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It’s November. Thanksgiving is around the corner, and our schedules are jam-packed with holiday parties, family gatherings, shopping, traveling, and lots of delicious food. With such hectic schedules, our normal routines and healthy habits often take a backseat.
We asked a dietitian for advice on staying healthy during the holidays. Jenna Werner, a Registered Dietitian, shares her approach (and favorite product!) to maximize the holidays without compromising your health and wellness goals.
When working with clients to create healthy outcomes during the holidays, here’s two key pieces of advice:
The first is to manage stress by sticking to a movement routine. Exercise is a known stress-reducer that releases endorphins, allowing you to ride the high of a workout and stick to your healthy habits all day long.
While the first piece of advice is obvious, the second is my secret weapon. It’s simple–manage your cravings by eating often. When you add in more of the good (healthy snacks), you effectively “crowd out” the bad (e.g., those communal cookies in the office kitchen).
While finding a nutrition regimen that works for you may take time, incorporating foods into your daily routine that are portable, healthy, and delicious doesn’t need to be difficult!
This is why I recommend Après to all my clients. Après is a plant-based protein powerhouse that’s perfect for a light, on-the-go snack, a post-workout pick-me-up, or even a post-holiday party refresher. It’s great year-round, but especially during the holidays.
Protein: Après is packed with 14g of plant protein. As we all know, protein is an important component of every cell in our bodies. It helps with weight maintenance, repairs muscle tissue, and keeps your immune system healthy. You need a high-quality, complete protein in order to get all the benefits. The Après blend of pea, chia, cacao, and hemp protein provides a complete protein source that is easily digestible (bye-bye bloat!). An extra bonus is this blend doesn’t have the chalky taste of some proteins–it’s smooth and creamy and tastes delicious.
Healthy Fats: Fat gets a bad rap, but when it’s from a good source, it can be highly beneficial. Fat also helps keep you fuller longer and creates that creamy and delicious texture. When fat comes in the form of MCTs (medium-chain triglycerides) like in Après, it’s absorbed faster and is thus able to provide quicker acting and longer-lasting energy–meaning no more afternoon crashes after those early morning workouts!
Electrolytes: Losing too many electrolytes can cause an array of symptoms, including brain fog, fatigue, and cramping. Replacing lost water is essential, but replacing your electrolytes (think post-sweat or post-holiday party) is even smarter. Après utilizes a coconut water base, helping you replace fluids and electrolytes in a natural and safe way to keep you sharp and energized.
Regardless of whether you drink Après, or have your own go-to product, you should take in some combination of protein, healthy fats, and electrolytes if you want to feel your best. (I love the product because it's already prepared and easy to take with me, which helps save time on busy days.) Do what works for you!
This holiday season, remember to move and replenish your body to get ahead of stress and cravings, and begin the new year feeling fresh and ready to go! For more holiday tips and nutrition information follow me on Instagram at @happystronghealthyrd.
To say the last year and a half was tough would be an understatement. In fact, it will probably go down as one of the most difficult times for our modern generation. In one of the many social polls we conducted during the pandemic, some of you described this time as a sheer “dumpster fire” or “like stepping on a Lego.” And to be honest, I couldn’t agree more.
Luckily, we’ve been able to get back to some form of normalcy in our lives and wellness routines over the last several months. As vaccines became available to the public, wellness businesses welcomed fitness fanatics, haircut seekers, and massage lovers back to in-person wellness experiences. And thank goodness for that—my roots and horrible posture from working from my bed were both getting wildly out of control. This girl needed a good massage and cupping session stat.
If there’s one thing we learned from the pandemic, it’s that our wellness routines are as personal as they are important. During shelter-at-home, those routines looked a bit different. For many, it meant taking a new approach to the “typical” wellness services we count on—I’m looking at you DIY haircuts, at-home waxing sessions (ouch!), and virtual swerking classes.
Now that we can leave our humble abodes to take advantage of in-person experiences again, the word “wellness” has seemingly taken on a new meaning.
Recently, we conducted another one of our famous social polls to see what wellness means to you, our Mindbody community, now that we're slowly but surely getting back to our regularly scheduled programming. We also tapped some of our most influential Mindbody business owners about the ever-evolving wellness landscape.
Here’s what you all had to say.
According to our annual Mindbody Wellness Index, 60% of Americans say they’re more focused on their health and wellness since COVID. Consumers are now realizing they need to take greater care of themselves to optimize and preserve their health. When we asked you on Instagram how important wellness is, a whopping 98% said it was more important than ever. When it comes to how you’re practicing wellness, though, the answers were all over the board. Many of you pointed to journaling, practicing breathwork, and daily workout routines (cycling and yoga topped the list) as being the activities that help you keep your chill throughout the week.
I’m also happy to report that over 50% said you tend to feel more blessed than stressed on a daily basis—which is more than likely a big improvement. Let’s be honest, a year ago I would’ve bet a billion dollars that 99.9% of us knew no other feeling than anxiety—am I right? But even with the stress in our lives dwindling, many of you are still experiencing burnout at the end of a long work week (guilty!). But instead of succumbing to a bottle of wine for relief (please, that was so 2020), you’re unwinding by going to your favorite workout classes—with hot yoga, barre, and Pilates as your faves.
Let’s be honest, we should credit the business owners in this space for helping us reignite our spark when it comes to our wellness routines, right? Thanks to them, we’ve been inspired to prioritize the activities that help us feel our best. In turn, we thought it’d be interesting to learn what wellness means to them—and how that definition has changed over the past eighteen months.
Here’s what they had to say.
“Wellness is living in balance—mind, body, spirit. Highs and lows. It all ebbs and flows and we can navigate it a bit better when we take time to move, breath and remember who we are, and how we are connected to this big, beautiful world.” - Jess Pierno, Founder, Owner, and Chief Inspiration Officer of Yoga Heights
“Wellness is a true balancing of the mental, physical, and spiritual. It has definitely evolved over the years for me—from something that I just thought was about exercising and eating a healthy diet—to also incorporating balancing and healing internally and spiritually.” - Stefanie Patterson, Owner, Indianapolis Salt Cave and Halotherapy Center
“My sense of wellness has evolved from staying healthy and motivated, mind/body/spirit... to being more gentle with myself, less demanding. Accepting my limitations, taking time for resting, and gaining real clarity about what's important. I care less about what people think of me—difficult as a performer and as a business owner with so many demands on me—and more about getting quiet and tapping into the divine source inside of me that helps me discern my next move. In this way, I know my motives are as pure as possible and I'm not getting distracted—not that I don't make mistakes! Those are necessary, that's how we learn!” - Johanna Krynytzky, Owner, Hip Expressions Belly Dance Studio
“My studio name reminds us that we are constantly evolving. The past 18 months have certainly shown us that! Wellness to me means doing your best on any given day to make sure that you are taking care of yourself as best you can. It leads to resilience. Diet, exercise, sleep, a sense of community, and some form of faith. It all matters. Setbacks happen all the time, and every day is a chance to start again. We strive to be 'cheerleaders' for our clients when we sense that things are coming out of balance in their lives. So many have been with us for 18 years and are friends—they are our community and we all watch out for each other.” - Mo Wolfe, Owner and Founder, Evolution Pilates
I think we can all agree that there isn’t one true definition of wellness anymore. To some of us, it means getting that hot yoga sesh in daily, and to others, it means carving out time to treat ourselves to a massage or manicure. As long as you’re actively pursuing wellness—whatever that means to you—you're on the right track.
Our MO has always been about connecting the world to wellness—a term that's seen a lot of change lately. Whether you’re fully embracing the in-person experience or still delighted by the convenience of practicing at-home wellness, the Mindbody app makes it easy for you to book experiences that help you feel like YOU again.