Chia Seeds, Kefir and Functional Exercises

 

In the last couple of weeks, I’ve become really interested in expanding my food horizons.  There are so many foods and superfoods out there that are just waiting to be eaten.  Here are a couple of my new favorites…

 

Chia Seeds:  chia seeds

The first superfood that I mentioned in my last entry are chia seeds. Chia seeds are a gelatinous food because of the gel like substance they become when they get wet.  This helps with the digestive process and clearing out the digestive tract.  They have 27 vitamins, minerals and amino acids as well as fatty acids. They also have 42% of our daily fiber intake.  A good place to check them out and get more information is Nutiva.com.  I’m sure after you read all of this, you have to be wondering how to incorporate these magical seeds into your diet.  Well, you can pretty much mix them into anything.  I usually mix it into my kefir or yogurt but I’ve also just put a serving into water and let them set a bit and just drank them down.  You can put them in your juice or smoothies too.  They are tasteless so the sky is the limit when it comes to consuming them.

Kefir:  kefir

I’ve had a bunch of people that have read my blog say to me that they haven’t heard of many of the foods that I eat.  I’m going to go ahead and assume that Kefir is one of those.

Kefir is a fermented probiotic milk product.  Probiotics are beneficial in helping with GI functions as well as pushing the bad bacteria out of the small intestines during the digestive process. I tend to just treat it like yogurt even though it’s thinner and drinkable and mix in muesli (whole grain granola), chia seeds and hemp seeds. 

I also try to avoid a lot of sugar so I buy the plain and just add stevia or truvia to it.  Add it to your smoothies or I suppose you could mix it in your juices or simply drink it to reap the benefits of this fast absorbing food (faster than yogurt). Check out Lifeway.net for more information.

Functional Exercises:

I’d like to switch gears a bit and get into a little fitness talk because I feel like its been a while.  I hope you have been incorporating stretching in your exercise routines like I mentioned a few entries ago.  The next thing I suggest adding into your workouts if you don’t already do them are some functional exercises.  They are called functional because they are motions that are used in everyday life. It can be something as simple as walking up stairs or sitting down and getting up from a chair.  The two exercises I’m going to introduce today are both just using body weight.  To challenge yourself you can always add weight as long as you are using proper form. 

The squat incorporates all lower body muscle groups such as quadriceps, hamstrings and glutes.  When doing a squat, it’s very important to protect your knees so technique is essential.  ashley wo

Let me take a moment and preface the photos…first of all, I never, I repeat, never work out with my hair down.  I’d pass out of heat exhaustion or drown in my sweat.  I just couldn’t find my ponytail holder.  Lastly, fitness photos where people are smiling are unrealistic and look pretty silly though for this photo of showing where your feet should start would be super awkward if I just mean mugged the camera hence the cheesy smile.  So here we go, let’s squat.  Start with your feet shoulder width apart with both feet facing forward. Weight should be evenly distributed through toes to heels.

To perform the exercise, pretend you have a chair behind you…sit your butt back first as you start to bend your knees.  The weight should shift into your heels and you should be able to lift up your toes at the bottom of the exercise.  The reason for this is to make sure your knees are protected.  The rule of thumb is your knees should never cross the plane of your toes.  You can start by putting a chair behind you and lightly touching down just to get a feel for sitting back and allowing your weight to shift.  Lastly, always keep your chest up and shoulders back.  Good posture is alway key for any exercise you do.

Ashley bo1

ashleybo2

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *