Remember back in 2019 when we were all counting down the seconds, minutes, days and months until 2020 began? A new year. New possibilities. A time to start fresh and leave our stresses and anxieties behind us.
Enter 2020. We’re barely half way through March and it’s safe to say that, the majority of us, if this year was a movie, would ask for our money back and demand to speak with the manager. Only, this isn’t a movie, but the reel keeps spinning.
Stress and anxiety will derail us if we don’t get a handle on it. When we feel like we’re not in control, we feel like we will lose all control. There are catastrophic things at work that are beyond anyone’s ability to handle! There’s no end in sight! My bills, my family, my job – all of it lies in the balance! I can’t change the outcome! These are all valid concerns – 100% – but we can manage.
“If you don’t like something – change it. If you can’t change it – change your attitude”. This advice from Maya Angelou is stated so simply it almost seems like a no brainer. But how do we change our attitude? We take some deep breaths, occupy our minds with something else, and the same thoughts keep creeping back again almost as quickly as they left. GIVE YOUR BODY A STARTING POINT FOR A NEW ATTITUDE. Just as a plane can’t safely land on a runway full of clutter, our minds and our bodies can not allow the positive when we are to cluttered with the negative. How do we remove this clutter? Here’s 10 ways:
Especially if you are ill. Your body needs to recover and recharge. Get more sleep. Lack of sleep is a major contributor to stress. “But stress is keeping me from getting sleep!” True. Stress will do that to you. Create a tranquil setting fro your self. Create a nighttime routine. Get your mind and body in a pattern of knowing that it’s time to sleep. Limit your caffeine, alcohol and sugar in the evening. In fact – curb it my 3:00pm. Get your work done as early as possible so that you give your brain a chance to shut off. NO PHONES OR COMPUTERS BEFORE BED! The blue light alone will contribute to insomnia, let alone the stress of social media and news. Which leads to –
2. CONTROL YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA FEED
Don’t like the drama? Cut it out. There’s no room for it. Unfollow profiles that cause you stress. That can be people as well as news or men sites that make you feel helpless, stressed and sad. Memes are funny, but can also subtly allow a tremendous amount of anxiety into your thoughts, which we are trying to fill with positivity.
Move. Get your blood flowing. Not only will this help you sleep better, but it will also regulate your stress hormones and calm your body. Get into a routine. Start in the morning if possible so you can meet the day on your terms. A brisk walk at lunch or in the evening is another good way of finding some peace. You can also check out our workouts to get your blood pumping and reduce anxiety.
It can be extremely hard to do. Start with your breath. It’s something you can control! Find a positive manta that you can repeat and breathe into your new attitude like “I deserve peace” or “I need serenity”. Something simple. Inhale through the nose and out with the mouth. Sit. Be still.
5. Avoid caffeine, alcohol, nicotine and sugar
Yes, this does include WINE! These are behavioral stimulants. They will effect your energy levels, make you crash and feel irritable. You will feel tired but won’t be able to sleep. Clean your body out. Stay hydrated. Get your electrolytes.
6. TALK IT OUT
Get your thoughts out of your head! Talk to someone you trust. Stress also has the ability to cloud your judgement and keep you from making rational decisions. Maybe you’ll find that you’re not the only one feeling the way you do and that you have an ally in your battle.
Call it a diary, or a journal – whatever you like. Date it. Include the who, what, why and how you felt. Look for your triggers. Compare your stresses. Find the positives in how you handled one thing better than the other.
8. HEALTHY HOBBIES
It’s ok you consider exercise a hobby. But we covered that. This is different. What makes you happy? What brings you peace? Painting? Knitting? Gardening? Playing a musical instrument? Give yourself time to do this. Be a kid again.
9. SAY NO AND ASK FOR HELP
A major source of anxiety is having too much on your plate. This is when we think, “I can handle it” because you haven’t had a total breakdown yet. Don’t give yourself one! Be aware of your capabilities. Spreading yourself thin will lead to even more stress. “Did I cut too many corners on this project?”, “Could I have done better had I not been so overwhelmed with all these other things?”
