Lots of people are getting out there and running now that Summer is here. 19 Ways To Shave Down Your Race Time includes some good ideas and advice on improving your pace , including this infographic about foam rolling – which I am huge fan of! Hope you find some useful tid bits — I like that strength training and core work are both mentioned as ways to improve.
I’m not a huge fan of running. It’s very difficult for me – my asthma gives me a hard time and I struggle. But, running, like a lot of other exercises, can really help reduce stress. Which is timely, because NPR recently did a piece on stress and how it’s seriously affecting our health and family.
According to the NPR article:
- 1 in every 4 Americans say they had a great deal of stress in the previous month.
- And half of all adults say they experienced a major stressful event in the past year. That works out to more than 115 million people.
Stress is a real health issue – emotional and physical and our lives are getting more and more stressful. People don’t take the time, or feel that they don’t have the time, to focus on activities that help alleviate it, like exercise. But it really does help and has science to prove it…
According to this HuffPo piece: How Does Exercise Reduce Stress?
“Exercise promotes production of neurohormones like norepinephrine that are associated with improved cognitive function, elevated mood and learning. And that can improve thinking dulled by stressful events — some research even shows how exercise can make you smarter.”
- Health: Health most common major stressful event in Americans’ lives last year, poll finds
- Health Let’s Move! How Body Movements Drive Learning Through Technology
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- Life Lessons THESE 26 COUPLES JUST GET IT. WE SHOULD ALL BE SO LUCKY TO HAVE RELATIONSHIPS LIKE THESE
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My brother sent me some info this week on Splenda. You know the made from sugar, tastes like sugar sweetener. My dirty little secret is I use one packet in my coffee daily. It’s a guilty pleasure of mine and I look forward to my cup of joe each morning. After reading these research findings- I’m going to have to find an alternative…
- Research Review: Is Splenda safe? This review points out that relatively low amounts of Splenda (100mg/kg/day) may cause weight gain and at moderate levels (300mg/kg/day and up), it has adverse effects on your gut, affecting both levels of gut flora and proteins.
- Splenda’s Many Secrets: Gut Flora Destruction, Side Effects This review suggests that Splenda negatively alters gut microflora in rats and may limit the bioavailability of drugs and nutrients.
- Splenda, Sucralose Artificial Sweetener, Could Affect Body’s Insulin Response This one talks about Splenda’s effect on the body’s responses to sugar (glucose) — which could thereby affect diabetes risk — despite the fact that it has zero calories.
Listen To This
The Hidden Plague with Tara Grant - Tara Grant, author of The Hidden Plague, stopped by to discuss a very common tongue twister of an autoimmune skin condition (HS) that no one is talking about, and how she was able to put it into complete remission by healing her gut with an autoimmune paleo protocol.
(29:45 – What Splenda does to your gut bacteria…and your weight!)
My yoga instructor Tori continued the theme of Aparigraha (Non-Possessiveness) in yesterday’s class. According to wiki, Aparigraha “is the concept of non-possessiveness or non-greediness. The term usually means to limit possessions to what is necessary or important, which changes with the time period.”
I am getting a lot out of this theme personally. I have needed to de-clutter my house as well some long held beliefs and resentments that are not doing me any good at this point in my life. It’s not easy to just let go – it takes time to work through whatever caused you to hold on to it in the first place. I need to find time to go through all the closets in my house and get rid of clothes that don’t fit or that I don’t wear anymore. My closets are overflowing with unworn clothes that will probably never see the light of day, so why am I holding on to them? (rhetorical question of course!)
We all have things and beliefs in our lives that have been around for far too long. A sweater that you loved 10 years ago? A perception of who you are and why you can’t just drop everything and let loose… Things we hold on to in our life that may or may not serve us anymore. How often do we take a look at all “stuff” and clean house?
Think about de-cluttering or spring cleaning – it helps us feel more open to fresh ideas and refreshed and renewed – at least I know that’s how I feel! Tori suggested wearing our beliefs like loose clothing – where you aren’t constricted or constrained by them. You have the freedom to move, shift and let go of things that are holding us back.
