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No More Excuses! #MotivationalMonday

I Eat Cake

 

  • “I am sick and tired of being sick and tired!”
  • “I hate the way I feel when I eat _____ (fill in the blank).”
  • “If only I could loose these last 5 pounds.”
  • “I just can’t say no!”

Can you relate to any of the above statements? If you do, I have good news! You are in control. You can stop being sick and tired. You can stop eating that food that makes you sick. You can lose those last five pounds. And yes, you can say NO!!!! You hold the power.

The most important thing is to stop making excuses for making poor choices. If you believe you can, you will. Sounds a little cheesy and a little too easy but it is true. Where your mind goes, your body will follow. We are just a culture of instant gratification so we don’t listen to our gut when it tells us that doughnut will go straight to our thighs, that bagel will cause great digestive distress, or the man we’re dating is nothing but bad news. When you start realizing you are in control, you stop being complacent to whatever it is that is causing you harm and put an end to it. Instead of feeling guilty for eating something “bad” for you, start feeling empowered by saying no or by putting the fork down after a little taste. Whether the culprit is; poor dietary choices, lack of exercise, a bad relationship, or a bad TV habit- you are hold the power to turn it around.

I am here to tell you that you are strong. Listen to your gut. Make a list of goals and start working towards them each and every day. Need a little motivation? Try putting up a photo of you when you think you looked your best in a place you will see it every day. Or, read a motivational quote every morning. Set an intention for the day and start inching your way towards happiness 😉

 

Put down the fork after one bite, you don’t need the whole piece.

 

#MotivationalMonday

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    Zoodle Salad

     

    I love how easy this salad is to make. It is perfectly simple but still packs a flavorful bite.

    Zoodle Salad

     

    Ingredients:

    • 1 medium zucchini, ends trimmed off
    • 1/2 medium avocado, diced
    • 1 red bell pepper, julienned
    • 1/2 c frozen peas
    • Small handful of cilantro, minced

     Dressing:

    • 1/2 lemon
    • 1 tbsp olive oil
    • Kosher salt, to taste
    • Fresh black pepper, to taste

    Directions:

    1. Use a spiralizer or a mandolin fitted with a julienne blade and cut the zucchini into thin spaghetti-like strands. Trim the strands into bite size lengths and place them in a large work bowl.
    2. Combine olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper in a bowl. Add to zucchini and toss.
    3. Add the remaining veggies to the bowl.
    4. Serve right away and enjoy!
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      Happy Lemonade Day!

      Gogi Lemon Lemonade

       

      Stay hydrated this summer with Goji Lemon Lemonade. It has less sugar than traditional lemonade and is loaded with nutrients like B vitamins, vitamin C, vitamin E, zinc, silica, and antioxidants. The secret ingredient is vTrue, a physician-developed blend of 25 botanical extracts, minerals and vitamins that promote beautiful skin from within. Cheers to healthy skin!

       

      Goji Lemonade Recipe

      Ingredients: GL Lemonade

      • Juice of one lemon
      • 1/2 cup vTrue, Gogi Lemon
      • 1 cup water
      • Ice
      • 1 Tablespoon goji berries
      • Lemon wedge or slice for garnish

      Directions:

      1. Combine all ingredients. Serve cold and enjoy!

       

       

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        The Best Banana Nut Muffin…EVER

        Best Banana Nut Bread

        This recipe is hands down one of the best banana nut bread recipes out there. Personally, I prefer making muffins to the traditional loafs. In my opinion muffins are prettier than slices of bread and trick me into thinking I am eating something more substantial. I highly recommend making extra and freezing some in individual baggies for snacks or breakfast on the go. Trust me, these won’t last long 🙂

         

        Ingredients:

        • 3 medium ripe bananas, mashed
        • 1 T maple syrup
        • 1 t vanilla extract
        • ¼ c almond butter
        • 2 T coconut oil, softened
        • 2 eggs, at room temperature
        • ½ c coconut flour
        • ½ t baking soda
        • ½ t baking powder
        • ½ t cinnamon
        • ¼ t salt
        • ½ c chopped walnuts

        Extras:

        • ¼ c-½ c Enjoy Life chocolate mini chips (they are dairy, nut, gluten and soy free!)

        Directions:

        1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a muffin tin with non-stick cooking spray, or use muffin liners, set aside.
        2. In the medium-large bowl combine bananas, maple syrup, vanilla, almond butter and coconut oil and mix until well combined on medium speed with an electric mixer. When mixture is smooth and creamy add in eggs, one at a time, mix on medium speed until combined.
        3. With the mixer on medium-low speed, add in coconut flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon and salt; mix again until just combined. Gently fold in walnuts and chocolate chips if using.
        4. Pour batter into prepared pan and smooth top. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until tester inserted into center comes out clean.
        5. Remove from oven and place on wire rack to cool for 20 minutes. Enjoy!

         

        Nutrition Fats:

        Per muffin, makes 12 servings

        Calories 126

        Protein 3.7g

        Fat 6.8g

        Carbohydrate 14.5g

        Fiber 3.5g

        Sugar 6.9g

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          10 Hydrating Foods

          Summer is in full force and boy is it hot out there! We all know the benefits of staying hydrated, better digestion, glowing skin, energy, healthy muscles and joints- to name a few. Aside from the 8 ounces (or more) of water you should be drinking each day, eat the following 10 foods to keep you hydrated and glowing this summer:

          Watermelon

          watermelon
          92% water, salts, minerals and natural sugars

          Cucumber

          cucumber-background
          96% water, vitamin C, caffeic acid- both reduce swelling

          Celery

          celery
          96% water, electrolytes and amino acids

          Yogurt

          yogurt
          helps replenish electrolytes

          Strawberries

          strawberry
          92% water, folate

          Romaine Lettuce

          romaine lettuce
          folate, vitamin C, and beta-carotene

          Zucchini

          zuchinni
          95% water, folate, potassium, vitamins A and C

          Raw Broccoli

          Broccoli1
          91% water, calcium, fiber, vitamin C

          Grapefruit

          grapefruit
          91% water, helps keep insulin stable

          Pineapple

          pineapple
          96% water, anti-inflammatory enzymes

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            4 Tips to Keep Looking as Young as You Feel

            look as young as you feel

            We all strive to fight the natural process of aging. Some visit their local plastic surgeons, while others chose to go the more natural route. Whatever your m.o., here are 3 lifestyle techniques that you can implement today to keep that youthful glow alive:

            1. Say Sayonara Sugar

            Consuming foods made with sugar and refined white flour is a huge no-no and should be avoided like the plague. Seriously, it might sound a little silly but these foods are highly processed, provide zero nutrition and create inflammation in the body. Inflammation plays a starring role in many health concerns including cancer, diabetes, obesity, cardiovascular disease and arthritis. Inflammation causes the stress hormone, cortisol to rise. High levels of this hormone wreaks havoc on your skin and leads to breakouts, loss of moisture and the breakdown of collagen and elastin, ultimately causing unwanted saggy skin and wrinkles.

            Put down that cookie! The average American consumes 21 teaspoons of sugar a day. The American Heart Association recommends men limit added sugar to 36 grams, or 9 teaspoons, per day. While the recommended daily amount for women is 24 grams or 6 teaspoons. I suggest you limit your sugar to 10 grams, 2.5 teaspoons, or less. There is no reason to sacrifice your health or beautiful complexion for some added sweetness. Eat fresh fruit or 70% dark chocolate instead of processed treats.

            2. Detox Daily

            I’m not advocating you juice 24/7 or jump on the Master Cleanse bandwagon but rather do little things each day to help your body move out the toxins. Regular detoxification prevents toxic build up which can cause weight gain, dull skin, cellulite, fatigue and more.

            Things you can do include: exercising for 45 min 3-5 times per week, starting your day with warm cayenne lemon water, dry brushing before you hop in the shower, taking hot/cold showers (alternate super hot, then very cold for 30 seconds each, repeat 5 times), enjoying an infrared sauna, and consuming at least 5 servings of fresh greens daily.

            3. Eat Right for Your Body Type

            Paleo, gluten free, dairy free, low carb, carb cycling…there are so many diet fads out there to chose from. Which one to follow is the tough part. My advice, keep it simple and stick to what works for you. We are overloaded with information nowadays. I can find several studies that demonstrate why you should stay away from gluten and on the contrary, why you need it. The only thing these studies do not take into account is your own body’s chemistry and how different foods actually affect you. The best thing you can do is listen to your body while still eating a primarily plant based diet.

            Try something like 45 to 65 % carbohydrates, 10 to 35 % protein, and 20-35% healthy fats for your macronutrient intake and modify from there. For example, if you find it difficult to digest animal protein then combine plant proteins instead of eating animal protein. Or, if you find that your metabolism is slowing as you age, kick up the protein and healthy fats while cutting down carbohydrates. For more specific advice, email: lorin@lovetolivenutrition.

            4. Stay Active

            Exercise keeps us looking youthful from the inside, out. When we hit the pavement or pump iron, a surge of hormones known as endorphins are released to make us feel good and block pain so we can power through that killer spin class. In addition, serotonin levels, the hormone responsible for happiness, restful sleep and a healthy appetite, increases with regular sweat sessions. Another hormone that is regulated through exercise is growth hormone. Growth hormone is involved in lean muscle mass production, metabolism, as well strengthening bone and collagen tissues. The best way to boost your GH is to incorporate more than one muscle group at a time. For example, deadlift, bent over row, olympic snatch… 

            Get your surge of these powerful hormones through regular exercise and incorporate strength training as well as HIIT (high intensity interval training) into your routine.

             

             

             

             

            References:

            Godfrey, R., Madgwick, Z., & Gregory, P.W. (2003). The Exercise-Induced Growth Hormone Release in Athletes. Sports Medicine: 33 (8).

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              #MotivationMonday

              #MotivationalMonday1

               

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                10 Reasons Why You Need to Stay Fit

                Gisele Yoga

                In order to be healthy and vibrant we need to have a solid diet and exercise regimen. We can’t just eat whatever we want and workout to negate it. Rather, you need to eat well and exercise. There is a reason you think of fruits and vegetables as well as being active when the New Year comes around or when you need to “detox” after a vacation. It is because that is what our bodies crave in order to function optimally. I compiled 10 reasons why it is important to keep active. Hopefully they will come to mind the next time you are too lazy to get off the couch!

                1. Happy Heart

                Every day, the approximately 10 pints of blood in your body travel many times through about 60,000 miles of blood vessels that branch and cross, linking the cells of our organs and body parts. Our heart is the key muscle in this system, responsible for moving blood throughout the body. In order to keep our heart healthy, we must exercise it regularly. Try incorporating interval training the next time you go for a run or hit the treadmill. You should be doing both steady state cardio (i.e. running for 45 minutes), and interval training (i.e. sprinting for 45 seconds and recuperating for 30 seconds then repeating 5-10 times) during your cardio sessions.

                2. Healthier Sense of Well Being

                We all want to look and feel our best, don’t we? When we exercise we get a surge of endorphins, the feel good hormones and natural stress and pain fighters. Exercise is a natural prescription for anxiety and depression.

                3. Better Body Image

                Staying in your best shape also helps your body image. When you are able to look in the mirror and like who is looking back at you, you preform better in the workplace, have more self-confidence, and are more fun to be around.

                4. Improved Body Composition

                A healthy body composition doesn’t just make you look good in clothes, but it also has several benefits for your well-being. Exercise reduces visceral fat and increases lean muscle mass. Visceral fat is the “dangerous” fat that surrounds our organs, and is linked to diabetes, obesity and cardiovascular disease. Not only will you be healthier, but you will look better too!

                6. It’s Fun

                Who doesn’t need a little fun in their life? There are countless ways to get moving, I’m sure you can find something that intrigues you. You can make it social by exercising with friends, family or by meeting new friends. Or, just enjoy that much needed solo time. The important thing is to get out there and do it, whatever it may be.

                7. Increased Energy

                Are you too tired to exercise? Believe it or not, exercising will increase your energy. Physical activity delivers oxygen and nutrients to your tissues and helps your cardiovascular system work more efficiently. When your heart and lungs work more efficiently, you have more energy to go about your daily life.

                cardio21

                8. Better Sleep

                Exercise can help you fall asleep and stay asleep. There’s not much more to it than that! Just don’t exercise too late in the evening, otherwise, it will have the opposite effect. 

                9. Superior Sex Life

                Sometimes sex is the last thing on our minds, especially when we’re feeling down on ourselves. One way to turn that frown upside down and turn up the heat in the bedroom is to increase your activity level. Women who exercise regularly can experience enhanced arousal. Whereas men who exercise regularly are less likely to have problems with erectile dysfunction than are men who don’t exercise.

                10. Enhanced Immune System

                An apple a day keeps the doctor away, well same goes for exercise. It promotes circulation, which allows the cells and substances of the immune system to move through the body freely and do their job efficiently.

                References:
                The benefits of physical activity. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. http://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/everyone/health/index.html. Accessed July 2, 2013.
                2008 Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. http://www.health.gov/paguidelines/guidelines/default.aspx. Accessed July 2, 2013.
                Armstrong S, et al. Social connectedness, self-esteem, and depression symptomatology among collegiate athletes versus nonathletes. Journal of American College Health. 2009;57:521.
                Peterson DM. Overview of the benefits and risks of exercise. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed July 2, 2013.
                Hannan JL, et al. Beneficial impact of exercise and obesity interventions on erectile function and its risk factors. The Journal of Sexual Medicine. 2009;6(suppl 3):254.
                Hamilton LD, et al. The roles of testosterone and alpha-amylase in exercise-induced sexual arousal in women. Journal of Sexual Medicine. 2008;5:845.
                Laskowski ER (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. July 2, 2013.
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                  Rise and Shine: How to Optimize Your Mornings

                  Morning Routine

                  How do you start your mornings?

                  This may not seem like an important question. However, what you after you get out of bed sets the tone for the rest of your day. I am aware that we all have different circumstances surrounding our lives, some of us are parents, others commute to work, while some work from home. Whatever the case, I suggest you start fine tuning your AM time to see what makes you feel good and what works well with your lifestyle. Pick and choose from the suggestions below to find your most favorable routine.

                  How to Set the Tone

                   

                  Meditate- Meditation has been around for thousands of years. It has been known to help with numerous ailments including stress, anxiety, lack of focus, poor memory, poor self-awareness, addiction and more. Headspace is an app you can download to your phone so you can practice anywhere, anytime. How easy is that? Neuroscientists have found that after just 11 HOURS of meditation, our brains actually experience structural changes in the part involved in monitoring our focus and self control. Have trouble focusing on that report or can’t bring yourself to part ways with your 3pm orange mocha frappuccino? Start meditating now!

                  Try it: Practice for 10 minutes every morning upon rising.

                  Stretch– While you are sleeping, your body is resting. Often times when we wake up we just go, we don’t ease our way into the day because we have too much to do and not enough time. From the second we wake up until we go to bed, as a culture, we are constantly on the go. This can be detrimental to your body, signaling stress signals within endocrine system. Is is important to wind down at night, and ease into your day to work with your body’s natural rhythm. I don’t know about you but when I wake up my body, my mind follows.

                  Try it:Take 9 minutes to stretch each morning. Get your routine here.

                  Exercise- Oh yes! Good ol’ exercise. Some of us are morning people, while others can not function until noon. If you are the former than get your exercise in first thing so you don’t have to worry about it later in the day. It may help clear your head for that important meeting or eliminate some of your daily stress.

                  Try it: Go for a walk, hit the gym or sign up for your favorite exercise class. Personally, I am a huge fan of taking classes in the morning, it eliminates unnecessary thinking when I am not quite awake. Kids still sleeping? Great! Pop in your favorite workout DVD or practice yoga.

                  Eat Up- I know you’ve heard it before, and you’re about to hear it again, breakfast is the most important meal of the day. This is because it sets your metabolism up for the day. In addition to fueling our bodies, we need to fuel our brains. Our brain requires an array of nutrients to be healthy such as omega-3s, folate, vitamin E, complex, choline and many more. Begin your day with a well balanced meal complete with complex carbohydrates, protein and a little healthy fat.

                  Try it: Start your day with eggs, oatmeal, or a protein rich smoothie.

                  Ready, Set, GO! 

                  Once you experiment and find what works for you, try to stick to your routine 7 days a week. If you wake up later on the weekends, it will be more difficult to stick to your routine come Monday morning. Keeping up your routine will also help you feel in control, organized and sane. I can’t tell you how much my life has improved once I found a method to my morning madness. When my life is chaotic, my work and personal life suffer. I don’t know about you but I am a much happier person when my work and relationships are happy.

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                    vTrue

                    I want to introduce you to a relatively new product: vTrue.vTrue-Formula-P-v1

                    vTrue is truly a unique beverage. It is classified as a skin supplement due to its long list of functional ingredients. The company started by launching two unique flavors, Blackberry Tangerine and Goji Lemon. The physician developed beauty beverage contains a proprietary blend of 14 botanical extracts, along with 100% of the recommended daily allowance of eight different vitamins and minerals. Said vitamins include vitamins A and E, niacin (B3), B6, B12, biotin (B7), pantothenic acid (B5), and zinc.

                    Proprietary Blend:

                    • Gotu Kola- Improves Skin Circulation, Free Radical UV Repair, Protects & Heals Skin, Produces Collagen, Skin Antioxidant 
                    • Acai Fruit Extract- Protects & Heals Skin, Produces Collagen, Skin Antioxidant
                    • Grape Seed Extract- Firms Elasticity, Protects & Heals Skin, Skin Antioxidant
                    • Pine Bark- Improves Skin Circulation, Firms Elasticity, Produces Collagen, Increases Hydration
                    • EGCG- Free Radical UV Repair, Protects & Heals Skin
                    • Apple Polyphenols- Free Radical UV Repair, Protects & Heals Skin, Skin Antioxidant
                    • Goji Berry Fruit Extract- Improves Skin Circulation, Free Radical UV Repair, Protects & Heals Skin, Produces Collagen, Skin Antioxidant
                    • Golden Root Extract- Improves Skin Circulation, Free Radical UV Repair, Protects & Heals Skin, Skin Antioxidant
                    • Sea Buckthorn Extract- Produces Collagen, Skin Antioxidant
                    • White Tea Polyohenols- Increases Hydration
                    • Pomegranate Fruit Extract- Produces Collagen
                    • Aloe Vera Leaf Extract- Free Radical UV Repair, Protects & Heals Skin
                    • Gingko Bibloba Leaf Extract- Improves Skin Circulation,  Firms Elasticity, Free Radical UV Repair, Protects & Heals Skin, Produces Collagen
                    • Silica- Firms Elasticity, Protects & Heals Skin, Produces Collagen

                     

                    In my opinion, what makes this brand so revolutionary is the way they are changing the notion that you treat your skin topically. Our skin needs certain ingredients to repair, rejuvenate and be healthy just like the rest of our body. In fact, what you are applying to your face doesn’t necessarily penetrate the several layers of skin like you think it is. Say buh-bye to your $300 face cream and swap it for a good ol’ fashion diet rich in nutrient dense vegetables and other skin salvaging whole-foods or beverages. Take it from me, you truly have feed your body the nutrients it needs in order for you to be beautiful on the exterior. Think of a rose bush, if it is not hydrated, exposed to the right amount of sunlight, or given a nutrient dense soil, it will not bloom as nature intended. Same is true for your skin, if your body is starved for nutrients, your hair, skin and nails will suffer immensely. For any nutrients it does take in, will go directly to the more “important” organs and systems like your brain, heart, hormone production etc…

                    Each bottle only has 45 calories and 9 grams of sugar. I normally do not recommend consuming sugar, however, since there are so many positive attributes, I suggest applying the principles of nutrient timing, meaning having vTrue when your body can absorb the sugar most efficiently. Personally I use vTrue as a base in my post workout shake. This way my body readily absorbs the sugar, along with protein, into the cells to repair and rebuild muscle tissue. Or, you can have a bottle before a run or exercise class. Another option is to drink this beauty beverage with a little alcohol as a mixer so you’re getting your B vitamins and beautifying benefits all while getting a nice buzz. Hey, we all have our vices! To see results, it is recommended to have one bottle a day in order to reap all these wonderful benefits. Just think of it as a multi-vitamin for your skin.

                    All in all I am a fan. To learn more about vTrue visit www.vtrue.com.

                     

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