Best Healthy Cookbooks and Fitness Reads in February 2018

I read, drooled and became inspired with some of the Best Healthy Cookbooks and Fitness Reads in February 2018.

health fitness and cookbooks read feb 2018

Along the way, I picked up so much great advice to keep me motivated with my running and exercise routines along with healthy, fit recipe ideas to fit my busy, active lifestyle. Read on to find out more! Continue reading

Nutrition Timeline for Marathon Recovery + Pizza

There’s plenty of nutrition advice out there on what to eat and drink BEFORE and DURING a marathon to optimize performance. However, what you consume immediately AFTER a marathon, and over the next 24 to 48 hours, is equally as important — it plays a significant role in the recovery process. Your taxed body demands fluids and nutrients to bring hydration back into balance, kick start muscle repair, and restore mental focus and mood. Bounce back from your 26.2 (or other endurance event such as Ironman, Spartan, century rides or even just intense pre-race training) quicker and more completely by following my suggested post marathon nutrition recovery timeline. Nutrition Timeline for Marathon Recovery - what to eat immediately and up to 48 hours after an endurance event like marathon, Ironman, Spartan, century ride, and more.

Read on to get the details on my Nutrition Timeline for Marathon Recovery, see what foods I pack in my drop bag, get questions answered (like should I take supplements), and get a speedy, satisfying, celebration-worthy post-marathon pizza recipe.

Also, ANNOUNCEMENT – I will be taking over the Whole Foods Market 365 Instagram story starting Saturday evening through Sunday (Feb 17th to Feb 18th) to share with you my experience prepping, running and recovering from the Austin Marathon. So, FIND ME! Continue reading

Hot Spiced Watermelon Lemonade for Running & Workout Recovery

This post is sponsored by The National Watermelon Board. All opinions, editorial comments, recipes and enthusiasm are my own.

I can’t say I HATE running in cold weather because even when the temperature drops, I’m still out there moving and grooving my body in the sport I love. But, I get chilled to the bone, my feet freeze, my fingers go numb . . . it doesn’t matter how warmly I’m dressed. Coming home to my Hot Spiced Watermelon Lemonade with collagen is not only a tasty treat, but thaws me out and fills me up with nutrients I need to expedite my workout recovery and bolster my immunity. Hot Spiced Watermelon Lemonade for Workout Recovery

Read on to learn more about my Hot Spiced Watermelon Lemonade for workout and running recovery, check out my how-to video and get the easy recipe. Continue reading

Finds from The Running Event – Marathon Sports Nutrition Giveaway

Giveaway Alert! I recently attended The Running Event, a trade show for the running retail industry, and got a sneak peak into some of the emerging trends, gear and sports nutrition products for 2018. I’ll save shoe, sock and sports bra talk for later, today I want to get right to the sports nutrition giveaway a.k.a. free tasty stuff. Yeah, I said “tasty stuff,” – that’s because so many race fuels, hydration aids and other sports nutrition products taste as good as they work!Giveaway of Sports Nutrition products at The Running Event 2017

Today, I’m sharing some of my new finds and old favorites with you “12 Days of Christmas” style, except all twelve days at once! You don’t have to come back to the blog every day for 12 days (although I don’t mind if you do)! Read on to discover some new products to fuel your running, obstacle course racing, triathalon, ultramarathoning – or whatever you do!  And, enter the sports nutrition giveaway to win in all 78 things! Continue reading

DIY Watermelon Beet & Chia Energy Blocks for Marathon

This post is sponsored by The National Watermelon Board. However, all opinions, ideas and enthusiasm are completely my own.

Almost six years ago, I started experimenting with making my own edible race fuel. There weren’t as many options on the market back then, and I also liked the control I had over ingredients and flavor when making energy gels, jellies and chews from scratch – not to mention saving a ton of money. Watermelon Beet Chia Energy Blocks

Today I’m sharing my recipe for Watermelon Beet & Chia Energy Blocks that are surprisingly easy to make and take advantage of the inherent health and performance benefits of the featured ingredients. Read on to get the recipe, nutrition info and details on how you can use these chews in your next marathon, triathlon, obstacle race or other endurance event.  Continue reading

Fit Food & Run Gear Making Me Happy in April

Who doesn’t love a three day weekend, having one every month should be mandatory. At least, that’s what my pup Lucy thinks! That face you make when they say 3 day weekend

Today, I’m sharing some of the things that are gearing me up and fueling me through the fun!  Continue reading

Why Athletes Should Eat Carrots + Fit, Fast Recipes

Trendy vegetables come and go, but carrots are a perennially popular pick in the produce department! I’m a non-discriminating vegetable lover and would never suggest kicking kale to the curb or saying bye-bye to beets, but these veggies, among other others, have enjoyed more than their fair share of time in the proverbial sun and now seem to be wilting away. But, let’s not forget about the tried-and-true carrot! Why Athletes Should Care about Carrots -- Health benefits that improve performance, recover and overall well being plus some easy, nutritious recipes using carrots.

All ages and all stages love carrots. Babies spoon up pureed carrots, kids munch on crunchy carrot sticks, and even finickiest of foodies can find a gourmet carrot recipe to delight.  Thanks to a host of health benefits and an easy-to-pack profile, this enduring edible also makes the perfect superfood for all types of athletes including runners, triathletes, football players, CrossFitters and other sporty types.  Plus, carrots are filling but are low in calories, with only about 50 calories for a cup of carrot slices or 5-ounces of baby carrots. If still questioning how carrots can help your athletic performance and need some great carrot recipes, read on:

Continue reading

Hear Me Roar – PMS and the Athlete #LetsTalkPMS

Hear Me Roar

I am a female athlete, hear me roar! I love the strength, power and grace shown by women in sports, and believe, in many ways, female athletes are superior to men. Now, don’t get your panties in a wad, gentlemen – obviously you have an arsenal of strengths including sheer muscle volume and all the testosterone stuff. I’m not arguing a 100lb female can beat a 200lb guy in an arm wrestle, so don’t challenge me please!  Despite a woman’s brain wiring, body composition and hormones being very different to a man’s, she can still be very successful in sports. We women are naturals at teamwork, multi-tasking and making less impulsive decisions. Women also have a different muscle-to-fat composition which, in general, can help spare glycogen in endurance events, and some of our hormones, like estrogen, have been shown to make us stronger in adverse conditions

PMS and the Athlete

However, every once in a while, my female ROAR is a little weak – namely on those days when I’m suffering from Pre Menstrual Syndrome.  So, #LetsTalkPMS  . . . The fatigue, muscle aches, bloating, sore chest, irregularity and mood swings the week before my period starts can take the attack factor out of my workout schedule if I’m not proactive. Thankfully, I have been spared many instances of PMS as I haven’t had my period on a regular basis in 25 years between long-term bouts of amenorrhea,  pregnancies/nursing and now middle age (sorry if TMI). So while my periods usually can’t be planned for, they also aren’t completely unexpected – because of the annoying PMS reminder!

While female hormones might not always be fun ,the are definitely functions — I mean, sheeze, we make a baby! The level of hormones in the female body during different parts of the cycle also play a factor in the metabolism of carbohydrate, fat, and protein, blood plasma volume, and tolerance to heat – all of these are important factors in many sports. Ironically, while the week or so leading up to your period may have you feeling super PMS-y, this “low hormone” stage is considered by many experts to be optimal for female athletic performance. But, you have to manage the physical and mental challenges of PMS and kick them in the buttt!

Now, if I wasn’t into running, CrossFit, yoga, lifting weights and so many other sports, I would probably be caught completely off guard by my infrequent visit rom Aunt Flow. However, there’s something about being a competitive athlete that I believe keeps a woman more in tune with her body, and therefore more likely to notice the onset of PMS symptoms. Oh, and I know!

Jayde PMS Natural Herbal Remedy

Since I don’t like to take time off from training or use prescription medications except when life-or-death necessary, I have looked for natural ways to treat PMS. One of the natural products I really like is Jayde from IntraNaturals. Jayde Natural Pain Relief is “100% Herbal Happiness for Women During their Menstrual Period” that may help soothe cramps, relieve muscle aches, and ease general discomfort.

Jayde PMS Natural Herbal Remedy The natural ingredients in Jayde include Cramp Bark, Turmeric Curcumin, Boswellia, and Bromelian—all inspired by the ancient healing powders of Ayurvedic herbs. The only herbal ingredient I wasn’t familiar with was Cramp Bark – so I reached out for more information. Cramp Bark is a smooth muscle relaxant with similar properties to valerian that targets the uterus specifically to reduce inflammation. It may help lessen ovarian and uterine cramps both before and during menstruation.

As a disclaimer, the benefits statements of Jaye have not been evaluated by the FDA but, my experience with this natural solution to PMS has been nothing but “thumbs up,” – plus the capsules are easy to take once or twice a day as needed. Additionally, Jadye is vegan, nonGMO, gluten-free, soy-free and comes with a 100% Lifetime Guarantee. This promise of quality means that if you should become dissatisfied with the product at any time, the company will gladly offer a full refund.

IntraNaturals is proud to partner with Vitamin Angels This is another amazing reason to love Jayde and IntraNaturals! With every order, IntraNaturals donates to their non-profit partner, Vitamin Angels, in order to provide life-changing nutrition to children in need (40,000 kids/women helped through their donation last year). Through this program, children and pregnant mothers without adequate access to important nutrients needed for optimal health are provided life-changing vitamins. While I’m over here freaking out my PMS symptoms (honestly, pretty trivial in the scheme of world health), others don’t even have the basic vitamins they need to thrive . . . or survive. So, I feel twice blessed knowing I have the means to take care of ALL my health concerns while helping children and pregnant mothers much, much less fortunate.

Do you avoid working out when you have PMS or your period? What is your worst symptom? Share in the comments if you care to – XOXO, Jennifer

Thank you to IntraNaturals for kindly sponsoring this post. All opinions are 100% honest & completely my own.