Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Guess What One Of The Most Powerful Tools In Maintaining Health and Fitness? 

 (*Hint: zzzzzzzzzzzzzz)

What is one of the most POWERFUL tools in maintaining and increasing your health and fitness?  Diet, yes, is important.... activity is, too....  but....  WE NEED SLEEP!!!! (This is definitely something that I need to work on!!)  
Scientists have determined 2 main types of sleep that we go through... there is the REM, or Rapid Eye Movement, stage and a NON Rapid Eye Movement stage (NREM).  We are in the REM stage for approximately 25% of our sleep time.  The NREM is broken down into 4 types of sleep..  the first two is a lighter sleep and the last two gives us that peaceful, restorative DEEP sleep.  It's the NREM stage that mostly aids in our fitness and training routines.  The NREM occurs about 75% of the time.  

Here is a link to an interesting article that I found about sleeping "your way to better fitness": 

**Sleep as a Tool to Maximize Fitness:

  • Muscle Repair & Regeneration. Growth hormone is actually produced and secreted during the deep sleep stage of the NREM period. This is what helps our muscles to recover from hard workout sessions. It also helps with building muscle.
  • Deep Sleep. For a normal, average sleep, we’ll be in deep sleep for about one tenth of the time. For those of us who are undertaking concentrated workouts or training, we can be in the deep sleep stage for approximately 30% of the time.
  • Timing. Deep sleep mainly occurs at the beginning of your sleep. However, to get the full benefits from it, you must achieve constant sleep during this time. Any disturbances or delays in getting to sleep can negate the advantages you receive.
  • Workout Performance. We all know how we feel the next day when we don’t get enough sleep or it’s of poor quality. It often impacts our workouts and we don’t get the full benefits. Scientists have found that not enough REM sleep causes us to feel like we’re working harder in our training sessions than we really are, greatly affecting our performance.
There’s no doubt that getting the correct amount and type of sleep 
is crucial for a good workout. But, it also helps to repair and grow 
our bodies and recover from the workout we did that day. 

A good night's sleep is vital for improving our fitness levels when working out.  Without the proper sleep, you will not be able to achieve the full benefits of exercising!

With all that said, how do we get a nice, sound sleep?  So many factors play into how WELL we sleep.  I find that when I work my hardest during fitness activities, my sleep patterns are much, much better.  Fitness releases endorphins that make us feel GREAT and ENERGIZED, but when the euphoria wears off, if we have properly pushed our bodies, we will get very tired creating a much better night's sleep.

**Thank you, PREMIUM FITNESS,  for that great information!!
****On a side note:  At night, if I have trouble falling asleep, I have been drinking Celestial Seasonings Sleepytime Extra.  It contains chamomile and valerian, both known for their calming effects.  It seems to help, but perhaps it's all psychological...  but whatever it is, either psychological or physiological, when I take it, I tend to have a nice, deep, restorative sleep!****

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Stop. Bullying. Yourself. Right. Now!

There is so much positive talk with our children these days about bullies. We are aware of how bullying can effect a child at such a basic and fundamental level, that it can destroy lives, literally. We are on the road to empowering our kids about what to do if there is a bully at school... schools are now employing  "zero tolerance" policies, "if you see something, say something" mantras and more.

But, if you think about it.. WE are OUR worst bullies!!  We can REALLY beat ourselves up!!  Would ever even consider telling your friends the thoughts you think about yourself?  Can you imagine telling your best friend "you have nothing to give" or "you are such a bad parent because you took out time for yourself" or "Wow, you look so old that no one will ever find you cute again" or "your idea was dumb, I can't believe you did that".   I can bet that you would NEVER tell anyone of value these things, especially your friends or family. But you know what?  You are the most important value there is! Then why do you say these things to yourself?

You know, you can't escape your mind.. you cannot escape your thoughts. What we tell ourselves (over and over) we tend to believe.  I know I do!  If you say things over and over, you believe it.  It's kind of like the story of Pavlov's dog... every time the dog heard a bell he would salivate because he received a dog treat every time that bell rang.  So... what if you SAID POSITIVE THINGS OVER and OVER creating that automatic response in our brains?
Go around telling yourself that you are unlovable will manifest itself...  so think of POSITIVE phrase that start with I AM.  If you go about your day saying how much you have going for you, how smart you are, how strong you are, how beautiful/handsome you are, you will believe it!  YOUR THOUGHTS BECOME WORDS, YOUR WORDS BECOME ACTIONS, YOUR ACTIONS BECOME YOUR LIFE!*

So STOP.. and correct yourself.  Start your sentence with I AM.  
  • I am going to finish this
  • I am worthy of the purest love
  • I will fight
  • I am strong
  • I am focused
  • No one can stop me
  • I have gifts to give and share
A big thing for me is the act of being GRATEFUL!!  Look around you and see the beauty that surrounds you!  See the gifts that you have been handed in life.  Wouldn't it be rude not to use a gift?  What are some special gifts that you possess?  At the very least, you have the gift of free thought. You have the gift of smiling!  Moving!  Breathing!  Loving!  Feeling and touching, too!!  Celebrate these things that sometimes we overlook, but are the greatest gifts that we can ever have received.

Another important thing you can do, is to only hang around those that support you, that do NOT make you feel bad about yourself.  Those that make you explain yourself and your actions and your reasons, those that tell you that you have flaws, those that make you feel that you cannot speak freely of your thoughts..  are not those you want to be around.  You will never stop negative self talk if you have people around you that make you feel small.  In fact, they are small and you are powerful enough to step away and FORWARD!

Also, find the path to create change in your life.  Step away from those that make you feel small...  find a new job, create a new career that works for you, find a new place to live....  it won't be easy.  In fact, it may seem impossible, but seek it, WORK FOR IT and it will happen.  Repeat the POSITIVE to get you out and seek the BEST because YOU DESERVE THE BEST!

* Thank you for the amazing quote: The Healthy Optimist 

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Today I want to talk about habits.  Bad habits, good habits.  We all have them and we all need to work on some of them!  The good news is, is that we don't HAVE to have them! We can CHANGE our habits.

I want to talk about food and eating habits.....

You know, I don't like the idea of dieting. I really don't like the idea of diet plans.  It's not the food that is the problem, it's the habit that is the problem.

There are 2 causes for eating habits. physiological and psychological.

What do I  mean by physiological?   First off, when I mention that we lack "certain foods", I am referring to the 3 basic MACROS in our diets: protiens, fats and grains.. Sometimes we CRAVE these macros, or certain foods. Then, we end up overeating that specific type of food because we are LACKING the basic component (macro) of that specific food in our diet.  Are you eating enough protein or is your body crying out for some meat which leads us to that burger (then fries, etc, because it's there) Are you on a "low-carb" diet? Your body NEEDS that macro group, so even though you may have lost a few pounds by eliminating that macro, you will end up binging on it because your body NEEDS it to keep it running properly. Your body will not "shut up" if it is craving carbs or protein or whatever you are denying yourself.  If you SO restrict (creating deprivation) yourself, then your body will CRAVE it because it comes to a point that it HAS to have it to attain it's homeostasis, without that specific food our bodies are out of balance.

To make order out of chaos isn't so easy.  There are so many different diets out there, such as no carb, low carb, juicing, etc.   Well, stop that right now. Let's think about eating to LIVE and not living to eat!
****Let's break this down in a simple way...  each meal should incorporate protein, fats, grains (a nice way of saying carbs).  Maybe you are asking how much?  Don't obsess!  Look at your plate.. ask yourself  if you have each of the components, or macros.****

We also can overeat because of emotional needs.  It is important to listen to WHY you are overeating.  What were your feeling at the time of your binge?  Take a step back  and ask, "what am I going through in my life that caused this binge"?  If you break it down into WHY instead of punishing yourself and feeling awful, you may get a better grab on how to handle the situation next time.

