With only a the dreaded bathing suit season getting into full swing, it’s time to kick it into high gear. One way you can burn fat is with a great cardio workout. My pick for the season, is with a run. You may be saying to yourself, “I’m not a runner.” But have you ever tried? Two years ago, running was an activity I loathed. I would see people on the waterfront in Hoboken whizzing by and think, “What do they get out of this sport?” It wasn’t until my sister challenged meto the Couch-to-5k that I was forever changed.I started out walking, and slowly increased my pace at time went on. After a few weeks, I was able to run a whole mile without stopping. Today, I am addicted to the mind-clearing, Zen-like experience. I feel stronger, healthier, and better than ever before.If you’re looking to add running to your workout routine, check out www.Couchto5k.com for more information
With a new year, comes a whole slew of some great music festivals.
For the health conscious consumer, going to these events can sometimes be a nightmare. Either you are overwhelmed by an array of local gourmet choices or dismayed by the lack of food that isn’t deep fried.
One thing to remember when you’re out in the summer sun is to try and stay healthy. Lucky for us a lot of festivals now a day they are offering better, more nutritious options for concertgoers with fresh, wholesome ingredients and low calorie options.
Here are some tips to stay on track at your favorite festival this summer:
Drink water! Not only is it usually free, but will also keep you hydrated in the sun.
Bike there! Whether you have your own bike or the festival provides bike valets it is a good way to stay in shape especially if you wind up eating a bunch of crap.
Increase your vegetables. Look for entrees that have more vegetables. Look for the words, natural, and fresh produce when surveying the foodstands. Eat meals that contain a higher ratio of vegetables to meat and refined carbs.
Stay away from the deep fryer: You may be craving those butterfly fries, but remember don’t over indulge in the deep fried foods. If you are there for three days and are eating three meals a day at the festival try to make 2 of the three healthful ones.
Eat a nourishing breakfast. If worse comes to worse and you have no other choices but to eat the unhealthy food at the festival, try to have a filling breakfast so you will not be starving all day. Make sure it has lean protein, complex carbs, and a healthy fat to fill you up. Egg whites with spinach and peanut butter and toast are a great start to your day.
Bring your own food (if possible). Most times these festivals thrive on concergoers purchasing food at the event. However, sometimes you can bring in sealed foods. When in doubt check the festival website FAQ page. That way you wont have to throw away a perfectly good healthy snack before entering the gates.
When you think about healthy food, music may not be the first thing that comes to mind. Sweetgreen is one company who is bringing the two together in a seamless harmony.
Being a health conscious consumer, I am often unsatisfied with the choice of take out food. Most of these establishments consist of items that are high in calories, low in nutrients, fried or covered in unhealthy sauces and toppings. Sweetgreen provides a nutritious alternative to the typical burger and fry joints that line the city streets. This organic farm-to-table salad shop offers nutrient dense foods that are not only good for you but are pretty tasty.
Former Georgetown University students Nicolas Jammet, Jonathan Neman and Nathaniel Ru founded the company in 2007. The idea was born from their belief that the community would benefit from a healthy, delicious, and eco-friendly dining option. They passionately believed it was possible to create “food that fits” – your values, your budget, your tastes, your imagination, and your community. They opened their
first location, a 560-square foot space in Georgetown, just three months out of college. The shop quickly grew a cult-like following, and the threesome went on to open 22 additional locations over the next 6 years.
Today there are 22 locations throughout Washington D.C., Virginia, Maryland, Philadelphia, Boston and NYC. In addition to salads, sweetgreen’s menu includes grain bowls, wraps, seasonal soups and sides, frozen yogurt (sweetflow) and fresh pressed raw juice known as sweetpress.
This company not only resonates with the tastes buds of consumers, but they are doing their part to be ecologically friendly. Their commitment to using only local farmers shows they are committed to the community and sustainability.
Sweetgreen is taking their message of farm-to-table and bringing into the classroom to promote nutrition healthy eating in schools. Educating children about the importance of nutrient dense foods is important in their growth and development.
One of the notable things about this company is their passion for music. In 2010, they founded the sweetlife Festival, an annual celebration of flavorful music and delicious wholesome food. The small line-up of musicians in the parking lot of sweetgreen's second location in D.C quickly grew to become the region's largest music and food festival.
Today, the festival still embodies the same themes of good living, health and well-being, community and sustainability. It has not only featured some great acts, but has a purpose of teaching consumers about the importance of leading a wholesome lifestyle.
The 2014 Festival will be held on May 10th at the Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, MD. Watch the video teaser.
For more information on sweetgreen check out their official website and follow them on twitter for all of the festival updates.
With winter in full swing, many people may be feeling the sting of cold and dark days. Feeling less than your optimal self? It may be a lack of vitamin D that is getting you down.
Don’t fear you can replenish your fat-soluble stores by incorporating vitamin D rich foods into your diet.
An important non-animal source of vitamin D is the mushroom. Just like humans, mushrooms have the ability to generate vitamin D when grown or placed in sunlight. Vitamin D is an important nutrient to the body because it enhances calcium absorption, which in turn strengthens your bones.
Mushrooms naturally contain ergosterol, a steroid found in fungi. When they see sunlight (or another ultra violet (UV) light source) it gets converted to ergocalciferol (D2) which the body then transforms to the active form of vitamin D (D3) known calcitriol.
One thing to note is that not all mushrooms are created equal. Mushrooms grown in the dark do not contain vitamin D. However, there are specific brands grown in UV light can generate vitamin D. Additionally, store bought mushrooms can produce vitamin D after being exposed to a short burst of ultraviolet light while still keeping their healthy look and nutrients.
A study conducted at University of Western Sydney in July 2013 showed mushrooms treated with 1-2 seconds of a pulsed UV light source can produce enough vitamin D for the daily needs of adults.
The study also found that store-bought mushrooms placed in direct midday sunlight for a couple hours generated over 20 mcg per serving.
Sun-treated mushrooms are a great source of vitamin D. Button mushrooms had 10 mcg of vitamin D after 1 hour in the sun. Bigger cup mushrooms needed about 2 hours of sunlight to reach that same number. Mushrooms in the study were treated during winter months so less time would be needed for spring and autumn. An average serving of 100 grams of mushrooms (or about three button mushrooms) can provide 100 per cent of an adult’s vitamin D requirement (10 mcg).
So next time you make a stir-fry, stew, or salad throw in some ‘shrooms to step up your daily vitamin D intake.
The New Year always starts off right, but somewhere along the way you may find yourself slacking on your exercise routine. One way to keep the momentum going is to find an activity that does not seem like a chore.
Swimming, bicycling, and dancing are fun ways to get exercise without even realizing it. If you enjoy nature, go for a long walk in the woods.
Another way to stay on track throughout the year is to incorporate music into your regiment. Whether it is cardio or weight lifting, music is an important aspect of any exercise routine. It helps keep you motivated and to finish the workout. Whether it is running that extra mile or finishing those final crunches, music has the ability to pump you up and lift your spirit. Keep your exercise regimen all year long with great tunes.
Here is a 2014 playlist to inspire you to move and groove:
"Bangs" by Brick & Mortar
"I Can Talk" by Two Door Cinema Club
Britney Spears -"It Should Be Easy (Feat Will.I.Am)"
"Streets of Gold" by 3OH!3
"Dayglow (Why Can't We Stay?)" by Boxed Wine
"The Pros And Cons of Breathing" by Fall Out Boy
"I Wanna Go" by Britney Spears
"We R Who We R" by Ke$ha
"Titanium" by David Guetta
"Jenny" by Walk The Moon
"Still Into You" by Paramore
"Cute Without the E (Cut From The Team)" by Taking Back Sunday
"White Snow" by Red Wanting Blue
These songs are perfect for a shorter workout lasting 20-30 minutes. "Bangs" 80 bpm will ease you into the workout. The songs then progress to faster tracks that kick the workout into high gear and then to cool down with the last few songs.
Click below for a link to the playlist: