7 Best Must Have Health Books To Kick-Off 2022!


1.  Keep Sharp by Dr. Sanjay Gupta

https://www.amazon.com/s?k=keep+sharp+by+sanjay+gupta&crid=2VL1RG5X302VZ&sprefix=keep+sharp+by+%2Caps%2C310&ref=nb_sb_ss_ts-doa-p_1_14
2.  Healthy Within Maria Dorfner
https://www.lulu.com/shop/maria-dorfner/shop/maria-dorfner/healthy-within/paperback/product-1257kwmv.html?page=1&pageSize=4

3.  Real Food Heals by Seamus Mullen
https://www.amazon.com/Real-Food-Heals-Younger-Stronger/dp/0735213852/ref=sr_1_3?dchild=1&keywords=real+food+heals+by+seamus+mullen&qid=1635193920&sr=8-3
4.  Prevent Heart Disease by Caldwell B. Esselstyn
https://www.amazon.com/Prevent-Reverse-Heart-Disease-Nutrition-Based/dp/1583333002/ref=sr_1_1?crid=27MC41UCTG1R5&dchild=1&keywords=prevent+and+reverse+heart+disease+by+caldwell+esselstyn&qid=1635194450&sprefix=Prevent+and+R%2Caps%2C212&sr=8-1
5. Food Fix by Mark Hyman, MD
https://www.amazon.com/Food-Fix-Economy-Communities-Planet-One/dp/031645317X/ref=sr_1_2?crid=XR1NKTNWTQ7W&dchild=1&keywords=food+fix+by+mark+hyman&qid=1635194340&sprefix=food+fix+by+mark+hyman%2Caps%2C96&sr=8-2
6. Walking For Health by Frank S. Ring
https://www.amazon.com/Walking-Health-Fitness-Easiest-Shape-ebook/dp/B081MZZY3G/ref=sr_1_2?crid=1WUVCVHMGUR3Q&dchild=1&keywords=Walking+for+Health+by+Frank+S.+Ring&qid=1635194183&sprefix=walking+for+health+by+frank+s.+ring%2Caps%2C110&sr=8-2
7. Seven Laws of Spiritual Success by D. Chopra
https://www.amazon.com/s?k=seven+laws+of+spiritual+success+deepak+chopra&crid=168RDSR4F5AP&sprefix=Seven+Law%2Caps%2C129&ref=nb_sb_ss_ts-doa-p_1_9

Here’s To Mind-Body-Spirit Health and Wellness!!

#1 Thing To Do For Your Mental & Physical Health

The absolute number one thing anyone can do for their mental and physical well-being is learn how to manage stress on a daily basis.

Daily stressors have always been a part of life, but it’s even more prevalent since the pandemic. Be sure to take a pro-active approach to reviewing what exactly causes the most stress in your life.

Then, think about what you can do differently that will alleviate that stress.

For example, if driving to work or appointments has you stuck in traffic and it causes stress –make a point of leaving extra early to allow for anticipated traffic.

If back-to-back Zoom calls, Video Conferences or Podcasting are causing you stress, make sure to spread them out, giving yourself enough time to get up from the computer and take a 20-minute walk.

In fact, if you are working remotely or in an office sitting at a computer, you should get up, stretch and walk around for every 20-minutes. Your eyes need the break too. Do that 3 times at you’re at 60-minutes, the ideal for optimum health.

Make walking 1 hour a daily habit. There is a significant association between daily walking and pneumonia-related mortality and cardiovascular disease mortality among older people who walked 1 hour a day, even if they lacked other exercise habits. Kids and adults can benefit from this. There are so many health benefits tied to it. It will improve heart health, oxygen to your brain, how you feel and your energy levels.

If you can get out in nature, even better. But you don’t need a gym or any fancy equipment to do this. You can do it anywhere.



If you find being in crowds or with certain people cause you stress, you know what to do. Set boundaries.

Everyone feels anxious from time to time. You may be worried about finding employment, finances, an upcoming exam –whatever it is –when you get that feeling of worry know that it will feel like it will last forever, but it will not.

What you need to do is distract yourself. 1. Take a shower 2. Call a friend and talk it through 3. Make a cup of tea 4. Go for a walk 5. Put on some music you enjoy 6. Splash cold water on your face 7. Take slow, deep breaths -8. Get out in nature and sunshine 9. Stretch and move your body -anything that interrupts that feeling and brings you back to the PRESENT moment. 10. If you watch a lot of TV, turn it off and get outside.

When the moment passes, write down what has you worried. Then, write down possible solutions. Think out of the box. Think about times in the past when you thought things were hopeless and you got through it.

You will get through this too. When you feel overwhelmed, tell someone. Allow people to help, even if it’s just through listening.

Even happy events can cause stress, like planning a vacation or wedding. Knowing when to take a break is crucial.

Know your Happy Place and what healthy activities make you feel better. Make a point of making Rest and Recovery a part of your everyday life. Your body needs it. Your brain needs it.

Even people who are adamant about working out at a gym take one day to do nothing. It’s when their body gets to recover and it’s how muscle gets built.

Getting at least 9 hours of sleep each night is crucial as well. It needs to be consistent, so prioritize this. Sleep experts recommend darkening your room, shutting down all electronics and keeping your bedroom on the chilly side one hour before you go to sleep.

Weighted blankets have also gotten a lot of favorable feedback about helping people sleep better. A warm bubble bath with the smell of lavender also gets favorable reviews from people.

Nightshades and ear plugs can help too if you live in a city with bright lights and lots of external noise.

There’s also a sleep hoodie that comes with built-in eyeshades made of fabric that cools your body as you sleep created by DepSlepWear that’s great for use at home or while traveling on an airplane.

Note there are also sleep positions that are recommended for your back. It’s either on your side with a pillow between your legs or on your back with a pillow under your knees. This provides proper alignment, so you don’t wake up with aches.

Before bed, make a list of the 3 most important things you need to do the next day.

It’s not easy to turn off all electronics (this includes your phone) with a 24/7 news cycle and social media, but it’s vital for your mental and physical health.

Avoid caffeine, spicy foods and alcohol before bed too. If you drink coffee, try to drink it earlier in the day and limit it to two cups.

There is a prior blog I wrote on foods that help you sleep. I will find it and insert the link below, as a lot of people do get hungry at night. It’s best to stock up on the PM foods in case that happens.

If you wake up mid-sleep, reading is recommended until you fall back asleep.

When you finally do get a good night’s rest don’t immediately jump out of bed. Take those deep breaths again, sit up, close your eyes and be in an intentional state of gratitude. Give thanks to be alive.

Remind yourself it will be a great day, everything will be okay and that you can and will handle anything that comes your way. Then, stretch and breathe deeply again.

Hydrate with water. If you’re a breakfast person, make sure it doesn’t contain sugar, so you’re not crashing by noon. Two eggs are always a great choice. I dash a bit of sea salt on them. You can boil them ahead of time if you know you’ll be in a rush. If you have more time, have fun making a veggie omelet.

The American Heart Association (AHA) actually recommends up to two eggs a day for older people with normal cholesterol and who eat a healthy diet.

If you’re not in that category, they recommend only one egg a day, and fewer if you have high blood cholesterol, diabetes or are at risk for heart failure.


When you do start work, review your Top 3 Priority items on your list. Get those things out of the way. You will feel a sense of accomplishment the rest of the day from meeting your commitments before any distractions can kick in. Speaking of, be aware of your distractions.

If checking out one thing on Facebook or Twitter ends up using up hours and hours of your time, be aware of that and place a limit on social media time. Be aware if you keep your TV on 24/7 or too many hours. Limit time watching it. Read instead. Nature is free to everyone. Go for a walk or hike in a local park.

Remember that how you spend your time, what you eat, drink and how much you exercise will affect the way you feel each day, so make healthy choices. If you’re stressed, something in your environment contributes to it. Be aware of your environment. Is your home cluttered? Get it organized and create more open space. Toss away or donate what you don’t use. Make sure your home and work space is calming.

If you need help with any of those things, reach out to someone who you think may be more productive with their time as they can offer tips–for healthy food choices, see a Nutritionist or do a Google search.

I’ve also blogged a lot in the past about healthy foods for your body and brain. There are also a lot of great books out there. You want to avoid the diet books, and opt for ones that are about long-term nutrition.

A few people I recommend following about Nutrition are:

Dr. Mark Hyman from The Cleveland Clinic

Dr. Daniel Amen from Amen Clinics

Seamus Mullen has a lot of great books on Anti-Inflammatory Foods

“How Not To Die” by Dr. Gregor

If you want a real education on how and why the foods we eat have changed over the decades for the worse read, “Formerly Known As Food” by Kristen Lawless.

Remember, your Mind, Body and Spirit have always been connected. You need to take care of both daily. If that means saying no more, then do it. Allow yourself that time to Rest and Recover.

Daily exercise is proven to grow new brain cells and improve your heart health. Make daily exercise, even if it’s a daily walk a habit. Then, allow yourself at least an hour a day where you schedule nothing.

Even your car will run out of gas if you keeping going without stopping.

