Morello, Kerrin

Keep Calm and Don’t Stress About Finals

photo from: http://mhhsmustangmessenger.blogspot.com

It’s that time of the year once again, the dreaded finals week. For many college students, finals cause a large amount of added stress to their lives. This short term stress can unfortunately do a lot of harm to a person’s health. However, there are a few ways to eliminate some of this added stress and take care of your health over these upcoming weeks. The Huffington Post published an article that gives some tips from fellow college students on how to make it through finals week. Below are a few healthy tips the students shared:

1. Exercise

Exercising is one way to help relieve stress, stay focused, and keep  your body healthy. Taking a short exercise break from studying is a good way to give your body more energy for the many hours of studying and work you are putting in during finals. If you’re too nervous to take a break from studying, bring your reading materials to the gym and read while on the bike or treadmill.

 

2. Eat Nutritious Meals and Snacks

For some, finals=junk food. Many times, a person’s health will decline during finals because they may feel they just don’t have time to think about making healthy meals and snacks. Eating junk actually negatively effects on your study habits because it actually makes it harder for your mind to concentrate, and can result in a food coma and/or sugar crash. To avoid this, opt for healthier snacks that will give your body more energy, help you concentrate, and also help your memory.

3. Breathe

Finally, just breathe. Simply breathing can relieve a great deal of stress from your body. The article suggests “take a deep breath for four counts, hold it for four counts, and exhale for four counts,” when you begin to feel stress building and overwhelmed.

For more tips on how to stay healthy during finals, check out the full Huffington Post article.

Race To The Boardwalk

On  Saturday April 30th, Race2Rebuild will be sponsoring a run that will take place on the Long Beach boardwalk. The run is to help support the continuous reconstruction from this devastating Superstorm Sandy. Nearly four years ago, Superstorm Sandy hit the Tri State area, leaving communities like Long Beach devastated from it’s aftermath.

photo from: http://www.race2rebuild.org

If you are looking for a way to mix fitness with helping a create cause, Race2Rebuild is the perfect event.  Participants have the option of either joining the 5k Boardwalk race, or the 2 mile hardcore run on the beach. Both of these options are perfect for people who are new to working out/running, or who are experienced and want to challenge themselves with a run on the beach. After the race, participants are invited to join the community for breakfast and also volunteer to help recover the town.

photo from: http://rew-online.com

Race2Rebuild is an organization created prior to the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. According to their website, Race2Rebuild’s main goal is to “create tangible change to our communities following natural disasters by supporting and participating in rebuilding projects and bringing families home.” Race2Rebuild is currently going into it’s fourth year of events to help Sandy victims and is looking to hopefully double the number of families they are able to help, and also to widen their reconstruction projects to other natural disasters that have destroyed other parts of the country, like Hurricane Katrina.

For more information about the race, or to sign up visit the Race2Rebuild website.

Bikini Ready in Just 8 Weeks

https://www.toneitup.com

This week, fitness trainers and founders of the Tone It Up (TIU) brand, Karena and Katrina, announced the start of their annual Bikini Series challenge. The Bikini Series is an 8 week fitness journey, geared toward getting your body into bikini shape for summer. This year the Bikini Series officially starts on April 25th, and is open to anyone who wants to join in on the fun. Participants simply just have to go onto the Tone It Up website and sign up for the challenge, completely free of charge. Once signed up, participants receive a Starter Pack created by Karena and Katrina that according to the TIU website include “3 slimming recipes, 5 tips to getting bikini ready and everything you need to know for the challenge.”

https://www.toneitup.com

The Bikini Series includes a full 8 weeks worth of workouts that all focus on different parts of your body, like your arms, legs, abs, etc. Everyday, Karena and Katrina make sure to change up the workouts and the part of body the exercises focus on, providing the best results for getting into bikini ready shape. If you want to join the Bikini Series challenge, or simply want to learn more about the TIU brand, check out their website, Facebook, or Instagram.

