Super food for a Super life

There are many many superfoods that are available for people to consume. While researching superfoods I got a huge range of foods. Sights listed anywhere from 3 to over 100 so called “superfoods”. But what even makes these foods so super? The answer depends on which food you are looking into. The main quality these foods have in common is that they benefit the human body in wonderful ways. Some are rich in antioxidants. Some are rich in vitamins and minerals. Some help your skin. They all are beneficiary to the human body in more way than one which makes them a superfood that you will want to devour after reading this. (:

These are a few of the big and popular superfoods.

Spirulina:

Most people reading this probably do not know what exactly spirulina is. I didn’t necessarily know what it was either before researching it, but I wish I would’ve known about it earlier. Spirulina is evidently one of the most renowned superfoods as of today. This comes from the sea, so it is basically algae powder. But don
‘t let that scare you away because it is very rewarding to your health. Spirulina is 65% protein and amino acids which even happens to include the essential amino acids. It has about 24 times the amount of calcium as milk! And it is packed with chlorophyll which removes toxins from the body and boosts the immune system. Also it is not scientifically proved, but many people that it is capable of treating some health conditions such as diabetes, weight problems, high cholesterol problems, and mental health problems.

Quinoa:

Quinoa is my personal favorite superfood by far. There are so many different ways to prepare a quinoa dish and it tastes delicious. Not to mention, it is one of the best superfoods out there. 2013 was even named “the year of quinoa” because of its amazing health benefits. Quinoa is gluten free but is still loaded with protein and fiber. This is amazing because gluten intolerant people can still eat quinoa! It has low glycemic index which is closely related to being responsible for lowering cardiovascular risks and cancer. If you are unfamiliar with quinoa it is a small circular almost rice like grain. But it is not a grain, it is actually closer related to spinach and beats than grains.

Blueberry:

Blueberries are already such a popular fruit that it is so convenient that they are also considered a superfood. Blueberries are delicious and eating them can even help with burning unwanted stomach fat! So while you are eating them you are becoming more fit essentially. This is beneficial to cardiovascular health as well. They are high in manganese which aids in turning carbs into energy. And I am sure you all have heard that blueberries make you smarter, right? This is mostly true! they definitely do contribute to brain health and preventing neurotic disorders, so in truth they make your brain healthier which is linked to intelligence.

Kale:

I’m sure everyone has heard of kale at some point whether you love it or hate it. Kale has taken over as a superfood so much that even Beyonce was sporting a kale crew neck in her 7/11 music video. You can eat kale either raw or steamed/sauteed. When steamed or sauteed kale has very high amounts of cholesterol lowering ability. When consumed raw it still has cholesterol lowering ability, but at lower amounts. Besides it tastes much better cooked rather than raw. Kale is also jam packed with protein. Some research has shown that kale can help prevent various types of cancers.

 

There are many more superfoods out there that you have probably consumed at some point in your life without even realizing. Superfoods are not something that should be a burden to eat. Anyone should be able to enjoy these foods and receive the benefits without eating something “gross”. There are multiple ways to prepare each and every superfood out there in a delicious way. Yes if you eat most of them raw they will not be enjoyable, but preparing them in the right way can help improve your experience with the foods immensely. I know that the first couple of times I tried kale and quinoa I was far from impressed. A lot of these foods are the type of food that you need to grow accustomed to (besides blueberries because who doesn’t love blueberries!).

I included a couple links of recipes for each of the superfoods I went over above. This way you can try them in the most delicious way possible.

 

 

 

iworkout

Recently I have been noticing a trend of people hating the way their bodies look. This is sad because no one should feel uncomfortable in their own skin. On the other hand though, don’t you all agree that if you are going to complain about your body you should put forth some effort to help your body become ideal to you? Too many people don’t even practice the most important way to stay healthy and in shape. That practice is a healthy diet. This doesn’t mean that you need to cut out everything unhealthy forever, but if you want to stay healthy you must be dedicated. Don’t even start thinking about waking up one day with the perfect body because it simply just will not happen. You especially won’t wake up  with a fit and toned body if you don’t work towards it.

It irks me that people are all about having the “perfect body”, which doesn’t even exist, if they are constantly treating their bodies poorly. Working out, being active, and the right diet are all essential to achieve any body goal. Even going to the gym for an hour or two a couple of nights a week is much better than not going at all. Most people find that working out on a regular basis will show them the best results though.

