Sharing My Story on Healthline.com
Bulldog Yoga: Anywhere. Anytime.
I am always challenging my body through dance, cycling, lifting, tennis, hiking, running, boxing…the list goes on. Through it all, yoga is the glue that keeps this body together. Because I am running around this crazy city, hopping on planes and spending long hours on set, over the past few months I’ve really grown to love my online yoga. My class, teacher and an amazing playlist come to me anywhere, anytime.
My online platform of choice is Bulldog Yoga. It’s a fitness focused flow with energizing music and blood pumping moves. Instead of watching an instructor demonstrate the flow, Bulldog films an entire room full of yogis of all levels. Because you’re watching people just like you on camera, the practice feels loose and approachable. Some students nail every position while others fall and get back right up. From what I can tell, there are no reshoots or do-overs which makes me feel like I too am in the room and putting in the work to be #BULLDOGSTRONG.
Bulldog has 4 different categories of classes to choose from depending on what mood you’re in.
Activate, Invigorate, Exhilarate and Bulldog Bites.
“Activate allows you to work your entire body in a dynamic ‘slow flow’ class.” The music is calm but still full of energy, think Coldplay with a splash of Chainsmokers. This is what Bulldog considers their classic flow. Good for anytime of day, any time of mood.
These classes are a full body workout. Invigorate is “ambitious, stimulating and pretty darn aerobic”. I love to take these classes first thing in the morning. The flow heats up my day, but doesn’t wipe me out. You’ll flow to classic bulldog music mixes with heavy hitters like Britney, Justin and Queen Bey.
Exhilarate is the toughest of all 4 categories as Bulldog dials up the cardio and give you an option to incorporate a resistance band for an added strength challenge. I love the Gwen Stefani themed class!
This is a section I frequent. These classes are quick- anywhere from 12 to 30 minutes. There offer body specific classes like “Core On The Floor” or “Hips and Hammies” which I love to tack onto other workouts. There are Bulldog Basics for beginners or yogis who want to get a refresher on form and flow.
Want to be #BULLDOGSTRONG too?
I love to share the love when it comes to things I stand behind.
Use code “meagankong15” for 15% off in additional to the standard 20% off your first purchase at bulldogonline.
Part injury prevention and rehabilitation, part fully body workout. Whether you’re injured or in peak condition, Sugarfoot Therapy is a challenge. My physical therapist Nick Cutri and his wife (and fellow dancer/choreographer) Katie Schaar created SFT to disrupt dancer’s bad movement habits. While dancers look and move like superheroes, they often develop movement patterns that stress and damage tissue overtime. SFT was integral in rehabilitating my torn shoulder(s) and continues to strengthen my body as a whole today.
But Sugarfoot Therapy is not just for dancers, I’ll let them explain:
Where did the idea for Sugarfoot Therapy come from?
I (Nick) had been treating several dancers in the PT clinic, rehabbing existing injuries. Every time I went to discharge a dancer patient, they would express that although their injury was fully healed, they wished they could keep coming to PT…they had never felt stronger in their bodies…they wished somebody had taught them these types of therapeutic exercises much earlier in their lives.
We did some research and realized that there were very limited resources for dancers in terms of science-based conditioning and injury prevention training. While many athletic programs have well-developed strength and conditioning programs, dance was in need of a program that bridges the gap between up-to-date kinesiology and physical therapy practices and dance technique. We decided to put a program online so that it could be a universal resource for the dance community.
Through our website, any dancer or dance teacher in the world can instantly access clinically proven exercises and workouts. A home exercise program is a huge part of the Physical Therapy process. With Sugarfoot Therapy, we have created a library of our evidence-based exercises…used by my patients, dancers and dance teachers worldwide, as well as by other Physical Therapists.
What does a typical workout look like?
I am a specialist in Functional Science; it is at the core of my practice as a Physical Therapist. With Sugarfoot Therapy, we merge functional exercise with dance-relevant movement. Our workouts always begin with dynamic mobility and neuromuscular activation exercises and then progress to strength and stability work.
