Human growth hormone (HGH) levels rise when you stress muscles for as little as 30 seconds. Once HGH starts to flow, you automatically feel less hungry. HGH also helps promote general muscle strength — which we all want as we age. To keep HGH levels high and prevent mindless eating, try doing any of the following exercises for at least 30 seconds every two hours. All can be done even if you spend significant time in a car commuting.
• Press your hands together as hard as you can, palms flat, elbows at shoulder height. Pull in your stomach at the same time.
• Put your hands together as if you were praying and bend your fingers down so your knuckles are together and your hands form a heart shape. Then press your elbows together as hard as you can.
• Suck in your stomach. Hold it tight for as long as you can. Release & breathe.
• If you’re a passenger, hold onto the seat, brace yourself, and try to lift your legs up off the ground. Keep your knees & ankles together, and try bringing your knees to your chest.
• Fill’er up with fruit. Fruit naturally maintains electrolyte flow through your body, which keeps your muscles comfortable. Plus, because it is naturally pre-packaged in its skin, you can easily take fruit anywhere, making it the perfect snack for eating on the go. Want something a little more compact without sacrificing nutrition? Pack prunes, raisins or dried apricots for the road.
• Skip caffeine & soda. Drink water. As tempting as it can be to drink such beverages in the car, think twice before you indulge. It makes for an unpleasant trip when someone is jacked up on caffeine or sugar. Both can worsen the agitation travelers may feel from being cooped up in a car. Water is the best.
• When things get tense in the car, pull over and take a deep breath. Close your eyes, take a deep breath in, and when you breathe out, try adding vibration (like the sound Darth Vader made.) This has been proven to relax the body better. Take 10 of these deep breaths to regroup.
With a little planning and a few creative strategies, you get healthier and survive any road trip with your sanity intact.