Healthy Cowboy Challenge Resources

By Gaurav Vaidya

Dietary Guidelines for Adults

- Fruits: 2 cups per day

- Vegetables: 2 1/2 cups per day

- Dairy Products: 3 cups per day

- Starch (Breads, cereal, pasta, beans, potatoes) 6 ounces per day

- Lean Meat, skinless poultry, fish, eggs, and nuts: 6 ounces per day

Adults should avoid trans fat as much as possible and should try to eat as much unsaturated fat (nuts, seeds, fish, and vegetable oils). Cholesterol intake should be less than 300 mg because your body makes its own cholesterol. So only eat egg whites, the yolks have 187 mg of cholesterol. Sugar is easy to consume a lot of because its easy energy for the body to metabolize but most people don't realize that sugar can cause people to gain more weight than consuming fat. Instead of using salt, you should use garlic and fresh or dried herbs when cooking.

You should consume 1,500 mg or less salt per day if you:

- Have high blood pressure

- Have diabetes, chronic kidney disease

- Are African American

- 51 and older

There is a way to find the caloric requirements for this program: Harris Benedict Equation:

1. Find the daily caloric intake you need a day:
- For women: 655+(4.35*weight in pounds) +(4.7*height in inches)-(4.7*age in years)

- For men: 66+(6.23*weight in pounds)+(12.7*height in inches)-(6.8*age in years)

2. Use the following chart and multiply the exercise factor to the number calculated above.


- If you want to gain weight, add 250-300 calories to the number from step 2.

- If you want to lose weight, subtract 500 calories from the number in step 2.

- If you want to maintain your weight, don't do anything to the number from step 2.

4. Eat around this number of calories each day. Keep adjusting this number as you gain or lose weight.

Heart Rate Zones When Exercising

When working out, you should be in a target of 50-80% of your age group's maximum heart rate. In order to make sure you are in this heart rate zone, check your heart rate in the middle of your workout by either using a portable heart rate monitor or checking pulse for 10 seconds and multiplying that number by 6 and make sure it's in the heart rate zone below.

Locations to check for heart rate:

- Neck: Carotid artery

- Radial artery: wrist on the thumb side

- Temporal artery: anterior to the ear, in the temple region

- Facial artery: clench the teeth and find the pulse just anterior to the masseter muscle

- Brachial artery: inner elbow area

- Popliteal artery: behind the knee


Cardio exercises are very simple exercises to do. Cardio can be anything that raises the heart rate to the target zone for at least 10 minutes at a time. It can be anything from walking to jogging to riding a bike as long as it keeps the heart rate up for a sustained period of time. In addition to strength training, it is recommended to do at least 20 minutes of cardiovascular exercise everyday.

Strength Training

Strength training will help people do daily tasks like getting out of a chair, walking, and standing for long periods of time. Muscle-strengthening workouts should be done at least 2 times a week. Some workouts include:

Flexibility (Stretching)

Stretching should always be performed after cardiovascular exercises and after strength training exercises. Stretching exercises: