The health benefits of exercise + nutrition are both amazing— no one can argue with that. But did you know that the benefits are amplified when BOTH a part of your regular routine? Yep! No matter what your health or fitness goals are, practicing good nutrition along with regular exercise is important for everyone.
Being active has always been a part of my life. I started running in the third grade in a little before school program, then I did softball for a few years and eventually fell in love with cross country in high school. Since then I have completed 5 marathons, a 50k trail race and I'm training for a 100k trail race this year!
Getting my body moving on a regular basis isn't just about running marathons and collecting race t-shirts (although yes, I do love that!). I also value being able to run, bike, and play with my kids, and love keeping a base level of fitness that allows me to do spontaneous sport-y things like joining a neighborhood softball team. Making sure I get some movement in every day also helps me sleep more soundly, keeps my jeans fitting right, and gives me a mental + emotional boost.
But…I also know that all of these things are affected by the food I eat. I wouldn't be able to keep up with my kids for hours or run a 30+ mile race if I wasn't fueling my body properly. But it also doesn't stop there. What I eat also affects my sleep, mood, and how confident I feel in clothes (Bloating + skinny jeans? No thanks!). Consequently, I can tell that my body feels and looks best when I'm committed to incorporating BOTH exercise + good nutrition into my regular routine.
Ready to combine green smoothies with fitness?
Since I co-founded Simple Green Smoothies, my primary passion has been to teach people how eating lots of whole, nutrient foods (like green smoothies!) can be easy, delicious, and affordable. My love for fitness has been more of a personal passion…until now! This year, I'm dedicated to sharing my love of fitness with the SGS community.
If you're not on board yet, I want you to keep on reading to understand why I'm so passionate about this…
4 REASONS EXERCISE + NUTRITION ARE A MATCH MADE IN HEAVEN
1) Drop those pesky pounds + keep them off
When you're looking to lose weight, experts say that starting with good nutrition should be your #1 priority (and I totally agree!). But moving your body is a great compliment to a healthy diet, especially if you're trying to bust through a plateau or maintain your weight loss. After all, engaging in physical activity influences what your body does with the food you eat. For instance, if you're not getting regular exercise, the protein you eat won't be used to help your muscles grow! And if you're looking to drop a few pounds—having more muscle mass means you burn more calories, even when you're at rest.
2) Get that youthful glow
Exercises increase blood flow, which carries oxygen and nutrients to workings cells in the body (including skin cells!). Combine that with lots of healthy fat, Vitamin E, and fiber in your diet (oh, and wear your sunscreen every day!), and your skin is sure to be vibrant + glowing for years to come.
3) Build strong bones
As you get older, having healthy bones is sooo important. And, no surprise here, taking care of your bones now can help keep you movin' for years to come! Making sure you're getting enough calcium, vitamin K and vitamin D are all important to bone health. You can stock up on these important nutrients with healthy, whole foods, such as leafy greens, white beans, and fatty fash (like tuna and salmon). But did you that exercise can also help you build strong bones? Yep! Weight-bearing activities such as walking or running, dancing, hiking, and weight lifting are all great for strengthening your bones.
4) Emotional well-being + sleep
You may have heard that exercise increases endorphins (the feel-good hormone), can reduce stress, improves memory and can help you sleep better at night. But did you know that the food we eat also affects our emotional well-being + sleep? It sure does. Remember that the food doesn't just fuel our muscles, but also fuels our brain. Eating a mostly whole-food diet may lower your risk of depression, and also affects learning and memory. Plus, steering clear of sugar and caffeine in the late afternoon and evening can help you get a better night's sleep (another important aspect of total health!).