Human beings are no different. Every day, stop and fill up your tank with good things, which also includes helping other people. It’s one of the best ways to get out of your head. Ask yourself who could use a helping hand, a kind word, encouragement or find something you no longer use and donate it. Make someone else’s day better.

Remember, there is something that comes easy to you that someone else finds difficult. It can be writing, reading, playing an instrument, dancing, swimming, playing a certain sport, organizing, decorating, cooking, drawing, speaking a different language, writing a cover letter or resume, networking, shopping, using computers, blogging, writing a book, acting, exercising, finding a job –something.

Offer to help someone with that.


A funny thing happens when you do that –you will end up feeling better yourself.

And don’t underestimate the power of love. Since in-person interactions are limited, you can still be old-school and tell someone you love them or mail them a card or gift or call them.

There is a lot more to health and well-being than masking up these day. You need to be pro-active daily and feed your mind, body and soul good things.

Developing life-long habits is a choice. It feels difficult at first, but once once you realize the better choices you make are having a positive difference in how you feel –you will do it the next day, and the next…

Be patient and kind to yourself and fill yourself with so much good that it can’t help but overflow to others. As they say, you can’t pour from an empty cup.

The #1 thing you can do for your overall well-being is learn how to manage stress. Everyone in the world needs to do this, because no one is immune from something unpredictable happening to them or to someone you love.

So, carve out time each day to take care of you. When you can’t change what’s going on externally, the only thing you can master is how to change what’s taking place inside. These changes are cumulative and add up over time. Be patient and take notice of when you feel most centered and calm.

I once wrote something that got widely picked up on Quote websites. It was: “Anxiety is who people want you to be. Calm is who you are.”

Find your calm.

If’s worth noting everyone needs to do this. Almost half of physicians themselves suffer from burnout.

Most recently, Olympic athletes have been more vocal about it. No one is immune to it No one. Only arrogance would tell someone they are and a good read for them is Robin Sharma’s book, “The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari.”

There are a lot of books about how stress caught up to otherwise extremely successful people. It happens to the best. If you can’t or don’t do so –you will one day be forced to.

There’s an old adage about how if you don’t take time for health today, you will be forced to take time for sickness later. So, I repeat everyone from the Chairman to the CEO to the receptionist to the janitor needs to find calm if you don’t want yourself, your team or productivity and the bottom line to suffer in the end.

Each individual’s health matters. Health = Mind + Body. Norman Vincent Peale wrote “The Power of Positive Thinking” decades ago and the pillars of health he talked about in it are still prevalent today. If you’ve never read it, you can listen to it on audio on YouTube. There’s a reason it sold millions of copies around the world.

Every generation should read it. If this all seems sanguine, know that your mind, body, wellness, relationships, health and longevity will benefit from these things in the long-run.

The future relies on what you do today, so focus on making the right healthy choices one day at a time.

Take time to de-stress your mind and body daily.


Stay healthy.
Maria Dorfner

Email: maria.dorfner@mariadorfner |
On Twitter: @Maria_Dorfner
Linked In: https://www.linkedin.com/in/mariadorfner

RELATED BLOGS:

Link to prior blog on Foods That Help You Sleep: https://mariadorfner.wordpress.com/?s=foods+to+help+you+sleep

Link to prior blog on Nutritional Tips: https://wordpress.com/post/mariadorfner.wordpress.com/87

DISCLAIMER: If you’re in a place where you can’t even think about doing any of the things mentioned here schedule an appointment with your physician.

BRAIN HEALTH:

Foods To Boost Your Brain Power
https://mariadorfner.wordpress.com/2019/04/09/5-foods-boost-your-brainpower/

Things That Can Cause Brain Fog
https://mariadorfner.wordpress.com/2021/03/24/27-things-that-can-cause-brain-fog/

Find Out What Ages Your Brain Prematurely
https://mariadorfner.wordpress.com/2019/09/12/find-out-what-ages-your-brain-prematurely/

Brain Power and Exercise
https://mariadorfner.wordpress.com/2017/04/26/brain-power-linked-to-45-minutes-of-resistance-training/

Things That Can Kill Brain Cells
https://mariadorfner.wordpress.com/2012/03/05/50-situations-that-can-kill-brain-cells/

6 Nutrients for Brain Health
https://wordpress.com/post/mariadorfner.wordpress.com/5659

Easy Breakfast Recipes from Eat Well To Boost Brain Power
https://www.yahoo.com/lifestyle/19-easy-breakfast-recipes-help-220549477.html

WTF Life vs. WFH Life

selfcareWTF is when you work in an office each day.  You waste time getting there. You waste time looking a certain way to fit in with the office culture. You waste time making small talk with the same people.  Asking, “How was your weekend?” is getting old. Your feet  hurt. Your back hurts. You are tired. And you are stressed knowing you have to do it all over again the next day.

WFH is an acronym for Work From Home. #WFH began trending on social media after The Corona Virus Task Force issued a Stay At Home or Shelter In Place or Work From Home order to everyone to help avoid its spread.

Some people have always worked remotely so it’s nothing new. Others freaked out.

There’s zero to freak out about. Remain CALM. Working from home is better for you.

I’ve been working remotely for decades, so I can share why it works, and how and why it’s easy it to stay healthier than those in an office. Contrary to popular belief, there are less distractions and you seriously get more done without sacrificing your health or life.

Occasionally, I take on an assignment that requires me to be in a physical office. Those times reinforce they are a colossal waste of money and space, not to mention people’s time. If you can do something using a computer or phone in 2020, why waste a minimum of four hours getting to and from an office. Makes no sense.

Ever wonder why a lot of business leaders boast about deals being made on the golf course? It’s because people are relaxed there. Good luck making a deal on a crowded B-Train from Brooklyn to NYC or any place you are squished like a sardine.

When you work in an office your stress begins upon waking up.  Tired. Again.

insomnia27WTF.  You’re already in a bad mood because you need more sleep, but know you won’t get it. When you set alarm knowing you need to get to a bus, plane, train or bus it places your body immediately goes into fight or flight mode, which right off the bat releases Cortisol, the stress hormone. Your fat cells are already gearing up to preserve them since they think you’re in danger. You are in danger. You’re in danger of illness from chronic stress.

vs. WORK FROM HOME WELLNESS sleeping11WFH. When you set your alarm to wake from home you wake up smiling. There’s no rush. In fact, if you’re wise you start to give Gratitude and stay in bed a little longer giving thanks and praise for blessings. Then, you can stretch. Your body is relaxed already releasing feel good Endorphins and Oxytocin to start your day off healthy. It’s proven fat cells shrink when you’re well-rested. You have time to Meditate. You do. You glance over at your To Do list written the night before knowing you’ll tackle it. No stress.

insomnia45WTF. WTF. You need caffeine and are the walking dead and quite cranky until you get your first cup of coffee. Coffee dehydrates you and has no health benefits.
Don’t believe the hype.

vs.

WFH. You don’t need coffee. You start your day with hot water and lemon, which hydrates you, cleanses and activates your metabolism for the rest of the day.  You wake up alert, not groggy when you need a cup of coffee. That tells you right there which is better for you.

WTF. You bring your gym bag to work because you plan to go to the gym afterwards. By the end of the day all you want is to get home in your pajamas with cookies and a tall glass of milk. Your favorite part of the day will be when you change into your pajamas. Think about that. It’s a real WTF.

vs.

exercise2WFH. You start your day with exercise which gets your brain and body energized to start the work day. Nothing is rushed in the work from home life. You’re in the zone. Your favorite part of the day is when you closed that deal, wrote that script or learned something new.  Your favorite part of the day is no longer the end of it.

sleep2WTF. You will not get enough sleep because by the time you get home, run errands, eat something, try to relax it’s way past your bedtime. This sleep deprivation will be chronic and slowly erode your health. You will begin to feel aches and pains and be moody and quite unpleasant to be around. You will snap at people when you get home, so your relationships will suffer. You just got home from work, so can’t be expected to do anything. You want to be left alone. If you have a spouse or children or pet –who want or need your attention –it’s a recipe for disaster.

vs.

WFH. The sleep you’ve been getting shows in your calm demeanor, and you feel great. No aches or pains and your skin looks better and you’re even keeled. No bad moods. People will comment you look younger than your age. You have time in between calls to toss in laundry and do a bit of cleaning or walk your dog or hug your spouse.

WTF. You are always hungry while at the office. The Gremlins are alive and well because you’re not getting enough sleep and you’re stressed. You feel like there aren’t enough snacks to keep you going until you can get out of that office.

vs.

WFH. You eat healthier because you’ve more time to prepare meals and you have time to make better choices when grocery shopping. You realize you feel better when you eat better.

 

Co-workers laughing together
Co-workers laughing together

WTF. No privacy. You have to listen to every conversation in the office. If someone sneezes the droplets land on your desk. If someone brings in smelly food or wears awful perfume –you’re right there having to soak it all in. It’s disgusting. You’re sick of the small talk, clicks and reminder of why you hated high school. Every day you have to convince yourself it’s not so bad as you watch the clock.

WFH. The Do Not Disturb sign is alive and well. Your office is your sanctuary. You don’t have to listen to co-workers gossiping, talking on the phone or kissing up to the boss. No worries about sexual harassment or any other nonsense. You can focus, get your work done and get results.

