FUNdamentals in FUNctional FITness
by Nikki Carrion, MA
FitXpress LLC
Join our Activity Director
Community message
board and network with
Activity Professionals
across the country. This
is a free service.
Be sure to subscribe to
Activity Director Today
E-magazine for the
latest news and more
about your profession.
Only $19.95/year
Providing Internet Resources
for Activity Professionals
in Long Term Care Settings

Copyright 2004-Present
The Activity Director's Office
All Rights Reserved

Activity Director
Novelties features
promotional materials
and gifts for you, your
residents, your facility
and your Department.
Be sure to visit.
Activity Director
Excellent Resources for
Activity Professionals
Featuring supplies for
parties, holiday
celebrations  and
special events
Click Here
Co-Owner; FitXpress
Nikki Carrion is co-owner of Fit Xpress
Consulting Services in Waterloo, IA.  
She has over 25 years of experience
in the field of health promotion and
says her passion for her work comes
from her desire to practice preventive
health and promote positive lifestyle
changes.  Although she works with a
wide variety of ages, from college
students to older adults, she says her
focus is on empowering older adults
to higher levels of functional fitness.   

Nikki has a graduate degree in
Community Health Education with an
emphasis in Gerontology from the
University of Northern Iowa.  She also
has a number of certifications
including balance training, chronic
disease self- management, exercise
for hip & knee replacements, group
exercise instruction, personal
training, yoga and pilates.


  • MA; Community Health
    Education.  University of
    Northern IA.  Emphasis in


  • Enhance Fitness Master
    Trainer ~ University of
    Washington, WA.
  • Chronic Disease Self-
    management Master Trainer
    ~ Stanford University, CA.
  • Balance Trainer ~ Cal State
    Fullerton, CA.
  • Personal Trainer / Fitness,
    Yoga & Pilates Instruction ~
    Nat'l Exercise Trainers

Nikki Carrion’s primary
passion and mission is to
empower older adults to
higher levels of functional
fitness.  Besides the Relax &
Breathe CEU module,
FitXpress has a series of
chair exercise DVDs as well
as a training module for
activity professionals.  
FitXpress methods are safe
and effective AND
demonstrate how to put the
FUN into FUNction!
For more information go to:
check out the product page.
Empower yourself with
or call 319-404-4219.  
Healthy Nutrition = Immediate Physical Effects

Welcome back!  Last month we touched on the topic of how good nutrition affects
health.  A key element of good nutrition is the virtual elimination of simple sugars found
in sodas, candy, cake, cookies and the like.  With that said…let’s take a look at what
one expert says about the rather immediate effects of such good nutrition on your

After 15 minutes: The body is said to be most active first thing in the morning.  
Therefore, breakfast is critical.  If it consists of whole grains, lean protein (e.g. egg
whites) and fresh fruit you are energized…physically & mentally after just one meal.  
“BREAK”…”FAST” = breaking the fast just experienced during sleep.  Break the fast in
an effort to jumpstart your metabolism first thing in the morning.  

After 3 hours: Your artery linings begin to expand more and to increase the flow of blood
to your body’s tissues and organs.

After 6 hours: The HDL (good cholesterol) in your blood perks up and begins to unload
LDLs (bad cholesterol) from your blood stream.  Think of LDLs as delivery
trucks…making deposits of cholesterol, while HDLs are like garbage men sweeping
up the LDLs and delivering them to your liver to be broke down and processed.

After 12 hours: Your body begins to BURN FAT because you have eliminated sugar!  As
long as sugars are coming in…you’re liver has to work incessantly to break it down
AND the fat hangs around because your body is busy breaking down all that sugar.  
Sugar ALWAYS comes first!  When you eat sugary items realize you are actually putting
your fat metabolism on lock down.  

After 16 hours: Your body wants to be a healthy weight, so if you’re carrying a few extra
pounds…your liver will begin the process needed to shed them.  As a bonus, you’re
very likely to get a better night’s sleep too.

After 24 hours: If you were carrying a few extra pounds around…you’ve probably already
dropped 1-2 as your body has started the process of eliminating excess water and
toxins from your system.

After 3 days: As you continue your journey, losing weight if needed, your numbers (e.g.
blood pressure, cholesterol, blood sugar) also begin to travel in a healthy direction.

After 1 week: Your bowels are likely to be in better working order, your cholesterol panel
is likely to have significantly improved already.  If you have a goal of weight loss…expect
your weight to be down as much as 5 pounds.  

After 2 weeks: If you have been diagnosed with hypertension, you can expect to have
healthy drops by now.  If you were carrying extra weight, depending on how much, you’re
likely to have dropped more weight by now.  

After 1 month: By now your LDLs have fallen up to 30% - a drop similar to what is seen
using cholesterol-lowering drugs, and your liver is not having to filter junk from your
blood stream as you are no longer eating and/or craving junk!

After 6 weeks: Your blood cholesterol and triglyceride levels are substantially improved,
and if it was needed you’ve most likely lost a substantial amount of weight.

After 12 weeks: By this time your numbers (e.g. cholesterol, blood pressure, blood
sugar, triglycerides, glucose and insulin) will have begun to, if not completely,

After 6 months: You feel great by now…healthier than ever!  “Why?”  You’re consuming,
and retaining, the vitamins and minerals essential for your body to operate at an
optimal level.  You’ve reduced your sugar intake over this period, and insulin production
has normalized.  Your energy levels have increased dramatically as you are now
completed the detoxification process.  You’re probably a healthy weigh by now, and your
goal is to be a conscious eater and to maintain good health moving forward by making
healthy lifestyle choices.  

Along with the idea of detoxification comes a cleansed palate.  The result of a clean
palate is reduction in those cravings you used to have for sweets and junk food.  You
may be surprised that you don’t even miss them!  If, on the other hand, you do…these
types of foods can now be reintroduced in moderation.  The key is moderation and
monitoring your numbers.  Until next time, be healthy…be happy!  