May 2016 Newsletter

Prize Giveaway

Should You Warm Up Before Exercise?



Specific Benefits of a Proper Warm Up:

Increased Muscle Temperature – The temperature increases
within muscles that are used during a warm-up routine. A warmed muscle
both contracts more forcefully and relaxes more quickly. In this way
both speed and strength can be enhanced. Also, the probability of
overstretching a muscle and causing injury is far less.

Increased Body Temperature – This improves muscle
elasticity, also reducing the risk of strains and pulls.

Blood Vessels Dilate – This reduces the resistance to blood flow
and lower stress on the heart.

Improve Efficient Cooling – By activating the heat-dissipation
mechanisms in the body (efficient sweating) an athlete can cool efficiently
and help prevent overheating early in the event or race.

Increased Blood Temperature – The temperature of blood
increases as it travels through the muscles. As blood temperature rises,
the binding of oxygen to hemoglobin weakens so oxygen is more readily
available to working muscles, which may improve endurance.

Improved Range of Motion – The range of motion around a
joint is increased.

Hormonal Changes – Your body increases its production of various
hormones responsible for regulating energy production. During warm-up
this balance of hormones makes more carbohydrates and fatty acids
available for energy production.

Mental Preparation – The warm-up is also a good time to mentally
prepare for an event by clearing the mind, increasing focus, reviewing
skills and strategy. Positive imagery can also relax the athlete and build

For more information:

5 Exercises for Spring

Understanding how your body responds to exercise is like how it feels when you press on the gas pedal in your car and you get up to 55 mph in a heartbeat. Spring is here and it is time for a tune-up by making sure your body is ready for a great workout that yields results.

Here are 5 simple and classic exercises that really drive your body to increase metabolic rate and reduce body fat:

Step-Ups – use a step or platform that is about 4-6 inches high. Stand with your feet hip-width apart and jump onto the step or platform at least 15 times. Repeat after walking around the platform in a complete circle.

Squats – stand with your feet hip-width apart and place your arms to your
side. Pretend there is a chair behind you and almost sit bringing your arms out in front keeping your back flat and abdominal muscles pulled in.

Push-ups – begin on your knees or feet and place your hands shoulder-width apart on the step or platform. Inhale as you lower your body to the step and exhale as you push yourself up.

Tricep Dips – sit with your back to the step and place your hands behind you on the step. Lift and lower your body using your tricep muscles to do the work keeping your elbows in line with your wrists.

Lunges – stand with one foot on the step and place your other foot behind
you so that your front knee is over your heel. Lower your body keeping your shoulders in line with your hips at least 12 times for each leg. Repeat on the other leg.

The key to getting results with this quick workout is doing all the moves back to back without any rest. It will spike your metabolism, burn fat and help you to continue to burn calories even hours after your workout. Aim for doing this workout at least twice a week.

Support your body nutritionally after your workout by getting some good quality protein in either in a smoothie with protein, organic berries and cold water or perhaps a mixed green salad with chicken or fish. It is important to avoid low blood sugar levels, especially after a hard workout so plan a healthy meal post workout.


Smoothies 101

1. Use a good blender

If you’re in the smoothie-making business, you
should invest in a great blender. It’s worth the cash not to have to chew
your smoothie. Vitamix, Ninja Ultima and Blendtec are both well-loved and highly recommended.

2. Use your (unsweetened) milk of choice

If you’re a fan of coconut milk, use it. Like cow’s milk? Go for it. A fan of almond milk? Cool. Use whatever milk you like in your smoothies—you can’t go wrong. It’s recommended to stick to unsweetened and unflavoured versions. That gives you the most control of the smoothie.

3. Sweeten to taste

A lot of smoothie recipes use frozen banana as a base, and bananas vary in sweetness. It’s recommended to blend up your smoothie without any added sweetener, then taste. Add in honey or maple syrup to taste. Many times, you don’t need to add anything! Another great natural option for sweetening: pitted Medjool dates. Throw in one or two of those bad boys and let the blender do its thing. You’d be amazed at how sweet your smoothie will be!

4. Stock the freezer for easy smoothies

You might want to throw a frozen banana into every single smoothie you make. It adds a lot of creaminess, sweetness, and nutrition. Try and buy the biggest, ripe bunch you can find. Then when you get home, freeze the whole bunch in chunks.

5. Use your creativity for mix-ins

If you want to expand your smoothie horizons, go for it! Toss in chia seeds or protein powder or hemp seeds or flax or whatever else makes your heart happy. If you have a standard set of mix-ins you like, you can even freeze them into booster packs—great for really quick and easy smoothies!

Happy Blending!


For more on recipes:

Healthy Transformations

Taco Salad

Taco Salad


• 2 oz beef, ground lean
• ½ oz cheese, cheddar- low fat
• 2 medium tomatoes
• ¾ cup onion
• 1 ½ cups lettuce, iceberg
• 1 Tbl salsa
• ½ tortilla, corn
• ¼ cup beans, pinto
• ½ tsp oil, high oleic safflower


• ¼ tsp salt, lite
• ¼ tsp chili powder
• ¼ tsp cilantro


Bake tortilla in oven until crisp and set aside.
Sauté onions in oil and once tender, add meat with seasonings, as desired,
and continue to cook until beef is cooked through thoroughly. Stir in salsa.

Toss lettuce, diced tomatoes and seasoned meat together.

Break tortilla into pieces and sprinkle on top of the salad.


Per serving: 306 calories, 23g protein, 10g total fat, 31g carbohydrates.
Source: Healthy Transformations Recipes

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