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Written By:  Kelly Miller

Have you ever done a workout where you were SO sore either the next day, or two days later (aka “DOMS” – Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness). You thought that you’d never be able to sit on your couch again because your butt was so sore, or maybe sneezing or laughing made you brace carefully because of sore abdominals.

It happens to the best of us!

Should we be worried? Not necessarily.

General muscle soreness is a normal effect of any type of physical activity. Has anyone spent the day cleaning windows in the spring/fall, only to wake up the next day feeling sore? it’s the same principle!
 Check out these 2 ways to manage this tenderness, and ensure you get back to feeling chipper ASAP!

Stretch!Spend 5 – 10 minutes on the days when you are feeling particularly tight and stretch the areas of your body that need it most – Keep it simple, and start with the basic stretches that you know. 
Better yet, join us for Thursdays in November for YOGA! Click here to learn more!

Keep an eye on your water intake!Sometimes we get really sore because we’ve actually worked out under conditions of dehydration. If our body doesn’t have an ample amount of water in it, we get stiff. Kinda like a car – no oil? No good.

A good rule of thumb is to aim for 2L, or 30-35 ml/kg or, your weight in pounds divided by 2 and drinking that number of ounces.
Still not sure? No Sweat! Email
maireadrodgers@degreecrossfitseaforth.com to learn more!

At the end of the day, movement matters. 

The best way to curb soreness is to stretch, get more water in, and keep moving. You may find your next few workouts you’ll take it a wee bit easier, and that’s OK!
Movement matters at any capacity. Let’s keep at it!
See you soon!
Coach Kelly

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Written By:  James Wilbee
My CrossFit journey began December, 2015 and it has been a whirlwind of ups and downs, huge accomplishments and frustrating days, and a new career that I never would have imagined.  Through it all, one thing has always remained, I can not wait until the next workout to challenge myself in a new and exciting way.Growing up, I have always had the good fortune to be able to be active and participate in a variety of sports. Like most, it reinforced many values taught to me by my parents, those of hard work, dedication, commitment, compassion for others and teamwork.  Life lessons that are so important to make us a valuable teammate but even more important to make us a valuable member of society.I had been hearing some talk about this thing called CrossFit, but really didn’t have much knowledge about what it was or what I was getting myself into.  So, after a discussion with a friend that suggested I should “give it a try”, that “I would really enjoy it,” I went to a trial class offered by Kaleda.
 I was hooked, and at the end of the class, signed up to become a member!
 There was a huge learning curve for the first few months but it was so great coming in everyday and learning a new skill, or getting a little more efficient with ones that I had already been taught.  One amazing thing that I learned was that even though CrossFit is an “individual” sport, and you are doing each workout as an individual, you are not alone! The CrossFit community in general and especially at our box at Degree, ensures that you are never alone, everyone cheers you on, everyone lifts you up when you need it and also gives you a kick in the pants if required (but in a loving,compassionate way).  Just like a Team, or even more appropriately, just like a Family.Another thing I learned is that CrossFit is a very humbling sport.  What I mean by that is, no matter how in shape you think you are, no matter how strong you are, CrossFit will always find a way to challenge you!  That being said, CrossFit will always have a way to prove to yourself that you are strong, that you can meet and surpass your goals and that no matter where you start, you can accomplish big things.  For me, I have always been fortunate to have good aerobic capacity but I have done very little with weight and strength training. So starting CrossFit opened my eyes to a new level of training that I had never done before.  When I look back on my early days and my scores and compare them to the weights that I am able to lift now, it makes me proud to see how far I have come. However, there are still many many days that I leave the gym frustrated with myself that I didn’t lift a heavier weight, or didn’t do as many reps as I wanted to.  That is what fuels my drive to keep coming back and trying it again.One more lesson that I learned, and maybe the most important one for me, is the ability for CrossFit to be a stress relief.  As a volunteer firefighter, there have been several days after we have had a bad or frustrating call, I will come to the gym and perform the workout and the stress I was feeling will fade away.  I don’t know if it is the fact that you are putting your body under stress in a different way, or if it is the fact that you can just shut your mind off from the rest of the world for an hour or if it is the sense of security and “family” you get from all the members and coaches.  Maybe it is a combination of all of these, but whatever it is, it allows that stress to dissipate and makes the rest of the day much easier to deal with. My “why” for doing CrossFit remains the same, to get into better shape, try new things and test myself each and every day.  What I have gained beyond that has been amazing, and such a wonderful bonus, that being strength. Strength in the traditional way, through lifting heavy weights and performing many reps.  Mental strength, gained from pushing yourself to finish a long, tough workout and the ability to block out the world on a bad day and just be in the moment for an hour. And finally the Strength of the community/family.  Through the good, the bad, or the ugly, that is what has been created (very deliberately) at Degree.
 We are a family, a community, we all have our own unique qualities but we come together to bond, struggle, succeed, and push each other to new and unimaginable heights. 
 For me, that is pretty incredible and something that I am very proud to be a part of, both as a member and as a coach.

Your Coach,
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By Mairead Rodgers, RD PHEc

As a dietitian and nutrition coach, I get asked about bread all the time. 

