Foam Roller Cleaning and Storage


Photo credit: Trevor Raab

Now that you invested in a foam roller, how do you take care of it so it continues to take care of you?

Cleaning

I recommend using a damp cloth with mildly soapy water to wipe your foam roller and let it air dry. Personally, I like to use Dr. Bronner’s castile soap and dilute it with water. Follow the diluting directions on the bottle. Personally, I put this solution in a squirt bottle and keep it on hand to use as a mild cleaning solution for fitness and household items. I’ve also used eco-friendly wipes (e.g., Seventh Generation) to wipe it down. I do not recommend cleaning your foam roller with any harsh chemicals, because it my alter the texture of the foam roller.

Storage

Avoid storage at extreme temperatures (above 90 degrees and below 32 degrees) and keep it out of direct sunlight. Store in a ventilated area so it can dry out from use and after cleaning.

For those of you with infants and pets, I recommend storing your foam roller in a location your child or pet cannot reach it. Disregard if you purposefully purchased a foam roller for your child or pet. (smile)

Related blog posts:

To Foam Roll or Not to Foam Roll, that IS the question…

Roll, Release, and Recover: A Foam Rolling Workshop

Free vs. For Fee in the Virtual Fitness World

mathieu-turle-uJm-hfuCHm4-unsplashPhoto by Mathieu Turle on Unsplash

In a world of social distancing and closed fitness facilities, there’s a plethora of free virtual training apps, online fitness classes, and 948,000,000 results¬† (that’s two commas folks) from a basic “home workouts” Google search. Some of us are still receiving paychecks and many of us were laid off or furloughed. A few of us will receive a stimulus check or unemployment benefits this year. Many of us might receive it next year…maybe…I think.

Basically, we now live in a world where FREE and FOR FEE services are tremendously magnified with limited budgets. We must purposefully discern our top priorities and invest our monies and time in them.

So, here are two lists of the types of fitness and wellness services and resources you and I may receive online for FREE versus for FEE.

What you get for FREE.

  • Ideas. You receive a workout you don’t have to create for yourself.
  • Less social anxiety and do workouts on your own without anyone knowing when and where you complete them. No perceived or actual judgment from others about your workouts.
  • Flexibility. You can train on your schedule at your convenience in a location of your choice.
  • Oftentimes, we get overwhelmed with too much information and not knowing what information is credible and appropriate for your body.
  • Education. Learn more about anything and everything you desire. It’s out there to find.
  • A new account with another log-in and password to remember. Oh, and periodic generic emails.
  • Cookies! No, not like chocolate chip cookies, but more like the kind that track your internet crumbs and send your targeted ads everywhere! It’s super creepy, isn’t it?

What you get for FEE.

  • Trained eyes and knowledge-FULL brain. You receive coaching, exercise modifications, and exercise form cues from a trained fitness professional.
  • Flexibility. You can train on your schedule at your convenience in a location of your choice.
  • Accountability. A certified personal trainer sets expectations and you learn to be responsible for your actions and behavior by truly committing to a program and becoming educated.
  • Accessibility. An actual person to be connected to from any location and ask questions for ongoing coaching and long-term success.
  • Customization and variety. Receive workouts customized to YOUR body, YOUR fitness levels, YOUR goals, YOUR lifestyle, and YOUR fitness equipment. Online training offers you a wide variety of options for activity and for mixing up workouts regardless of the training location; more variety equates to less burnout and boredom
  • Lifestyle Change. You can learn new behaviors and how to eliminate obstacles and stay committed to your success
  • Personalized correspondence addressed to YOU that addresses your interests.
  • Satisfaction of financially supporting a small business owner and helping them pay their bills and take care of their families. ūüėČ

And the reality is that oftentimes these lists crossover and for fee services don’t successfully deliver what is promised. Conversely, several free services over deliver with the hopes of you one day being a paying customer or at least you referring a paying customer to their services.

What else should I add to these lists?

Any who, please proceed with a critical eye, listen to your body, and move forward with what works best for you both short-term and long-term. One moment at a time. One day at a time. It literally adds up to weeks, months, years, and a lifetime!

Got Equipment_

COVID-19 Working from Home, Sitting, and Your Health

convertkit-9i3-OAIUHdY-unsplashPhoto credit: ConvertKit on Unsplash.com

Several of us are now working from home or looking for a new job while planted for hours at a time in a chair staring at a computer screen. If you have a job and still receive a paycheck, be thankful. If you were laid off or had to take unpaid leave, I encourage you to use this time to be creative in your job search and daily livelihood.

