Cool Stuff

 

This is a list of products I like and use. I don’t get anything here for free–I pay full price just like you. :) I will warn you that I invest in myself when it comes to health and you will see I spend a bunch money on health and fitness products–as you might guess, health is a priority for me and so I don’t compromise! This list contains affiliate links meaning if you click the link and choose to purchase the product I will receive a tiny commission and there’s no additional cost to you. I encourage you to use these links as the commission will help to offset the costs of hosting and running this site!

Supplements

I am a believer in supplements and I consume all of these listed products on a regular basis!

Creatine Powder, 100% Pure Creatine Monohydrate, 1000g, From Universal Nutrition

Based on my research I have chosen to supplement with Creatine daily at a dose of 5g, which is 1 teaspoon, of this product. One of these cans contains 200 servings, so I don’t have to worry about reordering too often. I take this supplement every morning when I get out of bed by dissolving the fine powder in a glass of water at room temperature. It really does not dissolve quickly so I just get the water swirling and then fire it down. I picked this brand because I prefer the Creatine Monohydrate form and the company has a good reputation for product quality and purity.

Scivation XTEND, Green Apple Explosion 90 Servings(42.1 oz)

I am pretty consistent when it comes to both intermittent fasting and heavy weight lifting. I prefer to do my workouts early in the morning in a fasted state. In order to make the most out of my workouts and keep myself fasted, I supplement with branch-chain amino acids just before and during my workout session. I picked this product because it has no calories or carbs and I actually like the taste! :) For more on intermittent fasting, please check out this post: Why I Practice Intermittent Fasting.

Damage Control Master Formula – Vitamins. Evolved.

I use these vitamins daily for a couple of reasons. First, simplicity! I found I had nearly a dozen vitamin bottles in the cabinet under my bathroom sink, none of them the same size. I constantly would run out of one or the other and sometimes go for weeks before I remembered to buy more. Then, when I did go to buy replacements it was stressful to pick out the right brand as none of the bottles seem to have consistent dose and/or serving size. The other reason is I trust this company and feel they have a better handle on what is the right amount of all the vitamins and minerals (and their combinations) than I ever will!

Fitness Gear

This is a list of gadgets I use at home and find extremely helpful.

Black High Density Foam Rollers – Extra Firm – 6″ x 36″ Round

This is probably the most important fitness accessory I own. I use this multiple times on workout days and often on rest days as well. Before I discovered foam rolling I lived in pain when squatting and deadlifting heavy weight –this inexpensive gadget has helped make me nearly pain free and helps with my mobility and flexibility too. If I had to choose one fitness gadget over all the rest, hands down I would pick the foam roller. Do yourself a favor and give one a try and I think you will thank me! :)

Lacrosse Ball

I use this ball a bunch much like my foam roller–it is great for getting deep into the muscles to alleviate soreness. I always carry one when I travel because I don’t fly with my foam roller. It is not uncommon of me to use this on my posterior muscles while sitting in an airplane seat on long flights. On squat and or deadlift days I will often use it on my hamstrings and glutes while driving. Sometimes when the overhead press causes me shoulder pain I can usually work it out using the lacrosse ball as I can apply strong, pinpoint pressure to the needed area. Like the foam roller, this is a must have for me.

Bowflex SelectTech 552 Adjustable Dumbbells (Pair)

I used to have this big ugly rack with a whole set of dumbbells. It took up the entire wall. I can remember pinching my fingers as I would attempt to place the heavier ones in the lower rack rails. What a an unsightly pain! This alternative is compact and, if you buy the stand like I did (see the stand below), elegant and functional. The engineering used to create this product is amazing and dialing in the desired weight is simple making dumbbell exercises easy and fun! I love these and recommend them if dumbbells are on your wish list.

Bowflex SelectTech Dumbbell Stand (2013)

You certainly don’t need this stand to enjoy the Bowflex Dumbbells (see above) because they come with bottom piece that they fit into. I went ahead and got this stand and I’m glad I did. It is sturdy and elegant allowing me to rack the dumbbells with out stooping to the ground. The stand makes super sets and drop sets a breeze as I can easily rack the dumbbells in the stand, select the new weight and hit the next set straight away. Nice! :) I highly recommend purchasing this accessory for the Bowflex Dumbbells (see above).

Fitbit One Wireless Activity Plus Sleep Tracker, Black

I resisted getting a device like this for awhile, partly because I’m a numbers geek and I felt like this would be just another statistical gadget to take a sliver of focus from my already fragmented self. However, when the idea of posting daily stats on this blog hit me, getting a tracking device like this just made sense. Now I am glad I did it (beyond the stats point already mentioned) because the sleep tracking and the daily walking are critical health markers for me and this device allows me to observe how I am doing and, hopefully, change my behavior for the better.

