We get it. There are A LOT of products out there; claiming to make you bigger, thinner, stronger, leaner, blah, blah blah. Here’s the good news: we’re here to provide you with a few products that we LOVE, BELIEVE IN, AND TRUST. The things listed below are special because they’ve made the Smart Fit Chicks Approved List (which is not easy to do!).
We’ve all been there. Whether via New Year’s resolutions, weight loss or productivity goals, or the achievement of big dreams, we’ve all desired to change something about our lives or the way we do things so we can experience fulfillment, success, or happiness.
It is well into December now, which means it’s time to pause and check-in with yourself: How are you doing? Are you finding some peace and silence during this season? Are you embracing moments of joy and wonder, no matter how small? If you aren’t, no problem! There’s still plenty of time to reroute and get aligned with what you want out of the holidays.
We’ve all heard phrases such as “do unto others as you would have them do unto you” and “love others the way you love yourself”. Many times it’s interpreted in the context of being a kinder, more giving person, and learning how to treat others with empathy and respect.
“I’m not as ________ as her.” What is the first word that comes to your mind? Not as pretty? Not as smart? Not as skinny? Not as athletic? Your children aren’t as well behaved as hers? Your job, paycheck, backyard, house, etc. aren’t as big as hers?
Or maybe you’ve experienced something more subtle, like a slight twinge of jealousy when someone gets the praise…or the raise. Or someone else’s outfit, home, or kids are complimented and yours are not. Has this ever made you feel just a little bit left out, or even…forgotten?
I know I’ve felt this way on countless occasions. But what makes us feel down or left out in these situations? It might actually have something to do with our style of thinking.
So, I have no idea how far along I’ll actually be by the time I post this article, but that’s okay…hopefully I’ll be less nauseous and have figured this whole pregnancy thing out a bit better (completely unrealistic, I know) (UPDATE: I’m 26 weeks and have nothing figured out)
I’m about 9 weeks pregnant right now, so VERY few people actually know at this point, which is one of the first challenges of pregnancy. I’m sick all the time, slightly grumpy and eating weird things, but NO ONE actually knows why. I’m certain people are starting to wonder about me. 🙂
Anyway, back to the topic at hand: here’s my list of why I think the world of pregnancy has started out a lot like a weekend trip to Las Vegas.
We have SO MUCH great news to share with you about our after school program, Smart Fit Girls! If you missed our year one in review article, check out this article describing the program and how it got started.
We all have those times when we think to ourselves, “I’m not (insert adjective here- smart, attractive, strong, thin) enough.” And while I like to think of myself as a very strong person, a recent experience really got me thinking about this whole business of self-doubt…
Earlier this week, we posted an article on New Year’s Resolutions where we asked the question “Is there a way to sit less and stand or move more?”. Recent literature suggests that high amounts of sitting cannot be compensated for with occasional physical activity (even if that amount is greater than the current minimum activity recommendations). In other words, even if you are an extremly active person, your risk of dying from all cause mortality is the same as someone who is inactive, but who spends only 1/2 the time sitting that you do. See…sedentary behavior is really a killer!
So, how can you decrease your sedentary behavior (time spent sitting)? We’ve included some fun examples below, but we’d love for you to comment and add your own favorite ways to be active!
1. During your kids sporting events, stand rather than sit. Even better, walk around the field or up and down the stadium stairs!
2. Shut off your TV. I’m amazed by how many people complain that they don’t have time for exercise, yet they spend 1+ hours a night watching TV. If you have a show (or football game) that you don’t want to miss, go to the gym and watch it. Trust me, you’ll end up spending more time doing cardio than you would have otherwise.
3. If you must sit while watching T.V., use the commercials wisely. During commercials, complete one or two sets of crunches, pushups, and squats. With the average commericals lasting between 2-3 minutes, you’ll sneak in a great workout!
4. Play a game. There are plenty of new high-tech video games that encourage you to move. BUT-I’m sort of old school. What about games like twister, spoons, tag, red rover, etc? These games are super fun and great for the entire family!
5. Be social. Join a community league. Think softball, running club, partner tennis, etc. There are plenty of ways to be social while being active at the same time. The next time you plan a girls night out, suggest a night on the town dancing. Just 45 minutes of moderate to vigorous dancing will burn 260-430 kcals (for a 150lb woman)! So get out there and shake your groove thang!
