… What to do w/ what it do: Event Attire/Product Review of GORUCK Shirt & Pants…

Another frequent question that I get from people who decide to do a endurance event is “What do you usually wear to these events?”… “What kind of shoes do you wear?”…

The truth is that what works for me may not work for someone else. BUT, I have no problem telling people what I use and what works for me.

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In the video that is posted at the top of this post I go over in detail each of the items that I typically wear during events AND I also go over how the GORUCK pants and shirt fit on my body (and issues that I had while wearing them).

I typically do events that are in warmer weather.  2016 was the first year that I really did events in weather that was cold, rainy, and far from perfect.  That did cause me to have to troubleshoot my wardrobe choices and add some things to my list.

But in a nutshell:

Base Layer (layer closest to my body):

  • Compression shorts: to help assist with preventing with chaffing and other skin rubbing together.  This is the most important layer (other than foot attire).  NOTHING is worse than getting chaffing early in the event and having to deal with that the rest of the event.
  • Bra: I did have to troubleshoot this a bit and find a bra that would be comfortable for long periods of time (and while doing exercise). My top choice… Wal-Mart/Target high impact sports bra. Cheap (just in case they do get ruined during the event) and comfortable for me to wear with my ruck AND during the whole event with minimal discomfort issues.

Outer Layer (outermost layer):

  • IF I AM DOING A COLD WEATHER EVENT: quick dry/water wicking long sleeve shirt (to help keep me warm but will also not hinder me if I sweat/get wet)
  • IF I WEAR A TANK TOP it is typically UNDER a t-shirt (so I can take off the t-shirt when I want and put it back on if I am getting rubbing on my shoulders/back).
  • T-shirt
  •  Fitness Compression Workout pants: I got mine from JCPENNEY but you can use any brand that is comfortable.  OR
  • GORUCK Challenge Pants: I am 5’10 and I got size Waist – 36 Length – 34
  • Wind barrier jacket

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Footwear: 

  • Socks (I also usually pack a pair in my dry bag)
  • Shoes (or boots for those who use boots)

MISC Items:

  • Hat/beanie
  • Face protection (for cold events)
  • Gloves
  • Knee sleeves (or knee pads)

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The GORUCK Pants were a great asset to my event wardrobe.  I honestly was not sure what to think of the pants before I got them.  I have a huge issues with getting pants that will actually fit and BE COMFORTABLE.  I was very shocked at how well they did fit/feel throughout the entire event. The material allowed me to move as needed but also protected my legs when we had to do activities on the ground.  They dried quickly, were very comfortable, and most importantly they fit (like I said is usually a hard thing to find when it comes to pants).  Another plus… they made pants that were also long enough for me…

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My fellow long-legged endurance junkies may be able to appreciate this aspect.  Nothing is more annoying then getting pants and having then not be long enough.  These pants hit me exactly where I wanted and were an over all great fit. The two events I did with these pants on… one was a colder event and the other was a warmer event.  Both events weather conditions yielded no additional issues for me while I was wearing these.  Cold (about 35-45 degrees) and warm (60-70 degrees) weather did not cause me to feel colder/warmer than I would have normally felt while wearing any other pants that I would wear to a event.  Overall I would recommend these pants to anyone looking for good durable pants. I do plan on getting another pair when they are available.

Pants DOWNFALL: 

These pants would NOT stay zipped up. I am not sure why.  They would zip up, but throughout the event the zipper would creep back down. I was not too worried about it because (1) I had on compression pants under them, (2) my t-shirt was long enough to cover it.  But, this could be more uncomfortable if I was wearing a tank top or another shirt that was not long enough to cover it. I made my own latch with a hair tie and it did just fine after I was able to attach the hair tie to the zipper/pants fastening button.

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The GORUCK Shirt was something that I enjoyed having.  The material is thin but also provides protection when you need it (I like having my arms/legs covered during events because of the brush/grass you may go through since I am allergic to those things).  These shirts also dried fairly quickly.  They did not keep the wind out very well (I felt a slight breeze but nothing that would be moderately uncomfortable) but that is why I usually always have a under shirt and wind jacket on. LADIES: I got a medium in this shirt and it was fairly LARGE. I typically wear a small/medium t-shirt so if you do the same I would suggest a small for sure. As with the pants, the material was very durable and cleaned very easily after the event. I wore both the shirt/pants throughout portions of a HTL (GORUCK Heavy, Tough, and Light) so it was put to the test throughout event.

