Hi Everyone, this is Fecni speaking (since I don't have fingers Audrey will be typing for me). For those who don't know me personally, I have a little weight problem. I'm kind of an easy-keeper as they say and over the long hot summer I gained a few extra pounds that I need to get off before the coursing season starts. So, since I know there's lots of other dogs out there who are also battling weight problems I thought I would take the opportunity to explain my personal fitness regimen so that others may follow along if they want.
The most important part of my fitness program is exercise. I believe that the majority of canine weight problems can be dramatically improved with just exercise alone. I usually do a brisk walk with my group for about one hour everyday, which translates into about 3 miles of walking. To increase my endurance, I walk with either a loaded backpack (see above and below) or I drag weight with a harness and chains every other day. For my cardio workout I jog about 3 or 4 times a week for about 30 minutes with adequate warm up and cool down periods to keep my muscles from cramping up.
The second most important part of my fitness program is diet. As I said before, I'm a really easy-keeper, plus I tend to be a little greedy when it comes to food. In order to keep myself feeling full, while also cutting back on calories, I eat a low-fat dry kibble mixed with a half a can of green beans.
Snacking is one of my major vices, but just because you're on a diet doesn't mean you can't have snacks every once and awhile or even everyday. The important thing is to cut back on high-calorie, high-fat snacks. I only eat a little of these right after a workout or right after a race to replenish my energy, but don't over do it!
For daily snacking, you can eat fresh fruits or vegetables (carrots, celery, apples, bananas etc), or my personal favorite, ice cubes.
You don't want to over do it with the ice cubes since it doesn't feel good to have a lot of cold ice in your stomach, but a few cubes in place of a dog biscuit will do wonders for your body and will leave you feeling satisfied until your next meal. Which reminds me, when I'm on a diet I prefer to eat twice a day rather than once a day. When dieting it's always better to eat more small meals over the course of the day rather than one big meal because it will lessen your hunger and help you eat less overall.
So, that's my fitness program in a nutshell. It's very simple and easy to follow and I guarantee it will work for you too.