Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Fitbit...is it worth the purchase?

I personally LOVE my Fitbit Charge HR. It was a gift from my lovely boyfriend after I completed my dietetic internship. 

What does the Fitbit Charge HR do? It continuously tracks my heart rate, provides all-day activity statistics, provides my workout statistics, and monitors my sleep! It also has caller ID, but I do not personally use this feature to help preserve batter life.  It comes in a variety of colors and sizes. You can also link your Fitbit to My Fitness Pal!

What do I love it about it? I love my Fitbit because it keeps me from being lazy. With it monitoring my steps, I'm more self-conscious about how much I move throughout the day. I love monitoring my heart rate during exercise whether that is anaerobic or aerobic. I have figured out which exercises raise my heart rate more and also knowing roughly how many calories I burn during each session. The size  is perfect with it not being too bulky. However if you do not like the look because it is more sporty, there are now Fitbit bracelet covers made my individual vendors on Etsy (click the link if interested). They are pretty cute but I like the sporty look. 

The Fitbit comes in a variety of options such as the Zip, Blaze, Alta, Surge, Charge, HR, Flex, and One. Some are more advanced than others therefore being more expensive. 

Would I recommend a Fitbit? YES, I would! Especially if you are trying to make a lifestyle change to start exercising more. Like previously stated, it keeps me from being lazy! Therefore, if you want to be more self-conscious about your activity level it is the perfect match!


Live Simply. Live Healthy. is a personal blog written solely by me, Kayla Parr, unless otherwise specified. 

The information shared on this blog is presented for anyone who is interested in following me. It is not intended for diagnosis or treatment of any condition or as a substitute for any medical or nutritional intervention. Your personal questions should be directed to your licensed health care providers.

As a member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, I am bound by the Code of Ethics for the Dietetics Profession

"Savor the Flavor"

This year's theme of National Nutrition Month is "Savor the Flavor!" It is important not just to eat to fuel your body but to also enjoy what you are eating! So this month I challenge you to:
  • Use onion, garlic, cumin, paprika, thyme, oregano, basil, mint, and so on either in natural form or in the form of spice.
  • Add spinach to your smoothies for extra vitamins and minerals. Some are afraid to add spinach because they may not like the taste, but to assure you the sweetness of the fruit will mask a majority of this. Another fear is the spinach not blending to a smooth consistency. To fix this issue, blend your spinach with the liquid base of your smoothie first and then add in the additional ingredients such as fruit and yogurt.
  • Try new recipes and foods! 
  • Eat and chew slowly to really enjoy and taste your food!
  • Most of all, love the food you eat and remember to eat in moderation!
I will be posting some new recipes this month that I have created and/or found from other bloggers within the nutrition field! Enjoy this beautiful month of savoring the flavor and enjoying the food you eat!

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Oatmeal Muffin Protein Squares

Oatmeal Muffin Protein Squares

What I love about this recipe is that it can be used for many purposes! Need a quick on the go breakfast? Grab 2 Oatmeal Muffin Protein Squares! Have a late night sweet tooth? Grab 2 Oatmeal Muffin Protein Squares! It is low in sugar (only 8 grams per serving for a PLAIN oatmeal square) and high in protein (12.3 grams per serving for a PLAIN oatmeal square)! What I love most about this recipe is that it helps solve my late night cravings and the best part is you can make them however you like! For this example I used Jiff Natural Low Sodium Peanut Butter and milk chocolate chips! You could also use fruit just as raspberries or blueberries, nuts, or dried fruits if you like. 

1 scoop vanilla protein
2 ripe bananas
2 whole eggs
1 cup Greek yogurt
2 cups of oats
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

Additional Ingredients
5 grams of milk chocolate chips (per muffin)
1 tablespoon of Jiff Natural Low Sodium Peanut Butter (per muffin)

1. Mash bananas until smooth. You can do this using a blender or using a potato masher.
2. Combine mashed bananas with Greek yogurt and eggs. Mix well. 
3. Add in oats, vanilla protein, and baking powder, Mix well. 
4. Spray square muffin ban (a regular circular muffin pan will work as well).
5. Use a 1/4 measuring cup to portion muffins (will equal 12 portions or 12 squares/circles).
6. Add additional ingredients (whatever you would like).
7. Bake on 400 degrees F for 15-20 minutes (depending on the darkness of your pan and how well you oven bakes).

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size: 2 plain squares (no additional ingredients)
Calories: 195
Carbohydrates: 30.5 grams
Sugar: 8 grams
Fat: 3.6 grams
Protein: 12.3 grams
Fiber: 3.7 grams
Cholesterol: 71.7 milligrams
Sodium: 45.3 milligrams

Additional Ingredient Macronutrients
5 grams of milk chocolate chip
Calories: 27
Carbohydrates: 3.3 grams
Fat: 1.3 grams
Protein 0 grams

1 tablespoon of Jiff Natural Low Sodium Peanut Butter
Calories; 95
Carbohydrates: 4 grams
Fat: 8 grams
Protein: 3.5 grams 

Be Happy. Be Healthy!

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Chest Workout

I don't know about you, but I love chest day! Thursday's are my "chest days" and it's a day I look forward to every week! I have seen significant improvement with my lifts and increasing my weights with some of these exercises.

1. Bench Press
--1 set of 10 repetitions easy weight
--1 set of 10 repetitions semi-easy weight
--2 sets of 5 repetitions at medium weight
--1 set of 3 repetitions at heavy weight
--1 set of 2-3 repetitions at difficult heavy weight
2. Cable Crossover
--4 sets of 10-12 repetitions
3. Dumbbell Decline Bench Press
--3 sets of 12 repetitions
4. Smith Machine Incline Bench Press
--2 sets of 10 repetitions at semi-easy weight
--1 set of 10 repetitions at medium weight
--1 set of 10 repetitions at heavy weight
5. Chest Fly 
--4 sets of 10 repetitions
6. Chest Press via Machine
--4 sets of 10-12 repetitions

What do I mean by easy, semi-easy, medium, heavy, and difficult heavy weight? These are from my prospective, not an official standard (just to make it clear). Easy is when you do not need any assistance and lifting light. Example is warming up with the bar. Semi-easy still does not need assistance and you are lifting at what I would consider your starting weight. Medium you still do not need assistance but you are lifting heavier and start feeling the burn more. Heavy is when assistance (spotting) is needed especially for those 1-2 last repetitions. Difficulty heavy is when assistance (spotting) is needed to possibly help lift the bar and to monitor all your lifts.

I'll give you my personal workout on bench press to help make sure you understand.
1. Easy: 1 set of 10 repetitions at 45 pounds (the bar)
2. Semi-Easy: 1 set of 10 repetitions at 95 pounds
3. Medium: 2 sets of 5 repetitions at 115 pounds
4. Heavy: 1 set of 3 repetitions at 125 pounds
5. Difficult Heavy: 1 set of 2-3 repetitions at 135 pounds

I typically do 4-5 of the exercises listed above every Thursday. I switch it up every now and then but I always do bench press and bench press machine. The other 2-3 exercises I switch around to keep it interesting!

I just want to clarify that I am not a personal trainer. The workouts I post are from my own personal experiences and successes. I would recommend for you to consult your personal physician before starting any intense physical activity program. 

Be Happy and Be Healthy!