Monday, March 27, 2017

6 exercise Instagram accounts to follow in 2017

More and more people nowadays are making their health one of their top priorities. There’s already too much stress that is added to people on a daily basis, so making sure that they live a healthy lifestyle has become the norm for many.

The good news is that there are so many helpful tips and information available to anyone with the access to the worldwide web. In fact, just having a social media account can bring you access to this advice. One of the most popular social media platform, Instagram, boasts of many accounts dedicated to making users live well.

If you have decided to begin your own fitness journey, you know that exercise is crucial. To help you, here are some Instagram exercise pages that will surely inspire and assist you as you aim to live a healthier lifestyle.

1. Claire Guents @cguentzgofit – What makes Claire’s posts unique is that she makes sure that whenever she posts a workout, her captions are very detailed. She really goes into the nitty gritty of the workout so it’s really helpful for those who want to follow the exercises. She also shares about her travels and other stuff so you will be entertained by her page.

2. Emily Skye - @emilyskyefit – She has almost 2 million followers on her page. She founded F.I.T., which stands for Fitness Inspiration Transformation. Her feed contains not only how-to videos of her workout routines but also positive messages of inspiration.

3. Joe Wicks – @thebodycoach – He may be the only guy on this list, but that does not make him the least capable. His Instagram is full of recipes for healthy eating and really great advice for working out. You will surely get inspired as he also posts transformation photos of his clients who have enjoyed a healthier lifestyle since joining his healthy eating and exercise program.

4. Simone De La Rue - @bodybysimone – Who would not listen to a woman who boasts of having clients like Emily Blunt, Chrissy Teigen, Taylor Swift and Gigi Hadid? She is a favorite among celebrity trainers nowadays. This Australian-born trainer came up with a program for women that would enable them to have a lean body comparable to that of professional dancers.

5. Cassey Ho - @blogilates – She is the creator of the popular YouTube channel blogilates where she uploads workout videos that are beneficial for those who would rather workout in the comfort of their own home. Her Instagram page aims to help those who would like to exercise on the go. You can also find some great quotes to motivate you on your fitness journey as well as some more tips and advice for healthy eating.
It’s never easy to adapt to a healthier lifestyle, especially if you are just starting out. Getting inspiration from these men and women on Instagram who have dedicated their pages to benefit their followers is truly helpful.

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Exciting Hobbies for the Stay-at-Home Moms of Today

One of these days I will become a mother and I have contemplated whether or not I would be a good stay at home mom. Being a stay-at-home mom can be really tough. It is a full-time job that is often stressful and demanding. To deal with some of the stress, a lot of moms I know are starting to take on new hobbies to keep their days exciting as hobbies are great for when you need to just relax for a little bit.
Naturally, some hobbies are more exciting than others. While traditional ones, such as reading and watching movies, can be very effective in helping you lower your stress level, there are also other, more unusual hobbies that you can consider.


Yes, gaming is actually really fun. This may come as a surprise, but a lot of moms are now spending their free time playing PlayStation 4 or Nintendo Wii titles and having a lot of fun. The best games are no longer the domain of kids and the hubby. They can be just as entertaining for moms, too. Fun fact, I love playing Madden 2017 on Xbox One!
If you love horror films, for instance, you can try games such as the new Resident Evil or Silent Hill. Unlike movies, you are actually a part of the experience when playing horror games. Before long, you will be hooked and enjoying the gaming experience so much. You may even be better at it than the kids.
Other games offer a more interactive experience. Fitness-related titles make working out very enjoyable. Sports games are just as thrilling, while other genres – such as dancing and music games – will keep you entertained until the kids are back from school. They are definitely worth a try, especially if you already have a gaming console in the house.

DIY Projects

Imagine learning to do some welding and completing some awesome metalworking projects; how cool would that be? You don’t have to stick to traditional DIY projects such as knitting. In fact, exploring new avenues and picking up new skills along the way can be fun.
Welding in particular is very easy to get into. There is plenty of welding equipment designed for first-time welders and home workshops. You can even pick up welding accessories that not only look cool, but are also very functional; the black welding helmet from Lincoln (available here) is a great place to start.
Projects like welding and woodworking are great for one other reason: you can share it with your partner. On weekends, the two of you can work on a project together and enjoy some bonding moments.

