Cool as a Cuke, HUH? Here’s Why…10 Benefits of the CUCUMBER

Basket FULL o Cukes!A Greek Fave

I know, I’m Greek and we do love a cuke. A Fo’ REAL Greek salad (like if you got one in Greece) is only cucumbers, tomatoes, feta, olive oil and maybe some fresh herbs sprinkled a top. I add cucumber to my AM green juice to “smooth” out the taste, but I always thought of it as “just a filler” with little health benefit… WRONG! Below are 10 benefits of using cukes in your diet and in your life!

  1. Vitamin B – Cukes contain loads of Vitamin B which helps maintain your nerve and red blood cells health. Vit B is also crucial in converting carbs to glucose in the body which is how our bodies create energy. YAY!
  2. Hydration – Cucumbers are 95% water, keeping the body hydrated (you KNOW how I feel about hydration) while helping the body eliminate toxins.
  3. Skin & Hair – The skin of the cucumber can be used for our own skin irritations and sunburns. Place a slice over puffy eyes (like you’re in the spa), its anti-inflammatory properties help reduce puffiness. Also, the silicon and sulfur in cucumbers help to stimulate hair growth. Mash up a cucumber (in a Cuisinart is best) and use the mash to rub onto your hair and scalp. You can leave for 20 minutes then rinse out.
  4. Cancer fighters – Cucumbers contain lariciresinol, pinoresinol, and secoisolariciresinol; lignans that have been proven in research studies with reduced risk of several cancer including breast cancer, ovarian cancer, uterine cancer and prostate cancer.
  5. Vitamin C – By leaving the skin on (a medium size cuke) you get up to 10% of your daily recommended Vitamin C.
  6. Bad Breath (Eww) –  The phytochemcials in cukes kill bacteria responsible for causing bad breath. Take a slice of cucumber and press it to the roof of your mouth with your tongue for 30 seconds,
  7. Hungover? No More! – To avoid a morning hangover (hurts so bad these days!) eat a few cucumber slices before going to bed. Cucumbers contain enough sugar, B vitamins and electrolytes to replenish essential nutrients, reducing the intensity of both hangover and headache. (HINT: forego that “last” drink of the night…you REALLY don’t need it)
  8. WEIGHTLOSS – Cukes are low calories and high water content…an ideal diet for people who are looking for weight loss. The high water content and dietary fiber in cucumbers are very effective in ridding the body of toxins from the digestive system, aiding digestion. Also, eating cucumbers daily can remedy chronic constipation.
  9. Diabetes, Cholesterol & Blood Pressure – Cucumber juice contains a hormone which is needed by the pancreatic cells for producing insulin which research has proven to help diabetics. Thanks to more research, scientists found that a compound called sterols in cucumbers may help reduce cholesterol levels. Cucumbers contain a lot of potassium, magnesium and fiber which effectively regulate blood pressure (GOOD for hight and low pressure).
  10. Joint Health – We gotta keep you moving for a LONG time and cucumbers contain an excellent source of silica, known to promote joint health by strengthening connective tissues.

Cuke WaterWHO KNEW?

Loads of good stuff in these little green numbers…go to your farmers market to day and grab a few. Chop ’em, put ’em in your water, chew on ’em before you hit the gym or go to bed and know you’re fillin’ up and losin’ weight!

HAPPY MONDAY!
xxxD

YOU ARE FIERCE!

I’m starting a COUNTDOWN 2CABO  …24 DAYS!

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FRIDAY is the NEW Tuesday…TUNE IN!

I'm posting these until they manifest on my ears!

I’m posting these until they manifest on my ears!

Ahhh…

I’m DONE with the cold…or in my mind I am anyway. I want to be warm and happy and in WAY less clothes than I’ve been wearing. I mean I LOVE me some leg warmers, but I’m over it! It’s the end of March and now’s the time to go “out like a lamb”… the weather is supposed to be beautiful this weekend here in New York and the below will be what I’m listening to as I’m runnin’ along the West Side Highway.

  • Watch Out for This – Major Lazer
  • Stay Awake – Madeon
  • Next to Me – Emeli Sande
  • Shawty Got Moves – Get Cool (I can’t help but do a little butt dance to this!)
  • On Top – Flume
  • I Could Be the One – Avicil (for Brommer)
  • Beethoven’s Fifth Gold Digger – A Plug D
  • Years – Alesso & Matthew Koma
  • Bassline Junkie – Dizzee Rascal (again with all the dancing…LOVE IT!)
  • Here We Go – Hard Rock Sofa & Swanky Tunes (to take me home)
  • Don’t Hold the Wall – Justin Timberlake (gotta give JT props, but he’s the cool down I want him to be in the ACTION, but I still like it!)