Since I am always talking about food, today I am going to be talking about just a couple of the exercises that work for me. I was in gymnastics for 8 years, so I learned a lot of tough, but great exercises that I still do today months after I retired from the sport. Everyone is different with a different body, but that doesn’t make any of us any less amazing!(:

Exercises:

Legs/Glutes

  • Squats
    • Squats can vary depending on how difficult you are ready for. You can start by squatting with no weight at all. You can even sit down and stand back up how ever many times you can. To make it more difficult you can grab a dumbbell and squat that way. I usually like to squat with the bar though and you can add as much weight as you are comfortable with.
  • Side squats
    • Side squats are usually done with a dumbbell. To do a side squat you stand with your feet together then step out to the your right side with your right leg until it is bent at about a 90 degree angle. Repeat the same motion for the left side. You can do this with no weight as well.
  • Lunges
    • My favorite way to do lunges is also with a dumbbell. You hold the dumbbell and step in front of your body with one of your legs until your back knee touches the ground. repeat as many times as you are comfortable with.
  • Frog jumps
    • Frog jumps are by far the hardest of these exercises in my opinion. They look exactly as they sound. Stand with your feet about shoulder length apart and bend down until you are touching the ground with your hands. The position you are in at this point should look like a frog essentially. Once you are in this position jump up and then back down to frog position then jump back up and repeat.

Arms

  • Pushups (wide arms, triangle, regular)
    • I usually do 3 sets of each type of push up; wide arm, triangle, and regular. Regular pushups are self explanatory. Wide armed are the same as regular pushups, but they are done with your arms further than shoulder width apart. Triangle pushups are done with your hands in the middle of your chest in the shape of a triangle. This means your thumbs should touch and your pointer fingers should touch as well.
  • Pullups
    • Pullups are done with a bar that you can hang on to without your feet touching the floor. Once you find the bar hang with your arms above your head and pull your body up until your chin is just above the bar. These are very difficult so only do as many as you can. For some people it is 1 and some people can do 30. (:
  • Bench press
    • Lay down on a bench so that a bar is above your chest. You can add as much weight as your heart desires, but you should always have a spotter. Grab the bar and bring it down to your chest and back up so that your arms are straight as many times as you can.
  • Curls with weights
    • The most common weight is in between 5 and 25 pounds that people curl. Hold the weight down by your side then bring it to about your shoulder. Do not move anything other than your forearm though.

Abs

  • Sit ups
    • Sit down with your legs bent and your feet underneath something so that they can’t lift off the ground. Put your arms crossed across your chest and lay down. Sit up using nothing but your upper body strength. Repeat as many times as appropriate for you.
  • V-Ups
    • V-Ups may not be for everyone because flexibility is a must for these. To do a v-up you lie down on your back and bring your legs and upper body up simultaneously so that you make a v shape. Your legs must be straight and your arms should be above your head for proper form.
  • Hollow hold
    • Hollow holds are similar to v-ups but you don’t move the entire time. You start by lying down on your back. Bring your feet and calfs off the ground about 3 inches. Bring your head and upper back off the ground as well so that the only thing still on the ground is your lower back and butt. Hold this for 45 seconds to 3 minutes depending on how much of a burn you want to feel!
  • Plank
    • Most people know what a plank looks like, but to reiterate you are on your forearms and toes. Your shoulders must be leaning over your elbows. Hold this for also 45 seconds to 3 minutes or more.
  • Russian twists
    • This is usually done with a dumbbell. Sit on the floor in a sort of hollow position but your legs should be bent. You can be on mostly your butt and lower back. Hold the dumbbell and twist from side to side putting the dumbbell to each side of your body.

Cardio

  • Running
    • You can run outside or on a treadmill, do whatever your heart desires.
  • Biking
    • Biking can also be done either outside or on a stationary bike in a gym.
  • Jump roping
    • Jump roping is amazing for your heart and it’s fun too!

 

Now that you have some suggestions to get your workout going there is no more excuses to complain!

stay body positive (:

 

Shape Your Own Protein

Today on MadlyFit blog we are going to be learning how to make the insanely easy no-bake-peanut-butter-protein-balls! Like I said these are insanely easy to make as you are going to find out. I got the recipe from a site called Gimme Some Oven. But to make things simpler I will rewrite the recipe directly onto this post.

Peanut Butter Protein Balls

What does the recipe call for?

