How To Deal With Taxes & Stress The Healthy Way

Rachel Daily : April 10, 2014 4:18 pm : Blog, News

“We have what it takes to take what you have.”–Suggested IRS Motto 

There’s an age old saying that there’s two things that are certain in this life – death and taxes. While that may be somewhat accurate, we certainly wouldn’t want the taxes to be the cause of death or even stress. Stress has been linked to weight gain, depression, heart disease and even accelerated aging! Thus, we have compiled some suggestions, tips, tricks, and overall positive energy from around the web to keep you smiling and stress free come April 15th. 

The Forms:

First, here’s two handy stress preventing tips for the actual paperwork portion from Forbes

File on time—and consider doing so electronically. You have until midnight on April 15 to file your return. If you’re filing by mail, your return is considered on time if it has an April 15 postmark. Many post offices are open until midnight on tax day to accommodate last-minute filers. A better option might be filing online. In the words of the IRS, e-file is the “safest, fastest and easiest” way to file your federal taxes, and most states and a growing number of municipalities also offer electronic filing. Depending on your income and the software you choose, you may be able to file for free.

File an extension if you need more time. Maybe you had a family emergency, were traveling, or just forgot to gather all the required information. Whatever your reason for needing more time to file your return, the IRS makes it fairly easy to apply for an automatic six-month extension. Simply fill out IRS Form 4868.

The Food: 

Haven’t had a chance to shop or grab any leafy greens lately? While cramming a year’s worth of paperwork into the evenings after work is incredibly time consuming, grab a bag of almonds or a fresh juice (without added sugars) from the gas station on your way home for a quick snack that won’t leave you wanting a nap afterwards. Crunch some numbers, not some chips. Also, try this super handy 15 minute dinner calculator from Real Simple

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The Fun: 

Take a minute. Ok, five of them.  The brain is a powerful thing but you have to make a moment to let it calm down for a second. Get yours feeling a little more sane with these 40 ways to relax in 5 minutes or less from the Greatist team. 

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Find a local route and go for a quick walk. Really. It increases brain activity and overall happiness like you wouldn’t believe! In fact, 20 minutes is all you need. “The first 20 minutes of moving around, if someone has been really sedentary, provide most of the health benefits. You get prolonged life, reduced disease risk – all of those things come in in the first 20 minutes of being active,” says New York Times bestseller,  Gretchen Reynolds. Take a look over at Lifehacker

 Afterawalk

Put in those headphones, fire up your MapMy app of choice, and let’s get everyone’s brain to all turn those fun colors! Do you have any other healthy methods you rely on in times of stress? Let us know what they are below. Happy taxing.

 

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Fitness Fuel: What’s Sabotaging Your Workout Efforts?

Rachel Daily : April 8, 2014 8:13 pm : Blog, News

Pizza and pasta and beer, oh my! Now that spring is here and we’re seeing a lot more athletic activity from our users, we’re taking a look at fitness fuel and how what you have for breakfast could affect that post work jog. Do you track your foods in a daily food log? While it may seem like a tedious process, it’s incredibly helpful for those times you hit a rut or need to pinpoint something that may be sabotaging your weight loss. The team over at An Appetite for Health revealed a list from a New Zealand research study that identified 49 foods that are considered the most damaging to your diet. Do you agree with them? What’s your most tempting healthy diet wrecker?

Ditch These Worst Foods for Your Diet to Win at Losing

1. Alcoholic drinks

2. Biscuits

3. Butter, lard, dripping or similar fat (used as a spread or in baking/cooking etc.)

4. Cakes

5. Candy, including lollipops

6. Chocolate

7. Coconut cream

8. Condensed milk

9. Cordial

10. Corn chips

11. Cream (including crème fraiche)

12. Chips (including vegetable chips)

13. Deli meats

14. Doughnuts

15. Energy drinks

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16. Flavored milk/milkshakes

17. Fruit canned in syrup

18. Fruit rollups

19. Fried food

20. Fried potatoes/French fries

21. Frozen yogurt

22. Fruit juice (except tomato juice and unsweetened black currant juice)

23. Glucose (pure sugar)

24. High-fat crackers

25. Honey

26. Hot chocolate, chocolate milk

27. Ice cream

28. Jam

29. Marmalade

30. Mayonnaise

donut

31. Muesli/granola bars

32. Muffins

33. Nuts roasted in fat or oil

34. Pastries

35. Pies

36. Popcorn with butter or oil

37. Puddings

38. Quiches

39. Reduced cream

40. Regular powdered drinks

41. Salami

42. Sausages

43. Soft drinks

44. Sour cream

45. Sugar (added to anything including drinks, baking, cooking etc.)

46. Syrups such as golden syrup, treacle, maple syrup

47. Toasted muesli, granola, and any other breakfast cereal with more than 15 grams of sugar per 100 grams of cereal

48. Whole milk

49. Sugar-rich flavored yogurt

There they are in all their glory. What are your thoughts? Did they miss anything? What’s the hardest item on this for you to stay away from?

via – An Appetite for Health 

 

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Who Fartleked? The Ultimate Guide to Running Lingo

Rachel Daily : April 4, 2014 4:06 pm : Blog, News

Fartleks: (noun) – Easy runs broken up by quick sprinting bursts.

Woah..what were you thinking? C’mon. 

We’re wrapping up #RunWeek here and figured your knees could use some rest – let’s work that brain muscle instead! Whether you are just getting into running or you’ve had it as a routine staple for a while, it can still be intimidating at times, even for the most seasoned pros. The crew over at Greatist knows that and has compiled a great list of some essential running jargon to have in your verbal repertoire – even if thinking about them only serves to take your mind off the dreadmill. Here’s some of our favorites. 

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Cadence - the number of steps taken per minute while running. The fastest runners have a cadence of about 180 steps a minute. 

Dreadmill - what runner’s call the loathed piece of gym equipment they have to use due to time or weather constraints. 

Interval Training - by alternating specific time periods of specific high and low intensity during a run, intervals are just one way to get faster, build strength and see calories melt away. 

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Lactic Acid - Formed when the body cannot generate energy using oxygen, lactic acid is produced anaerobically. 

Rabbit - pacemakers or pace-setters during a race. They keep going….forever.

Bandit - cheaters that run a race without registering or paying an entrance fee

Splits - A race’s total time divided into smaller parts is known as splits. An even split is the same pace through the entire race. A negative split, the second half of the race was run faster than the first! 

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Ice Baths – a shock to the senses that can reduce inflamation and aid in the post-long run recovery process. It’s like, brrrr. 

Taper - a decrease in total running mileage to help store energy before a big race. 

DNF – What is posted in race results when someone didn’t finish a race. Oops?! 

This is only the beginning! To check out the whole list of running terms, head over to Greatist and their Ultimate Guide to Running Lingo. Do you have any “runner’s slang” you use frequently that’s not on their list? Let us know! 

 

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National Walking Day

Rachel Daily : April 2, 2014 5:40 pm : Blog, News

This post is for those bold enough to take the stairs – when the elevator is RIGHT THERE. This is for those that park in the spot furthest away from the store, even when it’s not crowded. This is for those that lace up their shoes and deny the couch a victory – at least for a few minutes in their evening. This post is for the walkers of the world. Today has been named by the National Heart Association to be National Walking Day

Inactivity doubles the risk of heart disease and with desk jobs, computers, and the exorbitant amount of sitting we do as a nation, sometimes it’s hard to realize how the sedentary lifestyle creeps in. If you haven’t been moving as much as you would like lately, today is the perfect day to start. Here’s some tips to get you going: 

1. Make sure you have the latest update of MapMyWalk downloaded on your phone. Want some company while you walk? Upgrade to MVP for coaching tips and our live tracking capability. 

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2. Bring your sneakers to work. If they’re already in the car, you’re avoiding an extra stop home! 

3. Grab a few new pieces of spring workout gear. You’ll want to get your money’s worth so you’ll have to fit workout walks into your schedule. 

4. Get your friends involved. Fitness is far more fun with friends. 

5. Chart your progress, your routes, and your calories with MapMyWalk. There’s proof in numbers. 

walkingday

Need some more convincing? Here’s some alarming news from the American Heart Association about how important that daily dose of exercise is: 

Statistics show that 1 in 2 men, and 1 in 3 women are at risk for heart disease, and research shows that poor lifestyle is a major contributor. From walking clubs and paths to cooking tips and easy-made recipes, the American Heart Association’s My Heart.My Life. healthy living initiative is working to help individuals and families understand how to get active and eat healthy – all part of the American Heart Association’s 2020 goal. Don’t stop with signing up for Heart Walk; use our American Heart Association Walking Clubs and Walking Paths to keep you walking every day. Visit MyHeartMyLife.org to learn more.

walking tracker

Also, to celebrate National Walking Day, we’re offering 20% off of our Sync Elite Activity Tracker, a device that will help you track your daily movements and integrates seamlessly with your MapMyWalk account, for 24 hours only!  Hit the trail, the asphalt, the neighborhood, or wherever is closest to you and get those steps in. It’s reaaaaally good for you. 

 

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#RunWeek With Greatist & Brooks

Rachel Daily : March 31, 2014 4:58 pm : Blog, News

Whether you’ve been meaning to get started, need to buy a new pair of shoes, can’t find the right place to put your keys while you’re doing it, or are simply just afraid of getting that first one out of the way, it’s the perfect time of year to put those excuses to bed with Jack Frost and get your spring running goals set up!

RunWeek

It’s officially Run Week and the folks at Greatist and Brooks will be pushing out tons of tips, infographics, recipes, and surefire ways to kick that spring into your steps. Be sure to update to the newest version of MapMyRun, lace up those sneakers, and show us your pics from the trail by tagging your images #RunWeek.

Links to get you started: 

How to Run Your Best 5k Ever

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18 Ways to Change Up Your Running Routine

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30 Convincing Reasons to Start Running Now

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How Often Should You Replace Your Running Shoes?

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What’s your best running motivation? Is it the sunshine itself that keeps you going? Maybe a special event you’re getting ready for? Whatever the case may be, let’s lace up and run out! 

 

 

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