Posts Tagged ‘exercise’

If you don’t use it….

May 20th, 2015 No Comments Tags: , , , , , ,

Oh for the love of spring activities. I found myself moseying down to the centre of town in Kelowna, BC recently. A mile in any direction sports about from beach volley ball, mountain or trail walking, running, biking, paddling, swimming, golfing – you name it, people of all ages were doing it! Seeing so many “movers and shakers” participating in their own “movement movement” inspired me. My heart smiled as I passed through.

I too was a runner many decades ago. Well a jogger, really. I participated in a multitude of 10 kilometre (10k) fun runs and a couple of 20ks. That’s the extent of me actually doing a marathon – adding smaller races together to equal one big one. I would aim to beat my personal best time. I usually ended up in the last quarter of the group. Truly though, I’m not very athletic, not flexible enough to touch my toes on the first try, not really strong with my spaghetti arms as appendages. Nonetheless, I move, I stretch, I lunge, I burpee and I lift weights. I’m more like a tortoise, using the slow and steady strategy to win the race – my race.

When I took up jogging in my “big-boned” teen years, I distinctly remember that first time out. My Dad mapped a one-mile route to get me started. What I thought would be a cinch in the car felt like a one-mile marathon on the street – feet pounding, thighs rubbing, sucking in wind with a sharp stitch in my side. Am I there yet? What, another block to go? Oh the pain!

Being a hard-headed Italian, I was too proud to stop. As the weeks passed during those early stages, jogging that one-mile became easier. Soon, I yearned to do two miles then three, then four…

Jogging taught me the importance of setting goals and the euphoric sense of accomplishment when I reached them. It’s symbolic for any goal you make in life. If you are standing at the starting line of a marathon-long type challenge, break it down into blocks and tackle one block at a time. In time you’ll be meeting personal goals that add up to significant change over time and will stick with you for good.

My exercise regimen has morphed through the decades. I used to jog; now I walk. Whether you’re an iron-woman Viking or someone content with walking, the important thing is that you do something, anything. Our bodies were meant to move; we’re meant to run, walk, jump, dance, ski, rollerblade, swim and saunter, although some better than others. Neighbourhood malls are safe-haven walking trails for fair weather types. If you haven’t already done so, join in. There really isn’t any excuse not to participate especially this time of year. Because at the end of the day, it’s true: if you don’t use it, you’ll lose it.

Looking for more inspiration? Check out my ebook, Skinny on Slim, the Little Black Dress of Diet Books.

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Treat Your Body Right, Build a Healthy Lifestyle

February 25th, 2015 No Comments Tags: , , , , , , ,

When you’re in good health it’s easy to take it for granted. That ability to take on the day like a bull fighter is great. When you’re totally on your game it’s a snap to add more “to-do’s” to your day because you have the time and zest to do them. You embrace your day effortlessly with vim and vigour.

Take a few weeks ago; I joined a special someone on a business trip to Geneva. My down time was spent taking long walks in the old town, along the serene Lake Geneva looking for Shania Twain, meandering near the United Nations building and more. Each evening was spent taking another stroll to and from dinner, not giving walking an extra few miles a second thought. We probably clocked 7 to 11 miles each day to’ing and fro’ing.

Coming home on the plane I sat near a fellow who coughed the entire flight. I was doomed. The next day I succumbed to this year’s flu bug, UG. I truly can’t remember the last time I was so sick. You know the score, high fever, achy muscles, a splitting head ache and left with little energy even to sip water. I turned from a free spirit who could walk 10 miles in a day to a shut in who was winded after shuffling 10 steps, what gives!

It got me thinking about what a blessing good health truly is. During one of my usual daily Twittersphere scans I read a brash tweet that read “I know what’s good for my health and choose NOT to do it.” Hmmmm, I thought how strange it is to deliberately do the opposite of what’s good for me. As I recuperated that week how good it felt to do things that made me feel better. As I tend to say, “don’t mess with the machine!

It was wonderful to regain my energy to bundle up and head out for a daily walk again. It felt great to unravel my mat to bend and stretch and reach for the stars. I also listened attentively to my body’s cues for the whole foods it craved to help whip my systems back into shape – one day I yearned for homemade apple sauce; another homemade soup; then to eggs and toast; to fresh berries and plain Greek-style yogurt. I knew I was really coming around when I pined for ribs!

Establishing a healthy lifestyle is the best gift you can give yourself. Having it helps you be the best you can absolutely be. Your body truly is your temple, so treat it right!

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Propel to Change All Year…

January 3rd, 2015 No Comments Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Well folks you know where I stand on this topic of waiting only for the New Year to make resolutions. In two words I don’t! Every day is a new frontier and affords us an ample opportunity to make small changes. Whether it’s a Monday, a Friday, a vacation day or any day of any season, it is always an opportune time to make better choices. Here’s a running list of ideas to consider now and to refer to all year though toward a better you:

DO – Aim to get & stay more active every season of the year.

DON’T – Eat with distractions, especially in front of the TV.

DO – Work toward having more meals together as a family.

DON’T – Start any fad diet & check out Skinny on Slim, The Little Black Dress of Diet Books.

DO – Try a new easy, healthy recipe every few weeks and aim to cook more with your kids.

DON’T – Weigh yourself every day. You’ll make yourself nutty.

DO – Talk with your fellow employees and employer about making your workplace healthier.

DON’T – Eliminate your favourite foods, you’ll just crave them so much more. Create a love affair with food!

DO – Plan to make food choices using all of the food groups.

DON’T – Follow the crowd, follow your own inner voice and plans.

DO – Choose half a plate of veggies & fruit at each meal… an easy way to enjoy your 5-10 each day.

DON’T – Make excuses. Trust me, there are people worse off than you, so tune your attitude in.

DO – Get in the habit of reading food product labels AND finding out what’s in the restaurant food you frequent. Knowledge is power.

DON’T – Change your plans like the wind changes direction every time the news reports on a different study. Stay the course!

DO – Schedule your annual physical check up and dentist visit. Prevention is key.

DON’T – Take anecdotal advice from anyone. Just because Aunt Jane is a smart accountant, doesn’t mean she knows squat about nutrition.

DO – Work in small rewards and love yourself more.

DON’T – Aim for perfection. That’s as unrealistic as the hills are old.

DO – Work on looking and feeling better. You may do better when you feel awesome.

Ok, so there you have it, some food for thought as we propel ourselves into 2015. Upward and onward!

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December 12th, 2014 No Comments Tags: , , , , , ,

I stall
Not yet!
I fret

Sharp cold
Be bold
Scarf, hat
Make a pact

Head out
No pout
Fresh air
I dare

Walk fast
Time past
Around the bend
Home again

Not so bad
I’m glad
It’s only snow
Not Buffalo!

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Reactivate Your Activity

November 21st, 2014 No Comments Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Jack Frost is our master blaster this week folks, slapping us out of our autumn slumber. I like to ease into my winter-weather wardrobe in stages, don’t you? I still have flowers in my window box, now lying limp, a turtle gnome in my garden with his head poked into his shell and my doorbell on the Halloween theme setting, hmmmm. No I’m not ready for this!

I have been away for a stint and amped to get back into my exercise routine with gusto despite the sudden change in weather. But with this new cold reality I have changed my approach to get me back in the game. Here are some ideas to help you reactivate your activity explained in my ebook Skinny on Slim, The Little Black Dress of Diet Books, listen up:

  • Bundle Up – When you choose to go out and face the elements dress warmly (layers, coat, thermal socks, hat, mittens) or your frigid experience will reinforce couch-potato-dom and put your winter-esque activity plans on ice. Getting outside in these conditions and being active can be quite invigorating for some!
  • Just for Today – Adopt the adage “just for today”. How often do we ponder “how on earth am I going to be active from now until spring?” once the deep freeze hits, ug. Try my secret to chunk it down and focus on today rather than an entire season. When you do that all of the tomorrows will fall in to place!
  • Think Intervals – Another way to chunk it down is to think in terms of 15 minute intervals, the new “interval training”! Come on folks, everybody has a measly 15 minutes to start a movement movement, right? Once you break through inertia you may find you’re on a roll and decide on doing two intervals in a row. If not think about working in another interval or two in a little while. Your exercise doesn’t have to be done all at one time.
  • Wimp Out & Stay In – If you truly do hate the cold, plan workouts inside – do mall walks, turn on the tunes and dance to the music, invest in a piece of exercise equipment you’d enjoy using. I love my stair climber and cross country ski machine and used it yesterday to stay toasty warm.

Don’t lose heart folks, warmer temperatures are returning and this white stuff will be gone in a flash, we will overcome! Let’s be thankful for one thing…. we don’t live in Buffalo!

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What time is it? Exercise-o’clock!

November 7th, 2014 No Comments Tags: , , ,

What time is it you ask?
It’s exercise-o’clock!

