Category Archives: Fitness

How to Stay Fit when Life Gets in the Way

How to Stay Fit when Life Gets in the Way

If you want to stay fit but feel as though life just keeps getting in the way, then you are not alone. So many people are in the same situation that you are, but there are things that you can do to try and make things easier on yourself. This guide will help you to stay committed to the results you want to achieve.

Work out your Reason Why

Your reasons for working out are truly fundamental to your business. Some evidence has suggested that younger people tend to go to the gym if they want to improve their appearance. Older people however tend to do it more for health reasons or even stress reduction. Of course, if you want to make sure that you are successful, then you have to work out your reason for working out, instead of just trying to work out in general. If you are finding it hard to exercise because you don’t have time, then this also needs to change. If you have any limitations, removing them is the best way to ensure success. If you have mild or indeed severe back pain when you work out, then it would be wise for you to visit a chiropractor in Libertyville IL clinic to obtain suitable treatment to relieve the issue.

Get off to a Slow Start

At the beginning of the year, you may find that you have a lot of motivation to get started with fitness. You may promise yourself that you are going to change your diet and that you are also going to stop drinking too. That being said, sometimes you may be going too intensive with your workout. You need to start out with nice slow jogs or even fast walks. If you can do this with two or even three days’ rest, then this will help you to get through the first month with some degree of consistency. As always, consistency is key to success.

You Don’t have to Love It

It is helpful for you to try and avoid making yourself do things that you hate. You should not feel as though you have to enjoy exercise, a lot of people who stick with it simply say that they feel better when they have done it. Elements like this can be enjoyable, rather than the exercise itself. For a lot of people, going to the gym isn’t fun, but it is important that you try and find enjoyment in the little things where possible. If you can do this, then you will soon find that you are able to experience more success with the gym.

Get a Good Support Network

Lack of individual motivation is only a small part of the big picture. Parenting, money, and general demands are all stumbling blocks, and they can impact your physical activity. If you can try and make sure that you have a lot of support around you, then you will certainly find it a lot easier to maintain your figure. Take the time to make sure that your whole family is on-board with supporting you, and also make sure that you explain to them how important it is for you to achieve success.

Staying Healthy While Truck Driving

When you are in a job such as truck driving, you are inevitably going to find yourself in a sitting position for much of the day. This is obviously not as healthy as when you are in more active job roles. Therefore, you need to do everything that you can to ensure that you look after your health in the best possible manner. There are a few techniques that you can use, however. Keep reading to find out more.

Choose Your Jobs Wisely

You can start off by choosing the right job role in the first place. If you are looking on a permanent basis, you can select a company based on their overall reputation and how well they are known for looking after their drivers. If you are looking for jobs on a contracted or a less permanent basis, you can search through hundreds of loads on a truck loads site. This way, you are able to know exactly how long you are going to be out on the road and how tough the conditions will be.

Eat and Drink Right

When you are out on the open road, it is extremely likely that you will be tempted to stop at the common fast food outlets along the way. Instead of doing this, you should make a special effort to eat right. This often means that you should make some snacks to keep you going beforehand. Many supermarkets also have a healthier section nowadays that you should be drawn to. Also, it is always going to be worth having a bottle of water that you can keep drinking from whenever and wherever possible.

Wear Sunscreen

Another common issue that you can be exposed to when you are driving is getting sunburnt. This is often something that truckers forget about, but when you get burnt, this can result in all sorts of other health problems arising in the near or long-term future. With this in mind, it is certainly worth making sure that you lather yourself up in sunscreen to offer the highest level of protection possible.

Exercise When Possible

Whenever you are able to stop, it is certainly worth taking the opportunity to do some exercise. Instead of sitting down again, a stroll around is going to help you out significantly. When you finish up for the day, it is certainly worth having a clear exercise routine that you are able to follow. This can help you out in a big way when it comes to staying healthy.

Get Plenty of Rest

Another major issue that can occur when you are out on the open road is that you simply do not manage to get enough rest and relaxation. Not only is this important for your overall sense of health and wellbeing, but it can also make a difference when it comes to ensuring that you are safe when you are driving. You need to be taking frequent breaks, ideally every couple of hours and then getting 6-8 hours of sleep every night (or day, if you prefer driving at night).

All of these tips and tricks combined help you out significantly in being able to stay healthy while trucking.

The Benefits of Getting a Massage

Massages are incredibly popular nowadays. Recent statistics show that people are getting a massage on average at least once a month. Yet, there’s more to massage than relaxing music and essential oils. It’s about giving your body time to relax and decompress. This article talks you through some of the biggest benefits of getting a massage and helps you find the treatment you need. 

What is massage?

A massage is where pressure is applied to the soft tissue of the body with hands, forearms, elbows, or other parts including the feet and knees. These are often used in conjunction with relaxing music and oils. It can be done on its own or as part of a spa treatment, which usually includes other kinds of natural therapies to help you relax and unwind. Massage used to be done in the nude but it’s now more common to wear underwear or swimwear, depending on the kind of massage you’re getting.

People often think that massage is just about relaxing and giving yourself time out after a hard week. In reality, massage is good for so many things. Now you know what to expect, here are five great benefits to massage that you may not have heard before.

Reduce muscle tension

Massage is often used to treat people with muscular and joint problems. It’s great for relaxation, but it also helps the body get rid of toxins that can build up in muscles and cause pain or tension. By working on knots in the muscle, massage helps enhance flexibility.

Aids muscle recovery

If you’ve had a strenuous workout and your muscles feel tired, massage can also help. This is because it helps the muscle tissue to recover more quickly by releasing endorphins into the body that will give you an energy boost. If you suffer from over-worked or over-exhausted muscles often, then there are specific massage techniques that will help.

The oils and ointments used during massage can also help with muscle recovery, so be sure to choose something that works best for you. For instance, you could use muscle balms or massage oil infused with echinacea, mint, or even cannabidiol! You can buy CBD from various locations across the world, and many retailers have products specifically designed for massage. Be sure to shop around before making your purchase.

Eases pain

If you have a sports injury or an old injury, massage can help. The physical pressure helps to release both serotonin and endorphins, which are associated with pain relief. It’s possible to take this further by focusing on problem areas; for example if you have back pain all over but it’s mainly at your lower back. By applying pressure to that area specifically you can bring relief to your whole back.

Better mobility

Once you’ve had a massage, it might take some time for your muscles to get used to being worked on. However, after that point, the benefits are clear to see. Tighter muscles will become easier to work with and they’ll also allow you greater flexibility in your joints. This is due to the fact that your muscles serve as a kind of support system for your joints, so the more pliable they are, the better you’ll feel overall.

It’s relaxing! 

The final major benefit is that massage can be a great way to unwind and relax. Many people suffer from chronic stress throughout their lives, which leads to a variety of problems.

A massage won’t necessarily solve these problems by itself, but it can give you some time out from your busy life.

How Running Changes Your Body

The benefits of running cannot be overstated. Running changes lives. Period. It’s no secret that running is a great way to lose weight. But there’s so much more to it than just improving your looks or making your butt look good.

Having a regular running routine comes with essential health benefits. Not only will you feel good when you start running, but running can help improve your cardiovascular health, put on healthy muscle mass, regulate your body temperature, and maximize your body composition, just to name a few.

A lot of people are interested in implementing a running program into their lives because they want to change their body weight for the better. There is certainly nothing wrong with that being the driving force behind your decision to start running.

Even better, in fact, is that you stand to benefit from more than just healthy weight loss. As you will soon discover, running can exponentially improve your quality of life. Let’s begin with the external benefits of running and work our way inward.

How Does Running Change Your Body Shape?

When it comes to weight loss, the premise is actually quite simple. You need to burn calories, which of course, running promotes. In fact, running burns almost double the calories as that of walking. In short, if you develop and stick to a running program, you are going to lose weight. It’s that simple.

Now, there is a potential downside to this. Running is also going to make you hungry. There are no two ways about it. As you can imagine, this can pose a challenge if you’re trying to lose weight. As such, you will need to implement a sound diet plan in conjunction with your running routine.

There are many factors that can attribute to weight gain and make it hard if you’re trying to get in shape. Not only could you have your metabolism and age working against you, but medical conditions like hypothyroidism certainly don’t matters, either.

These factors, on top of getting hungry after a good run, can serve as roadblocks if you don’t commit yourself to make changes. So, what can you do? Well, first of all, make it a habit to run. You need to get your body used to running and how it feels.

You’re going to have a much harder time adjusting your current diet if you aren’t first used to running. Like any habit – good or bad – you’ll need to give yourself between two and three weeks. After that, running will either be a habit or be well on its way to becoming one.

At that juncture, you can actively begin work on your diet. Chances are that your diet is going to need a complete overhaul. There are eight things that every runner should have in their diet, so if you’re not already getting them, it’s time to get radical about what you consume.

In doing so, you can expect to see noticeable, healthy changes in your body’s shape.

Best Foods for Running and Losing Weight

1. Avocados

First of all, you need potassium in your diet, as it will help you run harder and longer. The first thing that comes to most peoples’ minds is bananas. True, bananas contain potassium, but nowhere near the amount found in avocados.

Just a single cup of sliced avocado has twice the amount of potassium found in one banana. By adding this to your diet, your body will have more electrolytes – fuel that your body loses as you sweat. A good way to ensure that you have the proper balance of fuel in your body is to consume avocados after you finish up with a run.

The advantages of avocados don’t end there. They are full of poly- and mono-unsaturated fatty acids. Why are these important? They help tremendously in the healthy loss of weight.

2. Greek Yogurt

Greek yogurt is another must-have that you should add to your list. And not the low-fat or non-fat kind, either. You want true Greek yogurt with its natural fat levels. This fat is essential to healthy recovery after running.

You see, every time that you run, your muscle fibers get damaged ever so slightly. Over time, this accumulates and causes unnecessary wear and tear that can easily be countered by getting the right fats in your diet – namely, protein and whole carbs – both of which are found in Greek yogurt.

Protein is needed to rebuild your muscles and increase their synthesis. It also plays a big role in improving your metabolic rate. As such, it’s a good idea to invest in Greek yogurt and consume some after a run.

For an added bonus, eating Greek yogurt before bedtime will ensure that your muscles have the necessary nutrients to build them up throughout the night.

3. Nuts

Looking to get even more protein in your diet? Nuts are a mostly inexpensive food that will provide plenty of protein, among other beneficial things. Aside from protein, nuts provide unsaturated fat and fiber.

Nuts are also linked to lowering inflammation, assisting with healthy weight loss, and promoting longer life. What’s more, nuts are an ideal food choice for runners due to their convenience. You can eat them while you’re out for a run, maintaining your body’s fuel in the process.

As great as this handy food is, it’s important to keep in mind that nuts are high in calories. Therefore, you should limit yourself to about a handful a day. It really doesn’t matter what kind, either. There are some nuts, such as macadamias, that are pretty steep in price.

If you’re on a budget or just don’t care how you get the benefits of nuts, avoid the exotic kinds and stick with what you can afford.

4. Eggs

As a runner, you know you need plenty of energy to adequately and safely complete your exercise regimen. There is perhaps no better food for fueling your body than that of eggs. Packed with natural energy and dirt-cheap, eggs deliver the most bioavailable protein on the planet.

What does that mean for you? In short, your body absorbs and converts eggs into fuel better than any other food on the market. Furthermore, you will be getting the protein needed to lose weight healthily. It’s a win-win however you slice it.

Studies have revealed that most Americans get the protein their bodies need at dinnertime. This practice ultimately does very little for weight loss, since it leaves little time to take advantage of the advantages of protein.

By adding eggs as a regular part of your breakfast, you can look forward to fulfilling energy throughout the day. Get a good breakfast in you, head out for a run, and enjoy the effects that eggs provide.

Moreover, eggs are full of B vitamins and antioxidants that serve to improve energy levels and fight free radicals, respectively.

5. Lean Beef

Did you know that some 10 million Americans don’t have enough iron in their diets? Iron is needed to help ensure that your muscles are getting the necessary oxygen for healthy building. Lean beef is an excellent way to get iron that will help keep your muscles and body in tip-top shape. When you shop for beef, just make sure that it’s at least 90% lean.

6. Frozen Berries

When you run, your body naturally uses oxygen to break down the food you’ve consumed, turning it into energy. Known as oxidative damage, this process can be tough on your body without the proper nutritional balance.

This is where frozen berries come in. They are rich in antioxidants that help combat the stress that your body undergoes during the oxidative damage process. And if you have other exercise programs in your life besides running, you’re going to need these antioxidants even more so.

While it’s true that berries contain antioxidants regardless of whether they are frozen, it’s the frozen state that ensures the berries have the most antioxidants. And you can be sure to get the most benefit from them if you consume frozen berries immediately after a run. This is when your body can most effectively absorb the goodness that’s packed inside.

7. Whole Grains

One of the biggest mistakes that people make when trying to lose weight by running is eliminating carbs from their diets. It makes sense on paper, but in application, you need carbs in your diet. This is especially true if you’re a runner.

Why? Because once you digest carbs, they get stored in your muscles and liver as glycogen. In turn, glycogen becomes your main source of fuel during workouts and running. Now, you might be thinking that you’ll have to eat pasta and bread for whole grains and risk gaining weight.

In truth, you can avoid both and still get whole grains. Foods like oats, quinoa, amaranth, and bulgur will give you the fuel you need for recovery and running. What’s more, these foods will also provide you with enough fiber to help combat cravings and overeating.

8. Water

Lastly, water is quite possibly the single most important thing you can consume if you’re trying to lose weight through running. Did you know that the slightest decrease in your body’s hydration can negatively affect your performance?

This may not sound like too much worry about, but think about this: A decrease in performance means your body won’t be able to burn calories as effectively, nor will it build muscle as well.

The best way to determine whether you need to increase water in your diet is to measure how much weight you lose in sweat after a run. If you’re losing over 1% of your weight, it’s time to add more water to the equation.

So, how can you find out how much weight in sweat you’re losing from running? Simply weigh yourself naked before and after your run. If you weighed 140 pounds before a run and weigh 138 after, that’s more than 1% and a sign that you need more water.

As such, make sure to start drinking before, during, and after runs. Your body will appreciate it and you’ll feel the effects right away.

How Does Running Change a Woman’s Body?

Now that you know what foods are essential to a runner’s diet and how consuming them can help change your body’s shape, let’s take a closer look at women, specifically. There are several things that a woman can expect to experience with regular running.

Maybe there are things you’re hoping that running changes for you. As we have already discussed, the benefits of running include healthy weight loss. Both men and women can expect to experience fat loss when they stick to a running routine.

Women, however, undergo weight loss in different areas. How running changes your body largely depends on your gender.

Buns of Steel

First of all, the female human body will benefit from an incredibly toned butt. A lot of people think that a toned butt comes from pumping iron at the gym, but that’s simply not the case. At least, not exclusively.

True, lifting weights is an effective way to get your butt and body in fabulous shape, but it’s not a necessity. But if you would rather tone that booty without the heavy lifting, running will assuredly do the trick.

Arms of Adonis

One of the downsides to skipping the gym and solely sticking to running is that the muscle mass in your arms will decrease. This is great for some people, but if you’re wanting sculpted arms, we recommend that you incorporate some type of weight training or yoga exercises into your running program.