Many orthopedic dance injuries are overuse injuries caused by a repeated dysfunctional movement pattern that places continued stress on a tissue over a period of time. The only way to fix the problem is through a process of movement re-education…and this takes repetition and practice. SFT exercises first retrain the neuromuscular system with functional exercises, and then we advance the exercise into more extreme dance-relevant positions…such as external hip rotation and demi point. This way the movement re-education translates into actual dancing.
Your routines seem to stress hip stability. So what exactly is hip stability?
Hip stability is having the neuromuscular activation and muscular strength to control the hip joint through its entire range of motion…during push off, during landing, while standing on one leg and kicking the other, etc.
…why is it so important?
The hips are the center point of the body, so if the hips are unstable it can cause a chain reaction of problems throughout the body…both above the hips and below the hips. Dancers often have tremendous mobility in their hips…not meaning that the muscles around the hips are extremely flexible, but that the hip joint itself has a huge range of motion. This is how dancers are able to create the gorgeous lines and shapes they are known for. The problem is many dancers lack the functional strength to control all of that range of motion. And instead of taking the impact of their expansive and explosive movements into the big structurally stable hip joint with it’s big powerful musculature, they take the impact into the soft tissue surrounding the hips.
Furthermore, one cannot adequately control their hip mobility, that instability often trickles down through the femur and affects the knee…which can then continue down and affect the ankles and feet. Over time this can wreak havoc on the connective tissue in the hips, knees, and lower back. A large number of injuries can be traced back to instability in the hips. So with SFT, we focus heavily on creating mobile stability in the hips, and how that mobility and stability integrates into the function of the body’s movement chain.
Can non-dancers benefit from the SFT Routines?
Yes! I prescribe SFT routines to non-dancers all the time. The main focus of our exercise routines is to improve your body’s functional biomechanics. This is something that benefits all bodies and can help us to live sustainable active lives, while reducing the occurrence of pain and inflammation caused by dysfunctional movement patterns.
How would someone who is new to fitness with less body awareness, know if they’re doing SFT right?
We teach our program with a lot of joint alignment cues. For example, “Your toes should be pointing straight forward and as your knee bends it should track straight forward over your second toe.” With our emphasis on hip stability, you will feel a great deal of glute activation…so sore booties are common! Also keep in mind that you should never experience joint pain with SFT. At the end of a workout, you will feel both strong and flexible.
Would you consider a SFT Routine a complete workout?
Absolutely. Many of our workouts focus on a specific joint or movement principal (e.g. SFT Ankle Stability Circuit, SFT Jumps, SFT Knee Stability Circuit), but every workout works the entire body. For example, if you are looking to strengthen your ankles and prevent future ankle sprains…the only way to actually develop functional ankle stability is to work on the ankle with all of the other moving parts in a full body workout.
Outside of SFT, how do you two workout?
Nick: We go on a lot of hikes/walks/jogs pushing our 18 month old son in a stroller! I workout at the PT clinic at the end of my work day…usually a 45-60 minute circuit workout of functional exercises and traditional weight lifting. My focus is always trying to create movement authenticity by incorporating 3 dimensional movement into my program design.
Katie: Dancing/choreographing professionally is a lot of my workout. I teach SFT classes weekly and perform the circuits regularly. But I love how my body feels with a variety of training…yoga, Pop Physique, running, aerial silks training.
Check out Sugarfoot Therapy for yourself! Click here.
Wanderlust 108 Santa Monica
I wanted to share some highlights from this year’s Wanderlust 108 on Santa Monica Pier! This was my second year attending the mindful triathlon and per-usual, it did not disappoint. The morning started with a 5K beach run followed by yoga with Chelsey Korus and meditation with Joanna Harper. Nothing like a long day in the sun, laughing, flowing and dancing with hundreds of your closest friends. I was excited to be outfitted in the new Adidas x Wanderlust co-branded apparel. The strappy back made for an awesome tan line 🙂
photos: Adidas ///
Refinery29 x Adidas Greater Every Run Event
I recently had the pleasure of hosting some runs at an event involving two of my favorite companies: Refinery29 and Adidas. It was all to continue the celebration of the release of Adidas Running’s latest shoe created specifically for the female foot- the UltraBoostX. I’ve spent a lot of time in these shoes the past few months and I love them. The shoe’s floating arch, boost sole and primeknit upper hug my foot like glue to keep up with my every move.
The event took place in Santa Monica, California in front of the gorgeous adidas 3rd St Promenade store. There were 3 runs throughout the day- 1 and 2 miles led by Remi Ishizuka and myself and a 3 mile led by my girls Diana Mireles and Mellie Cay. These three ladies have been at my side since I started sharing my fitness journey last year so this was an especially exciting combination of women 🙂
Throughout the day there were insane performances by treadmill dancers who were once on America’s Got Talent. As a professional dancer, I tip my hats to those ladies turning, leaping and jumping all while in perfect unison on a moving belt! Juice Served Here poured delicious runner themed pressed juices and attendees were able to try on the Ultra Boost X and enter a raffle for an Adidas gift card. Adidas swag, Rx bars and tunes from DJ Lola Langusta kept the energy flowing all afternoon.
Despite the classic ocean-fogged weather, I met SO many new faces full of energy, eager to become #GreaterEveryRun. Thank you to Adidas Running and Refinery 29 for having me be apart of such an inspiring afternoon and thank you to all of my friends new and old for coming out!
BodyBoss Method 12 Week Fitness Guide Review
I am lucky enough to try new workouts on the regular. Some are trendy, shiny and gimmicky… others like BodyBoss Method, let the work do the talking. It’s a straight forward, 12 week fitness guide that uses High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) as the basis to reshaping your body.
BodyBoss explains, “The HIIT technique involves repeated bursts of brief, intense anaerobic exercise performed at maximum effort, alternated with short periods of recovery.” BodyBoss HIIT days consist of 7-8 exercises done for 7-8 minutes and repeated for 3 rounds. This is a total workout time of 24 minutes. When you complete your workout, you continue to burn calories as your body recovers. This is called afterburn or the #BossEffect.
A typical week with BodyBoss looks like this:
Your workout week begins with Legs and Booty HIIT.
My favorite BodyBoss Leg and Booty exercise is the squat with side kick. You kill two birds with one stone lifting your ass while kicking out your aggression.
With your feet slightly wider than shoulder distance apart, do a squat without letting your knees go beyond your toes. Try to lower yourself back until your thighs are parallel to the ground.
Dig your heels into the ground and press back to vertical, shifting your weight to your left leg. Kick your right foot as if you’re busting through a doorway with your heel. Return to squat and repeat.
Tuesdays are about keeping the train in motion with some light exercise. The BodyBoss schedule reads my body’s mind and creates peaks and valleys in the week so you don’t get burned out. Bike, swim, go for a walk or take yoga.
Arms, Abs and Core HIIT days are Wednesday. I find that working my core always re-energizes my body so hump day is the perfect day for this session. I love V Sit Ups because they’re simple and there are so many variations to challenge yourself.
Start on your back with your feet and shoulders hovering above the ground,
Exhale while you engage your ab wall to lift your upper body towards your lower body. You can keep your legs bent, straight or even twist to either side to work your obliques.
Thursdays are for Cardio. I use these days as opportunities to make a fit date. Running, hiking, cycling and group classes are always more fun with with partner.
Fridays are the big finale. Total Body HIIT days. These days you rotate between only 4 exercises that usually correlate with what you did on Monday and Wednesday. These days usually require less reps but more energy and explosiveness from you. The BodyBoss book says, “Think of it as your Friday super power session!”
My favorite BossBody exercise for Full Body days is the Aeroplane Push Up. A plank alone is a great way to engaged your full body, but with a twist and push up added on you’ll be the best kind of dead by rep 12.