By embracing the idea of Aparigraha, we can start to understand how our stuff controls us. We all want to live comfortably, but when you start to hold on to things (ie hoard) and/or obsess over what you have/don’t have, it starts to take control. This is also true when it comes to our opinions, habits and perceptions. We all need to regularly look over both the physical and internal stuff we are holding on to and get rid of the junk!
- Fitness:Grease The Groove (GTG) For Greater Strength & When The Shit Hits The Fan
- Fitness: Why Your Yoga Class Is So White: The practice seriously lacks diversity—but some studios are trying to change that.
- Life Lessons: Body Image: BMI CHARTS PUT ME INTO THE OVERWEIGHT CATEGORY, AND IT’S COMPLETELY RIDICULOUS
- Life Lessons: 5 Ways to Help Build Your Integrity
- CrossFit: CrossFit Trainer Education and Certification: New Programs and a New Structure
- Health: A gut reaction? Rheumatoid arthritis has confounded efforts to identify its trigger. Mounting evidence points to a new suspect: a disturbance in the bacteria that live in the intestines.
Neil Young Sings “Fancy” with Crosby, Stills & Nash
So a friend of mine posted this Business Insider article: The Science Is In — Why Gluten Sensitivity Is Probably Fake out on FB. As anyone who has read this blog for a while knows, I am primarily gluten free. I clearly feel lethargic, bloated, and fatigued when I eat gluten, so when I do eat it – I make sure it’s worth it to me. Another friend of mine left a really good comment on the article that I think makes the point perfectly regarding the BI article:
“One study with 37 people doesn’t prove anything. Jeff quit gluten and his acid reflux went away. I quit gluten and my acid reflux, sinus infections, headaches, and fatigue went away. My client quit gluten and the three headaches a week she had had for 12 years went away and she had more energy – no afternoon naps needed anymore. A friend of mine quit gluten and dropped her 3/week migraine headaches. Yes, the food industry glommed on to gluten-free and stupid people think it means “healthy.” People think they are on a gluten-free diet when they’re not, people say they are on a GF diet and don’t really know what it means, etc, etc, etc. I don’t understand why so many people are out to prove that it’s all “a big lie”. Not everyone needs to be gluten-free, but a lot of people feel better without it. So the bottom line is, who gives a shit what a study says. People should try going gluten-free (strictly, and for 21 days) and then add it back into their diet, and see if they notice anything. If not, great, keep eating it. If they do notice they feel better, then that’s all the proof anyone needs. Granted, it may not actually be the gluten in the wheat/barley/rye as they threw in at the end of the video — could be FODMAPs. Regardless, cutting out wheat isn’t a bad thing for anyone.”
In my opinion we are all sensitive to gluten on different levels and because of different factors. If it doesn’t bother you too much, then go for it. For me, avoiding gluten helps me feel better and that is worth it.
- Health: What The Obesity Epidemic Costs Us [Infographic]
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Scott planned a last minute family road trip to Williamsburg to celebrate the Fourth of July. Fireworks watching in Colonial Williamsburg – what could be more appropriate? The hurricane brought cooler temps which made it a perfect weekend for site seeing and spending time outdoors. We spent our last day at Busch Gardens Theme park. Anyone who knows me well, knows I am not a huge fan of parks like that. It’s too crowded, people forget their manners and to me, it’s the biggest display of gluttony on Earth. We managed to find a place in the Ireland section that had healthy salads, which is what I ate for lunch but I was probably one of the few in the entire park that actually chose the healthy option. Every time I go somewhere toursity, it’s a shocking reminder how obese and out of control people are. It makes me angry and sad at the same time. I see obese parents raising kids who are already battling obesity. They will have a harder battle to fight as they grow up already dealing with it.
Obesity is such a serious health issue. I found some Shocking Facts Behind Obesity Infographic that will surely open your eyes to how it affects all of us! Whenever I hear about accepting our bodies – I want to clarify it to be more about kindness, respect and worth. Being overweight affects your health and for your benefit and others – that’s not OK!
