A Review of MyProtein

A Review of MyProtein

A month or two ago I was asked to sample some products from MyProtein. MyProtein is a supplement company that offers a wide variety of health and fitness products. Over the past month I was able to work in two of their products into my supplement regimen and here is what I thought!

The first supplement I sampled was their pre-workout called MyPre, lemon-lime flavored. Below is a list of what I liked and disliked.

Likes

  • Size and amount of servings (30 servings)
  • Some natural flavor
  • No jittery sensations, itch, or tingling
  • Provides long lasting energy for exercise

Dislikes

  • Some artificial flavor
  • I was not a huge fan of the lemon-lime flavor OR color. It tasted and looked very artificial which for me made it difficult to consume.

The other supplement I sampled from MyProtein was their impact whey isolate, rocky road flavored. I am a huge fan of whey isolate proteins. Not only are they low in calories, sugars, and carbs but they are easy on the stomach! For me, this is something I suffer with when consuming regular whey protein. Below is a list of what I liked and disliked.

Likes

  • Whey isolate protein makes it easier to digest with no bloating or gassiness.
  • The flavor tasted artificial, but was good overall.
  • Great solubility
  • Tasted the best when blended with ice cold water.
  • Low in calories, sugars, and carbohydrates.
  • Affordable price

Dislikes

  • I am not a huge fan of 100% artificially flavoring supplements. I like to see some natural ingredients and flavors.

Overall I enjoyed the protein more than the pre-workout. I am extremely picky when it comes to pre-workout supplements especially with the taste or flavor, solubility, color, and the effect it has on the body. I don’t like consuming a supplement filled with artificial ingredients. I like to see that a product I am consuming has some natural ingredients.

http://www.myprotein.com

T.G.I.M – Don’t wait too late to do what makes YOU happy!

Too many people let their lives fly by without doing what they really wanted to do. Don’t let the clutter in your life block your vision. All of those things you want to do .. make plans to do them. Make a list, a bucket list, and slowly check each one off throughout your life. Enjoy your life. See all of the beautiful things the world has to offer and embrace the warmth, the happiness.

Here are a few things I want to do in my lifetime:

  1. Inspire someone to change
  2. skydive
  3. visit a country I have never been to before
  4. compete in a fitness competition
  5. have my very own fitness spread in a magazine
  6. have a chance to educate kids about health and wellness

Your list can be literally anything!

Don’t wait too late to do things you have always wanted to do.

Start today!

-mk

T.G.I.M: Don’t wait too late to apply these helpful life lessons!

Beauty-of-nature-daydreaming-22571815-1024-768

I found these very helpful life lessons on another blog/website called reginabrett.com. These were written and created by Regina Brett the night before her 45th birthday and after she found out that she had breast cancer. These are some important lessons that we can apply to our lives today!

  1. Life isn’t fair, but it’s still good.
  2. When in doubt, just take the next small step.
  3. Life is too short to waste time hating anyone.
  4. Don’t take yourself so seriously. No one else does.
  5. Pay off your credit cards every month.
  6. You don’t have to win every argument. Agree to disagree.
  7. Cry with someone. It’s more healing than crying alone.
  8. Save for retirement, starting with your first paycheck.
  9. When it comes to chocolate, resistance is futile.
  10. Make peace with your past so it won’t screw up the present.
  11. It’s OK to let your children see you cry.
  12. Don’t compare your life to others’. You have no idea what their journey is all about.
  13. If a relationship has to be a secret, you shouldn’t be in it.
  14. Life is too short for long pity parties. Get busy living, or get busy dying.
  15. You can get through anything if you stay put in today.
  16. A writer writes. If you want to be a writer, write.
  17. It’s never too late to have a happy childhood. But the second one is up to you and no one else.
  18. When it comes to going after what you love in life, don’t take no for an answer.
  19. Burn the candles; use the nice sheets; wear the fancy lingerie. Don’t save it for a special occasion. Today is special.
  20. Overprepare, then go with the flow.
  21. Be eccentric now. Don’t wait for old age to wear purple.
  22. The most important sex organ is the brain.
  23. No one is in charge of your happiness except you.
  24. Frame every so-called disaster with these words: “In five years, will this matter?”
  25. Forgive everyone everything.
  26. What other people think of you is none of your business.
  27. Time heals almost everything. Give time time.
  28. However good or bad a situation is, it will change.
  29. Your job won’t take care of you when you are sick. Your friends will. Stay in touch.
  30. Believe in miracles.
  31. Whatever doesn’t kill you really does make you stronger.
  32. Growing old beats the alternative — dying young.
  33. Your children get only one childhood. Make it memorable.
  34. Get outside every day. Miracles are waiting everywhere.
  35. If we all threw our problems in a pile and saw everyone else’s, we’d grab ours back.
  36. Don’t audit life. Show up and make the most of it now.
  37. Get rid of anything that isn’t useful, beautiful or joyful.
  38. All that truly matters in the end is that you loved.
  39. Envy is a waste of time. You already have all you need.
  40. The best is yet to come.
  41. No matter how you feel, get up, dress up, and show up.
  42. Take a deep breath. It calms the mind.
  43. If you don’t ask, you don’t get.
  44. Yield.
  45. Life isn’t tied with a bow, but it’s still a gift.