From plank position, lower your upper body towards the ground.
Push your arms straight and shift your body weight onto your right hand. Lift your left elbow towards the sky, opening your body outward.
Extend your arm and focus to the sky to form a straight line. Return to starting position and repeat on the left.
My thoughts on BodyBoss
Amazing for Beginners. This book teaches you how to work out. Not only does it tell you what to do, it tells you how to do it. The back of the book has a full glossary of how to do the most basic to advanced moves. For someone just beginning their fitness journey who may never have done a squat in their life, they have a 4 week pre-training program to ease you into the motion before fully committing to the 12 week plan.
Amazing for hardcore fitness fanatics. There is an option to increase the intensity of every exercise in the book. Adding weights, ankle weights, stairs etc, takes each exercise to the next level.
BodyBoss budgets time for stretching. I also love that the book budgets time within the workout for stretching. Long, lean bodies are created by working the muscle then stretching it. Even as a dancer, I take stretching for granted. The Body Boss stretches are simple, but seeing them on the page makes stretching before and after your workout a no brainer.
Option to pick and choose. BodyBoss is effective whether or not you are following their 12 week plan. I love to workout at home or while I travel, but I often spend just as much time thinking of exercises as I spend actually doing them. The Body Boss book gives me a roadmap for my workout, wherever I am in the world.
You can travel with it. Many people skip workouts when they travel because they are away from their local fitness classes, regular running routes, or usual gym equipment. BodyBoss HIIT days require nothing else but the book. I like to take photos of the pages I’ll need while away so all I don’t need to pack anything extra at all!
-20% CODE: MEAGANBB
Good through May 2017 via link above. I make no profit on this, but let me know if you purchase and try!
Protein Packed Turkey Chili
I don’t permanently count anything out of my diet BUT, when preparing food at home I like to make it as lean and clean as possible. One of the easiest ways to do this is with your choice of protein. Many people think that eating lean means weighing your portions and force-feeding yourself unseasoned, unsalted baked or boiled chicken breast for breakfast lunch and dinner. Let me tell you first hand, we are better than boiled chicken. To keep my at home diet interesting, I opt for the ever versatile, California grown Foster Farms Organic (97% lean) Ground Turkey. I love to sub ground turkey into any recipe that calls for ground beef. Burgers, meatballs, tacos, lettuce cups, casseroles, pasta sauce and my favorite, chili.
Compare 4oz of Foster Farms Organic Ground Turkey to 4oz of normal Ground Beef Chuck and the stats look like this:
Calories – 160 FF Turkey vs 270 Chuck
Total Fat – 9g FF Turkey vs 21g Chuck
Protein – 22g FF Turkey vs 20g Chuck
If the nutritional stats didn’t already win me over, the USDA Organic certified standards Foster Farms adheres drives it home. Their land is farmed without pesticides, herbicides or fertilizers. Their turkeys are fed an organic, all-natural and vegetarian diet. No GMOs, antibiotics or growth hormones. I encourage you to trade your protein in for turkey and start with my moms chili recipe below:
Protein Packed Turkey Chili
My mom has made this chili recipe with soft tofu for years… I upped the protein with ground turkey. A key ingredient for this chili is the blackstrap molasses. Blackstrap molasses is high in magnesium, potassium, iron and it has a low glycemic rate so it adds a little sweetness without spiking your blood sugar.
Of course turkey chili is amazing with the classic toppings, but I love using it for nachos and healthified huevos rancheros (chili and eggs) topped with a dollop of plain greek yogurt and a few tortilla chips.
