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Top 10 Apps to Organize Your Life

Many people believe that they cannot survive without their smartphones. Do you have the most up-to-date apps for organizing and syncing your Smartphone and networks? Check our list.


Smart phones and tablets are essential business tools in today’s ever changing world. You need to be organized and ready to keep control of your fast paced life. Whether it’s Apple, Android or Windows, the tools you need are in the application market.


Thousands of these apps are available to you, but how do you know which one works best, is the easiest to use and most importantly, is the right one for you. We’re going to get you started in the right direction. Here are our Top 10 apps to organize your life:

► Catch Notes

My personal favorite note taking and thought capturing app makes it easy to create and file notes by typing, taking a picture or recording voice. It has reminders (big bonus) and has a unique feature called Streams that allows you and 1 or more friends to converse and exchange ideas privately. Everything backs up online so you never have to worry about losing your data.

► Google Maps

Definitely offers the best and most comprehensive maps on the web. You can get GPS guided walking, driving, cycling and public transportation routes from point A to point B in text or voice. It’s also tied into Google Places so finding restuarants, coffee houses, stores or points of interest can be done in one easy search.

► Astrid Tasks

This app is great for keeping track of repeating tasks and chores that you don’t want in your calendar. It comes with everything you need to stay on track with pop-up reminders, multiple alarm settings and a very easy interface.

► Barcode Scanner

Can’t find the price on an item in a store you’re shopping at? Easily scan the UPC code with your phone’s camera and instantly you will have the information pop up on your phone. It also reads barcodes such as QR Droid and Data Matrix. These can contain links to websites, contact information and more.

► Four Square

Helps you keep up with friends, discover what’s nearby, save money and unlock deals. Whether you’re setting off on a trip around the world, coordinating a night out with friends, or trying to pick out the best dish at your local restaurant, foursquare is the perfect companion. It’s easy to use and can get addictive if you start focusing on scoring points and earning badges.

► Flixster

Okay maybe you are not going to use this one all the time, but when you want to find movie listings and read reviews there isn’t an easier app to use. With this app you can also buy tickets and DVDs online, and can be your best friend when discussing movie trivia.

► Google Calendars

I could go on forever about why I love the Google calendar…let’s just say your time management skills are about to get a turbo boost of efficiency. Check it out for yourself!

► Seesmic

If you love social media and want to be up on everything that’s going on at Facebook, Twitter and Linked In… this app will consolidate all three into one simple format. It can handle multiple accounts such as a FB personal and business page, plus several Twitter accounts. A great app for your Smartphone and even better on the computer!

► Lose It

One of the best free weight loss apps we have found. Good set up makes it easy to set goals, track food, exercise, calories in/out and follow progress. The calorie counting is done for you and all you have to do is input your food from a vast library or (one of the best features) scan the barcode of a package where it is instantly added to your list. Many of our clients support each other through the app and it has pushed many to achieve their goals.

► Drop Box

Everyone is talking about the Cloud. Well here it is. This Cloud and you can store, transfer, send and move files of all types without using thumb drives or valuable hard drive space. It’s all stored on line.




5 Daily Get Fit Tips… No Gym Required (Part 2.)


Do you really need the danish, chocolate chip cookie, or bite-size candy bar someone brought into the office today?   The favorite retort is, “No, but I want it!” Ask yourself, in that moment, what do you want for your health? Will this help you meet your personal goals? I’m not saying never eat sweets, I’m saying practice self-control.


  • Standing heel lifts are easy do almost anywhere.  Washing dishes at the sink: before you begin the chore, hold the edge of the sink, (not the soapy area), keep your feet at least hip distance apart and rise up onto your toes as high as you can.  Do 10.  Do the dishes and do 10 more.  Waiting in a line:  do some heel lifts while holding onto your shopping cart or only lift halfway up onto your toes and do as many as you can while waiting.  It also helps to make the line move faster.