You’re getting warmer! Why you should warm-up, stretch, and cool down!

Attractive woman stretching legs after run on beach

I have to ask …

Do you warm-up, stretch, and cool down before and after your workout?

Unfortunately, many people will agree that they DON’T. If you are one of those people, this article is exactly for you!

You’re Getting Warmer!

Warming up is absolutely critical when it comes to being successful with your training. It allows your bones, muscles, and mind to warm-up, get loose, and get the blood flowing. This allows your body to train efficiently and accurately minimizing the threat of injury to muscles, joints, and ligaments during your workout. Though the main purpose of warming up is injury prevention it is also super beneficial for your mental state as well!

When you go into the gym and immediately start lifting or working out you don’t give your mind enough time to comprehend your workout and get you motivated for the stress you are about to put your body through. During the warm-up phase of your training you will be able to focus on the exercises you want to hit and you will be able to jump-start your motivation!

Here are a few great ways to warm-up before you train!

  • 5 – 10 minute warm-up on the treadmill, stair climber, elliptical, or arc trainer.
  • Perform light weight warm-up sets for the muscles you plan on training, bump up the weight to a moderately heavy weight and complete a few warm-up After this moderately heavy warm-up set you want to rest until fully recovered, then start your workout!

What you get from warming up!

  • Increased flexibility
  • Injury prevention
  • Lubricates the joints
  • Achieve optimal results

Stretch it Out!

Along with a good warm-up before your workout you should follow-up your workout with a stretching session. Just like warming up, stretching is preventative care. By implementing stretching into your training regimen you are less likely to experience injury in future training sessions.

There are many great ways to stretch each and every part of your body!

There is a big debate about what whether or not you should stretch warm or cold muscles. I am a huge advocate for stretching after a light warm-up. This allows increased blood flow to the muscles which in turn creates better mobility and avoids injury while stretching.

Imagine that your muscles are like a rubber band, a cold and brittle rubber band will snap but a warm rubber band will stretch and bend and return to its original shape.

What you get from stretching!

  • Increased blood flow
  • Improve flexibility
  • Prevents injury
  • Optimum training

Cool Down

Cooling down after you workout or cardio session is actually very important even though most people don’t normally incorporate a cool down after training. I would say it is most important after cardiovascular training. Think about it, you just completed 15 minutes of 30 seconds on and 1 minute walking rest of sprints. You immediately turn the treadmill off and leave. You’re gasping for air, sweating bullets, shaking, and your heart rate is higher than the empire state building. This is exactly why you need to allow your body a chance to cool down and let your heart rate return to normal.

I would say if you complete a 5 minute warm-up you should also complete a 5 minute cool down after you session.

What you get from cooling down!

  • Helps your heart rate and breathing to return to normal
  • Will help avoid dizziness or fainting
  • Helps prepare your muscles for the next exercise session

Protect your body from injury by incorporating a warm-up and cool down session along with stretching before and/or after training. Hey, we only get one body! Might as well take care of the one we have.

-mk

T.G.I.M: Music to Promote Positive Vibes

positivevibeselephantI thought I would do something a little different for you all today!

Instead of writing ABOUT something, I thought I would GIVE you something you can use to help you have a better, positive start to your day!

We all listen to some form of music right? I would like to think so. I 100% believe that the words we listen to and the vibrations we receive from our music absolutely have an impact on our mood and mentality. Have you ever noticed how when you’re mad you might want to listen to rock, hip hop, or something of the sort? I know I do. Or, if you’re feeling sad and sorry to say, you might feel like throwing a little pity party for yourself (I know I have before!) you might listen to some music that hits your emotional side hard like maybe country.

Well I am about to share with you my absolute favorite Spotify playlist that calms my nerves, puts me in a great mood, and promotes positive vibrations!

First of all if you don’t have Spotify I recommend you download it.

https://www.spotify.com/us/

Check it out by clicking the link above.