Sedentary Days

Regardless of your current situation, the majority of the U.S. is following a shelter-in-place protocol. Please don’t allow this forced time at home to minimize your movement and in turn, jeopardize your health.

Investigators say sitting too much can lead to increased fat surrounding organs, which can place individuals at a greater risk for chronic illness. Using MRI, researchers found that the more time participants spent sitting during the day, the more visceral and abdominal fat they possessed. The research team also notes that this relationship was strongest among those who failed to meet the public health recommendation of 150 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity per week. This suggests that regular exercise may offer some protection against the negative effects associated with prolonged sedentary activity. (Obesity, January 2017)

An even better approach is integrating small physical activity breaks throughout your day. One of my personal favorites is doing 10 reps of an exercise on the 10th minute of every hour. Set a repeated timer on your phone or watch. You can easily rack up 100 reps of squats in a single work day! Belly fat, be gone! Try it! Let me know how it goes!

Physical Impact

Extended periods of sitting can lead to several short-term and long-term effects on our physical body.

Sitting can lead to a tight neck, hip flexors, and shoulders. Furthermore, sitting while working at a desk can lead to a tight chest and even tighter neck muscles due to the body’s arms extended forward and head leaning forward when using a keyboard and mouse. And over time, this can cause stress, strain, and muscle tension.

Conversely, extended bouts of sitting can also lead to several muscles getting weaker due to inactivity. For example, our back (erector spinae, lower lumbar spine), scapular stabilizers (middle trapezius, rhomboids, latissimus dorsi and lower trapezius), buttocks (gluteus medius, minimus and maximus), and core (rectus abdominis, obliques and transversus abdominis) can all get weaker with repeated bouts of long-term sitting.

In addition to the physical impacts of sitting, I encourage you to further explore the physiological and mental benefits of sitting.

Adding More Movement

Several of us sit for short and often extended amounts of time tending to various computer tasks at work, home, and school. It’s easy to get caught up in a task, phone conversation, or productive meeting and the next thing you know, you have been sitting in the same chair for over 3 hours! Let’s not even talk about sitting when we eat, go to the bathroom, watch TV, or read our little techie gadgets. Regardless of what it is, all of this sitting time adds up.¬†

A recent 2015 British study that followed 5,000 people for 16 years completely debunked several prior studies about the detrimental impact sitting has on our health and longevity. It stated,

Long periods of sitting may not be as bad for health as previously thought. [The study] did not find any increased risk of early death from prolonged sitting. The results of this extensive study run counter to previous research claims that even regular exercise does not fully overcome the damage of too much sitting. The study did not cast any doubt on the benefits of exercise or the dangers of overall physical inactivity, but its results did suggest that prolonged sitting is no worse than other forms of inactivity, at least for risk of early death.

Find this study published in the International Journal of Epidemiology

The moral of the story is MOVE! Add more physical activity to your day period!

Here’s a quick list of five things you can do while working from home.

  1. MOVE YOUR TRASH CAN:¬†Your trash can may currently be conveniently located near your desk. Stop what you’re doing. Pick it up. And move it to the other side of your office space. This will force you to get up more frequently throughout the day; hence, integrate more physical activity into your workday and burn more calories!
  2. STAND UP- SIT DOWN – STAND UP: I remember learning this trick while listening to a nerdy exercise physiology podcast. One of the presenters gave this excellent tip. Here it is. Every time you are seated and wish to stand up to go do something, stand up, then sit back down, and then stand up and complete your task. This forces you to incorporate move movement–especially, squats to your day.
  3. SIT DOWN РSTAND UP РSIT DOWN: Similar to #2, every time you are standing and choose to sit, sit down, then stand back up, and then sit down. 
  4. DRINK MORE WATER: One of the most common complaints about drinking more water at work or even when flying is getting up to use the restroom more frequently. Well, consider this a blessing. Drinking more water AND getting up more often during the day is a WIN-WIN scenario. You are hydrated and incorporating more physical activity into your day. So what are you waiting for? Take another sip of H20!
  5. STRETCH: Regularly incorporate some active and dynamic stretching into your day. Don’t know where to start? Drop me an email.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Numbers 2, 3, and 5 assume you have the ability to stand up, sit down and walk on your own. Please contact me to explore ways to modify these activities for anyone who may have a physical limitation.


This article was originally posted on my LinkedIn profile on April 2, 2020. Since it can only be viewed by LinkedIn users, I decided to also post it on my blog.

Parts of this blog post are excerpts from other C.E.b. Fitness and Wellness blog articles, “Sitting Too Much Increased Belly Fat Around Organs” and “5 Ways to Add More Physical Activity into Your Workday.” . Email: candice@cebfitwell.com | Social Media: @cebfitwell

Understand the WHY to your WHAT’s at the Gym!

Photo Source: @RobertEBlackmon

First and foremost, if you have any type of physical fitness exercise routine, pat yourself on the back. Albeit, walking, cycling, doing house chores, weight lifting or other fun physical activities–it ALL counts as movement!

Keep in mind that the latest guidelines posted by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (2018) recommended amounts of physical activity (150 minutes per week) and strength exercises (two days per week). Oh, and good news, exercise bouts can and should be in increments of 10 minutes or more!

Photo by Hipcravo on Unsplash

 

Okay, let me get off of my educational exercise soap box. Okay, I’m going to assume you have some type of routine going to your local gym or home gym. Perhaps you walk on the treadmill, maybe you do some strength exercises (e.g., bench press, squats, etc.) and finish up with some core exercises and cardio in cycle class. You probably look super focused and like you know what you’re doing and why you’re doing it.

Good news! This is great! Even better news! There’s a way to work EVEN SMARTER at the gym.

DID YOU KNOW?

Most of us are roaming around this earth with one or more muscle imbalances?

It is extremely common. What do I mean by muscle imbalances? Well, we often overuse and underuse muscles as a result of repetitive (un)movements in our daily lives. This results in super tight and lengthened muscles. Sometimes, good ol’ fashioned genetics can pass down muscle imbalances, too. Chronic muscle imbalances often lead to future physical challenges later in life.

 

WHAT IF…. you could identify your muscle imbalances AND revise your exercises to help you strengthen weaker muscles, increase flexibility in tighter muscles, and potentially alleviate nagging pain(s) you’ve had for days, months, or even years?

I’m serious. Months and years. Knowing and working on your muscle imbalances WILL ROCK YOUR WORLD.

Contact me [candice@cebfitwell.com] to schedule your posture and movement assessments TODAY. This is one of the best investments you will ever make in yourself or a loved one. This can be done virtually or in-person. It’s painless. It’s easy. All you need is me and one of our smartphones. The results will have lasting effects on your life FOREVER. Guaranteed!

And the best part is that from here on out, you’ll understand the WHY to your WHAT’s at the gym!

Photo by Jonathan Borba on Unsplash

 

Needles Are My Friends! Acupuncture & Muscle Recovery

True or False?    1. Needles are sharp and pointy objects.

True or False?    2. All needles hurt.

Now that I have your attention, let’s have a crash course on how acupuncture helps your muscles recover.

EXERCISE

Exercise–whether it be an outdoor jog, walk in the park, indoor cycling class, or an intense weight lifting session–puts stress on your muscles. They literally contract, get tight, and sometimes experience tiny micro tears. Remember the last time you had a good workout and felt sore the next day? That’s what I’m talking about! The fancy term for this is delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS), more specifically, it’s lactic acid build up in your muscles. Muscle soreness is completely normal and healthy.

Before I move on and share some of the amazing benefits of acupuncture, I want to give you another example about when your muscles get stressed. It’s not what you may be thinking.

REPETITIVE MOVEMENTS

So, you know the cell phone you may be using right now? Or the computer you’re reading or typing on this very second? Or the car you drive every day? (This list could go on forever and ever…) Well, every single repetitive movement we integrate into our daily lives creates muscle imbalances. Think about it. Better yet, do it right now if it’s safe. Hold your phone and text someone. Now, type something on your computer keyboard. Now pretend you’re grabbing a steering wheel. Notice a common theme? Your arms are in front of you, your shoulders may be rounded forward, your back may be slouched, and your chin may be slightly down. These repetitive movements can cause your chest to get tight, neck tense up, and your lower back to ache. Pain, pain, and more pain…or discomfort and stress in your body. (sigh)

Now let’s talk about a few benefits of acupuncture as it relates to muscle recovery.

  1. Decreases lactic acid, heart rate max, and maximal oxygen intake (Lin, et. al., 2009)
  2. Decreases pain associated with arthritis and chronic pain; more effective used in with other pain management modalities (Chou, 2018 )
  3. Can decrease myofascial pain and muscle irritability (Wang, 2017)

    …and COMMUNITY ACUPUNCTURE!!!!