Interestingly enough, the type of food you overeat may give us tips on WHY you overate. Overeating on sweets can indicate the need to comfort yourself from sadness. Overeating salty, snack foods can indicate the need to calm yourself from anxiety. If you overrate spicy foods, you may lack adventure and are bored!

How do you break a habit once you have recognized it?

I found this article on and I like the way they broke it down:

1. You have to want them to go.
In truth, some people actually want their bad habits to stick around. So the first thing is to go deep into the recesses of your heart and ask, Do I really want to give this up?
You do? Good. Then on to the next step…
2. Make up a list of all of the reasons you want to quit your bad habits.
Make them positive. Make the list long. Start with the really powerful and dramatic if you need to. Now memorize them. Put them in your mind.
You are making connections between stopping the bad behavior with what good things you will get from doing so. If you want to lose weight, then picture yourself slim and looking good in those skinny jeans. If you want to stop smoking, picture your wife actually kissing you rather than sending you to the bathroom to brush your teeth.
3. Choose.
Once you have the information, this comes down to one thing: an act of the will. Choose to do it. Say to yourself throughout the day, I am choosing to…
Eisenhower rightly said, “The history of free men is written not by chance but by choice, their choice.” It is your choice. You can write your history.
4. Take action.
This is tricky because there are two philosophies about it.
One theory is that you must take massive action—you must go all or nothing. Using the weight loss example, this person would go spend $500 to join a gym, rework their schedule and hit the treadmill every day for a year. They will get rid of all fat in the house. They go all out—and that works for some.
Others would burn out on that, feel like failures and be worse off than before. They should start out slow, taking baby steps but working diligently toward a planned goal. This person would decide to start walking three days a week. They would decide to limit dessert to two nights a week, down from seven.
Either way is OK as long as you get to the goal eventually. Which one are you?
5. Tell somebody.
This is your accountability partner. Tell them your goal and tell them your plan. Write it down for them and have them ask you on regular intervals about your progress. This will prove invaluable.
6. Recover from failure.
Inevitably most people will have setbacks. The key is to have them be setbacks and not turnbacks. Pick yourself up and get going again.
Some people may want to lose 30 pounds and after losing 15, they eat a gallon of ice cream. Then they feel bad and give up. Don’t! Reset your goal for another two weeks and get going again. Chalk it up to experience! Say to yourself, Sometimes you win and sometimes you learn.
7. Reward yourself.
You should regularly congratulate yourself by rewarding yourself with some gift. Start small with small victories and plan a big one when you are finally and for sure over the habit.
Is it that simple? Most of the time, no. Habits are hard to break. There are so many intangibles that it would be hard to cover them all. But this is a simple and workable plan that will help you make great strides if you just apply the principles.

Friday, March 2, 2018

I Am Ready For An Awesome Workout! But What Should I Eat Before and After?

Before I answer that question, 

the best food depends on WHEN you eat it before you work out!

  • I teach 3 classes a week at 5:30 am.  I don't have time to sit and eat a nice breakfast and digest it before I start the class....   Eating something before you hit your workout seems logical because you want to feel strong and energized for your workout. You don't want any hunger pangs side tracking your focus during your workout, right???  
  • However, eating the wrong foods or eating too much can leave you with a case of indigestion, nausea, or make you feel more tired than before you started. You need to make sure you eat the right foods in the right amount before workout in order feel good and maximize your efforts and results.
  • The closer to you are to your workout, the more you want to consider eating carbohydrates in lieu of fat or protein. Now, because carbohydrates are digested in the small intestines and fats and protein are broken down in the stomach, the carbs are absorbed and utilized quicker.  This means cramping and indigestion are more likely when you work out with a stomach full of fat or protein rich foods.
The rule is this: The less time it is until your workout, the less you should eat. This makes sense: It takes time to digest food, so you don't want to wolf down a huge breakfast right before getting on the RealRyder or the rower! 

