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Tag: healthy

It’s Good to Be Happy

Ever heard that saying “It’s a good day to be happy”?  Well, that saying could really apply to any day of the week.  Let’s take Monday, for example.  For most people, Mondays can be hard.  It’s the start of the week, no one wants to go back to work and if you’re like Garfield, Mondays can bit you back.

I used to hate Mondays.  And even still, Mondays can be tough.  But every now and then, things go well – I get to work on time, I have my coffee to wake me up, I had enough food to eat during the day, etc.  The list can go on.  And that list can be different for others.  And you might think that I’m totally sugar coating things, but Mondays can be good days.  And I choose to see it that way.

I have learned over time that if you choose to be happy in a sea of people that are living negatively, then you will have a much more fulfilling life.  When I was younger, I was a negative child.  I grew up as a pessimist.  I never thought things were good and that the world was against me.  I told myself this was a realistic way of looking at the world.  Now, I laugh at myself because I think I was trying to protect myself.  Now, I see the brighter side of things.  The world isn’t as dark as I thought it was.

And what’s even better is that being happy is physically good for your health.  In 2012, Julia Boehm of Harvard School of Public Health found that people with a better sense of well-being tend to have healthier blood pressure, cholesterol and weight.  People that fall into this category also tend to exercise, eat healthy, get enough sleep and avoid smoking.  This sounds to me like it’s where I am now.  Do you fall into this category of people?  While more research needs to be done, it seems that this is the place to be.  If you’re not full there yet, don’t stress.  Just work on it a little each day.  Do some personal development, find a support group and take baby steps to get to the positive person that’s inside you.

Need More Activity in Your Desk Job?

I’ve been working a desk job for the past 13 years and I’ve just recently learned how important being healthy really is.  That includes proper nutrition AND physical activity.  You probably already know, but a lack of physical activity can create an onset of many health risks.  Unfortunately, you cannot have one without the other.

For many people with a full time job, it can be very hard to fit in any type of physical activity and therefore they rely solely on nutrition during the week.  Trust me, I get it.  If you have a demanding full time job like me, your focus the majority of the time is at work or dealing with the demands of your household.  If you’re in a corporate setting, it can be even more challenging.

Many people in a corporate work environment, like myself, sitting more than 5 hours a day.  Yes, I said 5 hours.  Crazy, right?  We’re either working at our desk or in meetings the majority of the day.  Unfortunately this sitting can lead to decreased longevity, among other things.  The American Journal of Preventative Medicine actually found that sitting for long stretches of time can increase our risk for heart disease and cancer.  What’s even more shocking is that even if people had physical activity in their lives, their lifespan was still shortened because of the extended periods of sitting.

I don’t know about you, but I definitely want to live a long, healthy, happy life.  So what do we do to slow the aging process?  One way to do this is to switch to a standing desk or one that can be adjusted throughout the day.  While many corporate offices do not have this luxury yet, I believe there is a movement to go in this direction.  The organization I work for not only has adjustable desks, it also has walk stations where individuals can walk at a slow pace while they work.  I should consider myself lucky.

Another way to get in some activity during your day is to change up your meetings.  Switch from meetings in a conference room to mobile meetings and hold your meetings on the go.  This mobile meeting allows for business activities to take place while allowing small groups for people to get moving.  Think of it in the Spring or Summer – get in some fresh air and get work done!  It’s the best of both worlds, really.

Unfortunately, both of these options may not work for you.  If that’s the case and you just cannot find time to leave your desk, why not get in some activity at your desk.  For starters, make sure you’re sitting with the best posture you have.  This means sitting up straight with your abdominal muscles engaged.  Sitting like this helps you strengthen your core and can help to reduce the early onset of cancer.

Want to kick it up a notch?  Do some leg lifts while at sitting.  This will not only work the strongest muscle group in your body – your legs – but also your core.  If you keep weights or stretch bands at your desk, you can even add some intensity.  You can do even more too!  Just think about squats, tricep dips and wall push-ups just to name a few.

The biggest recommendation I have for you is to stand and stretch at least once an hour.  Stretch your arms and legs as both areas of your body may get stiff.  Whatever you decide, make sure you at least attempt to factor in some physical activity throughout your day.  It can be as little or as much as you want, but I promise you, your body and mind will thank you later.

I’d love to hear what activities you fit in during your workday!  Comment below to share some ideas.

Halloween Candy or Healthy Lifestyle?

Trick-or-treat!  That’s what children say when they go to the front door on Halloween, right?  What if it had another meaning?

To me, “trick” relates to anything that is going to trick me into derailing from my plan.  It could be the candy from Halloween, the extra stuffing at Thanksgiving or even the champagne at New Years.  Yes, I will partake in a little of the indulgences, but I don’t allow the treats to completely steer me off my path.
“Treat” to me is the healthy lifestyle I’ve chosen to lead.  I get to treat myself because I’ve changed my lifestyle and I can live a little.  It’s because I live the healthy lifestyle that I can have one or two pieces of Halloween candy.  The real treat, is being healthy and allowing my body to have what it really needs to survive.
Now that Halloween has passed, what is your plan to get back on track?  Are you going to continue to indulge and trick yourself into thinking the path you’re on is ok?  OR…are you going to change up what you’re doing and treat yourself?  Either way, the decision is yours.  If you are thinking of changing it up, there are things you can do!
  1. Start to reduce your “boxed foods” and increase your “clean” ones. – If you read the ingredients on a box, I bet some of the ingredients you either won’t know or can’t pronounce.  Each time you go to the grocery store, stick to the outside aisles more and more.  That’s where the good stuff is!
  2. Add physical activity into your lifestyle. – You can start small too.  Start with 2-3 days a week and over time, increase the number of days.
  3. Eliminate the soda! – By removing soda out of your diet, you will reduce your chances of becoming a diabetic and help you lose weight.  Instead of soda, go with water that’s infused with fruit.  And if you like the bubbly, try a carbonated water.
  4. Find an accountability partner. – This can be anyone!  Someone you work with, one of your family members, someone you know online through social media.  Wherever you find that person, stay in contact so you can start this new lifestyle together and hold each other accountable.
  5. Set goals and stick to them. – By writing out your goals, you are more likely to stick to them.  What I suggest doing is writing out your goals and post them around the house wherever you are likely going to see them…on the bathroom mirror, on the refrigerator, on the back of the front door, etc.  The more place you post them, the more they will remind you that you are doing this for a reason.
I am not a nutritionist and I am not a doctor, but I have learned a lot since I started my own journey.  I can help you find the right program for you that you can do right in the comfort of your own home and I can help you with the proper nutrition you need to get you started.   After reading this, if you are serious about starting that journey and need help getting started, message me.  Finding this healthy lifestyle has really helped me and I cannot wait to pay it forward!

Meatless Mondays

While traveling on a business trip awhile ago, I read an article in Men’s Fitness magazine about something called the Meatless Monday Movement.  It made me start to think…and gave me some very interesting takeaways:

  • It takes 1,846 gallons of water to produce just one pound of beef.  It only takes 39 gallons of water to yield the same amount of veggies.
  • Farm-animal waste is funneled into football field size lagoons that release toxic gases such as nitrous oxide and methane.

The first point was shocking and yes, the second one was even more shocking than the first.  I could not believe this when I read the article.  The article even went on to say that if everyone gave up meat and cheese for just one day, once a week for a year, the impact on greenhouse gases would be the equivalent to taking 7.6 million cars off the road.  Yes, I said MILLION!

I want to be up front and say I am not a vegetarian and I am not a vegan because I do like to eat chicken, fish and turkey, mostly.  I am not someone who likes to eat a lot of red meat but will have a burger every now and then.

This article, though.  It really made me think.  What if I started a Meatless Monday in my house?  Would my husband go along with it?  When I read this article, I wasn’t sure.  I thought it was something worth trying, though.  I thought if i could slowly incorporate this idea into my house it wouldn’t be so hard to do.  I would be doing my part for the world and we would be eating clean and healthy.

We tried it and it’s worked.  There are a few meals we have each week now that are meatless and it’s been kind of fun coming up with different meals.  One of my favorites is my Southwestern Tacos.  If you really cannot remove meat from your diet, then my recommendation is to choose antibiotic-free, pasture raised beef and antibiotic-free, free-range chicken that are raised using sustainable farming practices.  You may have to do some research to find farmers in your area but they are out there.

Have you tried Meatless Monday in your house?  Share your favorite recipe below and help those thinking of joining the Movement.

**Product Review** – 3 Day Refresh

Wow!  This 3 Day Refresh kit was EXACTLY what I needed.  What is it?  It’s a program brought to you by Team Beachbody that consists of a meal plan for three days.  It’s three (3) daily shakes, a fiber drink, plenty of filtered water and an assortment of fruits, veggies and healthy fats that you choose from your own market.  Sounds complicated?  Well, I promise you, it’s not.

 

Every day, I had 8-10oz. of filtered water when I woke up.

Breakfast was Shakeology, some fruit and a cup of herbal tea, if I wanted it.

Mid-morning snack was the Fiber Sweep shake.

Lunch was a Vanilla Fresh shake, some fruit, some veggies and a healthy fat.

Mid-afternoon snack was veggies and a healthy fat.

Dinner was another Vanilla Fresh shake and a dinner from the recipe book.

 

That’s it!  It was so easy, especially because you could prep the same food for three days in a row and save time.