So, relax. Working from home is amazing. Make sure you don’t have a micromanager for a boss. You want a leader. Here’s the difference.

A leader lets you all know the vision and goals and then delegates tasks. A leader trusts you to get things done. They get out of the way. They ask you to call, email or text (whatever their preference is) them if you need them. These leaders inspire and motivate people with their positivity. Employees love working for this person and go the extra mile for them. They trust you’ll let them know if you need assistance.

A micromanager is the equivalent of a little kid tugging at your shirt while you’re trying to get work done. These people aren’t qualified for whatever position they are in, so they overcompensate for insecurities by brow beating other people. You can spot them because they send questions like, “Where are we at with …?” or ask if you’ve done what they’ve asked you to do right after asking you to do it. When they say people don’t leave jobs, they leave bosses –this is that boss. They have a negative affect on the morale of employees, productivity and bottom line.

WTF. You can’t always leave your desk when you’re feeling anxious.

WFH. You can go for a walk, take a hot shower, make a cup of green tea, call a friend, stretch, open your refrigerator to grab a snack (stock up on water and Better For You snacks when you work from home and healthy foods you can pick on. I blog a lot about those. You can search past articles. Some of my favorites are Veggie Stix, wheat thins, blueberries, cherries, almonds, walnuts, PeaTos makes Cheetos made from peas —and good ol’ chocolate.

How much money would a company save if they allowed employees to work from home? Can things be done differently?  Why do people really need to be inside a particular office or building? Can what’s being done in there be done remotely and end up costing less? Can the world prioritize health and family time? Things to think about the next two weeks.

Maybe there’s a healthier way long-term and not just for two weeks.

For now, enjoy Working From Home.  Stay healthy!

tea

health2

Dog Is Man’s Best Friend Post Heart Attack

dogwithrose

According to a study in Circulation, after suffering a heart attack or stroke, a dog really is man’s best friend.

cute dog laying on the bed
Photo by Sart Face on Pexels.com

Cleveland Clinic’s Doctor Luke Laffin did not take part in the research, but says results show owning a dog was associated with better outcomes.

man wearing white suit walking with a dog
Photo by Daria Sannikova on Pexels.com

CG:  Dr. Luke Laffin | Cleveland Clinic

“What they found was that those dog owners actually had a lower risk of having recurrent cardiovascular events.” [:07]

The study looks at more than one-hundred eighty thousand people between the ages of forty and eighty-five, who had previously suffered a hear attack or stroke.

Results show dog owners who lived alone, had a 33% reduced risk of death when compared with people who suffered a heart attack and lived alone without a dog.

dog

Doctor Laffin says the relationship between dog ownership and heart health makes sense.

person holding black and white dog
Photo by Lisa Fotios on Pexels.com

Dogs typically have to go for walks, which gets you out the door and moving, which is good for heart health.

Dogs also provide companionship, so it’s possible that dog owners have less loneliness.

Previous studies show depression and loneliness can increase the risk of heart disease.

But if you can’t own a dog –don’t worry.

Doctor Laffin says people can still mimic the benefits of owning one for the sake of their heart health.

pet dog licking face of man
Photo by thevibrantmachine on Pexels.com

CG: Dr. Luke Laffin | Cleveland Clinic

“They can go out for regular physical activity –maybe a walk, jog or even classes like yoga, swimming –those are all great activities that you don’t need a dog to do.” [:10]

Doctor Laffin says getting more physical activity on a regular basis can go a long way towards better heart health and longevity.

 

man walking near body of water
Photo by Yogendra Singh on Pexels.com

Complete results of the study can be found in Circulation.

MEDIA
Pathfire#: 11456
ccnewservice@ccf.org

Cleveland Clinic News Service

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The Hoodie That Helps You Sleep…Anywhere!

This hoodie to help you sleep is now on my list of Favorite Things for Your Health!

Insomnia is no longer something a few people suffer from. It’s now almost at 100% of Americans. All these electronic gadgets aren’t helping our case.

Teenage boy (16-17) using laptop, sitting on bed

“People spend up to 10 hours a day on electronic devices, which directly impacts melatonin production and stimulates the fight-or-flight response system in the brain. – Jenn J. Allen

Our physical, psychological and emotional health are all linked to our sleeping habits.

University of California, Berkeley researchers recently found that insufficient sleep can amplify levels of anxiety up to 30 percent and, on the flip side, that a solid eight hours or so helps reduce stress.

“Deep sleep seems to be a natural anxiolytic (anxiety inhibitor), so long as we get it each and every night,” Mathew Walker, a senior author of the study and a professor of neuroscience and psychology at the university, said in the published report for the journal Nature Human Behaviour

The study analyzed brain scans from 18 young adults and discovered that those who got a full night’s rest had a lower heart rate and lower blood pressure, as well as stable emotions when they woke.

According to National Sleep Foundation, most adults need 7 to 9 hours a night for the best amount of sleep, although some people may need as few as 6 hours or as many as 10 hours of sleep each day. Older adults (ages 65 and older)need 7-8 hours of sleep each day. Women in the first 3 months of pregnancy often need several more hours of sleep than usual.

There can be underlying causes to insomnia that need to be addressed first because if a you simply take a sleeping pill, you’re masking the underlying cause.

The best way to uncover that is with cognitive behavioral therapy –a fancy name for talk therapy.

Then, you want to set the stage for a good night’s sleep or day if you’re napping.

This is where Glenn Paradise found the ideal solution.

When his wife (who he met in high school…awww) got sick, and was in the hospital for 7 weeks, Glenn was left home alone caring for kids, dog, house and couldn’t  sleep worried about everything.
 
He was brought up to fix things instead of complain, so he ended up designing something that solved every frustration he had when he tried to get a good night’s sleep.
Of course, I tried it and I’m sold on it.  It was also incredibly comfortable to wear while commuting.  Loved it.
Dēp Slēpwear is purpose-built for deep sleep

Glenn Paradise invented the dēp sleep hoodie out of a need.

“I wasn’t getting the quantity  or quality of sleep necessary to consistently feel or perform at my best. I learned I wasn’t alone and that hundreds of millions of people around the world don’t sleep well. The DepSlepwear hoodie is our first product in a line of wear and gear purpose-built for deep sleep every night. No pills, elixirs or gimmicks required.” -Glenn Paradise

Display of DepSlepwear near Lord & Taylor

“I consider myself a problem-solving entrepreneur. It’s in my blood. When I was young, I was side-by-side with my father as he created several businesses that helped people learn faster, perform better, and enjoy their lives more. The gratification I felt from helping people during those early years inspired me to keep the good stuff coming in my professional career. The products and services I create are born from necessity and are designed to help people live more fulfilling personal and professional lives. I know and trust they work because I need and use them myself.” -Glenn Paradise

CEO, Glenn Paradise

Other tips for a good night’s sleep include:

  • Do not exercise within 3 hours of bedtime
  • Turn off all electronic devices 2 hours before bedtime
  • Spend time outdoors preferably in sunlight in a natural setting during the day
  • Exercise regularly
  • Take a nourishing bath before bedtime
  • Maintain a regular sleep schedule where you go to sleep and rise at the same time
  • Take a break from work every 90 min.
  • Breathe deeply. Focus on nothing except breathing before bed
  • Prepare items for the next day to alleviate worries upon rising
  • If you are worried about something remind yourself worrying doesn’t help
  • Remind yourself everything will work better when you recharge your batteries
  • Give yourself permission to rest your mind, body and spirit
  • Remind yourself you get to help more people when you yourself are at your best
  • Avoid any alcohol 3 hours before bedtime
  • Do not eat too close to bedtime as your digestive track needs time to rest

Dēp Slēpwear is purpose-built for deep sleep

Get Your Hoodie to Help You Sleep at: http://www.depslepwear.com

Related Articles on Sleep:

We’re all getting less sleep, but especially those who need it the most.

A recent study from Ball State University found the prevalence of inadequate sleep, defined as seven hours or less, increased from 30.9% in 2010 to 35.6% in 2018.
  • NHL players embrace sleep as a performance enhancer.

    Sleep could be the secret weapon of NHL players. And for us regular folks, too.
  • This secret to sleeping success comes from within.

    Clearing your mind is an important part of your sleep hygiene practice. But like many things in our daily lives, this is easier said than done.
  • What you should know about insomnia.

    Learn helpful details about insomnia and some strategies on how to effectively deal with it.
  • Control Your Body Temp to Optimize Your Sleep

    As explored in this article on The Sleep Forum, temperature plays an important role in achieving quality sleep. If you’re not taking steps to control your body temperature throughout the night, your sleep will never be optimal.
  • Permission to Sleep? Granted

    This is the story of the genesis of the Dēp sleep hoodie and Dēp Slēpwear. Writing it brought back some very emotional memories of a time when my f…
  • Why we can’t sleep

    An estimated 164 million Americans struggle with sleep at least once per week. That’s a lot of people having trouble performing one of the most imp…
  • What really happens during sleep?