Learning to say “No” will lead to more self-confidence. Often times we’re afraid to say no because we want to be liked, or we fear missing out on another opportunity – don’t forget to like yourself! Love yourself! Spurning an opportunity because we can’t give it our best could be just as damaging.
Ask for help. You can’t do it all. You just can’t. And that’s ok. It makes being a human that much easier.
Get in the habit of being honest. “I’m sorry, I can’t right now – I have a lot of high priority items I’m dealing with right now.” “I would love to, but there is just no way I could give this my top priority with everything I’m working on right now”. See? There’s nice ways of saying no.
Cut your immediate costs. Is there anything you’re spending money on that you don’t need? Are you still paying for past subscriptions to online sites, apps, or services that you forgot about? Check. Stop them.
Where are you shopping? Are there alternative locations that are cheaper? Check your eating habits – Are you spending money on things your body doesn’t need? Alcohol? Junk food? Right now your body needs nourishment to combat your stress. Give it what it needs and save the rest for another time. As much as we think Ben & Jerry’s will make us feel better – which it will, for about 5 minutes – it will leave our bodies in worse shape, our pocket books needlessly $6 lighter, and our thoughts regretting a needless purchase. Did I mention that sugar and alcohol also lower your immune system? Just saying.
We can’t control everything. What we can control is our approach to handling things differently. Our response is our responsibility. We can do this!
Vegetables. These can be hard for some people. Maybe it’s the taste or maybe it’s a sensitive stomach or texture.
I get asked all the time how the healthiest way to eat them is: raw, cooked, broiled? So here it is. Raw veggies usually contain more nutrients but that doesn’t mean that it’s better for you… it’s much more complex than that and really depends on what your body absorbs.
Cooked veggies can give you more antioxidants and minerals that your body can absorb. For example, cooked spinach has 245 mg/cup of calcium and raw spinach only has 30 mg/cup of calcium. They can also help aid digestion so if your stomach is sensitive to a veggie, see if cooking it helps.
However, when boiling veggies you can lose antioxidants so steaming is always better. During the boiling process, the nutrients escape. That’s why bone broth is so healthy for you… if you make homemade broth, make sure to throw in lots of veggies so the nutrients leave them and go into your bone broth.
So what are some pros to eating your veggies raw? Phytonutrients, which have been found to reduce certain chronic diseases such as heart disease and cancer, can be found in raw veggies. By heating these vegetables, it can destroy the beneficial compounds.
A 2018 study showed that people who ate vegetables raw, were more psychologically well than those who ate them in cooked. Also, for those trying to lose weight, raw veggies are better because it requires more chewing and slows the eating process
As you can see, no matter what form you take your veggies, any vegetable is a great addition to a healthy diet. It truly depends on your health goals… lowering the risk of heart disease, weight loss? And how your body handles vegetables. I truly believe that veggies are hard to digest raw however your body can handle them, raw, steaming, boiled or supplements with Vitamin K – get your veggies!
When you are thinking about your body and health does fascia come to mind? It should. In 2018, a study by CDC showed that 50 million Americans (20% of the countries population) suffers from chronic pain.
If you’re not feeling like yourself or have unexplained pain, your fascia could be a cause.
Fascia connects all tissues beneath the skin including muscles, bones, tendons, ligaments, and blood and holds together your entire body. There are four kinds of fascia: structural, intersectoral, visceral, and spinal. Healthy fascia will glide, it’s flexible and supple. When it is unhealthy it is sticky, clumpy, flaky and tight which can cause adhesions, muscle knots, and restrictions. Think of healthy fascia like a wet sponge. When it’s wet it is bouncy and resilient but when it’s dry, it can be brittle and hard.