A Home Business

Last, but certainly not least, you can consider starting a home business based on your existing hobby. If you love gardening, you can sell flowers and flower arrangements. If you love baking, it is easy to find buyers for those tasty cookies you’ve been perfecting for years.
The internet is your friend when it comes to turning an existing hobby into a home business. It is easy to set up an online store and start attracting hundreds – even thousands – of customers online. You can also start a blog and turn your experience into moneymaking opportunities. All you have to do now is pick an idea to develop and get started right away.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Do women need to take protein bars when going to the gym?

Sometimes I don't have time to pack my lunch so I'll grab a protein bar or keep a box in my desk drawer at work. I go to yoga every day at lunch time and if I don't eat, I can get sick or feel light-headed.

More and more women nowadays have the desire to keep fit and healthy. Many have become members in gyms to attain their goals. If you are one of those, you have probably looked for ways to maximize the effectiveness of your workout.  

One of the things that has always been mentioned in many articles is protein bars. You might be asking if you really need to take these products when working out, whether at the gym or at home.

To answer that question, you need to realize first what the role of the protein has for the body. Any doctor would tell you that protein is an important component in our bodies. It is after all, found in every cell of the body. What is the role of protein in the body? It not only makes enzymes, hormones and other chemicals for the body, but it is also the one that builds and repairs damaged tissues in our bodies.

It is macronutrient, so the body needs large amounts of it. But because our bodies do not store this important component, there needs to be a regular intake of this to ensure that the body can get a new supply when needed.

If you are intent on keeping fit by exercising, then you need to understand that you need to take protein. Why? When you are exercising using the equipment at the gym or in your house, your body undergoes strenuous physical stress depending on just how intense your workout are. But there’s no doubt your muscle fibers do tear and break apart. For your body to be restored and repaired, you need to protein.

The amount of protein you need to take every day varies for each person. It depends on your weight and just what type of physical activity you regularly undergo. If you are not sure about what your daily intake, you can ask nutritionists for advice. As for the food that provides protein, you can choose eggs, meat or nuts and much more.

But what if you do not have enough time to prepare your daily meals? What if you are wary of buying from restaurants as you are not sure of the calorie content? Then you can add protein bars to your diet. These are great sources to boost your energy while working out. It helps that the label on the packaging tells you exactly how much protein you are consuming.

You do need to watch out and not just buy any protein bar you see. With so many in the market nowadays, you need to be more meticulous with your choices. Some may have too many calories, and even more may have too much sugar.

To help you choose the right protein bars for you, Fitness Informant has come up with a comparative list of the best ones in the market today. You can be sure that these have been tested by people who go to the gym regularly so they know what they’re talking about.

What are your favorite protein bars?

