Monday Motivation: Fitness Motivation

Well it’s that time of year again! It’s March. Spring and summer are just around the corner, and it’s time to get back into shape! After a long winter full of holiday foods, stressful family get-togethers, and attempting to keep your new year resolutions, I know it can be hard to find that motivation to get back and go to the gym, wake up early to do some yoga, or go out for a jog or walk in the evening. It’s not an easy thing. Getting fit and healthy is a big task, and anyone who tells you otherwise is just blinded by the fact that they’ve already done it. And good for them! They should be proud of themselves, and you should be too – every time you don’t hit snooze on your alarm, walk into the gym before or after work, or choose a salad for lunch instead of the burger and fries you really want, that’s cause to celebrate and give yourself a pat on the back. But for those mornings after late night homework or being up with a crying baby, or those nights after a long day at work when your couch sounds so much better than a treadmill, here are some motivational quotes to help you keep your goals, heath, fitness, and opportunities in mind.

Wednesday Workout: Stand Up for Flat Abs!

Get great abs – standing up! Say goodbye to the same old crunch routine and say hello to this 15 minute workout!

Better Late Than Never Wednesday Workout: Bootylicious

Nothing goes with a pair of tight jeans and some fall boots like a great butt. Haha! Just because fall and winter are around the corner, doesn’t mean you can’t look your best and turn some heads. Try this workout to tone up your rear end.

Belated Tuesday Ten: Keeping Your Skin Healthy

Skincare is very important. It’s important not only for your looks, but for your health too. Here are ten ways you can help keep your skin healthy and looking good.

  1. Wash your face regularly. You should wash your face at least once a day with a gentle face wash. Depending on your skin type, you may want to do this twice a day, but be careful not to dry out your skin.
  2. Exfoliate. At least once a week, wash your face gently with a face “scrub”. The little beads in these types of face washes help to get rid of dead skin and keep your pours clean. If you don’t want to spend money on a separate kind of face wash, you can easily exfoliate with warm water, your regular face wash, and a warm, wet washcloth. Just scrub your face with the cloth, but be careful not to scrub too hard. Some magazines tell you not to use a washcloth because it may be too harsh for your face, but I’ve spoken to a friend of mine who is a skin care professional and she says that’s not true. If done correctly, exfoliating with a washcloth shouldn’t hurt your skin at all.
  3. Use a moisturizer. You want to keep your skin hydrated and looking fresh, so finding the right kind of moisturizer is essential. Do some research, try a few out, or talk to a skin care professional to find the best moisturizer for your skin. I use Olay Complete All Day Moisturizer with Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 15 for sensitive skin.
  4. Take off your makeup at the end of the day. Sleeping with your makeup on can be damaging to not only your skin, but your eyes and eyelashes too. Make sure you use a gentle makeup remover to take off all of your makeup before calling it a night. I use Neutrogena Oil-Free Eye Makeup Remover or Neutrogena Makeup Remover Cleansing Towelettes – Night Calming (lavender scented).
  5. Stay hydrated. Make sure to drink lots of water throughout the day. This will keep your skin looking healthy, feeling hydrated, and decrease chances of stretch marks by keeping your skin’s elasticity intact.
  6. Use sun protection. This is not only important for beauty purposes, but also for your health. Sun protection is a very important step in our daily routines that is most of the time, overlooked. Sunscreen is always best (For my face, I like to use an oil free sunscreen that is specifically made for your face), but if you don’t have the time for that, moisturizers and face powders can serve as a mild substitute. Many moisturizers these days have a SPF of 15, but it is possible to get higher. Also, there are some powders out now that have sun protection in them. bareMinerals has an entire line of powders, moisturizers, and foundations that help protect your skin from the sun. Check those out here.
  7. Don’t pick at your pimples. That will only make them worse, spread them, and leave scars. The best thing you can do when you have breakouts is keep your skin clean, and use a medication or acne treatment. Lately, my favorites are Clearasil Vanishing Acne Treatment Cream and Noxzema Triple Clean Anti-Blemish Pads.
  8. Get enough sleep. Sleep allows your body to heal and rejuvenate. Getting at least 8 hours of sleep a night will increase your chances of having healthy, clear skin.
  9. Take a multivitamin. Vitamins help give your body the nutrients that it needs, but doesn’t get enough of. Taking a multivitamin can help your skin be healthier overall, and give you that extra boost you need to look your very best.
  10. Have a healthy, balanced diet. Making sure you get the nutrients you need can’t just be left up to vitamins. Your eating habits are a big part of your skin’s outcome. If you’re constantly eating junk food with a lot of grease, you’re more likely to have breakouts. Eating a balanced diet will help to keep your breakouts more in control. Also, there are some foods that are absolutely great for your skin – avocados, mangoes,  and almonds are just a few.

Wednesday Workout: Body Part Specific Workout

Here’s a quick sketch to help you target the part of the body that you want to work out and tone up.

Suicide Awareness & Prevention

For those of you who don’t know, today is Suicide Awareness Day. It is also National Suicide Prevention Week.

Depression, anxiety, thoughts of suicide, and feelings of hopelessness are more common than you may realize. Growing up and living life is no easy task, and some handle it better than others. Some of us really struggle with the day-to-day feelings, thoughts, and pressure, and a lot of people never receive the help they need.

Here are some quick facts courtesy of To Write Love On Her Arms:

  • 121 million people worldwide suffer from depression. (World Health Organization)
  •  18 million of these cases are happening in the United States. (The National Institute of Mental Health)
  • Between 20% and 50% of children and teens struggling with depression have a family history of this struggle and the offspring of depressed parents are more than three times as likely to suffer from depression. (U.S. Surgeon General’s Survey, 1999)
  • Depression often co-occurs with anxiety disorders and substance abuse, with 30% of teens with depression also developing a substance abuse problem. (NIMH)
  •  2/3 of those suffering from depression never seek treatment.
  • Untreated depression is the number one cause of suicide, and suicide is the third leading cause of death among teenagers. (NIMH)

There are several foundations and communities that aim to support people who are feeling alone and need help. Two of the most popular ones are To Write Love On Her Arms and Love Is Louder. These organizations focus on educating the public and spreading the word about the effects of depression, anxiety, and the pressures of life, as well as providing resources for people to learn how to handle these feelings or how to help a friend or family member who may be going through a rough time.

Here are some tips from the Love Is Louder website:

Love is Louder is a movement to provide support and resources to anyone feeling mistreated, alone or hopeless. Sometimes people struggling with depression or other issues get so down and hopeless that they feel like there’s no way out. Today is World Suicide Prevention Day and an opportunity for all of us to take action to help ourselves or others who may be feeling hopeless or alone. Here’s how you can help:

Warning Signs of Suicide:

Seek help by talking to a counselor or calling 1-800-273-TALK (8255) for support if you see or hear anyone with these warning signs:

  • Hopelessness
  • Rage, uncontrolled anger, seeking revenge
  • Acting reckless or engaging in risky activities, seemingly without thinking
  • Feeling trapped – like there’s no way out
  • Increased alcohol or drug use
  • Withdrawing from friends, family and society
  • Anxiety, agitation, unable to sleep or sleeping all the time
  • Dramatic mood changes

Call 9-1-1 or seek immediate help from a mental health provider when you hear, or see any of these behaviors:

  • Someone threatening to hurt or kill him/herself, or talking of wanting to hurt or kill him/herself
  • Someone looking for ways to kill him/herself by seeking access to firearms, available pills, or other means
  • Someone talking or writing about death, dying or suicide, when these actions are out of the ordinary for the person

 

I’ve been there. I’ve had low points in my life that I never thought I’d survive. I’ve had suicidal thoughts and at 16 I finally asked for help. Telling my parents that I needed to see a therapist was one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do. But I’m so glad I did it. I’m constantly fighting anxiety and depression, but I’m able to cope now because I gave myself the chance to learn tools and techniques that make handling these feelings much more manageable. Not everyone speaks up though, and sometimes even if they do, we don’t hear them or realize what they’re really trying to say. So take action, support these organizations and their causes. Educate yourself, your family, and your friends. Make a donation. Talk with your loved ones. Spread the word. You could save a life.

 

Wednesday Workout: Sumo Squat with Calf Raise

This move will work out your inner thighs like crazy!

Late Wednesday Workout: Lean Legs, Tight Tush

Nothing catches a man’s eye like a woman in a short, tight dress and heels with killer legs. So here’s a workout to make your legs look amazing and your butt look great under that skin tight dress for your night out.

Wednesday Workout: Standing Abs Workout

I absolutely love this ab workout by Jillian Michaels!