Through Kat's Eyes

I think most of us have figured out that what we put into our bodies affects the outside, our skin.  There are so many amazing foods that can make a huge difference in the health of your skin and the easiest way to take advantage of using multiple super foods at once is to…make a smoothie!! Smoothies sound especially nice during this time of year when the weather is getting warmer and we are showing more skin; here is a recipe for a smoothie I made today to not only quench my thirst but also to indulge my skin.

Ingredients:

  • Strawberries- All berries are a great source of antioxidants which I am sure everyone has been hearing about for a while now. Antioxidants protect the skin against free radical damage, aid in anti aging and prevent further damage to the skin (1 cup sliced).
  • Spinach Yes it sounds weird to put in a…

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Hot Yoga via Storify

  1. Hey everyone, I stumbled across a site called “Storify”, and it is kind of cool.  It helps you create a story with the help of facebook, twitter, youtube etc.
    My friends always ask me why I go to yoga.  “Why would you want to do yoga in a 99 degree room Jess?”  Well besides it being relaxing and getting me in shape there are many benefits.
  2. Share
    Hot yoga is not an easy task, but absolutely great in preventing arthritis, back problems, muscle dystrophy and … bit.ly/Irj1zy
    Thu, Apr 26 2012 16:03:20
  3. Share
    Like working out? What about in 105 degrees? Hot yoga is a new ‘hot’ trend! Learn about the health benefits here: bit.ly/HqmrmG
    Thu, Apr 26 2012 15:35:17
  4. Did I mention, it will definitely wake you up.  So if you are tired, do not be scared to go do some hot yoga.
  5. Share
    Prepare to have increased energy levels after practicing hot yoga! You may even have difficulty sleeping due to the extra energy.
    Thu, Apr 26 2012 15:31:00
  6. Share
    #health via @MBHolistic: #Yoga #wellness How To Survive A Hot Yoga Class bit.ly/IzUPyX #fitness #health bit.ly/K1noqt
    Thu, Apr 26 2012 15:30:43

Huffington Post introduces workout music

If you are like me I must have music when working out.  It gets my adrenaline going and makes the time go by faster; but every now and then I must switch up my workout music collection.

Depending on if I’m running, lifting or doing cardio, I need different music for each workout. Research shows that having upbeat tempo music makes us work harder and faster.

The Huffington Post recently added a new page to their site – the “huffpost workouts.” The Huffpost partnered with Spotify and created a page just for workout music.  They gathered playlists from top trainers, DJs, music industry executives, editors and athletes.

They have playlist, for cardio, running etc.  You must have Spotify of course, but thanks to these playlist I have definitely come across some great new workout songs.

Thanks Huffpost!

How to get lean and toned

I’m a pretty thin and fit girl, but I’m not satisfied.  What I’ve been wanting for a while is to be toned (my body to show a firmness of muscle!) If I’m not running with a friend, you can find me at the YMCA running and of course working out.

I try my best to run around 3 miles everyday, lift weights, and of course Hot Yoga!  Thanks to yoga I have become a lot stronger and I can feel that I have become more toned,  BUT I can’t see it yet. As of now I have to be standing in a certain position, or flex just a tad..**UGH!!**

I am mainly aiming for my stomach to become defined and my love handles to disappear (crossing fingers). Running has helped my stomach and glutes trim down, but again – it’s hard to satisfy me.

So, 1) I decided to run a marathon, and 2) I looked up a couple of ways that women can get toned.

According to Livestrong, “The U.S. Department of Agriculture recommends that adults should receive about 6 servings of whole grains, 2.5 cups of vegetables, 2 cups of fruit, 3 cups of dairy, and 5.5 oz. of protein every day.” Sounds easy right?

Livestrong continues to tell us about the correct amount of portion control, consistency, and the importance of exercise.

Weightloss tells us how we (men and women) can tone our body.  What we need to do, how we can do it, how to do it at the gym, along with 3 experts giving advice on how to get a toned body!


Fitness Classes: Whats popular in 2012

As most of you know my go to class is Hot Yoga!  But what if you want more cardio in your workout, what class should you take?

Maybe you are like my roommate who loves cardio kickboxing, or my friend who loves spin classes.  There is a class out there for everyone!

DietsinReview talk about the 6 most popular fitness classes of 2012, along with letting you know more about them and how many calories you burn an hour.

