Tag Archives: health

Who Inspires You?

Harriette Thompson, 91, from Charlotte, N.C.

Harriette Thompson, 91, from Charlotte, N.C.

There are people you meet in life that prove everyone wrong and defeat “the odds”. They take their situation and decide not to listen to what everyone has to say, but instead decide for themselves what they are going to do. In turn they become an inspiration, a walking example of how we should all strive to live our lives. Harriette Thompson is someone we look up to here at Body Bar.

At 91, Thompson finished a marathon (26.2 miles!) with a pace of about 16 minute miles. All while raising almost 6 figures for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s Team in Training. Yes – it’s just as amazing as it sounds!

Don’t believe it? Watch a clip on Harriette here.

Who inspires you? How do you use that inspiration in your daily life?

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A Classic Twist Recipe

Don't they look delicious!?

Don’t they look delicious!?

Looking for a new twist on a classic recipe? Check out this one for twice baked broccoli and kale stuffed potatoes from Katie at the Kitchen Door! Potatoes are a great source of starchy carbohydrates after a workout, and you could even substitute them for sweet potatoes or yams in this recipe.

The addition of broccoli and kale offer many nutrients not found in the classic recipe. Kale is packed with Vitamin K, bringing benefits of diminished inflammation, strengthening bones, and reducing the risk cardiovascular disease and strokes. If you are looking for a dairy free option, just substitute the milk for a dairy free version of your choice (almond, coconut, soy, etc. – just make sure it’s unsweetened!) and omit the cheese or try goat cheese instead if you aren’t sensitive to it.

This makes a great post work-out snack to go along with your favorite protein shake.

Get the recipe here!

7 Tips for Outdoor Summer Workouts

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With summer just around the corner, everyone is getting antsy to do as many activities as possible outside.  Before you step outside, be sure to read these tips that will ensure you have a safe & fun outdoor workout.

1.  Wear Clothes

We know it can be tempting to show off that six-pack you worked all winter on but wearing clothing can actually keep you cooler than stripping down.  Wearing moisture-wicking sport clothes will draw the sweat away from your body to keep you cool.  Plus if the fabric is tightly knit or made of UV material, you are less likely to get burned.

2.  Slap on Some Sunscreen

Be sure to put on sunscreen 30 minutes before heading out the door.  If you don’t wait for the sunscreen to soak in, you’ll end up getting it in your eyes and you’ll also end up with burned skin.  Choose 15 SPF – 30 SPF, anything over 30 is unnecessary and has been proven to work just the same as the 30 SPF.  Be sure to purchase sunscreen that does not have Vitamin A, oxybenzone or added insect repellent as these chemicals have been known to cause cancer.  Click here for a list of sunscreens that are safe.

3.  Bring Water

This is a no brainer, hydrate, hydrate then hydrate some more.  If you’re going to be out for a long workout, bring a snack to keep up your energy.  We don’t suggest using energy drinks as the sugar in them can have adverse effects like further dehydration and a spike in blood sugar which will later lead to a sugar crash.  Post workout, be sure to keep hydrating.  If you’re really feeling like you just can’t take in enough water, coconut water is the way to go!

4.  Wear Sunglasses

Protect those eyes!  Make sure your sunglasses protect you from the UV rays that can cause cataracts and glaucoma.

5.  Train Early Morning or Late Afternoon

Make sure you are working out when the weather is not as hot.  Working out in the early morning or late afternoon means no direct sun.  If you do decide to workout mid-day, be sure you have a shaded area to workout in or a great mid-day summer workout would be in a pool.

6.  Beware of Allergies

No one likes to be stuffed up while trying to workout.  But did you know that if those symptoms go untreated you could develop asthma?  So be sure to check the pollen levels before stepping outside.  Plan your workouts later in the day when the pollen is typically not as high and avoid areas where you know there will be dense pollen.  Be sure to shower after your workouts as well.  A great natural remedy for allergies is a spoonful of local honey a day.  This helps to build your immunity against the pollen in your area.  To find local honey in your area, click here.