In doing so, you can look forward to having slim but solid arms. If you’re not worried about looking like an Adonis, simply stick to running and enjoy your sleek bod.

New Boobs

Losing weight is unquestionably full of advantages that help promote a long and healthy life. However, one of its downsides is that your boobs are bound to get smaller. This true for both men and women, as the chest is one of the first areas to lose mass.

Be that as it may, you shouldn’t worry about losing your sex appeal. Your cleavage can still look attractive, regardless of how much weight you lose. The key is to wear a sports bra when you run. Even if your boobs are already on the smaller side, a sports bra will help them retain their shape.

Not only will a sports bra keep you toned, but it will prevent painful stretching in your breasts, as well. This is because your Cooper’s ligaments are supported as you run, thus ensuring comfort and safety.

Killer Calves

It goes without saying, but you can count on your calf muscles getting sleek and toned when you take up running. If you’re into wearing skinny jeans, though, prepare to make some major adjustments to your wardrobe.

Many women come to find that they can no longer wear skinny jeans after running or weight training. As such, you should hold the expectation that you won’t be able to wear the same clothes as before.

For many women, this is a Godsend. However, not everyone is thrilled with the idea of overhauling their wardrobe. Still, it’s a good problem to have, and you can always start rocking yoga pants instead if you’re into that sort of thing. If nothing else, it’s a good excuse to show off your killer calves.

Toned Thighs

Another one of the most noticeable ways how running changes your body is your thighs. Running can help shed unwanted fat around your thigh muscles, leaving you looking fit and toned. If you want to speed up the process, try to increase your running to longer distances per week.

This will increase the burn you feel in your leg muscles, thereby promoting better muscle definition in less time.

Can You Get a Toned Body by Running?

Without a doubt. As a runner, your body muscles are going to become more pronounced while unwanted body fat burns away. The energy expenditure that running promotes ensures that your body gets the exercise it needs to become defined.

And the more you run, the more defined your body will be. Running strengthens parts of you that you never even knew you had. Just like weight training, you’re going to build muscles that don’t typically get the exercise they need.

Even better, if you struggle with belly fat, you can count on running to shed those unwanted pounds and help you build abs of iron. Belly fat is a common struggle for many people, so don’t feel like you’re alone here.

What isn’t common, however, is a healthy exercise regimen. You can break out of the norm and effectively do something good for your body by taking up running. Initially, you’re likely to hate it. Fortunately, a person who sticks with running usually comes to fall in love with it.

And in going so, benefits from all of the good things that come with it. If you’re tired of the way you look and feel, running can and will change your life for the better. On that note, let’s take a moment to explore some of the benefits that you’ll get from running. We’ve already talked about many of the external benefits. Now it’s time to look deeper.

A Closer Look at a Runner

Improved Sleep

One of the first things you’re likely to notice as a new runner is that you can now sleep like a baby. If you currently suffer from insomnia and tossing and turning at night, running could very well hold the key to sound sleep.

The best way to benefit from this is to get your run in early in the day. Not only will you sleep like a rock, but you will also wake up feeling refreshed and energized.

Please keep in mind, though, that you want to avoid running in the evening. Studies show that exercising before bed actually makes it harder to fall asleep. Without getting too sciencey, your body has its own internal temperature that it maintains throughout the day.

Usually, sometime in the afternoon, your internal body temperature begins to lower as it prepares for sleep at night. When you start any kind of exercise in the afternoon and beyond, you’re causing your body’s natural temperature adjustment to get out of whack.

This leads to a higher internal temperature come bedtime. As a result, you are likely to toss and turn and find it very difficult to get some shut-eye. There’s a time and place for running, and that’s before your body begins its natural temperature drop.

Even if you forgot to get in your morning run, don’t think that making up for it in the evening will make up for it. Instead, it will only serve to keep you up at night. If you forget to run during the day, just skip the rest of the day and pick it up the following morning.

Better Quality of Life

You’ve likely heard the term “runner’s high.” This is what a runner experiences after running for so long. You don’t necessarily have to run a half-marathon to experience runner’s high, although long-distance runs certainly help.

Runner’s high is exactly what it sounds like. It is a natural period of euphoria that provides a deep, relaxed state of being after running longer distances. This includes feelings of joy and elation, and best of all, it’s completely natural; no chemicals needed.

As a brief aside, running can serve as an excellent substitute for someone who is trying to kick a chemical dependency. The energy expenditure that the body goes through during running turns into an all-natural high that few people get to experience.

Many runners will even tell you that they start to miss the runner’s high, which helps to keep them coming back for more. It’s a great excuse to stick with your running program and thus stay in peak condition.

Regardless of your reasons for running, it can help you in more ways than one. So if you’re ready to experience all of the benefits that this activity provides, pick up a good pair of running shoes and get busy enjoying the runner’s life.

No More Overthinking

Does your mind never seem to stop thinking about life? You’re not alone. Without positive exercise and activity, your brain will be the one doing the running. As you can likely attest, this is a trap that can cause mounting fear and anxiety.

If you’re tired of feeling this way and overthinking everything, running is just the solution you need to combat your restless mind. It’s no wonder, then, that most runners enjoy a positive outlook on life.

You’re almost certain to start looking at life through a new lens, not caring about the trivial matters that used to haunt and confound you. On average, runners enjoy more energy, better muscle tone, feeling healthier overall, and less pain. And this brings us to the next benefit.

