Monthly Archives: March 2013

Leg day

Leg day

And while you’re at it, don’t forget to work those legs!

Credit: http://backonpointe.tumblr.com/post/26014627525/clear-some-space-and-kill-those-legs

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Tank top time

Tank top time

It’s spring! Which means it’s time to get in shape for summer. I found this short but sweet list of easy and effective exercises, designed to target the areas that show most when wearing tank tops-shoulders, biceps, triceps, core, etc.
I really like this list because it can be done at home, with little to no equipment!
Thanks to POPSUGAR for this list!

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Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead

Here is the trailer for the documentary I referenced in my last post.
It is available on Netflix, and I believe you can watch the whole thing at various sites online.
Have you seen it yet? Let me know what you think!

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My strange addiction: Juicing – Part I

Through talking with my classmate Wendy, I was introduced to the concept of juicing. After hearing about how much her and her family enjoyed it, I decided to watch a documentary she recommended: Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead

The documentary follows the journey of a man determined to cure his disease and obesity through juicing. The film was so compelling that I ordered a juicer halfway through watching the documentary.

While the man in the film went on an extreme juicing fast, I immediately realized the health benefits that I would see in my own life, if I started juicing. As to not overwhelm readers, I will make a future post explaining the full health benefits of juicing.

To start off, I needed a juicer. Not knowing how much I would really enjoy it, I decided to not go overboard and spend crazy amounts of money on my juicer, which is easily possible. On Amazon, I found one with a decent rating for fairly cheap.

I bought:

Black & Decker JE2200B 400-Watt Fruit and Vegetable Juice Extractor with Custom Juice Cup

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It was around $35 and I got it with free shipping. One of the reasons I picked it was because it is made for beginners. In addition, I ordered a book on juicing called, 

The Big Book of Juices: More Than 400 Natural Blends for Health and Vitality Every Day

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I eagerly awaited the arrival of my juicer, and it came within 4 days!

Check back soon for my next post on my very first juicing experience!

P.S. Check out my classmate Wendy’s blog here:

http://wendle90.wordpress.com/

 

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Handy Portion Control

Thanks to Prevention, I found this super helpful guide to portion control using your hands. This is useful for when you’re cooking and don’t have the proper equipment to measure your foods, or when you’re out on the go. Below is some info from their website, check out the link below for more stuff, too!

Eating the right portion sizes pays off, say Pennsylvania State University scientists, who found out how easily big servings lead to a calories overload. 

On 2 consecutive days in each of 3 weeks, 32 subjects chose as many food portions as they wanted. But the serving portion sizes changed: Regular size portions during week one became 50% larger the second week and doubled during week three. 

Compared with the first week, total daily calories jumped by 335 calories per day for women and 504 calories for men during the second week, and by an astonishing 530 calories for women and 812 calories for men in the last week. 

To make controlling portion sizes super easy, print out this guide and carry it with you until you’ve committed it to memory.  

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Read more: http://www.prevention.com/weight-loss/weight-loss-tips/your-guide-calories-and-portion-sizes#ixzz2OBYnPB9a

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Snack time: Healthy snack options-High in fiber

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People always ask me for healthy snack ideas during the day. While I do find this a challenge myself, I still try to change it up everyday. I recently came across this list of snack ideas. Some require simple assembly, some a little more time for cooking or baking. I selected my favorites and listed them below, but click the link at the bottom for all the snack ideas!

1. Raspberry Cream Cheese Toast
Toast 1 slice of whole-grain bread, spread with 1 to 2 tablespoons of low-fat cream cheese, and top with ½ cup of raspberries (1 cup of raspberries has eight grams of fiber, so feel free to add a few extra, or snack on another handful while making the toast)

2. Mediterranean Artichokes
Strain 1 6-ounce jar of artichokes to remove all liquid. Snack on them as-is, or get fancy by topping with 1 tablespoon of feta, a squeeze of lemon juice, a little olive oil, and some cracked pepper. This six-ounce (or ¾ cup) serving of the hearts (the center portion of an artichoke) has more than seven grams of fiber. Plus, they’re a rich source of vitamin C. (We won’t tell anyone if you stick a fork in the jar.)

3. Pears and Cottage Cheese
Core a pear and slice in half top to bottom. Scoop low-fat cottage cheese on top of the pear and sprinkle with cinnamon or poppy seeds. One medium pear touts six grams of fiber.

4. Buffalo Wing Hummus
Seriously, this is a real thing. It’s all the deliciousness of the Super Bowl, minus all the not-so-good stuff. Blend 2 cans of chickpeas2 to 3 cloves of garlic¼ cup of tahini¼ cup of lemon juice1 ½ teaspoons paprika3 tablespoons wing sauce2 tablespoons hot sauce1 tablespoon white vinegar, and a pinch of kosher salt. Puree until smooth and dip-able, and enjoy with celery and carrot sticks (or by itself…). The beans up the fiber content to a dip that usually gets its base from a fatty dairy source.

5. Kale Chips
We’ll be honest here: These guys definitely don’t taste exactly like potato chips. But if you’re looking for a healthier (or more chic) way to crunch, kale chips are it. Preheat oven to 375. Rinse and dry 1 large bunch of kale, then remove the stems and tough center ribs. Rip the kale into large pieces, toss with a little olive oil, then sprinkle with some salt and pepper. Arrange in a single layer on a large parchment lined baking sheet (careful not to overlap). Bake until crisp, about 10 to 15 minutes, checking frequently (they can burn easily!).

6. Chocolate Peanut Butter Balls
Considering my love affair with chocolate and peanut butter as separate entities, a combo of the two really knocks it out of the park. Plus, these snack bites are actually healthy and you only need three ingredients to make ‘em. Mix 3 scoops of chocolate protein powder¼ cup of ground flax seed, and ½ cup of peanut butter (look for the unsalted variety). Form the mixture into small balls and pop in the freezer to set before eating.

