Check out our May newsletter!
IT’S NATIONAL BIKE MONTH! EXPLORE THE WORLD ON 2 WHEELS
For many of us, biking comes just as naturally as walking. We learned how to ride at a young age and continued to ride our bikes throughout our lives for exercise and pleasure. There’s a common belief that once you learn to ride a bike, you never forget, and it’s true! The act of learning to ride a bicycle gets stored in our procedural memory so we never forget how to do it, much like when we learn to type or tie our shoes. May is National Bike Month, and there’s no better time than the present to get your bicycle out of storage and ride, even if it’s been some time since you last tried. I went to college at a university where cycling around campus was the optimal way to travel. UC Davis had 25,000 students, and nearly everyone, including myself, rode their bikes to class. Walking through campus when classes were in session was always strange because nobody was about, but all the bike racks were full. As soon as class let out, bicyclists were everywhere, and it took some time to learn how to navigate. There was a learning curve, especially when it came to roundabouts. Things haven’t changed too much at UC Davis. My daughter is attending school there now and going through many of the same bicycle-related experiences I did. Though, I’m hoping she can avoid some of the theft I experienced. I had two of my bikes stolen when I was at UC Davis. If
you didn’t properly lock up your bike, another student would snag it to ride to their next class. When this happened, most people would just go and get a new bike, leaving the campus littered with unused bikes. Once or twice a year, campus security would round up the bikes and auction them off to students and members of the community. This was always one of the best ways to get a new bicycle. “BIKING HAS A LOWER IMPACT THAN RUNNING, JOGGING, AND EVEN WALKING, SO THOSE WHO HAVE DIFFICULTY EXERCISING I didn’t ride my bike as much after leaving college. When our kids were younger, we would ride around the neighborhood with them, but now, I can easily jump on our Peloton to get some exercise. Unfortunately for me, I don’t use it as much as I should but my wife has well over 100 rides. Overall, I’ve been really impressed with the interactiveness of our Peloton. Some people say that biking at the gym can be ANOTHER WAY CAN FIND THE PERFECT SOLUTION IN BIKING.”
boring, but Peloton avoids this by providing a trainer and scenery to take in while you ride. This makes using the Peloton bike much more enjoyable and immersive. Biking is a great activity for people of all ages. Cycling offers a great way to work out while serving as a relaxation technique when biking along a river or through some parks. I had a client in his 80s who had extreme difficulty walking. If you asked him to walk 100 yards, he couldn’t do it. Yet, he could ride his bike for up to 200 miles each week. Biking has a lower impact than running, jogging, and even walking, so those who have difficulty exercising another way can find the perfect solution in biking. That’s a big reason why riding a bike is usually part of the exercise prescription I give clients. It’s low-impact, and all ages can benefit from it! Cycling is an excellent way to exercise, whether you’re riding outdoors or using a stationary one indoors. After a few short rides, you’ll notice improvements in your physical and mental health. Get out and ride during National Bike Month! You may discover a new favorite hobby in the process!
PUT YOUR GROUNDS IN THE GROUND!
How to Make Coffee Fertilizer
They say April showers bring May flowers, but sometimes, even with Mother Nature’s help, some sprouts have trouble growing. When this happens, the natural next step for many people is to give their precious plants a little fertilizer. But traditional chemically formulated fertilizers “[run] off into waterways or [get] broken down by microbes in the soil [and release] the potent greenhouse gas nitrous oxide into the atmosphere,” according to a report from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. So, if you’re looking for a more natural way to help your plants grow, you can make your own fertilizer at home — with coffee grounds! This eco- friendly alternative uses cinnamon as a natural pesticide and club soda for extra macronutrients.
WHAT YOU’LL NEED •
Get Out and Ride THE BENEFITS OF RIDING A BIKE health. Riding a bike decreases blood pressure and lowers your resting heart rate. After a few rides, your heart will be stronger, reducing your risk for cardiovascular diseases. A recent study from Purdue University found that cycling for 20 miles a week reduces your risk of heart disease by 50%. It doesn’t matter if you ride indoors or outdoors; riding a bike will boost your cardiovascular health. WEIGHT LOSS Many of us are seeking new ways to lose weight. We might try a different diet or start an alternative exercise routine, but what if the key to shedding pounds and maintaining a healthy weight is easier than we make it out to be? Biking burns calories, and the faster you go, the more calories you burn. The average person burns between 450 to 750 calories per hour cycling, though this number varies depending on the rider’s weight and speed. The Mayo Clinic found that those who burn or cut 500 calories daily would likely lose 1 pound per week. REDUCED STRESS We all have stressors in our lives that cause us to experience symptoms of anxiety, depression, and of course, stress. Biking is a great way to reduce these feelings, especially if you get outside and ride through nature. Various studies have shown that biking improves our moods, promotes positive mental health, and even helps us sleep better at night. Then, once your grounds have been brewed, mix them in a bowl with cinnamon and club soda. When these ingredients are combined, it creates a solution full of nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, and other minerals that plants love! Apply this coffee mixture directly to the soil of your plants every two weeks, ensuring you spread the fertilizer over the entire surrounding area to distribute the nutrients evenly. This mixture is excellent for indoor potted plants, outdoor plants, and even different bushes or shrubs. With this easy DIY fertilizer, you can reduce waste, help the environment, save money, and help your plants grow happier and healthier!
