Thursday, November 21, 2013

Healthy for the Holidays

Thanksgiving is next week, followed by over a month filled with celebrations and indulgences. For many, fitness takes a vacation during this time and then a snap back to reality comes January 1. But with a little strategic planning, holidays and treats can be enjoyed without feelings of guilt and regret. Here are some tips to help you through the season without stressing over having to start your fitness program all over in the new year.

- Schedule workouts and treat them with the same importance as any other appointment. Even if you have commitments that reduce the number of workouts you can get in a particular week,  scheduling and sticking to those you can fit in will help keep stress at bay and keep your energy high.

- Focus and push yourself during the time you have for exercise. The holidays can be chaotic and stressful. Pushing yourself during workouts will help clear your head while you focus all your energy into the task at hand. And, you'll burn tons of calories!

- Offer to contribute food items for parties and special holiday meals and bring something you feel good about eating. There will always be plenty of indulgent dishes available at celebrations. Adding something nutritious to the spread will show others your commitment to staying healthy and your family and friends will probably be happy to try something new.

- Consider revamping some of your traditional holiday dishes. There are so many ways to prepare traditional holiday fare and highlight your favorite ingredients. Try following healthy food blogs and Facebook pages for inspiration.

- Partner up with a friend or accountability group to keep you on track to meet your goals. Having someone to report your progress (or slips) to can work wonders toward helping you get past the urge to overindulge or skip a workout.

- Choose indulgences wisely. Avoid going to a party and filling up on cheese and crackers and then continuing on to all the special holiday food. Decide which items you're most looking forward to (those that are special for holidays, items you don't make for yourself) and enjoy a reasonable portion.

- Focus on people rather than food at holiday gatherings. Yes, there are food items you may have been looking forward to all year. Go ahead and have some. BUT, holidays are (should be!) about giving your time and companionship to the people you love, not just devouring a giant feast.

- Invite others to exercise with you. Physical activity accumulates and several small bouts can add up to a full workout. If you can visit with a friend while going for a walk or some other activity you both enjoy, you kill two birds with one stone.

These are just a handful of ideas to get you on track for celebrating the holidays while keeping your fitness in check. Plan ahead and you'll be ahead of the weight loss/fitness/health resolution pack
for 2014!

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Avocado Egg Salad Lettuce Wraps

Egg salad. I love it! But, I'm not a big fan of mayo. So this summer, I had the idea to make egg salad with mashed avocado. And boy is it good! I revisited my summer genius idea today and made my avocado egg salad and ate it on large butter lettuce leaves with a couple tomatoes and slices of cucumber.

This is so easy to make! 

1 large avocado, mashed
4 hard boiled eggs, chopped
large lettuce leaves
grape tomatoes
sliced cucumber (I cut mine in strips so it's easier to wrap)

Combine avocado and eggs in a bowl. Season with mustard, salt, and pepper to your personal taste. Spoon mixture onto large lettuce leaves and garnish with slices of cucumber, tomatoes, and whatever vegetables you like. Wrap it up like a burrito and eat! Makes 2 servings.


Friday, November 8, 2013

Cozy Orange Yoga Gear

Recently I tried a new brand of yoga clothing, Cozy Orange. As part of Cozy Orange's "Glam Squad", I received the Gemini Tank in True Teal and Gemini Pants in Raven Black and True Teal, to review. I was so excited to try some new yoga gear! Right out of the package, the fabric of both the tank and pants was super soft. The fabric has retained this softened after multiple washes, and both pieces have retained their shape and stretch as well.
Ready to teach class
When I tried the pants on, the first thing I noticed was how comfortable and flattering the waistband is. It doesn't dig in at all and it looks smooth under whatever top I wear with it. The Gemini pants have a good amount of stretch, giving a feeling of light compression without being too restrictive. The only thing I would change about these pants is to have them available in multiple lengths as they are a few inches too long (as usual for me!).

The Gemini yoga tank is another very nice piece. The seaming gives a flattering shape and again, the fabric feels great on. An interesting feature of this tank is that it has an adjustable shelf bra. I didn't find this to be especially helpful as it didn't feel super supportive and I would always wear a sports bra under the top anyway. However, for anyone who doesn't require/desire strong support, it is nice that you can adjust the band to make the fit more custom. I do like the True Teal color. It's colorful without being overwhelming. 

Overall, I really enjoy wearing both of these pieces of clothing and look forward to trying more of the Cozy Orange line!

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Sunday Workout

After a couple days off workouts due to a bad cold, today was the day to get back to it. Core Speed from T25 was my workout of choice. Actually, once I finished Core Speed, I decided to double up and popped Rip't Circuit in the DVD player.

I really like these workouts because they're short - only 25 minutes each - and they're intense. You feel as if you've done a longer workout when you're finished. And if you have days like I did today where you've missed a couple workouts and you want to come back with a bang, doing 2 still only takes 50 minutes! Because of the high intensity of T25, doing 2 workouts in a day isn't a frequent thing...only once per week to avoid overtraining. 

Here are a couple of clips from both videos. The first section is the last push in Core Speed, featuring every exercise from the whole workout combined and each exercise is only performed a couple times in this section. Then, a few exercises from Rip't Circuit are shown. It's been a few weeks since I've done these workouts, so I'm probably going to be sore tomorrow!