Having unhealthy fascia can cause poor posture, lack of strength, poor mobility, feelings of discomfort and injury. One common form of unhealthy fascia is plantar fasciitis. One in ten people will experience this during their lifetime. This affects the connective tissue on the arch of the foot.
Studies show that practicing healthy habits will keep your fascia healthier. As if you needed another reason to focus on your mental and physical health but here are some poor health choices that can lead to unhealthy fascia: sedentary lifestyle, poor posture, dehydration, unhealthy eating habits, stress and poor sleep. All these things dehydrate the fascia making it stiff and flaky.
So what can you do to avoid that? Staying active is the most important. Choosing activites that vary in tempo and also movements. This will decrease your chances of injury and also keep your fascia hydrated. Doing the same actions everyday (such as running) will not only be rubbing the same joints but “wringing” out your fascia. This is true with lifting heavy as well. When you are lifting heavy continuously, you are driving out the water.
Resting is a way for your tissue to rehydrate. This also prevents injury and gives your muscles a day to recuperate. Drinking enough water will also keep your fascia hydrated and flushes out toxins.
Stress free activities also help. Find things that will relax your nervous system. Meditation, yoga, cycling, running, reading or get a massage. By calming your nervous system you are creating a happy body and healthy fascia. Eating healthy and fueling your body with fruits, vegetables and proteins is a go. The benefits of taking care of your body and fascia will be less day-to-day pain, scar tissue breakdown, improved body alignment, reduced risk of injury and increased blood flow.
The bottom line is that no one likes to have unexplained pain. Take care of your body and it will take care of you. All of the above actions will also help with maintaining a healthy weight, helping your mental health and improving longevity of your life.
Do something to move your body today and improve your fascia healthy.
Valentine’s Day is usually all about couples but today, I want you to celebrate YOU.
Why? Because the most important relationship you will ever be in is the one you have with yourself. It is also the one that is most often overlooked. There are so many small things you can do each day to practice self love.
First, schedule out time just for you. This will be something that will help your mindset. If you haven’t been doing this already, start at 10-15 minutes. What is something you enjoy doing but haven’t been able to recently? This could be reading a book, journaling, meditation, taking a bath, going on a walk, get your hair done.
Whatever it is that you choose, make sure that you are focused on what you are doing and not what you should be doing. For many of us, we live extremely busy lives. We easily feel guilty for not doing the day to day tasks that we feel take priority over ourselves. These can include taking care of our children, packing a lunch for spouse, house chores, business emails, etc. Remember that 10 minutes or even 30 minutes are well-deserved for you to relax and focus on you. Remember, you can always build up to your ideal time and that some people require more “me” time than others. Do what feels right for you.
Second, move your body. You knew this would make the list. There are so many benefits to staying active and this can help our mental and physical health. By taking care of your body and respecting all that it does for you, is a way to show self love. Your body releases chemicals during a workout that increases your mood and helps you feel relaxed. It also decreases your risk of depression.
This doesn’t have to be a 60-minute, hardcore workout. Choose something that you enjoy. Go for a walk with your dog, play outside with your kids, take a kickboxing class, go for a run. Any of these will show your mind and body some love while helping you clear your mind. Partner this will fueling your body with healthy foods and your energy and happiness levels will sky rocket.
People always say that marriage is hard work and it is! But so is personal development. Trying to change a pattern within yourself is hard and you more than likely will fall a few times and that is normal and OKAY! When you are working on bettering yourself, it has a ripple effect on others. If you are wanting to focus on finances, for example, that may encourage your friends to do the same. Want to eat healthier? Awesome, ask your husband to join. Working on bettering your life will only help you and everyone in your life. Do not get this confused with being perfect. There’s a difference between striving for bettering your life and perfectionism. This can often lead to negative self talk.
