Trouble Sleeping Through the Night? 5 Tips for Better Sleep

May 16, 2017

Are you resigned to not sleeping through the night?

Are you feeling exhausted or “running on stress hormones” all day?

Do not fear, I have some great tips (and an amazing recipe) for you!

The science of sleep is fascinating, complicated and growing.

Sleep is something we all do every day and yet we’re just beginning to understand all of the ways it helps us and all of the factors that can affect it.

Lack of sleep affects just about everything in your body and mind.  People who get less sleep tend to be at higher risk for so many health issues like diabetes, heart disease, and certain types of cancer; not to mention effects like slower metabolism, weight gain, hormone imbalance, and inflammation.  And don’t forget the impact lack of sleep can have on moods, memory and decision-making skills.

Do you know that lack of sleep may even negate the health benefits of your exercise program?

What are the three main purposes of sleep?

  • To restore our body and mind.  Our bodies repair, grow and even “detoxify”

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Posted in Health/Fitness by Mari Pizarro
May 9, 2017

Yes, we’re talking testosterone.  That muscle-building hormone.  But I’m not going to recommend that you take any anabolic steroid hormones or anything like that. I am going to give you two solid tips on how you can boost your testosterone levels naturally with two natural supplements.

Tip #1: Get enough zinc

Zinc is an essential mineral that helps with a number of processes in your body (it helps over 300 enzymes).  Zinc helps your immune system, helps to produce critical proteins and DNA, and also helps with wound healing.  Enough zinc is necessary to maintain healthy skin and for optimal ability to taste and smell.  Zinc is an antioxidant and can be supplemented to support optimal levels of testosterone because it helps the enzymes that converts cholesterol into testosterone. Good sources of zinc include egg yolks, and shellfish but also plants can provide zinc such as beans and nuts.  The best dietary source of zinc are oysters. The daily recommended dose of zinc for men is 11 mg/day (for women it’s 8 mg/day).  Low zinc levels are rare but tend to occur in athletes, vegans and people who sweat a lot (zinc is lost in sweat).  And low zinc levels have been l

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Posted in Health/Fitness, Recipes by Mari Pizarro
May 2, 2017

Oh my gosh – nutrition and diet info is everywhere! And each expert and association tries to lead you in their direction because they know best and their advice is going to help you.  Right? Well, maybe… Everyone has heard (and maybe lived through) the intense focus on how much you eat. This has gotten way too much attention because while this does affect your weight and energy level, it’s certainly not the “holy grail” of health. Let’s focus a bit more on the often overlooked (and proven) benefits of what you eat and drink and how you eat and drink it. What you eat and drink The “calories in, calories out” philosophy (i.e. how much you eat) is being drowned out with research on other factors that may be just as important.  Don’t get me wrong limiting the amount of what you eat can certainly help you lose some weight but that’s simply not the only factor for long-term health and maximu

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Posted in Health/Fitness, Healthy Tricks, Recipes by Mari Pizarro
April 25, 2017

This word “metabolism” is thrown around a lot these days.  What it really means is that your metabolic rate technically describes all of the biochemical reactions in your body.  It’s how you take in nutrients and oxygen and use them to fuel everything you do. You know that if your metabolic rate is too slow you might gain weight easily and perhaps lack energy throughout the day. But what exactly does this all mean? Your body has an incredible ability to grow, heal, and generally stay alive.  And without this amazing biochemistry you would not be possible. Metabolism includes how the cells in your body:

  • Allow activities you can control (e.g. physical activity, etc.).
  • Allow activities you can’t control (e.g. heartbeat, wound healing, processing of nutrients & toxins, etc.).
  • Allow storage of excess energy for later.

So when you put all of these processes together into a system, let’s call it metabolism, it’s easy to imagine that these can work too quickly, too slowly, or just right. Which brings us to the definition of “metabolism”. Metabolism or metabolic rate: This is how fast this system works and is measured in calories (yup, those calories!). The calories you eat can go to one of three places:

  • Work (i.e. exercise and other activity).
  • Heat (i.e. from all

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Posted in Health/Fitness, Healthy Tricks, Recipes by Mari Pizarro
December 20, 2016

If you tend to gain weight during the holidays, you are not alone. Studies show that on average we gain 1.5 pounds over the 8-week period just before Thanksgiving through New Year’s Day. This might not sound like a lot but the problem is that we don’t usually lose this weight once we’ve gained it. That can add up to 15 pounds in a decade or more! This doesn’t have to be your reality and it certainly won’t be mine.  Let me share a few proven ideas with you. I give you Mari’s Personal Top 10 Tips to Stay Trim During the Holidays (or at least to avoid gaining weight).

  1. PLEASE do not try to start a weight loss program during this time. I’ve done this more than once in the past only to fail and resent myself in the end.  This is the time to enjoy, not to count calories.
  2. DO NOT sacrifice your workout routine. Don’t try to convince yourself that because it is the holidays it’s OK not to continue with your movement routine.  Whatever it is you are doing at home or at the gym, keep moving; park your car far from the mall entrance, take the stairs, take a stroll to see the decorations.  Daily movement will keep you focused, energetic, and healthier.
  3. EAT before going to a party or holiday dinner. Avoid arriving famished to a place where unhealthy food will be served.  My favorite hunger-calming foods are a handful of nuts, a

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Posted in Health/Fitness by Mari Pizarro
December 6, 2016

A good friend asked me the other day “Why are you doing a race?  What do you need to prove?  Plus, you know running is not the healthiest form of exercise – especially after 50.” Wow!  Great questions!  I don’t consider myself a runner but running somehow has always been very attractive to me.  It’s the one thing I have never been able to accomplish consistently.  Running doesn’t come easy for me, I’m super slow, my legs feel heavy and it’s not even helping me burn fat.  So why the heck did I sign up for a 13.1-mile race? Here’s the selfish part of my WHY:

  • Running is a challenge for me and it’s also a gift. It’s my gift to myself, to my business, to my family and to my soul.
  • Every time I finish a practice run I feel powerful. When I feel powerful everyone around me benefits.
  • I know that increasing my athletic performance well into my 50’s will inspire others to get moving. It has also inspired my second book.
  • To get into my best shape/performance after 50, I had to improve my diet and lifestyle. I finally had a reason to go 100% plant-based and I’m thriving.  I’m healthier, my body is lighter, I sleep even better, and I have (at a minimum) doubled my energy.

Here is the deeper WHY: I run for all the young single mothers that are battling the trenches to make a good life for their babies, they are

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Posted in Health/Fitness, Mindset by Mari Pizarro
September 20, 2016

Like detox?Detoxs are very popular right now and there are nearly as many detox myths as there are types of detoxs. Below are four detox myths you may have heard. When you hear the word “detox” do you immediately think of all-liquid diets, expensive supplements and short-term deprivation for short-term gains? The truth is, a detox doesn’t have to involve any of the above.

Myth # 1: You won’t enjoy anything you’re eating while on a detox.

While you might have to eliminate certain foods, my approach to detox is to lovingly allow your body to get rid of toxins using wholesome natural foods.  This is not about eating lettuce with a drizzle of olive oil. There are many delicious recipes that can be prepared using healthy ingredients that not only taste amazing, but nourish and help detoxify your body. The best part is, many of them don’t involve any fancy ingredients and can be prepared even by a cooking novice. In fact, my detox participants always discover new foods and recipes that they absolutely love that have become staples in th

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Posted in Health/Fitness by Mari Pizarro
September 13, 2016

The first time I saw an episode of the “The Biggest Loser” back in 2006 I was SO excited about the promise and recall imagining the contestant’s lives completely changing after the show. Being thin will make them happy…right? Or so they say. It has been several years since the show’s debut and there is a lot of controversy in the news that has triggered my curiosity and the “need” to comment in my blog. Let me explain. The show’s purpose was clearly entertainment, as it is any reality/contest type show… but that’s not how it felt. It was motivating and exciting to watch week after week. The camp, the intense workouts, the micro food servings, the screaming, the vomiting, the crying… wait! Oh crap! This show uses the fundamentally stupid concepts of starving your body and working out frenetically, using the scale as a true measure of progress, and worst of all, relying on willpower. None of these techniques are backed by science and all are totally unsustainable. Yet watching these folks and the trainers was so entertaining that we all forgot how dangerous it was (at least I know I did). Fast forward to 2016 and it’s all over the news that a group of researchers followed the winners for six years after they were crowned the Biggest Loser. Now we have factual data of what happens when people follow a ridiculously intense regime like they did. It’s sad. S

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Posted in Health/Fitness by Mari Pizarro