One of the things I was worried about was whether I could work out or not.  I’m happy to say that I could workout.  Moderate exercise is recommended so instead of doing a high intensity interval training, I would walk to work and walk home from work every day.  I walked more than five (5) miles a day.

Sounds a little more simple now, right?!  It was…very simple!  In just the three days, I lost five (5) pounds too!  The 3 Day Refresh helped me get off my plateau and made me feel so much better.  Want more info?  Contact me below and we’ll get you started on your own path to refreshing your body!

What Really is a Health Coach?

 

I was asked this question today and wondered if other people are curious what it is too.  When I think about a health coach, I think about the people in the world that help others with the health and wellness goals.  The truth is, a health coach can be so much more than just a personal trainer or a nutritionist.

A health coach really is the guidance that helps you while you’re on your journey.  This person can be your support system, a friend, an ally, a confidant.  A health coach helps you learn the ropes and helps you transition that learning into real action.  In most cases, a health coach and their client learn together.

Health coaches are different from personal trainers, nutritionists, clinicians and educators.   In most cases, the client does not have access to a personal trainer or nutritionist between sessions.  The client of a health coach would have access in between sessions because communication is key to helping the client grow inside and out.  A physician or an educator can give the client all the information in the world and share how this information would help the client be healthy, but in some cases, the physician or educator doesn’t help the client learn how to put it into action.  A health coach would help the client really put the information given into action through cooking demonstrations or workshops.

Don’t get me wrong, a health coach does not replace a physician, personal trainer or a nutritionist.  But a health coach can supplement the care received from these individuals.  Today there are endless opportunities to start a journey toward a healthy, happy life, but where do you start?  This is where a health coach can come in and help guide a client.  A health coach can help the client choose the right meal plan or fitness plan right for the individual.  And the health coach can help the client stick to it.

I recently became a certified health and wellness coach and the information I’ve learned in the past year is amazing.  I want to share it with people and help others learn what it feels like to live a healthy, happy, balanced life.  Are you someone looking for an addition to your current healthcare routine?  Connect with me today and set up your free consultation.

Southwestern Meatless Taco

 

Ingredients:

1/4 medium avocado, mashed

2 tbsp. fresh salsa or pico de gallo

3/4 cup of cooked black beans

3/4 cup of cooked brown rice

1/4 cup of cooked corn

1/4 cup of diced tomato

1/4 cup of diced onion

1 6″ corn torilla

 

Combine mashed avocado and fresh salsa in a small bow; mix well.  Set aside.

Place black beans, rice and corn on one half of tortilla and fold.

Serve with avocado and salsa mixture.

Cucumber & Tomato Salad

 

Ingredients:
2 tbsp. red wine vinegar

1 tsp. balsamic vinegar

1 tbsp. fresh lemon juice

2 tsp. extra-virgin olive oil

1 medium cucumer, partially peeled, halved lengthwise and sliced

1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved

1 tbsp. chopped red onion

1 tbsp. chopped fresh Italian parsley

1 tbsp. chopped basil leaves

Himalayan salt, to taste (optional)

Herbal seasoning, to taste (optional)

 

Combine red wine vinegar, balsamic vinegar, lemon juice and oil in a small bow; mix well.  Set aside.

Combine cucumber, tomatoes, onion, parsley, basil, salt (if desired) and seasoning blend (if desired) in a large bow; mix well.

Drizzle dressing over cucumber mixture; toss gently to blend.

Farina with Walnuts, Apples & Maple Syrup

Ingredients:

3/4 cup of water

3 tbsp. farina cereal

1/2 medium green apple, diced

3 tbsp. chopped walnuts

1 tbsp. pure maple syrup

 

Bring water to boil in a medium saucepan over medium heat.  Add farina; cook, stirring frequently for 4-5 minutes.  Remove from heat.

Place farina in a small bowl.  Top with apples, walnuts and pure maple syrup.

Enjoy!

Welcome!

Welcome to Just Live Mindfully – a place to come if you’re looking to learn how to live the healthy, happy life you are meant to live.  My name is Jenn Mullen and I am the owner of Just Live Mindfully.  I am a foodie, a fitness fanatic, a tomboy that has turned into a girly girl who loves all things fashion and a passionate woman looking to help others learn others with their health and wellness needs.

Health and wellness is not just about fitness and nutrition.  It involves all aspects of life – relationships with others, the career you have, what you believe in and yes, it does include physical activity.  Throughout my life, I always thought health and wellness was just about eating extremely well and being physically active every single day.  I had no idea that health and wellness involved laughing every day, having positive relationships with the people around you (“your tribe”) and living a life you design.  Now that I have learned this, my life has improved exponentially.

As Just Live Mindfully grows, my wish is that I am able to inspire and motivate people to be happy, healthy and live a life they have designed.  I hope you will join me on this journey and change the world along side me.

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