  • Posture…  Do you work standing all day? Try this.  Imagine you have two hard cover books on your head if you draw your navel toward your spine and draw your shoulder blades toward the floor, and look forward as you walk you will begin improving posture right away.  Or do you sit all day in a chair? Try this.           Sit all the way back into your chair so your back is touching the chair back, feet flat on the floor, draw your navel in toward your spine and sit tall. Now place your hands on the bottom of the back of the chair seat (if your arms are a bit short to reach then grab the bottom of the back of the chair)  and stretch the crown of your head toward the ceiling.  Count to 10 by saying 1 one thousand, 2 one thousand and so on.  Reach everything upward while your hands hold firm to stretch you in opposite directions.

  • Head tilts are great to pass the time and get fit while you are waiting for that download or defrag to finish.  Maybe you are watching a movie or at a sporting event for your child.  Sit or stand up straight, like when you worked on posture.     Tilt your head toward your shoulder with your ear lining up with your shoulder reach your finger tips to the floor on both sides.  Use only the strength of your neck muscles to press the ear to the shoulder (Caution: Do Not Pull on Your Head).  For a bit more intensity tilt your chin toward your chest and back to your shoulder, slowly.  Did you feel that?!  Repeat 3 on each side holding for a count of 10 seconds.  Alternate sides one a time in case the download finishes sooner than expected you will get a stretch on both sides.

  • Arm Stretches  can be done almost anywhere by bringing your R arm straight up over your head then reaching to your spine with the palm of your R hand.  With your L hand, grab the R elbow and gently pull it toward your head.  Gaze to the floor while active in the stretch.  Do not look up, but do not tuck your chin to your chest either, let it drop naturally.  Hold for a count of ten seconds while maintaining the pull and keeping your hand as straight onto your spine as you can.  If this stretch feels difficult don’t give up, just do the best you can taking a deep breath in and exhaling slowly while you count.  It will get better.  Repeat this on the Left.Do 3 sets counting to 10 until you can hold for a full 30 seconds on each side without letting go.

  • Spinal rotation stretches can be done while you wait in line, at home, at work, or at play.  Stand with your feet just hip distance apart (do not over exaggerate the stance).  Place your R hand at your R hip and your L hand on top of the R.  Keeping your chin level with your shoulder begin to look over your L shoulder while you hold your hips firmly so they do not move.  Take in a deep breath and as you begin to exhale it slowly keep your chin chasing your shoulder as the shoulder keeps rotating behind you.Remember your Pilates posture and reach upward through the crown of your head.  Draw your navel in and up as you stretch and enjoy the release of tension in your spine.  Repeat on the Left.

These are a few of the take away’s from class exercises I give my students.  It’s so important to create and maintain good habits in our lives because often life will get in our way.  It’s up to you to be proactive in your own health, so that you may give all to family, friends, & yes, your career too!


Budda said:    “No matter how hard the past, you can always begin again” Begin Today!

Stacy Price-Darkis, CPI, BCES..    Studio 59 Pilate Fitness, LLC



5 Daily Get Fit Tips… No Gym Required (Part 1.)


You have a busy life, too many meetings, you have guests coming for dinner and you’ve got to get the house in order, the kids have sporting events or practices to go to….exactly how are you supposed to slow down and take time for you to stay fit and maybe live more stress free?

Do a few of these while you get all that done too!

  1. Do walking lunges down the hallway or if at work, walk by placing one foot directly in front of the other like walking on a tight rope.
  1. Take the stairs whenever possible. If at home and the laundry is up or down stairs then walk briskly. (Caution: be careful if you are carrying something) If you are like me, you have a number of loads to do, so moving at a brisk pace, pulling and holding your navel inward while stretching the crown of your head toward the ceiling, as you travel up and down stairs, will give not only your legs and belly some work, but those lungs too!
  1. Park further away from the mall or office entrance you are visiting, on purpose. It’s a bit cold out and that will make you pick up the pace and move…plus your car will likely get a few less dings parking away from other vehicles. And yes, there is a good excuse to shop, as the packages you now have to carry back to the car will help your arm strength. But be sure to use proper posture while carrying heavy bags.  Hold them close to your body and do not slouch downward, instead hold your navel inward and feel your ribs pull close together like a vest. Keep a bend in your arms and your shoulder away from your ear lobes. Use their power equally to carry heavy bags. It’s all about form!