Feeling Better Physically

When you don’t get enough physical activity, your body starts to let you know in various ways. Your legs may hurt, you may suffer from knee pain, or you may have a poor heart rate, just to name a few.

Running can help improve your health exponentially, resulting in better cardiovascular health, which leads to a longer life. Your muscles are less likely to hurt, as are your knees. With the improved strengthening throughout your body, you aren’t likely to suffer from stiff joints and sore, achy muscles.

Running serves as a major tune-up for your body and is necessary for anyone struggling with daily aches and pains. Plus, with your increased energy levels, you will be able to accomplish more throughout the day.

Furthermore, you can look forward to vastly improved self-esteem. When you have unwanted fat on your body and you hurt all the time, it can make you feel depressed. It’s another reason why runners have a positive outlook on life.

Being physically fit leads to natural joy and happiness, so it stands to reason that you should take up running if you’re struggling with self-esteem issues or depression. If you’ve read this far, it’s safe to assume that you’re seriously considering taking up running.

All it takes is a little bit of your time. It’s likely to be hard at first, but so is everything else. With practice and a commitment to stick with it, you are likely to fall in love with running, making it a regular part of your life going forward.

To give you a better idea of what you can expect from running when you first start, let’s explore what happens to your body composition after the first 30 minutes. By knowing what to expect from running, it will be easier to adjust to.

What Happens to Your Body After 30 Minutes of Running?

At first, you’re going to be out of breath. Your heart rate is going to go way up because you’re not used to running. This is normal. What’s happening is, your lungs are taking in oxygen and your heart uses that oxygen to supply energy to your muscles.

In the beginning, yes, you’re probably going to feel pretty rough. Your stomach is likely to hurt, too. This is because it’s in the process of breaking down the energy in your body. the pain you’re feeling is the result of gas being released by your muscle cells.

At the juncture, your muscles are going to start using something called “Adenosine Triphosphate” for energy. Adenosine Triphosphate is simply an organic compound that works to provide energy to your cells.

Remember earlier when we talked about glycogen and whole grains? Well, Adenosine Triphosphate is stored in glycogen, which is in your muscles and bloodstream. You really only store tiny amounts of glycogen at any given time, but running makes sure that your body produces more, thus improving your overall health.

However, you need to make sure that you’re getting plenty of oxygen, too. Without it, your body can’t create Adenosine Triphosphate and therefore can’t provide you with the energy it needs to keep you going.

This is why when you run, you start breathing faster and harder. Your body is trying to get more oxygen to create Adenosine Triphosphate. What’s more, as you breathe harder, your body knows to divert blood from any areas that don’t readily need it.

As all of this is going on, you are burning calories in your body, which is needed to lose weight healthily. Lactic acid also starts building up in your muscles while your core body temperature increases.

Seasoned runners can go through the above process without issue. But if you’re new to running, your lactic acid building up is going to cause you some discomfort and pain. That’s why it is so important to start out slow. Don’t try to run a half-marathon on your first day.

It’s the same principle with endurance training. You have to build yourself up to it. That means getting your heart, legs, lungs, and the rest of your body in shape. When you’re ready, then you can tackle that half-marathon; but not before.

The Final Lap

As you can see, running just makes sense. There are far too many benefits to running. We’re talking about life-changing benefits that can lead to a longer and healthier life. The key is to take it slowly and stick with it.

Each day, running will become more natural. As long as you know what to expect, you will have an easier time getting used to it. Runners don’t just start out running 20 minutes a day.

It takes time and dedication to get to where you are running comfortably for several minutes at a time. But in doing so, you can expect to lose weight and feel great while you do it.

Ultimate Coffee Date

Let’s say we’re having coffee (a finely ground and richly flavored one of course), and I’m telling you how excited I am about our Montreal trip few short weeks. We are making it an extended weekend, for a bit of a vacation but also because we are running the Rock ‘n Roll Montreal Half Marathon. I’m really looking forward to the run but also exploring a fabulous new city. I’ve never been to Montreal so if any of you have, please feel free to send some recommendations for restaurants, sights to see, and how I can learn French in a few weeks.

Plus, while we’re sipping our coffee, what’s the big stink of Game of Thrones? Anyone? It’s like all I hear about and I feel like I’m missing out on something, because it’s everywhere and my friends and the media and everywhere are always referencing it. Should I binge this bad boy, or what? Because, honestly, I don’t want to, my husband watching and I find that annoying enough, so if anyone can sum it up for me, thanks in advance.

Also, now that we’ve got GOT out of the way, and we have started our second cup of coffee, I will share with you that we are finally planning our housewarming party at the end of the month. It’s been over a year, so we excited to finally open the house to our general public. We honestly haven’t really had anyone over since we moved in, except for a few family members, so now that we have a grill set up and feel like it public ready, we’ll get on that.

Before you finish your coffee, I’ll also wanted to tell you I am fulfilling one of my new year’s resolutions by reading more, reading actual books and on my Kindle. So, my library card and the new Kindle are getting their new year workout, too. I’ve been looking through all the free selections on offer from Amazon Prime and I read one book designated as ‘chick lit’, but found it a bit fluffier for my taste, so I’d like to get into something a little juicier.

