Tuesday, July 17, 2012

You're sexy, and all your Facebook friends know it.

Are we turning to social media now to hold us accountable? Given the number of times we check Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Myspace (Ha! Not!), etc., it makes perfect sense to use all of your cyber buddies to keep you in check when it comes to your health & fitness. If you are telling the world the story about how your favorite sweater just shrank in the dryer and posting a photo of that fancy taco you ate for lunch, then you might as well share with the rest of the world that you workout.

You're sexy, and all your Facebook friends know it.
I have been noticing lately how many of my Facebook friends have downloaded applications that keep track of their exercise, such as Runkeeper and Endomondo, calculating how far they've run or biked, how many calories they've burned, how quickly they did it, etc. Today on my newsfeed I saw that one of my Facebook friends had run 5.23 km - my first thought was: "Thats a nice little run - good for him!" (...although I did question the 505 calories he supposidly burned - which seems like a bit of an over-estimation). My next thought was: "Yea, but does that nice little run count for anything if he isn't eating well?" Even if we are to believe that 505 calories were burned on that run, that is basically the peice of afternoon cake that your damn co-worker has brought in (again) + a handful of candy from the office candy bowl - and BOOM, you've just undone all that hard 5.23 km of work you've done! But Facebook isn't telling that sugar covered story, now is it?

Runkeeper snapshot
Lets remember that losing weight and being healthy is mostly about diet - and exercise will excelerate weight loss (while providing other health benefits such as lowering stress and blood pressure, improving mood, etc). SO, in that case, people should really be making us all proud to be their Facebook friend by posting what their eating on facebook - i.e. "Jennifer Ruscelle Robinson avoided 372 calories in delicious chocolate cake brought to the office today, and ate an apple instead." If any of you work in an office like mine, you will realize how that is - at times - more difficult than a 30 minute run.

After a witty little Facebook status update about how we should have some sort of application to keep track of calories, in addition to exercise, in order to keep people accountable - another Facebook friend commented with this:

(it's Ok, it's not a virus...)

Truly brilliant (and quite funny). If late-night snacking is your downfall, this is for you. Its a security system that protects you from yourself! Now, if only it could tell us what you were getting from the fridge!!

Caught in the act - but all of your 567 Facebook friends!

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Work hard, play hard, and then, DETOX!

It’s been a busy summer already! After a six day sunny holiday by the pool in Malta, a week after I returned I was off again to the beautiful city of Amsterdam for a long four-day weekend. For me, vacation is vacation – which means I work out if I feel like it, and eat what I want. But when I arrive home again, it’s back to business – healthy eating and healthy living (e.g. sleep and training!).

This definitely happened in Amsterdam,
and I don't regret a second of it! :) 
When I get back from vacation, I like to detox – it is a great way to kick-start yourself back into routine, and cleanse of all your vacation sins. I've designed my own detox that works great for me. I’ve taken parts of other detox diets and found what I like and what is most effective– and I always encourage people to do the same. Maybe not all of my detox principles will work for everyone – but take what works and make it your own!

Jennifer’s Post-Vacation Detox

  • No coffee (note: I said ‘coffee’, not 'no caffeine')
    • Oh this is hard! Why no caffine? Because if you are anything like me, I’ve had quite a bit of coffee on my vacation; CafĂ© hoping in Paris, late nights in Amsterdam, iced coffees by the pool in Malta, indulging in every Starbucks I see because we don’t have them here in Copenhagen, etc….And for me, not being dependent on coffee is important, since I love the boost it gives me when I need it.  
    • Detox breakfast: Kusmi Detox Tea + Jenni's 'fruit soup' :)
    • I trade my cup of coffee for Kusmi Green Detox Tea – and I drink anywhere between 1-3 cups of it a day.
  • Only fruit in the morning!
    • I make what I call “Fruit soup”; I blend frozen blueberries or frozen mixed berries, with a banana and water (NO milk or yogurt – I promise you won’t need it, and it is important to not consume dairy products when detoxing), and then I pour it over a chopped apple (or any other fruit you want) in a bowl. It may sound weird, but try it – it’s delicious!
  • Only veggies in the afternoon/evening (on the first day)
    • Make it easier for your body to digest and cleanse by only eating veggies and drinking tea for the rest of the day.
    • If I get really desperate, I might have a few almonds or walnuts.
Detox salad: Red cabbage, mushrooms, bell pepper, salad
onion, kalamata olives (+ home-made mustard dressing)
  • Go to bed early
    • Getting back from vacation means getting back into a routine, which means getting sleep so you can: Go to the gym, go to work, do all that dirty laundry in your suitcase, etc. It is easier to get back into your training and every-day healthy diet if you are well-rested, so going to bed at a reasonable time is crucial.
  • Drink plenty of H2O 
    • You've been sight-seeing, you've been at the beach, you've been shopping and spending all that money you don't have - and during all of that fun, you've probably not been drinking enough water! Flying can also dehydrate you, so make sure you drink plenty of water upon your return home.
  • Sweat!
    • Sweat it out!
      (But maybe save it for the gym...)
    • Hit the gym and sweat out all that vacation! One way your body gets rid of waste and toxins is by sweating, so try some particularly sweaty training, like spinning or Bikram (hot) yoga. Not your thing? Then hit the sauna or take a really hot shower (or five) - anything to help get your sweat on!
  • Days 2-5
    • Only fruit in the morning, then veggies and protein the rest of the evening. Although I recommend complex carbohydrates as a part of a healthy diet, during a detox, I don't recommend it.
    • ONLY water or tea. No soda, no coffee, no juice.
This detox can be done for 1-5 days, but shouldn't go beyond that. It can also be used after a particularly sinful weekend or if you plateau in your diet and/or training and need a boost!

Work hard, play hard, and then, detox.