We’re in the middle of the Olympic Winter Games© Mini Challenge, and everyone is doing great! Don’t forget to commit to your workouts, try some new activities and receive your challenge entries by ‘earning your medals!’

Gold – 2,000+ MEPs, 10 entries
Silver – 1,200-1,999 MEPs, 5 entries
Bronze – 800-1,199 MEPs, 1 entry

For a list of ways you can challenge yourself during the mini-challenge, click here.

Check out our video below to see an easy resistance workout you can add to your routine. 

Get the most out of your workouts! When doing your cardio or weight routine, proper form can go a long way to achieving better results. Check out tips from J personal trainer, Andy Hayes, below.

Heart-Healthy Tips

1. Don’t add salt to your food. If you’re already eating whole, fresh foods, this isn’t such a big issue, however, most packaged foods already contain high levels of sodium, so adding more only increases your intake. Most Americans consume more than double the recommended level of sodium a day (2,300 mg), which can raise blood pressure and lead to heart disease and stroke. 

2. Make dark chocolate your ‘indulgence food.’ In case you haven’t heard, dark chocolate is better for you than milk or white chocolate. One of the biggest benefits of dark chocolate is that it can lead to a decrease in blood pressure (with a healthy diet). Aim for dark chocolate with a cacao percentage of at least 70% to reap these health benefits, and, as with all indulgences, moderation is key. 

3. Take a walk. Walking is a calming activity that helps you stay healthy without requiring any equipment. Regular 30-minute walks can help control hypertension and slow the progress of osteoporosis. Take regular walks throughout the week to stay on track!

4. Brush your teeth and floss. Your dentist will be happy about this one, but so will your heart! Periodontitis, or inflammation of the gums, is considered a significant risk factor for cardiovascular disease. People who rarely brush their teeth have a significantly higher chance of having a cardiovascular event. There’s a reason your dentist tells you to brush twice a day!

5. Follow your passion and do the things you love. People who live their lives with purpose and believe their lives have meaning or purpose report higher life satisfaction and psychological well-being. Find the things you are passionate about and pursue them, it’s worth the effort.

6. Have more intimate time with your partner. Most people would say they see why this would boost their happiness, however, (safe) sex can also be good for your health! Benefits include reduced blood pressure, better immune function and a lower risk of heart attack.

7. Eat more spicy foods. Hot peppers contain capsaicin, and the hotter the pepper the more capsaicin it contains (of course, be safe while eating hot peppers). Capsaicin has a number of health benefits, such reducing inflammation, pain relief, congestion relief, improved intestinal health, cardioprotection and increased fat burning.