Something that you can try to remember when you start to have negative thoughts about yourself is “would you say this to your best friend? Your husband? Your child.” If the answer is no, flip it to a positive. Instead of seeing stretch marks, notice how much more loosely your jeans are fitting. Instead of wondering if you talked too much, be grateful for your outgoing personality. This will help your mindset immensely and also grow your self-esteem.
Remember that you cannot pour from an empty cup. If you are always giving and pouring yourself into other relationships, how can you fill up your own cup?
What is your favorite activity to do to practice self-love? What do you struggle with?
How to Stick with Those New Year’s Resolutions in 2020
This may be a little presumptuous of me, but I will bet when you wrote our your New Year’s Resolutions this year, losing weight or eating healthier was on that list.
Why? Because in 2019, 71% of people in the U.S. had that on their list. OR maybe you chose not to include it this year because you’ve failed in the past? Don’t worry! I have some tips below that will help you stay on track.
Set clear goals. Most people just say, “I want to lose weight” which is great! But you need a plan. How will you lose the weight? Eating healthy and moving your body more. Perfect, but you need to get more specific: What will you eat? Will you make a meal plan each week? Who will cook the meals each night?
If you work out, how often? How much time can you dedicate to that each day? Will you workout at a gym or in your home? Your goals also need to be realistic. Do not tell yourself that you will work out for an hour a day, every single day. Choose a time of day and an amount of time that you can dedicate to your health. There needs to be a plan of action in order to succeed.
Track your progress. Please, do not just track the scale (this will be a whole other blog post!) but let’s just say the scale isn’t always your friends when you’re trying to lose weight. Those cute jeans you haven’t worn since you had your baby—are they looser? Have you lost inches around your thighs and waist? Do you feel less bloated, happier, more energetic? There are so many ways to track your health besides the number on the scale. Track those!
Buddy up and put skin in the game! Whether it’s a friend, spouse, personal trainer… don’t do it ALONE. It will make it easier to hold yourself accountable to making these small changes a habit. Also, sharing your goals makes it more real and shows your commitment.
Invest in your goals. If you hire a personal trainer or are spending money each month on a gym membership, you are more likely to stick with it because you’ve made an investment either with your time or your wallet (or both!). This is your health we’re talking about, and it’s worthy of your investment!
These are just a few ways for you to switch your mindset to positive while creating your new year’s resolutions. And even though we are almost through the month of January, it’s never too late to create new goals and have a successful year.
If you are needing to buddy up for accountability, I am always here for you!
Endurance & Strength Training
One of the things I love to do as a fitness coach is busting workout myths. I am sure as a woman, this is the one you have either heard or thought yourself: lifting weights will make me bulky.
This is simply not true.
Thanks to high levels of estrogen, women’s muscles will become more firm and toned as opposed to becoming larger in size. Strength training builds healthy bones, makes you lean and strong while helping you burn calories. Unlike, endurance training, lifting weights actually gives you more calorie- burning hours. It speeds up your metabolism so you will still be burning those calories long after your workout.
Also, as women age, muscle mass begins deteriorating at a higher rate. Lifting weights offsets this process. Due to the hormonal changes in women during menopause, they are at a higher risk for osteoporosis, thus, naturally losing bone density. Routinely lifting those dumbbells will slow the process of bone loss and helps your bones get stronger.
If you are a runner by nature… no worries! Cardio helps prevent heart disease, helps our lungs, mental health, increases our production of Human Growth Hormone and gives us better quality of life so don’t give it up. Just include strength training three times a week. Runners blogs agree that by strength training, you will increase your strength, endurance and the result will be that you will have faster running times as you are building muscle. Although cardio is great for weight loss, too much will result with the loss of muscle mass as well.
In conclusion, doing a healthy combination of strength and endurance training will give you the best results that you are looking for.
There are many benefits when it comes to preparing your food. Not only does it save you time, money, and stress, but it can also aid in eliminating unhealthy eating habits during the week. Most of us live very busy lives where eating out is convenient and almost necessary with a packed schedule. Preparing your meals can help to give you a healthy option during your crazy workweek while still maintaining convenience.