[Also Read:  5 MORE Daily Get Fit Tips… No Gym Required (Part 2.) ]

  1. Put on some music upbeat and your favorite to move to. Do it while you prepare meals and when cleaning the house. Nothing wakes up your senses like awesome tunes. And anything that makes getting that bathroom clean faster is better.
  1. Believe in what you do, nothing big will happen without your effort. Keep your goals in mind. When at your desk, sit up straight in your office chair. Stretch your arms over your head lining your bicep’s up with your ears, and reach up to the ceiling with a deep inhale, then just exhale out as much as you can. Repeat 3 times.



Transform Your Metabolism with Exercise

Know Your Body Mass Index(BMI)


  • BMI = Waist to Hip Ratio = Body Fat % (see BMI Chart @ Sparkpeople.com)
  • Why do I need to know this? When you know your ratio of lean mass to fat, you can determine which type of exercise and how much will get you to your goals!
  • Your current body weight _____lbs x your current body fat % ____ = _____lbs of fat
  • Your current body weight _____lbs – your current ______lbs of fat = _____lbs of lean mass: As your weight changes – so does your BMI
  • Fat weighs less than muscle and it takes up more space.
  • To burn fat = cardio exercise
  • To build muscle = weight resistance training
  • Skeletal muscles are designed to burn blood sugar effectively this is why maintaining adequate muscle mass & exercising regularly are important keys to maintaining stable blood sugar & metabolism


Know Your Personal Body Type

Why do I need to know this? To determine what it will take to get your body type to your goal body weight and BMI. Many people want to look like someone else and they don’t even have the same body type! This will help you be more realistic to the amount of cardio or strength training you will need.


Ectomorph:   Classic “hard gainer” = more difficulty building heavy muscle mass
                       Thin build, Lower Body Fat %, Small Bone Structure
                       Shape: Stick, Pear, Apple, Hourglass
                       Will need more strength training than cardio to build lean mass
Mesomorph: Classic “natural gainer” = strong ability to build muscle mass
                        Athletic, Muscular build, Medium to Large Bone Structure
                        Shape: Stick, Pear, Apple, Hourglass
Endomorph: Classic “hard loser” = predisposed to strong fat storage, fights
                        hard to lean out, may or may not build muscle easily
                       Thick build, Higher Body Fat %, Larger Bone Structure
                       Shape: Pear, Apple, Hourglass

Cardio Exercise & Metabolism

  • Cardio (Aerobic Exercise) is the best way to burn calories at a fast rate.
  • To burn more = hit your Target Heart Rate:
Target Heart Rate = 220 – your age = Max times your heart can beat per minute
Take pulse for 1 minute after intense exercise = Take pulse for 1 minute x 10
  • The more intense the exercise, the harder your muscle groups work = more lean muscle mass building!
(Interval Training, Cycling, Stair Master, Incline Treadmill, Aerobics w/weights, Pilates, Functional Training, Elliptical)
  • The more duration in the exercise, the more you break down muscle tissue = less lean muscle mass building and more fat burning!
(Walking, Running, Cardio Aerobics, Treadmill, Rowing Machine, Elliptical)
  • Interval Cardio Programs are best for cardio intensity workouts (Interval training on the Stationary Bike, Treadmill, Elliptical Stairmaster, Rower, Stairmaster or Circuit Training)
  • Aerobic classes which burn calories and sculpt muscle include both cardio and resistance training (Step Aerobics, Resistance/Toning Classes, Bosu Classes, and Pilates, Fitness Yoga, Bikram Yoga)
  • Cardio is best in the AM when you can capitalize on higher metabolic rate = biggest short – term metabolic boost
  • Pure cardio classes have no permanent affect on RMR = only temporary = help you burn calories today but you will have to do cardio again each day to burn calories
  • It is important to develop cardiovascular fitness along with lean muscle mass.



Resistance Training & Metabolism 

  • Weight Training increases metabolically active tissue (muscles)
  • Increased lean muscle mass = more calories burned throughout the day since muscle is highly metabolic (1lb of muscle burns 35-50 calories)
  • Building muscle creates a permanent affect on your RMR
  • Each pound of muscle can raise your RMR 15 calories per day
  • Weight training is the most effective way to build and preserve lean muscle
  • Resistance training should be placed before cardio training to get the maximum strength from your major muscle groups before breaking them down with cardio
  • To sculpt your muscle = rebuild more tissue than you break down
  • After Strength Training exercises you will continue to burn an additional 100+ calories over the next 24 hour period


How does exercise affect Metabolism?

  • You burn calories during and after exercising which elevates your metabolism the rest of the day (temporary daily metabolic change).
  • To permanently increase your metabolism, you need to change your body content by increasing your lean muscle mass and decreasing your body fat.
  • You will probably need a combination of Cardio and Weight Resistance to reach your goals.
  • The more muscle you lose, the more your metabolism slows or decreases.
  • The more muscle you gain, the more your metabolism increases (Lean, mean, fighting machine).
  • 1 pound of muscle burns 35-50 calories a day.


Average calories burned per fitness activity:

Check out Sparkpeople.com to Calculate Exercise Performance & Calories Burned for your specific Personal Stats


Gentle Reminder: 3500 Calories = 1 pound of Fat. To lose 1 pound of Fat a week you will need to decrease your current daily caloric intake or exercise away 500 calories a day for 7 days. Or combine the effort by reducing your caloric intake by 250 cal and exercising away 250 calories each day! Or some other combination that works for you and your weekly schedule!


Personal Power Thought: “Nobody should know your body better than YOU!” ~Sherryism CNC.CPT



Top 7 Healthy Living Tips for Students on a Budget


Achieving health and fitness goals can seem difficult for those living on a student’s limited budget. Meeting those goals can be accomplished by eating right and finding a way to work in a little exercise nearly every day, even if there isn’t money to join a gym.

Eating right

It’s no secret there is an obesity problem in America and a large part of it has to do with the fact most people don’t know the proper meal portions they should be eating. The fact that restaurant meals are often larger than necessary obviously doesn’t help. Being healthy isn’t just about cutting out the things people enjoy eating. The following tips should help make it easier to make better food choices.

  • Don’t skip breakfast– Eat a good meal within 30 minutes of getting out of bed. This will help kick start your metabolism and give it energy for the day. Oatmeal is an inexpensive, low calorie option that actually provides fuel over a longer period of time than most other breakfast foods.
  • Learn the right portions – Rather than heaping piles of food on a plate, divide the dish into sections – one for protein, one for vegetables and one for grains. It also helps to vary the meals and make a point of trying some new foods.
  • Snacks – Limit the amount of junk food in the dorm room or apartment and replace bags of chips with healthy snacks like fruit or small vegetables, such as carrot sticks. Fruit is water dense, which means eating it provides satiety with smaller amounts than other foods.


Staying in shape can be done without joining a health club and paying a costly monthly membership fee. With a little creative thinking it’s easy to exercise for free on a daily basis.
  • The body as equipment – Doing push-ups is a great way to build the muscles of the arms, chest and abdomen and use the weight of the body to do so. Sit ups or crunches also develop the abdominal muscles without the use of equipment. Jogging increases cardiovascular health and can be done outside around a track or the campus.
  • Sports – Get involved in intramural sports offered at the school or just go to the park and join in some pickup games. Playing sports uses a variety of muscles and often doesn’t feel like a workout routine.
  • Join with a friend– Working out is always more fun when there’s somebody urging another on to do their best. Relying on a friend can also prevent one member from quitting when the going gets tough.
  • Walk or bike –When possible, walk or ride a bike to class. This will provide a decent cardio workout without having to plan an extra session. For those that commute, park in a lot away from class and walk the rest of the way.
It doesn’t take a lot of money to reach fitness goals and maintain a healthy lifestyle. In fact, there are a number of easy ways to achieve good health without spending a lot of money for those willing to be creative.


