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Secrets to Great Morning Workouts

GreatMorningWorkouts

Do you wish you had great morning workouts? Ever find yourself envying those social media posts from your friends, humble-bragging about their predawn run? Are you wracked with guilt for hitting the snooze button yet again instead of hitting the pavement?

You may be inadvertently setting yourself up for failure. Setting healthy habits takes time and commitment, but there is also a strategy for giving yourself an edge. If you find yourself struggling to make that morning workout a reality, try these five steps for success.

1. Begin well the night before.

The old adage is true: a great morning starts with a good night. Don’t sabotage yourself by staying up too late, drinking heavily, eating poorly, or simply failing to plan. Instead, use your evening to get the rest and refreshment you need to start the new day right.

Be sure you are getting sufficient sleep, too. The average adult needs seven hours of sleep to be at their best; you may need a little more. Make sure you allow yourself plenty of time to get your rest.

That means turning off the screens. Televisions, tablets, and laptops are too stimulating for before-bed relaxation. Instead, switch to reading, listening to music, or quietly conversing with your loved one for thirty minutes before sleeping.

2. Prepare your gear.

Get everything ready the evening before, that way in the early morning hours you won’t need to search for anything. Lay out your workout clothes, put your equipment and shoes by the door, and locate your pedometer and other gear. Your goal is to eliminate thinking from the early morning when you are still sleepy; you’ll just do it.

3. Set your alarm.

Be sure to set an alarm, because if you are struggling to make this a habit, you won’t automatically wake up early enough. Be sure your alarm is loud enough to rouse you, and set it a distance from your bed. If you have to walk across the room to turn it off, you are already upright, which is half the battle!

4. Hydrate well.

Drink at least one glass of water as soon as you wake up. This will help hydrate your muscles and wake up your system. If you are going to a gym, be sure to take a large water bottle with you to continue drinking through your workout. Be sure to drink a couple more glasses of water with your protein bar when you finish your workout.

5. Make a commitment.

It takes most people over a month of successful repetitions to set a new habit. Help yourself beat the curve by making a commitment to yourself and to others to stick to your morning routine. If possible, invite a fitness partner to workout with you each morning. The appointment will spur you to get going on tough days. If you can’t find an early morning workout buddy, at least call on a friend to hold you accountable to your commitment and ask you regularly if you have achieved your goal.

For more information about your workouts, check back each week for tips from Promax Nutrition.

Posted in Fitness, Rest | June 12, 2015

The Healthy Parent’s Guide to Protein for Kids

protein for kids

Protein is important for children. Strong, healthy bodies need protein to grow. Constant activities, sports, and play require protein for repairing and building muscles. And all the movement needs energy.

That’s why your child wants to eat constantly. Growing children eat six to seven times a day, refueling for their constant learning and developing. According to HealthEating.SFgate.com, with adequate protein, children pay attention better, retain information longer, and experience less injury and illness. What parent doesn’t want that?

So that’s why they need plenty of protein. It is tempting to let them grab a cookie or even an apple every time they need a snack, but young bodies need more. Give them the protein they need for their vigorous day of challenges by stocking up on these quick and easy protein treats.

Tuna Dip

Mix a can of tuna with light mayonnaise, pickle relish, and shaved carrots. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. The tuna dip keeps in a covered container for several days. Enjoy it with sliced vegetables like celery or broccoli, or serve with whole grain crackers or toast squares.

Chicken Quesadillas

Keep some shredded chicken in the refrigerator, or slice some leftover chicken for a tasty, cheese snack. Simply warm a tortilla with shredded cheese and chicken in a skillet until cheese is melted and tortilla begins to crisp. Serve with salsa for dipping.

Cottage Cheese

Cottage cheese is a childhood favorite by itself, but it is even more fun with fruit. Dip apple or peach slices in cottage cheese, or serve a small bowl with pineapple on top. This is a great way to satisfy a craving for sweets while keeping young tummies satisfied longer with protein.

Hard Boiled Eggs

Keep a dozen hard boiled eggs in the refrigerator for a quick grab-and-go snack. Change the pace once in a while by chopping up the egg, mixing with light mayonnaise, and serving with pita chips.

Chocolate Milk

Next time your child asks for soft drinks with dinner, mix some chocolate into his milk instead. Milk provides valuable calcium for his strong bones in addition to a boost of protein. It’s a tasty treat that makes a great snack on the way to sports practice, too.

Peanut Butter Drizzle

Next time your child wants an ice cream treat, add some protein and some fun with this delightfully delicious topping.

Protein Bars

Replace the snack bags, cookies, and cereal bars with a healthy supply of delicious protein bars, instead. Yummy enough for dessert in school lunches and satisfying enough for a pre-game snack, protein bars pack a powerful supply of energy for growing bodies.

Moving Forward

Here at Promax we’re always looking for unique and innovative ways to mix it up with nutrition and fitness. For more ideas on how to live a healthy lifestyle, check out our blog or follow us on social media.

Posted in Nutrition |

Warning: 10 Signs You Aren’t Getting Enough Protein

ArentGettingEnoughProtein

You know that protein is an important part of your diet, and you have already taken steps to increase your protein consumption. How do you know if you are eating enough protein? Are there signs that your body is not getting all the protein it needs?

Absolutely! Your body will tell you in several ways if your diet includes sufficient protein to handle your daily fitness and wellness needs. Take this quick quiz to see if your body is asking for more.

  1. Are you tired? Fatigue after a strenuous workout or at the end of a long day is expected. But if you are feeling tired when you wake up in the morning or having a mid-day slump, you likely need more protein.
  2. Do you crave sweets? Protein helps regulate blood sugar, so if you are constantly reaching for cookies, you may want to turn to healthy protein snacks instead.
  3. Are you hungry? A balanced meal or snack should leave you satisfied for two to three hours. If you are looking for lunch before that, make sure you are including a strong protein source each time you eat. Protein will help you feel full longer.
  4. Do you have brain fog? By regulating blood sugar, protein keeps your brain functioning at its optimal level. Loss of clarity after eating with a sharp drop in capabilities drop an hour or two later is a sure sign of protein deficiency.
  5. Are you becoming weaker even though you are strength training? Your body actually breaks down muscle during workouts. If you don’t supply yourself with adequate protein, you could lose muscle rather than gain.
  6. Are you seeing more flab than muscle? Your body needs protein to function on a daily basis. If you don’t replenish that supply adequately, you may begin breaking down muscle for protein. Eat plenty of protein to keep the muscle you have.
  7. Are you suffering more injuries? Muscle needs to be repaired after every exercise. Without adequate protein, your muscles may not get all the repair they need, leading to more injury. Also, with insufficient protein, your injuries will heal slower and you’ll notice a longer recovery time.
  8. Are you frequently ill? Your body uses protein as well for keeping the immune system strong. Insufficient protein intake could leave your immune system lacking.
  9. Is your hair falling out? Your body rebuilds with protein, and in the absence of adequate stores will begin rationing to the most important functions. One of the first things to fall by the way side is hair and nails. If you notice hair thinning, nails breaking, and hang nails, it’s time to get more protein.
  10. Are you achy? Without protein to rebuild connective tissues and cartilage, you may begin noticing joint pain and aches increase.

If you said “yes” to several of these questions, it’s time to beef up your protein intake. For quick protein on the go, be sure to stock up on Promax bars, too.

For more information about nutrition and exercise, check back each week for tips from Promax Nutrition.

Posted in Protein |

Melinda Allen

Promax_FF_061015_Photo_v1What makes you the Featured Fan?
I’m a strong mom and woman! I have to have protein in my diet to keep me rolling and moving. As a stay-at-home mom, I care for my two autistic boys and my husband, who is a disabled Army veteran. He keeps me motivated to live a healthy lifestyle and has taught me so much in the 20 years I have known him. I am so grateful! I go to the gym five days a week to relieve stress; I take it out on the weights and my body thanks me for it! I’m a 39 year-old supermom who isn’t going to stop. I have no choice because people depend on me. 🙂

WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE FLAVOR?
Promax Original Lemon Bar.

Why is fitness and nutrition important to you?
Keeps me sane, mentally and physically happy!

What is one unique thing about you?
I like to collect baseball hats. I have hundreds of them! I’m a sportsmom! 🙂

CHECK OUT MELINDA ON TWITTER @LoveSportsMom!!


Want to be our next Promax FEATURED FAN? Fill out the form below to be considered as our next Featured Fan and a chance to win 1 box of Promax bars!

Posted in Featured Fan | June 10, 2015

Five Foods That Are Packed with Protein

protein

Protein is an essential part of every diet. It helps our bodies build muscle, improves metabolism, regulates blood sugar, and feeds us a steady stream of carbohydrates throughout the day. Our energy bars are designed to provide exercisers with a healthy dose of protein to power and recover from their workouts and help them achieve the healthy bodies they want. But, since not every meal can be a Promax bar (unfortunately!), we’ve put together a list of 5 additional foods that are packed full of protein.

Greek Yogurt

Greek yogurt has become increasingly popular over the last few years, and it’s not hard to see why. Greek yogurt gets its thick consistency from straining out the liquid found in regular forms of yogurt, and has nearly twice as much protein as the standard version (23 g per 8 oz. serving). In addition to being loaded with protein, Greek yogurt is also loaded with probiotic bacteria that improves digestion and calcium that helps keep bones healthy and strong.

If you’re limiting your sugar intake, be sure to pick up an unflavored Greek yogurt. The flavored versions can have up to three times as much sugar.

Eggs

Eggs aren’t just a dietary staple; they’re one of the most protein-heavy foodstuffs around. Eggs have an incredibly high biological value, which measures how much of the protein in a food item can be incorporated into proteins in the body. Biological value is largely determined by the amount of amino acids a food contains, and eggs are absolutely full of them. One large egg contains 6 g of protein; if you’re looking for food that will power your day, eggs are practically an essential.

Steak

When you think protein, you probably think meat. So it shouldn’t come as a surprise that steak is a great way to add protein to your diet. If you’re concerned with the fats and calories that are also found in your traditional cut of steak, we have some good news: leaner cuts of beef, like bottom round and beef loin, typically have only 7 calories per one gram of protein; for comparison, a rib eye has 11 calories per one of protein. Even better news: round cuts are some of the least expensive cuts of meat. Just be sure not to overcook – rounds and loins are thin, which means that they dry out easily if cooked too much.

Wild Salmon

Think there’s no real difference between wild caught sockeye and farm-raised salmon? Think again: wild salmon contains nearly 25% more protein than fish raised on a farm, as well as more of the fatty acids like omega-3 that increase your body’s fat-burning power. A 3 oz. serving of wild-caught sockeye salmon has 23 g of protein. If you’re looking for a tasty way to add protein to your diet, salmon is one of the easiest (and tastiest) ways to do just that.

Edamame

Looking for a light snack that’s packed with protein? Edamame fits the bill with its 8 g of plant protein per ½ cup serving, along with a healthy dose of essential vitamins, minerals, and fiber. Shelled edamame can be found in most grocery stores’ frozen aisles, and taste great with a squeeze of lemon juice after cooking.

And, of course, Promax protein bars are a great, healthy source of protein. Ready to stock up? Check out our variety of products today!

Posted in Nutrition, Protein | June 8, 2015

Allie Liu

Promax_FF_060315_Photo_v1What makes you the Featured Fan?
I am dedicated to leading a healthy lifestyle, both inside and out. My devotion to exercise isn’t to just get a six-pack or lose weight; it’s so my body can fully function. Since I was 11 years old, I struggled with eating disorders. It wasn’t until recent years that I went into treatment. After treatment I tried lifting weights instead of cardio for hours. I felt great! Now I’m stronger than ever, and feel comfortable fueling my body the way it needs to be.

WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE FLAVOR?
Promax LS Chocolate Mint, for sure!! It tastes just like my favorite Girl Scout cookie and doesn’t have a funky aftertaste like so many other brands.

Why is fitness and nutrition important to you?
Fitness is what keeps me feel content and energized. It helps me to channel my anxiety into a healthy outlet. Nutrition is just as critical because it helps my body perform to its full potential. After years of lacking nutrients, I now can say, from eating real nutrient-dense foods, I checked out perfectly healthy at the doctors!! And no more anemia, either!

What is one unique thing about you?
I’m double jointed in my thumbs and knees.

CHECK OUT ALLIE ON INSTAGRAM @allieliuz!!


Want to be our next Promax FEATURED FAN? Fill out the form below to be considered as our next Featured Fan and a chance to win 1 box of Promax bars!

Posted in Featured Fan | June 3, 2015

How to Train for Your First 5K and Live to Tell About It

Marathon

Have you long wanted to run a 5K but never actually completed one? Do you envy your running friends and wish you could talk about your goals or race finish time? It’s time to start dreaming and start doing. Train for your first 5K.

Easier said than done, right? Well, we’re here to help with the simple step-by-step guide to training for your first race. You can do it, just follow these tips.

Understand the training process.

If you have started training for a 5k and then quit, you likely had unrealistic expectations for yourself. No, you can’t instantly run three miles and feel great; if you try, you’ll feel terrible. Instead, recognize that like learning to do anything else, there is a learning curve. Your muscles and mind have to get accustomed to the workout, so expect this to take a couple months to achieve.

Recruit a friend.

Studies have shown you are more likely to stick with your training if you have moral support from a friend. So ask a neighbor, coworker, or family member to train with you. Besides, running is much more fun with company!

There are numerous apps and fitness routines to help you go from “couch to 5K.” Pick one that works for you and your device. Most will help you pace your progress with intervals of walking and light jogging at first to work up gradually to running a 5K.
Keep in mind that these programs are for general users, not you specifically. Sometimes you may need to modify the routine to work for your body. Don’t push your body further than it should go just because “the plan says so.”

Register for a race.

Give yourself a goal to work toward by registering for a 5K race in your area. Put the date in red on your calendar, and motivate yourself to keep going so you will be ready for your first race.

Get the shoes.

Be sure you are working out safely by getting proper running shoes. Make certain your arch is properly supported and your shoes fit well. Then only use those shoes for jogging. Running shoes maintain their support for about 350 miles, so be sure to replace them when necessary. Your shoes protect against stress fractures and other injuries, so make certain to get a good pair.

Go for small improvements.

A key to workout success is being honest with where you’re at. Don’t expect to run a six-minute mile your first time out. Instead, evaluate your current physical shape and level of activity, then celebrate every incremental win above that. Remember, exercise isn’t about impressing the neighbors or beating your coworkers, it’s about improving your own health. Keep that in mind and celebrate each small win.

Guard your recovery.

An important part of your training is the recovery you schedule in between workouts. Don’t run more than every other day at first, and . Listen to your body, and you’ll be good to run for the long haul.
Be sure to eat plenty of protein like
Promax bars to help your muscles recover, too. Protein is an important ingredient in building and repairing muscles, so make that a larger part of your diet.
Get more workout and exercise tips today by visiting our blog or contacting us at Promax Nutrition.

Posted in Fitness, Nutrition, Protein, Running | May 27, 2015

3 Quick & Easy Spring Snack Recipes

granola

Finally, warmer weather is upon us. It’s time to enjoy an active outdoor life again with running, hiking, and team play.

But all that activity will surely build up a powerful hunger! Stay fueled for your workouts and fun with these grab-and-go snacks you can feel good about.

Granola with Dried Fruit

Granola is old-school nutrition that is hip again. By making it yourself, you can make sure you have all the nutrition you need without the added sugar. Mix it up with your favorite grains, fruits, and flavorings. By including Promax bars, you’ll be sure to get the protein you need, too!

2 chopped PROMAX bars in your favorite flavors
2 cups rolled oats
1/2 cup sliced nuts (almonds or cashews are great!)
1/4 cup seeds (pumpkin or sunflower)
1/4 cup maple syrup
1 Tablespoon cooking oil
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 half cup dried fruit (raisins, cranberries, or mixed dried fruit)

Combine all the ingredients except the fruit on a baking sheet. Bake at 350 degrees until golden, about 25 minutes. Let granola cool before adding fruit and storing in individual servings.

Hummus

An excellent source of protein, hummus makes a great dip-able, spread-able snack. Pack small servings of hummus along with pita chips, whole grain crackers, or even raw vegetables for a tasty snack or even a complete meal. Spread hummus on toast or a tortilla, with or without lean meat, for a delicious alternative to the sandwich. While you can pick up hummus in the deli section of your local grocery, it is fun and easy to make your own.

1 can of chickpeas
1 teaspoon chopped garlic
¼ cup of olive oil
2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 Tablespoons tahini paste or peanut butter
1 teaspoon ground cumin
¼ teaspoon paprika
Salt to taste

Combine all ingredients except paprika into a blender or food processor. Process until smooth, adding more olive oil if necessary. Transfer to storage or serving container and sprinkle paprika on top.

Sweet Potato Chips

Potato chips are the go-to snack for outdoor games, picnics, and afternoon snacks. But by substituting vegetable chips, you can enjoy the salty flavor without the junk food. Instead, it’s a healthy treat! Make your own sweet potato chips and adjust the spices to your own taste.

2 small sweet potatoes
2 teaspoons olive oil
½ teaspoon paprika or other seasoning
½ teaspoon salt

Slice your sweet potatoes very thin with a sharp knife or mandolin slicer. Toss potato slices on two baking sheets with olive oil, seasoning, and salt. Arrange slices in single layer and bake at 375 for about 15 minutes or until chips are curling and edges are crisp. Transfer to paper towel to cool, then store.

Get more recipe and nutrition tips today by visiting our blog or contacting us at Promax Nutrition.

Posted in Nutrition, Protein |

Suffering from Allergies? Don’t Stop Exercising Now!

