Don’t Wait For The Gym

Have you ever stared at your gym membership and wondered when on earth you’d use it again?  The days seem to slip through your fingers, and it’s been too long since you’ve hit the gym?

You aren’t the only one.  There are exercises you can do at home to hold you over until your next gym visit, and I wanted to share one of my favorite moves with you today.

The Chair Squat.

Start with a chair behind you.

With your feet hip-width apart, lower yourself like you’re going to sit in the chair behind you.

Don’t actually make contact with the chair.

Slowly stand back up into standing position.

Repeat 10x.

 

Foods That Help You Burn Fat Naturally

We’ve been programmed to think that foods cause us to gain weight, which isn’t completely untrue. Overeating unhealthy foods can indeed cause us to gain weight — but did you know that there are foods that can actually help you BURN fat?

These foods hold a lot of nutritional value as well, so incorporating these foods into your meals as often as possible will pack a punch you will learn to crave.

Here are a few of these powerful foods that help your body burn fat:

Cayenne pepper. Generally, spicy food will speed up your metabolism and will thus make your body more likely to burn fat — so sprinkle on the cayenne pepper any chance you get.

Fermented foods. Fermented foods like sauerkraut are the natural probiotics that contain gut-friendly bacteria which will regulate your gut function and boost your immune system. Having better-regulated gut bacteria will, in general, give your metabolism a boost and will also reduce bloating.

White tea. You’ve probably heard of green tea as a fat-burner, but white tea can work just as well, if not better. White tea will stimulate the enzyme that breaks down fat and blocks the enzyme that builds fat cells. In other words, white tea works both ways to help you lose fat. So drink up!

Dark chocolate. Most people don’t expect that chocolate can be a food that helps you burn fat, as most people associate all sweet products with gaining weight. The antioxidants in cacao can support healthy gut function and help your body burn more fat. Dark chocolate is one of the best treats you can give yourself when you’re trying to lose weight and still satisfy your sweet tooth.

If you aren’t already using these ingredients, start incorporating these fat burning foods into your everyday meals to reap the benefits. Which of these are you most surprised to hear helps you burn fat?

Okay.  Hear me out.  I don’t suggest eating sweets on a regular basis, and the less processed the better.  But there’s this notion that if you’re going to adopt a healthy lifestyle, you must give up any and all treats forever.  That’s simply not true.

Obsessing over your meals with no wiggle room (unless you have allergies/sensitivities, of course) is a recipe for defeat.  Balance is a critical part of health, and I want you to enjoy a treat every once in awhile.  I do!

The focus needs to be on making the treats as healthy as possible, and not overdoing it.

Did you know that eating simple foods can reduce your stress levels?  What do I mean by simple foods?  Healthy, whole foods that aren’t processed or filled with chemicals.  Generally, these foods are going to be found on the perimeter of your supermarket, you’ll hardly need to venture into the middle aisles at all.

Think about how much time you’ll save not looking up recipes, spending hours trying new recipes out in the kitchen, and all the extra food prep that comes along with it.  Stick to simple ingredients, meals with no more than six ingredients and see how much easier your meals become.

Is there something in your life causing you to feel stuck?  Perhaps you aren’t in your dream career, you’re in a dry spell relationship-wise, or you are feeling uninspired in general.

I want you to be encouraged today that feeling stuck is okay.  It’s an entirely normal part of life, and it happens to every single one of us.  Instead, lean into the feeling of being stuck.  Fully facing this feeling will push you into brainstorming how to get un-stuck, and how to find your way back to the path you’re desiring.  Feeling stuck won’t last forever, so lean in and brainstorm your way out.

 

The Healthiest Spring Produce in Season Right Now

One way to make healthy eating a lot more affordable is by purchasing produce that is in season. These fruits and veggies are not only a lot more fresh and flavorful, but they are also priced well since they don’t have to be flown in from other countries. Eating in season keeps your menu on a rotation so you will not tire of ingredients. When you cook the same two veggies year round, it won’t take you long to get sick of them and never want to look their way again. But choosing your ingredients based on what’s in season will keep things fresh and ever-changing so you don’t get bored in the kitchen.

Here are a few of my favorite items that are in season this spring…

Asparagus. Not all people love asparagus, but it can taste amazing when you prepare it in the right way. Asparagus is in season from March through June, so this is the time you’ll be able to find it in abundance and enjoy the most flavorful tastes during the harvest.

Cherries. Cherries are harvested during spring and early summer, which makes them perfect for a spring fruit salad or a dessert you prepare for those spring evenings.

Artichokes. Artichokes are not a vegetable that you probably cook with every day, so you should see this spring as your opportunity to experiment. Artichoke season is from March to June, so be sure to pick up some artichokes while you still can.

Strawberries. This sweet fruit is grown mostly in California and Florida where they have long seasons, but they can also be found in the colder areas during the peak season which is from April to June. Strawberries are the perfect fruit to snack on, but they can also work very well in various salads and smoothies.

So, what’s your favorite!? Mine is asparagus, although strawberries are a close second <3

These are some of the healthiest and most delicious vegetables and fruits that are in season during the springtime. Some of these products can be purchased throughout the year, but they will always have the best flavor (and price) during spring.

How many times have you thought there just aren’t enough hours in the day?  How can you possibly get all that needs done completed each day?  And then have time for exercise, downtime, social interactions, etc. — it feels like an impossibility at times.

One way to multitask is by walking and listening to audiobooks or educational podcasts at the same time.  There’s something about curling up with a good book that comforts you to the core — but there isn’t always time to do this regularly.  Try downloading audiobooks from your library (Overdrive.com) or on Audible.com, and subscribing to podcasts so you can learn about something that interests you.

Invest in some Bluetooth wireless headphones (as low as $15 on Amazon) and tuck them in your ears as you’re walking around the block, doing laundry, commuting, getting ready in the mornings, and any other time you can find tucked away in your day.

What did you want to be when you were little?

What did you end up choosing as your career?

Think about how much time you spend working each week, and how HUGE of a chunk that is out of your lifetime.  If you spend 8+ hours a day unhappy at a job you despise, the vast majority of your life is going to be spent unhappy.  That’s not a gamble I want for you, and I guarantee that you don’t want that for yourself either.

I understand a career change isn’t always easy, but there are always aspects of the job you currently have that you can improve.  Think about the top three things you dislike about your current job, and brainstorm ways to enhance those areas for better.  If you aren’t working your dream job currently, also take time to brainstorm how you can work toward getting that dream job you’re desiring.  I know you can do it!

 

There are many different aspects of health that make up your overall well-being:  relationships, career, physical fitness, and financial health, just to name a few.  There are many more pieces of the pie, but today I want to focus on your financial health and how it relates to your overall health.

Financial trouble can feel like the weight of the world is on your shoulders.  It often feels like a hole you can’t seem to dig yourself out from — have you felt that before, too?  Being financially stable is a tremendously influential part of your health, if for no other reason than a lower stress level.

Struggling financially is something that feels taboo to talk about, and we are often prone to trying to hide.  Instead of continuing on a path of financial distress, focus on very concrete steps to get yourself out of the hole and release the stress that’s hindering you.

Foods That Age You Beyond Your Years

Youthful looking skin is something we’d all love to have. You likely have a daily routine of caring for your skin including moisturizers, exfoliators, face wash, night cream and more. Aside from what we can do on the outside, the health and appearance of our skin also comes from how well we take care of the inside.

Here’s what you should avoid eating to evade any additional aging to your skin:

Sweets. From sweet and tasty cakes to sugary candies, too much sugar in your body can wreak a lot of havoc. Excess amounts of sugar can tear down collagen in the skin, among many other negative effects that go on inside of your body. That’s not to say never to enjoy a slice of pie, but if it’s part of your everyday life, it’s time to try to lessen the load.

Overly salty foods. When you eat convenience foods and processed items, you intake more sodium than you would sprinkle on if you were cooking it yourself. That excess sodium makes you retain water, leaving you appearing puffy and swollen. The good news is that topical products with caffeine can help alleviate that, but you should start reading labels for sodium content to prevent issues from the inside out.

Excessive alcohol. A glass of wine won’t do you harm, but keeping alcohol at a minimum will do wonders for your skin. Regular alcohol consumption can cause your liver to gather build up which will leave your skin sallow, resulting in breakouts and wrinkles.

Too much caffeine. Because caffeine is a diuretic, it expels fluids from you more rapidly, dehydrating your body. When your body is dehydrated, it shows in your skin first. However, you don’t have to give up your cup of joe in the morning. Coffee has helpful antioxidants in it which are beneficial, but you can counter the  dehydration by simply drinking more water throughout the day.

On the outside, take care of your skin by looking for products with hyaluronic acid, which can hold up to 1,000 times its weight in water and keep skin hydrated and replenished. By watching what you eat and using proper skincare, you’ll keep your skin looking fabulous for ages.