About the Author: Christina Lloyd writes regularly for a site that has helpful tips about financial assistance for students, such as state school grants. She enjoys sharing her tips for living a healthy lifestyle on a tight budget.



Get in GREAT Shape with Dance


A New England Journal of Medicine study stated that participants over 75 who engaged in dancing, reading, board games and playing musical instruments once a week had a 7% lower risk of dementia compared to those who did not. Those who got involved with these activities 11 days out of the month had a 63% lower risk!

But isn’t it easier to just read a good book?

More than lowering your risk of dementia, getting in great shape, dancing can improve memory.  You may not be 75, but this study and others spotlight the many benefits of regular and intentional dance.  Mayo Clinic reported that social dancing helps with stress reduction, improves energy and overall mood, while boosting strength, & stamina.

What about a gym workout?

Dance movements are not the straight forward motion of treadmills, elliptical, Stairmasters, etc.  Improved joint mobility, particularly in the hips & spine has been demonstrated following 3-months of dance training. Dance entails balance and agility which engages the core, the variation of dynamic movement and speeds recruits many muscles that you would not be able to target with the typical gym workout.

What style of dancing is best?

Depending on the style of dancing, you can improve cardiovascular health, increasing muscle tone & coordination, as well as blood flow to the brain.  If you’re looking to stimulate brain health, dancing that involves memorizing steps & working with a partner can improve brain health and performance.

Whether you like ballet, ballroom, tango, salsa, Zumba or belly dancing, the benefits are irrefutable. Regular dancing can reduce many of the high risk chronic diseases that plague our country, improve leg & hip bone density, reduce depression & loneliness….and help with weight loss and management.

In fact, dancing the night away can burn more calories in an hour than riding a bike or swimming. Check this out.  These are based on a 150lb person, per hour:

  • Swing dancing:235  Ballroom dancing:265  Square dancing:280  Ballet:300
  •  Belly dancing:380  Salsa dancing:420+  Aerobic dancing:540+   Zumba:536+

Now, wouldn’t you rather spend the evening shaking your groove thing and listening to great music (with the one you love…or hope to) than watching some unplugged reality train wreck while on the treadmill?




6 Tips for Keeping your New Year’s Resolution to Stay Fit


The word “resolution” implies that you are resolved to do whatever it takes to accomplish a goal. However, resolutions have the connotation of being wishful thoughts that you would like to come true and may diligently pursue for a while. For the average person, resolve typically fizzles out within about six to eight weeks. One way to avoid that is to change workout plans often so you do not burn

The problem for most people is that they try to accomplish goals without committing to developing the habits required for meeting success. There is nothing magical about January 1st. In the past, if you have been a person who does not exercise or watch what you eat, you cannot expect to reverse years of negative behaviors overnight. In order to get and stay fit, sustainable and lasting lifestyle changes must occur.


1. Write Down Your Goals.

Goals that are on paper have a greater sense of permanence and urgency than do those that are floating around in your mind. Penning
your plans helps you work through the process of formulating goals and keeping your focus. Furthermore, you have something to reference along your journey of health and fitness.


It is critical that goals have several factors. They must be specific, measurable, and attainable. A goal stated as, “I want to get fit” is far too general. How will you measure fitness and know whether or not you have attained it?  Something specific might be reducing your body fat by two percent or increasing your lean muscle mass by four pounds. Even the notion to lose weight is too vague. Make your goals as specific as possible.


The next step to successful goal setting is determining how you will measure your progress. A goal such as being healthy is not truly measurable. The most effective way to measure your progress is to keep an online workout log. Resolving to get seven to eight hours of sleep each night can be tracked and measured. A two-point increase in your VO2 max can be measured. If you cannot measure your success, you will never know if you have achieved it.


