The Importance of Sleep

Why is sleep so important? Sleep is beneficial to a long, healthy, and happy life. Below are 10 reasons why you should set the alarm to go to bed as much as you set it to wake up.

#1 - Improves Memory: When sleeping your mind works in miraculous ways. You may think you are jumping from thought to thought or not falling asleep fast enough. But in fact your brain is actually working at high speeds of memorization, remembrance, and strengthening itself for daily activities. When teaching yourself something new, as in a new skill at work, a new language, or a new creative hobby, your brain is working in small exercises to lock away that information.

#2 - Helps with Creativity: Studies at Harvard University have shown that after a long nights sleep, creativity is at it's highest. Some will feel the creative power flowing while they are dreaming and wake with fresh new ideas. Working on something you love after a long nights sleep, first thing in the morning, may be the best time to have your "creative juices" flowing.


Fitness Shopping Made Easy

Knowing what to purchase for a home gym can be a chore. What products work and which do not. You don't want to spend money on a gym membership but want to workout at home instead at your convenience. So you need to know what will work for your living-room or basement and TuffPhit has the answer.

TuffPhit.com was started in 2010 and after many years of product testing, studying to be a trainer, and working out, I was diagnosed with Breast Cancer. Now closing in on five years since that diagnosis comes a new vision and new outlook on life. Slowly entering into my gym again, I find myself back here writing for TuffPhit.com. If I can do this, so can you. No excuses. So lets go!

TP brings you a quick and easy shopping list of products tested. Each of these companies have partnered with TP in the past and we thank them for their participation in the review process. You can do a search on our site for the original full reviews. We hope to bring you new products in the near future.


Gym Gems - Jewelry for Enthusiasts of Sport and Fitness

Gym Gems is jewelry for the gym enthusiast. Beautifully crafted of sterling silver, you won't be disappointed. As I go into my five year cancer free and my body goes back in the gym, I am reminded of all the amazing products I have had the honor to write about. Gym Gems. being one of them!

If you have a heart for the gym and working out and making a better you, then share it with the world by wearing a Gym Gems piece. You won't believe the compliments you receive while wearing your jewelry. When I am wearing my necklace, people at stores or anywhere I am out, will take notice of it. Asking "is that a dumbbell?" because it is such an unusual charm they don't see them every day. Then they say "That's really cool!" So be as different as your workout and sport Gym Gems!

My toggle necklace is probably my favorite. It's very feminine in that it's a smaller dumbbell. It looks great with the out-on-the-town outfit. Since these are real sterling silver (all marked with the 925) you will receive a Gym Gems gift box, a velvet bag to store it in, and a Gym Gems silver polish cloth. These items will help keep your jewelry looking great for years to come. If you invest in your body in the gym, invest a little in your jewelry too!


Accountability - A Must Have

Accountability is a very important factor in the daily choices we make. If we know we must justify tomorrow what we ate today, we will less likely pick up the fritter or eat an entire bag of Oreo cookies.

Who to be accountable to: It should be someone, or a group of someone’s, who you can trust. They should never rain on your parade or bring you down with negativity. They should be able to say “good job” on the positive and “you can do better, I believe in you” on the negative. And most importantly, they should be sharing the same thoughts and values as you when it comes to healthier life choices. They should also be treating you with “tough love” and telling you how it is.

Where to find accountability: Choose wisely. If you have good relationships at home, you can find accountability in a parent, sibling, or partner.  Sit down with your accountability partner(s) and explain your goals and what they should be looking for in regards to your weaknesses. If you are trying to give up pop, then they should help you make other choices.


Resolutions for Fitness

Did someone say 2016? What happened to the 80's? Is it that time again? To make a new resolution? I love how we get a clean slate every year because the world tells us we can. It is now acceptable to be "new and improved" as of January 1st. For some, it's a good time to make a change. If you started working out mid-year people may wonder what got into you. But now, because of a date on a calendar, no one will think you have lost your marbles drinking that green shake and walking the stairs at lunch.  So how do we get started on this new adventure? Below are a few simple tips for keeping those resolutions. And yes, I said "SIMPLE".


Multi Flask Review

Multi Flask was a tough review for me, I must say. Hopefully this post will be a clear view of what this product is and all it entails.  I put this review through the heat, cold, drops, washes, and everything in between. I haven't had something take me so long to get a grasp on, but with all the moving parts, I wanted to make sure I was using it as instructed and find out what it's strengths and weaknesses were. So here we go….

Multi Flask is a drinking bottle not just a water bottle. If you can dream it, you can drink it with Multi Flask. Are you a coffee drinker in the morning, a water drinker in the afternoon, and a protein shake drinker before your evening workout? Then this bottle has you covered in all aspects of your day.

When first getting the box you will unwrap all the parts and look for the instructions on how to use this "oh so fancy" device. Left only to realize the box is your only set of instructions. Pictures become your true guide for assembly. I can do pictures, this should be easy! Placing all the pieces on the counter, I read the box carefully to see what went where and how.


Benefits to Drinking Cucumber Water

Question: Are there benefits to drinking cucumber water? Answer: Is a cucumber green?

