Strawberry

Crossfit: A Guest Piece by Daniel Arfin

So I wanted to change it up a little bit this time.  My good friend, a guy I’ve known my whole life, fellow NY Mets fan, and partner in crime from back in the day Mr. Daniel Arfin joins us this week in giving us an insight to his workout regime.  I am lucky enough to talk to my friend regularly, and I’m always hearing about his Crossfit endeavors.  Crossfit is a program developed to offer a full-body workout that combines elements of cardio, weight lifting, gymnastics, core training and more to prepare the body for the unexpected.  From their website:  “CrossFit is the principal strength and conditioning program for many police academies and tactical operations teams, military special operations units, champion martial artists, and hundreds of other elite and professional athletes worldwide.” Arfin is so enthusiastic about it and I’m always amazed hearing about what he did next; which is basically on a daily basis.  He truly is a beast.  Crossfit routines really fascinate me and I have so much respect for this man.  That is why I thought it would be a good idea for you to hear about it from him.  A guy who completed Shaun T’s Insanity program with what seemed like ease, here is someone with credibility in my book.  This is what Arfin had to say:

I’ve been in love with Crossfit for almost 10 months.  For the large part of those 10 months I’ve been in the box 5 or 6 times a week.  I’ve found it to be right up my alley in achieving balanced fitness.  It addresses all areas to make you into a complete athlete.  Many people, including myself for a long time struggle with getting themselves to the gym consistently because they get bored of doing the same thing.  Crossfit hooked me so fast because there is always so much variety.  So it isn’t just challenging, it’s interesting.  It almost feels like you’ve never tried it before every day because there’s so many different things to do.  There are often several points of technique for whatever movement you’re doing.  Whether it’s for strength and you’re doing Olympic weightlifting movements, or if you’re just simply jumping on top of a box.  Everything looks easy watching someone who is experienced perform it, but it’s very easy to have one misstep and not do the movement correctly.  Especially with the Olympic weightlifts, it is imperative you do the movement right to keep moving up in weight, and to not get injured.  But there’s no prerequisite to joining in.  You can always scale the movements so that it’s tailored to what you can do.  If there’s a certain type of movement you’re not quite comfortable doing, you can do something else in its place.  An example of that would be if you do not want to do handstand push-ups against the wall, you could take a 45lb. plate and press it above your head instead.  Or if you can’t do strict pull-ups, you can use a band to assist you.  This way you’re still getting the benefit of the workout because you’re not really changing the movement, you’re only adjusting the workout to what you can do so you will always benefit from it.  It is for this reason that anyone can benefit from doing Crossfit so above all else that is why I recommend it.

Children: Set Them Up for Life

 

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(lol – This kid in the picture above is hilarious because that was exactly me when I was unhappy about something as a kid – verbatim)

You know, when people ask me how I lost the weight, I usually just say I got motivated and went ahead with it.  I go on to credit my trainer and that is usually that.  Between us, I’m not really sure where the motivation actually came from.  I have been on the bigger side since childhood and that is actually where it all starts.  We all go through rough phases or tough times and it’s important to never forget about those times in order to avoid repeating history.  That is why I tapped into my childhood.  I get lots of emails from people with links to tons of great health related websites.  I read them all.  This one in particular really caught my attention because of the way the site is laid out in the most eloquent and ideal way, webspace speaking.  It was also a topic that I have been interested in for a while now so it immediately grabbed my attention.  The site is healthkids.org.  While I can’t possibly cover everything their site has to offer, one part particularly hit home.  The section where they broke down all the different kinds of childhood weight problems and eating disorders.  Again, that hits home.

We already know and it’s common sense that children should be fed the best possible diet and live the healthiest / happiest lives possible.  Nutrition is important for everyone but it is even more important for children because it is directly linked to their growth, development, and moods.  It truly sets them up for the rest of their lives. Calcium intake for instance is very important.  This will promote optimal bone density which helps you grow big and strong making it less likely to be weak in the bones later in life.  “Breakfast is the most important meal of the day” is not just a catchy quote but it is the gosh darn truth.  For you adults, that is something I say to you was crucial in my weight loss journey.  Eating a good breakfast (protein protein protein) sets up your metabolism for the day making it less likely to binge eat at any given point, especially lunch.  Not to mention, studies show that kids who eat breakfast also perform better in school.  Children who eat a low cholesterol diet will find that their chance of having a heart attack later in life is greatly diminished.  There are endless things to read about on their site so I urge you to go check them out.

In the end, the information out there is endless and some of it makes perfect sense while some doesn’t.  Then sometimes we find there is just too much information to take in.  Feel free to take in what you feel is most important and put the less important stuff on hold.  I’m not a parent yet and rightfully so.  Before I could even begin to think about having a child and being able to care for one, I had to get “me” in order first.  I now possess a lot more knowledge than I did one year ago and I’m constantly evolving.  You guys are my inspiration to keep learning so I can pay it all forward in every way I possibly can.  If I can help just one person, this is all worth it.   To end it here, i’ll say that if you can instill good discipline into your kids diet at a young age they may just carry that on forever.  As long as they aren’t as stubborn as me…

For the Love of Oats: A Two-Part Series

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Happy Monday everybody. I hope you all had a productive yet relaxing holiday week and hope everybody enjoyed celebrating what ever it is you may celebrate. Always great to be with family and in the end, that is what it’s all about. Speaking of being with family, when we get together we have a tendancy to talk and talk and talk and we go off on tangents. This time one thing lead to another and long story short, my newest thing is now oats. I have created here a two-part series of posts talking about oats, recipes to make them, their nutritional value and more. Part two will come later in the week.

The health game is always evolving and for me that makes it a journey. You never know what I am going to read about or hear about next. That is why when I happen to come across something new and I think it may work for me, I will give it a try. Then if it turns out to be good, I post it here for you all to read about. Lately I’ve been really into the plant known as oats and I can’t stop reading about it. Their recipes are so easy to make and their nutritional profile is endless! First of all they are incredibly heart healthy. They do so much for both males and females in regards to treating and preventing different diseases related TO the heart such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, different kinds of cancers and more. Oats have also been known to regulate joint pain whether you are recovering from the gym or you have general joint pains.  It is also high in fiber so it will surely make you “go” regularly. It seems there is nothing they can’t do. They truly are a super food. Not only is it a great option for weight loss, it will help buff you up and give you that nice and toned look we so desire. There are so many interesting and delicious ways to incorporate oats into your diet; it’s easy!

Anybody ever hear of “Overnight Oats?” If you haven’t it’s simple and is a real treat. Take a Mason jar or any airtight container and put about a half to a full cup of rolled organic oats inside. Then mix that with equal parts milk. This milk can be Almond, Soy, Cow, or anything you chose. After that, you may want to throw some plain Greek Yogurt in there. The yogurt will increase the protein content and act as a thickening agent. In addition to the yogurt, I like to then add in a heaping scoop of protein powder. Follow that up by adding strawberries, blueberries, and blackberries, or anything that your heart desires. You can really free it up in this recipe and make it however you like. At the end, feel free to add a little organic Stevia for sweetness if you like it to be on the sweeter side. Seal the jar tight; shake it up nice and with good effort so all the ingredients mix together. Place it in your fridge overnight and in the morning you have a wonderful thick and creamy treat that took you less than 5 minutes to prepare and is PACKED with nutritional value. As you may be grabbing it to go from your fridge, you can also prepare some fixings like crushed nuts to sprinkle on top or stir in. Putting them on after the refrigeration process will ensure that it won’t get soggy. In addition to all of that, just to pack it even tighter with nutrients,  i’ll throw a scoop of Chia or Hemp Seeds in there right before I put it in the fridge.  Those are called “boosts.”  Any juice bar is usually stocked with various boosts for your drink, just ask what they have at the moment.  In addition to these boosts, I also bought other ones such as a container of wheat grass powder, a bag of Cacao Powder, Maca Powder, Goji Berries, and Camu Camu Powder. Let me know what you all think when you try making overnight oats for yourself! I’m truly curious what you all come up with because i’m always looking for new recipes/ideas to change it up.  I hope to receive some tasty pictures to post!!

….Part 2 about my new toy (the Nutri-bullet) and more on oats to come later in the week…..

Also, a little youtube clip of me trying overnight oats for the first time.  Experimenting with videos now for the site.

overnight-oats

Strawberries for the week

Yeah it takes a little effort to cut them up but look at me now I have strawberries for the week. Pre and post workout, throw some in cereal or just have around the apartment, preparing food ahead of time is huge. Not to mention the health benefits strawberries provide but that is for another post. Future you will thank current you.

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