The Health section of the Los Angeles Times is determined to help you reach your 2013 health and fitness goals via our #LATFit social media campaign. Friday morning, we’re joined by "The Biggest Loser" trainer Dolvett Quince, who has a fitness tip that just might get you bouncing out of bed each morning to get in a workout: Work out with your dog.
Pet obesity is on the rise in the U.S. In fact, obesity has increased by 37% in dogs, and a whopping 90% in cats in the past five years, according to a State of Pet Health Report issued by Banfield Pet Hospital, which operates over 800 clinics nationwide.
"I’ve found that sometimes we’ll do more for those we love -- such as our dogs -- that we’ll do for ourselves," Quince told The Times. "I want people to use their pets as the perfect 'excuse' to work out. Do something good for both of you."
Quince has partnered with Banfield to create a workout regimen pet owners can do with their four-legged pals. Some, such as hill and stair repeats, can be done with Fido. Others, such as squats and lunges, are done while your dog stares at you and wonders what the heck you are doing. You can find more workout suggestions at www.Banfield.com/fitness.
But you don't have to get fancy, Quince said. "Just getting out and walking with your dog is a great place to start," he said. "Walking is a great exercise for you and your dog."
It probably goes without saying, but we'll say it anyway: Get your vet's clearance before you launch your dog into a new fitness regimen. And if you are heading outdoors with your pet, watch the heat and make sure to bring plenty of water for both of you as you work up a thirst. (You may be working out in shorts and a T-shirt. Your dog is working out in a fur suit.)
We'll also talk to Quince about the upcoming season of "The Biggest Loser," which features its highest-profile competitor ever: "American Idol" Season 2 winner, Ruben Studdard.
If you have any questions you'd like to ask Quince, you can submit them on the Spreecast chat any time before it starts or during the live broadcast.
Finally, join #LATFit! It’s simple. Just use the #LATFit hashtag on Twitter and Instagram to share the healthy choices you’re making whether it’s your daily step count or the yummy lunch you packed for yourself. We want all the inspiration we can get to meet our 2013 health and fitness goals.