Sunday, June 30, 2013

h2o, h2o, h..........2.........o!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

please tell me that you've seen the movie hook.  please tell me that you get the lame "reference" in the post title.  if you haven't seen it, or if it's been a while, brush up on your childhood movies ::here::

anyway, getting on topic here.  unless you're living on an iceberg, you're probably being hit with this summer heat.  i'm usually all for hot summer weather but goodness am i ever hating it this year.  you see, i moved into an apartment....and old apartment...that only has a wall mounted a/c unit in the living room.  the living room also has a ceiling fan.  my bedroom has a window.  great ventilation!!!!!  i rely, heavily, on an oscillating fan to help circulate the air but i feel like i'm living in the lint trap of a dryer.  the one piece of relief i find is in drinking cold water.  sure i mix in a calorie-free powder or add some lemon juice from time-to-time, but i have never loved water so much before!  try some water recipes to spice up your own hot summer days, but read on to learn about some great benefits and reasons why you should be drinking more water!!!


































i know that carbonated high fructose is fun to drink, but will you make me a promise to drink less of it and drink more water?  if you really must drink your fizzy stuff, make sure it's diet and that you're being smart with portion size and just how much of it you're consuming?  diet or not, sodas have been shown to have severely negative impacts on your health.  don't believe me?  see it for yourself!!



































sorry, this last one is a little difficult to read.  see it better ::here::

eat clean.  live lean.  live better.  live longer.

Friday, June 28, 2013

bench, please!

buy tank ::here::

i've been known to joke about my happy hour at the bar...at the gym.  whether it's the squat rack, smith machine, or bench pressing, i love the bar!!!!  in fact, i love it so much that, when my trainer asked if there were new things i wanted to incorporate or work on, i told him that i really want to work on developing a lot of upper body strength, in particular, training my chest.  i wanna bench!  

whether a woman is intimidated by the bench press or by the guys pressing heavy loads, there really is nothing to fear.  truth be told, you really don't want to ignore training your chest and i'm going to provide you with the reasons why you shouldn't ignore your chest as well as some great exercises to incorporate into your training.

avoid injury and balance out upper-body strength
let's say you decide to forgo chest training entirely, but you still train your back, arms, core, and legs.  such an off-balance training routine could end up developing muscular imbalances in your body.  this could lead to bad posture, a stringy or bony looking chest, and inability to perform other exercised correctly. you might even seriously injure yourself one day trying to do an exercise that involves some chest muscles that you can pull--or in this case, push--their own weight.

i'm not arguing for benching near your max every time you hit the gym.  in fact, i prefer a chest workout that is tailored for females--basically it's going to be closer to full-body training or using compound movements that hit the chest, shoulders and triceps.

whether you want to be strong enough to move into your new apartment on your own, develop athletic skills for a specific sport, or sculpt a cover-model physique--your chest muscles will play a part in your training schedule.

in fact, if you've ever coveted beautiful, round shoulders on other women or kick-butt triceps, you might be surprised to find out that chest workouts really help develop those body parts!  often you can lift a lot more weight when doing chest exercises than when doing triceps or shoulder isolation moves alone.

plus, there's a bonus calorie burn!  since the chest is such a large muscle area, training it will burn more calories than training smaller muscle groups.  chest exercises lead to a better rate of burning fat!  now, how is that not convincing?

the 3 classic chest exercises
the exercises that every woman should incorporate for chest training are:
Are you a woman? You should be doing these exercises.

only three exercises?  i wrote this whole plan and mention only 3 exercises?! yeah, yeah--i admit it; chest training can be basic and highly effective.  but isn't that the beauty of it?  you probably don't have to change your routine much to add in these exercises, and your body will reap the benefits.
if basic push-ups are too easy, there are many ways to increase the intensity.  you can do decline push-ups, one handed push-ups, or push-ups on an exercise ball for just a few ideas.
note on rep range:  for bench press on flat, incline, or decline, challenge yourself with a rep range of 6 to 8.  always start with a warm-up set of 15 reps before hitting a heavier set.  for chest flyes and close-grip bench press, do 10 to 12 reps.  do push-up to failure, meaning going until you can't complete one more push-up.
To the women out there--to completely avoid chest training is simply a bad idea.

