Drink to Your Good Health – 6 Drinks for Maximum Health

6 drinks you should start slurping for maximum health.

You know exercise and a healthy diet help you maintain good health. But did you know that you can improve your health by sipping on the right drinks?

Wondering what drinks you should be drinking to live life to the fullest? Wonder no more.

Drink #1: Orange Juice

One of the most readily available drinks on the list, orange juice packs a very powerful punch. How much punch can you get from a glass of OJ? All you need is a single cup of the orange goodness to get your daily allotment of vitamin C. Since this vitamin helps your immunity stay strong and also aids in the fat-burning process, a second glass probably won’t hurt you. Just be sure to go with 100-percent orange juice. Otherwise, you may wind up with added sugars that make it more difficult for you to meet your health goals.

Drink #2: Green Tea

Sometimes, being healthy can be a drag. It requires check-ups at your doctor and dropping your unhealthy habits for new, healthy ones. But sometimes, a good thing can help you enjoy improved health. If you already love green tea, you probably know that it lowers your risk for cavities, cancers, heart disease, and osteoporosis. And if you don’t love green tea, these facts should change your mind!

Drink #3: Milk

Whether you love cow’s milk or soymilk, milk of all sorts is great for your health. By drinking low-fat (one-percent) milk, you get the upper hand against osteoporosis and are able to stay full longer, which means you’ll eat less and be better equipped to lose weight. Prefer soymilk? Your heart disease risk will be reduced, and you can have your soymilk fortified with all sorts of vitamins and minerals. Just be careful, as there is a potential link between excessive soymilk intake and breast cancer.

Drink #4: Coconut Water

Quite possibly the first sports drink to ever exist, coconut water is found inside whole green coconuts and your local grocery store. It’s not full of calories or fat, but it has plenty of potassium, which gives you the energy boost you need during and after a workout. So if you’ve been seeking an alterative to your daily banana, you just found it!

Drink #5: Kefir

It may have an odd name, but this drink is a fantastic way to protect your good health. Full of all the good bacteria you can find in yogurt plus five or six more, kefir is made with fermented cow, sheep, or goat milk. In addition to helping your immune system, kefir helps your digestive system maintain regularity and optimal health.

Drink #6: Cranberry Juice

It may have some bite, but cranberry juice’s benefits far outweigh any bitterness left in your mouth after downing a glass of the rich juice. For years, cranberry juice has been known to ward off urinary tract infections (UTIs). It was so well known that many physicians prescribed cranberry juice to patients with frequent UTIs. However, cranberry juice doesn’t just protect your urinary tract. It’s also been found to protect your gums and teeth from disease. As with orange juice, make sure it’s 100-percent cranberry juice or you’ll wind up with a mouthful of harmful sugars.

Sliding Spinach into Your Diet


How to take the green stuff from the food aisle and into your meals on a regular basis.

If you didn’t grow up eating much spinach, it may be difficult to find ways to toss it in your meals on a regular basis. However, as spinach is rich with vitamins C and A, as well as folate, calcium, iron, and magnesium, adding it to your dishes is a great way to boost your health today and well into the future.

Here are a few tasty and easy ways to make sure your diet is as spinach-centric as possible.

Slide It in Your Salad

This is by far the easiest way to pump spinach into your diet. All you have to do is find some fresh spinach leaves, toss them in a bowl along with your favorite salad additives (think tomatoes, cucumbers, and carrots), finish it off with some healthy dressing, and voila! A delicious spinach-based salad that’ll tickle your taste buds and do your body good.

Want to give your immune system some help? Like having beautiful skin and hair? Then you better start sliding more spinach into your diet!

Slide It in Your Side Dish

All sorts of side dishes could benefit from a splash of spinach. Vegetable soup is an easy target, as is a plate of mixed vegetables. Simply cook the spinach to your liking (or don’t cook it at all!), toss it in your side dish of choice, and take heart knowing you’re doing a little something extra to maintain your good health today!

