Showing posts from January, 2013

Sleep to Perform

It's a well-known fact that quality sleep is important, and it's also all too well known that it can be hard to come by.  FitFluential knows that quality SLEEP is one of the cornerstones of a healthy life; it affects everything we do for the remainder of our day!  But how many of us actually get a good night's sleep, every night?  Busy schedules, psychological stress, physical discomfort, and blue-light technologies all get in the way of a deep, quality sleep.

So what can we do to remedy the problem?  We can try setting a strict bedtime, eating nutritiously, enjoying 15 minutes of sunlight during the day, orshutting down electronics... but there's only so much we can do if our body is not comfortable.

When I wake up in the night to shift positions, or suffer through my morning with noticeable neck pain, I know something's not right.  Unfortunately, these are were common occurrences for me, and such disrupted sleep patterns left me tired, cranky, and in pain.


Learn about Sugar and Setbacks: 21 DSD Reflection

Just23 days ago, I began the 21 Day Sugar Detox.  It's something I'd wanted to do for a long time now, and the new year seemed like the perfect time.  Well, it wasn't perfect, because I knew that I had a trip on January 19, during which I would not want to restrict myself, but I figured a 19-Day Sugar Detox was better than nothing. It would be a good chance to dabble in it and see how it went!

And now, my first go-round is complete :)

Here, I'll give you a small background on it (but go to the website for all the details!), a glimpse at some of my eats during the 3 weeks, and a set of lessons learned about myself and my food--thanks to the detox program.

A bit of background: 
The 21 Day Sugar Detox is not intended to be a permanent lifestyle.  It is a nutrition-based program for anyone who experiences sugar or carb cravings, energy spikes and dips, brain fog, lethargy, and other undesirable symptoms of an unhealthy, unnatural diet.  It's carefully designed by Diane…

Prepare Weeknight Paleo

January Paleo is going well!  Or, well, was going well.  First, let me say that it's amazinggg how much more energized and slimmer I feel after just a week, or a few days, even, of paleo, sugar-free eating.  My digestion stopped bothering me and my hand eczema began clearing up again, very quickly.  Awesome.  My second week was toughest,as predicted, both just because it was week 2 and because it was a particularly stressful workweek.  Thus, I had a few setbacks and noticed the negative effects immediately, but I'm back and finishing out my month.

Eleven months into my experience with paleo nutrition, I've learned a lot...

Planning and preparation are KEY.  If you say, "I'm going to eat the paleo way" and then just wander out into the world, you will almost certainly struggle and fail. That's just the way it is. I found great success by preparing my week's meals in advance on Sunday.  It greatly helps with enforcing any dietary goals.  We don't li…

Know the Difference: Setback vs. Failure

My 21-Day Sugar Detox: Two weeks down, one to go!  

Since I started on January 1, I confess that I've ever-so-slightly fluctuated in my adherence.  Week 1 was outstanding.  It was fresh and new and I was turning down sugar-laden food and drink like it was nothing. Then, Week 2 caught me with... not even caving to suggestion but simply giving in to my own temptations, my own crankiness and whims, maybe simply because I could.  I made a couple choices that I am not happy about, but they taught me about myself, and now I continue on.

Each morning, I receive an email from Diane Sanfilippo, creator of the 21-Day Sugar Detox, in which she offers some words of motivation and some tips for simplifying the task. This week, one email contained some words that really spoke to me:

Yep, that's exactly what I needed to hear.  A setback means I slipped up, lost focus, got lazy, and made an undesirable choice.  It was not me "giving up," and it may not have furthered my goal, but a …

Cook with a New Food: Artichokes

Time to try out another new food!

I must admit that I already knew I liked to eat artichoke hearts. However, tossing the jarred hearts into a salad and cutting the heart out of a fresh artichoke... those are two very different things.  So today, I tried cooking artichoke hearts, from the raw.

There's a recipe in Make It Paleo that looks delish, so I went and bought some baby artichokes to give it a try.

Aren't they cute?  Or they were, until...

OUCH. Immediate fail. NOT cute!  Who knew that artichoke leaves were so pointy?!?

Some cold water and a bandaid later, I went about cutting the leaves off and chopping out the heart. I honestly have no idea if I did this correctly.  Learning by doing!

I boiled them first to soften, and then sliced and pan-seared them according to the Primal Palate recipe.

Cut up up and added some coconut oil...

Et voila!

Paired them with a little dip that I whipped up. Couldn't even really tell you what's in it (coconut milk? dijon mustard? oil? …

Friday Features

All workweeks should be 3 days! Who agrees?

A new year, and some new interesting articles to share with you!

Looking back on 2012 and beyond 2013, Mark Bittman offers thiscomprehensive overview of health-related current events, news, and trends in The New York Times Online.

Water, Coconut Water, or Sports Drink -- Which is best for you? Brad Gouthro helps you choose.
Mark Sisson asks if you're eating these important supplemental foods.  I've got about a third in my diet... dare me to try the rest?

Whether you're making this common interval training mistake or simply want to take your workout to the next level, Dr. Ray Hinish has the trick to get the most burn out of your high-intensity interval training.
Looking for some new recipes?  Jenn has you covered, with colorful recipes, from A to Z!

Or, check out Balanced Bites if you're interested specifically in15 egg-Free Breakfast Ideas.
More news on negative effects of fructose (which is in SO MANY PROCESSED FOODS) via Gre…

Set January Goals

Happy New Year!  My 2013 resolution involves having a different focus each month, and that begins with....

January: New Year Nutrition.

Really, before I tackle any other goals and focuses, I need to feel good, first, right?  That's why 2013 will start with the inside, which, of course, starts with food.

Step 1: Return to Paleo

I've gushed about the paleo lifestyle before, and I've shared my personal experience going paleo to "mostly paleo," and yet, in spite of my conviction that it is incredibly healthy and yields undeniable positive results, I've fallen off the wagon.

This fall, I got busy, and tired, and just sort of consciously gave concessions for a while, going beyond just 80/20 or "flexible."  In that craziness, I also came to rely on sugar for energy.  My poison of choice?  Chocolate-covered almonds, cashews, and blueberries. It was a temporary sweetness, that soon left me feeling foggy-headed.

Just as I discovered last spring, the food I eat …