use sparingly…if it has MORE than 10 grams of sugar (per serving) in it…leave it alone, and opt for a choice with less useless calories.

For now, drop the “sauces”, “gravies”, etc…unless they are vegetable-based and low-fat (and low-sugar), like a salsa.

NOTE: As a Certified Personal Trainer with over 6 years experience helping 100's of folks on their way to their Health and Fitness Goals, I feel confident to offer the above general nutritional information to you in good faith...however, I always recommend that you check with your Physician before beginning any new Health and Fitness Program.  And if you have problems or concerns related to getting a handle on Nutrition...because it is VERY important, I recommend you check with a Registered Dietitian to help lay out healthy meal plans just for you.