How to live to be 100+

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CrossFit Chicago Women’s Classes-1 FREE Month!

Are you a person that likes to leave everything on the floor at the gym?  No, not literally, but physically…You push yourself to your max and had one of those workouts were your muscles shake, but you feel so accomplished and proud.

CrossFit Chicago can make this all happen and more!  And they now have Women’s Classes that are held every Monday-Thursday.   These classes are lower impact using mainly body-weight movements focusing on agility and cardio.  Think toned, tight, well conditioned body-but not beefed up.

Need another reason to CrossFit?  CrossFit provides a sense of community, and the support you receive from those around you is second to none.  From those just starting a workout regimen to ex-college athletes, you challenge yourself, and yourself only with the help of trained coaches. 

So why wouldn’t you want to give it a try, especially if it is free for a month?  CrossFit Chicago is generously offering Healthy in Chicago readers 1 MONTH free of CrossFit classes.  Start the new year off right and do one thing a day that scares you-challenge yourself and look good while doing it!

Email info@crossfitchicago.com to sign up today!

 Read more about the CrossFit workout here

Make Your Own Mix and Match Energy Bars

Get instant pep from these easy healthier homemade bars–for only $.19 per serving.

Make your own wholesome, on-the-go snack! Start with this recipe and mix and match to suit your taste using a combination of healthy ingredients in the chart below.

 Work Time: 10 Minutes / Total Time: 55 Minutes + Cooling Time / Servings: 18

 2 c cereal, coarsely chopped
3/4 c roasted unsalted nuts, coarsely chopped
3/4 c dried fruit, coarsely chopped
2 Tbsp whole wheat flour
1/2 c second nut or fruit or an extra (see chart below for quantities), optional
1/3 c sugar, honey, or brown sugar
1/2 tsp salt
2 lg egg whites
1/2 tsp vanilla or almond extract, optional

 1. Heat oven to 300°F. Line 9″ x 9″ baking pan with foil. Oil and flour the foil. (An 8″ x 8″ pan can be used. Just bake 5 to 10 additional minutes.)

 2. Mix cereal, nuts, fruit, flour, and an extra, if using, in large bowl.

 3. Combine sugar and salt in small bowl. Whisk in egg whites and extract, if using. Pour mixture into dry ingredients and stir to combine.

 4. Pat into the prepared pan with moist hands or plastic wrap.

 5. Bake until bars are dry to the touch, 45 minutes to 1 hour, depending on ingredients used. Cool completely.

 Need a little inspiration? Try these tempting combos for a healthy treat.

 Strawberry Fields: Granola, cashews, strawberries, poppy seeds

 Mango Tango: Wheat flakes, pistachios, mangoes, wheat germ

 Perfect Pear: Puffed rice, pistachios, pears, chocolate chips

 Big on Fig: Rice flakes, hazelnuts, figs, apricots

 Peachy Keen: Wheat flakes, almonds, peaches, raisins

 Classic: Granola, peanuts, raisins, chocolate chips

Prevention Magazine, December 2010

Shed Holiday Excess with a Food-Based Cleanse

The New Year is here: are you feeling as healthy and vibrant as you can be?  If your holiday celebrations have left you vowing to turn over a new leaf once and for all, a food-based cleanse may be the perfect solution.

 Weight loss, increased energy, improved sleep, and reduced cravings are all results of detoxing.  If you thought that starvation, strange liquid concoctions, and bulking up on a bevy of pills and supplements were all requirements for cleansing, forget everything you have heard!  Cleansing with food is safe, and perhaps more effective, than drastic, harsh techniques. 

 Ready to get clean?  Bulk up on leafy greens, fresh fruits and vegetables, clean water, and high-quality protein sources.  Focus on eliminating common food irritants such as: processed foods, wheat, dairy, soy, caffeine, and sugar.  Read on for more tricks-of-the trade to set you up for cleansing success. 

 1- Scheduling Smarts: Planning a detox is like planning a vacation; you need to look at your calendar and see when you can take ‘time off’ from food and alcohol indulgences. Chances are you will never have a few weeks free of social commitments and mealtime obligations but be strategic and choose when temptation will be at a minimum. 

 2- Pre-Detoxing:   Sugar and caffeine are the two culprits that cause the most withdrawal symptoms.  If you are particularly sugar or caffeine dependent, try to wean off the stimulants fully before starting to cleanse.  A sugar and caffeine-free diet help to keep cravings in check, energy levels up, and will make the removal of other ‘favorite’ foods much easier and less tempting. 

 3- Kitchen Cleanout: To make your cleansing plan easier to stick to, give your refrigerator and pantry a makeover.  Get rid of the foods that tempt you.  Do you like to mindlessly munch on candy after dinner?  If it’s not in the house, your habit becomes much easier to break.  Once cleaned out, take a trip to the market and stock up on leafy greens, citrus, berries, and cleanse friendly snacks so you can stay on track. 

 4- Exit Strategy:  How you end your cleanse is just as important as how you begin.  Give yourself a few days or a week to gradually re-introduce the foods you have omitted. You have just diligently worked to clean out your body, so it would be foolish to start throwing all sorts of toxins back in.  People sometimes find that they have previously unnoticed sensitivities to wheat or dairy, and they feel so much better by continuing to leave them out of their diets.  Others are shocked that their once overwhelming cravings for coffee, sweets, cheese, and/or bread have vanished. 

 Amanda Skrip (www.amandaskrip.com) provides culinary and wellness services to inspire healthy living.  She specializes in food-based cleanses, weight-loss, and eating for energy.  Amanda teaches cooking classes and wellness workshops around the city including Detox 101 and a Natural Foods Boot Camp.  You can check her schedule here (http://www.amandaskrip.com/?page_id=138)

Work Out for Free!

Thanks to the Chicago Park District, you can start your 2011 off right.  Work out for FREE January 2nd-9th at all Chicago Park District Fitness Centers.

The Chicago Park District has over 70 fitness center located across the city that feature state-of-the art equipment and a variety of fitness classes!  To find a location in your neighborhood click here.

Watch the video below to learn more!

Do you workout at a Chicago Park District Fitness Center? Share your experience and comment below.