Although I’m a strong advocate of running outdoors, I’m not at all opposed to joining a gym (especially when exercising outside or even in your home just isn’t an option). They’re full of all the equipment you want and need, they’re great places to meet new people, and — let’s face it — Netflix marathons aside, going to the gym gives you a much better reason to wear those sweats.
However, joining a gym can be intimidating — for some (like me), it can even cause panic and anxiety.
Even so, I decided to join a gym this year as part of my physical wellness plan, and my experiences shopping around helped me figure out a few tips for joining a gym that might help you, too.
Raise your hand if you participated in the 108 Sun Salutations during the Spring Equinox this past weekend.
If you didn’t feel like you were up to it (or, opted not to for physical health reasons such as hip-related problems) or just didn’t have time (don’t get me started on that, though!), fret not: author and registered yoga teacher Carol Krucoff has put together 108 yoga practices anyone with a minute — literally, one minute — can do.
Learn more about Carol below, but for now, let’s talk about her awesome little guidebook, Yoga Sparks: 108 Easy Practices for Stress Relief in a Minute or Less.
First of all, I love sweet potatoes.
My God, do I love sweet potatoes.
Second of all, sweet potatoes are packed with carotenoids which, in addition to giving them their orange color, also act as antioxidants that protect cells from damage and help form Vitamin A — the vitamin important for sprouting new neurons and helping those neurons find each other and form new connections.
So, naturally I had to try this Vegetarian Times recipe for sweet potato latkes (which are sort of like pancakes).
You can see the entire write up over at Vegetarian Times: Sweet Potato Latkes, but below is my summary (and review).
Looking for a sweet little morning or mid-afternoon pick-me-up without the guilt of a ton of sugar or calories and some serious brain boosting?
I highly recommend this chocolate banana milkshake!
As I mentioned during February’s Monthly Meditation, Valentine’s Day has never really been my thing; however, that doesn’t mean there aren’t some lessons we can learn from all the lovey-dovey-ooey-gooiness spewing out this month.
The benefits of dark chocolate, specifically how some studies suggest:
Some sources believe the copper, zinc, and iron in dark chocolate can promote cell growth, which in turn helps your hair and skin!
Keep in mind, not all dark chocolate is equal. The higher the cacao percentage, the better. If you’re not sure where to start — and you’re new to dark chocolate — try 72%.
So, what are you asking your siggie other for Valentine’s Day this year? Better yet, what are you getting yourself!
Do you do your best work at a clean desk? Or, do you prefer a little mess?
What about those of you who work from home, or frequently have lunch in your office? Does a clean or messy work environment influence what you choose for lunch?
Need to calm down during high-demand driving situations?
According to the National Institute of Health, “listening to music can positively impact mood while driving, which can be used to affect state and safe behaviour.”
Well, duh. The calmer the tunes, the calmer the mood.
However, a recent study published by Ergonomics suggests that you don’t want to dilly dally around when switching over from Slipknot to Coldplay:
The current study shows that during high-demand drives, drivers are calmed more effectively using abrupt music changes compared to gradual music changes. This is illustrated by reductions in physiological arousal and improved driving behaviour. Hence, in-car music presentation can be used as a tool to improve driver’s mood and behaviour.
So the take-away is, switch over sooner rather than later.
But…what songs do you choose? When you’re stuck in a traffic jam or freaking out a little in a tight construction zone, which songs soothe you best?
Have you watched Hungry for Change yet?
A few Saturday nights ago, I had nothing better to do than sit in front of Netflix (sad, I know, but let’s stay on topic here). As I flipped through the new releases, a documentary called Hungry for Change caught my eye.
I suppose it was the documentary’s cover image, a happy chick holding a grocery bag full of whole foods wrapped with a measuring tape, that caught my eye.
Because my grocery bags have been looking more and more like that lately (see Can Clean Eating Help Restore Hormonal Balance?), it seemed potentially up my alley.
So, what’s Hungry for Change all about?
We’re fortunate enough to have a guest post today from Dr. George Drinka, child psychiatrist and author. Dr. Drinka’s upcoming book, When the Media Is the Parent, is posed to educate parents about the massive role media (think television, video games, and the Internet).
Today, he’s talking with us about the role media plays in childhood obesity, fast food advertising geared toward children, and how, in time, the media might even help promote healthier eating.
Happy Tuesday, beautiful readers!
We’ve survived Thanksgiving, but with Christmas just a week away and New Year’s just a week after that, it’s safe to say we’re still in the thick of the holiday season.
Which means, for some of us, there are still a lot of stress and anxiety triggers coming our way.
As such, the good people over at the National Institutes of Health’s (NIH) National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) are hosting a Twitter chat on using complementary health practices like yoga, meditation, and tai chi to manage stress and anxiety – specifically, the safety and efficacy of these mind and body practices.
During the chat, you’ll get to meet John Glowa, Ph.D., the NCCAM expert who oversees the organization’s behavioral health research portfolio, and Daniel Pine, M.D. from the NIH’s National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH).
Hope to see you there!