  1. Refer back to the rule above...  don't over eat, you will get cramping and possible indigestion, which will inhibit your work out. 
  2.  What you eat after the workout is even more important than what you eat before it. That's when your muscles are hungry and your depleted glycogen (muscle sugar) stores need replacing. The "golden hour" after the workout is the time when those muscles soak up nutrients most effectively. Choose what you eat after the workout with just as much care as you choose that pre-workout snack.We all know that working out is important to keep our bodies strong, but you DO need to fuel adequately! 
According to Carina Wolff, a health and wellness writer based out of Los Angeles (graduate of NYU), here is the deal:

“Just like how cars can’t run without proper fuel, neither can our bodies,” says Lindsey Joe, RDN, LDN. “Adequate nutrition before and after a workout can give your body the energy it needs to perform at its peak and support your fitness goals, whether it’s to tone up, strengthen or get some booty gains,” notes Joe.

To help you make the most out of your trip to the gym, you’ll want to pay attention to these best foods to eat before and after a workout, according to nutritionists.

Before a Workout

Before a workout, it’s best to keep it simple and whole. “Timing is important as it’s best to not have your body digesting while working out,” says holistic nutritionist Shauna Faulisi. “This will rob you of energy you could have spent on your workout,” she adds.
  • Carbohydrates: For the best boost in energy before a hard workout, carbohydrates are easier and faster to digest than foods high in protein and fat. “The best time to eat ranges from one hour to four hours before working out, depending on the size of the snack or meal,” says Megan Casper, MS, RDN. Rather than opting for a big bowl of white pasta—as delicious as that may be—you’ll want to stick to complex carbohydrates such as whole grains and brown rice, which are the longest lasting and will give you the most energy. “If you’re noshing right before or during a workout, or feel a bit queasy after a whole grain snack, simple carbohydrates like those found in rice cakes, raisins, or applesauce will digest more quickly,” she notes.
  • Fruit: Fruits are a great way to get your carbohydrates in without feeling weighed down. “Fruit contains energy-boosting carbohydrates—not to mention satiating fiber and phytochemicals—that are easy to digest and enjoy,” says Joe. Consider something like a banana, raisins, grapes, or oranges.
  • Nuts: It’s useful to add in a little bit of healthy fats before your workout, which makes nuts a great option. “Try some clementine oranges with a few unsalted nuts,” says Joe. The combination of healthy fats and carbohydrates will help keep you fueled without weighing you down.
  • Sugary Foods: You’ll want to steer clear of any sugar-rich energy bars or sports drinks. “All types of sugar should be avoided,” says Faulisi. “This includes chemical-rich energy drinks, conventional electrolyte drinks and the like,” she explains.
  • Heavy Foods: Avoid heavy foods, such as high-fat or fried foods, spicy foods or anything too fiber-heavy. “Anything heavy is likely going to slow you down come your sweat session,” says Joe. “These exact foods differ from person to person so it’s important to listen to your body and how it reacts to various pre-workout foods to avoid feeling bloated, cramped or even nauseous,” adds Joe.

After a Workout:

Make sure you eat 15 minutes to an hour after your workout—when your body is primed to receive fuel and start the recovery process. “If we wait too long to eat after a workout, our energy drops, and our cortisol spikes,” says Faulisi. “Cortisol stores fat and will prevent your muscles from recovering properly,” she explains.
  • Protein: Eating a high-quality protein post-workout is essential for muscle development and recovery. “Stick to a high-quality protein source like grass-fed collagen, plant-based hemp protein, organic meats and organic pastured eggs,” says Faulisi. If you like to load up on intense protein shakes, you might want to think again. “Keep in mind that too much protein can be problematic due an excess of amino acids that convert to glucose in the body,” she says. “Too much glucose increases insulin and stores fat in the body,” she adds.
  • Healthy Fats: “Fat will help lessen the glucose load and without it, our hormones cannot function properly,” says Faulisi. In addition to your protein, add high-quality extra virgin olive oil, avocado, coconut oil, grass-fed butter or raw nuts—all of which are anti-inflammatory and good sources of fat.
  • Leafy Vegetables: “Incorporating above-ground leafy vegetables after a workout will help neutralize the acid that’s released,” says Faulisi. “We want to keep our bodies in a state of alkalinity, otherwise the body will leach calcium from the bones to neutralize,” she notes.
  • Dessert: It’s tempting to reach for a treat to reward yourself after a workout, but just as sugar should be avoided before, it should also be avoided after. “It’s common to crave sugar after a workout because [your body] needs replenishing and sugar temporarily makes us feel great,” says Faulisi. “Avoid it at all costs. Keep your body feeling great long-term by nourishing it with water, minerals, protein, fat and phytonutrients,” she recommends.
  • Alcohol or Caffeine: A cocktail or a cup of coffee might sound like the best way to unwind after a full-body exercise, but you’re better off steering clear of drinks with alcohol or caffeine. “Avoid alcohol and caffeine due to their diuretic effects,” says Joe. “They dehydrate you and you want to rehydrate post sweat session,” she explains.
Thank you Dermstore blog for this great article!

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

New Year- New You... UGH!!! I REALLY Have A Problem With This And You Can Read Why!

As you know, fitness is my business.  I love it, I sell it, I practice it, I share it.  However, there is always this fine line that I think about though.  Yes, I want to create change in people's lives.  Yes, I want people to transform their bodies.  Yes, I want people, myself included, to be lean and healthy and strong.  

But hidden within all of this, is the message is that we are not good enough. That we need to work hard to change ourselves... and then, and only then will we be happy and therefore, better.  New Year's resolutions are the same. Right now, New Year, New You is my biggest peeve.  It tell us that we are not good, so we better make up our minds to change and then we will be better.  But the more people I meet, the more people that work out at Crank It Up, the more apparent it is to me that we are all so AMAZING!  That we are all BEAUTIFUL in our own right.  That we possess such amazing qualities.  It is not that we need to change who and what we are, we just need to work on staying as awesome as we can.  We need to move to be healthy, not skinny.  We need to sweat to work our hearts and lungs, not to be a size 0.  We want to PRESERVE our qualities and work on LONGEVITY and GOOD HEALTH... on mobility and functionality... on having a POSITIVE outlook, because, as we all know, life throws some pretty big curve balls our way! Let's go for being the best US that we can be at our jobs, with our families and with others!  We are a work in progress and the base of that work is just that.  It's US. It's YOU.  It's ME.  We have been given certain gifts in our lives, like the gift of mobility... like the gift of drive..  like the gift of desire.  Let's be grateful for these gifts and USE THEM TO OUR ADVANTAGE!  
Don't ignore your gifts, use them.

So, instead of making the same unrealistic resolutions that we seem to do every year, let's concentrate on celebrating our gifts and in turn, the most positive of changes can only occur!  

I am so proud of each of you and I can't wait to see how much we obtain in 2018! (Two Thousand Great-Teen)

Sunday, December 10, 2017

My 10 Tips For Staying Fit This Holiday Season!!!