I hope that someone (especially the ladies) are able to find this information helpful/useful.

Questions? Comments? Concerns? Let me know!

***THANK YOU Nick Schrein for capturing these moments of me during the Oklahoma City, OK Memorial Event***

 



…Recovering From Post-exercise Injury or Fatigue…

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Everybody knows that exercise, together with a healthy and balanced diet, is the best route to physical and mental fitness. Nothing equals the thrill of the ‘endorphin rush’ after a really good workout. Or the warm contentment following a good, brisk walk or bike ride.

But it’s all too easy to overdo things. Perhaps you’ve pushed yourself harder than your body really wanted, whether that’s in the gym, or a run that was just that bit longer and faster than usual.

It can take a day or two for muscle pain to really hit, and then it can be debilitating. It will certainly curtail any inclination to exercise for a while, and that’s self-defeating! Tiredness and injury can affect anyone, even those of us who consider ourselves to be seriously fit.

Recovery

The first tip is: don’t let it put you off or discourage you. Stiff muscles and a few aches are quite normal, and can actually be a sign that your level of fitness is improving. Delayed onset muscle soreness, known as DOMS, is likely to affect people starting a new exercise regime, or making changes to an existing one. The NHS has some really good advice from Dr Jonathan Folland, an expert in neuromuscular physiology at Loughborough University.

The simple truth is that time recovering is as important as time exercising, particularly for more strenuous workouts, walks, runs and bike rides.

Treatment

Injury is clearly more serious than simply overdoing things a bit, and there are several treatments available. Which you choose will depend on the type of injury, and what part of the body has been hurt. A few suggestions:

  • Hydrotherapy
  • Chiropractic
  • Stretching
  • Compression garments
  • Massage

Back Pain

One of the nastiest injuries that can lay the fittest person really low. There are several specialized treatments including IDD Therapy, Shockwave Therapy, and Low Level Laser Therapy. The physiotherapists and chiropractors at the Central Chiropractic Clinic have proved them all to be effective in treating chronic and recurrent injuries and conditions. They are all fully qualified and know exactly how to treat injuries from the ankle to the neck.

Stephen Small explains IDD Therapy Incidentally, although back injuries can be caused by failing to exercise safely, even stress can be a factor. We unconsciously contract our muscles when we’re stressed, and this can cause pain in the neck, upper back and lower back.

Yoga can also be a huge help, and special Yoga for Healthy Lower Backs courses devised by the University of York and Arthritis Research UK are well worth trying.

So, take care when exercising, try not to get stressed, and remember that help is available if you do fall victim to the dreaded injury!



…How to become a personal trainer…

What skills does a personal trainer need?

Before you even look in to starting any training courses, you need to assess your own personal skills and passions to make sure they line up with what a successful personal trainer is going to need. These would be our most important skills and traits:

    • Strong people skills including:
      1. Patience with clients
      2. Friendly, easy to talk to
      3. Enthusiasm & passion
      4. Tact
    • Knowledge of fitness, the body, healthy eating & anatomy
    • Strong organisational skills
    • Most importantly – a passion for the industry!


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What qualifications & skills does a personal trainer need?

There are four initial key qualifications you require in order to start working as a personal trainer in the UK:

 

Click each one to Get Trained.

The more added qualifications you can get, the more expanded your skillset will be. The CPD training (Continued Professional Development) that we offer allow you to go even further past your gym instructor or personal trainer qualifications.

You also need to be aware of specialist qualifications in addition to these basics. One of the best ways to break into the industry is to look at an area you’re passionate about and do it. To do this, though, you’re going to need qualifications and/or experience in your particular area.

This means you’ll master your trade and, when clients know exactly what they’re looking for, you’ll be there standing out on top!

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How much does a personal trainer earn / make?

It’s important to be realistic. A lot of people have mismanaged expectations of how much you can earn; you’re self-employed so it’s up to you to determine a realistic hourly rate, and aim to take on a manageable number of clients.

As a self-employed or freelance personal trainer, you can typically look to be earning between £20 and £40 per hour; be careful about people touting high-end figures talking about £100 an hour rates as these aren’t typical!

If you’re a personal trainer in full-time employment (e.g. working with a fitness centre or gym) then you can earn anywhere between £12,000 and £20,000 a year

There are so many factors that go into what a personal trainer can earn, that it’s really difficult to pin an exact or average figure down. It all depends on your qualifications, whether you’ve undertaken CPD training, how much experience you’ve got and the number of clients you can draw in (particularly freelance).

RESOURCES: Gov.uk National Careers Service – Personal Trainer

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How do I make it as a personal trainer?

How long have you got? We’ve talked about this before on our blog, which you can read here from Andi, and a lot of it can fall outside of your initial training. Once you’ve got this under your belt you need to stand out; choose your specialisms and run with them. Get more experience and (if possible) more qualifications so that you don’t get lost amongst the large number of personal trainers out there.

It’s a competitive market, so you need to be realistic about your rates, the number of clients you can take on and what specialisms and USPs you can boast!

What’s next?
Our Advice Centre is constantly being updated with new posts and information that can help expand you knowledge outside of formal training; it’s important to keep it topped up! You can also click on the courses above to get more information on starting your training.



…Yoga for Fitter, Happier Health Workers…

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Yoga has been around for centuries and has been helping people achieve enlightenment for the same amount of time. It traces its roots to India where it laid the foundations for Jainism, Buddhism and Hinduism. Yoga is a discipline that requires and improves one’s mind, body and soul. This practice has also gained prominence through the ages because of the healthy elements it imparts on practitioners. There are even stories and cases of men and women suffering from severe maladies that have been cured by constant yoga practice. This is the best reason why the tired and weary health worker needs to get off the couch and into the yoga mat; to stay fit and healthy.

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There are conflicting origins for yoga. Some would cite the pre-Vedic Indian traditions which have been mentioned many times in the Rigveda. Others claim yoga to have been developed around the fifth and sixth centuries BC as part of Indian movements known as ascetic and sramana. As time progressed, Yoga gurus found several ways to introduce the discipline to the west after the success of Swami Vivekananda in the early 20th century. While the east practiced yoga for both mind and body, the west embraced yoga as a physical exercise.

Yoga practice, tree concept for your design

Yoga practice, tree concept for your design

But how can health workers, involve yoga in their lives? Yoga isn’t just about doing strenuous poses for a fixed amount of time. It involves reflection and proper breathing. It will also call some serious dedication and perseverance. Would you believe that those poses are only a part that makes up the philosophy behind yoga? It’s a deeper and richer practice if you take the time to learn the teachings.

Let’s first examine the physical benefits that health workers like doctors, nurses and paramedics can get when they start doing yoga. Improved muscle strength – muscle strength is important for health workers especially when they are responding to emergencies which require them to lift something heavy.

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Increase blood flow – practicing yoga and following the proper breathing exercise can help keep your blood flowing faster, making you more alert.

Boosts Immunity – mastering the different yoga poses also gives nurses and EMTs a boosted immunity that will be a big factor when dealing with patients. This comes in handy especially in situations where there is a need to handle patients with communicable diseases.

Makes You Happier – a happy worker is a healthy one. The physical aspect of yoga helps your body release all sorts of hormones that can improve a person’s mood. This in turn can lead to better output and a positive outlook towards work and colleagues. A study found out that constant yoga practice can gradually relieve you of depression and an increased amount of serotonin levels. The same study states that the physical exertion also lowered the levels of monoamine oxidase and cortisol. Long term yoga practitioners also showed large amounts of activity on the left side of their brains.

Gives Back your Focus – in an industry like the health care industry, its so easy to lose focus especially when ridden with fatigue and insane amounts of stress. Practicing yoga not only keeps your mind alert and active it also brings back your focus. Studies show that yoga improves coordination, reaction time while at the same time vastly improving IQ scores. There was even one case where the respondent was practicing transcendental meditation and showed prowess in problem solving as well as recalling things. This is really important especially for doctors who deal with life-and-death situations most of the time.

This proves that there is nothing wrong with allotting sometime to take care of yourself by practicing this ancient discipline. If anything, this could prove to be beneficial and could even help you improve your performance at work, garnering more praises and even a promotion down the line.



…What to do w/ what it do: DIY RUCK Handle…

When doing any type of endurance event you want to make sure that your gear will perform to handle any/all tasks that are thrown at you. You may learn to adjust or modify the things that you use for events to assist you.