7.  Know the Signs of Heat Exhaustion/Stroke

Sometimes no matter how determined you are to workout, you have to be aware of how your body is reacting to the heat.  Be sure to look for these signs of heat exhaustion and heat stroke in the picture above.  If you or your workout buddy start experiencing these symptoms, move to a cool area quickly, apply a cold compress or immerse your body in cold water to lower the body temperature and seek medical attention if you are experiencing a heat stroke.

 

Enjoy the summer and have a safe & fun workout!

 

What precautions do you take before heading out for your summer workouts?  Comment below to share!

5 Ways to Spring Clean Your Diet

It’s finally warming up here in the Rocky Mountains which mean flip flops, shorts and tank top season ( at least until we get another spring snow storm).  Spring also welcomes the fresh crops to replace the winter protein and carb filled foods that keep us warm all day.  So now that we’re done hibernating, its time to clean out the kitchen and start focusing on foods to get us all ready to sport that “teeny weenie yellow polka dot bikini.”  Below is a list of ways to get ready to welcome spring into your diet.

1.  Shop Fresh

Boulder Farmer’s Market

Not all grocery stores carry vegetables and fruits that are in season so often the ones in major stores are going to be modified or contain chemicals that won’t help your digestion.  Find out which fruits and veggies are in season or visit your local farmers market to buy the freshest produce. Click here for a list of produce and when they are in season.

2.  Plant Your Produce 

Easy flower bed. I saw it for $40 at Home Depot but it is probably cheaper to buy the wood and build. We could also stain it.

Now is the time to start your own mini green house!  Nothing is better than being able to pick your own produce fresh from the ground!  Be sure to find produce and herbs that can handle the amount of sun you have available.  Some do better in full sun while others need shade to grow.  Click here for a list of easy herbs to grow & here for a lot of ideas on easy to grow produce.

3.  Check Your Expiration Dates

Winter makes us all hoarders since we never know if we’re going to get snowed in for days on end.  Some of the foods we buy can go bad though especially if you’re buying organic or all-natural that don’t have those preservatives for a long shelf-life (which isn’t a bad thing really).  Just be sure you’re not digesting anything that has gone bad.  Visit www.StillTasty.com to find out how long your food lasts.

4.  Replace Your Soups for Salads

Soups are perfect for winter and so easy to make when all we want to do is hide under the covers until the storms pass.  Now its time to switch it out.  The best salads for meal preps are those with spinach and protein.  Cook your meat beforehand and the morning of work simply add a cup of spinach, a few tomatoes and you’re ready to go!  For more salad ideas click here!

5.  Prepare the Grill & Store the Crockpot

Another meal prep swap!  Who doesn’t love grilling on a spring day?  We love grilling because we can get outside, throw around the pig skin or do some Body Bar workouts while we cook.  Instead of cooking for one meal, throw on a few pounds of chicken to have meals throughout the week.  You can even include veggies!  Just be sure to clean your grill after each use to avoid chemical build up from the charcoal or gas.  Here are some healthy tips on grilling.

How do you get your body ready for spring?  Comment below and share your tips or if you have any questions.

3 Easy Ways to Stay Fit at the Office

We have all heard that “sitting is the new smoking” but what can you do when your job requires you to sit from 9-5?  Not everyone has the space or means for one of those fancy treadmill desks or even a desk that allows you to stand all day.  Sitting for too long results in a sedentary lifestyle which in turn results in higher risks of heart disease, diabetes, and certain types of cancer.

So what can be done to help combat the risks?  Here are some tips to make sure your life does not become so sedentary in the office.

1.  Drink Plenty of Water

motiveweight:    Drink more water!

Water is essential for health.  It supports the digestive system, increases your metabolism and even curbs cravings.  Drinking enough water will also force you to get up from your desk at least once an hour not just for a bathroom break but to refill your water bottle.  Keep at least a 16oz cup at your desk and even setting a timer to remind you to drink will help your consumption.  We’ve also found that keeping it right next to your mouse or near our dominate hand makes us more likely to reach for our water.

