This post was sponsored by Zappos. As an exercise fanatic, I am always on the hunt for comfortable workout gear that allows me to have the best training sessions possible. I teamed up with Zappos.com to try out the latest Brooks collection, and it does not disappoint! When it comes to gym shorts, I often find many on the market are too wide, long or baggy. I like to wear active clothes that not only feel good, but also look good. Who says you can’t be stylish when going to the gym? These Brooks Cascadia (7 inch) shorts have a more tailored fit and a built in liner for extra support during your workouts. The fabric is designed to keep you cool and comfortable and is even wind resistant, which is great for outdoor training days.I don’t like wearing t-shirts to the gym – they’re usually restricting. But what I like about the Brooks Fremont shirt is that it has underarm paneling that allows for more freedom of movement. You don’t feel like the shirt is clinging to your body when you’re running or lifting. In fact, you barely feel any fabric rubbing up against you at all. The fabric is also made of the same DriLayer® fabric used in the shorts. Like the shorts, the shirt is made to accentuate your build without constricting your body movement.When I saw these sneakers, I fell in love. The denim-like futuristic design of these athletic shoes is unique. I’ve truly never seen shoes like them. The sneakers are lightweight and flexible, perfect for running or any active workout. The sneakers stretch and adjust to your feet, which is good for assisting in proper alignment and form. They also aren’t clunky like other sneakers that can get in the way of the exercise. Sneakers should be supporting the work your body is doing and these do exactly that.This was my first experience shopping on Zappos.com and it was nothing but smooth. They’re pretty much guaranteed to have what you like – infinite brands with solid products. The site provides a quick and convenient shopping experience with reviews for each product – love it!
I try to squeeze in a heavy weight-lifting workout daily, alternating different muscle groups between the upper and lower body during each gym session. It’s easy to forget to incorporate stretching into your workout when you have limited time, but this year I am challenging myself to make more of an effort to make this a part of my weekly routine. Whether it's taking a yoga class or pulling up a program on YouTube, stretching is essential for preventing injury, keeping your muscles flexible, extending your range of motion and even increasing the nutrients to your muscles.How many of you sit at a computer all day? Researchers at the Harvard Medical School found that extended sitting is detrimental to your health, so much so that many people have switched to a standing desk to protect their posture by stretching out their body throughout the day. Stretching maintains better alignment for the spine and prevents aches and pains, which lead to a hunched posture. Plus, the tighter you are, the more likely your muscles are to cramp, causing knots throughout your body which can lead to serious pain. Who wants that?! Stretching also enables you to exercise harder so that you maximize the time you’re in the gym. You will develop a greater range of motion that’ll let you target and isolate muscle groups much more during a workout. Even more, stretching relaxes your mind and is a great way to release stress. The toxicity that comes with stress is harmful to everyone’s health, so the more we can lower our stress levels, the better our overall health will be. I hope you will join me on my goal to stretch more this year and allow yourself to reap the benefits of something you can easily do anytime, anywhere.
Since I try to eliminate all flour from my diet, I have to get creative in the kitchen in baking traditional staples. Studies have shown that removing flour from your diet will boost your metabolism and decrease inflammation in your body. There also appears to be a correlation between refined foods (like flour) and diseases. Scientists are still working on studying this, but I am not willing to take any chances. That’s why I’m turning to flour-free recipes for some of my favorite cravings (because why not have a little fun while eating right?!)
Because chocolate chip cookies usually contain loads of flour, butter, and added sugar, I wanted to create something to get rid of all three of those ingredients, but still maintain the flavor and texture of a traditional cookie. These cookies are a lighter, healthier and guilt-free way of satisfying your next chocolate craving. Plus, they take less than 20 minutes to make! Check out the recipe below that I shared with my friends over at Sunwarrior! Ingredients: · 1 cup almond butter · 1/4 cup organic maple syrup · 1 egg · 1/2 teaspoon baking soda · 1/2 teaspoon organic vanilla extract · 1/2 teaspoon sea salt · 1/4 cup vegan chocolate chips
Directions: · Preheat the oven to 350 degrees · Line a baking sheet with parchment paper · Whisk together the almond butter, agave, egg, baking soda, vanilla extract, and sea salt until a smooth batter forms. · Fold in the chocolate chips evenly through the batter. · Drop 1.5 TBSP of batter per cookie onto the parchment paper, spaced out 1.25 inches apart. · Bake for 10- 12 minutes. If you want them a little crispier, leave them in a little longer, but watch them. This recipe makes 12 cookies and they should come out with slightly browned bottoms. Let the cookies cool for 15 minutes before enjoying! By substituting traditional ingredients for healthier alternatives, you can enjoy your favorite snacks while feeling great in the New Year!
I am a huge advocate for eating a mostly plant-based diet and limiting your daily intake of processed foods and meats. When it comes to protein powder, I ditched the whey in 2012 and switched to a plant substitute from a brand I truly love: Sunwarrior. I am excited to announce that I am their newest ambassador! Many people ask me why I made the switch to plant protein. Science shows that many of the major whey protein powders are laced with excessive amounts of heavy metals and detergents. This is clearly toxic to your body, exposing you to higher risks of cancer, heart disease, and even blood disorders. Studies continue to show that the cells in your body intended to block cancer are at a dangerously high risk of being damaged from carcinogenic metals when consuming whey protein powder. Whey can also be very hard for the body to break down and digest. After milk is curdled and strained, the liquid left behind is what makes whey protein. Many people are sensitive to this, feeling bloated or having abdominal pain. Whey is also said to be acid-forming which, over time, can weaken your bone density and lead to osteoporosis.
I don’t want to risk putting dangerous ingredients in my body. While protein is an essential part of one’s diet, and imperative for muscle recovery, there are healthier ways to get your daily intake. Plant protein is easily digestible, rich in antioxidants and vitamins, and better for your overall health. Plus: most plant-based proteins are less processed. It’s quite simple: less processed = more nutrients. I love Sunwarrior because it is vegan, gluten-free, non-GMO, has no added sugars, and is soy-free (which for guys especially, it is good to limit the amount of soy consumed). One scoop has 16 grams of protein so you can add more or less depending on how much you are trying to take per day. It’s not hard to make simple adjustments to your diet -- getting you closer to natural ingredients that will leave you feeling healthier, energized and your absolute best!
Protein Bars. So many options, so many mysterious ingredients.
Flip over the back of the next protein bar you’re about to eat. Are you able to identify every single ingredient listed? Probably not, because most of the ingredients listed sound more like a scientific table of elements.
That’s why I eat protein bars that are all-natural and vegan. Go Macro makes a peanut butter protein replenishment bar with 12 grams of protein that I eat every day as a mid-afternoon snack. It is an explosion of flavor and will keep you full throughout the day until your next meal. Their newest line of bars, Thrive, have also quickly become a favorite of mine. The chocolate, nuts and sea salt bar is both sweet and savory, containing plant based protein and a variety of super foods to keep you fueled throughout the day.
The products from Go Macro are easily digestible unlike many other bars that weigh heavily on your stomach. I always encourage my community to eat as clean as possible. If you are putting in the hard work at the gym, you also want to compliment the workouts with a healthy, clean diet to receive the full benefits of staying fit. I like to say that your body is your temple, don’t pollute it with foreign, processed ingredients.