Category Archives: Lifestyle

FIT in Your Recovery

By: Megan Lambert

Previous posts have addressed topics such as foam rolling, voodoo flossing, stretching and flexibility, as well as active recovery techniques. Adding on to this theme, in the third part of the FIT series, we will discuss how to practically apply recovery techniques in your busy schedule.

5 simple ways to incorporate recovery techniques in your daily life:

  1. Take a break every 1-2 hours.

If your job includes sitting in an office chair or staring at a computer screen for eight hours a day, then this tip is especially applicable for you. Every few hours, make a conscious effort to stand up, walk around the room, do a few stretches. Give yourself a short break. Not only will your muscles thank you, but you may even return to your task more alert and focused.

  1. Carry a lacrosse ball in your purse or briefcase.

When you have a random five minutes at the doctor’s office or are waiting in the school carpool line to pick up your daughter, you could spend those five minutes scrolling through Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. Or, you could use a lacrosse ball to target sore muscles from your workout the day before!

  1. Carry a gallon jug of water with you.

Are you drinking enough water every day? One way to hydrate is to keep a gallon of water in your car. That way, when your water bottle is empty and you are out of the house, all you need to do is fill it up again and keep drinking.

  1. Foam roll or stretch while watching TV.

It is easy to get sucked into mindlessly watching television to unwind at the end of the day. And it is a good thing to unwind! But, what if you devote 20 minutes of the hour in a half you spend on the couch working on your flexibility and mobility? That 20 minutes will go a long way toward reaching your goals.

  1. Start your morning with a mobility exercise.

Before brushing your teeth, eating your breakfast, or taking a shower, begin your day by performing one movement that will benefit your body and help your mobility. Some examples include rolling the bottom of your feet on a lacrosse ball, performing 10 slow squats, and doing a hip stretch. This way, you set a precedent at the beginning of the day that you are going to resist the urge to ignore your sore muscles and help your body recover.

FIT in Your Warm-up

By: Megan Lambert

This is the second article in our three-part “FIT” series, which discusses practical ways to implement an exercise routine, a dynamic warm-up, and a workout recovery into your daily life. Specifically, this article discusses what to do before your starting your workout. We already covered how important it is to carve out time in your daily schedule to exercise, but did you know that it is equally if not more important to prepare your body for exercise?

In this article, we will discuss the benefits of warming up your muscles before activity as well as give you 10 simple movements that you can include in your routine.

Visit our website ( or contact us at (317)430-0063 to inquire about our personalized training programs and how we can help you reach your fitness goals!

Benefits of a warm-up:

Injury prevention

Just like a NASCAR driver wouldn’t begin a race without first warming up the car’s engine, so you should increase the temperature of your “vehicle” (your body’s musculature system) before beginning your “race” (your daily workout). By performing various dynamic stretches and movement patterns, you prepare your body for more rigorous movement. For example, performing body weight squats or sumo squats prepares your body a set of barbell back squats.

Improved mobility

The exercises found in a dynamic warm-up are based upon movement patterns such as squatting, jumping, rotating, etc. These are movements that citizens in our modern society struggle to complete on a daily basis. Dr. Kelly Starrett illustrates this point well in his book, “Deskbound.” Because of our modern society, many people sit at work all day, sit in the car, sit when they eat, sit when they watch TV…you get the idea. Because of lengthy amounts of sitting, basic movement patterns are inhibited. Therefore, a good dynamic warm-up will help counteract the biomechanical deficiencies that prolonged sitting can have on your body.

Decrease stress on heart

According to an article from the American Heart Association, “by slowly raising your heart rate, the warm-up also helps minimize stress on your heart.” Meaning, performing steady state cardiovascular exercise, such as using an elliptical or riding a stationary bike, can increase your heart rate gradually rather than suddenly or all at once. Various exercises such as jumping jacks, jump rope, and skips can also accomplish this goal.

Sample warm-up:

Jumping jacks

Standing hip circles

Arm circles



Body weight squats

Jump rope

Open book stretch

Walking straight-leg march

High knees

FIT in Your Workout

By: Matt Nicholson and Megan Lambert

The holiday season is a time filled with family gatherings, Christmas tree decorating, and gift buying, and consequently it is easy to let your workout time disappear from your weekly schedule. However, just a few minutes of exercise each day can go a long way to helping you achieve your goals of getting in shape, losing a few pounds, and reducing stress. So, here are seven time management tips to help you prioritize your daily workouts as well as a simple and short workout that you can do at home or in the office.

Time management tips:

  1. Prioritize your daily activities in a to-do list.
  2. Determine your most productive hours of the day and plan to get the most done during this time, in order to free up other hours during the day.
  3. Set mini goals throughout the day to accomplish specific tasks by a certain time of day.
  4. Set an alarm to accomplish a certain task in an amount of time.
  5. Minimize distractions by silencing your cell phone when working an important task and only check your email at certain times throughout the day (for example, once an hour).
  6. Get a good night of sleep so that you are rested and recovered from previous work days and workout sessions.
  7. Prepare meals over the weekend and freeze them for the following week.

Simple 10 minute office workout:

Perform each exercise for 30 seconds and with a 10 second rest between exercises.  Complete 1- 2 rounds.

  • Squats  


  • Split squats


  • Push-ups

  • Chair dips


  • Planks

  • Bridges


  • Wall angels


6 Practical Ways to Reduce Stress in Your Life

By: Megan Lambert

There are different types of stress that impact you and your family on a daily basis. For example, planning a wedding and getting in a car accident are two very different types of stress. Specifically, the scientific community defines the difference between positive and negative stress as eustress and distress. Accordingly, this article gives six examples of coping mechanisms for the negative stressors in your life

  1. Keep a journal

Record something you are thankful for in a gratitude journal every day.

  1. Make lists

Create a to-do-list for every day of the week with the tasks you want to accomplish for the respective day. That way, your day will be more organized and focused.

  1. Practice deep breathing

After your alarm goes off in the morning, take 5-10 slow, deep breaths. Take five counts to breathe in and five counts to breathe out. This Harvard article describes the benefits of this relaxation technique.

  1. Create time for yourself

Schedule time to exercise, go for a walk, or practice yoga. Even 20 minutes makes a difference!

  1. Use relaxation phone apps

This article reviews five different phone apps that play relaxation, white noise sounds. For example, Brain Wave has 25 different categories such as “expresso shot,” “morning meditation,” and “focused and alert” that play different white noise sounds based on the category you choose. I personally have found success using Brain Wave when I am having trouble focusing when I’m working or studying!

  1. Utilize progressive relaxation

Edmund Jacobson, a renowned physician in the 1900’s, created a method of relaxation that takes an individual through a series of sequences that relax each muscle group. See the video below to learn more about this technique:

How to Sleep like a Baby

By: Megan Lambert

On average, 1/3 of your life is spent sleeping.

That’s approximately 25 years of your life!

If you wake up in the morning feeling unrested, read the following sleep recommendations for the amount you should be getting, as well as practical habits to include in your nightly routine.

How much sleep do you need each night?

School aged children (6-13) 9-11 hours
Teenagers (14-17) 8-10 hours
Younger adults (18-25) 7-9 hours
Adults (26-64) 7-9 hours
Older adults (65+) 7-8 hours

**According to the National Sleep Foundation recommendations.

Sleep deprivation causes:

  • An increase in stress hormone (cortisol) production
  • An exhausted immune system, which increases the potential for physical illness
  • An increase in fat production instead of lean muscle
  • Brain fog and irritability
  • Increased risk of depression

6 ways to improve your sleep quality:

  1. Sleep in a dark, quiet room.
  2. Use a regular alarm clock instead of your phone.
  3. Keep a notepad by your bed and write down your to-do list and any nagging thoughts before you go to bed.
  4. Keep your phone in another room so you aren’t distracted by late-night text messages and emails.
  5. Read, journal, or listen to music to quiet down before bed.
  6. Ask your doctor about safe and natural sleep-promoting supplements

Think About the Way You Think

By: Matt Nicholson & Megan Lambert

In the past 24 hours, has your job, the news, family issues, or politics brought any negative emotion or stress into your life?