Lastly, be sure that your goals are attainable. Going from couch potato to Ironman triathlete is probably not a realistic resolution. Someone who is not a runner can resolve to run a mile without stopping and work to get there over time. Change will not happen overnight. Have a friend examine your goals to help you judge whether or not they are realistically attainable for you in your current life situation.


2. Build a Support Team

Having the support and encouragement of friends and family members can make all of the difference regarding the success or failure of your resolutions. If you are trying to cut back on your alcohol intake, suggest fun alternatives to your happy hour crew. If you want to increase your caloric burn, recruit your friends to spend active, quality time together that does not revolve around food. During holidays, volunteer to cook a healthy dish.


It is important that your support team understand what you are trying to accomplish and why. Your mom will be less pushy about you eating her desserts if she knows that you are reducing your sugar intake to prevent diabetes. Surround yourself with like-minded people who will move you closer to your destination rather than farther from it.


3. Chart Your Progress

There is nothing more encouraging than to see how much closer you have come to reaching your goal. If you are trying to lose weight, set a regular weigh-in time and day each week. Write down your weight each time so that you can see if your efforts are fruitful. If the scale is tipping in the wrong direction, examine which behaviors have influenced the numbers.


It may be helpful to keep a food journal and workout log. Tracking diet and exercise holds you accountable to making necessary changes and makes you less likely to cheat. This keeps you honest about what you are eating as well as how much you are working out.


4. Start Small

Small steps can equal big results. If you want to increase your level of physical activity each day, take the stairs instead of the elevator. Park farther away from buildings, so that you are forced to walk more. Strap on a pedometer and aim to take a greater number of steps each day. Do calf raises while you wash dishes or lunges while watching TV.


For dietary changes, pick one area to focus on until you have mastered it. Start by cutting back on sodas until you have eliminated them completely. Next, swap one of your junk food binges for a healthy alternative. For example, replace salty potato chips with roasted nuts or trail mix. Over time, each small change will yield increasing results that equal a healthier way of life.


5. Treat Your Resolutions Like Your Job

Put in as much effort to keeping your resolutions as you do with your job. In other words, schedule your workouts, plan your meals, and avoid anything that derails your success. Plan to exercise at a time when nothing else will get in the way. This may mean that you have to sacrifice sleep or record your favorite TV show, but the payoff will be worth it.


Plan and cook meals in advance so that you are not tempted to reach for junk food when hunger strikes. Allow yourself some indulgences, but overall, be disciplined on a daily basis. You get paid for performance and output at your job. Likewise, you should reward yourself when you reach another milestone in your fitness journey. Use things other than food as your rewards. Buy something you have been wanting or escape for some relaxing time alone or with friends.


6. Be Patient

Change does not happen overnight. Be patient with yourself. You may see big progress some days while experiencing plateaus at other times. The support of your friends and family will be vital during the tough moments when you want to throw in the towel.


Make this year the year you actually stick to your resolutions by implementing them as a healthy way of life.

Author Bio: Emily P. is a freelance writer and a fitness enthusiast. She uses weight loss calculator in order to know exactly what she needs to do in order to lose those few pounds.



5 Reasons Having a Dog Can Keep You Fit


First question: Do you insist on taking the best care of your dog as you possibly can? You know, buying only organic dog food, the best dog insurance, and BPA free chew toys?



Yes? Good…now onto the next question: Do you often find yourself unmotivated to exercise?


Well, your dog might be just the partner you need to start a new fitness regimen and stick to it. Think of your dog as your personal trainer, with a resting heart rate in the 40 BPM range (ours is on average 70 BPM) and the ability to drink over a gallon of water a day. Need more convincing? He can help you maximize your workout and burn at least 200–250 calories per hour on a walk alone (compared to 100 calories on your own)!


Here are the five ways dogs can keep you fit—and five reasons you should let your dog take care of you for a change.


Dogs Will Wake You Up Early

For those of us who want to start getting up earlier to get some exercise in before work, a playful pup will have you out of bed at the break of dawn. Dogs are creatures of habit, so they will be at your bedside nudging you unfailingly for your 6 AM run.