Are you worried about gaining a few pounds over the holidays?  With all of the office, family and friend "get-togethers" it's hard not to  be a little concerned about over eating.  But why not enjoy a little of the festivities, relax at the parties and partake just a bit.  You are on the road into health and fitness, but sometimes we hit a few potholes in that road.  Here are some tips to make that road a little smoother...   Follow my top 10 tips and let me help you stay on track!!
  1. It's okay to "cheat" (with food and drink, that is!), but do it in MODERATION! Take a sampling of different foods.  Choose a small, snack sized plate to fill up.  It will look full, but it will have LESS on the plate than a full sized plate.  If you are at a buffet, for instance, go to the dessert station for a dessert sized plate (don't take the dessert first!) and fill up that size instead of a larger plate.  
  2. MAKE A DATE WITH A FRIEND:  A date for exercise!!  If you have a plan to meet someone, you are more likely to do that exercise than if that date didn't exist!
  3. I know we run around like crazy buying gifts, decorations, going to parties, etc, but it is important TO TAKE OUT TIME FOR YOURSELF AND GIVE YOURSELF THE GIFT OF SOME EXERCISE!! Set a side even 30 minutes to move!  We would love to help you SWEAT at Crank It Up!!  Check out our schedule of classes and come on down!  You make the commitment and we will take care of the rest!
  4. Drink plenty of WATER!!  Water is key...  key to cleaning out your system, key to mental clarity, key to FEELING FULL!!  When you are at a festive occasion, have a big, glass of water instead of an alcoholic beverage.  Put in a lemon wedge for flavor, but DRINK WATER, DRINK WATER, DRINK WATER!!
  5. Try NOT to keep tempting, fattening, dangerous foods around the house.  If you bring a dessert to a party, leave it there. If you are baking, wrap up and give the extras to your neighbors... you get the picture.  If it's around, it's pretty hard not to "knosh"!!
  6. If you can't get in even a 30 minutes Total Body Workout, try for 100 CORE EXERCISES A DAY!  WHAT?  100?  YES!!!  100!!  Maybe you want to make them 100 crunches..  do fifty traditional crunches, 25 with a twist to one side and 25 with a twist to the other and you are done.  YOU CAN DO THIS DURING A COMMERCIAL!!!!  OR you can view a set of exercises we did last year for an American Diabetes Association fundraiser.  Click here: 
  7. Core Challenge Exercises
  8. Try not to drink too much alcohol (if any).  I know it's out there, but the calorie content is so high in alcoholic beverages, you feel lousy the next morning and are less apt to want to work out if you feeling kinda yuck!  Alcohol is so hard on your body.  If you drink already and then eliminate it, you will feel stronger, healthier and your body will have a better overall glow.  It is taxing on the liver and other organs as well!
  9. Start a new tradition in your house!  After eating a large meal, even with tons of guests over, go for a group walk.  Everyone will enjoy the conversation, the change of scenery and definitely the fresh air!  You will feel better, get the heart pumping and the blood flowing and burn off some of your calories!!
  10. Try to stick to 3 main meals a day, plus 2-3 small snack in between.   Just because it's the holidays and things are crazy, make sure that you eat at proper intervals.. don't starve yourself going store to store trying to find that perfect gift and then cram everything you see into your mouth when you get home.  Take the time out to eat at the proper intervals of time!!  
  11. LAUGH!!! Laughing released tension!  Laughing burns calories!!  Don't sweat the small stuff, enjoy the season, SMILE, GIGGLE, CHUCKLE, GUFFAW!!!  

Please remember, that if you do indulge a little too much, it's doesn't mean that you have give up your road to health and fitness. It just means that maybe you will want to do a little more for your workout... bump it up just a bit!  Don't feel bad, feel good about the holiday season... enjoy... relish in your blessings/gifts/good fortune... be grateful for the miracle that you may celebrate this holiday season, but also for the everyday beautiful occurrences that happen all of the time...find the beauty in your ordinary!!

Monday, November 6, 2017

Being An Optimist Can Enhance Your Long-Term Health! What Is The Secret To Being One???

Ahhh...the world through rose colored glasses!  

Is this attainable?  

Why should it be attainable???  


A positive attitude and overall emotional wellness can help boost mental fitness at any age. Boosting MENTAL fitness will lead to a healthier life! 

(Read the full article: 

So what is the secret to being an optimist?  
HOW can we become an optimist instead of pessimist?
According to motivational speaker Christian D. Larson, there is a set of rules in which to follow...  He called this: The Optimist's Creed

The Optimist's Creed:
I promise myself:

-To be so strong that nothing can disturb my peace of mind.

-To talk health, happiness, & prosperity to every person I meet.
-To make all my friends feel that there is something worthwhile in them.
-To look at the sunny side of everything & make my optimism come true.
-To think only of the best, to work only for the best, & to expect only the best.

-To be just as enthusiastic about the success of others as I am about my own.
-To forget the mistakes of the past and press on to the greater achievements of the future.
-To wear a cheerful expression at all times & give a smile to every living creature I meet.
-To give so much time to improving myself that I have no time to criticize others.
-To be too large for worry, too noble for anger, too strong for fear, & too happy to permit the presence of trouble.
-To think well of myself & to proclaim this fact to the world, not in loud word, but in great deeds.
-To live in the faith that the whole world is on my side, so long as I am true to the best that is in me.