  • Chocolate Chips
  • Toasted Coconut
  • Vanilla Extract
  • Peanut Butter
  • Oats
  • Honey
  • Ground Flax Seeds (optional)
  • Chia Seeds (optional)

Once you’ve added all of these ingredients into a bowl all you need to do is mix them together. You can use a spoon or even your hands if you’re feeling it because you’ll be shaping them into balls in the near future anyway! Once all the ingredients are combined put the bowl into the fridge for 10-15 minutes so that the mixture can cool. After the appropriate amount has passed for the mixture to cool take it out of the fridge, duh. Then form it into any shape you please, really! The plain and simplest shape to form your mixture into is balls. The recipe even has the word “balls” in it which would refer to the shape people generally form their protein mixture into.  But if you’re feeling loving you can form it into hearts. Or if you’re feeling funny you can form it into your favorite cartoon character! Or if you would rather make them into protein bars just line a baking pan with parchment paper, lay the mixture onto it, and cut into rectangles.

no-bake-energy-bites-redo-6

Why these ingredients?

These protein balls are perfect for anything from sports to just a healthy after school snack.  The flax seeds and chia seeds add a  boost of superfood if you wish to add them. Contrary to popular belief, chia and flax seeds do not have a distinct taste to them. Adding them to the protein whatever-shape-you-please would not harm anything because chances are whoever is consuming them would not even notice they were there. They do have health BENEFITS though so there is not much of an excuse to exclude them from this recipe.

Chocolate chips are obviously interchangeable as well. If you are allergic or just not a chocolate fan you don’t even need to add them at all. The chocolate chips are mainly part of the recipe so that it becomes more appealing to little kids; and adults even too. Everyone loooooves chocolate so who wouldn’t try these? (:

Honey is simply for extra sweetness for your taste buds. Vanilla alike is to add a burst of flavor.

The rest of the ingredients are self explanatory if I do say so myself. These energy balls also taste almost identical to no bake cookie dough with many more health benefits hidden inside. These are so deliciously amazing that you won’t even think about them being healthy, and neither will young children.

When should I eat these?

Any time is the time to eat these amazing protein balls. My favorite way for these to be eaten is while participating in a sporting event. If someone on your team brought these to a game everyone would be praising them. So do it! Bring them for your team at your next game or tournament and you’ll become the MVP no doubt! You can also eat these at casual times to stay healthy while enjoying a delicious snack.

You can also eat these before working out to get an extra boost of energy to make your workout better than ever.

This recipe is completely interchangeable as well. If you pleased you could add dried fruit such as cherry, cranberry, blueberry, etc. You could also add lemon extract to make it lemon flavored rather than vanilla if that is what your heart desires. There really is no right way to make these, so I urge you all to play around with the recipe until you find one that you have fallen in love with.

What about vegans?

typical-vegan-diet-lacks-key-nutrients-supplements-can-help-study_strict_xxl

 

Good news! The recipe is almost already vegan without even trying to be. The only ingredients you would need to find substitutes for would be the chocolate chips and the honey. Good thing substituting milk chocolate chips for dark chocolate will fix the problem with no effort at all. Honey is also not a necessary ingredient so it can easily be taken out with no substitute needed.

Next time you’re stuck on what to eat you will surely think of these foolproof peanut butter protein balls!

(:

Drink Water. Just Do It!

Everyone knows that water is necessary to survival as a human. But people fail to realize actually how much more water they need to be intaking than they do on a daily basis. The average person drinks around four cups of water a day, which may seem like a lot to you. But you may be surprised to learn that it is far from enough water to consume in a day. In fact four cups of water is half the amount that you should ideally be intaking. If you haven’t inferred by now the average human is ideally to drink eight cups of water a day! Although it is ideal to drink eight cups of water a day, it is not required. It is quite obviously possible to live without drinking even close to this much water daily, but you must get other fluids.

Getting other fluids doesn’t mean to go out and drink as much soda and juice as you can though. In fact there are many reasons why you shouldn’t choose to drink these alternative beverages over water. Even though soda, and juices alike may be tastier than water, you have to realize how unhealthy these beverages actually are for your overall health.

The first reason to ditch soda has to do with your appearance. A lot of people would say that number one first trait they notice about a person when they first meet them is their teeth. Drinking soda, especially dark soda, can cause discoloration and even tooth decay. And who wants everyone staring at their not so pearly whites when they first meet someone all because they couldn’t resist that diet Pepsi! Not to mention, soda has so many unnecessary calories. Calories are not all bad because everyone must intake a certain amount on the daily, but chances are it will not be too difficult to meet that number. Soda just adds extra calories that are not needed and become stored away as fat, which in fact can lead to overweightness.

Why not Diet?

The majority of people think they are being smart by drinking diet soda, but that is so wrong. Like I mentioned before diet soda has no different effects on your teeth, so it is still likely your teeth will become discolored if you are an avid soda drinker. Diet soda may not have calories, but it does have artificial sugars added. There has been some research done on the artificial sweeteners that are added to the diet sodas and the results are not so ideal. Diet soda drinkers don’t realize that though they aren’t getting unnecessary calories, they are getting unnecessary artificial sugars. The sugar from the soda is stored as fat and helps you gain weight.

Now here’s a fact that will make you rethink drinking diet soda forever.

If you are one to avidly drink diet soda you probably aren’t considering the extra fat your body is automatically storing from the artificial sugar; therefore, you would most likely subconsciously justify the idea of eating that extra slice of pizza or greasy fries. See what you just did there yet? By drinking diet soda you are not realizing the negative effects, therefore causing you to be ok with consuming even more unhealthy food causing your body to store even more unnecessary fat.

Moral of the story. Don’t drink soda, whether it be diet or not.

But why drink 32 ounces of water in one day, EVERYDAY?! There are many answers to this frequently asked question. There has been significant research on why it is important to intake around this amount daily.

There is no significant evidence that water contributes to weight loss, but it can help in some other ways. Obviously substituting water for any other type of beverage will help keep that excess calorie intake at a whopping zero.

Water also helps energize your muscles. This is important for people who are active and/or workout often. Muscles that are dehydrated start to “shrivel up” causing muscle fatigue. Also it is important to drink water before during and after excercising. Most people sweat during their workout so you must replace those fluids lost while sweating by drinking water of course.

Another significant benefit of intaking enough water is for the sake of your skin. The human body is mainly made out of water, which pretty much everyone knows already. So tthe cells in your body NEED water to function, obviously. Just like any other cell in your body your skin cells can become water deprived and stop functioning as well as they should. So if you do not drink enough water it will eventually start to effect your skin causing wrinkles and other unwanted features on your skin.

There are many ways you can keep up with drinking water. My favorite way to drink water is out of a water bottle that I have decked out with stickers. I have 3 different water bottles that I have decorated with various stickers that I have happened to come across. My favorite water bottle is 32 ounces so I know to drink 2 of thunnamedose a day to get 64 ounces, which is a good amount to drink in a day.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The lesson for today is don’t drink soda, and drink plenty of water.

DUHHH! (:

5 Smoothie Ingredients You MUST Ditch

I’m sure everyone reading this, and everyone else on the planet, has tried some form of a smoothie before. Smoothies are easy to make and there is an unbelievable amount of combinations of ingredients that anyone could throw into a blender and call it a smoothie; some would call them “idiot proof”. But not everyone is making their smoothies with the healthiest of ingredients. I think there are a couple reasons that people don’t always add the “healthy stuff” into their smoothies. The obvious reason is that they don’t believe it can still taste good with things like kale, or flax seeds, or spinach, or chia seeds, etc. added to the smoothie. This is not true though! I’ve discovered that adding these types of uncommon ingredients can make the most delicious smoothies! So everyone, join me in ditching the flavored yogurt, juice, and even ice cream to guarantee your smoothies amazing flavor and ultra-healthy. Now for a recipe…

Mango-Peach Smoothie Recipe (:

  • 1 cup frozen organic mangoes
  • 1 cup frozen organic peaches
  • 2 large tablespoons of organic greek yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 1 tablespoon organic honey
  • 1 handful of spinach
  • filtered water

You may be wondering what makes this smoothie so healthy, so I am going to evaluate the benefits of each of these lovely ingredients. I’m going to start off with what may come as a shock to most people. The reason I chose frozen fruit instead of fresh is because frozen fruit is indeed better for your health than fresh. Wow! who would’ve ever guessed that fruit that has been frozen and stored in a bag has more benefits to your health than the fresh fruit?! The freezing process can help to lock in many more nutrients than you get out of eating just plain old fresh fruit. This is because the fruit is frozen within hours of harvest, so you will be getting many more nutrients, antioxidants, and vitamins.

