March 2012 Issue


Fitness Article:

Shannon's Top 10 Tips For Staying Fit
by: Shannon Elkins, Co-Producer of DCAC Fitness Conventions

1. Mix it up: Don't miss the opportunity to try new types of classes and or workouts. Keep it interesting to avoid boredom.

2. Make it fun: Meet up with friends and make it an event instead of a chore

3. Seek the advice of an expert: If you are in doubt of where to start, ask a certified personal trainer and or sign up for small group personal training to save money and have quality time with friends.

4. Have a Workout Partner: exercising with a partner (friend, family member, or colleague) can help keep you motivated.

5. Drink plenty of water to stay well hydrated and sleep at least 7-8 hours per night allowing time for your muscles to rest and repair.

6. Combine your workouts with a healthy meal plan that fits into your budget and cooking skills

7. Set goals that are measurable: tell a friend or family member about your goal to help you stay accountable and make it a goal that is measurable (weight loss, body fat loss, run a faster 10K, etc.)

8. Create a high energy play list to use while you are working out. The music will help to keep you motivated to move through a tough workout with ease.

9. Stretch: Make time during each workout to focus on flexibility helping your muscles to feel better and to avoid injury.

10. Attend a Fitness Conference & Trade Show: learn the latest and greatest ways to get fit, stay fit and reignite your passion for fitness.

To learn more about DCAC Fitness and or to register please visit our website at

Health Article:

Hot Topics in Nutrition
by Geraldine Zatcoff, M.S.Ed., M.S., C.N.S.

Nutrition is everywhere these days; magazines, newspapers, television. Bits and pieces of data from studies are sensationalized in dramatic headlines when, quite often, the information is unsubstantiated. Here’s what you need to know about the five hot topics in nutrition today.

Low-carbohydrate diets: Look at any of the popular low-carbohydrate diets including Atkins, South Beach and the Zone and you will find one common thread. They all limit calories by restricting the intake of a particular nutrient. One of the things that Dr. Atkins taught us is that we all have a carbohydrate or sugar tolerance. Each of us is bio-chemically unique and will respond differently to different amounts of carbohydrate. You must find out what your tolerance is. Get rid of the sugar and refined carbohydrates in your diet and practically anyone will lose weight. Cell membranes are composed of fat and protein, not carbohydrate. Fat is the body’s primary energy source, not sugar. Athletes are another issue altogether. Most of us are not athletes. The important thing to remember is that sugar (or any nutrient for that matter) gets converted to fat quite easily if the amount of calories you take in exceeds what you expend. The body stores glucose in two places; in skeletal muscle and in the liver. Once those reservoirs are filled, sugar gets converted to fat and sent to the depot. We all know where that is!

Weight Loss: Which brings us to weight loss. Why is it easier to take weight off than to keep it off? Because most of us don’t bother to go the extra and most difficult step that would ensure long-term, permanent weight loss. That step is behavior modification. Immediate gratification is rampant in our society and that is deadly when it comes to food, especially when one is overweight. Even Dr. Phil is talking about it. Those of us in the field of nutrition have long known that if you don’t deal with the issues (and feelings) associated with overeating, and there are always issues, permanent weight loss will elude you.

Anti-Aging: Eating to slow down the aging process is another popular topic these days, especially among some doctors like dermatologist Nicholas Perricone (The Wrinkle Cure). Oxidative stress that damages the cell membrane in skin cells, for example, causes wrinkles. If it happens in cartilage, you get arthritis. Nutritional heavy hitters like salmon (omega-3 fats) and blueberries (phytochemicals like anthocyanins), have been shown to protect cell membranes from oxidative stress. When the cell membrane remains in tact, not only does the cell live longer, it replicates perfectly over and over before is dies. Keeping the cell membrane protected also protects the DNA inside the cell from oxidative damage that could lead to cancer. That’s anti-aging at the cellular level.

So, what’s the best advice? If you want to feel better and look younger, listen to your mother and eat your vegetables. Limit sugar and refined carbohydrates. Eat the foods you love, but eat them in moderation. And remember, physical activity is the key to successful, permanent weight loss.

