What Does Self Care Look Like? We asked Physique 57 Trainers

self-care

You probably hear the word “self-care” everywhere these days. You know it’s essential, but what does it really mean? Put simply, self-care is setting aside time to care for yourself — mind, body, and spirit — in whatever form that takes for you. This looks different for everyone — it could be a Physique 57 class, reading a book, a bubble bath or watching your favorite reality TV show! The most important thing is that you do what brings YOU joy and relaxation. 

When you take this time for yourself, you are better able to show up for those around you as your best self. It’s the opposite of selfishness. It’s an act of love for yourself, your loved ones, and your community. 

To celebrate self-care, we asked some of the Physique 57 team to share what self-care means to them personally. We hope their answers inspire you to take some time for yourself today!

“Self-care to me means cultivating peace in my physical and emotional space. Often that manifests as organizing my room, taking a warm Epsom salt bath, and watching a comfort movie (Crazy Rich Asians is often a go-to!).”

— Jennifer Arfsten, Studio Manager & Trainer

“Self-care for me means that I am taking the time to take care of my mental and emotional health just as much as my physical health and not feel bad about it! Doing simple things like getting a manicure, massage, or sitting in a quiet park are things that I really enjoy doing and make me feel so good afterward.”

— Erin Livingston, Master Trainer & Content and Communication Associate

Self-care to me means carving time out of my day to ensure that I eat and sleep enough. I also make sure I spend some time during the day watching mindless television like Housewives or 90-Day Fiancé to turn my brain off for a bit!”

— Taylor Wenzl, Trainer

Self-care is an act of self-love and self-love is a VERB. We can show love to ourselves in a number of ways:

1. Feeding our bodies nourishing, nutritious foods

2. Saying no to things, places, or people we are not in alignment with…having boundaries

3. Taking a cleansing, soothing, healing bath

4. Sitting with self and having a cup of tea quietly for 5-10 minutes

5. Splurging on healing treatments such as acupuncture, massage, therapy, spa treatments, energy work. etc.

6. Setting aside time for and committing to daily exercise, physical activity, and FUN enjoyable play time — whatever that may look like for you

7. Reading and learning new things”

— Kameica Reid, Trainer

“Self-care to me means carving out time to attend to my body, mind, and spiritual needs so that I can show up fully present in the world around me.”

— Cassie Tumasz, Trainer

“Self-care, to me, is honoring your needs unapologetically.”

— Kristanne Thompson, Client Services Team

“Taking 10 minutes BY MYSELF in the morning: no hubby, no baby…to do absolutely nothing (except maybe coffee) before tackling a busy day.”

— Courtney Tilford Uyar, Senior Trainer

“Self-care to me means taking the time to recharge yourself so you can go back into the world with power, motivation, and above all, kindness.”

— Kerrie Schroeder Melissaratos, Master Trainer 

What does self-care mean to YOU? We want to hear! Share with on Instagram @Physique57

Plant-Based Proteins to Fuel Your Body Post-Workout

chickpeas in a bowl

One of the keys to forming long, lean, gorgeous muscles is not only rocking your Physique 57 workouts, but also refueling with healthy, nourishing foods. Protein is a powerhouse nutrient that delivers so many benefits for your beautiful body. 

Research shows that protein builds muscle strength and lean muscle mass ¹ ², plus it helps your muscles repair and recover post-workout ³. It can also boost your metabolism thanks to the thermic effect. This means your body uses energy — and burns calories — simply by digesting protein. Protein has a much higher thermic effect compared to fat or carbs (20–35% compared to 5–15%) ⁴. Protein is also an essential nutrient for protecting your bones ⁵ and heart health ⁶. 

When you hear the word “protein,” you probably think of animal proteins like chicken, fish, and eggs. But we also love plant-based proteins because they’re packed with antioxidants, fiber, and minerals. Plus, a plant-based lifestyle has been shown to protect heart health ⁷, help you feel lean ⁸, keep your brain sharp ⁹, and give you glowing skin ¹⁰. 

We asked Maria Marlowe, a leading holistic nutritionist and author of The Real Food Grocery Guide, to share her five go-to plant-based proteins, why they’re so amazing for you, and her favorite ways to enjoy them. She even suggests some incredible recipes!

Whether you’re a vegetarian, vegan, or simply looking to embrace a more plant-based lifestyle, you’ll love these delicious and energizing foods. 

Hemp seeds

“My number one plant protein for smoothies is hemp seeds. They not only contain complete plant-based protein (about 10 grams per 3 tablespoons), but they are also a source of omega-3 fatty acids, which provide anti-inflammatory benefits and are especially beneficial post-workout to reduce soreness and enhance recovery,” Maria explains. “I prefer them in their whole form, as they maintain maximum nutrition and freshness compared to powdered protein. As long as you put them in the blender with your smoothie, they will break down and make it nice and creamy. I also add them to salads, warm cereal, or blend them into the tastiest vegan Caesar dressing.”

Chickpeas

“Chickpeas are another favorite as they are so versatile. Put them on salad, bake them into crispy croutons or a crunchy curry chickpea snack, turn them into falafel, blend them into hummus, use the flour for flatbreads…the options are endless,” Maria says. “One cup provides a hefty 12.5 grams of fiber (hello regularity) and a whopping 14.5 grams of protein. This makes them filling and satisfying. They also provide a significant amount of iron (approximately 26% of the recommended daily intake per cup), which helps keep your energy high. Be sure to pair them with a vitamin C-rich food, such as lemon juice on your dark leafy green salad or bell peppers with hummus, to enhance iron absorption.”

Chia seeds

“Another tiny seed that packs a nutritional punch! Aside from providing about 5 grams of protein and 11 grams of fiber per ounce, they contain a variety of other nutrients, including anti-inflammatory omega-3s and stress-busting magnesium,” Maria shares. “Chia pudding is my favorite way to consume them. Top it with nuts and seeds for added protein.”

Organic tofu

“This is a staple in my home, and I consume it once or twice a week. Four ounces of tofu contains about 12-15 grams of protein. If you can find organic fermented tofu, even better (fermentation adds probiotics and has the texture and taste of feta cheese),” Maria says. “Soy is a great source of isoflavones, which have been linked to a variety of benefits, from reducing wrinkles to improving brain health, to reducing the risk of heart disease and various cancers. Always choose organic tofu to avoid GMOs. When seasoned well, it’s incredibly flavorful, like this curry-dusted tofu.”

Navy beans

“Navy beans and other white beans like cannellini beans are incredibly nutrient-dense. A 1-cup serving provides 15 grams of protein and 19 grams of fiber, along with a significant variety of vitamins and minerals like folate, magnesium, and iron,” she explains. “I love them simply sautéed with olive oil, garlic, and turmeric, or I blend them into dips, sauces, and even homemade falafel and veggie burgers to hold them together.”

You can learn more about Maria at MariaMarlowe.com and check out her Clear Skin Plan, a proven program and meal plan to clear acne naturally from within!

Pair these foods with Physique 57 workouts On Demand or in the studio for the BEST results!

Sources: 

  1. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25169440/
  2.  https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/22958314/
  3.  https://academic.oup.com/ajcn/article/112/2/303/5828186
  4.  https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/15466943/
  5. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/16373952/
  6. https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jama/fullarticle/201882
  7.  https://www.ahajournals.org/doi/10.1161/JAHA.119.012865
  8.  https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5380896/
  9. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5293796/
  10.  https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7380694/

What Trainers Really Eat After a Workout

avocado toast on a plate

Have you ever wondered what foods your favorite trainers eat after they lead you through some major sculpting and toning? We got you! 

We asked a few of our amazing trainers what foods they eat to refuel post-workout. They each have different go-to meals and snacks, but they all have a few things in common — plenty of protein, healthy complex carbs, and nutrient-packed whole foods to hydrate the body and replenish muscles. 

Check out their favorites below, and try these out after your next Physique 57 workout class On Demand or in the studio. These bites will have you feeling satisfied and energized, plus they’ll maximize your toning and muscle building results!

“After a workout you want to try to get a post-fitness snack that refuels and rebuilds your body. To do this you want to aim for something that’s a 2 to 1 carb to protein ratio that will help restore your glycogen stores (that bit of you that really pushes during those last 10 counts) and helps to rebuild your muscles back stronger. For me, that’s a protein smoothie, whole grain peanut butter toast, or simply chocolate milk! Don’t forget to hydrate too!” — Will 

“It’s all about replacing electrolytes (electrically charged minerals) for me, so my post-workout beverage and meal are packed with these. As an island girl, I have to have coconut water. It’s one of the best go-tos to replace the electrolytes you may have lost during a workout. Your body inhales it and you can feel every cell absorbing it. For a post-workout meal, I love a big scrumptious Sweet Green salad, which is walking distance from the studio. Most veggies like kale, spinach, broccoli, avocados, and beans are packed with electrolytes. Remember that salads and eating clean don’t have to be boring. They can be delectable and satisfying!” — Kameica 

“I don’t have a specific go-to meal after a workout, but I always make sure it’s balanced with healthy carbs and protein. This allows me to fill me up without making me feel overly stuffed. My biggest advice is don’t feel guilty eating after your workouts! Your body needs to refuel and you want to make sure you can nourish it so you have the energy to do the things you want to do!” — Erin 

“My favorite post-workout food is a smoothie with peanut butter, banana, oats, and vegan protein powder or an avocado toast! And remember to hydrate, hydrate, hydrate and rest. I can always feel a difference physically and emotionally when I have not properly hydrated! And rest days/stretch days are a huge part of your body’s capacity to recharge itself!” — Shannon

Want to learn more about how to refuel with foods that build muscle? Read our “Best Foods To Gain Long, Lean Muscle” blog post!

How To Set Wellness Goals For Success — And Achieve Them!

A silhouette of a woman standing in front of a sunset with her fist in the air.

So often in the fitness and wellness world, we hear about going after your goals, but we don’t often talk about how to set them. The way you go about setting your goals makes a major impact in how likely you are to achieve them.

When you create a goal — whether it’s to get stronger, feel more confident, be more consistent in your workouts, nourish yourself with healthy foods, or whatever it may be — you’re making a promise to yourself. That commitment is incredibly powerful! 

We’re sharing our best tangible and science-backed tips on how to set yourself up for success with your fitness and wellness goals. 

Start small & specific 

It may be tempting to set a goal like, “I want to work out more” or “I want to get leaner.” While we usually encourage you to think big, in this case, we want you to start small. Research shows that when your goals are specific, tailored, and set in shorter time periods, you are more likely to achieve them ¹. 

For example, start with a goal like: “I will do two Physique 57 classes this week.” When you rock two classes consistently, you can increase your goal to three and then four classes per week. Also, don’t overwhelm yourself with too many goals at once. Start with 1 to 3 challenging yet attainable weekly goals. As you achieve these goals, you will build confidence and be even more motivated to keep up your momentum!

Put pen to paper

Thinking about your wellness and fitness goals is just step one. Your next step is writing them down, and this one is so powerful! When you put your intentions down on paper, you are making a commitment to yourself. Writing them out will help you get clear on exactly what you want to accomplish, and you’ll be able to visualize yourself achieving it. 

Research shows that people were 42 percent more likely to accomplish their goals when they wrote them down ². So grab your journal and get writing! We suggest having a special journal dedicated to your wellness journey. Set aside time on the weekends to write out your weekly intentions. 

Use positive language 

When you jot down your wellness goals, instead of writing, “I want to meal prep every Sunday,” instead write, “I WILL meal prep every Sunday.” It’s a small shift, but makes a big difference in your mindset. If you believe it and put it out there, it WILL happen!

Get clear on your why 

Even more important than what your goal is is WHY you want to achieve it. For example, if your goal is to work out consistently every day, reflect on why this is important in your life. Does working out give you more energy to tackle your day? Does it give you more confidence and self-love? Does it keep you healthy to care for your family? Does it support your mental health? Journal on the why behind your goal, and don’t be afraid to dig deep here. 

At times when you feel discouraged or you may not feel like sticking it out, you can always come back to your why for motivation. 

Make a plan 

Now that you feel clear and confident on the what and why of your wellness goals, it’s time to think about how you’re going to make them happen. Look at your 1 to 3 weekly goals and make a specific action plan for how they will fit into your schedule. 

For example, if your goal is to prep healthy meals in advance, block out time in your calendar to grocery shop and meal prep. Think ahead about how you can make this simpler and more fun — can you order groceries in advance? Can you invite a friend over to meal prep with you? If your goal is to take a certain number of Physique 57 classes per week, book your classes in advance, put them in your calendar, and even lay out your workout clothes. The more you plan ahead, the more likely you’ll be to follow through!

Find someone to hold you accountable 

Accountability partners are everything! Share your goals with a friend, family member, or someone in the Physique 57 community, and ask them to gently hold you accountable. You can start a group text chain with your accountability buddies to check in on each other. Remember, the Physique 57 family is filled with supportive and loving friends who are here to cheer you on! Join us in the studio or On Demand to work out with us!

