Wellness Resource Wednesday: Hungry for Change

Happy Wednesday!

Has everyone finished digging out from Jonas yet? We didn’t get much snow at all in Boston, but what little we did get has already almost melted since temps have been in the 40s and 50s!

Snow in Summer GIF | 2 Generations RunningSince it’s Wednesday, I figured it was the perfect time to share about a great documentary I watched on Netflix this past weekend.

Wellness Resource Wednesday | 2 Generations RunningIt’s not a new movie (came out in 2012), but have you heard of Hungry For Change? (link to trailer here) The movie explores the food industry and the constant cycle of dieting/gaining weight that we seem to have gotten stuck on as a society.

Hungry for ChangeI normally shy away from watching food documentaries (I don’t like to be grossed out), but this one pleasantly surprised me. It wasn’t so much about unsanitary or unsafe conditions in the food industry, but instead focused on all the chemicals and artificial additives that have been added to food over the years. It’s gotten to the point where what we think of as “food” barely resembles food from 40-50 years ago! Just try to pronounce all those chemicals listed in the ingredients.

Hungry for Change Review | 2 Generations RunningOne of the most interesting points of the movie was that all these artificially processed foods have been specifically designed to be addictive. Just as cigarette companies realized they could add more nicotine to their cigarettes to make them more addictive, food companies know our bodies are designed to react strongly to certain flavors (salty, sweet, fatty), and engineered ways to exaggerate all those flavors. After all, an addicted customer is a customer for life.

Now, I’m not trying to be preachy or claim that I have the perfect diet – I think if I had to pick a favorite food, it would be cheesecake (specifically chocolate chip cookie dough cheesecake from The Cheesecake Factory because that stuff is a little slice of heaven). But watching this movie made me realize what a crazy hole we have truly dug ourselves into as a society – everyone is eating more calories from the heavily processed food, but these foods are less nutritionally dense, so you feel hungry again quickly and then eat more calories. So we gain weight, and then try to drop it all with crash diets, which fail a few weeks later. As a society, we get fatter while becoming more obsessed with being skinny.

I’m not making this sound very uplifting, am I? I swear, it ends on a positive note! And as far as documentaries go, I found this one to be really engaging with a lot of fascinating interviews. The movie has also really motivated me to stick with my clean eating/semi-paleo resolutions. There are always temptations, but now I find myself really thinking about a food and checking the ingredients before I eat it.

Hungry for Change is available on Netflix Instant and Hulu, and is $2.99 on iTunes. I would definitely give it a try (especially if you’re on a New Years diet right now!).

And if you are in the mood for a little healthy inspiration, try browsing this list -> 12 Netflix Documentaries that will Make You want to be Healthy via Popsugar.

Have you ever seen Hungry for Change? Do you like documentaries? Got any good documentaries to recommend?


Wellness Resource Wednesday #6

HAPPY CHRISTMAS EVE-EVE!

Or, in less confusing terms, happy Day before Christmas Eve!

Christmas GIF | 2 Generations RunningI’m so looking forward to spending the holiday with my family and Brady and Keeper (my favorite reindeer.)

Brady | 2 Generations Running

Since it is also Wednesday, I figured I would jump back into regularly scheduled programming, and share a couple of podcasts I think you guys might enjoy!

Wellness Resource Wednesday | 2 Generations RunningBoth of these podcasts are great for runners, and contain tons of valuable information. I only recently started listening to both of these, but I can already tell they are going to be favorites of mine.

  1. No Meat Athlete – Matt Frazier. This podcast comes from Matt Frazier, the creator of the very popular blog, No Meat Athlete. I actually heard Matt speak at a seminar during the Runners World Heartbreak Hill Half and Festival, and I really respect his advice. He’s extremely honest about his path towards qualifying for Boston (it took him quite a few tries, but he ended up qualifying and taking about 100 minutes off his first marathon time). Considering I’ve finally admitted this is one of my major running goals, I’ve been finding it really interesting learning more about his techniques and strategy. No Meat Athlete podcasts usually feature different guests as well, and they cover a variety of running/health-related topics.
  2. Running on Om – Julia Hanlon. A member of my running club recommended this podcast to me, and I’m so glad she did. While I would say Julia Hanlon is primarily a yoga teacher, she is also an avid runner, and she hosts a number of famous runners on her podcast, including Andrew Wheating (he ran in both the 2008 and 2012 summer Olympics). Her topics tend to try to provide a holistic approach to running and health in general, which makes for some very informative podcasts. She also has that typical soothing “yoga teacher voice”, so I really enjoy listening to her podcasts while I go to sleep. ūüôā

Wellness Resource Wednesday

So there you go! If you want a little something to listen to while you’re running during the holidays, I would definitely give these podcasts a try.

Hope you have a wonderful Christmas and enjoy the holiday break!


Wellness Resource Wednesday #5

Hey there!

So I know I totally spaced and missed this post last week, but we are back in action today!

Wellness Resource Wednesday | 2 Generations RunningI’ve brought up MapMyRun on the blog before, but I’ve wanted to do a more thorough run-down (#runningpuns4life) on the app for a while, because I think it has a lot of great features that might go unnoticed.The Benefits of Using Map My Run | 2 Generations Running

You can win awesome Under Armour gift cards. Undoubtedly, this is my favorite thing about using MapMyRun. All you have to do is select the challenges tab from the main menu and pick one that sounds good!

MapMyRun - Why Every Runner Should Use this appMost of them will have some crazy fantastic grand prize (and no, I can’t promise you will win that), but then they will also give away a number of gift cards! I’ve gotten a few gift cards from doing these challenges, and they generally ranged from $15 – $25.

It keeps track of your paces. Yes, I have a GPS watch for this too, but I generally like that better for monitoring my pace during the actual run. With MapMyRun, you can easily look back at your runs, and see how they fall in comparison to your typical paces.

Why Every Runner Should Use MapMyRunSo for example, 5 days ago, I ran 4.06 miles at 8:22/mile, which I can see ranks in the Top 10% of my runs according to my history on MapMyRun. So personally, I prefer my GPS watch for instant feedback on my pace, but I like using MapMyRun for more of a history on my running times. I also love looking at the charts of my overall mileage across each month – it really shows when I am getting those miles in (or not, as the case may be…)!

It will keep track of the miles you put on your sneakers. How many times have you thought to yourself that you were probably due for a new pair of sneakers but then not been able to exactly recall when you bought them or how many miles you had truly run in them? MapMyRun has a fantastic feature called the Gear Tracker Рyou can search for your exact model of sneakers (I know both Brooks Pure Flows and Asics Gel-Electro33s are on there from my personal experience!) You can select exactly how many miles you want to put on your shoes, and then the app will give you notifications as you get close to that number. It also links to Zappos to allow you to purchase a new pair right from the app!

MapMyRun - why it's a great app for runners.It will provide you with elevation charts from your run. If you run a really hilly route, how cool is it to be able to check out the elevation profile from your run and see just how hilly it actually was?! It’s proof of extra bada$$ runner points!

MapMyRun - why it's a great app | 2 Generations RunningThat’s the elevation profile from my 9 mile run at the¬†Mill Cities¬†Relay this weekend. You can see there are a few good spikes in there!

The app can also be used in a number of other ways, such as logging food, water, and other workouts like strength-training. I have to say, I pretty much only take advantage of the running-specific features, but those are pretty stellar. So if you’re looking to get serious about recording your running and tracking your progress, then I highly recommend using MapMyRun¬†– the basic version of the app (which is what I have) is free on the app store.

Do you use MapMyRun? Do you love recording all your running data as much as I do?


Wellness Resource Wednesday #4: Thanksgiving Edition

OMG IT’S ALMOST THANKSGIVING!!!!!!!

Thanksgiving GIFI absolutely love Thanksgiving – the food, the family, the intensely competitive annual football games my family always holds. All of it!

Thanksgiving Football | 2 Generations RunningIn honor of the holiday, and Wellness Resource Wednesday, I figured I’d share some articles I found with healthy living tips for Thanksgiving, since it can be pretty unhealthy¬†if you do it the wrong way. But that also doesn’t mean you can’t indulge in moderation! I love pie and will certainly be eating a piece (or two… probably two if I’m being 100% honest).

Wellness Resource Wednesday | 2 Generations Running

From Huffington Post:

From Around the Internet:

Recipes for Healthy Side Dishes:

What is your FAVORITE Thanksgiving recipe (healthy or not)? Have a wonderful holiday and enjoy the day with your loved ones!


Wellness Resource Wednesday #3

It’s time for the third installment¬†in my new Wellness Resource Wednesday series!

Wellness Resource Wednesday | 2 Generations RunningToday, I wanted to share one of my absolutely favorite websites for anything and EVERYTHING health-related. Want to find a healthy recipe? Discover a great workout? Learn about the healthiest companies in America? Go to Greatist.com.

Greatist.com

At this point, I don’t remember how I first came across Greatist, I’ve been using the website for so long. Whenever I’m in need of a little motivation boost, I like to check it out¬†and I can always find an interesting article to read or some good, practical advice for healthy living. I also love that it explains physiological or nutrition-related topics, without being overly technical. I’m not a science nerd, but I can follow their explanations.

ScienceSome of my favorite articles on Greatist:

I like it much better than Pinterest as a resource for health/fitness information, because I find it’s more reliable. While anyone can link websites to Pinterest promoting the latest insane, lose 10 lbs in a week¬†diet, the writers at¬†Greatist¬†back up their articles with actual data and research.

So check it out! There’s an article for everyone on there, no matter your health goals. ūüôā

Do you have a website you love for healthy living tips? I’m always looking for recommendations!¬†


Wellness Resource Wednesday #2

Happy¬†Wednesday and of course, a very happy Veteran’s Day!

Veterans Day Quote Zell MillerThank you to all the veterans who have served and continue to serve our country.

And because it is not only Veteran’s Day, but also Wednesday, I’m sticking to the new routine and sharing a health/wellness resource I recently discovered and absolutely LOVE.

Wellness Resource Wednesday | 2 Generations RunningI’m a big fan of podcasts. I like to put them on while I go to sleep to keep my brain from going haywire thinking about work/running/chores, etc… I also listen to them on the subway during my commute in the mornings. It makes the start of each day a little more enjoyable, and I love the random tidbits of knowledge I pick up listening to them.

Since deciding that I wanted to focus more on nutrition this Fall, I wanted to find a podcast to actually learn about what it means to have a balanced diet. Obviously, I understand the concepts of healthy eating broadly (I think pretty much everyone does. In a nutshell-¬†eat more vegetables and fewer cupcakes.) I knew there were a lot of nuances I was probably missing though.Dishing Up Nutrition Review | 2 Generations RunningAfter browsing the internet for podcasts related to health and wellness, I came across Dishing Up Nutrition¬†and I’m so glad I did! The podcast features several licensed nutritionists from Nutritional Weight & Wellness, a Minnesota-based company (which means cute accents that make me smile to myself). They cover a HUGE range of topics – from the mineral connection to cravings (an episode I found extremely interesting!), to gluten and Celiac’s disease to the psychology of weight loss. And that barely scratches the surface of what they cover! I love that it’s not a podcast focused around dieting and losing weight, it’s much more focused on overall health and eating in a way to make your body feel its best. And the advice they offer is practical.¬†No insane crash diets being recommended here.

What I’ve taken away about my own diet as a result of this podcast:

  • I eat too many refined carbs. I’m a big fan of toast. As a pre-run breakfast, it’s great. It’s easy and quick and I love to eat it with a good smear of jam (more simple carbs) But as far as a balanced diet goes, I should be taking in most of my carbs in the form of complex carbs from vegetables like sweet potatoes, squash, and broccoli.
  • I need to snack more frequently (and pick better snacks). With getting up for work so early each day, I’m generally hungry for lunch by about 11:30 AM. And if I don’t pack a snack for myself, this means I have to go from approximately noon time until 6:30-ish without eating. And that’s when I make bad choices, because I have low blood sugar and I’m RAVENOUS. Now, I actually do know this about myself, so I did typically pack myself a snack, usually a Greek yogurt or maybe some tortilla chips. Now, I know the Greek yogurt doesn’t sound like such a bad choice, but the thing is, it’s still not exactly balanced. I’ve learned from listening to Dishing Up Nutrition that a healthy snack that will keep you feeling full the longest should consist of protein, carbs, and fat. And no, fat is not the devil. It actually is what gives you that feeling of fullness (small quantities do the trick though – like 1 tablespoon of olive oil or a handful of nuts.)

snackFun, yes. Nutritionally balanced, no.

So what changes am I implementing?

  • I’m switching up my breakfast routine to scrambled eggs with assorted veggies (broccoli, mushrooms, squash, peppers, tomatoes, brussel sprouts -> I’ve found I really enjoy ALL of these in different combinations with eggs!) I’m not completely eliminating my toast, but I am going to try to reserve it for morning runs and early gym trips.
  • I started taking a zinc supplement. After listening to a podcast on the mineral connection to cravings, I realized there were several risk factors for zinc deficiency that fit me. And, low levels of zinc can lead to intense cravings for sweets after a meal (DEFINITELY me). So, I’m trying the supplement and waiting to see if it helps me get those sugar cravings under control.
  • I’m trying to be more regimented about snacking, and aiming to have a little protein, fat, and carbs in each snack. With traveling so much, I haven’t actually had time to really experiment with snacks yet, so I will have to report back on what kind of snacks I make for myself!

That’s about it for now. I want to start small and really focus on these aspects of my diet, and see how it goes from there. I’ll plan on doing a follow-up post in about a month to report back on how things are going! Hopefully, the Christmas cookie season won’t derail me. ūüėČ

 


Wellness Resource Wednesday

Happy Hump Day guys!

I thought I would try something a little new this week.

Wellness Resource Wednesday | 2 Generations RunningLately, I’ve been coming across a bunch of awesome health/fitness resources from Youtube videos to podcasts and every time I find something new, I think about how I should share it on the blog. And then I forget…¬†So, I’m hoping that by starting this Wellness Resource Wednesday as an ongoing series on the blog, I’ll remember to share what I find and you all can take advantage of the resources that sound interesting to you! My plan is to cover everything¬†from running to workouts to nutrition – basically, anything that I think you guys as readers might want to know more about or check out for yourself!

First up this week – a 53-minute NOVA documentary I watched a couple weeks ago on Youtube. It’s called Marathon Challenge¬†(click to watch!).¬†¬†It follows the story of 12 non-runners selected by a group of researchers at Tufts University to train for the Boston Marathon. The researchers wanted to find out whether sedentary non-athletes could become marathoners in 9 months of training. While I sort of question the ethics of throwing brand new runners into the sport with marathon training (even if they did have high-caliber coaches!), it was still fascinating to watch. I don’t want to spoil the ending, but I will say the results are inspiring, and the video is definitely worth a watch if you’re in need of a little motivation boost.

If you watch the documentary, let me know what you think! Do you have a health/fitness resource you love?