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My good friend Kelli came up with a CHEAP and EASY handle that you can attach to any pack that has molle.  The idea is to use the molle as an anchor for the handle. This is also a light weight and hazard free method to have an additional handle. All of the material is very durable yet “soft” if you were to drop it, land on it, or come into contact abruptly with the components of the handle.

WHAT YOU WILL NEED:

  • approximately 10 feet of 1 inch Nylon webbing (may be found at stores such as REI or any other similar store)

  • approximately 11 inches of  1 inch (or bigger) Nylon Tubing (may be found at most home improvement store) You want this to be the length of the ruck/backpack that you woul like to add the handle.

  • Ruck/Backpack (For this project we used a GORUCK GR1 and GORUCK GR0) For the difference of sizing of the other GORUCK bags check out my previous post by CLICKING HERE

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Instructions:

you can watch the video at the top of the post or click HERE

  • Weave nylon webbing through one side of the molle that is on your ruck. (START FROM THE BOTTOM).

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  • You will then RETRACE your step and thread the molle back over the same section

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  • You will pull a little bit of the webbing through the molle (to make sure that you have enough) and you will do the same on the 2nd row of molle that is on the ruck.

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  • After you do this you will want to cinch it down and get the webbing tight and secure. You will use the “tail” (or left over portion) of the webbing to tie the two open ends together when you are done.
  • Next, feed the other end of the webbing into the tube

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  • Pull all of the webbing tight and snug and weave the webbing on the other side of the back through the empty molle. DO EXACTLY THE SAME TYPE OF WEAVING ON BOTH

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  • Feed the webbing BACK THROUGH the tubing (this can be slightly difficult to do! We used a screwdriver and other tools to help feed it back through the tubing).

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  • Once you feed the webbing back through the tube TIE IT to the loose end that is on the other side of your ruck.  Make sure that you use a secure not to ensure that it does not come apart while you are using it.  You can knot it and burn the knot to secure it.

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I have personally used the handle in 2 HCL’s plus other various events.  It has held up to the weather, rough terrain, and the abuse of the events that I have done.

Kelli did not want to charge people for this handle.  She wanted this to be something that anyone could use.  All that she asks is that you make a donation for the BEWBS event that we are participating in this upcoming 4th of July.

You can make a donation via clicking the link below:

https://www.crowdrise.com/bewbschallenge005/fundraiser/kellimartino/setup_success/member

Let us know if you have any questions! And please feel free to share pics of the handle that you create with us! We would love to see how other people are creating their handles.

Happy training!



…Male Yoga – Why Your Downward Facing Dog Could Replace Your Dumbbell…

Men of the world! We live in 2016. It’s no longer acceptable to get in a taxi unless the word ‘UBER’ is scrawled across the side. The ‘selfie’ is an actual certified oxford defined noun, and also it’s very cool for the modern man to put down the Dumbbells and start stretching out on Yoga ball to participate in Male Yoga.

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The stereotype is set in stone. Men ‘pump iron’, ‘get juiced’ or very rarely may even partake in ‘feeding the pythons’. While Women participate in Yoga, Pilates or will stand in front of Davina McCall in their living room while she barks orders at them. But hurrah! There’s yet another shift in fitness trends. Yoga and Yoga poses specifically tailored for men are ever emerging. The benefits of incorporating Yoga into your weight lifting workout routine are fantastic with some fitness gurus starting to class it as essential.

If it’s something you’re new to, then it can be intimidating to just jump into it. There’s numerous things to consider such as what poses should I do? How should I do them? How beneficial will Yoga actually be? Have no fear though as we guide you through the phenomenon that is male Yoga.

So why try Yoga? The popular consensus is that Yoga is relaxing and de-stresses even the most wound up of individual. Tough day in the office? Hit the Yoga mat then. Car failed its M.O.T? Stretch over a Yoga ball to deal with your issues. Terrence Monte of Pure Yoga says, “going to amped up gyms or punching a punching bag can make you more aggressive or more tired”.

Although some may disagree with this and may find that punching the daylights out an inanimate object is ‘therapeutic’ it’s hard to argue against gentle breathing and stretching exercise to wind down your week. It’s also highly advantageous being away from your phone or computer for 60 minutes which is also another cause of stress.

Most Yoga postures involve spinal twists that loosen your joints making every day activities much easier. General activities such as sitting at a desk for long periods of time, or walking a long distance to work puts strain on the spine and causes it compress. By incorporating Yoga poses into your everyday life or routine, then this will help the spine relax, resulting in greater flexibility and may even improve your Golf swing!