9 Tips to Feeling Great While Enjoying the Outdoors

outdoor exercise

It’s allergy season, and your sneezing and sniffling may be discouraging you from your daily jog. But it doesn’t have to be that way. While we can’t keep the trees and grasses from blooming (even if we wanted to!), we can learn to cope during these spring weeks.

If you are wondering if you should stay or if you should go outside, the answer is go. Exercising will pump up your natural defenses and release your endorphins, actually helping you feel better. As for the allergens, we’ve got you covered. Here are some tips to making the most of your spring training, in spite of allergies.

Don’t skip your workout.

You can stay in shape during allergy season, you just may need to modify your exercise time or place. Stay flexible, but keep your resolve to get out there anyway.

Watch the calendar.

You know when your typical allergy season is in your area, so start a good offensive strategy. Right before your allergy season begins, start taking the allergy medications your doctor has recommended for you. By heading off the allergic reaction, you’ll lessen your discomfort.

Monitor the weather.

Watch the weather report for the pollen count, and notice the natural fluctuations. Plan this week’s workout days to correspond to the lowest pollen count days to minimize your exposure.

Pollen levels are usually higher on sunny, breezy days and lower on rainy days. So take advantage of the dismal weather by sneaking in your workout then.

Keep an eye out for pollution.

If your asthma and allergies are exacerbated already, pollutants will merely make things worse. Keep an eye on your local ozone report so you can exercise when pollution is at a safer level. Also, pollutants can attach to the pollen in the air, literally adding insult to injury. So during allergy season, stay particularly vigilant about air quality.

Avoid the peak times of day.

Some disagree with the strategy, but many find that pollen effects seem to be worse in the middle of the day. Experiment with exercising early in the morning or late in the evening to see if that makes a difference in your allergic reaction.

Exercise less strenuously.

If you are noticing particularly troublesome allergies, don’t exercise to your limit. Breathing heavily and gasping for air when pollen is high could cause your allergies to worsen. So don’t push yourself too much during allergy season.

Protect your eyes and mouth.

If you are still struggling to avoid pollen, try covering your eyes with goggles and wearing a mask over your mouth while exercising. Protecting your eyes and mouth from pollen may not look attractive, but it could make a big difference in how you feel after workout.

Change clothes and shower immediately.

Wash off the pollen that attached to you immediately by showering and washing your hair as well as changing into clean clothes. This can make a big difference by greatly reducing your exposure to pollen.

Consider exercising indoors.

If you are truly struggling against allergies this spring, consider stretching, stair climbing, or other indoor exercises until the pollen count drops. Just whatever you do, stay active!
Get more workout and exercise tips today by visiting our blog or contacting us at Promax Nutrition!

Posted in Fitness |

Sharilynn Brown

Promax_FOTM_May_PhotoWhat makes you the Featured Fan?
All of my life I’ve been the “skinny” girl who could eat whatever she wanted and lay around watching TV all day without gaining any weight… and that’s exactly what I did, until about a two years ago. I decided that it was time to take care of myself, to work on becoming strong rather than just “skinny” and to give my body the food and nourishment that it required to live a healthy life. Ever since I made those decisions, I’ve discovered a passion for health and fitness. I’ve worked my way up to a healthy weight, adopted a serious six-day-a-week lifting split, became addicted to protein bars and have never been happier or felt better. For me, it’s important to take care of my body without having to feel like I’m depriving myself, and PROMAX bars make it easy to do just that! When I’m craving a candy bar that my macros don’t necessarily allow for, I reach for a PROMAX bar and I’m left feeling not only satisfied, but also full, energized and ready to hit the gym and continue on this journey to creating my best self.

Which PROMAX bar do you like best?
Cookies ‘n Cream was the first PROMAX bar that I’d ever tried and continues to be my go-to snack.

Why is fitness and nutrition important to you?
Fitness and nutrition are important to me because they’ve completely changed my life. Since I’ve embarked on this journey I’ve not only experience obvious physical benefits, but I’ve also noticed psychological improvements. A healthy lifestyle including proper exercise and nutrition has allowed me to live an all-around happier, more positive life and to approach everything that I do with more confidence and enthusiasm.

What is one unique thing about you?
In addition to health and fitness, I am also very passionate about fashion and photography. It seems to be an interesting combination of hobbies to say the least, but when I’m not at the gym you can find me takin

CHECK OUT SHARILYNN ON INSTAGRAM!
@sharilynnbrown


Want to be our next Promax FEATURED FAN? Fill out the form below to be considered as next month’s Featured Fan and a chance to win 1 box of Promax bars!

Posted in Featured Fan | May 24, 2015

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