CAMP SATURDAY: WERK WITH ME!

If you want to try out my FIERCE TRAINING CAMP we are on PIER 45 (46 is under construction) every Saturday through April 20th from 9:30 -10:30AM! The group maxes out at 12 participants so you get FIERCE personal attention! Learn more about camp or shoot me an email: dyan at GETFIERCETRAINING.com to let me know you’ll be there. The cost for a drop in is $30.

Thinking of YOU!

xxx

D

I can see you GETTING FIERCE!

ELEVEN DAYS: Only 3 More Ways!

I Can Barely Stand It!

BEST LIFE EVER!I don’t know if I have the words to share how excited I am to turn 35! I know it seems so silly. It’s not 18, 21…there’s no specified BIG thing that happens now in life, I just have a REALLY good feeling about this year (honestly about every day)! I’m giddy! I woke up (at 5AM) today and as I was brushing my teeth I did a little “I’m almost 35” dance!

Now, I have 3 more days to post 3 more ways that I’m continuing my quest to live my FIERCEST LIFE. I’m 1/3 into this game of Life (cuz I plan on being 105) and I’ve learned SO much. especially in the last 5 years. I’m committing to being my BEST me starting NOW. Today with things that I will actually DO daily (some weekly) for the next 70 years! I’m sharing the steps I’m takin’ to get there with you, one each day until my 35th birthday next Friday. Today is day #9. (Check out DAY 1DAY 2 DAY 3DAY 4DAY 5, DAY 6, 7 & 8 for other game changers.)

I have to say I LOVE this ONE! I’ve been doing it nearly MOST days already, but on the days I switch it up I just don’t feel as good, SO I’m adding it to my list of FIERCE life things to do EVERY day!!!

GREEN JUICE#9: I AM GREEN: Startin’ my day with a fresh pressed green juice.

WHY?

  1. HEALTH: Drinking FRESH and WHOLE foods will start my day super charged with vitamins and minerals.
  2. JOY: When I drink my juice it makes me happy and makes me feel really strong. It inspires me to eat EXTRA healthfully all day long.
  3. LOVE: Sharing in the love if you want to join me I LOVE the following juice; kale, spinach, lemon, parsley, apple & cucumber. You can add ginger if you like (I know all of the benefits, but it’s really just not for me.)

DAY 9: I will start my day (after I drink my coffee…I’m not super human!) with a green juice.

Wanna join me? This is a GREAT one and not just for adults. This juice is a CRAZY color, it’s sweet; kids LOVE it. I started out as an Upper East Side nanny when I first moved to the city. When I go visit the kids we go out for “juice”…green juice! At first they thought Nanny Dyani was crazy (as usual), but now they drink ’em a few times a week when I’m not there…they like it! Share it with your family. FIERCENESS is a family affair.

xxx

D

YOUAH WICKED FEAHCE! (Hometown style)

Eleven Days: 6th, 7th & 8th WAYs WHOA!

This is a BIG Monday! 

BEST LIFE EVER!I have 4 days to post 6 more ways that I’m continuing my quest to live my FIERCEST LIFE. I took the weekend “off” of posting to think intensely about the last changes I am committing to. I’ve been telling you (over and over again) that I plan on being 105 years old! I wanna be a be FIERCE granny. I also want to have my word be meaningful and choose things that I CAN and WILL do fo’ life, not just for the next few days or weeks. I’m committing to being my BEST me starting NOW! I’m sharing the steps I’m takin’ to get there with you, one each day until my 35th birthday next Friday. Today is . (Check out DAY 1DAY 2 DAY 3DAY 4 & DAY 5 for other game changers.)

My TOP TEN LIST#6: I AM APPRECIATIVE!

WHY?

  1. PEACE: I think that when you appreciate things in your life that you already have or experience (even the crappy -ish) it puts you in a space where you can receive what you are wanting. Let me clarify, if I want more money, I believe that i have to first appreciate all the money I already have, the classes, the clients and all of the ways that bring me those funds. I believe THEN more of what I want will come. Why did I put “(even the crappy -ish)”? I think we have to see the stuff we really are not wanting in our lives as lessons. As soon as we can APPRECIATE it as just that, a lesson, and not as a end all be all state, THEN I believe that we can learn and move on. Make sense? Appreciating will bring me peace.
  2. MAS (en Espanol): I wholeheartedly believe that I it’s okay to want more. More love, more money, more success, more WHATEVER. If I want to be in that space I have to learn to appreciate each and every day ALL that I have in my world.

