24 Jul


Everyone feels stressed from time to time. Not all stress is bad. All animals have a stress response, and it can be life-saving. But chronic stress can cause both physical and mental harm.

There are at least three different types of stress:

  • Routine stress related to the pressures of work, family, and other daily responsibilities
  • Stress brought about by a sudden negative change, such as losing a job, divorce, or illness
  • Traumatic stress, which happens when you are in danger of being seriously hurt or killed. Examples include a major accident, war, assault, or a natural disaster. This type of stress can cause post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Different people may feel stress in different ways. Some people experience digestive symptoms. Others may have headaches, sleeplessness, depressed mood, anger, and irritability. People under chronic stress get more frequent and severe viral infections, such as the flu or common cold. Vaccines, such as the flu shot, are less effective for them.

Some people cope with stress more effectively than others. It’s important to know your limits when it comes to stress, so you can avoid more serious health effects.

Article Published by: NIH: National Institute of Mental Health

Relaxation Techniques For Stress

21 Jul


How Relaxation Helps

When you feel stress, your body responds by releasing hormones that increase your blood pressure and raise your heart rate. This is called the stress response.

Relaxation techniques can help your body relax and lower your blood pressure and heart rate. This is called a relaxation response. There are several exercises you can try. See which ones work best for you.

Deep Breathing

One of the simplest ways to relax is by practicing deep breathing. You can do deep breathing almost anywhere.

  • Sit still or lie down and place one hand on your stomach. Put your other hand over your heart.
  • Inhale slowly until you feel your stomach rise.
  • Hold your breath for a moment.
  • Exhale slowly, feeling your stomach fall


Article Published by: MedlinePlus

3 Phase Race Recovery

2 Jun

Runner Exercise Run Fitness AthleteRecovering from a race is a critical component to a proper training, a component runners often neglect. Our 3 phase recovery plan will help decreases your risk for injury and get you running comfortably again quicker.

Phase 1, immediately after race
– Quick calories: Carbs and protein will help repair your muscle damage while the fruit will give you a boost of vitamin c and antioxidants to help fight off any damage to your immune system.
– Change into dry clothes: Even on the warmest day, runners find themselves cold after their race. Bring an extra set of warm comfortable clothes to change into.
– Muscle recovery: Stretch your body out using a foam roller or muscle stick. You also may want to consider getting in an ice bath.

Phase 2, the rest of the day
– Fuel up: Eat a balanced meal with carbs, proteins and vegetables; and keep hydrating!
– Get a good night’s sleep: Try to keep your feet elevated and aim to get at least 8 hours of sleep.

Phase 3, the next day
– Stay active: Take a walk or ride your bike, staying active helps your muscles flush out the toxins.
– Continue muscle recovery: Roll your muscles out as much as possible!

Pre and Post Workout Nutrition

9 May



With weight loss or weight management, exercise and nutrition go hand in hand. If you are beginning a new exercise program, fueling your body before your workout is just as important as refueling after your workout.

Pre-workout meals (1-3 hours before) should give you quick and sustainable energy to get you through the exercises. How much and what you need depends on your exercise plan, however it is necessary to focus on quality carbohydrate and protein sources.

More importantly, is the post-workout refueling phase. Both quality carbohydrates (fruit, whole grains, vegetables) and lean protein sources help restore lost nutrients. Again, what you need to eat is dependent on the intensity of your workout. More intense workouts will require more refueling for your muscles.

This helpful link talks about both more in depth and has tasty, healthy snack and meal ideas:

Tired All The Time?

2 May
Screen Shot 2017-04-26 at 8.51.48 AM
Tired all the time? Did you know by Doing More, you’ll feel more energized and less stressed?
My Do More List:
– Take a walking meeting
– Work out on your lunch hour
– Join a gym
– Wear your fitbit activity tracker and get 10,000 steps a day
– Do jumping jacks and sit ups during commercials
– Spend a few minutes a day thinking positive thoughts about your future
– Go to a farmers market for fresh produce
– Invite a neighbor to take a bike ride with you
– Cook healthy tonight
– Stay hydrated with H2O
– Start a hobby
– Sign up for an athletic event
By Doing More, you’ll see your energy back and your stress levels down.