In less researchy language,

  1. Decreases muscle soreness and makes you more efficient using oxygen during exercise
  2. Helps you move better with a little less pain; more effective with things like stretching, foam rolling, chiropractic care, cupping, rest, etc…
  3. Ease DOMS and achy muscles

What else can acupuncture treat? A question with a shorter list of answers is what does it NOT treat. ūüėČ Check out this comprehensive list of what acupuncture CAN treat for you.

I regularly go to a community acupuncture clinic locally in Sacramento. It’s called the Sacramento Acupuncture Project. SAP is a part of a larger collective of acupuncture clinics called People’s Organization of Community Acupuncture. One of the best things POCA clinics offer is a SLIDING scale for its patients. Can we say, “cha-ching!”

Image from sacacupuncture.com

This makes a highly valuable service such as acupuncture way more affordable to most people. If you haven’t tried acupuncture before, I highly encourage you to give it a go. Get over your fears and walk through the door. Voice your initial concerns and questions to your acupuncturist. The staff will definitely take good care of you. Tell them Candice sent you. ūüėČ

 

Focus | Affirm | Dream (21-Day Challenge)

FocusAffirmDream_FacebookGroupPage
Photo by Jaime Handley on Unsplash

Focus Join the FREE 21-Day ‚ÄúEnergy of Attraction: Manifesting Your Best Life‚ÄĚ Meditation Challenge hosted by Oprah & Deepak Chopra. Let go of constricting beliefs and harness your power to manifest your most meaningful life. Practice daily meditations and reflective journaling.¬†

Affirm – Read our daily affirmation and create your own! Assert your lived and desired truths. Purposefully attract the love, success, and happiness you deserve.

Dream РRespond to our daily reflective and visionary question. Read others’ responses on Facebook. Reflect, reply, affirm, daydream, and ask more questions. Dream big!


HOW DO I SIGN UP?

  1. Get a friend, colleague, or family member to join you. Remember, this is a virtual program. Anyone can participate from anywhere!
  2. Submit payment ($19.95)
    PAYPAL – www.paypal.me/CEbFitWell/19.95
    VENMO Рvenmo.com/CEbFitWell<<Please include name, email address, full Facebook name, and #FocusAffirmDream  with your payment info.>>
  3. Join our closed Facebook group
  4. Actively participate in our closed Facebook group each day to be eligible to enter drawing for a $20 Amazon Gift Card!
  5. Sign up by Sunday, July 22, 2018.

Be Still Join the FREE 21-Day ‚ÄúShedding the Weight: Mind, Body, & Spirit‚ÄĚ Meditation Challenge hosted by Oprah & Deepak Chopra. Identify what nourishes your entire being and lift the heaviness that has held you back. Practice daily meditations and reflective journalling.¬†

Be (Body) Conscious – How do you honor your body every day? Explore how nutrition, physical activity, rest, stress, hydration, work, family, environment, and community influence your body consciousness, and in turn, your decisions and behaviors.

Be Free – Respond to our daily reflective and liberating question. Read each other’s comments on Facebook. Reflect, respond, affirm, and ask more questions. Be free!


How do I Sign Up?

  1. Get a friend, colleague, or family member to join you. Remember, this is a virtual program. Anyone can participate from anywhere!
  2. Submit payment ($19.95)¬† –PAYPAL¬† |¬† VENMO
    Please include name, email address, full Facebook name, and #BeStill with your payment info.
  3. Join our closed Facebook group
  4. Receive a free Daily Tracker. Check off what you complete each day. Share a photo of your completed tracker to be eligible to enter drawing for a $20 Amazon Gift Card!
  5. Sign up by Sunday, March 18, 2018.
photo credit: Aaron Burden

Invite friends and family!

-Coach Candice-

All program info and daily posts will be shared in our closed BeStillBeConsciousBeFree Facebook group.

#BeStillBeConsciousBeFree #Accountability #BodyConscious #Free #Motivation #Peace #Woosah #Healthy #Meditation #CEbFitWell #CEbFit #CEbFitness

Sitting Too Much Increases Fat Around Organs

Photo by Julian Howard 

Investigators say sitting too much can lead to increased fat surrounding organs, which can place individuals at a greater risk for chronic illness. Using MRI, researchers found that the more time participants spent sitting during the day, the more visceral and abdominal fat they possessed. The research team also notes that this relationship was strongest among those who failed to meet the public health recommendation of 150 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity per week. This suggests that regular exercise may offer some protection against the negative effects associated with prolonged sedentary activity. (Obesity, January 2017)

An even better approach is integrating small physical activity breaks throughout your day.