The next food I will be evaluating is greek yogurt. Greek yogurt is packed with nutrients and protein as well. Everyone knows that protein benefits your bones and cartilage, muscles, skin, etc. so why not get your protein from greek yogurt which has much more protein packed into it than milk even.

Now lets. talk about chia seeds. Many people don’t know about chia seeds, but they are a super food and a very extraordinary one at that. Chia seeds can help your skin as well as your bones. They also help boost your metabolism and your energy levels. So if you are wanting to work out you can eat chia seeds instead of the energy powder that doesn’t have anywhere near the same health benefits that chia seeds do. This also means that you they are able to help you lose weight. And these little black seeds are even known to help treat diabetes!

Honey is the next ingredient of discussion. I personally add honey to my smoothies because it is a natural sweetener that is much healthier than sugar, and has far more benefits. Adding honey to your smoothies can help you get a burst of energy, which is quite obviously far better than drinking caffeine. Honey is also filled with antioxidants that help boost your memory and prevent cellular damage within the brain. It is also a very good source of calcium for the brain which helps overall brain health. It also aids sleep and wake patterns.

Everyone knows that spinach makes you stronger as Popeye illustrated so greatly to us all when we were kids. And it is true. Spinach is very beneficial to the human body for many reasons. It is an excellent source of protein which helps build muscle. It also is an excellent source of calcium and iron which helps bone health. Want luscious skin and hair? eat spinach. Spinach is a great super food that helps keep your hair and skin healthy and looking beautiful.

The final ingredient in this superfood smoothie is of course water. Water is quite obviously one of the best things for the human body. As most people know, the human body is made up mainly of water, so if you are lacking water it can become obvious. Your skin and hair will not be at their prime if you are not drinking enough water. But I will not be going into the extreme details of water. That will be a different blog for a different time.

Now for the juicy part…

Ingredients to Ditch

  1. The number one ingredient to not include in your smoothie is ice cream/sorbet. Ice cream should not be included in your smoothies for several reasons. The most obvious reason is that it is not healthy. Dairy is fattening and high in calories. If you are trying to lose weight or maintain a healthy weight, ice cream is not an ideal ingredient for your smoothie. Ice cream is delicious, but it doesn’t need to be featured in your smoothie. It will instantly turn your otherwise nutritious smoothie to junk.
  2. The second ingredient to exclude from your smoothies may come as a surprise to many people. The surprise ingredient is tap water. Now I included water as one of my ingredients in my peach-mango smoothie, but the water in my recipe is filtered rather than tap. There have been some unwanted substances in tap and bottled water as well. So the easiest solution to unwanted substances in water is to filter it in your own home.
  3. Sweetened or sugary fruit juice. Too much sugar actually makes you feel a lot hungrier causing you to eat more and potentially causing you to gain weight. The juice also adds unnecessary calories while things like honey can make your smoothie equally as sweet while adding many more benefits.
  4. Number 4, is milk. Soy milk, whole milk, 2 percent milk, etc. are all examples of milk you should go without. Instead you can substitute it for almond or coconut milk. Almond and coconut milk are much more beneficial to your health than regular old dairy milk.
  5. The final ingredient is not an ingredient to ditch, but you should reconsider it. The ingredient is non organic fruit. Non organic fruit is obviously still good to eat, but organic has many more beneficial aspects to it. Non organic fruit is farmed with pesticides whereas organic fruit grows completely naturally. The pesticides help the fruit grow much quicker than the contrary, so the un organic fruit doesn’t have the time to develop the nutrients that it potentially could if it were grown naturally.

So, if you don’t know now you know.

I hope you all find time to try out this delicious superfood smoothie, and stay fit!

 

 

 

Introduction

Hi I am Madison Hall and this is my first post on my mad about fitness blog. I am very passionate about fitness because I was blessed enough to have been raised that way. When I was in about 4th grade my mom was diagnosed with cancer and everything about the way my family ate changed. My mom knew that if she wanted to fight cancer and exclude it from her life forever she needed to change her eating habits. Ever since then we have become especially conscious  of the food we put into our bodies. Everyone should be conscious of the food they consume because it does have effects on your body whether it is positive or negative.

This blog is going to be all about how to live a fit and healthy day to day life. To stay fit you must commit to eating healthy and staying active almost every day. I am going to be giving lots of helpful suggestions on healthy eating habits, physical activity, and maybe even some athletic outfits.

So stay tuned and stay fit!