Sources:

  1. https://www.nytimes.com/2021/01/06/well/move/exercise-goals.html
  2. https://scholar.dominican.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1265&context=news-releases

Why YOU Should Get Certified at Barre Academy

A group of certified Physique 57 barre instructors smiling at the camera.

Have you been feeling called to deepen your barre practice? Have you ever watched your barre instructor in class and thought to yourself, “I want to do that?!” Whether you’re a fitness instructor, a dancer, or simply a barre-loving beauty looking to take your workout to the next level, we have something for you…Physique 57 Barre Academy!

This immersive online barre certification will transform your life at the barre and beyond! You’ll learn from master instructors, feel supported by the Physique 57 community, and you’ll finish the program feeling confident and empowered in your own barre skills and as an instructor.

We are so proud of our barre training program and our amazing trainers that we have an entire wall in our Spring Street Studio dedicated to it (aka our “trainer wall”)! It says proudly, “Nobody’s trained like Physique 57 trainers.” And it’s true! Our trainers obsess over alignment, anatomy, kinesiology, and most importantly, their students — YOU! Our training values people over poses, and that shows in everything we do.

Here are just a few more reasons to join us at the Barre Certification Program:

✔︎ You’ll get certified in one of the most sought-after and effective fitness methods

✔︎ You’ll train with world class barre instructors

✔︎ You can say you’re certified in a globally-renowned program…what a flex 💪😉

✔︎ As an instructor, you’ll enhance your client retention, satisfaction, and engagement

✔︎ As a student, you’ll improve your barre form and fitness level

✔︎ You’ll step into new leadership potential 

✔︎ You’ll connect with and be supported by other amazing students like you

What you’ll learn:

✔︎ Physique 57’s one-of-a-kind positions and methodology

✔︎ Group fitness teaching fundamentals

✔︎ Injury and pregnancy modifications

✔︎ Safe and effective sequencing

✔︎ Anatomical cueing

✔︎ And more!

What Barre Academy includes:

✔︎ 80-hour self-paced program, including 15 hours of taking class and observation

✔︎ Receive 2 full Sculpt class formats to delight your clients

✔︎ Access to over 100 video modules with interactive learning paths

✔︎ Attend weekly group forums to enrich your learning experience

Hear what our incredible trainers are saying about Barre Academy:

“I cannot credit the expertise of the wonderful mentors of Physique 57 enough for the thorough knowledge of barre form that has guided my teaching career. Safely challenging clients is so important, and no one does it better than Physique 57!” – B. M.

“Studio owners and clients around the country respect the Physique 57 brand.  When a studio sees that I trained at Physique they are confident that I will teach a consistent, upbeat, and challenging class, and when a client knows my background, they trust that I will give them a rigorous yet safe workout.” – S. B.

“Physique 57’s safe, yet challenging, effective and fun training method helped me take my group fitness career to the next level. Their attention to detail and client focused approach is the best there is in the barre world!” – V. C.

“My training at Physique 57 was instrumental in shaping the way I approach teaching group fitness and personal training clients, especially preparing me for how to seamlessly sequence a Barre style class with a focus on musicality, working with injury and prenatal modifications, and truly being able to deliver personalized training, client connections, positive attention, and FUN within a group fitness setting.” – R. P.

“The clarity, confidence, passion, and dedication that Master Trainer Ashlea virtually projects in every training session for the Physique 57 Barre Academy helps one feel very welcomed and safe as they jump into a new learning process. It is a tremendous opportunity to have this incredible trainer giving you step by step feedback as if it were in person, but with the advantage of having it accessible 24/7 from home. Having all the resources available in the palm of your hand and being able to review it anytime you want is so helpful. I love learning from Ashlea, I love the online course, and I love Physique 57!!” – J. R.

Ready to get started?

We kick off our first barre certification session on August 16th! There are limited spots available, so click here to learn more and enroll now!

We’re so excited for you to take this next step in your barre practice and inspire others as a leader in the Physique 57 family!

Summer Parties on The Calendar? Here’s How to Stick To Clean Eating

Two slices of watermelon in front of a teal background.

Our calendars are starting to fill up again with summer parties, barbecues, picnics, weddings, and outdoor celebrations. But how do you stick to your clean eating habits when you’re surrounded by processed foods, fried dishes, chips, desserts, and lots of wine?