Yoga can remedy every day tasks that put a strain on your spine.

The great thing about Yoga is that it’s a fantastic way to sculpt muscles without picking up a single dumbbell. Some argue that constant heavy weights cause strain on joints, so when your arms are on a rest day then a 30-minute Yoga session will be the perfect remedy to keep those arms and core shaped, ready for the gym.

Making Yoga part of your workout routine will put you in better stead in terms of prevent injuries in the gym or any activity you do. Practicing Yoga will help reduce the risk of injuries because muscles and joints that aren’t normally used will be stretched and supple for any future excursions that you may undertake.

Yoga has no boundaries or entry requirements. Anybody of any age, weight or fitness can undertake in a session of Yoga making it the most versatile workout going. If you are new to yoga, there are a variety of Yoga starter kits available to help you get into it! Only guys that have to walk through a doorway side wards can lift the heaviest weights in the gym, anybody can position themselves on a Yoga mat and start working out.

 



…Hormonal Imbalance: Which Hormone is Causing You Problems?…

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When you talk about hormonal imbalance, most people would readily assume that

this talks about just one condition. While this is generally true, since hormonal

imbalance does refer to a condition where a person has hormones that are out of

whack, there are actually quite a few kinds of hormonal imbalance that you can

experience. The different types are based on which hormone is not at its usual

level, and this brings about a list of symptoms that you may experience.

In women, there are around 6 types of hormonal imbalances. In order for the

treatment to fit the problem, a diagnosis first needs to be made on what kind of

imbalance you are going through. Diagnosis can be made with a visit to your

doctor, who will either try to determine what imbalance you are experiencing

through testing, or by finding out what your symptoms are.

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Different Kinds of Hormonal Imbalance

Estrogen Dominance – as the name implies, this is when your estrogen levels are

very high. Estrogen levels that are higher than normal are usually experienced by

women in their mid to late 30s, and they often attribute the many symptoms they

experience to age, and their monthly cycle. Some of the symptoms of estrogen

dominance include PMS, uterine fibroids, insomnia, allergies, depression, cramps,

and migraines. Also part of the long list of symptoms that come with this hormonal

imbalance include memory loss, lethargy, mood swings, and hot flashes, among

others.

Low Estrogen Levels – this is the opposite of the aforementioned type, and is

often prevalent with women who are going through menopause. This can also be

experienced by women who have undergone a hysterectomy, are getting cancer

treatments, or are suffering from autoimmune problems. If you have this kind of an

imbalance, you can see such symptoms as hot flashes, arthritis, vaginal dryness,

mood swings, sleeplessness, and night sweats emerging. You may also experience

a lower sex drive, migraines, memory lapses, and skin problems.

High Progesterone Levels – if you are taking contraceptives, there is a high

probability that your progesterone levels are higher than normal. When this

hormone is imbalanced, you can expect to see symptoms such as breast

tenderness, dizziness, yeast infections, and mood swings. Feeling sleepy all the

time, and feeling bloated are also symptoms of an increase in progesterone levels.

Low Progesterone Levels – this is when progesterone levels drop, and this can

be caused by a number of things. You can experience low progesterone levels when

you have too much estrogen in your system, are ingesting too much sugar, not

exercising enough, and are overly stressed. This hormonal imbalance is often

accompanied by symptoms that include weight gain, depression, water retention,

panic attacks, infertility, and vaginal dryness, among others.

High Androgen Levels – women who have higher-than-normal androgen levels

may find themselves with symptoms that include acne, infertility, irregular

menstrual periods, and thinning hair. If you have this kind of hormonal imbalance,

you may also find yourself with hirsutism, which is a condition that allows hair to

grow excessively in areas that are not common for women, like the upper lip or the

chin. This hormonal imbalance can also bring about more serious problems like

polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), insulin resistance, and diabetes.

Low Androgen Levels – often occurring during perimenopause, the decrease in

androgen levels can result in feelings of fatigue, vaginal dryness, low sex drive, and

low self-esteem. This can also occur when you find yourself missing periods due to

too much diet and exercise, and when your body is producing too much prolactin,

which usually happens when you are breastfeeding.