I like to meal prep on my day off. By using my free day to prep my meals, this allows me to plan my meals, go to the store, and cook the food all in one day, making it easy and also efficient.
When creating my meal plans I usually like to add a little bit of variety, as eating the same meal five days in a row can become boring and will most likely result in eating out even with a prepared meal at hand.
A good meal plan incorporates, protein, vegetables, healthy carbs as well as fats to create a balanced meal that will keep you full while giving you energy. It is important to be aware of calorically dense foods while meal preparing in order to decrease the opportunity for undesired weight gain or excessive fatigue.
Preparing your meals for the week is the easiest way to prioritize your health and wellness, taking your fitness journey to the next level. By preparing meals, you are choosing to embody the aspects of your ideal diet. Just remember that planning healthy meals is the most important part of this process and should be combined with proper exercise, water intake, and sleep to optimize its benefits.
If you’ve never meal prepped before, and this has you feeling anxious, don’t worry; we have some helpful tips for beginners.
- Start by incorporating meals only a few days a week to combat the overwhelming feeling that beginners often experience. This will allow you to build the skill set necessary to fully implement meal prepping five days a week.
- When planning meals, not only consider the food options but the environment in which you will be consuming these meals. There’s nothing worse than cold chicken because you don’t have a microwave.
- Do your research; know what works best for your body, metabolism, and lifestyle.
It’s important to know that food is fuel for your body. It’s something we all take advantage of at times. It’s the only source of energy. We need to eat to build muscle, gain strength, build bone density, and have energy.
Just think of those times when you didn’t eat much in the day. You become lethargic, no energy, and you start reaching for junk food because your body is crying for help. So please do not think starving yourself is the answer.
Now, depending on what your goals are, change the game plan. If you want to lose weight – the answer is to burn more calories than you eat. That doesn’t mean, stop eating! You have to eat to workout, walk, work, or have sex. Lol.
If you want to build muscle – the more protein in your system, the better your muscles need that protein to be actual grow and become stronger. You’ll be on a different plan than the previously mentioned.
If you want to maintain – we need to find a balance that works with your body. Which means keep eating what your body craves and maintain your plan. I personally don’t like keto, paleo, Adkins, or any other “diet” out there. You should only limit
your body to types of food if your allergic; you hate it, give you cramps or diarrhea.
Everything should be in moderation. Even carbs! What?!? That’s right; why give up carbs. Your body needs carbs to give you energy. BUT! You can’t go out and have all the carbs and sugar you can eat! Again, everything in moderation.
Also, I know it’s trending to be a vegan or vegetarian. That’s great! And ok to do, but make sure your blood type will work and except those conditions. I can only say from experience- I’ve tried it all to know the differences. My blood type (O positive) can only maintain a meat-eater status.
Trust me when I say NO ONE WANTED TO BE AROUND ME when I tried the other two. Lol.
If you’re trying to change things up and go a different way, either get a blood test, check your vitamin levels and try it out for 30 days. If your body is responding well to the switch, most likely, you can proceed.
If you are willing to check your vitamin levels, please do. A lot of us lack in magnesium, sodium, potassium, and vitamin D3. These are very important to your health.
I’ll make a list of vitamins I would recommend and also send out a list of foods that I love and would recommend.
I’ll be updated this list monthly, as well.
I hope all is well, and the workouts are treating you well.
I know the time on the videos may be longer than expected. The time will get shorter because you’ll get stronger, and I’ll be adding more workouts (15,30,60), so you can choose if you only have time for a quick workout.
Good choices per meal:
- If you can, please buy organic, grass-fed, grass-finished meats.