Dogs Will Always Have More Energy Than You

One of the best parts about having a pet is that it will always want to play. How many times have you had a gym or running partner flake on you only minutes before you were planning on exercising? A dog will never cancel, making it more difficult for you to justify skipping the exercise. Think of them as the partner who is better than you— the one you strive to beat.


Dogs Are a Great Way to Meet Like-Minded People

The gym can be an intimidating place, especially for people just beginning their fitness adventure. A lot of people at the gym prefer to keep to themselves, adding to the intimidation factor and making it difficult to make friends. There are countless pet lovers across the nation, and even more fitness-minded pet lovers. Research local dog meet ups or play fetch at the local dog park. Puppies sniffing and nipping at each other are the perfect excuse to socialize with other owners, and who knows, you might just find a human fitness partner, too!


Dogs Are Protective

Especially for women, dogs double as a security guard. Not only can they keep you company, but they can also deter unwanted strangers from approaching you. This is a great way to keep up a good running habit during the winter months when it is dark outside.

Dogs Always Love Going Outside

Even if you don’t have a lot of time on your hands to spend hours at the gym each day, a quick walk in the morning or after work will be a great way to get into good habits of health. Plus, did you know your gait is more natural when you walk and run outside versus a treadmill? This can help prevent injuries and fatigue. Even 20-30 minutes of walking each day is a great start to a healthier lifestyle. And besides, a dog will give you the biggest guilt trip if you don’t treat him to some outdoors time every day.


 About the Author: Adria Saracino is a blogger, marketer, and freelancer. She writes for Embrace pet insurance on topics ranging from pet health to dog insurance. When not writing about puppies and kittens, you can find her writing about style at her personal fashion blog, The Emerald Closet.



Finding Your Stride: Tips for Healthy Lifestyle Change


You used to go jogging, take a walk, use the treadmill, take a Pilates class, bicycle or dance then life got in the way. You had a life altering event tragic or terrific and now you need to rediscover your stride.


First you have to stop making room in your life for the excuse. Whatever you use work, home,the kids, a pet who needs you, a past injury it is time to put aside the excuse and make time for you!

Next enroll in a class or go to the Pilates studio and meet the instructors get a tour of the facility this will take away the nervous jitters you have had about beginning again. Talk to them about your goals and any health concerns you might have. Find a good match to your needs and personality. Take the step.


Be held accountable, get a buddy to workout with, this doesn’t have to be your best friend, maybe it is a co-worker, neighbor, your partner, son or daughter. These people may share the same desires as you and have been nervous about bringing it up. Pick someone who will share and encourage your positive self-talk.
Now keep it realistic, did you get to this point in one month, two? This is going to be the step you take to a lifestyle change. This is going to take more than one or two months of twice a week Pilates classes. Know too that life will continue to take place and put up obstacles for you to overcome. So when they happen take the time to deal with them keep your routine as best you can then once it passes ,”This too shall pass” a proverb indicating that all material conditions, positive or negative, are temporary.   You will be proud of how well you did to maintain your healthful new lifestyle.


Give yourself permission to start feeling great about your choice to get fit. Make small changes and keep them going, studies show it takes about 60 days to form a new long term habit. When the critical inner voicerears its ugly head, and it will, to tell you “this is a lot harder than I thought it would be let’s just quit, Give up! “ Stop the chatter and remind yourself again what are the benefits you have enjoyed from this new healthful lifestyle. Take baby steps.
Now your ready to take charge of your stride again you can get to sculpting your upper body on the reformer, bust that muffin top with a challenging mat routine, and get those long lean legs with some standing arm spring squats and lunges.   Get out in the winter when the sun is shining and take a brisk walk with a buddy and feel the fresh clean air filling your lungs.


Now that you have broken the negative inner critic from its hold over you a small step at a time there is nothing you cannot accomplish. Remember nobody can make you feel inferior without your giving them permission, including yourself!


Stacy A. Price-Darkis, CPI, BCES
Studio 59 Pilates Fitness, LLC