Get up off the couch
And go for a wee walk

Put on music perhaps
And do a square dance

You won’t need special shoes
Or Lululemon pants!

Maybe take a few flights of stairs
To get from point “A” to “B”

Consider taking a bike ride
With your entire family

Any time is a good time
To fight inertia and get on the move

Our bodies we meant to shake and shimmy
Saunter, run, dance, so vamoose!

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Fall 5 Ways

September 22nd, 2014 No Comments Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Let’s hear it for fall. Yes folks, that time of year when Mother Nature inspires us with the harvest and her artistic palate. It’s a perfect time to shift your thinking and fall for some fresh new approaches.

Fall Back – Get back to basics with the horn of plenty of produce available at your grocery store or farmer’s market. Get your 5 – 10 a day of fruits and veggies with loads of easy picks.

Fall Forward – Start now to make goals to keep you progressing to a healthier you. Aim to make one, two or three goals at a time on your food and activity to ramp up your momentum.

Fall Aside – Discard some of those old habits that get you using the drive through too often.

Fall Off – Get yourself into being a leader and not a follower of what everybody else is doing. Ditch the diet du jour and find a horn of plenty of ideas in my ebook Skinny on Slim, The Little Black Dress of Diet Books to motivate you.

Fall In – Follow what the successful weight losers do and get inspired by their stories and testimonials from my book.

Stay in the moment folks and enjoy everything this new season has to offer. Fall in love with fall!

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New Shoes

September 17th, 2014 No Comments Tags: , , , ,

Bought some new shoes
That I’m gonna use
To get me around
No more making an excuse

A new gift to me
New model arrived Friday
Light, sturdy and slick
Fun to help me do my shtick

Got a headache from all the spin
A wall of shoes, where do I begin?
Just wanna walk without pain
Get me through heat, sleet and rain

Choices galore
Every colour and more
Rocker sole and higher heel
Bigger toe box is part of the deal

Finally chose a pair
Can hardly wait to wear
To take me near and far
My goal? Time to raise the bar!

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Happy Feat….

September 8th, 2014 No Comments Tags: , , , ,

I found myself in one of those big box sports stores shopping for shoes for a kinesiologist I know. Let me tell you, you need to keep your wits about you before you arrive at the Wall-O-Shoes because you might just forget what activity you needed them for. Do you need shoes for walking, jogging, hiking, biking, jumping, cross training, dancing, climbing, sacheing, sauntering, wandering?? Really folks there is something for every movement you might ever plan to make and then some!

I got that glossed over look early in the going distracted by the splashes of colour rather than form and supposed function. Is being active really that complicated? As I stood at that wall it crossed my mind that if a Marsian landed on Earth and moseyed into this store they would assume that ours is a society of super-fit custodians. Hmmm, I thought, we’re a society of chronic sitters who are now heading in to couch potato harvest season for the masses…. sadly.

I remember when my Dad brought my sis and me to the store for our first pair of jogging shoes, actually used for jogging back in the ’70′s. We had 2 choices – Adidas and some other brand I can’t really remember. The ladies got the white with blue stripes and the men had the blue with white stripes. These did the trick for walking, sauntering, jogging, even hiking, gym class and more.

You know if we truly had a fit-nik society I’d be delighted to write about it and let the sea of shoes wash over my closet. But sadly, we don’t, yet the sea of shoes still swells.

I think on this Motivation Monday we ought to make a pact this season folks, to take out any and all kinds of sports shoes you own and USE each of them at least once a week for an hour. Deal?

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Change Your Tone!

August 6th, 2014 No Comments Tags: , , , ,

As I turn another page on the calendar, so are ideas about how to further energize and tweak my activity routine. Time to take it up a notch to help me change my tone! How are your activity plans shaping up to shape you better this summer?

A few years back I found a vast difference in my core strength by simply adding a few new moves into my matt routine by incorporating lunges and squats. This season I’m adding in a string of burpees. I have been mulling over adding these for some time now as I have read about the benefits of doing these. I hit the start button on this in June, working 10 in each workout and I live to tell about it.

Truth be told I love to love the moves of my routine, but I’m getting acid reflux with this addition…. What I am loving is the results after just a few months of working these in….  It doesn’t take much time yet has myriad benefits for my aging body.

I wrote about making a 16 minute investment every 2nd day into your hourglass in my e-book Skinny on Slim, The Little Black Dress of Diet Books. Working on your muscles and tone as your personal protein preservation project.

While you’re sprucing up your repertoire consider trying something new moves such as lunges, squats and/or burpees to tone by. You’ll be glad you did!

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