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In order for you to determine what kind of hormonal imbalance you are going

through, a visit to your doctor is a must. As mentioned earlier, they can tell you

what you are going through with some tests and a careful scrutiny of your

symptoms. This will help them determine what kinds of treatments and therapies

are ideal for your imbalance woes, and whether or not therapies like HRT (hormone

replacement therapy) as well as a lifestyle change is necessary for the alleviation of

your symptoms.

Sources:

Balance Hormones Naturally Series- Types of Hormonal Imbalance and Symptoms

http://www.nativeremedies.com/ailment/symptoms-of-hormone-imbalance.html

http://www.planetnaturopath.com/functional-pathology-testing/what-causes-hormonal-imbalances-in-women



…working out with two wheels…

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As the weather gets nice outside, it becomes easier to want to get out and get active!

I hear so many people complain that they want to enjoy the good weather BUT they do not want to run. That is when you can get creative and choose to ride a bike instead!

If you work close to your home you can choose to ride your bike to work on the days there is nice weather outside.  You will not only get a cardio workout BUT you will also save money that you would spend on gas. There are various health benefits for riding a bike:

  • Riding a bike is low impact (compared to running) so you will not have to worry about the strain and high impact that your body may go through while doing other cardio exercises.
  • Riding a bike gives you a great cardio workout as it requires you to use a lot of major muscles groups.  Using more muscle groups = burning more calories!
  • Riding allows you to have a varied workout.  If you have a bike that is equipped with intensity settings you can change the settings to increase/decease the resistance to aid in changing the difficulty of your bike ride. Adding these variations to your bike ride can help to build you stamina and help with your aerobic fitness.
  • Health benefits to riding a bike include this such as increase improved joint mobility and overall range of motion, increased cardiovascular endurance, aids in helping to decrease your body fat percentage (when you also adapt a health eating lifestyle), reduced depression and anxiety, and can also help to decrease your stress levels.

There are also a variety of bikes for you to choose from.  You want to make sure that you try to find the best bike that will work for what you will use it for:

  • Mountain Bikes –  Typically are best for those who will be riding on unpaved and rough terrain and uneven surfaces. These bikes have fat thick tires (to handle the rocks and rough terrain).
  • Road Bike – Designed to be used on open, flat, and paved roads. These bikes do not have rear suspensions (which are typically found on mountain bikes).  These bikes are light weight and typically made of carbon fibers or aluminum.  They have smaller skinny tires and variations of this bike can be seen/used in races such as triathlons.

There are various options available for both mountain and road bikes.  You will have to really figure out what/how you will be using your bike.  You want to make sure to get a bike that will fit your body frame, your exercise needs, and your pocket book.

You will also want to make sure to purchase safety equipment regardless if you are riding your bike on city streets, back dirt roads, or on trails.  A lot of cities and states have laws requiring some types of safety equipment be worn but those on bikes.  You will want to check to make sure you are being lawful and abiding by all street/traffic laws if you are riding in the city and on paved surfaces. Most importantly you will want to wear a helmet that fits! You will also want to make sure that you have proper reflection so that other bikers and motorist can see you when you are on the road. You want to make sure that you make yourself  (and your bike) as visible as possible. This can be done via wearing bright clothing, reflectors/reflection vest/reflection belt, and trying to avoid riding in the street late at night/early in the morning. You will also want to make sure that you are wearing clothing that is appropriate for the weather that you are riding in (if it is cold = wear a warm layer/jacket)

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ALSO Make sure that you are aware of proper signaling when you are on city streets.  You want to be able to communicate with those around you which direction you are going and what you are doing so that you can help to prevent any accidents.

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Riding a bike is a great thing to add to your regular workout routine.  It is something that I personally do and really enjoy.  But most importantly you want to make sure you do what is necessary so you can stay safe and out of harm when you are riding (regardless if you are on paved roads or out on a trail).

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…Martial Arts: more than just a workout…

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Nobody likes to be told what to do at the gym, I know I don’t. Giving tips and

advice is ok if we ask for it but someone coming to me and preaching to me ‘oh

you should do it this way’ is NOT okay. I’m sure we’ve all heard the familiar

sayings at one stage in our lives – “lift weights you won’t get bulky” or “you

should really try cross fit, it’s so awesome!”. But let me ask you something, have

you ever heard someone say, “Oh my god martial arts changed my life”? Well if

you haven’t, now you have.