My neighbors are still hosting the monthly book club and I have yet to start this month’s selection, “Brothers and Keepers”. At some point I’d like to host the book club, now that I feel like I have a place to put them all, but I have no idea what type of book I would choose. Any good ones that you recommend? I’m pretty open when it comes to genres and new authors, or some of the classics.

So, anything on Montreal, anything for appetizers or fun cocktails for a house warming or something for the grill that may be new, and book recommendations, all welcome! Now I think I may need some decaf.

3 Vegetarian Dishes That Meat Eaters Will Also Love

The benefits of a plant based diet have been brought to the fore through a number of high profile documentaries and books in recent times. As a result, more and more people are turning vegetarian for more than purely ethical reasons. A large number of them have been long term meat eaters who have, arguably, come to the light. But that doesn’t mean that they have lost their love of meat. There are also many households where the person who does the cooking is a vegetarian while others in the home are meat eaters. That’s why we’ve put together this collection of vegetarian dishes that meat lovers will also love.

These recipes are designed to be filling, easy to make and delicious. If you are a person who is considering switching to vegetarian but still love meat and don’t have a whole lot of experience in the kitchen, these recipes are precisely what you need.

5 Meat Replacements You’ll Love

Here are 5 protein rich, texture filled vegan friendly alternatives that you can add to recipes on plant based diets.


Tofu is made from coagulated soy milk that is pressed into a solid white block. The tasteless product that results is rich in protein and takes on the flavor of the foods it is combined with. A four ounce serving contains 11 grams of protein and just 1.3 grams of carbohydrates.


Tempeh is also made from soy but, rather than soy milk, the entire bean is used to create a cakish product. Half a cup of tempeh contains 17 grams of protein and 6.3 grams of carbs.


With their full, meaty texture and flavor, mushrooms – especially large ones like Portabella – are a terrific meat substitute. As a bonus, mushrooms are high in fiber, which is good news for your digestive system. One cup of Portabella mushrooms will provide you with 5.2 grams of protein, 6 grams of carbs and 2.7 grams of fiber.


All sorts of beans can serve as a hearty, healthy meat replacement. You won’t get all of the essential amino acids in one single bean but mixing them up will cover all of your bases. In a cup of black beans you get 14.5 grams of protein and around 34 grams of carbs.


Jackfruit is a large fruit that grows on trees and originates in south eastern Asia. When eaten ripe, it is sweet and delicious like a pineapple. When cooked, however, it has a chewy, pull apart texture that is very much like pulled pork. One cup of raw jackfruit contains 2.4 grams of protein and 40 grams of carbohydrates.

Tortilla Soup Recipe


  • 1 can tomato soup
  • ½ cup cooked Jasmine rice
  • 3 cups water
  • ½ cup zucchini cut into square chunks
  • Squeeze of lime juice
  • Cilantro leaves
  • Chipotle to taste
  • 2 corn tortillas


  • Pour the tomato soup, water and Jasmine rice into a pot and cook at a medium heat.
  • After 3 minutes, add the zucchini, lime juice and chipotle.
  • Cover and cook for 10 minutes.
  • Bake the tortillas in a pan for 2 minutes.
  • Cut the tortillas into strips and then add to the soup.
  • Allow the soup to simmer for a further 5 minutes.

Mushroom Tinga


  • 2 large Portabella mushrooms cut into thin strips
  • ¾ white onion cut into strips
  • 2 tomatoes
  • 1 garlic clove
  • ¼ teaspoon chipotle powder
  • Cilantro leaves
  • 14 cup oregano
  • 2 corn tortillas


  • Add the white onions to a pot and cook on a medium heat for 3 minutes.
  • Add the Portabella mushrooms.
  • Place the tomatoes, garlic, chipotle powder, and oregano in a blender and blend for 30 seconds on high.
  • Add the blended mixture to the pot and cook for a further 8 minutes.
  • Top with cilantro.
  • Bake the corn tortillas in a pan until crispy.
  • Serve the Tinga on the tortillas and top with avocado.

BBQ Pulled Jackfruit Sandwiches


  • 1 can young, green jackfruit in brine
  • 1 small white onion, chopped
  • ½ garlic, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • ¼ vegetable broth
  • BBQ Sauce
  • Wholemeal bread
  • Butter


  • Drain and rinse the jack and then cut them into small pieces. Cut off and throw away any cores.
  • Add extra virgin olive oil to a pan on medium heat.
  • Add garlic and onions and saute.
  • When the onions begin to brown, add jackfruit.
  • Add the vegetable broth
  • Cover and cook for 8-10 minutes until the jackfruit has softened.
  • Mash with a potato masher until the jackfruit is pulled and stranded.
  • Spread the mixture on a large baking sheet.
  • Pour BBQ sauce over the mixture.
  • Bake in the oven for 10 minutes on a medium heat.
  • Remove from the oven and stir in a little more BBQ sauce.
  • Serve in a wholemeal sandwich

How To Avoid Work From Home Isolation Fatigue

Since the Covid-19 pandemic, businesses and their employees have been faced with many challenges of setting up remote work and trying to provide the appropriate planning, tools, and support for productivity and connectivity. Managers have to be focused on the concept of working with their employees while they are in various locations and still maintain discipline, the appropriate infrastructure, and technology and meet all the goals, deadlines, processes, priorities, and expectations. At the same time, while isolation is necessary to help everyone stay healthy, communication has to be at a higher level because many employees can experience isolation fatigue.

