Day 15: Vitamin D

day 15

This is one of my favorite vitamins, because the best way to receive Vitamin D is to go out in the sun!  Soak up the sunshine, go for a walk, lay on your patio, drink in the warm feelings & enjoy the beautiful rays!

I’m big into water skiing, so in the summer I am always outside, near the water, and under the sun.  There’s just something so happy about being outside and collecting the sun’s rays.  It also helps regulate your immune system and maintain cognitive function (hello happiness!).

Here is an interesting article suggesting the use of Coconut oil as sunscreen.  She also suggests that you actually don’t want to use high sunscreens as they lower your body’s ability to soak up the sun, and in turn, vitamin D.  While I’m not saying that she is right, it is an interesting argument!

Learn more about vitamin d on this website.

Day 14: Vitamin C

day 14

Vitamin C is needed for the growth and repair of tissues in your body.  You can find it in a lot of fruits and veggies, including:

  • Citrus fruits
  • Kiwi
  • Pineapple
  • Berries
  • Watermelon
  • Cruciferous veggies (broccolie, cauliflower, brussels sprouts)
  • Spinach
  • Tomatoes
  • and more!

Many foods are now fortified with Vitamin C, including cereals and beverages.  Be careful in assuming that fortified foods contain a form of this nutrient that your body is able to process – natural and fresh fruits and veggies seem the best way to go, and really make your body feel great!  While that is just my belief, it’s really up to you, and figuring out what forms of vitamin C work best for your body.  What is your favorite way to get Vitamin C?

Read more about Vitamin C here.

Day 13: Vitamin A

day 13

I’ve always had trouble remember the specifics of all the vitamins and minerals – so over the next few days (and throughout these 120 days of healthy) I’m going to review them in an easy way, and focus on all the positives of each one.

You can get vitamin A from many fruits and veggies (think orange!) including:

  • sweet potatoes
  • carrots
  • spinach
  • canaloupe
  • peppers
  • mangos
  • apricots
  • broccoli
  • and so much more!

Check out this website for more information on Vitamin A.

Day 12: 3 Healthy Travel Tips

day 12

I’m writing this post from Dallas, TX right now, as I have been here for the past few days visiting a friend, and taking a bit of time away from work.  Traveling has always been a huge passion of mine, but it’s definitely a challenge to try to stay healthy on the road!

Here are 3 tips for what I do to try to stay healthy and happy while away from home:

1. Stock up on granola bars, trail mix, vitamins, and anything that can fit on a plane that you can snack on throughout your trip.  This way you don’t find yourself starving at dinner, and you decide to get that cream-based soup, or a side of french fries instead of a salad.

2. Take time in the morning for a bit of yoga, stretching or breathing exercises.  Just like when you’re at home and you have a morning routine, take time to establish a short routine of your own.

3. Go for a walk.  In my opinion, going for a nice, long walk is the best way to stretch your legs after a plane ride and to enjoy and explore a new city or neighborhood.  You never know what you’ll find!

Day 11: Finding Yourself Through Yoga

day 11

“Yoga is not about touching your toes.  it’s about unlocking your ideas about what you want, where you think you can go & what you will achieve when you get there.”  -cyndi lee

Yoga has been the main constant in my life recently, and as a 26-year-old in today’s economy, it’s been a bit of a struggle to try to determine what I want to do with life.  Do I keep working where I’m working?  Do I totally shift gears and try a different occupation?  Do I go back to school for a masters?  Or do I just move down south, live on a beach and relax for awhile?  I know many others around this age are trying to discover who they are too.  I’ve found that I keep on moving, keep on attending yoga classes, keep on finding inspiration, keep taking baby steps towards things I’m interested, and something is bound to happen.

My yoga practice tells me that anything is possible – it just takes a little time and dedication.

Day 10: Namaste

day 10

Namaste – most commonly known here as the phrase used at the end of a yoga class.  It’s such a powerful phrase, and inspiring, but it took me awhile to understand what it meant.  A quick google search certainly helped, but it hasn’t been until the past few classes I’ve attended where I’ve really understood.

I have been doing yoga for almost 8 years (since I could no longer do gymnastics after an injury in college) and it still surprises me to this day.  Classes are so personal, yet supportive.  Poses are all about you, yet, the collective breathing of the class requires everyone to work together and support each other through the challenges of balances and strengthening exercises.  It’s such a great way to wrap up the class –  with compassion, understanding and support to everyone, from all walks of life, who made it through the class together.  And it is wishing your teacher and fellow yogi’s the best in their day ahead.

I hope you have a great day ahead as well!  Namaste!

Day 8: Tempeh Lettuce Wraps (Recipe)

day 8

This is a super easy recipe, and tastes great whether you use more or less of any of the ingredients.  This is one recipe I’ve made for many non-vegans and many gluten-eaters and everyone has just loved it!

For a gluten-free version of  the instant noodles, I usually use instant soba noodles (you can usually find them in the refrigerated section of specialty grocery stores)

See the original recipe here.

Day 7: Benefits of 1 Yoga Class

day 7

Yoga is definitely my exercise of choice – not only is it a great workout (especially when it’s heated!), but it has amazing health benefits!  After just 1 class you’ll notice:

  1. improved brain function – just 20 minutes of hatha yoga is shown to boost cognitive function, including both focus and working
  2. lower stress levels – by focusing on the present, and being grateful you made it to your mat, yoga has the ability to lessen the activity of proteins that are known to play a role in inflammation
  3. altered gene expression – studies have shown that genes may be altered slightly to boost immunity
  4. increased flexibility – especially in the shoulders, lower back, and hamstrings, making it a bit easier to wake up each morning 🙂

Find more explanations and benefits of doing yoga here.

Day 6: Daily Water Goals

day 6

That seems like a lot of water – but if you spread it out throughout the day, it’s not a problem!

Here’s an example day (using the 70 oz example above):

  • 2 8-oz glasses before work: 16 oz
  • 1 20-oz water bottle between breakfast and lunch: 36 oz
  • 1 20-oz water bottle in the afternoon: 56 oz
  • 1 8-oz glass when you get home from work: 62 oz
  • 1 8-oz glass before heading to bed: 70 oz!

By staying hydrated throughout the day, it can help prevent sleepiness, drowsiness, fatigue and headaches. Water makes up over 60% of our body, and when fully hydrated, our bodies are able to use water to easier carry nutrients to cells and to flush out toxins.

Unfortunately dehydration seems to be one of the biggest problems here in the US, and long-term dehydration can lead to countless other illnesses.  You’ll also most likely lose a bit of weight as well, because you won’t eat as much.  Many times our brain can be telling us we’re thirsty, and we misread the signs and think we’re hungry.

The easiest way to make sure you’re hydrated is to bring a bottle of water with you throughout the day.  It may take some time to get used to, but before you know it, you’ll be bringing it everywhere with you!

Read more about water and staying hydrated here.