Zatcoff Wellness
90 Main Street
Westport, CT 06880
Fax: 203-454-5569
E mail:

Professional of the Month:

Bill Parisi

Founder & Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Parisi Speed School


Widely known as the leading authority on youth speed and performance training, Bill Parisi has actively advocated on the importance of youth fitness since the company’s inception 20 years ago. What started out as a small entrepreneurial business has become the leading model of youth fitness programs with over 75 Parisi Franchises in 27 states. Over the two decades of being personally committed to developing fit lifestyles, Parisi has empowered more than 600,000 young and aspiring competitors, elite athletes, Olympic coaching associations, college and pro teams, Fortune 500 companies, and military personnel. Parisi’s philosophy is to concentrate on the fundamentals of improving speed, agility and basic skills as a way to improve overall sports participation as well as boost confidence levels and self-esteem in participants as young as seven.

A standout football player and javelin thrower at Ridgefield Park High School in New Jersey, Parisi pursued his passion for the Javelin throw by attending Iona College and became a two-time NCAA Division I All-American in 1988 and 1989 to qualify for the Olympic trials. While attending the Trials and various strength and conditioning clinics around the country, Parisi was exposed to all methods of training by some of the best in the business, including the Head Strength Coach for the NY Giants, who asked Bill to work with QB Phil Simms in the off-season. While a Graduate Assistant with the University of Florida, Parisi decided to pursue a career in performance training and the idea of the Parisi Speed School was created. The first official Parisi Speed School facility opened in 1993 in Wyckoff, NJ. The Parisi Speed School now specializes in training the beginner athlete all the way to the elite, and has trained over 133 players drafted to the NFL.

The Parisi Speed School’s outreach goes beyond the 75+ franchises as the fitness leader, including a web site, social media channels on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube and frequent contributions in leading sports and fitness publications including USA Today, Men’s Health, Sports, Runner’s World and Muscle & Fitness Magazine. In addition, Parisi has been an integral contributor to the NFL Youth Football Summit at the Hall of Fame Game for the past eight years, educating on the proper warm-up and speed development training. Bill, along with his team at the Parisi Speed School, has authored over 50 fitness education modules and DVDs; hundreds of articles, and their books have been used as college textbooks and teaching manuals for trainers, coaches, and athletes worldwide. He and his wife live in Northern New Jersey with their two sons.

Check out the Parisi Speed School Website >>>

Workout of the Month:

Perky Butt 'n Long Lean Legs (by Cassey Ho)


Cassey Ho is a pilates instructor & designer with a zest for life, a love for drawing, a fancy for dancing, cooking super healthy versions of everything, and smiling. All the time. She loves teaching Pilates so much - it gets her high on life after each session. Cassey feels lucky to be around such awesome people who want to push themselves to their fitness limits constantly...and with a smile. Cassey is living the uncertain but exciting life of a young entrepreneur designing yoga bags, gym bags, and all kinds of fashionable fitness gear. oGorgeous has been featured in SHAPE Magazine, Daily Candy, the Wendy Williams Show etc.

She is the Founder and Designer of the oGorgeous yoga bags. In college, she made the first bag for herself after running into trouble trying to find a cute mat carrier. When the original Beverly Bowtie was seen in her Pilates class, she realized that she wasn't the only one who was vying for fashionable yoga bags. Senior year 2009, Cassey debuted her first line. Since then, the bags have been featured in major publications such as SHAPE Magazine and on national talk shows such as the Wendy Williams Show. Cassey is currently working on the second line of bags which will include mat carriers for women, mat carriers for men, and a whole new collection of exciting women's gym bags. When not designing, Cassey teaches Pilates mat and reformer classes. When not teaching, she films workout videos for her Pop Pilates YouTube Channel while maintaining her Blogilates health & fitness blog.

Visit Cassey's Website:

Kids Health & Fitness:

Great Advice for Preventing Childhood Obesity
by Clarissa & Joe Constantine

It’s a generally accepted idea that children learn most of their lifestyle habits before they reach double-digits. So, what, exactly, are we teaching them?
• A meal received through a window is ‘food.’
• Phones are for entertainment.
• iPads are for watching movies at the dinner table.
• WiiFit counts as exercise.
• Watching TV every night is a good way to relax.
• Feel anxious? Can’t concentrate? Take a pill.
And as we’ve taught them all these wonderful lessons over the last couple decades, what have we noticed? Well, here’s what the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has to say:
• Childhood obesity has more than tripled in the past 30 years.
• The percentage of children aged 6-11 years in the United States who were obese increased from 7% in 1980 to nearly 20% in 2008. Similarly, the percentage of adolescents aged 12-19 years who were obese increased from 5% to 18% over the same period.
• In 2008, more than one third of children and adolescents were overweight or obese.
• Overweight is defined as having excess body weight for a particular height from fat, muscle, bone water or a combination of these factors. Obesity is defined as having excess body fat.
• Overweight and obesity are the result of “caloric imbalance”—too few calories expended for the amount of calories consumed—and are affected by various genetic, behavioral, and environmental factors.