Get Fit Outdoors This Spring

With the weather finally starting to feel like spring, why not start taking your workouts outside?  Working out outside is a great way to celebrate the season of spring and not only will it get your body physically healthy, it will also give you the opportunity to explore your neighborhood.

Below is a great workout from thelivefitgirl.com and fitnessista.com you can simply do outside by yourself or with your friends, all you need is a park bench. Complete each exercise for 30 seconds then rest for 30 seconds in between each exercise, do the full routine 2-3 more times for more of a challenge:

1. Split Squats

Facing away from the bench, place one leg in front of you, a couple of inches away from the bench. Place the other leg directly reaching behind you onto the bench and simply bend both legs to perform a lunge. Do the exercise on one leg for the full 30 seconds, then switch legs for the next round.

2. Single Leg Tricep Dips

http://thelivefitgirls.com

 

 

 

 

3. Burpees

Begin standing straight with your arms above your head. Putting your hands on the floor, bend down and jump out into a high plank position. Jump your feet back into your hands and stand back up into starting position while performing a vertical jump into the air. Repeat this sequence for full 30 seconds

4. High Knees

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5. Push-up Plank Jacks

Start in high plank/push-up position, perform a push up (place knees on ground if needed). After the pushup, jump your legs out, similar to a standing jumping jack, bring your legs back in and repeat from the pushup.

 

The Best Fruit to Buy in April

photo from http://cdn-media-2.lifehack.org/wp-content/files/2015/05/02.jpg

With the first week of April starting this week, it may be a good time to head to the grocery store and pick up some fruits and/or vegetables that are currently in season. Many shoppers may not be aware that certain produce items are better to buy during a certain month/season. One delicious fruit that is currently in season during April are strawberries. Strawberries offer a variety of health benefits including: reducing the risk of heart disease, strokes, cancer, and can also lower blood pressure. Incorporating strawberries into your diet can be an easy task. Below is a simple salad recipe from therecipecritic.com, featuring strawberries as the main ingredient:

Strawberry Chicken Salad with Strawberry Balsamic Dressing

 

For the salad, simply combine the following ingredients in a large bowl:

photo from therecipecritic.com

  • 2 cup cooked chicken
  • 4 cups romaine lettuce
  • 2 cups chopped strawberries
  • ½ cup dried cranberries
  • ¼ cup goat cheese
  • ¼ cup sliced almonds

For the dressing, combine the following ingredients in a blender or food processor:

  • 1 cup strawberries
  • ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • ¼ tsp salt & pepper

Healthier St. Patrick’s Day Tips

photo from https://tomasclancy.files.wordpress.com

St. Patrick’s Day is quickly approaching this Thursday, which for many means a day filled with the variety of delicious Irish traditions Irish ranging from Irish Soda Bread, to Corned Beef & Cabbage, and of course one of the most important aspects of the day, beer.  All the delicious food and drinks definitely are not the answer to continuing on your way to a healthier life, but fortunately there are some solutions to making your St. Patrick’s Day healthier.

If you are one of the many bread lovers of the world, Irish Soda Bread is a must have on St. Patrick’s Day. Luckily, there are substitutes that can be made that won’t ruin this Irish delicacy, like using whole wheat flour instead of white. This one change will not change the taste of your bread, and will also give you some added health benefits.

For dinner, many Irish families traditionally eat Corned Beef & Cabbage, which unfortunately can be loaded with sodium and preservatives found in store-bought meat. There is a way to get around all of the extra sodium and eliminate the preservatives if you make your own rub for plain meat. Instead of buying a pre-made corned-beef, a simple change can be to buy a skirt steak and put your own pickling spice on it. The result will be just as tasty as the store bought meat, but minus all the sodium and preservatives.

For many, St. Patrick’s Day means a day of drinking, which leads to a  lot of unnecessary added calories. Even though Guinness is the staple Irish beer of the day, try switching to lighter beers to lessen the amount of empty calories you will be in-taking. Greatist.com has a list of 9 ‘healthier’ beer options to choose from if you are looking to not ruin your diet completely. Fortunately for you Guinness lovers out there, the site lists Guinness Draught as #4 on the list, so enjoy!

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  New Season Means New Opportunities for a Healthier Life

Spring is a time of renewals, including the start of warmer weather, sunnier days, blooming flowers and trees, etc. All of the changes and rebirths in nature during the spring time can also mean a time for renewals or restarts for a person’s life. The month of March marks the start of National Nutrition Month, which is the perfect time to start or continue on a path to a healthier life. Throughout the month, there will be different events hosted across Long Island in order to spread awareness of the importance of good nutrition and how to incorporate healthier eating and exercise habits into your daily life.

photo from http://eatrightli.org

This Saturday, March 12th, 2016, the Long Island Dietetic Association will be hosting its annual Food and Nutrition Expo at Farmingdale State College. The Food and Nutrition Expo gives Long Islanders the perfect opportunity to learn more about nutrition and kick start their way to a healthier life. According to lifeonlongisland.com, the Expo will contain “Nutrition Information, Free Snack Samples, Food Demonstrations, Raffles, Health Screenings, Information Display Tables, And More.” The Expo is completely free of charge and will also be accepting non-perishable food donations for one of Long Island’s most well known hunger relief organizations, Island Harvest.

The Food and Nutrition Expo is just one example of the many ways to kick start your way to a healthier life. Gaining the proper tools to learn how to eat the right foods and exercise properly are extremely important in order to get in better shape and overall improve your life. For more information about the Expo, visit Long Island Dietetic Association’s website or Facebook page.nnm

 T-Minus 3 Weeks Until Spring Break

The beginning of March marks the start to the countdown to a highly anticipated event for college students across the US, spring break. For many college students, this causes a sudden panic to get in bikini ready shape. Many start regretting all of those late night pizza trips and naps they took instead of going to the gym, which can result in taking an unhealthy approach to getting spring break ready. Luckily, there are somethings that can be done to get beach ready. Below are three tips on how to get bathing suit ready in three weeks:

photo from http://www.rememberstuff.com/blog/

1. Examine Eating Habits:

Take a look in your cabinets and see exactly what you’re eating. Maybe a kitchen full of chips, frozen meals, and soda is the reason you’re not in the best shape. Try cleaning out your kitchen, and refilling it with healthier options like fruits, vegetables, whole grains, etc. Just making a few simple changes like eating an apple with peanut butter instead of chips and dip can make a huge difference to your body.

2. Start Exercising:

According to the Mayo Clinic, the type of exercise you chose to do has an effect on the amount of calories you burn, therefore “the more intense the activity, the more calories you burn.” If you are new to working out, try adding simple things to your day like going for a walk around campus, or taking the stairs instead of the elevator.

3. Fill Up On H2O:

Drinking water instead of sugary drinks like soda and juice can really make a difference for your body. If you find water to bland, try adding fruits to add some flavor. Adding fruits will make you forget your drinking plain old water and also stop the craving for other sugary drinks.

Heart Health 101

Photo from http://kidscures.org

The month of February marks the start of American Heart Month, presenting Americans with plenty of opportunities to gain more knowledge on how to protect their hearts. According to a 2015 report done by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, “heart disease is currently the leading cause of death in Americans.”

Heart disease does not discriminate on who it affects, almost everyone is prone to contracting some type of heart problem in their lifetime. Even though this disease is extremely deadly and dangerous, there are ways to prevent and reduce the risks. Below is a list of 5 ways to reduce the chances of contracting this deadly disease and save your heart:

  1. Exercising on a Daily Basis
  2. Eating a Well Balanced Diet
  3. Sleeping a Full 8 Hours at Night
  4. Quitting Smoking
  5. Managing Stress

Throughout this month, many organizations, like the American Heart Association, will be hosting events and providing information on how to reduce the risk of this terrible disease. For more tips on how to prevent, control, and create awareness of heart disease visit their website or Facebook page.