Monday, October 9, 2017

Pumpkin Chili

What are a few things that come to mind during this time of year?

Cool weather?

How about cooking pumpkin chili on these cool fall days for the football games?
Here's a recipe to try.

Pumpkin Chili

2 pounds of ground turkey
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup canned pumpkin
2-14 oz cans tomatoes, diced
1-16 oz can kidney beans
12 oz chili sauce
1-2 tablespoon chili powder
2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
1 teaspoon brown sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper

Coat large skillet with cooking spray. Brown ground turkey and onions.  Drain liquid.  Transfer to large pot.  Add all remaining ingredients.  Mix thoroughly.  Simmer for 30 minutes.

Let us know if you try this!

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Why you should practice Pilates during pregnancy

Two of us have recently had babies, and I feel Pilates has helped me have easy pregnancies, both during the pregnancy and after.  Having a baby definitely changes the body, but Pilates can help combat the discomforts and issues.  Here are a few reasons why to continue a Pilates routine:

- Decrease pain in lower back - Pilates exercises target the strength and stability of the pelvis and low back.  The baby grows... the belly grows.  This creates increased pressure on the lower back and possible posture changes.  If the stabilizing muscles around these areas are weak, pain is a result.  Pilates aims to prevent this from happening.

- Pelvic floor strength - As the uterus gets bigger it puts pressure on the pelvic floor.  Your muscles are asked to support this increasing pressure, but Pilates helps to strengthen these muscles.  It also strengthens the push during labor.

- Improve core strength - Pilates targets the deepest abdominal muscles, the transverse abdominis.  During pregnancy the fascia of the rectus abdominis, a more superficial muscle, will stretch and thin. If the fascia separates too much, problems can arise.  Strengthening the transverse abdominis will support the rectus to prevent increased separation of the fascia.

- Stress relief - Being pregnant can create a lot of anxiety for some women.  Pilates and other exercises decrease this feeling.

- Improve breathing - There's a lot of breathing in Pilates.  As the uterus expands, it puts pressure on the diaphragm and makes it hard to breath.  Pilates helps to combat this by tapping into the intercostal  muscles lining the ribcage so women still feel like they can take deep breathes.  Also with the breathing connection that occurs during Pilates, the breathing can make labor a little easier.

- Quicker recovery - The stronger the body is before delivery, the stronger the body will be after.   If moms have the connection to their abdominals before pregnancy they will regain that connection quicker than if they didn't have that connection in the first place.  And don't forgot about all the lifting and bending over to take care of the baby... and maybe any older children.  Strong arms and back will prevent injury, tension, and imbalances due to these activities.

Of course my body is different after my third pregnancy, but I felt strong after delivery.  I didn't have much of a down time afterwards.  I truly believe that practicing Pilates all these years has made my body strong enough to have pregnancies with little discomfort and to bounce back quickly after delivery.

- Mandy Harris

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Have you ever wondered what Microdermabrasion is?

Microdermabrasion is a minimally invasive procedure that gently sands off the outer layers of skin improving overall texture and improvement.  

What does it do?
- revitalizes dull skin
- reduces large pores
- erases fine lines and wrinkles
- treat sun damage
- reduce acne scars
- reduces mild pigment irregularities (hyperpigmentation), stretch marks and age spots. 

It is equally effective for reducing superficial imperfections and, most importantly, it allows you to get back to your daily routine immediately after treatment and even put makeup on right after. This patented Turbo System provides a controlled safe and even exfoliating process. One treatment will show improvement but a series of 6 is recommended for best results.  4 weeks should be scheduled between each treatment.

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

What is Cupping??

We have recently added the bodywork technique of cupping to our list of services.  Several clients have asked what it actually is especially after it was brought to light by many athletes in Rio’s 2016 Olympics.

Cupping is the term applied to a technique that uses small glass jars as suction devices that are placed on the skin. There are many ways in which suction in the cups can be created. One method involves swabbing rubbing alcohol on to the bottom of the cup,then lighting it and putting the cup immediately against the skin. Flames are never used near the skin and are not lit throughout the process of cupping but are only a way to create heat that causes the suction within the small cups.
Image result for cupping
Once the suction has occurred the cups can be gently moved in a gliding motion across the skin. The suction in the cup causes the skin and superficial muscle layer to be lightly drawn into the cup. Cupping can be compared to an inverse of massage rather than applying pressure to muscles, it uses gentle pressure to pull them upward. When combined with Massage Therapy, Cupping is a tremendously helpful technique for pain as well as many other conditions. In general, stagnation of circulation in the muscles and body tissues will lead to pain and illness. Cupping improves the circulation in these areas and pain is alleviated and underlying health issues are often relieved. Cupping helps such issues as pain, arthritis and other conditions such as asthma,insomnia,high blood pressure and more. Cups are usually left in place for about 10 minutes while you relax.

written by Rene Reynolds, massage therapist certified in cupping

Thursday, October 6, 2016

Pumpkin, Pumpkin Everywhere!

I drove by a pumpkin patch yesterday, and thought "It's that time of year".  I need to get my pumpkins to put by the front door.  They are not only for decoration but also can be used in some of your favorite foods.   Pumpkin is being put in everything during this time of year... coffee, donuts, soup, and even ravioli.

Image result for pumpkin images
Did you know that pumpkin is good for you?  Pumpkin is a nutrient dense food filled with vitamins and minerals but low in calories.  It is high in fiber so will keep you full longer.  Pumpkin contains beta-carotene which the body converts to vitamin A and essential for eye health.  The vitamin A also helps the body fight infections and recover from the common cold faster.  The beta-carotene in the pumpkin is also good to help the skin look younger.  The pulp can even be used in a facial-mask.

Here is a recipe for pumpkin bread with a little added protein from greek yogurt.  Let us know what you think!

Greek Yogurt Pumpkin Bread


2 cups flour
3/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup butter (or softened coconut oil)
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups pumpkin
1/3 cup plain greek yogurt
1 tsp vanilla

  1. Preheat oven to 350°.
  2. Combine the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt, stirring with a whisk.
  3. Place sugar and butter in a large bowl, and mix until well blended
  4. Add the eggs, pumpkin, yogurt and vanilla.
  5. Add flour mixture; mix until blended.
  6. Spoon batter into two loaf pans coated with cooking spray.
  7. Bake at 350° for 1 hour or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

Try adding 1/3 cup of chocolate chips.

Thursday, September 8, 2016

We asked some of our clients what their favorite Pilates exercises are.  Here are a few of their responses.

Bridging... because it helps my lower back and stretches my back all along the spine. - Nancy
Image result for pilates bridge

Short spine on the reformer and rolling like a ball.  Both exercises give a great core/ all body working helping with stability.  Rolling like a ball also helps with balance.  I also love the plank.  It works everything especially is moving while holding the plank.- Kathy
Image result for pilates short spineImage result for pilates rolling like a ball

Jumping! Great cardio workout.  And short spine because it stretches my entire body, releases stress, and improves breathing. - Laura

Thursday, August 4, 2016

Why Pilates?... Why Polestar Pilates?

Why Pilates?

I'm often asked how I ended up where I many others in the fitness world, I've had personal injuries that have led my interest in specific trainings to find healing. On my path, I was l led to Polestar Pilates. I was drawn to them because of their mission to create life changing movement experiences. Polestar Pilates philosophies have been an integral part of my work for several years. God made us so marvelously complex and yet so simple at the same time!  Moving the body as it was designed brings strength and healing.
Positive movement experiences are always the mission!  We focus on how the body moves and functions to be in the best shape in order to live life to your fullest potential. Helping you find your inner strength is truly our goal.
I've been so blessed to be a part of many others journey on their path to wellness.  Over the past 23 years I have seen clients overcome various obstacles. Here are a few inspiring examples!
*Clients that have been able to reduce or eliminate medications
*Pro athletes adding Pilates to balance out their training programs
*Chronic pain clients that are so fearful to move when they begin, then realizing freedom of movement when function is restored
*Post operative and post rehab clients that learn how Pilates can bridge the gap to wellness during recovery
*An 87 year old great-great grandmother who is as spunky today as she was 17 years ago when we began working together
*Spinal cord injury client that has gained range of motion
*Clients that have seen an increase in bone density to the effect that they've been removed from the label of osteoporosis
*Clients with MS that have been able to maintain independence and movement even through flares of their condition
*Clients suffered from strokes using Pilates for functional rehabilitation

Pilates changes lives. To some it is simply another form of exercise to add variety to ones routine, to others it is a groundbreaking revelation that blows their mind!

Why Polestar?