The CDC sites short- and long-term repercussions, from psychological issues & low self-esteem, to increased risk of diabetes, heart disease and numerous cancers.

While we’re watching childhood obesity increase at terrifying rates, we’re living through the toughest economic period many of us can remember. We know that Social Security won’t exist for us – never mind for our kids – and ‘health care’ is more than just a buzz word in political campaigns.

Does anyone see the perfect storm brewing? It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to look 15 years down the road and see the absolute disaster we’re facing.

So what do we do about it?
WE GET HEALTHY. We teach our kids to get healthy. AND WE DO IT NOW.
1 – Stop ordering ‘food’ through a window. Drive-thrus are oh-so convenient. But how do you feel after that triple burger and fries? I’m guessing you probably feel like there’s a brick in your stomach. Why would you do that to your child? Why would you teach her that that feeling is HEALTHY?
2 – Cook at home. Even if it’s just throwing some chicken and veggies in a pan and sautéing them, it’s healthier than anything you’ll get at a restaurant – drive-thru or not! And oh yeah – it’s cheaper, too. Plus, if you teach your kids how to cook, they’ll actually be able to do it for themselves someday – BONUS!
3 – Get active. Show your kids how to live a physically active lifestyle. Take them running with you, go for family bike-rides and create family workouts. Sign them up for ballet or soccer. Go on day-hikes together. Remember – the habits they learn during their first decade will be the habits they take with them into the rest of their lives. Teach them early to be active every single day.
4 – Set a healthy example. Kids look up to all of the adults in their lives, not just their parents. So even if your only contact with kids is as an honorary aunt or uncle, remember that they watch, and they learn. If they see that you eat healthfully, exercise regularly, have fun and laugh a lot, they’re going to mimic you.
5 – Laugh every day. Not only does it just feel really good, the more you laugh with your kids the happier everyone will be. ?
The key to reversing the trend of childhood obesity is obvious: treat your body like it’s the only one you’ll get, and teach the kids in your life to do the same thing.

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Recipe of the Month:

Chicken Tagine with Roasted Grapes and Saffron Couscous

(Recipe provided by The Culinary Institute of America) - Yields 8 Portions

Cinnamon, ground - ½ tsp.
Ginger, ground - 1 tsp.
Turmeric - ½ tsp.
Black pepper, freshly ground - ½ tsp.
Cayenne pepper - ¼ tsp.
Kosher salt - 2 tsp.
Extra virgin olive oil - 6 Tbsp.
Chicken thighs, boneless, trimmed and cubed - 2 lb.
Red onion, sliced ¼" thick - 1 ea.
Garlic cloves, minced - 4 ea.
Italian parsley sprigs - 4 ea.
Cilantro sprigs - 4 ea.
Chicken stock - 1 cup
Dried apricots, halved - ½ cup
Water - 1 cup
Honey - 2 Tbsp.
Cinnamon stick - 1 ea.
Red grapes - 1 lb.
Kosher salt - to taste
Black pepper, freshly ground - to taste
Saffron Couscous (See Culinary Institute of America Website)
Almonds, sliced and toasted - ½ cup


Method: (Click here for a Great Video Demonstration & Nutritional Info)
1. For the tagine: Combine the cinnamon, ginger, turmeric, black pepper, cayenne pepper and 1 teaspoon of salt in a small bowl with 3 tablespoons olive oil and add the diced chicken thigh. Mix to coat evenly.

2. In a large skillet or tagine, heat 3 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat and brown the chicken pieces until golden, about 6 to 8 minutes. Remove to a bowl along with any juices.

3. Add the sliced red onion and a pinch of salt and cook, uncovered, until soft and lightly colored. Add the garlic and cook for another 3 minutes. Tie the Italian parsley and cilantro together with twine.

4. Add the reserved chicken and juice, the Italian parsley bundle, and ½ cup water, and bring to a simmer. Cook, covered, for another 30 minutes.

5. For the apricots: Place the apricots in small saucepan with the water, honey, and cinnamon stick, and bring to a simmer. Cook gently until all the liquid has been absorbed and there is a glaze, about 15 minutes.

6. For the grapes: Preheat the oven to 400°F. Toss 1 pound of the red grape bunches with enough extra virgin olive oil to coat, and roast on a baking sheet for 10 minutes; remove, discard the stems, and cool.

7. To finish the tagine: After 30 minutes of simmering the chicken, add the apricot mixture and half of the roasted red grapes; stir to combine. Cook for another 5 minutes, remove from the heat, and discard the herb bundle and the cinnamon stick. Season to taste with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper.

The Culinary Institute of America
The Culinary Institute of America (CIA) is a private, not-for-profit college dedicated to providing the world's best professional culinary education. Excellence, leadership, professionalism, ethics, and respect for diversity are the core values that guide our efforts. We teach our students the general knowledge and specific skills necessary to live successful lives and to grow into positions of influence and leadership in their chosen profession. (Support the Culinary Institute of America)

Campus Corner:

Staying Motivated.....
by: Judi Ulrey (Trekking Together)

We’ve all been here before. Sincere New Year’s Resolutions to “get into shape”. But how can you keep up the commitment beyond Valentine’s Day? There really are some choices you can make that will dramatically improve your chances of staying on track long term. You’ve heard it. You know it. But have you done it?

1. Decide and Document. The first step toward success is deciding. What do you want to do, and more importantly, Why do you want to do it? Honestly, just losing weight isn’t that exciting or motivating. But what if you had more energy to do your days? Would taking control of your health make you feel better about yourself? What about being a positive role model for your kids? Profound incentive. Write down your reasons, post in a conspicuous place, and read them often. Then decide on specific actions.
“I’m going to eat a healthy breakfast 5x/week.”
“I’m going to walk at lunchtime 4x/week.”
“I’m going to STOP eating by 7pm.”
Focus on what you want, NOT what you don’t want.

2. Make an Intention Inventory. Unless you schedule it, you won’t do it. Habits don’t just magically change. There’s a big difference between “I’d like to…” and “I will.” That’s “will”, period. End of discussion and drama. Decide what days/time you’ll exercise and create a non-negotiable schedule. Decide to eat a healthy breakfast every morning and go out and buy your favorite wholesome breakfast foods. Decide it. Schedule it. Do it. Period.

3. Rally Your Support Team. No significant accomplishment was ever made in a vacuum. All of us need cheerleaders. So it is with behavior change. Solicit support from friends and family. Who wants to walk with you? To whom can you report your progress (or challenges) each week? Will your family agree to eat more healthfully? Ask and ye shall receive. (and so will they…)

4. Know Your Numbers. Too many people focus exclusively on weight. And honestly, if strength training is part of your fitness regimen, weight may not change dramatically. What are your cholesterol levels, both HDL and LDL? Your blood pressure? Your resting heart rate? How do you know if you’re improving if you’re not monitoring? Know your numbers. Won’t you feel better knowing multiple factors are changing for the better? Note these important physical statistics quarterly, at minimum. You can’t improve what you don’t measure.

5. Reward Thyself. When you’ve faithfully honored your exercise and/or food intentions, how do you acknowledge yourself? Wouldn’t you be the first to celebrate with a friend who had seen such success? So why don’t you celebrate yourself? Pat yourself on the back when you’ve done well. For if you don’t, who will?

6. Make it Fun! Fitness should be fun. If you’re going to make it a lifelong commitment it can’t be drudgery. Collect yummy recipes. Find pretty places to walk. Listen to upbeat music and say “Yes!” to feeling well. Exercise with your bestest buddy and talk about sports (boys) or about boys (girls). Make it fun! It’s your time to take good care of you.

So before you don your tennies and start walking, take some time to plan your program strategy. Here’s your checklist:
1. Journal why you want to change your habits. What benefits are you really seeking? Get with your gut on this one.
2. Create your non-negotiable schedule, but be realistic!
3. Identify your favorite healthy foods and stock your fridge. You can’t eat it if you haven’t bought it.
4. Find a buddy. This is the first person on your support team. S/he is your first line of accountability.
5. Start a log with your baseline physical stats, and count on all these numbers improving!
Live Life Well.

Judi Ulrey is a health and wellness communications creator using video, audio, and the good old-fashioned word. Grab a buddy and join her at, a weekly wellness program you do with a friend.

Health & Fitness Business:

Protecting the Nest Egg Is As Important As Growing It....
by Frank Rotella (Rofami Inc. President & CEO)

Many individuals should have these three objectives: (a) Protecting their wealth; (b) Saving wealth and (c) Growing wealth
However, the harsh reality is that the large majority of individuals and financial professionals focus primarily on the growth component, and often overlook the protection component. This can be very dangerous and damaging if we neglect to insulate ourselves from circumstances that could cause severe financial hardship… or even ruin.

