Protein Powder 101

I used to think that protein powders were meant for body builders or those trying to bulk. I didn’t think I really needed one since my goal is to gain lean muscle and improve my cardiovascular fitness. However, when I started to track my protein intake per day, I realized that I was not getting enough protein. How much protein is enough? Well that can probably be its own separate post, but I like to go by 1 gram of protein per lb of lean body mass as a daily guide.

The first time I walked into the nutrition shop, I felt completely overwhelmed! The stacks of massive cases of powders, supplements, bars and products was a lot to take in. I had no idea where to begin. There are a lot of different powders out there, so I decided to go back home and do some research first. Here is a quick explanation of the different types of protein powders:

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Mud Run/ Spartan Race Guide: How to be race day ready

You have signed up for a race, trained hard and now you are approaching race day. Planning out food and workouts the week leading up to the race can be challenging. The goal is to have peak energy and strength on race day and be as prepared as possible. I completed a spartan race about 2 weeks ago. This is a guide to how I got race-day ready, as well as tips and photos from my experience!

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Yoga, Art & a Live DJ…Sign me up!

There is definitely not a lack of yoga studios and events in Charlotte. I have absolutely loved trying new studios and going to different events since moving here last summer. I have been hopping around taking advantage of new student specials in order to find the perfect studio (annd to save some $$). The yoga presence in Charlotte is great and it has given me something to get involved in. I have also made some friends in the process, which has made Charlotte start to feel like home.

Last night I went to NC Yoga Bars “Balance to the Beat” event. NC Yoga bar is a “pop-up”studio in Charlotte. They hold classes at galleries, breweries, apartment complexes and for private parties. The vibe is really friendly and inviting, without any kind of studio intimidation. The event was held at the Advent Coworking Art Gallery. I got there early to have a look around and there were a ton of cool/unique pieces to check out before class.

Advent Coworking Art.jpg

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The 5 Puzzle Pieces of Fitness

So what makes someone physically fit and healthy? Of course lifestyle choices, diet and exercise are things that influence our fitness and overall health. But when thinking about what makes someone physically fit, what comes to mind? Being strong, energized, lean and confident are a few that come to my mind. There are 5 components of physical fitness and its important to train each part in order to increase performance or reach goals. Can you name all five?

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Weekly Workouts

I have been keeping a fitness log since September of last year (so about 5 months). I started tracking my exercise because I signed up for my first Reebok Spartan race! With something specific to train for, I have been much more motivated to keep up with my workouts. Having a goal makes such a big difference. It pushes you on the days your really not feeling it and its something to look forward to. My race date is in April, so I still have plenty of work to do.

When I track my workouts, I include the following:rpe-scale.gif

  • Main activity (HITT, yoga, running, weight training, etc) & duration
  • Main muscle groups targeted
  • RPE- rate of perceived exertion, which is a fancy way of stating how hard I worked. I use the Borg 6-20 scale.
  • What was most challenging
  • Any other notes- how I felt, if anything come up mentally, how sore I feel or just anything else I feel like noting.

 

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The real “secret” to weight loss

Understanding Weight Loss: Back to Basic AlgebraNike Math.jpg

Who knew that the key to understanding weight loss is to go back to 8th grade algebra? I know your probably thinking that weight loss is hard enough and now Im supposed to do math…I’m not having it. BUT- having this knowledge is so powerful and will allow you to understand the basic science behind weight loss. We have all heard that the real key to weight loss is diet and exercise, and guess what, thats right! It boils down to a caloric balance in the body. We must burn more calories then we eat in order to create a negative caloric balance. A negative caloric balance = weight loss. On the other hand, when we eat more calories then we expend, weight gain occurs, due to a positive caloric balance.
So how do we know how many calories we are burning? This is where the math comes in. Continue reading