HAWA Challenge

24 Apr


HAWA Members, the HAWA Team challenges you to submit pictures of the healthy, balanced meals you make all week. You may post to the HAWA U Facebook page or email your pictures to We will feature the winning picture in the June Newsletter and HAWA U blog post. Please feature healthy portion sized meals. We have a special prize for the winning picture. Winner will be announced this Friday!

Exercise Clothing and Shoes

20 Apr


When exercising, what you wear can be just as important as what you do. Having the right footwear and clothing for your sport can give you both comfort and safety.

Thinking about where and how you exercise can help you choose the best clothing and shoes for your workouts. You can find many of the items you need at your local sporting goods, department, or discount stores.

Exercise Clothing Basics

When choosing exercise clothing, consider both fabric and fit.


You can enjoy longer workouts and avoid overheating or getting too cold by choosing the right fabrics.

To help you stay comfortable and dry, choose fabrics that pull sweat away from your skin and dry quickly. Many quick-drying fabrics are synthetic, made of polyester or polypropylene. Look for terms like moisture-wicking, Dri-fit, Coolmax, or Supplex. Wool is also a good choice to keep you cool, dry, and naturally odor-free. Some workout clothing is made with special antimicrobial solutions to combat odor from sweat.

Socks also come in quick-drying fabrics that absorb sweat. They can help you stay cool and dry, and avoid blisters. Choose socks made with a polyester blend or other special fabric.

In general, it is best to avoid cotton. Cotton absorbs sweat and does not dry quickly. And because it stays wet, it can make you cold in cooler weather. In warm weather, it is not as good as synthetic fabrics at keeping you cool and dry if you sweat a lot.


In general, make sure your clothing does not get in the way of your activity. You want to be able to move easily. Clothing should not catch on equipment or slow you down.

You can wear loose-fitting clothing for activities like:

  • Walking
  • Gentle yoga
  • Strength training
  • Basketball

You may want to wear form-fitting, stretchy clothing for activities like:

  • Running
  • Biking
  • Advanced yoga/Pilates
  • Swimming

You may be able to wear a combination of loose and form-fitting clothing. For example, you might wear a moisture-wicking loose t-shirt or tank with form-fitting workout shorts. You can choose what is comfortable to you. Just make sure the material you choose helps pull sweat away from your skin.

Shoes to Match Your Activity

The right shoes can make all the difference between feeling refreshed and having aching feet after your workout. It is worth the extra money you may need to spend for a good quality athletic shoe.

Make sure your shoes fit your activity.

  • For running, buy running shoes. They are light, flexible, and supportive for simple forward strides. Make sure they have good arch support and cushioning for impact. For walking, choose stiffer shoes with good support and thick soles.
  • For strength or CrossFit training, choose training sneakers with good support and rubber soles that are not too bulky.
  • If you are playing a sport like basketball or soccer, get shoes that match your activity.

Every foot is different. You may have wide or narrow feet, low arches, trouble areas, or flat feet. Even in adults, foot size can change, so get fitted every year. Also, you will need to replace shoes when they start to feel uncomfortable or the soles look worn.

Your shoe salesperson can help size and fit you for the right athletic shoes. Many stores will allow you to return shoes if you find they do not work for you.

When Exercising Outside

If it is cold, dress in layers. Wear a fitted layer that wicks sweat away. Add a warmer layer, like a fleece jacket, on top. Wear gloves, a hat, and ear coverings if you need them. Take off the layers as you warm up. If you will be out running or walking, you may want to add a backpack. Then you can take off layers as you heat up, as well as carry a water bottle.

In the rain or wind, wear an outer layer that protects you, like a windbreaker or nylon shell. Look for the words “waterproof” or “water-resistant” on the label. Ideally, this layer should also be breathable.

In the hot sun, wear light-colored clothing that dries fast. You can also buy clothing made to block out the harmful rays of the sun. These clothes come with a sun protection factor (SPF) label.

When exercising in the evening or early morning, make sure your clothing has reflective parts so drivers can see you. You can also wear a reflective belt or vest.

Protect yourself from Lyme disease if you exercise in wooded areas. Wear long sleeves and pants and tuck your pants into your socks. You can also use an insect repellant containing DEET or permethrin.


Article Published by: MedlinePlus