Top 10 Benefits of Walking

Walking is one of those things that there’s really no down side to. Anyone (almost everyone) can do it, it’s easy and it’s FREE! We all like free stuff right?? Especially freebies that will help us with our health goals.

Walking is an incredibly good way to start, or continue your fitness journey. It’s not physically exerting – unless you are walking 10 miles a day, but hey all the power to ya – and it’s a good way to get your heart rate up and joints oiled up.

So what else is so great about walking? Well, let me tell you..

1. IT STRENGTHENS YOUR BONES

It can stop the bone loss of osteoporosis. One Nurse’s Health Study found that women who walked a minimum of 4 hours a week (less than 30 minutes per day) had a 40% less risk of hip fracture.

2. ENHANCES CIRCULATION

Walking regularly is great for your heart. It can increase blood circulation, helping to lower blood pressure and can end up reducing the risk of a stroke.

3. BOOSTS YOUR MOOD

Physical activity stimulates your brain. It also releases chemicals called endorphins, these chemicals interact with the brain in a way that reduces pain and improves ones mood.

4. IMPROVES SLEEP 

Walking can help you fall asleep faster, and into a deeper sleep. Walking outdoors is especially beneficial because the exposure to sunlight will help keep your vitamin levels happy. Physical activity will also tire your body out where it needs to hit REM more than normal.

5. STIMULATES YOUR MIND

A study done by the University of California found that women who walked about 30 minutes per day had a slower decline in memory loss than those that didn’t walk as much.

6. IMPROVE BALANCE AND COORDINATION

Walking utilizes every part of your lower body, and thus strengthens it. The more one walks, the stronger the lower body will be. Studies find that those who do not walk as frequently have weaker muscles in their shins and therefor tend to lose their balance more.

7. PREVENTS DISEASES

It lowers the risk of Alzheimers. Studies show that those who walk more than just a quarter of a mile per day have a greatly reduced risk of obtaining Alzheimers Disease.

8. RAISES YOUR IMMUNITY

Regular exercise will help maintain a healthy body weight. This will in turn keep your body at it’s full potential and have a strong immune system. Your body will then be able to fight off more diseases and illnesses.

9. SUPPORTS YOUR JOINTS

Your joints are made of cartilage, and many of our joints do not have a direct blood supply. Joints get their nutrition from juices and oxygen that the body circulates when we move. The more we walk, the more oxygen and nutrients get into the joints. The healthier our joints are the more painless our day to day life will be!

10. HELPS YOU LOSE WEIGHT

Last but not least, walking helps with weight loss. It burns calories! It also builds muscle. Walking several miles a day will help jump start your journey to a healthier life.

So, let’s get to walking! Take an early morning stroll, a lunch time break to clear your head, or an evening walk in the park.. However, whenever, just move your feet!

Do you walk every day? Why/why not? 

When is your favorite time to go on a walk? Do you jam out to music when you do, or do you like the silence? 

Comment below!!

That’s all for today!

Xo, Dev

Are You Eating Enough?

Many people think that the only way to lose weight is to starve themselves. There are SO many diets out there that include restricting your diet so heavily that you constantly feel hungry. WHO wants to be on a diet where you feel hungry all the time? More so, who wants to be on a DIET in general!?

Fun fact: You don’t actually need to starve yourself to lose weight. Feed yourself, people!! 

I have been one of those people. I have eaten far less than what I should. And not only that, I haven’t been eating the RIGHT things either! Well, it’s a lot easier than you think to make sure you eat the right things, and enough of them to help you along your fitness journey.

MACROS

What are these? There are three macro-nutrients, Fat, Carbohydrates and Protein. Fat has 9 calories per gram, while carbs and protein have 4 calories per gram.

IIFYM (If it fits your macros) is my absolute favorite macro calculator. You input your gender, height, weight, activity level and goals (if you want to lose weight, maintain or bulk) and it calculates how many calories I need in order to achieve my goal, and it breaks it down by macro group. For example, my macros are below:

Macros

So now that you have the macros down, how do you determine what to put into your meals?

First… PLAN. PLAN. PLAN.

What is your schedule like? When do you like to eat? Do you do intermittent fasting? Do you like to have three main meals or six small meals? It doesn’t matter what you like, it’s just important that you can figure out your meal schedule so that you can plan your meals accordingly.

Example of a full day of meals for me:

  • Breakfast – 1 C Steel Cut Oats with Cinnamon, 1 Med Banana
  • Lunch – 6 oz Grilled Chicken breast, 1 C White Rice, 2 C spinach cooked, 1/4 Onion sliced
  • Snack – Protein Shake
  • Dinner – Spinach Salad with Tuna, Tomatoes and Avocado. 1 tsp Italian Dressing

So much food right here!!! And it all fits inside my macros. The key is to make sure you are eating the RIGHT things, and it should align with your macro goals.