There is a free version and a paid version. Try it out for free, that’s what I did.

So here is the name of the playlist:

Beach Vibes

After you have created an account with Spotify and logged in, type the name of the playlist into the Spotify search bar. The image you’re looking for is shown below. Click the image below to be taken directly to the playlist!

Some of the songs you will find in the playlist are:

  • Wonderful World, Beautiful People by: Jimmy Cliff
  • What I Got by: Sublime
  • Upside Down by Jack Johnson
  • True To Myself by: Ziggy Marley (my absolute favorite song!)
  • Ordinary girl by: Rebelution
  • Three Little Birds by: Bob Marley & The Wallers
  • Love Is My Religion by: Ziggy Marley (another favorite!)
  • Bowl For Two by: The Expendables
  • Right Me Up by: State Radio

Listen for yourself and feel the calmness take over your body!

Enjoy!

-mk

I. AM. HUMAN: The Disappearance of Motivation

flower

“The flower that blooms in adversity is the most rare and beautiful of all.”

I’m sitting here on my couch, sipping on a warm cup of coffee and listening to “The Today Show” all while I look at my blog and wonder where my motivation went. Isn’t it strange how you can start something like a fitness routine or in my case a blog with an amazing amount of motivation to keep it going and then one day you lose it? It is pretty perplexing to me seeing as how it’s something I really enjoy doing.

But guess what … here’s why it happens:

I. AM. HUMAN.

or you can read it like this:

YOU. ARE. HUMAN.

That’s really it. While there are thousands of very motivated and inspiring individuals out there, not everyone is the same. Where one person might be highly self motivated another may not be. These people, like myself, have to look for inspiration that will jumpstart our motivation from something inward or outward.

Just because you experience this odd disappearance of motivation doesn’t mean you failed, I’ll say it again:

YOU. DID. NOT. FAIL.

A lack of motivation is not failure. Failure to notice this lack of motivation and not creating a plan to get back on track is failure. If you aren’t aware of your lack of motivation you wont ever feel the need to make changes. Without creating a game plan to get back on track … you wont ever progress.

  1. Recognize that you have a problem: Lack of motivation
  2. Create a game plan to get back on track
  3. Make a note of why you veered off path before (laziness, school, responsibilities, etc)
  4. Execute your game plan!

As long as you dedicate yourself to getting back on track, you will not fail.

That goes for everything in life: addictions, fitness routines, diets, work, blogs, writing, drawing, etc. Sometimes you just have to recognize what the problem is and where the problem came from in order to create a fresh game plan to get you back on track towards your goals!

-mk

T.G.I.M: Will you sink or float?

sinkaship

I am in love with the symbolism here!

Your body is the ship and the ocean water is the negativity of the world. The water slams into the sides of the ship repeatedly day in and day out just like negativity slams into our mind, heart, and body. How strong the ship was built, or how strong our bodies are built, determines whether or not that negative water will pour into the ship.

But listen! It is up to us whether our boat, our body, sinks or continues to float!


I consider negativity a mental disease. I mean, it works like a disease right? It gets inside of our brain, latches on, and seeps out of our body like blood from an open wound. It shows symptoms of anger, depression, and a lack of motivation; it eventually moves from one part of your life to the next destroying what little motivation and hope you had left.

Unlike physical diseases, we actually ALLOW negativity to enter into our heart, mind, and body.

Why do we let this happen?

It’s easy. We let it happen because we don’t know how to prevent it.

Living a positive life isn’t a skill you are born with. The negative influence the world has on us is something we are born into and it is up to us to teach ourselves how to deflect it or how to see the positive side to any negative situation.

It is my decision whether I wake up with a smile on my face or a frown. Whether I let spilled coffee on my clean shirt ruin my day or wipe it off, suck it up, and move on.

This reminds of a scene from “The Pursuit of Happyness” where actor Will Smith played a character named Chris. He was sitting in the interview room with his future employers. He was covered in paint from head to toe wearing only a paint jacket, white tank top, jeans, and work boots. His employers were less than impressed but he didn’t let that stop him. Will Smith’s character was able to impress his future employers by answering one simple question.

“What would you say if a guy walked into our office for an interview without a shirt on and I hired him, what would you say? ”

His character replied:

“He must have had on some really nice pants.”

His comment impressed his future employers and he was hired on for a chance to be hired for the internship. He didn’t let his circumstances that he could not change get in the way of him reaching his goals in the pursuit of happiness.

To watch the video clip click the link below! Absolutely inspirational!

https://youtu.be/8ioBmnoto1o

The one thing you have 100% control over in life is your own attitude. 

Don’t allow the bad situations that occur in life, big or small, to seep into your heart, mind, and body. Don’t let these negative experiences dictate whether your life is good or bad. You can decide for yourself!

If you were blessed with another chance to open your eyes and to breathe in the fresh air … you were already given a huge reason to be happy and positive. You are blessed with another day to reach your goals and to experience life: good AND bad!

Don’t let yourself sink.

Patch those holes and build your ship stronger.

You can prevail.

You will float.

-mk

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Is fasted cardio right for you? Here’s what you should know!

The past week I have implemented fasted cardio into my morning routine. Fasted cardio is still pretty new to me which is why I wanted to research and write a small article about it. As with any kind of fitness and exercise what works for one person might not work for another. You won’t know if it works for you unless you try, right?

So, what is fasted cardio?

Fasted cardio is simply cardio that is performed in the morning right after you wake up on an empty stomach. The goal here is for your body to use its fat stores as energy instead of food as energy just like f you were to perform cardio after a meal.

Studies have shown that fasted cardio can promote greater fat loss when performed properly.

What you should know:

  • Fasted cardio is proven to target stubborn body fat stores.
  • Fasted cardio is heavily dependent on your diet.
  • This form of cardio should be kept to a moderate intensity to avoid the loss of lean muscle mass.
    • If you are concerned about losing lean muscle mass, supplement with 5 – 10 grams of branched chain amino acids or a scoop of whey protein before your cardio session.
  • Supplementing with yohimbe or caffeine will improve your overall results during fasted cardio.
  • Fasted cardio, when performed at a low – moderate intensity, is safe to perform daily.
  • When deciding if you should or shouldn’t incorporate fasted cardio into your fitness regimen, assess what your overall fitness goals are. Before starting fasted cardio, make sure that your diet is in check. If you start fasted cardio and your diet is off … you more than likely won’t get the results you’re looking for.

Hopefully this information will help you decide whether or not fasted cardio is right for you. If you don’t think this type of cardio is for you check out my other blog post on other types of cardio!

http://fitlifemk.com/2015/06/17/5-types-of-fat-shredding-cardio/

Has anyone ever performed fasted cardio?

If you have, please share what you think about it!

Does it work for you? What do you like or dislike about it?

-mk

T.G.I.M: Invictus “I am the master of my fate, I am the captain of my soul”

This poem hit me hard and I hope it will give you a slice of inspiration and motivation this Monday morning.

-mk

Invictus

Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the Pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds, and shall find, me unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.

By: William Ernest Henley

Source: http://www.familyfriendpoems.com/poem/invictus-by-william-ernest-henley#ixzz3gR9Ky7Dg

From Unhealthy to Healthy: How you can make the switch!

From Unhealthy to Healthy: How you can make the switch!

healthyunhealthybody

I’m going to give it to you straight up … it ain’t easy. Hell if it was everyone would be living a healthy and fit life! Am I right? Knowing how to start helps and having simple steps to guide you through the process is even better. I have compiled my own step by step process to help guide you into this beautiful, stress relieving world of health.

  1. The Decision

It honestly has to start with the decision to willingly begin. It can’t be someone else’s decision for you, it must be 100% your own. As we all know if our heart isn’t 100% dedicated to something we are less likely to follow through with it. So, when you have taken that first step … you are ready to begin.

  1. Educate Yourself

This is the hardest and most frustrating part. Because you are a newbie you are a beginner and we all know where beginners start … the beginning, the bottom of the totem pole, the back of the line, etc. There is always a stage where you have to put in a little bit of hard work and that comes with anything in life: there are no shortcuts to any place worth going.

Research any information pertaining to YOUR current health status. For example, if you deal with a disease or have any food allergies you will want to look up the foods you can and can’t eat. Take note. Also, make sure to write down the types of foods that your diet should be rich in and will have a positive impact on your health. As for your fitness plan, research exercises you can and can’t participate in. Any injuries you may have, you will want to find the exercises that will build these parts up stronger but won’t hurt these bones, ligaments, or muscles at the same time.

I strongly suggest avoiding fad diets. A fad diet is a weight loss plan or aid that promises dramatic results. These types of diets may give short-term weight loss but the promise of keeping it off long-term … it just won’t happen. Fad diets can also cause metabolic damage and other health related issues.

To learn how to differentiate between healthy diets and fad diets check out the link below:

http://www.upmc.com/patients-visitors/education/nutrition/pages/fad-diets.aspx

After you have made a list of foods you can and can’t eat and a list of body strengthening exercises that won’t further irritate any injuries you may have, it’s time to make a plan of action!