Slide It into Your Main Course

Now that you know how to slide spinach into your salads and side dishes, you’re ready to go to the next level: inserting salad into your main dish. Since this one takes a little more effort than the others, here is a recipe to get you on your way.

Spinach Lasagna with Sun-Dried Tomato Sauce

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose (plain) flour
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup plain soymilk
  • 1 cup vegetable stock
  • 2 green (spring) onions, including tender green tops, sliced
  • 1/2 cup dry-packed sun-dried tomatoes, soaked in water and then drained and chopped
  • 10 ounces fresh cremini or shiitake mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf (Italian) parsley
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 6 cups baby spinach leaves, chopped
  • 2 cups fat-free ricotta cheese
  • 3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 egg white
  • 12 no-boil spinach lasagna sheets, about 7 by 3 1/2 inches
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil

Directions

In a saucepan, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium-high heat. Whisk in flour and cook for 1–2 minutes, stirring constantly. Add garlic and continue whisking until garlic is fragrant, about 30 seconds. Whisk in soymilk and stock together. Cook and stir until slightly thickened. Remove from heat and stir in the green onions and sun-dried tomatoes. Set sauce aside.

In large nonstick frying pan, heat 1 teaspoon of olive oil over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms and shallot and sauté until lightly browned, about 10 minutes. Stir in parsley and salt. Transfer to a bowl and set aside to cool. In same pan, heat remaining 1 teaspoon olive oil over medium-high heat. Add spinach and stir quickly until the spinach is wilted but still bright green. Remove from heat. Let cool slightly.

In a large bowl, beat together ricotta, 1/2 cup Parmesan, and the egg white. Stir in the spinach and set aside. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees (F). Lightly coat a 9-by-13-inch baking dish with cooking spray. Spread 1/2 cup of the sauce in the dish and cover with 3 sheets of the pasta. Spoon half of the spinach mixture onto the pasta and spread gently. Cover with 3 more pasta sheets. Top with another 1/2 cup of sauce. Spread the mushroom mixture on top and cover with another 1/2 cup of sauce, then another layer of pasta. Spoon in the remaining spinach filling and top with the last 3 pasta sheets. Add the remaining sauce and the remaining Parmesan. Cover loosely with foil and bake for 25 minutes.

Remove foil and bake until golden, about 10 minutes longer. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving. Garnish with basil.

Post-Pregnancy Workouts

Why, when, and how to get moving after giving birth.

You just made it through all 40 weeks of pregnancy. During the past nine months, you’ve felt nauseated at times, emotional at others, and dog tired at yet others. Sometimes, you felt all three at once. But when you welcomed your new bundle of joy into the world, all of the sacrifice and suffering was worth it.

Now, it’s time to get back to life as lady who is not pregnant. That means it’s time to return to your exercise routine! If you have questions about your triumphant return to the gym, read on for answers.

Why

The reasons to exercise after being pregnant are deep and wide. First and foremost on many new mothers’ minds is getting back in pre-pregnancy shape. In order to do this, you’ll have to begin exercising in some shape or fashion. But the perks of post-pregnancy exercising don’t stop with regaining your previous svelte physique.

It’ll also help bring your mind and body to a better place. Being a new parent can be exceptionally stressful. With a little exercise, you can work out your stress and be better able to handle your newfound responsibilities. You’ll also get a big boost of energy and be better able to sleep. Since your new routine involves being awake any time baby is awake, making the most of your sleep time and having the energy you need to care for your baby are essential.

When

Unless your physician says otherwise, you can begin your exercise routine as soon as you feel ready. In the event you go through an uncomplicated pregnancy with no issues during vaginal birth, this may mean you’re able to exercise again a few days after your child is born. On the other hand, if you had complications anywhere along the way or had your child via Caesarean section, you’ll need to wait until your doctor gives you the okay.

When you start, be careful not to overwork your body. Even with the smoothest pregnancies and deliveries, you ought to remember that your body has just been through a bit of trauma. If you feel yourself getting worn down, take a break. You ought to also be particularly careful to avoid dehydration and to seek immediate medical attention if you experience any strange effects after exercising.

