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Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Wednesday Inspiration


My lovelies, I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and enjoyed some special moments with family and loved ones. Here's a little Wednesday inspiration for you; it's one of my favorite quotations by the wonderful Marianne Williamson. Happy Wednesday! XO

Friday, December 23, 2011

Holiday Homework Part Three: Butt and Thighs


Today's final part of the Holiday Homework series shows you how to tone your butt and thighs. These exercises may seem simple but don't be fooled - they are extremely effective!



SIDE-KNEELING LEGS
  1. Kneel on the mat with hip creases open and shoulders, hips, and knees aligned.
  2. Reach the right leg out to the side, and take your left arm out to the opposite side, with the right hand behind your head.
  3. Tip over until your right leg is not touching the mat and you are relying on your left hand and left knee/shin to balance.
  4. First Set – Back and Forth: Inhale, flex your foot and bring right leg forward, exhale and point your foot as your leg goes back. Make sure to keep hips still. Repeat 8-10 times.
  5. Second Set – Circles: Bend the right knee to 90 degrees and draw little circles with your knee going forward. Keep the knee at hip-height or higher. Repeat 8-10 times then switch directions
  6. Third Set – Up and Down: Straighten right leg out to the side and pulse up towards the ceiling slowly. Repeat 8-10 times.
  7. Repeat on the opposite leg.

*** Please note that you should always consult with a doctor before beginning an exercise program and that all information conveyed is for entertainment purposes only and does not intend to diagnose or treat any medical condition.***

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Holiday Homework Part Two: Arms and Shoulders


In today's post, part two of the Holiday Homework Series, I will teach you how to strengthen and tone your arms and shoulders (so they will look like Eva's! :). These simple exercises not only build strength in your upper body, but also in your core muscles. Enjoy and feel free to ask any questions by leaving a comment!

Regular Plank
Position hands shoulder width apart and feet shoulder width apart in a plank position. Remember to dome between the shoulder blades, tuck your tailbone between your legs, and send your bellow button up to your spine. Hold for 30 seconds. Repeat 3 times.

Single Arm Plank
Same as above but take hands narrower and feet wider (like a tripod). Lift one arm up at a time switching. You can take your arm straight in front of you, to the side, or bend your elbow and bring your hand (plan down) to your chest. Keep hips level. Repeat 8-10 times on each side.

Single Leg Plank
Legs and hands in regular plank position. Lift one leg up at a time, maintaining alignment throughout body. Repeat 10 times on each side

Plank Knee-In
Set up in the regular plank position. Take one knee into to chest at a time, maintaining square hips and shoulders, using the abdominals to draw the knee in. Repeat 10 times on each side, alternating sides. 


*** Please note that you should always consult with a doctor before beginning an exercise program and that all information conveyed is for entertainment purposes only and does not intend to diagnose or treat any medical condition.***

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Holiday Homework Part One: Abs


Many of my clients have asked for some "Holiday Homework" during the Holiday season since they won't be coming in for Pilates sessions for a couple of weeks. Over the next few days, I will be sharing what I give to my clients to stay in shape over the Holidays and keep the extra lbs and muscle loss at bay.

In today's post, I will share with you the perfect abdominal set. Known as the "Ab Five" in the Pilates world, each exercise is intended to be done one after the other with no breaks in between, and targets all four layers of abdominal muscles! Do these every day and you will build a strong core and notice results quickly.


THE "AB FIVE"

Single Leg Stretch
  1. Sit in the center of your mat with your knees bent. Take hold of your right leg with your left hand on the knee and your right hand on the ankle. (This will keep your leg in proper alignment with your hip).
  2. Roll your back down to the mat, bringing your bent leg with you.
  3. Extend your opposite leg out in front of you and hold it above the mat at an angle that allows your back to remain flat on the mat.
  4. With your elbows wide and your chin lifted to your chest, inhale and watch as your navel sinks deep into your spine.
  5. Imagine you are anchored into the floor below. 
  6. Exhale and switch legs, bringing the left hand to the ankle and the right hand to the left knee. Stretch your extended leg long out of your hip and in line with the center of your body.
  7. Repeat 6 times on each side for a total of 12.
  8. Note on breathing: "inhale (switch), inhale (switch), exhale (switch), exhale (switch). 

