My name is Amanda, I am 26 year old and I am a mother to two beautiful little girls! My fitness journey started because I was unhappy with my body image and was weighing around 160-165 pounds. When I first started going to the gym I started with cardio, thinking that was the thing I had to do but it wasn’t. I wasn’t getting any results so I starting lifting weights, but didn’t really have an idea as to what I was doing. I took it one day at a time. I observed people around me, I also did some research on how to strength train. A few weeks went by and I started to notice the internal changes which kept me going back. I now weigh 114-120 pounds and don’t bother stepping on a scale anymore! I also don’t count calories. I eat when I’m hungry. I eat to get stronger. And as a result I am healthier and happier than I have ever been in my life. I focus on one more rep and one more breath. I am now full of confidence and I feel comfortable in my own skin, something that I never had in the past. Weight-loss tip: Stop trying to diet and instead focus on becoming healthier.
“My dad has been diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis for 21 years now. From 1988-2008 he worked as a police officer in Irvington, New York where he retired due to the decline of his health. In 2009, our family moved to Port Orange, Florida, where he met his best friend and personal Trainer, Joe Elam, at Snap Fitness New Smyrna Beach. Although He may not physically be able to walk or do your average activities, he finds time every Monday and Wednesday to push himself and push me. Because of his strength and motivation he's brought to my life and many others, Snap Fitness New Smyrna Beach would never be the same without his big smile and determination.” -Peter's daughter, Jackie Carelli
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 3/4 cups 1:1 gluten-free flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
For the topping:
¾ cup vanilla Greek yogurt
1/3 cup blueberries
2 sliced strawberries
1/3 cup blackberries
- Preheat oven to 350° F and lightly grease a 10-inch round pan. Set aside.
- Beat butter and sugar together until fluffy. Add eggs and vanilla and stir until combined. Scrap the sides of the bowl and then stir again briefly.
- Add dry ingredients and stir until just combined.
- Press dough into round pan* and use a spatula to separate dough from the edge of the pan, which makes removal easier.
- Bake for 25 minutes, or until edges are slightly golden.
- Let crust cool and remove it from the pan.
- Use a spatula to spread Greek yogurt evenly across the top of the crust.
- Decorate fruit pizza with berries.
- Optional: garnish with lemon zest and honey.
- Place in fridge and let set for 20 minutes before enjoying.
*For a thinner cookie crust, only use ¾ of the dough and save the rest for making cookies.
There is nothing like summer. Who are your favorite summer artists? There are no wrong answers, if it’s something that keeps your feet moving, you’re listening to the right songs!
It’s well-known that music can be a highly important motivator for exercise. Music can be a key ingredient to wellness. There are many reasons for this. Research consistently finds that listening to music provides a healthy distraction from the pain of a workout. One study even suggests that music can benefit athletic performance by up to 15 percent. The rhythm of your workout music is shown to stimulate the motor area of your brain, thereby aiding self-paced exercises such as running or weight-lifting. By paying attention to these signals, it helps us use our energy more efficiently, since keeping a steady pace is easier on our bodies than fluctuating through a workout.
To help you get your groove on, we’ve made our summer Spotify playlist. We’re hoping that these songs will help you in your workouts. But by all means, make your own playlist. It’s the time of year for good vibrations so get out there and enjoy yourself!
We all know that some workouts feel better than others. But when rough ones stack up it can affect your motivation. Next thing you know you’re hardly going at all. It’s important to break that pattern and get back into a healthy routine. Here are five ways to keep you smiling as you head to the gym.
1. Take a Class. We’re all social creatures and there is often valuable energy to be gathered by exercising with other people. And it’s a fun way to make friends! On the days you may not be feeling your peppiest, it can be motivating to look forward to seeing friendly faces.
2. Don’t Worry About Being Perfect. It can be easy to beat yourself up about not hitting your exact time or getting your reps done to your complete satisfaction. Or you see someone next to you burning it up and you suddenly don’t feel great about your performance. Don’t let those things get you down. Remember to enjoy the process and revel in how it feels to work your body. Let that be its own reward.