  1. Plan of Action

Failure to plan is planning to fail.

So, it’s time to put all of that information you spent hours researching together in a document. Pat yourself on the back because the hard part is over … for now (insert evil villain laugh). I highly recommend using a word processing program like word, excel, or publisher to put together something you can refer to. This is where you can have fun! What I would do next is simply put together a sample weekly diet plan and weekly fitness regimen. Start with one at a time so that you don’t overwhelm yourself! A sample diet plan could look like this:

Monday

Breakfast: egg whites with spinach, grape tomatoes, and feta cheese and 1 slice of Ezekial bread with Almond butter.

Snack: handful of almonds and 8oz of water

Lunch: 1 can of tuna mixed with seasonings, spicy brown mustard, and celery served on top of whole wheat toast with a side of mixed field greens and balsamic vin.

Snack: 2 rice cakes with peanut butter

Dinner: grilled chicken breast, mixed veggies, and sweet potato

Try your best to be thorough but the key here is to create something that YOU CAN REFER TO. This shouldn’t be some silly ‘ole regimen you put together and never look at again. This should be your guidance, what you will refer to when you get overwhelmed in the future. Trust me, it helps.

A sample fitness regimen could look like this:

Monday

Morning run / Afternoon weight lifting: Chest & Tri’s

  • Barbell bench press
  • Barbell incline bench press
  • Cable flies
  • Skull crushers with EZ bar
  • Dumbbell kickbacks
  • Cable press downs

If you are new and you aren’t sure where to start with selecting exercises visit bodybuilding.com. They provide thousands of sample exercises and all you have to do is type in what muscle group you are searching for.

www.bodybuilding.com

Those are a couple of examples of how you can lay out your sample diet and fitness regimen. A few things to aim for when it comes to creating a healthy diet plan:

  • Include variety: make sure your plan includes a variety of whole foods ranging from green leafy vegetables, fruits, red and white meats, legumes (beans), nuts and seeds, dairy, whole grains, etc. Including a variety of all of these foods allows your body to take in the nutrients it needs to be strong and healthy! Of course, pay attention to any health or medical conditions you have as they might limit or exclude some foods.
  • Create balance: creating balance just means not having too much of one thing. I am sure you have heard of MyPlate. If not, MyPlate is just a useful website that gives you information about eating healthy. It shows you how to divide your plate according to meats, vegetables, dairy, whole grains, etc. MyPlate says to dedicate half of our plate to green leafy vegetables and then divide the other half of our plate between a carbohydrate and a protein. Simple enough right?
  • Moderation: this simply means to pay attention to how much of one item you’re eating. Have you noticed that you have been consuming a lot of sweet potatoes the past couple of days? Maybe it’s time to switch things up and try eating some brown rice. Too much of a good thing can be bad, so just keep an eye on what you eat and how much of it you eat daily.

Visit the link below for more information about healthy food choices and how to implement balance, moderation, and variety into your diet!

http://www.choosemyplate.gov/

  1. Implement your Plan!

The day has finally arrived. Day One in your calendar; this is the day where your life can change forever. You have made the decision to begin living a healthy life and you have created a plan of action that will guide and aid in this life changing process!

It’s GO TIME!

Always keep in mind what your long-term goals are: lose 20 lbs, clear your acne, relieve the symptoms of psoriasis, and strengthen your heart, whatever it is always remember what you are working so hard for! They will be your motivating factors on this journey. When it comes to health and fitness nothing happens over night, let me say it again,

NOTHING HAPPENS OVER NIGHT.

Got it?

This process takes time. Do not give yourself unrealistic expectations of trying to accomplish this life change in one week or a month. Be patient and trust the process. Rome wasn’t built in a day, was it? No.

If you are someone who is motivated through seeing changes, as I am, I recommend keeping a journal. This is where you can write any and everything! Write down your starting waist, hips, and thigh measurements, your current weight, how clear your skin is, how you feel mentally and physically. Write down whether or not you enjoyed the food you ate or if you hated it. Make notes about your fitness: what did you enjoy and what did you dislike? As time goes by you will begin to notice subtle changes and you will also have a point of reference for determining if and when you need a change.

These steps helped me start living a healthy and fit life. I always recommend reaching out if you have questions or concerns. Contact a friend for advice, information, and motivation. Talk to your doctor if you have health related questions or a personal trainer for physical questions. You won’t know the answer until you ask the question!

Today is the day you could change your life forever.

Go for it!

-mk

Other blog posts I have previously written that can help aid in this process are listed below: