Blog Posts

What’s Next?

I have learned so much in the last 6 months, about myself and the healthy living community. With this platform I have been able to educate myself on all things healthy living. My first goal and plan is to follow the paleo diet! I hope to be able to provide you all with some great real life experience with the paleo diet and its benefits.

I also want to become more active in group settings! During my summer travels I have found that I can walk miles with ease. On average I have walked about 8.5 miles a day here in London, during the past week. I plan to continue walking everyday and encouraging outdoor summer activities with my healthy living Family!

I challenge you all to get out this week and be active with your friends and family. Go on a last minute hike and play a random game of football! Have Fun! ❤

“And at the end of the day, your feet should be dirty, you hair messy and your eyes sparkling.” – Shanti

Build that muscle, Don’t let the muscle build you!

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Photo By Scott Webb

Your body is made up of more than 600 muscles. These muscles are responsible for keeping the body upright, pumping blood through your veins and many more things. You have three different types of muscle smooth, cardiac and skeletal which all serve a different importance within your body. When thinking about the healthy living journey it would be foolish to not acknowledge the importance of muscle and how it is built within your body. So today lets discuss the types of muscle you have and how it is built.

Cardiac muscle, is the muscle that makes up your heart. It operates by itself pumping your blood to different areas of your body. The muscle itself is also known as myocardium. The overall purpose of cardiac muscle is to keep blood flowing through the heart and body! Cardiac muscle is the smallest amount of muscle in your body.

Smooth muscle is found all over your body like in your digestive tract and stomach. They are known as an involuntary muscle, meaning that you can’t actually control its movement. These muscles are controlled by your brain and body unconsciously. Think of smooth muscles as the behind the scenes operators, they keep everything in your body running smoothly!

Skeletal muscle is the most popular muscle in your body and is usually the focus of most fitness goals. These muscles are made up of striated or striped muscles comprised of both light and dark fibers. Skeletal Muscles are consciously controlled, which means you have full control them. These specific muscles are what provide your body with strength and control, as well as give your body the power to lift and push things.

How is skeletal muscle built?

Skeletal Muscle is built by applying stress, muscle damage and metabolic stress. These fancy terms just mean that in order to build muscle you must get physical and challenge your muscles. Muscles add little fibers to their structure as you grow in strength. In order to properly add muscle to your body you must be able to balance nutrition and fitness.

So today go out and get physical! Whether it is going for a walk or participating in a Pilates class, get out of the house and activate those awesome muscles! ❤

“Whenever you find yourself doubting how far you can go, just remember how far you have come. Remember everything you have faced, all the battle you have won, and all the fears you have overcome.” – Unknown

To Infinity and Beyond…

My healthy living journey has been so amazing. When I first began this journey I did not respect the work and perseverance I would need to get through the battle. Although it was difficult at times it was anything but boring. I have had so much fun discovering new exercises and meal options.

This journey is by no means finished or closed to ending but it is a constant process. I have learned so much about myself and my power to commit to a goal by maintaining this blog. As I look back at where I started it is eye opening to realize that the limitations that I felt were so huge, were actually minor speed bumps. I have now realized that nothing is impossible as long as you try your hardest!

I challenge you to set some time tonight to reflect on the journey thus far! How have you changed? What to you is an amazing transformation? ❤

“Strength doesn’t come from what you can do. It comes from overcoming the things you once thought you couldn’t.” – Rikki Rogers

Do you have your buddy?

I can not stress enough how important a fitness and healthy living partner is to your health success. This person or persons can keep your goals on track. With their insight into your peaks and pitfalls they will be able to support you in ways others may not be capable of doing. Accountability partners or gym buddies are going to be one of your greatest tools to reaching your health goals.

When I began this new and improved season of my healthy living journey I did something that I don’t normally do, I told all of my close friends. This disclosure step has kept me on track and is probably the greatest fuel that has helped me to stay on track. In past fitness/health attempts I have kept my process to myself in hopes of only surprising my friends and family with the results. By opening up I have been able to get a lot of support and indirectly support those who have been contemplating the same move to a healthier lifestyle.

I challenge you to really get out of your comfort zone and share your current journey with those around you. Your story and struggles have the ability to inspire others! ❤

“You need a good support system when you’re trying to make positive lifestyle changes. If everyone is eating burgers and fries while you’re having fish and salad, it’s easy to lose your willpower.” – Bob Harper

Weight loss = What exactly?

