Hi again!

Hey everyone! It’s been a little while since I’ve updated this page but I have big plans to bring it back to life!

First let me reintroduce myself! My is Jessica Armstrong. I’m 33 years old with 2 kids, Apollo and Theo, who are 3 and 1 years old respectively. My husband, Anthony, and the boys live about 40 miles north of Dallas, Texas in McKinney. Anthony and I are both personal trainers and love to help others.

Everyone is busy and we certainly are in that same category. In addition to our personal training schedule we have others jobs. I work for Fox Sports Southwest as a producer covering the Dallas Mavericks and Anthony is a Real Estate Agent.

The reason behind MAKETIMEFORFIT is just as simple as it sounds. Make time for IT. We believe your health is your wealth. In this current state of Covid19, it’s certainly ringing true even louder than before!

Workouts don’t have to take 2 hours at a gym. Or be something you don’t like to do. You don’t like running, even dread it? Then don’t do it. Fitness is fun and should be enjoyable! Yes it can be uncomfortable at times pushing yourself to get stronger or faster but big picture, WE ALL NEED IT.

So thanks for following along. Hopefully we can be a resource for you in the fitness world and inspire you to make your health a priority and a part of your everyday life.

It’s summertime, remember to stretch!

With summer time around the corner, many people will begin a new workout regime or take their current one up a notch.

With the increased work load on your body it is important to stretch. Your body is only going to perform if you take care of it. And let’s face it, if running, lifting, moving hurts you aren’t going to do it.

Fitness isn’t a once in a while thing it’s a continue processed full of ebbs and flows. Take your victories in stride and your struggles with grace. Just stick with it.

Here are some hip stretches that will help keep your body healthy and ready to go, no matter what you throw at it!

HIP STRETCHES

 

Physical Fitness is Priority #1

I’ve always been the person to make sure I get a workout in. No. Matter. What. Whether it’s a run, a lift, yoga, whatever, each day I do something to better my physical fitness. Sometimes it’s tough. Sometimes people may think it’s selfish. To me, it’s a necessity. To perform at optimum level you need to take care of yourself first and foremost. I need the endorphin rush I get from my workouts. If I workout later in the day, my body and mind thrive for that rush. I’ve learned over the years that to wake up at 5, 4 or even 3 am to get some type of workout in, is not only worth it for me, but worth for my family and work life.

I read this article and it hits the nail on the head.

Enjoy!

 

You are what you eat!

Food has so much effect on your feelings, attitudes and your appearance! Here are few foods that are good for skin!

  • Tomatoes
    Why: They’re full of lycopene, a phytochemical that provides red pigment and health benefits. Lycopene helps eliminate skin-aging free radicals caused by ultraviolet rays – in other words, it protects against sun damage. To reap the most benefits, heat them up: A half-cup of cooked tomatoes, for example, packs 16 milligrams of lycopene. A daily dose coupled with sunscreen will help block the burn.
  •  Mangoes, Papaya and Apricots
    Why: Got that washed-out look? Load up on some fruit. Mangoes, papaya and apricots are full of pigments called carotenoids, which are stored in the layer of fat directly beneath the skin and can improve color. “They peek through, giving you a rosy glow,” says registered dietitian Karen Ansel, a spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and co-author of “The Calendar Diet: A Month by Month Guide to Losing Weight While Living Your Life.”
  • Cocoa Powder
    Why: Flavonals, the antioxidants in dark chocolate, reduce roughness in the skin and protect against sun damage. A study published in the Journal of Nutrition found that women who drank cocoa fortified with 326 milligrams of flavonals a day had better skin texture and stronger resistance to UV rays than those who didn’t get as much of the antioxidants. Just a few ounces a day – or a standard Hershey’s Dark Chocolate bar – is sufficient. Another tasty way to get enough? Spoon some cocoa powder into your morning coffee, Ansel suggests.
  • Flaxseed
    Why: Think of these as tiny wrinkle fighters. They’re packed with omega-3 fatty acids, which erase spots and smooth fine lines. In one study, participants who had about half a teaspoon of omega-3s daily for six weeks had less skin irritation and redness, as well as better-hydrated skin, according to findings published in the British Journal of Nutrition. That’s likely because fatty acids attract water to skin cells, plumping the skin and reducing wrinkling.
  • Sweet Potatoes:
    Why: They’re full of vitamin C, which smooths wrinkles by stimulating the production of collagen. One study, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, found people who consumed 4 milligrams of vitamin C – about half a small sweet potato – daily for three years reduced the appearance of wrinkles by 11 percent.
  • Spinach:
    Why: Want to protect yourself against skin cancer? Take a page out of Popeye’s book. A study published in the International Journal of Cancer found that folks who ate the most leafy greens (more than four times a day) developed half as many skin tumors over 11 years as those who ate the smallest amount (once a day or never). That’s likely because the folate in spinach helps maintain and repair DNA, reducing the likelihood of cancer-cell growth
  • Canned Tuna:
    Why: It’s packed with selenium – a nutrient that preserves elastin, which keeps skin smooth and tight. Selenium also prevents free radicals that are produced by UV rays from damaging skin cells, protecting against sun damage.
  • Safflower Oil
    Why: If you have dry, flaky or itchy skin, take note: This common cooking oil doubles as a moisturizer. It contains omega-6 fatty acids, which keep cell walls supple, allowing water to reach the skin. Some research suggests consuming safflower oil can help ease skin problems such as dermatitis, inflammation, acne and dry skin.

Remember to stretch after your workout!

You finish your workout and are ready to walk out the door. Just before you leave you see a few people stretching and you think “I probably should, but i just wait to get home.” Well well well let me tell you that just because you can’t SEE the results of stretching – it is just as important to help reach your goals, whether it’s losing weight or wanting to compete.

Stretching can lead to better posture, fewer aches and pains, greater confidence, and EVEN a cheerier outlook on life (yep! sure can!). Sitting can be hard on your glutes and your back. Stretching helps keep from these muscles from atrophying over time. If stretching hurts – it’s cause you really need it. Breathe through the stretch and imagine your muscle tissues releasing. Practice makes perfect. The more you stretch the easier it is and better you will feel over all.

Here is my cool down stretching routine. Find whatever works for you! I promise with consistent stretching you will feel like a new you!

Walk on treadmill til my heart rate is down (wear a heart rate monitor so you are always aware of your heart rate). Then legs a little wider than shoulder width apart, stretch down feeling it your hamstrings, go to the right side then the left and finish back at center – holding each for about 10-15 counts.

Hip flexors right leg back in a lunge position and press hips forward and squeeze right glute, then straighten left leg and lean forward to feel the stress in your hamstring. I do this 5 times alternating hip flexor and hamstring holding about 8 counts for each stretch. Then do this same thing with the left leg back squeezing that glute and pressing hips forward then straighten right leg out for hamstring stretch on that side, again holding for 8 counts each.

Next I sit on the mat and stretch my glutes by bringing my right ankle to the top of my left knee and you’ll feel that pull in your glutes. The closer the leg is to your body the deeper the stretch. Then do a spinal twist turning to the right – repeat this on the left side.

Then I lay on my back and do some spinal twists with bent knees.

Stretch out my neck from side to side then reach high then I’m done!

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Reference here

Eating at Work!

When I first moved to Texas my job was during the evening so I was forced to eat dinner at work. Making a lunch is one thing but dinner – I know I had to be smart about what I bring because I’m at work making money not trying to spend it! Plus whatever restaurant I could run to during a break from work would not be healthy!

I try to get a protein, a carb (forget that carbs are bad! Not all are bad!) and a vegetable when I pack my dinners.  I usually stick with fish and chicken for proteins. Throw in some brown rice, quinoa, or whole wheat pasta for my starchy carb. My veggie of choice lately has been Kale. It’s very easy to make and I really like the crunch and flavor of baking it.  Otherwise I go with frozen broccoli, spinach or sweet potatoes.

Eating well is just a matter of planning. It’s hard to throw things together quickly if you don’t have things in the house or you are tight on time.

There are countless ways to prepare chicken, tilapia, and catfish. Find some recipes that you like and make them ahead of time, portion it out in tupperware containers and you’ll learn what works for you!

Good luck prepping!

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Pumping Iron?

Did you know?

Iron deficiency is the most common nutritional deficiency in the United States, and women are among those at greatest risk. Iron is critical for producing hemoglobin, a protein that helps red blood cells deliver oxygen throughout your body. So without it, everything suffers

Here are few symptoms that may be related to an iron deficiency.

  1.  Exhaustion
    This is tough to tell since many women are busy and just dismiss the tired feeling as normal when in fact it’s the most common symptom of iron deficiency
  2. Quick to lose breath
    Normal activities like walking up the stairs or you typical exercise routine causes you to lose your breath easily, easier than usual, chances are your iron is to blame.
  3. Headaches
    Iron helps produce oxygen so when you are low in iron your body will portions out your iron supply and prioritize getting oxygen to your brain although you will likely experience headaches because it still isn’t enough
  4. Increased anxiety
    Can’t relax? It may be in part to low iron since the lack of oxygen revving up your body’s sympathetic nervous system.
  5. Crave ice chips
    Ever have the urge to chew on ice chips? Those who are iron deficient! If you notice yourself going to the freezer, that’s red flag for lacking iron!