- 1 package Foster Farms Organic Ground Turkey
- 1/2 salt
- 1/4 pepper
- 1/2 chili
- 3 T blackstrap molasses
- 4 cans stewed and seasoned tomatoes
- 1 can black beans
- 2 cans kidney beans
- 1/2 onion diced
- 1 red pepper diced
Dice and sauté onion and red pepper with olive oil until soft (3 min)
Add ground turkey, 1/4 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp pepper
Break apart turkey with wooden spoon or spatula until cooked/slightly browned
Add all cans of stewed tomatoes, 3T molasses, 1/4 tsp salt and 1/2 tsp chili
Simmer for 5 – 10 min
Open and rinse beans. Be sure to shake the excess water out of the colander
Simmer for 10-15 min – simmer longer for a thicker chili but remember that chili is always thicker as leftovers
Motivated by MaraNatha
Let me fess up to a few neurotic habits I’ve committed to while I was on a health kick — Preparing all my food without oil or salt. Bringing my own meals to parties. Eliminating fruit except apples and berries. Counting my almonds. I was borderline insane and 100% not living life. Eating food that is delicious and more importantly satisfying around the clock is what keeps my on track today. Nut butters give you that fatty satisfaction and protein to keep you full. I am thrilled to partner with Mara Natha to share how nut butters are easy to travel with, quick to fill you up and satisfy both your sweet and savory cravings. Here are my favorite MaraNatha recipes that keep me motivated throughout the day.
Almond Swirl Overnight Oats
Most mornings I barley have time to brush my hair and let’s be honest, a lot of these healthy breakfast bowls and smoothies require so many dang ingredients it’s just too much to think about while running out the door. My go to for a busy week is throwing together a couple jars of almond butter swirl overnight oats on a Sunday night. You can add fruit, jam, chocolate, protein powder, the list goes on make them but here are the basics, no measuring involved!
Spoon MaraNatha almond butter blobs into jar
Fill HALF the jar with oats (I mix steel cut oats and rolled oats for a variety in texture)
Sprinkle a some chia seeds and cinnamon on top of oats
Drizzle some maple syrup or favorite sweetener
Fill the jar with your favorite milk (I use almond)
Screw lid tight and shake to mix oats and swirl almond butter
Refrigerate a few hours or overnight
Cinnamon Almond Butter Dip
I’m sure I’m not the only one who likes to eat nut butter by the spoonful and dip anything from apples to pretzels to fig newtons right into the jar. To slow my roll on polishing off an entire jar in one sitting I mix coconut milk (thicker dip) or almond milk (thinner dip).
Blend 1 part milk of choice to 1 part MaraNatha almond butter + cinnamon ( + sweetener as you’d like ). The photo was 1/4 cup almond butter and 1/4 cup coconut milk (from the can)
10 Second Energy Bites
Easier than making powerballs and cleaner than eating a packaged protein bar, these energy bites take 10 seconds tops to throw together. In a pinch or before I work out I grab a pitted date, smear some MaraNatha almond butter on it and sprinkle bee pollen on top. The date gives you the natural sugar, almond butter protein and fat, and bee pollen for B vitamins!
Almond Tahini Pad Thai
After a long day, these is a recipe for me to look forward to – Here is a fresh twist on Pad Thai. In these photos I used brown rice Pad Thai noodles, but I’ve also made the dish with kelp noodles, zucchini noodles, and a no noodle version served on top of brown rice. It’s really about the almond tahini sauce- make it as thin or thick as you want by varying the amount of water you add. Also, feel free to add less spice, but do make up for it by adding soy sauce or else your Pad Thai will reside in bland land 🙂
Make the sauce
- 1/4 cup MaraNatha almond butter (crunchy or smooth)
- 3 tsp Sriracha
- 1 T Tahini
- 1 tsp ginger – either graded fresh or I use a jarred for convenience
- 3/4 cup water
Boil a pot of water for your brown rice pad Thai noodles, rice or any other grain. Prepare as advised on packaging.
Slice your favorite veggies so they’re similar in size – I used spiralized zucchini, mushrooms, peppers, broccoli and broccoli slaw.
Heat vegetable oil or coconut oil and 1 clove of garlic minced. Sautee veggies until soft.