Is bread bad for me? Am I eating too much bread? What kind of bread should I eat? Should I eat wraps or something instead? 

Let’s clear some easy stuff up quickly. Bread is not bad for you. Yes you can eat it multiple times a day (if you have specific medical conditions that make you question this, maybe you should see a dietitian). 

Best bread choices are usually whole wheat and whole grain breads. They pack in more fibre and nutrition than white breads. If you’ve never heard of fibre, it keeps you full longer, keeps your blood sugar more stable, helps lower cholesterol, and keeps your bowels regular. Look for “whole grain wheat flour” or “whole wheat flour” to be the first ingredient. “Enriched wheat flour” is usually just white flour. Check the nutrition info and look for at least 2-3 grams of fibre per slice. Check the serving size at the top of the nutrition info to see if it’s referring to one or two slices on your label.

Flatbreads and wraps are usually pretty similar to bread in terms of calories, carbs, and fibre, if you’re comparing similar serving sizes. One is not better than the other; the best one for you is the one you like! Aim for whole wheat versions of these as well.

Those are the quick answers to your bread questions!

Other nutrition questions? Let’s chat! Email me to book your FREE 15-Minute Bite-Sized Nutrition Chat!

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By Mairead Rodgers, RD PHEc

I have done some weird nutrition things from time to time around working out, but this is one of the weirder ones. So while I laugh at myself about this (and you can laugh too), let’s break down the logic behind this decision and what you can learn about recovery nutrition from this particularly weird episode.

The two questions I feel need to be answered:
1. Why did I need a protein shake at that exact moment?
2. Why a protein shake?

For the first question, the answer is that I knew I needed to refuel my body. And I needed to refuel soon. On the day in question, I’d gone to group CrossFit class and gone for an easy run both in the morning. I had a small breakfast before hand, enough to give me some energy and keep me from being hangry. But I also know that pretty soon after a workout I need to refuel with protein and carbs. The longer I wait, the more my body will be playing catch-up all day. The sooner I refuel, the better I can help my body recover so I can keep training the next day. But since I couldn’t wait any longer to shower (I was super gross and needed to get on with my day), I had to choose between showering and nutrition, or start my recovery nutrition at the same time. Getting some kind of nutrition in within an hour of working out is key for recovery, especially if it was a harder or longer workout.

Is a protein shake necessary to recover from a workout? No, not at all. The one I drank had a combination of carbs and protein, which is key for recovery after a workout; protein to repair muscles, carbs to replenish energy stores. I chose a protein shake because it was convenient. Would a chicken breast and rice, or a tuna sandwich, or literally any other combination of protein and carbs worked just as well? Yep! The real benefit of protein powders is that they’re portable and quick and easy. If we want to get that recovery nutrition in within roughly an hour of working out, convenience can be key if you’re not planning on eating a real meal or snack in that time.

The take away: Carbs and protein shortly after workouts. If you’re not going to get to eat a real-food snack or meal, protein powder can be convenient. And also you should laugh at yourself if you realize you’re doing something totally ridiculous.

More nutrition questions? Shoot me an email and let’s chat!

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By Mairead Rodgers, RD PHEc

What should I look for in a granola bar? Are granola bars ok to eat? What granola bars are best? Am I eating too many granola bars?

These are questions I get all the time from nutrition clients and we’re going to answer (hopefully) all of them today!

Can I eat granola bars? Is this ok?
Yep, granola bars are just fine as part of a balance healthy diet! They’re quick and convenient, don’t need to be kept cold and are super portable!

Could I eat too many granola bars?
Of course! If granola bars are taking the place of other important foods, that’s an issue. For most people, a granola bar in your lunch or for snack every day is not going to be an issue. If we’re having 2-3 a day, maybe it’s time to find some more variety in your snacks, but that could vary by the person based on their specific needs.

What should I look for in a granola bar?
For this, you’ll have to flip the bar over and check out the nutrition facts, or look at the nutrition panel on the side of the box.
Fibre: Fibre is important! It helps keep us full longer (important for snacks for busy people!), keeps us regular, and can help keep our cholesterol in check. Look for a granola bar with at least 3-4g of fibre to make a dent in your needs for the day.
Sugar: There can be a lot of sugar in granola bars! Something sticky has to hold it together! Even if something is sweetened with honey, maple syrup, or brown rice syrup, it’s still sugar and all acts the same way in our bodies. Try to keep the sugar per bar under 8g if you can. 
Protein: Protein also helps keep us full longer, and can help us repair muscles after a hard workout. Try to find a granola bar with minimum 5g of protein. Closer to 10g is even better! For lower protein granola bars, trying pairing it with a source of protein (cheese, Greek yogurt, hardboiled egg) for a wellrounded snack.

Hopefully these tips make snacking and choosing things in the granola bar aisle easier! If you have another nutrition topic you wonder about, email maireadrodgers@degreecrossfitseaforth.com to get it answered!

Have specific questions about your personal nutrition? Book your FREE 15-minute Bite Sized Nutrition Chat here and let’s get started!