3oz-4oz – lean protein/meal – chicken, turkey, beef, fish, eggs, (lentils, quinoa, nut butter, tofu – vegan/Vegetarian)
- 1/2 cup – Veggies – Squash, zucchini, bok chow, steamed spinach, swish chard, asparagus, Red cabbage
- 1/2 cup – sweet potatoes, potatoes, quinoa, rice, wild grain rice, couscous
- Healthy fats – half avocado, a piece of dark chocolate, three teaspoons Chia seeds, tablespoon coconut or olive oil,
- 1/2 cup Fruits – limited and before 3 pm – Pineapple, apple, avocado, blueberries, grapefruit, strawberries, blackberries cranberries
Great breakfast choices:
- Avocado toast with hard-boiled eggs
- hard-boiled eggs
- Oatmeal – cinnamon, hemp seeds, almond/coconut milk, one teaspoon honey
- Sourdough with almond/peanut butter
Great snack choices:
- hard-boiled eggs
- tuna or chicken salad with crackers
- Handful of almonds
- 2oz lean protein – chicken, tuna, turkey, fish
- Apple with one tablespoon of nut butter
- collagen water or coffee
Great lunch choices:
- One can of tuna with crackers
- Chicken salad with eggs, nuts, chia seeds,
- 3oz lean protein with quinoa
Great dinner choices:
- 3oz lean protein (not the same protein as you had in the morning)
- 1/2 cup – brussles sprouts with olive oil
- 1/2 cup – sweet potatoes
If you can, add collagen into your breastfast foods or coffee, always change up your protein throughout the day. Your body needs to fight to burn it off; don’t allow your body to know what protein is coming.
There are many benefits when it comes to nasal breathing during your workout.
Controlling your breathing to inhale and exhale out of the nose rather than the mouth creates more pressure due to the noses small exit route. This technique helps to create a slower exhalation and helps in the overall release of oxygen. Not to mention, the nose is lined with small hairs that help to purify the air that enters your body.
By breathing through the mouth it restricts your breathing which in turn negatively affects respiratory function and decreases energy.
While working out it’s best to inhale through the nose as it allows a deeper and fuller breath which helps the lungs to deliver larger amounts of oxygen throughout the body, detoxifying the body as you train. Breathing through the nose helps to decrease the speed of air flow to the lungs allowing the lungs more time to extract the oxygen from the air that has been inhaled.
Breathing through the mouth causes a significant loss in carbon dioxide absorption to the body. When carbon dioxide decreases too quickly, the body is less likely to absorb enough oxygen which can result in dizziness or even fainting.
The healthiest way to breathe while working out is through your nose to ensure that there is increased oxygen absorption and less opportunity for fatigue or dizziness throughout your session
Burn it Off by Chrissy
Welcome to BIOFITBODY!
This program is where you will not only change your body’s appearance; you’ll also improve your mindset, nutritional goals, and your lifestyle.
We all care about “looking good,” but I want you to focus on:
FEELING GOOD. FEELING STRONG. MORE ENERGY. HEALTHIER.
So as we continue, yes, we will be taking in weight and measurements, but I want you to focus on roadblocks in your life and the sustainability for long term health.
I’m hoping that because you want to become healthy today, you’ll listen to a few options regarding food and nutrition. I DON’T want anyone to be on a “DIET.” I want you to enjoy life and everything it has to offer. You might have to learn the good and the bad of what you consume and fuel your body with daily.
As far as starting an exercise program, you should always listen to your body and of course, a Dr. if that should apply. You know your body the best, and nothing should be so painful performing a move. Protect your bones and muscles during your sessions. Challenge them, push yourself and expect, soreness, some inflammation, more energy, and less fatigue and brain fog.
If you can email me back the answers to these questions:
1. What are your goals?
2. What are your roadblocks when it comes to nutrition and fitness?
3. Any injuries, past or present that cause you pain?
4. What is your nutritional health as of today?
5. What is your fitness level as of today?
6. Any health issues I should know about that would cause problems for exercise?
7. Do you have a support system at home?
I can’t wait to start with you all; remember this is a jump start to your future. Happy, healthy, and at an optimal bodies!