Category Archives: General Health

How I Stay Motivated


I know I’ve been totally slacking on the blog a little, but I’m graduating college next month and that’s been consuming my life. Luckily, I’m being a loser and staying in tonight, so I have time to write. A lot of you have been asking how I stay motivated, so I figured I’d write a little about that today.

Here are a few ways I keep myself going, and things you might want to do too.

1. Write about your progress. Whether it be in a notebook, in a word document, on a blog, on a Twitter, or even in your phone, write it somewhere. Write about whether it was a good day or a bad day. Write about things you did well, and things you can improve on. Obviously we all make mistakes, but it’s nothing to beat yourself over. Admit that you did something wrong, and move on. You’re allowed to screw up. Try to write every few days, just to keep yourself in check.

2. Besides writing about progress, you should be tracking your calories. And track your fat, protein, carbs, etc. You can download these apps on your phone. Some good apps are My Fitness Pal and The Daily Burn, but there are tons more. I just downloaded My Fitness Pal a few weeks ago and I’m in love. When you track your food intake, don’t lie to yourself about what you ate. It doesn’t do any good. Be honest.

3. Subscribe to healthy living and fitness blogs. Or, use StumbleUpon to browse sights about health and fitness. Read fitness and health magazines. Constantly educate yourself on health and fitness.

4. Join and gym, and go to the classes. Group workouts are a great way to motivate yourself because you’re not just gonna give up in front of 30 people who aren’t giving up. Spend time in the gym. Get to know it. My gym has a lot of benefits because it has classes, trainers, tanning, drinks, and best of all, tons of in shape people. I love spending time there because I feel productive.

5. Don’t restrict yourself all the time. Have some cheat days. Take a day off once in awhile. You deserve it if you’re making progress. But be careful not to reward yourself with food. That is not the answer. But make sure you still enjoy some foods you wouldn’t normally eat once in awhile. Right now I’m eating Junior Mints while typing this. They’re not even that good though, and the sugar is getting to me, but that’s besides the point.

6. Don’t get worked up over how good celebritites and models look. They’re airbrushed and photoshopped, and it’s not realistic to compare yourself to them.

7. Surround yourself with healthy people, and don’t let uhealthy people influence your choices. You are the company you keep, and if the company you keep is constantly stuffing their faces with pasta and a side of chocolate cake, stay away. You don’t need that kind of negativity.

8. Be positive. That is all. And it’s simple.

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My New Love for Almond Milk


I’m not a huge milk drinker, but since I’ve been making smoothies and shakes, I decided I need to incorporate milk into the recipe. Plus, I probably could use some of the vitamins. However, instead of buying regular milk from a cow, I decided this time I would buy almond milk, which is literally made from crushed almonds.

I’ve been drinking it for a few weeks, and I figured now would be a good time to look up and write about the benefits of almond milk, besides the fact that it has fewer calories than regular milk. I chose unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk by Almond Breeze, which only has 40 calories per cup. That’s obviously the first benefit, since most of us are trying to maintain or lose weight.

Another benefit is that this milk doesn’t contain any cholesterol, and it also doesn’t contain a lot of sodium. This is a lot lower than let’s say, 1% milk, which has about 12mg of cholesterol and 100 mg of sodium. Besides being low in cholesterol and sodium, this milk also contains calcium and Vitamin D, which most women do not get enough of.

If you care about your skin and eyes, almond milk has plenty of Vitamin E and A as well. Seriously, who doesn’t care about their skin and eyes? And, it is great for any person with diabetes, has diabetes in the family, or anyone who cares about not consuming too much sugar (I care).

Plus, this milk tastes so good, and it doesn’t contain dairy for anyone who may be lactose intolerant or vegan. (I’m guessing you probably already love almond milk). Today I put Ovaltine in it, which made it even better, and provided me with even more vitamins than the milk alone. So you should totally try almond milk. Put it in shakes, or drink it plain. Either way, you will probably thoroughly enjoy it.

If you want to read more, click this link from Livestrong.com http://www.livestrong.com/article/246903-nutritional-benefits-of-almond-milk/

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Why I Only Drink Water


When I was younger, I was obsessed with the 99 cent cans of Arizona Iced Tea. I mean, who wasn’t? I’d bring them to the beach every day, and I would finish a whole one in about 30 seconds because I was so thirsty from the 9 million degree sun. They were delicious. But now, you can’t even get me to have 2 sips of an Arizona. While they still taste amazing, I can’t get over how much sugar is in one can.
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Before I tell you the amount, you should know that 4 grams of sugar are equal to one teaspoon. So if you put a teaspoon of sugar in your coffee, it is the same as 4 grams, or one sugar packet. So when you put 5 sugar packets in your coffee, it’s equal to 20 grams.

Arizona Lemon Iced tea has 90 calories per serving, and 24 grams of sugar, which is the same as 6 teaspoons. Doesn’t seem too bad, except that there’s actually 3 servings per can, so the whole can is actually 270 calories and 72 grams of sugar, or 18 teaspoons. That’s disgusting. And, I just spent forever even trying to find the servings in one can online. They seem to do a pretty good job of hiding this information.

This obviously isn’t the only drink that contains a ridiculous amount of sugar. A bottle of vitamin water is actually 2.5 servings, and it has 39 grams of sugar, or about 10 teaspons of sugar. Once again, not okay.

Here’s a chart of some other drinks with their sugar content.
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We all know sugar can be bad, unless it’s natural, like in an apple. Drinking beverages with added sugar immediately spikes your blood sugar levels, and after it is sent to the bloodstream, any excess levels of glucose is turned into fat. We don’t need extra fat. Also, once your blood sugar levels fall, you’re back to being hungry and tired again. Over time, you could even develop diabetes. It’s not a good situation. Plus, drinks are for hydrating, not for enjoyment.

If that wasn’t enough, you should remember that sugary drinks are basically just empty calories. They don’t make you full. They might taste good, but if you’re going to waste your time eating all that sugar, you should at least consume something that’s actually filling.

I stick to water most of the time. Sometimes I will drink Diet Coke, Vitamin Water Zero, and tea. Otherwise, I stay away from the sugar. Get your sugar from natural places, like fruits and vegetables. We don’t need sugar from processed soft drinks that have only been around for a short period of time. Why do you think so many Americans are overweight? A lot of it has to do with what they drink.

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Dieting Problems: Knowing about BMI


I’m sure most of you have calculated your BMI at least once in your life, or if not, I hope you’ve at least heard of the letters BMI, which stand for Body Mass Index. You might think BMI measures your percentage of body fat, but it doesn’t. Measuring body fat is a lot more complicated, and often not very accurate. Your BMI has to do with the ratio between your height and weight, and there are healthy and unhealthy BMI numbers.

For an adult, a healthy BMI range is between 18.5 and 24.9. Above 25, and you could be considered overweight. However, if you are an athlete, BMI isn’t always an accurate assessment of your health because the BMI number does not take muscle mass into account.

Your BMI can easily be lowered by the obvious: dieting and exercise. So when all of us complain about the need to be skinny, remember that it’s not just because we want to look good in the mirror. We also want to be healthy, and having a BMI in a normal range contributes to overall health.

You can calculate your BMI by multiplying your weight in pounds by 703, then dividing that number by your height in inches. Or, you can go to the following site if you don’t feel like doing math. I know I don’t.
 WEebMD BMI Calculator

By the way, my BMI is 20.6.

This is just a quick post I figured I’d write because I had to do a class project on my BMI. I’ll be blogging a lot this week, so if article wasn’t entirely useful to you, I promise something else this week will be.

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Sunday Funday Traditions and Monday Regrets


It’s monday, everyone, as I’m sure you all noticed. I love Mondays. I try my best to be a real person on Monday, because there’s usually a strong chance that I screwed up my diet and exercise on Saturday and Sunday. This is something I need to stop. I’m sure many of you can relate when you diet and exercise all week, but it all goes to hell on the weekend. I mean, it’s not our fault that we just have to go out Friday and Saturday night and drink everything in sight, and then stumble home and storm the kitchen in search for anything edible. My Saturdays can be pretty bad, but it’s my Sundays that I really need to work on.

I believe in treating Sunday as a day of rest. I’m not religious, and I don’t go to church, but I still value the 7th day being a day of rest. We work hard all week, and we certainly deserve a day to kick back, lounge in front of the TV all day, and eat some comfort food. But lately, I’ve been taking it too far.

My friends and I are headed in a downward spiral each Sunday, as we keep feeling the need to bake and cook everything imaginable. This is an all day event, and by the end of the day, there’s not a question that we doubled our usual calorie intake. It’s pretty embarrassing. And not only do we eat our hearts out, but we also make a pretty huge mess. It’s the whole nine yards; dishes piled to the top of the sink, counter tops spilling over with food and utensils, and a coffee table that you can’t see an inch of because it’s covered in shame.

Anyway, my point is that we all have problems. None of us can be perfect when it comes to dieting. We need our cheat days, and Sunday will continue to be mine. However, even on our cheat days, we should still be somewhat conscious of what we eat. A Day of Rest isn’t a ticket to a free-for-all from your diet. I put “Monday Regrets” in the title, but I’m honestly not one to regret anything I do. Make mistakes, and learn from them. Maybe next week I’ll give you a play-by-play of my attempt at treating my Day of Rest with a little more respect.

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