you can train chest once or twice a week.  you don't need to train chest more than twice in one week, unless you're doing a full-body workout three times a week.  and if you're doing full-body workouts, no need to do all three chest exercises.  pick one or two to round out your workout.
depending on your workout split, you might train chest on, say, wednesday and sunday.  here are two ways you can combine the above exercises into a quick but effective chest workout.

the pec-tacular chest workout

workout #1


workout #2

hopefully you can see how easy it is to incorporate chest training into your overall gym strategy. many women are afraid of looking overly masculine, but chest training isn't the necessary culprit. it just so happens that when you cut down body fat, you may go down a bra size, or even 2 or 3 sizes.
yes, ladies, those lady-lumps are made out of fat, not muscle. for many women, this isn't a problem. reaching your ideal level of fitness usually brings awesome benefits like high-energy, self-confidence and a general, "i feel great all the time!" attitude.
There's no more excuses. You can't avoid training your chest any longer.
the lesson here is this: don't blame the hard-knocked chest exercises. chest training will help you avoid injury and build a well-rounded and strength-balanced body. and it's everything else you do inside and outside of the gym that will determine your overall look. chest training is one piece of the fitness puzzle that can't be left out if you want to reveal an amazing body at the end.

article and photo credits ::here::
eat clean.  live lean.  live better.  live longer.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

investing in your home gym

a majority of people are dissuaded from doing at-home fitness because they don't want to purchase and then store bulky equipment.  infomercials play up the "under bed" storage and convenient 500-step disassemble process but let's be honest, most of those things get piled up in the garage because they're too bulky to keep in the house.  that means they're not being used.  that means you just wasted 10 easy payments of $29.95....with free shipping.

you don't need to buy huge pieces of equipment to build a home gym and build a better body.  one simple option is investing in a small piece of equipment that can be used in versatile options.  that's what i do with my clothes.  i buy investment pieces that can be paired in different combinations!  okay, who am i kidding.  if i had all the money in the world, i wouldn't buy investment pieces.  i'd buy the entire j.crew catalog...in every color.  still, you can be smart, functional, and still get a great workout in at home.

though they're trendy right now, the versatility and effectiveness of buying a kettle bell or two is a great stepping stone.  obviously found in sporting goods stores, you can even find them in your local wal-mart or target...even online!  prices totally vary, but for around $30 you can have a new toy to serve dual function as a workout item and door stop.

so, you've taken my advice and purchased your kettle bell.  now what?  okay, fine.  since you rely on me for everything, i'll tell you what to do.

1.  don't drop it when you're swinging it
2.  don't stub your toe on it in the middle of the night
3.  if you do stub your toe on it in the middle of the night, don't curse my name

oh, you want workout ideas?  you should have said so in the first place.

here you go:

this is for slightly more advanced users who already know proper technique and form when training with kettle bells.  if you're a total beginner, try this:


and then try this:


eat clean.  live lean.  live better.  live longer.

look into my crystal ball

i can admit that i'm a country music fan without fear or retaliation or negative comments.  nobody ever comments on here!  anyway, i was born in oregon, spent my first few years on a farm, grew
up loving rodeos and riding horses, and even owned a few pairs of wranglers jeans in high school.  in college, however, well, those years really could have turned this city girl kuntry.  i went to college in south eastern idaho, potato farms surrounded my apartments, and yes, i took basic equitation one summer.  my inner country girl loved that summer.  in fact, i go a little bit country every single summer listening to country music on the radio and going to live concerts.  there's just something about summer that screams country music.

a few years ago, one of my awesome friends, erik, scored us tickets to go see brad paisley.  these weren't crappy nose-bleed seats, either.  we were up so close that i could honestly verify just how short mr. paisley is....compared to the likes of this amazon.

while it's not my favorite song, brad has a song called "letter to me" that i'm identifying with, a lot, lately.  the inspiration behind the song came when his wife was asked to write for a book entitled what i know now: letters to my younger self.  after he heard about the book, he thought that the concept of a writing a letter to his younger self would be a good idea for a country song.  according to him, it took most of a week to write the song, as he would constantly change the lyrics and write a new letter every day.  if you've never heard the song, its narrator is singing a letter to his younger self about things he wish he would have known, done differently, focused on, etc.

wouldn't it be awesome if we could actually do that?  i could have written a letter to myself about how going through my most recent heartbreak would have been one of the most formidable learning opportunities.  i could have written a letter to myself with little reassurances about my career.  i could have done so much to prepare myself for the future.  guess what?  i wouldn't actually do it, given the opportunity.  why?  i wouldn't have learned anything!

don't wish for easy roads in the future.  don't wish for answers to prepare you for life's tests.  don't look for the easy outs when life throws a challenge in your way.  become strong, smart, wise, and show confidence in your choices.  focus on your goals.  reinforce your own beliefs.  hold on to them when people question them and you'll never be wrong.  make mistakes.  often.  and learn from them.  do something today that your future self will thank you for.

eat clean.  live lean.  live better.  live longer.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

waist not want not

i'm weird.  i'm probably one of man women who wish they didn't have curves.  i'm not some sultry hour-glass shaped woman.  i'm pear shaped.  it's a curse.  big hips and bum.  the plus side is having a slim waist.  i try to draw focus to the smallest part of my body, my waist, with what i wear, but to help it stay trim and slim, core exercises are a must.

the wonderful tracy anderson (i've written about here before) has an easy routine that you can squeeze into 6 minutes and then squeeze into those skinny jeans.

eat clean.  live lean.  live better.  live longer.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

it takes time

you getting out of shape, losing muscle mass, or putting on however many pounds didn't happen over night.  don't forget that.  it happened over time.  it's going to take time, a lot of sweat, commitment, and oh-so-worth-it hard work.  give it 12 weeks.  then give it more.  commit to changing your life and make healthy choices part of every day.

don't quit.

eat clean.  live lean.  live better.  live longer.


Monday, June 24, 2013

pre-packaged garbage...and you're eating it!

if you need one more reason to join the clean eating movement, i hope you'll take a few minutes to read the following report that i just found on yahoo.  considering the fact that about 80% of pre-packaged food found in america is banned outside of the good ol' u.s. of a, i firmly believe that a big change needs to take place among us as consumers.  read on:

if you or your kids enjoy pre-packaged convenience foods commonly found in grocery stores across the u.s. such as froot loops, swanson dinners, mountain dew, and frozen potato and bread products, you may think twice before purchasing them after hearing what they contain: dangerous chemicals that other countries around the globe have deemed toxic to the point that they're illegal, and companies are fined hundreds of thousands of dollars for including them in food products.
in a new book rich food, poor food, authors mira and jason calton provide a list of what they term "banned bad boys" - ingredients commonly used in up to 80% of all american convenience foods that have been banned by other countries, with information about which countries banned each substance and why. 
and though it might not surprise you to hear that olestra - commonly used in low/no-fat snack foods and known to cause serious gastrointestinal issues for those who consume it (understatement) - is on that list, having been banned in both the united kingdom and canada, you may be shocked to hear that mountain dew, fresca and squirt all contain brominated vegetable oil, a substance that has been banned in more than 100 countries "because it has been linked to basically every form of thyroid disease - from cancer to autoimmune diseases - known to man."
way to go, FDA! woot! 
you might also be upset to hear that the food coloring used to make your kid's delicious macaroni and cheese dinner visually appealing - yellow #5 and yellow #6, namely - is made from coal tar, which among other things is an active ingredient in lice shampoo and has been linked to allergies, adhd, and cancer in animals. and gaaaaah. 
then there's azodicarbonamide - commonly found in frozen dinners and frozen potato and bread products - which is used make things like bleach and foamed plastics like those found in yoga mats (tasty!). azodicarbonamide has been banned in most european countries because it's known to induce asthma, and is in fact deemed so dangerous that in singapore its use carries a hefty $500,00 fine and up to 15 years in prison. 
yet, according to the fda, it's SO TOTALLY FINE for us to keep shoveling it into our kid's faceholes: "[azodicarbonamide] is approved to be a bleaching agent in cereal flour and is permitted for direct addition to food for human consumption."
ooookay then.
finally, there's butylated hydroxyanisole (bha) and butylated hydroxytoluene (bht) - found in post, kelloggs and quaker brand cereals - which is made from petroleum and is a known cancer-causing agent. it's been banned in england and japan, but those of us in the u.s. can keep right on serving up to our children for breakfast.
anyone else find all of this, ohhhh i don't know, more than a tad bit disturbing? i'm not ashamed to say i have love for the blue box mac & cheese, and to think that chemicals known and recognized world-wide as completely toxic are included in that - a product openly marketed as being a meal for kids - makes me more than a little ragey. I mean, those chemicals can't be what makes it taste so good, right? So can't we, umm, just use something else instead?  
-By Tracey Gaughran-Perez  

