LIVING YOUR BEST LIFE

Working out and eating clean are crucial for your wellness, but there’s plenty more than goes into having a healthy lifestyle. Read how to make the most of your life outside the gym!

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Success Spotlight: Chelsea from Barrington, New Zealand

08/22/2016

“I joined Snap Fitness a few years ago when I realized that the lifestyle I was living was very toxic and something needed to change. I became a member at Snap Fitness Barrington in April 2013, and I've never looked back.

The staff welcomed me with open arms and gave me an excellent workout plan - a definite challenge, but fun at the same time! Because of this, I managed to lose 4 kilograms (8.8 pounds) in the first four weeks.

Snap Fitness is not like every other gym. It's always tidy, refreshing, and above all, welcoming. It can be intimidating joining a gym for the first time, but I've never felt insecure or judged by the other members or staff. Snap Fitness has helped me transform into a happier and healthier version of my former self. It has given me a reason to put time and effort into making myself a better person. Who wouldn't love that?!”

 

We are so proud of Chelsea for her dedication and perserverence. After joining Snap Fitness, she completely transformed her health and fitness routine.

 

Be an inspiration to others in Snap Nation and share your story with us here!

 

 

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Relax and Treat Yo' Self

08/15/2016

In honor of National Relaxation Day, we challenge you to take a few moments to yourself and focus on relaxing! Here are 30 quick and easy ideas to help you escape the busyness of everyday life. Read on and relax! Comment below and let us know some of your favorite ways to treat yo’ self.

 

  1. Take a bubble bath
  2. Go for a walk/run
  3. Read a book or magazine
  4. Go to the park and enjoy nature
  5. Indulge in your favorite treat
  6. Get a massage
  7. Curl up with a hot cup of something
  8. Put on your favorite playlist and dance around
  9. Stretch
  10. Cook/bake a new dish
  11. Watch a good movie
  12. Meet a friend for coffee
  13. Journal
  14. Spend time with pets
  15. Clean your environment
  16. Do something artistic
  17. Get a manicure or pedicure
  18. Buy yourself some flowers
  19. Write down what you are thankful for
  20. Pamper yourself with a face mask
  21. Watch your favorite Olympic event
  22. Lay in a hammock with a good book or just watch the sky
  23. Find a relaxing scent
  24. Watch the clouds/stars
  25. Go to a body of water
  26. Light a candle
  27. Cheer on your favorite sports team
  28. Buy new workout clothes/shoes
  29. Meditate
  30. Take a well-deserved nap
  31. Drive somewhere new
  32. Change into your comfiest sweats and t-shirt
  33. Take a break from technology for a couple hours 
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Life's Simple {Fitness} Pleasures

08/12/2016

Here are a few of the little fitness things that brighten our days. Share some of yours with us in the comments below!

  1. Walking in and having the whole gym to yourself.
  2. When the TV in front of your regular machine is already set to your favorite show/station.
  3. Having the perfect tempo song come on for your exercise pace.
  4. When the weight you need is already set on the machine.
  5. The feeling after a great workout.
  6. Comparing pictures of yourself from a few months prior and seeing how far you’ve come.
  7. Opening the fridge to see your pre-planned nutritious meal ready to go.
  8. The first breath of cold air leaving the gym in the winter.
  9. Seeing the same people each time you go and having a sense of community at your gym.
  10. Post-workout stretches.
  11. Getting the parking spot right out front.
  12. The first sip of a delicious protein shake.
  13. Receiving a compliment on your new body or hearing “You look great!”
  14. Getting new gym clothes and shoes.
  15. Being able to move the pin down to a heavier weight and recognizing your body getting stronger.
  16. Looking down at the treadmill and seeing that you’ve gone a lot farther/longer than you thought.
  17. The knowledge that with each workout, you are improving your health and happiness. 
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Sleep Success

08/09/2016

Your overall health relies heavily on the amount of sleep you’re getting. Not getting enough sleep has been linked to weight gain, increased stress, depression, and even decreased lifespan. Read on for some quick and easy tips for increasing your zzz’s. 

 

Diet:

There are a variety of foods that can improve how quickly you fall asleep, and how long you are able to stay asleep. Walnuts are a great source of tryptophan, which is a sleep-enhancing amino acid. Almonds are rich in magnesium, which is necessary for quality sleep. The calcium in dairy products such as milk and cheese aids the brain’s use of tryptophan to create sleep-triggering melatonin. Fish such as tuna and salmon are high in vitamin B6, which the body requires to make melatonin and serotonin. Cherries, especially tart ones, are natural boosters of melatonin levels. Finally, sipping on some chamomile tea can increase glycine, which relaxes nerves and muscles.  

 

Pre-sleep routine:

A dab of lavender oil on wrists and temples can be relaxing, and when repeated, can serve as a signal to the brain to get ready to sleep. The smell is also found to bring a sense of calmness. A few deep breathing exercises can also help clear your mind after a long, busy day. If you have difficulty relaxing before bed, try progressive muscle relaxation. Beginning at your toes, tense for 7 seconds and then relax. Do this to all your muscles groups moving up to your forehead.  Ingraining these helpful habits into your routines before bed can help deliver you a restful night’s sleep.

 

Environment:

The room and environment that you sleep in largely impacts the quality of sleep that you receive. Sleeping in a dark room helps to trigger your brain to sleep. Additionally, white noise will help to block out city noises or other sounds that may disturb your rest. The optimal temperature for sleeping ranges from 65-72 degrees, so that you can avoid waking up due to overheating or being too cold.

 

General:

Most of us need a cup of coffee (or three) in the morning to get ourselves going.  Avoid caffeine in the late afternoon and evening as its effects can make it harder for you to fall asleep. Studies have found that people who exercise sleep better. Aim for working out several times a week. Additionally, getting yourself on a sleep schedule is important. Try to go to bed and wake up at the same time each day (including weekends). While afternoon naps can be a quick pick-me-up, try to keep them to 20 minutes so you don’t disturb your schedule too much. Additionally, avoid napping in the late afternoon and evening to avoid trouble falling asleep when it comes time to go to bed. Finally, limit your screen time an hour before bed. Opt for a book instead to help your brain wind down for the night.

 

These tips and tricks can help you get the most rest possible. Everyone is different, so try them out and see what works best for you. Sleep serves as a “reset” for our bodies and plays a role in nearly every aspect of our lives. By improving the amount and quality of sleep you receive each night, you will greatly improve your health. 

 

 

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Best Foods to Fuel your Workout

07/31/2016

Heading to the gym? Grab one of these healthy snacks beforehand to ensure your body has the fuel that it needs to get the most out of your workout. These options are the perfect balance of carbs, protein, and healthy fats to maximize your efforts in the gym. We recommend eating a small snack 30-60 minutes before your workout. If you eat a larger meal, plan to give yourself about two hours before you exercise.

Banana and peanut butter or almond butter

Bananas are rich in potassium, helping to prevent muscle cramps. The peanut/almond butter contains high quality complex carbs that supplies your body with the energy you need throughout the entirety of your workout.  

Whole grain bread and hard-boiled egg

Eggs are packed with the high quality protein your muscles crave and the bread offers a good source of carbohydrates to fuel your workout. 

Greek yogurt or cottage cheese with berries

Both cottage cheese and Greek yogurt will supply you with protein to prevent muscle damage, as well as slow-released carbs to keep you full. The antioxidants in berries fight against stress imposed on the body during exercising. 

Oatmeal with dried fruit

Oatmeal has the carbs to keep you going strong through your whole workout and dried fruit (like blueberries) has anti-inflammatory properties which help your muscles to recover properly and maintain their strength.  

Cinnamon roasted almonds

Almonds are a great source of healthy fats and protein while the cinnamon enhances your body’s insulin response to sugar, and helps stave off cravings. 

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Success Spotlight: Hanna from Watertown, MN

07/25/2016

Hanna knew that she was unhappy with the way her body looked and felt, so she decided to make changes in her diet and exercise routine. After joining the Snap Fitness in Watertown, MN, she has found herself on a much healthier, happier path. Learn more about her story here!

 

“My name is Hanna and I am 20 years old. I always saw myself as healthy and fit, but I would catch myself making excuses as to why I shouldn’t go to the gym or why I shouldn’t eat healthy. I figured working out once or twice a week was fine, but the reality was that I was not fine. I began to gain weight and I grew unhappy with my appearance. One day as I realized I didn’t fit into my old clothes I thought, 'If I’m gaining weight now, imagine what I will look like 20 years from now.'

 

After that experience, I began to work out daily. I also had to completely change my diet; no more eating out, no more frozen meals, and no more late-night snacks. I have found that after making these changes, I hardly ever crave bad foods anymore.

 

It did take a long time to see any changes in myself, but once I noticed them I could feel my confidence rising. The first change I noticed was physical activity becoming easier. I was suddenly able to walk up a flight of stairs without becoming winded. I noticed my favorite change when I put these two pictures together because I saw where I started compared to where I am today. I always remind myself not to have a goal weight or image, but rather a goal mindset to be 100 percent comfortable with who I am now, and who I am becoming.”

 

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