DAY 6: I will write my appreciation list in my Super Fierce Wonder Woman journal each night. It will be 10 things that I’m grateful for in that moment, day, life.

It’s still Day 6 of writing, but this is “Item # 7” for my FIERCEST LIFE LIST.

8 O'Clock#7: I AM HUNGRY

WHY?

  1. Health: I work late and rise early. My body doesn’t have an abundance of time to heal itself (hence my 6 hours of sleep rule). By going to bed “hungry” it will allow my body to not be working to digest food, but working to repair what it needs to during rest (the point of sleep). 
  2. Habit: I tend to reach for food while I’m “unwinding” at the end of the day. This is not a real hunger I’m feeding it’s a habit I’ve continued and now I’m putting an end to it.

“DAY” (Item) #7: I will be finished eating for the day at 8PM. This is with clarification that If I’m out at a big dinner with friends I’m not going to be the lame-o who ruins dinner by making the plans for 6PM or sitting with a pouty face on that I can’t eat cuz we’re eating late. I’ll go, have something light to eat and ENJOY my friends and all the fun! (I do live in NYC after all and it is a bit of a late town!) I told you I want these rules to be fo’ LIFE, I’m making them doable.

THANK YOU#8: I TELL IT LIKE IT IS

WHY?

  1. HAPPINESS: I believe in saying what you feel. If people don’t know you or how you feel, they don’t really know you. I’m committing to write one letter a week letting my love ones know how much they mean to me. I think we don’t tell the people we’re closest to that we love them enough (and you can’t ever really tell them too much, can you?) So, I’m doin’ it. 
  2. KARMA: Putting out goodness is never a bad thing. Who knows what’s happening on the other end of that letter when the person you love opens it. It may be a horrible day for that person and you can brighten it just a bit or you can make their already sunny day sunnier…either way I think it’s all good!

“DAY” (Item) #8: I’m HAND writing one letter each week to a friend or loved one! (How much are stamps?)

I love this game so much! Has it inspired you to take on some of your own challenges? If YES write below and if NO write me below telling me “why?” I want t hear from you.

xxx

WE ARE FIERCE!

Can I Eat That?

Screen shot 2013-01-14 at 1.06.11 PMIt’s Not Just a Garnish

I have an amazing herbalist and “doc” that I see every month or so to check me out. When I first started going to him it was summertime and although I had very little physical complaints I did tell him that I had, what I call, the summer bloat.

Summer bloat (to me) is when I wake up in the morning and can’t put my rings on, my hands feel swollen and I generally feel “puffy” all over. He told me that I was “holding on” to extra water and he recommended I make and drink parsley tea. WHAT? I had never heard of parsley tea before! If you were previously in the dark about this easy fab fix I’m going to share with you its benefits (and also when NOT to drink).

What Parsley Tea Does…

  • Can help in prevent excess mucus in the bod
  • Reduces water retention and helps in flushing out toxins from the body with its diuretic properties
  • Contains a compound known as apiol, which is helpful in regulating irregular menstrual cycle and other menstrual disorders and has been shown that parsley tea eases menstrual pain and cramps.
  • With its high vitamin C content, parsley aids in the absorption of iron in the body (anemic check it out!)
  • Maintains the elasticity of blood vessels and helps in repairing any damage to those blood vessels
  • Consumption improves digestion and helps in cleansing a “sluggish” liver
  • Its high levels of beta-carotene, folate and vitamin B12. help reduces the level of LDL cholesterol as well as the risk of homocysteine in blood. Thus it boosts the cardiovascular health of an individual.
  • An infusion of parsley is recommended for people who suffer from chronic fatigue.
  • Rich in vitamin C and has anti-inflammatory properties. Because of this, consumption of parsley tea can aid in combating arthritis and rheumatism.
  • Used in easing discomfort from bladder infection.

WARNINGS and Side Effects…

  • Parsley tea should not be consumed by pregnant women as it acts as a uterus stimulant which can increase the risk of miscarriage
  • Parsley tea has a large amount of oxalic acid is not recommended for people who suffer from kidney inflammation
  • Excessive intake of parsley tea can cause nausea and vomiting
  • Too much consumption of parsley tea can cause diarrhea and bloody stools
  • Make SURE that you are well hydrated when you are adding parsley tea to your diet. Since it has diuretic properties you want to be sure that your bod is properly hydrated.