The first time I had this delicious water was at a hotel of all places. I was working a vendor booth, for a motorcycle expo, and after long hours on my feet the hotel lobby met me with cool and refreshing water. It was so cold, tasted like summer, and was just what I needed after spending a day in the hot sun. I continued throughout the day running back and forth to the lobby filling my water bottle with this cucumber delight. Unknown to me, I was doing my body good AND finding a new addiction.

So what are some of the benefits of cucumber water?

Cancer Reducing Cucumbers: Drinking water is essential to weightless and fitness in general, so that's a no brainer. Cucumbers contain something called Cucurbitacins. But Cucumbers have been the subject of ongoing research for over the last decade to determine the nature of their anti-cancer properties. Scientists have discovered several different signaling pathways required for cancer cell development and survival. These pathways can be blocked by the activity of Cucurbitacins, found in the cucumber (as well as pumpkins and gourds). Making cucumbers a part of your daily diet may help block cancer cells from forming.

Weightless Drink: Cucumber water is a natural way to loose belly fat. There is no easy diet pill or weightless system, so take this with a swig of cucumber water.  By adding cucumber water to your diet you will help hydrate and detox your body. Cucumbers are a natural diuretic and help with water retention and bloating, as well as cleaning out the colon and intestinal track. So be ware of the increased bathroom trips. Also, by adding a natural flavor to your water, you will find drinking more water and reaching your water intake goals for the day will be a little easier.

Blood Pressure: Cucumbers are very low in sodium and high in potassium.  Both which help reduce your blood pressure. Also increasing your water intake, again, will help with overall body health.

Low Calorie: Cucumbers only contain 45 calories with the skin and 34 calories without the skin. By adding only a few slices to your water this makes for a very low calorie drink, averaging around 5 calories! While rehydrating your body it's the perfect substitute for energy drinks loaded with sugar and high calories.

Bone Strength: Cucumbers are HIGH in vitamin K which is needed in your bones to slow bone loss and bone fractures often seen in post-menopausal woman. Being a cancer survivor, who is totally done with menopause, this is a must for my life.

Making Cucumber water is easy. Doing an entire pitcher of water at a time makes for an easy refill throughout your day. Slice up as much cucumber as you want flavor. By adding a few lemons and maybe even some mint, you can change up the flavors. Store in the refrigerator to keep the cucumbers fresh. Making this daily is a good idea. The cucumbers will start to ferment and smell bad if left out or not drank for a few days. But you should be able to put down a pitcher or two because it tastes so good!!

As the snow melts and we start to see signs of spring, this will be a refreshing reminder that summer is just around the corner. Toss a few cucumbers into your workout bottle and take it into the gym with you. Hydration during your workouts is a must!


Versa Grips Review

Versa Gripps is a new versatile way to get your grip on.  They are a self-supporting training tool to lock your grip into place. Being unlike regular fitness gloves, that restrict finger and hand movement, these grips allow your fingers to be mobile.

Of course I received the pink pair as shown above. These are a limited addition color, so if you want pink order today! I love having a little pink in the gym. It's a constant reminder of where I am and where I am going. Not looking back on the cancer and where I used to be. We need to always focus on the future. It's the only thing we can change.

I love Versa Gripps is made in the United States and with high quality materials. I, like many of you, may not be lifting huge amounts of weight (yet), but that's okay. These can be used with even the smallest of weight and still allow you to easily hang on. Pull-up bars are another great place to use the Versa Gripp.

When doing any kind of quick change in weights, as in following along with a DVD series, I did find them a bit awkward to get used to as they are not attached at the top of your hands in anyway. The longer or more often you use them, the more the tacky gripping type material (which is anti-bacterial and anti-microbial) molds and takes shape to your hand. After some use, they become easier to maneuver and get used to. Your entire hand is not covered or getting sweaty which helps bacteria stay away. Bonus. Also as you increase in weights, the VG is durable enough to make this transition with you.

Putting on the Versa Gripp is quite simple. Place the strap through the metal ring, pulling to adjust the size, then secure to the velcro. Sizes are available in XS, S, Regular/L, and XL. This allows for more strap to go around the wrist. When ordering on the VS site, follow the instructions on how to measure the wrist and chose your size. The gripp can be worn in your pushing and pulling exercises by just flipping the gripping pad around the bar or equipment rather than over. I was actually surprised at how gripping it really is.  

The science behind the gripp is well described on the Versa Gripp site and is as follows: 

"The grip is comprised of a group of small finger flexor muscles in the forearm. These finger flexor muscles are connected to the fingers by tendons passing through the wrists. Also running through the wrists, are arteries for blood flow and nerves. These small finger flexor muscles allow the hands to hold onto and carry the weight on the weightlifting bar. In order to gain maximum development and isolation of the larger muscles in the body - such as the back, arms and chest - the grip and hands need to be protected and supported."

If you are looking for a different and safe way to lift weights, do pull-ups, or dead lifts, the Versa Gripp could be for you. If you already have a pair, please feel free to comment below and let other Tuff Phitters hear what you think. 

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Blessings, Angie Christine

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