As we are in full summer mode, many of us will be exercising and/or attending events to benefit worthy causes. I’m all for giving back, but you have to do your research before you just give. You need to make sure the money you are donating is really going towards the causes you wish to support. We all found out the hard way about the Susan G Komen organization and the millions of dollars going to pay salaries and not helping find a cure for breast cancer. With that in mind, I came across information about the Wounded Warrior Project: Wounded Warriors Project A Legal Scam. If you do support this organization, I ask that you inform yourself on how they operate. Based on this report, they definitely have some inflated salaries and other sketchy operational cost which ultimately means less of the money donated goes to the wounded vets they serve.
- Health & Fitness: Here’s Proof That Exercise Changes Everything
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- Nutrition: The 5 Scariest Ingredients In Your Salad Dressing…
Yesterday’s soccer game was so thrilling and even though the USA team lost to Belgium, I am still in awe of how awesome our players are. I had no idea how awesome soccer players are in general –great athletes and amazing to look at too. That’s a great combination for sure. I love when world sports’ teams compete –it brings out our national spirit. Everyone rallies together and cheers the team on. It’s unifying and exciting and it was much needed especially after the SCOTUS ruling in favor of Hobby Lobby this week that clearly divided the country.
It was definitely tough getting up this morning for my Power Boxing class. I am enjoying it but it’s hard on my body at 6A, especially after a tough and hot yoga class yesterday. One thing I have begun to notice while boxing is the variety of intensity found among the boxers. There are a ton of newbies that are still not comfortable really beating the crap out of the heavy bag. At least I think they are newbies — I wonder how much benefit they are getting when they don’t hit hard or really move during the workout time. My feeling is that you are there to work – so go as hard as you can. Maybe that’s as hard as they can go but I doubt it — I think it’s as hard as their mind allows them to go. This is really where the CrossFit training and mentality serves me really well. I go at full intensity when it calls for it — and I don’t quit and I am finding that a lot of people outside of CF don’t necessarily subscribe to that.
Have you had a chance to read this NYT feature: Is Obesity Ok?. It’s such a touchy subject that is tied to so many emotions that it’s tough to really get to the heart of it. The health implications of obesity are not OK – but obese people are worthy of respect and kindness, just like everyone else out there. But does respect mean you don’t show sincere care for their well being and talk to them about addressing the issue? Obesity is a public health issue and causes a whole host of other health issues. Sometimes honest conversations can sting even though it’s coming from a place of concern, but that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t happen.
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Today’s theme at yoga was Letting Go — and the need to continually rethink, reimagine, re-explore long held beliefs and ultimately let go of those that prevent us from moving on. Why do we think we are not athletic? Why do we think we aren’t beautiful or worthy of love? Is there a moment in our pasts that helped define those thoughts and beliefs that we are still clinging to? It’s an interesting concept because so many of us get stuck in situations because we believe it’s the only way. Why do you put up with things in your life that make you miserable? Why can’t you go after the career you always dreamed of? What do you believe that is holding you back from doing?
What if we all took a breathe and really examined why we think the way we do — and should we continue to think it?
It’s also timely around the Hobby Lobby ruling. Times change, people change and it’s definitely time to re-examine and re-think who represents us.
Some related posts about Letting Go:
- Nutrition: Best Juicing Recipes Helps You Lose Weight
- Paleo/Nutrition: Camping Ideas for Paleo Enthusiasts
- Life Lessons: This is why you shouldn’t take people’s Facebook lives seriously
- Life Lessons: Why Women Aren’t People (But Corporations Are)
- Life Lessons: I DON’T WANT TO LOOK LIKE HER
- Life Lessons: VERIZON POINTS OUT THE LITTLE THINGS THAT HAVE A BIG IMPACT ON GIRLS IN MATH AND SCIENCE
- Health: Why Sitting Is Killing You + 9 Things You Can Do About It
- Health: The Mother Of All Antioxidants
Inspire Her Mind
- Saturday: Boxing
- Sunday: A Hike at Bear’s Den with the Family
- Monday: Boxing
- Tuesday: Flow Yoga
I don’t want to post anything today other than information about the Hobby Lobby decision by the Supreme Court. A facebook friend shared:
Hobby Lobby wins in a NARROW RULING….but here’s a thought…
Here is the slightly glossed-over rank hypocrisy of Hobby Lobby, in one sentence:
“They will cover male contraception, in the form of a vasectomy.”
