Wednesday, April 16, 2014

What's for breakfast?

Today was a 5:45 a.m. cycle day and I am just settling in for my post-workout snack (a little later than I'd advocate - I know!) 

If you are a morning exerciser, a pre- and post-workout snack is important to get the maximum benefit from your routine.  

Your body needs energy to work at it's maximum intensity, and how do we store good energy? By taking in a combination of complex & simple carbohydrates about 45 minutes - 1 hour before our workout begins.  

This promotes the slow & steady release of energy throughout your routine.  A slice of whole wheat toast with a tablespoon of peanut butter and a banana are perfect before a run or a cycle class. 

Post-workout, while your body in recovery mode, pick something packed with lean protein and healthy fats, like a veggie omelet with avocado or nutrient-rich berries with a hard boiled egg and a half of an avocado (that is my choice -- pictured here!)

In addition, be sure you are consuming 16-20 oz of water after your workout to replenish what you've lost while working out.  

Why an avocado?  Avocados are a superfood that can help your body absorb nutrients like Vitamins  A, D, E & K found in your veggies and/or berries.   These vitamins are packed with antioxidants, which are good for your body -- inside and out!  

For more tips on eating and exercise, check out this article by the Mayo Clinic

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Controlling your stress....

Currently making my way through a AFAA self-study course during my lunch breaks.  Today's chapter - stress & burnout. 

Stress is defined as a mental or physical tension or strain.  Those daily, small stressful demands we put on ourselves (especially the ladies) are what lead to the big "B" --- burnout! --- which is flat out emotional exhaustion.  Remember my mantra:  It's all about choices! 

In the fitness world jumping in to a new routine full steam ahead isn't the only thing can lead to burnout.  Did you know NOT seeing results quickly enough - or setting unrealistic goals and not achieving them - can lead to burnout?  So many times I've heard someone set a goal to lose 15 pounds in a month, but at the end of that month they've only lost 5, a healthy 1.2 lbs per week, that they see it as failure, they get frustrated, they feel EMOTIONALLY EXHAUSTED by their failed efforts --- all for naught.  1.2 lbs is a realistic goal that should be celebrated! No matter how much you have to lose.

One of the things that can be helpful in avoinding burnout is getting educated about working out & consulting a fitness professional before setting goals & strting new programs.  

But if your fitness routine isn't leading you to feel stressed, there are many other things that can help lower any bad stress and prevent burnout - all in this one handy list compiled by AFAA©

And if you're not stressed, whose spirits can't be lifted higher when they have a little dance party?

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