Walk Jane’s Talk: Getting to know you!

Hi, I’m Jane Riley, your new source on the island for fitness, health and nutrition facts!

A bit of background; I’m an internationally certified fitness trainer, nutritional consultant, Pilates’ and Yoga instructor, senior fitness specialist, and an international fitness and nutrition writer and speaker with over 20 years experience.

I had my own radio show for years in Canada, was a regular on daytime T.V., and wrote for the L.A. Health News, Hellbender press, Sport London, Endurance Magazine, North Carolina Journal for Women, Senior Living, Heritage Magazine, Perspectives, as well as many newspapers in both Canada and the U.S.

I also have an interesting background as a medical research scientist throughout North America which gives my writing a perspective from both ends of the health continuum. I can tell you about the causes of disease and dysfunction but also show you how to fix it!

I continued my academics, after achieving a B.A. in Kinesiology and psychology from U.W.O., by completing a master’s of science from University of Massachusetts. The diplomas in medical science and advanced degrees in pathology make for an interesting mix of credentials and education.

 This diverse background has taught me that the best defense against common diseases and simple illness is simply prevention. Lifestyle choices that you make, can determine the difference between good health and a lifetime of chronic illness.

We’ve likely all read with some distress, that the military is finding it difficult to find young people who are lean enough to be admitted for service. “Too Fat to Fight” was the name of the study. This is a sad state of affairs, but not one which can’t be fixed. We all need to move more and eat more healthily.

Here on Kaua‘i what could be easier? We have daily fresh food at the farmers markets, we have wonderful bike trails, beaches, walking paths, snorkeling, swimming and surfing options — and most of these options are available year round. That’s that true beauty of Kaua‘i, its year ‘round abundance of outside activity options and fresh healthy food!

The military pointed their finger at the school food programs as a problem, and of course we all know that we could do better there, but how about the “home food program”? Simple changes such as using multi grain bread instead of white (dead) bread, makes a huge difference.

Why? Whole grains break down in your body much slower, so they keep your energy level much longer, meaning you won’t be hungry soon after eating your sandwich. The other thing is that whole grains (the grainier, the better) have much more fiber which literally pulls fat out of your body with it. Changing white rice for brown whole grain rice is another easy fix which does exactly the same thing.

Another easy fix when it comes to food is to look for fish and chicken more often than red meat. It has less fat marbled through it so it has less calories, but also the fat that these meats have is less hard fat (saturated) so it doesn’t clog up your arteries as much and lead to heart disease.

Getting some activity into your life is easy too; you just have to make it a priority. Park the car at the far end of the parking lot when you go shopping so you force yourself to take those extra steps. They add up! Better yet; you can leave the car at home and walk to the store occasionally. Take up an activity that you really like such as dancing or something new like Pilates, or learn the hula! Little kids know instinctively that moving is fun and good. Moving is as natural as sunshine.

 Please write me with any health, fitness, nutrition or wellness questions that you have. Mahalo nui, and aloha, Jane.                      


• Jane Riley, B.A.,C.P.T., C.N.A., can be reached at janeriley_cpt@yahoo.ca, 808-212-1451 or www.janerileyfitness.com.


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