The Right Communication for Remote Productivity

If you are a remote worker due to the pandemic, you have to stay in touch with your managers and other coworkers as best as you can so you don’t feel like you are all alone. You should try to stay abreast of new information and be able to access the right tools to do your job efficiently. The company should provide most of the tools and one of the most important ones is video communication, which means you must have the right microphone, camera, software, and computer. With video communication, you and your coworkers and managers can meet up at least once per week to share accomplishments, thoughts, and future goals. Your manager is responsible for creating this group setting for sharing and planning the team’s goals, deadlines, and deliverables. This step will ensure that everyone is one the same page and that you feel that you are an important part of the team. Video conferencing is the right way to communicate with each other to share schedules, experiences, thoughts, and any challenges you might be facing.

Working From Home

With the pandemic, working from the comfort of your home is the new norm for so many employees. However, the company should not let the employees feel that they are on their own and have to be confronted with issues that are not quickly addressed. The employee should be still connected to the team and should not have to face any new pressures from working at home. It should be a smooth transition for everyone. In fact, it would be considered best practices, if the employer could have had a work from home training program prior to the pandemic. If not, then it is too late, but in the future, it should be a serious consideration. Not every employee is going to easily adjust to the new norm and so it is the company’s responsibility now to engage and make sure that all employees are doing well and not suffering from isolation fatigue on their own.

Keeping up Positive Communication Remotely

Every manager should be realistic and allow employees to take on workloads and projects they can manage. Allow interaction between coworkers by providing the video communication that they can all use while taking a break during the days. In fact, employers should encourage breaks and communication between coworkers. While there should be produced, the employees should also have work-life balance. Last, but not least, compliment your employees often; especially when they are doing a great job. This is a form of motivation and inspiration, which could go a long way into keeping out the isolation fatigue.

5 Health Tips for Fitness Fanatics

Although you might believe that doing a large amount of exercise each day will keep you healthy, even fitness fanatics need to take measures to support their lifestyle and keep themselves at the top of their game. If you play sports or love fitness, you will be putting a lot of strain on your body every day. However, there are many ways that you can stay healthy and still enjoy the activities that you love.

1.    Look After Your Injuries

When you are enjoying fitness activities every day, there is more chance that you will sustain a sporting injury at some point throughout your life. Although most fitness injuries are not serious, if you do not look after them properly, this can cause you to experience chronic pain and discomfort for a long period afterward. When you have contracted an injury, you should stop performing all fitness activities immediately and rest until your injury heals. If your injury is still bothering you after a number of weeks, you should consider trying CBD infused gel from, which can help to relieve the pain of old sporting injuries.

2.    Don’t Overdo it

When you are frequently exercising, you need to be careful that you do not overdo it, with many people forgetting to value rest. Rest can help you to avoid injury and illness from too much exercise. Not only this, but you should also look after your health by making sure that you do not carry out fitness tasks that you are not capable of or which you do not have the stamina for. You should also change your exercise type every couple of days in order to relieve stressed parts of your body.

3.    Eat the Right Foods

It is said that exercise and diet go hand in hand, whether you are trying to lose weight or simply looking to be as healthy as possible. However, if you are enjoying large amounts of exercise every day, it is paramount that you consume the right foods in the right portion sizes to enable you to support this. A good diet for fitness lovers include foods with large amounts of protein, such as eggs and tuna. Additionally, this should include a healthy amount of fruit and vegetables, like bananas, which provides you with slow-releasing energy.

4.    Drink Enough Water

If you don’t drink enough water throughout the day, this could increase your risk of injury by failing to lubricate your joints and regulate your body temperature. As well as improving your performance, failing to drink the amount of water that your body needs could lead you to feel nauseous and dizzy, and can even cause you to faint. Drinking enough water is also vital to recovery after exercise, and will help your muscles to heal.

5.    Get Enough Sleep

Although you may want to be exercising from the minute the sun rises, you need to make sure that you are also able to get enough sleep in order to start your day off right. Sleep is vital for fitness lovers as it is during this time that your body focuses on healing itself. This can prevent you from sustaining a nasty injury when you are at the gym, and can also make sure that your organs are working properly. Every adult should try to get between seven and nine hours of sleep a night in order to perform at their best.

How to Kickstart Your Fitness Journey

Have the past few months of lockdown left you feeling low and lethargic? If so, it could be that you’re in desperate need of some exercise. Working out is one of the best things that you can do to tend to both your physical and mental health, so what are you waiting for? Get your blood pumping and you’ll start to feel more like your old self in no time!

For advice on what you must do to kickstart your personal fitness journey, be sure to read on.

Start Small

Trying too much, too quickly will result in burnout in both a physical and mental capacity — there’s no doubt about that. Once this happens, you’ll find it difficult to find the motivation you need to push on with your fitness journey, which will ultimately see it come to an abrupt end before it’s even really got going.

When you decide to take the plunge and begin your fitness journey, it’s essential that you start small. As stated at Healthline, here are the initial steps that you should take if you are a beginner in the world of exercise:

  • Draw up a plan and set yourself realistic goals (you aren’t going to be running a marathon in a week!)
  • Make exercise a habit and get into a workout routine that works for you
  • Ensure that you give yourself time to rest
  • Remain hydrated at all times when working out
  • Optimize your nutrition by consuming a balanced diet that supports your specific workout program
  • Warm up before physical exertion, cool down after it
  • Listen to your body and be mindful of your limits

Lower Your Stress Levels

If you’re serious about kickstarting your fitness journey, you must make a conscious effort to tend to both your body and your mind. Looking after your mental health is just as important as tending to your physical condition, which is why you should actively attempt to manage your stress levels.

Sorting out your finances is one of the most important things you can do in this instance. Once your money woes and fiscal problems are taken care of, you’ll stand a much better chance of being able to live a life that is devoid of stress and worry.

If you want to get yourself out of financial trouble and finally start living the stress-free life that you deserve, you must:

  • Never fall behind on your bills: if this means that you have to borrow money from a reputable loan provider like Cashlady so that you can pay off your most important debts, so be it
  • Don’t be afraid to ask for help
  • Stop using credit cards
  • Curb your everyday spending habits (do you really need to purchase a coffee from Starbucks every day?)

Set Yourself a Challenge

If you find your motivation wavering shortly after you embark on your fitness journey, you might want to consider setting yourself a challenge. This will give you something to work towards, which in turn, will make you feel more inclined to work out even when times get tough.

If you’re stuck for inspiration with regard to the challenge you wish to set yourself, be sure to consider the ones listed below:

  • Run or walk a marathon
  • Do a 5-day desk detox
  • Go alcohol free for a month
  • Cycle 30 miles

How to Naturally Recover from a Gym Injury Quickly

Gym injuries are like one of life’s cruelest jokes. You’re working out and trying to improve yourself. And then you’re rewarded with an injury that stops you in your tracks.

For a moment, it may seem like it’s life’s way of slowing you down. But it’s more likely to be life’s way of giving you practice in endurance and steadfastness. You can overcome this, and you can do it without the help of prescription pain meds. 

Here’s how to recover quickly and naturally from a workout injury.

Find Alternate Pain Relief

When you’re really struggling with pain, your doctor may prescribe an opioid pain reliever. But there’s a major problem with going this route. The problem is called addiction. And if you don’t think it’s serious, spend a few minutes Googling the term “opioid epidemic.”

And you’ll be relieved (pun intended) to learn that there are natural alternatives that actually work. Two options are cannabis and kratom.

You’re probably familiar with cannabis because it has been in the news for many health benefits recently. But if you haven’t heard of kratom, you may want to pay attention. Kratom is a completely natural substance that works much in the same way opioids do, but it’s not likely to have the same side effects. 

In truth, researchers still have a lot of work to do in evaluating kratom. But being a natural substance, it’s probably a better bet. Before you take anything, do your homework. And treat any pain reliever, natural or otherwise, as medication. Use it only as needed.

If you decide to give kratom a try, your best bet is to search for kratom coupons. As the word is still getting out about this natural pain reliever, there are many deals available. 

Try Green Tea Ointment 

Green tea extract is probably one of the best home treatments you can use to speed up wound healing. And it probably sounds a little “woo woo”, but ask anyone who has tried it and they’re likely to sing its praises.

Why? Well, science has done some research on the matter to give us some answers. NCBI studied the effects of green tea on healing minor injuries and found that wounds treated with vaseline and green tea extract healed in a mere 14 days. Wounds treated only with vaseline healed took 20 days to heal. 

So if you have a surface wound, green tea extract may be the best natural remedy for you. Simply dab a bit (with or without vaseline) on your wound every day and watch it heal. 

Protect Your Injury

One of the biggest mistakes people make when trying to heal gym injuries naturally is to reinjure themselves before they’re fully healed. It’s common for athletes to push themselves too far or try to work around the injury by training in different ways. 

The best way you can protect your injury naturally is to wrap it in a supportive band. You can get a legitimate sports brace (and invaluable advice) from your doctor. Or, if you don’t have insurance and want to avoid the doctor, you can try a sports brace from the drug store, sports retailer or grocery store. 

Keep your injury wrapped in a sturdy brace during the day when you’re out and about. This will help you support your weight and protect your injury from further damage. At night, you can wear a softer support brace to hold your joints in place while you sleep. 

Remember to Stretch

For some of us, a lack of stretching is what got us in this mess in the first place. So don’t let it be your downfall in recovery. While you’re recovering, do everything you can to stay loose while you heal. If you don’t, you’re going to risk the new tissue growing too short or connected to tight muscles. 

You’re probably clear to do the amount of exercise that feels comfortable to you, but either way, be sure to stretch. Even if you aren’t ready to get back on the workout bandwagon, spend some time stretching every day.

If you end up getting too tight, you’ll lengthen your recovery as you attempt to stretch out that new tissue. Stretching daily can help you get back to your regular training routine right on schedule. 

Workout injuries are the worst, but if you take care of them properly, they will heal the right way the first time. Handle it the wrong way and you’ll spend extra time trying to fix a poorly healed injury.