Fitbit Aria Wi-Fi Smart Scale, Black

In general, I do not really care how much I weigh, so a traditional scale is not a must for me. However, body fat percentage is very interesting to me so I have been trying to find a good way to track this for years. I have several different devices in my fitness gadget graveyard that I just didn’t trust. When a friend told me about this scale and its ability to automatically record my weight and body fat percentage through my WiFi network to the FitBit cloud I was intrigued. Then, when he told me I could link FitBit to MyFitnessPal–game over! I love this device for those reasons.

iPad Floor Stand: Universal SwingHolder, Compatible with Most Tablets and E-Readers (SFS-FSU-A) NEWEST VERSION

This is a great product (perhaps I’m a tad biased since the inventor and manufacturer is none other than my own brother, Marty Springer) for anyone with an iPad, tablet, or E-Reader. It is perfect for fitness enthusiasts who have home gyms as the stand allows easy device positioning for use while exercising. Imagine being able to do P90X or yoga and easily swing your device down to the floor level when required. Now you can watch your device at the exact position you like while exercising on a treadmill, stationary bike, or elliptical trainer, no longer relying on the equipment for a place to prop up the device. This product is made in the USA so please check it out!

Food & Drink

Here are some interesting food and beverage items I enjoy regularly. I prefer to eat real, whole foods, but sometimes there are specialty things I consume that don’t come from the butcher or produce section of the grocery store.

Carrington Farms Organic Extra Virgin Coconut Oil, 54 Ounce

I use coconut oil now almost daily as I believe it to be a true miracle food. I put it in my green and red smoothies, protein shakes, pan fry fish in it, pop popcorn with it, saute vegetables in it, add it tea–you name it! As I’ve gone low-carb and high fat, getting quality fat is essential for me. Some folks also recommend using it as skin cream and moisturizer–I have not tried this. I highly recommend getting coconut oil into your daily diet if you haven’t.

Celsius Sparkling Orange, 12-Ounce Cans (Pack of 24)

You read me going on and on in my food diary and in my posts about these Celsius drinks. Yeah, I admit I have a caffeine addiction and don’t like the taste of coffee so, when I need a boost, this is the least harmful “energy drink” I have found. For some reason I love the Sparkling Orange flavor the best. Almost without fail I will drink a can of this on the way to the gym and I love it! If I’m going to drink and energy drink, this is the brand I choose.

Celsius Raspberry Acai Green Tea 12-Ounce (Pack of 24)

This is my second favorite Celsius flavor and it isn’t carbonated. When I want a break from the Sparkling Orange flavor or don’t feel like carbonation, this is my Celsius flavor choice. It has all the same all-natural characteristics of the Sparkling Orange flavor with the added benefit of green tea. What’s not to love? :) I use this for a boost before workouts and as a pick me up in the morning or early afternoon to power through. If I’m going to drink and energy drink, this is the brand I choose.

Celsius Sparkling Cola, 12-Ounce (Pack of 24)

Sometimes I just want a drink with a “cola” taste as I can only drink so much water, tea, and red wine. This is not my favorite flavor of Celsius, but I like to drink a can when the mood hits. Like the other flavors, I consider this the least harmful energy drink, especially when I’m craving the soda taste. Perfect before a workout or a mid-morning pick me up to power through work until lunch. If I’m going to drink and energy drink, this is the brand I choose.

Celsius Sparkling Wild Berry, 12-Ounce Cans (Pack of 24)

I actually bought this flavor of Celsius at a convenience store once and I liked it. So now I drink it when I’m in a “wild berry” kind of mood. :) Packing the same caffeine boost along with the “all-natural” characteristics of the other flavors, I’ll pound a can of before a workout or when I need to concentrate on an urgent task at hand. Plus, I love the awesome flavor name–anything with the word “wild” in it is worth a try in my book! :) If I’m going to drink and energy drink, this is the brand I choose.

 

Just Like Sugar Table Top Sweetener — 16 oz

I found this product in a Paleo dessert cookbook as a tasty sugar substitute. I really do like it to sweeten my smoothies and shakes. I will occasionally add a little to sweeten a cup of tea. No calories or and not a significant carbohydrate load, so not a big threat to take me out of ketosis.

I don’t use sweeteners often, but when I do, I like this one!

Mancakes Protein Pancake and Waffle Mix (24.7oz Bag) – Buttermilk

Sometimes I miss that delicious, grain-based, carbohydrate dominated breakfast food I can eat for any meal: pancakes/waffles! Then, a friend of mine told me about this product and I am hooked. Mancakes are gluten-free, no soy, no GMOs, no added sugar. I particularly like to make the chocolate protein donuts, yum! This stuff is not cheap and something I only indulge in every so often, but I love it. I’d love to get comments from others that have tried this product.

Well, there you have it–I’ll be adding new items as I find them. Please let me know the products you love and use so I can give them a spin as we are all in this together and, as always…

Be smart in the kitchen and a beast in the gym!