Although it is easy to be consumed by negative thoughts and emotions in your daily living, research shows that intentional positive thinking is beneficial for your overall health.

Positive thinking improves your mindset.

Dr. Barbara L. Fredrickson, a Kenan Distinguished Professor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, conducted a study in 2004 which researched the impact that positive and negative thoughts have on your brain. Fredrickson divided her test group into five different sections. Each of these groups watched movies which instilled either contentment, anger, fear, joy, or neither a positive or negative emotion. They then completed written responses to the images based on the emotions they felt.

Based on their responses, Fredrickson concluded that the subjects who responded to the films instilling positive emotions had much more to write in their responses in contrast with the subjects who watched films that instilled negative emotions.

James Clear, a behavioral psychologist, summarizes this idea by stating,

In other words, when you are experiencing positive emotions like joy, contentment, and love, you will see more possibilities in your life. These findings were among the first that proved that positive emotions broaden your sense of possibility and open your mind up to more options.

Positive thinking impacts your brain.

Additionally, positive thinking trains the brain to open pathways allowing us to be more open-minded and optimistic. As a result, this allows us to live a healthier, more stress-free life. Likewise, positive thinking exudes confidence, success, and improves your relationship with the people around you.

3 ways to practice gratitude and positive thinking in your daily life:

  1. Create a thankfulness journal and write down five positive thoughts every day.
  2. Write a letter of encouragement to someone important to you.
  3. Call someone who has made a positive impact on your life.





H2O Analysis: the ins and outs of water consumption

By: Matt Nicholson & Megan Lambert

Water makes up 45-70% of your body weight, according to Joan’s Salge Blake’s book, “Nutrition and You,” (2nd ed.).

Everyone talks about the importance of hydration, but how do you know if you should be consuming more?

Chris Kresser, a renowned natural health and nutrition professional says in his article entitled, “Hydration 101: How Much Water Do You Really Need,”

“There is no universal requirement for water intake, and your needs will vary widely based on age, gender, body size, health status, and physical activity levels.”

If the requirements vary, then what are his recommendations? He suggests utilizing your body’s thirst mechanism as an indicator for the amount of water to drink, instead of a specific amount.

In addition to the thirst mechanism, it is a good idea to monitor the amount of fluid you drink after exercise. One guideline according to Blake, is to replace each pound (lb) of weight lost during a workout with one pint (0.5L) of water.

Additionally, our Indy Core coaches recommend that you drink 8-10 ounces of water 20-30 minutes prior to an athletic practice, competition, or workout session.

What does drinking enough water do for your body?

  1. Increases energy levels
  2. Reduces fatigue
  3. Improves memory
  4. Enhances cognitive function
  5. Promotes quicker post-exercise recovery
  6. Improves joint lubrication
  7. Supports your body’s immune system
  8. Prevents overeating
  9. Promotes satiety
  10. Improves blood flow

Active Recovery – is it really necessary?

By: Megan Lambert

What do you do on your days off from the gym?

Do you lie on the couch and watch TV all afternoon? Or, do you go to the track and do a sprint workout, thinking, ‘this is recovery because I’m not lifting weights.’ Many people find themselves on either side this spectrum, but in reality, there is a third recovery option that is much more beneficial. To illustrate this point, read the following excerpt from chapter 11 (page 147) of Mark Verstegen’s book, “Core Performance.”

“Most fitness programs take an all-or-nothing approach. When you’re training, you train very hard. And when you aren’t training, you do nothing. No matter the circumstances, you do it all or you do nothing.

The problem with that formula is that it fails to facilitate one of the most important aspects of training: the repair of muscles and cells. If you’re sore from a workout, for example, you have two bad choices: Go out and give yourself an equally brutal workout, or do nothing.

In truth, you need to combine quality work with quality rest to get the results you want.

…But regeneration is also a lifestyle philosophy, a recognition that you need to plan ways to recover – mentally and physically – in all areas of your life. You experience the benefit of work on the days you rest.

There is a big difference between rest – doing nothing at all – and “active rest.” In the latter, you take a break from serious training but still do things that benefit your body, such as playing golf, tennis, or basketball. Wednesdays and Saturdays are lighter days of the Core Workout, so you might use those days, and/or Sundays, to play your favorite sport. You’re not training per se, but you’re still getting the benefit of physical activity. Not only that, you’re having fun.

We call it active recovery, because you’re making a modest effort. There’s also passive recovery, which includes getting a massage and sitting in a hot tub or a cold plunge. Both elements of recovery are not only important but also necessary. And not only necessary, but equally important as working out. If you don’t give your body time to recover, it’s never going to improve.”

In addition to playing sports, other active recovery options include yoga, Pilates, and low-impact dynamic exercise. To learn how to implement quality rest-day workouts into your exercise protocol, come visit us at Indy Core Fitness & Wellness. We would love to create a personalized program specific to you and your goals. Please visit our website ( or give us a call (317-430-0063) today.

5 Reasons to Exercise Before your Joint Replacement

By: Megan Lambert

Approximately one million hip and knee replacements are completed by surgeons every year, according to the Mayo Clinic website.

Although joint replacements are major surgeries, there are ways to prepare your body for these operations. For example, here at Indy Core Wellness & Fitness, we write specific exercise protocols to prepare clients for their replacement. These exercises are designed to improve muscle strength and stamina.

In addition to gaining strength, here are five major reasons you should exercise before going under the knife:

  1. You decrease the risk of post-surgery complications

The Wall Street Journal article entitled, “Are you Fit for Surgery?,” speaks to this idea. The thought is that when patients resolve chronic issues such as obesity, diabetes, and smoking, they are physically healthier going into surgery. So, they are less likely to have complications after the operation.

  1. You are less likely to need post-surgery inpatient rehab

A 2006 research study by Daniel Rooks of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center showed that patients who exercised six weeks prior to surgery were 73 percent less likely to need inpatient rehab after the surgery.

  1. You will save money

Less post-surgery rehab equals less money spent. Yay!

  1. You decrease your risk of post-surgery injury

After a hip or knee replacement, you will need to use more of your upper body strength to transfer yourself from one place to another. By strengthening the muscles of your upper body, you decrease the risk of falling while transporting yourself. Consequently, you also reduce the risk of injuring yourself while rehabbing from another injury.

  1. You better tolerate the surgical anesthetic

Cardiovascular training, which can include exercises such as walking, biking, rowing, using the elliptical, etc. strengthens your heart and lungs. Healthier essential organs help your body better tolerate the rigors of surgery such as the anesthetic.

How to Stand against the Sitting Problem

By: Megan Lambert

Have you ever heard the saying, “Sitting is the new smoking?”

Dr. James Levine, a Mayo Clinic specialist, coined this phrase to illustrate how sitting negatively affects the body.

But, do you really have a choice in the matter? I mean, you sit when you drive, you sit when you eat, you sit when you study, you sit in your workplace, etc.

Dr. Kelly Starrett, successful physical therapist, owner of San Francisco Cross Fit, and founder of the Mobility Project, has made it his mission to give people a solution to this problem.

Watch the video below and learn how switching to a standing desk in your workplace environment can impact your daily productivity and increase your business’ success. If you would like to watch the entire interview, visit and search for the “30 Days of Genius” video series.