Health

Breakfast Hacks for Anti-Morning People

Personal confession: I am not a morning person. Waking up is too hard and I 100% agree with Zooey Deschanel‘s thoughts on the subject:

Source: @ZooeyDeschanel on Twitter

Source: @ZooeyDeschanel on Twitter

But I have to admit, there is one good thing about mornings: breakfast! I mean, really, who doesn’t love breakfast food? No one, that’s who.

It’s a bit of a conundrum for us non-morning people though. On the one hand, breakfast is awesome: it’s the most important meal of the day, it gets your body off to a good start, and all breakfast food tastes amazing (bacon, anyone?). But on the other hand, making breakfast takes time. Time we’d rather spend savoring every last second of sweet, glorious sleep. So we have to choose: do we squeeze in a few more luxurious zzzz’s, or do we drag ourselves out of bed early to make a healthy breakfast? It’s a tough decision. And I don’t like making decisions in the morning!!!

Thankfully, I’ve discovered some breakfast hacks that offer the best of both worlds. With just a little prep on a Sunday evening or the night before an early start, I can make a healthy morning meal in seriously no time at all. Check out these two anti-morning-person-approved breakfast ideas: (more…)

Dreams Come True (When You Work For It)

On Instagram @aimeekinz

On Instagram @aimeekinz

When I first started this blog, I did it with the intention of  documenting my progress as I fulfilled one of my dreams to become a certified personal trainer. Three weeks ago, after nearly two years of juggling work and study, I finally did it!

If you follow me on social media, you may have seen my post on Instagram and Facebook:

For a long time I thought that I could never know enough, that this was a dream for someone else and it wasn’t worth pursuing. Then one day, with the support of so many wonderful people, I realized “why NOT me?”. After a lot of hard work, I am so proud and beyond excited that I achieved a dream today and can now officially call myself a Certified Personal Trainer! No matter how insignificant your dreams may seem, go after them! #motivation #nasm #lovemyfitlife

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Our Bodies = Freaking Awesome

On my quest to become a certified personal trainer, I’m constantly amazed by some of the things I learn about how the human body functions. So many reactions occur in order to produce even the simplest movement and sustain our health and vitality. Our bodies do these things without our awareness or effort, and it’s simply awe-inspiring to learn about these amazing vessels that we command without even a thought. It’s impossible not to come away with an immeasurable sense of gratitude and appreciation for what our bodies are capable of, and a renewed desire to take care of them as best as possible. (more…)

The Post-Holiday Anti-Guilt Trip: Putting Health & Fitness Back into Your Routine

First day back to the grind after a two-week vacation for the holidays. Two amazing weeks full of holiday parties, festive dinners, fancy cocktails, sleeping in, and the obligatory Netflix binge (#FriendsOnNetflix, anyone?).

During the holiday break, I had one goal in mind: RELAX! Occasionally, amid the hazy blur of movies and naps and indulgent deliciousness, a voice in the back of my mind would creep up and tell me to “get up!” and “do something productive!” But I kept the goal in mind. Sometimes, a break from the constant routine and the standards of normal daily life is exactly what you need to recharge your batteries, satisfy your guilty pleasures, and refresh yourself to begin anew with a reaffirmed sense of motivation and purpose. So if you overdid it over the holidays, accomplished nothing, ate and drank way too much, and barely moved enough to register 1 progress dot on the brand new fitbit you got for Christmas, then good for you! I hope you thoroughly enjoyed it  and that it was everything you ever dreamed it would be. Don’t waste one minute feeling guilty for those two weeks. However you indulged was just what you needed. Think of it as two weeks of feeding your soul and rejuvenating your spirit. And now, your rejuvenated spirit is in tip-top shape, ready to look ahead and get back into it.

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5 Reasons to Love Plank

5 Reasons to Love Plank

Core strength is so important to general fitness. It’s not all about six-pack abs; a strong core is the foundation for nearly every physical activity. It gives you better posture, relieves back pain, improves balance, and can even help you breathe better. There are a lot of exercises that target your core stabilizer muscles to strengthen your core, and plank is an excellent option. If you’re looking for a rock-hard middle, check out these 5 reasons to love plank:

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Fitting in Fitness – Making YOU a Priority

When I started blogging, I did it with the intention of posting at least once a week. It seemed a totally realistic goal. It’s only a few hours out of my week doing something that I enjoy.We all start with good intentions, but, as with so many other things in life, things often get in the way. Work stress, commitments to friends and family, chores and errands, sleep (remember sleep? That thing you’re supposed to spend 8 hours doing every night?). commuting, and everything else that makes up our days end up consuming so much of our time that we tend to push back other things that are important to us and make us happy. My blog has been my pushed-aside priority for the past few weeks. Raise your hand if fitness has been yours.

When we’re stressed out and busy, exercising and eating well is usually one of the first things on our list of priorities to fall by the wayside. Who has time to dedicate to fitness when you’ve running around all day, taking care of things at work, shuffling kids around, making dinner, returning phone calls, etc? Life has gotten so fast-paced, and it’s easy to get caught up in the hustle. But how can you expect to give your very best to everything else in your life when you give yourself nothing? The best output requires good input, and the best input you can give yourself is health – eating well, working your body, and getting enough rest. (Remember, it’s easier than you might think).

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Be Grateful for the Journey

Finally recovered from my mid-summer cold and have been pumped to be back in the gym! My first few days back, I experienced what most people who take some time off from working out discover when they try to get back into their normal routines – progress can be lost surprisingly quickly! When you’re mentally prepared to kick ass during your workout after being confined to your bed for a week, it can be so discouraging to reach failure with fewer reps and less weight than you’re used to, or have to stop halfway through a cardio routine that you normally breeze through. You think about how long it took you to get to that level of fitness before your workout hiatus, and worry that it will take just as long (or maybe even longer!) to get to that point again. That can be enough to make some people give up, take another week off, turn to comfort food or some other vice to soothe their disappointment and anxiety. Luckily, those who stick it out and focus on their exercise and nutrition come to find that you can actually gain it back pretty fast if you’re consistent, you push yourself, and you don’t give up!

Exercise is both a physical and mental activity. Quite often, your brain gives up long before your body does. When your body is recovering and rebuilding its strength, don’t let your brain psych you out. You may not be at the level you want to be yet, but every minute you spend working toward your goal is a minute well spent. Don’t let yourself be discouraged by what lies ahead or behind – instead pay attention to the moment you’re in. Focus on the task, the set, the road, the day in front of you, and do your very best in that moment. (more…)

Staying On Track When You Can’t Work Out

This week I got hit with a nasty summer cold (aren’t those the worst?!). Sitting around doing nothing while I’m laying sick in bed makes me incredibly restless. I can’t go to work, I can’t work out, I barely have enough energy to drag myself to the kitchen and make a cup of tea. During times like this when I’m out of commission, whether it’s due to an illness or an injury, it’s hard to stay in a good headspace about maintaining my fitness. I feel guilty that I haven’t been to the gym all week and when I’ve been able to eat, it hasn’t always been the complete, well-balanced meals that I’m used to. Other people I know have felt this way while they were recovering from an injury (knee injuries, shoulder injuries, back injuries – they can keep you out of commission for several weeks!). So what can you do to stay on track when your body needs a break? Here are some suggestions: (more…)