    The more you know about what happens during sleep, the better you will be able to prepare for and achieve a sustained, restful night’s slumber. Sle…
  • Sleep is more important than diet?

    Shawn Stevenson’s story is impressive and inspiring, and his take on sleep is a must read for anyone who wants to sleep and feel better every day. …
  • Tips for starting your healthy sleep habits

    From setting a schedule to establishing a ritual, the National Sleep Foundation helps us prepare for better sleep with these great tips.
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    7 Foods That Help You Sleep by Maria Dorfner

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    It’s worth repeating.  A good night’s rest is what makes you look AND feel your best.

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    Yet, texting, tweeting, blogging, emailing, facebooking and thinking in daylight can also keep you up at night.

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    A good night’s sleep isn’t just about being able to wake up when the alarm goes off. It benefits your weight, heart, mind & more.

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    In a 2010 study of women age 50 to 79, there were more deaths in those that got less than 5 hours of sleep a night.

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    So yes, it can affect the length of your life AND quality of life.

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    Sleep also lowers stress, depression, anxiety,  improves attention and learning, keeps your mind sharp and one more thing.

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    Well-rested folks lose more fat.  That’s right. It gives a whole new meaning to Snooze You Lose.

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    All great reasons to stock your refrigerator with these 7 foods that help you sleep soundly. Eat an hour before bedtime:

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    1.  OATMEAL – It promotes insulin production and sleep-inducing chemicals to relax you

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    2.  SMALL BOWL OF COTTAGE CHEESE WITH SLICED BANANAS – The magnesium and potassium are muscle relaxants

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    3.  CHERRIES –  Melatonin controls your internal clock and cherries help to release it

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    4.  TOAST – Carb rich foods produce insulin helping you relax

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    5.  WARM MILK – It contains amino acid L-tryptophan and turns into 5-HTP, releasing serotonin. Calcium is good for sleep too

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    6.  WHOLE WHEAT PASTA – Add fresh veggies & diced chicken with tomato sauce; high protein dish that also releases tryptophan

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    7.  YOGURT SPRINKLED WITH CEREAL – You get the calcium and the carb combo to help bring on the Z-z-z-z’s

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    A good night’s sleep also spurs creativity and improves your athletic performance the next day. It also curbs inflammation. Those that don’t get enough sleep have higher levels of inflammatory problems.

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    If you are STILL tossing and turning or watching the clock, make sure you are doing the following:

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    1.  STOP SIPPING CAFFEINE AT 2 P.M. – Check labels. You may not be aware what you’re drinking contains caffeine.

    2.  DIM THE LIGHTS IN YOUR ROOM ONE HOUR BEFORE YOU TURN IN.

    3.  SOAK IN A WARM BATH TO UNWIND AS SOON AS YOU GET HOME, NOT RIGHT BEFORE BED.

    4.  CLOSE YOUR EYES FOR 10 MIN. AND GENTLY STRETCH BY PAYING ATTENTION TO YOUR BREATHING.

    5.  THIS IS A MUST: MAKE SURE ALL YOUR GADGETS ARE TURNED OFF. PLACING THINGS ON VIBRATE DOES NOT COUNT AS OFF.  THAT SOUND CAN STILL DISRUPT YOUR SLEEP.

    6.  MAKE SURE ALL CLUTTER IS REMOVED FROM YOUR BEDROOM.

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4 Healthy Ways To Deal With Anxiety

tea1Everyone gets anxiety. It’s when you worry about something in the future, which let’s face it, can be tomorrow. A meeting, an interview, an exam, a commute, the weather…so much to worry about, right?  Wrong.

STOP those thoughts from spiraling because you’ve no control of tomorrow.

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You have THIS moment. Make it a HEALTHY ONE. Repeat that. STAY in the NOW.

Number ONE: Exercise daily. Don’t make excuses like rich people have a personal trainer.

When I was a kid I was influenced by one man I saw on TV. He had nothing, except ONE chair beside him. I was in the first grade when I first saw him.

His name was Jack La Lanne.  He spoke about the benefits of daily exercise. I listened. Kids brains are like sponges. Mine absorbed his message. His message is still true.

It is proven your brain benefits at the 45-minute mark. So, if you’re feeling anxious it may be a signal from your body or brain that you need to move.

Look at all the benefits you get simply from walking.  Best part? Do it anywhere.

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And stay hydrated. Drink water, even when you’re not thirsty. Look at all the benefits of staying hydrated in the photo below.

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When people tell me they get headaches, the first thing I ask is how much water they drink. Most say none.

Well, that’s why you have a headache. Most tell me they drink coffee, which DE-HYRDRATES. Your brain needs water.

Your doctor in a rush to get his or her next patient will be too quick to give you pills for headaches or migraines before even asking you this simple question.

If you are prone to headaches –you need to check how much water you should be drinking (use search in my blog to find that) daily and do that. Your headaches will probably magically disappear. You’re welcome.

The times you need to visit a Physician is when you’re doing everything right and you’re still experiencing some sort of pain.

But if you’re not doing the basics of self-care, then you need to make a LIFESTYLE change first to find out if that’s what’s causing your pain. We were created to be healthy and feel good, but we need to take care of ourselves. Here’s that photo magnified.

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Speaking of sweat, if you can get to a SAUNA after you exercise, even better. If not, no worries. Can’t get to a sauna?  Take a long hot shower or hot bubble bath with Epsom salt afterwards. They now make Epson salt with bubbles.

Try Dr. Teal’s. It contains Magnesium, which can only be absorbed through the skin. CVS sells it. It costs about six dollars. Smells nice too. Like lavender. It’s usually near the soap section. A lot of people lack Magnesium.

Remember, the second you start to feel anxious get up, DRINK WATER, STRETCH, BREATHE and MOVE.  Drink water, even when you’re not thirsty. Go for a walk.

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Photo by Thomas Chauke on Pexels.com

WALK. WALK BRISKLY and TAKE DEEP BREATHES (BREATHE IN…AND HOLD FOR 4 SEC. AND breathe out slowly) until the feeling passes. It will.  You can do this anywhere, even in a tiny room. Stand up. STRETCH AND HOLD. Then, walk. Every cell in your brain and body benefits when you do this. Don’t focus on what you were worried about. Instead, repeat the words “You can do it…” while breathing. Yes, you CAN walk off anxiety.

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Number TWO:  Take a good look in your refrigerator and pantry. Toss out the garbage. You don’t need me to tell you what’s garbage. Sugar, soda, junk food, processed foods, white bread, alcohol, cookies, cake, donuts, potato chips.

NOW replace those things with healthy go-to items like alkaline water, almonds, walnuts, blueberries, strawberries, greek yogurt without sugar in lieu of ice-cream or cottage cheese, veggie sticks instead of regular chips, cook veggies in olive oil and garlic, green tea.

Veggie sticks are so yummy I regret blogging about them because like everything else I blog about –it’s suddenly SOLD OUT on store shelves the next day.

I’ve blogged about emotional eating in the past and which foods to reach for when you feel a certain emotion because having different emotions are part of being a human being. Don’t let anyone numb them with pills.

The healthiest thing you can do is try all the good stuff first, because the good stuff works.

The good stuff is what they mean when they say the proof is in the pudding.

 

Proven healthy lifestyles are proven time and time again from centenarians and those of us who are healthy.

If someone gets through their 40’s and 50’s feeling great with natural energy and no prescription medications they are doing something right.

Unfortunately, there are males and females in their 20’s and 30’s who still think how they look, even if it’s through plastic surgery, or extreme dieting, makes them healthy. Health magazines (which I no longer buy) fuel this misinformation by placing these cropped top people on their covers. That’s insecurity, folks.

The good news is what it means to really be healthy is rising above all that noise.

As I predicted decades ago, the world has shifted conscientiousness regarding health. Take a look at this circle. There’s no bikini in it. There are no six or twelve pack abs for men.

HEALTH comes from inside and it doesn’t need external approval.

There is no longer any denying how interconnected the following are:

 

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Every generation goes through the same feelings as the one before them, so it’s time to start educating ourselves on how to LIVE HEALTHY and PREVENT ILLNESS while living in a crazy world.  Even if we live in a healthy bubble and try to shield ourselves from all the craziness –there is no escaping it. Even family members, friends, partner, colleagues, boss, kids, parents, strangers driving near you on the road  can infiltrate your peace. You can’t control that.

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The healthiest advice anyone can give you is DON’T REACT. The calm one is the healthy one.  Did someone less qualified get a position you earned, because they’re related to or know someone? Don’t react. Don’t despair.  Didn’t close a deal when something less deserving did? Same thing. It may make you angry. You’ll want to grab a bag of chips or drown your sorrows in ice cream.

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Keep your pantry or refrigerator stocked with healthy stuff you can grab instead. A bag of cherries, a large bowl of blueberries or those veggie sticks I told you about earlier.  You can snack on a ginormous bowl of these thing and not be left feeling even worse afterwards, as you will with regular chips and junk food.

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Number THREE: Turn off TV. Get out in nature instead or read a good book. I’ve been reading a book a day since I was a kid. I thought everyone did until my younger brother laughed and said I was crazy and people are lucky if they read one a year.

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Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Fine.  Then, make it one positive book a year.

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Photo by Leah Kelley on Pexels.com

 

Keep that ONE book on your nightstand and reread it when you need inspiration. For non-readers I recommend you start with, “The 7 Laws of Spiritual Success” by Deepak Chopra. I used to give them out as gifts. Little gem of a book. Then, get “The Four Agreements.” These are 2 books you can re-read during stressful times.

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My book, “Healthy Within” is one every celebrity who writes a Tell All Memoir should read. The reason is I never mention my ex’s name, or what actually happened. No details. Why? That part is not important. That part is no one’s business. What’s important is how to get through anything that at the time feels like a personal or professional tsunami.

That is the HEAL part in HEALthy. Other than that, it’s tabloid toxicity.

When you’re blaming someone else or pointing out all of your ex’s flaws, people reading it are actually cringing.  No one wants someone in they’re in an intimate relationship with to write a kiss and tell, so to speak.  There are two people in a relationship or marriage. Two.

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Advice to Demi.  Let.It.Go

I don’t know who advised her to write this in the first place. It feels like something that should have never been made public. When someone is in the public eye and they reveal they were someone entirely different than we believed them to be –it feels like WE were lied to and betrayed. So, I felt more let down from who I thought Demi Moore was than anything having to do with Ashton. Even when the other person betrays you it’s enough to know it was a betrayal –we don’t need details, thank you.  I would have passed on this book. I’m an avid reader and have zero desire to buy it.

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Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Back to self-care. Fuel your body and brain daily with nutritious foods. What does healthy food look like? Here are a few visuals.

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Photo by Artem Bulbfish on Pexels.com

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And do not forget how important SLEEP is…

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NUMBER FOUR: REST. NAP. SLEEP. Allow your brain and body to shut down and reset itself just like you do when your computer has lost it’s charge or starts acting up.  Shut it down. Anyone who brags about only getting or needing little sleep isn’t healthy. Every cell in your brain and body is created to regenerate and health itself, but you need to sleep and shut it down in order for it to do what it does naturally. It’s called Beauty Sleep for a reason.

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I’ve blogged about foods that help you sleep. If you’re a late-nigh snacker keep bananas, cottage cheese, blueberries and a bag of cherries in your pantry, along with decaf organic tea. Turn off all electronics 2 hours before a set time. Keep the room you sleep in a little chilly. Wear eye shades. Take that hot bath with lavender and you will crash naturally.

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If you are on any type of anti-anxiety or depression medication it needs to be under the supervision of a physician, who should ONLY prescribe TEMPORARY low-dose if you are in crisis mode, say after the death of a loved one or other tragedy. It needs to be in combination with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, fancy word for Talk Therapy, to taper you off prescribed medication.

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Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

It’s not dealing with what is causing your anxiety or depression. What’s causing it is change and stress from it. That change can come from work, finances, seasons, relationships, age, moving, parenthood –anything in life.

That’s why it’s natural and you need to LEARN healthy coping mechanisms for LIFE. Having a trusted confidante in life to go through ups and downs also helps keep your brain and body in top form.

Healthy relationships are a wonderful buffer against daily stressors in life. It’s having someone in your life to talk to, bounce ideas off of and be there during good times and bad. Healthy relationships proven to be a positive  constant in a sea of change. Positive because healthy relationships release all the feel good chemicals and hormones in your body and brain. Love releases oxytocin. When you have LOVE and commitment everything is less stressful.

So what do you do when you don’t have a trusted hand to hold during it all?

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Photo by Jasmine Wallace Carter on Pexels.com

Revert to the Four Tips solo, because HEALTHY attracts HEALTHY. Be your best you in mind, body and spirit.  Work on healing any past hurts. Put them in the past. Forgive. Move on. YOU need to BE that which you want to attract. Think about that. You want a healthy, intelligent, kind, independent, fun, supportive, honest, loving, faithful, committed, loyal, trustworthy partner?

BE that.

Photo by Rosie Ann on Pexels.com

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When your friends and the people you surround yourself with are healthy –you’ll learn healthy coping mechanisms, even through observing their habits. HealthDay

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Photo by Mircea Iancu on Pexels.com

Post note: I love tea and have blogged about the benefits of tea and my favorites in the past. USA Today and Washington Post now says tea bags contain plastic and that it is toxic. I cut right to the bottom to find out which brands contain plastic bags because not all of them do. Here are brands to avoid.

Mostly, it’s those cute triangle bags. Apparently, it looks like they are made out of paper, but it’s plastic that holds them together. They are cute. Recently, a restaurant served me on that looked was so cute. I commented asking how it was held together Now we know.

Avoid brands in RED

“So which tea bags contain plastic?

Brands that use plastic sealants include Tetley, Twinings’ ‘heat-sealed’ and ‘string and tag’ ranges, Yorkshire Tea and some Aldi tea bags.

Co-Op and PG Tips have all switched to 100% compostable bags.

Abel & Cole and Teapigs using plant-based SoilOn and Clipper makes a plastic-free teabag made from bananas, while some Tetley and Twinings ranges are biodegradable.

But if you want to be absolutely sure your tea is plastic free, loose leaves are the best way to go.”       [Source: USA Today, September 2019]

It’s not all tea and it’s not all brands, so get past their hype to the facts. Then, get back to:

Remember, when you have a bad day, week, month or year –don’t call it a bad life. Think of it as a bad season, like leaves falling off a branch in Fall. What do you need for leaves to grow back?  Oxygen, water, nourishment, sunshine. Nourish yourself every day and your leaves will return one day at a time. You got this!

Stay healthy!

blog contact: maria.dorfner@yahoo.com

 

Top 10 Safe Tea Brands

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Great news. There are still safe pesticide-free tea brands out there, and my favorite, Yogi tea is on there.

 

Top 10 Safe Tea Brands by Tammy Catania

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Testing Teas for Pesticides

According to a 2014 report done by CBC Marketplace pesticides in some tea exceed the allowable limit.

CBC had 10 different teas tested by an accredited lab, the lab used the same testing method as the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.

Half of the teas tested contained pesticide residues above the allowable limits in Canada. As per the test results eight of the 10 brands tested contained multiple chemicals, with one brand containing residues of 22 different pesticides. (1)

But what actually is the allowable pesticide residue in tea? As per the Canadian Food Inspection Agency, it is 0.1ppm. (2)

Other Countries Are Banning These Ingredients

Two of the chemicals that they found are actually in the process of being banned in other countries.

One of the chemicals found was Endosulfan.

This chemical is one of the most toxic pesticides on the market today. It is responsible for many fatal pesticide poisoning incidents around the world.

Endosulfan is also a xenoestrogen—a synthetic substance that imitates or enhances the effect of estrogens—and it can act as an endocrine disruptor, causing reproductive and developmental damage in both animals and humans. (3)

The second chemical they found was Monocrotophos. It is acutely toxic to birds and humans. Being also a persistent organic pollutant, it has been banned in the U.S. and many other countries (4)

Top brands of tea that CBC Marketplace had tested

  • Uncle Lee’s Legends of China – Green tea and Jasmine green tea
  • No Name- Black tea
  • King Cole- Orange pekoe
  • Signal- Orange pekoe two cups
  • Twinlings- Earl grey
  • Lipton- Pure green tea and Yellow label black tea
  • Red Rose – Orange pekoe
  • Tetley- Pure green tea

Out of all the teas that were tested, the only one that came back clean was the Red Rose Pekoe. (Here is the full test report from CBC marketplaces lab.)

Did you know that pesticides have been linked to a wide range of human health hazards, ranging from short-term impacts such as headaches and nausea to chronic impacts like cancer, reproductive harm, and endocrine disruption.

Some of the Acute dangers – such as nerve, skin, and eye irritation and damage, headaches, dizziness, nausea, fatigue, and systemic poisoning – can sometimes be dramatic, and even occasionally fatal. (5)

Some of the symptoms of Mild Poisoning or Early Symptoms of Acute Poisoning are headache, fatigue, weakness, dizziness, restlessness, nervousness, perspiration, nausea, diarrhea, loss of appetite, loss of weight, thirst, moodiness, soreness in joints, skin irritation, eye irritation, irritation of the nose and throat.

 

Another great place to get amazingly healthy, pesticide tea is from Mountain Rose Herbs.

How to Know if Your Tea Is Safe

  1. Look for the certified organic label on the package so you know that your tea was cultivated without harmful chemicals. You can find information on Organic certification here http://www.pro-cert.org/en/tea
  2. You can grow your own herbs and make your own tea.garden
  3. Research the brands you plan on purchasing. The Environmental Working group has many teas and their ingredient and toxic levels listed. Also, they have a great App that you can use when out at a store shopping.tea7
  4. Do be careful of buying tea that is grown in China or India, even if they state they are organic. Here is some information on the pesticide use in India, and here is some information on the pesticide use in China .

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Thank you registered holistic dietician, Tammy Catania. Stay healthy!

 

Health Benefits of Spinning and How To Do It Right

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spin13These Spin tips will keep you sweating, smiling and secure knowing you’re doing it right.

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First, here’s a little history on how Spinning was first created. Back in the ’90’s medical anchor, Ileana Bravo and I interviewed the founder of something people in Miami were talking about called “Spinning.”  We produced a health segment for NBC Miami and interviewed the Founder of it.  His name was Johnny G.

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The TODAY SHOW picked up the Miami story and spinning spun off nationwide. Johnny G. wanted other people to be able to reach their champion within from anywhere the same way he desired to after being sidelined in a car accident.

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The founder, Johnny G’s full name is Johnny Goldberg. He was a champion endurance bicycle racer. His passion to create a different type of indoor bike was ignited after he was hit by a car while training on his bike outdoors at night.

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Following that accident, Johnny G. spent ten years developing the right type of indoor cycle that would feel like his real road bike.

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The Spinner® bike officially launched in NYC in 1993 and was offered at Crunch Gyms.

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Here’s what it looks like.

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Spinning is still hotter than ever because of all of the above and more.

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Print

Now you know why it’s so popular with men and women. Here’s how to do it right.

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Proper set-up and form helps you avoid injury and maximize all those health perks.

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Everyone can benefit from a few expert tips. Numero Uno:  Warm up.

Best Warm Up Moves Before a Spinning Bike Class

by Brian Willett

Warm-up moves can help you burn more calories, reduce risk of injury, and improve your performance on the bike. Of course, certain warm-up moves will be more effective than others, so choosing well is important.

Quadriceps Moves

Your quadriceps — the large group of four muscles on the front of your thighs — drives the motion of spinning workouts, providing power to move the pedals. You can get your quadriceps ready for spinning with body-weight squats, light pedaling and the standing quadriceps stretch. To perform that stretch, stand with one hand leaning on a wall for support, and the other hand holding your foot to your buttocks so you are standing on one leg. Be sure to flex your knee completely when performing the standing quadriceps stretch to ensure you are fully stretching the muscle.

Hamstrings Moves

Your hamstrings are located on the back of your upper leg, and like the quadriceps, they are involved in every pedal stroke when spinning. An easy way to get your hamstrings ready for spinning is to bend over and touch your toes. You can also sit down and perform a sit-and-reach motion. According to a study from the February 2005 edition of the “Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research,” performing static stretches rather than dynamic moves is preferable for improving flexibility.

Back Moves

Your back muscles have to work hard to maintain proper posterior chain alignment and prevent you from slouching over when you ride. Thus, it’s important that you warm up your back muscles to prepare them for that work. You can stretch your back muscles in several ways, such as by lying on your back and pulling your knees to your chest, or doing the cat-cow stretch.

Shoulder Moves

Although your shoulders don’t push the pedals, they do help support your upper body while you ride and assist in steering. Moves such as jumping jacks, arm circles, and extending your arms behind your back as far as you can will help you get your shoulders loose and ready for your spinning class.

Calf Moves

The muscles of your calves are small, but they can produce a lot of power when cycling. Both squats and jumping jacks can help warm up your calves, but you may also wish to perform calf stretches while leaning against a wall. To do so, put both hands on a wall and lean into the wall, with one leg bent at the knee and one extended fully back.

 

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Now that you’re warmed up, I spoke with expert Spin Instructor, Julie Insogna.

Now that you’re warmed up, I spoke with Spin Instructor, Julie Insogna about your next move:

QUESTION:

FIRST, TELL US WHEN AND WHY YOU GOT INTERESTED IN SPINNING?

JULIE INSOGNA:

QUESTION:

WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF SPINNING?

JULIE INSOGNA:

QUESTION:

WHAT’S THE FIRST THING SOMEONE SHOULD DO WHEN ENTERING A SPIN CLASS?

JULIE INSOGNA:

QUESTION:

WHAT’S THE SECOND THING THEY NEED TO DO?

JULIE INSOGNA:

QUESTION:

THIRD?
JULIE INSOGNA:

QUESTION:

ANYTHING ELSE SPINNERS NEED TO KNOW?

JULIE INSOGNA:

QUESTION:

WHERE CAN PEOPLE TAKE YOUR CLASS OR FIND OUT MORE ABOUT IT?

 

Thanks, Julie!  

More Great Spin Tips by Deb Cheslow:

What to Wear in Spin Class

spin3When you first start spin, you might want to wear padded cycle shorts as the saddle takes some getting used to.

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Most spin classes have bikes with pedals that accommodate people in sneakers in addition to one or two types of cycle clips that attach to cycling shoes.

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When we first started spin, we wore sneakers for a couple months before making the commitment to buy the shoes. In hindsight, we would have purchased those “spin shoes” much sooner, as you have so much more leverage and less wiggling when you’re clipped into the spin pedals. It also puts much less stress on your shins and toes!

How to Set Up Your Bike

Spin class bikes are not beach cruisers. You don’t want your knees crumpled; you don’t even want them at a 90-degree angle.

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You want your knees to be slightly extended but not so much that you can’t put full pressure on the down stroke of your pedal.

 

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Most spin enthusiasts also bring their bike handles up higher than they would a road or mountain bike to accommodate running out of the saddle (we’ll get to this in a minute).

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And, make sure that you’re not reaching dramatically to those handlebars when you’re seated on the bike.

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Everything is adjustable and this is where it’s most important that your spin instructor get you dialed in.

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Spin is All About Tension and Tempo

Your spin instructor expects you to keep tempo with the song so that everyone in the class is on the correct “leg” for certain activities.

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Tension knobs on the bike will take you from no tension to “drag” (where you begin to feel tension or “the road” as they call it) and subsequent turns up from there make the ride increasingly “steep.”

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While no beginner in spin class is expected to keep high tempo AND tension like the advanced riders are accustomed to, you want to work your way into higher tension as it burns more fat and enhances your cardio workout.

Initially, though, just focus on the tempo, right, left, right left, right left, march!

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About Jogging, Sprinting and Running Out of the Saddle in Spin Class

 

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Spin usually requires seated climbs and runs as well as “running out of the saddle” where you’re actually jogging or sprinting while standing above the saddle of the bike.

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For beginners, the runs out of the saddle can be too demanding.

DON’T LET PEER PRESSURE CONVINCE YOU TO RUN WHEN YOU’RE NOT READY TO.

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Most spin enthusiasts have been doing this a long time, BUT they started right where you are starting. When you try to run out of the saddle at the same amount of time or distance these “regulars” are accustomed to, you can hurt yourself.

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Swallow your pride and stay in the saddle, keeping tempo and increasing your tension slightly until you feel you can take on a jog initially for a few given seconds. Build up from there!

When you begin to run out of the saddle, do NOT lean your body weight (or your elbows!) on your handlebars.

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This puts too much torque on your knees and can damage them. Rest your hands lightly on the handlebars and focus on sitting back, above the saddle, so the strong leg muscles of your quads and hamstrings are doing the work.

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Your spin class instructor will take you on intermittent (and imaginary, of course) hills, downhills and road runs.

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At times, he or she will ask you to do intervals where you sit in the saddle for a number of counts, then run above the saddle for the same number of counts – and sometimes, these counts can be just 2 or 4!

Remember the rules during intervals (or “jumps”) – if you’re not ready, sit your butt down and just keep pedaling.

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If you are ready, try a few, making sure you don’t lean on the handlebars.

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About “Hill Climbing” in Spin Class

Sitting on the saddle and pedaling in spin class does not necessarily mean you’re resting or “recovering.”

In fact, riding “in the saddle” with solid tension will burn more calories than sprinting.

 

A good spin instructor will methodically increase tension as you ride in the saddle, effectively making you feel like you’re pedaling up an increasingly steep hill.

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In these situations, you want to protect your knees once again by sitting as far back on the saddle as you can.

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By doing so, you’re  taking the pressure of the climb off your knees and re-depositing it where it belongs – in the strong muscles of your rear end. (And last time we checked, most people didn’t need to do much toning of their knee caps.)

Beware These Spin Instructor Indiscretions …

If your spin class instructor suddenly changes counts or actions, consider that a red flag – your instructor should give you full and fair warning in advance as to what’s coming up at least a few counts down the road.

As an example, we have a great (certified) spin instructor who’s been teaching for years. As one song ends and the other begins, he might say, “This is an interval run in the saddle and out of the saddle with 30 seconds up, and 30 seconds’ recovery in between.”

Then, as the song plays, he will be adding comments such as, “Next round is just 20 seconds up, same recovery.”  It’s enough to keep you informed and keep you hanging on knowing that the NEXT song will be a completely different action!

Some spin instructors will also make the error of doing extreme activities for too long. (Personally, we think this is an ego thing where they’re more concerned with looking better than the rest of the class riders than actually guiding the riders and watching the riders for signs of fatigue.)

As an example, we’ve been in classes with spin instructors who sprint (at least double-time to the beat of the song) out of the saddle for the entirety of the song. If it’s a short song around 2 minutes, and if the spin instructor offers optional breaks to sit down during the course of the song, that’s OK.

If, however, they insist on everyone in the class sprinting for a long duration, even the most advanced riders will have difficulty maintaining proper form.

In other cases, you might see a spin instructor insist on short intervals with 2 beats in the saddle and 2 beats above the saddle for several minutes at a time. An extended session of “jumps” can cause any rider to break good form, thus putting the knees at risk.

Again, if it begins to feel too much for you or a particular session of activity (jumps or sprints or hill climbing) is forcing you out of maintaining correct posture and form, SIT DOWN!

spinning4

Then, as you try different classes with different instructors, you will begin to see which instructors are actually the best teachers. Even as they push you and do advanced work, they are still watching their riders to ensure safety and fun.

This brings another point to mind: Only take spin classes where the instructor is situated to watch the riders during the class. He or she will either be riding with the group and facing a mirror, or the spin instructor can position the bike to face the riders. It’s important that the gym provide this aspect in the spin class.

Music Can Be Key

Every spin instructor has a different style and collection of music. If you don’t like the style or can’t stand the music, move on. Because spin is built on the tempo of the songs, when you like what you’re hearing, you’re better able to keep the pace.

When you’re in a spin class with an instructor you enjoy and music that’s more to your liking, you’ll find the hour zips by. (Honest!)

Stick With It!

When you’re a beginner, try not to quit and leave the spin class (though no one will call you names if you do). Just sit down in the saddle, take the tension down, and continue to peddle through the end of the class if you can.

You’ll be prouder of yourself for enduring, and you can push yourself in the next class to stay up and in the class activity another few moments. Give yourself permission to build into this activity and you’ll find that you enjoy it more each time.

spin17

ccf22

 

I also spoke with an expert from the Cleveland Clinic about spinning’s health benefits.

 

Don’t forget to bring water to spin class. There’s a holder for it on bike.

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Recommended Links:  

“7 THINGS YOU’RE DOING WRONG IN SPIN CLASS”
https://www.wellandgood.com/good-sweat/7-things-youre-doing-wrong-in-spin-class-and-how-to-fix-them/

 

Johnny G. himself has an instruction video and  Spinning Instructor Certification info at:
http://spinning.com/johnny-g-live/

spinning7

Thanks Johnny G. for keeping us sweating and smiling.

 

You can find a variety of Spin Shoes & Shorts on Amazon at:
https://www.amazon.com

 

Now you know why…

 

spinning20

And why you should too!

One thing I forgot to mention is you will absolutely loathe your first spinning class. It will be hard. You will ache. You may walk out of a class early. You might exclaim, “Never again!” But, as with anything worthwhile, if you commit to it, the rewards are worth it.

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Your physical and mental endurance will keep getting stronger as you look back on that first day and laugh in disbelief because classes go real fast for you now.

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“Unleash the champion within.” ~Johnny G

dietsoda31

blog contact:  maria.dorfner@yahoo.com

BE SURE TO TUNE IN TO GOOD MORNING AMERICA NEXT WEDNESDAY WHEN THE ARTIST OF MY FAVORITE SPINNING SONG RIGHT NOW WILL PERFORM: . LIVE. Only on 💃

gmalogo

 

 

 

Why Spinning Is Hot & How To Do It Well

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spin13These Spin tips will keep you sweating, smiling and secure knowing you’re doing it right.

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First, here’s a little history on how Spinning was first created. Back in the ’90’s medical anchor, Ileana Bravo and I interviewed the founder of something people in Miami were talking about called “Spinning.”  We produced a health segment for NBC Miami and interviewed the Founder of it.  His name was Johnny G.

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The TODAY SHOW picked up the Miami story and spinning spun off nationwide. Johnny G. wanted other people to be able to reach their champion within from anywhere the same way he desired to after being sidelined in a car accident.

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The founder, Johnny G’s full name is Johnny Goldberg. He was a champion endurance bicycle racer. His passion to create a different type of indoor bike was ignited after he was hit by a car while training on his bike outdoors at night.

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Following that accident, Johnny G. spent ten years developing the right type of indoor cycle that would feel like his real road bike.

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The Spinner® bike officially launched in NYC in 1993 and was offered at Crunch Gyms.

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Here’s what the bike looks like.

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Spinning is still hotter than ever because of all of the above and more.

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Print

Now you know why it’s so popular with men and women. Here’s how to do it right.

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Proper set-up and form helps you avoid injury and maximize all those health perks.

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Everyone can benefit from a few expert tips. Numero Uno:  Warm up.

Best Warm Up Moves Before Spinning

by Brian Willett

Warm-up moves can help you burn more calories, reduce risk of injury, and improve your performance on the bike. Of course, certain warm-up moves will be more effective than others, so choosing well is important.

Quadriceps Moves

Your quadriceps — the large group of four muscles on the front of your thighs — drives the motion of spinning workouts, providing power to move the pedals. You can get your quadriceps ready for spinning with body-weight squats, light pedaling and the standing quadriceps stretch. To perform that stretch, stand with one hand leaning on a wall for support, and the other hand holding your foot to your buttocks so you are standing on one leg. Be sure to flex your knee completely when performing the standing quadriceps stretch to ensure you are fully stretching the muscle.

Hamstrings Moves

Your hamstrings are located on the back of your upper leg, and like the quadriceps, they are involved in every pedal stroke when spinning. An easy way to get your hamstrings ready for spinning is to bend over and touch your toes. You can also sit down and perform a sit-and-reach motion. According to a study from the February 2005 edition of the “Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research,” performing static stretches rather than dynamic moves is preferable for improving flexibility.

Back Moves

Your back muscles have to work hard to maintain proper posterior chain alignment and prevent you from slouching over when you ride. Thus, it’s important that you warm up your back muscles to prepare them for that work. You can stretch your back muscles in several ways, such as by lying on your back and pulling your knees to your chest, or doing the cat-cow stretch.

Shoulder Moves

Although your shoulders don’t push the pedals, they do help support your upper body while you ride and assist in steering. Moves such as jumping jacks, arm circles, and extending your arms behind your back as far as you can will help you get your shoulders loose and ready for your spinning class.

Calf Moves

The muscles of your calves are small, but they can produce a lot of power when cycling. Both squats and jumping jacks can help warm up your calves, but you may also wish to perform calf stretches while leaning against a wall. To do so, put both hands on a wall and lean into the wall, with one leg bent at the knee and one extended fully back.

 

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Now that you’re warmed up, I spoke with Spin Instructor Pro, Julie Insogna to get more tips:



FIRST, TELL US WHEN AND WHY YOU GOT INTERESTED IN SPINNING?

Thank you, Julie Insogna!

 

NEXT, MORE GREAT SPIN TIPS BY DEB CHESLOW:

What to Wear in Spin Class

spin3When you first start spin, you might want to wear padded cycle shorts as the saddle takes some getting used to.

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Most spin classes have bikes with pedals that accommodate people in sneakers in addition to one or two types of cycle clips that attach to cycling shoes.

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When we first started spin, we wore sneakers for a couple months before making the commitment to buy the shoes. In hindsight, we would have purchased those “spin shoes” much sooner, as you have so much more leverage and less wiggling when you’re clipped into the spin pedals. It also puts much less stress on your shins and toes!

How to Set Up Your Bike

Spin class bikes are not beach cruisers. You don’t want your knees crumpled; you don’t even want them at a 90-degree angle.

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You want your knees to be slightly extended but not so much that you can’t put full pressure on the down stroke of your pedal.

 

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Most spin enthusiasts also bring their bike handles up higher than they would a road or mountain bike to accommodate running out of the saddle (we’ll get to this in a minute).

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And, make sure that you’re not reaching dramatically to those handlebars when you’re seated on the bike.

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Everything is adjustable and this is where it’s most important that your spin instructor get you dialed in.

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Spin is All About Tension and Tempo

Your spin instructor expects you to keep tempo with the song so that everyone in the class is on the correct “leg” for certain activities.

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Tension knobs on the bike will take you from no tension to “drag” (where you begin to feel tension or “the road” as they call it) and subsequent turns up from there make the ride increasingly “steep.”

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While no beginner in spin class is expected to keep high tempo AND tension like the advanced riders are accustomed to, you want to work your way into higher tension as it burns more fat and enhances your cardio workout.

Initially, though, just focus on the tempo, right, left, right left, right left, march!

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About Jogging, Sprinting and Running Out of the Saddle in Spin Class

 

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Spin usually requires seated climbs and runs as well as “running out of the saddle” where you’re actually jogging or sprinting while standing above the saddle of the bike.

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For beginners, the runs out of the saddle can be too demanding.

DON’T LET PEER PRESSURE CONVINCE YOU TO RUN WHEN YOU’RE NOT READY TO.

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Most spin enthusiasts have been doing this a long time, BUT they started right where you are starting. When you try to run out of the saddle at the same amount of time or distance these “regulars” are accustomed to, you can hurt yourself.

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Swallow your pride and stay in the saddle, keeping tempo and increasing your tension slightly until you feel you can take on a jog initially for a few given seconds. Build up from there!

When you begin to run out of the saddle, do NOT lean your body weight (or your elbows!) on your handlebars.

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This puts too much torque on your knees and can damage them. Rest your hands lightly on the handlebars and focus on sitting back, above the saddle, so the strong leg muscles of your quads and hamstrings are doing the work.

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Your spin class instructor will take you on intermittent (and imaginary, of course) hills, downhills and road runs.

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At times, he or she will ask you to do intervals where you sit in the saddle for a number of counts, then run above the saddle for the same number of counts – and sometimes, these counts can be just 2 or 4!

Remember the rules during intervals (or “jumps”) – if you’re not ready, sit your butt down and just keep pedaling.

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If you are ready, try a few, making sure you don’t lean on the handlebars.

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About “Hill Climbing” in Spin Class

Sitting on the saddle and pedaling in spin class does not necessarily mean you’re resting or “recovering.”

In fact, riding “in the saddle” with solid tension will burn more calories than sprinting.

 

A good spin instructor will methodically increase tension as you ride in the saddle, effectively making you feel like you’re pedaling up an increasingly steep hill.

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In these situations, you want to protect your knees once again by sitting as far back on the saddle as you can.

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By doing so, you’re  taking the pressure of the climb off your knees and re-depositing it where it belongs – in the strong muscles of your rear end. (And last time we checked, most people didn’t need to do much toning of their knee caps.)

Beware These Spin Instructor Indiscretions …

If your spin class instructor suddenly changes counts or actions, consider that a red flag – your instructor should give you full and fair warning in advance as to what’s coming up at least a few counts down the road.

As an example, we have a great (certified) spin instructor who’s been teaching for years. As one song ends and the other begins, he might say, “This is an interval run in the saddle and out of the saddle with 30 seconds up, and 30 seconds’ recovery in between.”

Then, as the song plays, he will be adding comments such as, “Next round is just 20 seconds up, same recovery.”  It’s enough to keep you informed and keep you hanging on knowing that the NEXT song will be a completely different action!

Some spin instructors will also make the error of doing extreme activities for too long. (Personally, we think this is an ego thing where they’re more concerned with looking better than the rest of the class riders than actually guiding the riders and watching the riders for signs of fatigue.)

As an example, we’ve been in classes with spin instructors who sprint (at least double-time to the beat of the song) out of the saddle for the entirety of the song. If it’s a short song around 2 minutes, and if the spin instructor offers optional breaks to sit down during the course of the song, that’s OK.

If, however, they insist on everyone in the class sprinting for a long duration, even the most advanced riders will have difficulty maintaining proper form.

In other cases, you might see a spin instructor insist on short intervals with 2 beats in the saddle and 2 beats above the saddle for several minutes at a time. An extended session of “jumps” can cause any rider to break good form, thus putting the knees at risk.

Again, if it begins to feel too much for you or a particular session of activity (jumps or sprints or hill climbing) is forcing you out of maintaining correct posture and form, SIT DOWN!

spinning4

Then, as you try different classes with different instructors, you will begin to see which instructors are actually the best teachers. Even as they push you and do advanced work, they are still watching their riders to ensure safety and fun.

This brings another point to mind: Only take spin classes where the instructor is situated to watch the riders during the class. He or she will either be riding with the group and facing a mirror, or the spin instructor can position the bike to face the riders. It’s important that the gym provide this aspect in the spin class.

Music Can Be Key

Every spin instructor has a different style and collection of music. If you don’t like the style or can’t stand the music, move on. Because spin is built on the tempo of the songs, when you like what you’re hearing, you’re better able to keep the pace.

When you’re in a spin class with an instructor you enjoy and music that’s more to your liking, you’ll find the hour zips by. (Honest!)

Stick With It!

When you’re a beginner, try not to quit and leave the spin class (though no one will call you names if you do). Just sit down in the saddle, take the tension down, and continue to peddle through the end of the class if you can.

You’ll be prouder of yourself for enduring, and you can push yourself in the next class to stay up and in the class activity another few moments. Give yourself permission to build into this activity and you’ll find that you enjoy it more each time.

Recommended Links:  

“7 THINGS YOU’RE DOING WRONG IN SPIN CLASS”
https://www.wellandgood.com/good-sweat/7-things-youre-doing-wrong-in-spin-class-and-how-to-fix-them/

 

Johnny G. himself has an instruction video and  Spinning Instructor Certification info at:
http://spinning.com/johnny-g-live/

spinning7

Thanks Johnny G. for keeping us sweating and smiling.

 

You can find a variety of Spin Shoes & Shorts on Amazon at:
https://www.amazon.com

 

Now you know why…

 

spinning20

And why you should too!

One thing I forgot to mention is you may loathe your first spinning class. It will be hard. You will ache. You may walk out of a class early. You might exclaim, “Never again!” But, as with anything worthwhile, as we’ve heard from Spinning Pro, Julie Insogna, Co-Owner of Prime Cycle in Hoboken, NJ — if you commit to it, the rewards are worth it.

spinning22

Your physical and mental endurance will keep getting stronger.

spin2

“Unleash the champion within.” ~Johnny G

 

Be sure to tune into Good Morning America next Wednesday when my the artist of my favorite Spinning tune will be performing LIVE!

dietsoda31

blog contact:  maria.dorfner@yahoo.com

I Love Watermelon. Why You Should Too.

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Ah, watermelon.  So refreshing on hot summer days.  Love it.

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So, it’s great to know it’s jam-packed with health benefits, including reducing muscle soreness the day after a workout.  Fellow fitness enthusiasts rejoice.

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According to a study in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, the amino acids citrulline and arginine in watermelon, help improve circulation. That’s not all.

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A prior study published in the Journal of Applied Physiology reports watermelon’s citrulline may also help improve your athletic performance.

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Study showed improved performance in high-intensity exercises like cycling & sprinting.

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It also contains amino acids, which you need to make protein function optimally.

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Watermelons are almost 100 percent water, and everyone knows I love H2O.

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Other nutrients worth noting are Vitamins C, B6, A, lycopene (the redder the watermelon, the more lycopene!), antioxidants, and potassium. Zero fat.

 

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Lycopene is tied to reducing prostate cancer cell proliferation.  Source: Nat’l Cancer Institute. 

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Good electrolytes help prevent heat stroke. Great choice when temps rise.

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Watermelon also contains choline. That helps lower chronic inflammation.

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A study published in the American Journal of Hypertension found watermelon lowers blood pressure in obese adults and helps reduce hypertension.  Stress can cause inflammation flareups in your body. Anti-inflammatory foods help reduce that.

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Just like exercise. Walking outdoors in nature (pollution also causes inflammation), preferably laughing with loved ones or friends is great for your health and well-being.

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When you lower stress, you lower inflammation and pain in your body.

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And there’s another benefit for your looks.

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According to Cleveland Clinic Vitamin A and C in watermelon are great for your hair and skin. It keeps it moisturized from the inside and promotes new collagen and elastin cells. Just one cup contains nearly one-quarter of your recommended daily intake.

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It increases blood flow, which is heart healthy. And fiber in it keeps you regular.

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And if that’s not enough, a study published in Menopause found postmenopausal women benefit from improved blood flow and reduce their accumulation of excess fat from the arginine and citrulline in watermelon.

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Women in the study who took watermelon extract for six weeks saw decreased blood pressure and arterial stiffness compared to those who did not take watermelon extract.

WALK1

Make sure the watermelon is ripe and red, which means higher concentrations of phenolic antioxidant, beta-carotene and lycopene.

Tomatoes, another favorite, are also high in lycopene.

One cup of cooked tomato contains almost 25 mg. One fresh tomato contains 3.7 mg. Again, lycopene reduces inflammation in your body and builds your immune system.

 

tomatos

These dessert options at get togethers keep family and friends healthy.

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Healthy choices make you feel your best. Select a variety of fruits & veggies.

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Disclosure:  I haven’t been paid to sell you watermelon.  I really do love it. Just to be fair, here are OTHER amazing hydrating foods.

Adults need one & 1/2 to 2 cups of fruit each day, so mix it up!

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Don’t forget too much watermelon will leave you feeling bloated.
So, stick with the recommended amount.

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Again,  that’s 2 cups of diced watermelon OR
a small 1-inch thick wedge of sliced melon.

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If you have Diabetes Medline.com did a terrific article called “Can I Eat Watermelon If I Have Diabetes?”  The following is an excerpt from it, but I highly recommend reading the full article at:

http://www.healthline.com/health/diabetes/watermelon-and-diabetes

Although eating watermelon has its benefits, you should consider balancing your diet with fruits that have a lower GI. Be sure to pick up fresh fruit wherever possible, as it doesn’t have any added sugars.

If you want to buy canned or frozen fruit, remember to opt for canned fruits soaking in fruit juice over syrup. Be sure to read the label carefully and look for hidden sugars.

Dried fruit and fruit juice should be consumed less often than fresh fruit. This is due to calorie density, sugar concentration, and smaller recommended portion sizes.

What are other diabetes-friendly fruits?

Diabetes-friendly fruits with a low GI include:

  • plums: 2 whole plums have a GI of 24 and a GL of 4
  • grapefruit: 1 average size has a GI of 25 and a GL of 7
  • peaches: 1 large peach has a GI of 28 and a GL of 5
  • apricots: 5 whole apricots have a GI of 34 and a GL of 6
  • pears: 1 small pear has a GI of 37 and a GL of 2

And one more bonus. Kids love watermelon too.

watermelonkids

Stay healthy!

maria.dorfner@yahoo.com