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Final Week Spring Mini Challenge

I wanted to share my Protein daily log with you in case you need to see my comments. Have you ever tracked protein before? The more I read and understand about how the aging process works, the more I am diligent about protein and strength training. You can counteract aging with more muscle mass.

Example of a day:

Breakfast: overnight oats with greek yogut+berries+walnuts

breakfast cont: 20g protein Shake mixed with water

Lunch: egg+avocado on Lavash wrap

snack: greek yogurt and turkey jerky

dinner: buffalo turkey burger and sweet potatoes

This is around 100g of protein. You can see how much I emphasized protein in each meal and still only get 100grams. Getting enough protein is hard and you have to prep each day to hit it.

For the most part, I make sure my protein sources are animal based. My body responds better to it. I usually have one shake a day that has 20 grams of protein--I use a vegan protein mix from Arbonne that also has many vitamins and minerals. Chicken, ground turkey breast, salmon, cottage cheese, non-fat Greek yogurt, eggs, turkey jerky sticks, lean ground beef, and some beans and lentils. This is my list of foods that is usually in the cart each week.

I don't find it all that challenging to eat 100grams of protein a day IF I am eating most of my meals from my home, I pre-plan, and I have a well stocked fridge. If I am running low on food, I do find it very hard to hit that number, so that's something important to consider each week.

For this final week, we are focusing on our nervous systems. I think everyone can agree that the pandemic years were stressful for a variety of reasons. Everyday life is full of stress and challenges--kids, finances, work, world news, etc. If we pile on stressors each day, it can create a fight or flight response within our parasympathetic nervous systems. This nervous system helps you calm down or relax. But, it will remain engaged and overly active, putting your body in an overly stressed state without regulation. Digestion is affected, sleep, mood, your social life and your overall demeanor as a parent, friend, spouse, human.

Here are some suggestions to create a more regulated and relaxed body:

- the obvious....workout, walk, lift weights, and move.

- warm bath

- positive image visualization. Think about clusters of good thoughts. When negative thoughts start to flood, you take action with thoughts of your kids laughing, going to the beach on a beautiful summer day, walking in a park with the wind lightly blowing, etc. Whatever brings you some peace and happiness.

-imagine a stressor being a bowling ball and you mentally reduce that stressor to a tennis ball. Sometimes just visualizing your issue floating away in a balloon. OR, my personal favorite is to realize that this moment of overwhelm will pass and to treat it as such--don't allow this moment to take over in such a big way.

- make a to-do list. Tried and true.

-Take more time to process your responses. Practice waiting 30-90 seconds to respond to a particularly stressful event. I think of my kids with this one--spend more time waiting and breathing before you answer their request to watch the iPad hahah!

It's very important to have a more regulated nervous system--it's literally your entire health in motion. It's the immune system, hormonal system, and digestive system working together. I can't think of a more important thing to focus on for this last week. I know some people can tolerate more stress---and some people are more like dandelions. It's important to identify your strength level so you can build up some resilience in advance. For example, I know that my tolerance to a messy kitchen is very low and I tend to overreact about dishes being on the counters. It really makes me feel out of control when my kitchen is a mess. I know that I can tolerate more when it comes to my kids. If they are unhappy or causing general chaos in the house, I know I respond calmer to that event. Channel your patience of one event into your impatience of another (in advance).

Lots of words there. So this week, continue your workouts x3. Walk DAILY. Our medium intensity cardio goal is 60 minutes+ 20 daily push-ups. Two 30-minute sessions, Three 20-minute session. Within this medium intensity cardio, our goal is to have the heart rate be around 120+. Could be a vigorous walk, jogging, running, biking, spinning, etc. This is not the morning walk to the bus stop or target parking lot hustling. In addition, focus on nervous system regulation activities. Try at least one of the listed methods above each day and see if it works for you. We are all living this life together, we may as well feel a little more relaxed!

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