Photo By David Di Veroli

Fat loss and gain are a natural part of life and the healthy living journey. For many we aspire to lose as much fat as possible by limiting unhealthy foods and regularly exercising. It is with laughter that I have realized that in my 23 years of life I have never truly understand how the body gets rid of fat. So today let’s discuss fat loss and fat gain in your body.

Fat loss is the process of releasing stored energy which causes your fat cells to shrink. Fat cells also known as adipocytes are created and set from your late adolescence to your early adulthood. In short you can blame your amount of fat cells on your teenage self. Fat cells will increase and decrease depending upon weight loss and gain.

What makes fat cells bigger?

Fat cells get bigger when your body begins to intake more calories than it burns. This can happen when you make a habit of over eating and or begin to live a less active lifestyle. Fat is found in the body in two categories, the first of which is essential fat which is used to cushion your organs and for daily function. The second is storage fat which is reflective of how much fat you are intaking in excess.

So how does fat leave your body?

Fat leaves after it has been used for energy within your body. It is excreted primarily as carbon dioxide, water, heat, and ATP. It is interesting that the amount of fat cells you have in your body for the most part doesn’t change throughout your life. The only thing that changes through your healthy living journey is the size of those pesky fat cells.

Fat loss and gain is a universal human experience. It is something that happens everyday without us even knowing. I believe it is important to understand how the body works in regards to fat loss because it’s amount in our body can directly effect the healthy living journey. So I challenge you today to really reflect on the current goal of your healthy living journey. Is it to lose weight? Is it to take back your health? Whatever the current goal is remember to keep the milestones realistic and stay positive. ❤

“Stand up to your obstacles and do something about them. You will find that they haven’t half the strength you think they have.” ~Norman Vincent Peale

Eat like a Caveman

The Paleo diet is a huge combination of many different meal plans. Within the plan you limit the consumption of dairy and grains within your diet. The basis of the diet is to eat as naturally as possible to eliminate foods that are believed to be difficult to digest. The paleo diet may be an essential change in eating for many individuals who experience sickness or discomfort from eating dairy and grains.

Diets and eating plans such as the paleo diet can be aa great addition to your healthy living journey. This plan can provide you will a great structure towards meal planning and cooking. As always I believe that you should all do your own research into the paleo diet and any new meal plan that you want to follow to be sure that it is the best for you. Don’t be afraid to test new plans and try new things, just be sure that it is the best option for your healthy living Journey! ❤

“THE BEST DIET is NOT ALWAYS the diet which is the best PHYSICALLY, but it’s the diet that you can TURN INTO A LIFESTYLE that allows you to lose fat and KEEP IT OFF because you learn how to incorporate ALL FOODS IN HEALTHY MODERATION.”
– Dr. Layne Norton

So what if it’s organic…

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Photo By Lukas Haffele

Organic eating can be an essential part of the healthy living journey. By obtaining these foods you can maintain a healthy diet free of chemicals and pesticides. There are many things that qualify a food item as organic as well as specific government entities that regulate and monitor foods labeled as organic. So today let’s discuss what an organic food specifically is and why it is viewed as an important factor in the healthy living journey.

The description organic describes the way farmed produce is treated and produced. These crops must be grown in an environment that limits the use of pesticides, GMO’s, and specific fertilizer’s. All meats must be given adequate access to the outdoors and be nourished with organic feed. These animals are also not given hormones for growth, fed any animal by product, and or given antibiotics.

Although organic foods can be expensive in certain markets and grocery stores it should relieve you to know that not all fruits and vegetables need to be organic. The general rule is to be sure that soft skin vegetable’s and fruit’s are purchased organically. This basically means that if you eat the skin of the crop, like you do with apples, strawberries, cucumbers and tomatoes that they should be purchased organically to ensure that they do not contain pesticides. There are specific fruits and vegetables that have high pesticide levels that you should surely purchase in organic form.

During my time here in Nigeria I have had the delight in eating fresh fruits and vegetables that are farm to table fresh. I must say that I have been impressed in the taste of these delicious produce. I challenge you to do some research on the food in your pantry and refrigerator. Find out what forms (organic or not) are the best for you and figure out where to buy them. ❤

“Let food be thy medicine, and medicine be thy food.”
-Hippocrates