Add protein and noodles to cooked veggies. To save time, I buy a rotisserie chicken (no salt option is best), shred the meat. For a vegetarian/vegan version, add cubed tofu.
Remove from heat and add sauce, stir
Top with the juice from 1/2 to 1 whole lime, slivered almonds and cilantro
The Power of Protein – Tart Cherry Superfood Smoothie
Everyone is always harping on about protein intake. We know it keeps you feeling full and your muscles feeling strong, but why is that? Turns out, like all things in life it’s not that complicated. Protein literally passes through your body (a.k.a. metabolizes) at a slower pace than fat or carbs. This is why a protein heavy choice keeps your energy up and your cravings at bay (hopefully) longer than a gorgeous pastry or cream cheese smeared bagel. That being said, protein is not stored in the body which is why we need to eat it on the regular– at least 0.8g of protein per kilogram of bodyweight per day. I am 5’7 and 135 lbs (61.23 kilograms) which means I should eat about 49 grams of protein per day. However, athletes and the super active should eat more. For young women that’s 15-23 grams of protein post workout. When I am in peak shape, I’m eating 20 grams of protein per meal (60g/day). A typical day looks like this: shake in the morning, eggs, egg whites, beans or quinoa at lunch, and chicken breast or turkey burgers for dinner.
The morning is often the most difficult time to get protein in, especially after a sweat sesh and before work. This post-workout shake will help soothe your muscles, replenish your strength, and sustain your energy well into lunchtime with 3 key ingredients:
OLLY Super Foods Smoothie Mix –
I have long embraced plant based protein over whey (dairy) which is why I love this OLLY Super Foods Smoothie. I consider dairy a gateway drug: with cheese comes bread, with milk come cookies. OLLY protein is a blend of pea, golden chiorella and flax. Unlike other vegan proteins like rice or soy, pea based proteins are considered “complete” meaning it contains all nine essential amino acids. The Super Foods blend has two serves of fruit & veggies with 6 different super foods which is great when I’m super crunched on time I can shake it up with almond milk and run out the door.
Bok Choy- Chinese Cabbage
Like broccoli, cauliflower and brussel sprouts, bok choy is a crucifer. Its leaves and stems are soft and fully edible. It’s great in stir fry, salads and soups, but not often forgotten when it comes to smoothies. Bok choy is high in antioxidants, vitamin K and omega-3s which help reduce muscle inflammation – key for post workout fatigued and sore muscles.
Tart Cherry Juice
I’ve long heard about runners drinking tart cherry juice to expedite muscle recovery. An Oregon Health and Science study found that runners who drank tart cherry juice immediately after a run, had 23% less pain than those who didn’t. However you’re sweating, unsweetened, 100% cherry juice is packed with antioxidants and potassium both major contributors to soothing your worn and torn muscles.
Tart Cherry Super Food Smoothie
2 scoops OLLY Super Foods Smoothie Mix
2 Bok Choy leaves and stems
½ cup Tart Cherry Juice (unsweetened)
½ cup Milk or Nutmilk (I used Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk )
5-6 Frozen Strawberries
½ Frozen Banana
1 Tablespoon Almond Butter
This post is in partnership with OLLY however the views are all my own!
SOCCA: Chickpea Pancakes
I woke up missing the south of France! I once lived in Monaco for 4 months and would go to Nice to eat my favorite street food: SOCCA. Made from chickpea flour, socca is naturally gluten free, vegan and has a bit of protein. Traditionally you’d eat socca plain, but I like to top it with anything I’m craving to make a pizza/crepe like meal. In the photo below I went with wilted arugula, spicy chicken sausage and sautéed onion and red peppers.
Combine and mix all ingredients well in large bowl. Coat a hot non-stick pan with oil. Pour 1/4 cup batter into pan and shift it around until it thinly covers the entire base of the pan evenly. Cook for 3 min and flip-the edges should be crispy. Drizzle with oil (I use flax) and salt and pepper.