Double Leg Stretch
  1. Lie on your back and pull both knees into your chest, elbows extended and head lifted. Hands are on your shins and elbows are wide.  
  2. Inhale deeply and stretch your body long, reaching your arms back by your ears and with your legs out long in front of you and raised off the mat at about a forty-five degree angle. Imagine you are stretching out of bed in the morning. Note: make sure you lower back stays completely pressed to the mat.
  3. Do not allow your head to move off your chest - keep a deep upper abdominal curl.
  4. As your exhale, draw your knees back into your chest by circling your arms around to meet them.
  5. Sink your belly further from your knees to increase the emphasis on the exhalation, as if you were compressing air out of your lungs.
  6. Repeat the sequence 6-10 times, remaining still in your torso as your inhale to stretch and exhale to pull. 
  7. End by pulling your knees into your chest for a deep exhalation.

Single Straight Leg Stretch
  1. Lie on your back and pull both knees into your chest, elbows extended and head lifted into your deep upper abdominal curl. 
  2. Extend your right leg straight up to the ceiling and grab your ankle with both hands as you stretch your left leg long in front of you, keeping it hovering slightly above the mat. 
  3. Imagine anchoring your torso firmly into the mat and keep your head lifted onto your chest. 
  4. Inhale and pull your raised leg in toward your head pulsing it twice at the top of your range. 
  5. Switch the legs by scissoring them and exhale for two pulses with the other leg at the top of your range, using your arms to stabilize the leg.
  6. After 4 repetitions, switch the breath so that you are exhaling for two beats on the opposite leg, and inhaling on the other leg.
  7. Complete a total of 8 repetitions. 

Double Straight Leg Stretch
  1. Lie on your back with your hands interlaced behind your head.
  2. Extend your legs straight in a slightly turned out stance, feet straight up to the ceiling. Squeeze your inner thighs together until no light comes through them. 
  3. Anchor your center firmly into the mat and lift your head onto your chest into your deep upper abdominal curl. Remember to lift from the back of the shoulders and abdominals, not your neck. Imagine your arms are a hammock for your head.
  4. Squeeze your buttocks, for stability in your lower back, and lower your straight legs down toward the mat a few inches as your inhale. Keep your lower back pressed firmly into the mat.
  5. Squeeze your buttocks tighter and exhale as you raise your straight legs toward the ceiling again. You should feel your chest pressing slightly toward the legs as they return to their upright position.
  6. Imagine your legs are attached to springs above your head and you must stretch the springs on the way down and resist their pull on the pay back up.
  7. Repeat 8 times and end by bringing both knees into the chest.

Crisscross
  1. Lie on your back with your hands behind your lifted head and your knees into your chest.
  2. Extend the right leg out long and above the mat in front of you and exhale as you twist your upper body until your right elbow touches (as close as possible) your left knee. Remember to twist from your ribcage, not your arms. 
  3. Return to the center, bringing the knee back into your chest as your inhale. Exhale as your twist to the other side, extending your left leg long in front of you, while maintaining your imprint with your lower back firmly pressed into the mat. 
  4. Imagine your center anchored to the mat so that you don't rock from hip to hip. 
  5. Complete 8 sets and pull your knees tightly into your chest.


*** Please note that you should always consult with a doctor before beginning and exercise program and that all information conveyed is for entertainment purposes only and does not intend to diagnose or treat any medical condition.***

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Acorn Squash Stuffed with Chard & White Beans


This Holiday season, swap out a heavy dish for this lighter and delicious alternative. With its natural shape making it just right for stuffing, this baked acorn squash with white beans, olives, and parmesan cheese hits the spot with just a touch of Mediterranean flair. Coming in at just under 350 calories per serving, it makes for the perfect meal without the guilt.