2. Learn How to Sit

Save your back with these tips on how to sit. 6 more ways to beat back pain: http://www.menshealth.com/health/5-ways-beat-back-pain?cm_mmc=Pinterest-_-MensHealth-_-Content-Health-_-BeatBackPain #NMHW

As you perform an exercise, you are are aware of your form.  Having the wrong form during an exercise can result in injury and sitting is no different.  Having the wrong set up can greatly deteriorate your posture and lead to neck and/or back pain.  Make sure your chair is set up properly and that you are sitting up straight with good posture.

3.  Find Fitness Equipment to Use at Work – Get Up & Move!

Click on the image to see how to use the Body Bar Flex in the office

The Body Bar and Body Bar Flex are great tools to use in the office.  We’re lucky enough to have a few lying around the office to pick up and use as we like. Having something in your vision or setting a reminder every hour or every other hour will remind you to get up and move!  We also love using stability balls as our desk chair (click HERE to learn more).  Not only do they force us to sit up straight but they are easy to workout on.  Just bouncing creates a little workout plus it even helps to improve your mood.  The great thing is, these pieces of equipment take up little room and a little 5 minute routine here and there throughout the day can improve your health immensely.

What are some ways you stay fit in your office?  Share your thoughts by commenting below.

Eat like an Olympian : Crock Pot Recipe for the Nordic Combined Athlete

Yesterday we learned what it took for endurance athletes to maintain their muscle mass and weight.  Today we’re going to share a few recipes that benefit the endurance athlete like those participating in the Nordic Combined.  These athletes must have the fuel to get them through the Ski Jump plus a 10km cross country ski race.

These skiers predominately use aerobic metabolism which utilizes carbohydrates and fats.  Therefore, it is important that these athletes load up on a lot of carbohydrates, fats and anything that will keep them full and their muscles fueled.  Here is a recipe that gives skiers the endurance to finish their event (not to mention keep them warm while training in freezing temperatures).  Try it before your next day of winter adventures!

Slow Cooker Pot Roast with Root Vegetables

by Diane Balch
simplelivingeating.com
preparation time: 20 minutes                         serves: 6 – 8
note: all vegetables are chopped into large pieces
Ingredients:

Slow Cooker Pot Roast with Root Vegetables: simplelivingeating.com

3 pounds Bottom Round or Chuck cut of beef
1 leek greens and stalk
2 parsnips
2 large carrots
3 celery stalks
3 shallots
6 new potatoes quartered
broth:
1 32 ounce of Beef Stock (best quality you can find, I used culinary stock)
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1/4 cup of fresh parsley minced
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon of fresh grated ginger
1 teaspoon of thyme
1 teaspoon of salt and pepper
Directions:
1) Tie the beef in 3 places with twine to keep it’s shape. Salt and pepper it and put it into a large slow cooker.
2) Chop vegetables and nestle them around the meat. Put the potatoes on top so they don’t over cook.
3) Whisk the ingredients for the broth together and pour it over the meat and vegetables.
4) Cook on low for 6 to 8 hours.
Serve with crusty bread and butter. The meat can be garnished with mustard or horseradish.
Suggested Snacks for Winter athletes:*
  • fruit (banana or mandarin (easy to peel/eat)
  • breakfast bars sports bars/gels
  • English muffins/sweet muffins
  • dried fruit and nut mixes
  • jam/peanut butter sandwiches
  • lollies
  • soup/hot chocolate in thermos
 *Provided by Sports Dietitians

Healthy October Eats

It’s time for fall and hearty, healthy, home cooked meals & we love using crockpots! The benefits of a crockpot include not having to baby sit your stove top all day for a delicious, slow-cooked taste. Here are some recipes we like here at Body Bar and some advice on in-season produce shopping for October!

According to Gourmetfood.com, here is the produce that is in season during the month of October.

  • Apples
  • Beets
  • Blackberries
  • Broccoli
  • Brussels sprouts
  • Cabbage
  • Cauliflower
  • Chicory
  • Cranberries
  • Dates
  • Figs
  • Grapes
  • Leeks
  • Lettuce
  • Okra
  • Oranges
  • Parsnips
  • Pears (late season)
  • Peppers
  • Pumpkins
  • Quince
  • Shallots
  • Star fruit
  • Sweet Potatoes
  • Turnips
  • Watercress
  • Winter squash

Additionally Epicurious.com has an awesome interactive Seasonal Ingredient Map that can show you what is in season in your area and how to shop for the freshest stock!

And now, some of our favorite crockpot meals:

Gingered Beef and Vegetables

Makes: 6 servings

Ingredients:

-1 1/2 pounds boneless beef round steak, cut into 1-inch cubes

-4 medium carrots, cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices

-1/2 cup sliced scallions

-2 garlic cloves, minced

-1 1/2 cups water

-2 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce

-2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger

-1 1/2 teaspoons instant beef-bouillon granules

-1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper

-3 tablespoons cornstarch

-3 tablespoons cold water

-1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper

-2 cups loose-pack frozen sugar snap peas, thawed

-Cooked rice

Directions

1. In a 3-1/2- or 4-quart slow cooker, combine beef, carrots, scallions, and garlic. In a medium bowl, combine the 1 1/2 cups water, soy sauce, ginger, bouillon, and crushed red pepper; pour over mixture in cooker.

2. Cover; cook on low-heat setting 9 to 10 hours or on high-heat setting 4 1/2 to 5 hours.

3. If using low-heat setting, turn to high-heat setting. In a small bowl, combine cornstarch and the 3 tablespoons cold water; stir into meat mixture along with bell pepper. Cover; cook 20 to 30 minutes more, or until thickened, stirring once. Stir in sugar snap peas. Serve with rice.

Originally published in FITNESS magazine, April 2009.

Quinoa Butternut Crockpot Chili

Makes: 6 servings

Ingredients:

-1 and 1/2 cups uncooked quinoa

-1, 15 oz can tomatoes

-1 can black or kidney beans

-1 onion, chopped

-2 cloves garlic, chopped

-1 T. olive oil

-1 T. Braggs

-1/2 of a butternut squash, cubed (without skin)

-3 cups water or vegetable broth

-1 red bell pepper, diced

Spices: 1 bay leaf, 1/2 T. cumin, 1/2 tsp. cayenne(reduce if you want it less spicy!), 1 tsp. cinnamon

1 T. molasses or honey

Directions:

  1. Sautee your onion and garlic with all spices except bay leaf and chili powder in a pan with your olive oil.
  2. Combine the rest of your ingredients except honey in a large Crockpot, and cook on low for about 6 hours. Your butternut squash should be tender and your quinoa should be cooked 🙂
  3. Stir in honey and desired salt and pepper.

Originally published on Moderngirlnutrition.com November, 2012.

Healthy Crock Pot Cinnamon Apple Sauce

Ingredients:

– 20 small to medium size apples, cored (& peeled if you’re using non-organic apples)

– cinnamon to taste

– 1/4 cup water

Directions:

  1. Wash your apples thoroughly. Core (and peel, optional) your apples.
  2. Place them in the crock pot.  Add your preferred amount of cinnamon. Add 1/4 cup of water to prevent scorching at the bottom of the crock pot.
  3. Turn the crock pot on low & allow to slowly cook for around 6 hours.
  4. Using a potato masher or the back of a large spoon, smash the soft apples until your apples turn into a chunky sauce. Spoon out a bowl of applesauce! Add a sprinkle of brown sugar & a spoonful of homemade whipped cream on top.

-You can store your applesauce in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to one week. You may also put the applesauce in large-mouth mason jars to freeze. Make sure to label your jar before freezing to remember its contents!

 

What is your favorite crock pot meal for the fall?