How

After pregnancy, you’re free to do just about any exercise you so desire—as long as it’s not too strenuous. However, some exercises are better tolerated than others. One of the easiest ways to ease back into the exercise after birthing a child is walking. Place your baby in the stroller and head off down the street. The first time you go out, plan on going a short distance and turn around. Otherwise, you may find yourself far from home without the energy necessary to make it back.

Other good exercises to try out after having a child include the following:

Kegels: Tighten the muscles needed to stop the flow of your urine. Hold for 5 to 10 seconds and release. Repeat 10 times a few times a day. This may not seem too strenuous, but it helps maintain the integrity of your bladder and vagina, which is particularly important after childbirth.

Bridges: Lie on your back with your knees bent and your back in a neutral, relaxed position. As you tighten your abdominal muscles, raise your hips from the floor until your hips are in a straight line with your knees and shoulders. Hold for 5 to 10 seconds, return to the starting position, and repeat.

Lying Slides: Start flat on your back with your knees bent slightly. Slowly inhale, allowing your right leg to slide flat on the floor in the process. As you exhale, bring your leg back to the starting position, and repeat with your left leg.

29 Simple Ways to Be Fit

Far too often fitness is presented as complicated and confusing.

Nothing could be farther from the truth.

Being fit comes from living the following simple everyday practices:

  1. Throw out your big dinner plates. Using small plates at home effortlessly reduces calorie intake and promotes weight loss.
  2. Make exercise a regular part of your life. Create a network of accountability with workout partners or by working with me, your local fitness expert.
  3. Know what you want to accomplish. Visualize the end result of your hard work.
  4. Believe in you. I know that you CAN accomplish your goals.
  5. Don’t be a wimp. Keep the intensity high during your workouts. Remember that you don’t want to kill time; you want to burn calories and strengthen your body through intense exercise.
  6. Drink water all day long.
  7. Know when to ask for help.
  8. Incorporate High Intensity Interval Training into your routine by doing bursts of high intensity rather than exercising at a single steady pace.
  9. Maintain your metabolism by eating a healthy snack or meal every three hours. This food should be unprocessed, low in fat and high in fiber.
  10. Forget will-power; it’s about WANT-power. How badly do you want it.
  11. Never eat processed foods. These items are high in empty calories and contain a plethora of chemicals that are harmful to your health.
  12. Fat contains twice the caloric density of carbohydrates and protein, so limit the amount of it that you eat. Fill your diet with lean protein and carbohydrates from leafy plants and whole grains.
  13. It’s OK to be a skeptic. Watch out for products that are labeled as ‘health food’. Always read the nutrition labels and make your own informed opinion.
  14. Talk is cheap. Act now and get the job done.
  15. Exercise with people that are in better shape than you. This will encourage you to push your limits.
  16. Never indulge in negative self-talk.
  17. Don’t drink calories.
  18. Pay attention to everything that you eat.
  19. Keep consistent. Exercise at least three or four times each week.
  20. Expect more from yourself.
  21. Never eat High Fructose Corn Syrup. It spikes your blood sugar levels and encourages your body to store fat.
  22. Eat plenty of whole plant foods. Vegetables, fruits and whole grains are filled with fiber and antioxidants, great for good health and weight loss.
  23. Do your cardiovascular exercise after weight training to encourage more fat burn. Your stored sugars will be depleted during the weight training then your body will rely on fat stores to get you through the cardio workout.
  24. Breakfast should be a balance of carbohydrates, protein and fat to get your metabolism going strong.
  25. If you know that you deserve better…then go get it.
  26. Challenge yourself during each workout. Try something new and exciting.
  27. Set specific, measurable goals and track your progress.
  28. Even if they are whole grain, eat carbohydrates sparingly. Carbohydrates are quickly stored as fat.
  29. Put an end to your struggle to get and stay fit. Call or email me today to get started on a proven fitness program that will change your life and body forever.

Print this list and place it somewhere that you’ll see every day.

Get Back on the Wagon!

So you splurged. Now it’s time to move on.

There you were, face to face with temptation. And it was much harder than you imagined. The icing was creamy, the filling rich, the flavors incredibly…flavorful. You caved. With each bite, you thanked the stars for your newfound ability to splurge and swore off your newly made resolution to eat well.

Then the morning came and you regretted your decision. How do you get back on the wagon to good health? By following these steps.

Don’t Mourn

Okay, so you made a mistake. Who hasn’t? Ask anyone who has lived on planet Earth for long and you’ll realize that everyone goofs up. More than likely, the people you idolize and think are picture-perfect have already made a few mistakes today. So stop feeling sorry for yourself and get ready to move on. After all, if you don’t have the right mindset, you’ll never get past this temporary lapse of judgment.

See It Clearly

Look around. Are buildings falling down around you? Did the stock market take a sudden downturn when you bit into that second cookie? No? Well, guess what? Your diet mistake is not going to be the end of the world. It’s a new opportunity to strengthen your resolve and get started on the road to better health once again!

Use It to Grow

Just because your mistake didn’t cause the world to fall apart doesn’t mean you should ignore your mistake and make mistakes a daily habit. Do this and you’ll be on the fast and furious road to unfit and unhealthy. Take a good look at your goof up and try to figure out why you gave in. Forget to munch on a healthy snack before heading to a friend’s house? Just get tired of eating healthy all the time? Figure out why you fell and avoid those pitfalls in the future.

Get Back to Life

When your diet takes a hit, you may think that avoiding food for a day or so will help you overcome your splurge. Think again. Instead of starving your body, fill it with healthy foods when you become hungry. This way you’ll be returning your body and mind to your healthy way of life as soon as possible, which makes it easier to put your past eating mistakes behind you.

Remember the Perks

If you’ve having a hard time returning to the healthy you, it may help to write down your reasons for seeking good health. Doing this can be therapeutic and help you refocus for the future. The purposes for living a healthy lifestyle and eating healthily are many. To get your list started, try these perks: you feel better, have more energy, and are more prepared to take care of your daily to-do list. Keep this list on hand and you’ll be better armed the next time you’re staring temptation in the face.

Prepare for the Next Potential Fall

No matter how hard you may try, you cannot always avoid temptation. So instead of tricking yourself into thinking you can, take time to prepare for the next temptation. What will you do beforehand to avoid tempting foods? What about when the food is right in front of your nose? Knowing how you’ll handle a situation before the situation arises increases your likelihood of success, so start planning today and you’ll avoid falls in the future.

Tell Somebody

Living a healthy lifestyle can often be a lonely business filled with calorie counting and fat avoidance. But you don’t have to do it on your own. Talk with a family member or friend about your goals, how you plan to reach them, and any setbacks you have along the way. Doing this regularly helps you stay the course and reminds you why you decided to get healthy in the first place.

7 Exercises to Build the Ultimate Chest

So you’ve mastered the bench press, eh? Congrats! You have figured out how to approach your pectoral muscles from one point of view. Unfortunately, if you want your pecs to be the best they can be, you can’t be content with a single approach to growing your chest.

To beef up your chest and help it develop more fully, you’ll need a nice variety that takes on your pecs from all sorts of angles. What kind of exercises should you be doing? Try these on for size, and expect more size from your chest soon.

Regular Bench Press

Okay, you’ve got to start somewhere, and if you’ve not done any bench pressing in the past, it’s time to get started. Lying on your back on the bench, grab the barbell a little wider than shoulder width apart. Lift the bar up and slowly lower the bar to your chest. When it reaches your chest, hold for a moment and slowly push the bar back up. After 8-12 repetitions, return the bar to the rack.

Declined Bench Press

Slowly lie down on a declined bench and place your feet under the pad at the top of the bench. Raise the barbell from the rack and hold it overhead. With your arms straight over your body and perpendicular to the floor, slowly lower the bar to your chest. As with the regular bench press, push the bar back up slowly and repeat for 8-12 repetitions.