Unlike female oral contraception (“The pill”), which have also been used to treat other medical conditions, such as polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), endometriosis, amenorrhea, menstrual cramps, adenomyosis, menorrhagia (excessive menstral bleeding), menstruation-related anemia and dysmenorrhea (painful menstruation), vasectomy has no other medical indications besides birth control.
I completely agree with Justice Ginsberg and her take on how wrong this decision was — It’s a very scary day in this country when Five White Conservative Men decide what’s best for a woman’s reproductive health.
Each morning I try to do some reflection and spend time reading through quotes or inspirational passages to start my day off positively. This quote from Iyanla Vanzant made me stop in my tracks and nod my head profusely…
If you really want to live your life to the fullest and realize your greatest potential, you must be willing to run the risk of making some people mad. People may not like what you do, people may not like how you do it, but these people are not living your life. You are!
I can certainly relate to the sentiment and am trying to be more comfortable with the realization that some people just don’t get me — and as long as I know my intentions are good and I am open to learning and being kind, then sometimes that’s the way it is. I definitely do have somewhat of a dominant personality and not everyone takes to it. But I can expect regardless of it, I deserve to be treated fairly, kindly and with respect. Scotty tells me often that that’s where I go wrong –to expect anything from anyone. I’m still not sure I subscribe to that way of thinking… although he sure seems to be a happy guy.
I have now been boxing for a few months and am starting to see the fruit of my switch over. I have lost some weight and am leaning out. I have realized that based on my body type, I do tend to get a bit bigger when I focus on strength training. There is nothing wrong with that depending on your goals, but I definitely like the way boxing is leaning me out. As I said, we don’t just box either – we do speed work, weight training and mobility. I am trying to figure out how to add in actual barbell work a few times a week but for now, it’s a real nice change for me. I am meeting some fun, friendly people and am finding myself getting excited again about getting up and working out. The music is good, the instructors are experienced and prepared and the boxing gym is clean. That’s my recipe for a good fitness experience!
Are you looking for some inspiration and motivation? Read about this 90 year woman old getting fit... No excuses!
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Since it has been so hot lately, I want to share more info about hydration and its effects on your health. Did you know that a 2% drop in body water can cause a small but critical shrinkage of the brain, which can impair neuromuscular coordination, decrease concentration, and slow thinking? Dehydration also reduces endurance, decrease strength, cause cramping and slow muscular response. Remember Lebron James and the cramps he had during the NBA playoffs this year?
Drinking more water can improve how you look: Woman Adds THIS To Her Diet And Changes Appearance By 10 Years.
I have found that when I am dehydrated, I feel run down and fatigued. I have to constantly remind myself to drink water. I’m not sure why it’s such a hard thing to do on a daily basis though. Seems like it’s a simple fix to many issues. Maybe we can all try to eat more foods that can help us stay hydrated in addition to drinking more H2O.
Remember a few posts ago, I mentioned Adrenal Fatigue? I’ve been doing some more reading and found information about the role DHEA plays in adrenal imbalances. DHEA is a natural steroid and precursor hormone produced by the adrenals. I was not able to find out how many women actually suffer from low levels of DHEA but considering so many women out there deal with hormonal imbalances, I would bet that many do have lower levels of DHEA. May be worth a check in with your doctor if you think it may be possible…
“When DHEA levels are low, your body does not have enough working material for proper endocrine function. This throws off your hormone production and you feel a general sense of malaise, along with other symptoms of hormonal imbalance — how severe depends on how many other demands are being made on your body at the same time.
There is a growing body of evidence that healthy levels of DHEA may help stave off Alzheimer’s disease, cancer, osteoporosis, depression, heart disease and obesity, but there is still no clearcut consensus. There may be some increased risks associated with DHEA for women with a history of breast cancer — all the more reason to take DHEA under medical supervision.”
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Sam Smith “How Will I Know” Whitney Houston Cover