How To Make It?

Parsley tea is really easy to make. Get a bunch of organic parsley (local if possible) from your market. Wash it throughly. Take a large pot and fill it with 6 – 8 cups of  filtered water. Put the bunch of parsley into the pot, bring the water/parsley to a boil and cover the pot turn the heat off and let it sit for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes you strain the water into a pitcher or pot and you’re ready to consume!

How I Do It

I make my pot of tea about once or twice a month and If I feel like I need a bit more of a “detox” I take my Pure Acai Berry for detox (usually on a Monday). I’ll add the tea in to my normally healthful diet. I drink it hot or cold and sometimes I squeeze in a 1/4 of a fresh organic lemon. I make about 6 – 8 cups of tea at a time, so I’ll have 2 cups a day until it’s gone.

Try it out…let me know what YOU think!

Enjoy!

xxx

D

I can see you GETTIN’ FIERCE!

2-fer Tuesday

Whud Up, Fierce Ones?

I’ve been a bit lax with my writing the past few days. I apologize, but know that I’ve been workin’ my butt off literally. I know that if you don’t move it you lose it, but in my line of work it also means mo’ money, more awareness, more skillz…this all, in the end, benefits YOU! I learn what works best, in terms of what keeps me going (NUTRITION), what keeps me inspired (YOU and TUNES) and what brings me “down” (MEDITATION).

ElixirFOOD NEWS

I’ve added 6 cycling classes a week to my teaching schedule taking my tally up to 20/week. I LOVE my job, but I know that I have to take care of myself even more diligently now. Nutrition is a HUGE part of this equation. In the past month I’ve dropped almost 8 lbs, whoot whoot! I haven’t been focused on “weight-loss”, but I HAVE been very clean with my eating and listening to what my body wants. Here are some of my favorite things that have been keepin’ me going (and the why) for the past few weeks!

  • EBOOST – This powdery goodness can be added to your water (I put a 1/2 pack of the orange kind in 16 oz of purified water). EBOOST’s ingredients are REAL stuff you’ve heard of; Vitamin C, Vitamin D, Green Tea, Vitamin B-12 and Folic Acid.  And some stuff you may not have heard of; Quercetin, 5-HTP, Resveratrol, Huperzine-A, but no worries it’s all good, FIERCE! EBOOST is sweet (which is why I put 1/2 in double the amount of water), but it’s done with Stevia, a plant, not a chemical. WHY I use it? Cuz it keeps me goin’! I get a little “crazy” with green tea. I get shaky, feel “out of it”, but EBOOST has Green Tea so I get the benefits of the natural caffeine, but without the jittery feeling! On top of that it has a healthy set of vitamins that are critical for all of the added physical output.
  • GREEN JUICE – I love me some green drink! I like to start my day with one post class that is (I still coffee up pre-class!). In my juice I get spinach, kale, cucumber, apple, parsley and lemon. Fresh pressed is the way to go for me. I totally love me some BluePrintCleanse Juice, but if it’s available I go JUST pressed juice. 2 things…you get to CHOOSE YOUR ingredients (which really is key for me cuz I don’t enjoy ginger and it’s in A LOT of green drinks) and it’s EXTRA fresh! Elixir and Jus’ Juice (outside of Coffee Shop, Union Sq, NYC) are two spots I frequent. WHY I crave it? My body knows, I think, how good this is. it’s REAL, it’s FRESH, it has cleansing properties for my bod and LASTLY it makes me FEEL good, strong & ready to GET FIERCE!
  • BREAKFAST – You ain’t no dummy! You KNOW this is the most important meal of the day. Yes, I start with a coffee, yes I have a green juice on my way home from class…it all seems so “on the go”, but I DO take time to MAKE my own breakfast. I know how important it is to actually know what goes into my food (including LOVE). Now, I’m totally a creature of habit. I literally eat the SAME thing each morning. 1/2 cup quinoa salad made in advance (quinoa, garlic, parsley, onion, crasins), 1/2 cup low fat organic cottage cheese and 3 scrambled egg whites with sauteed onions (in one tsp olive oil), fresh spinach and yellow peppers. LOVE IT! AND it keeps me going  until late afternoon.
  • LISTEN UP – This isn’t a specific thing, but it is THE most important thing that I’ve begun doing this past month. I’m listening to my body, when it’s hungry I eat, when it’s tired I sleep…these two things, I believe have lead to the drop in weight.