One of my personal favorites is doing 10 reps of an exercise on the 10th minute of every hour. You can easily rack up 100 reps of squats in a single work day! Belly fat, be gone!

Try it!

Let me know how it goes!

Muscle Soreness? Boost BCAA’s (maybe…)

Ever complain about being too tired and sore during or in-between your workouts? 

Whether you are a group fitness junkie, weekend warrior, power lifter, regular gym-goer, cyclist or competitive athlete, branch chained amino acids (BCAAs) may need a boost in your life.

Before heading out to your local supplement store or tossing “BCAAs” into your Amazon cart, let’s review a few basic considerations BEFORE supplementing your diet with BCAAs.

First, and foremost, you may need good old fashioned REST. You may be overdoing it at the gym and to incorporate another rest and recovery day.

Second, ask yourself, are you hydrating yourself enough? Your urine should me light yellow. Is it? If not, drink up!

Third, have you been getting enough SLEEP? If not, your body may be lacking essential nighttime muscle recovery. Revisit your evening routine and dedicate more time to sleep.

Fourth, what are you putting into your body to FUEL it properly? Junk? Grease? Sugar? If so, you may need to revamp your nutrition game. You know–filling half your plate with non-starchy colorful veggies and/or fruits, a quarter of your plate with a lean protein, a quarter to whole grains, and a thumbsize portion of healthy fat. P.S. Make sure you eat enough throughout the day.

Okay. Okay. Got numbers 1 though 4 down pat? Still tired and sore? Then you might want to consider supplementing with BCAAs.

One of my favorite supplement brands is Nutrology. And as a recent self-proclaimed, almost vegan, I am excited to say Nutrology’s BCAAs are vegan!

Pssst…You can receive 20% off with CEBFIT2 discount code. Oh, and I highly recommend the coconut orange flavor.


“For anyone in the business of fitness with the goal of achieving a lean and muscular frame for the long haul, it is important to understand just how much branched-chain amino acids or BCAAs can do for the body. BCAAs are essential to muscle maintenance; however, the body is unable to naturally manufacture them.

BCAAs play a crucial role in muscle creation, repair, and maintenance which is why it is recommended for anyone engaging in any rigorous exercise. They trigger the synthesis of proteins while also preventing the breakdown of muscles for energy production. They are amino acids after all; and are called the building blocks of the body for good reason.

Studies have shown that supplementing BCAAs before or during exercise reduces the breakdown of protein for up to 5 days after training. 

The Truth About Sourcing of BCAAs

BCAAs can come from both plant-based and animal-based sources. For years, it was a well-kept industry secret that BCAAs were derived from animal sources such as swine, fur, hair, and feathers. These animal sources were treated with acids and cleaned with certain chemicals so that the amino acids could be extracted from these sources. Not very appetizing, socially conscious or sustainable, is it?

Plant based BCAA sources are derived from either soy or corn. But the challenge with plant-based BCAAs is that they can contain allergens, and many are sourced from GMO farms. Fortunately, there are solid sources of Non-GMO farms that are producing non-allergen plant-based BCAAs. Corn has become popular material in the fermentation process of BCAA’s because it is not considered an allergen like soy.

Nutrology uses trusted Non-GMO farms with a proven record of producing the highest quality plant-based BCAAs anywhere, non-allergen and with no artificial flavoring, coloring or sweeteners. 

(Source: Nutrology email correspondence,, 2/5/2018)

RECEIVE 20% OFF ALL NUTROLOGY PRODUCTS WITH CEBFIT2 DISCOUNT CODE.

3MChallenge – Meditate, Move, & Moments of Gratitude

Join me October 30 – November 20, 2017

Good news! You and a friend can participate from anywhere! I encourage you to sign up with a buddy and help keep each other accountable.

All participants will receive a free MMM Daily Tracker. Check off what you complete each day. Tell somebody. Share a photo of your completed tracker to be eligible to enter drawing for an Amazon Gift Card!

Why should you do the 3MChallenge?

The better question is why NOT do it?

It’s a great way to start the holiday season!¬†Invite friends and family!
~Coach Candice

P.S. Here’s a link to the 21-Day Meditation Challenge.


All program info and daily posts will be shared in our closed 3MChallenge Facebook group.

$19.95

Submit Payment

www.paypal.me/CEbFitWell/19.95

www.venmo.com/CandiceBrooks32

Please include:
#3MCHALLENGE
FIRST & LAST NAME
EMAIL ADDRESS
with your payment. 


Photo credit: William Farlow
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