Say Goodbye to the Gym!
You know…the place you never go in the winter because going outside in the cold when you’re sweaty (or freshly showered) SUCKS, but you still pay hard earned money on a monthly basis! I was a member at a gym for a year and I went on a pretty regular basis. I just hated waiting for the machines, it cut into my free time at home, and most of all…I fear ringworm no matter how clean a place is. Gyms just freak me out and feel gross… Bleck!!! Also, I hate paying cold hard cash to feel like I’m going to get cauliflower ear. SO, to stay in shape I turned to smartphone apps, a yoga mat, a FitBit, and a rebounder. In the summer, I take walks around my neighborhood or down the Prairie Path and when I get home I do about 10 minutes of yoga for runners on a Yoga Studio app by Gaiam.
I’ve written about this app before…I still use it and love it! There are so many classes to choose from you can’t get bored and they all target different areas. If you don’t have or can’t afford a Fitbit (mine was a gift, so I lucked out) there are all kinds of free or $0.99 pedometer apps to choose from. It’s good to get over 10,000 steps a day as a general rule and it’s not that hard once you get used to it.
When it started getting cold, I decided to purchase a rebounder (mini trampoline) for $30 on Amazon. It’s probably the best piece of workout equipment I have ever bought. It works out every muscle in your body AND boosts your immune system. You can do anything from cardio to arm and ab workouts on this thing and you can find different types to fit your weight, height, and coordination level. I found a few YouTube videos I like to work out with and once you learn some moves you can make up your own routines in a designated amount of time. My favorite videos are by Arnita Champion at BeaChamp Fitness. She’s awesome! Start out with a 10 or 15 minute beginner workout and work your way up from there. I now save $40 a month NOT going to the gym and am seeing WAY better results.
Be a Green Goddess
Eating healthy is just as important as exercise is like Love and Marriage according to Frank Sinatra…you can’t have one without the other. You see the best results from exercise when you eat right and vice versa. Fresh produce is full of vitamins and minerals your body needs to stay healthy. If you have a hard time eating your allotted amounts of fruits and veggies, good news….You can throw them all in a blender and drink them quickly so you don’t even know what hit you. I throw mine in a sealed cup with a straw so I can’t tell what I’m drinking. I’ve added a veggie and fruit smoothie or 2 a day to my diet since January 1st and I’ve really felt the difference. There are plenty of recipes on Pinterest, but I just stick to this:
- 1 cup of cold filtered water
- 1 cup spinach
- 2 romaine leaves
- 1/2 of a banana
- Juice from ½ a lemon
- 1/2 a cup blueberries
- 2 TBS ground flax seeds
- 1/2inch round of fresh ginger
(Sometimes I’ll throw in some carrot slices - it's really up to you as long as you have more veggies than fruit in there)
Blend the water, spinach, romaine, flaxseed, and ginger together on medium or high. Once smooth, add the rest of the ingredients and blend on low to medium. Drink half immediately and save the other half in an airtight container for later in the day or tomorrow morning, but don’t keep it longer than 24 hours.
Quiet Your Mind
Probably my biggest problem is stress management. I tend to get anxious and angry about things I have no control over which causes me to get less sleep and that ends up wearing down my immune system. As a result, I get sick and lethargic throughout my day causing more stress and anxiety…. It’s a vicious cycle and (fortunately) I’ve found a good way to manage it. I recently read a book by Natalie MacNeil called She Takes on the World (SO good by the way…I highly recommend this book to any woman who is trying to start her own business). In the book she talks about meditation and mental focus. I’ve never been great at meditation because my brain always feels like someone has hit the “Scan” button on a radio and I have a really hard time sitting still. Plus, I just wasn’t really convinced that it was going to help me. However, I figured it was worth a try, since I have a problem with anxiety and mental focus…and it was annoying the crap out of me. Couldn’t hurt, right?
So, I did some research and downloaded Meditation Studio by Gaiam (the same people who made the yoga app I love so much). There are different courses (Meditation Essentials, Uncovering Happiness, and Changing Habits), Collections (different meditations focused on various “ailments” like anxiety, self-doubt, pain, etc…) and teachers to choose from. I’ve actually had great luck with this app and (like yoga does with your body) meditation trains your brain to better deal with unpleasant or annoying situations which results in less stress and anxiety. Like anything else, it takes some practice, but once you get in the habit of focusing it gets easier and you will definitely reap the benefits.
Get Your Beauty Sleep!
Getting enough sleep should be a top priority for everyone. Sleep deprivation causes so many issues health-wise both mentally and physically. Not getting enough sleep has been linked to heart disease, obesity, high blood pressure, and diabetes and it obviously makes you groggy and less focused throughout the day. Over the past few weeks, I’ve been trying to get more sleep mostly because my immune system sucks and I’m tired of feeling tired. It’s NOT easy for me to go to bed before 11pm in general. I’m a night owl. I hate getting up in the morning and I love going out at night no matter what day it is…Which does not work out for me when I have to be at the office by 8am the next day. It ends up catching up with me and making me sick (which is what happened to me last week). SO, I’ve slowly been getting myself into bed a little earlier over the past week and I’ve been waking up a little earlier each day.
Waking up is not my strong suit, either. I love to stay in bed and I get annoyed with my alarm when it goes off in the morning. It was really getting on my nerves, so (again) I did some research and found out that waking up is all about timing. You should wake up when you are at your lightest stage of the sleep cycle. So, I found yet another app called Sleep Cycle. It’s an alarm clock that tracks your sleep patterns and wakes you up during light sleep. Waking up during light sleep feels like waking up naturally rested without an alarm clock. I LOVE this thing. LOVE it. I wake up less irritated and I have more time to get ready in the morning so I don’t feel rushed. The free version works just fine for me and it’s available for iPhone AND android phones.
Want more "Pinup Style on a Shoestring?" Check out Part 1: Makeup here, and Part 2: Pampering here!
Until next time!
~Steph @ Calamity Layne