You CAN enjoy yourself and keep it clean at the same time. Here are 6 simple tips to stick to a healthy diet and feel your best at summer soirees.

Sculpt, pulse, and then party

Squeeze in a Physique 57 On Demand workout the morning of your event. Research shows that when you exercise in the morning, it will help curb cravings later in the day. Exercise reduces levels of the hormone ghrelin (aka the hunger hormone) and increases hormones such as peptide YY and peptide-1 that make you feel more satisfied ¹.

A morning sweat session can also help regulate blood sugar levels ², which prevents spikes and crashes that lead you to reach for sugary foods. Plus, you’ll be in a healthier mindset going into the party!

Start your day with a healthy meal

Before the party, have a nutrient-packed breakfast or lunch with a balance of lean protein, healthy fats, and leafy greens. This will make you feel energized, satisfied, and regulate your blood sugar levels so you’re not starving going into the celebration. We suggest having a protein smoothie, overnight oats, or a big salad topped with protein before you head to the event.

Bring your own dish to share

If you’re going to a barbecue or party that you know will be filled with unhealthy options, make it a bring your own situation! Whip up your favorite healthy side dish, salad, or treat to share with the group. Your hosts will appreciate you bringing something — and you don’t even have to tell the rest of the guests that it’s healthy!

Dip into the healthy stuff

Chips and dip are a fixture at summer parties. The great news: many dips are already smart, clean choices. Guacamole is packed with healthy fats, fiber, potassium, and B vitamins from the avocado. Fresh salsa is light and can be a great source of vitamin C. Just do your best to steer clear of heavy and dairy-filled dips.

It also matters what you dip! Swap chips for sliced veggies like cucumbers, bell peppers, and mini carrots. You’ll get extra vitamins from the veggies and feel more satisfied thanks to their fiber. Plus, the dip is the best part anyway!

Cheers to staying hydrated

If you’re going to enjoy a cocktail or wine (and really, wine not?!), make sure you stay hydrated. Drink plenty of H20 before the event and have 1 – 2 glasses of water between each drink. This will help prevent a hangover and keep you feeling energized throughout the party.

If you’re skipping alcohol altogether, you can bring seltzer for some bubbles or bring a pitcher of water with muddled berries and mint for a refreshing sip.

Be easy on yourself & enjoy!

Parties are meant to be fun so please don’t be hard on yourself about what you eat or drink. Do your best to stick to your healthy eating habits, but also remember to relax and be present with your friends and family.

Have fun!

Sources:

  1. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/22617393/
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4604526/

5 Healthy Travel Tips For Your Summer Getaways

A person laying in a car, holding a map, and sticking their feet out the window.

Summer is in full swing and travel is picking back up, so we’re dreaming of fun and relaxing getaways! Anyone else? 

Whether you’re planning a tropical vacay, road trip, city sightseeing, or a long weekend of R&R, make sure you take your healthy habits with you. 

When you’re in a new place and out of your routine, it can be tempting to skip workouts or get off track with your clean eating. But “out of office” mode doesn’t have to mean out of wellness mode! When you’re on vacation, you want to feel your absolute best. Your fitness and self-care practices will help you feel energized, confident, and radiant as you kick back and enjoy yourself!

Check out our 5 best tips for taking your healthy habits on the road (or on the fly!). 

Work out anytime, anywhere 

The amazing thing about Physique 57 On Demand is that you can do your workouts from anywhere in the world! Crush your sweat sessions from your hotel room, Airbnb, or even take your workout outside so you can soak in the scenery. 

You can find workouts from 5 minutes up to 57 minutes, so no matter how much time you have, we’ve got you covered! Even on your busiest travel days, you can squeeze in a 15-minute sculpt session. 

A workout will help energize you, relieve stress, and boost your mood, so you’ll be ready for whatever is on your travel itinerary! Plus, research shows that exercise can cause changes to your internal body clock, which helps counter the effects of jet lag ¹. 

BYO barre…and more gear

We don’t actually mean bring a barre, of course, but you can easily use a chair or another surface in your hotel room as a DIY barre. 

You can also pack small workout gear like resistance bands and grippy socks in your suitcase. Even easier: Physique On Demand has an entire selection of bodyweight only workout routines that are effective, efficient, and extra convenient for travel. 

Explore your destination 

There’s so much to explore in a new place, whether it’s city streets, parks, mountains, or trails. Go for long walks to take in the sights or rent bikes to tour the area. That way, you can get your steps in, get your heartrate up, and see more of the neighborhood. Walking also increases blood flow to your muscles and can help alleviate soreness ², so it will feel amazing after a long flight. 

Ask for recommendations from locals or you can look up hiking spots on a website like AllTrails

Stock up on healthy snacks

Airport and rest stop food is often highly processed, fried, or full of artificial sugars. Get prepped by packing your snacks in advance. Some of our favorite travel snacks: unsalted nuts, homemade trail mix, dried fruit, and kale chips. 

Hydrated, hydrate, and hydrate some more

Hydration is always key for your health, but especially when you’re traveling. Ever wonder why you’re so thirsty and your skin is dry when you’re flying? In an airplane, the filtration system makes humidity drop drastically (to 10 – 20 percent). Low humidity causes moisture to evaporate from your body quickly, which will dehydrate you faster ³. Changes in climate and altitude at your destination can also lead to dehydration, which makes jet lag symptoms worse ⁴.

Make sure you’re traveling with a reusable water bottle and fill it up often! In general, experts recommend drinking at least 12 cups of water per day for women ⁵. And when you’re flying, aim for about 8 oz of water for every hour you’re in the air ⁶. Drink up!

Sources:

  1. https://physoc.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1113/JP276943
  2. https://www.wellandgood.com/is-walking-good-for-sore-legs/
  3. https://www.travelandleisure.com/travel-tips/why-do-i-get-so-dehydrated-when-i-fly
  4. https://www.health.harvard.edu/newsletter_article/travel-tips-ways-to-minimize-jet-lag
  5. https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/nutrition-and-healthy-eating/in-depth/water/art-20044256#:~:text=The%20U.S.%20National%20Academies%20of,fluids%20a%20day%20for%20women
  6. https://www.asma.org/asma/media/asma/Travel-Publications/HEALTH-TIPS-FOR-AIRLINE-TRAVEL-Trifold-2013.pdf

The Best Foods To Gain Long, Lean Muscle

Closeup of two pieces of salmon coated in sesame seeds and seasoning sitting on a plate.

With every Physique 57 sweat session, you’re forming long, lean, gorgeous muscles. And after you’ve crushed your barre workout at home or in the studio you can enhance your gains in the kitchen! Refueling with whole, unprocessed, and nutrient-packed foods is key for muscle growth and recovery. The combination of your workouts and proper nutrition is where you’ll see the most benefits! 

We’re sharing 6 of the best foods to pair with your workouts to build muscle and feel lean, healthy, and energized.

Salmon 

Salmon delivers a double dose of muscle-building perks — it’s high in both protein and omega-3 fatty acids. First, let’s talk protein. Each 3 oz. serving of salmon contains about 17 g of protein, and protein is a powerhouse when it comes to gaining lean muscle. Research shows that protein helps build muscle strength and lean body mass ¹ ². It also helps repair and replenish your muscles after a tough workout, so you can recover faster and get back after it at the barre ³. Here’s how it works: When you’re rocking a workout, your muscle fibers break down. Protein’s amino acids allow your body to synthesize new cells, which repair the damaged fibers and help build new muscle ⁴. 

Salmon is also an amazing source of omega-3 fatty acids. In addition to protecting your heart health, omega-3s have been shown to maintain bone health and increase muscle gains ⁵. 

Eggs

Eggs also pack a lot of high-quality protein — about 6 g per egg. They are particularly high in the amino acid leucine, which has been linked to building muscle and enhancing post-workout recovery. Leucine is essential for regulating muscle protein synthesis, and it may be the key amino acid for optimizing muscle mass ⁶. 

According to research, you may get the most benefits from whole eggs. A study showed that people who consumed whole eggs had more muscle gains than those who opted for egg whites ⁷. This may be thanks to the cholesterol in yolks — a study shows that cholesterol can contribute to muscle building by enhancing your body’s inflammatory response ⁸. If you’re worried about cholesterol for heart health, it’s important to know that the cholesterol in eggs doesn’t seem to raise LDL cholesterol (aka the “bad” kind) the way other foods like trans and saturated fats do ⁹. Still, if you do have heart disease or diabetes, it’s smart to watch your overall intake. 

Quinoa 

While protein-rich foods are important for muscle gains, getting plenty of complex carbs is also essential. Carbs get a bad rap, but if you choose the right kind, they are a major way to feel energized and gain lean muscle. Slow-digesting complex carbs provide the energy your body needs to fuel your workouts and recover ¹⁰. Cooked quinoa, which is actually a seed and not a grain, delivers about 40 g carbs per cup. 

Plus, quinoa is an amazing plant protein for vegetarians, vegans, and anyone looking to lead a more plant-based lifestyle. Another perk: Quinoa is high in magnesium, which plays an important role in the function of your muscles and nerves and helps protect your bones ¹¹. 

Spinach 

Popeye was on to something! Spinach is a great source of glutamine, an amino acid that is important for muscle growth ¹². Research also shows that glutamine can help your muscles recover faster and soothe soreness post-workout ¹³.

Beets 

This root veggie contains a molecule that enhances muscle power. In a study, people who drank beet juice pre-workout saw an approximately 13% increase in muscle power. The perk comes from the nitrate, an ion found in beets and leafy greens like spinach. When you take in nitrate, it is converted to nitrite and then becomes nitric oxide, a molecule that boosts muscles and may enhance blood circulation ¹⁴. 

Almonds 

In addition to their high magnesium and protein content (16 g per serving), almonds also deliver phosphorus, a mineral that helps the body make protein for the growth, maintenance, and repair of cells. Phosphorus also helps your body make a molecule called ATP, which leads you to use carbs and fat for energy during exercise ¹⁵. 

Eat up and enjoy! We’ll see you at the barre!

Sources:

  1. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25169440/
  2. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/22958314/
  3. https://academic.oup.com/ajcn/article/112/2/303/5828186
  4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3381813/
  5. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25285409/
  6. https://journals.lww.com/nutritiontodayonline/pages/articleviewer.aspx?year=2009&issue=01000&article=00013&type=abstract
  7. https://academic.oup.com/ajcn/article/106/6/1401/4823156
  8. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/01/080109173717.htm#:~:text=In%20general%2C%20those%20with%20higher,in%20the%20participants%2C%20Riechman%20said
  9. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/high-blood-cholesterol/expert-answers/cholesterol/faq-20058468
  10. https://jissn.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12970-017-0189-4
  11. https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Magnesium-Consumer/
  12. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC426340/
  13. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25811544/
  14. https://www.npr.org/sections/thesalt/2015/10/14/448314966/why-you-might-want-to-be-drinking-beet-juice-at-the-gym
  15. https://medlineplus.gov/ency/article/002424.htm

Mental Health Awareness Month: 7 Ways To Care For Your Mind & Spirit

Woman meditating in the sun holding a Gyan mudra yoga pose (cross legged with thumb and index finger together on both hands)

Our mission at Physique 57 is to not only sculpt and strengthen your beautiful body, but also to nurture your incredible mind and spirit! In honor of Mental Health Awareness Month in May, we’re sharing 7 simple steps you can take every day to care for yourself from the inside out. 

Move your body

A Physique 57 sweat sesh not only tones your body — it also fuels and nourishes your mind. You’ll finish your workout feeling less stressed and more energized, confident, and empowered! Years of research has proven the mental health perks of exercise. A study from Harvard University showed that exercise can reduce the risk of depression by 26% ¹. Another study found that people who exercised regularly reported a 20% reduction in anxiety symptoms compared to those who didn’t work out ². 

Exercise helps the brain build new neural pathways that bring on feelings of calm and happiness. It also releases endorphins, powerful brain chemicals that give you a boost of bliss ³. You know when you leave class feeling so accomplished and on top of the world? That’s what we’re talking about!

Join us for a workout On Demand or in the studio!

Deepen (or start) your meditation practice 

A regular meditation practice quiets the mind, brings your attention to the present moment, and gives you a deep sense of centeredness, balance, and peace. Multiple studies have shown that mindfulness relieves stress ⁴ ⁵. Meditation helps lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol, while releasing mood-boosting hormones and neurotransmitters such as dopamine and serotonin ⁶. 

If you’re new to meditation, ease into it. Start with just 5 minutes a day and work your way up to longer. You can do guided meditations or simply listen to soothing music and focus on your breathing. If your mind starts to race or thoughts come up, don’t judge yourself — this happens to everyone and you’re not doing it “wrong.” Simply take notice of the thoughts and feelings that come up for you without judgement and gently release them in your mind. Your meditation practice will start to feel more natural as you, well, practice it! 

Nourish yourself 

You’ll feel happier and more energized when you nourish your body with healthy, whole, unprocessed foods. Certain foods have also been shown to have mood-boosting benefits. Omega-3 fatty acids in fish, flaxseeds, and walnuts are linked to lower levels of depression ⁷. Foods high in vitamin B6 (think: bananas, salmon, and sweet potatoes) help synthesize feel-good neurotransmitters like dopamine and serotonin ⁸. And dark chocolate releases several mood-boosting compounds such as theobromine and N-acylethanolamine ⁹ — just in case you needed another reason to eat chocolate!

Have your moment in the sun

Soak in the sunshine! Research shows that sunlight can boost serotonin production, which brightens your mood ¹⁰. Plus, the sun synthesizes vitamin D (aka the “sunshine vitamin”), and vitamin D has been linked to lower levels of depression ¹¹. 

Take a break from your workday to get outside and stroll around your neighborhood. Remember to wear SPF to protect your beautiful skin! Also, watch out for artificial blue light from computer and phone screens, which can increase cortisol levels and zap your energy. There are lots of options for cute and affordable blue light blocking glasses. 

See how  Physique 57 trainer, Christine Mirzayan, makes mental health part of her morning routine.

Grab your journal 

Journaling is a powerful outlet to express your emotions, reflect on your experiences, practice positive self-talk, and release thoughts or feelings that aren’t serving you. Research consistently shows that journaling has a positive impact on mental health ¹². 

You can journal in whatever way feels healing to you — there is no “right” or “wrong” way to do it. Some practices we love: 

  • Free writing: Write whatever comes to mind without editing or judging your thoughts. You can also free draw if that feels more intuitive for you. 
  • Gratitude journaling: Write down 3 specific things you’re grateful for each day and why you’re grateful for them.

Disconnect to connect 

So many of us are on our phones and computers all day long. Give yourself permission to disconnect from your devices in order to reconnect with yourself. Unplugging from technology helps you be more mindful in the present moment, deepen your connection with those around you, and become more in tune with your own feelings and instincts. 

Take a digital detox day or weekend where you turn your phone off and enjoy other activities you love — go on a hike or long walk, be present in nature, read, take a bubble bath, and spend time with loved ones with no distractions. You’ll feel so refreshed after!

Dance it out

Whether it’s pulsing in a Physique workout class or having a dance party in your living room, dancing is amazing for your mind and soul! Research shows that dance can help ease symptoms of anxiety and depression and keep your mind sharp ¹³. 

Come join us for a fun, empowering, and mood-boosting dance cardio class On Demand!

Sources

  1. https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamapsychiatry/article-abstract/2720689
  2. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/02/100222161848.htm
  3. https://www.helpguide.org/articles/healthy-living/the-mental-health-benefits-of-exercise.htm
  4. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24395196/
  5. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0889159112004758
  6. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4769029/
  7. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27472373/
  8. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/16763894/
  9. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24117885/
  10. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3779905/
  11. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2908269/
  12. https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/full/10.1177/1745691617707315
  13. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0197455613001676

Up Your Athleisure With This Discount Code

A woman wearing black ZISE workout clothes stretching her legs while reaching one arm to the sky

Anyone else seriously up their athleisure game this past year? bc SAME! We’ve been living in the cute new ZISE Collection by BLOCH  activewear. 😍 BLOCH has been designing clothes for dancers for more than 90 years, so they understand how our bodies move as we’re pulsing & sculpting at the barre. Plus, activewear that is fun and functional is our DREAM!

You are going to feel so empowered the moment you put on this new high-performance athleisure line! The premium, luxe fabrics are super soft, and the pieces are just as comfy for lounging too ~ major win! 🤗

A woman wearing white ZISE workout clothes doing a standing split next to a pool

We’re so excited because the BLOCH team is sharing special savings for the Physique 57 workout community! 🎉 use code: PHYSIQUE57 for 20% savings at Physique57.com/BLOCH  💗 We know you’re going to love this activewear collection as much as we do! Snap a pic and tag @physique57 in your new barre outfit! 

Woman wearing a mint-colored ZISE workout set taking a full-body selfie in front of a mirror surrounded by house plants
Woman facing away from the camera with her arms on her head while modeling a white criss cross ZISE sports bra and leggings.