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Halloween Came And Went... But What About All That Candy That You Ate? YIKES! Now THAT Is Scary!!! (Also titled: What To Do After You Binge!)

We all do it now and then.  
We get a little crazy and eat way more than we usually do.  Halloween, along with other holidays, aren't the only time.  But, how do you rebound after a binge?  Can you get back to eating properly right away?  Here are some tips that can help!!  
I found this short article on the Women's Health website with some very simple, yet very effective tips to get you back on track, even after a binge!!  
These tips should help you resume your healthy habits ASAP—because weight maintenance (and loss!) is way more about the decisions you make over time than it is about one random binge-fest.
Have Breakfast
Even if you wake up feeling full and sluggish from all that fill-in-the-blank you ate the night before, force yourself to start the day with breakfast. Not only does it reset your body by getting your metabolism going, but it also helps you set the tone mentally for a regular eating day.
Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate
Water is so critical on the day after you overeat. Why? It helps you feel full, so you won't be as tempted to carry your overeating day into the next day, too.
Have a Filling (healthy, not drenched in ranch) Salad for Lunch!
The water in the veggies will help hydrate you and take away that groggy food-hangover feeling.
Eat an Afternoon Snack!
Don't skip out on this! It's important to keep your metabolism going so you don't suddenly crash and begin another overeating session. A handful of almonds and a piece of fruit should do the trick.
Cook Dinner at Home
If you had plans to go out with the girls/guys, invite them to your place instead for some healthy reboot-your-body home cooking.  Go for clean foods, like a piece of broiled fish with roasted veggies and a whole grain like quinoa or barley. They'll give you the nutrients you need without all the processed gunk, which would only perpetuate your bloat.
Squeeze in a Workout
When you feel like you're carrying a small child, building up the mental energy to hit the gym can seem majorly daunting. But really try to do it because you’ll feel So. Much. Better. (**Sweating, pushing, pulling and pedaling is the best medicine!**)

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

POST Workout Drinks and Eats... Hmmm, What To Eat? And, Yes, Chocolate Milk Is One Of Them! YUM

Okay, so now, just by the title, you know that chocolate milk is a good recovery drink.  
But why? 

Is there science behind it? And what else can I drink, or eat for that matter, to help aid in recovery after a hard workout? had a great article that I am going to repost.  They have included a table graph with some post recovery foods and drinks that you might find interesting:

Surrounded by massive hills and valleys at the start line, the runners concerned about recovering from the Big Sur International Marathon breathed a sigh of relief as an announcement was made that chocolate milk would be available at the finish. I had to laugh a bit because, thanks to clever marketing and some scientific research, a beverage that was once avoided due to a high sugar and calorie content is now the Homecoming Queen of recovery nutrition.
The popularity started when research began to uncover that a blend of carbohydrates and protein, in a ratio of four grams of carbohydrate to one gram of protein, was effective in promoting muscle recovery following endurance exercise. (For a more in-depth look at the ins and outs of recovery, read this.)
Soon after the research was published, the Powers That Be in the dairy industry realized chocolate milk, the beverage most commonly associated with childhood school lunches, naturally conformed to this ratio and hence started to promote it as a recovery beverage. As an added bonus, chocolate milk is widely available, inexpensive, and just the right amount of indulgent. Plus, additional research has solidified chocolate milk as an optimal recovery beverage.
But the marketing of chocolate milk left some runners wondering: Is this all there is? The other day, Meghan wrote in to say, “I am a huge fan of java. I often treat myself to a fancy coffee drink after a long run. If it contains milk and sugar (like a latte) could this replace the all-coveted recovery miracle cure—chocolate milk?”
She’s not the only one wondering whether eating or drinking something else can provide the same recovery benefits. In short, yes. There are plenty of food and drink options available for runners looking to adapt to their training and effectively prevent muscle breakdown while stimulating muscle protein synthesis.
As we discussed in previous Fuel School sessions, when planning recovery meals and snacks, you want to meet one of the two following criteria: 0.5 grams of carbs per pound of body weight plus a sampling of protein OR simply a snack or meal providing 15 to 25 grams of protein, regardless of the amount of carbs.
You may be wondering, "What happened to the 4:1 ratio of carbs to protein that was once so widely touted?" Well, as research continues, it looks like if enough protein is consumed, the ratio is not as critical and can be relaxed slightly. For optimal recovery, aim for a ratio somewhere between 2:1 and 4:1 if you’re into counting grams of carbs and protein.
If you’re not into calculating ratios and doing math, consider recovering from your next hard workout with one of these easy-to-digest, easy-to-make (or purchase when you’re on the go) items listed below.
Food Item
Carbohydrate (g)
Protein (g)
Carb:Protein ratio
12 oz low-fat chocolate milk
Sandwich: PB&J (2Tbsp each PB, jam) on 2 slices whole wheat
McDonald’s® Fruit and Yogurt Parfait w/ Granola + 16oz nonfat latte
Sandwich: 3 slices deli meat on 2 slices whole grain bread + 1 cup grapes
Smoothie made with 1c skim milk, 1 large banana, 1 scoop whey protein powder (look for one with 75-135 calories and 10-15 grams protein/scoop)
*Nutrition facts provided by individual company websites &/ The USDA Nutrient Analysis Library


Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Give Stress The Ol' One-Two Punch With Exercise!

Exercise and stress: 

Get moving to manage stress

You know that exercise does your body good, right???'re too busy and stressed to fit it into your routine. Hold on a second!! There's good news when it comes to exercise and stress.

The mental benefit of aerobic exercise actually has a neurochemical component!! Exercise reduces levels of the body's stress hormones, such as adrenaline and cortisol. It also stimulates the production of endorphins (chemicals in the brain that are the body's natural painkillers and mood elevators.)
Relieving stress on bikes: Cycle-Therapy!

Exercise,in almost any form, can act as a stress reliever. Being active boosts your "feel-good" endorphins and actually DISTRACTS you from daily worries.At Crank It Up, we always say that NO MATTER what is going on outside of our doors, you LEAVE THAT BAGGAGE RIGHT OUTSIDE the minute you come in....  Yes, it will be waiting for you when you leave, but, because of the endorphin release that you receive while working out, you are much better able to tackle those issues when they greet you as you leave. 
Virtually any form of exercise can act as a stress reliever. It doesn't matter if you are an athlete or if you are completely out of shape,  you can still make a little exercise go a long way toward stress management. 

Read on to discover the connection between exercise and stress relief — and why exercise should be part of your stress management plan.

Exercise and stress relief

Exercise increases your overall health and your sense of well-being, which puts more pep in your step every day. But exercise also has some direct stress-busting benefits.
  • It pumps up your endorphins. Physical activity helps bump up the production of your brain's feel-good neurotransmitters, called endorphins. Although this function is often referred to as a runner's high, a rousing game of tennis or a nature hike also can contribute to this same feeling.
  • It's meditation in motion. After a cycle class, kickboxing or even a walk, you'll often find that you've forgotten the day's irritations and concentrated only on your body's movements.
    As you begin to regularly shed your daily tensions through movement and physical activity, you may find that this focus on a single task, and the resulting energy and optimism, can help you remain calm and clear in everything you do.
  • It improves your mood. Regular exercise can increase self-confidence, it can relax you, and it can lower the symptoms associated with mild depression and anxiety. Exercise can also improve your sleep, which is often disrupted by stress, depression and anxiety. All of these exercise benefits can ease your stress levels and give you a sense of command over your body and your life.  
The mental benefits of aerobic exercise have a neurochemical basis. Exercise reduces levels of the body's stress hormones, such as adrenaline and cortisol. It also stimulates the production of endorphins, chemicals in the brain that are the body's natural painkillers and mood elevators.







Taken from the Mayo Clinic

Guess What One  Of The Most Powerful Tools In Maintaining Health and F itness?   ( *Hint: zzzzzz zzzzzzzz) What is one of the m...