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Re-energize Throughout Your Day!

Jessica Roman Sep 10, 2013

It’s back to school and back to work, and with everyone finishing up summer break and vacation time, getting into the swing of things once again can be challenging.   With hectic schedules and busy days it can be hard to get in that trip to the gym or schedule time for a massage.  We have some suggestions for staying relaxed, focused and energized throughout your day.  Start by taking some simple stretch breaks throughout your day to energize and refresh .

Chin Tuck
To loosen a stiff neck and shoulders, drop your chin to your chest and stretch. I also like to roll my head from side to side to stretch the side of my neck and the back of my shoulders. You can also stretch your neck muscles by simply turning your head from side to side. It might sound simple (and it is) but if you think about how much of your day is spent facing straight forward, turning your head from side to side every so often can be very beneficial. You can also stretch your neck by tilting your head from side to side from a face-forward starting position. Do your ears touch your shoulders?


Shoulder Stretch
Put your hands behind your head, with your elbows out to your sides. Feel a stretch by pushing your elbows as far behind you as possible, squeezing your shoulder blades together.

Torso Twist
Inhale and as you exhale, turn to the right and grab the back of your chair with your right hand, and grab the arm of the chair with your left. With eyes level, use your grasp on the chair to help twist your torso around as far to the back of the room as possible. Hold the twist and let your eyes continue the stretch -- see how far around the room you can peer.
Slowly come back to facing forward.
Repeat on the other side.

Back and Side Stretch
You can do this one standing up or sitting down. Interlace your fingers and lift your arms straight up over your head. Slowly bend side to side, feeling the stretch.

Seated Hip Stretch
I love this stretch because it’s so simple yet makes such a difference. While sitting, cross one ankle over the knee on the other leg. Sit up tall and gently lean forward. You should feel a stretch in your glute and hip.

Cat-Cow Stretch
Put both feet flat on the floor and put your hands on your knees. On your inhale, arch your back and look at the ceiling. On the exhale, round your spine and let your head drop forward, your chin to your chest. Repeat.

We hope we’ve left you with a good amount of stretches to keep your blood moving and the oxygen flowing.  For a little extra boost, try an energy smoothie for breakfast.  Here are some recipes to get you started.  Also, feel free to share your tips with us on how to stay stretched, focused and energized throughout the day.  

Purple power smoothie
Ingredients
Makes 5 servings (Serving size: 1/2 cup)

1 ripe banana
1/4 cup strawberries, fresh or frozen
1/2 cup blueberries, fresh or frozen
1/2 cup unsweetened orange juice
2 tsp agave nectar
1/2 cup fat-free plain yogurt (coconut or almond milk yogurt for dairy-free)
1/2 cup extra-firm tofu
1 tsp chia seed

Directions
Place ingredients in a blender. Blend until smooth. Serve immediately.


Coffee Lover's Energy Shake
Makes one 12 oz. shake

Ingredients
1 ripe banana
1/2 shot espresso, 1/4 cup fresh coffee, or 1 tsp instant coffee
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1 cup vanilla soy milk or vanilla rice milk
2 T soy protein powder

Blend ingredients until shake is creamy and smooth. Pour into a tall glass and enjoy!

Banana-Almond Shake
Makes one 12 oz. shake.

Ingredients
1 cup vanilla soy, rice or almond milk
1 banana
1 tsp spirulina
1/4 tsp almond extract

Blend milk and banana until smooth. Add spirulina and almond extract and blend just until mixed. Enjoy!

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