TUNE IN TUESDAY

You know it…this is what I’m listenin’ to, playing, sweatin’ it up to this week. ENJOY!

  • Rosa Parks Remix – Outcast
  • Countdown – Beyonce
  • Canned Heat (Calvin Harris Remix) – Jamiroquai
  • New In Town – Little Boots (I LOVE ME SOME LITTLE BOOTS, FIERCE!)
  • Buy My Love (Fareoh Remix) – Wynter Gordon
  • Clique (Fresh Direct OG Edit) – Kayne (do I need to put West?), Jay-Z and Big Sean
  • Drop It Low –
  • Rude Boy (Wideboys Remix) – Rihanna
  • Anything Could Happen (Blood Diamond Remix) – Ellie Goulding
  • We Found Whitney (Isaac Jordan Remix) – EZ Money, Whitney Houston & Calvin Harris

TAKIN’ IT DOWN A NOTCH!

AHHHHH, after all the cycling, running, teaching, training, talking, traveling, lugging I’M READY for a break! At the end of the day (and sometimes on the subway) I sit and listen. I focus on what I want, need, am grateful for. I’m so appreciative to be in this space. Surrounded by people I love, family, friends, roommates, co-workers, it’s pretty awesome and I truly believe that I’ve created it all.

At night I take a moment to appreciate it where I am and everything I have! I then focus on what I want to create in the future. I put on my “greatest hit” The Hicks. If you don’t know who they are, Abraham is a spirit voice, Jerry and Ester are the physical ‘Hicks” here on earth. Ester is the channel for Abraham’s voice and Jerry is her husband and “business partner” if you will. I know it sounds totally CRA CRA’Y, but TRUST a sister, it’s an awesome meditation and FIERCE way to end your day. THE VORTEX is the name of the meditation and was introduced to me by my friend and mentor Patricia Moreno.

Let’s get down to business, THE VORTEX is a guided meditation that comes in four parts, General Wellbeing, Physical Wellbeing, Financial Wellbeing and Relationship Wellbeing. You pick which of the 15 minute sections you want to focus on and all you have to do is sit, breathe and listen. It gets me in a space, before I sleep, of peace, joy and excitement for what’s coming. Download it and lemme know what you think!

I LOVE YOU, ALL! Take care of YOU and listen to what your body needs!

xxx

D

I can see you ARE FIERCE!

 

Book It!

Screen shot 2013-01-02 at 4.22.09 PMWrite it Out

One of the biggest things that has helped me over the years in my quest to drop weight has been to open my eyes and start realizing WHAT and HOW MUCH I’m ACTUALLY eating. I hear people and have many times myself said, “I haven’t had anything to eat all day.” In reality I (and probably them too) would have eaten loads, but nothing that satiated me. It was an excuse I would use to eat much more food than I actually needed and in many cases foods that weren’t good for me.

Help Yourself

Here’s what to do. Buy a really cool journal, something you’re really jazzed about using. Each day write down the time you’re eating, what it is and the amount. Let this be a tool for you to start recognizing what, in FACT, you are eating. Do this for One Week without letting it alter your eating habits…this is just for awareness. I find that even when I’m not trying to change what I’m eating it does for the sole reason that I don’t want to write down “10:30PM  chocolate chip cookie” Make sense?

The second step happens in Week 2. After you’re use to the process of journaling your food start to get familiar with the calorie count. If you make your own food or there is no label (this is a good thing it means you’re eating fresh whole foods!) you can check out Calorie King, a great website you can enter the food and it will give you all of it’s nutritional info. Tally up your calories at the end of the day. Start to become aware of how many calories per day you’re taking in and where they’re coming from (i.e. mostly carbs, greens, packaged foods etc). Get to know yourself.

Part three of this game is where you make any changes. By making small changes we can create long and LASTING change. Remember that every pound of fat is 3,500 Calories it takes time to accumulate the deficit in Caloires aka lose a pound! Take a look at your count and see what little changes you can make to cut out the excess (if your goal is to lose weight). Fresh, whole foods not only have MANY more nutrients, but they are MUCH lower in Calories. See where you can swap out your morning bagel for your cup of whole oats it’ll save you about 300 Calories per day…that’s a 1 pound loss in 12 days just from that small change while still keeping in the carbs which help fill you up. To learn more about what YOUR body needs specifically for your size, height, activity you can check out one of my first blog It Really Is A Numbers Game

I just bought my new 2013 journal. Time to get to writin’.

xxx

D

I can see you GETTIN’ FIERCE!