Strength does not come from winning. Your struggles develop your strengths. When you go through hardships and decide not to surrender, that is strength – Arnold Schwarzenegger

Inclined Bench Press

Lie down on an inclined bench and lift the barbell directly overhead. From this position, slowly lower the bar until it gently touches your chest. Raise the bar back up, careful to maintain control throughout the movement. Repeat 8-12 times and return the bar to the rack.

Dumbbell Fly

Start by lying down on your back on a flat bench. Hold a dumbbell in both hands. Extend your arms toward the ceiling and place your hands near one another, palms facing one another, directly over your chest. Keeping your elbows bent throughout the movement, separate your arms until they are parallel with your chest or below your body. Lift the weights back to the starting position and repeat.

Explosive Push-Ups

Get in push-up position, with your hands more than shoulder-width apart, and a thick book or weight plate beside each hand. Go down. When you push yourself up, do it quickly and move your hands on top of the book or weight plate. Go back down for another push-up. This time, when you push back up, do it quickly and return your hands to your starting position on the floor. Don’t have a good book or weight plates to use? Then clap your hands while in midair and land in your starting position.

Chest Dips

It may not look too exciting, but chest dips are fantastic for your chest. All you need is a dip station and determination. Start by placing your hands on the dip bars and holding all your weight with your arms. Bend your knees to keep from touching the floor with your feet. Then, bend your elbows and lower your body until your upper arms are parallel to the floor, careful to lean forward throughout the repetition. Push back up to the starting position and repeat. For added difficulty, put on a weighted belt and add all the weight you can handle.

Bent Barbell Pullover

Though not primarily designed to work your pectorals, this exercise targets your chest in a unique way. To perform the exercise, lie on a flat bench, holding a barbell with your hands shoulder-width apart. Bend your elbows and lower the barbell behind your head until can feel the stretch in your pecs. Return to the starting position and repeat. For maximum efficiency, keep your elbows bent throughout the motion.

HardCORE Workouts

Want to strengthen your core? You’re going to have to get hardCORE!

In the exercise and fitness world, your core is the beginning of all things. Without a strong core, you will be unable to maintain proper form as you perform other exercises, stay on your feet as you age, or maintain optimal performance on the athletic field. To help your core stay its strongest, mix these exercises into your regular routine.

Ball-Based Reaching Crunch

Start with your back parallel to the floor as it rests on an exercise ball, your feet placed on the floor approximately shoulder-width apart. Straighten your arms and point them straight up toward the ceiling or sky. Raise your torso as you tighten your abdominal muscles as if you were performing a typical crunch or sit-up. Reach for the ceiling in this position for three seconds, return to the starting position, and repeat for 10 repetitions.

One-Legged Deadlift

Place a kettlebell on the ground in front of you and stand upright. When ready to begin, bend at your knees and waist as you pick up the kettlebell with both hands. Return to the upright position. Then, bend at the waist and allow your hands and the kettlebell to go toward the ground, while lifting your left leg behind you. Try to keep your leg and back in a straight line. Once the kettlebell touches the ground, return slowly to the starting position. Repeat 5 times. Swap legs and repeat.

Overhead Squat

Grab a barbell and hold it overhead with your arms straight and your legs spread approximately shoulder-width apart. Bend at the hips, squatting back and down. Once the tops of your thighs are parallel to the floor, return to the starting position by pushing up with your hips. Repeat 10-15 times. Rest and repeat. And in case you think you can perform this without having a stable core, try it and you’ll wind up on your backside before you get to the second repetition.

Russian Twist

Sit on a declined bench and place your feet under the supplied pads at the top of the bench. Lean back until your thighs and torso are at a 90-degree angle to one another. Next, put your hands together and reach out your arms straight in front of you, allowing a semi-circle shape to form between your arms. With your arms forming a 90-degree angle with your torso, move your body as far to the right as possible and then to the left. Move quickly, but do not get sloppy. Perform this as long as possible, with the goal of continuous movement for a minute.

Side Bridges

Put your feet and legs together as you lie on your right side. Place your right arm under your body and lift your upper body so that your right elbow is directly under your shoulder. Your left hand should be resting on your left hip. From this position, slowly raise your hips from the ground until a straight line is formed from your ankles to your shoulders. Hold the position for a moment, slowly return to the starting position, and repeat. Change sides and repeat for 3 sets of 10 repetitions.

Superman

Lying facedown with your legs straight behind you and your arms straight overhead, place a pillow under your hips. Tighten your abdominal muscles as you lift your left arm straight up. Hold the position for three seconds and repeat with your right arm. Next, lift your left leg for three seconds, and repeat for your right leg.

Your Health by the Numbers

The most important numbers you should know regarding your health.

Want to be in the best health of your life? You’ll have to keep an eye on some key numbers. But with so many numbers to keep track of, you may be wondering which ones to really pay attention to. If you’re in fairly good health, you should know and monitor the following few easy-to-track numbers.

Weight and Height

Your body-mass index (BMI) may not be the most accurate determination of your overall health, but it does provide a good indication of whether or not you’re overweight. To figure out your BMI using pounds and inches, divide your weight in pounds by your height in inches squared. Multiply this answer by 703. For a BMI based on kilograms and meters, divide your weight in kilograms by your height squared. Healthy adults should have BMIs between 18.5 and 24.9. A higher BMI indicates you may be overweight or obese, and a lower BMI means you may be underweight.

Cholesterol

Despite having a perfect BMI, your body may not be the well-oiled health machine it could be. If your cholesterol is out of control, your body—even if it’s thin—may be quietly putting you in harm’s way. Unfortunately, you can’t figure out your cholesterol levels with a mathematical formula. It requires a trip to your physician. Ideally, your total cholesterol is no higher than 199 mg/dL, your low-density lipoprotein (bad) cholesterol shouldn’t exceed 130 mg/dL (70 mg/dL if you’re at high risk for heart disease), and your high-density lipoprotein (good) cholesterol should stay at 45 mg/dL or higher.

Blood Pressure

Equally as important to your health is the force with which blood presses against your blood vessels, which is measured as blood pressure. To find out your blood pressure, drop by a pharmacy. Most of them now offer free blood pressure screenings, and many allow you to perform the quick test yourself. For your blood pressure to be considered healthy, your blood pressure should be 120/80 mmHg or less. The top number, called your systolic blood pressure, indicates the pressure on your arteries during each heartbeat. The lower number, your diastolic blood pressure, is the pressure on your arteries as your heart rests. If either the top or bottom number gets any higher than 120/80, you’re at risk for high blood pressure, one of the leading risk factors for heart disease and stroke.

Target Heart Rate

To lower your blood pressure and cholesterol and get other great benefits from exercise, you’ll need to know how hard to work your heart. In order to do this, subtract your age in years from 220. This number is your maximum heart rate, the highest number of beats you can likely achieve in one minute of strenuous exercise. Take this number and multiply it by .75 and you’ll have your target heart rate. Once you have this number, get to the gym and start exercising. Take your pulse in the middle of your routine. If your heart is going slower than your target heart rate, push it a little harder. Heart going faster than your target? You may need to slow down a bit. If you have other health issues, consult an exercise professional or physician to determine your target heart rate.

Blood Sugar

When it comes to blood sugar (glucose), you’ve got to hit the target. Have blood pressure that’s too high and it could spell trouble. Have blood pressure that’s too low and you’re on the same dangerous path. A normal range for your blood sugar if you’ve not eaten recently is between 70 and 100 mg/dL. If you recently ate, expect it to spike as high as 140 mg/dL, but no higher. In the event your blood sugar is out of these boundaries, you may have diabetes. If your blood sugar is on either edge of the scale, take steps to improve your blood glucose levels and your health.

13 Reasons to Exercise

Let’s face it, some days you just don’t feel like exercising.

You get too busy, too stressed and quite simply too tired.

Here’s a list of 13 of the top reasons to exercise. Pull out this list and read it when you’re having one of those days.

1. To Prevent Disease
Exercise has been proven to reduce the risk of just about every single health problem known to man, from stroke to heart disease to cancer and osteoporosis. Exercise is also a great defense against type 2 diabetes, which is one of the most widely growing diseases of our time.

2. To Look Great
Exercise firms your body, improves posture and even makes your skin glow. Looking your best is a wonderful result of regular exercise.

3. To Lose Weight and Keep It Off
Exercise burns fat and prevents future fat storage. If you want to have a thinner, healthier body, exercise is the answer.

4. To Have More Energy

Anyone who exercises regularly will tell you that they are more energetic, less easily irritated and are more peaceful.

5. To Sleep Better
Exercise boosts energy levels, but also wears you out. It makes you feel more vibrant during the day and sleep better at night.

6. To Age Slower

Exercise is one of the most effective ways to fight aging. When you age your body loses muscle and bone, while the loss of both are drastically reduced with regular exercise. Exercise also helps reduce inflammation.

7. To Relieve Back Pain

In most cases, the best thing that you can do for back pain is to move and strengthen those muscles. Consult your physician or physical therapist for guidance.

8. To Ease Depression
Exercise has been proven to reduce depression – sometimes even as effectively as medication. Just chalk this up as yet another amazing benefit to exercise.

9. To Reduce Aches and Pains
By strengthening muscles around your damaged joints you’re able to use exercise to reduce joint pain and overall aches. Always consult your physician before starting an exercise program, especially if you have chronic joint pain.

10. To Stay Mentally Sharp

Exercise has been shown to improve memory and other cognitive functions, and seems to have a protective effect against dementia. A Harvard University researcher called exercise “Miracle-Gro for the brain.”

11. To Enjoy Your Lifestyle
Whatever it is that you love in life – your kids, travel, sports, fashion – it is all more enjoyable when experienced in a fit and healthy body. Exercise so that you are able to enjoy all the great things in life.

12. To Reduce Sick Days

People who exercise regularly are 50% less likely to call in sick to work. A regular exercise program reduces colds and upper respiratory infections.

13. To Boost Confidence
Being fit, feeling healthy and having energy are all building blocks to having great confidence. There is no better confidence booster than sticking with a regular exercise program.

Regular exercise gives you so many amazing benefits, as you’ve seen from the above list. Sign up for Maplewood Boot Camp today to get started on the exercise program that will change your life forever.

Healthy Recipe – Cranberry Quinoa Mini Muffins

Here is a muffin that is truly packed with fiber. Whole wheat flour and wholesome cooked quinoa combine with almonds and cranberries for a moist and delicious treat. Cooked quinoa can be used in place of some of the flour in almost any recipe to increase protein and fiber.
Servings: 36

Here’s what you need:

  • 1 cup unsweetened rice milk
  • 1 Tablespoon ground flaxseeds
  • 1/4 cup safflower oil
  • 1/3 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
  • zest from 1 small lemon
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup ground almonds
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1 1/4 cups cooked quinoa
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped dried cranberries
  • 1/4 cup organic turbinado raw cane sugar
  1. Preheat oven to 370 degrees F. Place 12 muffins liners in muffin pan and set aside.
  2. In a medium sized bowl combine the rice milk, flaxseed, oil, maple syrup, vanilla, almond and lemon zest.
  3. In a separate bowl combine the flour, ground almond, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and cardamom. Mix the dry ingredients with the wet ones and fold in the cooked quinoa and chopped cranberries.
  4. Use an ice cream scooper to fill each muffin liner 3/4 full. Sprinkle the turbinado raw cane sugar on top of each muffin. Bake for 30 minutes or until golden.

Nutritional Analysis: One serving equals: 55 calories, 2.5g fat, 8g carbohydrate, 1g fiber, and 1g protein.