Xo, Dev

5 Healthy Ways to Cook Chicken

Whenever I think of “healthy meals” I always resort to grilled chicken, brown rice and broccoli. How BORING, amirite?! I believe a lot of people fall off the health bandwagon because of these types of thoughts.

Well, I’m here to tell you that there is SO much more to healthy food than that! You can be so creative with what you eat so that it keeps you interested, and you continue to eat right.

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Instead of giving you some recipes today, I am going to talk about 5 ways to cook chicken that will most definitely keep you coming back for more! This way, you can put your own spin to the cooking styles, and enjoy for meals to come.

COOKING STYLES:

Grilled

I like my grilled chicken super simple, so I usually take my chicken breasts and season them with salt and pepper and a little olive oil. Plus, this helps the flavor of the grill come through in the meat. Make sure the grill is clean and oiled up (don’t overkill it) and lay the chicken on the grill. You really don’t want to overcook the chicken (165 internal temp is ideal) so using a fire that’s between 375-400 Fahrenheit will work perfectly.

TIP: Pounding out the chicken before grilling will help even out the temperature throughout the breast, This will help ensure that the thinner edges don’t get overcooked while the thicker middle is undone.

Baked

Baking is an easy way to keep chicken moist, but it’s also an easy way to overcook and dry the chicken out. You’re going to want to heat your oven to 450 degrees and bake the chicken for 15-20 minutes. This will allow for a nice crispy outer layer, and a tender, moist inside.

TIP: I like to season my baked chicken with Mrs. Dash lemon pepper. GUYS. SO. GOOD. Try it, you’ll thank me later.

Roasted

The main difference between roasting and baking is the form of the meat you are cooking. Generally you will ROAST a whole chicken, while you would BAKE a breast or thigh. Roasted chicken is amazing, and there are so many options to stuff it, season it or cook with vegetables and potatoes.

Poached

Poaching can be seen as boring, but it’s a good healthy way to cook your poultry. It will also ensure that your meat is incredibly moist. WOOHOO! I like to season the liquid in which I am poaching my foods in, because that flavor will end being the seasoning.

TIP: Use a base of chicken broth, I normally go for a low sodium one! Throw in some garlic, bay leaves, some sliced lemon and any extra spices laying around and you’ve got yourself a great base.

PS- Poached chicken is PERFECT for a chicken salad!

Braised

Braising is a cooking style that incorporates both the wet and dry heats. You will first sear the meat (dry heat) and then finish it in a liquid (about 2/3 of the way up the meat) at a lower temperature.

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Try some of these new cooking methods and play around with the seasonings! It will definitely help ‘spice’ up your life 😉

Eat up my friends, I hope you enjoy!!

Xo, Dev

How do you go to the gym if you’re out of town? How do you make sure you eat well when you can’t cook at home? How do you ensure that you’re taking care of your body?

Ugh, it’s been a LONG day. I travel for work generally every other week and it’s wicked hard to keep up a healthy lifestyle.

When I think of training arms, I usually think about hitting the weights at the gym. Today, I wanted to go over some key exercises that you CAN do at pretty much any hotel that has a gym, and most of this routine you won’t even need a gym!

I always stay at a hotel that at least has a fitness facility. That can mean that there is a room with a treadmill in it, or it can mean there is a whole rack of weights. You never know!

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Arm Circles: Standing up, move your arms in forward circles for 30 seconds, and then backwards for 30 seconds.

Push-Ups: Get in plank position with your hands shoulder width apart. BONUS: Put your hands in a diamond shape for a harder training. 15 per set.

Decline Push-Ups: Create a decline by resting your feet on a box, bench or exercise ball with your hands on the floor shoulder width apart. Bring your elbows to a 90 degree elbow. You will feel more tension in your shoulders and upper arms. 15 per set.

Tricep Dips: Position your hands shoulder width apart on a bench or box, slide your butt off of the bench with your legs straight. Slightly bend your elbows and make sure to keep tension on your triceps and not your elbow joints. 10 per set.

Planks: Place forearms on the ground parallel to the body, keep your butt and abs tucked in, hold for 45 seconds.

Planks with Dips: Get in plank position, but drop your left side to the ground, then rotate your right side to the ground. You will feel this in your oblique muscles. Continue for 45 seconds.

Decline Mountain Climbers: Get in handstand position using a wall for support, hands shoulder width apart. Slowly bring your left knee in to your stomach, then straighten. Next bring your right knee in to your abs and straighten. 20 times each side.

Medicine Ball Sit Up Throws: Grab a medicine ball and get in a sit-up position. Bring the medicine ball over your head so that your arms are parallel to the floor, holding the ball. As you curl your abdomen to do a full sit up, bring the medicine ball with you. At the peak of the sit-up, toss the all in the air and then catch it. Once the ball is caught, release your position and decline back down to the ground bringing the ball back above your head.

All of these exercises are able to be done with little to no equipment! And I promise you – your arms WILL feel the burn if you push yourself and do it correctly. The key to these exercises is form!

Let’s continue to travel, but live a healthy life along the way 🙂

Xo, Dev