Ingredients:

2 medium acorn squash, halved and seeded
1 teaspoon plus 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper, divided
1/2 cup chopped onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoon tomato paste
8 cups chopped chard leaves (about 1 large bunch chard)
1 15-ounce can white beans, rinsed
1/4 cup chopped kalamata olives
1/3 cup coarse dry whole-wheat breadcrumbs
1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese

Preparation:
1. Cut a small slice off the bottom of each squash half so it rests flat. Brush the insides with 1 teaspoon oil; sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Place in a 9x13 inch (or similar size) microwave-safe dish. Cover with plastic wrap and microwave on High until the squash is fork-tender (about 12 minutes).

2. Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion; cook, stirring, until starting to brown. Add garlic, stir for 1 minute. Stir in water, tomato paste, and the remaining 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Stir in chard, cover and cook until tender. Stir in white beans and olives; cook until heated through. Remove from heat.

3. Position rack in center of oven; preheat broiler.

4. Combine breadcrumbs, parmesan and the remaining 1 tablespoon oil in a bowl. Fill each squash half with about 1 cup of the chard mixture. Place in a baking pan or on a baking sheet. Sprinkle with breadcrumb mixture. Broil in the center of the open until the breadcrumbs are browned (1-2 minutes).

5. Enjoy!

Nutrition: 342 calories; 13 g fat (3 g sat, 8 g mono); 11 g protein; 12 g fiber

Source: eatingwell.com

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Fresh Cranberry Chia Pudding


It's the time of year where cookies abound and refined sugar seems to be sprinkled on everything. Why not give your system a break and treat yourself to a healthy dessert instead? Crazy Sexy Life has this great little recipe for a chia pudding. It's easy, tasty, and oh-so-good for you. You'll be glad you have this in your fridge when a sweet tooth attacks! You can find the recipe here.

Source: crazysexylife.com

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

How to Find Real Food at the Supermarket


Grocery shopping can be confusing. With so many different marketing tactics screaming at you in every isle, it becomes difficult to tell which foods are actually good for you and which ones you should stay away from. This handy and amusing little chart from the Huffington Post will help you navigate through the junk and find the real food at your local supermarket.

Source: Huffington Post

Friday, December 9, 2011

Have a Wonderful Weekend!


My lovelies, what are you up to this weekend? Tonight, Mike and I are going on a low-key movie date complete with comfy jeans, sweatshirts, and Ugs (for me) and a few snuck in (somewhat) healthy snacks. Tomorrow night is my favorite duo's Christmas party, and Sunday we are finally getting our Christmas tree. Hope you have a wonderful, relaxing weekend, and here are some healthy living posts from around the web:


Do Pilates while you walk to work.

Foods that food safety experts won't ever eat.

The top 10 best workout videos on Youtube.

Delicious fall vegetable recipe. Just swap the butter for Earth Balance, sour cream for greek yogurt, and use whole wheat pasta instead. 

How to preserve lemons in a jar (makes for a great and inexpensive Christmas present!).

Some bikini workouts for your winter getaway. 

Foods to eat if you're trying to grow out your hair. 

Why coconut sugar may be the new agave

Thursday, December 8, 2011

2 Waist-Whittling Exercises

Side Plank-Up
Side Plank-Up
Targets: Rectus and transversus abdominis, obliques, and inner thighs

1. Lie on left side on floor with legs stacked and a rolled-up towel between thighs, propping torso on left elbow so that left forearm is perpendicular to torso. Make it easier: stagger feet so that side of right foot is on floor in front of left foot for a wider base of support.

2. Lift hips so that body forms a straight line from head to toe and squeeze towel between thighs. Hold for 1 count, then lower. Do 10 reps. Switch sides and repeat. Do 3 sets.

Round Back

Round Back
Targets: Rectus and transversus abdominis

1. Sit on a folded tower on floor with shoulder blades against a wall and knees bent, feet flat; make sure back is rounded. Place hands on floor near hips, fingertips pressed into floor.

2. Squeeze abs and lift feet off floor, bring knees toward chest, then straighten legs so toes point toward ceiling. Do 10 pulses: Bring legs 1 inch closer to wall, then move them back 1 inch. Make it easier: keep one foot down and repeat on both sides. Do 3 sets.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Dinner Idea


Not sure what to make for dinner? Here's an easy little dish you can whip up in just minutes. Take some quinoa, cook as directed on the package, mix in some vegan cheese like this one, and salt to taste. Being the spicy-foodaholic that I am, I add hot sauce and red pepper flakes. Just add whatever tickles your fancy. Then, plop yourself on the couch, turn on a good show or movie and devour :). Happy Wednesday!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Move of The Day: Arm Circles



Targets: shoulders, back, triceps, biceps
What you'll need: Two 3-pound dumbbells

1. Stand with feet shoulder-width apart, arms extended straight out to sides at shoulder height.
2. Keeping shoulders down, do 20 small backwards circles.
3. Switch directions; do 20 forward circles

Make it harder: stand on one foot for 10 circles, and on the other foot for 10 circles. Repeat in both directions.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Move Of the Day: Couch Decline Push-Up



Targets: Chest, arms, and abs

1. Get into full push-up position with palms on floor, arms extended, balls of feet resting on couch cushion and hips lifted to that the body forms a straight line from head to heels. Make it easier: place knees on cushion or do an incline push-up with feet on floor and palms on cushion.

2. Bend elbows to lower chest toward floor, then return to start. Do 15 reps. Make it harder: keep your elbows narrow, skimming the sides of your body when you bend.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Wednesday Inspiration

"I'm the hero of this story. I don't need to be saved."

A good reminder to us all. Happy Wednesday!


Source: Pinterest

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Earphone Designs That Stay Put

I have the hardest time running without music. In fact, once when I arrived at the gym and realized I had forgotten my earphones, I swiftly turned around and left (something I am not proud of). Something else that gets to me is when my earphones pop out of my years mid-run. So, I did a little research and found some earphones that are supposed to stay put throughout your workout.

1. Philips Earhooks
For earhooks that hook around your ear, these flexible earphones by Philips come highly recommended. They provide decent sound quality, stay snug and secure in your eats, and come with a 1.2 meter-long cable so you can pop your iPod in your jacket or pant-pocket. And they only cost $7!


2. Sony Spiral Neck-Band Headphones
If you're a fan of the wraparound-style headphones, check out Sony's lightweight Spiral Neck-Band headphones ($30) that come with a cord adjuster so you can get the exact length you want. They offer an excellent deep bass sound quality, too. The headphones are also protected in a moisture guard so now worries about heavy sweating. 


3. Shure Sound Isolating Earphones
These earphones from Shure ($100) are for runners who are adamant about exceptional audio output. With balanced armature speakers and sound isolation technology, you're guaranteed to hear the music the way it was intended. Shure also includes multiple earlobe attachments so you can get the perfect fit.


4. Innovelis Budfis
Inexpensive and functional, Innovelis created these Budfits earphone attachments ($9) for all iPod and iPhone earbuds. If you have a few pairs of Apple earphones lying around but don't use them because they fall out while running, these flexible add-ons will keep your earphones safe and secure. 



5. Sennheiser Twist-to-Fit Earbuds
Both sweat and water resistant, these twist-to-fit earphones ($65) ensure you are getting the most comfortable fit. Sound quality is stellar with neodymium magnets for detailed sound, and each pair comes with an ear adapter set, a cable clip, and a carrying case. 

Monday, November 28, 2011

10 Foods to Help You Detox

Even the most disciplined among us sometimes overindulge around the Holidays. If you're feeling a little sluggish from Thanksgiving weekend, here are some foods you can incorporate into your diet that will help you detox.



1. Watercress
Watercress is a natural diuretic, keeps free radicals away from your cells and helps energize cleansing enzymes in the liver. Try throwing some into a soup for a peppery crunch


2. Dark Leafy Greens
Dark leafy greens like spinach, kale, and collard greens boost chlorophyll levels in the digestive tract, which helps the body get rid of environmental toxins like smog and herbicides. Try throwing them in a juice, adding to a salad, or sauté them with a touch of olive oil.


3.  Cabbage
Not only is cabbage eaten in many cultures for luck and prosperity in the New Year, it's also known for its liver-cleansing properties. Mix cabbage, apples, and caraway for a crisp treat for your palate and liver,


4. Artichokes
Numerous studies show that artichokes promote healthy liver and gallbladder function. They're also loaded with cynarin, which helps increase bile production, prevents indigestion, and stimulates healthy digestion. Steam a whole artichoke for about 15 minutes then enjoy with a drizzle of olive oil, a touch of salt, and lemon juice to top it off.


5. Ginger and Garlic
Ginger and garlic are good friends to the liver because they help it get rid of free radicals that are built up in the body. Make yourself a healthy stir-fry and don't be shy to season it with these two liver-loving foods.


6. Whole Grains
Choosing whole grains over refined grains should be a part of any diet - detox or not. Besides being full of nutrients and antioxidants, they're incredibly high in insoluble fiber, which keeps you regular. Make sure to read the ingredient list when you buy whole grain bread - many of the big brands' "whole wheat" breads are loaded with sugar, sometimes even high fructose corn syrup! My favorite bread is the Sprouted Wheat vegan bread by Alvarado Street Bakery. It's loaded with flavor and contains only organic and natural ingredients.


7. Green Tea
Green tea is high in catechins - a flavonoid - which speeds up liver activity and increases the production of detoxification enzymes.


8. Beets
Fiber in beets helps increase the production of antioxidant enzymes in the liver, which help the liver and gallbladder eliminate bile and other toxic substances from the body.


9. Fresh Fruit
After filling up your body with butter and booze, what better way to say sorry to it than to treat it to juicy, vitamin-filled fresh fruit? Check out the farmer's market for locally grown, seasonal fruit.


10. Lemon Water
Lemons are a great source of vitamin C, which is known to help the body detox and burn fat. Try drinking room-temperature water with a quarter of a lemon in the morning to help with digestion and to alkalize the body.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Have a Happy and Healthy Thanksgiving!


With all the delicious foods likely surrounding you at Thanksgiving dinner, this eating-centered holiday can definitely do a number on your healthy diet. This year, don't let Thanksgiving set you back. Here are some measures you can take to avoid feeling overstuffed (leave that to the turkey) and insure you feel great throughout this holiday season.

1. Before Thanksgiving Dinner
Wait to eat until you are sitting down at the dinner table. It is so tempting to pick at the buffet offerings in the kitchen, but it's harder to control portions if you are standing up and snagging bites here and there. By waiting, you actually prime your body for digestion. The smells and sights of the delicious buffet trigger the production of extra saliva and digestive acids to help break down food. Giving your body time to prepare itself for food will prevent you from feeling bloated and uncomfortable after eating.

2. During the Thanksgiving Meal
Stop shoveling your food, and start chewing thoroughly. Taking your time to eat will not only insure the food is properly broken down for your stomach to start digesting (thereby preventing indigestion, bloating, and gas), it also gives your body a chance to send the signal to your brain that it has received enough food and is full. Eating too fast most often results in overeating and by the time you realize you're full, it's too late.

3. Post-Thanksgiving Dinner
Avoid lying down until three hours after the meal to avoid acid reflux. It can take up to 12 hours to fully digest your Thanksgiving meal, due to the inordinate amount of fat usually present. Instead, try going for a little walk around your neighborhood. Some fresh air will make you feel better, and the light exercise will speed up the digestion process. Afterwards, have a cup of green tea or peppermint tea, both of which aid in digestion.

And remember, even if you do go crazy and eat more than you planned, don't beat yourself up! We all overdo it once in a while and it doesn't have to be a huge setback. Just get back on your wellness plan the next day or maybe plan a cleanse for after the holidays. Be kind to yourself :). Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

POP Pilates


Have you heard of POP Pilates? Cassey Ho, a San Francisco-based Pilates instructor, has hundreds of Pilates videos on Youtube - for free! Her workouts are challenging and she's so enthusiastic that it's hard to get mad when your abs start to burn like crazy. Below is one of my favorites of her Mat Pilates videos. Enjoy!

Monday, November 21, 2011

6 Surprising Facts About Sleep


Most of us are very aware of the importance of sleep (and getting enough of it), but here are some surprising facts you may not have heard before about sleep:

1. Flu-Z's
If you're sleep-deprived before getting your flu shot, it can take three to four weeks for the vaccine to kick in. Those who don't get appropriate rest have a weaker immune system, which hinders the vaccination's effectiveness.
Source: University of Chicago and Ohio State University study.




2. Take This to Heart
Poor sleep is more dangerous to women than to men. Women experience higher risks of cardiovascular problems when they don't get enough rest and they're also more susceptible to psychological distress, depression, and anger.
Source: Duke Medicine


3. Late Night Shifts
There's a link between those who work night shifts and breast cancer; researchers say they think it's because melatonin is suppressed, which is necessary for protection against some cancers. "Shift work that involves circadian disruption" is officially listed as a probable carcinogen.
Source: World Health Organization's International Agency for Research on Cancer


4. Sleep Apnea
Not only does lack of sleep hurt your ability to learn, but there's also a link between sleep-disordered breathing (i.e. sleep apnea) and dementia in women. Mental impairment is consistently associated with hypoxia, which is when the brain gets less oxygen due to breathing disruptions.
Source: Journal of the American Medical Association



5. Car Accidents
Auto accidents increase by 17 on the Monday after Daylight Saving Time occurs, which is when people "lose" an hour of sleep. Heart attacks increase by approximately 5 percent.
Source: University of British Columbia and New England Journal School of Medicine



6. Pillow Talk
For couples who sleep together (a whopping 23 percent don't), one partner typically loses about 49 minutes of sleep every night, due to disruptive behaviors. These could include anything from a companion's tossing and turning, the TV being on, the room's temperature being too hot or cold, and more.
Source: National Sleep Foundation

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Trying to Lose Weight? Don't Give Up These Foods.

There is such mixed information out there about what to eat and not eat that it can get pretty confusing if you're trying to lose weight. Some say no carbs, others say no fat, while others yet tell you to eat cabbage soup (yuck). So, if you're trying to lose weight, whatever diet or method you may be following, make sure not to miss out on the important nutrients in the following foods.



Fall Fruits
Delicious apples, juicy pears, and others fruits may be high in sugar, but it's fructose, a natural and simple sugar that the body metabolizes quickly. Eating fruits will actually help you lose weight because they are bursting with fiver (a pear has six grams). Fiber fills you up and satiates your hunger, which prevents you from over-snacking.


Complex Carbs
While foods made with white flour (like bagels, regular pasta, and white bread) are a no-no, don't steer clear of all carbs. Complex carbs, like fruit, are high in fiber, and you don't have to eat much to feel full. During the chillier months, enjoy nutritious foods like whole wheat pasta, whole grain bread, brown rice, quinoa, and barley.


Healthy Fats
Not all fats are created equal, and while you want to avoid saturated fat-filled foods like ground beef or whipped cream, you definitely want to include heart-healthy unsaturated fats like buts, but butters, seeds, avocados, and olive oil. These foods are essential to your health; they make your skin glow and your hair shine, as well as keep your brain sharp.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Does Your Hair Keep You Out of the Gym?


When it comes to excuses to miss a workout, I've heard them all. But here's a reason every woman has used at least one - skipping the gym so you don't mess up your hair. Sound familiar?

I recently asked my hairdresser for some advice and here's what she said: You actually don't have to wash your hair after working up a sweat. It's not oil that your body releases from working out, it's actually salt water. Yes, this "salt water" may mess out a perfect blowout, but it doesn't mean your hair is dirty to the point where you must wash it. Her solution? If you're pressed for time and won't have time to wash and dry your hair, skip the wash and just use a hairdryer and round brush to fix the roots of your hair.

Have curly hair? Flip your head upside down and give the roots a blast of cold air from the hairdryer. Yes, for those of us (like me) who lean toward the germophobic side, his may seem out of the question, but my hairdresser guaranteed me there is no reason to wash after every workout. Fascinating, don't you think? So, I am curious: How many of you would try this method and skip washing after a sweaty workout?

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Bride Brain


The past couple of days have been a bit of a wonderful blur. On Saturday, my boyfriend Mike asked me to marry him... And I of course said YES! Ever since, I have been giddy with excitement, and all I can think about is the fact that I'm getting married! I know, I know... sounds silly and sappy but it's true. I have Bride Brain. What is this, you ask? Urban Dictionary describes this condition pretty accurately:
Bride Brain ['brid'-'bran']
A less invasive, but more expensive version of a frontal lobotomy. Experienced by most brides, as they enter a catatonic state which renders them incapable of sustaining any thought or conversation that does not involve cake, caterers, flowers, wedding dress designers, Chinese wedding dress knockoff designers, updos, hair pieces, color schemes, wedding themes, and personalized M&M's.  
Bride Brain symptoms include, but are not limited to: driving erratically because they can't stop staring at their shiny diamond ring; being amused by the resentment of their single girlfriends, rewinding songs several hundred times while imagining themselves walking down the aisle, and starvation induced bitchiness which is generally followed by late night bingeing at a Dairy Queen. 
Symptoms are ordinarily well controlled with valium, alcohol, and endless hours of watching Youtube "first dance" videos. 
This Bride Brain business has been affecting me in every aspect of my life, but especially so in terms of writing posts on here. I just can't seem to focus. Bear with me while I try and get back down to earth! :)

P.S. The picture above is the view from the place where Mike proposed to me. Isn't it gorgeous?

Monday, November 14, 2011

Take It Inside!


It's around that time of year when running outside at 6 o'clock in the morning isn't as appealing as it was during the summer months (especially now after daylight savings), and working out at the gym becomes most people's only option. The Huffington Post has a great article on ways to spice up your treadmill workout and beat boredom. You can read all about it here.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Have an Auspicious Weekend!


Today, 11.11.11, is said to be one of the most auspicious days in the next hundred years! So, tonight at 11:11 take a moment to think about what you really want in your life. Ask your heart what it wants and manifest it. Gabrielle Bernstein will be live streaming a talk on this topic tonight which I am oh-so-excited about. You can sign up for her live talk on manifesting here and read about manifesting (and what it is) here. Have a wonderful weekend!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

How To Get Flat Abs



The Huffington Post has a great article out today that I think everyone should read about abs. So often my clients ask me about how to get a flat tummy and want to know what is more important: diet or exercise. Well, the answer is that both are very important. Strong, firm, and flat abs are made in the gym (or Pilates studio :) and revealed in the kitchen! That means that just because you do a lot of ab work and work out a lot doesn't necessarily mean you're going to have killer abs. Downing fried food and sugary desserts after a hard workout only sets you back by contributing to your body fat percentage. So, even if you have rock hard abs they won't be visible if covered by a layer of fat. Interested in learning more about abs? Read more about this topic here.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

What Are Meatless Mondays?


Like many Americans, I partake in Meatless Mondays (I am also meatless on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursday and every other day of the week). Though I am a vegetarian and advocate that others eat a plant-based diet, I understand that taking the plunge can be a lot to take on for some people. Partaking in Meatless Mondays is a good place to start. Why would you want to do this? Watch the video below and learn more - it's pretty compelling. Happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

The Harry Potter Workout


Have you heard of the guy who lost 60 pounds by listening to Harry Potter in audiobook format while he ran on the treadmill? RunHundred just recently wrote an article on this and I found it fascinating. Such a good idea, don't you think? Read more about it here.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Hot Naked Yoga


Just when I thought I had heard it all, now comes along a new and very interesting form of exercise: Hot Nude Yoga. Scroll down for a little sampling of what to expect in one of these Hot Nude Yoga classes (warning: some of the pictures are a bit graphic). Definitely not something I would feel comfortable doing, but I'm curious: would any of you ever try it??




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