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Many people believe that a massage does nothing more than loosen muscles and treat injuries. While these are great benefits of a massage, there are other things you need to know.

Here are some of the many physical benefits of a massage:

·      Relieve chronic pain

·      Speed recovery from an injury

·      Lower blood pressure

·      Reduce the impact of stress on your body

Along with all the above, a massage simply feels good – and there is nothing better than that.

If those benefits aren’t enough to get you excited, here’s something else to think about: a massage can enhance wellness and relaxation. Here are some of the top benefits:

·      Boost immunity

·      Calm the central nervous system

·      Release toxins from tissues

·      Increase circulation

In other words, a massage can help put your mind at ease.

If you’ve never had a massage, you are missing out on all of these benefits, as well as many others. There is no better time than now to schedule an appointment with a professional and take full advantage of everything a massage has to offer!

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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With summer in full swing, it goes without saying that you’re spending a good amount of time in your yard.

While there is nothing more enjoyable than working outdoors, you realize that this could lead to injury if you’re not careful.

Here are some of the many types of yard work that commonly lead to a muscle strain:

·      Gardening. All of that bending over, lifting yourself up, and shuffling from one location to the next can cause a muscle strain. This often happens when you least expect it.

·      Mowing the lawn. Let’s face it: pushing a lawnmower around your yard can be a difficult task. If you’re not careful about how you treat your body, you could suffer a muscle strain at some point.

·      Lifting. Any time you bend over to lift something you run the risk of straining your back. This is particularly true if the item is heavy, such as a bag of soil or mulch.

If you have any reason to believe that an activity increases your likelihood of a muscle strain, take the right steps in protecting yourself.

For example, make sure you stretch before you tackle any physical activity. Also, don’t push, pull, or lift an item that is too heavy. Instead, ask somebody for help.

If you strain a muscle – regardless of how it happens – be sure to get the proper amount of rest and treatment in the days and weeks to come. A few days away from the yard, coupled with a massage, may be all you need.

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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Do you have a vacation planned for this summer (or fall)? Are you looking forward to relaxing during your time away from home?

Although you’re sure to get some rest on vacation, this doesn’t mean that you should completely shutdown. In fact, there are many ways to workout even when you are away from your comfort zone.

Here are a few ideas to consider:

·      Hotel exercise room. If you’ll be staying in a hotel, you might as well book one with an exercise room. This gives you a place to workout, all without having to leave the property.

·      Local gym. This may cost you a few dollars, but visiting a local gym is a great way to gain access to the high quality equipment you may already be used to using.

·      Walk, run, or jog. It doesn’t matter where you’re vacationing, it’s safe to say you can find somewhere to walk, run, or jog. For example, if you’re staying on the beach, make it a habit to take a run on the sand every morning. Talk about a great way to start your day!

Don’t let anyone tell you that you have to take a break from working out when you’re on vacation. You don’t have to dedicate your entire trip to this, but there are things you can do to stay on track.

Are you the type who enjoys working out, even when vacationing? Share some of your best tips in the comment section below!

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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There may come a point when you realize that your current workout routine is no longer exciting. You may also find that it’s no longer generating the results you were hoping for.

If you find yourself in this position, it’s time to review your current workout routine with an eye toward making a change. Here are a few reasons why it may be time to revamp your current approach.

·      You’re bored. Simply put, if you’re bored with your workout routine it’s time for a change. Here’s why: you don’t want to become lazy, but instead want to stay engaged from the beginning of your workout until the end.

·      The results aren’t there any longer. Early on, your workout routine may have been generating top of the line results. However, now that it’s stale, you may not be getting exactly what you want out of the process.

·      You want to try something different. You don’t need a reason to alter your workout routine. There may simply come a time when you want to experiment with something different. For instance, if you’ve never used free weights as part of your routine, you may want to implement this approach in the days to come.

These are just a few of the many reasons why your workout routine may need revamped. If you find that this is the case, don’t hesitate to take the first step in making a change. You may look back and realize this is the best thing you’ve ever done!

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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Let’s face it: when you workout isn’t nearly as important as actually doing so. However, some people find that they’re more likely to “put in work” at certain times of the day.

Here are some of the top reasons to workout in the morning:

1. Get Your Juices Flowing

Are you the type of person who struggles to get up and running? If so, nothing cures this better than a solid morning workout.

Once you have this out of the way, you’ll feel better about what the rest of your day will bring.

2. Improved Confidence

Do you want to feel your best, both mentally and physically, as you begin to tackle your day? If so, it’s time to experiment with a morning workout routine.

Self-confidence is a big deal, and a good workout can give you just what you need to feel the best about yourself.

3. Don’t Have to Worry About it Later

When you miss your morning workout, you know you’ll have to find time for this later in your day. Unfortunately, this has a way of weighing on your mind as the hours begin to disappear.

When you workout in the morning, you don’t have to worry about it later on. This gives you a clear mind as you tackle the many tasks that are waiting on you.

As you can see, there are quite a few reasons to workout in the morning. If any of these hit home, it may be time to adjust your approach.

When do you typically workout? Why do you choose that time of the day?

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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Are you ready to tackle a killer workout session at the gym? Are you doing some exercise around home? Either way, you need to prepare accordingly.

Here are several mistakes that many people continually make before working out:

·      Skipping the warm up. It sounds like a good idea to dive right into your workout, but this can cause you trouble soon enough. Before you do anything, make sure you take 10 to 15 minutes to warm up. Any repetitions of motion, combined with stretching, will get you ready to go.

·      Eating poorly. Did you just eat a few pieces of pizza? Did you just down a couple cans of soda? This may be why you want to workout, but remember this: hitting the gym right away could actually make you ill. You’ll want to give your body enough time to digest the food you just ate.

·      No plan for your workout. As excited as you may be about your workout, don’t dive right in without a plan. Instead, plan out what you’ll be doing, as this allows you to move from one exercise to the next in a more efficient and effective manner.

These are just a few of the many mistakes that people often make before working out. By avoiding these, you’ll find yourself making more progress from the start.

Have you made any other mistakes in the past? What steps do you take at the present time to avoid these once again?

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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Regardless of age, location, or overall health, walking is one of the best ways to get exercise.

But remember this: there is more to walking than meets the eye. If you don’t take the right approach, you could miss out on the health benefits while putting yourself in position to suffer an injury.

Here are several walking mistakes to avoid:

·      Neglecting to stretch. Although you may not consider walking to be strenuous exercise, you still need to warm-up before hitting the road. Five minutes of stretching can go a long way in helping you avoid injury.

·      Working yourself too hard early in your walk. There is no denying the fact that you may want to “ramp up” your speed, but don’t do so too soon. Once again, this can put you at risk of injury.

·      The wrong form. Walking is walking, right? Well, not exactly. You need to keep proper posture at all times. Along with this, don’t take steps that are too long. Both of these things can cause you trouble.

So, there you have it. These are just a few of the many walking mistakes that have hindered others in the past. By avoiding these, you will feel much better about your walking routine in the future.

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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As the summer goes by, there’s a good chance that you (or somebody you know) will suffer from a scrape.

This can happen for many reasons. Maybe you fall when you’re riding your bike, or maybe you get injured by a lawn tool.

When this happens, don’t assume that medication is the best treatment method. Instead, here are three of the best natural ways to treat a scrape:

·      Honey. This has long been one of the best treatment methods for scrapes, with medical grade honey sold both online and in local stores.

·      Peppermint and cinnamon. When you make these together or purchase pre-mixed capsules, you can be rest assured that relief is only a few minutes away.

·      Tea tree oil. You probably know that tea tree oil can do wonders for your hair. But did you also know it’s been proven effective in treatment cuts and scrapes? Thanks to its antibacterial qualities, make sure you have some of this on hand at all times.

So, there you have it. Although there are many medications on the market for treating scrapes and cuts, there are just as many natural treatment strategies that can yield serious results.

The next time you suffer a scrape (and there will be a next time), experiment with one of these treatment methods.

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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Are you getting ready to hit the road in the near future? Are you looking forward to your trip, but slightly concerned about the impact on your body?

If you answered yes to both questions, here are some tips for feeling your best on your next road trip:

·      Get enough sleep before you leave. You never want to hit the road when you’re tired. Instead, make sure you’re 100 percent awake and alert when you finally get behind the wheel.

·      Take breaks. This is one of the best things you can do. It’s also something that many people avoid, as they want to make good time. When you take breaks every so often, it gives your body the opportunity to recharge and recover.

·      Get enough to eat and drink. It’s easy to get dehydrated when you’re behind the wheel for a long period of time. It’s just as easy to eat junk, instead of focusing on a healthy diet. Don’t let either of these things drag you down.

·      Switch seats. Are you traveling with other people? Is there somebody else who can drive? Don’t hesitate to take some time off by letting somebody else take the wheel.

These are just a few of the many tips you can follow to feel your best on your summer road trip. By following these tips, you’ll be ready to hit the ground running once you reach your destination.

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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Muscle pain has a way of slowing you down. Furthermore, if not treated in the appropriate manner, it can cause a variety of other health concerns.

The most common causes of muscle pain are minor injuries – such as a strain – as well as overuse and stress. Fortunately, with the right treatment strategy, all of these concerns can be put in the past soon enough.

However, it’s important to pinpoint the exact cause of your muscle pain. Some of the primary reasons for this ailment include:

·      Muscle cramp

·      Muscle sprain, strain, or tear

·      Repetitive stress injury

·      Medication

·      Fibromyalgia

·      Flu

·      Rheumatoid arthritis

·      Dehydration

There are many reasons why you need to pinpoint the cause of your muscle pain, including the fact that this will help you decide on the best treatment strategy.

For example, if your muscle pain is due to overexertion, a massage may be the answer to your problems.

However, if there is an underlying medical condition causing the problem, it must be dealt with accordingly.

All in all, you should never take muscle pain lightly. Instead, find the problem and then implement a treatment strategy.

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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There is no denying the fact that you “go hard” during your workout. For this reason, it’s just as important that you focus on the cool down process once your workout comes to an end.

This means something different to everyone, but should typically include:

·      Stretching

·      Hydrating

·      Drinking a protein shake

For some people, it’s a challenge to understand the benefits of cooling down after a workout. Consider the following:

·      It allows you to normalize both your breathing and heart rate

·      It prevents dizziness

·      It prepares your muscles for your next workout

·      It reduces the risk of cramping or muscle spasms

·      It reduces stiffness and soreness (both now and the next day)

Like many, you put a lot of time into making the most of your workout. While this should be commended, remember this: your workout is not complete until you cool down in the appropriate manner.

Once you understand the benefits of cooling down, it’s much easier to implement a strategy that allows you to do what’s best for both your mind and body.

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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Do you find it difficult to sleep during those warm summer nights? If so, you’re not alone. Fortunately, you don’t have to compromise on sleep just because the outdoor temperatures are on the rise.

Here are some top tips for staying cool at night:

·      Stick with cotton sheets. In short, cotton works best because it is breathable and promotes a higher level of ventilation. Both of these things can work in your favor as you attempt to remain cool.

·      Open the windows. Even if it’s warm outside, opening a few windows in your sleeping space will bring a breeze indoors. As a result, it will cool down quickly (especially after dark).

·      Use fans. If you have a ceiling fan in your bedroom, don’t hesitate to turn it on. The same holds true for portable fans. In short, fans increase air flow and can quickly lower the temperature in your bedroom.

·      Get creative. Here’s an example of how you can do this: stick your sheets in the freezer for five or ten minutes before bed. This sounds silly, but it will go a long way in keeping you cool (at least for the first 30 to 60 minutes).

So, there you have it. These are some of the best ways to keep cool on those warm spring and summer nights. As a result, you’ll find it much easier to get a good night’s sleep.

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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Regardless of your profession or how many hours you work, you know one thing to be true: back pain can set in at some point during your day. This is particularly true if you have a history of back problems.

Fortunately, there are several things you can do to prevent back pain from bogging you down. Consider the following:

·      Know how to properly lift heavy objects. This is important if you work in an industry, such as construction or warehousing, when lifting heavy objects is something you’ll do on a regular basis.

·      Take breaks. Do you sit in a chair most of your day? While this may not be physically demanding, it can still take a toll on your back. Be sure to take breaks every now and again.

·      Stretch before and after work. This may sound like overkill, but it can be the difference between avoiding back pain and inviting it. Taking this one step further, don’t hesitate to stretch during your breaks.

As you can see, it can be quite simple to prevent back pain at work. When you take these basic steps, it won’t be long before you’re avoiding this problem and feeling better about every day you spend on the job.

Final tip: if you do suffer an injury, don’t hesitate to seek medical treatment. Along with this, a massage may be just what you need in order to eliminate your pain and get back on your feet.

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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During the warm summer months, there may come a time when you want nothing more than to cool down in a hurry.

While there are many strategies for achieving this goal, none are more efficient than taking a cold shower.

In addition to cooling down, here are some of the other benefits:

·      Eases stress (which is something everyone can use!)

·      Relieves depression

·      Speeds up the recovery of muscle soreness

·      Improves circulation

·      Enhances your immune system

·      Refines both skin and hair

·      Increases your overall level of alertness

At first, you may not enjoy the idea of a cold shower. Instead, you’d much rather take a warm shower, as you consider this more comfortable.

However, once you experiment a few times with a cold shower, you’ll realize that the benefits far outweigh any potential drawback. Once you’re okay with the idea that the water will be cold at first, you’ll “stick it out” as to ensure that you can take advantage of the many benefits.

There is no better time than now to experiment with a cold shower. If you get on a regular schedule, you may soon find that this is changing the way you feel, both mentally and physically.

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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Are you seeking a fun new way to get more exercise this summer? Are you open to any and all options?

If so, you should consider the many benefits of swimming. While this may not be your preferred method of exercise, this could change once you jump in the pool for the first time.

There are many benefits of swimming when compared to other forms of exercise, such as jogging or running. For example, swimming puts less strain on your body. As a result, you’re not causing harm to one part of your body as you attempt to improve another.

Here are some of the other benefits:

·      Improve strength and muscle definition

·      Improve flexibility

·      Build bone mass (perfect for older individuals)

·      Reduce inflammation

·      Burn calories

·      Help lower stress levels

With all these benefits in mind, there is only one thing left to do: find a swimming pool and jump in.

At first, you may not know what you are doing. Over time, however, you can develop a swimming regimen that allows you to get the exercise you’re seeking.

Final tip: don’t shy away from swimming because it takes a bit more work to get involved. If you keep an open mind, you’ll find it easy to locate a pool so that you can swim on a regular basis.

What do you think of swimming as a form of exercise? Is this something you have tried in the past? Will you experiment with this in the future?

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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Are you seeking a fun new way to get more exercise this summer? Are you open to any and all options?

If so, you should consider the many benefits of swimming. While this may not be your preferred method of exercise, this could change once you jump in the pool for the first time.

There are many benefits of swimming when compared to other forms of exercise, such as jogging or running. For example, swimming puts less strain on your body. As a result, you’re not causing harm to one part of your body as you attempt to improve another.

Here are some of the other benefits:

·      Improve strength and muscle definition

·      Improve flexibility

·      Build bone mass (perfect for older individuals)

·      Reduce inflammation

·      Burn calories

·      Help lower stress levels

With all these benefits in mind, there is only one thing left to do: find a swimming pool and jump in.

At first, you may not know what you are doing. Over time, however, you can develop a swimming regimen that allows you to get the exercise you’re seeking.

Final tip: don’t shy away from swimming because it takes a bit more work to get involved. If you keep an open mind, you’ll find it easy to locate a pool so that you can swim on a regular basis.

What do you think of swimming as a form of exercise? Is this something you have tried in the past? Will you experiment with this in the future?

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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If you suffer from allergies, this isn’t your favorite time of the year. Unfortunately, it won’t be long before your skin is itchy, your eyes are running, and your nose is clogged.

With all this in mind, there are a few basic skin care tips you can follow to ensure that you still look your best. Consider the following:

·      Use a daily serum. With this, you can strengthen the top layer of your skin to keep allergens on the outside looking in. Furthermore, don’t wait to wash your skin after entering your home from the outside.

·      Use a moisturizer on your nose. Does your nose always turn red during allergy season? Not only should you use a moisturizer, but make sure you only rely on high quality tissues. You don’t want to rub your nose with something irritating, such as a paper towel, as this will only worsen your situation.

·      Rely on eye drops. One of the top symptoms of allergies is red eyes and dark circles around the eyes. You can help combat both these concerns through the use of eye drops.

There is no denying the fact that the spring season will bring allergens to the area. Although you may be concerned about what this means to your health, there are steps you can take to protect your skin.

By following the advice above, irritated skin doesn’t have to drag you down this year.

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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With the hot summer months closing in on us, it’s safe to assume that you’ll be spending more time outdoors. While there is nothing wrong with this, it’s important that you take care of your body along the way.

Heat exhaustion should always be in the back of your mind, as this condition should never be taken lightly.

In short, heat exhaustion comes about when you’ve been exposed to high temperatures for an extended period of time. Without the right approach to treatment, this can soon turn into heat stroke. As a result, it’s not out of the question for your body to suffer serious injury, such as damage to one or more organs.

The most common signs of heat exhaustion include:

·      Dizziness

·      Confusion

·      Fatigue

·      Fainting

·      Headache

·      Muscle cramps

·      Diarrhea

·      Vomiting

·      Nausea

·      Extreme sweating

·      Rapid heartbeat

If you’ve been exposed to heat, if you’re suffering from any of these symptoms, it’s better to be safe than sorry.

There are two things you should do at that point: hydrate yourself and move to a cooler place, such as an air conditioned home.

It can be a lot of fun to spend time outdoors during the summer months. Just make sure you’re health always comes first. Heat exhaustion is a serious health concern, and it should be treated as such.

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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With warmer weather moving into the area, it won’t be long before bees and wasps begin to swarm.

While most people can avoid being stung, this doesn’t hold true for everyone. If you find yourself in this unenviable position, it’s important to do a couple things.

First off, realize that a bee sting could cause a severe allergic reaction. For this reason, you need to watch for symptoms such as:

·      Difficulty breathing

·      Hives

·      Severe itching

·      Dizziness

·      Rapid pulse

·      Swelling of the throat and tongue

·      Loss of consciousness

If you have any reason to believe you’re suffering an allergic reaction, it’s imperative to receive immediate medical attention.

Conversely, if you don’t suffer a serious reaction, you can treat the sting with one of these home remedies:

·      Honey. This can help with healing the wound, as well as the itching and pain. Apply a small amount of honey to the site, cover it with a bandage, and leave it be for 30 to 60 minutes.

·      Baking soda. By mixing bake soda and water, you’ll end up with a paste that can help reduce the pain and swelling. After applying, cover the area with a bandage and leave it sit for 15 to 20 minutes.

·      Toothpaste. This sounds silly, but many people claim that it can reduce the pain and itching associated with a bee sting. All it takes is a little dab on the site of the sting.

So, there you have it. You now have a better idea of the steps to take should a bee sting you this spring or summer.

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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Do your feet ache, day in and day out? Is this hindering your ability to live your life? Are you ready for a change?

If you find yourself in this position, there are a few things you can do to relieve the pain in the near future.

First and foremost, you should pinpoint the location of the pain and discomfort. Is the pain in your heel? How about the arch of your foot? What about the ball? Once you pinpoint the location, you can then move forward with implementing the right treatment plan.

Here are a few things to consider:

·      Soak your feet in warm water for 15 to 30 minutes every night.

·      Get a professional massage.

·      Try physical therapy.

·      Give your feet some rest (stay off them for a day).

Some of these treatment strategies may generate positive results. Others, however, may not do much for your pain. Your job is to find out what works so you can use that particular treatment plan to your advantage in the future.

If all else fails, don’t hesitate to consult with your doctor. There may be a good reason for your pain. Once your doctor diagnoses the problem, you’ll then know exactly how it should be treated.

Have you experienced foot pain in the past? How did you deal with this?

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.

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