eat clean.  live lean.  live better.  live longer.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

wave goodbye to arm flab

tracy anderson is best known for her celebrity clientele and their amazing transformations.  you've seen her work and probably didn't even know it.  madonna, gwyneth paltrow, nicole richie, courtney cox, shakira, ashley greene, jennifer lopez, and the gorgeous jake gyllenhaal are a few, just to do a little name dropping.

tracy trained in dance and hoped to become a professional dancer in nyc, but after a 40 lb weight gain during her first year in nyc, anderson switched her focus to weight loss/fitness training as a career.  she has several gym locations, dvd collections for at-home training, and even launched a pregnancy workout dvd collection aimed at women in the pre-and-postnatal periods of pregnancy.

but you don't have to be a celebrity to benefit from tracy's methods.  try this workout at home!


if, after doing this simple workout, you want to do more, explore your options on youtube!  i've found so many of her workouts and truly love them all!!!

eat clean.  live lean.  live better.  live longer.

Friday, June 21, 2013

essential fitness habits for success in health & wellness


you see that picture over to the right that introduces you to the man that built me?  well, this is that man!  taylor is a genius and full of so much insight.  download his free success kit ::here::

eat clean.  live lean.  live better.  live longer.

if/then

if
then
this should be pretty obvious...if i need to explain this any deeper, we need to have a little talk....

eat clean.  live lean.  live better.  live longer.


Thursday, June 20, 2013

happy national kissing day

kissing is good for your relationship, but you may wonder if it does your body any good.  stop wondering.  giving your lips a good workout apparently is okay for the rest of you as well:  kissing burns calories.

going in style
like so many things in life, the value of kissing--in terms of calories expended--is a matter of how much you do it.  if you give a passive smooch, you'll have less effect on calories burned, and probably less effect on your partner as well.  inject some passion in your kiss and get your body into the act and you will burn more calories.

stand and deliver
you'll burn more calories standing than sitting, and more moving than still.

breathless
oxygen consumption is the key to burning calories.  if you get to the point where you are breathing heavy because of your kissing, you are burning more calories.

the long kiss goodnight
a vigorous kiss could burn as man as 90 calories per hour, according to womansday.com, a figure that computers to 1.5 calories per minute.  the indiatimes website suggests that kissing can burn 120 calories per hour, which amounts to 2 calories per minute.  you probably won't drop pounds just by kissing, but it won't hurt either!
read more ::here::

eat clean.  live lean.  live better.  live longer.

toned & tight...just the way i like it

eat clean.  live lean.  live better.  live longer.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

face the facts

my amazingly inspirational fit friend, ashley nordman, shared this image on instagram and i could think of no simpler image to share with you to convince you to start eating clean.  before i get on my soapbox, go follow ashley on twitter and instagram.  the passion she has for fitness will truly rub off on you and you will learn so much from her.

though this may be a confessional for me, i want to share with you the reason behind why i eat clean.  i have a bunch of family in town staying with me.  we're cramming a lot of us into my tiny tiny apartment and in an effort to not only be the cool aunt to my teenage nephews and darling little niece, i also went for ease and convenience when stocking up on foods they'd want to eat.  i went for sugary cereals, convenient but packaged baked-goods, bags of chips, a run to a fried chicken drive-thru, and other dirty foods.  i knew that they would, begrudgingly, eat my health food, but i didn't want them to hate me for it.  i caved.  i bought food that i shouldn't.  i even ate the food that i shouldn't.  my justification was that i work so hard and eat clean so much of the time that i could totally pull off a cheat meal.

my weight didn't change, much.  my body didn't physically change, much.  but something did change.  they way i felt.  i had low energy.  i felt nauseated.  i had a headache.  my body hated me for eating so much processed, sugary, dirty, horrible junk.

i treated my body like that for years, before getting on the fitness bandwagon.  once i started eating clean, however, dude, all i can say is that the difference was amazing.  my skin hardly ever broke out.  my hair got healthier.  i felt like i had a certain clarity and light in my eyes.  my tummy troubles lessened.  my energy increased.  my headaches almost all went away.  i found myself relying less and less on prescriptions and bottled pills to make my body function.  i felt like a normal person should feel.  why?  because i was fueling my body with the best possible resources:  clean foods.

my sluggish lag from cheating this weekend is still lingering.  the guilt i feel when i eat that junk, too, is lingering.  but i know that i get to start every day with a clean slate.  i know that i can make decisions and live with the consequences.  so, now, i choose to make good choices.  and when i choose to cheat, i'm still going to make wiser cheating decisions.  just no more fried chicken, corn bathed in butter, chocolate doughnuts, chips, carbonated nastiness, and mini candy bars.

see, i can admit that i'm flawed.  i can admit that even i don't always follow my own advice.  but i am beast enough to step up and recommit.  don't say that you'll start making better decisions once a, b, c, d, and e, have been accomplished.  start making them now.

eat clean.  live lean.  live better.  live longer.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

she's got legs....she knows how to use them!

once upon a time, i had a "friend" who would constantly critique and criticize other women.  outfits.  hair.  makeup choices.  the men they would date.  nothing ever received an ounce of praise or positivity from this individual.  it was so taxing and difficult to be around her that i, eventually, severed ties.  she blew up at me and didn't handle it all that well and i honestly could not have cared less.  it was a joy to rid myself of that negativity.

i do, still, get a laugh out of her expense when i think about how opinionated she was about how a woman's legs should look.  she thought that any muscle on a woman was hideous and would always comment on how big so-and-so's calves looked.  i'm happy to say that i am one of those that she would be grossed out by, and i'm also happy to admit that i think muscles, leg muscles in particular, are a good thing.

i think there's nothing more telling about an individual than what you can see through their muscular definition.  it shows me that they care about themselves.  that they understand the value of hard work.  it shows me that they're a fit beast.  and i love it.  to this old "friend", if i had the chance, i'd remind her that skinny girls look good in clothes but fit girls look good....well...you get the point.

so, join me in my crusade to be the positive yin to her negative yang....work those legs!!!

eat clean.  live lean.  live better.  live longer.

Monday, June 17, 2013

work it!

here's a perfect mini circuit challenge for you to try today.  work those abs and legs with this quick workout!

eat clean.  live lean.  live better.  live longer!

Sunday, June 16, 2013

walk, forrest....walk!!

running isn't for everyone.  in fact, half of the time when i'm out for a run, i am one of those who hate running.  but that's usually only when i'm struggling up a hill, when i can feel a blister forming, or when it's hit me that i forgot to take a pee before embarking on a 7 mile run.  so, if running isn't your bag, you can walk and reap wonderful benefits!

grab a friend, family member, neighbor, video game playing kid, or the family dog...go for a walk!

eat clean.  live lean.  live better.  live longer.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

the fit beast feasts: over the rainbow salad with tahini-lemon dressing

remember how i once posted that you needed to eat a diet full of colorful fruits and veggies?  here is an extremely applicable recipe that you must try: over the rainbow salad.
picture and recipe found ::here::

over the rainbow cabbage salad with tahini-lemon dressing
ingredients
about 6-7 cups of roughly chopped purple cabbage
1 carrot, shaved with a peeler into 2-3 inch strips
3 celery stalks, chopped
1 red pepper, julienned
2 handfuls of fresh parsley, chopped finely
half a batch of lightened up tahini-lemon dressing (recipe found ::here::)
3/4 tbsp of toasted sesame seeds
salt & pepper, to taste

  1. preheat oven to 325 degrees.  toast the seeds for about 8-10 minutes, watching closely.  remove and set aside.
  2. add several cups of water into a kettle and bring to a boil.  lightly rinse the cabbage and slice in half, through the stem.  slice each half in half again and roughly chop.
  3. add chopped cabbage into a strainer int he sink and pour the boiling water over.  quickly rinse with cold water.  this helps soften the cabbage slightly.  roughly dry the cabbage with a hand towel.
  4. in a large bowl, mix the chopped celery, pepper, cabbage, shaved carrot, and parsley.
  5. prepare the dressing by whisking all ingredients together in a medium sized bowl.  the salad tastes best when the dressing is mixed just before serving, so i suggest you portion out how much salad you will be eating for the meal and then add on your desired amount of dressing and mix well. 
eat clean.  live lean.  live better.  live longer.