Try these classes out and see which is your favorite; you have nothing to lose.  Give it a shot!

 

Earth Day: Healthy Dirt and Worms Sundae

Dirt n’ Worms Sundae

Everyone remembers making Dirt and Worms for Earth Day in middle school and how delicious it was, am I not right?  Mounds of rich vanilla ice cream and hot fudge topped with whipped cream, Oreos, and gummy worms.  Does it not get any better than that?

Earth Day is this Sunday and I thought that I would find a healthier version of what we all know and love.

DietsinReview came up with a healthier version of this delicious dessert.  Their version features non-fat chocolate greek yogurt, Newman’s O’s for the ‘dirt,’ and mini gummies as the ‘worms.’  The calories, carbs, and sugars are cut in half.  So why not give it a try and celebrate Earth Day this Sunday.

Making a difference in the world, one step at a time

Marathons, have you ever had the desire to run one?  What about 1/2 marathon (13.1 miles)? I love running but had never had the desire to run one until recently.

Last Tuesday the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society (LLS) had an informational meeting on their upcoming marathon (26.2 miles) that will be held on October 14th in San Francisco California; the Nike Women’s Marathon!

*side note*  For those who don’t know much about the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, they are “the world’s largest voluntary health agency dedicated to blood cancer. LLS funds lifesaving blood cancer research around the world and provides free information and support services.” – LLS website

After going to this informational meeting I decided I want to run a marathon. (mind you there is work involved)  I have to raise $3,200 in order to do the marathon.  Raising this money will allow LLS to continue the research to cure cancer. 75% of the money I raise will go back to LLS, while the other 25% pay for my travels to California, along with the lodging.

*side note* Depending on where your destination is, your fundraising amount may differ.

Also, to prep for the marathon LLS has a something called Team In Training (TNT).  TNT is “the largest and most successful endurance sports training program that’s helping beat cancer. With professional coaches, participants are not only physically motivated but personally challenged as well.” – LLS website

As of now I can run two miles by myself, but thanks to TNT, we will go running early every Saturday morning to train for the event.  We will start off with one mile and work our way up, until its time to run in California. (I also have to run during the week as well, it’s not a Saturday only thing.)

I forgot to mention – once the women have finished the marathon, they will be greeted by a firefighter at the finish line with a Tiffany’s necklace for them. What a great reward for all their hard work and effort put to a great cause.  Don’t you agree?

*Side note* LLS not only offer marathons, but they offer –half marathons,  triathlonshikingobstacle racing and century rides.

I can not wait to start fundraising this summer, and prove to my friends/family, but most importantly that I can run a marathon.

If you or a friend are interested in participating in any of their events, you can find your chapter and get started today!

Portion Size Guidelines

Everyone has heard someone say to them at one point in their life, “watch how much you put on your plate”, or “be careful of your portion size.”  I use to hear this all the time.

Sometimes I still like to indulge a bit and tend to lose track of what the correct portions should be.

According to WebMD, 1/2 of your plate should be vegetables, 1/4 plate proteins and 1/4 plate starches.

WebMD also made the guidelines even more simplified. (Especially if you are new at this)

Their ‘basic guidelines’ tell us that –

  • 1 Cup = a baseball
  • 1/2 Cup = a lightbulb
  • 1oz OR 2 tbsp = golf ball
  • 1 tbsp = poker chip
  • 1 slice of bread = cassette tape (hopefully you remember these)
  • 3 oz chicken on meat = deck of cards
  • 3 oz fish = checkbook
  • 1 oz lunch meat  = 1 CD
  • 3oz muffin or biscuit = hockey puck
  • 1 1/2 oz cheese = 3 dice

Hopefully these visuals will help you.

To see EXACT visuals of food and their correct portion size, here is an EXCELLENT source to look too.

Plateau: Weight Loss and How to Beat It

Have you ever gone on a diet or worked out and then all of a sudden stopped seeing results?  There might be 3 reasons for this.

Possible reasons you are stuck:

  1. You’re being repetitive: The same moves and exercise schedule causes your body to become use to it all; thus slowing down or stopping any further results.

     FIX IT: by adding VARIETY! Mix up your workout schedule by changing the moves, OR completely replacing them with new ones.

2.  You aren’t doing enough: You might feel like you are doing enough, and maybe that was working.  But when it stops working what do you do?

     FIX IT: by adding more!  Yes all you have to do is add more reps or better yet cardio. Go for a run!

3. Your’e doing too much to fast: How is this possible? Well it is, and sometimes your body can’t comprehend it.

      FIX IT: by slowing down a bit!  Your body needs time to adjust to new habits and diets (if on one).

Remember

  • know your BMR (Basal Metabolic Rate; the number of calories you’d burn if you stayed in bed all day.)
  • add more weight when exercising (don’t stay on the same weight level just because u can lift it.  Once you got it down, challenge yourself and lift a couple of pounds more.)
  • drink more water (remember 6-8 glasses a day)
  • eat more metabolism boosting foods
  • DO NOT GIVE UP

Diet Soda vs. Regular Soda; Which is worse for you?

I work at a restaurant (which will stay un-named), and many guest and co-workers have asked me overtime, “is diet soda really that bad for you?”  Well, over the years I have always heard the answer was YES; and that the average american gains 10 lbs a year from drinking soda.  So that is what I have always told people when they ask me.

In the back of my mind, I have always wondered if that was really the case.  So I decided to do some extra research.

I am a really blunt person, so I am not afraid to say that yes, soda may taste good, but it is bad for you.  It is full of sugars or sugar substitutes, contains phosphoric acid, which according to some studies, may harm bones.

Other studies say that high intakes of added sugars are linked with high blood pressure and high triglyceride levels, that may result to risk factors for heart disease.

Overall calorie-wise, yes, the diet version seems healthier, but if you take a look at main ingredients phosphoric acid, sugar, aspartame, and caffiene, there is a big difference. Also, even though it is low in calories, diet soda may also lead to weight gain. Drinking sweet beverages makes you crave sweet foods, which can lead to higher numbers on the scale.

Truthfully, soda in general is not healthy, whether it’s diet or regular. It offers no nutritional value whatsoever.  Drink some refreshing water as your beverage of choice. If that is to boring for you, then why not squeeze in some lemon or lime juice, or drink some green tea instead. If you crave something sweeter, there are plenty of fruit juices out there to choose from, just make sure it’s 100 percent juice and not fruit-flavored sugar-water.  In the end if you are still craving that “soda taste”, you could always go for a club soda.

Calories – Do you count them?

I don’t know about you, but I count calories.  By doing so I have lost weight and have gotten toned. The many people I have talked to say counting calories is bad for you, but I have proven them wrong!

I have friends that want to start counting calories, but they go out to eat a lot and think that counting them will get in the way.  Thanks to shapefit, you do not have to worry about that anymore. 🙂

Shapefit has a page on their website that you can visit to find out the calories to 169 fast food/sit down restaurants. (YES, I counted all the restaurants.)

Some include, Applebees, Arbys, Baskin Robbins, Braums, California Pizza Kitchen, Chipotle, Olive Garden, Sonic and much more.

So, after taking a glance…will you start counting calories?  Or will you stick with your regular eating habits that you have right now?

Top 10 Core Exercises

What makes up your core?  The core consists of your abdominal, back, and lower back regions. A strong and stable core is vital for good balance, proper posture, and injury prevention.

  • You want a strong and stable core so it will help to stabilize the muscles involved with balance.
  • As you grow older you want to keep a strong core so you can maintain proper posture.  This is important especially the older you get. Back pain, neck pain, and several other forms of pain can result from not having a strong core which can result in poor posture over the years.
  • Injury prevention is another amazing benefit of working the core. Of course not all injuries can be prevented, BUT most can be or at least the injury can be lessened.
  • Below are some of the exercises you can do to strengthen your core. I recommend performing twenty to as many repetitions as you can for two to three sets and as often as you can.
TOP 10 CORE EXERCISES

Click on photos to view video

Bent Arm Side Bridge – Try 30 seconds on each side
Bicycle – the slower you go the harder it is
Roman Chair: Straight Leg Raise – Try 3 sets of 20, if you can do more, Great!!
Elbow Plank  – Try holding for at least a minute.  To make it harder raise one of your legs.
Straight Leg Raises w/ Hip Raise – Do this for a at least 1 minute and you will feel the burn.
Trunk Rotation With Medicine Ball and Feet Up – 3 sets of 15; using a weight does the same thing as a medicine ball if you can not get ahold of one. (works your love handles)
V Sit – my favorite!!
Side Bending On Hypertension Machine
Straight Leg Raises – try for about a minute
Double Crunch On Bench