3. Do What You Enjoy. This may sound like advice from Captain Obvious but it’s so true. If you always enjoy hitting the Stairmaster, but are hit and miss on the Elliptical, then focus on the stairs. Yoga may be your thing, so bring your mat and water bottle. Weights are rewarding. Put on those gloves. Do what energizes you love and build from there.
4. Timing Is Key. The time of day can be a big factor in whether you consistently look forward to working out. Some love to start the day with a burn. But if you’re not a morning person, that can be a slog. Maybe you’re a noon-hour person? Or you enjoy working off the stress of the day after work? Find out what works with you and stick with it. Not everyone’s clock works the same.
5. A Little Is Better Than Nothing. Some days you have a million things going on. It happens. But do keep your commitment to hitting the gym. You may need to scale back your workout on a given day— maybe do 30 minutes instead of 45 — but there are still so many health benefits to even brief appearances. On days when your phone is blowing up, give yourself that break in the day. By the time you’re done you’ll be ready to walk out the door with newfound calm and clarity.
Running Safety: How to Be Prepared for Anything
Running is empowerment. Running is strength. Running is freedom. Running is not always safe—for women, in particular. According to Women’s Running, an estimated one-third of Americans feel uneasy when exercising alone outside, and Runner’s World reports that 43 percent of females experience some type of harassment or assault when running outside.
Despite the disconcerting numbers, it is possible to run outside and feel safe at the same time. Thanks to the following five strategies, you can maximize safety without compromising your workout.
Maintain Awareness of Your Surroundings
Stay alert to prevent an attacker from catching you off-guard. Allow yourself space to find an escape route. Limit distractions like music, podcasts or audiobooks, if possible. If you can’t forego your favorite playlist, keep the volume soft enough to hear your own breathing and footfalls. Better yet, wear just one earbud so you can still hear noises around you.
Know Basic Self-Defense Maneuvers
You don’t need martial arts training to ward off physical advances. You just need to inflict enough pain to assume the upper hand. Simply use your fingers, palms, knees, elbows or feet to make contact with the face, genitals and other sensitive areas, which will cause injury to an attacker and give you time to run away.
Practice these three basic self-defense techniques and don’t hesitate to use them if someone threatens your well-being:
- Wrist hold
- Front and back choke
- Bear hug
You can find explanations for each one in Self Defense Techniques: Be Responsible for Your Safety.
Note Safety Landmarks
Choose familiar running routes and areas that are also visible and populated. Ahead of time, or along the way, take time to identify locations in close proximity and that are easily accessible, should you need to veer off-course and reach out for help. Think: convenience stores, police stations, neighbor’s houses, and restaurants. Tell a staff member about what’s going on so they can help as needed, use the phone, or find a safe place to take cover.
Don’t Leave Home Without Protective Gear
Get into a habit of carrying mace (or pepper spray), specifically when running alone or at night. While this may sound extreme, pepper spray is one of the most effective self-defense products because it’s easy to use and gives you ample time to run away.
The best part: Many brands make running specific pepper spray that’s easy to carry. “Most pepper spray comes in a two-ounce size or smaller, which makes it ideal to have clipped to your running gear. There’s even specific ‘jogger pepper spray’ with a built-in sling that secures onto your hand,” explains Dave Artman, CEO of The Home Security Superstore.
Change Your Running Route Consistently
Would-be attackers look for victims who stick to predictable routines, so avoid running in the same location at the same time each day. If you can’t change your running time due to work or other scheduling conflicts, make a point to choose new routes near your home on a consistent basis. Runner’s Connect suggests rotating between clockwise and counterclockwise directions.
Striking a balance of preparedness without sacrificing your own independence will boost both your peace-of-mind and overall enjoyment on a run. Be smart. Be careful. And use basic self-defense moves or your pepper spray to fight back if necessary.