ARTICLE ONE

8 Ways to Make Your Workout More Fun
Do you look forward to your workouts? If not, you’re more likely to come up with reasons to skip a session or two. As missed sessions become more common, you’ll lose the health and fitness benefits that made you want to exercise in the first place, so it’s important to keep things fun.
Consider these tips to bring some fun into your exercise time:
1. Analyze your current workout. If your exercise time is less than fulfilling, an analysis of your current workout will help you identify why you’re not happy.
• Does the thought of using the Stairmaster make you want to cry? Do you try to come up with excuses to avoid running? If your workout makes you sad, it’s time to reevaluate how you exercise.
• Consider why you’re unhappy and search for solutions that will work with your lifestyle. Would taking a group class make you more likely to exercise? Do you simply need a different type of workout?
• Consider signing up for a class at a local gym or other venue. Spending money can add motivation to your fitness routine.
2. Add a friend. Exercising alone can get boring, but a good friend can change how you think about your workout.
• Do you hate to exercise alone? Finding a friend who is also trying to get in shape can help both of you by making the workout more fun.
• A study, titled “The Influence of Partner’s Behavior on Health Behavior Change,” found that adding a partner to your workout can help. Researchers learned that it makes you five times more likely to exercise.
3. Turn it into a game with rewards. Games can make your workout more fun. This will motivate you to keep going and stay active.
4. Add music. Do you have music playing in the background as you do your cardio? Music has a powerful impact on exercise. There is a reason why you hear loud music in gyms.
• A study, titled “Music in the exercise domain: A review and synthesis,” found that music can actually make you better at exercising. The study also found that music makes the workout seem easier and more fun.
5. Add your favorite TV show. A TV show can help you get motivated and stay in shape. Do you watch TV while you exercise? Switching to your favorite show can make the time go by faster and make the workout seem easier.
6. Exercise outside. Exercising outdoors can make your workout more enjoyable. Researchers found that the outdoors helps you forget the pain while you focus on your surroundings.
• The outdoors will also make you feel more energetic.
7. Post motivational notes. Putting notes to encourage exercise wherever you might see them during your day can help you stay in shape. Research shows that even simple things like smiley faces can have a positive impact on your workout.
• Spend some time writing inspiring notes to yourself. Consider writing funny quotes to help you stay inspired to work out.
8. Add variety. Do you do the same exercise routine every day? The same workout can get boring over time. Consider trying new exercises you’ve never done before. Also, think about exercise in different ways.
• Dancing can be a great way to burn calories and stay in shape. Do you have a dance you love?
• Playing sports is a workout too. Organize teams with your family and friends or join community teams and have some fun!
Your workouts can be more fun with a few simple adjustments. Make exercise a better experience with these tips and you’ll find that fitness can be fun!

ARTICLE TWO

Headaches: The Great Productivity Killer
Headaches are one of the greatest productivity killers. When you’re trying to get something done and a headache comes on, it’s game over. Even if you try to make it through, you’re not going to be nearly as productive and you’re likely going to be more miserable than ever. While it’s no fun, there are some natural and simple methods to cure your headache!
The Quick and Natural Way to Cure Headaches
The idea behind relieving a headache is to do it naturally and quickly. There are plenty of over-the-counter medications, but they have their own side effects that just create a new problem. If taken too frequently, headache medicines may even lose their effectiveness.
Here are some natural headache remedies that you can use to quickly eliminate that headache:
• If you’re at home, take a warm bath. Many headaches are caused by contracted muscles and a hot bath will relax those muscles. This is especially great for tension headaches.
• If it is a stress headache, exercising can relieve it. Taking a walk to increase blood circulation can help dramatically.
• If the headache is caused by dehydration, drinking water can help, but it may take several glasses until the problem is solved.
• Massaging the shoulders and neck can relieve a tension headache. This is because the tightened muscles causing the headache are loosened.
• For a caffeine, sinus, or allergy headache, a cold or hot compress can make the headache go away.
• Try to sleep the same hours every night. Too little or too much sleep can cause headaches. You also want to try to keep a consistent bedtime.
• Try not to sit, stand, or work in the same position for long periods of time. This can put strain on your back, shoulders, and neck. This strain can lead to a tension headache, so change position frequently to keep this from occurring.
• If bright lights make your head hurt, avoid them. If you already have a headache, try to sit in a room with minimal light. People with migraines tend to benefit from this technique.
• Reduce your intake of caffeine in order to avoid caffeine headaches. This can be one of the worst types of headaches. Unfortunately, there are many people who attempt to solve this headache by taking in more caffeine. The problem is that this type of headache tends to be caused by caffeine withdrawal, so it’s a catch 22.
• Avoid foods that trigger headaches. If you notice a pattern that your head hurts after eating a certain food, that is your sign to avoid it. Try eating organic fruits and vegetables because of their nutritional value and health benefits.
Since everyone is different, different remedies will work for different people. You may need to experiment to find out which one is going to work best for you. Once you find your remedy, stick to it.
How to Prevent Headaches
You can prevent headaches by controlling your stress levels, exercising, and eating balanced meals. All of these go hand-in-hand because stress can be relieved by exercising and eating healthy foods. It may require a lifestyle change, but you’ll not only feel better but you’ll relieve the majority of your headaches!
By implementing these changes and eliminating your headaches, you’ll boost your quality of life and get more done.

ARTICLE THREE

Road Trip Rules for Healthy Eating
Heading out on a road trip with family or friends is exciting! Such a journey can help you create cherished memories, strengthen your relationships, and release the stresses of life.
When driving from place to place, you'll almost certainly want to indulge in the various cuisines you encounter. After all, that’s a big part of enjoying the full experience of the regions you visit. It's nice to know that you can savor the local flavor without giving up healthy eating.
Adapt these road trip rules for eating to enjoy the best of both worlds:
1. Plan stops ahead of time. One of the most foolproof ways to maintain healthy eating habits when on a road trip is to plan food stops ahead of time. Advance planning will enable you and your traveling companions to eat at the opportune meal times, choose healthy options, and avoid getting cravings with every restaurant sign you drive past!
• Use a map to plot out your stops, and then research the available eating options in each location. That way, you’ll have control over what you eat. You can find good locally-owned restaurants with a variety of regional dishes to choose from.
2. Pack healthy snacks. Even with planning meal stops and eating on schedule, you’re bound to get the urge to snack when you’re on a road trip. Take along plenty of healthy snacks to satisfy your inklings to nibble as you view the countryside.
• Pita chips with salsa or hummus is perfect because it’s both healthy and easy to eat while you’re driving.
• Fruits like apples, bananas, grapes and berries are also convenient, healthy, and not messy while you're trying to drive.
3. Time your final pit stop for each day. Make your last meal stop close to dinner time, but also close to your rest stop for that night. That way, you won’t end up getting hungry when you finally settle in.
• Once again, using your map will allow you to determine the best food stop closest to your night’s rest stop.
• Plan to eat your heavier meal at lunch and then choose a last stop for the day that has menus with lighter, healthier options.
4. Order group meals. Ordering for the group as opposed to individual meals will allow you to control your portions easier.
• You won’t be as tempted to clean a large plate of food to avoid wastage. Group servings are usually just enough for the number of diners.
• Eating as a group can also help you to gauge exactly what you’re consuming while on the road. This may be especially helpful if you have kids. Group choices make it easier to keep track of what they're eating as well, so their experience isn't limited to the same old kids' meals throughout your trip.
Does the open road beckon you? With these road trip tips, you’ll enjoy the experience of visiting different locations and tasting their cuisines, and head back home weighing the same as you did when you started out!

ARTICLE FOUR

I can resist cravings for high sugar foods.
One of the ways I take care of myself is by eating nutritiously. I want to eat well because I hope to avoid developing health concerns as I age. So I focus on eating healthy food. Planning my meals helps me honor my commitment to myself to stay vibrant as the years go by.
Sometimes I want to eat sweet snacks during the day. When the mood strikes me to eat a candy bar or order a piece of cake or pie for dessert when eating out, I acknowledge the urge, then set it aside. To stay healthy, I must gather my resolve and reject any urges for high sugar foods.
I find that giving in to sugar cravings leads to consuming more and more foods with high levels of sugar. To avoid this unhealthy process, I make it a habit to resist my momentary desire for sugar, one craving at a time. In time, these cravings subside.
Acceptance is the key to understanding my cravings. I know that sometimes a desire for high sugar foods will occur, so I thoughtfully consider the ways I might respond to those urges. I ask myself if there are other foods I can substitute that have a sweet taste.
Today, I choose to resist any cravings for high sugar foods. I intend to stock my cabinet and refrigerator with healthy choices that also satisfy my urges for sweet treats.
Self-Reflection Questions:
1. Do I experience cravings for high sugar foods? When and how often?
2. How do I usually respond to these urges for sweet treats?
3. What can I do to be more prepared to resist cravings for sweet foods?