Friday, June 14, 2013

i'm gonna sound harsh


as anyone in the fitness world can attest to, genetics play a small role in the final outcome when working towards fitness goals.  eating clean and training dirty do more to help you obtain optimum results.  what gets results, what shapes a body, what trims body fat, and what ultimately makes an individual healthy is what and individual does to stay healthy....not what's programmed into their genetics.  i'm speaking the truth here.  i had to get up on my soapbox and say that, first, before sharing a recent experience.

often, after working out, i remain in my gym clothes, covered in sweat, hair matted down, and have an exhausted look on my face, and run errands.  the looks i get when i'm walking through a store hardly phase me anymore.  the comments i get in the dead of winter about needing a coat make me laugh as my body temperature is obviously raised from a strenuous workout.  the walking peanut gallery of observers seldom say anything, but when they do, they often say it without a filter.

recently, i was doing this same thing...walking the aisles of a store in my gym attire.  i walk fast in stores for a lot of reasons.  first, i hate going shopping.  the faster i can get in and out of any store, the exceptions being sports authority and j.crew, the better.  second, i have long legs.  for these two reasons, i view shopping aisles like lanes of traffic to be navigated.  on this particular night, i was wearing my hot pink nike pro compression pants....kinda tight...and a super cute lululemon tank that shows my ab definition.  i was obvious, smelly, tired, and my body was just out there. ahead of me, on this night, i saw a tall man's head weaving through the aisles and i knew that our paths would collide if he didn't go faster.  so i adjusted my pace.  as i got closer i noticed he was going even slower.  he was extremely overweight and had a difficult time walking, so i definitely slowed my pace.

just like i do in traffic, i smile, let a car in, and pray that the traffic karma comes back to benefit me.  once he passed, i started to push my cart again and nearly missed his shorter and even more overweight wife.  i hardly noticed her between two displays and apologized for almost ramming her cart.  i let her pass by and as she did she said, "i wish i had your genetics so i could look like you."

without thinking, i said the unthinkable.......don't wish.  do something about it.  exercise and eat properly.  if i didn't do each of those, i'd look like you........in my head.  come on, give me some credit here.  i'd never say it out loud.  what i actually said was, "i actually train really hard and am disciplined with my diet.  but i do know of a great gym, nearby, that i could introduce you to."  i was met with the response i didn't want to hear.  "no, that's too hard and probably too expensive."

my heart broke for this couple.  they couldn't have been older than their early 40s.  they had a young child in their cart.  i thought of the defeat they must feel at having to tackle such an overwhelming task.  but then i remembered this saying:  don't be upset by the results you didn't get with the work you didn't do.

regardless of what your fitness goals are, whether you have 10 or 100 pounds to lose, if you have all the time in the world to commit or only 30 minutes a day, and definitely despite any prevailing financial circumstances, you can put in the work necessary to obtain the results you desire....the results and life you deserve.

explore the resources in your general area 

  • look for fitness clubs or recreation centers that meet your budget needs
  • start a walking group with friends from church, school, or the neighborhood
  • take advantage of wellness plans offered at work


surf the web



commit to a plan
if you have the means necessary, shop around and find the right trainer who will help you transform you life and body.  don't just pick any trainer, or sign up for a boot camp, or jump in to some workout training program that you are not prepared for.  make an education decision based on your goals, find a qualified and educated professional trainer who can help you reach those goals, and then stay committed

eat clean.  live lean.  live better.  live longer.

it's friday, i'm in love: gaba powder

gamma-amino butyric acid, or gaba, is a neurotransmitter that acts to reduce communication between nerve cells in the brain, producing a calming effect.  sold as pills, liquids, or powders, gaba may be beneficial, but discuss its safety with your doctor before using it.  here are some potential benefits:

promotes sleep
gaba powder might make it easier to fall asleep by lowering the activity of neurons in the brain.  gaba powder might also increase the amount of human growth hormone in the body, which might improve sleep cycles and decrease disruptions in sleep.

might prevent seizures
epilepsy is typically treated with medications or surgery.  some epilepsy medications increase the levels of gaba in the brain.  gaba might impact seizures by reducing the firing between neurons, according to the wholehealthmd website.  the studies that used gaba powder itself to treat epilepsy have not demonstrated success; you should never take gaba as a substitute for conventional epilepsy medications.  talk to your doctor before using gaba is you have epilepsy or another condition that predisposes you to seizures.

improves chronic pain
gaba inhibits the transmission of pain impulses throughout the body.  in some diseases, like rheumatoid arthritis, the brain's natural gaba is ineffective, which leads to constant and unfiltered pain signals.  gaba powder might lower the number of pain impulses and lessen feelings of pain.  the supplement might also decrease stress levels, which could potentially reduce pain, according to wholehealthmd.  your health care provider might suggest that you try gaba powder to improve chronic pain.

improves mood
people with depression or anxiety might have low levels of gaba in the brain.  gaba powder, taken as a supplement, is thought to increase gaba levels in the blood.  however, little evidence exists to prove that gaba supplementation actually increases the level of gaba in the brain, and gaba supplements have difficulty crossing the blood-brain barrier.  caution is required because some researchers believe that increasing gaba levels in people with depression might trigger further depression.  you should not substitute gaba powder for any prescribed medication for anxiety or depression.
information found here

why do i take it?  well, this non-essential amino acid is concentrated in the human brain and eyes.  unlike most amino acids, gaba is not incorporated into protein.  instead, it functions as an inhibitory neurotransmitter.  by inhibiting the quantity of neurons firing in the brain, gaba may help calm the brain.  it is responsible for regulating muscle tone, which helps maintain posture while awake.  it promotes relaxation, mood stabilization, and eases nervous tension.  not to mention that it helps to work as a sleep aid.  for the relaxation and sleep aid purposes, alone, is why i take it.  i have the worst adhd brain that never stops running.  though i spent a long time taking a controlled substance to help regulate my adhd, i decided that i would pursue alternative methods of treatment that still help me stay focused at work without the assistance of such a serious substance.

my focus at work is fine, but the ability to quiet down my mind at the end of the day is a horse of a different color.  since sleep is the time where my body rests and rebuilds itself, i want at least 8 or 9 hours of it.  gaba helps quiet my mind so my body can rest, rebuild, and grow.

like it says above, talk to your healthcare provider before taking gaba.

i personally use the bodybuilding.com brand.  can be purchased ::here::

eat clean.  live lean.  live better.  live longer.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

chatty kathy

i just have too much "stuff" that i want to share with the world.  it must be my adhd.  or just a profound desire to share what i enjoy.  regardless, i've started a new blog.  don't worry, i'm not giving up on this one.

a few months ago, i received a fun letter in the mail from a man telling me that he was taking over as the landlord over the house i'd been renting for the last four years.  two weeks later, i had a conversation with him on the phone that he was going to sell my house.  my world turned upside down.  i'd spent years creating a home, a place that i love, regardless of how badly the carpet needed to be replaced.  countless saturday mornings had been spent weeding the flower beds and maintaining the vegetable and flower gardens i'd planted.  the fact that i was renting didn't matter...it was my home.

i stressed, like crazy, and lamented my loss.  i even freaked out about having to move away from my gym...only .3 miles away.  but, eventually, my nerves settled and i accepted this new phase in my life.

my new place is only about 15 miles south of my old house, and about half the size, but i'm okay with it.  in fact, i've already fallen so in love with the neighborhood and surrounding areas that i woke up with an idea last night.  i wanted to start a blog to, if nothing more, share what i see and experience.  you already read about one of my passions...fitness...so i hope you'll follow my other blog, too, to see the other side of my life.

photos are being edited and content is being worked on, but go follow me as i start living in marmalade!