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Canyon Ranch Zwift Ride Monday April 25th

“When you choose to see the good in others, you end up finding the good in yourself”

With Mari Holden

I saw this great article by Natalie Camacho the other day for our main topic and discussion today. Remember that all links will be posted in our write up after the ride…‘Freudenfreude’ Is the Joyful Opposite of ‘Schadenfreude’ That Can Level Up All Your Relationships

What is freudenfreude?

Obviously, you want to surround yourself with people who want the best for you; those who relish in your struggles or even misery simply aren’t team members you need making up your starting lineup for tackling life. But while it would be wise to avoid those who are prone to schadenfreude

—the German term that describes that aforementioned sense of deriving joy from the struggles of others

—it would behoove you to search for folks in your life who embody its opposite, freudenfreude, or taking joy in other people’s successes.

Psychologists say freudenfreude can actually level up your relationships rather than compromise them. Freudenfreude functions kind of like vicariously living through someone else’s wins

—like when they get a new job, find their lifelong partner, or even simply finish a task on their to-do list.

A few examples of schadenfreude, on the other hand, include laughing at someone when they get hurt, being happy that someone has been fired from their job, and smiling when you hear something bad happened to someone you’re not so fond of. Given that the two are opposite concepts, one tends to show up in the other’s absence. According to research, a great way to pinpoint someone as fitting into more of the freudenfreude framework (as opposed to schadenfreude) is to look for signs of empathy, a trait that psychotherapist Aimee Daramus, PsyD, says is key to maintaining healthy relationships. That is, people who can empathetically feel your wins are likely to help you feel even better about them.

But how, exactly, does freudenfreude lead to deepening a relationship? It has to do with providing healthy support in positive times just as much as in trying times, says Dr. Daramus. Think about it: The very notion of “leaning on a friend for support in times of need” implies that support is largely only needed when things are tough.

“There are happy moments,” says Dr. Daramus.

It’s great when friends are available to help sort out problems and stressors, but we also need to clock the successes as well, she adds. While certain folks may be predisposed to practicing freudenfreude, it’s also something anyone can learn and mindfully introduce into their relationships by letting loved ones know when they’re proud of or happy for them. And the more you express those feelings, the more adept you may become at experiencing them period.

“Your attitudes toward life shift when you really take time out to pay as much attention to the good things that are happening as much as to the bad things,” Dr. Daramus says.

This mindset shift reflects the personal gains you stand to enjoy as a result of embracing freudenfreude.

“When we have genuine joy for someone’s success, they not only get to lean in and enjoy their success more"

—it also builds more of a social fabric of people who will be there for you when you have successes,” says clinical psychologist Ramani Durvasula, PhD. To mindfully practice freudenfreude, first be observant and then make a note to celebrate the good things that are happening to folks around you. One main component to keep in mind is that no success is too small.

“Find the little successes that you can really reward, reinforce, and acknowledge in a person,” Dr. Durvasula says.

People notice you noticing and realize that their efforts make a difference, she adds, which might be enough motivation to keep striving for success. Not sure how to get started if freudenfreude feels unnatural to you? Have a conversation with a friend, and ask them what they’re currently proud of themselves for doing.

Dr. Durvasula adds a question to get the ball rolling: “What is something good that happened to you today?”

(Low-pressure, but still impactful in terms of freudenfreude material.)

Once you know the positive things going on in someone’s life (that they, themselves are happy about, no less), try taking the meaning of freudenfreude a little further by setting up a time to celebrate those precious accomplishments. This not just shows your pals that you’re proud of them for their wins, but it also “builds a list of everything good that is happening not just to us, but around us,” says Dr. Daramus.

And who couldn’t use more good in their life?


I’ve been working hard to eat a more thoughtful diet…. This article was interesting to me because of the tips about protein.

-Isadora Baum


Protein is a powerful macronutrient that’s required for metabolic function, stable energy and blood sugar, and for repairing, building, and strengthening muscles as a source of immediate fuel for workout recovery—and more.

It’s important to make sure you’re consuming enough of the healthier proteins throughout the day and snacking every few hours, especially if you lead an active lifestyle or exercise regularly.

“When you’re deficient in protein, your body begins turning to muscle for fuel and amino acids, which includes the heart muscle, and in turn decreases muscle mass and strength and puts your heart at risk for heart damage in the future,” explains Trista Best, MS, RD, LDN.


How To Choose Proteins for a Healthier Heart

Nutritional value depends on several other factors, too, which can change how heart-healthy your meal or snack is and either enhance or hinder protein’s benefits. For example, a lean, generally healthy source of protein, when in its natural state, might become more or less heart-healthy based on cooking technique, other flavors and ingredients that complement it and portion size. Yet, once you’re aware of how you might be compromising nutritional value, you can easily integrate a couple of simple protein swaps for a healthier heart into your daily meal plan and reap all those heart-healthy rewards. In general, you should monitor sodium and saturated fat content and avoid trans fat, most commonly found in processed, packaged goods, like snack foods and baked goods.

“They can increase blood pressure, oxidative damage, and cholesterol,” says Best.

Here are five protein swaps for a healthier heart, where you won’t skimp on protein or compromise satisfaction and flavor.

1. Beef Stir-fry for Tofu Stir-fry

“Cuts of beef that are high in fat have a negative impact on heart health and contain saturated fat, which increases the risk of clogged arteries and triglycerides and. often raises LDL (bad) cholesterol and lowers HDL (good) cholesterol,” says Best. Any beef and broccoli or stir-fry recipes you might enjoy will work just as well with a tofu substitution, which has plant-based protein, less saturated fat and benefits for your bone and muscular health and immune system.

“Tofu is a soy based plant protein that is often a replacement for beef or eggs, and it’s lower in saturated fat and higher in beneficial nutrients like iron and vitamin D, with more protein per serving than other plant foods,” says Best.

Use firm tofu and mix with vegetables, especially green ones, like kale, spinach, broccoli and Brussels sprouts, as well as colorful starchy ones, like carrots and sweet potato. And keep the sauce light and low in sodium and sugar, too!

2. Beef Patties for Salmon Cakes

Salmon is a rich source of protein, and it’s also anti-inflammatory, thanks to its heart-healthy fat content. Salmon contains omega-3s, which are clean fats that lower inflammation and risk for various disease, and salmon has pretty low mercury levels, so it’s safe (and encouraged!) to consume two or three servings a week.

“Replacing proteins high in saturated fat with those high in omega-3 fatty acids can be beneficial for heart health, as they lower inflammation in the body and ultimately reduce stress that is placed on the heart and other organs,” says Best.

This is particularly true and common when stress is chronic, where low-grade inflammation persists at higher levels on a routine basis. Plus, salmon also contains vitamins B6 and B12, and vitamin D—the latter being particularly scarce in the diet, with only a few options to choose from that have a rich dose. Use salmon for protein swaps for a healthier heart when you’re grilling or meal prepping burger patties and cakes for the week to use as protein toppers for salads, sandwiched between bread or as an easy main course alongside greens and fiber.

3. Pork Sausage Links for Grilled Chicken

Poultry provides a low fat, animal-based protein for a heart-healthy replacement for pork and beef.

“Many cuts of pork and beef are high in saturated fat,” says Best. Those sausage links and patties you eat with scrambled eggs for breakfast?

They’re likely heavy in saturated fat and sodium, and might be heavily processed, too. (Always check labels at the store and go with brands that have a minimal ingredient list and are free from nitrates and other additives and are lower in sodium.) The same goes for chicken wings and breaded recipes, like cutlets.

“How it is prepared is still important, however, and chicken shouldn't be fried if you are attempting to lower your risk of heart disease,” Best says.

Instead, swap pork for chicken for a healthier heart and choose lean, chicken breast or rotisserie chicken, instead. if grilled, dice it and enjoy inside a healthy breakfast sandwich, with eggs and whole grain or wheat toast, or even stuffed inside a halved avocado.

4. Chicken Salad for Tuna Salad

Much like salmon, this omega-3 rich fish is versatile and works well in dishes that are traditionally made with chicken and beef. Think: casserole and deli-style salads for lunch. For example, replace chicken with tuna when making a deli salad for lunch.

“Tuna is also rich in B vitamins and vitamin D, and it also offers light options, which are lower in mercury,” Best says.

So, you’re increasing heart-healthy fats with this swap, and increasing overall nutritional value while maintaining sufficient protein, too. Just be careful with mayonnaise—it’s thick and creamy and high in saturated fat, and many deli-style spreads and salads are drenched in it. Use a little bit if desired, or swap for olive or avocado based oils and dressings instead, which further promote heart health.

5. Beef Burritos for Bean or Chickpea Burritos

Plant-based protein swaps for a healthier heart include beans, peas and legumes, such as lentils, black beans and chickpeas, for example. beans, peas, and lentils. A tip? If you’re worried about not getting in all nine essential amino acids, combine plant proteins or choose quinoa, which is a gluten-free grain that actually does offer all nine by itself. This is pretty easy to do when building a burrito. “Using beans and rice in a meal will provide the consumer with a complete protein without needing an animal-based protein,” says Best.

We wish you the best week!

As always,

Be Kind Do Fearless,

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