A Bonfire Thanksgiving – Make it a Healthy, Happy Holiday

by admin

So you’ve made the commitment to change your life and/or the lives of the people in your family. You’ve changed the way you eat, move, and think. It’s awesome. You’re feeling better, and you might even get used to this! But suddenly, you realize…it’s holiday time. The time of year that you cook all the yummy stuff your mom and grandma used to make. The time when you stuff yourself silly, then watch football and pass out in your recliner. How is this going to work? What about tradition? What about my candied yams??

Take a deep breath. Don’t panic. We can help.

First of all, remember that Thanksgiving is intended to be a day to appreciate and give thanks for our gifts. It was not intended to be a day of stress. And one thing Doc always says is “Progress, not perfection.” So if on this one day, you just HAVE to have a slice of Mom’s apple pie, don’t beat yourself up about it too much. The problem is this: one day of cheating can open a floodgate. We’ve all done it before. “I’ll just cheat today, and get back on the wagon tomorrow!” Then tomorrow comes and you tell yourself, “after the weekend.” Before you know it, it’s Christmas and you’re eating a dozen cookies with milk that were meant to be for Santa.

Secondly, the Bonfire way of life is just that – a LIFELONG journey toward health and wellness. That means many, many Thanksgivings! So we’d better figure out how to do it the healthy way from now on. In that spirit, Bonfire presents some Paleo, Bonfire-approved Thanksgiving Day recipes and ideas…enjoy!

FUEL: What to Eat on Turkey Day

AIR: Get Your People Moving!
In the midst of the chaos that big family holidays can bring, make sure that you take some time for yourself to move! Try to get your family members involved…maybe it means a family football game in the yard, or a family walk after dinner to help digest. Or MAYBE, if you’re feeling crazy, you do 5 air squats for every commercial you see involving food! We know that moving helps elevate our serotonin levels and keeps us in a better mood. Couldn’t hurt when dealing with in-laws, right?

SPARK: Bring the “Thanks” back into Thanksgiving
Try starting a new tradition at your house – a gratitude tree! Cut out some leaves from construction paper and have each person write down what they are thankful for when they arrive. We used a jewelry tree and ornament hooks to hang them, but you could use clothespins to hang them on a garland or twine strung over the fireplace, or have people put them into a basket. After dinner ask one of your younger guests to read each one out loud. Have people guess who wrote what, and soak in all the gratitude and positive energy!

Don’t forget to sit back, relax, and enjoy the day. Appreciate your blessings, embrace your family, laugh often, and eat some healthy food that’s going to fuel your body! We hope this post helps make this special day just a little bit healthier and less stressful. And we’re thankful for you!!

Special thanks to Amanda Cannon photography for the pictures!


Active Recovery

by admin

Active recovery – low-intensity exercise during periods of rest between moderate to intense workouts – a small number of research findings say it positively provides benefit while a small amount of research says it is not yet possible to conclude whether or not there is significant benefit.  While it is clear that research is still growing, there are studies that have pointed to positive effects of including active recovery in training cycles. More

The Dangers of a Sedentary Lifestyle

by admin

Sedentary Lifestyle
Sedentary lifestyle is a medical term used to describe a lifestyle with little or no physical activity.  It is commonly found in both the developed and developing world, and is characterized by sitting, reading, watching television or using the computer for much of the day, with little or no vigorous physical exercise.

The Facts on Sedentary Lifestyle:

  • Approximately 50% of America’s youth aged 12–21 are not regularly physically active.  Moreover, physical activity declines dramatically during adolescence.
  • According to the American Heart Association, those who are physically inactive have between 1.5 and 2.4 times the risk for developing coronary heart disease, comparable to that observed for high blood cholesterol, high blood pressure or cigarette smoking.
  • A sedentary lifestyle increases the risk of developing diabetes, hypertension, colon cancer, depression and anxiety, obesity, and weak muscles and bones.
  • According to the CDC, nationally in 2000, 78% of the population was at risk for health problems related to lack of exercise, which is regular and sustained physical activity.
  • On average, physically active people outlive those who are inactive.
  • Physical inactivity affects at least 20 of the most deadly chronic disorders. 

The Importance of an Active Lifestyle
Our genes, combined with lifestyle choices, determine the health that we get to experience during our lifetime.  What current research shows is that our genes are virtually identical to those of our hunter-gatherer ancestors who inhabited the earth over 10,000 years ago.  For them, daily physical activity was not a lifestyle choice; it was a necessary part of survival.  Nowadays, even though exercise and movement may seem like a choice, exercise is still very necessary for our survival and optimal health.

Currently, more than 60% of American adults are not regularly active, and 25% of the adult population is not active at all.  Sedentary Death Syndrome, or “SeDS,” is the term developed by more than 200 of the nation’s leading physiologists to diagnose the growing epidemic of physical inactivity and its relationship to chronic, preventable diseases.  All inactive Americans are currently at risk for SeDS, which can lead to premature disability or death.  Approximately 2.5 million Americans will die prematurely in the next ten years due to SeDS, a number greater than all alcohol, gun, motor vehicle, and illicit drug use deaths combined.  These researchers call SeDS the second largest threat to public health.

Avoid all these dangers of a sedentary lifestyle by making the choice to exercise regularly!  Check out our tips for getting started.

Now Get Moving!

Related Resources:
The Chair is Your Enemy
Sitting is Killing You
Inactivity Responsible for More Deaths than Smoking
If You Must Sit, Sit Here