Chances are you’re reading this from a laptop or maybe even a smart phone. Let me guess, your chin is pulled down toward your chest allowing you to look down at the screen, turning your posture into a slouch. Am I close?
Now sit up straight, square your shoulders back and lift your chin high — even if it means looking at the wall instead of this post. Doesn’t that feel better? That’s because it should! Humans were designed to stand this way, we weren’t ever actually built to be sitting for long periods of time. Think about this: when we stand in conversation we are eye to eye. It’s the most natural position for our bodies to be in.
This whole conversation was inspired by a colleague of mine. She was experiencing some pretty serious neck and back pain, and was finding the relief from a good massage was only temporary. Since there’s only so much time a girl can spend on a heating pad, she decided to look into what might be causing these aches. It turns out that years of sitting hunched over her laptop actually changed her posture and was causing all kinds of problems.
Remember when the kid in Jerry Maguire claimed the human head weighs eight pounds? Well, he was right! When my girl had her alignment checked, they discovered even though her head weighs eight pounds, the position she’d become accustomed to created 18 pounds of pressure coming down on her neck and shoulders! She was given three options: visit a doctor regularly to constantly correct her body, take prescription medicine to alleviate the discomfort, or create a better working environment and train her body to self-correct. You can bet she went with number three — and never looked back!
Below you’ll find some of the best ways you can create a workspace that benefits your body. In addition to these products, simple adjustments in your daily life can make a major difference in your posture. For example, when you’re scrolling through your newsfeed on your smart phone, hold the phone at eye level rather than holding it down toward your lap. Your neck will thank you!
On most days around mid-afternoon I begin to deflate, feeling like a sinking balloon days after a party. Caffeine always crosses my mind but I know one cup of coffee too late in the day usually translates to tossing and turning late at night.
Luckily I discovered a healthy (and delicious!) way to energize that won’t result in a late night buzz or early crash.
My Pretty Powder Super Smoothie has become my must have for many reasons. Besides giving me a great energy boost, Hum Nutrition’s superfood powder also keeps my metabolism in check. I call it pretty powder because in addition to keeping me out of cranky status, it also improves my skin tone. Plus, there’s no feeling less attractive than being tired and hungry. From there, things can get ugly.
• 1 scoop Hum Nutrition Raw Beauty Green Superfood Powder
• 1 cup almond milk
• ½ banana
• ½ cup strawberries
• ½ cup ice
Blend until smooth and enjoy your day!
By the way, if I don’t have time to make this smoothie, or when traveling on the go, I’ll skip the ingredients and mix one scoop of Raw Beauty from Hum Nutrition into a serving of water or almond milk. This would be an easy way to perk up while you’re at work or school and sans blender.
I was very inspired by the Ask Jules email below from a reader named Missie. Missie is dealing with several health challenges, which make it difficult for her to be physically active, but you know what? Those limitations are not stopping Missie from finding activities she’s able to do to be healthy and fit.
Keeping up with your fitness isn’t all about appearance. We know it’s also about reducing levels of stress and anxiety, improving mental clarity and focus, having a greater lung capacity and getting a good night’s sleep.
My personal trainer, Erica Hood at Body by Simone had some excellent advice for Missie. Through that I learned about adaptive yoga, a type of yoga for people of all abilities, including disabilities.
I am one of your “older” newsletter and blog readers! I simply find you so inspiring! I don’t think inspiration has age limits! Here’s my question for you: I’m a 48-year-old empty nest mom. But I also have 2 serious health issues (CRPS/RSD and Sjogrens Syndrome) that really limit what I am able to do physically in terms of exercise. I’m unable to do anything that involves impact on my right foot/ankle or standing only on that foot. In addition, both conditions cause nearly debilitating fatigue which worsens if I overdo exercise.
I have heard the term “adaptive yoga” but don’t know anything about it. I’m trying to find out what it’s about to see if it’s an option for me. Is this something you have knowledge of? I appreciate any help you can give!
Being a teenager can be really tough. The whole “not a girl but not yet a woman” thing — shout out to Britney! — really threw me for a loop. All of these exciting opportunities like dating, driving, and working come along but then you realize those things comes with a whole lot of uncharted territory. Then you throw in the things you can’t control: acne, anxiety, confidence… It can be terrifying!
These Ask Jules emails reminded me of when I was a teen, navigating the new world of flirting and nervousness. I hope my answers help more than just a few of you out! If you can relate to the letters below, show your support by sharing your advice and experiences in the comments.
This two-step treatment will leave your hands looking, smelling, and feeling divine for days to come. The winter months can be really tough on all your skin, but your hands can sometimes get the brunt of those dry, cold and windy days.
• 2/3 cup of sugar
• 2 tablespoons liquid hand soap
• 1 teaspoon coconut oil
• optional: essential oils
First, you’ll create a cleansing scrub.
Try as we might, we can’t always squeeze a workout into our schedule. I learned a long time ago sometimes you have to get creative and let the workout come to you.
With these DIY wrist and/or ankle weights, you can go about your at-home business while getting toned and tight.
You can put them to use while you squat, lunge and work your arms or, like me, you can wear them while you put groceries away, vacuum, and blow dry your hair! As long as you’re moving, they’re working.
These sock-weights are easy to make in just 4 simple steps.
I recently learned by committing to break a sweat for 30 minutes every day, I’m reducing my risk of breast and ovarian cancer by as much as 20%! Immediately added that to the list of reasons to get moving every day. This risk-reducing activity is only one of the many ways we can take action. I found dozens of other tips, facts and tools to prevent and detect ovarian cancer on Bright Pink’s website.
When detected early, the five-year survival rate for breast and ovarian cancer is greater than 92%. It is essential for women of every age to take action and practice early detection and risk reduction. We have the power to be proactive — so let’s do what we can!
In the event I don’t necessarily feel up for a solid workout (come on, we all have those days) I made this list of active activities I could get into for at least 30 minutes.
Often things come up in our lives that cause us stress and frustration. Whether it’s waiting for a final grade or stirring over a big decision, situations that have us feeling disorderly or out of control can truly drive us nuts!
In these times, I know of one simple solution that provides a temporary relief and offers a sense of order: organizing. Not so much sorting your thoughts or sketching out a to do list but rather straightening out something completely unrelated such as a spice rack or desk drawer. Cleaning up this real mess doesn’t completely clear the one in my head, but it sure gives me a little sense of order and accomplishment.
Try it! You might be surprised. Below is a list of spaces I usually dig into when I’m needing to sort through something physical. Cleaning out and straightening up any junk drawer will give you an instant jolt of pride but these spots can usually always use some sprucing up as well:
They say you learn something new every day so a few days ago, this was my lesson learned. I was pretty blown away to discover when we’re feeling the heat of the hot summer sun it isn’t an ice-cold glass of anything that will cool us off quickest, but rather a warm mug of something.
Yup, you read right! Research shows when you drink something hot, the nerves in your tongue send signals to your brain telling it your body temperature is rising. Our brain tells our body to go into cool down mode, which begins with producing sweat. When the sweat begins to evaporate off our skin it lowers the temperature of our body. Crazy, right?
What’s the best hot beverage to sip if it’s super hot outside?