Friday, March 10, 2017

5 Steps You Can Take to Escape a Life of Addiction

In my work with students I often see how some could be on a path to addiction. Addiction is a disease that is so destructive, debilitating, and scorned by society that many hide from seeking assistance. Drug addiction is one of the deadliest and hardest problems a person can encounter in their lives. It is a condition that affects not just the person but also his/her family and loved ones. It is a serious problem that should be addressed and treated immediately. Please note that these are merely suggestions on how to get started on a path to recovery. Everyone has a different situation and addiction recovery is often unique to the individual. The most important thing you can do is to take a step forward. Any step towards recovery is a success.
If you are a drug addict that wants to escape the life of addiction, then here are 5 very important steps that can help you in escaping your situation.
1.    Identify the cause of addiction – In order for you to escape your drug addiction; you must first identify the cause of your addiction. Find the reason why you resorted to drug abuse, is it because of your friends? your co-workers? or perhaps your own self?
Find that reason and try to make terms with it; accept that it has lead to your current problem and that you are going to conquer and escape from it. After which, try to avoid from getting yourself involved in the same things that lead you to drug addiction. The most important thing is to identify that you have a problem and you need help. Through your recovery process, you can work on the cause.
2.    Find help – Experts from the Haven House Addiction Center have long been dealing with patients suffering from drug addiction. They have concluded that drug addicts that voluntarily submit themselves to treatment recover faster as compared to other drug addicts.
Therefore, it is better for you to get treatment voluntarily rather than getting dragged into treatment. Today, there are a lot of treatment centers that offer various kinds of treatment. They may be different in their approaches to suit different kinds of patients but they are still designed to ultimately treat drug addiction.
3.    Establish a Strong Support Group – drug addiction most of the time leads to loneliness. And a solitary lifestyle can most of the time lead the patient to return to drug abuse.
Find people who are in the same boat as you, they can share with you the pain, the loneliness and all the hardships you have gone through. Having people with the same goals as you at your side can prove to be very helpful in battling the helplessness caused by the drug addiction. Moreover, having a strong support group gives you hope that one day, you will all be sober and free from the shackles of drugs.
4.    Take care of your body, mind, and soul – Exercise regularly, eat healthy foods, and groom yourself. Re-establish your self-esteem and confidence. Always be positive and look ahead to the brighter future.
You can also train your mind by engaging in activities that require critical and technical skills. Train your soul by meditating and reflecting on your past actions. Constantly improve yourself and rid of the negativity surrounding you.
5.    Find your Happiness – lastly, find your true happiness. There are a lot of things the world can offer to you. You just have to find it yourself. Try to think of the things that make you happy, the people that make you contented with your current life, the activities that inspire you to do better and improve. Find all of these things and you will definitely be able to escape the life of addiction.

Understand that recovery is a lifelong journey that you will travel. It is an adventure and you will have ups and downs and that is normal and part of the process. Congratulations for taking a step towards a happier future by seeking help!

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Rachel's Creperie in Lancaster, PA

Working at a small private liberal arts college in Lancaster, PA has its perks. One of which is the ability to pop into the local creperie shop for a nutella hot chocolate and crepe. Today was a particularly busy day and I was constantly on the go. On days like this when I have no time to myself, it is easy for me to get overwhelmed and feel run down.

As the director of wellness, I find that it is critical to take care of myself or I am just a hypocrite. Even though I know it is crucial to manage stress, I often feel guilty about doing so. For some reason today, I felt so overwhelmed by tasks and projects that I felt the need to take myself out to Rachel's Creperie on Walnut Street. When I first took the job in Lancaster, I was told that I needed to check out Rachel's because the crepes were delicious and the atmosphere was lovely. I thought that escaping from the hustle of bustle of campus for an hour would provide me the space and breathing room that I needed to get back on track.
Nutella Hot Chocolate and blogging to relieve stress

Upon arrival, it was somewhat of a challenge to find parking along the meters on Walnut Street and the parking lot is quaint and was full to capacity. I found a spot on a side street and walked to Rachel's. The store front is adorable and the windows were decorated with girl scout cookies and an adorable large pink vintage bicycle. When I walked in the door, I was greeted by a barista at the coffee counter and offered a table in the dining room. I had no idea that I could expect a full service restaurant with breakfast, lunch, dinner, AND dessert crepes. I sat down at a nice table by the window and ordered a nutella hot chocolate and lemon blueberry cheesecake crepe. The hot chocolate was absolutely divine which the perfect amount of rich, creamy, nutella and chocolate flavor. The crepe was just as delicious with the perfect amount of lemon and blueberry flavor. The crepe was extra special because it was made with ground up girl scout smile cookies for a crunchy lemon addition. I enjoyed both sugary concoctions so much and instantly found myself in a better mood.
lemon blueberry cheesecake crepe, $8

If you happen to visit Lancaster, take a few moments and check out Rachel's creperie. What a joy to the tastebuds and visual and auditory senses. Not to mention I am feeling much better about my tasks and projects at work because I took an hour to myself to decompress.

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

5 things you can do to help with tennis elbow

If you are a tennis player or one who loves to play racket ball, this post is for you! With warmer temperatures comes more outside activity. After staying indoors all winter, outdoor activity can be a welcoming change of pace for the body. It is easy to get back outside and over exert yourself which could cause injury. In preparing for warmer temperatures, here are some thoughts on how to help with tennis elbow.

Tennis elbow, also called lateral epicondylitis, is a medical condition characterized by a localized pain on the outer side of the elbow. It is caused by the inflammation of the tendons connected to the elbow’s outer bony prominence (lateral epicondyle). The inflammation is often triggered by repetitive movements, twisting and straining of the lower arm. Common symptoms of tennis elbow include pain that does not go away with pain reliever and a marked weakness and numbness of the lower arm.

Contrary to its name, tennis elbow can occur to anyone. People exposed to activities that involve repetitive movements of the lower arm are however at a greater risk of developing tennis elbow. These activities may include tedious construction work, strenuous sports, and even painting for a long period of time. Doctors usually diagnose patients for tennis elbow using different physical tests. The diagnosis is verified from the results of nerve tests, x-ray, CT scan, and MRI.

Tennis elbow is not considered by health professionals as a serious medical condition. If left untreated, it can cause restrictions to motion, a nagging pain, and weakness and numbness in your lower arm. Fortunately, there are a number of effective ways that you can try. Here are the top 5 things you can do to help with tennis elbow.

1. Apply Compression

For muscle strains, sprains, and other similar injuries, application of compress within the first 72 hours is an effective way of reducing swelling in an area. Athletic trainer’s tape, bandage or even just a piece of clothing can be used to tie around the injured area. The compression must neither be too tight or too loose in order to promote good blood circulation and reduce inflammation. Application of ice or a cold bottle of water for 10 to 15 minutes as early as possible is also a good way to lessen the extent of an injury.

2. Get Enough Rest
Similar to other muscle injuries, rest is always beneficial for a quick recovery. If you haven’t fully healed from a tennis elbow yet, avoid doing heavy tasks such as carrying loads and playing contact sports that will just aggravate your injury.

3. Undergo Therapy
A professional physical therapist should be able to design a rehabilitation program that you can follow to alleviate the pain and increase the muscle strength and flexibility of your lower arm. These include warm-ups, strength conditioning, and stretching exercises that will provide long-term relief from chronic tennis elbow.

4. Wear Braces
Tennis elbow braces and support can be purchased from sporting good outlets and drugstores even without a doctor’s prescription. Tennis elbow braces limit the range of your arms’ motion, distribute the stress directed to the tendons and aid in a quick and complete recovery of injured muscle tissues. You can find more information about some of the best tennis elbow braces here.

5. Take Medications or Consider Surgery
If there are no signs of progress after 2 months of rehabilitation, corticosteroids are usually injected into the injured tendons to relieve the pain. Ultrasound therapy is also a non-invasive procedure of treating the inflamed tendon. If in any case, any therapy or medication does not work after 6 to 12 months, surgery will be the last option. The operation involves the removal of the damaged part of the tendon, or the reattachment of the tendon to the outer bone, or both.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Why I LOVE Turbo Tax

Hiya friends!

This is NOT an ad. This is just an honest opinion by a once very stressed out American who had yet to file her taxes. Taxes always stress me out because I want to make sure that I do everything right and I have a pretty big fear of "getting into trouble" regardless of who you are. I surely do not want Uncle Sam knocking at my door and I tend to do my taxes as quickly as humanly possible so that I can cross that off the annual to do list.

This year I was a bit more nervous about filing my taxes than in years past because I haven't done them on my own...since I was in college. And that was like more than a decade ago. Not to mention, I have been adulting a lot more lately and I switched jobs last year and am now working in a state in which I do not reside.

Instead of searching for a reputable tax professional, I decided to give turbotax a go and I am so glad that I did. They made it so easy to walk through and complete my return from multiple states. There are many filing options to choose from and they help you sort all that out by asking you simple questions about your lifestyle, work, etc. In fact, everything was simple. If I wasn't sure of something, I clicked on the help box and my question was explained in terms I could UNDERSTAND! I was pleasantly surprised. You don't pay anything until the end when it is time to file and even then there are choices for payments for the software but also to the government if you owe. If you don't owe, you can enter your bank account information or request a check. That's it! Done. Whew!

The entire process took me some time as I had to organize myself, my paperwork, and read through the simple steps laid out by the software but overall it was an easy, stress-free experience. I think I spent an hour or two on it and most of it was just my need to read everything. Give it a try! Leave a comment and let me know what you think of Turbo Tax!
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