6. Park your car futher away from the store. Those extra steps really add up. Curious about how many steps you walk a day? Try using a pedometer or accelerometer…these devices are wonderful tools to keep you motivated and on track!
7. Take the stairs, not the elevator. Simple…but it works.
9. Walk your shopping cart back into to the store. Think about it……why have we converted to a society where the store hires employees specifically to move the shopping carts from outside to inside…..simply because we (the customer) are too lazy to do so? Ugh. Can you tell this is a pet peeve of mine?
10. Convert your office. If you can afford a treadmill desk, wonderful. If not, try making your own (it can actually be relatively cheap!). Or, simply raise your computer so you stand, rather than sit, while using the computer. Lastly, if you must sit, try using a fitball to sit on. You’re posture will improve instantaneously!
Happy Friday Everyone!!!
Over the past few weeks I’ve been experimenting with a few different protein pancake recipes. This one is by far the best!!! I’ve adapted this from everydaybelle.com. The recipe will make 4 really really LARGE pancakes, so I only eat two of them. You’ll see I also have a side of three egg whites scrambled with Mrs. Dash’s southwestern seasoning (delicious!). Thank you Chrissy Schaefer for that tip!
9 0z of plain non-fat greek yoghurt
1 egg + 1 egg white
~10 stevia drops (optional, but will make the pancakes a lot sweeter without any additional calories)
3/4 cup of whole wheat flour
1 1/2 tsp of baking soda
200 grams of strawberries
1/4 cup of sugar free maple syrup
Nutrition Information (for 2 of the pancakes with syrup (~1/2 the batter), NOT the scrambled egg whites):
Calories: 349 kcals
Carbs: 59 grams
Fat: 4 grams
Protein: 25 grams
Mix greek yoghurt with eggs and stevia drops until smooth. In a separate bowl, mix flour and baking soda. Combine dry and wet ingredients and mix well. Add 3/4 of the cut strawberries and save the rest for putting on stop of your pancakes.
I like to use medium heat for my pancakes, which helps avoid burning. After the griddle/pan heats up, spray with Pam (or some other non-stick spray) before putting batter on pan. I use about 1/3 cup of the batter for each pancake, but if you’d like more, smaller pancakes, just use less batter for each pancake (duh right). Wait for pancakes to start to bubble, then flip. I top my pancakes with sugar free maple syrup-so yummy Micah (my husband) almost wanted to try them! Ha! Enjoy!!!
One of the biggest debates within the fitness community these days has to do with meal frequency. What do I mean by that? Simply, how often we eat throughout the day. You’ve ALL heard the recommendations. “To keep your metabolism high, eat 6 small meals throughout the day.”
Is this true? Is there something magical about 6 meals per day that turns your body into a fat burning machine??? Well, let’s take a brief look at the science, since that’s what SFC is all about.
To begin, I’d like to discuss a concept termed the thermic effect of food (TEF). Essentially, TEF is how much energy is required to digest the food we eat. By energy, I mean calories. It is true that our bodies require a certain amount of energy (calories) to digest our food, and it’s approximately 10% of total calories. This is for individuals eating a mixed diet (composed of carbs, fat and protein).
So, let’s look at two scenarios…we’ll call these subjects Chrissy and Kellie.
1) Chrissy is CONVINCED that eating small meals throughout the day is best. So, she meticulously packs 6 mini meals that she eats every three hours like clockwork…in the lab, in class, while she’s on her bike…you name it, she’s eating. Her total intake is 1800 calories, divided by 6 meals per day = 300 calories per meal. So, her TEF, or the calories required to digest her food each time she eats is 10%, or 30 calories per meal, times 6 meals/day = 180 total calories.
2) Kellie doesn’t believe the hype. She is also on a diet of 1800 calories. She is so busy with teaching and Adult Fitness, that she only has time to eat twice each day. So, she eats two large meals of 900 calories each. Every time she eats, her TEF is 10%, or 90 calories. Multiply this by 2 meals per day = 180 calories.
See where I am going with this? In terms of your metabolism, it doesn’t actually matter when the calories are consumed, because either way, you burn 10% of TOTAL calories in digestion.
Make sense so far?
Now, there are other things that researchers have examined regarding meal frequency, including hunger levels, maintaining muscle mass, cholesterol levels and blood sugar. What does meal frequency do to these variables?