I struggled myself with iron deficiency. My doctor prescribed iron supplements for me when I was in high school and I learned to eat more dark leafy green vegetables and red meat (loaded with iron).

Before you give blood they do a finger prick to test your hemoglobin levels which is produced by the iron in blood. Any time I tired to give blood I would try to increase my iron-enriched foods but didn’t work. I’d have enough iron (hemoglobin) but not enough to give. This was a little battle within myself over the next 10 years.

I pride myself on being healthy, why couldn’t I get my iron up?

I started ID Nutrition four months ago and I’ve noticed a few things improve but little did I know biggest changes are happening on the inside.

About a month after starting ID Nutrition, which based on my personalized assessment included an iron supplement, there was blood drive at my work. I signed up just hoping I’d been eating well enough. Not even thinking of my ID Nutrition supplements.

Sure enough, I was able to give at blood drive at work. My iron (hemoglobin) was just over what it needed to be to donate! WOOOO!

Now, about 3 months later and four months since I started ID Nutrition, another blood drive popped up near my house.

I went in to donate, all the while hoping in the back of my mind that my iron (hemoglobin) was high enough.  The technician told me that hemoglobin levels needs to be 12.5 in order to give blood, mine was  was 13.7.  The technician with the Red Cross was even impressed! I knew this had to be a direct correlation of my use of ID Nutrition and my iron supplements. My hemoglobin level has never been higher and I’m so happy that I can give blood without worry of getting there just to be turned away.

It’s sometimes hard to track positive results form vitamins but this is something tangible and something that I’m so proud of! Not only is ID Life helping me fill in my nutritional gaps but in turn I can help save someone’s life.

Go take your free assessment today and see how quickly you reap the benefits of these pharmaceutical grade vitamins!

Visit jarmstrong427.idlife.com for your free ID Nutrition assessment.

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Reference here

Fun Fitness Friday – Pyramid Run

I was very active in high school and college playing sports so running has been apart of my life for basically. I actually love love love running, but let’s be honest running on a treadmill can get kinda boring!

So I came up with this pyramid run to change it up a little bit. With this run you are constantly changing paces and the longest period of running at the same pace is 5 minutes! 5 minutes anyone can do 5 minutes! These little time goals during my run help me to keep me going!

The pyramid run alternates between running at a “race pace” (RP) and “recovery” (R).

If you don’t know your race pace I suggest setting at a mile time goal.  For example, if you want to run a 10 minute mile as your RP go 6 mph and on the R you can adjust to mph slower so 4-5 mph.
The best part is that you can always adjust as you go.

What I love about this type of run is that it fits with any type of runner from the novice to the marathon runner because you adjust the speed to whatever works for you!

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The key to remembering how many minutes that the RP minutes increase 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and the R is 2 minutes except on the 1 minute RP.

Having little 1-5 minute goals really pushes me to keep going since I know can recover!

Hope you guys enjoy this run as much as I do! And I promise it’s not as easy as it looks! ;););)

Start today! Email maketimeforfit@gmail.com for a free consultation for a personalized workout program!

Simple and delicious salad

One of my “go-to” salad is this spinach avocado tomato salad. It’s easy and delicious.

Recipe:
Spinach leaves
Half an avocado, diced
Half a tomato,  diced
Dash of olive oil and balsamic vinegar

Viola simple, easy and nutritious! And the best part – there’s no wrong way to make a salad. Add in more of what you like and take out what you don’t.

What are your favorite salads?!

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Hitting the gym?  Email maketimeforfit@gmail.com for a FREE consultation for a personalized workout program!

Stay on track even when dining out

Headed out for dinner? Here are some tips that can help you stay on track with you fitness lifestyle goals!

One tip I use when dining out is to order half my meal. Just ask the server to box up half for you before you get it.
You’ll be surprised how much food half is, and you trick your brain because when you clean your plate you won’t feel terrible afterwards!

Another tip I use is to always get the side of vegetables! Fries have zero nutritional value, just don’t get them -you’ll be OK I promise!

You know you can order those veggies dry? They won’t be raw but they won’t use a half a stick of butter when sauteing them.

This is half of my dinner from the other night

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I got a chicken caprese sandwich with a side of zucchini and squash. That doesn’t look like half a meal does it? Portion sizes are outrageously large in restaurants and often times our eyes are way bigger than our stomach! Go to the restaurant with the mindset to order half and you’ll get to enjoy your meal without the guilt! PLUS you get leftovers!

Need a workout program? Start today! Email maketimeforfit@gmail.com for a free consultation to get your personalized workout program!