The vast majority of individuals are not adequately protected against unexpected events such as:
• A car accident and major lawsuit
• One spouse passes
• Both spouses pass together
• A critical illness
• A major disability
• The need for long-term care
• An unexpected coma
• Estate tax issues
• Probate costs and administration

However, the majority of individuals can easily provide in-depth details about their current investments and can usually answer these types of questions rather effectively:
• Why did you choose your advisor?
• What investments do you own?
• What is your asset allocation plan?

Not many people don’t like to purchase, discuss or be sold any form of insurance. Most people view insurance as “throwing money down the drain.” The perception and belief is usually, “That will never happen to me!”
Below are some topics I strongly feel must be discussed when creating a sound, comprehensive financial plan. Ask yourself the following questions:
Life Insurance:
• Do you know exactly what type of life insurance you own now?
• What are the different types of life insurance, and what kind should you have?
• How much total coverage should you — and your spouse — have?

Disability Insurance:
• Do you have short-term disability, long-term disability or both?
• What is your definition of disability?
• How long is your waiting (or elimination) period?
• What percentage of your salary does it pay?
• For how long does it pay?
• Is there a cost-of-living adjustment in place to keep pace with inflation?
• What are the tax consequences?
• Is there a maximum amount per month?
• Does this disability insurance cover your salary and commissions?
• Does it have an own-occupation clause?
• Is individual disability insurance a better option than what your employer may offer?

Long Term Care Insurance:
• At what age should you consider purchasing it?
• Do you really need it?
• How much does it cost?
• How much should you choose for your daily benefit?
• For how many years should your benefits pay?
• Does it make sense to own a cost-of-living rider?
• Which carriers have the strongest financial ratings?

Medical Insurance:
• Does your medical insurance carry a maximum benefit limit?
• Which types of insurance are best: HMOs, PPOs, HSAs, FSAs? What are the differences?
• What is your deductible or co-pay?
• What is your maximum out-of-pocket cost?
• What are the differences between in-network and out-of-network coverage?

Social Security:
• How do you read your statement?
• At what age can you begin taking benefits? When should you begin drawing on your benefits?
• What is your full retirement age?
• What are the tax ramifications?
• What are the spousal benefit options?

Wills and Trusts:
• What is the difference between a will and a trust? Which should you have? If you do have one, is it outdated?
• What is a living will? Do you have one?
• What are durable powers of attorney? Do you both have them?
• What are health directives? Do you both have them?
• What is the difference between a Revocable and Irrevocable Trust?
• Who should be your guardians? Who should be your trustees?
• Is your trust properly funded?

Lawsuit Protection:
• How much will you be protected if you are sued from an accident that occurs in your car or in your home?
• What are the deductibles on your car? Your homeowners insurance?
• Does your home insurance have full replacement value?
• Do you have receipts, pictures, or a video of your home contents in the event of something such as a fire?
• How should your car be titled — individually or jointly?

Protecting yourself from unexpected events that could cause financial ruin can be just as important, if not more important, than growing wealth. The harsh reality is that you can spend a lifetime doing a great job accumulating wealth or achieve what you believe to be a superior rate of return. However, should there be an unexpected event that was not planned for in advance, you can lose a lifetime of hard-earned wealth… and potentially cause a lifetime of financial pain.

Contact Frank Rotella if you have questions about the information discussed in this article.

Q& A Section:

What exercises can I perform to help fight fatigue?

Answered by Ryan Krane (Certified Personal Trainer and Performance Enhancement Specialist through NASM & Certified Corrective Exercise Specialist who demonstrates breakthrough exercises that give relief from pain so you "Move Better, Feel Better and Live Better.")


Ryan Krane, creator of the Krane Training Method™ discusses the five corrective exercises that help fight fatigue--calf stretch, neck stretch, back stretch, floor bridge and golf ball stretch. Decreasing fatigue will fight fat, increase energy and reduce pain.

Ryan Krane is one of the leading fitness consultants specializing in Corrective Exercises in the Los Angeles region. Along with helping clients become healthier and pain-free, Ryan is determined to help each client meet their own personal goals in both health and life. You can visit Ryan's website at If you'd like to read tips and articles about fitness, nutrition, and Corrective Exercise, be sure to check out Ryan's blog at

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