Yields 4-5 pancakes
- 2 cups chickpea flour
- 2 cups water
- 1/2 teaspoon Salt
- 1/2 teaspoon Pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon Cumin
Almond Butter Berry Bowl
In my last blog entry I discuss some brain boosting foods that help you focus fast and sustain your energy throughout the day.
Here is my absolute favorite food for thought, an Almond Butter Berry Bowl. I originally created this bowl for an article on SimonSAID, but am so obsessed with it I had to share it here. Unpeel and freeze bananas in a plastic bag or Tupperware in advance. Using frozen opposed to fresh banana and berries will create the thick, satisfying smoothie bowl you are hoping for. Combine all ingredients and blend until smooth. My favorite post workout meal to date!
1 Cup Frozen Mixed Berries
1/2 Frozen Banana (I always keep peeled and bananas in a Ziplock in my freezer!)
1 Scoop Protein Powder
1 T Almond Butter
1 T Chia Seeds
3/4 cup Unsweetened Vanilla Almond milk (1/2 cup for even thicker bowls)
Top with your favorite brain foods— I used dark chocolate, blueberries, whole grain granola and shredded coconut.
Brain Boosting Foods to Help You Focus
These days your mind is at a constant tug of war with so many worlds. While you can’t tell the world to stop spinning, you can take control by feeding your brain with the nutrients it craves. Using food as fuel you can funnel your focus, harness a sense of control and turn your mind into an ally. While a venti triple dirty chai sounds like the perfect pick me up to focus fast, you risk a heavy crash. Whether for a meal or on the go, nutrient dense foods with a balance of healthy fats, carbohydrates and protein will sustain your energy level when you need it most.
In creating this balance, there are certain foods you can incorporate that contain especially powerful brain boosting properties:
Flavonoids are an important component of berries. Not only do the flavonoids give the berries their gorgeous color, they feed the hippocampus which is the portion of your brain responsible for memory and learning. Their antioxidant and anti-inflammatory power helps your blood flow through your body and to your brain without inhibition.
Like coffee, dark chocolate is a natural stimulant but has a fraction of the caffeine so you can get a boost, but avoid the crash. 1 ounce of dark chocolate (5-6 squares) contains ¼ of the caffeine in an 8 ounce cup of coffee. Like berries, dark chocolate contains flavonols and antioxidants which can do the work so your attention span doesn’t have to.
Probiotic foods like yogurt, kefir and kimchee help balance the bacteria in your gut referred to as your gut microbiome. “The key to optimizing our cognitive and physical health lies in the health of our gut. When we feed our gut a healthy diet we are truly fueling maximum health,” explains Bruce Lowell MD of Lowell Metabolics.
The benefit of eating your greens is no new news but, recent studies link the consumption of 2 cups of greens per day with a lower level of cognitive decline*. Greens such as spinach, kale and swiss chard are loaded with Vitamin A, and folic acid which has been shown to improve mental clarity.
Nuts and Seeds
Nuts and seeds are especially high in good fat and vitamin E. Both properties help keep your heart healthy and brain functioning properly, increasing focus and concentration.
Click here for my favorite food for thought… an almond butter berry smoothie bowl!
Hi guys! I’m Meagan. I am a professional dancer based in Los Angeles, by way of Minneapolis. Using my body for a living is both a blessing and a curse. It’s great because I get to be active and live out a childhood dream. It sucks because I never know when I’ll get the call that I booked the job, dancing in a white bikini, on television, for example. *Actually happened
In situations like this, I used to call 911 and do quick fix crash diets, take water pills, weigh my food, do insane three a day workouts or hot yoga challenges to get it together stat. Problem is, I would end up looking like a raisin and having no energy to do the job I was hired for.
I consider these hardcore yo-yo diet and exercise years, research. I’ve learned what aspects of each extreme method my body and brain respond to. I’ve taken these bits of information and wove them into a manageable way of living. I am here to share what I eat and how I move so maybe #youkongdoit too.