4-6 tbsp used coffee grounds
1 tsp cinnamon 1 cup club soda
Your coffee grounds must have gone through a brew cycle to make them less acidic so they don’t harm your plants. You can save the needed amount of coffee grounds throughout the week (depending on whether you use single-cup machines or drip pots) or brew a pot using 4–6 tablespoons specifically to use for fertilizing.
If you read our cover article, you learned that May is National Bike Month. Whether you’re going out for a casual ride around the neighborhood or undergoing intensive training to prepare for a race, there’s never a wrong time to get on your bicycle and go. Biking is a great way to get in some exercise, and it provides many benefits to our mental and physical health.
Below are a few of the many benefits you’ll experience when riding a bike.
IMPROVED CARDIOVASCULAR HEALTH Your heart is one of the most essential organs in your body. If your heart isn’t functioning properly, your overall well-being suffers. Thankfully, biking is one of the best activities for those looking to improve their cardiovascular
Imagine this scenario: You go out for your regular morning jog, but once you hit the halfway point on your route, your ankle begins to hurt. You’re an avid runner, so this is nothing unusual. You slow down and finish your jog before carrying on with your normal day. You ice and heat your ankle, but the pain doesn’t subside. The pain remains for weeks, disrupting your jogging routine. At what point do you say enough is enough and get your injury checked out? DON’T WAIT ON PAIN
GET HELP BEFORE IT’S TOO LATE
body part to perform other functions, which may worsen the injury. This pain becomes the new standard; we become accustomed to it until we’re unable to move that area at all. Chronic pain affects a large percentage of our population. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that 1 in 5 Americans struggle with chronic pain on a regular
basis. That’s over 50 million people! Chronic pain is defined as any pain or discomfort that lasts for more than six months. Chronic pain doesn’t only cause consistent discomfort; it bleeds into nearly every aspect of our lives and can cause issues with our work ethic and sleep patterns. It can even take a toll on our mental health and weaken our immune system.
This is an extremely common situation — each and every one of us has the potential to experience an injury at any given moment. Some of us will recover with time and rest, but others might not be so lucky. They may need surgery or assistance from a physical therapist to get better but choose to wait it out. We think that our bodies would let us know if something were seriously wrong, but that’s not always the case. Our bodies constantly send feedback to our brains, but over time, we can become desensitized to this feedback. This can cause us to ignore the pain and try to use the injured
Don’t let your pain worsen until it’s become intolerable. If you’ve recently experienced an injury or are suffering from chronic pain, give us a call, and we’ll help you get better!
TAKE A BREAK
Salmon Croquettes With Dill Sauce
Inspired by Epicurious.com
This dish is light and refreshing, making it perfect for spring! The crispy salmon patties pair perfectly with the cool dill sauce dolloped on top.
INGREDIENTS • 1 1/2 cups plain yogurt or fat-free sour cream • 1/4 cup Dijon mustard • 6 sprigs fresh dill, chopped • 2 14.75-oz cans salmon packed in water • 4 celery stalks, finely chopped
• 1 large white onion, finely chopped • 4 large eggs, beaten • 1/2 tbsp salt
• 1 tbsp pepper • 2 tbsp olive oil
DIRECTIONS 1. In a small bowl, whisk together yogurt, Dijon mustard, and dill to make the dill sauce. Set aside. 2. Drain the salmon, then remove and discard the bones and skin. In a large bowl, mix the salmon, celery, onion, eggs, salt, and pepper. Form the mixture into 8 patties. Coat a medium skillet with olive oil and heat it over medium-high heat. Cook the patties until browned on both sides, about 5 minutes per side. 3. Put a dollop of the dill sauce on top of each patty and serve.
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Mark’s Adventures While Biking
Give Your Plants a Coffee Boost!
Pedal Toward Good Health
Don’t Let Your Pain Become Chronic
Salmon Croquettes With Dill Sauce
Anxiety CAN Be Overcome
s n ’ t
When most people think of anxiety, they likely have negative connotations tied to it. Many make the assumption that anxiety will always lead to panic attacks and fears of major change, but just about anything
things in perspective. JAMA Internal Medicine published an article stating that practicing mindfulness can help ease feelings of anxiety, depression, and pain. You can meditate by following a guided meditation or silently sitting in a quiet area and breathing slowly. While meditating will be challenging at first, it will become easier with practice. FACE ANXIETY HEAD-ON Many people try to avoid anything that could make them feel anxious. While this method may make you feel short-term comfort, it can cause you to be more anxious about specific scenarios. The best strategy to overcome anxiety is to face it head-on. Although it will be uncomfortable and challenging, don’t let it stop you! The more you put yourself out there, the less anxious you’ll feel. You’re stronger than you give yourself credit for! Please contact your health care provider if you’re worried about the anxious feelings you get. They can assist you with identifying your triggers, why anxiety is occurring, and methods
can generate feelings of anxiety, and not all of them are harmful. However, if your anxiety stops you from doing something, it can hinder you almost every day.
In honor of May being National Anxiety Month, here are three ways to reduce your anxiety.
DAILY EXERCISE Physical activity can increase your self- confidence, improve your mood, help you relax, and lower anxiety symptoms. You don’t have to do anything significant — you can go for a walk, take a hike, conduct at-home workouts, go to the gym for at least 30 minutes, or participate in yoga and Pilates.
MEDITATE Sometimes, taking a step back, focusing on your breathing, and letting your thoughts flow in one ear and out the other can help you put
you can use to reduce your symptoms.
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