7. Avocado Boat
Cut an avocado in half, and twist it to separate both pieces. Remove the pit, and fill up the hole with salsa and some shredded cheese. Aside from a pretty stellar fiber content (six grams for just half of a medium one), avocados are a fantastic source of monosaturated fats, which can help improve cholesterol levels, decrease the risk of heart disease, and benefit brain activity.

Happy snacking! 🙂

http://greatist.com/health/high-fiber-snacks/

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Metabolism Boosting Foods

Metabolism Boosting Foods

Take this list of awesome, healthy foods into consideration when choosing your meals each day!

Credit to: http://womenist.blogark.com/metabolism-boosting-foods/ for the link!

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NCAA Diver article

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Here is an article I wrote about a diver from my college. She is currently at NCAA Nationals with two of her other teammates.

Good luck Sarah!

Her wet, blonde hair in a braid running down her back, Sarah Ficarro squeegees her body dry leg by leg with her Shammy before throwing it down off the board. The concentration shows on her face as she prepares, mentally and physically, for her next dive.

With a few quick steps and a jump off the sandpapery board, she hurls herself through the air, flips, and enters ever so gracefully into the water.

The judge’s scores appear almost instantly on the board, marking Ficarro one step closer to clenching her last SUNYAC win as a diver for SUNY Fredonia.

*          *          *

The road of becoming a four-time NCAA national competitor and six-time All American has not been an easy one. After watching her dive, one would not guess the 22-year-old senior speech pathology major had never been on a board until tenth grade of high school. Originally a gymnast, diving didn’t appear in her life until the 5’4’’ athlete began to outgrow gymnastics.

Aware of Ficarro’s abilities, her high school swim coach recruited her for their diving team.

“I didn’t really want to do diving because I thought the swim team was weird,” she said.

After encouragement from her parents, Ficarro began her bruised, black-and-blue journey toward the state meet during her very first year of high school competition.

Though the school had no actual diving coach, Ficarro combined her background in gymnastics with an undying will to persevere and coached herself during her first year.

“Jerri [her mother] was gonna pull her out because she was getting so black and blue the first week. She was gonna tear her right out, but Sarah wouldn’t let her because she wanted to master it,” said Ficarro’s father, Jay.

The solution to stop Sarah from bruising from smacking the water so frequently while learning the dives came from her swim coach.

“My coach wanted me to continue trying the dives, but I didn’t want to get bruises on top of my bruises so he would make me put sweatpants and a sweatshirt on,” she said. “Since they would get wet, they’d get so heavy, he’d make me put duct tape around them. One time I even put on a life vest!”

To picture a future All-American jumping off the board in a duct taped sweat-suit is crazy in itself. But after an entire season of being handed a list of dives to master by herself, Ficarro qualified for the state meet after just one year of competition.

*          *          *

Exiting the water after her dive, Ficarro is calm and collected. She begins to run through her next dive in her head and motions the movement with her arms in the corner, not concerning herself with her competitors’ performances or scores.

Though serious and concentrated, she fulfills her role as team caption and congratulates her teammates on their dives.

“Sarah’s supportive and helpful,” said teammate Ryan Fuller. “She’s always willing to watch you and help make a correction.”

Her proud parents watch with more anxiety than Ficarro herself.

“She don’t like losing,” her father says. “I’m a nervous wreck watching her.”

Mrs. Ficarro agrees, “I can’t imagine being in her shoes.”

*          *          *

Constantly being No. 1 comes with an immense pressure that sometimes causes even the best athletes to crack. Though it took time for Ficarro to adjust once at Fredonia, she quickly found success. Once on the boards, it wasn’t long until Ficarro was on her way to nationals as a college freshman.

“She tried so hard all the time, and I think that’s a part of her personality that has pushed her to the level that she is at now,” Fuller said. “I think she realized how good she could be, and she pushed herself to be the best she could be.”

Though Ficarro was recruited by multiple Division I schools, she chose Fredonia largely in relation to academics. While qualifying for nationals and holding two school records is important, becoming a three-time Scholar All American is just as important to Ficarro.

“I take a lot of pride in what I do at school,” she said. “I try really hard.”

“I only saw her dive once in all of her diving career of high school,” said her coach, John Crawford. “Diving is a sport where you can tell by the points score if they’re going to be able to help a program out. I could tell by her points total in her championship meet that she’d be able to help us out.”

It was more than her successes on the board and in the classroom that led to her teammates electing her to be captain for the 2012-2013 season. Her high-pitched giggle and effervescent personality match her big smile.

“Her work ethic is a model for other divers to emulate,” Crawford said of Ficarro. “She’s never shied away from going after things that we thought she could do. She’s got a great work ethic, and has from day one.”

*          *          *

Just as recognizable as her smile, Boomboozle, Ficarro’s stuffed lemur, accompanies her to every meet.

“She’s had it for as long as I can remember,” Fuller said. Practicing together since high school on a club team, he recalls there never being a meet where it wasn’t present.

Somewhat of a good-luck charm, Boomboozle has followed her all the way to the end.

“When we went to Empire State Games, she brought it and Coach Crawford was actually there. He threatened to throw it in the pool,” Fuller remembers.

Ficarro is set to end her collegiate diving career March 17-20 during NCAA nationals in Texas on both the 1- and 3-meter diving boards. Defeating the 2012 1-meter national champion during NCAA qualifying, Ficarro secured her spot at the meet while setting a new team and conference record.

 

 

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Skinny Rules

Skinny Rules

I would prefer this be called “Healthy Rules”, but nevertheless I agree with these. Published by the famous Bob Harper (The Biggest Loser)

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