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I didn’t realize how martial arts can play such a huge part to someone’s everyday

life. Fitness being one thing but the way the art can also improve other things like

your balance, focus and attitude is somewhat quite fascinating and alluring. Like

other sports we can run, swim, play basketball or do gymnastics, but martial arts

is much more than just a sport it goes deeper than that. If we dig deep enough,

and really understand the culture of the art, martial arts not only can physically

benefit you but mentally as well.

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You will learn moves that are like a soothing meditation which can help control

stress and tension levels, also believe it or not but it can actually teach you

valuable life lessons and build a positive attitude easing the mind and soul. After a

few practices you will soon realize your flexibility will improve, and being able to

defend yourself is not a bad skill to have either. Don’t get me wrong it’s great to

look better and feel stronger from any sport, but let me tell you something,

martial arts is much more than just a workout. Practicing this art has many

benefits that can lead to a happier and healthier lifestyle and perhaps an even

better you.

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Right, now that we know that martial arts is a good form of fitness and the next

question is, which technique do we go for? As you may know there are many to

choose from and each one holds their own skill. Judo, Karate and Tae Kwon do are

probably the more popular ones, but you also have Muay Thai, Jiu-Jitsu and more

recently, MMA (Mixed Martial Arts). YouTube Ronda Rousey if you aren’t familiar

with this full contact combat sport, it basically involves a mixture of everything

including wrestling too. But I would suggest starting off lightly with one technique

first, see how you go and then if you want to you can cross train later.

Finding a class and the right gym is always a pain in the backside especially trying

to fit it in your busy schedule, so let me make it easier for you, Martial Tribes is an

online platform where you can connect with martial arts instructors from

anywhere in the world. It’s the first martial arts social networking website where

you can browse all the different types of martial arts and see what trainers have

to offer. Train, interact and learn from them through video blogs and live

streaming wherever you are. Explore everything you want to know about martial

arts with the latest updates and news. With only just launching last year the site

already has over 100,000 registered users and boasts a variety of top instructors

signed up. You have no excuses, so what are you waiting for?



…Meal Prep Crash Course…

MEAL PREP

Two words that can evoke a lot of different emotions.

For a person that is new to meal prep, it can be a scary and overwhelming thing.  My words of advice…HAVE A PLAN!

Before you prep I suggest you do the following things:

  • Create a menu… You will need this so you can create your shopping list.  You will need this so you will know how much you will need to cook.  You will need this so you will make sure that you will have enough food to get you through so you will not have to steer off of your plan and on a impulse go grab something that is not healthy.
  • You will need a shopping list…I like a shopping list because it allows me to stay on task when I go to the store.  I like to wonder around the store and grab things that look new and delicious.  BUT when I have a list I run in, grab what is on the list, and leave.
  • Have enough containers… This can be Tupperware containers, zip lock bags, or whatever else you would like.  You will need these to help you portion out the food that you cook.

So this is what you need to do to get started: create your menu, create your food list, go to the store and purchase the food that you need, and make it home and organize the food that you have purchased to cook.

This is the hardest part….cooking and preparing the food.

HAVE A PLAN! Figure out what you can cook simultaneously so you can use your time efficiently.  I always start with the things that take the most time.  I will cook the meat in the oven or on the grill and then come back and cook the other items while the meat is cooking.  You have to be efficient with your time to ensure that your meal prep time is used in a productive way.

Once you have everything cooked you will want to go ahead and portion those foods out! You will want to make sure that you have them ready and available for you to grab when you need them.  I usually cook enough food for me to have for about a month. I will put 3/4 of the meals in my deep freezer and put the other 1/4 in the fridge.  This will allow me to use the meals that are needed and freeze/store the other meals so they do not go bad.

You can get creative and cook a ton of chicken BUT use them for different things such as:

  • chicken fajitas
  • chicken salad
  • chicken veggie stir fry
  • chicken bbq sandwich
  • chicken breakfast burrito
  • chicken soup

The goal is to make the staple products (such as the meat) so you will have it when it is time to eat.  You can then get creative and use the meat however you would like to create meals.

It is all about planning! That is the hardest part BUT it is the necessary part.

With snacks and any other store bought things I also suggest to go ahead and portion those out and have them in your fridge/pantry so you can have them when you need them.  This will help you to limit over eating and you will have it if you are busy and you need to grab something.

Question? Comments? Concerns? LET ME KNOW!

I am here to help!

ALSO feel free to check out THIS POST to get  more information on meal prep AND how to meal prep on a budget!



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